Sharapova has rough claycourt debut win
STUTTGART, Germany — Top-seeded Maria Sharapova needed three sets and more than three hours Thursday in her claycourt season debut to overcome Lucie Safarova for a place in the Porsche Grand Prix quarterfinals.
Sharapova, the defending champion, won 6-4, 6-7 (3-7), 6-3 in 3 hours, 9 minutes. Her quarterfinal opponent is Ana Ivanovic, who beat eighth-seeded Nadia Petrova 6-4, 6-3. Li Na, Angelique Kerber and Petra Kvitova also advanced to the quarterfinals.
Barcelona Open: Nicolas Almagro and Juan Monaco got third-round wins in the Spanish claycourt event before rain forced the postponement of matches. The two will meet in the quarterfinals. The rain bumped Rafael Nadal's match against Benoit Paire to today.
USF signs junior college guard, brings recruiting class to seven
USF basketball coach Stan Heath announced the signing of junior college guard Corey Allen, a versatile player who should help the Bulls move to a more uptempo style next season.
"He is a solid combo guard who can make a lot of plays, both scoring … and being able to find guys with his passing ability," Heath said in a statement.
Allen, 6 feet, is from St. Louis. He played the past two seasons at Mt. San Antonio College in Walnut, Calif. He averaged 21.1 points and 4.2 assists as a sophomore, hitting 61.8 percent of his shots from the field.
Allen is the seventh member of Heath's recruiting class. The others: top 100-rated big men John Egbunu, now at Faith Baptist in Brandon, and Bartow's Chris Perry; Orlando forward Dre Clayton; Michigan wing Bo Zeigler; and point guards Drew Davis and Josh Heath, Stan's son, from Tampa Prep.
More basketball: Creighton two-time All-America forward Doug McDermott said he will return for his senior season. … La Salle rewarded coach John Giannini with a contract extension after he led the Explorers to the NCAA Tournament final 16, their best run since 1955. Terms of the deal were not released.
MLS commissioner changes course on goal-line technology
Major League Soccer has decided goal-line technology is over its budget line.
After saying last year the league was "open to using goal-line technology as soon as it is made available," commissioner Don Garber said it's not worth the cost.
Soccer's international body, FIFA, approved goal-line technology in July. It announced in February the GoalControl-4D system will be used at the 2014 World Cup. England's Premier League said April 11 it will install the Hawk-Eye system next season; it would be the first domestic league to use the technology.
GoalControl said its system likely will cost about $260,000 per stadium to install and $3,900 per game to operate. Garber called the price "very, very, very expensive."
More MLS: The league hopes to announce plans in four to six weeks for a stadium in the New York City borough of Queens for a 20th team that would start play in 2016.
EPL: Aggrieved at the severity of Luis Suarez's 10-match ban for biting an opponent, Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers defended the striker and said the punishment was given "against the man rather than the incident." Suarez got one of English soccer's longest suspensions for on-field misbehavior after biting Chelsea's Branislav Ivanovic during a 2-2 draw Sunday. A disciplinary panel ruled that a regular three-match ban for violent conduct was "clearly insufficient" and added seven games. Suarez is out for the rest of the season and for the first six matches of next season. Suarez has until today to appeal the seven added games.
Greg Auman, Times staff writer; Times wires