Sports Briefs

Posted: Thursday, August 07, 2003

Skyview volleyball tryouts start Monday

Two-a-day tryout sessions for the Skyview High School volleyball team begin Monday. Sessions will run from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m. Monday through Friday.

All players must have a completed physical form before participating.

For more information, call Skyview High School at 262-7675 or coach Sheila Kupferschmid at 262-1476.

Mariners send Nelson to New York for Benitez

SEATTLE The Seattle Mariners traded reliever Jeff Nelson back to the New York Yankees on Wednesday for right-hander Armando Benitez and cash.

Nelson criticized the Mariners' front office last week after the team failed to make a major deal at the trade deadline, but was told that wasn't the reason he was dealt.

''It gives us more options,'' Mariners manager Bob Melvin said. ''Not to take anything away from Shigetoshi (Hasegawa), who has been fabulous as a closer, but we've got another guy experienced in that role.''

Nelson, 36, has pitched for only two teams in his 12-year career two stints with Seattle and this will be his second with the Yankees. The right-hander helped New York win four World Series titles from 1996-2000.

The Yankees acquired Benitez in a trade with the New York Mets on July 16, but he didn't last long in the Bronx.

The deal comes less than a week after the trade deadline, meaning both players had to clear waivers before being dealt.

Clijsters takes another step toward No. 1

CARSON, Calif. Kim Clijsters moved closer to replacing Serena Williams at No. 1, beating Emilie Loit 6-1, 6-1 in 50 minutes Wednesday in the second round of the JPMorgan Chase Open.

Clijsters raced through the first set in 21 minutes, with Loit offering her only resistance in the sixth game. She fought back from love-40 on her serve to force three deuces, but then netted a backhand to give Clijsters a 5-1 lead.

In the second set, Loit had three break points on Clijsters' serve, but couldn't convert any of them and fell behind 3-1. She had four chances to hold on her serve in the next game, but Clijsters hit a backhand winner for a 4-1 lead. Loit trailed triple match point on her serve and lost when she netted a backhand.

Clijsters is on the verge of overtaking the injured Williams as the world's top-ranked player. Williams had knee surgery Friday and will be out up to two months, meaning she won't be able to defend her U.S. Open title.

Hewitt upset; Agassi, Roddick win

MONTREAL Former No. 1 Lleyton Hewitt was upset in the second round of the Canada Masters, losing 7-5, 6-7 (4), 7-5 to Max Mirnyi on Wednesday.

Hewitt has lost four of his last nine matches, including a first-round exit as the defending champion at Wimbledon. His ranking has dropped to No. 5 in the world.

Those reaching the third round included Andre Agassi, Andy Roddick, Wimbledon champion Roger Federer and French Open winner Juan Carlos Ferrero.

Agassi waited through a 1 1/2-hour rain delay, then made quick work of Nikolay Davydenko 7-6 (3), 6-2. The top-seeded Agassi is trying for his fourth title at this hard-court tuneup for the U.S. Open, which starts Aug. 25.

Bucks introduce Porter as new coach

MILWAUKEE Terry Porter has been hired as the new coach of the Milwaukee Bucks, general manager Larry Harris announced Wednesday.

Porter, 40, worked last season as an assistant coach with the Sacramento Kings, his first season in coaching after a 17-year playing career.

He played in Portland, Minnesota, Miami and San Antonio.

''He's never been traded as a player, and I'll never trade him either,'' Harris said.

''He is a proven winner in the NBA who played the game with dignity, confidence and intensity, skills that will translate directly to the improvement of our team.''

Porter met with Harris last month and returned for a second interview over the weekend with the team's owner, Sen. Herb Kohl, and vice president of business operations John Steinmiller.

''He's played under the greatest coaches to play this game. I can't say enough about the person, I can't say enough about the leadership,'' Harris said.

After starring at Milwaukee South Division High School and at Wisconsin-Stevens Point, Porter was hoping to be drafted by the Bucks in 1985, but they bypassed him and he was selected by Portland instead.

''1985 was a tough year for me,'' he quipped Wednesday, but said he was happy to return home with a much bigger profile.

''This is a day that I've dreamed about and worked very hard for,'' Porter said. ''For it to happen here in Milwaukee makes it that much more special.''

Bucks coach George Karl was fired July 20 after posting a 205-173 record in five seasons in Milwaukee. The Bucks are paying him his $7 million contract for 2003-04 plus more than $1.5 million for his 1 percent slice of the team that Kohl gave him two years ago.

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