Sports Shorts

Hoops State Cup tourney gets underway tonight

The first round of basketball's State Cup tournament commences tonight, with half the games starting at 7 P.M. and the remainder at 7:30 P.M. The early contests include: Kiryat Ata vs. Gilboa/Galil, Nes Tziona vs. Bnei Herzliya, Ironi Ramat Gan vs. Ironi Nahariya and Maccabi Be'er Yaakov vs. Maccabi Kiryat Bialik. The late slate of games include Maccabi Kiryat Gat vs. Hapoel Tel Aviv, Hod Hasharon vs. Hapoel Jerusalem, Elitzur Yavne vs. Maccabi Ashdod, Hapoel Galil Elyon vs. Barak Netanya and Hapoel Kfar Sava vs. Elitzur Ramle. (Arie Livnat )

Reds' Bailey can follow no-hitter with playoff clincher

Homer Bailey's breakthrough season culminated in the 15th no-hitter in Cincinnati Reds history. He can follow that big moment with another in the National League playoffs. Bailey can finish a division-series sweep of the San Francisco Giants today at Great American Ball Park. It will be the Texan's first game in his home ballpark since he no-hit the Pirates in Pittsburgh on Sept. 28. When he takes the mound, he'll make history. San Francisco's Matt Cain threw a perfect game during the regular season. It will be the first time pitchers with no-hitters during the same season faced each other's teams during a playoff series, according to STATS LLC. There's a lot at stake in Cincinnati. The Reds, one of baseball's oldest franchises, haven't won a home playoff game in 17 years. (AP )

NY Giants' Hill banned four games for drug violation

New York Giants rookie safety Will Hill has been suspended for four games without pay after violating the National Football League's policy on performance-enhancing substances. The suspension begins immediately, the NFL said in a statement yesterday. Hill, 22, was suspended for using Adderall, the same medication used by fellow Giants safety Tyler Sash, who returned to the roster yesterday after being banned for the first four games this season. "I received a doctor's prescription for Adderall prior to signing with the Giants," Hill said in a statement released by the team. Adderall is a central-nervous-system stimulant used to treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder and narcolepsy. (AP )

Serena up to third as Azarenka stays atop women's top 10

Belarus' Victoria Azarenka remains atop the women's tennis rankings, while Serena Williams of the United States has moved up a place to third. China's Li Na also improved one position to seventh in the rankings issued yesterday by the WTA. Azarenka has improved slightly to 10,955 points, while second-place Maria Sharapova is up to 9,135 points. (DPA )