PINEHURST, N.C. -- Michelle Wie is becoming a regular contender in major championships, only now as an adult. She captivated womens golf as a teenager, contending in three straight LPGA Tour majors when she was 16. That was when she still was trying to compete against the men, when she didnt always look as if she was having fun and before injuries and criticism were a big part of her growing pains. On another tough day at Pinehurst No. 2, the 24-year-old from Hawaii held it together Friday with two key par putts and finished with back-to-back birdies for a 2-under 68, giving her a three-shot lead going into the weekend at the U.S. Womens Open. "I think you look at the way Michelle has played the last six months and you look at her differently," said Stacy Lewis, the No. 1 player in womens golf who was four shots out of the lead. "I think shes become one of the best ball-strikers on tour. She hits it really consistent. She knows where the balls going. And shes figuring out how to win. Thats the big thing." But theres a familiar name, and another teen prodigy, who joined Wie as the only players still under par. Lexi Thompson, who soundly beat Wie in the final round to win the Kraft Nabisco Championship for her first major title, powered her way out of the sand and weeds, running off three straight birdies to match Wies 68, the low score Friday. For all the interest in the men and women playing Pinehurst No. 2 in successive weeks, Wie and Thompson made the Womens Open more closely resemble the first LPGA major. Is it too early to start thinking rematch? "Definitely too early," Thompson said with a laugh. "Thirty-six holes in a major, thats a lot of golf to be played, especially at a U.S. Womens Open." For now, Wie had control. Her three-shot lead is the largest through 36 holes in the Womens Open in 11 years. She twice thought her shots were going off the turtleback greens, and twice she relied on her table-top putting stance to make long par saves. She finished with a 6-iron that set up a 12-foot birdie putt, and a 15-foot birdie on the par-5 ninth to reach 4-under 136. "End of the day yesterday, I was thinking if I just did this again, that would be nice," Wie said. "Finishing with two birdies is always great. Its a grind out there. Its not easy. Really grateful for the par putts that I made and some of the birdie putts that I made. I cant complain. Ill take it." Just when it looked as if this had the trappings of another runaway -- Martin Kaymer led by at least four shots over the final 48 holes to win the U.S. Open -- along came Thompson with a shot reminiscent of what Kaymer did last week. From the sand and bushes left of the fairway on the par-5 fifth hole, Thompson blasted a 5-iron from 195 yards just off the green, setting up two putts for birdie from about 60 feet. Kaymer was in roughly the same spot in the third round when he hit 7-iron from 202 yards to 5 feet, that pin position more toward the front. That was her third straight birdie, and she closed with four pars to reach 139. Sue Kim of Langley, B.C., and Brooke Henderson of Smiths Falls, Ont., each shot 73 to finish the second round in a tie for 14th place. Pinehurst No. 2 wasnt in much of a giving mood on another warm day in the North Carolina sandhills, with a brief shower in the middle of the afternoon that didnt do much to soften a dry, crusty golf course. Lewis, who opened with a bogey-free 67, picked up a bogey on her first hole in a wild round of six bogeys, three birdies and a tough 73. Even so, the two-time major champion managed to see the big picture. "I hung around, and thats what youve got to do at this tournament," said Lewis, at even-par with Amy Yang (69) and Minjee Lee, the 18-year-old amateur from Australia who played bogey-free on the back nine to salvage a 71. Lucy Li, the precocious 11-year-old and youngest qualifier in the history of the U.S. Womens Open, isnt leaving town until Monday. She just wont be playing any more golf. The sixth-grader from the Bay Area started with a double bogey for the second straight day and shot another 78 to miss the cut by seven shots. The cut was 9-over 149. Na Yeon Choi had a 70 and was at 1-over 141, followed by a Paula Creamer (72) at 2-over 142. The group at 143 included Karrie Webb (73) and So Yeon Ryu (74), who saved her hopes with three straight birdies on the front nine, and narrowly missing a fourth. All of them are former Womens Open champions. This is a different Wie they are chasing. She already has won this year in Hawaii, and she has eight top 10s and is No. 2 on the LPGA money list. Attribute that to a putting stroke that she owns, no matter how peculiar it looks with her back bent severely, almost parallel to the ground. And she has learned to play the shot -- she has a full allotment -- instead of worrying about her score or her position on the leaderboard. "I knew I could get better," Wie said. "I knew I could improve. But thats the game of golf. I think thats whats so fun about it. You work hard, you work hard, its a challenging game. You can never quite perfect it. I love working on my game. I love working on different shots. Just trying to get better every day. I never really lost a sense of determination or drive." Herman Edwards Jersey .com) - Coming off a pair of tough losses last week, the Syracuse Orange will try to put an end to their first losing skid of the season when they pay a visit to the Maryland Terrapins at the Comcast Center on Monday night in Atlantic Coast Conference action. Josh Sweat Jersey .A. Dickey, even though he was coming off a Cy Young Award in 2012. Many felt the Jays would regret giving up righthanded pitcher prospect Noah Syndergaard and catcher Travis DArnaud over the long haul. http://www.officialphiladelphiaeaglesfootball.com/authentic-haloti-ngata-jersey-womens .com) - Graeme McDowell opened up with a first- round, 5-under 67 on Thursday and he holds a 2-shot lead at the WGC - HSBC Champions. Harold Carmichael Jersey .Cullen scored the go-ahead goal at 13:47 of the third period and Nashville beat the slumping Dallas Stars 3-2 on Thursday in a game that wasnt decided until the last shot of the night. Dallas Goedert Jersey .com) - American Madison Keys grabbed a first- round victory on Sunday in a rainy start to the Apia International Sydney tournament.NEW YORK -- If Commissioner Roger Goodell gets his way, change could be coming to the NFL. Adding playoff teams. Monitoring instant replay from league headquarters. Possibly creating a set of guidelines to prevent locker-room bullying. Short on details or precise timetables, and acknowledging hell need approval from team owners for action, Goodell painted the picture of an ever-evolving league during his annual pre-Super Bowl news conference, held Friday in a theatre in midtown Manhattan. Goodell said "theres a lot of benefits" to increasing the post-season field from 12 to 14 clubs. "We think we can make the league more competitive. We think we can make the matchups more competitive toward the end of the season. There will be more excitement, more memorable moments for our fans. And thats something that attracts us," Goodell said. "We think we can do it properly from a competitive standpoint. So this will continue to get very serious consideration by the competition committee." That sort of proposal would require "Yes" votes from 24 of the 32 owners. At least one who attended Goodells speech, Jeffrey Lurie of the Philadelphia Eagles, sounded in favour of the idea, with a couple of caveats: He wouldnt want to let too many teams into the post-season, and hed like to hear more about scheduling. "We dont want to become like some other sports, where its too easy to make the playoffs," Lurie said. "Adding one team would not put us in a counterproductive situation. But when you would play the games, I think, is very important, so that the following games, you have virtually an equal time to prepare." Making a not-so-subtle reference to mistakes by game officials this season, Goodell said that committee also will make recommendations to the 32 owners about having replays from all games overseen by the league office. Major League Baseball recently joined the NHL as sports that have centralized replay systems. "We think theres plenty of room for us to improve the game of football, and officiating in particular. What we all want is consistency and fairness in our officiating," Goodell said. "I do believe there is a possibility that some version of that will occur -- where our office can at least be involved with the decision. It may not make the decision," he added, "but at least can provide some input that would be helpful to the officials on the field to make sure theyre seeing every angle." Pittsburgh Steelers owner Dan Rooney said he needs more information before deciding whether hed be in favour. "Our situation is different than hockey. But I think we should look at everything," Rooney said. "Maybe we want to expand the numbeer of incidents that you look at.dddddddddddd. A lot of times theyll say, Thats not reviewable. Look into that, for example." New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft likes the suggestion. "Games should be standardized and have the same people making the calls," Kraft said. "I dont want to ever lose a game based on poor interpretation of rules by (different) officials." Another focal point, according to Goodell, will be preventing the kind of alleged bullying that rocked the Miami Dolphins this season. "Ive already begun discussions with outside parties. Ive discussed it with the union, Ive also met with several groups of players, individually and collectively, to talk about the circumstances. What needs to be done?" Goodell said. "Some of it will be education. Some of it possibly could be policy change." Speaking two days before the Denver Broncos and Seattle Seahawks play in East Rutherford, N.J., Goodell did not respond directly to questions whether other cold-weather cities with outdoor stadiums could host NFL championship games. During his opening remarks, Goodell said: "One unique aspect about the focus for this years Super Bowl has been on the weather. Of course, we cannot control the weather. I told you we were going to embrace the weather. Here we go." And with that, flakes of fake snow fell from the ceiling above the stage, drawing laughter. Among other topics addressed by Goodell: --The NFL is working to convince a federal judge in Philadelphia that the tentative $765 million settlement reached with former players who sued the league about concussions "can provide the kind of benefits that we intended, and were confident that well get there"; --The difficulty in selling out wild-card playoff games resulted from "mistakes that were made by us, the NFL, and our clubs," and not fans fault, and that improving stadium safety "is a critical component"; --The NFL is "not actively considering" allowing players to use marijuana for medical reasons, but "thats something we would never take off the table, if it can benefit our players"; --Selling out all three of next seasons games in London is "just another indication that the more we give fans in the U.K. of NFL football, the more they want" and that the possibility of placing a franchise in that country is closer to reality than a year ago; --He deflected a question about whether hed call a Native American a "Redskin" face-to-face, saying, "Lets not forget this is the name of a football team." ------ AP Pro Football Writer Barry Wilner and Sports Writers Rachel Cohen, Tim Booth and Tom Canavan contributed to this report. 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