ST. LOUIS -- Mark Mihal was having a good opening day on the links when he noticed an unusual depression on the 14th fairway at Annbriar Golf Club in southern Illinois. Remarking to his friends how awkward it would be to have to hit out of it, he went over for a closer look.
One step onto the pocked section and the 43-year-old mortgage broker plunged into a sinkhole. He landed 18 feet down with a painful thud, and his friends managed to hoist him to safety with a rope after about 20 minutes. But Friday's experience gave Mihal quite a fright, particularly after the recent death of a Florida man whose body hasn't been found since a sinkhole swallowed him and his bedroom.
Annbriar general manager Russ Nobbe described the sinkhole as "an extremely unfortunate event, an event we feel is an act of nature."
"We don't feel there is any way we could have foreseen this happening," he told a Tuesday news conference.
Mihal said it was a real downer on what had been a fine outing.
Talking tourney: ESPN is going to offer viewers a chance to hear about what really goes on in the selection committee meeting room as the unveiling of the bracket nears.
Greg Shaheen, the man who was in charge of the NCAA tournament from 2001-13, will appear on all of the cable network's outlets starting Friday with the mission of letting people know the twists and turns of the days leading up to Selection Sunday.
Cavs beat Wizards: Dion Waiters scored 20 points, Alonzo Gee added 17 and Cleveland held off a late run to beat Washington.
Cleveland played its first game since Kyrie Irving sprained his left shoulder Sunday against Toronto. The All-Star point guard, who watched the game from the bench with his left arm in a sling, could miss the next month -- and maybe the rest of this season. The Cavaliers are 5-10 without him this season.
Jackets lose: Mason Raymond scored the only goal in the shootout, and seldom-used Roberto Luongo stopped 26 shots through overtime to lead Vancouver past Columbus.
Luongo, playing in his second game in 16 days, stopped all three Blue Jackets in the shootout.
Make trade: The Columbus Blue Jackets have acquired forward Matthew Ford from the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for future considerations.
Ford will report to the Blue Jackets' American Hockey League in Springfield, Mass.
Originally selected by Chicago in the eighth round, 256th overall, of the 2004 NHL draft, Ford has 72 goals and 69 assists in 256 career AHL games with Hartford, Lake Erie, Hershey and Adirondack.
Manny starting over: Manny Ramirez said he is "starting a new beginning" after signing a short-term contract to play with the EDA Rhinos in Taiwan's professional baseball league.
The Rhinos said the 40-year-old will earn $25,000 a month to appear with the team during this year's March-November season.
Iditarod champ: A 53-year-old former champion has won the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race to become the oldest winner of Alaska's grueling test of endurance.
Mitch Seavey and 10 dogs crossed the Nome finish line to cheering crowds at 10:39 p.m. Alaska time Tuesday.
Players suing: A group of 78 former United Football League players and team staff members are suing United Football League founder and chairman William Hambrecht for millions of dollars.
The UFL in October cancelled the second half of its 2012 season because of financial problems. The 78 plaintiffs say they haven't received any of the pay agreed upon in their contracts or in signed "personal guarantees" by Hambrecht; all 78 were associated with the Omaha (Neb.) Nighthawks and Las Vegas Locomotives. The league also had teams in Norfolk, Va., and Sacramento, Calif.
Sponsorship deal: Penske Racing has reached a multi-year sponsorship deal with Quicken Loans.
Penske Racing President Tim Cindric announced the deal on Wednesday during open testing at Barber Motorsports Park.
Detroit-based Quicken Loans will also be the presenting sponsor for a doubleheader race weekend at the Chevrolet Detroit Belle Isle Grand Prix.