Brady Hare hit a two-run homer and Hunter Bennett added a two-run double to lead South Caroline of Preston, Md., to a 7-2 victory over Owensboro (Ky.) Southern at the Little League World Series yesterday in South Williamsport, Pa.

Preston (1-0) had a 3-2 lead in the fourth inning when Hare sent his home run over the center field wall to make it 5-2. With runners at first and second in the fifth, Bennett hit a line drive down the left field line for a 7-2 lead.

Davonta DeShields earned the win; Cole Sturgeon, who hit four batters, took the loss for Owensboro (0-1).

Preston went up 1-0 in the first when Robbie Payne scored on a bases-loaded walk. Nick Laster tied the score with an RBI single in the second inning, and Owensboro took a 2-1 lead when Bryson Morrow scored on an infield error.

Preston went back on top when two runs scored on a fly ball by Hare that was bobbled in center field.

* TRAGEDY: A medical school student who jumped to his death in Little Rock after apparently killing his wife reportedly left a note citing problems in their marriage.

Robert Howard, 28, left a rambling note about his perceived failures, police said. The Arkansas Democrat-Gazette reported yesterday that a second note pointed to rifts in the couple's relationship.

"I'm sorry I did not respect your independence and hard work," the second note said. "I'm a man in fear of losing things."

The notes were found together in the home of Howard, a former all-American triple-jumper at the University of Arkansas who competed at the 1996 Atlanta Olympics and four years later in Sydney, and his wife, Robin L. Mitchell, 31, chief neurosurgical resident at the university's medical school.

Mitchell was found stabbed to death on Aug. 14 after Howard leaped to his death from the 10th floor of a campus dormitory.

The couple was last seen Aug. 13 at a restaurant near their home. The manager, who would not give his name, said they were with two other people and their discussion got "a little loud."

Police Detective Eric Knowles said a restaurant employee told him Howard was the one arguing and that Mitchell appeared to be embarrassed.

Howard was beginning his third year of medical school. Mitchell, who had also been a track star in her home town of Newburgh, N.Y., was a Harvard graduate who earned her medical degree at Cornell.

* COLLEGE FOOTBALL: Florida State tight end Donnie Carter will miss the upcoming season with a torn right knee ligament, Coach Bobby Bowden said. Carter, a junior, tore his anterior cruciate ligament in a scrimmage Wednesday and will have surgery within two weeks. Carter caught five passes for 99 yards and a touchdown last season.

* TENNIS: Second-seeded Vera Zvonareva fought off two match points and went on to defeat No. 3 Amy Frazier, 3-6, 7-6 (7-4), 6-1, in the semifinals of the Western and Southern Women's Open in Mason, Ohio.

Zvonareva will meet top-seeded Lindsay Davenport in today's final. Davenport advanced in a walkover when a hand injury forced fourth-seeded Marion Bartoli to withdraw four hours before their semifinal match. Davenport has won 16 consecutive matches and three straight tournaments.

* PRO BASKETBALL: The Milwaukee Bucks acquired guard Maurice Williams after the Utah Jazz did not match the offer.

Williams, a restricted free agent, signed an offer sheet with the Bucks on Aug. 6.

Milwaukee General Manager Larry Harris said the team will bring Williams to Milwaukee tomorrow to finalize his contract.

Williams, 21, spent the 2003-04 season with Utah, where he appeared in 57 games and averaged 5.0 points, 1.3 rebounds and 1.3 assists per game.

The former Alabama guard was selected by the Jazz with the 47th overall pick in the 2003 NBA draft.

* COLLEGE BASKETBALL: Maine Coach John Giannini will be named head men's coach at La Salle tomorrow , according to a source familiar with the school's coaching search.

Giannini coached Rowan to the 1996 NCAA Division III national title. Giannini, who could not be reached for comment, had a 125-111 record and coached Maine to its first two 20-win seasons.

* RUGBY: South Africa beat Australia, 23-19, in Durban, South Africa, in the deciding match of the Tri-Nations to win the Southern Hemisphere's annual championship for the first time since 1998.

The Springboks, who have now won eight of the past nine home Tri-Nations games against Australia, survived an onslaught from the Wallabies in the final 10 minutes, in which the visitor scored two tries.

Because Australia lost, New Zealand, despite relinquishing its Tri-Nations title, will not lose its No. 1 status atop the International Rugby Board's rankings.

-- From News Services