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#SportsReport: Croatia Edges England To Reach World Cup Final

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Some are calling it the greatest generation of Croatian soccer players and who could argue? Mario Mandzukic scored the go-ahead goal in the 109th minute and Croatia stunned England 2-1 in Moscow in their World Cup semifinal. It was the third consecutive extra time win for Croatia, which advanced to the World Cup final for the first time.

France, which won its only title on home soil in 1998, will play Croatia in Sunday's final.

England will have to regroup for Saturday's third-place game against Belgium in St. Petersburg.

Elsewhere in Professional Soccer:

The United Soccer League announced Wednesday it is bringing a team to Hartford, Connecticut next year, and they will play under the name Hartford Athletic. The Hartford Courant reports the team will play at Dillon Stadium, and Hartford Sports Group CEO Bruce Mandell says they have already seen 1,000 commitments for season tickets.


Serena Williams is the only former champion left in the field as the women's semifinalists take to Centre Court at Wimbledon. Williams will play Julia Goerges in a match of experience against youth. Williams will be playing in her 35th Grand Slam semifinal, while Goerges will be playing in her first. In the other semifinal, No. 11 Angelique Kerber faces 12th-seeded Jelena Ostapenko.

Roger Federer was a point away from a neat, straight-sets victory in the Wimbledon men's quarterfinals Wednesday, but he failed to convert.

What followed over the next two-plus hours was a stunning rally by South African Kevin Anderson who beat the top-seeded Federer 2-6, 6-7 (5), 7-5, 6-4, 13-11 in a 4-hour, 14-minute battle.

Friday, Anderson will face No. 9 John Isner, the 33-year-old American who reached his first major semifinal in his 41st try by eliminating 2016 runner-up Milos Raonic of Canada 6-7 (5), 7-6 (7), 6-4, 6-3.

The other men's semifinal will be a battle between Rafael Nadal and Novak Djokovic

Nadal, who's won two of his 17 Grand Slam titles at Wimbledon, edged 2009 U.S. Open champion Juan Martin del Potro 7-5, 6-7 (7), 4-6, 6-4, 6-4.

Djokovic, whose 12 major championships include three from the All England Club, got to his first Grand Slam semifinal since 2016 by beating No. 24 seed Kei Nishikori 6-3, 3-6, 6-2, 6-2.


Greg Bird belted his first career grand slam and Sonny Gray put on a dominant pitching performance as the New York Yankees blasted the Baltimore Orioles 9-0 for a split of the four-game series.

Bird launched a drive off the right-field foul pole in the third inning to put the Yankees up 5-0.

Gray allowed three hits, walked one and struck out eight over six innings to improve to 6-7 after losing three straight starts. The Yankees head to Ohio to take on the Indians Thursday at 7:10 p.m.

Elsewhere in the majors:

Kenta Maeda registered 9 strikeouts and allowed a run and four hits over 5 /23 innings as the Los Angeles Dodgers beat the San Diego Padres 4-2. Matt Kemp, Logan Forsythe and Chris Taylor each had an RBI single for the Dodgers.

Marco Gonzalez retired the first 10 batters he faced and gave up just two hits with four strikeouts over seven innings pitching the Seattle Mariners to a 3-0 win over the Los Angeles Angels. David Freitas hit his first major league home run for Seattle.

Chad Pinder ripped a three-run homer and Khris Davis drove in three runs leading the Oakland Athletics to an 8-3 romp over the Houston Astros. Davis extended his career-best hitting streak to 13 games.

Jose Ramirez belted a pair of home runs and drove in five runs as the Cleveland Indians blasted the Cincinnati Reds 19-4. Ramirez hit a two-run homer in the first inning and added a three-run shot in Cleveland's nine-run third.

Ozzie Albies, who's headed to his first All-Star game next week, launched two homers as the Atlanta Braves outscored the Toronto Blue Jays 9-5 to move back into a first-place tie in the National League East. The Braves led 7-0 before Toronto scored five runs in the seventh on Justin Smoak's leadoff homer and a grand slam from Devon Travis.

Chris Sale struck out 12 in seven innings in his final start before the All-Star game and major league batting leader Mookie Betts had two more hits leading the Boston Red Sox to a 4-2 victory over the Texas Rangers. It was the ninth straight win for Boston. The Red Sox head home to begin a 4 game series with the Toronto Blue Jays Thursday at 7:10 p.m.

Carlos Gonzalez hit two homers and starter German Marquez added a home run in the Colorado Rockies' 19-2 drubbing of the Arizona Diamondbacks. The Rockies socked five home runs in the game.

Buster Posey delivered a single off the right-field wall in the 13th inning to drive in the winning run as the San Francisco Giants edged the Chicago Cubs 5-4. The winning rally was set up as Brandon Belt drew a two-out walk from James Norwood (0-1) and Andrew McCutchen singled to bring up Posey, who ended the 4-hour, 30-minute game.

Carlos Rodon pitched into the eighth inning allowing only three hits and no runs as the Chicago White Sox blanked the St. Louis Cardinals 4-0. Tim Anderson tripled and had two RBIs for the White Sox who ended a six-game losing streak.

Brandon Nimmo delivered a three-run pinch homer in the bottom of the 10th inning, lifting the New York Mets to a 3-0 win over the Philadelphia Phillies. All-Star Jacob deGrom was dominant for the Mets, scattering five hits over eight innings. The Mets will host the nationals Thursday at 7:10 p.m.

Starling Marte hit a two-run home run and Trevor Williams combined with four relievers on a five-hitter as the Pittsburgh Pirates beat the Washington Nationals 2-0 on Wednesday. Washington (46-46) lost for the 11th time in 16 games and fell back to .500. The Nationals entered the season as favorites to win a third consecutive NL East title.

C.J. Cron's three-run home run in the seventh inning carried the Tampa Bay Rays to their fifth straight win, a 4-2 victory over the Detroit Tigers. Cron and Kiermaier each had three hits for the Rays, who have won 14 of 18.

Brian Dozier went deep for the second straight game, hitting a two-run homer in the Minnesota Twins' 8-5 victory over the Kansas City Royals. Dozier has 15 homers on the season.

In other MLB news:

The Philadelphia Phillies have adjusted their rotation for this weekend's series against the Miami Marlins to allow ace Aaron Nola to pitch in the All-Star Game Tuesday night in Washington. Nola will move up one day and will draw a Saturday start and Zach Eflin will pitch for the Phils on Sunday. Nola has a 2.27 ERA with 126 strikeouts over 19 starts and he leads the National League with 12 wins. The 25-year-old right-hander is the youngest Philadelphia pitcher selected to an All-Star game since then-23-year-old Cole Hamels got the honor in 2007.

St. Louis Cardinals pitcher Miles Mikolas has been removed from the National League's active roster for the All-Star Game because he's scheduled to start Sunday against the Cincinnati Reds. Mikolas will be replaced on the NL pitching staff by Los Angeles Dodgers right-hander Ross Stripling.

The Phillies have activated right-hander Vince Velasquez from the 10-day disabled list. Velasquez had been out with a bruised right forearm.

The Baltimore Orioles placed right-hander Andrew Cashner on the 10-day disabled list on Wednesday with a neck strain. Baltimore manager Buck Showalter said, "It's something he gets once a year." Cashner received an injection on Wednesday to treat the injury.


The New York Giants spent a 2019 third-round draft pick on Western Michigan cornerback Sam Beal, and Washington selected Virginia Tech cornerback Adonis Alexander in the sixth round Wednesday.

New York will surrender its third-round pick in next April's draft in Nashville, while the Redskins give up a sixth-rounder.

Both players were ruled academically ineligible for the upcoming college football season and entered the supplemental draft.

Not selected were Mississippi State safety Brandon Bryant, Grand Valley State running back Martayveus Carter and Oregon State linebacker Bright Ugwoegbu.

In other NFL news:

Police say Cincinnati Bengals cornerback Adam "Pacman" Jones was attacked during a run-in with a facility-service employee at the airport in Atlanta. Atlanta police say Jones confronted ABM Industries employee Frank Ragin after Ragin made a "gesture" toward the football player Tuesday night at Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport. Police say words were exchanged before Ragin struck Jones with a closed fist, causing a cut to Jones' face. Ragin was arrested on two counts of battery and taken to a nearby hospital to be treated for injuries.

The ex-girlfriend of NFL star LeSean McCoy says through her lawyer that the Buffalo Bills running back orchestrated an attack that left her bloody amid attempts to get her to leave his suburban Atlanta mansion. Attorney Tanya Mitchell Graham says in a statement to news outlets that her client was physically assaulted by a man who entered the home with no signs of forced entry and demanded specific items of jewelry that had been given to her by McCoy. McCoy and the woman have been in court over his attempts to evict her from the home.


Darryl Rogers, who coached Michigan State to a share of the Big Ten title in 1978 and later took coached the Detroit Lions, has died. He was 83.

The Lions said Rogers' family confirmed his death Wednesday.

Rogers coached Michigan State from 1976-79, going 24-18-2. The 1978 team, which included star flanker Kirk Gibson, won its final seven games to finish tied for first in the conference.

Rogers also coached at Arizona State from 1980-84 before heading to the NFL.

In other football news

Two-time national champion and 2007 Heisman Trophy winner Tim Tebow will be inducted into Florida's ring of honor, becoming the sixth player to receive the honor. The school announced Wednesday that Tebow will be recognized during the LSU-Florida game on Oct. 6. His name will be unveiled on a wall inside Ben Hill Griffin Stadium.


An attorney representing a group of former Louisville men's basketball players says they have filed a lawsuit against the NCAA over the Cardinals' 2013 vacated national championship and 2012 Final Four.

John Morgan, one of several attorneys representing former Cardinals captain Luke Hancock, the 2013 Final Four Most Outstanding Player, and four teammates from that title team, described the NCAA during a Wednesday news conference as "a morally bankrupt organization" that exploits student-athletes.

The NCAA stripped Louisville of the title as part of sanctions for violations discovered during an escort scandal investigation.

The governing body in February denied the school's appeal and vacated 123 victories, including their third NCAA title following an escort's book allegations in October 2015 that former basketball staffer Andre McGee hired her and other dancers for sex parties. Louisville removed the championship banner from its home arena soon afterward.


Triple Crown winner Justify has swelling in his left front ankle and he's been taken out of training to see if the swelling subsides.

Trainer Bob Baffert says Justify will be re-evaluated in two weeks.

Baffert told the Daily Racing Form on Wednesday that Justify will ship to Del Mar and be part of his stable based at the track for the summer meet that begins July 18.

© 2018 Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

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