HOCKEY

Josh McDonald scored a power-play goal from Alex Roos and Chris McCarthy with 4:05 to play in the second period to break a 1-1 tie and give the Reading Royals (32-28-4) the lead for good in a 4-1 victory against the Maine Mariners (35-31-2) in front of  1,753 at Cross Insurance Arena.

The Mariners remain three points out of a playoff position with three games remaining. Greg Chase opened the scoring for Maine from Michael McNicholas and Taylor Cammarata midway through the first period before Nick Luukko answered on a power play for the Royals just 2:02 later.

Francois Brassard stopped 36 shots for the Mariners. Jamie Phillips had 39 saves for Reading.

BASKETBALL

G LEAGUE: Maine Red Claws guard P.J. Dozier was named a third team all-league selection.

Dozier, a two-way player, started and played 46 games for Maine this season, and averaged 21.1 points, 6.6 rebounds and 6.7 assists per game. He also played in five games with the Boston Celtics as part of his two-way contract.

COLLEGE: Texas A&M hired Virginia Tech Coach Buzz Williams, luring him back to his home state to try to turn the Aggies into a basketball power.

• Guard Ja Morant will enter the NBA draft following a record-breaking season for Murray State. He’s considered a lottery pick and may be chosen as high as No. 2.

OLYMPICS

TENNIS: The men’s tennis singles final was shortened to a best-of-three-sets match as part of format changes designed to reduce the workload of players competing in multiple events.

It means all matches across the men’s and women’s singles are now best-of-three sets with tiebreakers.

SOCCER

PELE HOSPITALIZED: Pele, 78, the Brazilian soccer great, was hospitalized in Paris after feeling ill.

According to the Brazilian TV network Globo, Pele had a cold and was medicated at his hotel. He woke up still feeling ill and was taken to a hospital.

PREMIER LEAGUE: Tottenham Hotspur opened its $1.3 billion stadium in London with a 2-0 victory over Crystal Palace.

FOOTBALL

NFL: Mike McCarthy, the former Green Bay Packers coach, said he was “stunned” at the timing of his firing last December and his dismissal “couldn’t have been handled any worse.”

McCarthy told ESPN he knew it might be time to go if the Packers missed the playoffs. But he was fired with four games left after a home loss to Arizona dropped the team to 4-7-1. McCarthy said he was summoned to a meeting with the team president, Mark Murphy, and fired in a meeting with “no emotion to it.” He said he always tried to be gentle in releasing players and didn’t get the same treatment.

• Prosecutors in Texas dismissed a felony charge against defensive end Michael Bennett, now with the New England Patriots, who was accused of pushing the arm of a paraplegic security guard while trying to get onto the field after the 2017 Super Bowl in Houston. Bennett was a spectator at the game and a member of the Philadelphia Eagles when he tried to get onto the field after the Patriots’ win over the Falcons to see his brother, Martellus Bennett, a New England tight end at the time.

HORSE RACING

BLUE GRASS: Vekoma is the 9-5 morning-line favorite from the No. 2 post for the Saturday race at Keeneland in Lexington, Kentucky, that will award 170 points toward next month’s Kentucky Derby.

The George Weaver-trained chestnut colt will lead a 14-horse field in the race run over 1 1/8th mile. First place earns 100 points toward the May 4 Derby with the next three finishers awarded 40, 20 and 10 points, respectively.

TENNIS

VOLVO CAR OPEN: Fourth-seeded Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia was among three of the world’s top 20 players who lost to unseeded opponents at Charleston, South Carolina.

Sevastova, ranked 12th in the WTA, fell to American Jessica Pegula, 6-4, 6-2. Sixth-seeded Elise Mertens of Belgium, No. 17 in the world, was beaten by Kaia Kenepi of Estonia 0-6, 6-0, 7-5. And Julia Goerges, the seventh seed from Germany who’s ranked 15th worldwide, lost to American Taylor Townsend, 6-4, 7-6 (0).


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