PINEHURST, N. Carl Yastrzemski Red Sox Jersey .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." Andrew Cashner Red Sox Jersey . Juventus announced details of the deal Saturday, saying that Morata signed a five-year contract with the club. The deal also includes an option for Madrid to buy Morata back for up to (euro)30 million ($40. Mitch Moreland Red Sox Jersey . Lawrie was hit on the hand by Cincinnati pitcher Johnny Cueto in the second inning of Sundays 4-3 loss to the Reds.NORWICH, England -- Norwich sacked manager Chris Hughton and his backroom staff Sunday and replaced him with former player Neil Adams in a bid to keep the club in the Premier League next season. The decision came a day after a 1-0 home loss to fellow struggler West Bromwich Albion, which left Norwich in 17th in the Premier League standings, just five points above the relegation zone after losing four out of its last six matches. Four of the teams remaining five games are against Liverpool, Manchester United, Chelsea and Arsenal -- by far the toughest run-in of any of the relegation-threatened teams. Norwich said in a statement it parted ways with Hughton and his staff "to give the club the maximum chance to secure the points required between now and the end of the season to ensure retention of our Barclays Premier League status." The 48-year-old Adams was promoted from his previous post as under-18 coach. He played 206 matches for Norwich between 1993 and 1999, having won the league with Everton in 1987. Rich Gedman Red Sox Jersey. "To say that I am delighted to have been offered the opportunity of managing Norwich City Football Club would be a massive understatement," Adams said. "People know what this club means to me, and so it goes without saying that we will be doing everything possible to ensure that we maintain our top-flight status for next season. "These final five games will be a huge test for us, and everyone must step up to the mark. But with the full backing of these magnificent Norwich supporters we will have every chance of achieving our objective." Hughton guided the Canaries to 11th place last season, and Norwich said "he has represented the club with dignity throughout his tenure." "However the recent run of four defeats in our last six Premier League games and six consecutive away league defeats, left the club with no choice but to act, with five games still to play in the current campaign," the clubs statement said. ' ' '