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ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Carlos Beltran homered, Adam Wainwright earned his 18th win and the St. Louis Cardinals beat Washington 4-3 on Monday night, eliminating the Nationals from playoff contention.

Looking for their first NL Central title since 2009, the Cardinals maintained a two-game lead over Cincinnati and Pittsburgh and reduced their magic number to four.

All three teams are headed to the postseason. The Reds and Pirates both won Monday night, clinching at least a wild-card berth when Washington lost.

St. Louis secured no worse than a wild card on Sunday.

All three NL Central contenders have five games left.

The Nationals won the NL East last season with 98 wins but were eliminated by St. Louis in the division series. One year later, they were knocked out by the Cardinals again.

Beltran's two-run homer in the fifth off rookie Tanner Roark broke a 2-all tie. It was Beltran's team-leading 24th of the season and first in 91 at-bats since Aug. 24.

Wainwright (18-9) gave up three runs and seven hits over seven-plus innings. He struck out five, giving him a career-high 214 on the season.

Jayson Werth hit a two-run homer on the 15th pitch of the game. Wainwright then retired nine in a row and allowed just one run on five hits the rest of the way. He moved into second in the NL in wins behind Washington right-hander Jordan Zimmermann, who has 19.

Wainwright gave up two singles to begin the eighth. Trevor Rosenthal got two outs for his first career save.

Roark (7-1) gave up four runs and five hits in five innings for his first loss in four starts. He went 45 2-3 innings before allowing his first home run.

Washington closed to 4-3 in the eighth on singles by Anthony Rendon and Steve Lombardozzi and a groundout from Ryan Zimmerman. St. Louis reliever Carlos Martinez got Werth to ground out with a runner in scoring position to end the threat.

The Cardinals climbed within 2-1 on a run-scoring single by Yadier Molina in the first. They tied it on successive singles from David Freese, Daniel Descalso and Shane Robinson in the fourth.

Robinson replaced Matt Holliday in the lineup. Holliday was a game-time scratch for the second night in a row due to back spasms. He is day to day.

NOTES: Cardinals broadcaster Mike Shannon, 74, returned to the booth four weeks after undergoing surgery to replace an aortic valve in his heart. Shannon, who played on the Cardinals' 1964 and 1967 World Series championship teams, made his announcing debut in 1972. He received a standing ovation when his picture was flashed on the video screen during the second inning. ... The Cardinals have 92 wins, their most since winning 100 games in 2005. ... Cardinals 1B Allen Craig will be re-evaluated Thursday. Craig has missed the last 18 games with a left foot sprain sustained Sept. 4. ... The Nationals have a 24-8 advantage in homers over their last 17 games. ... St. Louis rookie Michael Wacha (3-1, 3.21 ERA) will face LHP Gio Gonzalez (11-7, 3.39) in the second game of the three-game set on Tuesday.

Monday, 23 September 2013 23:10
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MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Norichika Aoki scored three times and doubled home a run, and the Milwaukee Brewers beat sloppy St. Louis 6-4 on Sunday night, hours after the Cardinals clinched a playoff berth.

Wily Peralta (11-15) gave up five hits and walked five in five-plus innings for the Brewers. The Cardinals put the go-ahead run at the plate with two outs in the ninth, but closer Jim Henderson got slugger Matt Adams to strike out to end the game and earn his 26th save.

St. Louis learned earlier Sunday it was assured of at least an NL wild card after Washington lost its doubleheader opener against Miami.

The Cardinals chased Peralta after loading the bases in the sixth with nobody out. Reliever Donovan Hand allowed two runs to score on consecutive sacrifice flies to cut the Brewers' lead to 4-3, but he hot out of the jam by getting Matt Carpenter to strike out on a curve with the tying run at third.

Cardinals catcher Yadier Molina misplayed a throw to the plate for another error in a two-run seventh that gave Milwaukee back its three-run cushion. St. Louis also committed two errors in the Brewers' two-run second.

Hand struck out three in his two innings of work to settle down the Brewers. The Cardinals threatened again in the ninth with two outs. Carlos Beltran had an RBI single, and the Cardinals sent the potential go-ahead run to the plate but closer Jim Henderson got slugger Matt Adams to strike out to end the game and earn his 26th save.

St. Louis remains two games up in the NL Central, but now has two teams to fend off in second after the Reds defeated Pittsburgh 11-3 to pull into a tie with the Pirates.

Playing their final home game of 2013, the Brewers closed Miller Park on a high note in a season marked by injuries and the doping suspension of slugger Ryan Braun.

The Cardinals didn't look sharp on the field. Errors by third baseman David Freese and starter Joe Kelly (9-5) helped contribute to the two Milwaukee runs in the second.

St. Louis began the day with an NL-low 71 errors.

Kelly also hesitated on what could have been an inning-ending double play in the first after getting Carlos Gomez to bounce sharply back to the mound with runners on first and third. But Kelly glanced just a split second long enough at Jonathan Lucroy leading off third. The Cardinals got the runner at second but couldn't get the relay to first and Lucroy scored easily for a 2-0 lead.

Leadoff hitter Aoki contributed to rallies in both the first and second. He's tortured Cardinals pitching all season, hitting .406 against them entering the day.

Aoki led off the first with a single and came home on an RBI single by Aramis Ramirez with one out. Aoki then reached on an RBI double in the second before scoring after Kelly threw away a sacrifice bunt attempt by Scooter Gennett.

Aoki also walked twice to reach base in each of his four plate appearances.

Kelly went seven innings, allowing seven hits and six runs - three of them unearned.

NOTES: LF Matt Holliday was scratched from the starting lineup with back spasms. ... St. Louis has a major league-leading 34 wins from rookie pitchers this season, their most since also getting 34 in 1952. ... Manager Ron Roenicke thinks SS Jean Segura will be available for pinch-hitting duties for the Brewers' three-game set starting Monday in Atlanta. Segura, the NL leader in steals with 44, has been sidelined since Wednesday with a strained right hamstring ... LF Khris Davis was out of the lineup Sunday due to a nagging wrist injury, but is also likely to return to action in Atlanta.

Sunday, 22 September 2013 22:29
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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- San Francisco linebacker Aldon Smith will miss Thursday night's game at St. Louis and perhaps sit out longer, 49ers CEO Jed York said Sunday.

Smith will seek treatment following his arrest Friday for suspicion of driving under the influence and marijuana possession. After Sunday's loss to the Colts, Smith apologized and acknowledged he will get help, but didn't field questions.

"First off, I wanted to apologize to the team, the organization, my family and everybody I let down," he said. "I also wanted to let it be known that this is a problem and it's something that I will get fixed, and that I'll do everything in my power to make sure that this never happens again.

"I also wanted to let everybody know that once again I'm sorry."

Smith started for San Francisco and had five tackles in a 27-7 loss, two days after he was arrested and jailed early Friday morning following an accident in which his truck hit a tree. York defended the organization's decision to play Smith.

"Our opinion is if you're sitting someone down and paying them to sit down when they're going to seek treatment in the future, we didn't feel like that was an appropriate punishment," he said. "We're not trying to circumvent what the NFL will do. This is about making sure that Aldon has the opportunity to work on something, to get better, and he knows that he has our support and hopefully he has everybody's support in something that is going to be very difficult."

York expects Smith to get help, but the 49ers won't interfere.

"I think Aldon is going to take steps on his own," York said. "We're not worried about that."

Smith is a key pass rusher and sacks leader for the 49ers, and coach Jim Harbaugh had said leading up to Sunday that the NFL would decide how to punish the third-year pro, who turns 24 Wednesday. He had a franchise-record 19 1/2 sacks last season, second in the NFL.

When asked about Smith getting help, Harbaugh said "there's a process there we'll apprise you of at the appropriate time."

"It will be indefinite," York said. "There's no timetable."

York said Harbaugh and general manager Trent Baalke handled the situation and communicated with him.

"I think this was the best thing for Aldon," York said. "Again, there's no right answer here. We're very fortunate that nobody got hurt, Aldon included and anybody else. And we want to make sure that Aldon is never in a position like this again."

The league is likely to suspend Smith, but whether that is later this season or next year is unclear. 49ers defensive lineman Demarcus Dobbs was suspended for Week 1 without pay for a violation of the NFL's substance abuse policy that happened last season. Dobbs was arrested last Nov. 30 - his 25th birthday - for suspicion of driving under the influence and possession of marijuana.

Smith has had a rash of run-ins with the law that raised questions about his character.

"It was disappointing, but we support him, and knowing that what he wants to do is not a one-day fix, it's a long-term fix for Aldon," York said. "Aldon is willing to fight for himself and try to make this right, and I will see it through, and I will support him. I will take any shots that anybody wants to direct at the organization. They can direct at me, and I will support Aldon as long as he is willing to work at this and fight to get better."

Earlier this month, a lawsuit was filed in Santa Clara County Superior Court naming Smith by a Northern California man who said he was shot at a party at Smith's house on June 29, 2012.

The players charged a $10 admission and $5 per drink, the lawsuit said. Smith and former 49ers tight end Delanie Walker, 29 were allegedly intoxicated on Smith's balcony when they later fired gunshots in the air while trying to end the party, the lawsuit said.

Before the 2012 home opener last September, Smith was the passenger in a car accident in Santa Clara County in which the driver swerved to avoid hitting a deer. Smith sustained a cut beneath his right eyebrow. He apologized and insisted he had grown up.

The 49ers selected Smith seventh overall in the first round of the 2011 draft out of Missouri. He became an instant impact player like many of the others chosen by Baalke in the past three drafts.

"This was not an easy weekend for us," York said. "Again, I'll support our players as long as they're willing to work toward getting better and being better teammates, better members of the community I believe that Aldon wants to do that, and I will support him and I will stand by him as long as that's what he's willing to do."

Sunday, 22 September 2013 22:27
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ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) — Sam Bradford and the St. Louis Rams faltered under pressure.

And they still can't stop Bradford's college teammate DeMarco Murray.

Bradford was sacked six times, after none the previous four games going back to last season, and Murray ran for 175 yards with a touchdown on 26 carries and the Dallas Cowboys beat the Rams 31-7 on Sunday.

"We didn't do really, do anything well today," coach Jeff Fisher said. "I did not see this coming. This is a defining moment for us right now. We've got to get past this and get ready for the 49ers."

With a home game Thursday night against the defending NFC champions, St. Louis (1-2) has to correct things in a hurry.

The good part for the Rams is they don't have much time to worry about another lopsided loss against the Cowboys or another breakout performance by Murray against them.

The running back had a Cowboys-franchise record 253 yards rushing as a rookie two years ago in a 34-7 win over the Rams.

"It's a little frustrating. I'm not really sure why he has to do it against us," Bradford said of Murray, his teammate at Oklahoma.

The Rams had only 232 total yards. They were 0 for 12 on third-down conversions until a 9-yard run on the game's last play.

They had a punt return for a touchdown nullified by a penalty and they trailed 24-0 before finally scoring in the third quarter on a fourth-and-goal play from the 4.

It was the second week in a row the Rams trailed by at least three touchdowns before scoring. They lost 31-24 at Atlanta after being down 21-0 in the first half.

"Pretty much, we had a flat start," said receiver Tavon Austin, whose 84-yard punt return in the second quarter was wiped out by a holding penalty.

"We've got to find ourselves right now. Our back is against the wall. We've got to come out and play harder and harder and hopefully get some wins."

Players and coaches held a closed-door meeting in the locker room immediately after the game.

"We have to stick together," defensive end Chris Long said. "Nobody is going to come in here and save the day. It is on us to change things."

Tony Romo threw for 210 yards and three scores for Dallas, and Murray had his first 100-yard game in more than a year.

It started with a 14-yard run on Dallas' first offensive play, and he had plenty of open space on a 36-yarder to start Dallas' second drive to a 10-0 lead late in the first quarter.

Bradford finished 29 of 48 for 240 yards. But he was sacked four times by halftime when the Rams, trying for their first 2-1 start since 2006, had just 18 yards total offense. Murray had 96 by himself and the Cowboys 202 with a 17-0 lead by then.

The Rams then had a turnover on their first play of the second half when Chris Givens fumbled after a 26-yard catch.

Romo threw 2 yards to Dez Bryant for the first Dallas score. He had a pair of 24-yarders in the second half to rookie tight end Gavin Escobar and Dwayne Harris, who bounced back from a fumble on the game's first punt.

When the Rams finally started getting defenders around Murray at the line of scrimmage, Romo found him on the outside for a pair of catches on a drive that ended with a 2-yard run by Murray for a 17-0 lead.

Murray went around the left end before extending the ball over the goal line right on the pylon, and there was no review.

St. Louis avoided the shutout on Bradford's 4-yard pass to Austin Pettis on fourth down late in third quarter after an interception by rookie safety J.J. Wilcox was wiped out by a roughing-the-passer penalty against Jason Hatcher.

The Rams had a chance to stay in the game on their next drive, but Bradford threw behind Givens while Givens on fourth down. Dallas scored three plays later for a 31-7 lead when Romo hit Harris in stride in the back of the end zone.

"You name at it as far as execution errors and we did it today," Bradford said. "In the first half, we just never got anything going, played behind the chains all day. First play (of the second half), turn the ball over. Just things you can't do. Just a very poor performance on our part today."

Sunday, 22 September 2013 22:26
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BLOOMINGTON, Ind. (AP) — James Franklin threw for 343 yards and two touchdowns, and defensive end Kony Ealy returned an interception 49 yards for a score to lead Missouri past Indiana 45-28 on Saturday night.

The Tigers (3-0) won in Bloomington for the first time since 1953 and ended an eight-game winless streak in this series, though the teams hadn't played since 1992.

Indiana (2-2) was led by Nate Sudfeld, who threw for 229 yards and one TD, but he was picked off three times. The Hoosiers are now off have a bye week before hosting Penn State on Oct. 5.

It was the only regular-season meeting between schools from the Big Ten and SEC, but the highly-anticipated shootout became a one-sided affair after the Hoosiers tied the score at 14 midway through the second quarter.

Franklin broke the tie with his 1-yard TD run. Then 275-pound Ealy leapt up, picked off Sudfeld and scored to make it 28-14.

Indiana never recovered.

On a night the Hoosiers wore their chrome-striped helmets and celebrated the 20-year anniversary of their Independence Bowl team, fans got to see a little bit of everything in the first 30 minutes.

While Franklin and Sudfeld were busy trading scores, each team had a receiver top the 100-yard mark. And during two quarters in which the teams combined for 627 yards, 93 plays, six touchdowns and five turnovers, the two biggest turned out to be a successful fake field goal that eventually led to a Missouri touchdown and Ealy's incredible interception and touchdown trot.

The second half, however, was a different story.

While the Hoosiers struggled to move, Missouri took its time, extended the lead and prevented Indiana from taking advantage of its quick-strike offense.

Missouri, which led 28-14 at the half thanks to Ealy, made it 31-14 on Andrew Baggett's 31-yard field goal late in the third quarter. Franklin then hooked up with L'Damian Washington on a 14-yard TD pass early in the fourth to seal it.

Coach Gary Pinkel won his 93rd game at Missouri, tying Dan Devine for second on the school's all-time victory list.

Indiana did manage to get a 68-yard scoring pass from Tre Roberson to Shane Wynn with 11:24 left in the fourth and Roberson scored on a short run with 10 seconds to go, but the Hoosiers never got a chance to get close.

Franklin finished 32 of 47. Marcus Lucas caught 10 passes for 101 yards, Dorial Green-Beckham had eight catches for 105 yards and a score, and Russell Hansbrough ran 13 times for 104 yards and scored a TD.

Sudfeld was 21 of 39. Cody Latimer had eight catches for 139 yards and a score, while Wynn caught five passes for 90 yards and another TD.

Saturday, 21 September 2013 23:13
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MILWAUKEE (AP) -- Matt Carpenter broke Stan Musial's team record for doubles by a left-handed batter in a season, Lance Lynn won for the first time since early August and the St. Louis Cardinals beat the Milwaukee Brewers 7-2 Saturday night to maintain a two-game lead in the NL Central.

Seeking their first division title since 2009, the Cardinals (91-64) have surged ahead of Pittsburgh (89-66) and Cincinnati (88-67), which dropped three games back with a 4-2 loss in Pittsburgh.

St. Louis lowered its magic number to one for clinching a postseason berth, won for the 12th time in 17 games and improved to 14-4 against the Brewers this year, including 8-1 in Milwaukee.

Carpenter's fifth-inning double was his 54th of the season, one more than Musial's total in 1953.

Lynn (14-10) allowed one run, four hits and four walks in 6 1-3 innings with seven strikeouts. He had been 0-5 with a 5.44 ERA in eight starts since winning at Cincinnati on Aug. 4.

Yovani Gallardo (11-10) gave up two runs and four hits in seven innings and dropped to 1-11 with a 6.46 ERA in 17 career starts against St. Louis.

Matt Adams hit a two-run homer for the second straight night, putting the Cardinals ahead in the first. Davis hit an RBI grounder in the bottom half, but the Cardinals blew open the game in a five-run eighth.

Rob Wooten walked Yadier Molina on a nine-pitch at-bat with the bases loaded, David Freese hit a two-run single and Daniel Descalso added a two-run double against Alfredo Figaro for a 7-1 lead.

Davis doubled in a run in the bottom half against Seth Maness.

NOTES: Brewers players drove through the parking lots and tossed bobbleheads and T-shirts to surprised tailgaters after batting practice, part of an effort to thank fans at the end of a disappointing season. ... Cardinals GM John Mozeliak said that INF-OF Allen Craig's left foot will be re-evaluated at the end of next week. He's missed 16 games since spraining his left foot Sept. 4 at Cincinnati. ... Mozeliak said that team will remain flexible in how it closes games. Edward Mujica's 37 saves leads the club, but his recent struggles force the Cardinals into a closer-by-committee approach. "So, just having somebody labeled our closer right now, we can't do that," the GM said. He added that there still was enough time yet this season to correct the problem.

 
Saturday, 21 September 2013 23:11
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ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Patrik Berglund scored a power-play goal in overtime to lead the St. Louis Blues to a 3-2 win over the Dallas Stars on Saturday night.

Berglund collected a rebound of Alex Pietrangelo's blast that bounced off the glass behind the Dallas net. Berglund's first goal gave the Blues their second win over the Stars this preseason.

Pietrangelo tied the game at 2-2 on a power-play goal with 4:41 left in regulation.

Jamie Benn and Alex Chiasson scored for Dallas, which had won two straight. It was Benn's second of the preseason.

The Blues tied the game at 1-1 with 11:30 remaining in the second on Jaden Schwartz's goal. His score ended Dallas goalie Kari Lehtonen's shutout streak at 59:30. Lehtonen stopped 33 shots.

Jake Allen made 22 saves for the Blues.

 
Saturday, 21 September 2013 23:09
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ST. LOUIS (AP) -- Valtteri Filppula assisted on three of Tampa Bay's four goals, and the Lightning beat the St. Louis Blues 4-3 on Friday night for their third NHL preseason win in three days.

Artem Sergeev, Brett Connolly, Ondrej Palat and Pierre-Cedric Labrie had goals for the Lightning (3-0), who will host the Florida Panthers on Saturday night.

Ben Bishop, who grew up in St. Louis, and Anders Lindback split time in goal for the Lightning. Bishop stopped 14 of 15 shots. Lindback made 13 saves on 15 shots.

Corey Locke had a goal and assist for the Blues, who were beaten by the Lightning 4-3 in a shootout on Wednesday. Alexander Steen and T.J. Oshie added goals.

Jaroslav Halak made his first preseason start in goal and played the entire game, making 19 saves.

 
Friday, 20 September 2013 23:34
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COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Markus Golden had trouble describing what went through his mind during one of the greatest moments of his college career.

But he still remembers how he forced Toledo quarterback Terrance Owens to lose control of the ball before snatching it in the air and sprinting 70 yards for a touchdown.

"I can't sit here and tell you exactly how I felt," the Missouri defensive end said, smiling. "But I know when I got to the end zone and set that ball down and looked at the crowd, it felt good."

His teammates felt good, too.

Golden's score increased the Tigers' lead to 24-9 over Toledo on Sept. 7 and gave Missouri its first defensive score against a Football Bowl Subdivision team since 2008.

It was Missouri's fifth interception of the year, and another by safety Ian Simon left the Tigers (2-0) with just one fewer pick than they had all of last season.

"There's nothing — nothing — in my business that determines winning or losing more than that stat," coach Gary Pinkel said. "Turnovers and turnover margin. There's no stat that comes close to that."

Pinkel said luck may be a factor with the interceptions, which obscure two bend-but-don't-break performances from his defense this season.

After Golden's return, the Rockets got two quick touchdowns to get within a point, but the Tigers stiffened and pitched a shutout in the fourth quarter to win 38-23.

In its opener against Murray State, the team trailed 14-13 after the first quarter before scoring the final 45 points of the game.

Part of the problem lies with the defense's struggles to apply pressure.

Missouri has failed to force a fumble and has three sacks, all against Murray State.

Last year, opponents fumbled 28 times and the Tigers ranked first in the Southeastern Conference with 16 recoveries. The team also had 21 sacks.

"We just want to get as much pressure back there as we can," end Kony Ealy said. "If we can get sacks, that's great. But we're not concentrating mainly on sacks, but just getting turnovers, three-and-outs, getting the ball back to our offense."

Pinkel attributes the issue to quick-throwing quarterbacks, part of a trend in college football. Missouri will face another high-octane attack this week at Indiana (2-1), which leads the Big Ten with 50 points and 571.3 yards per game.

Nothing that the Tigers aren't used to, however.

"I've seen their offense, and honestly, they're no faster than our offense, and we practice against them every day," cornerback E.J. Gaines said. "So the tempo shouldn't be that big of a deal."

While slowing the Hoosiers would be a difficult task on a normal day, Missouri will start without linebacker and last year's leading tackler Andrew Wilson, who is suspended for the first half after being ejected for targeting in the third quarter against Toledo.

The captain described his initial reaction as "shock," having never been forced from a game previously.

Although he has no complaints about how officials applied the rule, Wilson added, "It's not going to change the way I play."

And the Tigers aren't planning to change how they play defense despite the roller coaster ride they've already experienced this season.

The team has still forced a turnover in 32 consecutive games, but statistics aren't discussed in meetings. Rather, coaches concentrate on how players respond to big plays by opponents.

"For the most part, I think our guys have handled that, whatever adversity has come their way, and stiffened up when they've needed to," safeties coach Alex Grinch said. "And in other scenarios we haven't. And we need to do better at that."


 

Friday, 20 September 2013 23:31
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SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- San Francisco 49ers All-Pro linebacker Aldon Smith was released from jail Friday after his pickup truck apparently struck a tree and he was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence and marijuana possession, authorities said.

Smith later took to the practice field with his teammates Friday afternoon at team headquarters in Santa Clara. He is scheduled to appear in court on Nov. 4.

Smith declined to comment when reporters asked about his arrest.

Head coach Jim Harbaugh told reporters Friday that he expects that Smith will play Sunday when the Niners host the Indianapolis Colts at Candlestick Park.

"I expect Aldon - like today - he'll be back to work and playing on Sunday," Harbaugh said. "I anticipate that, yes."

Harbaugh said that any potential discipline will likely come from the NFL.

"There will be consequences. There always is," Harbaugh said. "Good or bad, we all have consequences."

Smith, 23, posted $5,250 bail and was released from the Santa Clara County jail late Friday morning, just hours after he was taken into custody by police responding to a single-vehicle crash that involved his truck in San Jose, Santa Clara County Sheriff's Sgt. Kurtis Stenderup said.

San Jose police arrested Smith after officers received a call from a resident about the crash in the city's Silver Creek area around 7 a.m., Sgt. Heather Randol said.

Officers gave Smith breath tests and other tests after his pickup apparently struck a tree, hit a curb and left streak marks on a driveway and sidewalk.

"They conducted an investigation and determined he was under the influence," Randol said about Smith. "He was the only person inside the vehicle."

The linebacker, who helped the 49ers get to the Super Bowl last season, has 37 sacks in 34 career games and was selected to his first Pro Bowl and was an All-Pro last season.

Smith won the team's MVP award last season as he set the Niners' franchise record with 19 1/2 sacks. A first-round draft pick out of Missouri in 2011, Smith also set the team's rookie sack record with 14 that year.

His teammate, Pro Bowl tight end Vernon Davis, said Friday that Smith's arrest caught him by surprise as the team constantly talks about staying out of trouble.

"Some guys listen, some guys don't. You can take the horse to the water, but you can't make him drink. It's all about doing the right thing," Davis said. "I'm sure he'll come around. It's just a matter of time. Hopefully, he'll learn from this situation that he got himself into, and maybe it will come out positive instead of negative."

Smith, who turns 24 on Wednesday, has had other issues with the law as he was also arrested on suspicion of drunken driving in Miami Beach in January 2012.

In addition, he's named in a lawsuit by a Northern California man who said he was shot during a party at Smith's house.

In the suit filed earlier this month in Santa Clara County Superior Court, David Kleczek, an attorney for Ronndale Esporlas, claims that Smith and former 49ers tight end Delanie Walker fired weapons illegally during a party at Smith's San Jose home on June 29, 2012.

The players charged a $10 admission and $5 per drink, the lawsuit said. Smith and Walker, who is also named in the suit, were allegedly intoxicated on Smith's balcony when they later fired gunshots in the air while trying to end the party, the lawsuit said.

Kleczek said they then moved to the driveway where he alleged more shots were fired. Esporlas, 21, was shot twice in the leg while he was "caught in the crossfire between the two groups of people firing gunshots at each other," the lawsuit said.

As a result, Esporlas, "sustained serious, catastrophic and permanent injuries," the lawsuit said. The lawsuit seeks unspecified damages.

Attorneys for Smith and Walker, 29, who currently plays for the Tennessee Titans, have said Esporlas "freely and voluntarily exposed himself to all risks of harm" by attending the party.

They say injuries suffered by Esporlas, who was shot in the leg, were not caused by the defendants.

Santa Clara County prosecutors have said they are considering criminal charges.

 
Friday, 20 September 2013 23:29
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