The University of Virginia's potential participation in the Tempe, Ariz.-based Sunkist Fiesta Bowl football game will be reconsidered by school and state officials in the wake of Arizona voters' rejection of a proposal to make a state holiday of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.'s birthday, according to the Newport News Daily Press last night.
Before the Arizona referendum Tuesday, Virginia had agreed to play in the New Year's Day game, if the Cavaliers won their game tomorrow at North Carolina.
"That's something we'll take into consideration," Virginia athletics director Jim Copeland said of the King issue. "Beyond that, I really can't say anything."
Virginia's bowl decision will be made by university president John Casteen, football coach George Welsh and Copeland, according to Copeland. Casteen and Welsh were unavailable for comment last night.
Gov. L. Douglas Wilder, the nation's first elected black governor, was in New York and also unavailable for comment, but state Secretary of Education James Dyke said he will discuss the matter with school officials.
Lisa Christensen, the 19-year-old woman who suffered a fatal heart attack during Sunday's Marine Corps Marathon in Washington, had a congenital heart defect that may have been aggravated by the strain of the race, a medical examiner said yesterday. Christensen, a sophomore at Boston University, collapsed a little more than two miles short of the finish line of the 26.2-mile race and later died at Arlington, Va., Hospital.
Dr. James Beyer, the Northern Virginia Medical Examiner, said she had been born with a condition in which the two arteries that supply blood to the heart join rather than taking separate paths, and results "in reduced blood flow to the heart muscle. The exertion of marathon running may have been a contributing factor," but the autopsy he performed would not show whether the marathon itself led to her death.
Steffi Graf defeated Natalia Zvereva, 6-0, 6-1, in 36 minutes, but sixth-seeded Helena Sukova had to rally to eliminate Stephanie Rehe, 4-6, 6-2, 6-2, in the New England Virginia Slims tournament in Worcester, Mass. Sukova ran off a string of three straight games in a vain bid to get back into the first set before building identical 4-1 leads to take charge in the next two sets.
* Top-seeded Pete Sampras withdrew because of painful shin splints and fifth seed Aaron Krickstein lost, 7-5, 6-4, to Peter Lundgren in an indoor tournament in Wembley, England. Krickstein lost his serve twice near the end of the first set and two more times at the beginning of the second set as Lundgren won eight of 10 games in that stretch.
* Second-seeded Emilio Sanchez struggled for 1 hour, 45 minutes to defeat unseeded Veli Paloheimo, 2-6, 7-5, 6-2, in the third round of the Kremlin Cup in Moscow.
* Mats Wilander overpowered Andrew Sznajder with eight aces and a barrage of precision passing shots to win, 6-1, 6-0, in the Citibank tournament in Itaparica, Brazil.
David Peoples overcame four bogeys in the second round of the Kapalua International in Kapalua, Hawaii, for a 2-under-par 69, a two-day total of 10-under 132 and a three-shot lead over Tom Purtzer. Purtzer had a second-round 68.
* Webb Heintzelman of Bethesda, who failed to retain his Professional Golfers' Association Tour card during the 1990 season, goes into today's final round of 1991 regional qualifying with a five-shot lead on the field after rounds of 69-70-67206 at the Jones Creek course in Augusta, Ga. The top 30 scorers will advance to the final qualifying event Nov. 28-Dec. 3 at PGA West in LaQuinta, Calif.
Nikki Gianulias won her second Ladies Pro Bowlers Tour title of the year, beating Robin Romeo, 206-156, to win the $35,000 Los Angeles Open. Gianulias qualified for the championship round in the No. 4 position.
Bits and pieces
The University of Coimbra of Portugal will play exhibition basketball games at St. Mary's tonight (7:30) and at the University of Maryland Baltimore County tomorrow night (7:30). . . . There are still a few openings for the under-12 and under-14 age groups in the Soccer America tournament which will be held Nov. 24-25 at the Myers Pavilion. Interested teams can call Mike Woodard at 396-5782 for more information. . . . Tickets are available for a dinner honoring Nick Wischuck Nov. 30, beginning at 6 p.m. at the Knights of Columbus Hall on Eilers Avenue. Tickets are $25. For information, call 284-4929. . . . Trish Elser (Dulaney), junior center for Fairfield University, was named to the Metro Atlantic Athletic Conference's preseason second all-star team.