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Thursday, January 2, 2003

Free hockey
BOARDMAN -- The Youngstown Borderhawks are offering free ice hockey tonight and Friday at the Ice Zone for children ages 4-14. Time are 6-8 tonight and 4-6 p.m. Friday.
No experience is necessary and equipment will be provided by the Borderhawks. Phantom Rockets Junior A players and members of the Ursuline/Mooney high school team will provide instruction in fundamentals.
For more information, call (330) 726-8215.
Eagles' McNabb hopes to return
PHILADELPHIA -- Donovan McNabb won't have to watch practices much longer.
The star quarterback will get a chance to show the Philadelphia Eagles he's ready to return from an ankle injury that forced him to miss the last six games.
No. 25 Texas Techhandles Houston
LUBBOCK, Texas -- Three times in as many games, Texas Tech has built a lead only to see it evaporate in the closing minutes.
"We're not happy with the leads we lost in the last couple of games, but it's just something we have to overcome. But the bottom line is we are 9-1," assistant coach Pat Knight said Wednesday after the No. 25 Red Raiders beat Houston 62-48. "We're happy with that."
Up by as many as 28 points early in the second half, the Red Raiders let that margin dwindle to 12 as the Cougars (2-7) went on an 18-4 run down the stretch but got no closer.
Against Minnesota on Saturday, Tech was up by 10 points with 2:15 to play in regulation before winning 99-89 in overtime.
Against New Mexico State on Dec. 21, the Red Raiders led by 19 points with 11:33 left. The Aggies came back and had a chance to tie it with 2.5 seconds left, but Texas Tech held on to win 85-84.
Kasib Powell, who had 21 points Wednesday in the only game involving a ranked team, realizes the Red Raiders, off to a 9-1 start for the second straight season under Bob Knight, need to work on maintaining leads.
Tech, which moved into the rankings this week for the first time this season, never trailed against Houston, which finished 17-of-61 from the field.
Senators fail to sell
OTTAWA -- The Ottawa Senators failed to pay their players after a refinancing deal fell through.
The deal involved the sale of the team by majority owner Rod Bryden to a limited partnership for $118.7 million, and would have provided cash and a better lease with the Corel Centre.
The Ottawa Citizen reported that players received empty pay envelopes and a letter from Bryden when they arrived at practice. Under the collective bargaining agreement, teams have a one-time, 10-day grace period to meet the payroll, but the players were told they would be paid well inside that window.
Flyers sign Kallio
PHILADELPHIA -- The Philadelphia Flyers acquired right wing Tomi Kallio off waivers from the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Tennis roundup
DOHA, Qatar -- French Open champion Albert Costa lost to Swedish qualifier Andreas Vinciguerra 3-6, 7-6 (5), 7-5 in the Qatar Open second round.
Top-seeded Roger Federer of Switzerland made it to the final eight, beating compatriot Michel Kratochvil. Ninth-seeded Jan-Michael Gambill defeated David Ferrer of Spain in a rain-delayed match.
Others to make it to the quarters were third-seeded Younes El Aynaoui of Morocco, sixth-seeded Mikhail Youzhny of Russia, eighth-seeded Fabrice Santoro of France, Fernando Vicente of Spain and Stefan Koubek of Austria.
MADRAS, India -- Second-seeded Paradorn Srichaphan reached the Tata Open quarterfinals by beating John van Lottum 6-2, 6-4.
In other action, fourth-seeded Juan Ignacio Chela was leading 3-6, 6-3, 2-0 when Zelkjo Krajan quit with a hip strain; Sargis Sargsian upset eighth-seeded Albert Montanes; and German qualifier Tomas Behrend rallied past Albert Portas.
USOC executiveapologizes
LOS ANGELES -- U.S. Olympic chief executive Lloyd Ward apologized for allegedly helping his brother's company try to land a deal with the 2003 Pan American Games but maintained he did "nothing wrong."
Staff/wire reports