Soccer: The United States’ path toward the 2018 World Cup became considerably more difficult when coach Jurgen Klinsmann made some puzzling lineup choices and the American defense self-destructed Friday night in a 2-0 loss to Guatemala in Guatemala City.
Edgar Castillo’s poor backpass set up corner kicks that led to Rafael Morales’ goal in the seventh minute. A goal kick by Paulo Motta went most of the length of the field in the 15th and Carlos Ruiz ran onto the ball, came in alone on goalkeeper Tim Howard and doubled the lead.
Seeking their eighth straight World Cup berth, the Americans had been unbeaten in 21 games against Guatemala since January 1988 and had never lost to Los Chapines in World Cup qualifying but now face a high-pressured rematch Tuesday in Columbus, Ohio.
Trinidad and Tobago (2-1) leads Group C with seven points after rallying for a 3-2 win at St. Vincent and the Grenadines on Friday. Guatemala (2-0-1) is one point back. The U.S. (1-1-1) has four points and St. Vincent (0-3) is last.
U.S. ties Columbia: Luis Gil scored in the fifth minute, and the United States held on for a 1-1 tie against Colombia at Barranquilla on Friday in the opener of a two-leg playoff for the final berth in this year’s men’s Olympic soccer tournament.
In the matchup of under-23 teams. Colombia had 76 percent possession in the first half but didn’t break through until Juan Quintero tied it with a penalty kick in the 68th. The second leg of the total-goals series is Tuesday at Frisco, Texas. The U.S. is in danger of failing to qualify for consecutive Olympics for the first time since 1960-68; it was forced into the playoff by losing to Honduras last October in the semifinal round of regional qualifying in North and Central America and the Caribbean.
Spurs win 37 straight at home, tie record
NBA: LaMarcus Aldridge had 32 points and 12 rebounds and the host San Antonio Spurs defeated the similarly short-handed Memphis Grizzlies 110-104 to match the best home start in league history with their 37th in a row.
San Antonio’s streak tied the season-opening mark set by the Chicago Bulls in 1995-96 during their record 72-victory season. The Spurs have won 46 consecutive regular-season games at home, dating to March 2015.
The Spurs won Friday despite Kawhi Leonard missing the game with a bruised right quadriceps and Danny Green, Boris Diaw and Patty Mills all sitting out for rest. The Grizzlies were without injured starters Marc Gasol, Zach Randolph, Mike Conley and three others.
Kevin Martin had a season-high 13 points with the Spurs in his first start since signing with San Antonio on March 9.
JaMychal Green had 20 points to lead Memphis, which has lost two straight.
Thompson leads: Klay Thompson scored 40 points and Stephen Curry added 33 to help the Golden State Warriors become the second team to post back-to-back 65-win seasons with a 128-120 victory over the Dallas Mavericks in Oakland, California.
Draymond Green added 19 as the Warriors won their 52nd straight regular-season home game and improve their record to 65-7 following a 67-win season a year ago. The only other team to win at least 65 games in consecutive seasons was Chicago in 1995-96 and 1996-97.
Golden State hit 21 3-pointers to give them a record 938 on the season, breaking the mark of 933 set by Houston last season. Dallas hit 18 3s as the teams combined for a record 39 on the night.
Wesley Matthews scored 26 points and J.J. Barea added 21 for the short-handed Mavericks, who were without three usual starters.
Harden’s triple-double lifts Rockets: James Harden had his third triple-double this season with 32 points, 13 assists and 11 rebounds to help the Houston Rockets snap a three-game skid with a 112-109 win over the Toronto Raptors in Houston.
Houston squandered a double-digit lead early but opened the fourth quarter with a big run to take control.
Patrick Patterson scored five quick points to get Toronto within 110-107 with 10.1 seconds remaining, but Trevor Ariza made two free throws after that to secure the win.
It’s Toronto’s second straight loss overall and its ninth loss in a row in Houston, where the Raptors haven’t won since 2007.
In the last few minutes, Toronto stars DeMar DeRozan and Kyle Lowry both get ejected for arguing with the officials.
DeRozan scored 18 points before being kicked out with about 3 minutes left.
Wolves top WIzards in 2OT: Karl-Anthony Towns scored 27 points and grabbed 10 rebounds, and the visiting Minnesota Timberwolves dealt a blow to the Washington Wizards’ playoff hopes with a 132-129 double-overtime victory.
Zach LaVine added 25 points, and Gorgui Dieng scored 18 while helping the Timberwolves to comebacks at the end of regulation and the second overtime.
Bradley Beal scored 26 points as the 10th-place Wizards fell 3 1/2 games behind Detroit for the Eastern Conference’s eighth and final playoff spot.
John Wall had 22 points and a season-high tying 16 assists, and Marcin Gortat had 19 points and 14 rebounds for Washington. But Gortat missed a pair of free throws with a chance to take the lead late in the second overtime.
Minnesota hit all 22 of its foul shots for its first back-to-back wins since Feb. 3 and 6.
Pistons overwhelm Hornets: Andre Drummond had 18 points and 14 rebounds and the Detroit Pistons overwhelmed Charlotte with their highest-scoring first half of the season en route to a 112-105 win over the Hornets in Auburn Hills, Michigan.
Detroit led 72-56 after two quarters and won its fifth straight game, taking a two-game lead over Chicago for the eighth and final playoff spot in the Eastern Conference. The Pistons also pulled within a percentage point of seventh-place Indiana.
Detroit’s lead reached 26 points in the fourth quarter before the Hornets went on a 25-4 run to cut the margin to five with less than a minute left, but the Pistons held on.
Carlson’s overtime goal lifts Washington
NHL: John Carlson scored at 2:17 of overtime, Braden Holtby made 22 saves and the Washington Capitals moved with grasping distance of the Presidents’ Trophy with a 1-0 victory over the New Jersey Devils in Newark, New Jersey.
Carlson, playing for the first time since sustaining a lower-body injury on Feb. 24, took a pass from Jason Chimera and ripped a shot from the right circle that beat Scott Wedgewood.
Wedgewood had his shutout streak of 159 minutes, 34 seconds ended by the goal, only the second he has given up in three NHL starts.
The win gave Washington 111 points. They can clinch their first Presidents’ Trophy since 2009-10 with a point against the Blues on Saturday or Dallas losing earlier in the day.
Chimera took a pass from Marcus Johansson on the winning play, circled the Devils’ net and found Carlson in the circle for his seventh goal of the season.
Holtby is three wins away from tying Martin Brodeur’s NHL single-season record of 48 wins.
Lightning tops Islanders: Tyler Johnson and Jason Garrison scored 23 seconds apart midway through the third period and the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the New York Islanders 7-4 in Tampa, Florida.
Johnson had a go-ahead rebound goal at 10:09 before Garrison stopped a 26-game goal drought and put the Lightning up 6-4. Garrison also had two assists after going 18 games without a point.
Tampa Bay also got goals from Nikita Kucherov, Vladislav Namestnikov, Steven Stamkos, Andrej Sustr and Victor Hedman, who had an empty-netter.
The Lightning host Florida on Saturday night with first place in the Atlantic Division at stake as both teams have 91 points.
Brock Nelson, Shane Prince, Johnny Boychuk and Nikolav Kulemin scored for the Islanders. They remained a point behind third-place Pittsburgh in the Metropolitan Division.
McIlroy, Day advance at Dell Match Play
Golf: Rory McIlroy had to go 20 holes. Jason Day only played six. Both advanced to the round of 16 in the Dell Match Play in Austin, Texas.
Day was all square in his match when Paul Casey withdrew because of a stomach illness. Day was likely to advance, anyway, but the short day at Austin Country Club at least gave him extra rest for his back and for the weekend ahead.
McIlroy was in one of the four winner-take-all matches between undefeated players. He and Kevin Na each missed birdie putts to win the match, and when they halved, they headed back to the first hole of a playoff. McIlroy won on the second extra hole with a 6-foot par after Na drove into a hazard.
McIlroy now has won 10 straight matches.
Shin takes lead at Kia Classic: Jenny Shin took the lead in the LPGA Tour’s Kia Classic in Carlsbad, California, a stroke ahead of top-ranked Lydia Ko and Brittany Lang.
Shin birdied five of her first eight holes and had a 7-under 65 to reach 10-under 134 at Aviara in the final event before the major ANA Inspiration next week in Rancho Mirage. The 23-year-old South Korean player is winless on the LPGA Tour.
Ko shot a 67, and Lang had a 68. The 18-year-old Ko was second Sunday in Phoenix in the Founders Cup.
Second-ranked Inbee Park and fellow South Korean player Hyo Joo Kim were 8 under. Park had a 69, and Kim shot a 66. Jessica Korda (67) and Sung Hyun Park (66) were 7 under.
Phoenix winner Sei Young Kim followed her opening 72 with a 74 to make the cut by a stroke at 2 over. Last week, the fifth-ranked South Korean player matched Annika Sorenstam’s LPGA Tour scoring record of 27 under, closing with a 10-under 62 for a five-stroke victory.
Compos leads Puerto Rico: Rafael Compos held onto the lead in front of his home fans in the PGA Tour’s Puerto Rico Open, shooting a 1-under 71 in windy conditions in Rio Grande, Puerto Rico.
Compos had a 9-under 135 total at Coco Beach for a one-stroke lead.
He’s the first Puerto Rican to lead a PGA Tour event since the 1979 Tallahassee Open, when Chi Chi Rodriguez was tied for the 54-hole lead and went on to win his eighth and final title.
George McNeill, the 2012 winner, was second after a 71.
Ian Poulter, playing the event after failing to qualify for the Match Play tournament in Texas, was tied for third at 7 under after a 66 – the best round of the day.