NEW YORK — Into the great unknown.
The NFL has begun the final season of its contract with the players union by eliminating the salary cap. Free agency started today with no ceiling on spending for teams, and no floor, either.
Predictions on how free agency without a salary cap will turn out are pointless. Will teams go on wild spending sprees? Will some operate on the cheap because there is no payroll minimum? Will players who became unrestricted this year find lots of bidders or few?
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Lyon College Pipers’ basketball team was eliminated from the TranSouth Athletic Conference Tournament here Wednesday night when the No. 19 Trevecca Nazarene Trojans collected a 65-55 victory in the first round.
Lyon led 41-40 with 9:42 to go when the Trojans went on a 15-6, game-deciding run. The Pipers were scoreless for more than three minutes during that span with three turnovers, two blocked shots, a missed shot and a pair of missed free throws.
LYNN — The Mammoth Spring Bears nearly doubled the Mount Vernon-Enola Warhawks in points scored in the fourth quarter while rallying for a first-round Class 1A State Tournament high school basketball victory here Wednesday night.
Down 33-31 after three quarters of play, the second-seeded Bears scored 20 points to the ’Hawks 11 in the final stanza, including a 12-0 run, and won going away, 51-44. Mount Vernon-Enola was also a second seed.
The team from Faulkner County, the 1A state runners-up last spring, finished with a record of 29-9.
HEBER SPRINGS — The Arkansas Sheriffs’ Youth Ranches will benefit from the golf tournament set for April 2 at Tannenbaum Golf Club in Drasco, according to a news release from the sheriff’s office.
The TranSouth Athletic Conference announced its 2010 womens basketball awards on Wednesday and Lyon College’s K.K. Hodges and Suzanne Fincham were among the honorees selected by the league’s nine coaches.
Hodges, a 6-foot junior forward from Wynne, was selected first-team All-TranSouth Conference and Fincham, a 6-foot freshman post from Royal, earned an All-TranSouth Conference All-Freshman team honor.
NEW YORK (AP) — Omir Santos tried on his new batting gloves, said to slow the impact of a harmful fastball down to the mere annoyance of a junkball, and voiced excitement.
“I think it’s going to help,” the New York Mets catcher said. “It sounds like it’s going to work.”
The latest high-tech protective product in a sport that’s slow to accept innovation, the batting gloves are manufactured by the startup company XProTeX, which hired former All-Star Reggie Smith to go around spring training trying to persuade big leaguers to switch.
Zac Wallace and Corey Ford drove in two runs apiece to spark the Lyon College Scots to a 10-1 victory over the Clarke College Lions in the first game of a nonconference doubleheader split at Scots Field Wednesday afternoon.
Lyon (8-5) lost the second game 12-0 in five innings, but has won six of its last eight games. Clarke (7-3) has won five of its last seven.
Wallace finished the opener with a 2-run double and Ford picked up a 2-run single and scored twice. Third baseman Aaron Thornton slapped two hits and drove in a run with a fourth-inning double.
Tenequa Martin earned five hits and drove in six runs during the Lyon College Pipers’ doubleheader sweep of the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff Lady Golden Lions on Wednesday at House Field.
“‘T’ played a heck of a game, both games. She had several RBI,” Lyon Coach Jason Miner said.
The Pipers (8-6) won game one 7-5 and took game two 6-3. UAPB hasn’t won a game in eight tries this season and is 1-3 against the Pipers in their last four meetings.
PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. — Jack Nicklaus is going to appear at next month’s Masters. He thinks Tiger Woods will, too.
Nicklaus said Wednesday that “it would surprise me” if Woods did not return to competitive golf in time for the Masters, a tournament the embattled world No. 1 has won four times in his career.
“I suspect he’ll play something before Augusta,” Nicklaus said behind the 18th green at PGA National, where the Honda Classic opens on Thursday. “Your guess is as good as mine. I’d be very surprised if he doesn’t play something before Augusta.”
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Tennessee Coach Bruce Pearl hoped his players would start strong against Arkansas after upsetting Kentucky.
Instead, it took a technical foul on Pearl to fire up the 16th-ranked Volunteers and their fans in an 80-73 win over Arkansas on Wednesday night.
“I was pleased to win the game, but I was hoping to build on how we played Saturday — and we did not,” Pearl said. “We didn’t play basketball like you need to play basketball in March.”
ALMA — Trailing 41-37 early in the fourth quarter, the Camden Fairview Lady Cardinals struck back, regained the lead and won going away here Tuesday.
The Lady Cardinals defeated the Batesville Lady Pioneers 55-48 in the first round of the Class 5A State Tournament for high school basketball. The Lady Cardinals, champions of the Southwest District, improved to 16-11 and advanced to the quarterfinals. They are scheduled to play the Monticello-Greenwood winner at 4 Friday afternoon.
The Lady Pioneers, fourth seeds out of the East, finished with a record of 15-12.
LYNN — The first big surprise of the state high school basketball tournaments didn’t take long to happen and it was provided by a host.
The Hillcrest Screamin’ Eagles stunned the previously-unbeaten, No. 1-ranked Bradley Bears here Tuesday afternoon in the first boys’ game of the day. The final score was 61-47.