BASKETBALL—ABA: Kentucky moved past Virginia to grab the East Division lead and Utah replaced Indiana in first place in the West. The Colonels won three straight behind rookie Center Artis Gilmore, the league's leading rebounder, and Forward Dan Issel, the leading scorer. Gilmore had 31 points and a team record 30 rebounds in a 117-112 win over Virginia; Issel scored 31 points as Kentucky topped Florida 114-102, and he came back with 38 points and 24 rebounds. Gilmore added 32 points and 24 rebounds as the Colonels blasted Carolina 120-107 to open up a two-game lead. Zelmo Beaty made two free throws with seven seconds left to give Utah a 113-111 victory over Indiana. The Stars widened their lead to 2� games by beating Dallas 103-99 while the Pacers lost to Pittsburgh 124-123, running their losing streak to three. The West was still tightly bunched, however, with last-place Dallas and Denver trailing Utah by just four games.
NBA: Baltimore extended its winning streak to four since acquiring Forward Dave (the Rave) Stallworth from New York and took the Central Division lead from Cincinnati. Stallworth had 19 points in a 110-107 win over Houston, 23 as Baltimore clubbed Cincinnati 113-103 and 18 more as the Bullets walloped Buffalo 126-105. Then Baltimore met New York, and Stallworth managed only two points in 33 minutes of play; the Knicks won 125-114. Guards Jerry West and Gail Goodrich combined to average 53 points a game as West leader Los Angeles ran its victory streak to 10, beating Boston 128-115, Cleveland 108-90 and Houston 106-99. Cazzie Russell and Jeff Mullins led runner-up Golden State to three victories, including a 107-100 win over Milwaukee that ended the Buck streak at 10. Second-place Chicago gained half a game on Milwaukee with three wins but trailed the Bucks by four. Boston lost three of four, yet increased its Atlantic lead to 1� games over Philadelphia, which dropped three.
BOWLING—DON JOHNSON of Akron, Ohio moved into a second-place tie with Billy Hardwick for career victories on the PBA tour when he won his 16th tournament—Detroit's $50,000 Ballows-Valvair Open by 264 pins over Dave Davis. Dick Weber leads in career wins with 22.
BOXING—MUHAMMAD ALI, the top-ranked heavyweight contender, won a unanimous 12-round decision over Buster Mathis in Houston (page 28).
CROSS-COUNTRY—BOB WHEELER of Duke won the IC4A title by 15 yards over Dave Wright of Villanova with a time of 24:27 for five miles at Van Cortlandt Park in New York City. VILLANOVA took the team title 45-54 over Pennsylvania.
FOOTBALL—NFC: LOS ANGELES beat San Francisco 17-6 to climb past the 49ers into first place in the West (page 30). In another showdown, DALLAS took over first in the East from Washington, shutting out the Redskins 13-0 on Roger Staubach's 29-yard touchdown run and Mike Clark's two field goals. MINNESOTA increased its Central Division lead to 1� games by walloping New Orleans 23-10, while in the battle for second place, DETROIT pounded Chicago 28-3 as the Lions caught Bobby Douglass eight times for losses of 62 yards and intercepted four of his passes. St. Louis replaced PHILADELPHIA in the East cellar when the Eagles defeated the Cardinals 37-20. It was the second loss for the Cards in six days; SAN DIEGO beat them 20-17 in the Monday night TV game.
AFC: MIAMI edged Baltimore 17-14 on Garo Yepremian's 20-yard field goal late in the final quarter to take a 1�-game lead in the East. CLEVELAND and PITTSBURGH remained tied for first place in the Central Division as the Browns whacked New England 27-7 and the Steelers beat the New York Giants 17-13. Bill Nelsen led Cleveland to its first win in five games with two touchdown passes, one to Leroy Kelly, who gained 113 yards in 23 carries and scored another TD on a run. OAKLAND held its half-game lead over KANSAS CITY in the West when the Raiders came from behind to beat San Diego 34-33 on Daryle Lamonica's three touchdown passes, the last with 6:49 remaining, while the Chiefs defeated Denver 28-10 on Len Dawson's three touchdown passes, including a 69-yarder to rookie Elmo Wright. Rookie Fred Willis made his first start for CINCINNATI and scored two-touchdowns as the Bengals beat Houston 28-13. Bob Davis threw two touchdown passes to lead the NEW YORK Jets to a 20-7 victory over winless Buffalo, which suffered its 10th loss.
HOCKEY—The six original NHL teams played six of the eight expansion teams 11 straight times without suffering a loss. Finally, it remained for the only expansion team with a winning record, Minnesota, to defend the newcomers' honor against the hottest established team, New York, which had been undefeated in 14 games. The North Stars promptly scored a triple victory: they beat the Rangers 4-1, cost New York its season-long lead in the East Division and moved into a tie with Chicago for the West Division lead. Montreal tied Philadelphia 2-2 on Pete Mahovlich's third-period goal to move a point ahead of New York. It was the Canadiens' third 2-2 tie in four games; each time they trailed 2-1 going into the last period. Marc Tardif scored both key goals in the first two ties—with 1:53 to go against Buffalo and with less than two minutes remaining against St. Louis. Third-place Boston extended its win streak to four by beating Los Angeles 11-2, Vancouver 5-0 and Chicago 2-1, and trailed Montreal by only four points.
HORSE RACING—INKSLINGER, ridden by Tommy Carberry, won the $100,000 Colonial Cup in Camden, S.C. by a neck over Soothsayer (page 22).
Hitchcock ($6.40), ridden by Ron Turcotte, beat Chompion by 1� lengths to win his second consecutive $57,800 Gallant Fox Handicap over 1? miles at Aqueduct.