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UPI NewsTrack Sports

April 20, 2012 at 11:00 PM   |   Comments

Yankees spoil Fenway's birthday party

BOSTON, April 20 (UPI) -- The New York Yankees hit five home runs -- two by Eric Chavez -- to beat Boston 6-2 Friday in a game celebrating the 100th anniversary of Fenway Park.

Alex Rodriguez, Nick Swisher and Russell Martin also homered for the Yankees, who handed the Red Sox their fourth straight loss. Ivan Nova (3-0) got the win, allowing two runs on seven hits with five strikeouts over six innings.

David Ortiz hit a solo homer and Mike Aviles had two hits and one RBI for Boston.

Red Sox starter Clay Buchholz (1-1) went six-plus innings, giving up six runs on nine hits, including all five New York home runs.

The teams wore replica uniforms to observe the 100th anniversary of the oldest MLB ballpark currently in use. The first game at Fenway, April 20, 1912, featured the Red Sox against the New York Highlanders -- who went on to become the Yankees.

The anniversary celebration featured appearances by all surviving Red Sox uniformed players and managers, wearing jerseys from the eras in which they played or coached.


Penguins keep season alive against Flyers

PITTSBURGH, April 20 (UPI) -- Marc-Andre Fleury slowed down Philadelphia's offense Friday and the Pittsburgh Penguins again kept their season going with a 3-2 victory over the Flyers.

After losing the first three games of the opening-round playoff series by a combined score of 20-12, Pittsburgh has come back to win two in a row and will try to even the matchup with their cross-state rival when the Flyers host Game 6 Sunday.

Fleury blanked Philadelphia over the final two periods in the lowest-scoring game of the series and the Penguins rallied for two goals in the middle stanza.

Jordan Staal tied it for the Penguins 6:15 into the second and Tyler Kennedy put a slap shot past Ilya Bryzgalov for the game-winner midway through the period.

The game then turned into something this series had not yet seen -- a goaltending duel. Fleury stopped 24 shots and Bryzgalov had 20 saves.

Matt Carle gave Philadelphia the lead 11:45 into the game, Steve Sullivan tied it 3 minutes later and Scott Hartnell again put the Flyers in front with 2:25 to go in the opening period. All three of the first-period goals came on the power play.

There was an absence of the brawling and misconduct penalties that featured the first four contests of the series and led to multiple suspensions by the NHL. Only eight 2-minute penalties were called, just one of them of coming in the tense final period.


Ben Curtis leads Texas Open

SAN ANTONIO, April 20 (UPI) -- Former British Open champion Ben Curtis, winless on the PGA Tour for the last six years, vaulted into the lead Friday midway through the Texas Open.

Curtis shot his second straight 67 over the TPC-San Antonio course and his 10-under 134 total put him two shots in front of David Mathis when play was halted by darkness. A weather delay of 2 hours during the afternoon eventually prevented 22 players from finishing the round.

Curtis became the surprise winner of the British Open in 2003 and has won just twice since. He has spent part of this year playing on the European Tour, where he is still exempt due to the British Open victory.

He has made the cut in just one of his other three PGA Tour appearances this season.

Mathis was alone in second at 136 after shooting a 67 while Cameron Tringale was at 7-under 137 after firing a 65. First-round leader Matt Every, who broke the course record with a 63 on Thursday, was at 7-under with two holes to play when darkness fell, was 2-over for his round.

No other player was closer than within six shots of the lead. Blake Adams, Ryan Palmer and Hunter Hass were all at 140.

After the rains left the area, a brisk wind came through and made scoring conditions difficult during the afternoon. It took a score of only 4-over 148 to make the cut and among those missing it was Colt Knost, who contended last week for the title at the RBC Heritage.


Surgery to keep Howard from post-season

ORLANDO, Fla., April 20 (UPI) -- Orlando Magic center Dwight Howard will miss the rest of the season, including the playoffs, because of lower back surgery, the team said Friday.

Team officials and Howard's agent, Dan Fegan, said Howard, 26, will undergo surgery for a herniated disk Friday in Marina del Rey, Calif. Surgeon Robert Watkins and team orthopedist Craig Mintzer agreed the procedure was the best treatment for the player's condition, the Orlando Sentinel reported Friday.

"Dwight went in for an MRI Thursday morning," Fegan said. "When the results of that MRI came back, it appeared from that MRI that the problem had worsened, the tear. The doctors got on the phone. They consulted together and they both reached the same conclusion: that he was no longer a candidate for rehab, that surgery was required."

Fegan said Howard won't be able to play in any of the Magic's post-season games and it is "almost a certainty" that he won't be on the U.S. men's basketball team during the Summer Olympics in London.

Howard's injury has caused him to miss the Magic's last six games.

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