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SPORTS MONDAY, MARCH 15, 2004 —5 udjSfWrts@pacific.net LOCALSPOBTS CALENDAB PREP SOFTBALL •Ukiah JV at Fort Bragg, 3:30 p.m. JC BASEBALL •College of Marin at Mendocino. 2:30 p.m. JC SOFTBALL •Diablo Valley College at Mendocino (DH), 1 p.m. PREPBASEBALL •Casa Grande at Ukiah frosh, 3:30 p.m. •St. Vincent's * Potter Valley, 3:30 p.m. PREP SOFTBALL •St. Vincent's at Ukiah, 3:30 p.m. (V/JV) •Ukiah frosh at Potter Valley varsity, 3:30 p.rn. PREP BOYS GOLF •Ukiah at Rancho Cotate, 3: 30 p.m. (9 holes) •Ukiah JV at Cardinal Newman, 3, p.m. COMMUNITY SPORTS DICEST Wildcat Wrestling Club The Wildcat Wrestling Club, open to athletes 6 years old and higher, is holding practices on Tuesday and Thursday evenings at the Ukiah'High School gym from 6 to 8 p.m. Interested individuals looking to work on their skills can sign up on site. UHS Awards Night Ukiah High School is hosting its winter sports awards night at 7 p.m. on March IS in the school cafetorium. Girls Youth Softball League The City of Ukiah Community • Service Departments 2004 Girls Youth Softball League will be getting underway soon. Participants may register individually and will be placed on teams according to their grade level. League play begins in early April and will run through May. Each team will play at least 10 games. Cost is $45 per player (sibling discounts are available). Registration deadline is March 15. Need-based scholarships are available (proof of income required). Registration forms are available at the City of Ukiah. For more information, call 463-6712. City Co-ed Volleyball League The City of Ukiah Community Service Department's co-ed volleyball league gets underway soon. Adults, 16 years and older, are permitted to register on a team of up to 12 players. Recreational and competitive leagues are available. All teams will play at least eight games and one playoff game. Games will be played on weeknights starting in April and running into June. One may register as part of a team or as individuals. Solo players may register and be placed on an available team. The cost is $250 per team (up to 12 players) or $40 per individual if before March IS. Registration forms are available at the City of Ukiah. Ukiah Women's Athletic Association meeting The Ukiah Women's Athletic Association will be holding a women's slow-pitch softball meeting for the 2004 season at Wright Stuff Pizza on Wednesday, March 17, at 6;30p.m. AH women interested in playing softball are welcome to attend. COLLEGE BASKETBALL City Meji's The City of Ukiah Community , ; - Service Department's ' 2QQ4 men's softbftll league siason will begin soon. March 18 at Tl$ PUP in Ukiah. League play is scheduled to. beg&HWy 3,; Team fees Stanford earns top seed, but has tough road Cardinal to face UT-San Antonio in Round 1 By JAMIE McCAULEY The Associated Press A No. 1 seed didn't quite satisfy Stanford's Josh Childress. "Duke seemingly no matter what happens to them will be the nation's No. 1 team," Childress, the Cardinal's leading scorer, said Sunday. "They have five losses. I wouldn't say it's unfair, because we're a No. 1 seed, but you look at it and say, 'Why?'" Actually, both Kentucky and Duke were ahead of Stanford (29-1). expected to move back into the No. I spot in the poll Monday after a week's absence following the team's title in the Pac-10 tournament over the weekend. The Cardinal, making their l()th straight NCAA tournament appearance, still don't have it that bad. They open against 16th-seeded Texas-San Antonio (19-13) on Thursday in Seattle. Texas who? "We've got faxes, we've got Internet stuff, we've got rumors, and we've got tape," Stanford coach Mike Montgomery said when asked what he knew about the Roadrunners, in the tournament for the first time in five years and winless in their two previous appearances. Montgomery is happy his learn won't have to travel far — Seattle is less than a two-hour flight, and if the ' Cardinal get through the first two rounds they'll be headed for Phoenix. This is especially important for Stanford because players have final exams starting Monday, and they will try to complete their tests before leaving. "Frankly, they're a little bit fatigued," Montgomery said. Stanford faces a tough road in a bracket that also features second-seeded Connecticut, the Big East champion, and the past two NCAA champions — Syracuse and Maryland. UConn played two games in its conference tournament without star center Emeka Okalor. who's been fighting back spasms. The Huskies (27-6) open against No. 15 Vermont (22-8) on Thursday in Buffalo. N.Y. "We're good enough to win a national championship." coach Jim Calhoun said. "Our teams travel exceptionally well. I tell the kids. This is your reward, you get to travel the country.'" Syracuse and Maryland are seeded fifth and fourth, respectively, and could meet in the second round. Their first-round games are in Denver — See STANI-'ORI), Page 6 MOTOCROSS MANIA Herman Magdnlcno/Thc Dull) Journal Geyserville's Jeremy Garcia skies during Sunday morning's quad race at a Ukiah Speedway spring series motocross race. Garcia went on to win the event. Kings hammer Spurs SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Mike Bibby scored 20 of his 24 points in the second half, and the Kings got nasty to defeat the San Antonio Spurs in Sacramento for the first time in more than two years, 101-87 Sunday. Brad Miller had 19 points and 13 rebounds for the Kings, who had a 23-7 run early in the fourth quarter. Sacramento also, abandoned its finesse game to bully and outwork the Spurs, who were without the injured Tim Duncan. Chris Webber had 23 points and eight rebounds, and Doug Christie made several impressive defensive plays in the fourth quarter as Sacramento roared ahead for its fourth victory in five games. Peja Stojakovic added 18 points for the Kings, who got an early taste of playoff ball. Without their star, the Spurs forced Sacramento to play slow- tempo, defensive basketball. Manu Ginobili scored 16 points and Rasho Nesterovic had 14 points and 13 rebounds for the Spurs, who had won three straight in Sacramento. San Antonio was one of just five opponents to win at Arco Arena this season, beating the Kings last month on the strength of Duncan's 28 points and 14 rebounds. I GOLDEN CORRAL 500 Earnhardt Jr. back on top a week after bad run Junior overtakes Mayfield with 15 laps to go By KEITH PARSONS The Associated Press HAMPTON, Ga. — One of the worst runs of his career probably helped Dale Earnhardt Jr. save his season. A week after he nearly was parked for running too slow, Junior zoomed by Jeremy Mayfield with 15 laps to go and sprinted to an easy victory Sunday in the Golden Corral 500 at Atlanta Motor Speedway. He also won the season-opening Daytona 500. "Last week was as bad as it ever gets," Earnhardt said. "But we didn't get on each other too bad, and we stayed pretty focused." Rookie Kasey Kahne was third — his third straight finish in the top three — and Jimmie Johnson and Ryan Newman followed him across the finish line. Defending series champ Matt Kenseth, who had won the past two races, rallied from a lap down to finish sixth. At Las Vegas last Sunday, Earnhardt started 26th and quickly drifted to the rear of the field at the start. His Chevrolet was so far off the pace that NASCAR warned his crew he was right at the minimum speed. After eventually finishing 35th, Earnhardt and the team spent Thursday testing at Kentucky Speedway. Just as their session was ending, they hit on u setup that worked, and Earnhardt was fast all weekend at Atlanta. "We went testing, and we're going testing this week," Earnhardt said. "We're going to test, test, test, until we lap the field. "I'm determined and devoted to running like this every week, no matter what it costs." He qualified seventh and stayed near the front, then dominated the latter stages. He passed Mayfield's Dodge for the lead with 60 laps to go and held the top spot until the leaders made their final pit stops under green. Mayfield came in with 26 to go and his crew changed four tires in 14.3 seconds, then Earnhardt followed three laps later. His stop was nearly a second faster, but he came back on the track in third, behind Mayfield and Johnson. With 20 laps left, Earnhardt drove by Johnson on the inside and set his sights on Mayfield. He didn't take long. Junior ran up high in Turns 1 and 2 to get momentum, then swooped underneath Mayfield down the backstretch, moving into the lead with hardly a struggle. "We had a great car to start with, but it just seemed as the race went on, the tighter we got," Mayfield said of his car's handling. "Dale Jr. and those guys got ahead of the track and we didn't." Kenseth started 30th and was up to 13th after 15 laps, and eventually got to sixth before the first pit stops. But he made a rare mistake, spinning his Ford as he came into the pits, and dropped a lap down after a drive-through penalty. He made up the ground during (he second caution for oil on the track, because he was the first lapped car behind the leader, and got his fourth straight top-10 finish to start the season. Kenseth leads Tony Stewart by H2 points, with Earnhardt another eight points back. Marathon designed for women to debut in SF Race to celebrate 20th anniversary of first women's Olympic marathon By ROB GLOSTER The Associated Press SAN FRANCISCO — A marathon designed for women will debut in San Francisco in October, celebrating the 20th anniversary of the first women's Olympic marathon. Joan Benoit Samuelson, who won that inaugural Olympic women's marathon at the 1984 Los Angeles Games, will participate in the new race — though she said she may only do a half-marathon instead of the full distance. The Nike 26.2 Marathon, to be run Oct. 24, will benefit The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. Organizers hope the race will become an annual event. Samuelson, 46, who still runs about 50-70 miles a week despite trying to juggle the needs of two teenage children and various fund-raising and volunteer positions, said fighting a disease like leukemia requires the same dedication as running. "It's a challenge to get out there every day," she said in a telephone interview. "People who are challenged by leukemia and lymphoma are fighting to go the distance with their disease." Though organizers will not prevent men from running, the race will be marketed to women and all the pre-race activities — such as sessions on women's health and fitness — will be geared to female runners and walkers. After seeking feedback from women about their marathon needs, organizers said they will make some adjustments to normal procedures — such as adding more portable toilets along the race route. Announcement of the race was to be made Monday by Nike. The marathon and half-marathon will start and finish on the Great Highway •outside Golden Gate Park and run through the city of San Francisco before ending along Ocean Beach. Participants can train for the marathon through The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society's Team in Training, which provides training for endurance competitions in exchange for participants raising funds for leukemia and lymphoma research. More than 200,000 people have participated in Team in Training, raising more than $470 million. It has 63 chapters nationwide. "The Nike 26.2 exemplifies the trend of more and more people participating in marathons for a good cause," said Greg Elfers, vice president of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. "For t'ie hundreds of thousands of patients and iamilies battling leukemia, lymphoma and myeloma, the fact that women from across the country are coming to San Francisco to help in the battle to cure these cancers sends a clear message of hope."