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Sports Log

NCAA crafting interim pay rules for athletes

College sports governing body needs to come up with some kind of compensation plan by July 1.
College sports governing body needs to come up with some kind of compensation plan by July 1.Maddie Meyer/Getty

NCAA President Mark Emmert said Wednesday the association is working on interim rules that will permit college athletes to earn money off their fame and celebrity by July and act as a bridge until there is a permanent solution. In a memo sent to member schools and obtained by the Associated Press, Emmert acknowledged the current uncertainty across college sports as it moves toward allowing name, image and likeness compensation for athletes. Six states — Texas, Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi and New Mexico — have laws set to go into effect July 1 that would undercut existing NCAA rules and give athletes the opportunity to be paid by third parties for things such as sponsorship deals, online endorsements and personal appearances. Several other state laws could also go into effect in July. Without NCAA action, athletes in some states could be making money without putting their college eligibility in jeopardy while their counterparts in other states could be in danger of breaking NCAA rules … Former Syracuse All-American lacrosse player Kayla Treanor has a job she’s coveted since she graduated. The 27-year-old Treanor was named the third women’s lacrosse coach in Syracuse program history, succeeding Gary Gait, who also starred as a player at Syracuse and is now head coach of the men.

Baseball

WooSox fall to Red Wings

The Worcester Red Sox (29-15) had their 11-game road win streak snapped after a 5-3 loss to the Rochester Red Wings (16-28) at Frontier Field. Tied 3-3 in the bottom of the eighth inning, Rochester took the lead on a home run from Carter Kieboom. It was the first homer allowed by WooSox reliever Kaleb Ort in more than 20 innings this season. A trio of singles delivered one more Red Wings run, capped off by a Rafael Bautista blooper that fell between three defenders to make it 5-3. Worcester didn’t score in the ninth. Jarren Duran smacked a solo home run for the WooSox in the fourth inning. Duran now has two homers in his last three games and six total since June 10 … The Portland Sea Dogs (25-18) split a doubleheader with the Somerset Patriots (28-15) at Hadlock Field. The Sea Dogs defeated the Patriots, 5-3, in the first game and fell, 11-3, in the second.

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NFL

No stipends for voluntary opt-outs

NFL players must decide by July 2 if they plan to opt out of playing this season due to COVID-19 concerns, though voluntary opt-outs will not be paid any stipend this year. In a memo sent to clubs and obtained by the AP, the league and the NFL Players Association agreed that only high-risk players will receive a stipend of $350,000. Voluntary opt-outs got a $150,000 stipend in 2020. To qualify as a high-risk, a player must have opted out last season and have an effective contract executed before Oct. 1, 2020, or have been newly diagnosed with a CDC-defined higher-risk condition. Rookies wouldn’t be eligible unless they were diagnosed with a high-risk condition after signing a contract … Four misdemeanor charges were dropped against former Washington Football Team running back Derrius Guice after he reached an agreement with his accuser, a former girlfriend. Guice was charged last year in Loudoun County with three counts of assault and battery and one count of destruction of property. The charges resulted in the release of the former LSU star, who has not yet been re-signed. Authorities said the charges stemmed from accusations of domestic violence. Loudoun County Commonwealth’s Attorney Buta Biberaj said Guice availed himself of a provision in Virginia law that allows for dismissal of charges when a victim says she has reached an agreement with a defendant.

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Soccer

Ronaldo matches goal record

Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo enjoyed a big day Wednesday.
Portugal's Cristiano Ronaldo enjoyed a big day Wednesday.Darko Bandic/Associated Press

Cristiano Ronaldo scored two penalties to tie the overall men’s scoring record with 109 goals and give Portugal a 2-2 draw with France and a spot in the round of 16 of the European Championship. Ronaldo scored in the 31st minute and then equalized in the 60th after France forward Karim Benzema netted twice in between for the World Cup champions in Budapest, Hungary. France was already assured of a spot in the next round … Leon Goretzka scored late as Germany eliminated Hungary to move into the final 16 with a 2-2 draw in Munich. Ádám Szalai and András Schäfer both scored for Hungary. But Kai Havertz equalized for Germany the first time and Goretzka got the second … Even with two goals, Robert Lewandowski still couldn’t stop Poland from making an early exit in St. Petersburg, Russia. The FIFA player of the year made amends for an astounding early triple miss by scoring twice in the second half, but Viktor Claesson got the winning goal in stoppage time to give Sweden a 3-2 victory to advance to the round of 16 … A bizarre own-goal by the goalkeeper put Spain on the way to a 5-0 victory over Slovakia and gave the team a spot in the round of 16 … Christine Sinclair, who holds the all-time record for international goals among both men and women, leads Canada coach Bev Priestman 18-player roster for the Olympics. The Candians are making their fourth straight Olympic appearance and have won back-to-back bronze medals … Japanese soccer player Kumi Yokoyama said they are transgender — a revelation praised in the US where they play in the National Women’s Soccer League but an identity not legally recognized in Japan. The 27-year-old forward for the Washington Spirit said they felt more comfortable with their own gender identity while living in the United States, where teammates and friends are more open to gender and sexual diversity.

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Wembley questionable

The British government faced accusations of mixed messaging that could threaten its plan to fully lift lockdown restrictions in England next month after it decided to allow more than 60,000 people inside Wembley Stadium for the latter stages of the European Championship. Following a request from UEFA, European soccer’s governing body, to allow more fans inside the London stadium for the semifinals on July 6 and 7 and the final on July 11, Britain agreed to increase capacity at the 90,000-seat stadium to 75 percent. That will make the three matches the largest gatherings at a sporting event since the coronavirus pandemic took root in the country in March 2020. But that decision has stoked worries that it will ignite a scourge of new infections in the U.K., which already has Europe’s second-worst pandemic toll of 128,000 people dead and is experiencing a third wave of infections due to the delta variant first identified in India. Professor Lawrence Young, a virologist at the University of Warwick, warned that allowing 60,000 fans to crowd into Wembley is a “recipe for disaster” given the delta variant, which scientists say said 40 percent to 80 percent more contagious.

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Tennis

Djokovic, Barty top seeds at Wimbledon

Following his win at the French Open, Novak Djokovic was named the men's top seed at Wimbledon this year.
Following his win at the French Open, Novak Djokovic was named the men's top seed at Wimbledon this year.Michel Euler/Associated Press

Defending champion Novak Djokovic was named as the top seed at Wimbledon as he seeks a 20th Grand Slam title while Roger Federer and Serena Williams will begin the grass-court tournament next week seeded seventh. Top-ranked Ashleigh Barty is seeded first on the women’s side. The Australian hasn’t played since retiring from her second-round match at the French Open because of a flareup of an upper-leg injury. The draw is Friday and the tournament begins Monday.

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Purcell upsets Monfils at Eastbourne

Max Purcell’s unlikely run continued when he reached the quarterfinals by defeating top-seeded Gael Monfils at the grass-court Viking International in Eastbourne in England. The 283rd-ranked Australian beat the Frenchman, 6-4, 5-7, 6-4, after trailing 3-0 in the deciding set to secure the biggest win of his career. It’s the first time he has made a tour-level quarterfinals in singles. On the women’s side, CoCo Gauff fell to Latvia’s Anastasija Sevastova, 4-6, 7-5, 6-2, a day after the American teenager eliminated seventh-seeded Elise Mertens in three sets. Elena Rybakina of Kazakhstan reached the quarterfinals by beating second-seeded Elina Svitolina of Ukraine, 6-4, 7-6 (7-3), Estonia’s Anett Kontaveit eliminated third-seeded Bianca Andreescu of Canada, 6-3, 6-3, and Russia’s Daria Kasatkina defeated fourth-seeded Iga Swiatek of Poland, 4-6, 6-0, 6-1. Top-seeded Aryna Sabalenka of Belarus advanced with a 6-4, 6-1 win over Alison Riske of the United States.

Miscellany

Italian swim champ is ill

Italian swimmer Gregorio Paltrinieri has contracted mononucleosis, raising questions over whether he’ll be able to defend his gold medal in the 1,500-meter freestyle at the Tokyo Olympics because of the energy-sapping virus. Besides the 1,500, Paltrinieri is also planning to enter the 800 free and 10-kilometer marathon races. Paltrinieri won three golds and two silvers when he competed in both the pool and open water at the European Championships in Budapest in May. He’s also a three-time world champion. Heats for the 800 free, Paltrinieri’s first event in Tokyo, are scheduled for July 27 … Jeff Gordon will leave the Fox Sports booth to take a daily role at Hendrick Motorsports as vice chairman and the second-ranking team official to majority owner Rick Hendrick, ESPN reported. The announcement positions the four-time champion and Hall of Fame driver to one day succeed the 71-year-old Hendrick at the top of NASCAR’s winningest organization. Gordon, 49, will formally begin the executive management role at the start of 2022.