MOTOR SPORTS—A. J. FOYT's 191.632-mph pole position average held up as the second round of qualifying filled the Indianapolis 500 field. With Larry Cannon on the low end at 173.963 mph, the 33-car pack posted an average of 182.787 for the Memorial Day classic.
Cale Yarborough averaged 119.99 mph as he drove his Chevrolet to victory in the Mason-Dixon 500 Grand National at Delaware's Dover Downs International Speedway. David Pearson, who set a track record of 134.403 mph in qualifying, finished second in his Mercury, ahead of Richard Petty, who had to settle for third when his Dodge blew an engine with four laps remaining.
SOCCER—Philadelphia grabbed the Eastern division lead after a 1-0 win over Denver that was impressive, not for the score, but for the NASL record crowd of 24,093 at Veterans Stadium. Baltimore was idle for the week but remained only one point behind Miami after the Toros topped the New York Cosmos 2-1 and the Vancouver Whitecaps 3-2, both tie breakers. Dallas still led the Central division despite a 3-2 tie-break loss to Los Angeles and a 4-1 beating by Washington. Three of those Diplomat goals were scored by Striker Leroy Deleon, much to the delight of the 11,887 fans in RFK Stadium. Elsewhere, San Jose took a tie breaker 3-2 from St. Louis and Seattle dumped Denver 4-0.
TENNIS—ROD LAVER downed Marty Riessen 6-2, 6-2, in the finals to take the Alan King Classic and $30,000 plus a $21,000 Mercedes-Benz automobile as first prize at Las Vegas.
Australia retained the Federation Cup by defeating the United States two matches to one in Naples, Italy. Evonne Goolagong and Janet Young paired for the decisive doubles victory over Julie Heldman and Sharon Walsh, 7-5, 8-6.
WTT: Only two weeks into the season, directors of the WTT announced a change intended to shorten time of play. Matches now will have five sets, not the original six; men's and women's doubles will be on the card, and intermission will last 10 minutes instead of 15. Entering the third week, Philadelphia (7-0) was the only undefeated team in the league, with a strong hold on the Atlantic section. Player-coach Billie Jean King improved her singles record to 12-2 after taking sets 6-1 and 6-3 from Joyce Williams Hume in the Freedoms' 34-20 win over the Baltimore Banners. Rosie Casals accounted for 12 points in Detroit's 34-25 victory over Pittsburgh, which gave the Loves a slim Central section lead. Attendance was averaging 3,000 per night.
TRACK & FIELD—Strong winds hampered most performers at the Bakersfield Classic but Jamaica's DON QUARRIE caught a legal 4.451-mph gust on his way to a 20.3 clocking in the 220-yard dash, this year's fastest time, and MARY DECKER managed a brisk 2:04.6 in the 880-yard run.
MILEPOSTS—AWARDED: To DAN COUNCE of St. Louis University, the Robert R. Hermann Trophy as most valuable college soccer player of the 1973 season. Counce has signed with the NASL Boston Minutemen.
FIRED: JAMES (Babe) MCCARTHY, 50, after one season as coach of the ABA Kentucky Colonels. The team finished second in the Eastern Division and lost four straight to the New York Nets in the playoffs.
REINSTATED: LANCE RENTZEL, 30, by NFL Commissioner Pete Rozelle, who lifted the suspension of 10 months ago, permitting the wide receiver to rejoin the Los Angeles Rams.