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#SportsReport: Phillies And Red Sox Win; Novak Djokovic Advances In U.S. Open

Roger Federer of Switzerland, in action against Novak Djokovic of Serbia during the Wimbledon final on Sunday.
Andy Rain
Roger Federer of Switzerland, in action against Novak Djokovic of Serbia during the Wimbledon final on Sunday.

Novak Djokovic has easily reached the third round of the U.S. Open with a 6-2, 6-3, 6-2 victory over Tallon Griekspoor of the Netherlands. Djokovic improved to 15-0 in second-round matches at the U.S. Open and remained unbeaten in Grand Slam matches this season. He is trying to become the first man to win all four majors in the same year since 1969.The No. 1 seed’s biggest problem came in the second set with a heckling fan, but Djokovic regained his concentration to put away the victory.

In other action:

Kei Nishikori advanced to a possible third-round meeting with Novak Djokovic, holding off American Mackenzie McDonald 7-6 (3), 6-3, 6-7 (5), 2-6, 6-3.

Two-time Grand Slam runner-up Karolina Pliskova has saved a match point and edged 75th-ranked American Amanda Anisimova in three sets to reach the U.S. Open’s third round. The No. 4-seeded Pliskova pulled out the 7-5, 6-7 (5), 7-6 (7) victory shortly before midnight after trailing 5-2 in the final tiebreaker.

Women’s No. 1 seed Ash Barty has advanced to the third round with a 6-1, 7-5 win over Clara Tauson. The reigning Wimbledon champion had trouble closing out Tauson but survived and will try to reach the quarterfinals at Flushing Meadows for the first time.

Olympic gold medalist and 11th-seeded Belinda Bencic defeated Martina Trevisan 6-3, 6-1 to reach the third round. Two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova is also headed to the third round after a 7-6, 6-2 win over Kristyna Pliskova.

Olympic gold medalist Alexander Zverev cruised to the third round with a 6-1, 6-0, 6-3 win over Albert Ramos-Vinolas. Zverev is trying to make the U.S. Open final for the second straight year.

Denis Shapovalov has reached the third round for the fifth time in five appearances by beating Roberto Carballés Baena 7-6 (7), 6-3, 6-0. The No. 7-seeded Shapovalov compiled a 50-13 edge in winners to get past the player who eliminated him from the French Open last year.

No. 1 doubles team Nikola Mektic and Mate Pavic were stunned at the U.S. Open and lost their shot at their second Grand Slam title of the season. The Wimbledon champions were upset by Nathaniel Lammons and Jackson Withrow. The Americans beat Mektic and Pavic 6-2, 7-5.


Andrew McCutchen drove in four runs and the Philadelphia Phillies erased a six-run deficit against the Washington Nationals to earn a 7-6 victory and a three-game sweep.

The Phillies overcame a disappointing start from Aaron Nola and rallied against the Nationals’ bullpen for their sixth consecutive win. Philadelphia pulled within 1½ games of NL East leader Atlanta and two games of idle Cincinnati in the race for the second NL wild card. Juan Soto homered and drove in four runs and Lane Thomas also went deep for Washington, which has lost five in a row and 21 of 27.

In other MLB action:

Sergio Alcántara scampered home when second baseman Wilmer Difo mishandled a popup in the 11th inning, and the Chicago Cubs beat the Pittsburgh Pirates 6-5 for their third straight win. Rafael Ortega and Ian Happ homered for Chicago, and Alcántara logged the first three-hit game of his career. Codi Heuer got three outs for the win. Alcántara began the 11th on second base and advanced on Ortega’s sacrifice bunt. Happ then sent a high fly to second, where Difo committed the game-ending error.

Jed Lowrie hit a three-run homer in the first inning for the first of Oakland’s eight two-out runs against Matt Manning in the Athletics’ 8-6 victory over the Tigers on Thursday. Mark Canha followed Lowrie’s shot with another homer for 4-0 lead. It was the 14th homer of the season for both Lowrie and Canha, and each went to the opposite field to reach the seats. Lowrie drilled a 411-foot shot to left-center, and Canha drove one out to right-center. Lowrie’s RBI double in the fourth made it 8-0 before the Tigers battled back by scoring six runs.

Eduardo Rodriguez pitched four-hit ball into the seventh inning, and the Boston Red Sox beat Tampa Bay 4-0 for a split of their four-game series with the AL East-leading Rays. Garrett Richards replaced Rodriguez with two on and no outs in the seventh, and the right-hander escaped the jam with a pair of strikeouts and a fly ball. Richards earned his second save, finishing a five-hitter. Rays rookie Wander Franco extended his on-base streak to 33 games with a seventh-inning walk but left afterward with a headache.

Pinch-hitter Dominic Smith broke a seventh-inning tie with an RBI single and the New York Mets beat the Miami Marlins 4-3 for their fifth straight victory. Marlins leadoff batter Miguel Rojas and Mets counterpart Jonathan Villar each homered on the first pitch they saw, the first time that’s happened in a major league game since at least 1985, according to the Elias Sports Bureau. New York won all three games completed this week against the last-place Marlins to cap a tumultuous homestand.

Adam Duvall hit a two-run homer in Atlanta’s three-run fifth inning, and the Braves overcame a grand slam by Charlie Blackmon to beat the Colorado Rockies 6-5. Atlanta took the opener of a four-game series after losing three straight to the Los Angeles Dodgers. The Braves also stayed two games ahead of Philadelphia in the NL East. Five Atlanta relievers combined for six scoreless innings after Touki Toussaint struggled. Jacob Webb got six outs for the win, and Will Smith worked the ninth for his 30th save.

Triston McKenzie limited Kansas City to a run and two hits over six innings and the Cleveland Indians beat the Royals 4-2. Owen Miller hit a three-run homer in the fifth inning, plenty of support for McKenzie, who has dominated the Royals throughout his young career. A day after being activated from the injured list, McKenzie showed no ill effects from his recent shoulder fatigue and improved to 3-0 with a 1.57 ERA in six appearances against Kansas City.


The New York Mets have placed acting general manager Zack Scott on paid administrative leave following his arrest on charges of driving while intoxicated.

Electronic court records show Scott was released without bail after pleading not guilty Thursday to driving while intoxicated and some traffic violations. He’s due back in White Plains City Court on Oct. 7. Scott was arrested on a DUI charge early Tuesday in suburban White Plains, New York, hours after he attended a fundraiser at team owner Steve Cohen’s house. The Mets said they placed Scott on paid leave until further notice and team president Sandy Alderson will assume Scott’s responsibilities.


C.J. Stroud passed for 294 yards and four touchdowns in his debut as the Ohio State starter and the fourth-ranked Buckeyes kept coach Ryan Day unbeaten in Big Ten play with a 45-31 victory over Minnesota on Thursday night. The Buckeyes flashed their five-star speed with two 70-plus-yard scores in the opener, one early on a run off right end by Miyan Williams and one late on a third-down screen to true freshman TreVeyon Henderson. Day, starting his third full year on the job, is 24-2 overall and 16-0 in conference games.

In other T-25 action:

Charlie Brewer threw for 233 yards and two touchdowns in his Utah debut to help the No. 24 Utes beat Weber State 40-17 on Thursday night. Dalton Kincaid caught four passes for 75 yards and a pair of touchdowns in the opener for both teams. Tavion Thomas ran for 107 yards and two touchdowns on 12 carries in his Utah debut. Weber State took a 7-3 lead when Rashid Shaheed cut to the edge and returned a kickoff 100 yards untouched. He tied an FCS record with his sixth kickoff return for a touchdown. The teams retreated to the locker rooms with 8:26 left in the first quarter because of a lightning delay that lasted 90 minutes.

Darien Butler had two interceptions and No. 25 Arizona State used its punishing run game to overcome some sloppy moments in a season-opening 41-14 win over Southern Utah. The Sun Devils were a bit rusty to start a season of high expectations, committing numerous miscues on special teams and 13 penalties for 135 yards. Arizona State still proved to be too much for the FCS Thunderbirds, forcing four turnovers and running for six touchdowns to win its 22nd straight home opener. Rachaad White and DeaMonte Trayanum each ran for two scores.

Grayson McCall threw for 262 yards and a touchdown and No. 22 Coastal Carolina scored on its first seven possessions in a season-opening 52-14 victory over The Citadel on Thursday night. McCall was the Sun Belt Conference offensive player of the year in 2020 and kept up his stellar play by completing 16 of 19 passes. Jaivon Heiligh caught six passes for 133 yards and Reese White and Shemari Jones each rushed for two touchdowns. The Chants came into the year with their first preseason ranking and never gave the Bulldogs a chance for the upset.

In other college openers

The season-opening football game between Temple and Rutgers scheduled for Thursday night has been postponed until Saturday after the remnants of Hurricane Ida dumped historic rain over parts of the Northeast. Rutgers officials said Saturday’s kickoff would be at noon and that all tickets and parking passes will be honored.

Liam Welch threw four touchdown passes as Samford rolled to a 52-14 victory over Tennessee Tech in the season opener for both teams. Welch, the Southern Conference’s Preseason Offensive Player of the Year, was 33-of-44 passing for 370 yards.

Ricky Person Jr. scored three first-half touchdowns and was one of two North Carolina State players to run for more than 100 yards in the Wolfpack’s 45-0 season-opening win against South Florida. It marked the Wolfpack’s first season-opening shutout victory in 17 years.

Nic Baker threw for a school-record 460 yards and four touchdowns and Southern Illinois beat Southeast Missouri 47-21 in a season opener. Baker finished 25-of-34 passing with his yardage total breaking Sam Straub’s record of 450 yards set against Western Illinois in 2016.

Drew Plitt threw two long touchdown passes to Justin Hall and Ball State pulled away in the second half for a 31-21 victory over Western Illinois in a nonconference season opener.

Nolan Henderson threw for 262 yards and two touchdowns and Delaware rallied to beat Maine 34-24 in the season and Colonial Athletic Association opener for both teams.

Carter Peevy threw for 139 yards and a touchdown and Tommy Pollack ran for 103 yards and two scores and Mercer beat NAIA-member Point University 69-0 in its season opener. The Bears’ total points established a new program record.

Ian Corwin ran for two scores and passed for a third in the first half as Drake opened its season with a 45-3 win over Division II West Virginia Wesleyan.

Draylen Ellis threw for 325 yards and four scores to four different receivers and Austin Peay beat Chattanooga 30-20 in the season opener for both teams. Chattanooga entered as the preseason 18th-ranked team in the FCS and Austin Peay No. 20.

Kyle Vantrease threw a 63-yard touchdown pass to Jovany Ruiz within the first minute of the game, Buffalo coach Maurice Linguist collected his first win at the helm, and the Bulls routed Wagner 69-7 in the season opener for both teams.

Bailey Zappe passed for 424 yards and seven touchdowns as Western Kentucky walloped UT Martin in the season opener 59-21. Zappe was college football’s leading passer in 2020 while playing at Houston Baptist.

Isaiah Gomez kicked two of his four field goals in the fourth quarter and UC Davis, an FCS school, stunned Tulsa 19-17 in a nonconference season opener. game-winner from 22 yards out with 7:35 left to play.


The Indianapolis Colts have activated three starters from the reserve/COVID-19 list: quarterback Carson Wentz, center Ryan Kelly and receiver Zach Pascal.

All three were put on the COVID-19 list Monday after being deemed a close contact to someone who tested positive for the virus.

The Colts also put four-time Pro Bowl receiver T.Y. Hilton, third-string quarterback Sam Ehlinger and receiver Dezmon Patmon on injured reserve. By going on injured reserve after the active roster was cut to 53 all three could return this season.

In other NFL news:

Defensive tackle Jurrell Casey is retiring from the NFL after 10 seasons, the first nine with the Tennessee Titans and the last with Denver. Casey scheduled his announcement for Thursday afternoon at Nashville’s Nissan Stadium, where he became a five-time Pro Bowl pick, six-time defensive captain and a team two-time Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year. His 51 sacks rank seventh in team history and are second only to Jevon Kearse’s 52 sacks since 1999 in the Titans era.

A person familiar with the deal says the Las Vegas Raiders have added another proven veteran to bolster their banged-up linebacker group by agreeing to a one-year contract with K.J. Wright. Wright has been one of the most dependable linebackers in the league since being drafted by Seattle in 2011. His 54 passes defensed are the fourth most of any linebacker over his 10-year career.

Investigators say former NFL player Keith McCants was found dead Thursday at his home in Florida in a suspected drug overdose. He was 53. McCants, a linebacker, was a fourth-round pick in the 1990 NFL draft by the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He earned All-America honors as a college player at Alabama. McCants played three seasons in Tampa, then with the then-Houston Oilers and Arizona Cardinals. McCants had previous drug-related arrests.


The Philadelphia Flyers have signed forward Joel Farabee to a $30 million, six-year contract extension.

Farabee’s extension, announced Thursday, kicks in with the 2022-23 season. He was scheduled to become a restricted free agent after this season.

The 21-year-old led the Flyers with 20 goals and had 38 points in 55 games. The Flyers’ first-round pick in the 2018 draft, Farabee has 28 goals and 31 assists in 107 career games.

In other NHL news:

The Buffalo Sabres have re-signed center Casey Mittelstadt to a three-year, $7.5 million contract. Mittelstadt, a restricted free agent, was selected in the first round of the 2017 draft. The 22-year-old from Minnesota overcame early career inconsistencies to finish third on the Sabres with 10 goals and fourth with 22 points in just 41 games last season.

The Arizona Coyotes have submitted a bid for two parcels of a 46-acre tract of land in what could be the first step to landing a permanent home. The City of Tempe said it received one response before the deadline to a request for proposals issued in July for a mixed-use project incorporating a professional sports franchise and entertainment district on city-owned land near Arizona State University.

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