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Sports in brief: Tiger Woods swinging again at Firestone, feels no pain


woods swinging again, feels no pain

Tiger Woods was on the practice range just as the sun began to rise Tuesday over Firestone, his first time on a PGA Tour golf course in nearly three months.

"I'm excited to compete, to play," Woods said. "And hopefully, to win the tournament."

Woods showed up at the Bridgestone Invitational in Akron, Ohio, at No. 28, his lowest world ranking since the start of his first full season on the PGA Tour. He has a new caddie — at least temporarily — in Bryon Bell, a childhood friend. For Woods, however, the biggest change is how he feels about his health.

"The great thing is I don't feel a thing," said Woods, who has been dealing with injuries to his left knee and Achilles' tendon. "It feels solid. It feels stable. No pain. That's one of the reasons why I took as long as I did to come back, is that I want to get to this point where I can go ahead and start playing golf again like this."

Junior PGA Championship: Zachary Wright of Phoenix shot 6-under 66 and has the lead after one round in Fort Wayne, Ind. Casey Danielson of Osceola, Wis., is atop the leaderboard on the girls side with 68.


Vollmer golden in 100 fly once again

Dana Vollmer added another memorable event to quite an eventful summer.

Vollmer won the women's 100-meter butterfly at U.S. nationals in Stanford, Calif., adding to the gold she won in the event last week at the world championships. She showed few signs of fatigue one day after arriving from Shanghai, finishing in 57.26 seconds to beat out Claire Donahue.

Former Gator Ryan Lochte, coming off a breakout performance at worlds, did not qualify for the final in his only event of the day. He finished 24th in the preliminaries of the 100 breaststroke at 1:02.96.


Blake to face neighbor Isner at Legg Mason

James Blake's reward for upsetting defending champion David Nalbandian 6-2, 6-4 at the Legg Mason Classic in Washington will be a third-round matchup against his big-serving pal and doubles partner, John Isner.

Blake and Isner live near each other in Tampa and hit together all the time. They'll team up in doubles today before heading to opposite sides of the net Thursday.

"We're practically neighbors. Last time I was home, I was eating breakfast at his house just about every morning. And he's taken so much food out of my fridge, I think he owes me a few thousand dollars," Blake said. "We practice together so often that I've seen his serve a million times — and it doesn't get any easier."

The 11th-seeded Isner needed only six aces to get past Tobias Kamke 6-1, 6-3.

pro basketball

Bulls' Noah healing, will join French team

Injured Bulls center Joakim Noah should be ready to join his France teammates this week, the French Basketball Federation said.

The former Gators standout has been having treatment in Los Angeles on his right ankle, which he sprained in March.

WNBA: Pienette Pierson scored 20, Leilani Mitchell sank four 3-pointers — all in the final period — and New York held off host Atlanta 85-75. … Maya Moore scored 22 and host Minnesota opened the fourth quarter with a big run to put away Phoenix in a 90-73 victory.

et cetera

Cycling: The inaugural USA Pro Cycling Challenge through the Rocky Mountains this month will feature the top three finishers from the Tour de France. Andy and Frank Schleck will join Tour winner Cadel Evans in the weeklong Colorado race.

Track: Former world and Olympic 400-meter champion Jeremy Wariner will miss the world championships this month in Daegu, South Korea, with a torn ligament on his left foot.

Times wires

Sports in brief: Tiger Woods swinging again at Firestone, feels no pain 08/02/11 [Last modified: Tuesday, August 2, 2011 10:56pm]
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