Overton takes lead at Frys.com Open
• Coming off his worst year, Jeff Overton opened the new PGA Tour season on a good note in San Martin, Calif.
Once he finally made a putt Thursday in the Frys.com Open, Overton felt as if he couldn’t miss. Over the last 11 holes at CordeValle, he made three birdie putts over 25 feet and a 20-foot eagle putt when his gamble paid off on the par-5 ninth.
He finished with a tap-in birdie on the 18th for a 7-under 64 and a 1-shot lead over Brian Harman.
Harman finished with back-to-back birdies from short range and had eight birdies on his round. Kyle Stanley had a 66.
• South Korea’s Ilhee Lee shot a 7-under 64 to take a 1-stroke lead over American Brittany Lang after the first round of the LPGA Malaysia. Paula Creamer, Jodi Ewart Shadoff, Beatriz Recari and Eun-Hee Ji shot 66 at Kuala Lumpur Golf and Country Club.
• Spain’s Alviro Quiros shot a 6-under 65 on his home course for a share of the first-round lead in the European Tour’s Portugal Masters. Felipe Aguilar, Maximilian Kieffer, Graeme Storm, Jamie Donaldson, David Lynn and Simon Thornton also shot 65 at Oceanico Victoria.
Federer suffers another early loss
• Roger Federer’s chances of qualifying for the ATP Tour Finals took a hit when he lost in three sets to Gael Monfils at the Shanghai Masters, the latest early round loss for the 17-time Grand Slam champion. Monfils beat the former No. 1-ranked Federer 6-4, 6-7 (5), 6-3 in the third round. Defending champion Novak Djokovic and top-ranked Rafael Nadal moved into the quarterfinals with straight-set wins.
• Sixth-seeded Madison Keys reached her fourth WTA quarterfinal of the season by beating China’s Shuai Zhang 6-3, 6-0 in the second round of the Japan Open. The 18-year-old American won nine successive games to wrap up the match in just 51 minutes.
• Second-seeded Sloane Stephens and top-seeded Angelique Kerber reached the quarterfinals of the Generali Ladies in contrasting styles in Linz, Austria. Stephens needed 2½ hours to defeat Andrea Petkovic of Germany 7-6 (1), 4-6, 6-3, and Kerber cruised past Alexandra Cadantu of Romania 6-1, 6-0 in just 50 minutes.
• The state of Connecticut is planning to spend $618,000 to buy the rights to the New Haven Open women’s tennis tournament and keep it from moving to North Carolina.
Minnesota coach on leave for health
• Minnesota football coach Jerry Kill has taken an open-ended leave of absence from the team to focus on treatment and management of his epilepsy. The university announced the decision Thursday, before a news conference with athletic director Norwood Teague and defensive coordinator Tracy Claeys. Kill had to miss the last game at Michigan when he suffered a seizure at home that morning and was unable to travel with the team. Claeys called that the turning point in Kill’s thinking about needing more time away to rest, recuperate and adjust to his new medication.
• Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel decided that football games and other sports will go on at the military service academies this weekend, and continue through the end of the month, despite the government shutdown.
Endurance swimmer survives Manhattan
• Endurance swimmer Diana Nyad on Thursday ended her 48-hour swim in a pool set up at a busy Manhattan intersection to benefit the victims of Superstorm Sandy, an event that raised more than $105,000 in donations.
• The head of Italy’s gymnastics federation condemned “every form of racism and discrimination” following offensive comments by one of the country’s gymnasts. The president of USA Gymnastics considers the matter closed. Italians Vanessa Ferrari and Carlotta Ferlito finished fourth and fifth on the balance beam Sunday at the world championships in Belgium, just behind bronze medalist Simone Biles of the U.S. Ferlito said, with a laugh, that she told Ferrari: “Next time we’ll have our skin black also so we can win, too.”
— From wire reports