SECTIONAL BASKETBALL TUESDAY

LAKE CENTRAL SECTIONAL

LAKE CENTRAL (10-13) AT HAMMOND MORTON (10-13)

PORTAGE SECTIONAL

HOBART (8-14) AT PORTAGE (15-8)

PLYMOUTH SECTIONAL

MISHAWAKA (13-9) VS. MICHIGAN CITY (14-8)

SOUTH BEND ADAMS (11-12) VS. SOUTH BEND RILEY (11-11)

ELKHART SECTIONAL

WARSAW (16-7) VS. PENN (20-2)

CONCORD (11-10) AT ELKHART (6-16)

DEKALB SECTIONAL

FORT WAYNE SNIDER (15-7) VS. FORT WAYNE NORTH (10-10)

EAST NOBLE (10-12) VS. FORT WAYNE NORTHROP (12-10)

HUNTINGTON SECTIONAL

HUNTINGTON NORTH (14-9) AT HOMESTEAD (19-5)

FORT WAYNE SOUTH (12-10) VS. COLUMBIA CITY (17-5)

LOGANSPORT SECTIONAL

LAFAYETTE JEFF (19-4) VS. MCCUTCHEON (7-14)

MARION (8-13) VS. HARRISON (WEST LAFAYETTE) (17-6)

NOBLESVILLE SECTIONAL

ZIONSVILLE (14-7) AT NOBLESVILLE (12-10)

WESTFIELD (18-6) VS. FISHERS (21-2)

GREENFIELD SECTIONAL

MUNCIE CENTRAL (4-18) VS. NEW PALESTINE (17-6)

NORTH CENTRAL SECTIONAL

LAWRENCE NORTH (15-6) VS. INDIANAPOLIS ATTUCKS (13-10)

BEN DAVIS SECTIONAL

SOUTHPORT (12-11) VS. PIKE (14-8)

INDIANAPOLIS RONCALLI (7-14) AT BEN DAVIS (18-6)

TH NORTH SECTIONAL

TERRE HAUTE NORTH (20-4) AT MOORESVILLE (13-7)

PLAINFIELD (12-10) VS. TERRE HAUTE SOUTH (4-19)

GREENWOOD SECTIONAL

SHELBYVILLE (5-17) VS. FRANKLIN (8-14)

GREENWOOD (9-13) AT FRANKLIN CENTRAL (8-13)

MARTINSVILLE SECTIONAL

COLUMBUS EAST (7-14) VS. BLOOMINGTON NORTH (19-3)

BLOOMINGTON SOUTH (17-7) AT MARTINSVILLE (7-16)

SEYMOUR SECTIONAL

JEFFERSONVILLE (7-11) VS. BEDFORD NORTH LAWRENCE (11-11)

FLOYD CENTRAL (17-4) VS. JENNINGS COUNTY (14-8)

NORTH SECTIONAL

EVANSVILLE REITZ (11-9) VS. EVANSVILLE CENTRAL (8-14)

JASPER (18-4) AT EVANSVILLE NORTH (13-10)

HANOVER SECTIONAL

LIGHTHOUSE CPA (5-12) VS. GRIFFITH (3-17)

KANK. VALLEY SECTIONAL

CULVER ACADEMY (15-7) AT KANKAKEE VALLEY (16-7)

MARIAN SECTIONAL

SOUTH BEND CLAY (7-15) VS. JIMTOWN (7-15)

SOUTH BEND WASHINGTON (15-9) VS. JOHN GLENN (22-1)

MACONAQUAH SECTIONAL

BENTON CENTRAL (13-10) VS. WEST LAFAYETTE (5-18)

WAWASEE SECTIONAL

TIPPECANOE VALLEY (13-9) VS. WEST NOBLE (14-8)

GARRETT SECTIONAL

LEO (16-5) VS. ANGOLA (7-15)

NORWELL SECTIONAL

HERITAGE (5-17) AT NORWELL (19-4)

JH PREDICTION: NORWELL, 71-41.

BELLMONT (12-10) VS. MISSISSINEWA (9-13)

NEW CASTLE SECTIONAL

NEW CASTLE (17-4) AT JAY COUNTY (19-4)

YORKTOWN (7-14) VS. DELTA (12-11)

FRANKFORT SECTIONAL

CRAWFORDSVILLE (17-5) VS. TRI-WEST (13-9)

EDGEWOOD SECTIONAL

EDGEWOOD (11-13) AT SOUTH VERMILLION (12-12)

LEBANON SECTIONAL

INDIANAPOLIS SHORTRIDGE (3-18) VS. BREBEUF JESUIT (15-7)

CHRISTEL HOUSE MANUAL (12-9) VS. INDIANAPOLIS CHATARD (15-7)

SPEEDWAY SECTIONAL

BEECH GROVE (15-6) VS. INDIANAPOLIS HERRON (10-12)

INDIAN CREEK (5-16) VS. INDIANAPOLIS WASHINGTON (16-8)

CONNERSVILLE SECTIONAL

RUSHVILLE (5-17) VS. LAWRENCEBURG (17-7)

SALEM SECTIONAL

NORTH HARRISON (16-3) VS. CHARLESTOWN (8-14)

PRINCETON SECTIONAL

PRINCETON (3-20) AT PIKE CENTRAL (9-12)

BOONVILLE SECTIONAL

GIBSON SOUTHERN (10-11) VS. HERITAGE HILLS (14-9)

EVANSVILLE BOSSE (14-9) VS. MOUNT VERNON (POSEY) (10-13)

NORTH JUDSON SECTIONAL

WESTVILLE (14-8) VS. BOONE GROVE (15-7)

WESTVIEW SECTIONAL

CHURUBUSCO (3-19) VS. CENTRAL NOBLE (22-2)

BLUFFTON SECTIONAL

SOUTH ADAMS (5-17) VS. WHITKO (9-13)

MANCHESTER (10-12) VS. FORT WAYNE BLACKHAWK (19-4)

WINAMAC SECTIONAL

ROCHESTER (9-12) VS. LEWIS CASS (11-11)

DELPHI (3-19) AT WINAMAC (8-13)

WESTERN BOONE SECTIONAL

WESTERN BOONE (8-12) AT CLINTON PRAIRIE (19-4)

FOUNTAIN CENTRAL (13-12) VS. SEEGER (8-12)

TIPTON SECTIONAL

MADISON-GRANT (12-10) VS. BLACKFORD (8-14)

TIPTON (14-6) AT TAYLOR (12-9)

ALEXANDRIA SECTIONAL

ALEXANDRIA (6-16) AT LAPEL (11-11)

HAGERSTOWN SECTIONAL

SHENANDOAH (12-10) VS. NORTHEASTERN (17-5)

KNIGHTSTOWN (6-15) AT HAGERSTOWN (6-17)

PARK TUDOR SECTIONAL

PARK TUDOR (14-6) AT HERITAGE CHRISTIAN (10-11)

INDIANAPOLIS SCECINA (12-10) VS. COVENANT CHRISTIAN (11-12)

SOUTH PUTNAM SECTIONAL

CLOVERDALE (11-12) VS. PARKE HERITAGE (14-9)

SOUTH RIPLEY SECTIONAL

MILAN (2-18) VS. NORTH DECATUR (12-10)

SOUTHWESTERN SECTIONAL

SWITZERLAND COUNTY (10-13) VS. AUSTIN (6-14)

SOUTHWESTERN (HANOVER) (15-7) AT HENRYVILLE (8-14)

TELL CITY SECTIONAL

PAOLI (13-9) VS. CRAWFORD COUNTY (3-19)

NORTH KNOX SECTIONAL

NORTH KNOX (13-9) AT EASTERN GREENE (6-16)

SOUTHRIDGE SECTIONAL

SOUTHRIDGE (12-11) AT NORTH POSEY (14-6)

FOREST PARK (11-10) VS. TECUMSEH (7-15)

KOUTS SECTIONAL

KOUTS (13-10) AT MORGAN TWP. (16-5)

TRITON SECTIONAL

WEST CENTRAL (4-17) VS. ARGOS (15-5)

FREMONT SECTIONAL

HAMILTON (0-21) AT FREMONT (14-8)

TRI-COUNTY (4-15) AT NORTH WHITE (18-3)

FRONTIER (6-16) VS. PIONEER (7-15)

SOUTHERN WELLS SECTIONAL

NORTHFIELD (5-17) VS. SOUTHWOOD (11-11)

SMITH ACADEMY (5-16) VS. LAKELAND CHRISTIAN (13-10)

ATTICA SECTIONAL

FAITH CHRISTIAN (10-10) AT ATTICA (0-21)

CLINTON CENTRAL (8-14) VS. LAFAYETTE CENTRAL CATHOLIC (14-9)

LIBERTY CHRISTIAN (14-9) VS. TRI-CENTRAL (13-8)

DALEVILLE (12-9) VS. ANDERSON PREP ACADEMY (1-20)

BLUE RIVER SECTIONAL

BLUE RIVER (12-10) AT UNION CITY (6-16)

RANDOLPH SOUTHERN (11-12) VS. SETON CATHOLIC (15-8)

WRV SECTIONAL

BLOOMFIELD (17-6) VS. SHAKAMAK (14-9)

BETHESDA SECTIONAL

TRADERS POINT CHRISTIAN (11-12) VS. INDIANA DEAF (8-14)

LUTHERAN SECTIONAL

PROVIDENCE CRISTO REY (0-21) VS. GREENWOOD CHRISTIAN (15-9)

CENTRAL CHRISTIAN (16-8) AT INDIANAPOLIS LUTHERAN (15-5)

SOUTHWESTERN SECTIONAL

RISING SUN (9-13) VS. JAC-CEN-DEL (17-5)

BORDEN SECTIONAL

ROCK CREEK ACADEMY (13-8) VS. NEW WASHINGTON (6-17)

CHRISTIAN ACADEMY (10-13) VS. LANESVILLE (6-17)

EDINBURGH SECTIONAL

SHAWE MEMORIAL (8-12) VS. WEST WASHINGTON (9-13)

TRINITY LUTHERAN (9-14) AT EDINBURGH (19-3)

LOOGOOTEE SECTIONAL

NORTH DAVIESS (20-3) VS. WASHINGTON CATHOLIC (0-19)

ORLEANS (16-7) AT LOOGOOTEE (18-5)

SPRINGS VALLEY SECTIONAL

VINCENNES RIVET (3-12) VS. CANNELTON (4-19)

SPRINGS VALLEY (19-3) AT WOOD MEMORIAL (3-19)

MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL

#14  HOUSTON 75 SMU 61

#15 ILLINOIS 93 MICHIGAN 85

#21 UCONN 86 GEORGETOWN 77

MARYLAND 75 #22 OHIO STATE 60

INDIANA 84 MINNESOTA 79

NEBRASKA 93 PENN STATE 70

MEMPHIS 81 WICHITA STATE 57

DEPAUL 99 ST. JOHN’S 94

MEN’S COLLEGE BB WIRE: http://hosted.stats.com/cbk/wire.asp

WOMEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL

#1 SOUTH CAROLINA 71 OLE MISS 57

#3 NORTH CAROLINA STATE 68 #23 VIRGINIA TECH 66

#4 LOUISVILLE 86 #14 NOTRE DAME 64

#21 IOWA 104 #6 MICHIGAN 80

#7 UCONN 88 PROVIDENCE 31

#8 LSU 57 #16 TENNESSEE 54

MISSOURI 78 #15 FLORIDA 73

#17 OHIO STATE 61 MICHIGAN STATE 55

#18 NORTH CAROLINA 74 DUKE 46

#22 GEORGIA TECH 64 WAKE FOREST 56

#25 GEORGIA 67 TEXAS A&M 58

WISCONSIN 63 PURDUE 62

GEORGETOWN 69 BUTLER 48

DEPAUL 90 CREIGHTON 84

BOSTON COLLEGE 91 SYRACUSE 75

SOUTH FLORIDA 68 CAROLINA 60

WEST VIRGINIA 60 OKLAHOMA STATE 56

TULSA 61 WICHITA STATE 49

VILLANOVA 58 XAVIER 49

ALABAMA 77 VANDERBILT 71

RUTGERS 66 ILLINOIS 56

MARQUETTE 79 ST. JOHN’S 75

KENTUCKY 90 AUBURN 62

MIAMI, FLORIDA 76 CLEMSON 40

NEBRASKA 73 NORTHWESTERN 59

ARKANSAS 87 MISSISSIPPI STATE 79

NBA SCOREBOARD

INDIANA 127 BOSTON 107

PHILADELPHIA 125 NEW YORK 109

UTAH 118 PHOENIX 114

LA CLIPPERS 99 HOUSTON 98

DETROIT 127 CHARLOTTE 126 OT

DALLAS 107 GOLDEN STATE 101

DENVER 124 PORTLAND 92

NEW ORLEANS 123 LA LAKERS 95

NBA WIRE: http://hosted.stats.com/nba/wire.asp

NHL SCOREBOARD

CAROLINA 2 EDMONTON 1

DALLAS 4 BUFFALO 2

ST. LOUIS 4 CHICAGO 0

WINNIPEG 5 ARIZONA 3

PITTSBURGH 3 COLUMBUS 2

VANCOUVER 5 NY RANGERS 2

NY ISLANDERS 4 ANAHEIM 0

SAN JOSE 3 SEATTLE 1

NHL WIRE: http://hosted.stats.com/nhl/wire.asp

TOP NATIONAL SPORTS NEWS/RELEASES

Euro backlash as FIFA refuses to expel Russia from football

LONDON (AP) FIFA drew a swift backlash from European nations for not immediately expelling Russia from World Cup qualifying on Sunday and only ordering the country to play without its flag and anthem at neutral venues under the name of its federation – the Football Union of Russia.

Protesting against FIFA’s response to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, Poland said it would still refuse to play the country in a World Cup playoff semifinal, which is scheduled for March 24.

“Today’s FIFA decision is totally unacceptable,” Polish football federation president Cezary Kulesza tweeted. “We are not interested in participating in this game of appearances. Our stance remains intact: Polish National Team will NOT PLAY with Russia, no matter what the name of the team is.”

The unanimous ruling by the FIFA Bureau, featuring the six regional football confederation presidents, said the Russian flag and anthem can’t be associated with the team playing as “Football Union of Russia (RFU).”

“FIFA will continue its ongoing dialogue with the IOC, UEFA and other sport organizations to determine any additional measures or sanctions,” FIFA said in a statement, “including a potential exclusion from competitions, that shall be applied in the near future should the situation not be improving rapidly.”

The decision adopts the Court of Arbitration for Sport ruling before the invasion of Ukraine, punishing Russia’s cover-up of the investigation into state-sponsored doping. It meant the Russians had to compete at the last two Olympics as the ROC team. FIFA had stalled implementing the ban on Russia competing under the country’s name until a potential qualification the World Cup.

The winner of the Russia-Poland playoff is due to host Sweden or the Czech Republic on March 29 to decide who advances to the Nov. 21-Dec. 18 World Cup in Qatar.

Swedish federation president Karl-Erik Nilsson, the senior UEFA vice president, told the website Fotbollskanalen that he was not satisfied with the FIFA decision with a “sharper stance” expected. The Czechs said the FIFA compromise did not change their decision not to play Russia.

FIFA said it had engaged with the three associations and would remain in “close contact to seek to find appropriate and acceptable solutions together.”

Separately, the English Football Association announced that its national teams would refuse to play Russia for the “foreseeable future.” Russia has qualified for the Women’s European Championship which is being hosted by England in June.

The English FA said the decision was taken “out of solidarity with the Ukraine and to wholeheartedly condemn the atrocities being committed by the Russian leadership.”

The RFU’s president is Aleksandr Dyukov, who is chief executive of a subsidiary of state-owned energy giant Gazprom and also sits on the UEFA executive committee.

In France, the football federation president Noel Le Graet told the Le Parisien daily Sunday that he was leaning toward excluding Russia from the World Cup.

“The world of sport, and in particular football, cannot remain neutral,” said Le Graet, who sits on the ruling FIFA Council and has recently been a close ally of the governing body’s president, Gianni Infantino.

A strict reading of FIFA’s World Cup regulations would even make the Polish, Swedish and Czech federations liable to disciplinary action and having to pay fines and compensation if they wouldn’t play Russia.

In 1992, however, FIFA and UEFA removed Yugoslavia from its competitions following United Nations sanctions imposed when war broke out in the Balkans.

The FIFA Bureau, which is chaired by Infantino, includes UEFA President Aleksander Ceferin.

UEFA on Friday pulled the 2022 Champions League final from St. Petersburg, moving it to Paris, and said Russian and Ukrainian teams in its competitions must play home games in neutral countries. UEFA allowed Spartak Moscow to continue playing in the second-tier Europa League’s round of 16.

As Russia’s war on Ukraine entered a fourth day on Sunday, Russian President Vladimir Putin temporarily lost his most senior official position in world sports. The International Judo Federation cited “the ongoing war conflict in Ukraine” for suspending Putin’s honorary president status.

The Russian president is a keen judoka and attended the sport at the 2012 London Olympics.

There was an abrupt resignation on Sunday from the Russian who is president of the European Judo Union, with Sergey Soloveychik referencing the “heartache that we see the people in brotherly countries die” but backing his country.

“No one doubts that my heart belongs to judo,” he said. “But it is equally true that it belongs to my homeland, Russia. We, judoka, must always be loyal to our principles.”

In Putin’s other favorite sport, ice hockey, Latvian club Dinamo Riga withdrew Sunday from the Russian-owned and run Kontinental Hockey League citing the “military and humanitarian crisis.”

Ukraine athletes defend country, demand sanctions for Russia

(AP) — Earlier this month, Ukrainian skeleton rider Vladyslav Heraskevych flashed a sign at the Olympics: “No war in Ukraine.” On Sunday, he was hunkered down about 150 kilometers (90 miles) outside of his nation’s capital with weapons nearby in case he needs to defend his country.

“I am a student,” the 23-year-old said in a phone interview with The Associated Press. “I am not experienced in these type of things. But I am ready to stand strong and help in any way I can.”

With Russian troops encircling the capital of Kyiv, Heraskevych was among more than 60 athletes from Ukraine and 14 other countries who sent an open letter to Olympic and Paralympic leaders, urging them to immediately suspend the Russian and Belarusian Olympic and Paralympic Committees.

“Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, supported by Belarus, is a clear breach of the Olympic and Paralympic Charters – a breach that must be met with strong sanctions,” said the letter addressed to IOC President Thomas Bach and his counterpart on the International Paralympic Committee, Andrew Parsons.

The letter said more Ukrainians would have signed the letter but “it has been a challenge to speak with all athletes from Ukraine as they are seeking safety in bomb shelters.”

The advocacy group Global Athlete helped coordinate the letter, which also was signed by sliders from the U.S., Latvia and the Netherlands, members of the Russian fencing team, an independent athletes’ group from Germany and the Belarus Sport Solidarity Athletes Federation.

The International Olympic Committee has condemned Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, saying it violated the Olympic Truce. It has called on international federations to cancel or move events planned in Russia and Belarus and to stop using the countries’ flags and national anthems.

Neither the IOC nor the IPC have taken direct action against the countries themselves, however. The Paralympics start next Friday. Neither federation immediately responded to AP requests for comment on the letter.

Among those signing the letter was Ukrainian freestyle skier Oleksandr Abramenko, whose embrace with a Russian athlete in Beijing was caught on camera and captured headlines.

Heraskevych’s “no war” banner did, too. After that gesture on Feb. 11, the IOC came out quickly and said Heraskevych would not face any sanctions for violating the Olympic rule that limits political protests on the field of play at the Games.

“This was a general call for peace,” the IOC said in a statement. “For the IOC the matter is closed.”

Heraskevych told the AP he left China in mid-February with a guarded sense of optimism; at the time, Russia was amassing troops along Ukraine’s border but had not invaded.

His hopes were quickly dashed. He spoke to the AP from Zhytomyr, about a two-hour drive from Kyiv. He was preparing to defend Ukraine’s capital if called on.

“It’s quiet now,” Heraskevych said. “But there is no safe place in Ukraine right now.”

2022 Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament Bracket Announced

ROSEMONT, Ill. — The Big Ten Conference has announced the full bracket for the 29th Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament presented by TIAA that will take place March 2-6 at Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis.

Ohio State (22-5, 14-4 Big Ten) is the No. 1 seed for this year’s tournament after securing a share of the Big Ten Championship on Sunday with its 61-55 victory at Michigan State. The Buckeyes, who claimed the top seed by virtue of their head-to-head win over Iowa on Jan. 31, earned their conference-record 17th Big Ten title (first since an outright crown in 2018) and have won six Big Ten Tournament championships (most recently in 2018).

Ohio State will open tournament play on Friday with a quarterfinal contest at 11:30 a.m. (ET) live on Big Ten Network against the winner of the second-round game between No. 8 seed Michigan State and No. 9 seed Purdue.

Iowa (21-7, 14-4) is the No. 2 seed for this year’s Big Ten Tournament after the Hawkeyes earned a share of their ninth Big Ten title and first since sharing the crown in 2008 with a 104-80 win over Michigan on Sunday. Iowa, which has won three Big Ten Tournament titles (the last in 2019), will tip off its postseason schedule at 6:30 p.m. (ET) Friday with a tournament quarterfinal game live on Big Ten Network against the winner of the second-round matchup between No. 7 seed Northwestern and 10th-seeded Minnesota.

Michigan (22-5, 13-4) earned the No. 3 seed for the Big Ten Tournament, matching its highest tournament seed in the 10-year tenure of head coach Kim Barnes Arico (the Wolverines were also a No. 3 seed in 2017). Michigan, which was seeded third by virtue of its two-game series sweep over Maryland, is seeking its first Big Ten Tournament title and will tip off in the last quarterfinal live on Big Ten Network on Friday night, 25 minutes following the completion of Iowa’s quarterfinal.

Rounding out the top four seeds is two-time defending Big Ten Tournament champion Maryland (21-7, 13-4), which claimed the last of the tournament’s double-byes into the quarterfinal round. The Terrapins, who have five Big Ten Tournament championships since joining the conference in 2015, will open this year’s tournament slate Friday afternoon in the quarterfinals, playing live on Big Ten Network 25 minutes after Ohio State’s game has concluded.

All 13 games of this year’s Big Ten Tournament will be televised live to a national audience, with the first round through semifinal games from Wednesday through Saturday broadcast on the Big Ten Network, as well as on the FOX Sports app. The Big Ten Tournament championship game on March 6 will be televised live on ESPN2, as well as the ESPN app.

All-session and single-session tickets for the 2022 Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament are on sale at the Gainbridge Fieldhouse box office and Ticketmaster.com. Single-session ticket prices vary from $8 to $16 depending on the session, while all-session tickets are available for $75. Other than suites and the fan blocks for that university’s respective games (with tickets within fan blocks available through each school’s ticket office), the Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament features general admission seating, allowing fans to witness the action from the best available seats at Gainbridge Fieldhouse.

In addition, several special ticket offers and activities are lined up for this year’s Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament. For more information on this year’s tournament ancillary events and promotions, visit the Big Ten Tournament Central page at bigten.org/WBBT.

The 2022 Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament schedule is as follows:

Wednesday, March 2 (First Round)

Game 1 (#12 Penn State vs. #13 Rutgers) – 2 p.m. ET (BTN)

Game 2 (#11 Wisconsin vs. #14 Illinois) – 4:30 p.m. ET (BTN)

Thursday, March 3 (Second Round)

Game 3 (#8 Michigan State vs. #9 Purdue) – 11:30 a.m. ET (BTN)

Game 4 (#5 Indiana vs. Game 1 winner) – 25 minutes following Game 3 (BTN)

Game 5 (#7 Northwestern vs. #10 Minnesota) – 6:30 p.m. ET (BTN)

Game 6 (#6 Nebraska vs. Game 2 winner) – 25 minutes following Game 5 (BTN)

Friday, March 4 (Quarterfinals)

Game 7 (#1 Ohio State vs. Game 3 winner) – 11:30 a.m. ET (BTN)

Game 8 (#4 Maryland vs. Game 4 winner) – 25 minutes following Game 7 (BTN)

Game 9 (#2 Iowa vs. Game 5 winner) – 6:30 p.m. ET (BTN)

Game 10 (#3 Michigan vs. Game 6 winner) – 25 minutes following Game 9 (BTN)

Saturday, March 5 (Semifinals)

Game 11 (Game 7 vs. Game 8 winner) – 3:30 p.m. ET (BTN)

Game 12 (Game 9 vs. Game 10 winner) – 6 p.m. ET (BTN)

Sunday, March 6 (Championship)

Game 13 (Game 11 vs. Game 12 winner) – 4 p.m. ET (ESPN2)

MLB players, teams talk for 7th day in row, deadline nears

JUPITER, Fla. (AP) Locked-out players and management officials were bargaining for the seventh straight day Sunday, holding at least three meetings just one day before Major League Baseball’s deadline to salvage March 31 openers and a 162-game schedule.

Negotiators narrowed some differences Friday and Saturday. But entering the 88th day of the work stoppage they were still far apart on big issues that include luxury tax thresholds and rates, the size of the new bonus pool for pre-arbitration players and minimum salaries.

A smaller group of players that included Max Scherzer, Andrew Miller and Marcus Semien walked into Roger Dean Stadium shortly before 1 p.m. along with union head Tony Clark, chief negotiator Bruce Meyer and staff.

A few minutes later, Deputy Commissioner Dan Halem walked from the offices in the main part of the ballpark to the area where players caucus in the building of the Cardinals clubouse.

Halem met for about 20 minutes, then later for 30 minutes and and less than 10 minutes. Executive vice president Morgan Sword, senior vice president Patrick Houlihan and vice president Reed MacPhail also met with the union.

Baseball’s ninth work stoppage started Dec. 2. Spring training games were to have begun Saturday and have been canceled through March 7.

MLB says that if there is not a deal by the end of Monday, there will not be enough training time to start the season as scheduled.

MLB has offered to raise the luxury tax threshold from $210 million last season to $214 million this year, increasing to $220 million by 2026. Teams also want higher tax rates, which the union says tend to act like a salary cap.

Players have asked for a $245 million threshold this year, rising to $273 million by the final season.

The union wants to expand the players with at least two seasons of major league service and less than three to the top 35%, up from the 22% cutoff in place since 2013.

The union wants the pre-arbitration pool to have $115 million distributed to 150 players and management proposed $20 million be split among 30.

Embiid has 37, Harden a triple-double as 76ers beat Knicks

NEW YORK (AP) Joel Embiid and James Harden were greeted by loud roars from the plenty of Philadelphia fans that packed Madison Square Garden.

The cheers later turned to groans as one foul after another threatened to make the matinee last deep into the afternoon.

Embiid didn’t care how it looked to viewers. All that matters is how his partnership with Harden looks to him.

“Unstoppable,” he said.

Embiid scored 37 points and made a career and NBA season-high 23 free throws, Harden had 29 points, 16 assists and 10 rebounds, and the 76ers made it two straight wins with their new duo by beating the New York Knicks 125-109 on Sunday.

The 76ers made 39 free throws, most in the NBA this season, and almost all their work to break open a close game midway through the fourth quarter came from the line. Embiid finished 23 of 27 on free throws and the NBA’s leading scorer added nine rebounds.

It was the opener of a home-and-home series, with the game Wednesday to be Harden’s first in front of his home fans.

“Tonight felt like we were in Philly,” Harden said. “But that crowd, it’s going to be turned (up) in there and I’m ready for it.”

After a powerful performance in a 133-102 win at Minnesota on Friday in Harden’s 76ers debut, this one became a grind-it-out game that the 76ers handled better. It was tied at 100 in the fourth, but Philadelphia pulled away by scoring 10 of its next 12 at the line. Embiid made six free throws, Harden four, and the only 76ers basket during that stretch came when Harden fed Embiid on the fast break.

Once Embiid fouled out both opposing centers and the Knicks were forced to play small, the 76ers put Harden and Embiid in the pick-and-roll.

“So now you’re rolling the big guy down the middle and it’s really difficult to come help and that’s when we got him rolling and getting all those fouls,” 76ers coach Doc Rivers said.

Harden added five steals and matched his season best in assists.

RJ Barrett and Evan Fournier each scored 24 points for the Knicks, who have lost five straight and nine of 10. Julius Randle had 16 points, 10 rebounds and seven assists.

Embiid scored 34 and Harden had 27 points and 12 assists Friday in the All-Star guard’s first game since the 76ers acquired the 10-time All-Star and Paul Millsap for Ben Simmons, Seth Curry, Andre Drummond and two future first-round picks in a Feb. 10 trade.

Harden and Embiid combined to score Philadelphia’s first 11 points. Harden made a 3-pointer that gave the Sixers a 38-35 lead after one.

But the pace eventually slowed down, with Rivers seeing all the fouls and saying to himself: “This game’s going to be a while.”

The teams combined to commit 50 fouls. Philadelphia finished 39 of 44 at the line and New York was 22 for 35.

“They shot 40-whatever it was, a ton of free throws, and we shot a lot,” Knicks coach Tom Thibodeau said. “So there was no flow to the game, so that hurts you some.”

TIP-INS

76ers: Rivers said he wasn’t worried about Tobias Harris after the forward was just 2 for 9 for six points against Minnesota while so many other Sixers had big nights. “He had great shots,” Rivers said. “Listen, we’re in the wins business. We’re not trying to keep everybody happy, because if that’s true then we’d be in the loss business.” Harris was 3 for 9 Sunday.

Knicks: Thibodeau said he couldn’t say yet if Derrick Rose would be able to play next month. Rose had a procedure Friday for a skin infection on his surgically repaired right ankle that has sidelined him for two months. “You just have to sort of let him go through it and be patient with it,” Thibodeau said. … Rookie Jericho Sims got in again as the backup center to Mitchell Robinson, with both fouling out early in the fourth. Veteran Nerlens Noel didn’t play as he battles foot problems. Thibodeau said the Knicks will be rotating their centers.

DOC ON DRUMMOND

Rivers has kept in touch with Drummond, saying he has known the center since he was in high school. Most of the texts are sarcastic, such as one he sent after he saw Drummond throw a behind-the-back pass out of bounds. Drummond had 17 points, 12 rebounds and five assists in the Nets’ victory in Milwaukee and appears will play a big role in Brooklyn.

“He’s playing well, man,” Rivers said. “I’m happy for him because last year, last couple years he’d struggled and he came to us and I thought we really got his motor going again. Now you’re watching him, he’s still doing it, so really happy for him.”

UP NEXT

The 76ers will try to split the four-game season series Wednesday.

Mitchell, Gobert lead surging Jazz over Suns, 118-114

PHOENIX (AP) The Utah Jazz are reasonably healthy, hitting shots and reasserting themselves as a Western Conference powerhouse.

Donovan Mitchell scored 26 points, Rudy Gobert added 16 points and 14 rebounds and the Jazz stayed hot with a 118-114 victory over the NBA-leading Phoenix Suns on Sunday.

“We’ve got so much talent, it’s hard to lose when we play that way,” Gobert said.

Utah has won eight of nine to improve to 38-22. Phoenix, at 49-12, has lost back-to-back games for the first time in two months. Before the two losses, the Suns had won eight straight and 19 of 20.

Utah’s been a little inconsistent this season, but is playing well now that its deep roster is mostly healthy. Jordan Clarkson had 22 points on 10-of-17 shooting – part of the Utah second unit that played well and outscored Phoenix’s bench 43-11.

It was the second straight impressive win for the Jazz, who also beat the Dallas Mavericks on Thursday. Jazz coach Quin Snyder said the team’s deep, unselfish roster allows him to be more creative with substitution patterns and allowing hot hands like Clarkson to stay on the floor in important situations.

“We’ve got a group that’s willing to accept that,” Snyder said. “… It’s really important and I think it’s unusual.”

The Jazz used a 16-3 run late in the third quarter to take a 94-89 advantage heading into the fourth quarter. It stayed tight throughout most of the final minutes but the Jazz were able to keep their lead, helped by Mitchell’s banked-in 3-pointer with 1:50 remaining that put them up 10.

The Jazz shot 17 of 40 (42.5%) from 3-point range. Mitchell made six of them.

“More than the wins, it’s our mindset,” Gobert said. “The way we’re competing defensively and the way we play together offensively, is really the thing we can take away. When we play that way, we’re going to be in good shape every night.”

Devin Booker led Phoenix with 30 points. Cameron Johnson and Deandre Ayton each added 23. Phoenix had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds, but Jae Crowder threw the ball out of bounds.

Suns coach Monty Williams took the blame, saying it was his fault for not calling a timeout, but Crowder said the miscue was also on him.

“I have to be better at that situation,” Crowder said. “I have to know time possession, timeout situation, etc. I am the veteran on this team. I am a veteran basketball player. I should know what to do and what not to do in that situation.”

Phoenix has played its past three games without All-Star point guard Chris Paul, who broke his thumb on Feb. 16 and could be out the rest of the regular season. The Suns have a 1-2 record in those games.

The Suns rallied for a 60-56 halftime lead after trailing for much of the second quarter. Ayton had 17 points on 8-of-10 shooting before the break while Mitchell scored 11 for the Jazz.

TIP-INS

Jazz: G Rudy Gay played Sunday after missing the previous six games with right knee soreness and a non-COVID illness. … Gobert had a season-high eight offensive rebounds. … Gobert blocked three shots.

Suns: Made 10 of their first 11 shots, scoring 24 points in the first six minutes of the first quarter. … G Aaron Holiday returned after missing one game with a sprained ankle. … Welcomed their 18th straight sellout crowd to the Footprint Center. … Phoenix lost despite shooting 51% from the field, 46% from 3-point and 81% on free throws. … Ayton was 11 of 15 from the field.

UP NEXT

Jazz: At Houston on Wednesday night.

Suns: Host Portland on Wednesday night.

Donic leads big comeback, Mavericks stun Warriors 107-101

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) Outside the victorious Dallas locker room, coach Jason Kidd had a little fun with Mavericks superstar Luka Doncic.

“You almost had a triple-double,” Kidd joked, referring to Donic’s 34 points, 11 rebounds and nine turnovers.

The miscues didn’t matter at the end, when Donic and Dallas did almost everything right.

Doncic converted two free throws with 7.9 seconds left, leading the Mavericks back from 21 down in the third quarter to stun the Golden State Warriors 107-101 on Sunday night.

New addition Spencer Dinwiddie scored 10 of his 24 points in the final period for Dallas.

“We wanted to continue to have fight,” Dinwiddie said.

Stephen Curry hit a 3-pointer with 10 seconds remaining and had 27 points and 10 assists in his first game at home since earning All-Star Game MVP honors, but the Warriors couldn’t do enough on either end during crunch time as the Mavericks made all the big shots.

Doncic went 10 for 21 from the floor in the first of two matchups over five days between a pair of top-five NBA defenses: No. 1 Golden State and the fifth-ranked Mavericks. Dinwiddie scored five straight points midway through the fourth that got Dallas to 93-90.

Dorian Finney-Smith’s 3 with 5:05 to go made it 94-93, then his putback at 3:21 gave Dallas the lead before Donic scored the next time down.

Andrew Wiggins added 18 points for Golden State and Kevon Looney grabbed 10 rebounds to go with eight points and five assists as Klay Thompson sat out with an illness after missing practice Saturday. The hope is he will be healthy to travel with the team.

“I think we let our offense dictate our energy and our spirit in the game,” Looney said. “… We kind of folded when adversity hit.”

Warriors rookie Jonathan Kuminga received a technical with 9:20 left for grabbing the rim after a goaltending call. Golden State couldn’t deliver in what seemed set to be another commanding victory over Dallas after the Warriors snapped a four-game home losing streak to the Mavericks last month with a 130-92 rout.

Golden State has given away big leads in losing its last two home games after a 117-116 defeat to Denver on Feb. 16.

“I think it’s actually good to go through and feel it because this is what it feels like in the playoffs,” coach Steve Kerr said. “This is what it feels like when you’re playing a really good team, the game’s never over.”

Curry was presented another time with his All-Star Game MVP trophy so the home fans could celebrate the reigning scoring champion’s accomplishment: 16 3-pointers and 50 points. Vince Carter, who Curry admired while growing up in Toronto, handed him the hardware during a pregame ceremony.

The teams will meet again Thursday night in Dallas.

“Energy, effort, execution under pressure, that’s the name of the game,” Kerr said.

BERKELEY PROUD

Kidd visited his old campus at California in Berkeley on Saturday to see the Golden Bears beat rival Stanford 53-39, then also caught some of Cal’s baseball game next-door against Illinois-Chicago and caught up with coach and friend Mike Neu.

“It was good to be back on campus,” Kidd said, joking how he has former Stanford star Dwight Powell on his roster.

TIP-INS

Mavericks: Also sidelined for the Mavericks were G Trey Burke (sprained left shoulder), F Marquese Chriss (sore right knee) and G Frank Ntilikina (sprained right ankle). … Dallas is 14-9 on the road against the Western Conference. … Powell picked up his fourth foul at the 9:02 mark of the third.

Warriors: Jordan Poole was 0 for 7 and missed all four of his 3-point tries. … C James Wiseman is scheduled to travel with the team on its upcoming four-game road trip and continue to be integrated into practices and scrimmages as he works back from right knee surgery last year. … Andre Iguodala missed his fifth straight game with lower back tightness.

UP NEXT

Mavericks: At Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday night.

Warriors: At Minnesota on Tuesday night.

McCollum, Pelicans roll to 123-95 win over reeling Lakers

LOS ANGELES (AP) CJ McCollum scored 22 points, Jonas Valanciunas and Brandon Ingram added 19 apiece and the New Orleans Pelicans rolled to a 123-95 victory over the reeling Los Angeles Lakers on Sunday night.

The 28-point margin of victory is the largest in franchise history by the Pelicans over the Lakers, surpassing their 139-117 win in 2018.

McCollum has six straight 20-point games. He is averaging 28 points in his seven games with the Pelicans since being acquired from Portland on Feb. 8. He had nine points in the third quarter when New Orleans went on a 26-7 run over four-plus minutes to put the game away.

Valanciunas also had 10 rebounds for his 37th double-double of the season, which is tied for third in the NBA.

Ingram, who played for the Lakers for three seasons, also had eight assists. He had six points during the last six minutes of the first half as the Pelicans went on a 17-4 run to grab a 51-37 lead with 35 seconds remaining. LeBron James banked in a 3-pointer on the ensuing possession to pull the Lakers within 51-40 at halftime.

James led the Lakers with 32 points and Russell Westbrook added 16. Los Angeles has dropped two straight and five of its last six to fall a season-worst six games under .500 at 27-33.

The Lakers committed 23 turnovers, including 16 in the first half. Los Angeles’ night could be summed up during the third quarter when DeAndre Jordan threw a cross-court pass that hit a fan in the first row of the seats along the baseline.

Fans at crypto.com Arena voiced their displeasure with boos for most of the second half.

TIP-INS

Pelicans: New Orleans has won five straight road games, marking the fifth time that has happened since the team moved from Charlotte in 2002. The longest streak is eight in 2007-08.

Lakers: Dwight Howard finished with 11 rebounds. He reached 10,400 career defensive rebounds midway through the second quarter.

UP NEXT

Pelicans: Host the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday.

Lakers: Host the Dallas Mavericks on Tuesday.

Cockburn, Plummer help No. 15 Illinois beat Michigan 93-85

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) Kofi Cockburn dominated on the inside, as usual, and his teammates provided plenty of offense from the outside.

Cockburn scored 27 points and Alfonso Plummer had 26, helping No. 15 Illinois beat Michigan 93-85 on Sunday.

“Kofi was truly great,” coach Brad Underwood said.

Plummer was, too, especially in the first half.

The Utah transfer had 23 points at halftime after making 7 of 11 shots, including 5 of 8 3-pointers, and 4 of 6 free throws.

“Plummer had as good a first half as I’ve seen any player not named Mike Beasley that I’ve coached,” said Underwood, who was on Kansas State’s staff when the former NBA player was at the school. “That was electric.”

The Fighting Illini (20-8, 13-5 Big Ten) led by eight at halftime and were ahead by 15 midway through the second half before the Wolverines (15-12, 9-8) rallied to give themselves a shot at a comeback win.

Caleb Houstan’s 3-pointer with 2:03 pulled Michigan within two points, and Cockburn quickly responded with a jump hook.

Trent Frazier made a 3-pointer with 45.2 seconds left – just before the shot clock expired – for a seven-point lead. The win pulled Illinois within a game of Big Ten-leading and 13th-ranked Wisconsin.

Michigan was without suspended coach Juwan Howard, who missed the second of five games for hitting a Wisconsin assistant coach a week ago. Phil Martelli again filled in for Howard.

“We just weren’t good enough and we trailed for 40 minutes,” Martelli said. “And defensively, we seemed to be chasing.”

Frazier finished with 17 points and Andre Curbelo scored 12 for the Illini.

DeVante’ Jones had a season-high 25 points and matched a career high with 10 assists for the Wolverines. Houstan scored 21 points, matching the season high he set in his previous game.

Hunter Dickinson had 13 points on 4-of-13 shooting and 11 rebounds, playing in a matchup that he missed last month due to the effects of COVID-19 as Illinois won 68-53 at home.

“Jones played great for them, which is OK,” Underwood said. “We did a really good job on Hunter.”

Michigan’s Moussa Diabate and Terrance Williams returned from one-game suspensions, stemming from the melee at Wisconsin. Diabate started and finished with 12 points. Williams did not play in the first half and had two points in four minutes of the second half.

BIG PICTURE

Illinois: After losing three of the previous five games, the Illini put together a strong performance on the road to stay in the Big Ten championship race.

Michigan: The Wolverines have work to do to earn an NCAA Tournament at-large bid with a grueling schedule to end the regular season with four games in an eight-day stretch.

“The fact that we’re on spring break is actually going to help because they can decompress,” Martelli said. “But it’s also a challenge because it’s lonely and there’s no one around.”

LET’S GO O!

Illinois made 71% of its shots in the first half, finishing at 57% shooting, and Michigan connected on 51% of its attempts.

“There wasn’t much defense being played,” Underwood said.

HE SAID IT

“We don’t have great rim presence,” Martelli said. “I think we’re last in the Big Ten in blocked shots per game. We have to improve on that.”

Michigan entered the game 10th in the Big Ten in blocked shots, averaging 2.9 per game.

FOLLOWING UP

Plummer had 26 points in his previous game and matched a school record with 8 3-pointers in a loss to Ohio State.

“Plummer has been spectacular,” Underwood said.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

The Illini may stay in the same spot in the Top 25 after losing to No. 22 Ohio State by three points and beating Michigan.

UP NEXT

Illinois: Finishes the regular season at home against Penn State on Thursday and No. 25 Iowa on Saturday.

Michigan: Closes the regular season, hosting rival Michigan State on Tuesday, the 25th-ranked Hawkeyes on Thursday and playing at No. 22 Ohio State on Sunday.

White scores 21, No. 14 Houston beats SMU 75-61

HOUSTON (AP) Fabian White Jr. had 21 points and nine rebounds and Josh Carlton added 19 points and eight rebounds to lead No. 14 Houston to a 75-61 win over SMU on Sunday.

Taze Moore chipped in 11 points, and Jamal Shead finished with 10 points and 11 assists for Houston (24-4, 13-2 American Athletic Conference).

“We had an advantage inside with Josh and Fabian,” Houston coach Kelvin Sampson said. “The good news is that we exploited it. We tried to really attack them inside. . It was our game plan to get the ball inside and attack the offensive glass.”

Houston owned a 48-30 advantage in points in the paint, shot 45% and had a 49-25 advantage in rebounds in their fourth straight win. The Cougars also grabbed 21 offensive rebounds and turned them into 18 second-chance points.

Houston entered ranked 13th in nation in offensive rebounds, averaging more than 13 per game.

“Sometimes you have to play to your identity,” Sampson said. “Our kids defend and rebound. We are not a great shooting team. We are kind of hit and miss at the free throw line. We are hit and miss at the 3-point line, but defensive rebounding is something that consistently we have been good at.”

Kendric Davis scored 19 points and Michael Weathers had 10 for the Mustangs (20-7, 11-4). SMU shot 39% and struggled on 3-pointers, hitting four of 21.

SMU coach Tim Jankovich said Sunday’s game had a similar feel to SMU’s win over Houston on Feb. 9 where the Mustangs rallied from a 15-point deficit in the second half.

“It felt much the same except when it just became apparent that we just can’t get a defensive rebound,” Jankovich said. “Yes, offensively, we didn’t shoot the ball well. I give Houston a lot of credit. I thought their defense was outstanding.

“The game was rebounding. They dominated the boards. Every timeout, the last nine timeouts that’s all we were begging, and we couldn’t get it done.”

Houston has a two-game lead over the Mustangs for first place in the AAC heading into the final week of the regular season.

“Just win this game,” White said of the Cougars’ mentality coming in. “This was for the conference championship. It’s one versus two. Just try to win this game by any means.”

Houston used a 23-6 run to push its lead to 27-10 midway through the first half on a layup by J’Wan Roberts. The Cougars led by as many as 19 in the first half and took a 37-22 lead into halftime.

SMU cut the lead to 43-35 on a 3-pointer by Emmanuel Bandoumel with 16 minutes remaining, but the Mustangs got no closer than eight when Houston responded with a 15-2 run to increase its lead to 63-42 on layup by Carlton with 6 1/2 minutes to go.

BIG PICTURE

SMU: The loss hurts the Mustangs’ NCAA Tournament resume with two games left in the regular season. . The Mustangs scored a season-low in first half points with 22 and struggled shooting in the first half, making 33% of their shots and missing all eight of their 3-point attempts.

“We are disappointed, and it was a great opportunity, but we have a lot to play for,” Jankovich said. “We’re trying to finish as high as we can. We are trying to hold our home court streak (14-0 at home this season). We are trying to get a bid if the tournament doesn’t work out. . It’s not like this was an all or nothing game. There’s a lot of important basketball ahead.”

Houston: The Cougars helped their NCAA Tournament resume with the win. . Houston forced the Mustangs into 10 turnovers and turned it into 16 points. . The Cougars had 20 assists on 29 made field goals.

UP NEXT

SMU: Hosts Cincinnati on Thursday.

Houston: Hosts Cincinnati on Tuesday.

No. 21 UConn sends Hoyas to school-record 18th loss in row

WASHINGTON (AP) R.J. Cole scored 18 points and No. 21 UConn excelled from behind the arc while sending Georgetown to its school-record 18th straight loss, 86-77 on Sunday.

Connecticut (21-7, 12-5 Big East) shot 11 of 20 on 3-pointers. Seven different Huskies made at least one 3.

Isaiah Whaley scored 14 points and Tyler Polley and Jordan Hawkins each added 11 as UConn matched its longest winning streak of the season at five. Adama Sanogo, averaging over 15 points per game, finished with six after fouling out in 18 minutes.

“You go into a year and you lose a killer like (James) Bouknight and you literally go into the season and he’s got to get 15 or 16 (points) and four or five assists,” UConn coach Dan Hurley said of Cole, who stepped into a leading role after last season’s leading scorer was taken 11th in the NBA draft.

“R.J. has given this team exactly what it’s needed at the guard spot after losing a dynamic guy.”

Georgetown (6-22, 0-17) remained winless in conference play. Coach Patrick Ewing, who starred for the Hoyas in the 1980s and won a national championship and appeared in three Final Fours as a player, has posted just one winning season in his five at the helm of his alma mater. His career record is 68-81.

Dante Harris scored 23 points, Aminu Mohammed added 16 and Donald Carey had 13 for the Hoyas.

“Of course, I want to be back here,” Ewing said when asked about his future.

“But in this position and this job, whatever happens will happen. I’m hoping that I’ll be back and doing something that I love at a place that I love and getting us back to being the king of the hill.”

Cole made his fourth 3 of the game right in front of the Huskies bench to extend UConn’s lead to 66-46 with 11:27 remaining, forcing Ewing to call timeout. The Howard transfer shot 4 of 6 on 3-pointers.

UConn led 41-26 at halftime and pushed the lead to 81-59 with 2:53 remaining before Georgetown ended the game with a late run.

BIG PICTURE

UConn: The Huskies remained in third place – a game ahead of Creighton – with one week left to play before the Big East Tournament begins at Madison Square Garden on March 9. Hurley has the Huskies in great shape to make consecutive NCAA Tournaments for the first time since 2011-12 under former coach Jim Calhoun.

Georgetown: The Hoyas have clinched their first last-place finish in the Big East since the league began in the 1979-80 season and are now closing in on both a school record for losses and the record for conference losses in a season. Last year’s improbable four-day run to the Hoyas’ record eighth conference tournament title that seemed to go a long way towards cementing Ewing’s job status now seems like a thing of the distant past.

POINT OF ANGER

When asked if it was a point of emphasis to limit Georgetown’s offensive rebounds after a possession where the Hoyas grabbed three, Hurley corrected the reporter.

“It wasn’t a point of emphasis,” Hurley said. “It was a point of anger.”

UConn finished with a 35-25 edge on the glass.

MONSTER JAM

Hawkins – a freshman from nearby DeMatha Catholic High School in Maryland – had his best game since scoring 15 in the first meeting with the Hoyas on Jan. 25. He got in the scoring column with a big dunk over Mohammed while also drawing the foul to give the Huskies a 15-13 lead with 12:12 left in the first.

“It was crazy,” Cole said about the jam.

“He’s really grown into his own right now and I’m proud to see it.”

UP NEXT

UConn: Visits Creighton on Wednesday and finishes the regular season at home against DePaul on Saturday.

Georgetown: Travels to Seton Hall on Wednesday and ends the regular season at Xavier on Saturday.

Bucs Pro Bowl OL Ali Marpet announces retirement at age 28

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) Pro Bowl offensive lineman Ali Marpet caught the Tampa Bay Buccaneers off guard Sunday, announcing his retirement from the NFL at age 28.

A second-round draft pick out of tiny Hobart College in 2015, Marpet became a starter at right guard as a rookie. He transitioned to center the following season and later settled in at left guard, where he helped the 2020 Bucs win the Super Bowl and was a first-time Pro Bowl selection in 2021.

Marpet announced the decision on Instagram. He did not give a reason for the surprising move.

“After seven formidable years with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, I’ve come to the decision to retire from the game that has given me so much. This organization and the people surrounding it have helped build me into the person I am today,” Marpet wrote.

“To the coaches and teammates, family and friends, an Instagram post simply can’t express the profound impact you’ve had on me,” Marpet added. “I’m eternally grateful. Thank you, Tampa Bay.”

The move comes just weeks after quarterback Tom Brady announced his retirement after 22 seasons. It also means the Bucs potentially may have to replace three offensive lineman this winter, with Pro Bowl center Ryan Jensen and right guard Alex Cappa set to become free agents in March.

“I want to thank Ali for all that he had done as a valued member of the Buccaneers organization over the past seven seasons. He has played a key role in our success both on and off the field and we will certainly his leadership and professionalism,” Bucs general manager Jason Licht said in a statement released Twitter.

“As the highest Division III player ever drafted, Ali always seemed destined for greatness on the NFL level,” Licht added, “and we simply could not have attained the success of the past two seasons without him.”

Coach Bruce Arians described Marpet as a “consummate professional” and “a rock for us in the interior of our offensive line.”

“It is never easy saying goodbye to a player who has meant so much to our success,” Arians added, “but I support and respect his decision and wish him a great life after football.”

Marpet had two seasons remaining on a five-year, $54.125 million contract he signed in October 2018. He was due to earn a base salary of $10 million next season.

Teravainen, Aho score in Hurricanes’ fifth straight win

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) Teuvo Teravainen had a goal and an assist, Sebastian Aho also scored and the Carolina Hurricanes won their fifth game in a row by beating the Edmonton Oilers 2-1 on Sunday.

Andrei Svechnikov provided two assists for the Hurricanes, and Frederik Andersen made 29 saves for his league-leading 29th victory.

Edmonton had scored at least three goals in eight straight games, but put only six shots on goal in the third period.

“We’re just so in sync, whoever is out there,” Carolina defenseman Brett Pesce said of the defensive effort. “Obviously, we’re really confident right now.”

Edmonton center Leon Draisaitl, who is second in the league with 36 goals, didn’t register a shot on goal.

“If you’re holding that guy without a shot, you’re doing something right,” Hurricanes coach Rod Brind’Amour said.

One day after his first career hat trick, Derek Ryan scored an unassisted goal for the Oilers, who were on their third stop of a five-game trip. Mike Smith made 27 saves for Edmonton, but was tagged for a loss in his third consecutive outing.

“I thought they pushed us,” Oilers coach Jay Woodcroft said. “We pushed them.”

Both of Carolina’s goals came in similar fashion with crisp passing.

“It’s kind of what was available,” Brind’Amour said of the puck movement. “The whole key for us is to understand what’s available, what is the best play.”

Jalen Chatfield and Svechnikov set up Teravainen’s goal in the first period. And Aho finished a power-play sequence when the puck went from Teravainen to Svechnikov later in the period.

“We created those changes and obviously big goals early on,” said Aho, who now has a team-high 23 goals. “It was enough for us.”

The Oilers have allowed at least one power-play goal in six games in a row.

“That’s an area that we can continue to clean up,” Woodcroft said. “We can be better for sure.”

The Hurricanes were perfect on four penalty-killing stints.

“It all starts with a hot goalie,” Aho said. “You trust your own goalie.”

Oilers captain Connor McDavid, the NHL scoring leader with 75 points, logged less than 2 1/2 minutes in the first period. He exited following a high-sticking penalty on Carolina defenseman Brady Skjei. McDavid came back at the beginning of the second period after receiving what Woodcroft referred to as treatment for a laceration and dental work.

RYAN’S WORLD

Ryan has scored four goals across a two-day period after managing four goals in his first 47 games this season. A former Carolina player, Ryan has scored four of Edmonton’s last five goals.

PREDICTABLE PATTERN

There was a similar trend for both Carolina’s home wins during this stretch.

The Hurricanes had three days off before defeating Columbus 4-0 on Friday night. They were off Saturday before the Oilers arrived.

In both cases, the opponent had played and won the day before at Florida, which leads the Eastern Conference in points.

RINK NOTES

Oilers center Ryan Nugent-Hopkins missed the game after sustaining an upper-body injury during the first period Saturday at Florida. Right winger Kailer Yamamoto was out of the Edmonton lineup for this first time this season, with Woodcroft calling his situation day-to-day with bumps and bruises. . Ex-Hurricane Warren Foegele played on the visiting team for the first time in Raleigh. He was called for offsides on a coach’s challenge, negating a would-be goal in the game’s opening minute from McDavid. . Edmonton used a coach’s challenge in the second period, wiping out Pesce’s tally.

UP NEXT

Oilers: At Philadelphia on Tuesday.

Hurricanes: At Detroit on Tuesday.

McLaughlin wins 1st IndyCar race in St. Pete season opener

ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. (AP) Scott McLaughlin drove to his first IndyCar victory and tumbled off his winning car during the celebration.

Out of breath under a clear sky, he sat on the car to collect himself. Then he jumped again, this time because the heat from his exhaust was burning his behind through his firesuit.

Then he sat on the ground to video call his parents in New Zealand, who listened to the race on the IndyCar app. The pandemic has kept McLaughlin from his family for two years and they’ve yet to see him race in his new home and new series.

He at last called for a cold beer, but when McLaughlin noticed Australian fans in victory lane, he amped up the party. He took off his racing boot and dumped the beer inside for a “Shoey” – Aussie style. The move ruined his favorite racing shoes.

It was quite the day for McLaughlin, who at last proved his decision to leave Australia after three consecutive V8 Supercars championships to join IndyCar. The 28-year-old had a difficult first year but broke through Sunday for his first IndyCar victory in the season-opening race through the downtown streets of St. Petersburg.

“I knew I’m a rookie and I wasn’t kidding myself, but at the same time it’s hard to go from the mindset of, `OK, win every week and that’s all that matters, nothing less,’ to going, `Hey, I’d love a top-15,'” McLaughlin said. “I don’t work like that. I’m a competitive bloke. I want to win. I want to get poles. I want to dominate races and not even worry about things. I did that for four years, and then coming here… it just mucks with your head, and you’ve got to be realistic about things.

“I put a lot of pressure on myself, like, `Why isn’t this happening? Why am I sucking in qualifying when I’m good?’ I’ve done that before, I’ve proved that. It’s a mind game, man, and you’ve got to be on top of it. You’ve got to just believe in yourself.”

Now the New Zealander will have to see how far his first victory takes him: The winner of IndyCar’s season opener has gone on to claim the championship the last three years.

“Oh, mate, I don’t know. Let’s keep it low key,” McLaughlin said about his title chances. “Let’s be the underdog for a little while longer.”

McLaughlin made his IndyCar debut at St. Pete in the 2020 season finale and declared the experience “far out!” and “the best day of my life apart from my wedding,” even after a crash caused his early exit. In his third trip back, he made qualifying his priority and was rewarded with his first career pole.

He led 49 of the 100 laps but had to hold off reigning IndyCar champion Alex Palou over the closing laps to secure the victory. McLaughlin was held up by rookie Devlin DeFrancesco, the last car on the lead lap, on the final trip around the track. That gave Palou the chance to take one look at a pass for the lead, but he couldn’t get close enough and McLaughlin followed DeFrancesco across the finish line for another win for Team Penske.

“It was close. It was really, really close, but I don’t think we had the pace he had,” Palou said. “He was on rails and he knew where to go fast and where to obviously save some fuel at the end. I was just there trying to make some pressure so hopefully he made a mistake or anything.”

McLaughlin stood atop his car in victory lane to celebrate but then tumbled off it to the ground in his excitement.

“I couldn’t believe it, I jumped and my legs just wouldn’t move, they were like jelly,” he said. “And when I hit the ground, I was done. I was trying to make it as delicate as I could, and I just looked like a wombat out there.”

He was greeted with a hug by team owner Roger Penske, who just one week ago celebrated his 85th birthday with Austin Cindric’s win in the Daytona 500.

“Thank you to Roger Penske for trusting me and giving me the opportunity to come here,” McLaughlin said as he sat on his car trying to catch his breath. “He’s the one that calmed me down last year. He said, `Hey, it’s a long story, not a short one.’ To pay back that faith and prove the trust he put in me is a very proud moment.”

But sitting on the car for relief backfired under a clear sky and temperatures nearing 80 degrees Fahrenheit (26 degrees Celsius) at the checkered flag.

“My butt is getting burnt. Oh, that hurt, on the exhaust,” he said. “Oh my God, I’m just – love you Australia, New Zealand, miss you guys. Thinking of everyone in the Queensland floods at the moment. But oh, I can’t believe it.”

The wins by Cindric and McLaughlin are a marked turn for Team Penske, which didn’t get an IndyCar driver into victory lane until the 10th race of last season. But the team has exploded out of the gate in 2022: Joey Logano won NASCAR’s exhibition Busch Clash in Los Angeles to open the season and Penske now has three straight victories to start the year. Cindric started from the pole later Sunday in the NASCAR race at California.

Palou finished second for Chip Ganassi Racing and Honda, and Will Power, who started alongside Penske teammate McLaughlin on the front row, was third to put a pair of Chevrolets on the podium.

Colton Herta, the defending race winner and favorite, was fourth for Andretti Autosport and followed by teammate Romain Grosjean in his debut with the team. Rinus VeeKay was sixth for Ed Carpenter Racing and Graham Rahal seventh for Rahal Letterman Lanigan.

Ganassi drivers Scott Dixon and Marcus Ericsson were eighth and ninth, and Takuma Sato completed the top 10 in his debut with Dale Coyne Racing.

NEXT UP: IndyCar is off until its March 20 race at Texas Motor Speedway, which will be the IndyCar oval debut for Jimmie Johnson. A seven-time NASCAR champion, Johnson won seven times at Texas.

Larson holds off Dillon, Suarez for NASCAR win at Fontana

FONTANA, Calif. (AP) Defending NASCAR Cup Series champion Kyle Larson held off Austin Dillon and Daniel Suarez in a tense finish Sunday to win at Fontana for the second time.

After starting at the rear under penalty, Larson raced to his 17th career victory and the 11th in his year-plus at Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet. But Larson only added another famed surfboard trophy to his 2017 award after clinging to the lead through an exciting finish in the first race for NASCAR’s Next Gen car on an intermediate track.

“There was definitely some guys that were quicker than us, but they had their misfortune,” Larson said. “Just kept our heads in it all day. … the whole race was crazy, but definitely good to get a win in California.”

Larson surprisingly hadn’t won any races anywhere in 2022, but the relentless multidisciplinary competitor and Northern California native cruised to another win at Auto Club Speedway in an entertaining race featuring ample passing, plenty of mistakes and thrilling top-to-bottom moves on the seasoned five-wide asphalt.

Larson had victory in sight with eight laps to go when Chase Elliott spun and forced a race-record 12th caution. Elliott had a beef with his Hendrick teammate several laps earlier when he got pinched into the wall by Larson, who apologized for it on the radio.

Larson made it out of the pits first, and he led off the restart with four laps to go. He was neck-and-neck with Suarez with two laps left, and Dillon got into the draft to take his own shot at the leader, but Larson hung on through it all on the 25-year-old asphalt that meshed splendidly with the new car.

Dillon came in second, and Suarez slipped to fourth behind Erik Jones as Chevrolets took the top four spots.

“We had a fast car, but we went through a lot of adversity,” Suarez said. “It’s a lot of fun to race like that.”

Teams expected the new car to be a challenge all weekend in their first attempt to race it on a two-mile track, with their worries compounded by getting only 15 minutes of practice Saturday. After 10 cars spun or crashed in qualifying and practice, several drivers scraped the wall or spun early Sunday, most notably Kyle Busch and Brad Keselowski.

Busch had an early spin followed by a flat tire, and Elliott ran himself into the wall early. Bubba Wallace and Keselowski then made contact with 43 laps to go in a wreck that collected Harrison Burton.

But the new car also led to impressively competitive racing, and casual contact between drivers didn’t necessarily lead to wipeouts. Seven drivers held a share of the lead early on with well over a dozen lead changes before the halfway point.

Tyler Reddick won the first two stages and led 90 laps Sunday – more than he had led in his entire previous Cup career combined – but his race fell apart from the lead with 48 laps to go. He got a flat shortly before William Byron got loose and ran him into wall, ending Byron’s day.

Reddick returned, but finished 24th. The California native also was leading the Clash at the Coliseum three weeks ago before he was sidelined by a prop shaft failure.

Daytona 500 champ and Fontana polesitter Austin Cindric finished 16th.

AMPLE CAUTION

In the 32nd Cup Series race at Fontana, the drivers tied the 2008 course record with 12 cautions – and that was in a 500-mile race, rather than the current 400-mile iteration.

RAMS GO RACIN’

NASCAR’s closest race to Hollywood had its usual smattering of movie stars, including Danny Trejo, but the biggest names were from Southern California sports. Slugger Albert Pujols drove the pace car, while Los Angeles Rams left tackle Andrew Whitworth was joined in his Grand Marshal duties by Matthew Stafford.

Whitworth said his second date with his wife, Melissa, was at a NASCAR race while she reported on it. Stafford called himself a casual racing fan, but he was rooting for Elliott as a fellow No. 9 with Georgia connections.

Neither Whitworth nor Pujols had any announcements about their playing futures. Stafford said he wants his 40-year-old blind-side protector to return, but he’ll respect whatever decision Whitworth makes because “he’s old.”

NEXT UP

The West Coast swing continues at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on March 6. Larson won Vegas’ spring race last year.

Augusta on his mind: Straka rallies to win the Honda Classic

PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. (AP) Sepp Straka is going back to Georgia in a few weeks. He’s headed to his first Masters, after pulling off a huge comeback to win the Honda Classic.

Straka, down by five shots entering the final round, tapped in for birdie in the rain on the final hole and ended up beating Shane Lowry by one shot to become the first Austrian winner in PGA Tour history. He shot a 4-under 66 on Sunday to finish at 10 under and earn $1.44 million.

“The words aren’t really coming to me right now,” Straka said. “It’s just crazy. I really don’t know what to think.”

He sure knew how to play.

A first-round 71 was followed by a 64 on Friday, 69 on Saturday and then then 66 on Sunday. He was 4 under in his final 10 holes, 3 under over the final five, finishing with a flourish while most others sputtered.

“It’s hard to win out here,” Lowry said. “It’s just hard. End of story. There is no point saying any different.”

Lowry shot his third consecutive round of 67, finishing the week 9 under. First-round leader Kurt Kitayama (68) was alone in third at 8 under, and Daniel Berger – who led by six shots with 19 holes left in the tournament – simply fell apart Sunday, his round of 74 leaving him 7 under for the week and three shots behind Straka.

“Just a poor round,” Berger said. “It can happen at any time. I’m not going to dwell on it too much. Just didn’t hit quality shots at the right time. Probably would’ve had a chance to win if I made a few more putts. I don’t think I made a single putt today.”

He didn’t. Berger made two birdies Sunday – both chip-ins, one from the sand, one from a grassy slope.

Lowry needed to make a 45-footer for birdie on the final hole to force a playoff. It missed, and with that, the Honda had a new champion – one who came into the week ranked No. 176 in the world, has never been higher than No. 129 on that list, and whose claim to fame as a pro probably was being the first-round leader at the Tokyo Olympics last summer.

He’s a PGA Tour winner now. And Straka – who played his college golf at Georgia – will play the Masters in April.

“It’s crazy. It’s a lifelong dream of mine just to be heading to Augusta in a month or so,” Straka said. “It’s still surreal.”

Straka matched the biggest come-from-behind win this season. Luke List was also down by five entering the final round at San Diego last month.

The undoing for Berger began Saturday when he went to the 18th tee with a six-shot lead, then made bogey. Still, the five-shot lead through 54 holes matched the biggest in Honda history and for a hometown guy – his home is 15 minutes from PGA National – the ingredients were there for a memorable win.

Sunday had different ideas. He was paired with Lowry for the final round, and it didn’t take long for everything to change.

Lowry made birdie on the first; the lead was down to four. Berger put a tee ball into the pine straw on the par-5 third, then had a ball buried in the sand of a greenside bunker and made double-bogey 7 to see the lead trimmed to two.

Lowry tapped in for birdie at the fourth. Lead down to one. Berger bogeyed the fifth. The lead was gone. And when Berger missed a 15-footer for par at the sixth, Lowry was suddenly up by one.

“Didn’t play well, so I didn’t win the golf tournament,” Berger said.

Straka was in the group five shots back to start Sunday, then missed a 2-foot par putt and made bogey on the opening hole. But slowly and steadily, he clawed back – a birdie on the par-4 ninth got him to 7 under, followed by another birdie on the 14th.

A 20-footer on the 16th pulled him into a tie. That’s when weather decided to show up, too.

As if the finish needed more drama, it simply started pouring as the final groups were finishing. Kitayama and Straka got a fortunate break, getting to play their tee shots on 18 before the rain started. The sudden downpour came in fast, and both camped out on the 18th fairway under their umbrellas before playing their second shots into the par-5 finishing hole.

Each hit to about 50 feet and set up eagle putts. Straka two-putted, then waited to see if Lowry – who rushed into a poor tee shot during the downpour on 18 – could get to 10 under.

He couldn’t. And Straka is on his way back to Georgia.

“That bad weather came in just as we were hitting our tee shot on 18, which was as bad a break as I’ve got in a while,” Lowry said. “Yeah, it’s a tough one to take.”

DIVOTS: Cameron Young shot the round of the day, a 5-under 65 on Sunday, moving him from tied for 56th entering the day to tied for 16th at the end. It may be enough to get him into the Players, the Match Play and if his world ranking hits the top 50 in a few more weeks, possibly the Masters. … Lee Hodges played his second shot out of the sand on the par-3 15th with a putter, rolling it across the green and toward a hazard. He wound up making double-bogey. … Andrew Kozan, who waited until Saturday morning to play his final hole of the second round and ensure he made the cut, finished tied for 30th and earned $43,133.

TOP INDIANA SPORTS NEWS/RELEASES

Brissett, Pacers hot from long range, beat Celtics 128-107

INDIANAPOLIS (AP) Indiana Pacers coach Rick Carlisle knew his team needed to work hard for quality shots.

Oshae Brissett and Buddy Hield made sure they did.

Brissett scored 27 points on a career-high six 3-pointers and Hield finished with 11 of his 21 points during the final eight minutes to help the Indiana Pacers beat the Boston Celtics 128-107 on Sunday.

“It was important for us to play with pace and play randomly and play with an unselfish spirit to get shots,” Carlisle said. “So letting our guys play was a really important thing for our guys tonight.”

The Pacers delivered their best performance since reshaping the roster with three trade-week deals.

They decimated one of the league’s top defenses by making 17 3s, just two short of their season high, to earn their second win in 10 games and their second win over an Eastern Conference foe since Dec. 17.

Tyrese Haliburton had 22 points and nine assists for Indiana.

Jayson Tatum finished with 24 points and Jaylen Brown scored 23 as the Celtics’ seven-game road winning streak ended. Boston had won five straight in the series and three in a row at Indiana.

But on Sunday, the Celtics couldn’t slow down the Pacers’ long-range shooters.

“We didn’t come out as physical as we wanted to and it allowed them to get in a rhythm and it kind of snowballed on us,” Boston coach Ime Udoka said. “Those guys were walking into 3s and a guy like Brissett started making some but they’ve got good 3-point shooters.”

Three of them – Brissett, Chris Duarte and Hield – combined for five straight 3s late in the first half, and when Hield capped the 15-5 run, Indiana led 59-46. Boston never completely recovered.

Indiana led 66-55 at the half and, after extending the lead to 19 early in the third, fended off a charge that got Boston within 83-76 with 3:46 left in the quarter. Indiana then rebuilt a 93-82 lead.

When the Celtics closed within 99-92 early in fourth, Hield scored five straight and Indiana closed it out from there.

“We got to it them and they were flying around and everyone kind of flowed to it,” Haliburton said when asked about Brissett and Hield. “And that kind of set the tone.”

TIP-INS

Celtics: Tatum became the third player to score 1,500 points this season. … Robert Williams had 10 points, 11 rebounds and four blocks while Marcus Smart had 13 points and seven assists. … Payton Pritchard had 14 points off the bench. … Brown also had eight assists. … Boston played without center Al Horford.

Pacers: Indiana was 12 of 20 from 3-point range in the first half and finished 17 of 33. … Malcolm Brogdon had 20 points and five assists. … Jalen Smith finished with 12 points and 10 rebounds. … Isaiah Jackson had 11 points and three blocks while Chris Duarte added 11 points.

IN MEMORIAM

Carlisle offered condolences to the family of former Pacers coach Dick Versace. Bradley University, where Versace won three Missouri Valley Conference coach of the year awards, announced Saturday that the longtime coach had died. He was 81.

“I didn’t know him well, but I knew of his love for the game,” Carlisle said.

Carlisle also said the league’s coaches are working with the Houston Rockets organization to hold a celebration-of-life ceremony for Bill Fitch, who died earlier this year.

QUOTABLE

“As professionals you don’t know what’s coming toward you every game or every other play, so you’ve got to adjust and we didn’t,” Williams said. “They came here to play, honestly.”

UP NEXT

Celtics: Host Atlanta on Tuesday.

Pacers: Play the first of two straight games at Orlando on Monday.

Indiana Survives Late Rally from Minnesota to Win 84-79

MINNEAPOLIS – The Indiana men’s basketball team (18-10, 9-9 B1G) swept the season series against the Minnesota Golden Gophers (13-14, 4-14 B1G) with an 84-79 win on Sunday evening at Williams Arena. 

Senior/junior guard Xavier Johnson paced the Indiana scoring attack with 24 points for the second-straight game. He matched a season-high with four made 3-pointers. Johnson also tallied eight assists and six rebounds.

Junior/sophomore forward Trayce Jackson-Davis added 14 points and eight rebounds on 5-of-7 shooting from the floor.

Senior/junior forward Miller Kopp went over 1,000-career points after scoring 10 points in the win.

Hoosiers Fall to No. 6 Stanford

ROUND ROCK, Texas – Facing its second top-10 team in three days the Indiana baseball program dropped an 10-0 decision to No. 6 Stanford in seven innings at Dell Diamond in its finale at the Karbach Round Rock Classic.

Stanford (5-1) opened the scoring with two runs in the second inning, before tacking on three runs each in the fourth and fifth innings, and five runs in the sixth. Indiana (1-5) stranded seven on base in the game.

Starting pitcher Reese Sharp (0-1) allowed five runs on six hits over 3 1/3 innings of work in the loss. He struck out three and walked two in his first career start.

Redshirt-junior Matthew Ellis and redshirt-sophomore Morgan Colopy each collected two hits in the game. Senior Phillip Glasser accounted for the fifth IU hit, while redshirt-sophomore Bobby Whalen and freshman Josh Pyne each walked, and freshman Carter Mathison was hit-by-pitch.

For Stanford, Drew Dowd (2-0) threw four shutout innings with eight strikeouts to earn the win and Joey Dixon (1) picked up the save with three scoreless frames. Brett Barrera drove in four runs with a 3-for-3 effort at the plate, while Adam Crampton had three hits and three RBIs on the afternoon.

Scoring Recap

Top Second

With two on and two out, Brett Barrera singled to left field with the runners in motion and gave Stanford an early advantage with the two-RBI single.

Stanford 2, Indiana 0

Top Fourth

The Cardinal put runners on second and third with one out, before a wild pitch allowed the first run to cross. After a walk, Barrera singled through the left side to score the second run of the inning and Adam Crampton delivered an RBI single to end the outing for IU starting pitcher Reese Sharp.

Stanford 5, Indiana 0

Top Fifth

A trio of two-out RBIs helped Stanford grow its lead. After Ty Bothwell got out of the fifth inning to limit the damage, he retired two of the first three batters in the sixth. Braden Montgomery doubled to drive in the first RBI and Barrera followed with his fourth RBI of the day. Crampton added his second RBI of the game with a double, before Bothwell got the final out.

Stanford 8, Indiana 0

Top Sixth

A bases-loaded wind-aided single and sacrifice fly helped build Stanford’s lead to double digits. Owen Cobb doubled to drive in a pair of runs and Crampton capped the scoring with an RBI single.

Stanford 13, Indiana 0

Up Next

Indiana will open the home portion of its schedule on Tuesday, March 1 against Miami (Ohio). The Hoosiers and RedHawks will throw the first pitch at 4 p.m. at Bart Kaufman Field.

Boilers Improve to 8-3 over Butler and Illinois State

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. –  The Purdue women’s tennis team completed its three week homestand with a sweep of the Butler Bulldogs and the Illinois State Redbirds.

NOTES

PURDUE VS. BUTLER

Purdue came out ready to win with the doubles pairs of Carmen Gallardo Guevara, Juana Larranaga, Nathalia Wolf Gasparin and Csilla Fodor executing their matches right away to start the match off 1-0.

The match then proceeded with Juana Larranaga besting Norah Balthazor 6-2, 6-1 at No. 4 singles.

No. 77 Csilla Fodor and Seira Shimizu followed soon after to clinch the match for the Boilermakers, 5-0.

PURDUE VS. ILLINOIS STATE

Similar to the previous match, Nathalia Wolf Gasparin and Csilla Fodor were quick on their feet to secure the first set of doubles for the Boilermakers.

Making a strong finish for doubles, Juana Larranaga and Carmen Gallardo Guevara rose above the Redbird’s Penelope Abreu and Elena Jankulovska, 6-4.

Tara Katarina Milic swept her first set of the singles matches to give the Boilers a headstart.

Rut Galindo rose above Elena Jankulovska at No. 5, 6-1, 6-1 to improve the Boilermaker’s score to 3-0.

Purdue improved their overall record to 8-3 this weekend with the sweep of both matches.

UP NEXT

Purdue will travel to Tulsa, Okla. on Saturday, Mar. 5 for a rescheduled match against Tulsa at 1 p.m.

PURDUE (7-3) – 4, BUTLER (2-9) – 0

Singles

1. No. 77 Csilla Fodor (PUR) def. Natalie Boesing (BUT) – 6-3, 6-2

2. Carmen Gallardo Guevara (PUR) vs. Delaney Schurhamer (BUT) – 3-6, 4-5, unfinished

3. Tara Katarina Milic (PUR) vs. Sara Linn (BUT) – 6-4, 4-3, unfinished

4. Juana Larranaga (PUR) def. Norah Balthazor (BUT) – 6-2, 6-1

5. Rut Galindo (PUR) vs. Katie Beavin (BUT) 4-6, 1-2, unfinished

6. Seira Shimizu (PUR) def. Emma Beavin (BUT) – 6-1, 6-2

Doubles

1. Nathalia Wolf Gasparin/Csilla Fodor (PUR) def. Natalie Boesing/Delaney Schurhamer (BUT) – 6-3

2. Tara Katarina Milic/Rut Galindo (PUR) def. Veronika Bruetting/Norah Balthazor (BUT) – 5-3, unfinished

3. Carmen Gallardo Guevara/Juana Larranaga (PUR) vs. Emma Beavin/Sara Linn (BUT) – 6-2

Order of Finish

Singles –  4,1,6

Doubles – 3,1

PURDUE (8-3) – 4, ILLINOIS STATE (7-4) – 0

Singles

1. No. 77 Csilla Fodor (PUR) vs. Tijana Zlatanovic (ISU) – 6-3, 2-1, unfinished

2. Carmen Gallardo Guevara (PUR) vs. Alexandra Abyasovia (ISU) – 7-5, 0-1, unfinished

3. Tara Katarina Milic (PUR) def. Tara Damnjanovic (ISU) – 6-0, 6-1

4. Juana Larranaga (PUR) vs. Penelope Abreu (ISU) – 6-4, 0-1, unfinished

5. Rut Galindo (PUR) def. Elena Jankulovska (ISU) – 6-1, 6-1

6. Seira Shimizu (PUR) def. Laura Fitzgerald (ISU) – 6-1, 6-0

Doubles

1. Nathalia Wolf Gasparin/Csilla Fodor (PUR) def. Tijana Zlatanovic/Tara Damnjanovic (ISU) – 6-1

2. Tara Katarina Milic/Rut Galindo (PUR) vs. Alexandra Abyasova/Laura Fitzgerald (ISU) – 5-5, unfinished

3. Carmen Gallardo Guevara/Juana Larranaga (PUR) def. Penelope Abreu/Elena Jankulovska (ISU) – 6-4

Order of Finish

Singles –  3, 5, 6

Doubles – 1, 3

Purdue’s Comeback Bid Falls Short vs. Wisconsin

WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. – A blocked shot at the buzzer saw the Purdue women’s basketball team’s comeback bid against Wisconsin come up short in a 63-62 loss in the regular season finale at Mackey Arena. The Boilermakers finish the regular season with a 16-13 record overall and 8-10 in the Big Ten.

Purdue roared back from a double-digit halftime deficit, scoring 39 points in the second half including seven of its nine 3-pointers. The Boilermakers tied the game at 48-48 with 8:14 to play in the fourth quarter, before Wisconsin (8-20, 5-13) jumped back in front. Jeanae Terry weaved through the defense to give the Boilermakers a 62-61 lead with 13 seconds remaining, only for Halle Douglas to put the visitors back in front on a layup with six seconds left.

Terry, who already recorded two game winners this season, saw her contested layup at the horn blocked by Julie Pospisalova.

The Boilermakers honored seniors Brooke Moore, Rokia Doumbia, Ajah Stallings and Nyagoa Gony, all of whom made their first starts of the year, in a postgame ceremony. The quartet totaled 11 points, three rebounds, three steals and two assists in their final regular season game at Mackey Arena.

Abbey Ellis and Cassidy Hardin powered Purdue with 14 points each. Ellis went 5-of-12 from the field with four rebounds and assist and four steals, while Hardin knocked down a quartet of triples. Rickie Woltman joined the duo in double figures with a 10-point outing.

The Boilermakers shot 34.4% from the field to Wisconsin’s 47.4% clip. Purdue turned 18 Badger turnovers into 16 points, while the visitors converted 12 Boilermaker giveaways into 16 points.

The seniors put Purdue on the board early with a triple from Doumbia and a layup by Gony to take a 5-2 lead. The Boilermakers hit a rough patch shooting, going one for their next 12 to close the opening frame.

The Boilermakers started to find their rhythm in the second quarter shooting 50% in the period. Rickie Woltman gave Purdue a spark with six points in a row. Wisconsin countered every Purdue spurt, knocking down five of their final seven shots of the half to take a double-digit lead into the break.

Out of halftime, Hardin brought Mackey to its feet with an early triple to cut the gap to 10. After Wisconsin opened the deficit to 14 points, Purdue rolled off a 14-2 run in 2:11 to pull within two.

Hardin, Ellis and Moore tied the game for the Boilermakers with eight straight points to start the fourth. Wisconsin regained the lead until the final minute, but Purdue kept it within a two-possession game until the end.

Purdue committed just four turnovers during their comeback bid in the final 20 minutes, while forcing the Badgers into 11 giveaways. 

NOTES

• Purdue leads the all-time series with Wisconsin 54-21 with a 30-6 mark at home.

• The Boilermakers finished with 17 assists, topped by six from Madison Layden.

• Sunday marked the third start of Stallings’ career, the second for Gony, first for Doumbia and 36th for Moore.

• Purdue pushed the pace for 18 fast break points, its second highest total this year.

• Hardin finished the regular season with 73 3-pointers, good for third most by a senior and fifth overall in single-season history.

• Terry claimed the team rebounding title with 200 boards this season. She is the first guard to lead the team in rebounding since Katie Douglas in 1999.

• Terry also reached 166 assists this season, good for fifth in program history.

UP NEXT

Purdue will head to Gainbridge Fieldhouse in Indianapolis for the 2022 Big Ten Women’s Basketball Tournament this week. A full bracket with game times will be announced by the Big Ten Conference later.

Softball Falls in Doubleheader

Baton Rouge, La. – Falling in the doubleheader at Tiger Park, Purdue softball (7-9) was unable to overcome a 4-run fourth inning for Drake, falling 2-4 to the Bulldogs before being shut out by No. 24 LSU, 0-17.

Mo Wimpee produced her first RBI of the season in the sixth inning as the Boilermakers looked for a late-inning push against Drake. Wimpee, who entered as DP and had has only entered the batter’s box four times this season, connected on her first at-bat of the game for second baseman Jade Moy to score.

Alex Echazarreta recorded her first loss of the season, moving to 3-1 after throwing 91 pitches, including 61 strikes. Over the senior’s 3.2 innings pitched, Echazarreta secured six strikeouts and allowed no walks. Offensively, Echazarreta was the first to put the Boilermakers on the board, earning a run in the fourth, thanks to freshman Olivia McFadden’s single to center field.

At No. 24 LSU, the Boilermakers held the Tigers to one run in the first two innings before a five-run third inning, followed by a seven-run fourth inning solidified the game. The loss was credited to Brenna Smith, who tossed the first 2.2 innings and saw the first six LSU runs.

Purdue will be back next weekend in Boca Raton, Florida, for the FAU Parent’s Weekend Tournament. Opponents will include at Florida Atlantic, SIUE and Illinois State during the Friday, March 4-Sunday, March 6 series.

ButlerUWBB Falls to Georgetown on Senior Day

INDIANAPOLIS- The Gerogetown Hoyas led Butler the whole game to post a 69-48 win over the Bulldogs on Sunday afternoon in the regular-season finale. The Bulldogs will now shift their focus to the 2022 BIG EAST Tournament set for next weekend.  

How It Happened 

Georgetown went on 10-3 run to open up the game and shot 47% from the field in the first half. Kelsey Ransom was pivotal in the Hoyas first-half efforts scoring nine. She shot 4-7 from the field and 1-2 from behind the arc in the first. 

Trinity White was a bright spot for the Bulldog offense. White shot 4-6 in the first half with 10 points and was the only Dawg in double digits heading into the half. Tenley Dowell added six as well for the Dawgs in the first half. Butler trailed 34-24, heading into the intermission.

To start the third quarter, the Hoyas went on a 10-0 run behind 48%, shooting early on in the second half. Ransom scored four of the Hoyas 10 points during their run. Brianna Scott matched her first-half total of four points early on in the third quarter. She was shooting 80% through three quarters. 

The Bulldogs had a sluggish day on the offensive end. Trinity White, Emilia Sexton, and Celena Taborn were providing a lot of the offense for the Bulldogs. The trio combined for 31 points on the day. 

Up Next

The Bulldogs will travel to Uncasville, Connecticut, to play in the BIG EAST Conference Tournament. The Dawgs will open the tournament on Friday, March 4.

Ball State Drops Contest to Coastal Carolina

CONWAY, S.C. – The Ball State baseball team returned to Spring Brooks Stadium on Sunday for a game with Coastal Carolina. Rain shortened the game, but the Cardinals (2-5) fell to the Chanticleers (6-1) 7-2.

CCU got on the board first in the bottom of the second inning on a solo home run. The Chants added six more runs in the home half of the fourth to take a 7-0 lead. Michael Knorr was perfect for Coastal Carolina through four innings of work.

Trenton Quartermaine ended the perfect game and shutout with one swing of the bat as he launched a solo homer over the right field wall.

Aiden Hinds led off the top of the sixth with a single to left field. After an Amir Wright walk, Zach Lane reached on a fielder’s choice, which put runners on the corners for BSU. Nick Powell ripped one to left field for an RBI single to cut the deficit to 7-2.

The game was called due to rain in the bottom of the seventh, which led to a 7-2 win for Coastal Carolina.

Ty Johnson got the start on the hill for the Cardinals. He went three innings with three strikeouts and six earned runs. Johnson fell to 0-1 on the season. Jake Lewis added an inning in relief with a strikeout and an earned run. Ryan Brown pitched 2 2/3 innings of solid relief with one strikeout and no hits given up.

Knorr went six innings in the win. He struck out six batters and gave up two earned runs on three hits. Darin Horn added an inning in relief with a strikeout.

The Cardinals close out the Carolinas Coastline Classic with a Monday contest against the Chanticleers. First pitch is scheduled for 11 a.m.

From the Coach – Head Coach Rich Maloney

“Despite the loss, I was encouraged by the pitching of Ryan Brown. For his first college appearance, he really looked good. Our guys keep battling.”

COLD START DOOMS #14 IRISH IN 86-64 LOSS TO #4 CARDINALS

SOUTH BEND, Ind. – It was a tale of two halves for the No. 14 Notre Dame women’s basketball squad (21-7, 13-5) versus the visiting No. 4 Louisville Cardinals (25-3, 16-2). The Fighting Irish were plagued from a 1-for-18 shooting start from the field, while down on the other end Louisville started 7-for-7 from three, all in the first quarter, to jump out to a 31-3 advantage. The Irish outscored the Cardinals 49-32 in the second half, but ultimately fell 86-64. It marked Notre Dame’s first loss at home this season, dropping to 13-1 inside Purcell Pavilion.

Regardless of today’s outcome, Notre Dame has secured the double-bye in the upcoming ACC Tournament, but will have to await the result of tonight’s Virginia Tech/NC State matchup to determine whether it’s the No. 3 or No. 4 seed. Notre Dame’s first game will be on Friday, March 4 inside the Greensboro Coliseum.

How It Happened

Louisville just couldn’t miss in the first half, going 7-for-7 from beyond the arc in the first quarter alone to build a 31-3 lead. At one point in the first half the Cardinals were 19-of-24 from the field before finishing the half 23-of-34.

On the flipside, the Irish couldn’t find their rhythm, starting 1-of-18 from the field,  and 6-of-27 by half. Add in the fact that the Cardinals owned a 26-8 rebounding advantage, the Irish found themselves in a 54-15 hole at the midway point.

The Irish got clicking on offense in the third quarter, where they outscored the Cardinals 19-17. Olivia Miles was the spark, shooting 4-for-4 in the quarter tallying eight points. As a whole, Notre Dame was 8-of-14 from the field.

The Irish finally got the three-ball going in the fourth, hitting four treys (Mabrey, Peoples, Brunelle x 2) before the media timeout. Mabrey and Peoples each had seven points in the quarter in which the Irish outscored the Cards 30-15.

All-in-all, Notre Dame shot 62 percent in the second half compared to 22 percent in the first. Four Irish finished in double figures: Dodson (12 pts), Mabrey (12 pts), Miles (13 pts) and Citron (10 pts). Citron led the team in boards with eight.

IRISH COMPLETE PERFECT WEEKEND WITH 6-4 WIN OVER FGCU

LEESBURG, Fla. – The University of Notre Dame softball team completed a 5-0 weekend with a 6-4 win over Florida Gulf Coast on Sunday morning. The Irish did their damage early and continued to throw the ball well in the circle to earn the win. The Irish improve to 12-3 with the win and have won seven-consecutive games.

Payton Tidd started in the circle. The senior threw 4.0 innings, surrendering four hits, three runs, one earned and struck out two to improve to 4-1 on the season. . Alexis Holloway worked in relief, going the last 3.0 innings, allowing a run on four hits and struck out three earning her first save of the season.

At the plate Leea Hanks led the Irish attack, going 3-for-4 with an RBI and scored twice. Abby Sweet, Emma Clark and Sarah Genz all tallied multi-hit contests as Sweet scored twice and Genz drove in a pair.

Notre Dame took the early lead, plating a pair of runs in the top of the first. Sweet led off with a single behind first base, and moved up on a ground out. Hanks delivered a hot shot that was mishandled by the shortstop, allowing Sweet to score. Tidd followed with a single to right to bring in Hanks and put the Irish up 2-0 before FGCU had an at bat.

The Irish tacked on four more in the top of the second. Brooke Marquez led off the inning with a sharp hit ball that was mishandled and a sacrifice bunt moved her up and turned the lineup over. Sweet doubled and Clark singled to second base to bring in Marquez from third. Hanks delivered a single through the left side for another and stole a base to put two in scoring position. After an intentional walk to Tidd, Genz worked an eight-pitch at bat before singling up the middle to bring in two and extend the lead to 6-0.

Florida Gulf Coast answered in the bottom of the frame with three of their own. A lead-off walk and an error put two on for the FGCU first baseman who singled to right to bring in the first run. Another single and a sacrifice fly scored two more to cut the Irish lead to 6-3.

FGCU scratched a run home in the bottom of the sixth, and threatened with two runners in the seventh, but Holloway struck out the cleanup hitter and got the pinch hitter to pop up for the final out of the game.

Up Next

The Irish return to the diamond next Friday in Lynchburg, Virginia in the Liberty Softball Invitational as they will take on George Washington and Rutgers in a split doubleheader beginning at 11:30 a.

Eighth-inning rally leads Sycamores past Minnesota in Florida finale

FT. MYERS, Fla. – It took until the eighth inning, but Indiana State’s offense erupted for the third time this weekend as the Sycamores utilized a 10-run inning to come from behind and top host Minnesota on Sunday afternoon at Hammond Stadium, 14-8.

Trailing 6-3 and struggling to connect against the Minnesota (2-6) pitching staff at that point of the game, the Sycamores (5-2) sent 14 batters to the plate in the top of the eighth inning with Luis Hernandez providing the big hit to swing the momentum to Indiana State. Hernandez’s two-out, three-run single scored Parker Stinson, Daunte Majors, and Diego Gines and gave the Sycamores the 7-6 lead in the inning.

Before the inning let out, the Sycamores add a two-run Aaron Beck single and a pair of RBI doubles from Josue Urdaneta and Isaiah Thompson to firmly seize control of the game with the 13-6 lead. Overall, eight consecutive Sycamores reached base during the two-out rally in the decisive frame.

Stinson connected on his first home run of the 2022 season to lead the Sycamores hitters as three different Indiana State players finished with multi-hit contests. Urdaneta and Gines both scored three times, while Beck, Thompson, Stinson, and Hernandez all finished with multi-RBI contests.

Joey Hurth (1-0) picked up his first win of the season as the sophomore right-hander went 2.2 shutout innings in relief. The Hopkins, Minn. native struck out five and surrendered two walks in the scoreless outing.

Luke Patzner took the no-decision in the start after allowing six hits and four earned runs over the opening inning. Jared Spencer struck out four in 3.1 innings of relief, while Connor Fenlong went the final two frames to complete the contest.

Kyle Bork and Jack Kelly both homered for Minnesota as the Gophers suffered their second loss of the weekend to the Sycamores. Bork finished 3-for-4 from the plate with three RBI and two runs, while Kelly’s three-run home run in the bottom of the first sparked the Gophers offense.

Will Semb (0-1) took the loss after allowing five runs in 0.1 innings. J.P. Massey went 5.1 innings in effective relief for Minnesota as the Gophers sent six pitchers to the mound in the contest.

How They Scored

Josue Urdaneta scored on a wild pitch to start the scoring in the contest as the Sycamores went up 1-0 in the top of the first.

Jack Kelly connected on a three-run home run, while Kyle Bork added a RBI single as Minnesota responded with a four-run bottom of the first to take the early lead.

The Gophers added to the lead in the bottom of the third as Bork’s two-run home run to right center scored Easton Bertrand and gave Minnesota the 6-1 lead.

The Sycamores chipped away at the lead with Diego Gines scoring on a wild pitch in the top of the fourth to put the margin at 6-2.

Parker Stinson halved the Minnesota lead in the top of the seventh with a solo home run to right field putting the score at 6-3.

The Sycamores recorded six hits and took advantage of four walks and two wild pitches on their way to a 10-run inning in the top of the eighth to take the 13-6 lead. Stinson started the rally with a two-out bases-loaded walk, while Luis Hernandez, Aaron Beck, Urdaneta, and Isaiah Thompson all drove in runs over the two-out rally.

Minnesota scored two runs in the bottom of the eighth with Andrew Wilhite and Chase Stanke bringing home runs to narrow the ISU lead down to 13-8.

Grant Magill scored the final run of the contest in the top of the ninth as the redshirt sophomore catcher scored on a Minnesota throwing error to put the final margin at 14-8.

News & Notes

Indiana State scored 44 runs over the three-game weekend as the Sycamores scored 14 runs in the opener against Merrimack, 16 on Saturday against Minnesota, and 14 more in the win over the Gophers.

The 44 runs over the three-game stretch was last accomplished by the Sycamores back in the 2001 season when ISU topped Illinois (W,12-8, April 11), fell to Wichita State (L, 16-9, April 13), and topped the Shockers (W, 23-7, April 14).

Indiana State’s double-digit scoring streak also extended to three games with the team last achieving the feat over May 24-25 at the Missouri Valley Championships against Illinois State (W, 10-6) and Dallas Baptist (W, 10-6; W, 16-3).

The Sycamores improved to 5-1 all-time against the Gophers with the win.

Jordan Schaffer’s infield single in the top of the ninth inning extending his career-best 19-game hitting streak. Schaffer reached on a fielder’s choice in the fifth inning to also extend his on-base streak to 19 games.

Diego Gines also extended his hitting and on-base streaks to 11 games in the contest with a single in the eighth inning, while also reaching on an error and drawing a pair of walks.

Parker Stinson extended Indiana State’s home run streak to five consecutive games the team has connected on a home run. The Sycamores hit home runs in at least five consecutive games twice last season with five from April 1-9, while adding an eight-game streak covering games from May 21-June 4.

Josue Urdaneta joins Gines and Schaffer as the lone Sycamores to hit safely in all seven games in the 2022 season.

Altogether, the Sycamores trio of Urdaneta, Gines, and Schaffer has combined to hit .393 (35-of-89) from the plate with 33 runs scored, seven doubles, and a home run.

Indiana State closes out the Florida swing of the 2022 schedule with a 5-2 record overall.

Up Next

The Sycamores are back on the road next weekend as Indiana State makes the trip to East Carolina University and Clark-LeClair Stadium for the LeClair Classic on March 4-6. The Sycamores will take on host ECU on Friday with first pitch set for 4 p.m. ISU will also take on Maryland (Saturday) and Michigan (Sunday) over the three-day tournament.

Coffey’s 2-run double lifts UE to 3-1 win at Southern Miss

HATTIESBURG, Miss. – Minutes after Southern Miss tied the score at 1-1, Bella Coffey hit a 2-run double to help the University of Evansville softball team finish the Hub City Challenge with a 3-1 win over Southern Miss.

Evansville’s win caps off another strong weekend that saw the Purple Aces go 3-1 while improving to 9-5 on the season with three of those losses coming to opponents ranked in the top eight in the nation.

Izzy Vetter was the story through the first five innings on Sunday.  The senior allowed just one Southern Miss hit in the opening five frames while the offense gave her a 1-0 lead in the third.  UE threatened in the first inning when a 1-out single by Jessica Fehr was followed by a double from Marah Wood.  Fehr rounded third before an excellent throw got the out at home.

Two innings later, Fehr continued to swing the hot bat, reaching on a 2-out double.  Wood followed with her second double of the contest and Fehr crossed the plate for the first run of the game.  The score remained 1-0 in favor of UE until the sixth when the Golden Eagles knotted the score at 1-1, picking up three of their four hits on the day.

In the seventh, the Aces offense wasted little time in working to retake the lead.  Hannah Hood led off with a walk and Alexa Davis followed with a single.  The duo advanced to second and third on the play and gave Bella Coffey a big opportunity.  Coffey delivered, doubling down the right field line to put Evansville on top at 3-1.  Vetter was solid in the seventh, allowing one walk before recording the final two outs to clinch the win.  She picked up win #7 of the season.

Fehr and Wood accounted for four of UE’s eight hits in the game.  Fehr, Hood and Davis scored the three Aces runs.

Home action opens next weekend with the UE Softball Invitational.  Running Friday through Sunday, the Aces are set to face Oakland, Green Bay, Morehead State, Creighton and Bowling Green.

Arch Madness Arrives as Valpo Faces Evansville on Thursday

Valparaiso (13-17, 6-12 MVC)

vs. Evansville (6-23, 2-16 MVC)

Game No. 31 – Thursday, March 3, 8:30 p.m.

Enterprise Center (16,502 full; 8,476 lower bowl) – St. Louis, Mo.

Next Up in Valpo Basketball: College basketball’s signature month has arrived. March begins with the season’s most important game to date as the seventh-seeded Valparaiso University men’s basketball team will open up Arch Madness, the annual State Farm Missouri Valley Conference Tournament in St. Louis, on Thursday night against 10th-seeded Evansville. The winner of Thursday’s opening-round game will advance to Friday’s 6 p.m. MVC quarterfinal contest against second-seeded Missouri State. The last time Valpo entered Arch Madness as the No. 7 seed and played Evansville in the opening round, it became the first team in the tournament’s 30-year history to play on Thursday and advance to Sunday’s title game in 2020.

Last Time Out: Valpo trailed 34-13 at halftime and eventually came out on the wrong side of a 79-55 score in Saturday’s regular-season finale against Bradley at Carver Arena in Peoria, Ill. The Beacons were led by 16 points apiece from Kevion Taylor and Kobe King. Valpo shot 23.1 percent (6-of-26) in the opening half before improving to a 16-of-31 clip (51.6 percent) after the break. It was a tough day from beyond the 3-point arc as Valpo went just 5-of-21 (23.8 percent). Bradley possesses the No. 1 field-goal percentage defense in the Missouri Valley Conference and their ability on the defensive end was on display on Saturday.

Following the Beacons: Television – MVC TV Network (Bally Sports Midwest, Bally Sports Indiana, Bally Sports Kansas City; NBC Sports Chicago Plus will join in progress at 9 p.m., tape delayed game will air at 1 a.m. on March 4 on NBC Sports Chicago main channel) – John Rooney (play-by-play), Rich Zvosec (analyst), Tom Ackerman (sideline) and Scott Warman (host)

Streaming – ESPN+ available with no blackout restrictions in the states of Illinois or Indiana

MVC Radio – KTRS 550 AM – Brendan Wiese (play-by-play) and Kevin Lehman (analyst)

Valpo Radio – 95.1 FM, WVUR, ValpoAthletics.com, TuneIn Radio App – Todd Ickow (play-by-play) and Paul Oren (analyst)

Twitter updates – @ValpoBasketball

Links for video, audio and live stats will be available at ValpoAthletics.com.

Head Coach Matt Lottich: Matt Lottich (96-95) is in his ninth season overall at Valparaiso University and sixth as the head coach of the men’s basketball program in 2021-2022. The 2020-2021 season saw Valpo improve its Arch Madness seeding for the fourth straight year as the program continued to make positive strides in each season as a Missouri Valley Conference member. The team earned a first-round bye in the State Farm MVC Tournament for the first time since joining the prestigious league. Valpo upset previously-undefeated Drake, the nation’s No. 25 team, 74-57 on Feb. 7, 2021 at the ARC, the fourth win over an AP Top 25 team in program history and second under Lottich. The Bulldogs were one of three undefeated teams in the nation prior to that setback, joining Gonzaga and Baylor. Just two years removed from finishing in last place and being knocked out in the first round of the Missouri Valley Conference Tournament as a first-year Valley member, Lottich’s team did more than hold its own in 2019-2020, ascending into a tie for sixth in the league standings before finishing as the conference tournament runner-up. Valpo became the first team in the history of Arch Madness to reach the title game after playing in the opening round. Lottich, hired as the 22nd head coach of the Valpo men’s basketball program in April 2016, graduated from Stanford University in 2004 and New Trier High School (Illinois) in 2000.

Series Notes: Evansville is Valpo’s second most common opponent in program history as the two squads have matched up 94 times. Butler (103) is the only school Valpo has faced more frequently than Evansville. The Aces own a 72-22 advantage in head-to-head showdowns. Valpo dropped both matchups last season, which occurred in Evansville, but swept all three 2020 meetings, including an opening round MVC Tournament game in St. Louis. The Beacons are looking to complete a three-game sweep of the Purple Aces for the second time in three years as they prevailed in both of this year’s regular-season matchups. Valpo is 5-6 in 11 games against Evansville since joining the Missouri Valley Conference.

Regular-Season Matchups

Feb. 19 – Valpo 72, Evansville 56: Boring was not a bad thing in the closing minutes of the Feb. 19 game at Evansville. A Valpo team that has been no stranger to close contests enjoyed its first win that was not hanging in the balance in the final minute of regulation in conference play this year as the team’s previous four victories came either in overtime or in the final seconds of regulation. This time, the visiting Beacons surged to a 16-point halftime lead and won the game by that same margin, 72-56 at the Ford Center. Valpo withstood a pair of unanticipated injuries to starters as Thomas Kithier was scratched 10 minutes before game time with a back injury and Preston Ruedinger injured his ankle during the contest.

Feb. 21 – Valpo 74, Evansville 69: Valpo led by as many as 13 late in the first half on Feb. 21 at the ARC, but visiting Evansville scored the first 16 points of the second half to build up a 10-point lead. Valpo responded in a positive manner, rallying past the Purple Aces 74-69 to allow the Beacons to complete a four-game Hoosier State sweep of instate foes Indiana State and Evansville for the first time since joining the Missouri Valley Conference. Valpo was led in scoring by Kevion Taylor with 23 points, while Ben Krikke had 16. In addition, Sheldon Edwards (13&12) and Kobe King (12&10) both posted double-doubles. Valpo went 9-of-10 at the free-throw line in the final 33 seconds to ice the win. This game represented the 19th time in the Matt Lottich Era (sixth season) that Valpo has erased a double-figure deficit for a victory. This game represented just the second time in the last five seasons that two Valpo players enjoyed double-doubles in the same contest. Edwards became the first Valpo player with back-to-back double-doubles since Alec Peters in January 2017. Valpo shot just 22.2 percent from 3, its lowest 3-point percentage in a win since going 0-for-10 against the Aces in the first round of the 2020 MVC Tournament.

Outrebounding UE: Over the two regular-season games against Evansville, Valpo went +15 in terms of rebounding margin on Feb. 19 at Evansville and +19 on Feb. 21 vs. Evansville. The 42-23 advantage on the boards on Feb. 21 marked the team’s best rebounding margin against a Division-I opponent since going +32 vs. Samford on Nov. 21, 2017. In terms of offensive rebounds, Valpo outdid Evansville 10-2 on Feb. 21. The 10 offensive caroms tied for the team’s most against D-I competition this season (vs. Eastern Michigan, at Indiana State), while the two offensive rebounds allowed tied for the fewest permitted by the Beacons all season with the Feb. 19 game at Evansville. Valpo permitted just four total offensive rebounds in the two regular-season matchups even though both of those games came without the services of leading rebounder Thomas Kithier.

Arch Madness History

In 2020, Valpo became the first team in the history of Arch Madness to win three games in three days to reach the MVC title game. As a No. 7 seed, Valpo became the lowest seed to ever play in the title game. The Beacons led Bradley 38-36 in the title game and were 20 minutes from clinching an NCAA Tournament berth, but the Braves eventually prevailed 80-66.

Valpo entered Arch Madness as the No. 10 seed in 2017-18, No. 9 seed in 2018-19, No. 7 in 2019-20, No. 6 in 2020-21 and now No. 7 in 2021-2022.

Valpo is 4-4 all-time in eight Arch Madness games. Three of the four victories came during the 2019-20 run to the title game, which featured wins over Evansville, Loyola and Missouri State.

Valpo’s previous Arch Madness matchup with Evansville was a 58-55 victory on March 5, 2020. Valpo prevailed despite going 0-for-10 from 3-point territory, snapping the team’s 298-game streak of making a 3. Valpo went without a made 3 for the first time since Nov. 18, 2011, an 0-for-14 performance in a 62-59 win over Akron.

Hoosier State Sweep

Valpo went a combined 4-0 during the regular season against instate foes Evansville and Indiana State, completing a regular-season Hoosier State sweep for the first time since joining the Missouri Valley Conference.

Valpo will look to improve to 5-0 against instate foes this season on Thursday.

In addition, the Beacons will try to secure a three-game sweep of the Purple Aces for the second time in the last three seasons. The 3-0 record against Evansville in 2020 represented the first time Valpo recorded a three-game sweep of a conference nemesis since March 7, 2015, a 60-55 Horizon League semifinal win over Cleveland State.

Valpo in St. Louis

Although Valpo is the new kid on the block when it comes to Arch Madness (for one final time before UIC, Murray State and Belmont join the fold next season), the program’s history in the building now known as the Enterprise Center goes beyond the team’s three MVC Tournament appearances.

Valpo’s Sweet Sixteen game against Rhode Island in 1998 was played in the building, which was then known as the Kiel Center.

Valpo also appeared in the 2002 NCAA Tournament in St. Louis, but the first-round date with Kentucky was played at the Edward Jones Dome.

Head coach Matt Lottich played at Stanford from 2000-2004 and was part of the Cardinal team that participated in the first and second rounds of the NCAA Tournament at the Edwards Jones Dome in 2002. His squad joined Valpo as two of the eight teams competing in St. Louis in the opening round of the tournament that year.

Injury Bug Bites: Valpo has been bitten by the injury bug more frequently than the team would have liked this season. In part for that reason, head coach Matt Lottich has used 14 different starting lineup combinations and had 11 unique lineups in conference play alone over 18 games. No Valpo player started every game this season, and only three (Kevion Taylor, Sheldon Edwards, Eron Gordon) have played in each contest. Here’s a breakdown of the season-long injury report.

Thomas Kithier: Missed the first two Missouri Valley Conference games due to COVID-19 health and safety protocols, returned on Jan. 11 at Loyola and played in four games, left on Jan. 22 at Indiana State with a back injury, did not play in the next four games due to the back, returned on Feb. 12 at Missouri State and played in two games, then missed the final four games of the regular season with the back injury.

Preston Ruedinger: Returned on Feb. 26 at Bradley after missing the previous two games with an ankle injury.

Darius DeAveiro: Suffered a thumb injury in the regular season finale at Bradley and is questionable for Arch Madness.

Ben Krikke: Missed the first three games of the season with an ankle injury.

Kobe King: Sat out the first nine games of the season in order to gain eligibility.

Keyondre Young: Has only played in eight games and has not played since Dec. 5 due to a thumb/wrist.

Trevor Anderson: Was limited to 17 games and hasn’t played since Jan. 26 due to a season-ending back injury.

Connor Barrett: Has only played in 13 games and hasn’t played since Jan. 5 for undisclosed reasons.

Emil Freese-Vilien: Played in the first two games of the season in November, then missed 25 games due to Lyme disease before returning on Feb. 19 at Evansville.

Mastodon Baseball Drops Final Game at California Baptist 11-1

RIVERSIDE, Calif. – The Purdue Fort Wayne baseball team fell 11-1 at California Baptist on Sunday (Feb. 27) in the final game of a four-game set with the reigning Western Athletic Conference Champions.

The Mastodons were led offensively by Jack Lang who went 2-for-4 with a double and a walk. Braedon Blackford finished 1-for-3 with a walk and an RBI after scoring Lang in the eighth. Garett Lake had a double for the ‘Dons.

The Lancers scored one in the first but opened it up with a four-run second inning. The ‘Dons couldn’t get to CBU starter Anthony Silvas. He went five innings for the win. Bryce Martens started and took the loss for the ‘Dons. He is now 0-2 after a 1.2 innings of work. Freshman Rex Stills had a nice outing from the bullpen, going 2.1 shutout innings while allowing one hit, walking one and striking out two.

GAME NOTES

» The ‘Dons had base runners in seven of the nine innings.

» Kevin Fee didn’t allow a run in 1.2 innings of work and earned a double play to end a threat in the sixth.

» California Baptist was led offensively by sophomore Jake Skipworth, who went 2-for-4 with a double and three RBIs.

» The ‘Dons are now 0-8. The Lancers improve to 7-0.

UP NEXT

The ‘Dons play a three-game series at Tennessee Tech next week.

Johnson Breaks Triple Jump at Day Two of Horizon League Championships

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Purdue Fort Wayne women’s track & field athlete Selena Johnson broke the program record in the triple jump at day two of the 2022 Horizon League Indoor Championships on Sunday, Feb. 27.

Johnson’s jump of 11.79 meters in the triple jump surpassed her previous record of 11.73 meters from the Mastodon Opener back on Dec. 4.

Point scorers in running events for the ‘Dons included Madison King, who finished in second in the women’s 3,000-meter run (9:56.72, eight points). Jesseca Hudson-Turpin (8.73 seconds) and Jordan Yanders (8.80 seconds) were fourth and fifth in the 60-meter hurdle finals (nine combined points). Katie Clark finished fifth in the women’s 400-meter dash finals (56.76 seconds, four points).

Point scorers in field events included Johnson and Louiza Kruiswijk (11.49 meters) who were fourth and seventh in the triple jump (seven combined points). Miranda Haney was sixth in the high jump at 1.60 meters (three points). NakiaHarris-Campbell was eighth in the shot put at 12.82 meters (one point).

The Mastodons finished the meet with 59 points and in fourth place. Youngstown State earned the team title with 211 points.

The Mastodons open outdoor season on Friday, March 11 at the Myrtle Beach Colligate Challenge in Myrtle Beach, S.C

Six More Men’s Track & Field School Records Broken at Horizon League Championships

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – Six program records fell for the Purdue Fort Wayne men’s track & field team on the final day of the 2022 Horizon League Indoor Championships on Sunday, Feb. 27

Kai Auernheimer broke his own program record in the men’s heptathlon with 4,281 points, Joe Cartwright broke his own record in the 400-meter dash at 49.36 seconds and Brent Donaldson broke his own record in the 60-meter hurdles with a time of 8.24 seconds. JT Hodges set a new 3,000-meter time at 8:34.82.

In addition, Aaron Martin broke the record in the men’s shot put at 14.90 meters. The men’s 4 by 400-meter team of Brent Donaldson, Braxton Trittpio, Nicolas Blair, and Joe Cartwright set a new record at 3:18.30 in a second place performance.

Auernheimer and Logan Alexander (3,850 points) were fourth and seventh in the men’s heptathlon. The two combined for seven points for the men’s team.

Auernheimer won the 1,000-meter run (3:03.11), was third in the pole vault (3.74 meters) and long jump (6.41 meters), sixth in the high jump (1.75 meters) and shot put (11.08 meters), sixth in the 60-meter hurdles (9.52 seconds), and seventh in the 60-meter dash (7.69 seconds),

Alexander finished third in the high jump (1.87 meters), fourth in the 60-meter dash (7.45 seconds) sixth eighth in the 60-meter hurdles (10.04 seconds) and 1,000-meter run (3:13.17), seventh long jump (5.78 meters) and shot put (9.87 meters), and ninth in the pole vault (2.94 meters).

Other point scorers included Donaldson in the 60-meter hurdles in fourth (five points), Cartwright with a seventh-place finish in the 400-meter dash (two points), and Aaron Carter in eighth in the shot put (one point).

As a team, the ‘Dons finished in sixth place with 33 points. Youngstown State was the Horizon League champions with 225 points.

The Mastodons kick off outdoor season on Friday March 11 at the Myrtle Beach Colligate Challenge in Myrtle Beach, S.C

Men to Host, Women to Travel for GLVC Basketball Tournament Opener Monday

INDIANAPOLIS—The 2022 GLVC Basketball Championship Tournament gets underway Monday, Feb. 28 with first-round action happening throughout the conference footprint. All 30 teams (15 men, 15 women) are eligible for postseason play this year, with seeds 2-8 hosting first-round contests in both the men’s (PDF) and women’s brackets (PDF).
 
For the Greyhounds, the men earned the No. 6 seed and will host 11th-seeded Missouri S&T at 7 p.m. ET in Nicoson Hall. Meanwhile, the UIndy women snagged the No. 9 seed and will head to eighth-seeded Southwest Baptist University for a 6:30 p.m. Eastern tip.
 
As always, both games will be available on the GLVC Sports Network. However, the league recently approval the implementation of a pay-per-view pass system for both the opening rounds this Monday and the later quarterfinals, semifinals and finals set for March 3-6 in Edwardsville, Ill.

Softball Extends Win Streak with Two Sunday Wins

OWENSBORO, Ky.— The seventh-ranked UIndy softball team wrapped up a productive trip to Owensboro, Ky., with two more wins Sunday, routing Davis & Elkins, 16-0, and topping in-region Trevecca Nazarene, 8-3. The results capped a perfect 4-0 stay at the Blue Bridge Battle, upping the Greyhounds’ win streak to eight and their overall record to 11-1.

GAME 1 | UIndy 16, D&E 0 (5 innings)

The Greyhounds absolutely blitzed the overmatched Senators, racking up season highs in both runs and bases on balls while hitting .407 as a team. UIndy’s 10 walks were good for its highest single-game total in three full years.

Meanwhile, All-America pitcher Kenzee Smith kept missing bats, notching a one-hitter in her fourth consecutive shutout, striking out seven and walking one. Smith has not allowed a run in her last 19 1/3 innings pitcher.

Lexy Rees at herself a day at the plate. The Greyhound catcher twice came to the dish with the bases loaded and twice drove in three runs. Her six ribbies were the most by a Hound in a decade, joining another UIndy catcher – Cori Eckerle in March of 2012 – in the elite club.

Sydnee Perry added a two-run double in the first inning, while Dominique Proctor turned a rare trick with two pinch-hit, RBI doubles.

GAME 2 | UIndy 8, TNU 3

The Trojans, a team the Hounds shut out earlier this season, struck first with two runs in the top of the second. It marked the first time the Greyhounds trailed in nine games.

The tables turned quickly, however, as UIndy answered with four tallies in the bottom of the second and later tacked on runs in the third, fourth and fifth frames. Perry, Emily O’Connor and Tara Williams all had RBI hits, while Gianni Iannantone and Maddy Stout each coaxed an HBP.

Haylie Foster got the complete-game win in the circle, allowing two earned runs and striking out four in seven innings. She is now 6-0 on the year.

UP NEXT

The Greyhounds recently added a trip to The Mountain State to their schedule. UIndy will travel to West Virginia State on Saturday, March 5 for a doubleheader versus the Yellow Jackets.

Greyhounds Fall in Series Finale to Northwood

INDIANAPOLIS – The University of Indianapolis baseball team dropped its series finale to Northwood on Sunday afternoon by a final of 9-4. With the loss, UIndy falls victim to a series sweep against NU.

HOW IT HAPPENED

The Timberwolves jumped out ahead 5-0 through two innings of play before the Greyhounds landed a few on the board. Will Spear sent out an RBI single in the bottom half of the second that scored two from the bases to cut into the deficit.

The Hounds continued to climb back into the ballgame with another run in the third. Denton Shepler rolled out a single through the left side that brought home a Greyhound runner.

Closing the gap further, Caleb Vaughn added another UIndy run after crushing a solo homerun over the left field fence. This made the game 5-4 through five innings of play.

Despite the late game heroics, Northwood finished the game strong by adding a total of four insurance runs through the final four innings with no answer from UIndy.

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

-Northwood tallied a game-high 15 hits while UIndy had just six in return.

-Five different Greyhounds led the team with one hit from the plate.

-Spear (2), Shepler (1), and Vaughn (1) all tallied RBI’s in the contest.

-Logan Peterson earned the start from the bump and went six complete where he tallied six strikeouts while allowing 11 hits. Johnny Irish, Alec Burnett, and Blake Sarjent all saw action from the mound in the game.

UP NEXT

The Greyhounds will return to the field this upcoming Friday to behing a four-game home series with Wayne State (MI).

MARIAN SUFFERS FIRST LOSS TO (RV) AQUINAS

INDIANAPOLIS – The Marian women’s lacrosse team suffered their first loss of the 2022 season Sunday afternoon, dropping their matinee game to (RV) Aquinas 18-9. Marian’s loss gives them a 2-1 record through three games.

Aquinas began the game quickly scoring 70 seconds into play, doubling their lead two minutes later to claim a 2-0 lead through 3:23 of gameplay. The Saints would get another goal three minutes later, as the Knights’ offense struggled to connect for a score. Grace Martin finally got the Knights on the board with 4:39 to play as Ashlynn Gray found her teammate cutting for a goal. The Saints answered with 2:07 remaining to go up by three, but after a timeout Madison Ash netted her first goal of the game. Aquinas would end the quarter with a Shaylin Rings goal, taking a 5-2 lead after 15 minutes.

In the second quarter Marian scored quickly as Emily Blackburn scored on a free position shot 28 seconds into play. Marian was unable to get within a goal as the Saints pushed ahead 6-3 on a Cierra Davis goal at the 11:29 mark, and at the 7:44 mark the lead moved to four goals. Blackburn scored another free position shot and Gray added a man-advantage goal with 1:11 to play in the quarter, however it wasn’t enough for the Knights to inch closer, entering halftime trailing 9-5.

Marian was again out-scored in the third quarter 4-3, as Aquinas’ offense struck first with a goal from Davis. Marian would get within two goals as Gray sparked the offense, starting a 3-0 run. Katelynn Gray answered her sisters goal within 20 seconds, and with 9:52 left a free position goal from Ash brought Marian within two, trailing 10-8. The Knights found several shot attempts as they tried to inch closer, but three unanswered goals from the Saints in the final five minutes pushed the visitor’s lead back to 5.

Trailing 13-8 going into the fourth quarter, Marian was unable to get an early goal to pick up momentum, as Aquinas scored twice in the period’s first three minutes. The run moved to seven straight goals as the quarter wore on, giving Aquinas enough of a lead to seal the game and take the victory 18-9.

Martin led the Knights in shots with six, while both of the Gray twins, Blackburn, and Ash scored two goals. Ash led Marian with three assists in the game. Martin also led Marian with six ground balls, and Ashlynn Gray recorded eight draw controls. In goal both Katherine Hirsch and Grace Coyne allowed nine goals, while each making six saves as the two net minders split halves in the loss.

The Knights will look to rebound as they take on Webber International on Saturday, March 5 at 1 PM from St. Vincent Field.

Little Giants Score 15 Runs In Sunday Victory Over Otterbein

Wabash pounded out 19 hits Sunday afternoon to defeat Otterbein 15-5 and improve to 2-0 to begin the 2022 baseball season.

The Little Giants finished with a total of nine extra-base hits, including seven doubles and back-to-back triples by Felix Valero and Reece Bauer in the sixth inning. Liam Patton went 4-for-5 at the plate with three doubles and three RBI.

Bauer collected three hits in four at-bats for Wabash. Valero, AJ Reid, Brayden Lentz, and Camden Scheidt each produced two hits. All nine starters collected at least one hit for the Little Giants in the game.

Wabash jumped out to an early lead by scoring four runs in the first inning. Reid drove in Kamden Earley with a double in the opening frame. A ground-rule double for Patton brought Reid home with the second run of the game. A single from Lentz scored Noah Luebbehusen to make it a 3-0 contest. Scheidt drove in the final run of the inning when he reached on a fielder’s choice.

The Little Giants added another run in the second and two more in the fifth. A five-run sixth inning put the game well out of reach, but Wabash still wasn’t done scoring. The Little Giants added one more run in the seventh inning and a final two runs in the eighth for the 10-run margin.

Tavic Simmons earned the win in relief of starter Jacob Bishop. Bishop threw four innings and held Otterbein (1-1) to two runs on two hits. He struck out five batters and walked one. Simmons pitched three innings and scattered eight hits while recording two strikeouts. He surrendered three runs on the afternoon. Sam Phillips and Grant Stratton each pitched one scoreless inning to close out the ballgame.

The Little Giants are scheduled to play seven games on their spring break trip to Tucson, Arizona, beginning with a doubleheader against Aurora University on March 6.

RECAP | Women’s Lacrosse Drops Season Opener at Wittenberg

SPRINGFIELD, Ohio – The Franklin College women’s lacrosse team took to the field for their season opener on Sunday (Feb. 27) afternoon, taking on the Wittenberg Tigers.

Four different Grizzlies (0-1) found the back of the net on the afternoon, but Franklin wasn’t able to overcome a solid Tiger (1-0) squad in a 16-4 Wittenberg win.

How it Happened

Franklin got on the board late in the first half, when Sydney Briggs connected on a free position shot to stop an 8-0 Wittenberg run.

The second half saw juniors Anya Glodowski and Victoria Simmons net goals and Mia Turnbaugh got on the board in the final minute of regulation to cap the scoring.

Inside the Box Score

-Shot attempts were 33-16 in Wittenberg’s favor, with Baleigh Riddle’s five shots leading all Franklin attackers.

-Glodowski was the lone Grizzly to record a multi-point game, assisting on Simmons’ second half goal.

-Turnbaugh and freshman Delaney McCafferty tied for the Franklin lead with four ground balls each.

-Making her first career start in net, sophomore Riley Rice made six saves for Franklin.

Up Next

Franklin opens the home portion of their schedule on Thursday (Mar. 3) night, when they host the Alma Scots. The opening draw from Faught Stadium is set for 6:00 p.m.

Little Giants Score 15 Runs In Sunday Victory Over Otterbein

Wabash pounded out 19 hits Sunday afternoon to defeat Otterbein 15-5 and improve to 2-0 to begin the 2022 baseball season.

The Little Giants finished with a total of nine extra-base hits, including seven doubles and back-to-back triples by Felix Valero and Reece Bauer in the sixth inning. Liam Patton went 4-for-5 at the plate with three doubles and three RBI.

Bauer collected three hits in four at-bats for Wabash. Valero, AJ Reid, Brayden Lentz, and Camden Scheidt each produced two hits. All nine starters collected at least one hit for the Little Giants in the game.

Wabash jumped out to an early lead by scoring four runs in the first inning. Reid drove in Kamden Earley with a double in the opening frame. A ground-rule double for Patton brought Reid home with the second run of the game. A single from Lentz scored Noah Luebbehusen to make it a 3-0 contest. Scheidt drove in the final run of the inning when he reached on a fielder’s choice.

The Little Giants added another run in the second and two more in the fifth. A five-run sixth inning put the game well out of reach, but Wabash still wasn’t done scoring. The Little Giants added one more run in the seventh inning and a final two runs in the eighth for the 10-run margin.

Tavic Simmons earned the win in relief of starter Jacob Bishop. Bishop threw four innings and held Otterbein (1-1) to two runs on two hits. He struck out five batters and walked one. Simmons pitched three innings and scattered eight hits while recording two strikeouts. He surrendered three runs on the afternoon. Sam Phillips and Grant Stratton each pitched one scoreless inning to close out the ballgame.

The Little Giants are scheduled to play seven games on their spring break trip to Tucson, Arizona, beginning with a doubleheader against Aurora University on March 6.

Wabash Wins NCAC Championship; Trip to NCAA’s Up Next

Junior forward Ahmoni Jones scored the final six points, all from the free-throw line in the final 21 seconds, to help the Wabash College basketball team win its first-ever North Coast Athletic Conference Championship with an 85-84 win over the College of Wooster in overtime.

The win is Wabash’s 20th straight and propels the Little Giants into the NCAA Division III Tournament for the first time since 1998. Wabash improved to 24-3 on the year and took all three games against Wooster’s Fighting Scots (19-9) for the first time since Wabash joined the NCAC in 2000.

“Wooster is really good, and I’ve got a lot of respect for what they’ve done over the last 25 years – it’s insane,” said Coach Kyle Brumett. “We really needed a game like this. Today’s game was exactly how it had to go – great team, close game, tournament atmosphere.”

Indeed, Wooster has played for the NCAC Championship in 23 of the last 25 years, but the Little Giants built big leads twice, held off several Wooster haymakers, and hit big free throws down the stretch to claim the title.

“We really fought and clawed in this one,” Brumett said. “I’ve got really good players, especially my guards. They were not super-heroes today, but they were very good.”

Wooster played sticky defense on senior guard Jack Davidson, who was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player after scoring 97 points in three games. The national Player of the Year candidate got off to a slow start, but finished with 28 points, 12 rebounds, and five assists – playing all 45 minutes of the game.

Fellow senior guard Tyler Watson started hot – scoring all 16 of his points in the first half when Wabash built a 43-34 lead – but took a nasty shot to the face, which briefly sidelined him. Watson earned a spot on the All-Tournament Team.

Wooster led by five points, 18-13, seven minutes into the game. The two teams went back and forth for the next five minutes before Davidson hit a pair of three-pointers, Kellen Schreiber buried a short jumper, Davidson followed with a layup, and Watson hit a put-back bucket to put Wabash up 12, 39-27.

At that point, the roaring crowd thought the Little Giants were headed to a third straight double-digit win over the Scots. But Wooster’s guards, Najee Hardaway, Brandon Styers, and Jamir Billings, and big men, Elijah Meredith and Turner Kurt, never backed down.

Trailing by nine at the break, 43-34, Wooster stormed back behind Hardaway’s two three-pointers in the opening four minutes of the second half, outscoring Wabash 10-0 to start the half.

Wabash’s Jones calming sank a three-pointer to stop the bleeding and two more three-pointers by Davidson helped Wabash open up another 10-point lead at the 12:30 mark.

But Meredith and Styers each hit threes and it was game-on.

The Little Giants could never shake the Scots from there, and Wooster completed yet another comeback when Kurt sunk an easy layup with 3:08 to play. Kurt’s fellow 6-8 center, Nick Everett, gave the Scots a two-point lead at 2:14 and the teams traded baskets from there.

“Wooster always presents a lot of non-Division III problems,” Brumett said. “They are enormous and have two really good centers. To out-rebound them today is one reason we were able to claw out an overtime win. We won the second-chance points by three, and we won the game by one – that’s the difference.”

Wabash appeared to have the game in the bag when Jones hit a jumper and a free throw to put the Little Giants up 73-70 with just over a minute to play. But Everett hit his own bucket and free throw with 48 seconds left to send the game to overtime tied at 73-all.

Both teams struggled to put points on the board in overtime. Davidson scored Wabash’s first six points in the extra period on a layup and four free throws. But it was Jones with ice in his veins, who calmly sank all six free throws in the final 21 seconds – as Wooster fouled him on a fast break and twice in desperation.

“Ahmoni got to the line three times late – the biggest ones of his career,” Brumett said proudly of the junior who struggled with knee injuries over the last three weeks. “Just having him out there – 28 minutes last night and 36 minutes tonight… he played great and looked healthy.”

Schreiber had a dozen points and five rebounds, while starting point guard Edreece Redmond scored seven points. Freshman Jesse Hall hit all three of his shots for six points in 14 minutes.

Coach Brumett praised back-up guard Vinny Buccilla. The rookie pulled down five rebounds and had a steal. “Vinnie came in and played 20 minutes,” Brumett said. “He didn’t score, but we outscored them by 19 when he was on the floor.”

Wooster got balanced scoring from its lineup with Hardaway scoring 18, Meredith 17, and Styers 14. Everett had 13 off the bench, and Kurt had 10 points and a team-high nine boards.

Wabash will have to wait until Monday to know whether they’ll host a first-round NCAA tournament game or hit the road. The selection committee will announce the field of 64 teams at 12:30 p.m.

Brumett knows it’s hard to make the tournament. It’s been 24 years since Wabash was last in the field, and 40 years since the Little Giants ran the table over the final 19 games to win the College’s national championship.

“It’s really hard to put into words. Just to see all the hugs and smiles out there,” Brumett said, his voice trailing off. “A lot of things went right for us tonight.”

Wabash Wins 2022 DIII Central Wrestling Regional

Wabash captured the 2022 NCAA Division III Central Region Wrestling Tournament team title and earned seven spots in the upcoming national championship tournament in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

The Little Giants matched its highest number of national qualifiers with seven wrestlers earning top-three finish at the regional. Wabash sent seven wrestlers to the 2017 national meet, eventually finishing third overall with one national champion and four All-Americans.

Wabash scored a total of 168.5 points to outdistance Baldwin Wallace in second place with 145.5 points. John Carroll took third place with a score of 141.

Maxwell Bishop and Jack Heldt each claimed individual titles for the Little Giants. Bishop won the 285-pound weight class by finishing the weekend with a 4-0 record including a pair of pins in Friday’s first two rounds. He earned a 5-1 victory in the semifinals before capturing the weight class title with a 2-1 decision in the finals. Bishop was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Wrestler.

Heldt won the 197-pound weight class with a 4-0 record. He picked up two victories on Friday, then followed with a 9-0 major decision in the semifinals and a 15-0 technical fall in the title bout.

Carlos Champagne will return to the national tournament after placing second in the 125-pound weight class. He advanced to Saturday’s final bout with a pin in his semifinal bout, but lost a tight 3-1 decision in the last match of the day.

Daniel Uribe took third place at 141 pounds. He lost his opening match by a score of 602 on Saturday after scoring two Friday victories. Uribe rallied for a 9-7 victory in the consolation semifinals before scoring a 7-6 win to take third place in the bracket and earn a trip to the national tournament.

Alex Barr will also make a return trip to the national tournament after capturing third place at 149 pounds. Barr went 4-0 in consolation-round matches, including two pins and a 6-1 victory in the third-place finals bout.

Kyle Hatch placed third at 165 pounds to earn a fourth trip to the championship tournament. A three-time All-American and the nation’s top-ranked wrestler in his weight class, Hatch took a surprising loss in his first bout on Saturday. The senior rallied for an 11-2 major decision in the consolation semifinal bout before earning his trip to Iowa with a 5-3 win in the finals.

Chase Baczek took third place in the 184-pound weight class to earn a trip to the national tournament, as well. Baczek rebounded from a 4-0 loss in the semifinals on Saturday morning by claiming a 7-3 victory in the consolation semis. He scored an 8-0 shutout in the third-place finals bout to claim a spot in the national tournament.

Wabash head coach Brian Anderson was voted the region’s Coach of the Year after guiding the Little Giants to the team’s first regional title since 2019.

The NCAA Division III National Championship Tournament will take place March 11-12 at the U.S. Cellular Center in Cedar Rapids.

Wabash Claims NCAC Men’s Indoor Track and Field Title

Wabash captured its eighth North Coast Athletic Conference Men’s Indoor Track and Field Championship on Saturday and the program’s 16th indoor and outdoor title overall. The Little Giants earned 13 all-conference titles while outscoring the second-place team by 63.5 points.

Wabash finished with 151.5 points as a team. Wooster took second place overall with a total of 88 points. Wittenberg placed third overall with a final score of 87 points. Denison finished in fourth place (84 points) with DePauw (78), Oberlin (69), Ohio Wesleyan (65.5), Allegheny (47), and Kenyon completing the team scoring.

The Little Giants won six event titles at the meet. Max Bigler, who won the heptathlon one week ago to begin the team’s drive for its third consecutive indoor title, added an individual victory in the high jump by clearing 6 feet, 6 inches. Bigler was named the NCAC Men’s Field Athlete of the Year.

Jose Franco scored an individual victory in the 200-meter dash with a new Wabash school record time of 22.33. He was also part of the Little Giants’ winning 4×400-meter relay team. Franco joined Howie Steele, Keith Abramson, and Will Neubauer to win that event with a time of 3:23.08. Franco added a second-place finish in the 400-meter dash with a time of 49.95 to earn Men’s Sprint/Hurdles Athlete of the Year honors.

Leo Warbington won the 60-meter hurdles for an NCAC individual title and all-conference honors. He turned in a time of 8.49 in the finals for the victory. Giovonni Zappala placed third to pick up all-conference. He crossed the finish line in 8.76.

Ethan Pine won the mile run with a time of 4:14.96 to provide the final individual title for the Little Giants.

Kamron Ferguson took second place in the triple jump with a leap of 43 feet, 10.75 inches. Brandon English finished second in the shot put with a top effort of 48 feet, 4.75 inches. The Wabash foursome of Clarke Criddell, Thomas Joven, Neubauer, and Pine scored a second-place finish in the distance medley relay on Friday night by finishing in 10:23.79. Neubauer also took third place to score all-conference honors in the 800-meter run with a time of 1:55.05. Luke Bender placed third in the pole vault by clearing 13 feet, 11.25 inches.

Wabash head coach Clyde Morgan, along with assistants Tyler McCreary, John Bute, Emile Conde, Courtny Cotton, and emeritus coach Robert Johnson was named the NCAC Men’s Coaching Staff of the Year.

“This one goes to the top,” Morgan said. “This group has gone through so many ups and downs with confidence, injuries, COVID, and other things. They fought hard for two days and supported each other on a championship level.  Hats off to our phenomenal coaches who put so much into these guys on and off of the track. They are true Wabash and NBU (Nothing Breaks Us) Men.”

RHIT Baseball – Rosen Earns First Wins as Engineers Open with Sweep

AUBURNDALE, Fla. — The Adam Rosen coaching era begins with a pair of victories, as the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology baseball team swept Northern Vermont-Lyndon 14-1 and 12-11 on Sunday to open the team’s Florida Spring Trip.

In the opener, Josh Mesenbrink collected four RBIs to help lead the offense in a convincing 14-1 victory.

Ian Kline (1-0) started on the mound and picked up the win for Rose-Hulman (1-0). The right-hander went 4.2 innings, giving up one run on five hits, allowing three walks and striking out five. Sam Stieby added one scoreless inning while allowing one hit, with no walks and one strikeout.

Mesenbrink went 2-for-2 with a home run in addition to his four RBIs for the Engineers. Dalton Busboom put together a noteworthy day at the plate as well, going 1-for-2 with a double, two walks and an RBI. Adam Taylor also contributed for Rose-Hulman, putting together two hits in four trips to the plate while adding two RBIs.

In the nightcap, Northern Vermont-Lyndon took the lead with an 8-run third inning, before Rose-Hulman rallied to earn the 12-11 win.

Brett Tuttle led the way offensively for the Engineers, going 3-for-4 in the ballgame with a double, a triple, a home run and two RBIs. Adam Taylor also went 2-for-4 with a triple and three RBIs. Colter Couillard-Rodak adding one hit and two RBIs.

Jonathan Oliger (1-0) came out of the bullpen to pick up the win for Rose-Hulman (2-0). The right-hander went 1.2 shutout innings without giving up a hit, two walks and striking out three. Schuyler Wilcox earned the save, going 1.1 shutout innings without allowing a hit.

Rose-Hulman stands 2-0 on the season and returns to action on Monday against Saint Mary’s (Minn.).

Adam Rosen Era Begins with Rose-Hulman Baseball Sweep on Sunday

AUBURNDALE, Fla. — The Adam Rosen coaching era begins with a pair of victories, as the Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology baseball team swept Northern Vermont-Lyndon 14-1 and 12-11 on Sunday to open the team’s Florida Spring Trip.

In the opener, Josh Mesenbrink collected four RBIs to help lead the offense in a convincing 14-1 victory.

Ian Kline (1-0) started on the mound and picked up the win for Rose-Hulman (1-0). The right-hander went 4.2 innings, giving up one run on five hits, allowing three walks and striking out five. Sam Stieby added one scoreless inning while allowing one hit, with no walks and one strikeout.

Mesenbrink went 2-for-2 with a home run in addition to his four RBIs for the Engineers. Dalton Busboom put together a noteworthy day at the plate as well, going 1-for-2 with a double, two walks and an RBI. Adam Taylor also contributed for Rose-Hulman, putting together two hits in four trips to the plate while adding two RBIs.

In the nightcap, Northern Vermont-Lyndon took the lead with an 8-run third inning, before Rose-Hulman rallied to earn the 12-11 win.

Brett Tuttle led the way offensively for the Engineers, going 3-for-4 in the ballgame with a double, a triple, a home run and two RBIs. Adam Taylor also went 2-for-4 with a triple and three RBIs. Colter Couillard-Rodak added one hit and two RBIs.

Jonathan Oliger (1-0) came out of the bullpen to pick up the win for Rose-Hulman (2-0). The right-hander went 1.2 shutout innings without giving up a hit, two walks and striking out three. Schuyler Wilcox earned the save, going 1.1 shutout innings without allowing a hit.

Rose-Hulman stands 2-0 on the season and returns to action on Monday against Saint Mary’s (Minn.).

GAME 1 | Rose-Hulman 14, NVU-Lyndon 1

HOW IT HAPPENED

The Engineers got on the board immediately, starting their scoring with three runs in the bottom of the first inning off a left-field blast by Mesenbrink.

The Hornets then gained ground, narrowing the lead to 3-1 until the Engineers expanded their advantage in the third. Rose-Hulman scored once on an RBI single off the bat of Ben Christiansen, which brought the Engineers lead to 4-1.

Rose-Hulman kept NVU-Lyndon without a run before building their lead to 6-1 the following inning. The Engineers picked up two runs in the frame, the important hit being an RBI double from Dalton Busboom scoring Shane Garner.

Rose-Hulman held the Hornets scoreless before their offense got back in action in the sixth inning. The Engineers scored four runs, highlighted by a two-run single off the bat of Taylor, bringing the Rose-Hulman advantage to 10-1.

The Engineers kept NVU-Lyndon scoreless before building on their lead to 14-1 the following inning. The Rose-Hulman offense piled up four runs, highlighted by a one-run HBP by Kade Kline. The score remained 14-1 for the rest of the game, as the Engineers coasted to the win.

GAME NOTES

» Ian Kline struck out five Hornets hitters.

» Mesenbrink drove in four runs for Rose-Hulman.

» Every Rose-Hulman starter reached base safely in the win.

» Rose-Hulman’s highest scoring inning was the sixth, when it pushed four runs across.

» Rose-Hulman grabbed a 3-0 lead in the bottom half of the first and didn’t surrender that lead for the remainder of the game.

» The Engineers out-hit the Hornets at a 14-8 clip.

» Rose-Hulman went 8-for-19 (.421) with runners in scoring position.

» Rose-Hulman pitchers faced 32 NVU-Lyndon hitters in the game, allowing seven ground balls and six fly balls while striking out six.

» The Engineers drew five walks from NVU-Lyndon pitching.

» Mesenbrink led the Engineers at the plate, going 2-for-2 with a home run and four RBIs.

» NVU-Lyndon was led offensively by Jordan Cane, who went 2-for-4 with an RBI.

GAME 2 | Rose-Hulman 12, NVU-Lyndon 11

HOW IT HAPPENED

The Engineers got the scoring started early, putting one run on the board in the top of the first inning. Rose-Hulman’s offense started clicking and put up six runs, including a two-run single off the bat of Colter Couillard-Rodak.

The Hornets then gained ground, narrowing the lead to 6-1 until the Engineers expanded their advantage in the second. Josh Mesenbrink came across to score the lone run of the inning for Rose-Hulman, which brought the score to 7-1 in favor of the Engineers.

NVU-Lyndon narrowed Rose-Hulman’s lead to 7-3 before the Engineers stretched the advantage to 9-3 in the third inning. The Engineers picked up two runs in the frame, punctuated with an RBI triple off the bat of Adam Taylor scoring Blake Deckard.

Rose-Hulman lost the lead they built in the third, but got back on the board in the fourth trailing 11-9. Drew Roberts crossed home plate with the lone run of the inning for the Engineers, tightening the NVU-Lyndon lead to 11-10.

The Engineers held the Hornets off the scoreboard before rallying to grab a 12-11 lead in the sixth. Rose-Hulman scored twice on a line-drive shot over the right field fence by Brett Tuttle.

The score remained 12-11 for the rest of the game, courtesy of the Rose-Hulman bullpen.  Jonathan Oliger came out of the pen and earned the win.  Schulyer Wilcox earned the save as the combination of Oliger, Wilcox, and Jason Ims kept NVU-Lyndon off the scoreboard to hold onto the win.

GAME NOTES

» Tuttle had three hits in the game for Rose-Hulman.

» Rose-Hulman got a great power hitting day from Tuttle, who reached safely with three extra base hits.

» Every Rose-Hulman starter reached base safely in the win.

» Rose-Hulman’s highest scoring inning was the first, when it pushed six runs across.

» Rose-Hulman pitchers faced 41 NVU-Lyndon hitters in the game, allowing seven ground balls and seven fly balls while striking out six.

» The Engineers drew nine walks from NVU-Lyndon pitching.

» Tuttle led the Engineers at the plate, going 3-for-4 with a double, a triple, a home run and two RBIs.

» NVU-Lyndon was led offensively by Steven Friscia, who went 1-for-2 with a double and three RBIs.

» Dylan Crump led the Hornets pitching staff, throwing two innings of one-run ball

Men’s Volleyball Picks Up Statement Win to End Wittenberg Triangular

SPRINGFIELD, Ohio – The Trine University men’s volleyball team split in a tri-match on Sunday afternoon at Wittenberg University. The Thunder (6-9) were defeated by Marian University (16-3) in straight sets and bested the host institution, Wittenberg (8-10) by a score of 3-1.

Against Wittenberg, Ted Hofmeister [Powell, Ohio / Saint Charles] tied the school record with 26 kills.

TRINE vs MARIAN:

The Sabres opened up set one with a 13-6 lead, but Hofmeister, Kyle Dixon [Lockport, Ill. / Lockport Township] and Matt Stillman [Mokena, Ill. / Lincoln Way Central] led the charge offensively that cut the lead down to two. Unfortunately, Marian scored eight of the final 11 points to take the first set 25-18.

A slow start in the second set doomed the Thunder as well. Trine fell behind 9-2 before head coach William Dowdy was forced to take a timeout. Kevin Boncaro [Rochester, N.Y. / Rush Henrietta], Carter Steffgen [Lockport, Ill. / Lockport Township] and Sam Buckingham [Saginaw, Mich. / Nouvel Catholic Central] helped to cut into the lead, but Trine was unable to keep pace in a 25-16 loss in the second.

The Thunder were able to take advantage of early errors by the Sabres, but still Marian was able to get ahead 9-5 in the third. Ethan Howard [South Whitley, Ind. / Witko] set up Hofmeister for a pair of kills and Daniel Boren [Fort Wayne, Ind. / Homestead] got in on the scoring to lower the deficit. A timeout by Trine down 19-15 was ineffective in stopping Marian as they completed the match sweep with a 25-19 set three win.

Hofmeister led the team with nine kills on offense. At the setter spot, Howard had 18 assists and Ryan McDonald [New Lenox, Ill. / Lincoln Way West] set up nine attackers for points. Hunter Haas [Cincinnati, Ohio / Bishop Moeller] had 14 digs from the back row and Boncaro contributed with eight digs.

TRINE vs WITTENBERG:

The Thunder wrapped up the afternoon with a match at Wittenberg, who is in the Midwest Collegiate Volleyball League (MCVL) school as well, but this was a non-conference match.

The teams went even through the first 18 points of the match, and slowly but surely, Trine began to pull away. Hofmeister had four kills in a 6-1 scoring run that resulted in the first timeout called by the Tigers at 16-13. Landon Barrow [Noblesville, Ind. / Noblesville] sparked a 9-2 run, including the final six points of the set, for the Thunder in a 25-16 set one victory.

A huge scoring run of 13-6 in favor of Wittenberg allowed the Tigers to run away with set two 25-19. Trine had eight errors in the set, the most in any set of the match and uncharacteristic of the rest of the match after securing 15 kills to just two errors in the first.

The third and fourth sets would look more like the first for the Thunder as they claimed both for the four-set win. A Steffgen service ace at 7-4 seized the momentum of the match as Wittenberg took a timeout. Buckingham made his presence felt offensively with three key kills to extend the lead mid-set. A Stillman kill gave Trine their largest lead of the set at 20-11, and Howard found Steffgen for the final kill of a 25-18 set three win.

Six kills out of seven Thunder points made it 7-2 in the fourth and once again, it was the Tigers taking the set’s first timeout. Jonah Lockard [Wheaton, Ill. / Wheaton North] gave Trine an eight-point edge at 16-8. Buckingham and Hofmeister continued to flex their muscles at the net with a flurry of kills late in a 25-17 set win to claim the match 3-1. Trine wrapped up the match by hitting .355 and .333 in the final two sets.

As a team, 59 kills and 69 digs are the most in either category for a four-set match in program history. Hofmeister led the way with 26 kills in total, and Buckingham was also in double figures at 10. Hofmeister hit .561 in 41 attempts while Buckingham scored his 10 kills in just 13 tries (.615 kill percentage). Howard had 50 assists, one off the record mark in a four-set match. Haas (19), Hofmeister (16) and Howard (10) led the team defensively with double digit digs.

Next on the schedule for Trine is a conference match at Adrian College on Friday, March 4 at 7 pm.

Baseball Drops 2022 Season Opener 5-4

WILMORE, Ky. – The Trine University baseball team opened the 2022 season at Asbury University on Saturday afternoon. Unfortunately, the Thunder (0-1) came up short versus the Eagles (4-3) by a score of 5-4.

Starting pitcher Josh Hoogewerf [Crown Point, Ind. / Crown Point] worked around an Asbury single in the bottom of the first and retired eight in a row as the game remained scoreless after three innings.

Brenden Warner [Richland, Mich. / Hackett Catholic Prep] got into scoring position in the fourth inning after stealing second, but was left on base. The Eagles broke the scoreless tie with an RBI single in the fourth, but Hoogewerf worked out of a jam with runners on second and third to keep it 1-0.

Trine put themselves in the same position of second and third with two away in the fifth, but were unable to come up with a run. A sacrifice fly brought home a run in the bottom half for Asbury to take a 2-0 lead.

Warner sparked a two-out rally in the sixth by drawing a walk, followed by a Jacob Medvescek [Zionsville, Ind. / Zionsville] single (the first hit of the game for Trine) and two RBI double from Dalton Nikirk [Bedford, Ind. / Bedford North Lawrence].

Austin Nuessgen [Beavercreek, Ohio / Beavercreek] relieved Hoogewerf with the game tied at two and left a man stranded on base after a one-out double. In the bottom of the seventh, the Eagles sent eight batters to the plate as two runs crossed the plate. Nuessgen was able to get the final out with the bases loaded to preserve the 4-2 ballgame.

An Adam Stefanelli [Westerville, Ohio / Westerville North] hit by pitch came around to score in the top of the eighth via a Nikirk single, but the Thunder still trailed 4-3. Cole Decker [Leonidas, Mich. / Mendon / Glen Oaks] came on to pitch in the bottom half of the inning and Asbury was able to plate an insurance run to go up 5-3.

Trine would go down easy in the top of the ninth and took advantage of Eagle mistakes. A walk and hit by pitch put two runners on for the visitors and Steffaneli drove in Matt Weis [Trenton, Ill. / Triad] with a groundout. Avery Fulford [Conifer, Colo. / Conifer] was the game’s tying run on second base, but was left stranded in the 5-4 defeat.

Nikirk had two of the team’s five hits and drove in three of four runs on the day to lead the Thunder offense. Cory Erbskorn [Archbold, Ohio / Archbold] was successful in his pinch-hit appearance and was 1-for-1.

The three-game set concludes tomorrow, February 27 with a doubleheader against Asbury at 2 pm and 4:30 pm.

Thunder Claim Third Consecutive Men’s Track and Field Title

ANGOLA, Ind. – The Trine University men’s track and field team won their third straight Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Association (MIAA) Championship on Saturday with a team score of 208.

The Thunder were first-place in seven different events on the day, with 42 different scorers.

In field events, it was Theodore Samra [Lansing, Mich. / DeWitt] topping the charts in both the weight throw (17.19 meters) and shot put (14.65). Jacob Barkey [Waterloo, Ind. / DeKalb], Ben Alston [Adrian, Mich. / Adrian] and Alexander Lewis [LaPorte, Ind. / LaPorte] were fourth, fifth and eighth in the weight throw while Travis Dowling [Swayzee, Ind. / Oak Hill] was fourth and Lewis fifth in the shot put.

In jumps, Ben Williams [Farmington Hills, Mich. / Harrison] was the event winner in the long jump at 6.86 meters. Brycen Abbott [Findlay, Ohio / Liberty Benton] and Ethan Spahr [Osseo, Mich. / Pittsford] were sixth and eighth in the event. Greysen Spohn [Peru, Ind. / Peru] was also champion in the high jump at 1.95 meters. Spahr was fourth and Garret Kelley [Fremont, Ind. / Fremont] sixth.

Spahr recorded a new school record with a third-place 13.22 meters in the triple jump. Noah McClellan [Schererville, Ind. / Lake Central] and Eirik Eggen [Brownsburg, Ind. / Brownsburg] were sixth and eighth.

Jake Gladieux [Oregon, Ohio / Whitmer] was the top Trine finisher in three events: the 60-meter hurdles, 400-meter dash and 200-meter dash. He won the hurdles with a time of 8.17 seconds, with Spohn in second, Evan Selby [Lake Villa, Ill. / Lake Villa] in fifth and Clayton Kirkpatrick [Kendallville, Ind. / Central Noble] in eighth. Gladieux’s race-winning time of 50.25 in the 400 was followed by Kyran Pearson [Elkhart, Ind. / Elkhart Central] in sixth and Ryan Smith [Peru, Ind. / Peru] in eighth. Gladieux was second in the 200 at 22.36 seconds. Behind him were Williams P3, Thonn P4 and Josh Davis [Sterling Heights, Mich. / Sterling Heights] P6.

Danny Vinson [Berrien Springs, Mich. / Berrien Springs] was second in the 60-meter dash with a time of 6.93 seconds, just a tick off the school record. Davis, Thonn and Maxwell Harris [Brownsburg, Ind. / Brownsburg] placed third, fourth and sixth for Trine.

Noah Packard [Kokomo, Ind. / Western] led the way for the Thunder in distance events with a race win in the 5000-meter run at 15:13.43. Zach Brickler [Indianapolis, Ind. / Ben Davis] finished fifth in the event to podium as well. Noah Acker [Kendallville, Ind. / East Noble] was second-place in the 3000-meter run (8:42.08) with Packard on the podium in eighth. The mile run saw Holden Martin [Indianapolis, Ind. / Scecina Memorial] finish a team-high fifth with a time of 4:28.48. Aidan Lapp [South Bend, Ind. / Riley] was just behind in sixth.

The 800-meter run saw Connor Miller [Warren, Ind. / Huntington North] place sixth at 2:00.77.

Trine was third and fifth in relay events. In the distance medley relay, the team of Ashton Still [Sellersburg, Ind. / Silver Creek], Ty Hoover [Monticello, Ind. / Twin Lakes], Philip Nemechek [East Jordan, Mich. / East Jordan] and Gehrig Longe [Birmingham, Mich. / Seaholm] were third (10:58.06) and Patrick Boulay [Noblesville, Ind. / Kaiserslautern American], Ryan Smith, Pearson and Hoover were fifth in the 4×400 meter relay (3:31.46).

The Thunder will continue looking ahead to the NCAA DIII National Championships with next weekend’s Last Chance Meet at Wartburg College on March 4 and 5.

Softball splits in season-opener with Illinois College

JACKSONVILLE, Ill. – The Hanover Panthers opened the 2022 season on Sunday afternoon with a trip to non-conference foe Illinois College. Hanover claimed game one 4-2 before falling in the night cap 12-7.

GAME ONE

Hanover captured game one over Illinois College 4-2 behind a strong showing by freshman Carson Kruse (Fort Branch, Ind.) with two RBI.

Hanover surged ahead early as sophomore Carson Bennett (Batesville, Ind.) provided a lead-off single that set the stage for junior Kendra Hutchison (Lafayette, Ind.) who delivered with a shot to second base that scored freshman Carson Benne, 1-0.

The Panthers tacked on another run in the top of the fifth inning as Bennett delivered reaching on an error that plated freshman Mallorie Fultz (Greenfield, Ind.).

They would tack on two more runs in the top of the sixth inning with Kruse providing the clutch hit using an RBI single to right to score both freshman Lauren Beaman (Indianapolis, Ind.) and graduate studnet Lily Beurman (Evansville, Ind.).

Illinois College looked to rally in the bottom half of the inning but fell unsuccessful as Hanover was able to retire the side and secure the win.

GAME TWO

Illinois College took the early advantage using a two run first inning before the Panthers responded in the next half inning. Junior Lexi Garloch (Salem, Ind.) provided the RBI with a single through the right side that scored Beaman, 2-1.

However, the Lady Blues remained poise adding a run in the bottom of the second inning and six in the bottom of the third inning to blow the contest wide open, 9-4.

Trailing 11-5 in the sixth inning, the Blue and Red looked to rally as Fultz charted an RBI that scored Kruse to cut the difference to 9-5. Bennett charted the Panthers last RBI as she scored sophomore Ava Hilgenhold (Tell City, Ind.) off a shot to the third baseman, but the comeback fell short as Illinois College took the game 12-7.

Hanover returns to action on Thursday, March 3 when they head to Alabama to take on Birmingham-Southern.

Hanover dominates Carroll University from opening face-off

HANOVER, Ind. – The Panthers ran past the Carroll University Pioneers on Sunday afternoon en route to the dominating 23-5 victory. With the win, Hanover moves to 2-1 overall.

Senior Josh Perkins (San Diego, Calif.), senior Dirk Meinhart (Elizabethtown, Ky.), and freshman Owen Cuniffe (Indianapolis, Ind.) paced the offense with four goals apiece, while freshman Alex Kleinhelter (Fishers, Ind.) and freshman Scott Dues (Louisville, Ky.) netted three goals.

The Panthers dominated from the opening face-off using a balanced attack to surge ahead 4-1 as Perkins led the attack with two first quarter blows.

Meinhart brought the pressure in the second stanza as he netted back-to-back blows that extended the Panther difference to 6-1 with 13:35 to play before the break. Carroll looked to steal the momentum as they hit a goal minutes later that pulled them within 6-2.

However, Perkins had other things in mind as he hit a wrap-around goal from “x” followed by a Cuniffe goal that sent HC into the intermission with the 9-3 advantage.

Kleinhelter and freshman Owen Parker (O’Fallon, Mo.) paced the Panthers in the second half as they dealt a pair of goals that pushed Hanover on top 11-3. The flood gates continued to flow as Dues made his way into the score’s column sending Hanover to the 13-4 advantage with 7:00 minutes remaining in the third period.

The lead would reach double digits with sophomore Nick Adams (Greenwood, Ind.) adding to the goal column with his first blow of the afternoon and Hanover never looked back tacking on six goals in the fourth frame securing the non-conference victory.

The Blue and Red return to action on Sunday, March 6 when they travel to Wabash. Game time is set for 3:00 PM.

Mighty Oaks MBB To Host NCCAA Regional Matchup

Oakland City, IN- The OCU Men’s Basketball team will host this years NCCAA Mid-East Regional matchup in the Johnson Center. The Mighty Oaks will square off against former RSC opponent, the Asbury Eagles. This game will take place on Wednesday, March 2nd in the Johnson Center with tip off being at 6:00 pm. The Mighty Oaks finished the season at  13-18 with a 10-8 conference record. The Oaks were tough to beat at home with a 10-5 record in the Johnson Center. The Eagles bring in a 13-10 overall record going 5-8 on the road this season. In the 2020-21 season, the Oaks fell to the Eagles during the regular season in both matchups.

This game can be seen for free on GoMightyoaks.com.

PNW Softball defeats Hillsdale on walk-off single

ROSEMONT, Ill. – Purdue Northwest Softball is off to its best start to a season through the first six games in the DII era after Sunday’s 4-3 walk-off win over Hillsdale. The Pride finished their strong showing over the opening weekend with a 5-1 record at the DII Midwest Region Crossover Dome Invitational. PNW previously started 4-2 in each of its first two seasons of DII competition in 2018 and 2019.

Trailing 3-2 after giving up a two-run lead, PNW scored twice in its final at-bat to pull out the dramatic comeback against the Chargers in the bottom of the seventh.

Junior shortstop Jocey Gault (West Lafayette, Ind./Harrison) delivered the game-winning hit with a sharp single through the left side. The Pride tied the game after Selena Michko (Dyer, Ind./Lake Central) drew a one-out walk and pinch-runner Kara Aloisio (North Aurora, Ill./Yorkville) scored all the way from first on Briana Poehler’s (Mattoon, Ill./Mattoon) hit to left field. A costly error from the left fielder when trying to play the ball on a hop allowed Aloisio to round the bases and Poehler to reach third.

Gault was one of four players with two hits on the day for the Pride, going 2 for 4 with two RBIs. The three others included Poehler (2-4), Allison Arnold (Tucson, Ariz./Naperville North) (2-4) and Myah Stuckey (Noblesville, Ind./Noblesville) (2-3).

Gabby Paliska (Palos Park, Ill./Lincoln-Way East (Wisconsin-Green Bay)) earned the complete-game victory, her first in a PNW uniform, to improve to 2-0. The sophomore right-hander struck out six while surrendering two earned runs on six hits.

PNW got on the board first with a pair of runs in the third. The middle of the lineup produced three consecutive hits as Poehler’s single to center brought in Arnold and Gault’s RBI ground out plated Michko.

After the Pride stranded a pair of runners in the fourth inning, Hillsdale responded with two runs to tie the game in the fifth. The Chargers recorded back-to-back, two-out hits including a double down the left field line to make the score 2-2.

Then, Hillsdale used more two-out magic in the sixth after a double and fielding error allowed the Chargers to take their first lead of the game, 3-2. PNW left two more aboard in the home half of the sixth after Ashley Bravo (Chicago, Ill./Whitney Young) was robbed of extra bases on a diving catch at third base.

Sunday morning’s contest was the first-ever meeting between the two teams. Hillsdale (2-6) was led by Oliver Latimer (2 for 3, 2B) and Madison Rathbun (1 for 4, 2B, 2 RBI). Starting pitcher Joni Russell fell to 2-2 after giving up two earned runs on 11 hits with eight strikeouts.

UP NEXT

PNW will have nearly two weeks off before returning to action at The Spring Games, hosted in Florida. The Pride will face a 12-game schedule against non-conference Division II opponents.

Grace handles No. 7 IWU in semifinals

MARION, Ind. – Grace’s men’s basketball team led from start to finish at No. 7 Indiana Wesleyan in the Crossroads League Tournament semifinals.

The Lancers took down the top-seeded Wildcats to win 84-76 on Saturday.

As a result, Grace will play in the tournament championship at No. 12 Marian on Tuesday. The Lancers and Knights will tip off at 7 p.m. The winner receives an automatic bid to the NAIA National Championships.

Grace is searching for its first tournament championship since 2012.

Frankie Davidson led all players with 21 points to go along with six rebounds.

The Lancers (24-8) were impressive defensively on Saturday; the Wildcats (26-6) were held to 42 percent shooting compared to Grace’s 56 percent shooting.

Grace flexed its muscles in the paint, outrebounding the Wildcats by four with 10 offensive boards. The Lancers also outscored IWU in the paint 42-32.

Grace began the game with the lead thanks to a triple by Jakob Gibbs. And the Lancers remained in front for the rest of the game.

The Lancers shared the ball well at the onset with six assists on their first eight made field goals. Elijah Malone was a force early with five quick points, including a 3-pointer.

Grace exposed IWU’s early zone defense with smart passing and sharp cutting. Cade Gibbs converted back-to-back shots at the rim, forcing the Wildcats to burn an early timeout as Grace led 20-10.

The Wildcats kept Grace within range, pulling to within three at 25-22 after an and-1. IWU eventually knotted the score at 31-31 after a series of offensive foul calls were made against Grace.

But the Lancers showed resolve, producing five tough points. The spurt was capped off by a flashy fastbreak, ending with a clever pass by Jake Wadding which led to a dunk from Cade Gibbs.

With a minute left, Wadding blocked IWU’s attempted dunk which preserved the Lancers’ lead. Grace went into halftime with a 36-35 lead.

The Lancers shot 54 percent from the field compared to 42 percent for the Wildcats. Both teams had eight turnovers. Grace made just 55 percent of its free throws (6 of 11).

Grace had balanced scoring in the first half with nine different players scoring a point. Cade Gibbs led Grace in scoring with eight points.

The Lancers maintained the lead to begin the second half. Back-to-back scores from Frankie Davidson put Grace ahead by seven at 46-39 with 16:41 remaining.

The Wildcats clawed back to within two, but Malone buried a timely 3-pointer to give Grace another five-point edge.

The teams traded baskets over the next several minutes with the Lancers refusing to surrender the lead.

Grace’s defense was airtight in the second half. The Lancers did not allow IWU to make a field goal for over four minutes.

As a result, a layup from Davidson put Grace ahead 66-60 with 3:20 to play. Soon after, IWU was whistled for a technical foul.

Davidson promptly sank both free throws to extend Grace’s lead to eight at 68-60.

The Wildcats hit a 3-pointer, but Jakob Gibbs responded with a triple of his own to reassert Grace’s eight-point cushion with 2:40 on the clock.

Davidson also buried a critical 3-pointer a minute later to keep momentum on Grace’s side.

IWU managed to grab points late at the foul line. The Wildcats made five free throws in a two-minute span to keep in range of Grace.

Grace responded in kind as IWU was forced to foul. The Lancers sank enough free throws down the stretch to lock in the victory. In the closing minute Ian Scott hustled his way to an offensive rebound after a missed free throw, a fitting show of heart for Grace on the road.

All five starters scored at least nine points for the Lancers. Jakob Gibbs had 13 points, and Wadding had 11 points, 6 rebounds, 4 assists, 3 steals and 1 block.

Malone finished with 11 points and two assists, and Eddie Gill IV had 9 points, 4 assists, 3 rebounds and 2 steals.

Cade Gibbs produced eight points and two steals while making all four of his field goals, and Scott tallied 6 points, 6 boards, 2 assist, 1 block and 1 steal.

USI Softball falls to Northwood, Ashland to end Blue Bridge Battle

OWENSBORO, Ky.—University of Southern Indiana Softball dropped both games on the second and final day of the Blue Bridge Battle. The Screaming Eagles fell to Northwood University, 5-4, in the opener before falling to Ashland University, 10-3, in their second game.

Northwood 5, USI 4

Freshman pitcher Hailey Gotshall (Lucerne, Indiana) drove in two runs in the top of the second inning and senior designated player Katie Back (Indianapolis, Indiana) had a two-run single in the sixth inning, but Northwood answered the Eagles scores each time.

The Timberwolves (3-2) tagged USI for four runs in the bottom of the second inning to take a 4-2 lead and answered USI’s two-run sixth frame with a with a go-ahead run in the last half of the sixth.

USI (10-6) had runners at first and second with two outs in the seventh, but a strikeout closed the door on USI’s comeback attempt.

Senior pitcher Maddie Duncan (Lynnville, Indiana) took the loss for the Eagles after coming on in relief during the second inning. Duncan (1-2) gave up just one run off four hits in 4 1/3 innings of work.

Ashland 10, USI 3

USI and Ashland traded runs in the second, fourth and sixth innings, but a four-run third inning and a three-run seventh inning was too much for the Screaming Eagles to overcome in a 10-3 setback.

Junior catcher Sammie Kihega (Greenfield, Indiana) paced the Eagles at the plate, going 2-for-3 with a home run, RBI and two runs scored. Gotshall also had a strong presence at the plate, going 1-for-2 with an RBI-triple, while senior third baseman Mary Bean (Schaumburg, Illinois) had an sacrifice fly to drive in USI’s second run of the game.

Freshman pitcher Josie Newman (Indianapolis, Indiana) was charged with the loss after giving up five runs, three earned, off five hits in 2 1/3 innings of work. Newman (2-3) had four strikeouts and three walks.

Up Next

USI returns to action Friday at 9 a.m. (CST) when it takes on St. Cloud State University in The Spring Games in Winter Haven, Florida.

USI moves to 5-0 with an 8-3 win

EVANSVILLE, Ind. – University of Southern Indiana Baseball made it two in a row with an 8-3 win over Lake Erie College Sunday afternoon at the USI Baseball Field. The Screaming Eagles are 5-0 to start the year, while Lake Erie opens spring 0-2.  

USI struck early to take command of the contest with a run in the first and two in the third. USI junior second baseman Lucas McNew (Floyds Knobs, Indiana) gave the Eagles a 1-0 lead with thunderous home run off the scoreboard in the first inning, while sophomore first baseman Michael Conner (Moline, Illinois) made the margin 3-0 with a two-run single in the third.

The Storm rallied to narrow the gap to 3-2 with a pair of runs in the top of the seventh before the Eagles rebounded with a three-run rally by boosting the lead to 6-2. USI sophomore pitcher/designated hitter Trent Robinson (Louisville, Kentucky) helped his cause by driving in the Eagles’ fourth run of the day, while Conner pushed the margin to four runs, 6-2, with a two-run single with one out.

USI senior shortstop Ethan Hunter (Terre Haute, Indiana) sealed the victory with a two-run home run in the eighth to push the lead to 8-2. Lake Erie tried to rally in the ninth, getting one across the plate, before USI closed out the 8-3 victory.

On the mound, Robinson posted his first career-win by giving the Eagles a strong 6.2 innings before exiting the mound in the seventh. Robinson allowed the two runs on six hits and a walk, while striking out eight. The eight strikeouts were a career-best for Robinson.

Sophomore right-hander Cory Anderson (Linton, Indiana) followed Robinson to get the final out of the seventh, while sophomore right-hander Nick Belcher (Owensboro, Kentucky) finished the final two innings by allowing one run on one hit and striking out four.

Up Next for the Eagles:

The Eagles and the Storm conclude the three-game set Monday with a noon first pitch. Monday’s game was originally slated for Friday, but was postponed due to cold weather.

Following the first home series of the season, USI concludes the first home stand of the season with a three-game set versus Trevecca Nazarene University March 4-5 at the USI Baseball Field.

Trevecca Nazarene holds the all-time series lead, 6-4, following a series sweep of the Eagles in Nashville, Tennessee, last spring. The Trojans are off to a 6-1 start and host Truman State University for a four-game stet before visiting the Eagles in March.

Eagles start post-season Monday

EVANSVILLE, Ind. – University of Southern Indiana Men’s Basketball begins the 2022 post-season Monday when it hosts the University of Illinois Springfield for the first round of the GLVC Tournament. Tipoff is slated for 7 p.m. at Screaming Eagles Arena.

Tickets are on sale through the USI Ticket Office at usi.universitytickets.com. Season ticket holders can purchase their seats by clicking on the link and logging in before 10 a.m. Monday. The general public can purchase tickets on-line or at the USI Ticket Office at 8:30 a.m. Monday and prior to the game. For more information call the USI Ticket Office at 812-465-7165  Monday.

Game coverage information for USI Men’s Basketball, including live stats, video, and audio broadcasts, is available on GoUSIEagles.com. The games also can be heard on ESPN 97.7FM and 95.7FM The Spin.

USI Men’s Basketball vs. Illinois Springfield Quick Notes:

USI finishes strong with overtime win. USI concluded the 2021-22 regular season on a high note with a 77-70 victory over Lindenwood University in overtime. Freshman guard Isaiah Stafford led the Eagles with a season-high 31 points, while junior guard Jelani Simmons and sophomore guard Tyler Henry rounded out the double-digit scorers with 21 points and 10 points respectively. 

Stafford hits the 30-point plateau. Freshman guard Isaiah Stafford scored a season-high 31 points and the season-best game for an Eagle this year in the win over Lindenwood. Josh Price reached 34 points last February versus William Jewell College. Stafford is averaging 11.9 points per outing since becoming a starter at the end of January.

Henry in the last four games. Sophomore guard Tyler Henry has caught fire the last six games for the Eagles, averaging 13.8 points per contest.

At home vs. the road USI is 8-4 at home this season, 9-3 on the road. The Eagles also are averaging 71.0 points per game at home, compared to 75.3 points per outing on the road.  

Doing the job on defense. The Eagles are holding the opposition under 70 points per game (65.7) for the season for the first time since 2012-13 (65.4).

Leading Scorer: Junior guard Jelani Simmons leads the way in scoring this season with 13.5 points per game. He is followed closely sophomore guard Tyler Henry with 12.2 points per contest and junior forward Jacob Polakovich with 11.8 points and a team-best 11.5 rebounds per outing.

Polakovich doubling up to lead the Eagles. Junior forward Jacob Polakovich is averaging a double-double 11.8 points and 11.5 rebounds per game in 2021-22. Polakovich, who has 11 double-doubles this year, is the GLVC leader and ranked fifth nationally in rebounding.  The junior also is averaging over 14.8 rebounds per game in the last six games.

USI vs Illinois Springfield. USI has a 16-4 all-time series lead over the University of Illinois Springfield, including the last six and 10 of the last 12 games. The 66-39 victory by USI completed a regular season sweep of the Prairie Stars. The Eagles took the first meeting of the season, 64-52, in Springfield.

Illinois Springfield in 2021-22. The Prairie Stars finished the 2021-22 regular season with a 12-16 overall record and a 7-13 mark in GLVC play. Illinois Springfield lost 10 of its last 13 games since the end of January, beginning with a loss to USI, 66-39, at Screaming Eagles Arena.

USI vs. UIS in 2021-22. USI swept the season series with Illinois Springfield, winning on the road, 64-52, and at Screaming Eagles Arena, 66-39. USI junior forward Jacob Polakovich has dominated the two games with 22.0 points and 14.0 rebounds per contest. Junior guard Jelani Simmons followed with 14.5 points per game, while freshman guard Isaiah Stafford averaged 12.0 points per outing in the two contests.

Lady Blazers advance to District Semi-Finals after First Round win over Kaskaskia

MATTOON, Ill. – The VU Lady Trailblazers began their postseason run Sunday night and advanced to the Midwest District Semi-Finals Tuesday night after defeating Kaskaskia College 79-75.

Vincennes got off to a slow start offensively against the Blue Angels, quickly falling behind by 11 points early in the first quarter.

The Lady Blazers would battle back and cut the deficit to five points at the end of the first period, trailing 22-17.

VU grabbed the lead early in the second quarter at 23-22, but this would definitely not be the last time the lead changed hands.

The lead flipped back-and-forth for the rest of the first half, with Vincennes holding a narrow two point lead heading into the break. Leading 41-39.

Neither team was able to control the momentum of the game in the third quarter either, with the largest lead for either team being two points throughout the quarter.

The final Midwest District Quarterfinal game of the day was tied at 61-61 heading into the final quarter of play.

VU took the momentum in the fourth quarter, grabbing a two possession lead four time in the final period of play.

Vincennes took the lead back with just under four and a half minutes to play and held on to the advantage at the free throw line as the Lady Blazers closed out a 79-75 win over Kaskaskia to advance to Tuesday’s District Semi-Finals.

“We were a little bit up and down tonight,” VU Hall of Fame Head Coach Harry Meeks said. “Our defense was a little spotty. We could have been better defensively. We had a couple of kids tonight that just didn’t play up to par. At the end of the game, I told my Assistant Clyde Buck, ‘we need to get this lead up to four points and make it a two possession game,’ and we did and fortunately for us, Kaskaskia didn’t score again.”

“I think Kaskaskia got a little rattled and rushed a few shots and we took advantage of that,” Meeks added. “They are a good basketball team. Kaskaskia has gotten better as the season has gone along and they have some good athletes on that team. They are going to be something to deal with next year.”

VU was led offensively by freshman DayLynn Thornton (Lafayette, Ind.) who came on strong in the second half, ending her night with 18 points, three rebounds and a pair of assists.

Sophomore Laila Grant (Derwood, Md.) finished the night with 16 points, while putting together a complete, all-around game with six rebounds and a team-high five assists.

Freshman Cherrelle Newsom (Indianapolis, Ind.) hit a pair of three’s in the first half on her way to a 14-point night.

Freshman Trinitee Harris (Elkhart, Ind.) came off the bench to score in double figures, ending with 13 points and four rebounds.

Sophomore Nina Blade (Milwaukee, Wis.) came off the bench helped control the boards, ending her night with six points, a team-high eight rebounds and a pair of steals.

“My gameplan for every game is to get as many scorers into double digits as we can,” Meeks said. “Most of the games we’ve won this season we’ve had four or five scorers in double figures. DayLynn, I thought, didn’t play her best basketball in the first half. We had a heart-to-heart in the second half and she really brought it after that. She did a good job for us tonight. When we were pushing to catch up and go ahead, she was a big factor in that.”

“She also did a good job at the free throw line,” Meeks added. “Which was another big factor for us tonight. Down the stretch we hit a bunch of free throws that were really helped us.”

The VU Lady Trailblazers advance to the Midwest District Semi-Finals where they will face Rend Lake College Tuesday, March 1 at 8 p.m. eastern at Lake Land College in Mattoon, Ill.

In the other District Quarterfinal games, top-seed Wabash Valley defeated Southwestern Illinois 112-43. John A. Logan won 72-54 over Shawnee and Rend Lake defeated Lincoln Trail 81-48.

“We have to do a better job offensively and defensively Tuesday,” Meeks said. “Rend Lake is a really good team. Coach Brown really has them coached up. They play really loose and he’s done a really good job with them.”

“We’re going to have to play as a team Tuesday,” Meeks added. “We are going to have to do better than we did tonight because they are a formidable foe.”

TV MONDAY

COLLEGE BASKETBALL – MENTIME ETTV
SYRACUSE AT NORTH CAROLINA7:00PMESPN
BAYLOR AT TEXAS9:00PMESPN
KANSAS STATE AT TEXAS TECH9:00PMESPN2
JACKSON STATE AT PRAIRIE VIEW A&M9:00PMESPNU
NORTHWESTERN AT IOWA9:00PMBTN
NEW MEXICO AT FRESNO STATE10:00PMFS1
SAN DIEGO STATE AT WYOMING10:00PMCBSSN
UCLA AT WASHINGTON11:00PMESPN2
WASHINGTON STATE AT OREGON STATE11:00PMESPNU
NBATIME ETTV
INDIANA AT ORLANDO7:00PMBALLY SPORTS
MINNESOTA AT CLEVELAND7:00PMBALLY SPORTS
CHICAGO AT MIAMI7:30PMNBCS-CHI
BALLY SPORTS
TORONTO AT BROOKLYN7:30PMYES
SPORTSNET
CHARLOTTE AT MILWAUKEE8:00PMNBATV
BALLY SPORTS
SACRAMENTO AT OKLAHOMA CITY8:00PMNBCS-CA
BALLY SPORTS
SAN ANTONIO AT MEMPHIS8:00PMBALLY SPORTS
NHLTIME ETTV
VANCOUVER AT NEW JERSEY7:00PMSPORTSNET
MSG+
TORONTO AT WASHINGTON7:00PMSPORTSNET
NBCS-WSH
BOSTON AT LOS ANGELES7:00PMNHLN
NESN
BALLY SPORTS

NBA STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
 WLPCTCONF GBHOMEROADDIVCONFLAST 10STREAK
MIAMI4021.65620-720-1411-225-128-23 W
CHICAGO3922.6391.024-915-137-324-137-31 L
PHILADELPHIA3723.6172.516-1321-105-721-146-43 W
CLEVELAND3624.6003.519-917-157-421-146-41 W
MILWAUKEE3625.5904.020-1216-138-322-185-52 L
BOSTON3627.5715.020-1116-168-626-168-21 L
TORONTO3227.5427.016-1316-145-521-166-42 L
BROOKLYN3229.5258.013-1619-137-322-143-71 W
CHARLOTTE3032.48410.515-1515-175-720-192-81 L
10 ATLANTA2931.48310.518-1311-187-518-195-51 W
11 WASHINGTON2733.45012.515-1612-176-620-204-62 L
12 NEW YORK2536.41015.013-1912-174-814-241-95 L
13 INDIANA2141.33919.515-186-232-1110-292-81 W
14 DETROIT1546.24625.09-216-254-711-243-71 W
15 ORLANDO1447.23026.06-218-262-118-313-71 W
 
WESTERN CONFERENCE
 WLPCTCONF GBHOMEROADDIVCONFLAST 10STREAK
PHOENIX4912.80326-723-56-429-98-22 L
GOLDEN STATE4318.7056.026-717-119-226-125-51 L
MEMPHIS4220.6777.520-1022-106-428-137-31 W
UTAH3822.63310.522-1016-1211-124-128-22 W
DALLAS3625.59013.020-1116-1411-225-157-31 W
DENVER3625.59013.017-1019-155-821-178-26 W
MINNESOTA3229.52517.018-1214-177-421-186-41 L
LA CLIPPERS3231.50818.018-1314-186-619-236-43 W
LA LAKERS2733.45021.518-159-182-915-213-72 L
10 NEW ORLEANS2536.41024.013-1712-194-716-206-42 W
11 PORTLAND2536.41024.016-189-181-911-264-62 L
12 SAN ANTONIO2437.39325.011-1813-194-614-205-51 L
13 SACRAMENTO2240.35527.515-187-225-715-244-64 L
14 OKLAHOMA CITY1941.31729.59-2010-213-513-253-71 W
15 HOUSTON1545.25033.58-197-262-87-291-99 L
 

EIGHT TEAMS IN EACH CONFERENCE QUALIFY FOR THE PLAYOFFS. 

X – CLINCHED PLAYOFF SPOT,  Y – CLINCHED DIVISION,  Z – CLINCHED CONFERENCE

NHL STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
 GPWLOTLPTSROWGFGAHOMEROADL10
CAROLINA HURRICANES5237114783618212219-4-218-7-26-2-2
FLORIDA PANTHERS5335135753321816123-6-012-7-56-4-0
TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING5134116743217714417-4-417-7-27-2-1
PITTSBURGH PENGUINS5533148743117814815-8-518-6-36-3-1
TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS5234144723219214919-5-115-9-35-4-1
NEW YORK RANGERS5333155712915713417-5-316-10-25-4-1
BOSTON BRUINS5231174663015114216-10-115-7-36-3-1
WASHINGTON CAPITALS5428179652617315112-10-516-7-45-5-0
COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS5327251552417519314-11-113-14-07-3-0
10 DETROIT RED WINGS5323246522015619115-11-38-13-35-5-0
11 NEW YORK ISLANDERS4920218481912513710-10-410-11-44-4-2
12 OTTAWA SENATORS5119275431813516110-16-29-11-34-5-1
13 PHILADELPHIA FLYERS5216261042161311819-13-57-13-53-5-2
14 NEW JERSEY DEVILS5218295411715719110-13-38-16-23-7-0
15 BUFFALO SABRES541630840141431958-14-48-16-42-7-1
16 MONTREAL CANADIENS531333733111231988-17-15-16-65-5-0
 
WESTERN CONFERENCE
 GPWLOTLPTSROWGFGAHOMEROADL10
COLORADO AVALANCHE5339104823621315022-3-217-7-27-2-1
CALGARY FLAMES5131146682917712415-4-416-10-29-1-0
ST. LOUIS BLUES5232146703018814119-6-213-8-47-2-1
MINNESOTA WILD5031163652719015716-4-115-12-24-6-0
LOS ANGELES KINGS5329177652715914614-11-215-6-58-1-1
VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS5329204622517215614-12-315-8-14-5-1
NASHVILLE PREDATORS5330194642816315115-10-015-9-44-5-1
DALLAS STARS5229203612615115119-7-110-13-26-3-1
EDMONTON OILERS5329213612617617114-11-015-10-36-4-0
10 ANAHEIM DUCKS5525219592116116914-10-411-11-54-5-1
11 VANCOUVER CANUCKS5426226582315215112-10-314-12-37-3-0
12 WINNIPEG JETS5323219552215516213-10-110-11-84-4-2
13 SAN JOSE SHARKS5324236542214216513-12-311-11-32-4-4
14 CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS541927846161341859-14-410-13-43-6-1
15 SEATTLE KRAKEN551634537151401969-17-37-17-22-7-1
16 ARIZONA COYOTES531435432131221957-20-17-15-34-6-0
 

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