Sports Digest: Isaiah Harris ranks seventh at world indoor championships


Isaiah Harris of Lewiston finished seventh in the 800 meters on Saturday at the world indoor track championships in Belgrade, Serbia.

Harris, the fastest qualifier in Friday’s heats, clocked 1 minute, 47.00 seconds for the second straight day. Spaniard Mariano Garcia won with a time of 1:46.20, followed by 17-year-old Kenyan Noah Kibet (1:46.35) and American champion Bryce Hoppel (1:46.51).

Kibet became the youngest medalist in an individual track event at the world indoor championships.


ENGLAND: Chelsea secured their sixth straight win since Russian billionaire owner Roman Abramovich announced he would sell the London club, brushing aside second-tier Middlesbrough in a 2-0 victory to reach the FA Cup semi-finals.

Romelu Lukaku and Hakim Ziyech scored first-half goals which were celebrated by a smaller-than-normal pocket of visiting fans inside Middlesbrough’s Riverside Stadium. In light of the economic sanctions imposed on Abramovich by the British government for his close ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin after the invasion of Ukraine, Chelsea were only able to bring around 700 supporters for the game in the north- East.

Arsenal strengthened their grip on the Premier League’s last Champions League spot with a 1-0 victory over Aston Villa, secured by a first-half goal from Bukayo Saka.

The England international latched on to a weakly cleared ball from the Villa defense and fired a low first shot past blind keeper Emiliano Martinez from the edge of the box in the 30th minute.

Arsenal, absent first-choice goalkeeper Aaron Ramsdale through injury and in-form winger Gabriel Martinelli through illness, controlled most of the midday game at Villa Park despite the short deadline after losing to Liverpool on Wednesday night.


OPEN BNP PARIBAS: Taylor Fritz ended Andrey Rublev’s 13-game winning streak with a 7-5, 6-4 semifinal victory in Indian Wells, Calif.

Fritz qualified for the final on Sunday against 18-year-old Rafael Nadal or Carlos Alcaraz. Seeded 20, Fritz is the first American to reach the final since John Isner in 2012. Andre Agassi was the last American to win in Indian Wells in 2001.


PGA: Davis Riley, a 25-year-old PGA Tour rookie, shot a 9-under 62 and took a two-shot lead at the Valspar Championship in Palm Harbor, Florida.

Riley was 18-under 195. He’ll be in Sunday’s final game with second-round leader Matthew NeSmith, who shot a 69.

EUROPEAN TOUR: Shaun Norris opened a four-stroke lead after three rounds of the Steyn City Championship in Johannesburg, putting the South African in first place for his maiden European Tour title.

Norris shot 5-under 67 and went 23-under overall at low-scoring Steyn City, where players enjoyed favorite lies due to heavy rain ahead of the tournament. His closest challenger is fellow countryman Dean Burmester, who moved to 19 under with a 66.


NFL: Quarterback Matthew Stafford has agreed to a four-year contract extension through 2026 with the Los Angeles Rams after winning the Super Bowl in his first season with the team.

The deal is worth $160 million, with $135 million guaranteed, according to ESPN.

• While waiting to welcome Deshaun Watson, the Cleveland Browns have agreed to trade backup quarterback Case Keenum to Buffalo for a seventh-round draft pick and plan to sign free agent QB Jacoby Brissett, A.D. the Associated Press a person familiar with the agreements.


TRUCKS: 19-year-old Georgian Corey Heim raced to his first NASCAR Truck Series win, getting a push from John Hunter Nemechek’s lapped machine at Atlanta Motor Speedway to deny Chandler Smith a second straight win.

Smith, another 19-year-old from Peach State, took the white flag with his head on the outside just ahead of his Kyle Busch Motorsports teammate Heim, who was lining the line at the bottom of the track.

Nemechek, who was also racing for KBM, looked like he wanted to follow Smith, only to suddenly rush inside to follow Heim. That was all Heim needed to pass Smith and take the checkered flag.

Ben Rhodes finished second, 0.173 seconds behind the winner. Smith settled for a fourth place.

FORMULA ONE: Ferrari’s Charles Leclerc surprised Formula 1 champion Max Verstappen with a brilliant pole position for the season-opening Bahrain Grand Prix.


WORLD CUP: Andreja Slokar stepped up with a career-best result to win the slalom in the World Cup final in Meribel, France. The 24-year-old Slovenian skier finished 0.48 seconds ahead of Lena Dürr, who squandered another first run lead as she did at the Beijing Olympics last month.

Petra Vlhová, who has won five of the last eight World Cup slalom races, was third at 0.81. Mikaela Shiffrin, the overall World Cup champion, was eighth, 1.48 seconds behind.

Marco Odermatt ended his extraordinary season once again by winning the giant slalom in his favorite discipline at the World Cup finals. The 24-year-old Swiss star was 0.49 seconds quicker than Lucas Braathen in the sun and softening snow, which made it difficult for the stragglers to find speed. Loïc Meillard is third at 0.63.


IDITAROD: Two mushers at the back of the peloton had to be rescued in separate incidents on Friday after winds from a severe ground storm caused conditions to deteriorate, race officials said.

Both rescues took place on Friday morning as the mushers made the final push towards the finish line in Nome. Gerhardt Thiart, who was approaching the Safety checkpoint, 22 miles from Nome, activated his distress beacon because of the storm. Edward Stang from a nearby village was in the area on his snowmobile and found Thiart and his team of dogs. Thiart had injured his leg.

Around the same time, another musher, Bridgett Watkins, called a family member in Nome asking for help. A search and rescue team from White Mountain was dispatched, but in the meantime Watkin’s husband, Scotty, located her. He and four other people on snowmobiles set out from Nome to help mushers during the storm.

Watkins was taken to White Mountain, where she was evaluated at a local clinic. She was then flown to Nome and was with her family.

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