The Sports Report: UCLA softball advances to Women’s College World Series semifinal

UCLA's Holly Azevedo pitches in the fifth inning.
UCLA’s Holly Azevedo pitches in the fifth inning.
(Alonzo Adams / Associated Press)

Howdy, I’m your host, Houston Mitchell. Let’s get right to the news.

From Thuc Nhi Nguyen: Kelly Inouye-Perez couldn’t hide her pride. Sitting next to Holly Azevedo after the pitcher extended UCLA’s season with a complete-game shutout against Florida on Sunday, Inouye-Perez beamed as a room of reporters recounted Azevedo’s accomplishments.

Now everyone can see what Inouye-Perez has always known about Azevedo.

The redshirt senior secured UCLA’s spot in the national semifinal with a two-hit, six-inning 8-0 win against No. 14 Florida. Azevedo gave up just one walk while striking out two in her first career Women’s College World Series start as the Bruins (50-9) advanced to face No. 1 Oklahoma at 9 a.m. PDT Monday at USA Softball Hall of Fame Stadium. The game will be televised on ESPN.

The No. 5-seed Bruins must knock off the Sooners twice Monday to punch their ticket to the best-of-three championship series, which begins Wednesday.


“Moments like this, we have been waiting for this,” Inouye-Perez said. “[Azevedo] hasn’t had that opportunity on this stage. So I couldn’t be more proud and happy for her and for us that she pitched her game today.”

Azevedo followed teammate Megan Faraimo’s 10-strikeout gem from Friday to keep UCLA’s season going after the Bruins disappointed in the opening round against Texas. It’s the first time UCLA has had different pitchers get wins in the same World Series since Megan Langenfeld and Aleah Macon in 2010. The Bruins won the national title that season.

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From Jack Harris: There were wild momentum swings, questionable pitching decisions, a ninth-inning comeback and an extra-inning finish.

It might be the first week of June. But the Dodgers’ finale against the New York Mets — and most of this weekend’s four-game series overall — had the markings of something more than a typical early summer matchup.

“This is a good test,” shortstop Trea Turner said. “Any time you can go head-to-head with one of the better teams, it’s always fun.”

The only problem for the Dodgers: Sunday resulted in a disappointing 5-4 loss, a defeat that forced them to settle for a series split, finish a weeklong homestand with an ugly 2-5 record, and cede the top spot in the National League standings back to their resurgent visitors.

“It’s ending on a sour note, obviously, to lose two in a row at home,” manager Dave Roberts said.


From Mike DiGiovanna: A solid start from Patrick Sandoval and some clutch hits during a rare five-run, fourth-inning outburst Sunday provided a salve and some hope for a club that hadn’t won a game since May 24.

Then the Angels found a new and even more soul-crushing way to lose, blowing a four-run lead in the eighth inning and a one-run lead in the ninth to an underachieving Philadelphia Phillies team that fired manager Joe Girardi on Friday.

Closer Raisel Iglesias gave up a tying grand slam in the eighth, and Jimmy Herget gave up a three-run homer to No. 9 hitter Bryson Stott in the ninth, as the Phillies stormed back for a 9-7 walk-off victory in front of a crowd of 34,801 at Citizens Bank Park.

“That was a tough one,” Angels manager Joe Maddon said. “We’ve lost a lot of tough ones. It really makes no sense. We got the right guys out there at the right time, and again, we gave it up late. … It’s gut-wrenching at times, no question.”

The Angels have now lost 11 straight games, going 0-6 against the Phillies and New York Yankees on this trip, and 15 of their last 18. The 11 losses match their second-longest streak in franchise history. The last such streak was from Aug. 4-15, 2016.

Longest losing streaks in Angels history:

13, Sept. 19, 1988-April 4, 1989; Season record (1988): 75-87

11, May 25-June 5, 2022

11, Aug. 4-15, 2016; 74-88

11, July 16-26, 1999; 70-92

11, June 28-July 9, 1992; 72-90

11, June 30-July 10, 1974; 68-94

10, July 17-26, 1993; 71-91

10, May 16-25, 1969; 71-91

10, June 30-July 12, 1963; 70-91



Carson Yates homered leading off the top of the ninth to give UCLA a 2-1 win over Florida State on Sunday in an elimination game in the Auburn Regional.

Kyle Karros, who had three hits, tied the score for the Bruins with a home run in the seventh and Alonzo Tredwell (4-1) struck out three in two innings of one-hit relief for the win.

UCLA (40-23) faces host Auburn, the overall No. 14 seed, and needs two wins to win the regional title.


Cherif Fall, surf champion of Senegal, goes airborne off a big wave
Cherif Fall, surf champion of Senegal, goes airborne off a big wave.
(Allen J. Schaben / Los Angeles Times)

From Myah Taylor: Once he’s enveloped in the barrels of the Pacific’s blue-gray waves, Nathan Fluellen feels one with God.

The chilled water, while untamed, supplies a transcendent energy to anyone who dares ride its swells. They say Black people don’t like the water, but bucking that stereotype has continued to propel Fluellen back onto his surfboard and into the ocean.

“It fits my ethos of something new every day and something different, a new challenge,” Fluellen said.

Saturday morning on the shores of Huntington Beach, he invited Black people of all ages into his joy. Dozens, clothed in wetsuits, drifted from the waves and into the dampened sand during Fluellen’s event “A Great Day in the Stoke,” what he has coined as “the largest gathering of Black surfers in history.”

Initially scheduled to occur in October 2021, the free event sponsored by Patagonia, Black Girl Sunscreen and Kavata Swimwear moved to this summer because of a crude oil spill off the coast of the beach last fall. “A Great Day in the Stoke,” which also honored Black surfing pioneers Sharon Schaffer and Tony Corley, featured a surfing competition, beach yoga and surfing lessons.

Fluellen said the idea for the event came to him in the aftermath of 2020s racial reckoning when Black surfers staged “paddle outs” in honor of murdered Black people such as George Floyd and Ahmaud Arbery, and Breonna Taylor, who was fatally shot by police. Still, the inspiration for the event runs even deeper.

“When I became an adult, I started hearing people saying Black people don’t know how to swim,” said Fluellen, a Chicago native who has swum since he was 10 months old. When he traveled to South Africa for his show “World Wide Nate: African Adventures” and highlighted the Zulu people who both swam and surfed, he proved this idea to be a myth.


The L.A. Giltinis advanced to the Western Conference finals despite a 35-27 loss to the Seattle Seawolves on Sunday.

The Giltinis advanced by finishing on top of the Western Conference standings with an 11-5 (54 points) record. The postseason scenario took a major twist on Friday when the Austin Gilgronis, who finished with 58 points, were disqualified from taking a spot in the playoffs for violating Major League Rugby’s competition rules.

The Seawolves will face the Houston SaberCats on Sunday in an eliminator to decide which team meets the Giltinis in the Western Conference final.

Rugby ATL and Rugby New York face each other in Saturday’s other eliminator to settle on a rival for the New England Free Jacks in the Eastern Conference final.


Skylar Diggins-Smith scored a season-high 29 points on 10-for-16 shooting to lead the Phoenix Mercury to an 81-74 victory over the Sparks on Sunday.

Nneka Ogwumike had 19 points and seven rebounds to pace the Sparks (5-7). No other Sparks starter scored more than eight.

The Sparks trailed 21-18 after the first quarter and 43-40 at halftime before taking a 59-58 lead into the fourth quarter, getting outscored 23-15 to finish the game.


Jesús Ferreira failed to convert a pair of first-half chances as U.S. men’s soccer forwards kept up their goal-scoring struggles, and the Americans played a 0-0 draw against Uruguay on Sunday in their second of four World Cup warmup matches this month.

The U.S. took the field three hours after learning Wales would be its opening World Cup opponent in November, and the Americans stretched their home unbeaten streak to 25 matches since a September 2019 loss to Mexico. That’s one shy of the team record set from 2013 to ’15.


Ukraine misses out on World Cup after losing 1-0 to Wales


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All times Pacific
Conference finals

All games on TNT
Colorado (C1) vs. Edmonton (P2)
Colorado 8, Edmonton 6
Colorado 4, Edmonton 0
Colorado 4, Edmonton 2
Today at Edmonton, 5 p.m.
*Wednesday at Colorado, TBD
*Friday, June 10 at Edmonton, TBD
*Sunday, June 12 at Colorado, TBD

All games on ESPN
New York Rangers (M2) vs. Tampa Bay (A3)
New York 6, Tampa Bay 2
New York 3, Tampa Bay 2
Tampa Bay 3, New York 2
Tuesday at Tampa Bay, 5 p.m.
Thursday at New York, 5 p.m.
*Saturday at Tampa Bay, 5 p.m.
*Tuesday, June 14 at New York, 5 p.m.

*-if necessary


Schedule and results
All times Pacific
All games on ABC

Boston vs. Golden State

Boston 120, Golden State 108
Golden State 107, Boston 88
Wednesday at Boston, 6 p.m.
Friday at Boston, 6 p.m.
Monday, June 13 at Golden State, 6 p.m.
*Thursday, June 16 at Boston, 6 p.m.
*Sunday, June 19 at Golden State, 5 p.m.

*-if necessary


Ime Udoka couldn’t hang with Shaq and Kobe’s Lakers, but worked way to Celtics coach

Quin Snyder ends his tenure as Utah Jazz coach after eight seasons

Jersey worn by Kobe Bryant as a rookie in playoffs sold for $2.7 million


1919 — Man o’ War wins his first race, a 5-furlong contest over a straightaway at Belmont Park. The 3-to-5 favorite wins by six lengths, covering the distance in 59 seconds.

1924 — Cyril Walker captures the U.S. Open with a three-stroke victory over Bobby Jones.

1936 — Granville, ridden by James Stout, wins the Belmont Stakes by a neck over Mr. Bones. Bold Venture, the Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner, does not run in the race.

1946 — The National Basketball Association is founded at the Commodore Hotel in New York.

1981 — Summing, ridden by George Martins, wins the Belmont Stakes, spoiling Pleasant Colony’s Triple Crown bid.

1987 — Bet Twice, ridden by Craig Perret, breezes to a 14-length victory in the Belmont Stakes to deny Alysheba the Triple Crown. Alysheba is a distant fourth.

1987 — West Germany’s Steffi Graf, eight days shy of her 18th birthday, becomes the youngest women’s champion of the French Open when she beats Martina Navratilova 6-4, 4-6, 8-6.

1998 — Real Quiet is denied the Triple Crown when Victory Gallop edges him at the wire in the Belmont Stakes.

1999 — Andre Agassi rallies to win the French Open and become the fifth man to complete a career Grand Slam. After losing the first two sets, Agassi surges back to beat Andrei Medvedev 1-6, 2-6, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4. Agassi won the 1992 Wimbledon, 1994 U.S. Open and 1995 Australian Open.

1999 — Juli Inkster wins the U.S. Women’s Open with a 16-under 272, the lowest 72-hole score in the championship’s 54-year history.

2007 — The Ducks capture the Stanley Cup with a 6-2 victory over the Ottawa Senators, ending the series in five games.

2007 — Trevor Hoffman becomes the first major leaguer with 500 career saves when he closes out the San Diego Padres’ 5-2 victory over the Los Angeles Dodgers.

2010 — Rafael Nadal wins his fifth French Open title and avenges his lone Roland Garros defeat, beating Robin Soderling 6-4, 6-2, 6-4. Nadal improves to 38-1 at Roland Garros, with the only loss to Soderling in the fourth round a year ago.

2011 — The Bowl Championship Series strips USC of its 2004 title, leaving that season without a BCS champion. BCS officials vacated the championship after the Trojans were hit with heavy NCAA sanctions last year for rules violations committed during the 2004 and ’05 seasons.

2015 — American Pharoah leads all the way to win the Belmont Stakes by 5½ lengths, becoming the first horse in 37 years to sweep the Kentucky Derby, Preakness and Belmont Stakes. The bay colt, trained by Bob Baffert and ridden by Victor Espinoza, is the 12th horse and first since Affirmed in 1978 to win the Triple Crown.

2015 — Serena Williams overcomes a mid-match lull and a third-set deficit to win her third French Open title and 20th major singles trophy by beating Lucie Safarova of the Czech Republic 6-3, 6-7 (2), 6-2.

2015 — Tiger Woods hits a new low with the highest score of his career — an 85 in the Memorial at Muirfield Village, the course where he has won eight times. Woods ends his front nine of the third round with back-to-back double bogeys and finishes with a quadruple-bogey 8.

2018 — LeBron James passes Michael Jordan’s record of 109 for the most 30-point games in NBA playoff history in a 110-102 loss to the Golden State Warriors.

Compiled by the Associated Press

And finally

The Ducks win the 2007 Stanley Cup. Watch and listen here.

Until next time...

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