Sampras Overpowers Muster for ATP Title

From Staff and Wire Reports

Top-ranked Pete Sampras defeated Thomas Muster of Austria, 6-3, 6-4, Sunday to win the $2.3-million ATP Championship at Mason, Ohio.

It was Sampras' fifth title this year and his 49th ATP Tour victory, tying him with Boris Becker for most titles among active players.

"I'm very pleased I played so well this week," said Sampras, who hadn't played since winning at Wimbledon a month ago.

Sampras' serve was broken once--in the first set--and he became the first ATP Championship winner in 10 years to go through the week without losing a set.

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Felix Mantilla of Spain defeated Magnus Gustafsson of Sweden, 6-4, 6-1, in the final of the San Marino International tournament.

Top-seeded Mantilla, ranked 12th in the world, won his fourth tournament title of the year and earned $39,000.

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Second-seeded Jimmy Connors defeated Andres Gomez, 6-4, 7-5, to advance to the final of the Citibank Champions clay-court tournament at Purchase, N.Y., for the fourth consecutive year.

Motor Racing

Jeff Gordon won his first road course race in the Bud at the Glen. Gordon, 26, showed he can handle right turns as well as left-handers by picking up his eighth win of the season and the 27th of his Winston Cup career at Watkins Glen, N.Y. All of his other wins had been on ovals.

Gordon, driving a Chevrolet, won by 10 car-lengths over defending race-winner Geoff Bodine. Gordon averaged 91.294 mph during the 90-lap event on the 2.45-mile, 11-turn layout and earned $139,120, including a $50,000 bonus for winning while leading the season points race.

Defending champion Alex Zanardi won the Miller 200 at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course at Lexington for his second consecutive victory and third in the last four races.

Zanardi's Reynard-Honda averaged a track-record 110.456 mph in leading 56 of the 83 laps of the 186.5-mile race. Greg Moore was second and Bobby Rahal followed.

Jacques Villeneuve won his fifth race with a last-lap dash by the damaged car of defending Formula One champion Damon Hill in the Hungarian Grand Prix at Budapest.

Villeneuve, in a Williams-Renault, was timed in 1 hour 45 minutes 47.149 seconds for 189.851 miles. He averaged 107.7 mph. Hill, in an Arrows-Yamaha, experienced power and gear problems.

Johnny Herbert, in a Sauber-Petronas was third. Two-time series champion and current points leader Michael Schumacher was fourth after winning the pole in his Ferrari.

Basketball

Latasha Byears had a season-high 23 points and grabbed eight rebounds as Sacramento (8-14) beat the New York Liberty (15-6), 76-69, the Monarchs' third consecutive victory after a nine-game losing streak. The game drew a crowd of 10,162. . . . Maria Paula da Silva scored 38 points to lead Brazil to a 101-95 victory over the United States in the gold medal game of the American zone qualifier for the World Championships in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

Miscellany

Australian Olympic champion Susan O'Neill outswam Kristane Quance and Misty Hyman to win the women's 200-meter butterfly in 2 minutes 8.59 seconds, leading her nation to five gold medals at the Pan Pacific swimming championships at Fukuoka, Japan.

Quance, a gold medalist in the Olympic 400-meter medley relay, was second in 2:09.29, followed by Hyman in 2:11.53.

U.S. swimmers won three of the 10 events on the opening day of the competition. Ugur Taner set a meet record of 1:57.35 in the men's 200-meter butterfly. Brooke Bennett swam 16:10.24 to lead a top-four sweep by the United States in the women's 1,500-meter freestyle. And Lenny Krayzelburg won the men's 100-meter backstroke in 54.43. . . . Karch Kiraly, recovering from a shoulder injury, and Adam Johnson won their third title in a row in the AVP Open at Vail, Colo. Kiraly and Johnson defeated Dain Blanton and Eric Fonoimoana, 13-8, in the finals and will share a $27,000 first-place check. . . . Australian Wayne Mawer and his team won the Long Beach to Catalina and Back water ski race in 55 minutes and 5 seconds. . . . The PICO American Dream won the Texaco Cup at Seattle, a comeback victory for driver Mark Evans of Wenatchee, Wash., after his boat flipped in an earlier heat. . . . Costa Rica failed to take advantage of a man advantage for the final 41 minutes and settled for a 0-0 draw with El Salvador in a World Cup qualifier in San Jose, Costa Rica. Mexico leads the federation with 11 points, followed by Costa Rica with eight, the United States and El Salvador tied at six points. Three will advance to the World Cup next summer.

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