AUTO RACING—BOBBY ISAAC's 1970 Dodge overlook David Pearson's Ford early in the race and hung on to win the Greenville ( S.C.) 200. It was Isaac's first Grand National victory of the season.
BASKETBALL—NBA: As the semifinal round of the playoffs began, Baltimore Pound the going rough against New York without injured Gus Johnson. Even so, the Knicks won the first game by only 112-111 after a suspenseful second half in which the lead changed hands 24 times. The second game was a Knick runaway by 107-88. Cazzie Russell came off the New York bench in the second quarter to sink three baskets and then Dick Barnett sparked New York to a 21-5 third-period flurry. Barnett finished with 29 points 10 bring his playoff to 22.6 (he had averaged 15.5 in the regular season). Next, however, Baltimore rebounded to humiliate New York 114-88 despite the absence of both Johnson and Kevin Loughery as Earl Monroe and Fred Carter, in the backcourt, combined for 51 points. Milwaukee and Lew Alcindor (page 36) opened powerfully in the West by defeating Wilt Chamberlain's L.A. Lakers 106-85 and 91-73.
ABA: Only one playoff semifinalist was left undecided, with the Kentucky Colonels leading the Floridians at 3-2. They split four games last week, Florida winning its second 129-117 to tie the series, Kentucky coming back 118-101 in a game in which Louie Dampier set a league playoff record with 18 assists. In the New York-Virginia match-up the Nets evened the series with a 130-127 win, lost the next game 127-124 despite Rick Barry's eight three-pointers (another playoff record), and were out as the Squires won 118-114, sparked by Charlie Scott's 38 points. The Utah-Texas and Indiana- Memphis series were won in four straight by the Stars and the Pacers.
COLLEGE BASKETBALL—The MIDWEST, led by Dean Meminger of Marquette with 23 points, upset the West in the Aloha Classic 95-91. The South took third place, defeating the East 80-75.
GOLF—CHARLES COODY, happily erasing the memory of the 1969 Masters in which he lost the tournament with three bogeys on the last three holes, won the 1971 Masters with a nine-under-par 279. Jack Nicklaus, who was even with Coody entering the final round, tied for second with John Miller at seven under (page 16).
Des Sullivan, retired golf editor for the Newark (N.J.) News, took the annual Golf Writers Association of America championship at Myrtle Beach, S.C. Sullivan, a four-time winner, defeated Dan Jenkins of SPORTS ILLUSTRATED on the first hole of Sudden death. They had tied at 76.
GYMNASTICS—PATTI CORRIGAN of Springfield (Mass.) won twice in the women's national intercollegiate championships at University Park, Pa., placing first in vaulting and uneven parallel bars. All-round champion KATHY GLEASON of Buffalo State was first in the floor exercises.
HARNESS RACING—The $104,000 American-National Maturity Pace for 4-year-olds at Sportsman's Park in Chicago was won by KENTUCKY ($3.80) by a length in two minutes [3/5] second. Bruce Nickells was at the reins. Ferric Hanover was second.
Laverne Hanover ($8.20) returned to racing in the $25,000 Easter Bonnet Pace at Liberty Bell Park in Philadelphia after a winter-long lay-off, and Bill Haughton piloted him to a length victory over James Darren in 2:01[1/5], pushing the 5-year-old over the $700,000 mark in earnings.
HOCKEY—Stanley Cup play opened with a mixture of violence and surprise. The biggest surprise of all was Boston's weakness against the Montreal Canadiens, who, despite an opening 3-1 defeat, skated back to win 7-5 and 3-1. Then Bobby Orr scored three goals as the Bruins won 5-2 (page 20). An unusual display of temper by Orr in the first game was echoed in the second game of New York's series with underdog Toronto. The Rangers had come from behind to win the first, 5-4. Now, en route to an embarrassing 4-1 defeat at home, New York provided a unique example of bush behavior as Ranger Vic Hadfield seized Leaf Goalie Bernie Parent's face mask and tossed it into the stands. Both benches emptied in a melee that had begun with Hadfield and Toronto's Jim Harrison tangling. The mask was not returned, and Jacques Plante finished the game for Toronto, which followed with a 3-1 victory at home before New York tied the series 4-2. Chicago, with Bobby Hull swinging a big suck, resisted the upset fever and ousted Philadelphia in four straight games, 5-2, 6-2, 3-2 and 6-2. Minnesota surprisingly took the first game of the remaining series from St. Louis on the Blues' ice, lost the succeeding games 4-2, 3-0, then bounced back to win again 2-1.