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Colleges

Lakeside hurler signed by Pacers

Lakeside senior pitcher Hunter Hubbard has signed a national letter of intent to play baseball for USC Aiken in 2014.

Last year the right-hander led the Panthers in wins and innings pitched.

USC Aiken coach Kenny Thomas likes what he is getting in Hubbard.

“Great local pick up for us,” he said. “He has come on very strong the past year and has emerged as one of the top pitchers in the Augusta area.”

• The Augusta State men’s tennis team is ranked ninth by the Intercollegiate Tennis Association after the fall season.

The Jaguars doubles team of Victor Cabellos and Victor Guimaraes are ranked 11th.

Three other Peach Belt Conference teams are ranked ahead of Augusta State, headed by top-ranked Armstrong Atlantic State.

Columbus State is ranked seventh and Lander is eighth.

Golf

Lefty to start his year at Humana

Phil Mickelson is starting his new season in the desert, only much closer to home than he sometimes has in the past.

The three-time Masters Tournament champion, who lives in Rancho Santa Fe, Calif., announced Wednesday he will play in the Humana Challenge on Jan. 17-20 in La Quinta, Calif.

That’s the same week several of golf’s biggest names will be across the globe in another desert at the Abu Dhabi Golf Championship. Tiger Woods and Jason Dufner are among the PGA Tour players teeing it up in Abu Dhabi.

Mickelson played in the Abu Dhabi tournament in 2011, but started his 2012 season in the Humana Challenge tying for 49th place.

Mickelson won the Humana Challenge in 2002 and 2004 when it was known as the Bob Hope Classic. He set the tournament record in 2004 with 37 birdies when it was a 90-hole event.

Mark Wilson is the defending champion.

FedEx Cup champion Brandt Snedeker has said he would play the Humana Challenge.

• In Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Shanshan Feng and Florentyna Parker both shot 6-under-par 66s to share the lead after the first round of the Dubai Ladies Masters.

Klara Spilkova, Sahra Hassan and Cindy Lacrosse were a stroke behind at the season-ending Ladies European Tour event.

Defending champion Lexi Thompson is three shots off the pace.

Feng, who became the first player from mainland China to win a major championship in June at the LPGA Championship, had six birdies at Emirates Golf Club.

Parker moved into a tie for the lead with a birdie the par-5 18th.

Michelle Wie (70) is four shots behind after a round that included a double bogey on the par-4 12th.

Carlota Ciganda, who leads the Order of Merit, also shot 70.

• Georgia resident Davis Love III has been named the winner of the 2013 Bob Jones Award, which is the U.S. Golf Association’s highest honor.

The award recognizes an individual who demonstrates the spirit, personal character and respect for the game exhibited by the legendary Jones.

Love, who lives in Sea Island, Ga., will receive the award during the USGA’s annual meeting in San Diego in February.

Love, 48, has won 20 PGA Tour events including the 1997 PGA Championship, the 1992 and 2003 Players Championship was the 2012 U.S. Ryder Cup captain.

• The European Tour’s 2013 season begins today with the inaugural Nelson Mandela Championship in Durban, the first of six events in South Africa.


Top headlines

Commission rejects tax jump

Seven commissioners nixed a proposed tax increase Monday that would cost a typical homeowner $70 a year, leaving the countywide millage unset with just a few days to meet state deadlines.
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