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STORM CAN CLINCH PLAYOFF BERTH FRIDAY

MAKING NEWS

The Storm moved a step closer to the Arena League playoffs late Saturday. Cleveland's 77-70 overtime victory over Orlando left Tampa Bay needing only to beat Dallas (1-11) on Friday to clinch a berth. Four teams from each of the two conferences make the playoffs, the two division winners and next-best two teams. The top six in the American Conference (each has four games left):

Team.......................Division..............Rec.

Storm......................Southern.............9-3

Tulsa.......................Southwest...........7-5

Jacksonville..............Southern............8-4

Alabama..................Southern.............6-6

Okla. City................Southwest...........5-7

Orlando...................Southern.............5-7

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OUT OF BOUNDS

Max security marks Argentina's arrival

One day after its 4-0 loss to Germany in the quarterfinals, Argentina's World Cup team returned home. And police and government officials took extreme measures to make sure the players were safe. Police blocked access to the only highway leading to Buenos Aires' airport, allowing only passengers, flight crews and airport workers to come within 2 miles. At the airport, customs and immigration officials processed the players and coaching staff on the plane, and a bus took them directly from the tarmac to the federation headquarters.

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NUMBER OF THE DAY

37 Consecutive games with a hit for Clearwater second baseman Harold Garcia, including Sunday's first-inning single that set the Florida State League record; the 23-year-old switch-hitter, signed by the Phillies out of Venezuela in 2004, surpassed Joe Altobelli, who hit in 36 in a row for Daytona Beach in 1951 but is best known for managing the Orioles to the 1983 World Series title; the minor-league record is 69 by Joe Wilhoit of the Wichita (Kan.) Jobbers in 1919.

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