UH-Arizona matchup promises offensive fireworks

McDonald, Taylor put up big numbers in ’18

By KALANI TAKASE

The Associated Press

HONOLULU — Arizona’s season-opening matchup against the University of Hawaii will be a study in contrasting offensive styles.

While both teams ranked in the top 50 nationally in total offense in 2018, the Wildcats did a lot of their damage on the ground, averaging 202.4 rushing yards per game, which led the Pac-12. The Rainbow Warriors’ pass-heavy attack, meanwhile, aired it out at a clip of 310.3 yards per game, tops in the Mountain West.

Arizona running back J.J. Taylor and Hawaii quarterback Cole McDonald are expected to take center stage when the teams meet today for the first time since 2016.

Taylor, a 5-foot-6, 185-pound redshirt junior, ran for 1,434 yards last season, good for seventh nationally. It was the fourth-highest single-season rushing performance in Wildcats history.

McDonald, a 6-foot-4, 220-pound junior, finished eighth nationally in passing yards (3,875) and sixth in passing touchdowns (36). He threw for over 300 yards seven times and eclipsed the 400-yard mark three times last season.

“The scary part about this guy, McDonald, is he had a great year last year … and he’s coming back this year bigger and stronger, so they’ve got some weapons offensively and defensively, but I think they’ve got a quarterback that’s as good as probably there is in the country,” Arizona second-year coach Kevin Sumlin said.

McDonald has been named to the preseason watch lists for the Manning, Maxwell, Davey O’Brien and Johnny Unitas Golden Arm awards. Taylor is also on the Maxwell Award watch list, along with the Doak Walker Award.

Hawaii coach Nick Rolovich said slowing down Taylor and the Wildcats will require discipline.

“This is about all-out effort to the ball, this is about good tackling, this is about getting them down and seeing if we can get some takeaways because if they make you miss, they have the ability to take it as far as they need to go,” Rolovich said.

The Rainbow Warriors are coming off an 8-6 record and their first winning season since 2010.

Arizona went 5-7 in 2018 and is tabbed for a fifth-place finish in the Pac-12 South.

A few more things to look for when the Wildcats and Rainbow Warriors meet:

Continuity Counts

Not only does UH return 20 starters from a year ago — which ties them for the most in the nation with the quartet of Ball State, Indiana, Michigan State and Oregon — it also managed to go through the offseason without any turnover on its coaching staff.

Among the new additions to the Arizona staff this year is running backs coach DeMarco Murray, who played seven years in the NFL. Murray played his college ball at Oklahoma, where Sumlin served as co-offensive coordinator in 2007 when the Sooners won 11 games, including the Fiesta Bowl.

Tribute To Tomey

Dick Tomey, who coached at both Hawaii and Arizona, will be honored today. Tomey passed away in May at the age of 80 after a battle with lung cancer. Several of Tomey’s family members will be in attendance and Arizona players will wear a “DT” sticker on their helmets in his honor.

Tomey went 63-46-3 in 10 seasons at Hawaii (1977-86) and also served as special teams coordinator in 2011. After leaving for Arizona in 1987, Tomey coached 14 seasons with the Wildcats (1987-00), led them to seven bowl appearances and finished as the school’s winningest coach with a record of 95-64-4.

You Again

The Wildcats will open against the Rainbow Warriors for the third time in program history and are seeking their fourth win in Honolulu in as many tries. They have won all five previous meetings in the series, including a 47-28 win in Tucson the last time the teams met on Sept. 17, 2016. The two also met in a season opener in 1952, when Arizona hosted Hawaii and won 57-7, and in 1998, when the Wildcats made their last visit to Aloha Stadium and came away with a 27-6 win.

Early Start

Today’s opener will mark the earliest start to a season for both programs.

The teams will open the 2020 season against each other in Tucson.

Hawaii will take on two more Pac-12 opponents, Oregon State and No. 13 Washington, in the coming weeks.

_______________

COLLEGE FOOTBALL ON TV

Today 6 a.m.—Villanova at Colgate, CBSSN

9 a.m.—Youngstown St. vs. Samford, ESPN

1 p.m.—Miami vs. No. 8 Florida, ESPN

4:30 p.m.—Arizona at Hawaii, CBSSN

Cowboys edge Rams at Aloha Stadium

By KALANI TAKASE

The Associated Press

HONOLULU — Dak Prescott appears ready for the regular season, with or without Ezekiel Elliott.

The Dallas quarterback completed all five of his pass attempts in his only series, and the Cowboys came away with a 14-10 victory over the Los Angeles Rams on Saturday night at Aloha Stadium.

Prescott dropped back to pass seven times, completed passes to five different receivers, had one short completion negated by an ineligible lineman downfield penalty and was sacked once.

Prescott’s only drive covered 97 yards in 12 plays, took more than six minutes and culminated with Tony Pollard’s 14-yard touchdown run.

“It’s always a challenge coming off your own goal line. We call that a ‘coming out situation.’ One of your goals is to get a first down and change field position. To be able to have a 13-play drive and cash it in for points was big for us,” Cowboys coach Jason Garrett said.

With starting quarterback Jared Goff among the large number of Rams starters that did not make the trip to Hawaii, Blake Bortles got the start and finished 7 of 11 for 62 yards. His 7-yard scoring pass to JoJo Natson capped Los Angeles’ second drive, which was extended by a fumbled punt return by Dallas return man Reggie Davis and recovered by rookie Jake Gervase.

“Blake did a really good job, got us in and out of the right run calls and I thought it was exactly what we wanted to accomplish for him,” Rams coach Sean McVay said.

Los Angeles (0-2) took its only lead on Greg Zuerlein’s 29-yard field goal in the second quarter. Zuerlein attempted a 56-yard field goal just before halftime, but missed wide left.

Dallas (1-1) pulled back ahead late in the third quarter, when third-string quarterback Cooper Rush found Devin Smith for an 8-yard touchdown.

Pollard, who started in place of Elliott, finished with five rushes for 42 yards. Elliott, a two-time league rushing champion, missed his second preseason game while he continues his holdout. Alfred Morris, who signed with the team during training camp, saw his first action of the preseason and carried three times for 6 yards, all before halftime.

The game marked the NFL’s first time back in Hawaii since the 2016 Pro Bowl was played at Aloha Stadium. Although the game was technically a home game for the Rams, fans of both teams jumped at the rare opportunity to see professional football in the 50th state.

“What a great atmosphere and environment it was,” McVay said. “The fans were awesome from start to finish.”

Garrett said he took a moment during Saturday’s game to reflect upon the history that has taken place at Aloha Stadium.

“I was thinking about while I was standing on the sidelines, thinking about all the great players that who have played here. The best of the best have played here because they played the Pro Bowl game here for a long time,” Garrett said.

Holloway overwhelms Edgar at UFC 240

EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) — Reigning featherweight champ Max Holloway defended his belt Saturday, overwhelming former lightweight champ Frankie Edgar at UFC 240.

Holloway (21-4-0) won a unanimous five-round decision.

The 27-year-old from Waianae, Oahu, kept Edgar at a distance throughout the fight, stinging him with jabs and uppercuts in the first round and bloodying his nose in the second.

Holloway resisted all but one attempt by Edgar (22-7-1) to take him down, and said he was proud to be able to go the distance.

“Everybody said I wouldn’t be able to stay with this pace. I wanted to be able to stay for five rounds,” Holloway said.

Holloway successfully defended his title for a third time and earned his 14th straight victory in the featherweight division — he hasn’t lost in the category since a unanimous decision defeat to Conor McGregor in 2013. He was coming off a lightweight division loss to Dustin Poirier in April.

It was one of two headline fights Saturday.

In co-main event, Brazilian MMA legend Cris Cyborg pummeled Montreal’s Felicia Spencer with punches, leg kicks and knee shots to win a unanimous decision.

Cyborg (21-2, 1 NC), with blood spilling down her face from taking an elbow in the first round, pounded Spencer and deflected multiple attacks to put her in a clinch or take her down in the women’s featherweight fight.

Spencer (7-1) had the crowd cheering as she withstood the assault and launched a few counterstrikes, her white shirt stained red with Cyborg’s blood.

“I trained really hard. Thanks to Felicia for giving me my first cut. I’m happy. I just want to come back and do my job. Thank you, God. I feel very blessed to be here,” Cyborg said.

The 34-year-old Cyborg is trying to rebuild her brand after coming off a loss to Amanda Nunes in a featherweight championship fight in December, Cyborg’s first defeat in 13 years.

This was the last fight on her UFC contract.

In other bouts, American welterweights Geoff Neal and Niko Price put on a back-and-forth brawl that had the crowd cheering. Neal won a TKO when he pinned Price to the canvas in the middle of the second round and pounded him until Price’s arms went limp.

Marc-Andre Barriault (11-3) lost a split decision to Poland’s Krzysztof Jotko in a middleweight bout, and Olivier Aubin-Mercier (12-5) lost a unanimous-decision to 22-year-old Arman Tsarukyan of Armenia in a lightweight fight.

Tagovailoa: Tide learned from title loss

The Associated Press

HOOVER, Ala. — It’s easier for Alabama to be humble now.

The Crimson Tide can thank Clemson for that, at least. There’s nothing like a 44-16 drubbing in the national championship game to strip away any feelings of invincibility and self-satisfaction that come from scarcely getting challenged during the regular season on the way to another Southeastern Conference title.

“I know it sounds bad, but I’m glad I had that opportunity to feel a loss like that, because what can you learn from winning?” Tide quarterback and Heisman Trophy runner-up Tua Tagovailoa said Wednesday at Southeastern Conference media days. “You can’t learn as much. But when you lose, you start appreciating things a lot more. Many lessons have been learned from that loss.”

It’s a silver lining of sorts from a painful performance that rattled Nick Saban’s dynasty and made it clear Clemson is a challenger for the label of college football’s dominant program.

The defense was abused by Trevor Lawrence and the Tigers and allowed 300-plus yards passing in each of its last three games. Tagovailoa — who spent most fourth quarters during the season as a spectator — was intercepted twice, including a pick-six on Alabama’s opening series.

It didn’t get much better from that point.

But the end result doesn’t change the expectations for a team seeking its sixth national title under Saban and a fifth SEC title in six years.

Led by Saint Louis School graduate Tagovailoa, wide receiver Jerry Jeudy and linebacker Dylan Moses, Alabama approaches this season as one of the national favorites as usual.

Plus, it’s easier to soul-search and improve after such a loss than while celebrating yet another triumph.

“Whether or not people were worried about personal outcomes more than team outcomes, it’s always hard to judge that,” Saban said. “But it seems like we had a lot of distractions at the end of the year. So hopefully we learned from those scenarios, and it will help us do the things that we need to do to be able to play to our full potential throughout this season.”

This team has a second straight year of huge staff turnover with seven new coaches, including new offensive coordinator Steve Sarkisian and newly elevated defensive coordinator Pete Golding.

The Tide also lost seven underclassmen to the NFL, including first-round picks Quinnen Williams, Jonah Williams and Josh Jacobs.

The nonconference schedule isn’t particularly daunting, with games against Duke, New Mexico State, Southern Miss and Western Carolina.

The challenge will be maintaining focus until the end. Alabama might have coasted at times down the stretch after a 29-0 rout of LSU that secured a spot in the SEC championship game with three games left. It didn’t really matter until the competition became elite, starting with Georgia, which jumped ahead by two touchdowns.

“I think it comes down to how we prepared the second half of the season as a team,” Tagovailoa said. “We were goal-oriented the second half of the season, meaning we played looking at the scoreboard. If the scoreboard was good to us, we kind of eased off and we let the second guys go in and we weren’t playing the way we were supposed to be playing.

“We’d only play for two or three quarters, and then we’d let off the gas.”

Alabama survived against Georgia and again in the national semifinals against Oklahoma. Then the engine sputtered from the get-go versus Clemson, which could match Alabama’s wealth of talent on both sides of the ball.

Moses said things like media attention, accolades and worrying about the NFL draft can be distractions.

“I do wish I could have it back,” the linebacker said. “I really wish I could have the whole month of December back in a sense, so we could look at Oklahoma and Clemson at the same time and try to prepare ourselves for it. Obviously, during the game we weren’t prepared for it and Clemson got the best of us that day. Kudos to them. From that point on, we learned from our mistakes and we’re trying to get better.”

Yamamoto, Marlins top slumping Padres

By STEVEN WINE

The Associated Press

MIAMI — Marlins rookie Jordan Yamamoto won with less than his best to stay unbeaten, while the San Diego Padres lost again to reach a new low.

The Saint Louis School graduate needed 99 pitches to get through five innings but gave up only two earned runs to help Miami win 12-7 on Tuesday.

The Padres (45-49) lost their fourth consecutive game and fell four games under .500 for the first time this season.

“Definitely not the plan,” manager Andy Green said.

Yamamoto (4-0), making his sixth career start, struggled early but got nine outs from the last eight batters he faced. His ERA rose to 1.59.

“The curveball and slider, the money makers in the first five starts, I couldn’t really get them over,” Yamamoto said. “It definitely was a little eye-opening. I had to kick myself in the butt and say, ‘Let’s go.’ ”

The lowest-scoring lineup in the majors gave Yamamoto more than enough help. Brian Anderson hit a three-run homer in the first inning, and Harold Ramirez had two doubles, two RBIs and two runs. Garrett Cooper hit his 11th homer and a two-run single, and Starlin Castro’s bases-loaded triple in the sixth made it 11-3.

“We’re not a team that is going to hit a bunch of home runs,” Anderson said. “Our guys did a really good job of getting pitches out over the plate that we can handle and barrel and drive. It seemed like we always had guys on base and were making it happen tonight.”

Padres rookie Logan Allen (2-2), pitching for the first time since July 1 because of the All-Star break, allowed seven runs in 2 1/3 innings.

“Obviously, I had some rust,” Allen said. “The command wasn’t there. I was battling from pitch one. Just terrible.”

Franmil Reyes hit his 26th homer pinch-hitting in the ninth. Manuel Margot hit his sixth homer, but the Padres’ comeback bid fell short.

“The attitude and the fight in the dugout were there,” Green said. “You dig a hole like that, it’s tough to come back from.”

Anderson’s one-out homer in the first, his 13th, gave the Marlins a quick 3-0 lead, and in the second they added four more runs. Two scored when right fielder Josh Naylor misplayed Ramirez’s fly into a two-run double, and Cooper followed with a two-run single.

“Those guys came out swinging,” Padres first baseman Eric Hosmer said.

Miami went 5-for-9 with runners in scoring position.

“I have to really thank my offense tonight,” Yamamoto said.

UH says 21-year-old linebacker has died

By CALEB JONES

The Associated Press

HONOLULU — A University of Hawaii football player has died.

Linebacker Scheyenne Sanitoa died on July 4, the school said in a statement Friday. He was 21.

Teammates were brought together Friday morning to discuss the death, and campus counselors were available for students and staff, the statement said.

“Scheyenne was a tremendous young man and we are devastated by this news,” said the school’s athletic director, David Matlin. “It’s always heartbreaking to lose a member of our UH ohana, particularly when it’s one of our young student-athletes.”

University of Hawaii spokesman Derek Inouchi said the death did not happen on campus, and Sanitoa was not involved in any athletics department activities at the time of his death. No other details were available.

According to the school, Sanitoa played in 12 games last season. He was originally from American Samoa.

Wie to take off rest of the season

JUPITER, Fla. (AP) — Michelle Wie says she’ll take a break for the rest of the year to try to get healthy.

Wie had surgery on her right hand in October and tried to return in February, completing one tournament. She sat out a month and returned to the LPGA Tour’s first major and to her hometown event in Hawaii, both times missing the cut. After withdrawing from the U.S. Women’s Open, the 29-year-old Wie played in the Women’s PGA Championship at Hazeltine National and shot rounds of 84-82.

In an Instagram post Friday, Wie says, “After doing everything I could to play this year, I have made the decision to take the rest of the year off from competitive golf.” She says that will be her best chance to “finally get healthy.”

3-for-3: Yamamoto picks up another win, helps Marlins down Phillies 6-4

By AARON BRACY

The Associated Press

PHILADELPHIA — Manager Don Mattingly likes the progress he is seeing from the rebuilding Marlins.

Phillies manager Gabe Kapler thinks he has the right pieces, too — even if that’s a tough sell right now to frustrated fans in Philadelphia.

Rookie right-hander Jordan Yamamoto won for the third time in three career starts, Garrett Cooper and Brian Anderson hit consecutive homers, and Miami beat Philadelphia 6-4 on Sunday for the Phillies’ seventh straight loss.

JT Riddle homered, doubled and drove in two for Miami, which swept three games in Philadelphia for the first time since August 2009. The Marlins outhit the Phillies 16-4.

Miami has won 7 of 11 to improve to 31-46 after opening the season by losing 15 of 19.

“We like the way we’ve been playing,” Mattingly said. “We know we’re young and still in a rebuild. You want to see improvement, and hopefully that’s the trend we’re setting that we’re going to be moving forward the rest of the year.”

Jean Segura had two RBIs for Philadelphia, which has dropped 16 of 22 to fall 6 1/2 games behind the Braves in the NL East. The Phillies led Atlanta by 3 1/2 on May 29.

Boos poured down often during the game and were robust when Roman Quinn popped out foul to the catcher for the final out.

“We have the right personnel in the room,” Kapler said. “We win as a team, we lose as a team, we don’t single anybody out. It’s not how baseball is played. … We don’t quit on anyone — ever.”

Philadelphia has been outscored 43-15 and outhit 70-45 during the skid. The Phillies were swept for the second straight series and third this season. Philadelphia is 1-8 against the NL East in the last 10 days and will host the division-rival Mets for a four-game set beginning today.

“We’re much better than we’ve played,” outfielder Jay Bruce said. “We’re a good team, a very good team. This is going to turn.”

The 23-year-old Yamamoto pitched two-hit ball over five innings, allowing two runs and four walks on 99 pitches. The Saint Louis School graduate struck out seven and kept his ERA at 0.95.

Nick Anderson gave up a run in the ninth but recorded his first career save.

Cooper extended his hitting streak to 14 games with a first-inning RBI single off Enyel De Los Santos (0-1) that gave Miami a 1-0 lead. Yamamoto walked the first three batters in the bottom of the frame but escaped with just a 2-1 deficit after Segura’s two-run single to left.

“Getting out of that inning with two (runs) was huge,” Mattingly said.

Riddle put Miami in front for good in the second with a two-run shot to right. It was the third homer in four games for Riddle, who has five on the season.

“That definitely was a great turning point,” Yamamoto said. “It really helped me as a pitcher.”

The Marlins went up 4-2 in the third on a double-play groundout before back-to-back two-out drives in the fifth by Cooper and Anderson off Edgar Garcia put Miami ahead 6-2. Cooper has seven homers and Anderson has 10 this season.

De Los Santos, making his first start this season and third in his career, gave up four runs and seven hits in four innings.

Pro Golf

WOMEN’S PGA CHAMPIONSHIP
Friday’s Second-Round Leaders
At Chaska, Minn.
Hannah Green 68-69—137 -7
Ariya Jutanugarn 70-70—140 -4
Lydia Ko 71-70—141 -3
Sung Hyun Park 70-71—141 -3
Nelly Korda 72-70—142 -2
Angel Yin 71-71—142 -2
Nuria Iturrioz 73-70—143 -1
Jimin Kang 73-70—143 -1
Lexi Thompson 72-71—143 -1
Pernilla Lindberg 72-71—143 -1
Caroline Hedwall 72-71—143 -1
Lizette Salas 72-71—143 -1
Moriya Jutanugarn 71-72—143 -1
Xiyu Lin 70-73—143 -1
Hyo Joo Kim 69-74—143 -1
Jin Young Ko 77-67—144 E
Jessica Korda 74-70—144 E
In Gee Chun 74-70—144 E
Jennifer Song 74-70—144 E
Pajaree Anannarukarn 74-70—144 E
Brittany Lang 73-71—144 E
Caroline Masson 72-72—144 E
Pornanong Phatlum 72-72—144 E
Amy Yang 70-74—144 E
In-Kyung Kim 70-74—144 E
Missed cut
Michelle Wie 84-82—166 +22

Tearful Wie after shooting 84: ‘I’m not entirely sure how much I have left in me’

By DOUG FERGUSON

The Associated Press

CHASKA, Minn. — Michelle Wie returned to competition Thursday in the KPMG Women’s PGA Championship looking as if she had never left.

She was icing her right hand. She shot a 12-over 84.

And then she wondered, through tears, how much time she had left.

“It’s hard,” the Honolulu native said after matching her highest score on the LPGA Tour as a pro. “It’s just one of those situations where I’m not entirely sure how much I have left in me. So even on the bad days, I’m just like trying to take time to enjoy it.”

At this point, her voice was cracking and she began wiping tears from her eyes as she stood outside the clubhouse at Hazeltine National.

“It’s tough,” she said, before walking away.

Wie has lived with fame her entire career, from winning the U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links at age 13, competing against the men on the PGA Tour at age 14 and turning pro at age 16. She has five LPGA victories, most notably the U.S. Women’s Open at Pinehurst No. 2 in 2014, most recently the HSBC Women’s World Championship at the start of the 2018 season.

The most recent injury was to her right hand. She had surgery in October, returned in Thailand in February and had to withdraw from her title defense in Singapore a week later as she still coped with pain.

Wie sat out a month and returned at the LPGA’s first major and then her hometown event at Ko Olina, both times missing the cut. She withdrew from the U.S. Women’s Open three weeks ago, and didn’t start hitting balls again until last week.

Hazeltine proved to be too tough for someone whose hand is that fragile, and that was before dark clouds, cooler temperatures, wind and rain arrived as she was finishing a round to forget.

Wie had two birdies to go along with two double bogeys, six bogeys and a quadruple bogey on the par-3 eighth over the water, her penultimate hole.

“It was kind of a little foolish to think that I would shoot really well — just hitting golf balls last week — at Hazeltine,” Wie said. “It’s a tough golf course but I’m really, really happy that I played. Just feeling a lot of joy just being out there and competing again. It’s going to take time and I’ve just got to be patient, and thankfully I have all afternoon to get warm again and take care of my wrist.”

Wie also shot an 84 in the third round of the Evian Masters in 2007. Her highest score on any tour was an 85 at the CJ Nine Bridges Classic in 2004 when she was 14.

She played with Lydia Ko, who saw a good attitude to go along with a big struggle.

“Clearly, she loves the game and she’s passionate about it and she’s not out there just because she’s a golfer. She loves it,” Ko said. “She loves being out here with the girls and that’s why even though she has to go through the treatments and everything, she keeps coming out and trying. … She’s definitely got nothing to lose. She’s proven herself in all different levels. She’s a U.S. Women’s Open champion. But it shows how much she loves the game.”

Wie had said earlier in the week she talked to the LPGA Tour about taking a medical leave the rest of the year. She thought she was getting healthy enough to rehabilitate and try to play without pain.

“Every bit of my body wants to play and it sucked sitting out of the U.S. Open,” she said. “I just didn’t want to do it again and I’m here.”

Just maybe not for long.