The Sports Report: Meet the 13-year-old who could qualify for golf’s U.S. Open

Jaden Soong, 13, is trying to qualify for the U.S. Open. His parents, Chris and Sandra, are nhis strong supporters.
Jaden Soong, 13, is trying to qualify for the U.S. Open. His parents, Chris and Sandra, are big supporters.
Share via

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

From Eric Sondheimer: Jaden Soong, a seventh-grader at Thomas Starr King Middle School in Los Feliz, plans to miss classes June 5, so he’ll need his mother to write a note.

There have been some funny notes for missing class dreamed up by parents and students through the years: doctor’s appointments for thumb injuries from playing video games, dentist appointments for broken teeth from roughhousing with siblings.

Soong’s excuse for missing class is extraordinary: He’ll be the only 13-year-old trying to qualify for the U.S. Open golf tournament in a 36-hole competition at Hillcrest Country Club.


“I didn’t expect to make it this far, so the next round is just learning and getting the experience,” he said. “I really should be in school that day.”

Some middle schoolers dream of snow days or beach days. Soong, at 5 feet 2 and 115 pounds, could play golf from morning to sundown.

“I love golf more than any other thing I can imagine,” he said.

He shot 72 two weeks ago at Brentwood Country Club to become one of five qualifiers to advance to the final tournament that will decide at-large berths for the U.S. Open, which will be played June 15 to 18 at Los Angeles Country Club.

Continue reading here

Enjoying this newsletter? Consider subscribing to the Los Angeles Times

Your support helps us deliver the news that matters most. Become a subscriber.


From Ryan Kartje: USC has appointed an “interim executive administrator” to help steer a reeling department in the wake of Mike Bohn’s resignation Friday.


Denise Kwok, USC’s executive senior associate athletic director for student-athlete development, will be the interim executive administrator while USC balances conducting a search for a new athletic director and navigating a transition to the Big Ten Conference.

She’ll be joined in that task by a newly appointed “interim leadership” team that includes three external administrators with athletics experience, as well as four members of university president Carol Folt’s senior administration.

Outside members of USC’s leadership team include Sandy Barbour, a former athletic director at Berkeley and most recently at Penn State; Mitch Moser, a longtime administrator at Duke; and Kevin Weiberg, a former Big 12 commissioner and Big Ten Network executive.

Continue reading here


From Andrew Greif: Washington has hired Michael Winger, the Clippers’ general manager since 2017, to oversee all of the organization’s basketball operations, a person not authorized to publicly discuss the hiring confirmed to The Times.

Winger agreed to be the President of Monumental Basketball, which will oversee not only the Wizards but also the team’s G League affiliate, the Capital City Go-Go, the WNBA’s Mystics and all of the organization’s basketball facilities.


Respected as a salary cap expert from previous stops in Cleveland and Oklahoma City upon his arrival in Los Angeles in 2017, Winger’s role went beyond the day-to-day of the roster and included managing facilities. He also had responsibilities with the construction of the team’s Inglewood arena, Intuit Dome, which is slated to open in the fall of 2024.

Continue reading here

Results, schedule
All times Pacific
Conference finals

Western Conference

No. 1 Denver vs. No. 7 Lakers
Game 1: at Denver 132, Lakers 126
Game 2: at Denver 108, Lakers 103
Game 3: Denver 119, at Lakers 108
Game 4: Denver 113, at Lakers 111

Eastern Conference

No. 2 Boston vs. No. 8 Miami
Game 1: Miami 123, at Boston 116
Game 2: Miami 111, at Boston 105
Game 3: at Miami 128, Boston 102
Game 4: Boston 116, at Miami 99
Today at Boston, 5:30 p.m., TNT
*Saturday at Miami, 5:30 p.m., TNT
*Monday at Boston, 5:30 p.m., TNT

*-if necessary

Vote in our poll

Do you think LeBron James will retire? Click here to vote. Results will be announced in Friday’s newsletter



From Thuc Nhi Nguyen: With one explosive dribble, Zia Cooke drove past her defender and elevated. There’s a reason why her Sparks teammates call their rookie fearless.

She was less than two minutes into her WNBA playing career, but Cooke already had shared the court with her childhood heroes, fought for two rebounds, and when she watched the ball fall through the hoop for her first points as a pro, she whipped her fist three times in celebration.

“This is something good,” she thought to herself.

The Sparks have something good in the 22-year-old out of South Carolina.

Continue reading here


Results, schedule
All times Pacific
Conference finals

Western Conference

Vegas (P1) vs. Dallas Stars (C2)
Game 1: at Vegas 4, Dallas 3 (OT)
Game 2: at Vegas 3, Dallas 2 (OT)
Game 3: Vegas 4, at Dallas 0
Today at Dallas, 5 p.m., ESPN
*Saturday at Vegas, 5 p.m., ABC
*Monday at Dallas, 5 p.m., ESPN
*Wed., May 31 at Vegas, 6 p.m., ESPN

Eastern Conference


Carolina (M1) vs. Florida (WC2)
Game 1: Florida 4, at Carolina 3 (4 OT)
Game 2: Florida 2, at Carolina 1 (OT)
Game 3: at Florida 1, Carolina 0
Game 4: at Florida 4, Carolina 3

*-if necessary


From Jack Harris: It’s a good thing the Dodgers already clinched their series win over the Braves this week.

Otherwise, Wednesday’s 4-3 loss at Truist Park would have been a lot more frustrating.

After surprise wins in the first two games of the series, when the Dodgers prevailed with rookie pitchers on the mound, Wednesday seemed set up for a potential statement sweep.

The Dodgers outhit the Braves 12-5. They got their starting pitcher into the sixth inning for the first time in more than a week. They had runners aboard in every single inning.

“I thought our guys still did some things well,” manager Dave Roberts said.

But when it mattered most, they time and again came up empty.

The offense left 10 men aboard and went one for 10 with runners in scoring position. Tony Gonsolin gave up two moon shot home runs that spotted the Braves an early lead.

Continue reading here


From Sarah Valenzuela: There’s a comforting feeling Angels fans have when they realize Matt Moore is warming up for the penultimate inning. Then when Carlos Estévez starts preparing to close out the game, it’s all but over for the opposing team. Moore has held scores 12 times, with Estévez converting all 12 of his save opportunities.


“I’m like ‘This is it. Enough. We’re gonna get this game,’” Estévez once said of his mentality going into one of his saves. “That mentality of ‘you’re not gonna touch me.’ ”

But getting to the point of a game when Moore and Estévez are needed has not been easy. It hasn’t been a secret that the bridge from starter to those back-end relievers is where the Angels’ relief corp has struggled. The Angels are tied for second in the major leagues in blown saves, 11. Not that the bullpen has had an easy job. In 15 games this season, an Angels starter failed to complete at least five innings.

The Angels refreshed their bullpen over the weekend, sending down Jimmy Herget, Andrew Wantz and Zack Weiss, moving Chase Silseth back into a reliever role and bringing in seasoned relievers Jacob Webb and Reyes Moronta. The team has hopes the new look can finally build that bridge to the back end of the bullpen and give them more flexibility there.

“I’m a back of the baseball card guy,” manager Phil Nevin said Tuesday. “I see what guys have done. I’ve seen the situations they’ve been in. Moronta, Webb, [Chris] Devenski, they’ve all pitched in big roles. … That means something to me. Aaron Loup’s the same way.

Continue reading here

Athletics and Nevada reach tentative agreement on move to Las Vegas



1935 — Babe Ruth hits his last three home runs in Pittsburgh, Boston Braves still lose the game 11–7 to the Pirates.

1935 — Legendary American athlete Jesse Owens equals or breaks four world records in 45 minutes at a Big Ten meet at Ferry Field in Ann Arbor, Michigan; remembered as “the greatest 45 minutes ever in sport”.

1948 — Ben Hogan wins the PGA championship, beating Mike Turnesa in the final round, 7 and 6.

1951 — Willie Mays plays his first major league game (goes 0 for 5).

1965 — Muhammad Ali knocks out Sonny Liston a minute into the first round in the controversial rematch for Ali’s heavyweight title. Listed as the fastest knockout in a heavyweight title bout, Liston goes down on a short right-hand punch.

1967 — European Cup Final, Estádio Nacional, Lisbon: Glasgow Celtic beats Internazionale, 2-1; first British team to win the Cup.

1972 — Heavyweight Joe Frazier KOs Ron Stander.

1975 — The Golden State Warriors become the third team to sweep the NBA finals, beating the Washington Bullets 96-95 on Butch Beard’s foul shot with 9 seconds remaining.


1977 — 21st European Cup: Liverpool beats Borussia Monchengladbach 3-1 at Rome.

1978 — The Montreal Canadiens defeat the Boston Bruins 4-1 in Game 6 for their third straight Stanley Cup.

1980 — Johnny Rutherford wins his third Indianapolis 500 in seven years and becomes the first driver to win twice from the pole position.

1983 — 27th European Cup: Hamburg beats Juventus 1-0 at Athens.

1986 — KC Royal George Brett gets his 2,000th hit.

1987 — Herve Filion becomes the first harness racing driver to win 10,000 races. Filion reaches the milestone driving Commander Bond to victory in the third race at Yonkers Raceway.

1988 — 32nd European Cup: PSV Eindhoven beats Benfica (0-0, 6-5 on penalties) at Stuttgart.

1989 — Stanley Cup Final, Montreal Forum, Montreal, Quebec: Calgary Flames beat Montreal Canadiens, 4-2 to win series 4 games to 2; Flames’ first SC title.

1991 — The Pittsburgh Penguins, led by Mario Lemieux, win the Stanley Cup for the first time with an 8-0 rout of the Minnesota North Stars.


1998 — Princeton punctuates its claim as one of college lacrosse’s great programs by beating Maryland 15-5 for its third straight NCAA Division I title and fifth in seven years.

2002 — Boston sets an NBA record, overcoming a 21-point fourth-quarter deficit in a 94-90 win over New Jersey. The Celtics outscore the Nets 41-16 in the quarter.

2003 — Juli Inkster shoots a 10-under 62 — tying the lowest final-round score by a winner in LPGA Tour history — to beat Lorie Kane by four strokes in the LPGA Corning Classic.

2005 — 13th UEFA Champions League Final: Liverpool beats Milan (3-3, 3-2 on penalties).

2007 — Bjarne Riis is the first Tour de France winner to admit using performance-enhancing drugs to win the sport’s premier race, further eroding cycling’s credibility after a series of doping confessions. His admission means the top three finishers in the 1996 Tour are linked to doping — with two admitting to cheating.

2008 — Seven crashes and spinouts mar the first Indianapolis 500 since the two warring open-wheel series (CART and IRL) came together under the IndyCar banner. Scott Dixon stays ahead of the trouble to win the race.

2008 — Senior PGA Championship, Oak Hill CC: Jay Haas wins his second title in the event by 1 stroke from Germany’s Bernhard Langer.


2009 — Syracuse rallies from a three-goal deficit in the final 3:37 of regulation to beat Cornell 10-9 and win its second straight and unprecedented 11th NCAA lacrosse title.

2013 — UEFA Champions League Final, London: Arjen Robben scores twice as Bayern Munich beats Borussia Dortmund, 2-1 in first all-German final.

2014 — Senior PGA Championship, GC at Shore Harbor: Colin Montgomerie of Scotland wins first of 3 Champions Tour majors by 4 strokes from Tom Watson.

—Compiled by the Associated Press

And finally...

Muhammad Ali defeats Sonny Liston in controversial fashion. Watch and listen here.

Until next time...

That concludes today’s newsletter. If you have any feedback, ideas for improvement or things you’d like to see, email me at, and follow me on Twitter at @latimeshouston. To get this newsletter in your inbox, click here.