Allenby, Palmer share Sony Open lead

Wire Reports

Robert Allenby and Ryan Palmer avoided bogeys on a windy day in Honolulu and made enough birdies Saturday to share the lead at the Sony Open and give themselves a small cushion over a crowded leaderboard.

Neither of them was spectacular, though they didn’t need to be.

With no one making a move, Allenby made three birdies inside four feet for a three-under-par 67 and his first time atop the leaderboard through three rounds on the PGA Tour in more than six years.

Palmer, who started with a one-shot lead, two-putted from long range on the last two holes -- one for par, the other for birdie -- for a 68 to catch the Australian.


They were at 11-under 199, three shots clear of Davis Love III (68), Troy Matteson (68), Steve Stricker (69) and defending champion Zach Johnson (70).

Five more players were another shot back, including a pair of 50-year-olds, Tom Lehman and Michael Allen.

All their hopes start with the play of Allenby and Palmer, who have been steady throughout the week.

Jack Nicklaus and Tom Watson took the first seven skins worth $220,000 to build a big lead after nine holes of the Champions Skins Game at Kaanapali, Hawaii.

Fred Couples, making his Champions Tour debut, and Nick Price were in second place with one skin worth $40,000. Defending champions Fuzzy Zoeller and Ben Crenshaw, who earned a record $530,000 last year, were shut out on the first day of the alternate-shot event, as were 74-year-old Gary Player and Loren Roberts.


Vonn keeps lead despite crash

Lindsey Vonn crashed three gates from the finish but was not hurt, and Kathrin Zettel of Austria won the World Cup giant slalom at Maribor, Slovenia.


Vonn, a favorite in the upcoming Vancouver Olympics, was second after the opening run. But the American lost time early in her second run, forcing her to attack in the lower section. She was thrown off course by a bump shortly before the finish line.

Vonn, who has never won a giant slalom, kept her lead in the overall standings. Last weekend, she won speed races over three straight days, a first for an American.

Zettel finished in a two-run combined time of 2 minutes 36.22 seconds for her first victory of the season and seventh overall -- all in giant slalom.

Maria Riesch of Germany was 0.23 behind for her first career GS podium finish. Anja Paerson of Sweden was third.



Offerman throws punch at umpire

Former major league All-Star Jose Offerman has thrown a punch at an umpire during an argument in a Dominican Republic winter league game, the second time in 2 1/2 years that he’s attacked someone on a baseball field.

Offerman, manager of the Licey Tigers, appeared to hit first base umpire Daniel Rayburn in the face or neck with his fist during a heated discussion in a game against the Cibao Giants. Rayburn fell to the ground.


The Chicago White Sox have avoided salary arbitration with two of their top players, agreeing to a one-year, $7.5-million contract with closer Bobby Jenks and a one-year, $3.2-million deal with outfielder Carlos Quentin.

The Padres and Athletics finalized a four-player trade that sent third baseman Kevin Kouzmanoff from San Diego to Oakland.

The A’s also acquired minor league infielder Eric Sogard for outfielders Scott Hairston and Aaron Cunningham.



Tennessee lifts two suspensions

Tennessee guards Melvin Goins and Cameron Tatum will rejoin the Volunteers for practice today after serving suspensions for their Jan. 1 arrests.

Coach Bruce Pearl said he decided to reinstate the pair after learning more details from the legal investigation and the student judicial affairs process.

Pearl suspended Goins, a junior, and Tatum, a sophomore, along with forward Tyler Smith and center Brian Williams after the four were arrested on misdemeanor gun, drug and alcohol charges during a traffic stop in Knoxville.


Williams, a junior, will remain indefinitely suspended. Smith, a senior, was dismissed from the team Jan. 8.