April 22, 2021

National Digest

DES MOINES — WHO-TV sports has confirmed that Iowa State head wrestling coach Cael Sanderson is the leading candidate for the same job at Penn State.

Sports Director Keith Murphy reported that Sanderson has interviewed twice with Penn State. Penn State competes in the Big Ten Conference against two time defending champion Iowa, but Penn State is thought to be a sleeping giant because of all the high school wrestling talent in Pennsylvania.

Wrestling for Iowa State, Sanderson is the only collegiate wrestler in history to win four national championships while never losing a match (159-0). He also won the United States' only freestyle gold medal at the 2004 Summer Olympics.

Sanderson was hired as Iowa State's head wrestling coach in 2006. Former UNI All-American Dylan Long of Creston is a graduate assistant with the Cyclones, and three-time state champion Andrew Long of Creston is a redshirted freshman on the Cyclone squad.

Heart attack

BOSTON (AP) — Boston Celtics general manager Danny Ainge was hospitalized after suffering what the team described as a minor heart attack.

The Celtics issued a brief statement saying that Ainge, 50, was taken to a Boston hospital but provided few other details.

A member of two Celtics championship teams in the 1980s with the original Big Three of Larry Bird, Kevin McHale and Robert Parish, Ainge was an NBA All-Star in 1988.

As general manager, Ainge helped the franchise raise its record 17th NBA championship last season by assembling a new Big Three, acquiring Kevin Garnett and Ray Allen to join Celtics veteran Paul Pierce. Ainge was named 2007-08 NBA executive of the year and in October was rewarded with a contract extension and the title of president of basketball operations.

Not ready

WALTHAM, Mass. (AP) — Celtics star Kevin Garnett could miss the playoffs because of a knee injury that has limited him to four games over the final two months of the season.

Celtics coach Doc Rivers said Garnett will not be ready for Game 1 against the Chicago Bulls on Saturday and possibly won't be back at all.

Garnett has been the Celtics' inspirational leader since joining them in a 2007 trade and propelled the franchise to its record 17th NBA title. He averaged 15.8 and 8.5 rebounds per game for the defending champions this season.

Garnett injured his right knee Feb. 19 and missed the next 13 games before returning for four and playing a total of 66 minutes.

Rivers said he watched Garnett run at the team's practice facility and said he had to shut him down after 20 minutes because his leg was locking up.

Accident

NORTHBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — Former All-Star pitcher Mark Fidrych suffocated after his clothes became entangled with a spinning part on the truck he was working on, Massachusetts authorities said.

The state medical examiner's office ruled the death an accident, according to a release from the Worcester District Attorney's office. The investigation is now closed, a spokesman for the DA said.

A friend found Fidrych, 54, beneath a 10-wheel dump truck on Monday at his Northborough farm.

Fidrych went 19-9 with a 2.34 ERA for the Detroit Tigers in 1976 to win the AL Rookie of the Year award, becoming as famous for his mop of curly hair and on-the-mound antics as his skills.

The Bird, as he was known, was beloved by Tigers fans for appearing to talk to the ball and smoothing out the mound between innings.

He never matched the heights of his first season, as injuries derailed his promising career.

Guilty plea

BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) — Former NFL running back Travis Henry pleaded guilty to trafficking cocaine in a federal drug case that could land him in prison for 10 years or more.

Appearing in federal court in Billings, Mont., the 30-year-old Henry admitted to a single count of conspiracy to possess cocaine with intent to distribute.

He was arrested in Denver last October after authorities broke apart a drug ring that trafficked cocaine between Colorado and Montana. Henry was described as the "money guy" who helped finance the operation.

U.S. District Judge Richard Cebull accepted the guilty plea and set a July 15 sentencing date. Two other cocaine trafficking charges were dropped under the plea agreement.

Henry will remain free on $400,000 bond. Henry's attorney, Harvey Steinberg, said Henry recently sold his Colorado property and will live in Florida until his July sentencing.

CYCLING

MILAN (AP) — Lance Armstrong has told organizers that he will race in the Giro d'Italia.

The announcement posted on the Gazzetta dello Sport's Web site removed doubts that the seven-time Tour de France champion would miss the race after having surgery on a broken right collarbone last month.

It will mark the first time Armstrong races in the Italian classic, which runs May 9-31.

Armstrong, who returned to racing at the start of this year after three and a half years of retirement, fell during the Vuelta of Castilla and Leon in Spain on March 23 and had surgery two days later. A stainless steel plate and 12 screws were inserted into to stabilize the broken collarbone.

Armstrong is also planning to enter the Tour in July, although he has said he is worried French doping officials may ban him for allegedly violating protocols during a recent drug test.