Missing ball


Bucs' Thomas 'serious' after being shot in fight

Linebacker Broderick Thomas of the Tampa Bay Buccaneer was shot in the upper chest and right arm outside a Tampa, Fla., nightclub early yesterday and was reported in stable but serious condition.

An Air Force staff sergeant was arrested in the shooting, which police said took place at 2:40 a.m. outside Rumors Nightclub north of downtown.

Staff Sgt. Frank Taylor Jr., 27, assigned to the Services Squadron at MacDill Air Force Base in Tampa, was charged with aggravated battery with a firearm and released on his own recognizance.

According to police, an unidentified friend of Thomas' was involved in an argument with Taylor in the parking lot outside the nightclub. Thomas intervened and apparently the serviceman backed down.

As the car Taylor was a passenger in was driving away, Thomas swung his fist through an open window, bruising Taylor's face and breaking his glasses. Taylor then pulled out a small-caliber handgun and fired at Thomas, police said.

* After serving 10 years as executive director of the NFL Management Council and guiding the league through player strikes in 1982 and 1987, Jack Donlan has submitted his resignation and commissioner Paul Tagliabue already has interviewed several possible successors, an NFL spokesman confirmed to Newsday.

Donlan's decision to step down apparently is the result of a structural change approved by NFL owners at a meeting Nov. 14 in Dallas that stripped the Management Council of its independent status and placed it under the authority of the commissioner, along with NFL Properties and NFL Films. Donlan's successor will hold the new title of vice president for labor relations and will serve as chairman of the Management Council Executive Committee, which includes six owners or their representatives. But unlike the past, the commissioner will take the lead in directing NFL labor policy.



Third-seeded Brad Gilbert beat top-seeded Andre Agassi, 6-1, 6-2, in a 59-minute match to advance to the finals of the Volvo-San Francisco tournament. Agassi called it his worst loss since Pete Sampras beat him in the final of the U.S. Open. Gilbert will face the winner of last night's semifinal between sixth-seeded Darren Cahill and No. 7 Wally Masur, both of Australia.

* Arantxa Sanchez Vicario beat Zina Garrison, Martina Navratilova and Jennifer Capriati to win the $250,000 Women's Tennis Shoot-Out at Dallas. Sanchez, ranked No. 7 in the world, needed a total of 22 minutes to earn the $100,000 first prize in the one-day exhibition at Reunion Arena. All the matches consisted of best-of-12-point tie-breakers. In the final, Sanchez beat Capriati, 7-4, 7-3. Earlier, the 1989 French Open champion eliminated Garrison, 7-3, and upset Navratilova, 7-2.

* Tim Wilkinson, Harold Solomon and Robert Seguso failed to win their first-round matches to qualify for the $1 million U.S. Pro Indoor tournament in Philadelphia. Wilkinson fell to Jeff Tarango, 6-3, 5-7, 6-4, Solomon lost to Chuck Adams, 6-3, 6-2, and Seguso was defeated by Todd Martin, 6-4, 6-2.

* Third-seeded Catarina Lindqvist and second-seeded Raffaela Reggi advanced to the final of the Oslo Open women's tournament in Norway. Lindqvist beat top-seeded Sabine Appelmans of Belgium, 6-2, 6-2, and Reggi defeated unseeded Pasacale Paradis of France, 7-5, 6-1.

College basketball

Dirk Minniefield, a former Kentucky basketball standout, was ordered to serve a 12-month sentence for violating probation. Minniefield, 30, was put on probation last summer on the condition he remain drug-free. He pleaded guilty June 25 to misdemeanor theft charges and was given a 12-month sentence, all but 10 days suspended. Minniefield's lawyer, Jon Larson of Lexington, Ky., said Minniefield had had a positive urine test.



Carole Merle of France blazed to her first World Cup victory of the season, winning a super-giant slalom at Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany, by a wide margin. Merle had a winning time of 1 minute, 26.14 seconds on the icy Kandahar course for the 10th World Cup victory of her career and the seventh in a Super-G. Karin Dedler was second in 1:26.67 and Michaela Gerg finished third in 1:26.80.

* Ove Nygren of Norway overcame a near spill and won the giant slalom in the U.S. Pro Ski Tour at Winter Park, Colo. Nygren defeated Mathias Berthold of Austria to win his second giant slalom of the season.

5/8 Nathaniel Mills gave United States speed skating a boost with a second-place finish in the 500-meter sprint at the world championships at Heerenveen, the Netherlands. Mills of Northfield, Ill., impressed a world-class field with his explosive speed with a 37.87-second clocking, the best 500 of his life. He was beaten only by German Peter Adeberg, who also skated his best 500, 37.52.



American Chris Patton made a 15-foot putt for par on the 19th hole and beat Australian Brad Hughes in their semifinal at the Australian Matchplay championship at Melbourne. Patton will play Ken Dukes of Australia in today's final. Dukes beat fellow Australian Peter Senior, 2 and 1, in the other semifinal.

* Australia's top four golfers -- Greg Norman, Wayne Grady, Ian Baker-Finch and Rodger Davis -- halved all 18 holes in the first round of the Australian Skins. Baker-Finch and Davis made birdie putts on the final hole to halve the hole and roll the pot of nearly $52,000 over to today's first hole of the final round.


No. 16-ranked Navy (15-2) won three wrestling matches, beating Bucknell, 23-12; William and Mary, 35-11, and Coppin State, 36-6. Rob Weis at 118, Steve Cantrell at 177, and Brett Bourne at heavyweight each won twice for the Midshipmen. Coppin State's winners were Demetrius Munroe at 118 and Robert Dillard at 126.

* Navy split its weekend indoor track meets with Army at West Point, N.Y., the men winning for the fourth time in the last five years, 77-59, and the women losing, 95-23.

* In men's swimming, Princeton won 10 of 13 events en route to a 150-87 victory over Navy (3-7). The Navy winners were Eric Winter in the 400-meter freestyle, Richard Petersen in the 200-meter breaststroke and the 400-meter freestyle relay team.

* In squash, Navy defeated Franklin & Marshall for the first time in five years, 7-2, and lost to Harvard, 8-1, to finish the regular season 17-6.


Twenty-one teams from 10 states will compete in the Columbia Challenge, a women's gymnastics invitational Feb. 23-24 at Howard Community College's Physical Education Building. Sessions will be held at 10 a.m., 3 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday and 10:30 a.m. and 2:55 p.m. Sunday. Admission is $3 for adults and $1 for children 12 and under; daily admission is good for all sessions that day.

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