PRO BASKETBALL—Three of the four division leaders seem to have gotten complacent, as only the Pistons, No. 1 in the Central, played better than .500 ball. Detroit, whose 56-18 record at the end of the week was the best in the NBA, had its eight-game winning streak snapped by the Trail Blazers. 118-100, but bounced back by beating the Bulls 115-108 and, in overtime, 114-112. In the latter victory the Pistons' Isiah Thomas and Chicago's Bill Cartwright were ejected for fighting. Cartwright was fined $2,500 and suspended for one game: Detroit's Mark Aguirre was fined $2,000 for "acting as other than a peacemaker"; and Thomas, who was deemed to have started the set-to, was fined $5,000 and suspended for two games. Worse still, Thomas broke his left index finger and may miss the rest of the regular season. The Lakers lost to the Jazz 99-97 and to the Warriors 122-116 and saw their Pacific Division lead over the Suns, who won three straight, shrink to 1½ games. In the Atlantic Division the Knicks suffered their fourth loss in their last seven home games, falling to Philadelphia 124-113. New York also lost 115-105 on the road to the Nets, who got 29 points from Chris Morris. Utah, the Midwest Division leader, went 2-2 for the week and lost ground to second-place Denver, which was 3-0 and trailed the Jazz by 3½ games. One of the Jazz's defeats came at the hands of the Nuggets, whose Alex English had 26 points in a 110-106 game, giving him 2,001 for the season. English became the first NBA player to score at least 2,000 points in eight consecutive seasons.
BOWLING—RON BELL beat Amleto Monacelli 255-230 in the title game to win a PBA event and $27,000, in Baltimore.
BOXING—JEFF FENECH retained his WBC featherweight crown with a unanimous 12-round decision over Marcos Villasana, in Melbourne.
GOLF—NICK FALDO birdied the second playoff hole to beat Scott Hoch and win the 53rd Masters. Faldo, who like Hoch finished regulation play at five-under-par 283, earned $200,000 (page 18).
April 16, 1989
Patti Rizzo beat Martha Nause by two strokes to win an LPGA event and $45,000, in Poway, Calif. Rizzo shot a seven-under-par 277.
HOCKEY—In the first round of the NHL playoffs, the Penguins swept four games from the staggering Rangers, who, under general manager-turned-coach Phil Esposito, ended their season with six straight defeats. Pittsburgh, which hadn't made the playoffs since 1982 and had won only three of 12 playoff series in its 21-year history, will face the winner of the Caps-Flyers series, which was tied at two games apiece after Philly got four goals in the second period Sunday en route to a 5-2 victory. The Sabres scored the first nine goals of their Adams Division playoff with the Bruins, winning the opener 6-0 and then taking a 3-0 lead in Game 2 before folding. Boston won that one 5-3 and then got two game-winning goals from Cam Neely to lead the series 3-1. In the other Adams Division bracket, the Canadiens finished off the Whalers in four straight. In the Norris Division the Blues' Brett Hull scored four goals as St. Louis took a 3-1 lead over the North Stars, and the surprising Blackhawks, paced by Duane Sutter's two game-winning goals, led the Red Wings 3-1. The Flames were upset 4-3 by the Canucks in the first game of their Smythe series when a shot by Vancouver's Paul Reinhart at 2:47 of OT slipped through the legs of Calgary goalie Mike Vernon. Vernon later redeemed himself by shutting out the Canucks 4-0, but Vancouver got a goal and three assists from Trevor Linden in a 5-3 win in Game 4 to even the series at 2-2. Also in the Smythe, the Oilers spurted to a 3-1 lead over the Kings (page 26).
HORSE RACING—In Kentucky Derby prep races: the colt AWE INSPIRING ($3.80), Craig Perret up. ran 1‚Äö√Ñ√∂‚àö√±‚àö¬µ miles at Hialeah in 1:49[3/5] to win the Flamingo Stakes by two lengths over Irish Actor and collect $180,000; another colt, SUNDAY SILENCE ($6.80), ridden by Patrick Valenzuela. defeated Flying Continental by 11 lengths in covering the 1‚Äö√Ñ√∂‚àö√±‚àö¬µ miles of the Santa Anita Derby in 1:47[3/5] to win $275,000; and a third one, EASY GOER ($2.10), with Pat Day in the irons, beat runner-up Diamond Donnie by 13 lengths in the Gotham Slakes at Aqueduct to earn $168,300. His lime for the mile, 1:32⅖ was a fifth of a second off Dr. Fager's 21-year-old world record (page 78).
INDOOR SOCCER—Baltimore, which has stumbled regularly of late, losing seven of its last 10 games, moved to within two games of clinching the MISL's regular-season title with a 6-5 OT win over Wichita. After a 6-2 loss to Dallas, Baltimore led second-place San Diego by two games.
MOTOR SPORTS—RICK MEARS, driving a Penske Chevrolet, beat Al Unser Jr., in a Lola Chevrolet, by one lap and 4.91 seconds in a CART event at Phoenix International Raceway. Mears averaged 126.11 mph in the 200-mile race and won $53,460.
ROAD RUNNING—MARCUS O'SULLIVAN, JOHN TREACY, JERRY CURTIS, FRANK O'MARA and JOHN DOHERTY successfully defended Ireland's title in America's Ekiden, a 26.2-mile road relay in New York City. The winners, who ran a 1:58:20, beat the runner-up U.S. team by 24 seconds.
STEEPLECHASE—LITTIE POLVEIR, a 28-1 long shot ridden by Jimmy Frost, defeated West Tip by seven lengths to win the 150th Grand National, at Aintree, England, The 12-year-old horse was one of 14 in the field of 40 to finish the sodden, 4½-mile, 30-barrier course.
TENNIS—In Davis Cup quarterfinals, defending champion West Germany defeated Czechoslovakia 3-2, Sweden beat Austria 3-2. Yugoslavia nailed Spain 4½-and the U.S. overwhelmed France 5-0 (page 76).
Steffi Graf beat Natalya Zvereva 6-1, 6-1 to win a women's lour event and $60,000, in Hilton Head Island. S.C.
MILEPOSTS—NAMED: As basketball coach: at Tennessee. WADE HOUSTON, 44, who had been an assistant coach at Louisville the past 13 years; at Washington, LYNN NANCE, 42, who had a 61-27 mark in three years at St. Mary's in Moraga, Calif.: at Louisiana Tech, JERRY LOYD, 34, a Bulldog assistant for the past three years; at Butler, BARRY COLLIER, 34, who had been an assistant coach al Stanford since 1986; at Wichita State, MIKE COHEN, 45, an assistant coach with the Shockers for the past three years: at Akron, COLEMAN CRAWFORD, 35, an assistant at Tennessee the past two seasons; al San Jose Stale, STAN MORRISON, 49, the athletic director at UC Santa Barbara since 1986; at Wake Forest, DAVE ODOM, 46, who had been an assistant coach at Virginia since 1982; at Marquette, KEVIN O'NEILL, 32, an assistant coach at Arizona for the past three years; al Ball State, DICK HUNSAKER. 35, who had been an assistant with the Cardinals for the past two seasons (Hunsaker replaces RICK MAJERUS, 41. who left Ball State after a two-year record of 43-17 to become the coach at Utah); and at Michigan, STEVE FISHER, 44, who, as interim coach, led the Wolverines to the national title (page 58).
RESIGNED: As basketball coach al Marshall, RICK HUCKABAY, 43, who had a 129-59 record in his six seasons with the Thundering Herd.