Digest for 07-08-14


COMMUNITY

Watson Chapel physicals

Watson Chapel athletic physicals will be administered July 22 for high school and July 24 for junior high student-athletes. The girls will report to the high school gym at 8:30 a.m. and the boys will be in the field house on both days.

STATE

Portis, Qualls to participate in LeBron James Skills Academy

FAYETTEVILLE — Arkansas forwards Bobby Portis and Michael Qualls have been invited to participate in the LeBron James Skills Academy.

The prestigious camp will be held Wednesday through Saturday in Las Vegas.

The two are among 30 college players and 80 high school players who have been selected to attend the Academy, according to its website. The four-day event will feature workouts and games in front of NBA scouts.

It will be the second camp attended by both players this summer.

Portis was among 15 college players at the Nike Big Man Skills Academy in New Jersey, while Qualls attended the Kevin Durant Skills Academy in Washington, D.C.

Both players will be key to Arkansas’ NCAA Tournament hopes in 2014-15. Portis lead the Razorbacks in rebounding (6.8) and was second in scoring (12.3 points) last season. Qualls ranked third in scoring (11.6 points) and rebounding (4.5).

Three Hogs named to preseason watch lists

FAYETTEVILLE — Three Arkansas football players were named to preseason watch lists for national awards Monday morning.

Running backs Alex Collins and Jonathan Williams were among 78 players selected to the watch list for the 2014 Maxwell Award, which is presented annually to the college player of the year. Defensive end Trey Flowers is in consideration for the 2014 Bednarik Award, which recognized the nation’s defensive player of the year.

Collins and Williams were selected to the watch list after combining to rush for 1,926 yards with 10 touchdowns last season and will be vital to Arkansas’ offensive success once again in 2014. Williams is a candidate for the award after combining for 972 yards with six touchdowns last season, while Collins topped the 1,000-yard mark and was named the Southeastern Conference’s Freshman of the Year.

Arkansas is among four schools to have two running backs on the Maxwell Award watch list, joining Alabama (T.J. Yeldon and Derrick Henry), Texas (Malcolm Brown and Johnathan Gray) and Oregon (Byron Marshall and Thomas Tyner).

Flowers earned second-team All-SEC honors after collecting 13½ tackles for losses and 5 sacks last season. He considered entering the 2014 NFL Draft as a junior, but will be back to lead a defense that allowed 30.8 points a game last season.

Alabama quarterback A.J. McCarron won the Maxwell Award last season, while Pittsburgh’s Aaron Donald was the Bednarik Award winner.

The Maxwell and Bednarik watch list announcements were the first of several over the next two days. Watch lists for the Mackey Award (nation’s top tight end) and Rimington Trophy (nation’s best center) will be announced today.

WORLD

Kittel wins Stage 3

LONDON — Marcel Kittel of Germany won Stage 3 of the Tour de France on Monday and Italy’s Vincenzo Nibali remained the overall leader of cycling’s most prestigious event after three days of racing in England.

Kittel completed Monday’s 155-kilometer jaunt from Cambridge into London in a time of 3 hours, 38 minutes and 30 seconds for his second stage win of this year’s tour. He also won the opening stage on Saturday.

Nibali won Stage 2 on Sunday to grab the coveted yellow jersey as the overall leader and finished Monday with the same time as the stage winner to keep the top spot for a second straight day.

“We have really enjoyed our first day with the yellow jersey,” said Nibali. “The race has gone very well for us. I hope to entertain my fans who enjoy seeing me in the yellow jersey, in Italy and elsewhere.”

A total of 20 riders are within two seconds of Nibali’s overall lead. Included in that large group are defending tour champion Chris Froome of Britain and former winner Alberto Contador of Spain.

Djokovic outlasts Federer for second title

LONDON — Novak Djokovic captured the Wimbledon title for the second time and denied Roger Federer a piece of history on Sunday at the All England Club.

Djokovic dropped the first set in the blockbuster final and failed to serve it out in the fourth, but recovered to earn a 6-7 (7-9), 6-4, 7-6 (7-4), 5-7, 6-4 victory. He also won the 2011 Wimbledon championship and now has seven career Grand Slam titles.

Federer, meanwhile, was denied an unprecedented eighth Wimbledon crown. The Swiss superstar remains tied with Pete Sampras for the most men’s titles in the Open Era on the famed lawns of the London suburb.

It appeared to be Djokovic’s match for the taking on Sunday after he won the second and third sets, then grabbed a 3-1 lead in the fourth with a break of serve.

There had been just one break in the first three sets, but the floodgates opened in the fourth as the two traded breaks again to make it 4-2. Federer had a chance to make it four straight breaks, opening a 30-15 lead in the next game, but Djokovic recovered and held for a 5-2 advantage.

After an easy Federer hold, Djokovic had a chance to serve for the match. He quickly fell behind and Federer earned a break point, which he converted with a forehand winner after Djokovic fell while chasing the previous shot.

Djokovic, though, picked up a championship point against Federer’s serve, but an ace saved it for the Swiss superstar and he went on to hold to make it 5-5. Federer then broke serve again for a 6-5 edge when he forced Djokovic into a long forehand, and came away with an easy hold in the next game to send the match to a fifth set.

Federer saved three break points in the eighth game of the decider and held to make it 4-4, but Djokovic also held in the next game and earned a second championship point when a Federer forehand went long. A Federer backhand then found the net on the ensuing point to end the nearly four-hour marathon.