After trailing by 26 points at halftime, the Harvard men’s basketball team got off to a blistering start in the second half Thursday. But 21st-ranked Saint Mary’s had an answer and went on to defeat the Crimson, 89-71, in the opening game of the Wooden Legacy in Fullerton, Calif. Bryce Aiken led Harvard (2-3) with 22 points, including 20 in the second half when the Crimson outscored the Gaels, 51-43, and opened on a 12-0 run. Aiken’s two free throws with 6:23 remaining pulled Harvard to within 69-60, but Saint Mary’s (5-0) made 10 of 10 free throws in the closing minutes to put it away. The Crimson shot just 4 of 21 from 3-point range. ‘‘A lot of them were some tough shots early,’’ Harvard coach Tommy Amaker said. ‘‘We have to be better at it.’’
Duke survives a scare
Trevon Duval had 22 points and top-ranked Duke pulled away for a 99-81 victory over surprisingly tenacious Portland State to open the Phil Knight Invitational tournament in Portland, Ore. Marvin Bagley III added 18 points and Grayson Allen had 14 points and nine assists for the Blue Devils (6-0), who trailed by as many as 8 points but took control midway through the second half. It was Mike Krzyzewski’s 200th victory as coach of a No. 1-ranked team. He’s 200-29 when the Blue Devils sit atop the poll . . . Jared Terrell made a running layup with 5.2 seconds left to give Rhode Island a 75-74 win over No. 20 Seton Hall in the Preseason NIT in New York. Terrell finished with 32 points to help the Rams improve to 3-1 . . . Jalen Brunson scored 25 points to help No. 5 Villanova (5-0) rally from 15 down and beat Tennessee, 85-76, at the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament in the Bahamas.
49ers claim LB Marsh
The San Francisco 49ers claimed linebacker Cassius Marsh off waivers from the Patriots. The 25-year-old California native was waived Tuesday. The Patriots acquired Marsh Sept. 2 and he played nine games, recording 19 tackles and a sack . . . Chicago Bears outside linebacker Leonard Floyd was placed on injured reserve, ending his season because of a right knee injury. Floyd had 4½ sacks this season, his second in the NFL. Bears coach John Fox said Floyd suffered medial collateral and posterior cruciate ligament damage, but did not tear the anterior cruciate ligament . . . Former tight end Jacob Tamme, who spent nine seasons with the Colts, Broncos, and Falcons, announced his retirement.
Robinho is sentenced
Former AC Milan and Real Madrid striker Robinho was sentenced to nine years in jail by a court in Milan on charges of sexual assault following an incident in 2013, Italian news agency ANSA reported. Currently playing for Atletico Mineiro in his native Brazil, Robinho’s lawyer said in a statement that the 33-year-old player denied the charges and will appeal the court’s decision . . . Ten of the top 32 teams in the latest FIFA rankings will not be in the World Cup draw next week. No. 10 Chile, No. 14 Italy, and No. 24 the United States are among those who will be missing from the draw on Dec. 1 in Moscow. All five of the Asian Football Confederation’s World Cup entries are outside the top 32. Defending champion Germany leads an unchanged top five ahead of Brazil, Portugal, Argentina, and Belgium. Spain is up two places to No. 6. Host Russia is the lowest-ranked team in the field at No. 65 . . . A major study into whether soccer players are at risk of degenerative brain disease was commissioned amid concerns that the sport’s authorities in England haven’t done enough to tackle the issue. The Football Association and Professional Footballers’ Association appointed an independent research team, based in Scotland, to undertake a study entitled ‘‘Football’s Influence on Lifelong Health and Dementia Risk’’ from January 2018. The study should produce initial results within the next two to three years.
Kings acquire Mitchell
The Montreal Canadiens traded forward Torrey Mitchell to the Los Angeles Kings for a 2018 fifth-round conditional draft pick. Mitchell, 32, who played at the University of Vermont, was scoreless in 11 games this season, his 10th in the NHL . . . The United States opened qualifying for the 2019 Basketball World Cup with an 85-78 victory over Puerto Rico in Orlando. Reggie Hearn scored 16 of his 17 points in the second half for the Americans, the two-time defending World Cup champions who are using players from the G League to try and qualify for the tournament, to which the United States would send NBA stars . . . Providence’s Molly Huddle came up one second short in her quest to win the Manchester (Conn.) Road Race, finishing second in 23:58 on the 4.75-mile course. Ethiopia’s Buze Diriba won in 23:57. On the men’s side, Olympian Paul Chelimo, a Kenyan-born US citizen, outkicked American Kirubel Erassa by two seconds . . . S.S.P. Chawrasia had six birdies and a bogey for a 5-under-par 65 and a one stroke lead at the Hong Kong Open, the first event of the 2018 European Tour season.