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Europe Finally Wins Solheim Cup on U.S. Soil

Parker, Colo. — Europe showed Sunday it can win the Solheim Cup anywhere.

Caroline Hedwall became the first player in Solheim Cup history to win all five of her matches, holing a 4-foot birdie putt on the 18th hole for a 1-up victory that assured the Europeans retaining the cup. Moments later, Catriona Matthew finished off a rally to halve her match against Gerina Piller. Europe went on to a 18-10 victory for its first win on American soil since this event in 1990.

And it wasn’t even close.

Charley Hull, the 17-year-old teenager and the youngest player in Solheim Cup history, capped off her amazing week by demolishing Paula Creamer in a match that set the tone for Europe. Carlota Ciganda of Spain handed Morgan Pressel her first lost in singles in four appearances to go 3-0 for the week.

Reed Wins Playoff

Greensboro, n.c. — Patrick Reed won the Wyndham Championship on Sunday for his first PGA Tour title, beating Jordan Spieth with a birdie on the second hole of a playoff.

Reed recovered from a drive on the par-4 10th that nearly went out of bounds and placed his second shot 7 feet from the pin.

Tennis

Nadal, Azarenka Win
First Cincy Titles

Cincinnati — Rafael Nadal extended his sizzling summer with another title in Cincinnati. Serena Williams wilted.

Nadal withstood John Isner’s steamy serves and ground out a 7-6 (8), 7-6 (3) win over the top-ranked American in the finals of the Western & Southern Open on Sunday.

The top-ranked Williams faded after the first set and lost to No. 2 Victoria Azarenka 6-2, 2-6, 7-6 (6), ending her 14-match winning streak.

Williams beat Azarenka in three sets to win the U.S. Open last year.

College Football

Ex-Marine Appeals NCAA Ban

Murfreesboro, Tenn. — A Middle Tennessee State freshman who finished five years of active service in the Marines this summer is appealing an NCAA rule preventing him from playing this season because he played in a recreational league in the military.

According to The Daily News Journal, the rule essentially says student-athletes who do not enroll in college within a year of graduating high school will be charged one year of collegiate eligibility for every academic year they participate in organized competition.

By NCAA standards, Steven Rhodes’ play at the Marine base counted as “organized competition” because there were game officials, team uniforms and the score was kept.

But the 6-foot-3, 240-pound Marine sergeant said the recreational league was nothing close to organized.

“Man, it was like intramurals for us,” said the 24-year-old. “There were guys out there anywhere from 18 to 40-something years old. The games were spread out. We once went six weeks between games.”

The rule first took shape in 1980, when “participation in organized competition during times spent in the armed services, on official church missions or with recognized foreign aid services of the U.S. government” were exempt from limiting eligibility.

But through several revisions and branches of the rule, the clause allowing competition during military service was lost and not carried over into the current bylaws.

Daryl Simpson, MTSU’s assistant athletic director/compliance, said he doesn’t believe the NCAA ever intended to penalize military service members.

“All this is strictly because of how the bylaw is worded,” he said. “In my opinion, there is no intent of anyone to not allow protection to our U.S. service members.”

Middle Tennessee won a partial appeal to the NCAA last week recouping two years of eligibility for Rhodes with his recreational league spanning two academic years. But Rhodes still is appealing to play this season practicing both at tight end and defensive end.

MTSU spokesman Mark Owens told The Associated Press on Sunday that the school hopes to hear from the NCAA within the next month. The Blue Raiders open the season Aug. 29 hosting Western Carolina.