Beholder captures Breeders’ Cup Distaff

Horse racing: Beholder won the $2 million Distaff by 4 1/4 lengths Friday at Santa Anita in Arcadia, Calif., spoiling Royal Delta’s bid for a third straight victory at the Breeders’ Cup, with veteran jockeys Gary Stevens and Mike Smith dominating on opening day.

Stevens, who at 50 began a comeback in January that included winning the Preakness Stakes, earned his ninth career Cup win and first since 2000.

Smith, a 48-year-old Hall of Famer, won two of the five Cup races at Santa Anita, and will be aboard early favorite Game On Dude in the $5 million Classic today. He and Royal Delta finished fourth as the 7-5 favorite in the Distaff.

Nets end skid against Heat

NBA: Paul Pierce and Joe Johnson scored 19 points each, and the Brooklyn Nets ended years of futility against the Miami Heat and sent the NBA champions to their first losing streak in 10 months with a 101-100 victory in New York.

LeBron James scored 26 points for the Heat, who dropped consecutive games for the first time since January. The Nets ended a 13-game skid against the Heat

T-wolves stop Thunder: Kevin Love had 24 points and 12 rebounds and Ricky Rubio added 14 points, 10 assists and five steals to lead the Minnesota Timberwolves to a 100-81 victory over the Oklahoma City Thunder in Minneapolis.

Kevin Durant scored 13 points on 4-for-11 shooting and had trouble finding clean look.

Couples takes lead at Schwab

Golf: Fred Couples took the second-round lead in the Charles Schwab Cup Championship in San Francisco, shooting his second straight 6-under 65 in the Champions Tour’s season-ending event.

Former Pullman resident Kirk Triplett is at 2 under.

Johnson builds HSBC lead: Dustin Johnson made 10 birdies and tied the course record with a 9-under 63 to build a five-shot lead in the HSBC Champions in Shanghai. Rory McIlroy shot a 72 and was five shots behind, along with Boo Weekley and Bubba Watson.

Djokovic, Federer set up semi

Tennis: Novak Djokovic won his 15th straight match and Roger Federer avenged a loss last week to Juan Martin del Potro, setting up a semifinal between the two at the Paris Masters.

Djokovic beat Stanislas Wawrinka 6-1, 6-4, and Federer edged Del Potro 6-3, 4-6, 6-3.

Rafael Nadal also moved into the semis with a 6-4, 6-1 victory over Richard Gasquet. Nadal will face defending champion David Ferrer, a 4-6, 7-5, 6-3 winner over Tomas Berdych.

Ivanovic, Stosur reach Sofia semis: Ana Ivanovic wasted a 5-2 lead in the third set to lose 6-4, 3-6, 7-6 (1) to Elena Vesnina in their last group match at the season-ending Tournament of Champions in Sofia, Bulgaria, but still advanced to the semifinals at the expense of her opponent.

Samantha Stosur and Anastasia Pavlyuchenkova also secured spots in the semis. Simona Halep already qualified.

Caps’ rout of Flyers sparks brawl

Miscellany: Joel Ward had his first NHL hat trick in the visiting Washington Capitals’ 7-0 fight-filled rout of the Philadelphia Flyers.

Ward’s third-period goal that made it 7-0 sparked a brawl that even involved both goalies. A total of 114 penalty minutes were handed out.

Coach says he saw Pelini use drugs: A Florida Atlantic assistant coach told the school he personally witnessed former Owls head coach Carl Pelini using marijuana last month, and that he also witnessed him using cocaine. Matt Edwards’ claims played a vital role in the investigation that led to Pelini’s resignation.

Expanded replay will be tested: Expanded instant replay will be given a test next week by Major League Baseball at the Arizona Fall League.

MLB said the new video review procedures will be used during five AFL games from Tuesday through Nov. 9. AFL umpires will work the games and MLB umpires will observe. The contemplated procedures allow each manager one challenge over the first six innings and two from the seventh inning on.

Challenged calls will be reviewed by a crew in MLB headquarters in New York City, which will make a final ruling.

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