Tennis: Proctor, Talbert win U.S. Open qualifier
TALLAHASSEE -- Recent Lakewood Ranch High graduate Lauren Proctor and former State College of Florida player Miranda Talbert moved closer to playing in the U.S. Open by winning the USTA Florida U.S. Open National Playoffs-Florida Section Tournament on Sunday at Florida State.
Proctor and Talbert defeated Heather Kaiser and Sheronda Thompson of Gainesville 6-1, 6-0 in the women's doubles final. The duo advances to the national playoffs Aug. 25-28 in Connecticut to play for a spot in the U.S. Open main draw or qualifying rounds.
Proctor, who helped the Mustangs to the programs first state team title in the spring and will play at Winthrop University this fall, placed second in the women's singles tournament, falling 7-6 (4), 6-2 to Yukako Noi of Japan in the final.
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Talbert signed with the University of Wyoming after her sophomore year at SCF. The Manatees placed third in the junior college national tournament.
ELSEWHERE -- Top-seeded David Ferrer lost to Marcos Baghdatis 6-2, 7-6 (4) in the second round of the Aegon Classic in Nottingham, England. Ferrer, the world No. 7, lost his first two service games to Baghdatis, who earned his first win over a top-10 player in more than two years. ... Second-seeded Caroline Wozniacki made a winning start to her grass-court season with a 7-6 (4), 6-2 victory over qualifier Jarmila Gajdosova in the second round of the Aegon International in Eastbourne, England. Earlier, Eugenie Bouchard earned her first win of the grass-court season when the 2014 Wimbledon runner-up beat Alison Riske of the U.S. 7-6 (5), 6-3.
Little League: D-26 tourney start postponed
PALMETTO -- The start of the Florida District 26 Little League All-Star tournaments at Blackstone Park will have to wait one more day. The intermediate and 9/10 tournaments, which were scheduled to begin Tuesday at 7 p.m., were postponed for a day by rain, lightning and poor field conditions.
The start of the three games -- Braden River vs. Manatee West in intermediate, and Palmetto vs. Braden River and Lakewood Ranch vs. Buffalo Creek in 9/10 -- were initially delayed because of afternoon rainstorms which rendered the infields unplayable. The intermediate game briefly began the move from Palmetto to G.T. Bray park in Bradenton before all games were called.
After an almost hourlong delay, lightning forced all patrons at Blackstone to retreat to their cars. Before 8:30 p.m., the games were postponed and moved to Wednesday, which was a scheduled off day.
NHL: Salary cap increasing to $71.4M
LAS VEGAS -- The NHL's salary cap for the upcoming 2015-16 season will increase to $71.4 million, allaying some concerns about a weak Canadian dollar's impact on the hockey pay scale.
The NHL and the Players' Association announced the figure as the league's general managers met in Las Vegas.
The salary cap will increase by $2.1 million from the just-completed season to its highest level in league history.
Many observers had projected the cap to land between $70 million and $71 million after the Canadian dollar's slump over the past year hurt the league's seven Canadian teams, but the NHLPA triggered a 5 percent escalator clause in the collective bargaining agreement to boost the cap.
ELSEWHERE -- The NHL plans to play three-on-three overtime next season. The league's general managers and the NHL Players' Association agreed Tuesday to change its regular-season overtime period from four-on-four hockey to three-on-three. The Board of Governors still must approve the change Wednesday when it meets in Las Vegas.
Golf: Couples out of U.S. Senior Open
SACRAMENTO, Calif. -- Fred Couples has withdrawn from the U.S. Senior Open because of a back injury.
The 55-year-old Couples has a long history of back trouble. He missed the cut at the Masters and has not played in the last two months. Couples also pulled out of qualifying earlier this month for the U.S. Open, held outside his hometown of Seattle.
College basketball: Henson hospitalized
LAS CRUCES, N.M. -- Former New Mexico State and Illinois men's basketball coach Lou Henson, 83, who is set to be inducted into the College Basketball Hall of Fame this fall, is at a Houston hospital awaiting tests due to a weakened immune system.
-- Herald staff, wire reports