Maggert extends lead in Schwab Cup golf
Jeff Maggert shot a 6-under 65 on Friday to increase his lead to four strokes in the Charles Schwab Cup Championship, with Bernhard Langer second in a bid for his record sixth PGA Tour Champions season points title.
Maggert birdied three of the first four holes in a front-nine 31 and capped the bogey-free round with a birdie on the par-4 17th in perfect conditions at Phoenix Country Club. He has a 14-under 128 total.
The 55-year-old Texan entered the season-ending event 34th in the Charles Schwab Cup standings, just three spots from failing to qualify. He won three times on the PGA Tour and has five senior victories, one in 2014 and four in 2015.
Langer closed with a double bogey after hitting his approach into the water on the par-5 18th. Coming off a playoff loss to Colin Montgomerie on Sunday in California, Langer is third in the standings behind Scott McCarron and Jerry Kelly.
To take the season title, the 62-year-old German star needs to win the event and have McCarron finish in a two-way tie for fifth or worse and Kelly finish in a two-way tie for second or worse. McCarron (71) and Kelly (74) were tied for 25th at 2 under.
Green, Suzuki tied for LPGA lead: Australian Hannah Green shot a 5-under 67 on Friday to finish the first round of the LPGA Japan Classic in Shiga tied for the lead with local favorite Ai Suzuki.
Green carded five birdies at the par-72 Seta Golf Course to finish one stroke ahead of six golfers including Lydia Ko and Jennifer Kupcho.
Ko had an erratic round that featured seven birdies, a double bogey and a bogey in the final event of the LPGA Tour’s Asia Swing.
Defending champion Nasa Hataoka shot a 71 and was tied for 35th place. Lexi Thompson, making her first start since the Indy Women in Tech Championship in September, struggled with her game and shot a 74.
Schwab up by one stroke in Turkey: Matthias Schwab started with an eagle and finished with a birdie to lead by one shot after the second round of the Turkish Airlines Open in Antalya on Friday.
The 24-year-old Austrian shot 5-under 67 to move to 12 under overall, leading a four-man group that includes Danny Willett (66) and Alex Noren (67).
Schwab, who has a tour-best nine top-10 finishes this season, begins the weekend with five more players within two shots. The 10-under group includes two-time defending champion Justin Rose (67).
Fired up by his selection by Tiger Woods for the United States’ 12-man Presidents Cup team, Patrick Reed shot 7-under 65 to trail Schwab by four shots.
Braves re-sign O’Day: Right-handed reliever Darren O’Day has signed a $2.25 million, one-year deal to return to the Atlanta Braves.
The 37-year-old O’Day appeared in just eight games for the Braves last season due to a right forearm strain. He allowed one earned run in 5 1/3 innings in the regular season, then pitched two scoreless innings in the playoffs.
The sidearmer has pitched in 12 big league seasons and was an All-Star with Baltimore in 2015. He also missed much of the 2018 season due to injury.
Rick Pitino to coach Greek national squad: Rick Pitino has agreed to coach the Greek national basketball team and lead the country’s effort to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
The Greek basketball federation said Friday that Pitino will be officially presented on Monday, when details of his agreement will be announced.
The 67-year-old Pitino coached Greek club Panathinaikos last season and guided the team to victory in the country’s cup competition before returning to the United States. He remains popular among Greek fans despite his outspoken criticism of smoking and rowdy behavior by spectators at games.
NBA MVP Giannis Antetokounmpo and his brother Thanasis Antetokounmpo both play for Greece and the Milwaukee Bucks.
In September, the Greeks narrowly missed reaching the quarterfinals at the World Cup.
Pitino spent much of his career jumping between the college ranks and the NBA, coaching the Boston Celtics and the New York Knicks as well as Kentucky and Louisville.
Torrent out as MLS coach: Major League Soccer’s New York City team will have its fourth coach in six seasons.
The team said Friday it has reached an agreement for coach Domènec Torrent to depart, a decision that followed a loss to Toronto in Major League Soccer’s Eastern Conference semifinals.
NYC vice chairman Marty Edelman says in a statement the team spoke with Torrent and “we’ve decided that this is the right moment for both parties to focus on new opportunities.”
— Associated Press