KATIE LEDECKY beat

Missy Franklin

in a 500-yard freestyle matchup between Olympic gold medalists to highlight the first day of the Winter National Championships in Knoxville, Tenn.

Ledecky, 16, won in 4 minutes, 32.37 seconds. Franklin was second at 4:34.63.

Other winners included Nathan Adrian in the men's 50 freestyle, Natalie Coughlin in the women's 50 freestyle, Darian Townsend in the men's 200 individual medley, Elizabeth Pelton in the women's 200 IM and Connor Jaeger in the men's 500 freestyle.

Golf

Zach Johnson shot 5-under 67 to take a one-shot lead in the World Challenge in Thousand Oaks, Calif.

Luke Donald's fast start in the Nedbank Golf Challenge was halted by lightning, leaving the Englishman ahead by two shots at 5-under through 11 holes in Sun City, South Africa.

Stacy Lewis shot a 7-under 65 to take a one-stroke lead during the suspended second round of the Dubai Ladies Masters.

* English golfer Simon Dyson was handed a suspended, 2-month ban from the European Tour and fined $49,000 after being found guilty of a rules violation at the BMW Masters in Shanghai in October.

Sport Stops

Tim Tebow has been offered a 4-month contract by the Italian federation for American football, and the Milano Seamen are hoping to sign the unemployed pro quarterback. A federation spokesman said the offer is for $200,000.

* Chicago Fire forward Mike Magee was selected Major League Soccer's Most Valuable Player. Acquired by the Fire from Los Angeles on May 25, Magee scored 15 goals and had four assists in 22 games for Chicago. He had six goals before the trade, bringing his season total to 21.

Lindsey Vonn says she will race today in a World Cup downhill at Lake Louise, Alberta, her first competition in 10 months. Vonn says she is "confident and excited" about racing for the first time since a high-speed crash at the world championships in February, when she tore two ligaments in her right knee and broke a bone in her lower leg.

* Former Giro d'Italia winner Danilo Di Luca was banned from cycling for life following a third doping offense.