INDIANA HIGH SCHOOL BASEBALL

EVANSVILLE CENTRAL 29 EVANSVILLE BOSSE 0

CASTLE 2 EVANSVILLE MATER DEI 1

NEW PRAIRIE 5 ELKHART 4

PERRY MERIDIAN 13 FRANKLIN 5

PORTAGE 13 WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP 4

MORGAN TWP. 17 KNOX 3

CALUMET CHRISTIAN 11 HAMMOND MORTON 3

NORTH NEWTON 30 SOUTH NEWTON 6

HIGHLAND 11 HAMMOND CENTRAL 1

CULVER ACADEMIES 31 CULVER 1

CASTON 18 N. WHITE 3

MILAN 8 RISING SUN 5

BOONVILLE 5 HERITAGE HILLS 4

MONROE CENTRAL 8 MUNCIE CENTRAL 0

MIDDLETOWN CHRISTIAN 10 LEGACY CHRISTIAN ACADEMY 0

CONCORD 18 BETHANY CHRISTIAN 1

YORKTOWN 13 JAY COUNTY 8

COVINGTON 17 ATTICA 1

WAPAHANI 6 DALEVILLE 2

NORTHEASTERN 12 UNION COUNTY 1

EASTERN 19 TIPTON 5

SALEM 3 SCOTTSBURG 1

SOUTHWESTERN 11 SHAWE MEMORIAL 1

BORDEN 14 NEW WASHINGTON 0

GRIFFITH 15 WHEELER 7

CLARKSVILLE 5 NORTH HARRISON 0

UNION CITY 6 TRI 3

COWAN 5 WES DEL 2

WASHINGTON 5 TECUMSEH 4

ROCHESTER 5 PIONEER 0

HANOVER CENTRAL 16 WHITING 0

SOUTH DECATUR 7 EDINBURGH 1

TRI COUNTY 13 FRONTIER 0

PLYMOUTH 11 LAVILLE 1

BLUE RIVER VALLEY 12 RANDOLPH SOUTHERN 5

WHITKO 7 LAKEWOOD PARK CHRISTIAN 4

GARRETT 13 CHURBUSCO 7

WEST VIGO 10 N. VERMILLION 0

WESTVILLE 24 SOUTH BEND CAREER 3

SOUTH ADAMS 8 NEW HAVEN 0

WESTVIEW 19 LAKELAND 2

SILVER CREEK 13 AUSTIN 3

BLOOMFIELD 20 EMINENCE 3

WEST WASHINGTON 18 CROTHERSVILLE 1

HERITAGE 10 NORWELL 3

ELKHART CHRISTIAN 12 TRITON 2

RUSHVILLE 8 GREENSBURG 7

BATESVILLE 7 EAST CENTRAL 6

FORT WAYNE SNIDER 13 FORT WAYNE NORTH 1

SOUTHRIDGE 11 PRINCETON 1

MADISON GRANT 28 ANDERSON PREP ACADEMY 0

EDGEWOOD 17 INDIAN CREEK 1

WINAMAC 13 OREGON DAVIS 1

WEST NOBLE 11 PRAIRIE HEIGHTS 4

GIBSON SOUTHERN 5 MOUNT VERNON 1

LEO 15 FORT WAYNE CANTERBURY 3

FREMONT 5 EASTSIDE 3

MARTINSVILLE 12 GREENWOOD 8

FAIRFIELD 8 ANGOLA 7

PENDLETON HEIGHTS 7 FRANKTON 0

DEKALB 15 CARROLL 11

FORT WAYNE BLACKHAWK 11 WOODLAN 1

FRANKFORT 11 LEBANON 9

HARRISON 11 WEST LAFAYETTE 8

TRI WEST HENDRICKS 9 SOUTHMONT 6

NORTH MONTGOMERY 25 WESTERN BOOM 6

ZIONSVILLE 2 HAMILTON SOUTHEASTERN 1

NORTHWESTERN 15 OAK HILL 4

FLOYD CENTRAL 7 COLUMBUS EAST 3

AVON 14 FRANKLIN CENTRAL 3

CORYDON CENTRAL 6 CHARLESTOWN 5

GREENFIELD CENTRAL 12 DELTA 5

JEFFERSONVILLE 0 SEYMOUR 0

WESTFIELD 5 BROWNSBURG 4

LAFAYETTE JEFF 6 KOKOMO 5

JASPER 9 EVANSVILLE HARRISON 0

FISHERS 4 NOBLESVILLE 3

FRANKLIN 18 SOUTHPORT 6

INDIANA SOFTBALL SCOREBOARD

WEST CENTRAL 11 WASHINGTON TOWNSHIP 2

SOUTH BEND ADAMS 6 CONCORD 0

NEW PRAIRIE 15 ELKHART 3

NORTH NEWTON 11 COVENANT CHRISTIAN 1

CROWN POINT 11 PORTAGE 1

MORGAN TWP. 11 N. JUDSON 9

LAVILLE 11 CULVER ACADEMIES 6

OWEN VALLEY 14 LINTON STOCKTON 8

RISING SUN 24 MILAN 4

CLAY CITY 9 NORTH CENTRAL 4

HERITAGE HILLS 3 BOONVILLE 2

GIBSON SOUTHERN 24 FOREST PARK 0

TIPPECANOE VALLEY 12 WINAMAC 4

NORTHEASTERN 11 TRI 5

NORTHEAST DUBOIS 10 TELL CITY 6

BROWNSTOWN CENTRAL 16 AUSTIN 0

SOUTH BEND RILEY 15 ELKHART CHRISTIAN ACADEMY 1

CARROLL 19 FRONTIER 15

LINCOLN 6 KNIGHTSTOWN 5

COWAN 9 WES DEL 4

HOBART 8 ANDREAN 7

EASTERN 13 BLACKFORD 0

EVANSVILLE NORTH 15 SOUTH SPENCER 1

PIONEER 6 DELPHI 2

ROSSVILLE 27 TRI COUNTY 1

HANOVER CENTRAL 19 WHITING 3

ORLEANS 10 PAOLI 6

WEST WASHINGTON 3 SPRINGS VALLEY 2

GLENN 14 PLYMOUTH 2

SOUTHWOOD 12 SOUTHERN WELLS 2

WHEELER 10 GRIFFITH 0

PIKE CENTRAL 17 NORTH KNOX 0

MISHAWAKA 7 SOUTH BEND CLAY 0

LAWRENCE CENTRAL 13 INDIANAPOLIS RITTER 2

KOKOMO 18 MISSISSINEWA 0

BEDFORD NORTH LAWRENCE 3 NEW ALBANY 2

CORYDON CENTRAL 15 NORTH HARRISON 4

PERRY MERIDIAN 11 FRANKLIN 7

CASCADE 7 NORTH CENTRAL 3

WESTVIEW 11 LAKELAND 2

CENTER GROVE 9 BROWNSBURG 5

FRANKLIN COUNTY 3 RUSHVILLE 0

KOUTS 12 NORTH WHITE 11

FRANKFORT 11 LEBANON 7

NEW PALESTINE 12 HAMILTON SOUTHEASTERN 10

EASTERN GREENE 5 SHOALS 4

CENTRAL NOBLE 20 HAMILTON 0

WESTERN 17 HAMILTON HEIGHTS 0

ELWOOD 18 LAPEL 4

ANGOLA 3 FAIRFIELD 0

EVANSVILLE CENTRAL 5 EVANSVILLE REITZ 2

EASTSIDE 17 FREMONT 1

ANDERSON 16 LIBERTY CHRISTIAN 1

ADAMS CENTRAL 14 DELTA 4

NORTHVIEW 17 SHAKAMAK 0

CASTON 12 TWIN LAKES 2

JENNINGS COUNTY 6 GREENSBURG 5

SCOTTSBURG 10 CHARLESTOWN 6

EAST CENTRAL 9 SOUTH DEARBORN 5

EASTERN HANCOCK 17 SHENANDOAH 0

EDGEWOOD 13 INDIAN CREEK 3

FAITH CHRISTIAN 15 INDIANA DEAF 0

PRAIRIE HEIGHTS 22 WEST NOBLE 11

BENTON CENTRAL 17 RENSSELAER CENTRAL 1

BLOOMINGTON SOUTH 8 TERRE HAUTE NORTH 4

EMINENCE 18 WHITE RIVER VALLEY 2

HARRISON 12 NORTHWESTERN 2

MOORESVILLE 8 DECATUR CENTRAL 4

TERRE HAUTE SOUTH 6 BLOOMINGTON NORTH 1

MARTINSVILLE 18 GREENWOOD 4

TECUMSEH 16 APOLLO 0

OAK HILL 11 MACONAQUAH 8

COLUMBUS NORTH 19 FRANKLIN CENTRAL 0

LOGANSPORT 13 LAFAYETTE JEFF 2

FLOYD CENTRAL 11 MEADE COUNTY 3

NBA PLAYOFF SCHEDULE

FRIDAY, APRIL 15

HAWKS AT CAVALIERS (7:30, ESPN)

WINNER CLINCHES NO. 8 SEED IN EAST

PELICANS AT CLIPPERS (10, TNT)

WINNER CLINCHES NO. 8 SEED IN WEST

FIRST ROUND

EASTERN CONFERENCE

(1) HEAT VS. (8) PLAY-IN

GAME 1: SUNDAY, PLAY-IN AT HEAT (1, TNT)

GAME 2: APRIL 19, PLAY-IN AT HEAT

GAME 3: APRIL 22, HEAT AT PLAY-IN

GAME 4: APRIL 24, HEAT AT PLAY-IN (7, TNT)

GAME 5: APRIL 26, PLAY-IN AT HEAT*

GAME 6: APRIL 28, HEAT AT PLAY-IN*

GAME 7: APRIL 30, PLAY-IN AT HEAT*

(2) CELTICS VS. (7) NETS

GAME 1: SUNDAY, NETS AT CELTICS (3:30, ABC)

GAME 2: APRIL 20, NETS AT CELTICS (7, TNT)

GAME 3: APRIL 23, CELTICS AT NETS

GAME 4: APRIL 25, CELTICS AT NETS

GAME 5: APRIL 27, NETS AT CELTICS*

GAME 6: APRIL 29, CELTICS AT NETS*

GAME 7: MAY 1, NETS AT CELTICS*

(3) BUCKS VS. (6) BULLS

GAME 1: SUNDAY, BULLS AT BUCKS (6:30, TNT)

GAME 2: APRIL 20, BULLS AT BUCKS (9:30, TNT)

GAME 3: APRIL 22, BUCKS AT BULLS (8:30, ABC)

GAME 4: APRIL 24, BUCKS AT BULLS (1, ABC)

GAME 5: APRIL 27, BULLS AT BUCKS*

GAME 6: APRIL 29, BUCKS AT BULLS*

GAME 7: MAY 1, BULLS AT BUCKS*

(4) SIXERS VS. (5) RAPTORS

GAME 1: SATURDAY, RAPTORS AT SIXERS (6, ESPN)

GAME 2: APRIL 18, RAPTORS AT SIXERS (7:30, TNT)

GAME 3: APRIL 20, SIXERS AT RAPTORS (8, NBATV)

GAME 4: APRIL 23, SIXERS AT RAPTORS (2, TNT)

GAME 5: APRIL 25, RAPTORS AT SIXERS*

GAME 6: APRIL 28, SIXERS AT RAPTORS*

GAME 7: APRIL 30, RAPTORS AT SIXERS*

WESTERN CONFERENCE

(1) SUNS VS. (8) PLAY-IN

GAME 1: SUNDAY, PLAY-IN AT SUNS (9, TNT)

GAME 2: APRIL 19, PLAY-IN AT SUNS (10, TNT)

GAME 3: APRIL 22, SUNS AT PLAY-IN

GAME 4: APRIL 24, SUNS AT PLAY-IN (9:30, TNT)

GAME 5: APRIL 26, PLAY-IN AT SUNS*

GAME 6: APRIL 28, SUNS AT PLAY-IN*

GAME 7: APRIL 30, PLAY-IN AT SUNS*

(2) GRIZZLIES VS. (7) TIMBERWOLVES

GAME 1: SATURDAY, TIMBERWOLVES AT GRIZZLIES (3:30, ESPN)

GAME 2: APRIL 19, TIMBERWOLVES AT GRIZZLIES

GAME 3: APRIL 21, GRIZZLIES AT TIMBERWOLVES (7:30, TNT)

GAME 4: APRIL 23, GRIZZLIES AT TIMBERWOLVES

GAME 5: APRIL 26, TIMBERWOLVES AT GRIZZLIES*

GAME 6: APRIL 29, GRIZZLIES AT TIMBERWOLVES*

GAME 7: MAY 1, TIMBERWOLVES AT GRIZZLIES*

(3) WARRIORS VS. (6) NUGGETS

GAME 1: SATURDAY, NUGGETS AT WARRIORS (8:30, ABC)

GAME 2: APRIL 18, NUGGETS AT WARRIORS (10, TNT)

GAME 3: APRIL 21, WARRIORS AT NUGGETS (10, TNT)

GAME 4: APRIL 24, WARRIORS AT NUGGETS (3:30, ABC)

GAME 5: APRIL 27, NUGGETS AT WARRIORS*

GAME 6: APRIL 29, WARRIORS AT NUGGETS*

GAME 7: MAY 1, NUGGETS AT WARRIORS*

(4) MAVERICKS VS. (5) JAZZ

GAME 1: SATURDAY, JAZZ AT MAVERICKS (1, ESPN)

GAME 2: APRIL 18, JAZZ AT MAVERICKS (8:30, NBATV)

GAME 3: APRIL 21, MAVERICKS AT JAZZ (9, NBATV)

GAME 4: APRIL 23, MAVERICKS AT JAZZ (4:30, TNT)

GAME 5: APRIL 25, JAZZ AT MAVERICKS*

GAME 6: APRIL 28, MAVERICKS AT JAZZ*

GAME 7: APRIL 30, JAZZ AT MAVERICKS*

MLB SCOREBOARD

OAKLAND 6 TAMPA BAY 3

SEATTLE 5 CHICAGO WHITE SOX 1

NY YANKEES 3 TORONTO 0

TEXAS 10 LA ANGELS 5

DETROIT 4 KANSAS CITY 2

MILWAUKEE 5 ST. LOUIS 1

PITTSBURGH 9 WASHINGTON 4

MIAMI 4 PHILADELPHIA 3

SAN DIEGO 12 ATLANTA 1

CHICAGO CUBS 5 COLORADO 2

LA DODGERS 9 CINCINNATI 3

NHL SCOREBOARD

OTTAWA 3 BOSTON 2

ST. LOUIS 6 BUFFALO 2

TORONTO 7 WASHINGTON 3

TAMPA BAY 4 ANAHEIM 3

PITTSBURGH 6 NY ISLANDERS 3

DETROIT 3 CAROLINA 0

MINNESOTA 3 DALLAS 2

EDMONTON 4 NASHVILLE 0

CHICAGO 5 SAN JOSE 4

COLORADO 3 NEW JERSEY 1

VEGAS 6 CALGARY 1

VANCOUVER 7 ARIZONA 1

COLLEGE BASEBALL SCOREBOARD

GEORGETOWN 14 BUTLER 8

DUKE 15 NOTRE DAME 5

PURDUE FORT WAYNE 9 NORTHERN KENTUCKY 5

COLLEGE SOFTBALL SCOREBOARD

CLEMSON 3 NOTRE DAME 2

TOP NATIONAL SPORTS NEWS/RELEASES

Report: Murray pulls extension proposal, hasn’t had offer from Cardinals

The drama surrounding Kyler Murray’s future with the Arizona Cardinals could be set to reignite.

Murray’s agent, Erik Burkhardt, informed the Cardinals several weeks ago that he was pulling his opening contract proposal off the table, sources told Tom Pelissero of NFL Network.

The quarterback reportedly has also yet to receive an extension offer from Arizona.

Other teams are closely monitoring Murray’s situation, added Pelissero. The NFC West club has insisted it doesn’t intend to trade the 2019 No. 1 pick.

Burkhardt announced at the end of February that he had submitted a proposal to Arizona to create “long-term stability” for the organization and Murray. He added the deal would “match the current quarterback market” while allowing the team to build a championship-caliber roster.

Friction between Murray and the Cardinals arose following the team’s playoff exit to the Los Angeles Rams.

The club was reportedly looking for more leadership out of the quarterback. Meanwhile, Murray apparently felt the Cardinals used him as a scapegoat for their blowout postseason loss.

The 24-year-old also fueled speculation about his future by scrubbing all mentions of the Cardinals from his Instagram account in early February.

Murray is set to earn around $5.5 million in the fourth year of his rookie contract.

Packers address receiving issues by signing Sammy Watkins

GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) Sammy Watkins is heading to Green Bay as the Packers attempt to rebuild their receiving corps after trading All-Pro Davante Adams.

General manager Brian Gutekunst Thursday announced the signing of Watkins. The Packers have needed to upgrade at receiver since trading Adams to the Las Vegas Raiders for a first-round pick and a second-round selection in the draft at the end of the month.

Watkins, who turns 29 in two months, was drafted by Buffalo in 2014 with the No. 4 overall pick after a stellar career at Clemson. He has 348 catches for 5,059 yards and 34 touchdowns, but much of that production came early in his career before he was hampered by injuries.

Watkins caught 65 passes for 982 yards and six touchdowns as a rookie, and he followed that up with 60 receptions for 1,047 yards and nine touchdowns in 2015.

But he has exceeded 600 yards receiving just once in the six seasons since. He hasn’t caught more than three touchdown passes in a season since 2017, when he scored eight times with the Los Angeles Rams. Packers coach Matt LaFleur was the Rams’ offensive coordinator during that 2017 season.

Watkins caught 27 passes for 394 yards and only one touchdown last season with the Baltimore Ravens, his fourth NFL team. He previously played for Buffalo (2014-16), the Rams (2017) and the Kansas City Chiefs (2018-20).

The move reunites Watkins with Packers receivers coach/passing game coordinator Jason Vrable, who worked with the Bills in a variety of roles from 2013-16. Vrable was an offensive quality control coach, assistant quarterbacks coach and interim running backs coach with Buffalo.

WR A.J. Green returns to Arizona Cardinals on 1-year deal

TEMPE, Ariz. (AP) Receiver A.J. Green is coming back to the Arizona Cardinals on a one-year deal.

The seven-time Pro Bowler played in 16 games last season, catching 54 passes for 848 yards and three touchdowns. The 33-year-old is expected to be the team’s No. 2 option next to three-time All-Pro DeAndre Hopkins.

Contract terms were not immediately available.

Green joined the Cardinals last season after playing his first 10 seasons with the Cincinnati Bengals. His first season was a mixed bag. He was a big piece of the offense during the team’s 10-2 start but wasn’t as productive down the stretch when Arizona lost four of five games.

Seahawks re-signing Geno Smith to reported 1-year deal worth up to $7M

The Seattle Seahawks are re-signing quarterback Geno Smith, he told Josina Anderson of CBS Sports.

Smith is finalizing a one-year deal worth up to $7 million, a source told ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler.

The veteran signal-caller joins a quarterback room that includes Drew Lock and Jacob Eason.

Smith spent the last three seasons in Seattle as the primary backup to Russell Wilson. But with Wilson now in Denver following a blockbuster move to the Broncos, Smith could be set to compete with Lock – who joined the Seahawks as part of the Wilson trade – for the team’s starting job.

Head coach Pete Carroll said in March that Smith would likely enter the offseason atop the depth chart if he re-signed, according to Bob Condotta of the Seattle Times.

The NFC West club is also widely expected to target a quarterback early in the draft.

Smith, a 2013 second-round pick of the New York Jets, started three games for the Seahawks in 2021 while Wilson was sidelined with a finger injury. He led Seattle to a 1-2 record while throwing for 702 yards, five touchdowns, and one interception.

Malik Willis, Matt Corral only QBs attending NFL draft

NEW YORK (AP) Quarterbacks Malik Willis and Matt Corral are among 21 prospects who will attend the NFL draft in Las Vegas this month.

Ohio State wide receivers Chris Olave and Garrett Wilson will be there along with two more wideouts. Alabama is also sending two players: wide receiver Jameson Williams and offensive lineman Evan Neal. Georgia leads the way with three players: defensive linemen Jordan Davis and Devonte Wyatt and linebacker Nakobe Dean.

Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson, who is projected as the potential No. 1 pick, is one of six defensive linemen headed to Vegas.

The draft begins with the first round on April 28. It’s being held in Nevada for the first time.

Willis had a dazzling NFL combine after starring at Liberty. He showed off an exceptionally strong arm on deep throws. Corral threw at the Ole Miss pro day after he didn’t participate in throwing or workouts at the combine while recovering from a right ankle injury sustained early in the Sugar Bowl against Baylor.

Other prospects confirmed to appear at the draft are: Mississippi State offensive lineman Charles Cross, North Carolina State offensive lineman Ikem Ekwonu, Cincinnati cornerback Sauce Gardner, Washington cornerback Kyler Gordon, Notre Dame safety Kyle Hamilton, Boston College offensive lineman Zion Johnson, Florida State defensive end Jermaine Johnson, Purdue defensive end George Karlaftis, Utah linebacker Devin Lloyd, Southern California wide receiver Drake London, and Oregon defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux.

Report: Luka likely out Game 1 vs. Jazz with calf strain

Luka Doncic is expected to be sidelined for the Dallas Mavericks’ series opener against the Utah Jazz on Saturday due to a calf strain, sources told Shams Charania of The Athletic.

Doncic suffered the injury in the third quarter of Dallas’ final game of the regular season against the San Antonio Spurs on Sunday.

The 23-year-old is without a definitive timetable after undergoing an MRI on Tuesday.

Doncic tallied 28.4 points, 9.1 rebounds, 8.7 assists, and 1.2 steals through 65 regular-season appearances in 2021-22. The Mavericks split their season series against the Jazz at two games apiece, though Doncic missed their Christmas Day matchup – a 120-116 win by Utah – due to protocols.

Dallas is attempting to advance past the first round of the Western Conference for the first time since 2011 when it won its only NBA championship in franchise history.

Stephen Curry optimistic about returning for Game 1

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Stephen Curry threw down a two-handed slam dunk during practice, then said he was optimistic about his chances of being on the court again for Golden State’s playoff opener Saturday against Denver.

Curry took a key step in his recovery from a sprained ligament in his left foot when he scrimmaged Thursday. If he plays in Game 1, “for sure I’ll start,” Curry said.

“I see the light at the end of the tunnel,” Curry said after an extensive, hours-long workout.

The reigning scoring champion participated in three six-minute stretches in full team scrimmaging work then his full individual shooting routine, too. Game 2 in the best-of-seven series is scheduled for Monday.

Coach Steve Kerr also is hopeful of having Curry in the opener against the Nuggets at Chase Center. Curry’s foot is still tender four weeks later and he also dealt with a bone bruise that had him in a walking boot.

“There’s a confidence that the whole team gets when Steph is playing,” Kerr said. “And then I think there’s a confidence that comes with the continuity and familiarity of groups that have been together and been through a lot of experience, playoff experiences together.”

It would be the first time all season the Warriors’ four postseason veterans are healthy and available – Curry, Draymond Green, Andre Iguodala and Klay Thompson.

“Steph looked like himself. He just gives everybody a lift, just his presence on the court,” Thompson said. “Great to have him out there.”

The 34-year-old Curry was injured March 16 at home against Boston and Golden State went 6-6 without him, though the Warriors found their rhythm and won the final five regular-season games.

Curry has long shown a knack for being able to come back from injuries and immediately return to dominant form.

“It’s just who he is on a human level, it’s the wealth of expertise and confidence built over time,” Kerr said.

Wolves’ Beverley fined again; $30K for interview profanity

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) Minnesota Timberwolves guard Patrick Beverley was fined $30,000 by the NBA on Thursday for what the league declared “inappropriate statements,” including the “egregious use of profanity” in a media interview and social media post following the team’s play-in game victory.

Beverley was especially emotional after the Timberwolves beat the Los Angeles Clippers 109-104 on Tuesday. He played the last four seasons for the Clippers and confidently predicted upon arrival in Minnesota that the Timberwolves would make the playoffs.

Beverley was just fined $25,000 by the NBA on Tuesday for improper conduct toward a game official. He was ejected from Minnesota’s final regular-season game on Sunday for receiving two technical fouls, which were levied against him for complaining about calls and non-calls.

The Timberwolves earned the No. 7 seed in the Western Conference and play at Memphis on Saturday in Game 1 of their first-round series.

Bridges fined $50K for hitting fan in face with mouthpiece

The NBA fined Charlotte Hornets forward Miles Bridges $50,000 for striking a fan with his mouthpiece during Wednesday’s play-in loss to the Atlanta Hawks, the league announced.

Bridges was heading toward the locker room after being ejected with two quick technical fouls just before the midway mark of the fourth quarter. However, as he approached the tunnel, he appeared to take exception with a fan by the railing and threw his mouthpiece in their direction. Instead, he hit a separate young spectator standing nearby in the face.

Bridges expressed remorse for the incident postgame, saying he hoped to connect with the young woman in order to apologize personally. Both Bridges and the Hornets have attempted to reach out to the girl but have yet to hear back, according to The Charlotte Observer’s Rod Boone.

Bridges added Wednesday that he was prepared to accept any punishment handed down from the league for the incident.

The $50,000 fine is the maximum the NBA can levy against a player under the current collective bargaining agreement.

Report: Simmons could debut in Game 4 of 1st round

Ben Simmons could make his Brooklyn Nets debut as soon as Game 4 of the team’s first-round series against the Boston Celtics, reports ESPN’s Brian Windhorst.

Simmons has yet to participate in five-on-five practice but is targeting a return to the court in Games 4, 5, or 6, according to Windhorst.

Reports emerged Sunday that Simmons could play in the first round of the playoffs, but head coach Steve Nash said Tuesday he had “no idea” when the Australian could return.

Simmons has gradually ramped up his workload in practice after suffering a back injury near the start of his rehab process following his trade from the Philadelphia 76ers in February. He hasn’t played in an NBA game since last June.

The all-league defender would bring size and playmaking to a team heavily centered around stars Kevin Durant and Kyrie Irving.

However, Simmons’ lack of aggressiveness and poor free-throw shooting in his last playoff appearance created a rift with the 76ers that contributed to his holdout from the organization this season.

Simmons averages 13.9 points, 8.1 rebounds, and 7.1 assists over 34 career postseason appearances while shooting 57% from the field and 52% from the free-throw line.

Blue Jays OF Hernández goes on IL with left oblique strain

NEW YORK (AP) Toronto Blue Jays outfielder Teoscar Hernandez was placed on the 10-day injured list Thursday with a left oblique strain.

Hernandez was pulled from Wednesday’s 6-4 win over the Yankees with left side discomfort, and an MRI revealed the strain.

“You never know with obliques but I don’t think it’s as bad as we thought it would be,” manager Charlie Montoyo said before the Blue Jays concluded a four-game series at Yankee Stadium.

Hernandez grounded out to second base in the sixth inning and left the field in pain. He slammed his helmet as he made his way down the dugout tunnel back to the clubhouse.

The 29-year-old was a first-time All-Star in 2021, when he hit .296 with 32 homers, 116 RBIs and an .870 OPS. He’s finished in the top 20 of AL MVP voting each of the past two seasons and is 6-for-19 with one homer and three RBIs in the first week of the season.

In the pandemic 2020 season, Hernandez missed 10 games with an oblique injury in September.

“We’re going to be careful,” Montoyo said. “He’s done it before. He knows what it feels like. So whenever he feels ready.”

Montoyo said recent acquisitions Raimel Tapia and Bradley Zimmer would see time in right field. He also said George Springer could slide over from center field.

In a corresponding roster move, the Blue Jays recalled infielder Gosuke Katoh from Triple-A Syracuse.

Pirates agree to $13.5M. 2-year deal with All-Star Reynolds

PITTSBURGH (AP) No salary arbitration hearing for Bryan Reynolds this year, and that is more than fine with him.

The All-Star center fielder has agreed to a two-year deal with the Pittsburgh Pirates worth $13.5 million. The contract, announced Thursday, will pay Reynolds $6.75 million per season.

Reynolds and the Pirates were scheduled to go to arbitration after failing to come to an agreement on a one-year deal for 2022. Reynolds asked for $4.9 million, with Pittsburgh countering with $4.25 million.

“I always hoped this would be the outcome and it was the outcome, so I’d say this was a win-win,” Reynolds said. “I don’t think anybody ever wants to go to a hearing. For me, personally, I love Pittsburgh. I love my teammates and everything like that. To knock it out quickly like we did and to land where we’re at, I think it worked out really well.”

The 27-year-old Reynolds has blossomed with the Pirates after coming over in the January 2018 trade that sent 2013 NL MVP Andrew McCutchen to San Francisco. Reynolds reached the majors in 2019 and moved to center field in 2021, hitting .302 with 24 homers and 90 RBIs and becoming a finalist for a Gold Glove.

Reynolds is batting .227 with one home run in five games so far this season for Pittsburgh. The Pirates are off to a 2-3 start heading into Thursday night’s game against Washington.

The agreement comes two days after Pittsburgh signed third baseman Ke’Bryan Hayes to an eight-year, $70 million contract.

Hayes was happy to see Reynolds’ contract situation get resolved.

“It’s awesome,” Hayes said. “That’s part of the reason I signed. I feel like we’re moving in the right direction. It’s amazing to have a guy like that, middle of the order-type of guy. He’s expressed that he wants to stay here. It’s awesome to get a guy like that, keep him here for two years.”

AP exclusive: MLB average salary up 5.9% after lockout

NEW YORK (AP) The average salary in the major leagues rebounded to $4.4 million on opening day, boosted by a frenzy of free agent signings before and after the 99-day lockout, according to a study of baseball contracts by The Associated Press.

New York Mets pitcher Max Scherzer set a season record at $43.3 million, topping the previous mark established last year by Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Trevor Bauer at $38 million. Scherzer earns more than all the current players on the Baltimore Orioles combined.

The average of $4,414,184 was up 5.9% from the $4,167,164 at the start of last season and just below the record of $4,451,508 set in 2017, before the salary slide that angered players during the labor contract that expired last December.

Major League Baseball projects opening-day payrolls at about $4.5 billion, up almost 10% from the previous high of approximately $4.1 billion.

This year’s average would have been higher had active rosters not been expanded from 26 to 28 through May 1 following the shortened spring training. Factoring out the added players who are at the $700,000 minimum or close to it, the average would have been a record $4.62 million.

In addition, this year’s final average will be boosted by the new labor contract’s $50 million bonus pool for lower-salaried players not yet eligible for arbitration. Adding that figure and dropping the added 60 players, the average would be $4.68 million.

The average salary declines over the course of a season as higher-paid veterans are released and replaced by lower-salaried players.

The Los Angeles Dodgers top the major leagues at nearly $285 million, up from $241 million at the start of last season.

The Mets are second at $266 million in their second season under owner Steven Cohen, up from $186 million last year and $154 million in 2019, the last full season under the Wilpon and Katz families.

The New York Yankees are third at just under $237 million, followed by Philadelphia ($224 million) and San Diego and Boston ($212 million each).

World Series champion Atlanta is eighth at $184 million, and AL champion Houston is 10th at $174 million.

Oakland, which traded several stars after the lockout, is last at $48 million, down from $83 million last opening day and the Athletics’ lowest for a full season since 2008.

Other low payrolls are Baltimore ($58 million), Cleveland ($60 million), Pittsburgh ($62 million), and Miami (just under $80 million).

The Orioles totaled $38 million for their current players, with just over $20 million going toward the final season of the seven-year contract of first baseman Chris Davis, who retired after years of injuries and three straight sub-.200 batting averages.

Scherzer was followed at the top of the salary list by Angels outfielder Mike Trout at $37.1 million, Angels third baseman Anthony Rendon at $36.6 million, Yankees pitcher Gerrit Cole at $36 million. Minnesota shortstop Carlos Correa at $35.1 million and San Diego third baseman Manny Machado at $34 million.

Thirteen players earn $30 million or more, 48 earn at least $20 million and 133 at least $10 million. More than half the players, 514, earn at least $1 million.

After several years of widening, payroll disparity among players decreased slightly.

The 50 highest-paid players are getting 30.3% of salaries, down from 33.4% at the start of last season but still above the 28.6% in 2017. The 100 highest-paid are receiving 48.9%, down from 52.4% last year but above the 42.5% in 2017.

Of 975 players on opening day active rosters, injured lists, the restricted list and the bereavement list, 461 (47%) had salaries under $1 million, up from 46% last year. The minimum was raised from $570,500 to $700,000; 57 earned the minimum and 375 were below $730,000.

The median salary – the point at which an equal number of players are above and below – rose by $50,000 to $1.2 million, down from $1.4 million in 2019 and well below the $1.65 million record high at the start of 2015.

The AP’s figures include salaries and prorated shares of signing bonuses and other guaranteed income. For some players, parts of deferred money are discounted to reflect current values. For the 23 players remaining eligible for salary arbitration, the midpoints of the player requests and team offers were used.

Luxury tax payrolls computed by Major League Baseball are different, using average annual values of contracts on 40-man rosters plus about $18 million per team for benefits and extended benefits and a 1/30 share of the pre-arbitration bonus pool.

Freeman, Smith key 6-run 8th, Dodgers rally to beat Reds 9-3

LOS ANGELES (AP) Trea Turner singled in Freddie Freeman with the go-ahead run and Will Smith added a three-run homer in the eighth inning, rallying the Los Angeles Dodgers past the Cincinnati Reds 9-3 on Thursday in just the second night home opener in Dodger Stadium history.

Freeman led off with a ground-rule double to deep left-center off Justin Wilson (0-1). The crowd of 52,995 broke out in chants of “Freddie! Freddie!” Standing at second, Freeman took off his helmet, patted his heart with it and nodded his head in appreciation.

His family cheered in a suite for the slugger who returned home to Southern California in March when he signed with the Dodgers after spending his entire career in Atlanta.

Turner followed with a single to right off Tony Santillan, sending Freeman charging home to give the Dodgers a 4-3 lead.

After taking a 3-0 lead in the first, the Dodgers went begging until scoring six runs in the eighth when they batted around.

Justin Turner walked, Trea Turner took second and both moved up on Santillan’s wild pitch. After Max Muncy struck out, Smith blasted his shot to center. The ball hit the wall and then ricocheted off the glove of Jake Fraley and back into the park as the crowd erupted.

Ryan Hendrix came on and his wild pitch scored Chris Taylor. Mookie Betts’ RBI single made it 9-3.

Blake Treinen (1-1) to the win with one scoreless inning of relief.

Freeman ignited the Dodgers’ offense in the first with the first of five consecutive singles off Reds starter Luis Cessa. Trea Turner, Justin Turner, Muncy and Smith were part of the hit parade.

The Reds tied it 3-all on Brandon Drury’s two-out homer off David Price in the seventh. Drury came in as a defensive replacement for 2021 NL Rookie of the Year Jonathan India, who got hurt in the fifth.

The Reds closed to 3-2 in the fifth on Aristides Aquino’s two-run homer, just his second hit of the season. The left fielder struck out in his first two at-bats.

Dodgers starter Walker Buehler got yanked and promptly threw his glove against the dugout wall. He allowed two runs and five hits in 5 2/3 innings. The right-hander struck out four and walked three.

Cincinnati slugger Joey Votto doubled in the second, snapping an 0-for-11 skid.

Suzuki extends hit streak to 6, Cubs down Bryant, Rox 5-2

DENVER (AP) Seiya Suzuki stayed hot with an RBI double in a three-run first inning, Frank Schwindel homered and drove in two, and the Chicago Cubs cooled off Kris Bryant and the Colorado Rockies, winning 5-2 on Thursday night.

Suzuki extended his hitting streak to six games since joining the majors from Japan and drove in his 10th run when the Cubs collected five straight hits against Kyle Freeland (0-2).

“I’ll take him every day in my lineup,” Schwindel said of the two-time Japan Central League batting champ. “He’s just fun to be around. He’s a great hitter and he’s got a great eye, which I think is more impressive, adjusting to the pitching here.”

Bryant went 2 for 5 and lost a third hit due to Yonathan Daza’s baserunning gaffe as the Rockies had their four-game winning streak snapped in the opener of Bryant’s second series against his former team.

Bryant, the NL MVP when the Cubs won the 2016 World Series, was traded to San Francisco in July and signed a seven-year, $182 million deal with the Rockies after the lockout.

Schwindel had a run-scoring single in the first and went deep to right to lead off the sixth after the Rockies had sliced the lead to 3-2. Ian Happ’s RBI single made it 5-2 and chased Freeland, who allowed five runs and nine hits in 5 1/3 innings.

“Didn’t have good fastball command, so I had to rely on a lot of my off-speed stuff. And I got singled to death,” Freeland said.

C.J. Cron had an RBI single off Ethan Roberts, who also walked in a run after replacing Justin Steele with one out in the fifth. Keegan Thompson (1-0) took over and got Elias Diaz to fly to right with the bases loaded to end the inning. Thompson pitched 3 1/3 scoreless innings.

“I think it’s usually hard to have a really nice curveball in this climate and he looked like he had some pretty good depth to it,” Cubs manager David Ross said.

Mychal Givens pitched a scoreless ninth for his first save as the Cubs hung on despite hitting into five double plays.

Bryant singled to left in the third and ninth and hit a liner that fell in front of Happ in left in the fifth. But Daza thought the ball might be caught and was forced at third.

Bryant was the center of attention before the game.

“I want to do what I did there for another team,” Bryant said, while noting how few players he knows from the Cubs’ retooled roster. “I enjoyed my time in Chicago, but I don’t know if it warrants a press conference every time I play them.”

Irvin pitches into 7th, A’s take 3 of 4 from Rays, 6-3

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla, (AP) Cole Irvin pitched into the seventh inning,and the Oakland Athletics beat Tampa Bay 6-3 Thursday to take three of four from the Rays.

Irvin (1-1) allowed three runs and five hits in 6 1/3 innings as the rebuilding A’s under new manager Mark Kotsay improved to 4-3. Two of the runs off Irvin were in his final inning.

“I was throwing strikes, getting outs the way I know how,” said Irvin, who struck out two and walked none. “It was fastballs in and out. Change ups were the equalizer. That’s what I like to call that pitch because it allows me to throw more fastballs. Ultimately it was a good fastball day.”

Brandon Lowe homered for the Rays.

Cristian Pache had a two-out RBI single with two on in the second and scored on the play to make it 3-0 after the Rays misplayed his hit to center. Left fielder Randy Arozarena was charged with an error after the ball deflected off him while he was sliding, and the ball eluded center fielder Kevin Kiermaier and ended up on the warning track.

“The excitement he brings,” Kotsay said. “The energy. If he wasn’t running hard out of the box, that play may not happen.”

Rays manager Kevin Cash called it “a fairly unique play.”

“We got two defenders are elite at covering ground, and they just got tangled up,” Cash said. “Randy, the ball hit off his foot or leg or something and kind of ricocheted. So it was kind of a messed play from the beginning.”

Oakland scored 31 runs during the series.

“Again the fight, the character, it’s continuing to grow, the right direction,” Kotsay said,

Tampa Bay opened the second with three straight hits but scored only once on Manuel Margot’s single. Margot was thrown out trying to advance to second by right fielder Billy McKinney on Mike Zunino’s fly ball.

Irvin retired 14 batters in a row starting with Zunino’s double play. Harold Ramirez stopped the streak with a leadoff double in the seventh before Lowe ended the left-hander’s day on his two-run homer that cut the deficit to 6-3.

Dany Jimenez, the third Oakland reliever, worked the ninth for his first big league save.

Sean Murphy’s third-inning run-scoring double off Josh Fleming (1-1) gave Oakland a 4-1 lead.

Popups become adventures as Mariners beat White Sox 5-1

CHICAGO (AP) Jared Kelenic hit a two-run homer off the right-field foul pole in the second inning, and the Seattle Mariners stopped a four-game losing streak with a 5-1 victory over the Chicago White Sox on a windy Thursday when popups became adventures.

Chicago scored in the fifth after Adam Engel’s two-out popup was blown from the middle of the infield into foul territory behind third base and dropped. Engel then reached second when his popup to the first-base side came back and kicked off the mitt of catcher Cal Raleigh in front of the plate for an error.

Jake Burger followed with a popup over the mound that drifted to the left side and fell for an RBI single, bouncing off the arms of shortstop J.P. Crawford, who tried for a basket catch with his back to the plate on the infield dirt.

Logan Gilbert (1-0) allowed an unearned run and four hits in five innings, and four pitchers followed with an inning each of hitless relief.

Andres Munoz struck out the side on 14 pitches in the sixth, reaching 102.8 and 102.5 mph, Seattle’s fastest pitches since Statcast began tracking in 2015.

Drew Steckenrider worked around a walk in the seventh, Diego Castillo pitched a perfect eighth and Paul Sewald threw a 1-2-3 ninth.

Chicago didn’t get a hit after Tim Anderson’s two-out single in the fifth.

Cal Raleigh homered off Bennett Sousa in the eighth and Mitch Haniger against Jose Ruiz in the ninth, both taking advantage of 30 mph wind blowing out to left field.

Jimmy Lambert (0-1) gave up two runs and two hits in three innings of his season debut.

Kelenic’s home run on a 114 mph drive was his first this season.

King bails out Chapman, saves Yanks’ 3-0 win over Blue Jays

NEW YORK (AP) Michael King escaped a bases-loaded, no-outs jam created by Aroldis Chapman to preserve the New York Yankees’ 3-0 win over the Toronto Blue Jays on Thursday night after Luis Severino became the first pitcher to strike out Vladimir Guerrero Jr. three times.

Guerrero struck out four times in all for the first time in his career, a night after hitting three homers and going 4 for 4.

Handed a 3-0 lead, Chapman threw just four of 16 pitches for strikes. He walked the bottom three batters in Toronto’s order: Cavan Biggio, Santiago Espinal and pinch-hitter Matt Chapman.

Yankees manager Aaron Boone removed Chapman in favor of King, a 26-year-old right-hander.

“It’s a tough call,” Boone said of pulling Chapman. “I felt he could have gotten out of it.”

In the first save opportunity of his big league career, King struck out George Springer on three pitches, throwing a fastball for a called third strike.

“A ton of adrenaline and then knowing you have to execute,” King said.

With Guerrero in the on-deck circle, Bo Bichette took a called strike, then hit a soft liner to second baseman DJ LeMahieu, who threw to first to double off Chapman for the final out. The Yankees shut out Toronto for the second time in the four-game series.

“He was tremendous,” Boone said. “Obviously coming up against the guys he was coming up there, to do what he did there with Springer was huge and then gets ahead of Bo there and gets some soft contact.

“It made you nervous like it was headed for the outfield, but DJ looked like he got a really good read on it and turned a really nice double play on it.”

King’s escape act continued a strong start for New York’s bullpen. The Yankees closed out their first homestand with a 1.30 ERA through their first 34 2/3 innings.

Severino (1-0) allowed two hits in five innings, struck out six and walked two. Lucas Luetge, Miguel Castro, Clay Holmes and Chad Green followed before the ninth-inning drama.

Following a 95-minute rain delay, Severino got his first win as a starting pitcher since Sept. 22, 2019, also against Toronto. He threw 83 pitches, 18 more than his season debut on Saturday against Boston and he averaged 97.4 mph for 33 fastballs.

“Trevino, (pitching coach Matt) Blake and I did a very good job of trying to look at the weakness (of Guerrero),” Severino said. “He’s a great hitter. So every time you can contain him that’s great.”

Jose Trevino hit RBI singles in the third and fifth inning off Kevin Gausman (0-1) and Isiah Kiner-Falefa also had three hits and scored on Trevino’s hits. New York’s Nos. 8-9 hitters entered 4 for 43 with one RBI.

Giancarlo Stanton added an RBI groundout in the eighth.

Guerrero struck out in the first on a changeup, took a called third strike on a cutter on the outside corner in the third and whiffed on another Severino changeup in the fifth. He struck out on a slider from Holmes opening the eighth.

“You got to give Severino credit, he had the stuff today,” Toronto manager Charlie Montoyo said.

Gausman allowed two runs and six hits in 5 2/3 innings. He struck out nine and walked none.

Avalanche beat Devils 3-1, extend winning streak to 8 games

DENVER (AP) Artturi Lehkonen had a goal and an assist, Logan O’Connor and Andre Burakovsky also scored and the NHL-leading Colorado Avalanche won their eighth straight game, 3-1 over the New Jersey Devils on Thursday night.

Pavel Francouz had 26 saves for Colorado, which has a league-best 114 points with eight games remaining. The Avalanche are four points behind the 2000-01 team that set the franchise record for points in a season. That team went on to win the Stanley Cup, beating the Devils in seven games in the finals.

Colorado has a four-point lead over the Florida Panthers in the race for the President’s Trophy, awarded to the team with the most points. The Panthers have played one less game than the Avalanche.

“We’re still fighting for that first overall, as they are,” coach Jared Bednar said. “I mean, they’re scoring a bunch of goals every night so that they’re going to be a challenge for whoever they face in the first round.”

Jesper Bratt scored for New Jersey, which had its two-game winning streak halted. Andrew Hammond stopped 25 shots for the Devils.

Colorado seized control with a dominant second period, when it outshot New Jersey 14-4 and scored three times.

O’Connor made it 1-0 on a rebound at 3:07, his seventh of the season. Burakovsky scored his 22nd at 7:45 as Devils defenseman Dougie Hamilton knocked the net off of its moorings.

“I had to look at the replay to figure out what happened because I was confused when the net was on the ground after and didn’t know if it did go in or not,” Hammond said. “It was confusing and unfortunately it did count.”

Lehkonen’s 16th of the year and second with Colorado made it 3-0 at 14:35.

“It’s fun to get points, but as long as the team keeps winning it’s all it matters,” Lehkonen said.

Bratt’s 24th goal of the season at 11:39 of the third period spoiled Francouz’s shutout bid.

“We stepped up in the third period and we played harder,” Bratt said. “When we play a fast-paced game and don’t turn pucks over on the blue line and get them deep we create some scoring chances. You can’t do 20-, 30-minute good game against this kind of team.”

Tarasenko’s 5-point outing fuels Blues’ 6-2 win over Sabres

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) Vladimir Tarasenko is again showing he can shoulder the St. Louis Blues’ late-season playoff push.

The 30-year-old scored three times as part of a career-best five-point outing, and St. Louis rolled to its seventh straight win by beating the Buffalo Sabres 6-2 on Thursday night.

Putting behind questions of whether he could regain his prolific playmaking ability after missing much of the past two seasons with a nagging shoulder injury, Tarasenko is fueling the Blues’ surge up the standings.

“It’s huge,” coach Craig Berube said. “His work ethic and his competitiveness, he’s leading by example. That’s what I see.”

Tarasenko broke open a game tied at 2 by scoring twice in the second period, including making a tremendous fake to turn rookie defenseman Owen Power inside out for a breakaway goal. He then added an empty-netter to cap an outing in which he topped 30 goals for the sixth time in 10 seasons.

As if that wasn’t enough, the 30-year-old has scored the winning goals in each of the Blues’ past three outings to give him a career-best nine on the season.

“He’s playing out of his mind. We all know, Vladdy can play like that,” center Robert Thomas said. “We’ve just got to keep going and we’re going to have to rely on him a lot.”

Thomas had five assists to extend his point streak to 11 games, during which he has six goals and 23 points. With 53 assists, he became St. Louis’ first player to top 50 since Doug Weight had 51 in 2003-04.

Pavel Buchnevich, Brandon Saad and David Perron also scored for the Blues, whose run has them battling the Minnesota Wild for second place in the Central Division standings, and home-ice advantage in the first round of the playoffs.

Jordan Binnington stopped 35 shots for his second straight win after four consecutive losses.

The winning streak is the Blues’ longest since an 8-0 run from Feb. 18 to March 3, 2020, and they improved to 9-0-1 in their past 10.

Alex Tuch and Rasmus Asplund scored, and Craig Anderson stopped 22 shots for Buffalo. Power set up Tuch’s goal for the 2021 No. 1 draft pick’s first NHL point in his second career game since leaving Michigan to sign with the Sabres.

Tarasenko took Power to school on each of his first two goals.

The 19-year-old was caught out of position in allowing Tarasenko to score the go-ahead goal into an open right side of the net 7:18 into the second period. And Power was caught flat-footed when Tarasenko sped past him up the right wing to score 5:27 later.

Power accepted what happened as a learning experience with Buffalo playing out its final string of games after having already been eliminated from playoff contention.

“When you play against these top players, you have to learn a lot and you obviously make a lot of mistakes where you’re glad you’re able to learn from it,” he said. “Every game I’m going to get better and work on things. This is a step in the right direction.”

Tarasenko, who has six goals and 11 points in his past four games, and leading an offensively balanced Blues team which began the day ranked fourth in the NHL in goals, and has now outscored its past seven opponents by a margin of 35-14.

“When we do things right, it’s good. There’s a lot of times tonight that it was just OK, too,” Berube said, assessing his offense. “But it has the ability to be really good.”

Crosby, Guentzel lead Pens past Islanders, back to playoffs

PITTSBURGH (AP) The Pittsburgh Penguins have been a model of consistency, yet understand the difficulty of qualifying for the playoffs.

It’s still certainly a yearly expectation for an organization that prides itself on trying to win the Stanley Cup each season.

Jake Guentzel scored twice, Sidney Crosby also had a goal and the Penguins earned a playoff berth for the 16th straight season with a 6-3 victory over the New York Islanders on Thursday night.

“You expect it,” Penguins defenseman Kris Letang said. “The ownership, every year they try to make the best team as possible on the ice and it’s our duty to get us in the playoffs, as players.”

Guentzel scored his 36th and 37th goals and Crosby his 29th as the Penguins extended the longest active postseason streak among teams in major North American professional sports.

“Every year is a challenge,” Crosby said. “You need so many things to go right to give yourself an opportunity to play in the playoffs. It’s not given to you. It’s not easy. You appreciate those opportunities and everybody works hard to give us a chance to do that.”

Danton Heinen equaled a career high with his 16th goal, while Letang and Brock McGinn also scored for Pittsburgh, which tied Calgary for the seventh-longest playoff streak in the NHL since 1967. Tristan Jarry made 36 saves for the Penguins, who have won two of three overall. Pittsburgh has 11 wins and points in 15 of its last 17 against the Islanders.

Zach Parise, Anders Lee and Zdeno Chara scored for the Islanders, who have lost three of their last five following a four-game winning streak. Ilya Sorokin stopped 22 shots.

“This is a team you can’t trade chances with,” Islanders coach Barry Trotz said. “You have to execute. When you don’t, they can jump on you, and they do.”

Pittsburgh scored twice in the first nine minutes of the game for an early lead. Letang beat Sorokin at 4:59 with a wrist shot from the left point and Heinen scored on a breakaway at 8:52.

Heinen just left the penalty box after a slashing call when he took a lead pass from Brian Boyle and beat Sorokin with a shot between the legs. Heinen has points in seven of 10 career games against the Islanders. Boyle has points in nine of his last 10 home games and Teddy Blueger established a career high in points with a secondary assist.

Parise cut the deficit in half at 5:51 of the second period. He took a pass from Mathew Barzal off the rush and sent a shot behind Jarry to put the Islanders on the board.

Guentzel regained Pittsburgh’s two-goal lead at 12:10 of the second. Guentzel, on a two-on-one, took a pass from Crosby and beat Sorokin with a blocker-side wrist shot.

Crosby and Guentzel combined for Pittsburgh’s fourth goal at 10:44 of the third period, following New York’s neutral-zone turnover. There was a slick passing sequence between the two on a two-on-none before Crosby finished it off with a slap shot from in close, cementing Pittsburgh’s return to the playoffs.

“It’s hard to make the playoffs,” Sullivan said. “There’s a lot of good teams every season that don’t make it. The fact that this organization has done it 16 consecutive years is a remarkable achievement.”

TOP INDIANA SPORTS NEWS RELEASES

INDIANA HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL

Lawrence North Head Boys basketball coach Jack Keefer announced his retirement Thursday night. Keefer is the only coach in the history of Lawrence North Boys basketball.  He is the second all-time winningest coach at 865-338.  Keifer won state championships in 1989, 2004, 2005 and 2006. The Wildcats made another state finals appearance in 2021. Keefer was inducted into the Indiana Basketball Hall of Fame in 2007.

COLTS FOOTBALL (COLTS RELEASE)

The Colts on Thursday signed veteran safety Rodney McLeod. The 31-year-old McLeod brings 10 years of experience to the Colts’ secondary spent with the St. Louis Rams (2012-2015) and Philadelphia Eagles (2016-2021). Over 139 games (123 starts), McLeod has 16 interceptions, 36 pass break-ups, 11 forced fumbles, 593 tackles, 15 tackles for a loss and two sacks.

McLeod also started five playoff games for the Philadelphia Eagles, including all three in the Eagles’ Super Bowl run in the 2017 season. In Super Bowl LII, McLeod registered six tackles and broke up a pass to help the Eagles defeat the New England Patriots and bring a Lombardi Trophy to Philadelphia.

In 2021, McLeod started 13 regular season games and one playoff game for the Eagles while recording the second-best Pro Football Focus run defense grade of his career (73.2). He held opposing quarterbacks to a 62.7 passer rating when targeting him last season; since 2019, no safety has allowed a lower passer rating when targeted than McLeod:

Lowest passer rating allowed among safeties, 2019-2021 (min. 70 targets)

Rodney McLeod (48.6)

Harrison Smith (54.8)

Devin McCourty (55.5)

Micah Hyde (60.8)

Jordan Poyer (64.5)

Only the Jets’ Marcus Maye and the Steelers’ Minkah Fitzpatrick allowed lower completion percentages when targeted than McLeod (56.2 percent) in that same span as well.

McLeod was named the 2022 NFLPA Alan Page Award recipient for his impact on the community in Philadelphia. He was the Eagles’ 2020 Walter Payton Man of the Year nominee as well.

McLeod played his college ball at Virginia and entered the league as an undrafted free agent in 2012 with the Rams. He also brings extensive special teams experience to the Colts – he played over 100 special teams snaps in six of his 10 seasons.

INDIANA MEN’S BASKETBALL

Race Thompson announced on his Twitter account Thursday evening that he will return to Indiana for a sixth season. Thompson, a 6-8, 235-pound power forward, averaged 11.1 points and 7.7 rebounds per game in 2021-22.  Thompson enters his final season with 746 career points and 563 career rebounds.

INDIANA BASEBALL

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – After its come-from-behind midweek win, the Indiana baseball program will head east to take on Rutgers in a three-game series at Bainton Field. The series kicks off at 2 p.m. on Friday, April 15.

It will be the fourth three-game series between the two programs as Big Ten opponents, however, the two teams met four times last season in separate pod play events in Minneapolis and Piscataway, N.J. Indiana (13-18, 2-4 B1G) is looking for its first conference series win, while Rutgers (27-6, 8-1 B1G) has swept two of its three Big Ten opponents.

Gameday Info

Friday, April 15 (2 p.m.)

Probable Starters

IU: John-Biagio Modugno, RHP, Jr.

RU: Jared Kollar, RHP, Gr.

Live Video: bit.ly/3JDw32t

Live Audio: bit.ly/IUAudio

Live Stats: bit.ly/3jCwbos

Saturday, April 16 (1 p.m.)

Probable Starters

IU: Jack Perkins, RHP, R-Jr.

RU: Nathan Florence, RHP, Gr.

Live Video: bit.ly/3JCw8ne

Live Audio: bit.ly/IUAudio

Live Stats: bit.ly/3jCwbos

Sunday, April 17 (Noon)

Probable Starters

IU: Bradley Brehmer, RHP, Sr.

RU: Justin Sinibaldi, LHP, So.

Live Video: bit.ly/3EchbHr

Live Audio: bit.ly/IUAudio

Live Stats: bit.ly/3jCwbos

Quick Hitters

Indiana and Rutgers will meet for the 17th time on Friday afternoon in Piscataway, New Jersey. IU leads the all-time series with Rutgers, 13-3.

Redshirt-junior Matt Ellis has been seeing the ball well and leads the Big Ten lead in home runs. The left-handed hitter has also hit some mammoth home runs so far in 2022.

Rookie Josh Pyne had a 15-game hitting streak come to an end versus Northwestern, the longest stretch at IU since 2014. He is currently riding a 21-game reached base streak.

Freshman Brock Tibbitts took a pair of pitches out of the park in the IU’s season opener versus Miami (Ohio), but you don’t have to look far in the record books for the last rookie to hit multiple home runs in a game.

Graduate student Tyler Doanes has been a table setter for IU and ranks among the national leaders in walks through eight weeks of the season.

Indiana has three alums on MLB rosters to start 2022 and saw a school-standard four student-athletes selected in the first 10 rounds of the Major League Baseball Draft in 2021.

Head coach Jeff Mercer owns 85 victories as the Indiana frontman and is poised to become the eighth IU skipper to reach 100 victories in the cream and crimson.

Scouting the Opponent

Rutgers is one of the hottest teams in the country with a 12-game winning streak entering the weekend, which is the second-longest active streak in the country.

The Scarlet Knights own a 27-6 overall record and are 8-1 in the Big Ten, coming off a series sweep at Nebraska last weekend.

As a team, Rutgers leads the Big Ten and ranks top 10 in the NCAA in average (.325), hits (391), doubles (83) and runs per game (9.6). The pitching staff leads the B1G in ERA (3.11), while its defense paces the conference in fielding percentage (.981).

Nick Cimillo leads the Big Ten and ranks No. 17 nationally with a .416 batting average. He also leads the conference in hits (50), runs (41) and total bases (86).

Friday night starter Jared Kollar ranks No. 18 nationally with a 0.86 WHIP with 42 base runners allowed over 46 2/3 innings of work.

Series Notes

In 16 previous meetings, Indiana is 13-3 against Rutgers, with 13 of those meetings coming in conference play.

Since the Scarlet Knights joined the Big Ten in 2014, Indiana owns a 10-3 record in conference games. The five meetings in Piscataway have come as conference foes, with IU leading 3-2.

The two teams also met on a neutral site during the 2018 season, a 7-6 win in Port Charlotte, Florida.

The first meetings between the two teams came in 1934 in Bloomington. IU won that contest, 6-4.

Of the 16 meetings, nine of them have been decided by two-or-fewer runs.

The highest scoring games in the series have come via the Hoosier offense, with back-to-back double-digit scoring games in 2019.

INDIANA SOFTBALL

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – The Indiana softball team will travel to Penn State this weekend for a series against the Nittany Lions. 

Date: Friday April 15-Sunday April 17

Location: University Park, Pa. 

Stadium: Nittany Lion Softball Park

The Schedule

Indiana (22-10, 5-4 Big Ten) at Penn State (23-15, 5-4 Big Ten)

Friday April 15 at 6:00 PM ET

Saturday April 16 at 3:00 PM ET

Sunday April 17 at 12:00 PM ET

Twitter Updates: @IndianaSB

Live scoring

B1G Plus Video

Series History

Indiana leads the all-time series history 44-28. The Hoosiers have won 10 of the last 11 games against Penn State. 

Scouting the Opponent

After going 7-34 in the 2021 season the Nittany Lions are 23-15 in 2022 and 5-4 in Big Ten games. In their most recent game Penn State beat Michigan 3-2 in Ann Arbor. Penn State ranks fourth in the Big Ten in pitching with a team era of 2.79. The Nittany Lion ace Bailey Parshall has pitched in 136.2 inning. The next most on the staff is 72.2 innings. Parshall ranks third in the Big Ten in era at 1.54 and third in opposing battering average at .183. Offensively Cassie Lindmark leads Penn State with a .411 batting average and a .521 on base percentage.

Last Time Out

The Hoosiers picked up their first Big Ten series with a sweep of Rutgers. In the first game the Hoosiers came back from down 4-2 with a three-run fifth inning. In the second game the Hoosiers trailed again 2-1 and came up with a four-run inning to secure a 5-4 win. On the final day Indiana put up 11 runs including a six-run fourth inning. Cora Bassett and Taylor Minnick each hit .667 on the weekend. The pair combined for eight hits, two home runs and were walked a combined 10 times, including an intentional walk to Bassett.

Minnick Earns Big Ten Freshman of the Week

For the fourth time this season and third straight week a Hoosier was selected Big Ten Freshman of the Week. Minnick, a native of Bloomington, Ind., hit .667 on the weekend in the Hoosiers sweep over Rutgers. Minnick recorded four hits, five runs, a home run and was walked five times. Her slugging percentage was 1.500 and her on base percentage was .818. Minnick leads the Big Ten in batting average (.463) and on base percentage (.585), ranks second in OPS (1.414) and third in slugging percentage (.829).

Stanton Earns 700th Career Victory

With the Hoosiers 2-0 victory over Sam Houston State on March 19 IU head coach Shonda Stanton earned her 700th career victory. Stanton is in her 24th year as a head coach. Before arriving in Bloomington, she coached at Marshall for 18 seasons and is the winningest coach in Marshall history with 560 wins.

Copeland Freshman of the Week X3

On Monday April 4 Brianna Copeland earned her third Big Ten Freshman of the Week honor. Copeland provided fireworks in the Hoosiers 14-11 win over Kent State on March 30. Copeland hit three home runs to become the Hoosiers first freshman to ever hit three home runs in a game and just the third ever player to accomplish the feat. Copeland lifted the Hoosiers to victory with a walk-off three-run home run in the ninth inning of the game. Copeland is hitting .400 on the season with eight home runs.

The Long Ball

The Hoosiers have already surpassed their home run total from a season ago. Indiana has 40 home runs through 32 games this season. Last year the Hoosiers tallied 28 home runs in 44 games.

Attacking the Next 60 Feet

The Hoosiers rank fifth among NCAA DI softball teams in stolen bases at 2.56 per game. Tatum Hayes ranks third in the Big Ten in stolen bases with 20 and 22nd  in the NCAA. The Hoosiers have stolen 81 bases this season compared to 23 from their opponents. Lindsey Warick has thrown out nine runners trying to steal bases this season.

2 Out Hitting

The Hoosiers have had excellent production with two outs this season. Indiana has scored 65 runs with two outs and are hitting .306 with two outs. Cora Bassett and Brianna Copeland are each individually hitting .500 with two outs. The Hoosiers have tallied 10 games this season in which they have scored at least three runs with two outs.

Roster Breakdown

The Hoosiers graduated seven seniors from Team 48 and have added seven newcomers to the roster for this season. The 2022 roster features 20 student-athletes with 10 upperclassmen. Grayson Radcliffe returns for her final season. The 2021 All-Big Ten Second Team performer hit .315 with 39 hits, 25 RBI and 16 stolen bases last season. The Hoosiers also return First Team All-Big Ten and All Freshmen Team standout Grace Lorsung. Lorsung tallied 29 hits and 20 RBI in 2021.

Fresh Faces in Bloomington

The Hoosiers signed four freshmen and added three transfers. Making their collegiate debuts will be Heather Johnson, Kinsey Mitchell, Brianna Copeland, Taylor Minnick and transfer Sarah Stone. Indiana added All-Big Ten student-athlete Cora Bassett from Purdue and Lindsey Warick from Missouri.

Jenkins Transitions into Coaching Role

The Hoosiers all-time leader in career stolen bases Gabbi Jenkins is out of eligibility, but will still be impacting the Hoosiers this season. Jenkins has stepped into a role as volunteer assistant coach and will continue to mentor the Hoosier student-athletes. In her final playing season, Jenkins earned All-Big Ten First Team honors as she hit .331 with 24 stolen bases and set an Indiana record for single season doubles with 18.

Ford Comes Up Big in Opening Weekend

Senior Brittany Ford hit .625 over four games for the Hoosiers in their opening weekend of play. In eight at bats she tallied two home runs, two runs, five hits, three extra-base hits, seven RBI, 12 total bases and a 1.500 slugging percentage. In the Hoosiers first game of the season, against Louisville she came off the bench to pinch hit and hit a home run in her only at bat. In game two she got the start and hit a grand slam to help the Hoosiers to an 11-1 win over Florida Atlantic. It is the second straight season she has hit a grand slam. Ford had at least one hit in all four of

the Indiana games this past weekend. Ford collected RBI in three of the four games and had multiple RBI in two of the games.

Johnson Shines in Florida

Freshman Heather Johnson made her first career start on Feb. 26 against No. 3 Florida State. Johnson retired 15 of the 20 batters she faced and had 4 strikeouts. She helped the Hoosiers to a 1-0 lead through five innings. The next day Johnson earned her first victory with a complete game shutout of Hofstra.

BUTLER MEN’S BASKETBALL

Lithuanian freshman Simas Lukoskis is withdrawing his name from the transfer portal. Indiana University was among the schools pursuing Lukosius. He averaged 6.8 points and 3.3 rebounds in 22 minutes per game.

BUTLER BASEBALL

INDIANAPOLIS – The Georgetown Hoyas scored 14 runs off 14 hits Thursday afternoon to collect a 14-8 victory over the Butler Bulldogs. The two teams combined for 29 hits on the day with Butler recording 15 of their own. In the end, Georgetown would move to 21-13 while Butler would slide to 15-19.

Nolan McCarthy was great for Georgetown over the first six innings of the game. He struck out 11 and didn’t issue a single walk. Kollyn All would take McCarthy deep to left in the second inning to give BU a quick 1-0 lead and the Bulldogs would score again in the third off a James Gargano RBI single. Those would be the only two runs to hit McCarthy’s line as he secured his fourth win of the year.

The Georgetown offense got a lift from second baseman Ethan Stern. The three-hole hitter went 2-for-3 with two walks a run scored and a team-best six RBI. Michael Eze was yet another Hoya with a multi-RBI game. Eze was equally as impressive in the field making two great catches in centerfield.

The two teams took a 2-2 tie into the fifth inning, but that is when the game started to take shape. Georgetown scored four in the fifth, three in the seventh and five in the eighth to grab full control of the contest. The Bulldogs did plate six runs in the bottom of the ninth inning. Kyle Van Liere highlighted that charge going 2-for-2 with two RBI and a run scored.

On the mound for Butler, Cory Bosecker tossed 4.1 innings and struck out six before leaving the mound. Jon Vore, Benji Downs, Austin Andrishok and Dawson Taylor would also see time on the rubber.

These two teams will meet again Friday afternoon for a 4 PM first pitch.

BALL STATE BASEBALL

MUNCIE, Ind. – The Ball State baseball team returns to the friendly confines of the Ball Diamond at First Merchants Ballpark Complex on Friday for game one of a four-game series against Mid-American Conference foe Akron.

Ball State enters the weekend 18-12 overall and 12-2 in conference play after a four-game stint at No. 13/21 Oregon. The Cardinals ended the series 1-3 against the Ducks, but had a chance to win all four games. Akron enters this weekend with a 10-21 record and an 8-12 MAC mark. The Zips split their weekend series with the Western Michigan Broncos, 2-2.

The Wright Stuff

Amir Wright has reached base safely in 29 of the 30 games this season. He has 16 walks and has scored 26 runs, both lead the team. He has added six doubles, four stolen bases, three triples, and one home run. Wright is currently tied for 23rd in the nation as the toughest to strikeout and is second in the MAC with a strikeout average of 12.8. He has struck out just nine times in 96 at bats.

Power Bats

The Cardinal offense features 12 guys that have combined for 33 home runs. BSU is tied for 87th in the NCAA in home runs and are third in the MAC. The team has produced 172 RBIs and has produced 185 runs.

Above Average Hitters

Zach Cole leads the team with a .333 average and has a team-best four triples. Cole has produced 10 runs, drove in eight runs, three home runs, and has two doubles with five walks. Cole is second on the team with a .580 slugging percentage. Wright is tied second on the team with a .330 batting average. Nick Powell has bolstered a .330 average, tied for second on the team. He is second on the team with 23 RBIs. Powell has scored 25 runs, is second on the team in doubles with eight and has hit two home runs. Trenton Quartermaine currently has a .315 average. He leads the team with eight home runs and RBIs with 30. He also has the best slugging percentage of the Ball State attack with a .602 slugging percentage. He is third on the team with seven doubles. Quartermaine has been walked 20 times. Matthew Rivera enters the weekend with a .313 batting average. He has driven in 22 runs, notched three home runs, three doubles, and scored nine runs. Rivera has a slugging percentage of .493.

Strikeout Staff

The Ball State pitching staff is tied for 28th in the NCAA and leads the MAC in strikeouts per nine innings with 10.4.

Solid Staff

Trennor O’Donnell is projected to get the start in game one against the Zips and enters the weekend with a 3-2 record. He has produced 34 strikeouts and a 6.27 ERA in 33 innings. He has a WHIP of 1.45. Tyler Schweitzer has a team-high 52 strikeouts in 42 2/3 innings of work. He is tied for the team lead in wins with a 4-2 record. He boasts an ERA of 3.16 and a WHIP of 1.20. Schweitzer is expected to get the ball in game two of the series. Ty Johnson is the scheduled starter in game three and he enters tied for the team lead in wins with a 4-2 record. Johnson has tallied 39 strikeouts in 39 innings of work with an ERA of 6.00 and a WHIP of 1.15. Sam Klein, Ty Weatherly, Ryan Brown, and Nate Dohm have 20 or more strikeouts with 28, 25, 25, and 22, respectively. The pitching staff is tied for 23rd in the NCAA with 7.81 hits allowed per nine innings, which leads the MAC.

Kloser Klein   

Klein solidified his role as a closer as he has six saves, which is tied for 23rd in the NCAA and leads the MAC. He has struck out 28 batters in 19 2/3 innings on the mound. Opponents are hitting just .162 against him, which is the best on the team.

Possible Starting Matchups (subject to change)

Friday: Trennor O’Donnell (RHP) vs. Taed Heydinger (RHP)

Saturday: Tyler Schweitzer (LHP) vs. Anthony Fett (LHP)

Saturday: Ty Johnson (RHP) vs. Jackson Hickert (RHP)

Sunday: TBA vs. TBA

Weekend Schedule

Friday: 3 p.m.

Saturday: Noon

Saturday: 3:30 p.m.

Sunday: 1 p.m.

*Times and locations are subject to change

Cardinals vs. Zips: The Series

Ball State enters the series with a 36-23 record against Akron. Last season, the Cardinals swept the four-game series at Akron. BSU has won the last five meetings between the two programs. Ball State is 14-9 at home against Akron. The Cardinals are 18-8 against the Zips under Head Coach Richard Maloney.

Scouting Akron

Taed Heydinger is slated to get the start in game one for the Zips. Heydinger comes into the series with a 2-5 record with an ERA of 6.64. He has a team-high 31 strikeouts in 39 1/3 innings of work. Anthony Fett has an ERA of 5.85 and an 0-5 record. Fett is scheduled to pitch the first game of the doubleheader on Saturday. He is second on the team with 25 strikeouts and leads the staff with 40 innings pitched. Jackson Hickert is the probable starter for the second game on Saturday and has an ERA of 11.08 in 13 innings of work. Hickert has a 1-3 record and has 11 walks to 10 strikeouts. Tate Wargo leads the attack with a .310 batting average. He has 15 RBIs, scored 15 runs, four doubles, and has one triple. Cameron Benson leads the squad with 22 RBIs, five home runs, and is second on the team with a .304 average. He is tied for the team lead with six doubles. Nick Arrivo has an average of .300 and is second on the team with 33 hits. He has 19 RBIs and 12 runs scored.

BALL STATE FOOTBALL

MUNCIE, Ind. – Ball State’s 2022 campaign is kicking off two days sooner than previously announced as the Cardinals’ season opener has been moved to primetime Thursday night, ESPN and the Southeastern Conference announced Thursday.

Ball State is set to take on Tennessee in Knoxville Thursday, Sept. 1 at 7 p.m. ET on the SEC Network.

The meeting on Rocky Top is slated to be the first in series history. The Cardinals have played against members of the currently constructed SEC 10 times in program history with the latest being a trip to Texas A&M on Sept. 12, 2015.

Ball State is coming off back-to-back bowl appearances for the third time in program history. In addition, the Cardinals boast the most wins by any team in the Mid-American Conference over the last two seasons with 13.

BALL STATE MEN’S VOLLEYBALL

MUNCIE, Ind. – The Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association regular season champion Ball State men’s volleyball team had four players and its head coach recognized with postseason honors from the league on Thursday.

Senior outside hitter Kaleb Jenness was voted as the MIVA Player of the Year while also earning All-MIVA First Team honors for the third-straight season. Graduate senior setter Quinn Isaacson along with classmate opposite attacker Angelo Mandilaris were both tabbed to the All-MIVA First Team as well, marking it the second-straight season for Isaacson and the first for Mandilaris. Senior middle attacker Felix Egharevba was selected to the All-MIVA Second Team for back-to-back seasons and Donan Cruz was voted MIVA Coach of the Year. 

Jenness, was tabbed preseason All-MIVA prior to the start of the season. Jenness currently ranks second nationally in kills per set (4.69). He leads the Cardinals in kills (352), hitting percentage (.386) and points (5.14). Jenness has turned in a double-digit kill performance 19 times this season including a season best 31-kills against Purdue Fort Wayne on Feb. 17, as he tied Ball State’s all-time rally kills record. Jenness earned MIVA Player of the Week honors on Feb. 8 for his performance at BYU. Currently, Jenness leads the MIVA in kills per set (4.69) and in points (5.21). Jenness currently ranks 11th on Ball State’s all-time kills list with 1,042.

The nation’s leader in assists began the year on the preseason All-MIVA team and has earned All-MIVA First Team honors for back-to-back seasons. Isaacson has earned MIVA Player of the Week honors twice this year. The senior setter ranks atop of the NCAA and in the MIVA in assists per set with 11.48. He has dished out personal-best 907 assists for the season and currently ranks seventh all-time on Ball State’s career top-20 list with 3,055 assists. Isaacson leads the team in service aces with 15 and served up the winning ace against then top-ranked Hawai’i on Jan. 31.

In only one year of action, Mandilaris has made quite the impact on the Cardinals offense earning his first All-MIVA postseason honor. Mandilaris, recently was named MIVA and AVCA National Player of the Week on April 5 for his strong showing offensively but also defensively. He threw down 32 kills off 69 swings for a .333 hitting percentage to help the Cardinals move past McKendree and Lewis both in 3-0 sweeps. Mandilaris currently ranks second on the team in kills (259), second in service aces (11) and second in block assists (32). 

A force to be reckoned with on defense, Egharevba has been tabbed to the All-MIVA Second Team for the second time in his career. Egharevba leads the Cardinals with 60 blocks which includes 10 block solos and 50 block assists. He ranks at the top nationally in blocks per set and in the conference with 1.347. Just a year ago, Egharevba dominated play at the net with 16 total blocks against McKendree setting a Ball State men’s volleyball rally-scoring era record. This season, Egharevba has turned in two double-digit block performances with 10 against McKendree on Feb. 12 and 12 at NJIT on March. 11. Egharevba has 211 total blocks for his career at Ball State. 

In his first season at the helm of the Cardinals, Donan Cruz has restored Ball State men’s volleyball historic success and guided his team to the program’s first MIVA outright regular season championship title since 1997. The Cardinals shared a piece of the honor in 2002 as well. Under Cruz, Ball State has posted its first 20-win season since 2016 and a national ranking of seventh. Cruz started the year off hot guiding Ball State to back-to-back wins over the 2021 national champion and then ranked No. 1 Hawai’i. The Cardinals also earned a notable win against BYU this year. In conference action, Cruz helped the Cardinals defeat Lewis on the road for the first time 2010 while also winning the two-match series over Ball State’s longest rival Ohio State, a feat that hasn’t been accomplished since 2014. 

The Ball State men’s volleyball team enters this year’s 2022 MIVA Tournament as the No. 1 seed and will host No. 8 Quincy in quarterfinal round in Worthen Arena on Saturday, April 16 at 7 p.m. ET.

BALL STATE SOFTBALL

MUNCIE, Ind. – – This weekend marks the halfway point of the 2022 Mid-American Conference softball season and Ball State will look to build momentum for a late-season title run when it travels to Toledo this weekend for a three-game series at Scott Park.

The Cardinals (13-22; 6-5 MAC) and Rockets (8-26; 1-11 MAC) are currently scheduled to play a 3 p.m. contest Friday and a Saturday doubleheader starting at 1 p.m.

Ball State enters the week just outside the MAC Tournament picture as the sixth-ranked team in the league with its 6-5 MAC mark. With just the top four teams advancing to the tournament, BSU is half a game behind fifth-place Buffalo (6-4) and a game back of fourth-place Bowling Green (8-5). Miami currently leads the MAC with a 12-2 league record, followed by Ohio (9-5) and Central Michigan (7-4).

Toledo enters the week ranked 11th in the conference at 1-11, with its lone league victory coming in its MAC opener at Western Michigan by a score of 5-4 on March 19.

The Cardinals are coming off a very busy stretch, in which it played seven games in a seven-day span. The last of which was a Tuesday contest at IUPUI.

Despite going 3-4 on the run, Ball State outscored the opposition 50 to 41, including its largest run total of the season in a 13-3 (5) win to open the Northern Illinois series on April 5.

Overall, the Cardinals tallied a .318 team batting average over the seven games, led by a .474 mark from senior left fielder Faith Hensley. Hensley also led the team in runs (11), RBI (10), slugging percentage (1.368), on base percentage (.630), and home runs (4) over the course of the week.

Redshirt freshman McKayla Timmons and sophomore Kayla Lissy were not far behind with .471 averaged, with both collecting eight hits over 17 at bats. Lissy’s biggest hit was a walk-off solo shot to give BSU’s the 5-4 victory in Monday’s showdown versus Ohio.

In the circle, the Cardinals welcomed back junior Deborah Jones, who after nearly a month off, came back and did not allow a single earned run over four appearances. Over 13.1 innings of work, Jones tallied a 2-0 record, a 0.00 ERA, 16 strikeouts, and a .196 batting average.

SEASON SO FAR:

The Cardinals enter Friday’s game at Toledo with a 13-22 overall record, including a 6-5 mark in MAC play. While Ball State is 5-7 in true road games on the year, it has won two of its last three MAC road games. 

The Cardinals enter the Toledo series ranked second in the MAC and in the top 100 nationally with a .281 team batting average … Leading the way is senior left fielder Faith Hensley who is second in the MAC and in the top 25 nationally with her .440 average.

Ball State’s power has been there this season too, with the squad ranking 42nd nationally with a 1.12 home runs per game average … BSU’s sluggers have belted 38 home runs so far this season, with nine different players going yard.

Ball State’s ability to double teams up has been a bright spot for the defense so far this season, as the Cardinals entered the week tied for sixth nationally with 19 double plays so far this season … In addition, BSU’s 0.56 double plays per game average is fifth among the 293 ranked NCAA Division I softball programs.

The Cardinals have also been making moves on the base paths, ranking fourth among Mid-American Conference programs with 40 stolen bases … Leading the way is sophomore transfer Remington Ross, who is a 13-for-14 so far this season, with her 13 stolen bases ranking third among all league players.

SCOUTING TOLEDO

The Rockets enter the series with an 8-25 overall record, including an 1-11 mark in MAC play … Toledo has lost 13 straight games, with its last win coming in its MAC opener at Western Michigan (March 19) … On Tuesday, the Rockets suffered a 5-4 setback at Ohio State, scoring two runs in the top of the sixth to make it a one-run game.

Dayna Denner leads the Rockets with a .392 batting average, including 10 doubled and six home runs … Denner also tops UT with 23 RBIs and 18 runs scored … Aubrey Reed is second on the squad with a .264 average … Sophia Knight has thrown a team-high 86.2 innings, and made 22 appearances in the circle with 18 starts and a 6.38 ERA … She has a 4-12 overall record, while striking out 70 batters and owning a .305 batting average against.

As a team, the Rockets hold a .227 batting average with 19 total home runs … UT’s pitching staff maintains a 6.22 ERA and are allowing team to bat .339.

THE ALL-TIME SERIES VERSUS TOLEDO:

Ball State holds a 62-49-1 edge in the all-time series versus Toledo, with the teams splitting a four-game series in Muncie last season.

The Rockets took the first game of the series by a score of 6-4 on April 30, and won the opener of a May 1 doubleheader by the same score … Ball State responded with a 14-5 (5) victory in the nightcap, before winning the series finale by a score of 5-4 (8) courtesy of a walk-off RBI single from Faith Hensley in the eighth.

Overall, the Rockets hold a 27-26-1 edge in games played in Toledo, including wins in five of the last seven games … BSU did win the last game at Scott Park by a score of 2-1 (9) on May 5, 2018.

In last season’s series versus Toledo, senior second baseman Amaia Daniel turned in a brilliant performance, tallying a .545 average powered by two doubles and three home runs … She also drove in a team-high six RBIs, while scoring three runs … Overall, the team registered a .375 batting average against the Rockets, including six starters batting at least .313.

BALL STATE NOTES:

Senior outfielder Faith Hensley has picked up right where she left off last season, leading the Ball State offense with a .440 batting average this season … She has reached base safely in 32 of the 34 games she has played, including via a hit in 27 contests … She also leads the team with 34 RBIs, including five in the Feb. 19 come-from-behind win over Western Carolina, and runs scored with 36.

A 2021 NFCA All-Great Lakes Region First Team selection last season, Faith Hensley enters the Toledo series ranked second in program history (minimum 150 at bats) with a .399 career batting average … She is also currently second in career slugging percentage (.750), based on the strength of her 22 career doubles, 23 career home runs and three career triples … Hensley’s 23 career home runs also rank 10th on BSU’s career charts with her 15 so far this season tying as the fifth-most in a season in program history.

Sophomore shortstop Kayla Lissy registered BSU’s first triple of the season in the 3-2 (8) victory over Towson (Feb. 18), and added her second in the series opener against Kent State (April 1) … Last season, Lissy tied for the NCAA Division I lead with nine triples and added an inside-the-park home run for good measure.

Kayla Lissy is also off to a strong start on the base paths, ranking second on the squad with eight stolen bases … As a freshman, Lissy ranked fifth in the MAC with 18 stolen bases … Her 26 career stolen bases rank 20th in program history, while her .867 (26-for-30) stolen base percentage is fifth on BSU’s career charts.

Ball State’s sluggers have blasted 38 total home runs so far this season, with nine different players getting into the action … Faith Hensley leads the way with 15, which is second in the MAC and 10th nationally … Three other Cardinals have four home runs each, while three others also have three … Overall, 10 different players on the active roster have at least one career home run for the Cardinals.

Redshirt freshman first baseman / catcher McKayla Timmons is second on the squad with a .337 batting average, including a .471 mark over BSU’s last seven games … Timmons is second on the team lead with seven doubles, tied for second on the squad with four home runs, and tied for second on the team with 23 RBIs.

McKayla Timmons has also been BSU’s best clutch hitter so far this season with 19 of her 23 RBIs coming with two outs … She is also batting a team-best .486 (17-for-35) with two outs.

Junior third baseman Haley Wynn has also had a solid season to date, entering the Toledo series with a .298 batting average … She has reached base safely in 28 of BSU’s 35 games this season, including a team-high 15 straight contests earlier in the year … Wynn has had at least one hit in 23 games, including a perfect 4-for-4 effort versus Albany (Feb. 19) for her first career four-hit game … She also leads the squad with eight doubles and is second on the squad with 26 runs scored.

Sophomore outfielder Remington Ross enters the Toledo series ranked third in the league with 13 stolen bases … She started the season a perfect 13-for-13 before being narrowly thrown out in her last attempt … She’s also shown off her speed at the plate with seven bunt singles so far this year.

Overall, Ball State has stolen 40 total bases this season in 55 attempts … Last season, the Cardinals registered 62 stolen bases which was the 13th-highest single-season total in program history.

Junior pitcher Deborah Jones enters the weekend with 191 career strikeouts to rank 17th in program history … She needs nine more strikeouts to become just the 15th pitcher in program history to reach 200 career Ks … Jones has a team-leading 57 strikeouts over 49.1 innings of work this season.

Deborah Jones earned her 20th career victory versus Northern Kentucky on March 5, allowing just one run and four hits, while striking out a career-high 12 batters in the 2-1 victory … It was her first win of the 2022 season, to go along with her seven wins as a freshman in 2020 and 12 last season.

After missing nearly a month due to injury, Jones picked up her second win of the season last Tuesday at Northern Illinois in BSU’s 13-0 (5) victory … She allowed just four baserunners in the game (three hits and one walk) on her way to registering her fifth career shutout victory … Jones has a 22-13 career record, with the 22 wins tying for 19th on BSU’s all-time list.

Freshman pitcher Angelina Russo has been BSU’s go-to pitcher so far this season, entering the Toledo series with a team-high 88.0 innings of work … She has started 16 of BSU’s 35 games, while making 24 appearances … Russo also owns a 6-8 record and a 5.17 ERA against some tough competition … In fact, she earned the win at No. 18 Missouri (March 20), holding the Tigers to just seven hits and three runs (two earned) over 5.1 innings of work in the 4-3 victory.

Angelina Russo, who threw a complete game one-hitter to earn the second-game win against Kent State on April 1, also earned the complete game victory at Grand Canyon (March 12), while turning in solid pitching performances at No. 23 Arizona State (March 13), vs. Stanford (March 19), and vs. No. 14 Northwestern (March 20).

Ball State’s offense is really starting to find its grove, scoring a season-high 13 runs in a 13-0 (5) victory at Northern Illinois (April 5) … BSU’s previous season-best was 11 runs one game earlier in the 11-3 (5) victory over Kent State (April 2) … The Cardinals added an 11-0 (5) win over NIU in the opening game of an April 6 doubleheader at NIU, giving them three consecutive games in double figures … It was the first time since the 2019 season Ball State has scored double-digit runs in three consecutive games … That year they started the streak with an 11-3 (6) win versus Fordham (March 17) and followed with back-to-back wins over Akron by scores 14-6 (6) (March 22) and 13-1 (5) (March 23)

While the Cardinals did not get the win in the series finale at Northern Illinois, they scored eight runs in the second inning of the contest which is the most runs BSU has scored in a single inning this season … It was also the most runs Ball State has scored in a single inning since producing 10 in the fifth inning of the opening game of the May 12, 2021, doubleheader at NIU.

BALL STATE WOMEN’S BASKETBALL

MUNCIE, Ind. – Alex Richard (Avon, Ind./Avon), a transfer from Butler, has committed to play for the Ball State women’s basketball team for the upcoming 2022-23 season.   

“Alex comes to us with some great experience playing against a high level of competition,” Ball State head coach Brady Sallee said. “She will be ready to impact our program as a strong and physical big in this system. Her ability to score with her back to the basket is evident and I look forward to seeing her skill set flourish as we take advantage of her athleticism and strength. Alex is a perfect fit both on and off the court.”

Richard comes to Ball State after playing one year with the Bulldogs. At Butler, Richard saw action in 26 games while averaging 7.4 points, 4.3 rebounds and shot 45 percent from the field.  

She started her freshman campaign on a high note after scoring 20 points against No. 8 Indiana while shooting 10-of-13 from the field in Butler’s season opener.  

Richard closed out her freshman year with a total of 192 points, 113 rebounds, 28 assists, 15 blocks and 11 steals.   

Richard led the Bulldogs in scoring after registering 14 points against DePaul on two separate occasions. She was also just shy of a double-double after a nine-point, eight-rebound performance at Big Ten foe Illinois (12/12/21).   

Richard, a consistent threat on the court both offensively and defensively, added a season high three blocked shots against the Blue Demons. She grabbed eight rebounds and nine points versus Villanova (1/28/22) and led Butler with seven rebounds against Xavier (2/20/22).  

A four-year starter at Avon High School, Richard averaged 11.8 points, 8.7 rebounds and 2.9 blocks per game for the Orioles. Richard was named to the All-Hendricks County team three times during her career at Avon. Richard is a two-time Hoosier Crossroads All-Conference and First Team All-State honoree. She was also chosen by her team as a three-time captain for the Orioles.   

While at Avon, she etched her name into the Orioles’ all-time program record book for most rebounds in a single-game (18) and most rebounds in a single-season (218).  

NOTRE DAME SOFTBALL

The University of Notre Dame softball fell 3-2 in the series opening game with the 14th-ranked Clemson Tigers Thursday night at McWhorter Stadium. The Fighting Irish scored two runs early, but couldn’t hold off the Tigers in the bottom of the seventh as Clemson scored two to win it. The 21st-ranked Fighting Irish fall to 30-8 on the season and are now 9-4 in Atlantic Coast Conference action. Clemson improves to 32-10 and 10-6 in ACC action.

Payton Tidd started in the circle, throwing 6.1 innings. She scattered six hits and the three Clemson runs were credited to her, two of which were earned as she suffered the loss. Alexis Holloway came on in relief in the seventh, allowing a hit and getting an out.

The Irish offense was paced by a 2-for-3 effort from clean-up hitter Karina Gaskins. Jane Kronenberger, Miranda Johnson, Cassidy Grimm and Sarah Genz each added a hit in the contest.

Notre Dame got on the board in the top of the first inning, plating two runs. A walk and a hit batter with one out put two on. Gaskins chopped a single up the middle and legged it out, and the throw to get her at first was wild, allowing Clark to score from second and Sweet took third. With runners on the corners, Emily Tran, pinch running for Gaskins, ran the delayed steal to perfection, forcing a throw as she stole second and Sweet slid in at home ahead of the relay to take the 2-0 lead.

Clemson battled for a run in their half of the first inning. A lead-off single and a double put runners on second and third with no outs. A sacrifice fly to left brought a run in before Tidd buckled down and struck out two to keep the Irish in front.

The Irish threatened in the fourth, getting back-to-back singles to start the frame, but couldn’t find the play needed to add some insurance.

The 2-1 score held until the bottom of the seventh inning. The bottom of the Clemson lineup started the rally with back-to-back one out singles. Lead-off hitter Cammy Pereira chopped a single back to Brooke Marquez at short who fired home to hold the Irish lead. McKenzie Clark followed as she dropped a single off the end of the bat to right field to tie the game. An error led to the game-winning run as the Irish fell 3-2.

Up Next

The Irish and Tigers are back in action tomorrow evening at 6 p.m. for the second game of the three-game series.

NOTRE DAME BASEBALL

DURHAM, N.C. — The No. 4 Notre Dame baseball team’s (21-6, 8-5 ACC) nine-game win streak came to an end on Thursday afternoon, as the Irish fell to Duke by a score of 15-5 at Jack Coombs Field in the first of a three-game series.

Spencer Myers did the majority of the damage at the plate for the Irish, driving in a team-high three runs after going 2-for-5 at the plate. Jack Brannigan and Danny Neri each drove in one run on the day. Brooks Coetzee III scored twice in the series opener.

HOW IT HAPPENED

Duke struck first, scoring three in the bottom of the first and then plated another run in the second to take an early 4-0 lead. The Blue Devil bats stayed hot, tacking on two more in the third to increase the advantage to 6-0.

The Irish bats came to life in the top of the fifth, as Neri drove in the first run of the day with a single through the left side to drive in Jack Zyska. After a Zack Prajzner walk loaded the bases, Myers lined an RBI single through the right side to plate Neri and Coetzee. Jack Brannigan drove in the fourth run of the frame on a fielder’s choice to cut the host’s lead to just two at 6-4.

The Blue Devils responded in the bottom of the sixth, managing to put two runners across home plate to push their lead to 8-4.

Myers drove in his third run of the day on a sacrifice fly in the top of the seventh to make it an 8-5 game but Duke scored seven in the bottom of the eighth to secure the 15-5 win.

UP NEXT

Game two of the series is scheduled for 6 p.m. ET on Friday, April 15. The game will be streamed on ACC Network Extra.

NOTRE DAME VOLLEYBALL

SOUTH BEND, Ind. – The University of Notre Dame head volleyball coach Salima Rockwell announced the addition of Indiana-native Avery Ross for its incoming class. Ross, a standout at Pendleton Heights High in Pendleton, signed her National Letter of Intent to join Fighting Irish volleyball in the fall of 2022.

“We are so grateful to keep the tradition alive with the Ross family and Notre Dame.” Coach Rockwell said, “Avery is a high-flying, dynamic attacker that is so fun to watch. She gets on the ball fast and is as effective attacking from the back row as she is from the front row. She has an incredible work ethic and never takes a play off. It is incredibly important to us to keep the best talent in the state and we did just that with Avery. She is a perfect fit for our team and for Notre Dame. Welcome to the family, Avery!”

At Pendleton Heights, she led her team to four-consecutive Madison County Championships and an overall record of 98-33. In her career, she amassed 1,500 career kills and led the state with 597 kills as a senior where she earned second team All-State honors. Not just an attacking threat, Ross added 34 blocks, 34 aces and was second on her team with 274 digs in her final campaign. She also earned two Volleyball Athlete of the Year awards as recognized by The Herald Bulletin.

Ross competed with Munciana Volleyball during club play, one of the nation’s longest-running volleyball training programs.

Ross is the daughter of former men’s basketball monogram winner, Joe Ross.

NOTRE DAME WOMEN’S LAX

Date/Time: Saturday, April 16— 12:00 p.m.

Location:  Arlotta Stadium

Live Stream: ACCNX

Live Stats: Click Here

Twitter Updates: @NDWomensLax

#18 NOTRE DAME vs. MARQUETTE

Date/Time: Monday, April 18— 2:00 p.m.

Location:  Valley Fields/Milwaukee, WI

Live Stream: Youtube

Live Stats: Click Here

Twitter Updates: @NDWomensLax

FOR STARTERS

The Irish are back at Arlotta Stadium to take on first time ACC opponent in the Pittsburgh Panthers on Saturday April 16 at noon. Saturday’s contest will celebrate six senior class members and three graduate students.

Notre Dame will take to the road right after Saturday’s matchup for a Monday matchup with the Marquette Golden Eagles at 2 p.m.

There will be live stats available and the matchup will be streamed on ACCNX.

After 12 games, Madison Ahern leads the team with 39 goals.

Bridget Deehan established a new career high for the second time this season. She notched 19 saves in the matchup against North Carolina.

Madison Mote tallied a career high in goals and points against Duke with five goals, two assists, and seven points.

Maddie Howe notched a new career high against the Yale Bulldogs with seven goals.

Hannah Dorney leads the Irish with 21 caused turnovers and currently ranks fourth in the ACC with an average of 1.46 caused turnovers per game.

Bridget Deehan ranks second in the ACC in saves per game (8.85) and fourth in save percentage (.447).

Sophomore Lilly Callahan appeared in goal for the Irish against Detroit Mercy where she saved a career high six shots.

Freshman Ciara Mazzone made her way into play against Detroit Mercy and recorded her first collegiate career goal.

Notre Dame is coming off a 2021 campaign in which it finished 11-7 and earned an NCAA Tournament berth.

SENIOR SPOTLIGHT

Madison Mote will be graduating from the Mendoza College of Business with a degree in marketing. Mote has seen action in 41 games over her Irish career and has recorded 36 goals and 9 assists for 45 points. After graduation, Madison plans on pursuing a career in the marketing industry.

Mollie Carr is set to graduate from the Mendoza College of Business with a degree in finance. Carr has seen action in 25 games over her Irish career, and has recorded 22 goals. She has been named an ACC Top Six for Service award recipient. She serves as an Executive Board Member of the Student Athletic Advisory Council as the Leader of Service for all student athletes. After graduating in May, Mollie will be headed to New York City to work with Goldman Sachs as an Investment Banking Analyst.

Hannah Dorney is set to graduate from the Mendoza College of Business with a degree in business analytics. A 2022 captain, Hannah has played in 53 games with 71 ground balls and 44 caused turnovers. After graduating in May, Hannah will be returning to Notre Dame to earn a Masters of Science in Finance.

Meaghan Scutaro is set to graduate from the Mendoza College of Business with a degree in accountancy. Meaghan has recorded 20 caused turnovers and 20 ground balls in 43 career contests. Scutaro was named to the 2019 ACC All-Academic team and to the ACC Academic Honor roll three times. Meaghan, after graduation, will be pursuing a career or higher education in accounting.

Kirsten Scutaro is set to graduate from the College of Arts and Letters with a degree in marketing.  Kirsten has appeared in 11 games for the Irish. She was named to the ACC Academic Honor Roll three times and was named to the All-ACC Academic team in 2019. After graduation Kirsten plans on pursuing a career in marketing in New York City.

Cailin Field is set to graduate next month from the College of Arts in Letters with a degree in psychology. In 26 career games for the Irish, Cailin has tallied 11 goals and four assists for 15 points. Cailin has been named to the ACC Academic Honor roll for three seasons and was named to the 2019 All-ACC Academic Team. Next year, Cailin will be attending Pepperdine University to study for her masters in clinical psychology.

Diana Kelly, a 2022 captain, will graduate in May from the Mendoza College of Business with a masters degree in business analytics. An ACC Academic Honor Roll recipient, Diana has picked up 96 ground balls and caused 70 turnovers over her five year career. After graduation, Diana will be working for Accenture in Chicago.

Maddie Howe, a 2022 captain, will graduate in May from the Mendoza College of Business with a masters degree in business analytics. Maddie has recorded 170 goals and 68 assists over her five-year career. Howe is currently third in program history for career points with 238. She was named an All-American in 2019, and to the 2019 & 2020 Ta-waara-TAWN watchlist. In 2019 and 2021 Maddie was named to the All-ACC tournament team and the regular season All-ACC team. Howe was also named to the All-ACC Academic team in 2018, 2019, and 2021. Following graduation, Maddie will start her job as an Investment Banking Analyst at Bank of America.

Bridget Deehan, a 2022 captain, will graduate in May from the Mendoza College of Business with a masters degree in business analytics. Named to the 2022 preseason All-ACC squad and named a 2022 ACC player of the Week, Deehan has collected 409 saves and 25 wins in her five-year Irish career. Bridget was named to the 2022 Ta-waara-TAWN watchlist, named an Inside Lacrosse First Team All-American and Breakthrough Player of the Year in 2020, along with being a 2021 nominee for the Ta-waara-TAWN Award. She was also tabbed U.S. Lacrosse Magazine’s Preseason Goaltender of the Year in 2021. She was named an All-American in both 2020 and 2021. After graduation, Bridget will be working for Slalom Consulting.

IUPUI MEN’S BASKETBALL

INDIANAPOLIS – The IUPUI Athletics Department and head basketball coach Matt Crenshaw announced the signing of DJ Jackson (Mississauga, Ont./Montverde Academy) to a National Letter of Intent to join the Jaguars this fall. Jackson, a 6-foot-4 guard, played this past season at Montverde Academy and will be a true freshman, beginning this season.

“DJ’s a really quality basketball player and really quality young man,” Crenshaw said. “He’s a versatile and skilled player and is going to immediately help us in a number of ways. He’s got a really good midrange game and has range out to the three-point line. He’s a good finisher and can finish through contact. He played with a ton of confidence too, which helps make everyone around him better. Defensively, he’s going to be really good just because he plays with such a high basketball IQ. We’re excited to be adding him to the program and know that he’s going to make a major impact here.”

Jackson emerged on the scene through his play with UPlay Canada where he averaged 18.7 points per game during the EYBL. He played for Team Canada in the 2019 U16 Americas Championships, averaging 10.3 points and 3.2 rebounds per game over six games, helping Canada to a silver medal. He also played in the BioSteel All Canadian All-Star Game, the Canadian equivalent to the McDonald’s All-American Game, finishing with six points and 11 rebounds.

Jackson played this past season at Montverde (Fla.) Academy, following a long line of Canadians to have played at Montverde, which includes RJ Barrett. He helped Montverde capture a 2022 Prep National Championship, posting 29 points in the championship game, earning Second Team All-Tournament honors by On3.com. Earlier in the season, he helped Montverde win the Florida Sun Conference State Championship, tallying 33 points in the conference championship game.

Jackson becomes IUPUI’s sixth addition for next season.

2022-2023 Men’s Basketball Signing Class

Name    Pos.       Ht.          Hometown         Previous

Jlynn Counter    G             6-3          Oklahoma City, Okla.      Northern Oklahoma Enid

Cooper Dewitt   G             6-6          Pasco, Wash.      North Idaho College

Daylan Hamilton               G             6-3          Houston, Texas Triton College

DJ Jackson           G             6-4          Mississauga, Ont.             Montverde Academy

Amhad Jarrard   G             6-5          Indianapolis, Ind.              Mt. Vernon

Armon Jarrard   G             6-3          Indianapolis, Ind.              Mt. Vernon

INDIANA STATE FOOTBALL

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – Indiana State football season ticket membership renewals and new season ticket memberships are now on sale for the upcoming 2022 season.

Fans are able to purchase tickets at an early discounted rate through May 27. Season tickets will also be on sale at the Indiana State spring football game scheduled for April 30 at 1 p.m. at Memorial Stadium.

With the early discount, season tickets for the six Indiana State home football games start at just $50 for adults and $20 for youth. Faculty, staff, seniors, and members of the I-Club can purchase tickets for just $45.

Additionally, anyone who renews or buys a reserved seat in Section F will have the option to rent a seat chairback for the season. Chairback rentals are available for $20.

Indiana State will employ mobile ticketing as the default option for all home games during the 2022 football season, enabling contactless entry into athletics venues. Offering greater convenience and safety, fans can access their ticket online and transfer to family and friends. Fans will also have the option to get their tickets printed for an additional $5 charge.

For more information on season tickets, fans can contact Assistant Manager of Athletic Ticketing Austin Bishop by phone at 812-237-8972 or via email at Austin.Bishop@indstate.edu. Fans can also call 877-ISU-TIXS or email ISU-Tickets@indstate.edu. Fans have the opportunity to also buy or renew season tickets online by clicking HERE.

2022 Home Schedule

Thurs, Sept. 1 – North Alabama

Sat., Sept. 17 – Montana

Sat., Oct. 8 – North Dakota State

Sat., Oct. 22 – Illinois State (Homecoming)

Sat., Nov. 5 – North Dakota

Sat., Nov. 19 – Missouri State

INDIANA STATE VOLLEYBALL

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – Indiana State Director of Athletics Sherard Clinkscales announced Thursday that Ashlee Pritchard has been named the 10th head volleyball coach in Sycamore history.

Pritchard takes over the reins of the program following the departure of former ISU head volleyball coach Lindsay Allman after Allman accepted the role as the associate head coach at Florida State earlier this spring.

“I couldn’t be happier to have Ashlee lead our program,” Clinkscales said. “Her competitive success and proven leadership in developing student-athletes into productive citizens will continue to be the mantra of our program.  I look forward to working with Ashlee in bringing an MVC championship to Terre Haute.”

Pritchard comes to Terre Haute after spending the last 10 seasons as the head coach at Marian (Ind.), turning the Knights into an NAIA power. She compiled a 222-103 record during her time on the sidelines at Marian, including a 161-37 mark over the last six seasons and a 75-9 record in conference play over the last five seasons. Marian posted the only 30-win seasons in program history under Pritchard. She had three in the past five years. The Knights have finished either first or second in the Crossroads League each of the last five seasons.

Marian won four Crossroads League regular season titles and two conference tournament titles during her tenure, including a sweep of the conference championships last season. The Knights made the NAIA Tournament in each of the last five seasons, going 15-8 in the postseason and winning the first national championship in program history in 2019.

Pritchard developed 11 NAIA All-Americans and 42 All-Crossroads League selections during her time at Marian. Her coaching ability has been recognized on multiple occasions at the conference, regional and national level. Pritchard was named Crossroads League Coach of the Year four times, while also earning four AVCA Midcentral Region Coach of the Year honors. She was also named the 2019 NAIA/AVCA National Coach of the Year and was twice an AVCA “Thirty Under 30” Award winner.

“I am excited about Coach Pritchard joining our department and leading our volleyball team,” Indiana State Senior Associate Athletic Director for Business and Senior Woman Administrator Angie Lansing said. “I believe she has what it takes to move our program forward.”

In her most recent season on the sidelines, Pritchard led Marian to a 35-3 record during the 2021 season, including a 17-1 mark in conference play. It was the third 30-win season for Marian during Pritchard’s tenure, all coming since 2018. The Knights won the Crossroads League regular season and tournament titles, while also reaching the semifinals of the NAIA Tournament and finishing the season ranked fourth in the nation.

Pritchard turned the Knights into one of the premier programs of the Crossroads Leagues over the course of the last five seasons. Marian advanced to the NAIA Tournament every season from 2017-21, including a historic run to the national championship in 2019. Her 2019 team went 38-2, including seven wins in postseason play to claim the first volleyball national title in school history and finish the season ranked first in the nation. The 2019 season saw Pritchard named the NAIA National Coach of the Year and the National Tournament Coach of the Year.

Pritchard also led the Knights to their first 30-win season in program history in 2018 with a 30-7 record. Marian won the Crossroads League regular season title in four of the last five seasons, while also winning conference tournament titles in 2018 and 2021. Marian was ranked in each of the last 26 national polls to close Pritchard’s tenure, a streak that dated back to midway through the 2018 season and was among the NAIA’s top 10 active streaks.

During Pritchard’s tenure, Marian was one of the top teams in the nation when it comes to defending its home court. The Knights went 98-26 at home in her 10 years as head coach, including a 74-7 mark on their home court over the last six seasons.

Prior to her time at Marian, Pritchard spent three seasons as an assistant coach at Taylor University, where she helped lead the Trojans to a 103-24 record. Taylor won the Mid-Central Conference championship in all three seasons Pritchard was on the bench, amassing a 41-1 record in conference play. The Trojans won at least 30 games in each of Pritchard’s three seasons on staff, making three trips to the NAIA Tournament.

Pritchard was a four-year player at Taylor, where she was a part of back-to-back conference titles for the Trojans. She was a team captain her senior season and finished her career ranked fourth in school history in digs.

Pritchard graduated from Taylor with a bachelor’s degree in exercise science with a minor in management in 2009 and earned a master’s degree in sports administration from Liberty University in 2014. She and her husband, Nathan, have two children, Charlotte and Drummond.

INDIANA STATE SOFTBALL

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – Indiana State softball returns home after four games on the road to host Drake for a three-game MVC showdown at Price Field this weekend.

The series will begin on Friday with a doubleheader at noon ET while Saturday will be a single game with first pitch scheduled for noon ET.

The Sycamores (18-18, 5-7) are in the midst of a four-game skid while Drake (12-20, 6-5) is coming off a weekend sweep of Bradley.

Indiana State dropped a road contest to Illinois on Tuesday at Eichelberger Field with the Illini winning 5-0 on a cloudy night in Urbana.

Scouting the Bulldogs

Drake head coach Rich Calvert is in his 19th season at the helm for the Bulldogs, winning over 500 games in his tenure to become the all-time winningest coach in program history. He led Drake to back-to-back NCAA Tournaments in 2018 and 2019, sweeping both MVC regular season and tournament crowns in both seasons.

Leading the Bulldog offense at the plate is Macy Johnson who has a .373 average with 31 hits and 15 RBIs. She leads the team with a perfect 16-for-16 on stolen base attempts and has scored a team-best27 runs. Emily Valtman is second on the team with a .343 average and a team-high 35 hits. She’s hit seven home runs and driven in 27 runs while scoring 22. Johnson and Valtman were both named to the All-MVC First Team in 2021.

In MVC play, Paige Bedsworth has been Drake’s best pitcher with a 3-0 record and a 3.25 ERA. She’s struck out 10 batters over 27.2 innings and held opponents to a .224 average.

The Bulldogs lead the all-time series 48-34 but the Sycamores have won three-straight in the matchup, sweeping Drake in Des Moines in 2021.

Around the Horn

-Indiana State is 6-1 against other Indiana schools this season after an 11-5 win over Butler last week.

-The Sycamores have two hitters within the top-10 of the conference leaders for batting average with Isabella Henning (.371) and Bella Peterson (.363) at sixth and seventh, respectively. Lexie Siwek is just outside of the top-10 with a .327 average.

-Peterson’s 13 doubles this season are the most in the conference while her 41 hits rank second. Henning’s 39 hits put her at fourth-most.

-Lexi Benko’s 2.37 ERA ranks fourth-best in the MVC. She’s recorded 66 strikeouts this season which is good for eigth-most in the conference.

PURDUE FT. WAYNE BASEBALL

HIGHLAND HEIGHTS, Ky. – Purdue Fort Wayne broke a 2-2 tie in the seventh on their way to a 9-5 victory at Northern Kentucky on Thursday (April 14) afternoon. The Mastodons have now won five games in a row. The ‘Dons had a season-high 17 hits in the game.

The ‘Dons earned a solid outing from starter JD Deany. He moved to 2-1 on the season with the win. The right-hander went six innings, giving up two runs, both of them earned, on six hits, allowing two walks and striking out seven.

Rex Stills put up a zero in the seventh inning with two strikeouts out of the pen.

Justin Miller tossed the final two innings. The senior gave up one big hit, a three-run home run. However, he also recorded four strikeouts. Miller now has 167 strikeouts in his Mastodon career, third most all-time in program history. He passed Evan Miller (2015-16) and David Zachary (2002-05) on the career strikeout list. They had 165. Miller is a San Diego Padres draft pick currently in AAA.

The Mastodons struck out a season-high 13 Norse hitters, tied for seventh most in program history.

Ben Higgins led the way offensively for the Mastodons, going 4-for-5 in the game with his sixth home run of the season. He had three RBIs and two runs. Cade Fitzpatrick smacked his seventh home run of the season. Garett Lake also chipped in, going 2-for-5 for Purdue Fort Wayne with a key two-RBI double in the ninth inning to put the game away.

The ‘Dons scored two in the first before NKU knotted it with single runs in the second and sixth innings. Purdue Fort Wayne went up for good with a four-run seventh. Jack Lang singled in Jarrett Bickel in the frame before Higgins and Fitzpatrick hit back-to-back home runs.

A three-run home run by NKU’s John Odom in the eighth made it a 6-5 game, but the ‘Dons scored three in the ninth.

GAME NOTES

» The Mastodons’ five game win streak is their longest since winning 12 straight in 2016.

» Higgins’ four-hit game was his eighth multi-hit game on the season. His four hits marked a season high for Higgins.

» Fitzpatrick now owns a 10-game hit streak.

» Deany struck out a season-high seven Norse hitters.

» Jarrett Bickel had two doubles in the game.

» Every Purdue Fort Wayne starter reached base safely in the win.

» Purdue Fort Wayne never trailed in the game.

» Six Mastodons had multiple hits in the ballgame.

» The Mastodons out-hit the Norse 17-9.

» Purdue Fort Wayne pitchers limited Northern Kentucky to just 2-for-12 (.167) with runners in scoring position.

» The Mastodons drew five walks from Northern Kentucky pitching.

» Northern Kentucky was led offensively by John Odom, who went 3-for-4 with a home run and four RBI.

» The ‘Dons chased NKU starter TJ Graves in the first inning. Ben Gerl (2-5) took the loss for the Norse, throwing 7.1 innings.

» The Mastodons improve to 9-22 (6-7 Horizon). The Norse fall to 12-19 (6-6 Horizon).

UP NEXT

» The ‘Dons and Northern Kentucky play game two of the series on Friday in a 1 p.m. start.

PURDUE FT. WAYNE MEN’S VOLLEYBALL

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The Midwestern Intercollegiate Volleyball Association announced Purdue Fort Wayne men’s volleyball student-athletes Jon Diedrich, Troy Gooch, Bryce Walker and Rico Wardlow received All-League recognition on Thursday, April 14.

Diedrich and Gooch received First Team All-MIVA honors. Walker and Wardlow were named to the All-MIVA Second Team.

Offensively, Diedrich led the Mastodons in total kills (390) which was second-most in the MIVA. He also led the ‘Dons in points per set (4.27) and kills per set (3.94) while hitting .274. His marks in kills per set and points per set were fifth in the MIVA. Defensively, Diedrich averaged 1.46 digs per set, which ranks second for the Mastodons.  This is the first time Diedrich has been named an All-MIVA performer.

Gooch led the ‘Dons in digs per set (2.29). This marks ranks first in the MIVA and 12th in the country. The senior libero racked up 10 or more digs in eight matches this season, including a career-high 20 digs against Ohio State on April 9. He received two MIVA Defensive Player of the Week awards this season. Gooch was named an All-MIVA First Team selection for the second time, the first coming in 2021.

This is Walker’s first All-MIVA nod in his career. The sophomore middle blocker averaged ranked third in the MIVA in hitting percentage (.397), fourth in aces per set (0.38), and fifth in blocks per set (0.91) and total service aces (32). He also finished third on the team in kills per set (2.15). Walker hit .500 or better in seven matches this season, and had a career high 17 kills against Ball State on February 17.

This is also Wardlow’s first All-MIVA selection in his career. He led the Mastodons and finished second in the MIVA in hitting percentage (.443). He was also fourth on the team in kills per set (2.04). This season, Wardlow hit .500 or better in eight matches, including a .909 hitting percentage on 11 attempts against Harvard on February 5. He had a career-high 12 kills against McKendree on February 26.

The Mastodons will play in the MIVA Tournament quarterfinal against McKendree on Saturday, April 16 at 8 p.m.

EVANSVILLE BASEBALL

EVANSVILLE, Ind. – Following a midweek win over Butler, the University of Evansville baseball team travels to Springfield, Mo. for a three-game weekend series with Missouri State, its first road series in MVC play this season.

Previewing the Matchup: Missouri State

The Aces and Bears are meeting for the 103rd time in series history in Friday’s series opener with Missouri State owning a 60-42 advantage for the all-time series.

Last meeting at German American Bank Field in 2021, the Bears took a four-game set from the Aces, 3-1, a season ago.

UE and Missouri State have not played each other in Springfield since 2018 playing seven-straight games in the series in Evansville before this weekend.

Missouri State enters the weekend with a .500 record just like the Aces, opening MVC play last weekend, falling in all three games of a series at DBU, who sits second in the nation in RPI, and most recently falling by a narrow 9-8 margin to Oral Roberts in a midweek contest.

Night is Alright

This season, Evansville has been excellent in games with first pitch at 6 PM or later.

In night games, the Aces are 5-1 this season, averaging 8.5 runs per contest.

Comparatively, UE is averaging just 6.1 runs in day games.

Individually, Brent Widder is hitting .577 in night games and .257 during day contests.

Berkey Wears It

For the second-straight season, an Evansville player is among the nation’s leaders in being hit-by-pitch.

A year ago, Troy Beilsmith was hit 23 times, the sixth-most in the nation.

This season, Evan Berkey has been hit 12 times, the 26th most in the nation and second-most in the MVC.

Mark Shallenberger is not far behind, having been hit nine times, including a game-winning HBP to secure a series sweep over Michigan State.

EVANSVILLE SOFTBALL

EVANSVILLE, Ind. – A Friday and Saturday Missouri Valley Conference series is on the docket for the University of Evansville softball team when the Purple Aces face Missouri State in a 3-game set at Cooper Stadium.  Friday’s doubleheader opens the weekend at noon with Saturday’s finale set for a 12 p.m. start; all three games will be on ESPN3.

Last Time Out

– UE dropped three contests last weekend in its series at Illinois State

– The first and final games of the weekend saw the Redbirds win in walk-off fashion, both by final scores of 3-2

– Game two on Saturday saw ISU take a 9-0 victory

– Marah Wood belted her team-leading fifth home run of the season in Saturday’s opener at ISU

– Mackenzie McFeron had one of the top offensive games in her career in the finale, going 3-4 in her first collegiate 3-hit game

Raising Her Level

– Through the opening 12 games of the MVC slate, senior Mackenzie McFeron leads the team with a .379 batting average and carries a 5-game hitting streak

– Her efforts in conference have seen her season average rise to .302

– She had the first 3-hit game of her career in the April 10 finale at Illinois State

– McFeron has 11 RBI in her career with eight of them coming in 2022

– She connected on one of the biggest hits of the season, hitting the game-tying double in the 7th inning of the opener at Loyola

– Four of those RBI came in the doubleheader sweep over Drake in March

– In game one, her triple in the sixth inning proved to be the game-winner in a 5-3 UE win that evened the weekend series

– McFeron did even better in the finale, belting a base-clearing walk-off double to seal a 12-3 victory and a series win

Still Going Strong

– Picking up a hit in all three games at Illinois State, Alyssa Barela improved her average to .333 in MVC play while adding two home runs and seven RBI in 12 games

– That is a huge disparity from her non-conference numbers, which saw her bat .176 with one homer and five RBI in 21 appearances

– Barela hit a game-tying single at Illinois State on April 10, which followed up a successful trip to Loyola in the weekend prior where she had a 2-3 effort in game two with a home run, double and three RBI

– With one out and two runners on in the bottom of the 9th on March 27, Barela belted a 3-run walk-off home run to give the Aces a 6-3 win over UNI

– She entered the March 4 home opener with four hits in her first 30 at-bats of the season before rebounding to hit .444 in the opening four home contests

Home Run Threat

– For the fifth time this season and first time in Valley play, Marah Wood hit a home run in the opener at Illinois State

– While her consistency has seen her record a hit in 17 of her last 23 games, she looks to make the jump on her power numbers, which have seen her register one homer and three RBI

– For the season, Wood is batting .270 with five homers and 19 RBI and is tied for third in the MVC with 10 doubles while her five homers is tied for 8th.

U OF I WOMEN’S LAX

ST. LOUIS, MO. – After back-to-back GLVC Offensive Player of the Week honors, UIndy standout, Abigail Lagos, earned her career high 11 points in leading the Greyhound offense with six goals and five assists as the Hounds downed the Maryville Saints, 23-2 on Thursday afternoon.

Lagos also becomes the Greyhounds single-season goal leader as she bypasses former leader with the six goals posted in today’s matchup, bringing her season total to 72.

UIndy, who is undefeated in conference play, now holds a record of 13-1 overall.

HOW IT HAPPENED

The Greyhound offense flexed its strength today in every manner, with three Hounds earning three goals or more, and outshooting the Saints 41 to 12.

Sarah Klein was the first to score for the Greyhounds and Kylee Manser was the last to draw blood in the match up, along with notching another during the matchup. The Hounds have continued to show depth offensively and defensively. Quinn Malcolm continued her hot streak with four goals and an assist, while defensively Peyton Romig earned 17 draw controls, caused a turnover, and scored a goal.

Mekayla Montgomery caused three turnovers, picked up two ground balls, and earned four draw controls.

Cassidy King had four saves while splitting time in net with Audrey Moran.

UP NEXT

The Greyhounds travel to Quincy on Saturday, April 16, at 4 p.m. ET.

U OF I BASEBALL

QUINCY, Ill. – The University of Indianapolis baseball team opened its road Great Lakes Valley Conference (GLVC) series on Thursday afternoon with a 14-4 loss in seven innings against Quincy. The loss drops UIndy to 15-18 overall with a 7-6 record in the GLVC.

HOW IT HAPPENED

Despite a solo home run in the opening inning by the Hawks, the Greyhounds grabbed the lead in the second on a Zack Williams RBI groundout and Jared Bujdos RBI single to left field.

Quincy delivered the knockout punch with nine runs in the bottom half of the third. Will Spear brought home two runs on an RBI single in the seventh, but the Hawks answered with three more in the bottom half of that inning to lock up the eventual run-rule victory.

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

-UIndy had eight hits on offense while Quincy had 13.

-The Hawks tallied a total of five home runs.

-Williams and Bujdos each had two hits from the dish to lead UIndy.

-Logan Peterson picked up the start from the mound and recorded three strikeouts. Kase Lawson came in for relief and tossed four complete with three Ks of his own.

UP NEXT

The Greyhounds and Hawks will return to the field tomorrow for a doubleheader beginning at 1 p.m. ET.

WABASH BASEBALL

Wabash and Wittenberg completed the final game of the scheduled two-game series Thursday evening at Grand Park Sports Campus in Westfield, Indiana. The Little Giants lost the North Coast Athletic Conference contest 10-4.

Wabash (14-9, 0-6 NCAC) scored a run in the bottom of the first inning in response to a two-run first inning by Wittenberg (17-5, 5-1 NCAC). Austin Simmers raced home from second base on an errant throw on a ground ball to short by Liam Patton. The Tigers extended their lead to 7-1 in the top half of the third inning by scoring five runs on five hits and one Wabash error.

The Little Giants added two more runs in the bottom of the third inning on RBI singles from Simmers and AJ Reid to cut the Wittenberg lead to 7-3. The deficit remained four runs until the sixth inning when the Tigers tacked on three more runs to move in front 10-3.

Reid added another RBI in the bottom of the seventh inning with a slow tapper to the pitcher that allowed Reece Bauer to score from third.

Wabash finished the game with eight hits led by Simmers’ three base hits. Patton added two hits for the Little Giants.

Reid started for Wabash on the mound, pitching 2-2/3 innings of five-hit baseball. He gave up five earned runs and one walk while striking out four batters. Tavic Simmons worked 3-1/3 innings and gave up six hits and three earned runs with one walk. Jacob Bishop, Gavin Patrick, and Sam Phillips each pitched one inning of scoreless relief.

Wabash returns to action on Saturday with a home doubleheader against The College of Wooster. The first pitch at Goodrich Ballpark is scheduled for 12 p.m.

FRANKLIN SOFTBALL

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – The Franklin College softball team continued a busy week on Thursday (Apr. 14) afternoon, taking on the Rose-Hulman Engineers on the first of three straight days with a double header scheduled.

The Grizzlies (12-11, 5-3 HCAC) left no doubt in either contest, picking up a pair of five-inning wins over the Engineers (13-9, 0-6 HCAC) by scores of 9-0 and 15-1.

Game One: Franklin 9 – Rose-Hulman 0 (5 inn.)

A pair of scoreless trips to the plate started the game but Franklin put things away starting with a four-run third inning. Shelby Crockett led off the frame with a double and scored later in the inning on an error with RBI singles from Genesis Munoz and Molly Wallace coming later in the frame.

Franklin continued their offensive onslaught in the fourth, starting with the first career home run from Addie Csikos to lead off the inning. Munoz drove in another run with a single, Makiah Thomas drove in two with a single and Sydney Bostic scored on a passed ball to cap a five-run frame and end the scoring.

Sydney Rodeghier and Munoz had two hits each with Munoz, Wallace and Thomas driving in two runs each.

Sophomore Sydney Pitts (5-3) got all the support she needed from her offense on her way to tossing a second straight shutout. Pitts allowed three hits, struck out one and did not allow a walk while needing just 48 pitches to record her fifth complete game of the year.

Game Two: Franklin 15 – Rose-Hulman 1 (5 inn.)

Franklin broke out for five runs in their half of the second inning to put things out of reach. Csikos opened the scoring with an RBI single and came in to score a batter later when Shelby Crockett barreled on up for her first home run of the year. Sydney Bostic doubled in a run later in the inning to make it a 5-0 game.

Thomas and Crockett doubled in runs in the third and Rodeghier brought in two with her first career home run to stretch the lead to 9-0. Franklin added six more in the fourth and one in the fifth to cap their scoring outburst.

Five different Grizzlies recorded multiple hits in the game and Crockett’s four RBI lead the team. Stephanni Kleber (4-6) scattered four hits and struck out four to pick up the win and her seventh complete game of the year.

Up Next

The Grizzlies are back at home on Friday (Apr. 15) to start a six-game homestand. Franklin meets Hope College with first pitch from Behrens Field set for 3:30 p.m.

TRINE SOFTBALL

NOTRE DAME, Ind. – The Trine University softball team posted a pair of lopsided victories over their hosts from Saint Mary’s College, sweeping the Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) doubleheader.

There were two headlines during the first game of the day. The first was the offensive explosion that started in the very first inning. The Thunder would plate 11 runs in the top of the first inning, the final four of those runs coming on homeruns from seniors Taylor Murdock (Lapel, Ind. / Lapel) and Ashley Swartout (Westfield, Ind. / Westfield).

In the bottom of the first the other main headline also began to emerge as sophomore Adrienne Rosey (Schoolcraft, Mich. / Schoolcraft) would end the inning with three straight strikeouts.

The offense had what would end up being a slow inning in the top of the second scoring just two runs on the back of a single from Ainsley Phillips (Yorktown, Ind. / Yorktown) and a double from junior Ellie Trine (Kokomo, Ind. / Kokomo). In the bottom of the inning Rosey recorded three more straight strikeouts.

Junior Amanda Prather (Indianapolis, Ind. / Roncalli) scored both runs for the team in the top of the third on one swing of the bat and the bottom showed three more straight strikeouts for Rosey.

Trine would score five in the fourth inning with freshman Emma Beyer (Rochester, Mich. / Stoney Creek) plating two on the first homerun of her career and sophomore Giselle Riley (Temecula, Calif. / Temecula Valley) plating the other three on a double.

Rosey would continue her dominance in the circle striking out the side for the fourth straight inning.

The Thunder would score five more runs in the top of the fifth. Scarlett Elliott (Utica, Ohio / Utica) would be hit by pitch for the first run and Prather would score the other four on her second homer of the game. The grand slam made the score 25-0 heading to the bottom half of the inning, all but insuring that the game would end under the run-rule.

There was still the business of Rosey’s start which had yet to see a baserunner as the team went to the bottom of the inning. In fact, Rosey had struck out all 12 batters she had faced in the game. Her quest for the perfect game would end during a particularly gusty part of the day with a full count walk.

Rosey would end the game three batters later, completing the 12th no-hitter in the program’s history. She would also finish off the game with three more strikeouts finishing with 15, it is only the third time in program history that a pitcher has reached 15 strikeouts in a single game and the second highest total for a single game as well.

The offensive performances were also historic. Swartout would finish the game with three hits, three RBIs and two walks. Her record though would come from crossing the plate five times during the contest tying the program record.

Prather finished the game going 4-for-4 with her two homers and seven RBIs which ties for third most in a single game in program history. Riley would finish the contest with three RBIs. Five members of the team would record a pair of RBIs in the contest including Trine, Murdock, Beyer, Elliott, and Phillips. Freshman April Sellers (North Salem, Ind. / Tri-West) brought in one run for the final RBI of the game.

The offense would continue to be extremely effective in the second game, though it didn’t get off to quite the start that it did in the first. Neither team would score a run in the first inning.

The bottom of the second saw the Thunder start their scoring. Phillips brought the first run in with a double, Trine followed up with a single and an error that brought in another. Murdock would finish the inning with her second homer of the day making the score 4-0.

The third inning saw the team really bring in the runs, as they would score seven making the score 11-0. Elliott, Prather, Riley, Phillips and Trine would all bring in a run with Murdock homering for a third time to finish the inning again.

In the circle for the Thunder sophomore Elizabeth Koch (Franklin, Wis. / Franklin) turned in a strong performance, but she did allow one run to the Belles in the top of the fourth inning, coming off of a homerun of their own.

It didn’t matter much to the outcome however with Trine responding with five runs in the bottom of the same inning. Ellie Trine would bring home one to start the inning. Then senior Mercede Daugherty (Watervliet, Mich. / Watervliet) would bring in three runs with a bases-loaded double. Swartout would then bring Daugherty home on a single.

Koch would finish of the victory with three strikeouts in the top of the fifth and the game would end with the Thunder ahead 16-1.

Koch would finish the game allowing just three hits and a walk while striking out four.

The team improves to 14-9 overall and 4-0 in MIAA play following the wins. They will return to the field tomorrow, Friday, April 15 when they travel to face Calvin University for another MIAA doubleheader beginning at 2 p.m.

BETHEL WOMEN’S BASKETBALL

MISHAWAKA – Bethel Athletic Director Tony Natali is pleased to announce that Scott Polsgrove has been named as the 13th head coach in women’s basketball program history.

“I’m very excited to have Scott Polsgrove leading our women’s basketball program moving forward,” stated Natali. “Scott fits in perfectly with the Bethel University Athletic Department’s philosophy of being Christ-centered and student-focused. Scott is 100-percent invested in these young ladies and this program. His ability to not only be a terrific basketball coach but be very intentional about relationships makes the future very promising.”

Polsgrove takes the reins of the women’s program after previously serving last year as a men’s basketball assistant coach under Steve Drabyn in his first season in Mishawaka. He has more than 30 years of collegiate men’s basketball coaching experience, including head coaching stops at Eastern Nazarene (Mass.), Lees-McRae (NC), and King (Tenn.) and holds a career collegiate coaching mark of 275-446 in 25 years.

Prior to arriving at Bethel, Polsgrove spent five seasons as the head coach of the men’s program at Eastern Nazarene (ENC) from 2016-21, earning three conference tournament semifinal appearances.

Prior to ENC, Polsgrove earned three Western Highlands Conference Coach of the Year awards and conference championships in four years as the boys’ basketball head coach at Avery County High School in Newland, NC and left with a 41-game conference win streak intact.

Polsgrove got his first head coaching opportunity at King College in Tennessee and spent 14 seasons at the helm of the men’s program, guiding the Tornado to 187 wins and two NAIA National Tournament Appearances (98, 04). He was two-time Tennessee-Virginia Athletic Conference (TVAC) Coach of the Year (97-98) and led the Tornado to the 1998 TVAC Tournament title. Following his time at King, Polsgrove spent five seasons at Lees-McCrae in North Carolina and built the Bobcats to the program’s best record in Conference Carolinas league play in his final season.

A native of South Bend, Polsgrove played basketball at Taylor (Ind.) under legendary head coach Paul Patterson and made three appearances in NAIA National Tournaments. His coaching career got started as a Graduate Assistant at Mobile (Ala.) and a two-year stint as an assistant at Taylor—where he assisted the Trojans to a 34-4 record and the program’s first and only trip in the NAIA national semifinals in 1991.

“I am honored and humbled to be named the women’s basketball coach at Bethel University,” stated Polsgrove. “I want to thank Athletic Director Tony Natali and Vice President for Student Development Shawn Holtgren for their confidence in me to lead this program. I am excited to work with these young ladies to help them grow academically and athletically, but most important spiritually. The women’s basketball program has a rich history, and it is my desire to make the former players and coaches who accomplished so much proud of what we do.”

Doug Porter stepped down following a 10-20 campaign in 2021-22 and a 23-51 overall record in three seasons. Polsgrove inherits a program that will return approximately 75-percent of the nation’s fifth-ranked scoring offense and welcome a 2022 class that includes three signees (of four total) that were invited to the Hoosier Basketball Magazine’s Indiana Top 60 Senior Girls workout in March. Polsgrove is expected to retain Brandon Auker as the women’s basketball assistant coach but is looking to fill an open Graduate Assistant position—interested parties are encouraged to apply.

HANOVER WOMEN’S LAX

HANOVER, Ind. – Senior Milah Young (Granger, Ind.) surpassed 100 career points as the Panthers dominated Earlham on Thursday afternoon, 13-3.

With the win, HC moves to 6-5 overall and 2-0 in Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action.

Leading the Panthers was sophomore Masi McNally-Henriksen (Zionsville, Ind.) with a team-high five goals.

The senior paced the Hanover attack as she found the back of the net just moments into the contest for the 1-0 lead.

Freshman Katie Comer (Indianapolis, Ind.) added the team’s second blow picking up her first career goal of the season before Young etched her name into the record books charting her 100th career point at the 3:21 mark in the first frame.

McNally-Henriksen made her way into scores column as she helped propel the Blue and Red into the second quarter with the 4-0 advantage.

The scoring outburst continued as the HCAC Defensive Player of the Week, senior Anne Breeding (Miamisburg, Ohio) extended the Hanover lead to 5-0.

Earlham netted their first strike at the 6:33 mark entering the intermission trailing 5-1.

The second half saw the Blue and Red extend the difference to 7-1 as McNally-Henriksen netted back-to-back goals before Young added a hat trick at the 8:07 mark.

Hanover never looked back as freshman Anissa Weber (Westfield, Ind.) added her first career goal at the 11:27 mark to help HC secure the convincing 13-3 victory and remain perfect in HCAC play. 

The Panthers return to action on Saturday, April 16 when they play host to Franklin. Game time is set for 1:00 PM.

INDIANA TECH MEN’S VOLLEYBALL

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa – The No. 3-ranked Indiana Tech men’s volleyball team had their historic season come to a close Thursday afternoon inside the MidAmerican Energy RexPlex with a 3-1 loss (15-25, 20-25, 26-24, 20-25) to No. 8-ranked Benedictine University at Mesa in pool play portion of the NAIA National Championship.

Dante Siracusa had a team-best 10 kills while Daynte Stewart had eight kills and five digs. Brandon Jones dished out 29 assists with six digs and two blocks. Joey Hermes had seven digs while Chase Christiansen, Jon Fonda and Mason Milan each had two blocks.

The Redhawks took the lead on the opening point of the first set and never looked back thanks to a 10-1 run that pulled them ahead 22-11. Benedictine Mesa hit .455 in the opening set while holding the Warriors to a .000 attack percentage.

The second set was more even with 10 ties and three lead changes, with the Warriors holding slim two-point leads at 7-5 and 9-7, but the Redhawks came back with a 4-1 lead to go up 11-10 and never trailed again. A 4-0 run by Benedictine Mesa pushed their lead to 17-13 and they rode the momentum to the 2-0 match lead.

The Warriors found some momentum with a 7-4 run to kick off the third set before pushing their lead to 12-6. The Redhawks came storming back thanks to a 9-4 spurt that knotted the set up at 21. After trading two-point swings, Tech got a kill from Fonda to put them up 24-23 before eventually pulling out the 26-24 victory to keep their season alive.

Benedictine Mesa took the opening point of the fourth set and never trailed despite the Warriors tying up the match three different times, but the last one coming at 7-7. The Redhawks went on an 8-2 run following the tie-up, but the Warriors got within three points at 20-17 to make things interesting. The Warriors got back to within three at 23-20, but the Redhawks took the final two points following a kill form John Dawson, who had a match-high 15, and a triple block to send the Redhawks to the national semifinals on Friday.

Tech finishes the season 29-3, their most wins ever.

INDIANA TECH MEN’S LAX

LIVONIA, Mich. – The No. 2-ranked Indiana Tech men’s lacrosse team extended its win streak to 11 games Wednesday afternoon with a 17-11 victory over Madonna University at the Madonna Soccer and Lacrosse Field.

Louis Czech and Andrew Ryan had a game-high four goals with the former adding three ground balls and the latter collecting three assists and seven ground balls. Nate Langille picked up eight ground balls while Nick Craddock had four caused turnovers. Chad Nedbal made six saves in the cage to pick up the win.

Madonna started off the game on fire with three goals in the first three and a half minutes, but Cooper Langille started a 4-0 run with 9:24 to go in the opening quarter to put the Warriors on top. Brandon Schmehl scored at 8:16, Josh Bramley tied it up at 7:25 and Andrew Ryan made it a 4-3 game at the 6:56 mark.

The Crusaders ended the period with two more goals though to take a 5-4 lead into the first break, but three goals in a 1:28 stretch put the Warriors back ahead 7-5 with 6:31 to play in the first half. Ryan tied it up with 7:59 on the clock while Czech scored at the 7:39 and 6:31 marks.

The hosts would not go away however, scored four straight goals to open the third quarter and going back on top with a 9-8 lead and 5:24 to play in the period. Nate Durham tied it up with 3:25 to play in the quarter while Nate Langille put the Warriors on top for good at the 2:08 mark.

Czech made it a 11-9 game just 15 seconds into the fourth quarter while Ryan scored a minute later to make it a three-goal game. Tech continued to put balls into the back of the cage of the final eight minutes of the contest with Joe Solin converting on the power play with 7:57 to go while Devin Macomber got a score while the visitors were down a man at the 5:56 mark.

Tech (11-0, 6-0 WHAC) returns to action Saturday as they host Cleary University. Opening face-off is set for 4 p.m. from Warrior Athletic Field.

ST. MARY OF THE WOODS MEN’S GOLF

FLORENCE, Ind – Saint Mary-of-the-Woods College (SMWC) men’s golfers Andrew Granda and Logan Vernon were award 2nd Team All-American and Champion of Character honors this weekend at the RSC Golf Championship, respectively. Granda finished 6th overall in the tournament shooting a 74, 72, and 81 over the three-day event. Vernon was recognized as the team’s Champion of Character which honors outstanding service and high personal character. Both men helped lead the team to a 9th-place finish in their first conference showing.

Quote | Andrew Granda

On earning 2nd Team All-American…

“It feels good to finally put together a solid tournament. I knew it was a marathon and not a print so my mindset was to just hit as many fairways and greens as possible and see where I ended up. I had a dissapointing final round, but I didn’t give up and was able to pull out a top-10 finish.”

Quote | Logan Vernon

On his Champion of Character award…

“Being selected for the Champions of Character award really means a lot to me, as not only myself but my teammates have been putting in a lot of hard work on and off the golf course. We’re already looking forward to getting back to work in the fall!”

GOSHEN SOFTBALL

GOSHEN, Ind. – Two home runs by Ri Koteles and another by Grace Schmitt powered the Goshen Maple Leafs offense on Tuesday afternoon. With Mia Pawelski getting the job done on the mound, Goshen upset the #8 Wildcats of Indiana Wesleyan 9-6.

Koteles hit her first home run in the first inning – a solo shot in the number two spot. Later in the inning, Ellie Van Heerde and Alyssa McDonald scored unearned runs after a dropped fly ball by the shortstop. Koteles came back up to bat again in the second and hit a two-run homer, scoring Edith Vega. Goshen quickly had a 5-0 lead over the best team in the Crossroads League.

Pawelski didn’t allow any hits in the first two innings and continued to keep IWU off the scoreboard through the fourth. The Wildcats picked up three runs in the fifth, but the Maple Leafs got runs when they needed them.

Pawelski helped her cause with a two-RBI single down the right-field line that scored Claire Ouellette and McDonald. While it increased Goshen’s lead to 7-3, Indiana Wesleyan answered with another trio of runs in the sixth.

With just a one-run lead now, Grace Schmitt sent one over the fence in left-center – the first home run in her collegiate career. Shea VanScoter closed out the game in the final 1.1 innings to earn the save as Goshen won 9-6.

“Getting a win against the top team in the conference is huge,” said head coach Juliaclare Plezbert. “The team has put in a lot of hard work to be able to beat the top teams, and it finally paid off today.”

This was Goshen’s first win over IWU since April 15, 2015, ending a 21-game losing streak. Koteles finished the game going 3-4 with two runs and three RBIs. The program leader in home runs extends her career total to 30. Pawelski allowed three earned runs in 5.2 innings. She improves her record to 6-7 this season.

The Wildcats, who were 15-2 in the Crossroads League before today, won game two 20-3 in five innings.

They scored in each inning – with nine runs coming in the third inning alone. Miranda Wehrle was 4-5 at the plate with a home run, three runs scored, and six RBIs. The Wildcats totaled 17 hits in that contest.

Grace Schmitt continued to perform in game two for GC, going 2-3 with two doubles, a stolen base, and two RBIs.

Goshen hosts Mount Vernon Nazarene, who is receiving votes in the NAIA coaches poll, on Friday, April 15 at 1:00 pm.

TAYLOR ATHLETICS

HUNTINGTON, Ind. – A few members of the Taylor women’s track and field squad competed in the Huntington Invitational on Thursday afternoon. It was a challenging day as strong winds blew against the TU athletes, however the ladies persevered and turned in successful performances.  

Taylor’s throwers had a solid day as three women set personal-bests in the hammer throw. Hallie Brenner claimed eighth place with a lifetime-best toss of 38.88-meters. Adelyn Schoenbeck finished in ninth, logging a career-best mark of 37.09-meters. Stephanie Wadsworth ended 19th with a throw of 32.48-meters and Chrissy Hickman launched a career-best throw of 27.77-meters to claim ­­­­25th place overall.

In the shot put, Wadsworth recorded a mark of 10.52-meters, finishing in ninth place. Schoenbeck added a ninth-place finish in the discus throw (29.74-meters), while Brenner clinched 11th place overall (28.82-meters).

Patience Sakeuh won the long jump by one-centimeter. The sophomore recorded a distance of 4.97-meters to finish in first place.

The Purple and Gold pole vaulting trio grabbed top-five finishes, led by freshman Betsy Underwood who placed third with a vault of 2.80-meters. Avery Birkla finished in fourth place, clearing 2.65-meters and Charis Siefert ended fifth with a mark of 2.50-meters.

The Trojans raced in only two events on the track. The 4×100-meter relay team posted a victory with a time of 49.16. The squad consisted of Ashley Hall, Eden Siples, Audrey Altum and Patience Sakeuh. Ashley Hall later went on to finish eighth in the 100-meter dash. Hall sprinted to a time of 12.92.

The Trojans will be back in action on Friday, April 22 and Saturday, April 23 for the Little State Championships hosted by Indiana Wesleyan.

TAYLOR ATHLETICS

HUNTINGTON, Ind. – On a windy Thursday before Easter weekend, a handful of athletes on the Taylor men’s track and field team traveled to Huntington, Indiana to participate in the Huntington Invitational. The Trojans competed well, as they took home two first-place finishes and six top-five performances.

Taylor’s jumpers added first and second-place finishes in the high jump and long jump. Jake Thompson cleared a height of 1.90-meters to claim the victory in the high jump, while Sammy Sommers soared to a season-PR of 6.58-meters in the long jump, placing second overall.

Liam Hesting had strong performances in the throwing events. The junior launched the hammer 54.55-meters to take first place in the hammer throw. Hesting turned in a second-place finish in the shot put, recording a mark of 14.56-meters, and a second-place finish in the discus throw, claiming a distance of 40.94-meters. 

Three Trojans competed in the open 400-meter dash. Cole Whitehead finished in second place as he cruised to a time of 52.64. Nate Conkel placed eighth overall with a time of 56.15 and Bennett Hill grabbed 12th place, crossing the line at 57.60. Whitehead later went on to finish fifth in the 200-meter dash, logging a time of 23.16.

In the mid-distance races, Nathan Brainer and James Bates finished fourth and fifth place, respectively, in the 800-meters. Brainer posted a time of 2:02.34 and Bates ended in 2:03.22. Matthew Roach clocked a time of 4:47.41 in the 1,500-meters and claimed 18th place overall.

Caleb Ranzau claimed a fourth-place finish in the pole vault. The freshman cleared a height of 4.00-meters.

The Trojans will be back in action on Friday, April 22 and Saturday, April 23 for the Little State Championships hosted by Indiana Wesleyan.

1903 WORLD SERIES

Boston Americans (5) vs Pittsburgh Pirates (3)

In an effort to end a bitter two year rivalry and promote unity in baseball, the veteran National League and newly established American League decided to bury the hatchet and come together for a new kind of season finale.

Nine years earlier, the two top teams in the National League competed in an experimental post-season championship in which Boston beat Pittsburgh five games to three. In 1903, both teams (now in separate leagues) found themselves competing against one another in the first official “World Series”. Echoing the 1894 proposal of owner William C. Temple, Pittsburgh’s Barney Dreyfuss and Boston’s Henry Killilea agreed that their ballclubs, who were both pennant winners, should meet in a best-of-nine playoff series for the “World Championship.”

The spectacle would represent the first step towards a mutual reconciliation for years of open hostilities and blatant player raids. The Pirates, who had just won their third consecutive pennant, were the perfect representatives for the veteran Nationals. Their rivals, the Americans, had won their flag by 14½ games and represented the fledgling Americans who were still trying to establish themselves as a worthy competitor.

Game 1 of the series proved to be a complete success as fans were treated to the best baseball that both leagues had to offer. The Pirates played exceptionally well on both sides of the ball as Deacon Phillippe pitched a six hitter and right fielder Jimmy Sebring hit the first home run in World Series history. He alone drove in four runs for a 7-3 victory. Game 2 did not disappoint either as Boston mirrored Pittsburgh’s previous performance. They evened the series when Bill Dinneen threw a three-hitter and Patsy Dougherty walloped two homers in a 3-0 triumph.

Pittsburgh’s pitching staff, ravaged by illness and injuries, forced the Pirates to start Phillippe again in Game 3 after only one day of rest. The veteran workhorse, a twenty-five game winner during the regular season, rose to the challenge allowing only four hits in a 4-2 win. Three days later, Pittsburgh went to their dependable ace for a third time and backed him up with reinforcements who came out swinging. Third basemen, Tommy Leach, knocked in three runs while Honus Wagner and Ginger Beaumont each collected three hits. Boston was unable to answer and Pittsburgh led the series three games to one.

Boston was down, but far from out. Cy Young, a veteran, twenty-eight game winner was called upon to cool off the Pirates in Game 5 and that’s exactly what he did. Pittsburgh never knew what hit them. Young yielded only six hits and drove in three runs in an 11-2 runaway. The following day, Game 2 winner Bill Dinneen maintained Boston’s momentum with a 6-3 victory in a contest that featured four hits, two RBIs and two stolen bases by the losing Pirates. The series was now tied at three games each.

Deacon Phillippe, who was undefeated in the series, took the mound for the Pirates in Game 7. Unfortunately for Pittsburgh, all good things must come to an end. The Americans’ playing manager Jimmy Collins and Chick Stahl knocked him for first inning triples and Boston bolted to an early 2-0 lead en route to a 7-3 triumph. For the first time, the Americans had seized the Series lead. Ahead four games to three, Boston would attempt to nail down the championship on its own Huntington Avenue Grounds.

Game 8 looked to be a pitchers duel as Dinneen and Phillippe went head to head to a scoreless tie through the first three innings. Boston managed to get on the board twice in the fourth and again in the sixth. Phillippe battled on and would end up pitching his fifth complete game in the Series, which lasted thirteen days, but Dinneen bested him in the climactic finale, tossing his second shutout of the Series and notching his third victory.

The 3-0 decision was the Americans fourth straight triumph and made the upstart Boston team champions of the First American League vs. National League World Series. With great pitching dominating the play, hitters obviously had a rough time at the plate. Boston batted .252 while Pittsburgh, despite the presence of National League batting champion Honus Wagner, hit .237.

TODAY IN BASEBALL HISTORY

1876       The Alleghenys bring professional baseball to Allegheny, a municipality that will be annexed into Pittsburgh in 1907, when they defeat the Xanthas at Union Park, 7-3. In February, the team, losing its bid to become part of the newly established National League, plays as an independent club this year before joining the minor league International Association next season, competing in the circuit for two campaigns until it disbands in 1878.

1909       On Opening Day, 26-year-old Giants starter Red Ames keep the Superbas hitless until one out in the 10th inning when second baseman Whitey Alpermann doubles to left-center. The Polo Grounds contest, featuring Brooklyn’s Kaiser Wilhelm tossing a complete game, goes thirteen frames, with the New York right-hander dropping a 3-0 decision to start the season.

1911       At the age of 24, Grover Cleveland Alexander makes his major league debut, losing a 5-4 decision to the Rustlers on an unearned run in the tenth inning at Boston’s South End Grounds. The Phillies rookie, who will become known as ‘Old Pete,’ will post a 28-13 (.683) record, including seven shutouts and 31 complete games.

1915       After being called the Naps since 1903, Cleveland’s American League ballclub plays its first game known as the Indians, a moniker selected from a contest to re-name the team run by a local newspaper. The franchise’s former name, which honored their once-popular player-manager Nap Lajoie, needed to be changed when the 40-year-old second baseman was sold back to A’s after feuding with the team’s current skipper, Joe Birmingham.

1915       In his first start of the season, the Giants’ southpaw Rube Marquand no-hits the Brooklyn Robins, the team that will select him off waivers at the end of August. In his 2-0 complete-game victory, the 28-year-old faces 30 batters, striking out two and walking two in the 85-minute contest at the Polo Grounds.

1921       At Redland Field, Pirates’ right-hander Chief Yellow Horse makes his major league debut against the Reds. The Pittsburgh hurler, a member of a North American Plains Indian tribe called the Pawnees, is believed by many baseball historians to be the first full-blooded American Indian to play in the big leagues.

1930       On Opening Day, Phillies’ southpaw Les Sweetland throws a three-hitter at Ebbets Field. The 28-year-old southpaw doubles and scores the lone run in the eighth inning of his 1-0 complete-game victory over Brooklyn.

1933       In his major league debut, Tigers rookie Schoolboy Rowe tosses a six-hitter, blanking the White Sox, 3-0. During his 15-year career, also playing with the Dodgers and Phillies, Lynwood will compile a 158-101 record, posting an ERA of 3.87.

1942       At Sportsman’s Park in St. Louis, Hiram ‘Hi’ Bithorn becomes the first Puerto Rican to play major league baseball. The Cubs’ right-hander from Santurce makes a relief appearance, allowing no runs or hits during his two innings of work in Chicago’s 4-2 loss to the Redbirds.

1947       A year before President Truman desegregated the military, Jackie Robinson debuts for the Dodgers, becoming the first black player to participate in a major league game this century. In front of 25,623 Ebbets Field fans, the 28-year-old first baseman is hitless in three at-bats but scores a run in the 5-3 Opening Day victory over the Braves.

1947       In his National League debut, Hank Greenberg has the lone RBI in the Pirates’ 1-0 win when his sixth-inning double off Cubs right-hander Hank Borowy plates Billy Cox from second base in the Forbes Field contest. Pittsburgh bought the slugging first baseman from the Tigers in the off-season for $75,000.

1954       In front of 46,354 fans, big-league baseball returns to Baltimore after a 51-year absence when the Orioles beat Chicago in the first game played in Memorial Stadium, 3-1. A Baltimore ownership group, including Clarence Mills, Jim Keelty, Jerry Hoffberger, and Zanvyl Krieger, bought the former St. Louis Browns and brought the franchise to the Charm City.

1957       Before the Senators’ 7-6 loss to Baltimore in 11 innings at Griffith Stadium, President Dwight Eisenhower throws the traditional ceremonial first pitch of the season. The horsehide Ike tosses is billed as the 10th millionth Spalding baseball used in a major league game.

1958       On Opening Day, the transplanted New York Giants and Brooklyn Dodgers play the first major league game on the West Coast. The California contest sees Ruben Gomez blanking Los Angeles and Don Drysdale at San Francisco’s Seals Stadium, 8-0.

1959       Cardinal right-hander Bob Gibson makes his major league debut at LA Memorial Coliseum, tossing the final two innings in a 5-0 loss to the Dodgers. The 23-year-old rookie becomes the first future Hall of Fame hurler to give up a home run to the first batter he faces in the major leagues when third baseman Jim Baxes takes him deep in the seventh inning.

1962       With the Mets ahead 2-0 in the fifth game of their winless existence, snow begins to fall bottom of the fourth at the Polo Grounds. The umps call the game in the next frame before the Pirates complete their needed at-bats to make it an official contest, thus prolonging the expansion team’s losing streak, eventually dropping their first nine decisions.

1967       At the age of 18, Gary Nolan makes his major league debut, striking out the side in the first frame en route to his first career victory when the Reds beat Houston at Crosley Field, 7-3. The hard-throwing teenager, who will give up six hits and three runs in 6.1 innings in his first outing, will be the runner-up to Tom Seaver and Dick Hughes for the Rookie of the Year honors this season.

1968       The Astros defeat the Mets in 24 innings, 1-0, making it the longest scoreless game in major league history. The six-hour and six-minute contest, where each team had 79 at-bats and 11 hits, ends when Bob Aspromonte’s grounder goes through the legs of shortstop Al Weis, scoring Norm Miller from third base with one out.

1972       On Opening Day in Oakland, A’s outfielder Reggie Jackson becomes the first player in fifty-eight years to wear a mustache during the regular season. The last time facial hair appeared in a major league game was in 1914 when Wally Schang had hair above his lip catching for Philadelphia Athletics.

1976       In the debut of the ‘new’ Yankee Stadium, 52,613 fans watch the Bronx Bombers shell Minnesota on Opening Day, 11-4. Bob Shawkey, the winner of the 1923 Stadium opener, throws out the ceremonial first pitch in the ballpark that has been completely rebuilt from top to bottom, replacing the fences, the seats, the roof, and the original grandstand.

1983       With two outs in the bottom of the ninth inning, Jerry Hairston’s clean pinch-hit single to center field spoils Milt Wilcox’s bid for a perfect game. The 32 year-old Tigers right-hander retires the next batter, settling for a one-hit 6-0 victory over the White Sox at Comiskey Park.

1985       In a 2-1 loss to the Cubs at Wrigley Field, Mike Schmidt plays in his 1,795th game wearing a Phillies uniform, breaking Richie Ashburn’s franchise record. The first-ballot Hall of Famer will extend the streak to 2,404 contests before retiring in 1989.

1987       Juan Nieves becomes the first Brewer to toss a no-hitter, walking five batters and striking out seven en route to a 7-0 victory over the Orioles at Memorial Stadium. The 22-year-old Santurce native’s no-no makes him the first Puerto Rican and second-youngest major leaguer to accomplish the feat.

1990       ESPN’s Sunday Night Baseball makes its debut, with Jon Miller and Joe Morgan behind the microphones, a broadcasting team that will remain in the booth for the next 21 seasons. The early stages of the sports network’s coverage on Sunday evenings call for every ballpark to host a game, assuring each team at least one appearance on national television throughout the season.

1994       With only 115 fans in attendance on a cold and rainy night at Pohlman Field, Kelly Wunsch becomes the third player and first starting pitcher to strike out five batters in one inning in professional baseball. The Beloit Brewer hurler, Milwaukee’s first-round pick (26th overall) of the 1993 amateur draft, makes this possible when two of those victims reached first base on wild pitches during a 7-3 loss to Springfield (IL) of the Midwest League.

1997       At Shea Stadium, with President Clinton and Rachel Robinson in attendance, Commissioner Bud Selig announces Jackie Robinson’s No. 42 will be retired throughout Major League Baseball, an unprecedented tribute to the player who broke the color barrier fifty years ago on this date. There are presently 13 active players still wearing the number who will be allowed to keep it, including Mariano Rivera, who in 2013 will become the last player to don the digits.

2000       Orioles infielder Cal Ripken, in the 2,800th game of his career, lines a base hit to center off the Twins’ Hector Carrasco, becoming the 24th player to reach the 3000th hit milestone. The single also makes the ‘Iron Man’ only the seventh player to get 3,000 hits and 400 home runs in major league history.

2001       A swarm of bees nesting in the Coors Field’s right-field auxiliary scoreboard makes their presence known when Todd Hollandsworth steps into the batter’s box to start the bottom of the fourth frame. After a nine-minute delay, the game continues without incident to the players, fans, or the bees, with the Rockies’ outfielder getting the crowd buzzing by hitting three home runs following the stoppage of play, including a three-run walk-off round-tripper in the tenth inning of Colorado’s 10-7 victory over Arizona.

2004       Major league baseball begins the tradition of Jackie Robinson Day, an annual celebration commemorating the day in 1947 when the Dodger infielder broke the color line. Ceremonies occur across the country to honor the ground-breaking historical event, including baseball commissioner Bud Selig and Jackie’s widow Rachel Robinson attending the Shea Stadium’s festivities.

2004       In the Astros’ 6-2 loss to the Brewers at Minute Maid Park, Brandon Backe strikes out the three batters he faces in the eighth inning on nine pitches. The 26-year-old right-handed reliever retires Bill Hall and Scott Podsednik looking with Craig Counsell swinging at a third strike to end the frame.

2005       Right-hander Ben Sheets, who agreed to a one-year deal worth $6 million during the offseason to avoid salary arbitration, signs a $38.5 million, four-year contract to stay with Milwaukee. The contract is the richest in the history of the Brewers.

2005       The Dodgers, to commemorate the 58th anniversary of Jackie Robinson’s first game in the big leagues, wear replicas of the old road uniforms worn by the 1947 team, which played in Brooklyn. Right-hander Derek Lowe throws a three-hitter, blanking the Padres in San Diego, 4-0.

2005       In the first major league game in Washington, D.C., since September 30th, 1971, the Nationals beat Arizona at RFK Stadium, 5-3. President George W. Bush throws out the ceremonial first pitch after receiving the ball from Joe Grzenda, the former Washington reliever who threw the final pitch before the new Senators moved to Texas.

2005       A Fenway fan is ejected from the game after taking what appeared to be a swipe at Gary Sheffield as the Yankee outfielder fields a ball hit by Jason Varitek. The right fielder’s response, which includes shoving the fan, making a fist, and exchanging words, will be investigated by major league baseball.

2007       In honor of the 60th anniversary of Jackie Robinson’s debut, Ken Griffey, Jr. wears the Dodger Hall of Fame infielder’s retired uniform #42 after getting permission from Commissioner Bud Selig, who gives all major leaguers the option to wear the number individually. In 2009, all uniformed personnel will start wearing #42 every year on April 15th, the date designated annually as Jackie Robinson Day.

2007       The Indians become the first team in almost 55 years to notch a victory, getting their only hit in the team’s first at-bat when Grady Sizemore doubles, leading off the first inning in Tribe’s eventual 2-1 win over Chicago at Jacobs Field. The Tribe won with just one hit or less in 1992, posting a 2-1 victory in a no-hitter thrown by Red Sox right-hander Matt Young.

2007       To honor Jackie Robinson, major-league players, including Yankee shortstop Derek Jeter and Braves outfielder Andruw Jones, wear the Dodger immortal’s uniform No. 42 on the 60th anniversary of his historic breaking the color barrier in baseball. In the Cardinals and Brewers contest at Busch Stadium, every player and coach on both teams dons Jackie’s revered number.

2009       Texas infielder Ian Kinsler, having already collected a single, double, and home run, admits he was trying for a triple when he batted in the sixth inning of Baltimore’s 19-6 rout. The Rangers’ second baseman gets his three-bagger en route to a 6-for-6 cycle performance.

2010       Jorge Cantu establishes a major league record when he gets at least one hit and drives in one or more runs during the season’s first ten games. The Marlins’ infielder start also proves to be the longest streak at any point of the campaign.

2011       The Rangers tie an American League mark shared with 15 teams by turning six double plays in a nine-inning game, including a record-tying five DPs by Elvis Andrus for the most by a shortstop, in the team’s 5-3 victory at Yankee Stadium. The first six batters in the Bronx Bombers’ lineup, Alex Rodriguez, Mark Teixeira, Robinson Cano, Derek Jeter, Andruw Jones, and Nick Swisher, bounce into Texas twin killings.

2011       With a 7-6 defeat to Toronto at Fenway Park, the Red Sox lose their tenth game of the new campaign, making their 2-10 record the worst start in franchise history. Despite its record-setting first dozen contests, Boston will still be in contention for a playoff spot until the last day of the season.

TV FRIDAY

COLLEGE BASEBALLTIME ETTV
MICHIGAN AT MICHIGAN ST.5:00PMESPNU
FLORIDA AT VANDERBILT7:00PMESPN2
CLEMSON AT WAKE FOREST7:00PMACCN
LSU AT ARKANSAS7:00PMSECN
STANFORD AT UCLA10:00PMESPN2
COLLEGE SOFTBALLTIME ETTV
GEORGIA AT MISSOURI1:00PMSECN
SYRACUSE AT LOUISVILLE5:00PMACCN
MINNESOTA AT NEBRASKA6:00PMBTN
PROVIDENCE AT UCONN7:30PMFS1
OREGON AT ARIZONA8:00PMESPNU
GOLFTIME ETTV
PGA: RBC HERITAGE3:00PMGOLF
LPGA: LOTTE CHAMPIONSHIP7:00PMGOLF
MLBTIME ETTV
ARIZONA AT NY METS1:10PMESPN+
BALLY SPORTS
NESN
MINNESOTA AT BOSTON2:10PMESPN+
BALLY SPORTS
NESN
WASHINGTON AT PITTSBURGH6:35PMMASN/2
ATTSN-PIT
PHILADELPHIA AT MIAMI6:40PMNBCS-PHI
BALLY SPORTS
NY YANKEES AT BALTIMORE7:05PMYES
MASN/2
OAKLAND AT TORONTO7:07PMNBCS-CA
SPORTSNET
SAN FRANCISCO AT CLEVLEAND7:10PMNBCS-BAY
BALLY SPORTS
TAMPA BAY AT CHI. WHITE SOX7:10PMNBCS-CHI
BALLY SPORTS
LA ANGELS AT TEXAS8:05PMBALLY SPORTS
DETROIT AT KANSAS CITY8:10PMBALLY SPORTS
ST. LOUIS AT MILWAUKEE8:10PMBALLY SPORTS
CHI. CUBS AT COLORADO8:40PMMARQ
ATTSN-RM
ATLANTA AT SAN DIEGO9:40PMBALLY SPORTS
HOUSTON AT SEATTLE9:42PMATTSN-SW
ROOT SPORTS
CINCINNATI AT LA DODGERS10:10PMBALLY SPORTS
SPORTSNET
NBA PLAY-IN TOURNAMENTTIME ETTV
ESPN
TNT
NHLTIME ETTV
WINNIPEG AT FLORIDA7:00PMNHLN
SPORTSNET
BALLY SPORTS
NY ISLANDERS AT MONTREAL7:00PMSPORTSNET
MSG+
SOCCERTIME ETTV
ENGLAND CHAMPIONSHIP: LUTON TOWN VS NOTTINGHAM FOREST7:30AMESPN+
ENGLAND CHAMPIONSHIP: BIRMINGHAM CITY VS COVENTRY CITY10:00AMESPN+
ENGLAND CHAMPIONSHIP: AFC BOURNEMOUTH VS MIDDLESBROUGH10:00AMESPN+
SERIE A: SPEZIA VS INTERNAZIONALE1:00PMPARAMOUNT+
SUPER LIG: TRABZONSPOR VS FATIH KARAGÜMRÜK1:30PMBEIN SPORTS
SCOTTISH CHAMPIONSHIP: INVERNESS CT VS KILMARNOCK2:45PMPARAMOUNT+
SERIE A: MILAN VS GENOA3:00PMPARAMOUNT+
LA LIGA: REAL SOCIEDAD VS REAL BETIS3:00PMESPN+
LIGUE 1: RENNES VS MONACO3:00PMBEIN SPORTS
ARGENTINA PRIMERA DIVISIÓN: TIGRE VS HURACÁN3:30PMPARAMOUNT+
ARGENTINA PRIMERA DIVISIÓN: ALDOSIVI VS ROSARIO CENTRAL6:00PMPARAMOUNT+
ARGENTINA PRIMERA DIVISIÓN: CENTRAL CÓRDOBA SDE VS ARSENAL6:00PMPARAMOUNT+
USL CHAMPIONSHIP: NEW YORK RB II VS RIO GRANDE VALLEY7:00PMESPN+
LIGA MX: NECAXA VS ATLÉTICO SAN LUIS8:00PMTUDN
NWSL CHALLENGE CUP: KANSAS CITY CURRENT VS HOUSTON DASH8:00PMCBSSN
ARGENTINA PRIMERA DIVISIÓN: NEWELL’S OLD BOYS VS PATRONATO8:30PMPARAMOUNT+
LIGA MX: JUÁREZ VS PACHUCA10:00PMTUDN
LIGA MX: TIJUANA VS AMÉRICA10:06PMESPN+

MLB STANDINGS

AMERICAN LEAGUE
EAST
TEAMWLPCTGBHOMEROADEASTCENTRALWESTLAST 10STREAK
NY YANKEES43.5714 – 30 – 04 – 30 – 00 – 04 – 3W 1
TAMPA BAY43.5714 – 30 – 03 – 00 – 01 – 34 – 3L 2
TORONTO43.5712 – 12 – 22 – 20 – 02 – 14 – 3L 1
BOSTON33.5000.50 – 03 – 31 – 22 – 10 – 03 – 3W 2
BALTIMORE15.1672.51 – 20 – 30 – 30 – 00 – 01 – 5L 2
CENTRAL
TEAMWLPCTGBHOMEROADEASTCENTRALWESTLAST 10STREAK
CHI WHITE SOX42.6672 – 12 – 10 – 02 – 12 – 14 – 2L 1
CLEVELAND42.6670 – 04 – 20 – 02 – 20 – 04 – 2W 4
DETROIT34.4291.52 – 41 – 01 – 22 – 20 – 03 – 4W 1
KANSAS CITY24.33322 – 30 – 10 – 02 – 30 – 02 – 4L 4
MINNESOTA24.33322 – 40 – 00 – 00 – 02 – 22 – 4L 2
WEST
TEAMWLPCTGBHOMEROADEASTCENTRALWESTLAST 10STREAK
HOUSTON42.6670 – 04 – 20 – 00 – 03 – 14 – 2L 1
OAKLAND43.5710.50 – 04 – 33 – 10 – 00 – 04 – 3W 2
LA ANGELS34.4291.53 – 30 – 10 – 00 – 01 – 43 – 4L 1
SEATTLE34.4291.50 – 03 – 40 – 03 – 40 – 03 – 4W 1
TEXAS24.33321 – 21 – 21 – 20 – 01 – 02 – 4W 1
NATIONAL LEAGUE
EAST
TEAMWLPCTGBHOMEROADEASTCENTRALWESTLAST 10STREAK
NY METS52.7140 – 05 – 25 – 20 – 00 – 05 – 2W 2
PHILADELPHIA34.42923 – 30 – 11 – 30 – 00 – 03 – 4L 3
ATLANTA35.3752.53 – 40 – 11 – 22 – 20 – 13 – 5L 2
WASHINGTON35.3752.51 – 32 – 23 – 40 – 10 – 03 – 5L 1
MIAMI24.3332.51 – 01 – 41 – 00 – 01 – 22 – 4W 1
CENTRAL
TEAMWLPCTGBHOMEROADEASTCENTRALWESTLAST 10STREAK
CHI CUBS42.6672 – 12 – 10 – 03 – 21 – 04 – 2W 1
ST. LOUIS32.6000.53 – 10 – 10 – 02 – 20 – 03 – 2L 1
MILWAUKEE43.5710.51 – 03 – 30 – 02 – 20 – 04 – 3W 3
PITTSBURGH33.50012 – 11 – 21 – 02 – 30 – 03 – 3W 2
CINCINNATI25.2862.50 – 22 – 32 – 20 – 00 – 12 – 5L 3
WEST
TEAMWLPCTGBHOMEROADEASTCENTRALWESTLAST 10STREAK
COLORADO42.6672 – 22 – 00 – 00 – 12 – 14 – 2L 1
LA DODGERS42.6671 – 03 – 20 – 01 – 01 – 24 – 2W 3
SAN FRANCISCO42.6674 – 20 – 02 – 10 – 02 – 14 – 2W 2
SAN DIEGO53.6251 – 04 – 31 – 00 – 04 – 35 – 3W 1
ARIZONA24.33322 – 40 – 00 – 00 – 01 – 32 – 4W 1

X – CLINCHED DIVISION,  Y – CLINCHED PLAYOFF SPOT

NHL STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
 GPWLOTLPTSROWGFGAHOMEROADL10
1 X-FLORIDA PANTHERS73521561104930521631-6-021-9-69-1-0
2 X-CAROLINA HURRICANES75481981044724718027-8-421-11-45-4-1
3 X-TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS74482061024628622927-8-221-12-48-1-1
4 X-NEW YORK RANGERS75482161024423119124-8-424-13-27-2-1
5 X-TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING7445218984324320823-7-622-14-25-3-2
6 X-PITTSBURGH PENGUINS76432211974025321321-12-522-10-64-5-1
BOSTON BRUINS7445245954323120222-13-223-11-35-5-0
WASHINGTON CAPITALS74412310923625221919-15-522-8-56-4-0
NEW YORK ISLANDERS7334309773220320619-13-415-17-56-4-0
10 COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS7435336763124027419-15-416-18-23-4-3
11 DETROIT RED WINGS74293510682621328118-14-711-21-33-4-3
12 BUFFALO SABRES76273811652421027214-18-613-20-54-5-1
13 OTTAWA SENATORS7428406622720023913-21-315-19-35-4-1
14 NEW JERSEY DEVILS7426426582322827416-17-410-25-23-6-1
15 PHILADELPHIA FLYERS74234011572219026913-19-610-21-52-8-0
16 MONTREAL CANADIENS74204311511719328410-21-410-22-73-6-1
 
WESTERN CONFERENCE
 GPWLOTLPTSROWGFGAHOMEROADL10
1 X-COLORADO AVALANCHE74541461145028720230-4-324-10-39-0-1
CALGARY FLAMES7445209994325918722-9-723-11-26-3-1
MINNESOTA WILD7346216984127122526-7-220-14-47-1-2
ST. LOUIS BLUES74442010984227421125-9-419-11-69-0-1
EDMONTON OILERS7543266923926023523-12-120-14-57-2-1
LOS ANGELES KINGS76392710883522022518-16-421-11-64-5-1
NASHVILLE PREDATORS7442275894023721423-13-019-14-55-4-1
DALLAS STARS7442275893821722023-10-319-17-26-2-2
VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS7541295873724422221-14-320-15-27-2-1
10 VANCOUVER CANUCKS75372810843422421117-14-620-14-46-2-2
11 WINNIPEG JETS74352811813323023219-15-316-13-85-4-1
12 ANAHEIM DUCKS76293314722521324916-17-513-16-92-5-3
13 SAN JOSE SHARKS73293311692719023416-16-513-17-61-6-3
14 CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS74253811612019926412-20-613-18-52-6-2
15 SEATTLE KRAKEN7323446522118925512-21-311-23-34-6-0
16 ARIZONA COYOTES7422475492118227810-25-112-22-42-7-1
 

EIGHT TEAMS IN EACH CONFERENCE QUALIFY FOR THE DIVISIONAL PLAYOFF FORMAT.  THE TOP THREE TEAMS FROM EACH DIVISION MAKE UP THE FIRST SIX SPOTS.   THE TWO REMAINING TEAMS WITH THE HIGHEST POINTS, REGARDLESS OF DIVISION, QUALIFY FOR THE FINAL TWO WILD CARD SPOTS.  X – CLINCHED PLAYOFF SPOT, Y – CLINCHED DIVISION, Z – CLINCHED CONFERENCE