The Los Angeles Rams released veterans James Laurinaitis and Chris Long and also cut tight end Jared Cook on Friday.

In what appears a salary-cap purge as the team relocates from St. Louis, the Rams parted with Laurinaitis, their star linebacker from Wayzata and Ohio State, and Long, a top-notch defensive end.

Laurinaitis has been one of the NFL's leading tacklers throughout his seven-year pro career. Long, the son of Hall of Famer Howie Long, has been their top pass rusher for most of his eight seasons.

• Packers defensive tackle Mike Pennel was suspended for the first four games of the 2016 season for violating the league's substance abuse policy, and Ravens tight end Nick Boyle was suspended 10 games for violating the league's policy on performance enhancers.

• Pittsburgh tight end Heath Miller retired after an 11-year career.


U.S. women make Olympics

Alex Morgan scored three goals and the United States secured a spot in the Olympics this summer with a 5-0 victory over Trinidad and Tobago in the semifinals of the CONCACAF Olympic qualifying tournament.

The World Cup champions, ranked No. 1 world, will seek their fourth straight Olympic gold medal and fifth overall.

Canada secured the other spot in Brazil with a 3-1 semifinal victory over Costa Rica. It is the third straight trip to the Olympics for the Canadians, who face the United States on Sunday.


Merritt tied for third at Riviera

Former Winona State golfer Troy Merritt shot a 66 and is tied for third place at 134 after the second round of the Northern Trust Open.

Jason Kokrak made birdie on all the par 5s at Riviera and shot a 7-under 64 to build a one-shot lead over Chez Reavie in Los Angeles.

Dustin Johnson had a 66 and Bubba Watson played bogey-free in his round of 68. They were two shots behind. Johnson has been runner-up the past two years. Watson won two years ago. Rory McIlroy, Adam Scott and Hideki Matsuyama were four behind.

Charlie Danielson, from Osceola, Wis., shot a 1-over 72 for a 3-under 139 total to make the cut. He is the only amateur in the field.

• England's Holly Clyburn shot a 7-under 65 to take a share of the second-round lead with 46-year-old Scottish golfer Catriona Matthew at the Women's Australian Open.

Clyburn and Matthew (69) had 36-hole totals of 8-under 136.

They held a one-stroke lead over four players — Caroline Masson, who shot 71, Lin Xiyu (67), Jenny Shin (70) and Haru Nomura (68).


Phillips, Davenport dead

Tony Phillips, an infielder and outfielder who made the final defensive play in the Athletics' sweep of the Giants during the earthquake-interrupted 1989 World Series, died.

The A's didn't provide a cause of death of the 56-year-old, but said it was unexpected. Phillips played nine of his 18 major league seasons with the A's, and he also spent five years with Detroit, two each with the Angels and White Sox and one year for both the Mets and Toronto. He was a career .266 hitter with 160 home runs and 819 RBI in 2,161 games.

Jim Davenport, a longtime third baseman for the Giants who later managed the team and worked in the front office, died of heart failure. He was 82. Davenport was among the original San Francisco Giants after the franchise moved west from New York after the 1957 season. He played in the 1962 World Series and won a Gold Glove that same season.

• Pitcher Mike Minor agreed to a $7.25 million, one-year contract with the Royals, a deal that could be worth $24.5 million over three seasons if he is a regular member of the rotation. … The Indians agreed to a one-year, $5 million contract with veteran Juan Uribe, who likely will be their starting third baseman this season. … Jeff Banister's contract to manage the Rangers was guaranteed through 2018.


Vonn loses both ski and lead

Lindsey Vonn was incensed after losing her ski and the World Cup lead in a tricky downhill, frustrated and fuming over her equipment

Swiss rival Lara Gut won and moved 13 points ahead of Vonn in the overall ranking.

Vonn was the last of the favorites to start and was ahead of Gut at the first checkpoint but then her right ski detached on a sharp turn at about 50 mph and she slid down the course on her hip.

"I'm really confused at how this happened. I have to watch the video again," Vonn said. "The whole thing is a little bit perplexing to me. Normally none of this should happen."

Vonn wearing just body paint in SI

Vonn says that by posing in nothing but body paint in the Sports Illustrated swimsuit issue she's sending a message that "athletic women can be beautiful." The 2010 Olympic downhill champion says, "It's showing that strong, athletic women can be beautiful and it's not just skinny models. There's a lot of different body types in this world, and everyone is beautiful in their own way."