ACC basketball tourney grows by gameThe Atlantic Coast...

Sports briefly

May 23, 1991

ACC basketball tourney grows by game

The Atlantic Coast Conference basketball tournament grew one game larger yesterday when league officials decided -- against the wishes of the ACC coaches -- to recommend a game between the eighth and ninth seeds to open the tournament.

The proposal is expected to be officially adopted today at the ACC spring meetings in Myrtle Beach, S.C.

Under the format, which will accommodate Florida State's entry as the ninth team, the 8-9 game will be played Thursday, March 12, at 7 p.m. at the Charlotte (N.C.) Coliseum.

The winner will advance into the quarterfinals to play the regular-season champion, with the tournament retaining its standard format from there.

Earlier this year, the league's athletic directors had suggested a tournament format that would give the regular-season champion automatic bye into the semifinals and force the bottom four teams to play today.

The ACC's coaches endorsed that plan Tuesday, but it was rejected yesterday by the league's basketball committee headed by Duke athletic director Tom Butters. North Carolina coach Dean Smith said Tuesday that the coaches voted unanimously against an 8-9 game.

But the basketball committee decided to keep the event as close to its original format as possible.

In other business, the league signed a seven-year extension with Jefferson Pilot Sports to carry football games.

Also, the league passed a rule requiring each school to play at least one home football game at night if national television

requests such a game.

Auto racing

In an unprecedented move, the sanctioning body for stock car racing's top circuit yesterday reduced the 12-week suspension of car owner Junior Johnson for using an oversized engine.

The decision was made by NASCAR commissioner Semon E. Knudsen less than three hours after officials announced that an appeals panel had refused to ease the suspension.

Knudsen, the final possible route of appeal, trimmed the suspension to four races. Johnson and crew chief Tim Brewer, who also had received 12-week suspensions, will be eligible to rejoin their team at Michigan next month.

* Mark Martin won the pole for the Coca-Cola 600 by being the fastest of three drivers to break the year-old event record at Charlotte Motor Speedway in Concord, N.C.

Martin had a top lap of 174.820 mph in his Ford Thunderbird. The 13th career pole for Martin came at the expense of Ken Schrader and Michael Waltrip, both of whom also broke the event qualifying mark of 173.963 set by Schrader.

Football

The National Football League owners, meeting in Minneapolis, approved a measure allowing each team to dress a 46th player as an emergency third quarterback.

If this third quarterback is put in the game, neither of the first two quarterbacks will be allowed to return, even if they have recovered from their injuries.

Women's lacrosse

University of Maryland seniors Michelle Uhlfelder (Pikesville) and Jennifer Ulehla (Maryvale) have been named first-team All-Americans by the Intercollegiate Women's Lacrosse Coaches Association.

The three teams included five Terrapins, the most of any school. The 16-player first team also included Virginia junior Jenny Slingluff (Roland Park). (Teams, 13D)

Hockey

The final game of a 22-game series featuring teams from the NHL, Team USA and the Canadian Olympic squad will be played Jan. 22 at the Capital Centre in Landover.

The format has each of the 15 U.S.-based National Hockey League clubs playing a home game against Team USA. The seven Canadian-based teams will play Canada's Olympic team.

Endorsements

Nike Inc. has appointed Georgetown University basketball coach John Thompson to its board of directors.

The appointment fulfills the company's pledge last August that it would name a minority to its board of directors within a year.

The pledge came after Operation PUSH, the Chicago-based civil rights group, alleged that the Beaverton-based athletic shoe and apparel company denied blacks adequate employment and business opportunities.

Bowling

Cindy Coburn-Carroll won five of eight matches to take the fifth round lead in the LPBT's Hammer Western Open at Tempe (Ariz.) Bowl. Carroll, who started the round in second, leads Leanne Barrette by 77 pins (7,920-7,843) after 34 games.

* Brad Kiszewski, the 1990 PBA Rookie of the Year, averaged 251 for six games and took the the first-round lead in the PBA's Celebrity Denver Open with 1,510 pins. Five-time winner Parker Bohn III is second with 1,482.

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