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Sports briefs


DESERET NEWS SPONSORS BUZZ GAME: To celebrate the completion of its new corporate headquarters, the Deseret News is sponsoring a Salt Lake Buzz game on May 23. When the Buzz square off against the Tuscon Torros at 7 p.m., it will be Deseret News night at the ballpark.

As a gift to its readers, the Deseret News is providing 1,500 free tickets. These tickets will be given away starting May 12 at 8 a.m. at the Deseret News temporary location, 135 Regent Street.

Up to four tickets will be provided to each person, or four tickets per family on a first-come, first-served basis.

In addition, the first 1,000 tickets given away will have a red dot on the reverse side. These tickets are redeemable at the game for a simulated construction helmet courtesy of the Deseret News and Layton Construction, the general contractor responsible for the new building.

According to Deseret News publisher, Wm. James Mortimer, "This is a very historic occasion for us and we want our readers to help us celebrate in a big way."

A helmet will be given to each person with a ticket carrying the red dot at the entrances to Franklin Quest Field the night of the game.

FLOYD ON DL: The Florida Marlins placed outfielder Cliff Floyd on the 15-day disabled list Friday because of a pulled hamstring.

The Marlins recalled outfielder Todd Dunwoody from Triple-A Charlotte.

INDIANS ACQUIRE MORMAN: The Cleveland Indians acquired lefthanded pitcher Alvin Morman on Friday from the Houston Astros for a player to be named.

Morman, 28, was 4-1 with a 4.93 ERA last season in 53 relief appearances with Houston.


WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS: A fluke goal in the final period gave Canada a 2-1 victory over Russia Friday and a berth in the finals of the World Ice Hockey Championships in Helsinki, Finland.

Finland beat the United States 2-0, dashing the American's hopes for getting into the bronze-medal game.

Canada, world champions in 1994, will play Sweden in the best-of-3 final which starts Sunday. Defending champion the Czech Republic will play Russia in the bronze-medal game Saturday.

SHARKS FIRE SIMS: The San Jose Sharks, who had the second-worst record in the NHL this season, fired coach Al Sims after just one year.

The Sharks went 27-47-8 for 62 points, ahead only of Boston, which was 26-47-9 with 61 points.

PARKER SAYS NO: Boston University's Jack Parker on Friday turned down an offer to coach the Boston Bruins and will stay at the school he's led to two national championships over 24 years.

Parker, 52, cited the extra travel, the demands of an 80-game season compared to a 40-game schedule and the media glare as reasons for passing up what has been reported as a four-year, $2 million deal to coach the Bruins.

NHL EXPANSION: The NHL's expansion committee met for four hours Friday without reaching any decisions on applications from six cities seeking franchises.

Atlanta; St. Paul, Minn.; Oklahoma City; Columbus, Ohio; Houston and Nashville, Tenn., had hoped for some word after commissioner Gary Bettman and a number of owners toured the cities last month.


DEVANEY DIES: Bob Devaney, who began a winning Nebraska football tradition in the 1960s and won two national championships in the 1970s, died Friday at a Lincoln, Neb., retirement home. He was 82.

Family spokeswoman Marilyn Mecham said Devaney died of cardiac arrest at 4:05 p.m. CDT at the Eastmont Towers. She said his wife, Phyllis, and son, Mike, were at his side.


FULLERTON HIRES CURRY: Former UCLA star Denise Curry, who was elected to the Basketball Hall of Fame earlier this year, was hired as women's basketball coach at Cal State Fullerton on Friday.

Curry, 37, who was given a three-year contract, succeeds Deborah Ayres, who resigned on March 17.

TUBBY STILL DECIDING: Tubby Smith, still the Georgia coach for now, met with his players Friday and told them he hasn't decided whether to accept an offer from Kentucky.

Kentucky officials, however, scheduled a news conference Monday to introduce a new coach.

Despite all indications that Smith is set to leave, the Georgia players held out scant hope he might turn down the chance to replace Rick Pitino at one of the nation's most prominent basketball programs.

"I really can't get myself to say he's leaving," sophomore guard Ray Harrison said. "He's been like a father to me. I really can't see myself saying he's leaving and a new coach is coming in. I just hope he stays here for a while, hopefully until I leave."


WOODS' LAWYERS MIGHT SUE: A medal commemorating the record-setting victory by Tiger Woods at the Masters is an unauthorized use of his image and lawyers for the golfer said they might sue.

The Franklin Mint said the sterling silver medal advertised in a half-page display in Friday's New York Times for $37.50 was protected under the Constitutional right to cover a news event.


ITALIAN OPEN: In Rome, Arantxa Sanchez Vicario, hampered by an arm injury, bowed out of the Italian Open quarterfinals Friday, losing in straight sets to Swiss teenager Patty Schnyder.

Sanchez Vicario, the second seed in Rome, said after the 6-1, 6-1 defeat that she had pulled a right arm muscle during the opening game of the match, making it difficult to serve or hit her forehand.

Schnyder has yet to drop a set in four matches this week and will face four-time defending champion Conchita Martinez in one semifinal today.

Also into the semifinals was Mary Pierce, who followed up her ouster of top seed Monica Seles with a 6-3, 6-4 defeat of Romania's Ruxandra Dragomir, the 14th seed.

Pierce next faces No. 11 Barbara Paulus of Austria, who won her quarterfinal match with No. 7 Irina Spirlea 6-4, 6-2.

GERMAN OPEN: At Hamburg, Germany, Yevgeny Kafelnikov, picking up his game at the right time of the season, breezed into the semifinals of the German Open by routing Albert Costa 6-3, 6-0 Friday.

In three weeks, Kafelnikov will start defense of his French Open title as he continues recovering from an injury-induced slump.

In other matches, Tommy Haas, a 19-year-old wild card from Germany, rallied to upset Alberto Berasategui 2-6, 6-2, 6-3 and reached the semifinal of a major tournament for the first time in his career.


STILL ON SCHEDULE: Rumors that Mike Tyson wasn't training and that his once-postponed bout with Evander Holyfield was in jeopardy prompted a visit to Tyson's training camp by a top Nevada boxing official.

After watching Tyson train for about an hour, Nevada Athletic Commission executive director Marc Ratner said he was satisfied the June 28 fight was going ahead as scheduled.

"For the last 10 days, every other phone call is another rumor about the fight," Ratner said Friday "We as a commission just wanted to put the fears to rest about this fight."

HILL STRIPPED OF TITLE: Virgil Hill lost the IBF light heavyweight title Friday without throwing a punch - and because he was not scheduled to throw a punch against top-ranked William Guthrie.

Now Hill will defend only the WBA 175-pound title against Darius Michalczewski of Poland June 13 at Oberhausen, Germany.