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Thursday, September 19, 2019  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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In brief: Northern Ireland steps up at Euro

Northern Ireland's players celebrate after eliminating Ukraine 2-0. (Laurent Cipriani / Associated Press)
Northern Ireland's players celebrate after eliminating Ukraine 2-0. (Laurent Cipriani / Associated Press)
Associated Press

soccer: Northern Ireland won its first game at the European Championship on Thursday, in Lyon, France, with a 2-0 victory over Ukraine that helped to eliminate its opponent.

Northern Ireland’s victory – its first in a major competition in 34 years – combined with the later 0-0 draw between Germany and Poland to leave Ukraine unable to advance from Group C.

Building on a strong finish to the first half, Northern Ireland center back Gareth McAuley put his team ahead with a header from an Oliver Norwood free kick in the 49th minute. Substitute Niall McGinn added the second deep in stoppage time when Ukraine was chasing an equalizer.

The victory, which followed a 1-0 defeat to Poland in its first game, is Northern Ireland’s first since beating host Spain in the 1982 World Cup. It also means the team has a good chance of qualifying for the knockout stages of Euro 2016.

Euro 2016 roundup: Germany provided the first goalless draw and England earned the first comeback victory at the European Championship.

World champions in Brazil two years ago and 2-0 winners over Ukraine on Sunday, Germany went into its Group C game against Poland at the Stade de France as the clear favorites.

Instead, Germany was kept in check by a well-organized Poland side that also had the best chance to break the deadlock in a dour game.

Arkadiusz Milik, who had scored Poland’s winner against Northern Ireland on Sunday, miscued a header as he fell to his knees in Germany’s goalmouth and the ball bounced wide.

For a second match running, Gareth Bale scored with a long-range free kick to put Wales 1-0 up in a match.

But unlike its opening-game win over Slovakia, this time there was only disappointment after the break as England substitutes Jamie Vardy and Daniel Sturridge turned the match around for a 2-1 victory.

England coach Roy Hodgson doesn’t have a reputation as a hardened gambler when it comes to substitutions. So the sight of Vardy and Sturridge walking on for the second half, instead of Harry Kane and Raheem Sterling, was little short of astonishing.

Murray eases into quarterfinals

Tennis: Andy Murray kept on track to claim a record fifth title at Queen’s Club in London by beating fellow Briton Aljaz Bedene 6-3, 6-4 to reach the quarterfinals.

John Isner of the U.S. fired 43 aces and held 10 match points but lost to Gilles Muller of Luxembourg 3-6, 7-6 (16), 7-6 (7).

Murray faced a break point in the opening game but then broke to lead 5-3 and served out the set. Murray maintained the pressure in the second set, and despite failing to convert four break points to lead 1-0 and dropping his own serve after breaking for 2-1, a further break for 4-3 proved decisive.

Federer tops Jaziri: Top-seeded Roger Federer overcame a 4-1 deficit in the second set to beat Malek Jaziri 6-3, 7-5 and stay on course for his ninth title at the Gerry Weber Open in Halle, Germany.

Federer caught up and broke serve for 6-5, before serving out the match. Jaziri sent a backhand wide on the first match point.

Jaziri actually hit two more winners than Federer but also had three more unforced errors.

Kvitova’s Wimbledon bid takes a blow: Petra Kvitova, the two times Wimbledon champion, suffered a blow to her bid for a third title when she joined a list of well-known names who have been beaten amidst the rainstorms at the Aegon Classic in Birmingham, England.

Kvitova is fighting back from form, fitness, and personal problems, and had been hoping for a good build-up here to the grass court Grand Slam, but lost 6-4, 4-6, 6-3 to Jelena Ostapenko, the promising world number 38 from Latvia.

Thompson tied for Meijer LPGA lead

Golf: Defending champion Lexi Thompson shot a 6-under 65 in Belmont, Michigan for a share of the Meijer LPGA Classic lead, with Brooke Henderson, Lydia Ko and Ariya Jutanugarn close behind.

The 21-year-old Thompson played the front nine – her final nine at Blythefield – in 6 under. After parring the first nine holes, she holed out from 71 yards with a lob wedge for eagle on the par-5 first and birdied Nos. 3-5 and 8 – playing the three front-nine par 5s in 4 under.

Fired coach Art Briles lambastes Baylor

Miscellany: Fired Baylor coach Art Briles is ripping his former employer, accusing the school of wrongful termination and indicating he has no interest in settling a federal lawsuit filed against him and the university by a woman who was raped by a football player.

In a motion filed as part of the lawsuit, Briles said he wants a judge to assign him new counsel and his personal attorney Ernest Cannon, said the school was using the coach as a scapegoat for its failings in handling allegations of sexual assault.

Australians to play Pac-12 All-Stars: The Australian basketball team will host a team of players from the Pac-12 Conference for a pair of exhibition games before the Olympics.

The games against the Pac-12 College All-Stars will take place on July 12 and 14 at the Hisense Arena in Melbourne, says John Eren, Australia’s Minister for Sport and Tourism.

Former Stanford and California coach Mike Montgomery will lead the Pac-12 squad, which includes: Tra Holder (Arizona State), Kadeem Allen and Chance Comanche (Arizona), Jordan McLaughlin (Southern Cal), Stevie Thompson and Drew Eubanks (Oregon State), Lorenzo Bonham (Utah), Dorian Pickens (Stanford), Matisse Thybulle (Washington), Stephen Domingo (California), Wesley Gordon (Colorado), and Josh Hawkinson (Washington State).

Harrison wins again in Stockholm: Kendra Harrison of the U.S. continued her impressive run of form in Stockholm, leading an American 1-2-3 in the 100 meter hurdles.

On a wet night in the Swedish capital, Harrison wasn’t able to match her performance last month in Eugene, Oregon, which saw her run the second fastest race of all time.

The 23-year-old won the Diamond League event in 12.66 seconds, ahead of Nia Ali in second and Queen Harrison in third.

Norfolk State placed on probation: Norfolk State’s athletic department will vacate 97 victories and three conference championships and spend two years on probation after an NCAA investigation that found the school allowed 48 ineligible student-athletes to compete over a period of four academic years.

The violations were discovered by the school after the 2011-12 academic year and reported to the NCAA.

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