#SportsReport: Suns Down Bucks; Fans Banned At Tokyo Olympics Amid State Of Emergency
The Phoenix Suns find themselves two wins away from the first NBA championship in team history, and the first major league title for the city since the 2001 Arizona Diamondbacks. Devin Booker pumped in 31 points and Mikal Bridges added 27 as the Suns downed the Milwaukee Bucks, 118-108 to take a two-games-to-none lead in the Finals. Chris Paul chipped in 23 points and eight assists for Phoenix, which took control by outscoring the Bucks, 30-16 in the second quarter to go up by 11. The Suns shot 20-for-40 from 3-point range, led by Booker's 7-for-12 from beyond the arc. Paul, Bridges and Jae Crowder each added three treys. Bucks forward Giannis Antetokounmpo finished with 42 points and 12 rebounds in his second game back after missing two games with a hyperextended left knee. But Jrue Holiday and Khris Middleton combined to shoot just 12-for-37. Holiday finished with 17 points on 7 of 21 from the field. Middleton scored just 11 on 5 of 16 shooting while adding eight assists and six rebounds. Game 3 is Sunday in Milwaukee.
Ash Barty will face Karolina Pliskova on Saturday in the first Wimbledon women's final for both. Barty beat 2018 Wimbledon champion Angelique Kerber, 6-3, 7-6 to become the first woman from Australia to reach the title match at Wimbledon since Evonne Goolagong won the trophy 1980. Barty was two points from dropping the second set, 6-2 before holding serve and breaking Kerber twice to force a tiebreak. Pliskova then advanced by coming back to eliminate second-seeded Aryna Sabalenka 5-7, 6-4, 6-4. Pliskova overcame Sabalenka's 18 aces with 14 of her own. Pliskova finally broke for a 3-2 lead in the second set and again in the opening game of the third to take control. This is the first team either player has advanced past the fourth round at Wimbledon. Barty owns the lone Grand Slam title between the two, taking the 2019 French Open.
In other tennis news, Rafael Nadal will return to competition by making his debut at the Citi Open in Washington later this month. Nadal hasn't played since his loss to Novak Djokovic in the semifinals of the French Open last month. The 35-year-old Spaniard decided to sit out Wimbledon and the Tokyo Olympics. The Citi Open is among the hard-court tuneup events leading up to the U.S. Open. Other players entered in the Citi Open include Wimbledon semifinalists Denis Shapovalov and Hubert Hurkacz, who beat Roger Federer on Wednesday.
The Mariners blanked the Yankees, 4-0 as Logan Gilbert pitched one-hit ball over seven innings in the best start of his young career. Gilbert set a career-high with eight strikeouts and retired his final 18 batters. Kyle Seager and Dylan Moore as Seattle salvaged the finale of the three-game set.
Elsewhere in baseball:
Brad Miller homered three times for the first time in his career to lead the Phillies' 8-0 pounding of the Cubs. Miller hit a solo drive in the third inning and added two-run homers in the fifth to finish with five RBIs. Didi Gregorius added a two-run shot and All-Star catcher J.T. Realmuto scored on a double-steal as the Phillies took three of four games at Wrigley Field.
Rookie reliever Daniel Camarena hit a grand slam off Max Scherzer in the fourth inning as the Padres turned an 8-0 deficit into a 9-8 win over the Nationals. Trent Grisham hit an RBI single with two outs in the ninth, allowing San Diego to match the largest comeback win in franchise history. Padres shortstop Fernando Tatis Jr. homered and stole a base to become the youngest player in baseball history to have 20 homers and 20 steals before the break. Tatis has 28 home runs.
Julio Urias picked up his major league-leading 11th win while helping the Los Angeles Dodgers avoid a four-game sweep in Miami. Urías allowed Jazz Chisholm's leadoff homer, then pitched shutout ball through the seventh inning of the Dodgers' 6-1 win over the Marlins. He allowed just five hits and struck out nine in improving to 11-3. Urias also sparked the Dodgers' five-run fifth with a leadoff single. Chris Taylor had two hits and two RBIs for Los Angeles, which owns the second-best record in the National League but is one game behind the West-leading Giants.
Jed Lowrie and Matt Olson collected RBIs in the first inning of the Athletics' 2-1 win over the Astros. Frankie Montas fanned 10 while allowing five hits and a run over 6 2/3 innings, helping Oakland end a three-game skid and avoid a three-game sweep. The A's halted Houston's six-game winning streak and dealt Lance McCullers his first loss in 10 starts since April 14.
The Indians ended their nine-game losing streak as Franmil Reyes slammed a three-run homer in the ninth inning to complete a 7-4 comeback over the Royals. Kansas City had a 3-1 lead in the eighth until Roberto Hernandez launched a three-run shot. Bobby Bradley also homered for the Indians, whose losing streak was their longest under manager Terry Francona.
The Twins took advantage of a replay reversal to score three runs in the seventh inning of a 5-3 verdict over the Tigers. Detroit tried to turn a double play in the seventh, but Gilberto Celestino beat the throw to first and replay showed that second baseman Willi Castro pulled his foot off the bag too quickly. Ryan Jeffers and Miguel Sanó homered off Tigers starter Tarik Skubal.
The Brewers beat the Reds, 5-3 on Avisaíl García's tiebreaking, two-run home run in the eighth inning. Milwaukee wasted an early 2-0 lead and tied the game on the first of Keston Hiura's two doubles. The Brewers now lead the NL Central by seven games over the Reds.
The Rockies won for just the seventh time in 40 road games as Dom Nunez doubled twice and singled in a 9-3 thumping of the Diamondbacks. Nunez scored twice, drove in a run and drew a walk after carrying a .159 batting average into the game. Winning pitcher Chi Chi Gonzalez provided an RBI single and allowed three earned runs and six hits in five innings.
The Mets and Pirates were rained out in New York. The game has been rescheduled as part of a Saturday doubleheader and would be the Mets' 10th twinbill already this season.
The Blue Jays and Orioles were postponed with Tropical Storm Elsa expected to hit the Baltimore area during the game. The game will be made up as part of a doubleheader on Sept. 11.
In MLB news:
Trevor Bauer's administrative leave has been extended by seven days through July 15 by Major League Baseball and the players' association. MLB investigators continue to look into allegations of sexual misconduct against the Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher. Bauer was placed on seven days' paid leave on July 2.
Astros middle infielders Jose Altuve and Carlos Correa will not play in next week's All-Star Game after being named reserves for the game in Denver. Altuve cited a left leg issue for his reason to skip the game, and Correa wants to spend time with his wife as they await the birth of their first child.
Marlins manager Don Mattingly will return for a seventh season in 2022 after the two sides worked out a mutual option in his contract. Mattingly was the NL Manager of the Year after guiding Miami to its first playoff berth in 17 years, but the team is last in the NL East right now.
Fans will be banned from Tokyo-area stadiums and arenas when the Olympics begin in two weeks. The city's governor made the announcement on Thursday after meeting with organizers of the pandemic-postponed games. The Japanese government put the capital under a COVID-19 state of emergency because of rising new infections and the highly contagious delta variant. It's a serious blow for Japanese taxpayers and local organizers of the games, which already had been postponed from 2020 by the coronavirus. Hundreds of millions of dollars in ticket revenue will be lost, and that must be made up by the government.
Nick Kyrgios pulled out of Australia's Olympic tennis team after Tokyo's governor confirmed the ban on fans. Kyrgios posted a statement on social media to announce his withdrawal, citing the ban and a need to get healthy. The 26-year-old Australian said he wouldn't want to take an opportunity away from a healthy athlete ready to represent the country.
Sebastian Munoz closed with five straight birdies for an 8-under 63, turning a solid day into a share of the lead with Chesson Hadley at the PGA's John Deere Classic. Hadley played bogey-free and had back-to-back birdies on three occasions. He was helped by making three of his birdies from 25 feet. Hank Lebioda, Chez Reavie and Camilo Villegas opened with 64s. Lebioda finished one shot out of the playoff last weekend in the Rocket Mortgage Classic.
Billy Andrade and Stephen Ames shot 5-under 65s to share the first-round lead in the U.S. Senior Open. Andrade had five birdies and no bogeys on an Omaha Country Club course that dried out after the sun broke through and the wind came up in the afternoon. Ames had seven birdies and two bogeys in the morning session. Wes Short Jr. shot 66.
Nasa Hataoka flirted with an LPGA record-tying 59 while building a four-stroke lead in the first round of the Marathon Classic in Ohio. Hataoka settled for a 10-under 61 with pars on the final two holes. Annika Sorenstam is the only player to shoot 59 on the LPGA Tour, accomplishing the feat in 2001. Hataoka had six straight birdies and added three more in a row on Nos. 5-7 before closing her bogey-free round with the two pars. Lauren Stephenson is second after a 65.
The anticipated third fight between heavyweight champion Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder will be postponed, likely until the fall. A person with knowledge of the situation says Fury has tested positive for COVID-19, pushing back the scheduled July 24 bout in Las Vegas. Fury is 30-0-1 with 21 knockouts, while Wilder has earned 41 of his 42 victories by KO. Wilder has lost just once in 44 matches. Fury tested positive along with several members of his camp. He was already in the U.S. to complete his final preparations for the bout.
© The Associated Press 2021. All Rights Reserved.