Watson takes lead in Hope with a 62
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Bubba Watson loves a little rain on his game. With his mammoth drives sticking to fairways instead of bounding across them, he had the best round of his pro career to take the lead in the Bob Hope Classic at La Quinta, Calif.
Watson shot a course-record 10-under 62 yesterday to take a two-stroke lead over Alex Prugh after the second round, which began and ended in the storm that washed out Thursday's play and pushed the final round to Monday.
But there were just enough hours in between squalls for a SilverRock course record by Watson, who's trying to show there's more to his game than his jaw-dropping drives.
"I didn't expect it to be that wet," Watson said. "I didn't come out of my house yesterday, so I didn't know what it was. It was really wet."
Although it's expected to clear on the weekend before returning Monday, the storm has wreaked havoc on the PGA Tour's only five-round, four-course tournament.
Prugh, no stranger to rain from his college career at the University of Washington, followed his opening 64 with a bogey-free 66 on the Palmer Course at PGA West. First-round leader Shane Bertsch (69) was at 13 under with Joe Ogilvie (66), Chad Collins (64) and Martin Flores (65).
ANKIEL TO SIGN WITH ROYALS
Rick Ankiel and the Kansas City Royals have agreed to a $3.25 million, one-year contract, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press.
The person spoke on condition of anonymity yesterday because the deal had not yet been announced.
MATTHEWS JR. TRADED TO METS
The Los Angeles Angels traded outfielder Gary Matthews Jr. to the New York Mets yesterday and agreed to pay $21.5 million as part of the deal.
Los Angeles got right-handed reliever Brian Stokes for Matthews, who slumped for three straight seasons since signing a $50 million, five-year deal.
The Angels also finalized a $16 million, two-year contract with right-hander Joel Pineiro.
DAVIS, WHITE IN DANCE LEAD
There's no arguing with Meryl Davis' and Charlie White's lead. No questioning the authenticity of their Bollywood-style dance, either.
Davis and White won the original dance last night, extending their lead and moving one step closer to an upset victory over Olympic silver medalists Tanith Belbin and Ben Agosto at the U.S. Figure Skating Championships in Spokane, Wash. Davis and White are 1.62 points ahead going into today's free dance, a margin that is difficult to make up in dance.
"It's a slight confidence boost, but nothing we're going to think about," White said. "We know what we have to do."
World champions Oksana Domnina and Maxim Shabalin have outraged some Australian aboriginal leaders, who claim their dance is offensive cultural theft, with inauthentic steps and gaudy costumes.
AMERICA'S CUP STILL IN COURT
The America's Cup is still being contested in court less than three weeks before the yachts are to begin their showdown in Spain.
America's Cup champion Alinghi of Switzerland is taking on U.S. challenger BMW Oracle Racing in New York State Supreme Court.
Alinghi says the sails for its 90-foot catamaran are legal under the 19th-century document governing the race. Yachts must be constructed in the team's country of origin. Alinghi says its sails are built in Switzerland. Alinghi wants BMW Oracle Racing's boat disqualified because the Americans added a radical wing sail.
The best-of-3 series between the giant multihulls is to start Feb. 8.
AND WHAT'S MORE ...
Rick Kulacz of Australia shot a 9-under 63 yesterday for 36-hole total of 132 and one-stroke lead over Sergio Garcia (67), Shane Lowry (65) and Peter Hanson (67) at the Abu Dhabi Championship at Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. ... "Mr. Baseball" Bobby Bragan, who managed Braves Hall of Famers Hank Aaron, Eddie Mathews and Warren Spahn, died Thursday night at his Fort Worth, Texas home. He was 92. ... Bengie Molina and the Giants have completed a $4.5 million, one-year contract that brings the veteran catcher back to San Francisco for a fourth season. ... American Lindsey Vonn earned her seventh win of the season in a World Cup super-G yesterday at Cortina D'Ampezzo, Italy to reclaim the lead in the overall standings. ... Didier Cuche of Switzerland won a World Cup super-G race at Kitzbuehel, Austria yesterday, while American Bode Miller finished 17th.