Thomas Pieters wins NCAA title at Riviera

Illinois sophomore Thomas Pieters shot a final-round 71 to win the men’s NCAA Division I golf championship Thursday at Riviera Country Club.

Pieters finished at five-under 208, three shots better than Julien Brun of Texas Christian and Florida’s Tyler McCumber.

Alabama went wire to wire in stroke play to grab the No. 1 seeding going into Friday’s match play. The Crimson Tide finished with a three-day total of seven-over-par 859. UCLA finished second, two shots behind. Texas, San Diego State, California, Washington and Oregon also earned spots.

Florida State and Kent State finished tied for the eighth and final spot. They will return Friday morning and all five team members will play sudden death with the best four scores counting.

USC, the host school, finished in a tie for 15th place at 28-over 880.


Kirkland to fight Alvarez

James Kirkland was announced as the new opponent for Mexican star Saul “Canelo” Alvarez in a World Boxing Council super-welterweight title fight on Sept. 15 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Alvarez replaces Paul Williams, who was paralyzed in a motorcycle accident near Atlanta last weekend.

Richard Schaefer, chief executive of Golden Boy Promotions, said Kirkland was “signed and sealed” for the bout. Alvarez (40-0-1, 29 KOs) won his last fight on May 5, scoring a lopsided decision over former world champion Shane Mosley.

Kirkland, 28, is 31-1 with 27 knockouts, and he’s coming off compelling bouts against Alfredo Angulo and Carlos Molina.

Schaefer said the card will include a WBC featherweight title bout pitting champion Jhonny Gonzalez of Mexico against countryman Daniel Ponce de Leon, who resides in Huntington Park.

Fight promoter Top Rank announced junior featherweight champions Nonito Donaire (28-1, 18 KOs) and Jeffrey Mathebula (26-3-2, 14 KOs) will stage a unification bout July 7 at the Home Depot Center.

The HBO-televised card will also include a 10-round bout pitting Oxnard’s former world lightweight champion Brandon Rios (30-0-1, 21 KOs) against Riverside’s Mauricio Herrera (18-2, seven KOs) in a junior-welterweight fight.

Lance Pugmire

The Lakers promoted Glenn Carraro, the team’s director of basketball administration and general manager of the D-Fenders, to assistant general manager. Carraro will also continue in his role with the D-Fenders.

A member of the Lakers’ front office since 2000, Carraro had been the director of basketball administration since 2006.

Ben Bolch

There was a scare Thursday morning at Belmont when Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner I’ll Have Another nearly was slammed by a loose horse on the track. The horse dumped his rider and came “screaming up the outside rail” and ran between the rail and I’ll Have Another, who was just a few feet from the rail, trainer Doug O’Neill said.

Basketball Hall of Fame member Jack Twyman, one of the NBA’s top scorers in the 1950s, who became the guardian to paralyzed teammate Maurice Stokes, has died. He was 78.

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