Soccer: Graham Zusi and Jozy Altidore scored second-half goals in Kansas City, Kan., to give the United States a 2-0 victory over Jamaica and clinch first place for the Americans in their World Cup qualifying group for the third straight cycle.
The sides had played to a stalemate through the first 77 minutes before Alejandro Bedoya got the ball on the wing. He crossed to Zusi, whose shot from about 12 yards out beat goalkeeper DuWayne Kerr and ignited his home-team crowd of 18,467 decked out in red, white and blue.
The U.S. (6-2-1), which clinched its seventh straight World Cup berth last month, has 19 points and a four-point lead over second-place Costa Rica (4-2-3), which lost 1-0 at third-place Honduras (4-3-2).
Jamaica (0-5-4) was eliminated.
• Mexico beats Panama to renew WC hopes: Raul Jimenez scored on a 16-yard bicycle kick in the 85th minute – four minutes after Mexico had allowed a tying goal – and El Tri beat Panama 2-1 at Azteca Stadium in Mexico City to revive its hopes to qualify for its sixth straight World Cup.
With the victory, Mexico (2-2-5) improved to 11 points and overtook Panama (1-3-5) for fourth place in the final round of qualifying for North and Central America and the Caribbean.
• World Cup tickets punched: Germany, Belgium, Switzerland and Colombia qualified for next year’s World Cup, while England and Russia won and moved into position to clinch next week.
Germany (8-0-1) defeated Ireland 3-0 to guarantee first in Group C. … Belgium (8-0-1) won 2-0 at Croatia to ensure first place in Group A. … Switzerland (6-0-3) clinched Group E with a 2-1 victory at Albania. … Colombia (8-4-3) rallied for a 3-3 draw at home against Chile.
Kings outlast ’Canes in NHL shootout
Hockey: Jeff Carter scored the shootout winner to lift the Los Angeles Kings to a 2-1 victory over the Carolina Hurricanes in Raleigh, N.C.
Dwight King also scored for the Kings while Jonathan Quick made 27 saves.
Jeff Skinner had Carolina’s goal while Cam Ward stopped 36 shots.
• NBC, Notre Dame reach deal: Notre Dame and NBC Sports Group have reached a three-year agreement worth close to $15 million annually, calling for NBCSN to televise 12 of the Fighting Irish’s home hockey games each year of the deal.
The agreement also calls for NBC Sports Live Extra to stream an additional eight more home games online.
NBCSN says it will televise more than 20 college hockey games this season.
Nelson shares SAS Championship lead
Golf: Larry Nelson shot his age for a share of the lead in the SAS Championship in Cary, N.C., while Nick Faldo failed to finish the round in his first regular Champions Tour event.
The 66-year-old Nelson had a 6-under 66 to join Russ Cochran and Mark Mouland atop the leaderboard.
Faldo withdrew after 12 holes with an elbow injury.
Former Pullman resident Kirk Triplett was one stroke back, along with defending champion Bernhard Langer, Mike Goodes, Michael Allen and David Frost.
• Lee holds lead at LPGA Malaysia: South Korea’s Ilhee Lee retained a one-stroke lead at the LPGA Malaysia after American Lexi Thompson shot an 8-under 63.
Lee had a 67 to finish the second round at Kuala Lumpur (Malaysia) Golf & Country Club at 13-under 129.
Thompson was in second and Feng Shanshan was another two strokes back.
• Koepka grabs lead at Frys.com Open: In his first regular PGA Tour event, Koepka surged to the top of the leaderboard in the Frys.com Open with a 7-under 64, giving him a one-shot lead over Jason Kokrak going into the weekend at CordeValle in San Martin, Calif.
The 23-year-old had no status at the start of the season but won a full European Tour card while winning three times on the Europe’s Challenge Tour. If he were to win the Frys.com Open – his first start in a regular PGA Tour event – Koepka would have a PGA Tour card, too.
Kyle Busch earns sweep at Charlotte
Miscellany: Kyle Busch raced to his 11th Nationwide Series victory of the year, giving him a season sweep at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C.
Busch edged Nationwide series title contenders Austin Dillon and Sam Hornish Jr. to win for the eighth time in the series at Charlotte. Busch has a record 62 Nationwide wins.
• Stuckey has surgery on thumb: Detroit Pistons guard Rodney Stuckey, a former Eastern Washington standout, had surgery on his broken right thumb.
The team said that he’ll wear a splint for two weeks before being re-evaluated.
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