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PRO BASKETBALL—On Wednesday Indiana suffered its seventh defeat in eight games, blowing a 67-57 lead over Cleveland to lose 102-92 and prompt a soul-searching, players-only meeting on Thursday. "Everybody voiced opinions on how or if we can salvage anything this season," reported Pacer co-captain Jerry Sichting. On Friday, Indiana got 31 points from Herb Williams to upset the Pacific Division-leading Lakers 122-113 and halt an L.A. winning streak at nine. Denver, No. 1 in the Midwest Division, won its fifth in a row, 132-129 over Atlantic Division leader Boston (page 34), before losing to Seattle (133-123) and beating Phoenix (117-107). Milwaukee also ran up a five-game streak, by edging Detroit 113-112 to lead the Pistons by 654 games in the Central Division, but the Bucks were then beaten 128-106 by the Cavaliers, who were playing without World B. Free (out with a lower-back sprain) and Lonnie Shelton, who was attending his mother's funeral in California.
BOATING—SMILES, a 41-foot production sloop skippered by CHARLIE SCOTT of Annapolis, Md., placed fourth in class and 11th in fleet in the Nassau Cup race in the Bahamas to retain first place overall and win the six-race Southern Ocean Racing Conference series. Glory, a 39-footer, was second, 16� points behind.
BOWLING—TED HANNAHS defeated Bob Handley 215-190 to win a $150,000 PBA tournament in Peoria, Ill.
Sot Chitalada retained his WBC flyweight title by stopping Charlie Magri in the fourth round, in London.
PRO FOOTBALL—USFL: In the league's season opener, Tampa Bay routed Orlando 35-7 on the strength of four touchdown runs, of three, 68, six and one yards, by Gary Anderson. Jim Kelly threw for 574 yards in Houston's 34-33 triumph over Los Angeles (page 14), while Bobby Hebert threw for four TDs to lead Oakland past Denver 31-10. In Doug Flutie's debut, New Jersey lost to Birmingham 38-28, as Flutie ended up with 12 completions on 27 attempts for 189 yards and three interceptions. Luis Zendejas kicked three field goals to lift Arizona over Portland 9-7, while Brian Franco booted five in Jacksonville's 22-14 defeat of Baltimore.
COLLEGE HOCKEY—WCHA champion Minnesota-Duluth ended the regular season with a 7-6 and 5-3 sweep of Northern Michigan as Bulldogs forward Bill Watson clinched the conference scoring crown with a total of 37 goals and 43 assists. RPI clinched first place in the ECAC by beating Dartmouth 11-1 and Harvard 4-1. The wins were the Engineers' 22nd and 23rd in a row. CCHA champ Michigan State split with Lake Superior State, losing 4-2 and winning by the same score, while Boston College, the Hockey East winner, split games with Maine, winning 3-2 and losing 4-3.
PRO HOCKEY—After Winnipeg's 6-2 loss to Hartford, Jets general manager John Ferguson, in violation of an NHL rule that stipulates a locker room must be open not later than 10 minutes after a game, kept the dressing-room doors closed for 40 minutes while he met with his players and coaches. Ferguson may well be fined $500, but two nights later Winnipeg defeated the Islanders 3-2. "Five hundred of the best-spent dollars you've ever seen," declared Ferguson. Winnipeg then lost 6-4 to Montreal, which took over the Adams Division lead as Buffalo, which had held the top spot, lost to Norris Division leader St. Louis (4-1) and Los Angeles (4-2). Philadelphia won its sixth and seventh games in a row, 4-1 over both Toronto and Calgary, but Washington still led in the Patrick Division by two points after defeating Vancouver 6-2—Mike Gartner had a hat trick in that win—and tying Smythe Division leader Edmonton 3-3.