Louisiana State beats USC for golf ti­tle

Los Angeles Times - - SPORTS -

Ben Tay­lor made a tricky eight­foot par putt on the 18th hole Wed­nes­day to give Louisiana State its first NCAA golf cham­pi­onship in 60 years.

The Tigers beat USC, 4-1, at the Con­ces­sion Golf Club in Braden­ton, Fla., for their fifth team ti­tle and first since 1955.

USC missed a chance for its first team ti­tle but had its best fin­ish in pro­gram his­tory.

“Sec­ond place is way bet­ter than third,” Tro­jans Coach Chris Zam­bri said. “In the end, where we are, that’s how we’re mea­sured, so I’m pretty bummed. You’ve got to play great and sur­vive, so when you get [to the fi­nal], you want to get it done. Again, sec­ond beats third, fourth, dead last by a mile, yet we still haven’t won a na­tional ti­tle and that’s a bum­mer.”

Af­ter Tay­lor holed the putt for a 1up vic­tory over Bobby Go­juangco, he dropped his put­ter and em­braced team­mates who raced up the fair­way to the fi­nal green.

Bran­don Pierce got LSU on the board, beat­ing Rico Hoey, 2 and 1. Zach Wright ex­tended his record to 5-0, top­ping Sean Crocker, 3 and 2. Eric Ri­card beat Jonah Tex­eira, 1 and 2.

Eric Sugi­moto, a se­nior, ac- counted for USC’s lone point, beat­ing Ste­wart Jolly, 1 and 2.

“I’ll re­mem­ber this for the rest of my life,” Sugi­moto said. “It’s bit­ter­sweet col­lege golf end­ing, and be­sides not win­ning it all to­day, I wouldn’t change a thing.”

Shaqquan Aaron, a 6-foot-7 wing, has trans­ferred from Louisville and joined USC’s bas­ket­ball pro­gram.

Aaron played in 23 games for Louisville last sea­son, av­er­ag­ing 1.3 points in 7.2 min­utes. He came to the Car­di­nals highly rated out of Seat­tle Rainier Beach High, where he av­er­aged 19.7 points, 8.5 re­bounds and 7.5 as­sists and was hon­ored as Wash­ing­ton’s high school player of the year.

He will be el­i­gi­ble for the 2016-17 sea­son and has three years of re­main­ing NCAA el­i­gi­bil­ity.

Long-dis­tance run­ning coach Al­berto Salazar’s former as­sis­tant is among those ac­cus­ing the Amer­i­can of vi­o­lat­ing anti-dop­ing rules and en­cour­ag­ing dop­ing by one of his top run­ners, Olympic sil­ver medal­ist Galen Rupp.

In a story Wed­nes­day by ProPublica and BBC former Salazar as­sis­tant Steve Mag­ness ac­cused Salazar of us­ing dop­ing prac­tices for his ath­letes at the Nike Ore­gon Project.

The story quoted Salazar and Rupp as deny­ing any wrong­do­ing.

In soc­cer, Real Madrid hired Rafa Ben­itez as coach, giv­ing him a three­year con­tract as the suc­ces­sor to the fired Carlo Ancelotti.

Ben­itez, who be­gan his coach­ing ca­reer in Madrid’s youth academy, had re­turned to the Span­ish league where he led Va­len­cia to ti­tles in 2002 and 2004 be­fore join­ing Liver­pool, where he won the 2005 Cham­pi­ons League. He left Naples early Monday, a day af­ter coach­ing Napoli’s last game, a 4-2 home loss to Lazio.

Ben­itez is Madrid’s eighth coach in 10 years. He will be tasked with end­ing Madrid’s dis­mal record of one Span­ish ti­tle in seven sea­sons de­spite count­ing on Cris­tiano Ron­aldo and record rev­enues.

Broth­ers Pau and Marc Ga­sol have been awarded Spain’s Princess of As­turias prize for sports for their “bril­liant record” play­ing bas­ket­ball for Spain and their NBA teams.

Ottawa Se­na­tors team owner Eu­gene Mel­nyk has been dis­charged from a Toronto hos­pi­tal af­ter un­der­go­ing a liver trans­plant last month.

The team said in a state­ment that the anony­mous donor, who gave up part of his or her liver, also had been dis­charged.

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