Mavs blow huge lead, rally to beat Blazers
NBA: Dirk Nowitzki scored 22 points, Devin Harris hit the go-ahead shot in the final minute and the Dallas Mavericks rallied in the fourth quarter after blowing a 30-point lead, beating the Portland Trail Blazers 103-98 last night in Dallas.
LaMarcus Aldridge finished with 30 for Portland, including 18 in the third quarter when the Blazers went in front for the first time at 69-67 after trailing 44-14 early in the second quarter.
The Mavericks nearly tied the franchise record for their biggest blown lead. They lost at the Los Angeles Lakers 105-103 on Dec. 6, 2002, after leading 66-36 early in the third quarter.
• Rockets pound Pacers: James Harden had 28 points and the Houston Rockets used a huge third quarter to turn a close game into a blowout in a 112-86 win over the Indiana Pacers in Houston.
Harden scored 16 in Houston’s 38-point third quarter, which turned a three-point lead into a 29-point advantage. He also got into a dustup with Evan Turner that resulted in both players receiving technical fouls.
• Bucks’ Ilyasova suspended: Milwaukee Bucks forward Ersan Ilyasova was suspended one game without pay for punching Sacramento forward Reggie Evans in the stomach.
The punch happened in the fourth quarter of Milwaukee’s 116-102 loss to the Kings on Wednesday when the two players became entangled while battling for rebounding position.
Austria’s Fenninger leads World Cup
Winter Sports: Anna Fenninger seized the lead in the overall Alpine World Cup standings by winning a giant slalom for the second straight day in Are, Sweden.
The 24-year-old Austrian extended her first-leg lead to beat Viktoria Rebensburg of Germany by 0.61 seconds.
• Antoine, Graybill win U.S. skeleton titles: Olympic bronze medalist Matt Antoine won the men’s title and Savannah Graybill took the women’s crown at the U.S. national skeleton championships in Lake Placid, N.Y.
Antoine won by an enormous margin, his four-run time of 3 minutes, 33.68 seconds topping Mike Rogals by 3.38 seconds. Antoine’s final run was 53.39 seconds, a course record at Mount Van Hoevenberg.
Graybill also scored an easy win on the way to her first national title, her time of 3:42.74 topping the second-place time from Samantha Culiver by 4.03 seconds.
Weather makes for tough day at Dural
Men’s Golf: The new Doral in raging wind looked a lot like an old U.S. Open.
Matt Kuchar played out of the rough to tap-in range for birdie on the 18th hole for a 2-over 74 that allowed him to join an exclusive group at the Cadillac Championship in Doral, Fla. – one of only four survivors to par.
The Blue Monster gobbled up just about everyone else.
Dustin Johnson bogeyed three of his last six holes for a 74.
Patrick Reed made only two birdies in his round of 75. Hunter Mahan atoned for a triple bogey with a 4-iron into 5 feet for eagle on the eighth hole, giving him a 74. They joined Kuchar atop the leaderboard at 1-under 143.
Tiger Woods hit three balls in the water and scraped out a 73, thanks in part to a 90-foot birdie putt on the par-3 fourth hole.
• Driscoll out front in Puerto Rico: James Driscoll matched the Puerto Rico Open record with a 9-under 63 to take a one-stroke lead after the second round.
Playing in wind after morning rain at Trump International in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico, Driscoll had an eagle and seven birdies in his bogey-free round. He had a 12-under 132 total.
Spokane native Alex Prugh shot a 1-under 71 but missed the cut by two strokes.
Miscellany: Major League Soccer’s referees and other on-field officials were locked out a day before the season openers.
The Professional Referee Organization, which manages game officials for the U.S. Soccer Federation and MLS, notified the Professional Soccer Referee Association of the lockout and said replacement officials will be used.
PRO said the union, which was formed last year, rejected a no strike-no lockout agreement that management had proposed. The sides have bargained since July without reaching a deal on a labor contract for the upcoming season.
• Cassel to rejoin Vikings: A person with knowledge of the agreement tells The Associated Press that veteran quarterback Matt Cassel is re-signing with the Minnesota Vikings.
The person says the two sides reached agreement Friday, one day before Cassel would be able to open negotiations with other teams. Terms of the deal were not immediately available.
• Berra’s wife dies: Carmen Berra, the wife of New York Yankees great Yogi Berra, has died. She was 85.
The Yankees confirmed that she died Thursday night in New Jersey’s Essex County.
The team didn’t say how she died.
The Berras got married in January 1949 and recently celebrated their 65th wedding anniversary.