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Congressman supports real grass at World Cup

Oregon congressman supports players protesting artificial turf at the 2015 World Cup
Anne M. Peterson, The Associated Press

PORTLAND, Ore. - An Oregon congressman is throwing his support behind players who are protesting the plan to use artificial turf at the Women's World Cup next summer in Canada.

Rep. Earl Blumenauer has written his colleagues to join the effort. He will gather their signatures for a letter he plans to send early next week to Jeffrey Webb, president of the North, Central America and Caribbean soccer federation and vice-president of FIFA, soccer's international governing body.

Thursday's Scoreboard

Thursday's Scoreboard
The Canadian Press

Thursday's Games

(All Times Eastern)

MLB

American

Texas 7 Oakland 2

N.Y. Yankees 3 Toronto 2

Cleveland 2 Houston 1 (13 innings)

Seattle 3 L.A. Angels 1

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National

Washington 6 Miami 2

L.A. Dodgers 8 Chicago Cubs 4

St. Louis 3 Milwaukee 2 (13 innings)

Colorado 7 Arizona 6

San Diego 7 Philadelphia 3

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Interleague

Pittsburgh 3 Boston 2

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NFL

Atlanta 56 Tampa Bay 14

Falcons romp to 56-14 win over hapless Buccaneers

Ryan, Jones, Hester lead Falcons to 56-14 rout of Bucs, 1 of biggest wins in franchise history
Paul Newberry, The Associated Press

ATLANTA - Devin Hester high-stepped into the NFL record book. Matt Ryan had as many touchdown passes as incompletions. Julio Jones made a spectacular over-the-shoulder catch tumbling into the end zone.

The result: One of the biggest wins in Atlanta Falcons history.

Jeter homers as Yankees beat Blue Jays 3-2

The final homestand: Jeter's 1st Yankee Stadium homer in 14 months helps beat Blue Jays 3-2
Ronald Blum, The Associated Press

NEW YORK, N.Y. - Derek Jeter turned on R.A. Dickey's fastball, sent it deep into the left-field seats and circled the bases at Yankee Stadium for the first time in 14 months.

With his usual flair, Jeter began his final homestand in dramatic fashion.

Goals, goaltending talk of Flames camp

Scoring goals, stopping pucks the talk of Calgary Flames training camp
Donna Spencer, The Canadian Press

CALGARY - Goaltending and goalscoring are the burning issues at the Calgary Flames training camp.

Jonas Hiller signed a two-year, US$9-million deal with Calgary in the summer after the 32-year-old Swiss netminder dropped down the Anaheim Ducks goaltending depth chart at the end of his seventh season there.

Hiller brings a winning NHL record, plus playoff and Olympic Games experience to Calgary's net.

Devin Hester sets NFL record with 20th TD return

Falcons' Devin Hester sets NFL record with 20th TD return, had shared mark with Deion Sanders
The Associated Press

ATLANTA - Devin Hester has set an NFL record with his 20th return for a touchdown, breaking the mark he shared with Deion Sanders.

Hester returned a punt 56 yards for a touchdown midway through the second quarter to give the Atlanta Falcons a stunning 35-0 lead over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers on Thursday night.

Galchenyuk ready to try move to centre

Habs Galchenyuk just wants to be more productive, at centre or on the wing
Bill Beacon, The Canadian Press

BROSSARD, Que. - Alex Galchenyuk feels it is time to step up and become a dominant player, whether it is at centre or on left wing.

The 20-year-old will be tried out at centre during the Montreal Canadiens pre-season after spending most of his first two NHL seasons on the wing.

Showdown of veteran quarterbacks as Lions host Argos

Veteran QBs Glenn and Ray set to face each other as Lions host Argos
Monte Stewart, The Canadian Press

VANCOUVER - They are two of the oldest quarterbacks in the CFL — and the healthiest.

Unlike most of their CFL peers this season, Kevin Glenn, 35, of the B.C. Lions and Ricky Ray, 34, of the Toronto Argonauts have escaped serious injury. They will continue their survival missions Friday when the Lions host the Argonauts at B.C. Place Stadium.

Canucks have clean slate, few expectations

Coming off disastrous season, Canucks have clean slate, lowered expectations
Joshua Clipperton, The Canadian Press

VANCOUVER - The Vancouver Canucks are in an unfamiliar position.

Perennially a pre-season pick to go deep in the playoffs, this incarnation enters training camp with significantly lower-than-usual expectations from fans and media — and with good reason.

The Canucks fell flat last season, squandering a decent start with a swoon that saw them fail to make the playoffs for the first time since 2008.

Ryan Kesler begins Cup chase with Anaheim Ducks

Eyes on a prize: Ryan Kesler begins Cup chase with Anaheim Ducks after summer trade
Greg Beacham, The Associated Press

ANAHEIM, Calif. - Ryan Kesler and his family are slowly getting used to the ocean view at their new home, and the Anaheim Ducks' new centre still has to remind himself he can go to the rink in flip-flops.

Oh, the sacrifices necessary to contend for a Stanley Cup.

Kesler formally got to work Thursday with the Ducks, who acquired the vaunted centre from Vancouver on draft day. After spending his entire 11-year NHL career with the Canucks, he's meeting new teammates and familiarizing himself with Anaheim's coaching staff while his kids start at a new school.

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