u.s. women's coach steps down
ROCHESTER, N.Y. — Once the U.S. women's team's victory tour suddenly turned into a farewell tour for coach Pia Sundhage, Abby Wambach wanted to send her off on a fitting note Saturday.
Wambach scored twice and added an assist in an 8-0 exhibition win over Costa Rica. "I love Pia so much because she has shown me what it's like to love the game," the ex-Gator said.
Hours before kickoff, Sundhage told the players she was stepping down to return to her native Sweden. She leaves after five years in which she led the Americans to an 89-6-10 record, back-to-back Olympic gold medals and their first World Cup final in 12 years, in which they lost in penalty kicks to Japan.
"It's really a difficult decision to make, as you can imagine, being around those guys. They make me look good," Sundhage said, pointing to her players after the game. Ultimately, she said, the decision came down to pursuing her dream job, coach of the Swedish women's team. The Swedish Football Association announced later it had reached a deal with her to take over that job Dec. 1, a day after her contract with U.S. Soccer expires.
Sundhage will coach the U.S. team for two more exhibition games this month. U.S. Soccer, which said her decision wasn't surprising, will begin searching for a new coach immediately. The next major tournament is the 2015 World Cup.
St. Petersburg's Snyder medals again
Former Navy Lt. Brad Snyder of St. Petersburg, who lost his sight in an IED explosion in Afghanistan in September 2011, won a swimming silver medal and set a U.S. record in the men's 50-meter freestyle in London. It was Snyder's second medal of the Games, following a gold in the 100 freestyle Friday.
Snyder, 28, who was a standout at Northeast High, was second to China's Yang Bozun in 25.93 seconds. Bozun, second to Snyder in the 100, won in a world-record time of 25.27. Spain's Enhamed Enhamed, whose mark of 25.82 Bozun broke, got the bronze.
Swimmers are classified according to how their impairment affects their ability to perform each stroke. Snyder's race classification is for swimmers with little or no sight.
In sailing, St. Petersburg's Jen French and JP Creignou were in fourth after the first two races in two-person keelboat.
On the track, defending 200-meter champion Oscar Pistorius set a world record of 21.30 seconds in his heat in advancing to today's final. The South African last month became the first handicapped runner to compete in the Olympics.
horses: To Honor and Serve edged favored Mucho Macho Man by a neck in a long stretch drive in the $750,000 Woodward Stakes at Saratoga Race Course in Saratoga Springs, N.Y. Ridden by John Velazquez, the Bill Mott-trained 4-year-old ran 11/8 miles in 1 minute, 48.65 seconds and paid $9.30, $3.60 and $2.60 for his second victory in four starts this year.
boxing: IBF middleweight champion Daniel Geale outpointed Felix Sturm with a split decision to take the WBA title in their unification bout at Oberhausen, Germany. … A woman who said she was intimidated by Oscar De La Hoya during a wild night at a New York City hotel was ordered to pay his legal bill after a judge said her lawsuit was "frivolous" and malicious. A Manhattan court ruled model Angelica Cecora owes $12,000 to the former welterweight champion.
cycling: Joaquin Rodriguez increased his lead in the Spanish Vuelta by outlasting Alberto Contador to win the mountainous 93-mile 14th stage. Rodriguez finished in 4 hours, 10 minutes, 28 seconds, extending his advantage over Contador to 22 seconds.