PRO BASKETBALL—Portland (4-0) began its latest string of victories with a 127-104 defeat of Indiana at home, then took off for San Antonio, where the Blazers ended the Spurs' nine-game home winning streak, and improved their own road record to 17-9, best in the NBA, with a 118-114 win. At Washington, Bill Walton and Maurice Lucas got into foul trouble, and subs Lloyd Neal and Tom Owens combined for 27 points to give Portland a come-from-behind 105-97 victory. The Blazers ended the week with a 107-96 defeat of Kansas City. Los Angeles (3-1) whipped Golden State 115-93 and Chicago 106-104 for its fifth consecutive road triumph and 13th victory in its last 17 games. After losing to the Kings 127-122, the Lakers wound up the week with a 109-99 win over Denver as Lou Hudson and Charlie Scott combined for 50 points. The New York Knicks (2-0), behind by 19 points with 11:43 to go against Seattle, scored 42 points in the fourth quarter for a 122-120 win, then handed Phoenix its sixth defeat in its last eight games, 122-115. After losing to Seattle 94-83, it looked like the same old dirge for the New Jersey Nets (1-2), but against Houston, Kevin Porter handed out an NBA-record 29 assists (the previous mark was 28, held jointly by Bob Cousy and Guy Rodgers) as the Nets beat the Rockets 126-112. Philadelphia (2-1) had wins over the Nets, 120-110, and Cleveland, 127-114, and ended the week losing to Denver 124-115. With Dave Cowens out with a sore back, Curtis Rowe with a knee injury and Jo Jo White with heel spurs, Houston raced past Boston 111-96. San Antonio rebounded from its defeat by the Blazers with wins over Atlanta, 118-105, and Cleveland, 112-108 (page 12).
BOATING—WILLIWAW, a 46-foot sloop skippered by Dennis Conner, took Division II honors in the SORC series (page 63).
BOWLING—EARL ANTHONY won the $100,000 AMF MagicScore Open in Kissimmee, Fla., defeating Ernie Schlegel 258-201. By virtue of his victory, Anthony moved ahead of Dick Weber as the PBA's career leader in prize money with $556,936.
BOXING—Undefeated WBC bantamweight champion CARLOS ZARATE of Mexico City retained his title with an eighth-round knockout of Alberto Davila in Las Vegas. It was Zarate's 50th win and 49th knockout.
March 6, 1978
CURLING—Skipped by SANDY ROBARGE, Wisconsin won the U.S. women's championship at Duluth, with a 10-7 victory over the Alaskan team skipped by Lynn Kirkvold.
GOLF—Defending champion JACK NICKLAUS fired five consecutive birdies, two from off the green, on the final five holes to win the $250,000 Jackie Gleason Inverrary Classic. Nicklaus finished with a 12-under-par 276, one stroke better than Grier Jones.
Nancy Lopez shot a one-over-par 289 to win her first LPGA tournament, the $100,000 Bent Tree Classic in Sarasota, by one stroke over Jo Ann Washam.
Jane Blalock, shooting a four-under-par 212, defeated Gloria Ehret by two strokes to win the rain-delayed $60,000 Orange Blossom Classic in St. Petersburg, Fla.
HOCKEY—NHL: Playing his first game in the NHL, former Swedish National Team Goaltender Hardy Astrom stopped 29 of Montreal's 32 shots as the New York Rangers terminated the Canadiens' league-record 28-game unbeaten streak with a 6-3 victory at the Forum (page 16). Goaltenders dominated the news. Boston, battling with Buffalo for the Adams Division lead, lost No. 1 netminder Gerry Cheevers indefinitely when he suffered torn ligaments in his right knee in a collision with Colorado's Joe Contini. WHA defector Ron Grahame replaced Cheevers and helped the Bruins beat the Rockies 3-2, Vancouver 6-4 and Los Angeles 4-2. Buffalo remained deadlocked for first place with Boston, thanks to Goaltender Don Edwards' 4-0 blanking of struggling Philadelphia and a 13-3 blitzing of hapless Cleveland. Philadelphia Coach Fred Shero was so displeased with the performance of Goaltender Bernie Parent in the Flyers' 4-1 loss to the New York Islanders that he replaced him with rookie Rick St. Croix for games at Buffalo and at Pittsburgh. Parent was shaky in the Islanders' game; he gave up two New York scores when he got caught far out of his net and yielded a third when he fanned on Lorne Henning's knuckleball shot. St. Croix played well in Philadelphia's loss at Buffalo, then beat Pittsburgh 3-1. Still, Philadelphia trailed the Islanders by seven points in the Patrick Division. New York's Mike Bossy broke Rick Martin's goal-scoring record for rookies as he notched No. 45 in a 7-1 rout of Chicago. In that game Bryan Trottier had a goal and two assists, and became the first player to reach the 100-point plateau this season. Colorado's Barry Beck broke Denis Potvin's record for goals by a rookie defenseman when he scored No. 19 in the Rockies' 5-5 tie at St. Louis; the night before, Beck's 18th goal of the season had lifted Denver to a 3-2 win over Minnesota.
WHA: Now that Montreal has finally lost a game, the streakingest team in hockey is Winnipeg. The Jets reeled off their WHA-record 13th and 14th consecutive victories, beating second-place New England 4-2 and 7-2, to take a 12-point lead over the Whalers. Swedish Right Wing Anders Hedberg scored his 51st and 52nd goals in the Jets' 7-2 skate over the Whalers, while linemate Bobby Hull had three assists. Off the ice, Hull was a member of a group that purchased control of the Winnipeg franchise. The new owners said that they intended to keep Hedberg and Center Ulf Nilsson from signing with the NHL's New York Rangers by matching New York's reported $1.9 million offer to the Swedes. They also indicated that they would file a formal application for Winnipeg to join the NHL.
HORSE RACING—SILVER SERIES ($3.20), ridden by Angel Cordero Jr., won the $148,750 Widener Handicap by three lengths over Adriatico. Dr. Archie Donaldson's 4-year-old colt covered the 1¼ miles in 2:02[1/5].
Taisez Vous ($6.20), Donald Pierce up, won the $100,000 Santa Margarita Invitational Handicap at Santa Anita for her fourth consecutive stakes victory. She ran the 1‚Äö√Ñ√∂‚àö√±‚àö¬µ miles in 1:49.
MOTOR SPORTS—BENNY PARSONS, driving a Chevy, won the $80,000 Richmond 400, averaging 80.304 mph on the .542-mile oval. Second-place Lennie Pond's Chevy was the only car Parsons did not lap.
SPEED SKATING—ERIC HEIDEN of Madison, Wis. won his sixth consecutive world championship and his second consecutive world all-around title in G‚Äö√†√∂‚Äö√†√áteborg, Sweden. Heiden skated the 500 meters in 39.01, the 5,000 in 7:20.80 and the 1,500 in 2:00.22.
SWIMMING—TRACEY WICKHAM, 15, of Australia, established a women's world record of 8:30.53 for the 800-meter freestyle at the Australian swimming championships in Brisbane. The previous record of 8:31.30 was held by Michelle Ford of Australia.
TENNIS—MARTINA NAVRATILOVA beat Dianne Fromholtz, 6-3, 6-2, to win the $100,000 Virginia Slims tournament in Detroit (page 20).
Top-seeded JIMMY CONNORS defeated Stan Smith, 7-6, 6-2, to win the $125,000 United Bank Classic in Denver.
Unseeded BALAZS TAROCZY, of Hungary, defeated Ray Moore, 6-4, 6-4, to win the $100,000 Ocean City (Md.) International, his first U.S. victory.
TRACK & FIELD—NATALIA MARASESCU of Romania set a women's world indoor record of 4:05 for the 1,500 at the Hungarian Indoor All-Comers Championships in Budapest. Her time was 3.1 seconds below the record established by Mary Stewart of Great Britain.
Houston McTear ran the 60-yard dash in 6.04 to set a world indoor record for automatic timing at the AAU national indoor championships in New York (page 18).
In the same meet, DEBY LAPLANTE ran the 60-yard hurdles in 7.53 to break the automatically timed world indoor women's record. The old mark of 7.68 was held by Patty Van Wolvelaere.
MILEPOSTS—NAMED: EDDIE BIEDENBACH, 32, as basketball coach at Davidson College, replacing Dave Pritchett who resigned. Biedenbach has been an assistant coach at North Carolina State for the past nine years and briefly played with the Los Angeles Lakers and Phoenix Suns.
DIED: VIC HARRIS, 72, an outfielder and manager of the Homestead Grays in the old Negro National League: in San Fernando, Calif. Harris' teams won seven pennants in nine years (1937-45).