Originally created 02/22/06

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Golf

Pacers open spring with 20-shot victory

In Clinton, S.C., Scott Brown and freshman Roberto Diaz led No. 1 USC Aiken to a 20-shot victory in the Presbyterian College Intercollegiate.

In the Pacers' spring opener, Brown, a senior, won a playoff over Diaz for the medalist title. They finished regulation at 2-over-par 146. Brown shot 71-75 and Diaz had 73-73.

Of the other Pacers, Matt Giftos (75-73-148) tied for fourth place individually, Casey Thompson (80-76-156) tied for 12th and Dane Burkhart (78-79-157) tied for 15th place.

Counting its three victories in the fall, USC Aiken has won four of its five tournaments in the 2005-06 season.

- In Jekyll Island, Ga., North Augusta's McKenzie Talbert easily won the 10-year-old girls division of the U.S. Kids Golf Jekyll Island Cup Regional Championship.

In the two-day tournament, McKenzie shot 37 the first day and 34 the second for 71 to win by eight shots over Sabrina Bonanno of Norridge, Ill.

The victory earned Talbert a spot in the U.S. Kids Golf World Championship on July 26-29 in Pinehurst, N.C.

There were golfers from 37 states and five countries in the event for golfers age 4-12.

Hockey

Lynx captain Lang earns ECHL honor

Augusta Lynx captain Ray Lang has been named ECHL Player of the Week.

Lang played a key role as the Lynx went 3-0-0 last week. He had three goals and three assists.

One of his goals was a game-winner and another tied a game.

Baseball

USC Aiken reliever is player of week

USC Aiken reliever Nick Wandless, the Peach Belt Conference leader in saves this season with four, has been named the conference's player of the week.

In two victories against No. 2 Catawba, on Feb. 17 and 18, Wand-less combined to pitch 3q innings of relief and strike out seven of the 11 batters he faced.

For the season, Wandless, a former Greenbrier High standout, is 1-0 with an 0.00 ERA in six appearances.

It is the second consecutive week that a USC Aiken player has won the player of the week award. Gary Lee won it the previous week.

Tennis

Hingis starts fast in return to Dubai

In Dubai, United Arab Emirates, Martina Hingis made her return to Dubai a winning one with a 6-3, 7-5 victory over Sania Mirza.

Hingis, returning from a three-year retirement and already ranked No. 50 after six weeks back on the tour, broke Mirza's serve six times in the first-round match.

Mirza was impressed after her first match with the five-time Grand Slam winner.

"Martina is one player I admired and was really disappointed that she wasn't around when I started playing the tour," Mirza said. "... I think I played a great match and made her work hard for her points."

A wild-card entry into the field, Hingis won the inaugural Dubai Open in 2001 and hadn't been back since. Hingis next meets sixth-seeded Anastasia Myskina.

- In Bogota, Columbia, Flavia Pennetta beat Katerina Bohmova, 6-4, 6-1 in the first round of the Copa Colsanitas.

Gisela Dulko, the No. 2 seed in the WTA tournament, beat Lioudmila Skavronskaia 6-2, 6-4, while hometown favorite Catalina Castano took care of Daniela Munoz, 6-2, 6-3.

Pennetta, ranked No. 16 in the world and the defending champion, and Dulko both said they struggled with the thin air in Bogota.

Softball

Pacers' Harvey earns recognition

Shortstop Sarah Harvey of USC Aiken has been recognized for her play in the two games the Lady Pacers had last week.

Harvey had seven hits in 14 at-bats, including a homer and a double.