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Digest: Altidore scores twice, US advances with 4-0 win

United States' Paul Arriola, right, celebrates with Christian Pulisic. (John Raoux / Associated Press)
United States' Paul Arriola, right, celebrates with Christian Pulisic. (John Raoux / Associated Press)
Associated Press

Soccer: Jozy Altidore scored twice in a three-minute span of the second half, Sacha Kljestan and Paul Arriola had goals and the United States beat Trinidad and Tobago 4-0 on Tuesday night in Jacksonville, Florida, to reach the final round of qualifying for the 2018 World Cup.

The Americans finished atop Group C of the semifinal round in the North and Central American and Caribbean region and will open the hexagonal on Nov. 11 against Mexico – presumably in Columbus, Ohio, where the U.S. has won four straight qualifiers over El Tri by 2-0 scores.

Christian Pulisic made his first U.S. start after seven appearances as a substitute, and at 17 years, 353 days became the youngest American to start a qualifier. Landon Donovan had set the mark of 18 years, 184 days against Honduras in 2001.

UFC star Tate saves girl with broken arm

UFC: UFC star Miesha Tate says she’s inspired by the tough little girl who broke her arm while hiking near Las Vegas after the mixed martial arts fighter carried the child back down the mountain.

Tate posted on Facebook that she encountered the 6-year-old on the popular Mary Jane Falls trail of Mount Charleston, 40 miles northwest of Las Vegas.

Amber Ellis of Lake Havasu City in Arizona said that her daughter, Kai, broke her arm at the top of the mountain during a family hike over the Labor Day weekend.

Ellis scooped Kai up and began the hike back. Tate came across them and offered to help Ellis carry Kai down the mountain. Ellis thanked Tate in a Facebook post, calling her “a true life saver” because the mom said she couldn’t have done it alone.

Cowboy’s Elliott cleared of charges

NFL: The office of Columbus City Attorney Richard Pfeiffer said charges won’t be filed against Dallas Cowboys rookie Ezekiel Elliott following domestic violence allegations because of conflicting and inconsistent information in evidence.

A police report says Elliott, a running back who played at Ohio State, denied allegations that he assaulted his girlfriend in July, causing bruises and abrasions. Elliott says the woman got the bruises and abrasions in a bar fight.

No. 1 pick Goff inactive for Rams’ opener: Los Angeles coach Jeff Fisher told NFL Network that No. 1 overall pick Jared Goff will be inactive in the Rams’ season opener at San Francisco. Second-year pro Sean Mannion will be No. 2 quarterback behind starter Case Keenum against the 49ers.

Bills’ Williams returns: Buffalo Bills safety Aaron Williams has returned to practice after missing nearly a month recovering from a concussion and is set to start in the team’s season opener at Baltimore on Sunday.

Lynx edge Sparks, move into first place

WNBA: Sylvia Fowles had 21 points and nine rebounds, Maya Moore scored 12 of her 20 points in the fourth quarter and the Minnesota Lynx beat the host Los Angeles Sparks 77-74 for sole possession of first place in the Western Conference.

Fowles and Moore combined to score Minnesota’s first 18 points of the fourth.

McCoughtry leads Dream: Angel McCoughtry had 27 points and eight rebounds, Tiffany Hayes scored five points in the final 30 seconds and the host Atlanta Dream beat the Phoenix Mercury 91-87.

Bria Holmes added 18 points and Hayes finished with 14 points for Atlanta (15-14).

Tampa Bay fires hitting coach Shelton

MLB: Tampa Bay has fired hitting coach Derek Shelton and replaced him with Chad Mottola, the organization’s minor league hitting coordinator. The team announced the moves before Tuesday night’s game against Baltimore.

Mottola will join the Rays for a four-game series against New York at Yankee Stadium that starts Thursday night.

Swanson hits first MLB homer inside the park: Dansby Swanson’s first major league home run stayed in the ballpark. Swanson circled the bases with an inside-the-park home run in the second inning of the Atlanta Braves’ game at Washington.

Swanson lined a pitch from Gio Gonzalez over Trea Turner and high off the center-field fence, 399 feet away. The ball caromed toward the infield, and Swanson slid home headfirst, easily beating the throw by right fielder Bryce Harper.

In other MLB news:

Tigers righty Jordan Zimmermann (neck) was activated from the DL and is scheduled to start Saturday against the Orioles. … The White Sox activated right-hander Miguel Gonzalez (strained right groin) from the DL. … The Mets called up right-hander Rafael Montero from Triple-A Las Vegas to start against the Reds in the second game of their series. … The Marlins reinstated slugger Giancarlo Stanton (strained groin) from the DL. White Sox righty James Shields vowed to stay in the rotation despite back pain and asked for patience from fans amid the worst season of his career. … The Reds promoted utility player Tony Renda and right-handed reliever Josh Smith from Triple-A Louisville.

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