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TMP settles for split -4/18/2014, 10:23 AM

Shields strikes out 12 as Royals complete sweep -4/18/2014, 10:23 AM

Indian swimmers seventh in Salina -4/18/2014, 10:23 AM

HHS softball splits with Salina South -4/18/2014, 10:23 AM

HHS baseball swept at Salina South -4/18/2014, 10:23 AM

Final home games for Tigers -4/18/2014, 10:14 AM

Tiger softball No. 8 in first region rankings -4/18/2014, 10:13 AM

Indian track competes at Valley Center -4/18/2014, 10:13 AM

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Otis track team deals with injuries, illness -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Jets land former Titan Chris Johnson -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

HDN Area Track & Field honor roll, April 17 -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Freeman winds up with N.Y. Giants -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Tigers win on grand slam -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Weber gets extension at K-State -4/17/2014, 10:15 AM

HHS' Weigel becomes a Cowboy -4/17/2014, 10:15 AM

Humburg jumping well for Ness City -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Doubles team rolls at HHS Invitational -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

HHS soccer improves to 6-2, beats Great Bend -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Prep golf results, April 15 -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Tiger tennis ends MIAA season in loss -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Tiger golfers ninth in St. Charles, Mo. -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Track results, Redmen Relays, April 15 -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP boys win at Ellsworth -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP softball sweeps Ellis -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP soccer suffers loss at Garden City -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP boys' golf third at Goodland -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP baseball rolls past Ellis -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

HHS baseball splits with Junction City -4/15/2014, 9:53 AM

TMP softball swept at Colby -4/15/2014, 10:10 AM

TMP golf begins season today -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

HHS soccer rallies for victory -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

Rare time off for Tiger softball -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

KSU, WSU Barnstormers coming to Hays -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

Watson wins Masters -4/14/2014, 10:08 AM

Royals swept by Twins -4/14/2014, 10:07 AM

Harvick wins at Darlington -4/13/2014, 6:51 AM

Royals ace James Shields struggles in loss to Twins -4/13/2014, 6:42 AM

K-State's Deante Burton feels ready to take his game up a notch -4/13/2014, 6:39 AM

Former Jayhawks address football team about facing struggles -4/13/2014, 6:39 AM

HHS basketball camp May 27 to 29 -4/13/2014, 6:32 AM

Tigers’ Wolf second at K.T. Woodman -4/13/2014, 6:32 AM

FHSU tennis drops pair of MIAA outings -4/13/2014, 6:31 AM

FHSU softball 3-1 in weekend -4/13/2014, 6:31 AM

Tiger offense shines in Spring Game -4/13/2014, 6:31 AM

Tiger baseball 1-3 in series -4/13/2014, 6:30 AM

Mattheyer jumps onto scene at Ellis -4/13/2014, 6:30 AM

HHS golf finishes second in Garden City -4/13/2014, 6:32 AM

HHS pitcher, catcher share chemistry -4/13/2014, 7:56 AM

Sports Scores

Tuesday

Prep basketball

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Atwood 76, St. Francis 65

Dighton 62, Oberlin 47

Hillsboro 50, Goodland 47

Lakeside 42, Lincoln 32

Minneapolis 68, Russell 35

Rock Hills 42, Natoma 37

Salina Central 62, Andover 58

Salina South 62, Sacred Heart 47

Sharon Springs 75, Leoti 38

St. John's Beloit-Tipton 57, Osborne 34

Sylvan-Lucas 61, Thunder Ridge 48

Girls

Dighton 44, Atwood 11

Dodge City 71, Hays High 28

Hesston 51, Goodland 18

Hoisington 60, Victoria 46

Hoxie 65, St. Francis 13

Lincoln 33, Lakeside 26

Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

Thunder Ridge 33, St. John's Beloit-Tipton 30

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SPOTLIGHT
Kenseth wins 2nd Chase race at New Hampshire

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Kenseth wins 2nd Chase race at New Hampshire

Published on -9/23/2013, 10:01 AM

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LOUDON, N.H. (AP) -- Matt Kenseth just might win a championship with a touch of dominance, not dullness.

Kenseth firmly has defended the style of his 2003 championship, stating his one-win season in the final year before NASCAR made the move to the playoff-style Chase format was as meaningful as all the titles collected by Jimmie Johnson or Tony Stewart.

He probably won't have to justify anything about his Cup run this season. There are plenty of checkered flags.

Kenseth made it 2 for 2 in the Chase, holding off Joe Gibbs Racing teammate Kyle Busch to win Sunday at New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

He followed his win in the Chase for the Sprint Cup championship opener at Chicagoland with his series-high seventh victory of the season. Kenseth made his 500th career start and built a 14-point lead over Busch before the series shifts to Dover.

One win or seven, Kenseth will take a title any way he can.

"If you're fortunate enough to win a championship, or another championship, I don't think there's a bad way to win it," he said. "I know it still gets brought up because it was the last year without the Chase and we won once race. But I was real proud of what we did that year. It was tough to accomplish."

Kenseth was paired with owner Jack Roush for more than a decade and won 22 races, a pair of Daytona 500s and the 2003 championship. He's having a career year in his first season at JGR, obliterating his previous season best for wins -- 5 in 2002.

"I don't feel like I'm necessarily a better driver than what I was last year," he said. "Certainly, things are different."

Just a little bit.

His gamble to change teams has been a success, and Kenseth's eyes glistened as tears rolled down his cheeks in Victory Lane. He reached for a big white towel to wipe them away.

Neither side could have expected this kind of run.

"We've known Matt for a long time but, in all reality, we wouldn't have guessed seven wins," team President J.D. Gibbs said.

Kenseth was anxious heading into New Hampshire because it had long been one of his worst tracks. He might have calmed down had he checked this season's results from some of the other tracks where he traditionally struggled: Four of his seven wins in 2013 are at tracks where he was winless.

Kenseth and Busch made it a 1-2 finish for Joe Gibbs Racing and helped the organization win for the fifth time in the last seven races dating to Busch's win at Watkins Glen in August. Kenseth won at Bristol, Busch took Atlanta and Kenseth won the last two.

Kenseth joins Greg Biffle (2008) and Tony Stewart (2011) as the only drivers to win the first two Chase races. Stewart went on to win the title.

Kenseth moves on in the No. 20 Toyota to Dover, where he's a two-time winner. He led 29 laps there earlier this year before an engine failure ended his day.

"For me to win at Loudon, it's more than a stretch, more than a dream," Kenseth said. "This is probably one of my worst places. This just shows you how good this team is."

Chase drivers filled six of the top 10 spots. Biffle was third and Johnson fourth. Dale Earnhardt Jr. was sixth and Carl Edwards ninth. Jamie McMurray was the highest non-Chase finisher in fifth place.

JGR, with Busch, in the past has dominated the regular season, but dropped off considerably once the Chase began. Now they've carried their success into the Chase and are a credible 1-2 threat to give Toyota its first Sprint Cup title.

Busch is nipping at Kenseth and said the 20 "lucked into one" last weekend. He blamed a poor restart for losing at New Hampshire.

"That's good that we're both up there like that," Busch said. "We're pushing each other hard and we're pushing the competition, too."

While NASCAR has been smacked with scandal, Kenseth has quietly gone under the radar doing what he does best: winning races. He has 31 wins in 500 starts.

He joined Richard Petty as the only NASCAR driver to win in his 500th career start. It was easy to spot Kenseth's No. 20 Toyota -- and not just because it was the only car in Victory Lane. JGR slapped an oversized "500th Start" logo on the front of the hood.

Chase drivers took spots 13-17: Kurt Busch, Joey Logano, Jeff Gordon, Ryan Newman and Clint Bowyer. Kevin Harvick was 20th and Kasey Kahne slammed the inside wall with 48 laps left and was 37th.

Kenseth took the lead from Bowyer with 92 laps left. Martin Truex Jr., whose future is in limbo after NAPA dropped its sponsorship of Michael Waltrip Racing in the wake of the NASCAR scandal at Richmond, led 98 laps and was 10th

Johnson, a five-time champion, is 18 points behind Kenseth. Edwards, Biffle and Harvick are all within 39 points of the leader.

Johnson has seven wins at Dover and could use an eighth to stay a contender for a sixth championship.

Johnson had some fun with Kenseth on Twitter, writing, "Congrats (at)mattkenseth. Careful though, you keep winning like this and they'll start booing you."

Odds are Kenseth will take it.

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