Skier Will Brandenburg of Spokane earned the title in the combined (slalom and super-giant slalom) at the U.S. championships in Squaw Valley, Calif.

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Brandenburg earns

a U.S. championship

Will Brandenburg of Spokane earned a national title in the combined event Saturday at the U.S. Alpine Championships in Squaw Valley, Calif.

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Brandenburg, 26, had the fastest combined time from the slalom and super-giant slalom. He finished second in the slalom to seven-time U.S. champion Ted Ligety of Park City, Utah. Colby Granstrom of Lake Stevens got the bronze in slalom.

“I wanted to go for it a little bit more, and I just didn’t really have it today,” Brandenburg said of his slalom performance.

“I didn’t have that gear that would be able to win a ski race. So I got to the bottom and was happy.”


Back injury sidelines

Venus Williams

A big Sony Open match beckoned for Venus Williams on a court in Key Biscayne, Fla., where she first hoisted the championship trophy 15 years ago.

Alas, she wasn’t up to any heavy lifting. The three-time Key Biscayne champion withdrew from the event because of a lower-back injury shortly before her third-round match against fellow American Sloane Stephens.

Meanwhile, Serena Williams, Venus’ sister, heard about gridlock on Key Biscayne’s main road. She borrowed a bicycle at her hotel, rode to her third-round match and beat Ayumi Morita of Japan 6-3, 6-3.

“That’s pretty cool,” Serena said.

Horse racing

Black Onyx triumphs

in Spiral Stakes

Black Onyx took a big step toward the May 4 Kentucky Derby, winning the $550,000 Spiral Stakes at Turfway Park in Florence, Ky.

Black Onyx, a 15-1 shot trained by Kelly Breen and ridden by Joe Bravo, beat runner-up Uncaptured by 1 ½ lengths in the Grade III race for 3-year-olds.

Black Onyx ran 1-1/8 miles on the synthetic surface in 1 minute, 51.98 seconds and paid $33.40 to win.

College wrestling

Penn State takes title

Penn State won the national championship for the third year in a row and Cornell’s Kyle Dake became the first wrestler in NCAA history to win four national titles at four weights to highlight the competition in Des Moines, Iowa.

Penn State scored 123.5 points and Oklahoma State was second at 119.5.

The 165-pound Dake beat defending champion David Taylor of Penn State 5-4. Dake won titles at 141, 149 and 157 pounds in previous years.

College swimming

Georgia women win

Georgia dethroned two-time defending national champion California at the NCAA women’s swimming and diving championships in Indianapolis.

Georgia had 477 points and got its fifth national title; it also won in 1999, 2000, 2001 and 2005. Cal was second with 393 points.

College football

TD, Marshawn Lynch

California’s first spring game under new coach Sonny Dykes included a 22-yard touchdown run by ex-Golden Bears standout Marshawn Lynch of the Seahawks. Lynch, 26, wasn’t allowed to be tackled.

Under a complex scoring system, the Cal defense won 28-24.

Seattle Times news services