The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on May 19, 1997 · Page 13
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 13

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Salina, Kansas
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Monday, May 19, 1997
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Page 13
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MONDAY MAY 19, 1997 THE SALINA JOURNAL Sports BIG 12 TRACK CHAMPIONSHIPS / B2 HIGH SCHOOL REGIONALS / B3 AUTO RACING / B5 f PRO BASKETBALL Hardaway helps Heat oust Knicks Miami overcomes 3-1 series deficit behind guard's 38 points By STEVEN WINE The Associated Press MIAMI — The Miami Heat had the home court, the momentum and — most important — Tim Hardaway. It was all too much for the dazed New York Knicks, who served their suspensions, and now will sit out the rest of the playoffs. Hardaway scored 38 points and the Heat outscored New York by 15 points from 3-point range Sunday to win Game 7 O f the Eastern Conference semifinals 101 . 90 The Knicks became only the sixth team in NBA playoff history to blow a 3-1 series lead. Miami's dubious reward will be a date against Michael Jordan and the Bulls in the conference finals-beginning Tuesday night at Chicago. "Chicago is the greatest team probably in the history of the game," Heat coach Pat Riley said. "We don't have the right to say anything, or the right to posture. We have the right to play them." New York never recovered from a Game 5 brawl that resulted in the suspension of five Knicks, including starters John Starks and Larry Johnson for Game 7. Guard Chris Childs symbolized the Knicks' frustration — -•and lack of composure — when £$e angrily punted the ball into *$)ie stands midway through the ffinal period. " Did the suspensions by the NBA for leaving the bench area * Spurs come up big in NBA lottery / Page B5 * Jazz-Rockets series opens tonight / Page B5 during an altercation cost the Knicks the series? "I'm going to take the high road on that stuff," coach Jeff Van Gundy said. "People are going to make excuses for us. I don't think our players are looking for excuses. Our coaches aren't either. We just got beat today." The Knicks stumbled into the offseason with their first three- game losing streak since November. Despite acquiring Childs, Johnson, Allan Houston and Buck Williams last summer, New York was eliminated in the second round of the playoffs for the third consecutive year. Hardaway did the most damage by hitting six of 10 3-pointers, and his point total was a franchise playoff record. The Heat guard had 18 points in the third quarter, when Miami's lead reached 71-50 even with Alonzo Mourning on the bench because of foul trouble. "When I'm in that zone, you're at my mercy," Hardaway said. When New York closed to 92-85 with 1:13 left, Miami hit nine of 12 free throws the rest of the way. Patrick Ewing led New York with 37 points and 17 rebounds. But Ewing, who had promised a championship this year, instead remains without a ring after 12 NBA seasons. "In a way I feel robbed, but that's life," said Ewing, who was suspended for Game 6 because he left the bench during the Game 5 melee that saw Miami's P.J. Brown suspended for two games. The Associated Press Miami Heat guard Tim Hardaway drives to the basket against New York Knicks defenders Patrick Ewing (behind) and Charlie Ward during the third quarter of Sunday's Eastern Conference semifinal. Hardaway scored 38 points In the Heat's 101-90, series-clinching victory. MVP finally delivered to Utah's Malone .A4.%» <( J , -!,.f^ ». ^BF out Jordan, Jazz's ~3-year-old star becomes :0lo!est player to win honor NBA MW* VOttal V! 7 V l( v«. ^ '^ NEW VOW'- - - * -'"'• f '^' Vki " S ,By BOB MIMS '•"•• TKefasociated Press SALT LAKE CITY — The way Karl Malone of the Utah Jazz sees his NBA MVP award, it's strictly a lend-lease affair from four-time winner Michael Jordan. "I thank Michael for letting me borrow it for one year," Malone joked Sunday after winning the second closest MVP vote since the media balloting began in 1981. Malone's victory margin was 29 points. He received 986 points and 63 first-place votes while the Chicago Bulls star got 957 MALONE points and 52 first-place ballots from a panel of sports writers and broadcasters throughout the United States and Canada. The only closer vote came in 1990 when Magic Johnson beat Charles Barkley by 22 points. He may be borrowing the MVP award but Malone also earned it, carrying the Jazz into the Western Conference finals against Houston that begins to night. He averaged 27.4 points, 9.9 rebounds and 4.5 assists, leading Utah to the best record in the conference at 64-18. He was second in scoring, sixth in field goal percentage (.550) and llth in rebounding. "To have this trophy after 12 years, really and truly I never thought I'd have the opportunity," Malone said. "... We won 64 games and I think they looked a lot at that, too." "He's never stopped doing the things we asked him to do," Jazz coach Jerry Sloan said of Malone. "As great as he's become, it's due to hard work. Work has never been something he's shied away from." A 12-year veteran, Malone went over 2,000 points for an NBA record 10th consecutive season and moved ahead of Jerry West into 10th place on the career scoring list. He is one of just five players who have 25,000 points and 10,000 rebounds. The others are Wilt Chamberlain, Kareem Abdul- Jabbar, Moses Malone and Elvin Hayes. "He's played great all year and he came into this year with the attitude that we've going to take that next step," Jazz guard Jeff Hornacek said. "Karl was definitely the leader, the one who' 1 ? carried us." Malone, 33, is the oldest player to capture the MVP since the NBA first awarded the honor in 1956. He said he thought about the award and his personal statistics early in his career, but later took the advice of his mother, Shirley Turner, that "'When you stop thinking about it, it will happen.' And the one year I've had the most fun I've ever had ... all of a sudden I win the award," he said. Detroit's Grant Hill was third with 376 points followed by Miami's Tim Hardaway (238), Charlotte's Glen Rice (134) and Seattle's Gary Payton (105). Malone and Jordan were the only players named on all ballots. Besides his 63 firsts, Malone received 48 seconds and four thirds. Jordan had 61 seconds and two thirds to go with his 52 firsts. T MAJOR LEAGUE BASEBALL Hamelin propels Detroit Former Royal drives in two runs as Tigers sink KG with three-run 7th By The Associated Press KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Bob Hamelin hoped for a victory, not revenge. Facing the team that cut him in spring training, Hamelin had two hits and drove in two runs Sunday as the Detroit Tigers beat the Kansas City Royals 6-5. "I just wanted to get the hits to help us win," he said. "There are no hard feelings. I just wanted to do my job and not concentrate on that (revenge)." Hamelin, the 1994 AL rookie of the year with Kansas City, took - ,.- * .* part in the -. Alt *Aj Tigers' third Tigers 6 straight win. ^j^t£ Tony Clark tied a career- high with four hits and Travis Fryman added three for Detroit. The Tigers trailed 4-3 entering the seventh inning when they bunched four hits to score three runs. Clark, Fryman and Hamelin had RBI singles. The Tigers scored 34 runs on 47 hits in the four-game series. "We have a good group of young guys who battle for nine innings," said Clark, who was 8-for-17 in the series with three home runs and seven RBIs. Mike Sweeney hit two homers and drove in four runs for Kansas City. Jose Offerman added a solo home run. The Royals loaded the bases in the ninth against reliever Todd Jones. Mike Myers came on to get Bip Roberts for the final out, earning his first save of the season. Tim Belcher (5-4), who came into the game with the top ERA in the American League at 1.72, gave up a career-high 13 hits in 6 1-3 innings. He tied a season-high in strikeouts with six, but surrendered six runs to raise his ERA to 2.35. Roberts' 14-mlnute at-bat In an amazing at-bat, Bip Roberts spent 14 minutes at the plate in the first inning Sunday. The Kansas City hitter lasted for 18 pitches — fouling off 14 — and stood around while Detroit pitcher Felipe Lira made nine pickoff throws to first base. "It wore me out," Roberts said. "I was so lazy the rest of the day. I was just trying to put the ball in play, but they kept going foul." Roberts hit 13 fouls with two strikes. Finally, he grounded out on a 2-2 pitch. Dye sent to Omaha The Kansas City Royals optioned outfielder Jermaine Dye to Triple-A Omaha on Saturday night. Dye, bothered by a ankle injury, was hitting just .188 with two RBIs after Saturday's 9-2 loss to Detroit. The Royals recalled utility infielder Shane Halter from Omaha to take Dye's spot. Halter was hitting .265 in 14 games. T PRO GOLF Tiger does it again Woods follows Masters victory with win at Byron Nelson Classic By RON SIRAK The Associated Press IRVING, Texas — His short game and his mind won the GTE Byron Nelson Classic for Tiger Woods. Two dramatic moments with the driver defined the tone he has brought to golf. It all added up to his second consecutive victory on the PGA Tour, following his record-setting win at the Masters a month ago. And he'll try to make it three in a row at the MasterCard Colonial in Fort Worth later this week. Twicje, Woods set hearts racing at the TPC Four Seasons Resort course Sunday when he pulled^he tiger headcover off his driver. The first came on No. 1 when he tried to drive the 385-yard hole, only to have the ball bounce wildly off a fan and nearly caused him to make a bogey. The second was on the 16th hole when he put the tournament away with a 240-yard fairway driverlo the fringe of the green. BoUt put the Woods' stamp on the tournament. For as much as Woods' great play has capti- vated the crowds, so has his aggressive style in which he plays with only one goal — to win. When he boldly blasted the driver from off the fairway to the fringe of the 16th green one man in the crowd screamed the deepest thoughts of most in the gallery, bellowing: "Don't ever change." Playing far from his best but better than anyone else, Woods shot a final-round 68 to win by two strokes over Lee Rinker, tying the tournament record with a 17-under-par 263 total. "I had only my mind and my short game," Woods said. That was good enough. No one else made a serious run as Tom Watson and Dan Forsman finished four strokes back at 267 and seven other players were at 268. "Playing like this means a lot to you, it really does," Woods said after winning with a game he rated as a C-plus effort. "It goes to show that if you think well and you have a good short game you can win." Woods started the day with a lesson from coach Butch Harmon, who drove four hours from Houston after a late-night call from his pupil, and ended it with an emotional hug from his mother, Tida, on the final green. In between he hit all the right shots exactly when they were needed, the most astounding of which were a 170-yard punch 6-iron from off the edge of a drainage grate to 8 feet on No. 15 and the driver on the 16th hole that gave him the clinching birdie. Woods took the lead for good while he was walking down the 14th fairway and Rinker was making a bogey on the hole ahead of him. The final four holes were then played in a tunnel of noise more usually heard around here when Texas takes the field against Oklahoma in a college football game. But even that football game doesn't get the 100,000 people tournament officials said were at the Nelson for the final round. "At Augusta, I was hitting the ball pretty good," Woods said. "That wasn't the case here." Woods is now the second-youngest person in the history of pro golf to get five victories. Horton Smith, who played in the 1920s, had seven wins before he was 21. But Woods' five victories in his first 16 pro tournaments is unmatched. V COLLEGE BASEBALL: NCAA II WEST REGIONAL Fort Hays State falls in finals to Chico State Wildcats' six-run sixth inning sparks 11-5 victory over Tigers By The Journal Staff CHICO, Calif. — Fort Hays State's record-breaking season came to a close Sunday as the Tigers lost 11-5 to Chico State (Calif.) in the finals of the NCAA Division II West Regional at Nettleton Stadium. The victory sends the regional host Wildcats (48-11) into the Division II College World Series. The Tigers finished their season with a 48-15 record — a school record for wins. Fort Hays State reached the regional final after defeating Chico State 11-3 late Saturday night. First baseman Steve Gotowala, the tournament's MVP, belted his 19th and 20th home runs of the season Sunday to lead the way for Chico State. Fort Hays State, however, opened strong, scoring two runs in the top of the first inning on an RBI double by Jerry Valdez and a single by Steve Ysac. After Chico State scored twice in the bottom of the third to pull even at 2-2, Fort Hays State regained the lead in the fourth when Ryan Wasinger clubbed a solo home run. Tied at 3-3, Chico State gained command in the decisive sixth inning despite just three hits. See BASEBALL, Page B3 SUGGESTIONS? CALL BOB DAVIDSON, SPORTS EDITOR, AT (913) 823-6363 OR 1-800-827-6363 OR E-MAIL AT sjnewsesaljournal.com

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