Friday Sports in Brief

Sports

NCAA TOURNAMENT

INDIANAPOLIS (AP)The NCAA will allow a limited number of fans to attend all rounds of its men’s basketball tournament in Indiana and later rounds of its women’s tournament in Texas.

The governing body said Friday it is permitting 25% capacity at the men’s tournament venues to allow for social distancing. That figure will include all participants and essential staff along with the family members of team players and coaches.

On the women’s side, the NCAA will allow a capacity of up to 17% at each venue from the Sweet 16 to the Final Four. Games taking place for the first two rounds will limit attendance to team guests.

In each case, attendees must wear face coverings, while cleaning and disinfecting efforts will be emphasized at venues in keeping with COVID-19 safety protocols. The NCAA said it acted in conjunction with local health officials for each tournament.

BASEBALL

Justin Turner’s extended flirtation with free agency ended where it began – with the Los Angeles Dodgers.

Along the way to a $34 million, two-year contract that was announced Friday, the third baseman had doubts about whether he would return to his hometown team and wondered if his mask-less appearance on the field to celebrate the Dodgers’ World Series championship would hurt him.

Turner got yanked from the clinching Game 6 against the Tampa Bay Rays in the eighth inning last October after testing positive for the coronavirus. He wasn’t initially on the field as his teammates celebrated the franchise’s first World Series title since 1988.

Instead, Turner was confined to a small room at Globe Life Field in Texas, pained as he watched the hugs and high-fives go on without him. Major League Baseball said he violated COVID-19 protocols by returning to the field, pulling down his mask and posing for photos. After an investigation by MLB, Turner was not disciplined and he issued an apology.

NEW YORK (AP) – Thirteen of 4,336 tests for COVID-19 were positive during intake for Major League Baseball’s spring training, a rate of 0.3%

The commissioner’s office said Friday that nine positive samples involved players and four involved staff. Positive tests included 11 of the 30 teams.

After the intake screening, there were no new positives among 2,298 monitoring test samples. Samples thus far totaled 6,634.

All players on 40-man rosters and players with minor league contracts invited to big league training camp are screened. Also tested are all other on-field personnel such as managers, coaches and athletic trainers, strength and conditioning staff and physicians.

Team owner, front office management, communications staff, groundskeepers, clubhouse and travel staff and ballpark operations employees who require access to restricted areas also are screened.

GOLF

LOS ANGELES (AP) – Sam Burns wanted to pay respect to tough Riviera by playing it safe. It led to a 5-under 66 on Friday to tie the 36-hole record at the Genesis Invitational and build a five-shot lead going into the weekend.

Among those chasing is Dustin Johnson, the No. 1 player in the world and a past winner at Riviera. Another shot back was Jordan Spieth, who is starting to make himself at home near the top of the leaderboard.

Burns kept his bogey-free day intact toward the end of the round when he came up short of the eighth green, his 17th of the morning. He chipped it about 10 feet short – anything too strong could lead to big trouble – and made the par putt.

He also handled two of the par 5s, and picked up so much roll on the firm turf at the 476-yard 12th hole that he had only a pitching wedge into the green and made a 5-foot putt.

Burns was at 12-under 130, matching the record last set in 2004 by Mike Weir and Shigeki Maruyama.

Johnson led a group at 7-under 135 despite playing the three par 5s in only 1 under for the week. Part of the problem is that Johnson has hit only one fairway on the par 5s. That was the final one he played Friday, the 17th, and it set up a simple up-and-down that moved him a little closer.

AUTO RACING

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. (AP) – Ben Rhodes swept a two-race stop at Daytona International Speedway, winning his second NASCAR Truck Series race in one week Friday night.

Win No. 2 came under caution in triple overtime on Daytona’s road course. It was exactly one week after Rhodes won on the Daytona’s oval in the season-opening race.

Rhodes earned his fifth career victory, all with Thorsport Racing. The team last month returned to a partnership with Toyota and Rhodes’ win was the 200th for the manufacturer in the Truck Series.

Rhodes passed Sheldon Creed after a caution in regulation and it ultimately gave him control of the race despite the three overtime challenges. Rhodes held position over Creed on two overtime restarts, and John Hunter Nemechek on the third attempt to finish the race.

SAILING

After a week of storms ashore Ineos Team UK won one of two races sailed in a shifting breeze Saturday to raise the faint hint of a comeback in the America’s Cup challenger series final against Luna Rossa Prada Pirelli.

As racing resumed after a week’s delay, Luna Rossa won the fifth race of the Prada Cup final by 1 minute, 20 seconds to lead 5-0 in the first-to-seven series. Faced with the possibility of match point, Team UK expertly called the shifts to win the second race by 14 seconds and keep the series alive after six races.

Two races on Sunday will decide whether Britain’s Team UK continues in the series or whether Italy’s Luna Rossa wins its way into next month’s America’s Cup match against defender Emirates Team New Zealand.

More AP sports: https://apnews.com/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/AP-Sports

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Trending Right Now

Don't Miss

Community Calendar

KETK Twitter & Facebook

FOX51 Twitter & Facebook