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WTA and ATP Tennis: Rafael Nadal and Aravane Rezai win Madrid

compiled from staff, news and ATP, WTA news

Rafael Nadal is playing so well on clay this season that he is dominating the men’s ATP Tour.

Nadal improved to 15-0 on clay this season and won a record 18th Masters title Sunday by beating top-ranked Roger Federer 6-4,7-6 (5) in the Madrid final.

Rafael Nadal (atp)

Nadal, will be returning to number 2 in the world when rankings come out Monday, is now the favorite for the French Open which will start on May 23.

Nadal, slowed by nagging knee injuries in 2009, turned around the result of the 2009 final; the last time he and Roger Federer faced each other, to win Madrid for the second time and move one Masters title ahead of Andre Agassi and two in front of Federer.

Nadal also won titles in Monte Carlo and Rome to become the first player to win all three titles in the same season. He lost only two key sets during that run and is 14-7 lifetime vs. Federer, including 10-2 on clay.

In the Madrid women’s final, unseeded Aravane Rezai defeated Venus Williams 6-2,7-5 on Sunday.

Rezai rallied from two breaks down in the second set to win her third career title in her sixth final.

Aravane Revai Tennis (WTA)

The fourth-seeded Williams was looking to win her 10th clay-court title and improve on her 12-1 record on the surface this year. It was the 70th final of her career, and she will move up to number 2 in the world when the rankings come out Monday, for the first time since May 2003.

Dover Sprint Cup race won by Kyle Busch

compiled from staff, wire and NASCAR reports

Kyle Busch beat Jimmie Johnson on Sunday because rare pit road mistake by the four-time NASCAR champion.

When Johnson was penalized for speeding on the final pit stop, that was the break and opportunity Busch needed to pull away late Sunday and win  his second race in two days at Dover International Speedway.

Busch’s win capped a widly successful weekend for the Joe Gibbs Racing driver.

Busch missed the tripleheader sweep on the one-mile concrete track by just a couple of gallons of gas.

Kyle Busch (nascar)

He was in position to win the Trucks Series race on Friday but ran out of gas at the end. He easily took the checkered flag Saturday’s second-tier series race and raced about 800 miles in three days.

On Sunday, Busch swapped the lead with Johnson throughout most of the 400-mile race ran in front of thousands of empty seats. He saw the race coming down to him and Johnson but the Lowes number 48  car was clocked at 40.09 mph in a 35 mph zone.

Minor League Baseball: Clippers and Dragons win on Sunday

Info Courtesy of Columbus Clippers and Dayton Dragons

Staff Writer Dan Hock also contributed to this story

COLUMBUS CLIPPERS

The Columbus Clippers found their gear and bats on Sunday afternoon at Huntington Park, as they beat the Durham Bulls, 5-0. Josh Tomlin pitched well for Columbus as he shutout the Bulls, a team that outscored the Clippers in the first two games of the series, 15-4.

Carlos Santana had a big game going 1 for 1 with a two-run homer in the fifth, two walks, and three RBI’s. That homer was his seventh of the season and the three RBI’s gave him 32 for 2010. He also had a sacrifice fly in the bottom of the third inning.

Carlos Santana (MiLB)

Tomlin pitched six scoreless innings for Columbus earning the win and pitched out of two jams in the second and fifth innings.

GAME NOTES

* Charlie Montoya, Durham manager, was the winner of the 2009 Mike Coolbaugh award. The award symbolizes an individual that has shown outstanding baseball knowledge, a good work ethic in baseball and skill in mentoring young players at the minor league level.

Montoya in 2009 led Durham to their third straight Southern Division title en route to the International League title.

Montoya has been a part of the Tampa Bay organization since its initial season in 1998. Amongst the major leaguers he has managed in the minors are Josh Hamilton, Carl Crawford, Evan Longoria, David Price, Jeff Niemann, James Shields, Ben Zobrist, B.J. Upton and Delmon Young.

* The Durham Bulls hosted the Toledo Mudhens on Monday May 10th at historic Durham Athletic Park that was the home of the Durham Bulls from 1926-1994. Both Toledo and Durham wore throwback jerseys. The seating capacity for Durham Athletic Park is only 1,800 but Durham General Manager Mike Birling said around 4,000 people showed up for the game.

Birling said retro t-shirts designed to look like shirts from the Bull Durham era, sold out within 15 minutes of the game. The game with Toledo sold out immediately once it was announced earlier in the year.

The uniforms will be auctioned off to benefit the cancer center at Duke University.

DAYTON DRAGONS

Josh Garton’s two-run double lifted the Dayton Dragons to a come-from-behind 6-2 win over the Great Lakes Loons on Sunday afternoon in Midland, Michigan. The win gave the Dragons a split of the four-game road series. Dayton improved to 18-19 on the year and dropped Great Lakes to 23-14.

Pedro Villarreal (MiLB)

Dragons starting pitcher Pedro Villarreal worked for the first six innings, allowing seven hits and two earned runs with one walk and six strikeouts. Villarreal (2-2) earned the win for the second straight start.

Former Ole Miss and NFL defensive tackle Norman Hand dies

compiled from staff and wire reports

Former NFL defensive tackle Norman Hand has died after collapsing at his home in South Carolina. Hand’s family was with him when he died.

Colleton County Coroner Richard Harvey told reporters that the 37-year-old Hand collapsed at his home in Walterboro, South Carolina, about 11 a.m. Friday and died 90 minutes later at a local hospital. The cause of death has not been determined but an autopsy has been planned, according to Coroner Harvey.

Mississippi Rebels (ole miss)

NFL (nfl)

Hand played defensive tackle at Ole Miss (University of Mississippi) from 1993-94. In 22 games, 20 starts he had 100 tackles with 12 quarterback pressures.

Hand’s 10-year NFL career included stints with Miami, New Orleans, San Diego, Seattle and the New York Giants. Hand, who had 22 1/2 career sacks, was drafted in the fifth round by the Dolphins in 1995 after playing at Mississippi.

Garrett Wittels hit streak continues as Florida International beats South Alabama

compiled from staff, wire and Florida International news

Florida International University sophomore Garrett Wittels had an RBI single in the first inning off of South Alabama pitcher D.D. Hanks, thus extending his hit streak to 43 games, the longest active streak in the NCAA. With the single he moves into sole possession of fourth place on the NCAA Division I consecutive games hit streak list. He finshed the game 1-for-5 with an RBI.

Garrett Wittels (FIU)

The FIU Panthers (28-20, 14-11 Sun Belt) overcame four lead changes and nipped the South Alabama Jaguars (30-21, 16-9 Sun Belt) on Friday evening by a score of 6-5 at the FIU baseball stadium in Miami, Florida.

Here is a list of NCAA Division I Consecutive Games Hitting Streaks over the years:

Robin Ventura of Oklahoma State 1987               58

Phil Stephenson of Wichita State    1981               47

Roger Schmuck of Arizona State      1971               45

Garrett Wittels of Florida International 2009  43

Chuck Abbott of Austin Peay                1996               42

Michael Campo of Penn State               2000              41

Todd Nace of Southern Mississippi   1989-90        41

Rusty Adkins of Clemson                         1965-66          41

Shane Robinson of Florida State           2004-05       40

Brandon Caraway of Houston                 1998-99          40

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