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Rogers Is Latest to Join Yankees

From Staff and Wire Reports

Left-hander Kenny Rogers became the latest piece in the reconstruction of the New York Yankees, who seem to be determined to match their Eastern Division rivals in Baltimore.

Rogers, who was 17-7 with a 3.38 earned-run average with Texas last season, agreed Saturday to a $19.95-million, four-year contract. The Yankees have an option for 2000 that, if exercised, would make the deal worth about $25 million for five years.

Yankee owner George Steinbrenner made his move four days after the Orioles traded for lefty David Wells, whom the Yankees wanted. The Orioles went for Wells after losing a bidding war with the Yankees for free-agent pitcher David Cone, who agreed to a $19.5-million, three-year deal with New York. Baltimore’s answer to that was to sign all-star second baseman Roberto Alomar for three years at $18 million. The Yankees then traded for left fielder Tim Raines.

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Steinbrenner also was talking with Angel free agent left-hander Chuck Finley. According to a source, Cone pushed Steinbrenner to sign Rogers rather than Finley.

Basketball

St. Anthony High of Jersey City, N.J., the nation’s top-rated team, defeated Crenshaw, 90-74, in the finals of the Nike National Prep Classic at Torrey Pines High on Saturday.

Bob Hurley, the St. Anthony coach and the father of Sacramento King guard Bobby Hurley, recorded his 600th victory.

Center Ajmal Basit, the tournament’s most valuable player, scored 36 points for St. Anthony (5-0). Crenshaw (10-4) was led by guard Alastair Faux with 23 points.

Winter Sports

Austria’s Elfi Eder, urged on by a boisterous home crowd and capitalizing on a mistake by Slovenia’s Urska Hrovat, earned her third World Cup slalom victory of the season by winning in Semmering, Austria. In fourth place after the first run, Eder skied well on the treacherous, rock-hard Hirschenkogel course while several of the other favorites failed. Eder, the overall slalom leader, was assured the victory when Hrovat, the leader after the first run, missed a gate near the top of the course in the second run and was disqualified.

KC Boutiette, the roller-blading star who stunned the speedskating world in 1994, won a 5,000-meter race in the U.S. Allround Speedskating Championships at Milwaukee. He edged David Tamburrino of Saratoga Springs, N.Y., by more than four seconds.

Christine Witty of West Allis., Wis., who a week ago captured the women’s sprint title, won the 500-meter and 3,000-meter races. Casey FitzRandolph of Verona, Wis., who last weekend swept the men’s sprint championship races, won the 500-meter men’s race.

Hockey

Switzerland’s 5-3 upset over Ukraine in the 1996 World Junior Hockey Championship was good news for both Canada and the United States. Switzerland’s victory advances Canada to the tournament’s semifinals and improves the chances of the United States advancing.

The top three teams in each of two pools advance. For the United States to move ahead, the team needs a victory against Finland today coupled with a Ukraine loss or tie in their upcoming game against Canada.

In another game, Slovakia overcame a 4-2 deficit in the third period to tie Germany, 4-4, Slovakia’s third tie of the tournament.

Soccer

Nigeria said its national soccer team would not travel to South Africa to defend its title in the Africa Cup of Nations. Minister of Youth and Sports Jim Nwobodo told a news conference that the Super Eagles were withdrawing from the games because South Africa could not guarantee the safety of Nigerian players.

Relations between the two nations have soured greatly since South African President Nelson Mandela led the international condemnation of Nigeria after its military government executed nine human-rights activists last month. The Super Eagles, defending champions in the 16-nation tournament, were preparing to leave for Johannesburg on Friday to begin practice for the games that begin Jan. 13 in four cities.

Jurisprudence

John D’Acquisto, former San Diego Padre pitcher, was indicted by a federal grand jury in New York on charges of trying to pass off a forged $200-million certificate of deposit as collateral on a deal at Prudential Securities Inc. Now a businessman, D’Acquisto was arrested at his home in Carmel Mountain Ranch and released after posting a $100,000 bond.

Quincy Quick, a former Ferrum College basketball player, is facing murder charges in connection with a drive-by killing in Petersburg, Va. Quick, 22, also is charged with conspiracy to commit robbery and attempted robbery in the Oct. 5 shooting death of Carlos Williams.

Water Polo

Chris Humbert scored four goals to lead the U.S. national water polo team to a 10-8 victory over defending Olympic and world champion Italy in an exhibition at Corona del Mar High.

Names in the News

Ethiopia’s world junior cross-country champion, Assefa Mezgebu, and Britain’s Paula Radcliffe won the men’s and women’s road races in Durham, England. Mezgebu won the 10-kilometer race in 30 minutes 12 seconds. Radcliffe finished the 5K in 18:15.


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