COLLEGE FOOTBALL SCOREBOARD

NO. 9 BAYLOR 21, NO. 5 OKLAHOMA STATE 16 (BIG 12 CHAMPIONSHIP GAME)

NORTHERN ILLINOIS 41, KENT STATE 23 (MAC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME)

EAST TENNESSEE STATE 32, KENNESAW STATE 31 (FCS — SECOND ROUND)

JAMES MADISON 59, SE LOUISIANA 20 (FCS — SECOND ROUND)

UTAH STATE 46, NO. 19 SAN DIEGO STATE 13 (MOUNTAIN WEST CHAMPIONSHIP GAME IN CARSON, CALIFORNIA)

SAM HOUSTON 49, INCARNATE WORD 42 (FCS — SECOND ROUND)

NO. 24 LOUISIANA 24, APPALACHIAN STATE 16 (SUN BELT CHAMPIONSHIP GAME)

NORTH DAKOTA STATE 38, SOUTHERN ILLINOIS 7 (FCS — SECOND ROUND)

NO. 3 ALABAMA 41, NO. 1 GEORGIA 24 (SEC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME IN ATLANTA, GEORGIA)

NO. 4 CINCINNATI 35, NO. 21 HOUSTON 20 (AAC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME)

JACKSON STATE 27, PRAIRIE VIEW A&M 10 (SWAC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME

MONTANA STATE 26, UT MARTIN 7 (FCS — SECOND ROUND)

NO. 15 PITT 45, NO. 16 WAKE FOREST 21 (ACC CHAMPIONSHIP GAME IN CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA)

NO. 2 MICHIGAN 42, NO. 13 IOWA 3 (BIG TEN CHAMPIONSHIP GAME IN INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA)

SOUTH DAKOTA STATE 24, NO. 4 SACRAMENTO STATE 19 (FCS — SECOND ROUND)

CALIFORNIA 24 USC 14

BOYS HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL

RONCALLI 69, SHORTRIDGE 37

HOMESTEAD 48, CARMEL 37

GUERIN CATHOLIC 64, HAMILTON HEIGHTS 46

TRITON CENTRAL 72, SOUTHWESTERN 53

DANVILLE 74, EMINENCE 31

BEN DAVIS 79, SOUTHPORT 40

BLOOMINGTON LIGHTHOUSE 81, MOORESVILLE CHRISTIAN 36

BLOOMINGTON NORTH 59, CENTER GROVE 52

CARDINAL RITTER 98, KIPP INDY LEGACY 59

CASCADE 93, KIPP INDY LEGACY 64

CONNERSVILLE 65, SHELBYVILLE 37

COVENANT CHRISTIAN 55, SCECINA 45

EASTERN HANCOCK 72, WES-DEL 45

EDINBURGH 75, WALDRON 61

FISHERS 65, MT. VERNON 59

GREENWOOD CHRISTIAN 61, UNIVERSITY 57

HAMILTON SOUTHEASTERN 73, MARION 54

HAUSER 61, MORRISTOWN 36

INDIAN CREEK 59, GREENCASTLE 47

MOORESVILLE 64, TERRE HAUTE NORTH 45

NEW PALESTINE 67, RUSHVILLE 49

NORTHVIEW 79, LEBANON 52

NORTHWEST HOME SCHOOL 56, NOBLE-WHITELY HOME SCHOOL 32

SETON CATHOLIC 77, PROVIDENCE CRISTO REY 45

SEYMOUR 57, FRANKLIN 47

SHERIDAN 82, ANDERSON PREP 46

TRADERS POINT CHRISTIAN 55, INDIANA DEAF 38

WESTERN BOONE 61, TAYLOR 56

WESTFIELD 60, KOKOMO 48

WOODWARD (OH) 84, WARREN CENTRAL 73

ZIONSVILLE 63, NEW ALBANY 56, OT

BROWNSBURG 44, PLAINFIELD 43

GARY 21ST CENTURY 82, TUSCOLA (IL) 59

HAMMOND CENTRAL 64, FORT WAYNE NORTH SIDE 48

LINTON-STOCKTON 58, CRISPUS ATTUCKS 46

HOMESTEAD 48, CARMEL 37

LAWRENCE NORTH 73, HERITAGE CHRISTIAN 64

BRUSH (OH) 60, CATHEDRAL 53

NORTHMONT 55 RICHMOND 48

ANDERSON 77 NEW CASTLE 62

CONNERSVILLE 65 SHELBYVILLE 37

GIRLS BASKETBALL

WESTFIELD 67, RUSHVILLE 15

BEECH GROVE 52, PROVIDENCE CRISTO REY 3

DANVILLE 59, CRISPUS ATTUCKS 38

BATESVILLE 41, SHELBYVILLE 32

BETH HAVEN (KY) 54, CENTRAL CHRISTIAN 49, OT

CASTLE 64, MARTINSVILLE 18

FISHERS 65, BISHOP CHATARD 31

HAMILTON HEIGHTS 67, TWIN LAKES 37

INDIAN CREEK 56, GREENCASTLE 29

INDIANAPOLIS HOME SCHOOL 98, HEARTS TOWARDS HOME HOME SCHOOL (OH) 11

INDIANAPOLIS HOME SCHOOL 59, HUDSONVILLE HOME SCHOOL (MI) 53

MT. NOTRE DAME (OH) 62, NORTH CENTRAL 46

NEW PALESTINE 61, DELTA 41

NOBLESVILLE 74, MISHAWAKA MARIAN 55

NORTHVIEW 49, LEBANON 35

PENDLETON HEIGHTS 47, MT. VERNON 36

HARRISON 66 ANDERSON 34

WINCHESTER 58 MONROE CENTRAL 34

UNION COUNTY 38 SHENANDOAH 27

UNION CITY 64 KNIGHTSTOWN 22

MEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL

#16 ALABAMA 91 #3 GONZAGA 82

#4 BAYLOR 99 ARKANSAS PINE BLUFF 54

#6 VILLANOVA 81 ST. JOSEPH’S 52

#10 ARKANSAS 93 LITTLE ROCK 78

#12 BYU 74 MISSOURI STATE 68

#13 TENNESSEE 69 COLORADO 54

#17 UCONN 88 GRAMBLING 59

OLE MISS 67 #18 MEMPHIS 63

#19 IOWA STATE 64 CREIGHTON 58

#20 USC 63 WASHINGTON STATE 61

#21 AUBURN 86 YALE 64

#22 MICHIGAN STATE 81 TOLEDO 68

#23 WISCONSIN 89 MARQUETTE 76

#24 MICHIGAN 72 SAN DIEGO STATE 58

#25 SETON HALL 113 NYACK 67

DAYTON 79 NORTHERN ILLINOIS 41

OAKLAND 78 IUPUI 45

PURDUE FORT WAYNE 71 NORTHERN KENTUCKY 57

CLEVELAND STATE 85 WRIGHT STATE 75

INDIANA STATE 69 MIAMI OHIO 68

OHIO 78 ST. FRANCIS PA 75

ST. BONAVENTURE 68 BUFFALO 65

AKRON 79 SOUTHERN 62

EVANSVILLE 59 TENNESSEE TECH 51

WOMEN’S COLLEGE BASKETBALL

#5 BAYLOR 70 MISSOURI 68

#18 OREGON 62 PORTLAND 59

#21 BYU 85 UTAH 80

PITTSBURGH 64 BALL STATE 54

MIAMI OHIO 81 EVANSVILLE 73

OHIO 98 RICHMOND 89

EASTERN ILLINOIS 87 NORTHERN ILLINOIS 81

WESTERN MICHIGAN 68 INDIANA STATE 67

NBA SCOREBOARD

DENVER 113 NEW YORK 99

MILWAUKEE 124 MIAMI 102

CHICAGO 111 BROOKLYN 107

MEMPHIS 97 DALLAS 90

SAN ANTONIO 112 GOLDEN STATE 107

BOSTON 145 PORTLAND 117

SACRAMENTO 104 LA CLIPPERS 99

NHL SCOREBOARD

FLORIDA 4 ST. LOUIS 3

TAMPA BAY 3 BOSTON 2

OTTAWA 6 COLORADO 5

DETROIT 4 NY ISLANDERS 3

WASHINGTON 3 COLUMBUS 1

NASHVILLE 4 MONTRÉAL 3

MINNESOTA 4 TORONTO 3

CAROLINA 6 BUFFALO 2

NY RANGERS 3 CHICAGO 2

PITTSBURGH 4 VANCOUVER 1

MAJOR LEAGUE SOCCER PLAYOFFS

PORTLAND 2 REAL SALT LAKE 0

B1G-TIME VICTORY: MICHIGAN ROUTS IOWA TO CAPTURE 43RD BIG TEN CHAMPIONSHIP

Site: Indianapolis, Ind. (Lucas Oil Stadium)

Event: Big Ten Championship Game

Score: #2 Michigan 42, #15 Iowa 3

Records: U-M (12-1), Iowa (10-3)

Attendance: 67,183

Next U-M Event: Sunday, Dec. 5 — College Football Playoff Selection Show (ESPN), Noon

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — The No. 2-ranked University of Michigan football team defeated No. 13 Iowa, 42-3, in the Big Ten Championship Game on Saturday night (Dec. 4) at Lucas Oil Stadium. The Big Ten title is the Wolverines’ league-leading 43rd and the first since the conference switched to the two-division alignment in 2011.

With the win, U-M — ranked No. 2 in this week’s College Football Playoff rankings after beginning the season unranked in the AP and Coaches’ polls — achieved its third-ever 12-win season (1905 and 1997) and is likely to play in a CFP semifinal game on Dec. 31. The final rankings will be revealed Sunday (Dec. 5) on the College Football Playoff Selection Show, starting at noon on ESPN.

The Wolverines capitalized on back-to-back explosive touchdown plays in the first quarter to jump out to a 14-0 lead, which proved more than enough thanks to the sustained dominance of the stout Michigan defense and Big Ten Championship Game MVP Aidan Hutchinson throughout all four quarters.

Michigan’s offense fully found its stride in the second half, reeling off four touchdowns in five drives for 28 unanswered points to run away with the title. Two of those scores came by the feet of Hassan Haskins, who tied and then ultimately broke the single-season rushing touchdown school record with his 19th and 20th of the season.

Quarterback Cade McNamara went 16-for-24 for 169 yards with a touchdown and an interception, a solid performance against an Iowa defense that entered leading the nation with 22 interceptions. Blake Corum was the leading rusher with 74 yards — 67 of which came on a single touchdown rush — and Roman Wilson led all receivers with 82 yards, 75 of which came in a trick play touchdown pass from Donovan Edwards.

The defense — led again by newly crowned Big Ten Defensive Player of the Year and Heisman Trophy hopeful Hutchinson with his 13th sack of the season — throttled the Hawkeyes all evening long. Michigan limited Iowa to but a single field goal in three red-zone possessions, and allowing conversions on just five of 19 third downs throughout the game and none in the fourth quarter.

The 39-point margin of victory was the Wolverines’ most lopsided win over the Hawkeyes since a 63-7 victory in 1971.

That formidable Michigan defensive unit bent but did not break on the Hawkeyes’ first drive, coming through when it mattered most. David Ojabo dragged down a Hawkeye rusher on an Iowa third-and-five situation at the Michigan 12 yard-line, forcing a 33-yard field-goal attempt that the Hawkeyes missed wide right to keep the game scoreless.

Michigan’s offense was ignited by that spark from the defensive unit. Nearly exactly two minutes of game time later after the missed Iowa field goal, Corum found an opening through the Hawkeyes’ defensive line, juked past a defender in open space to the right sideline and was off to the races for the Wolverines’ first score of the game on a 67-yard run.

Ojabo and the Michigan defense limited Iowa to a three-and-out on the subsequent drive, setting up the Wolverines to resume right where they left off. On the first play from scrimmage, McNamara threw a screen to Edwards, who went toward the right sideline, but, instead of turning up the field, he planted and threw a perfect spiral downfield and hit a wide-open Wilson in stride for a 75-yard touchdown strike. Michigan took a 14-0 advantage with 5:27 remaining in the first quarter, all coming in the span of two consecutive plays.

The defense came up with another big red-zone stand on Iowa’s next possession, as the Hawkeyes came within four yards of scoring before the Wolverines stopped them on third-and-goal to limit Iowa to a 22-yard field goal.

Much of the second quarter proved to be a battle between the two squads’ defensive and special teams units. Iowa pinned Michigan near its own goal line multiple times on punts, and the Wolverine defense held multiple times — forcing a 16-yard-to-go average on four third-down opportunities, none of which were converted by Iowa — despite the Hawkeyes gaining better starting field position near midfield each time. Neither team scored for the duration of the half.

Michigan got back to its scoring ways on its opening drive of the second half, set up by a pair of long passes and solid rushing from Corum and Haskins. After a 27-yard strike from McNamara to Luke Schoonmaker brought the Wolverines down to the Iowa four-yard line, Haskins converted on the next play, going wide to the right and turning the corner untouched into the end zone for a 21-3 lead. The TD was his 19th touchdown run of the season, tying him with Ron Johnson (1968) for the most in a single season in Michigan program history.

Iowa looked poised to answer on its next possession, but the Michigan defense continued to hold the line. The Wolverines faced four plays inside the red zone, but forced a turnover on downs.

Though the offense did not capitalize on the turnover, a booming 64-yard punt from Brad Robbins set up the Michigan defense in strong position deep inside Iowa territory. Hutchinson and Co. did their job once again to force a punt that was blocked by Cornelius Johnson and recovered by Michigan at the Iowa 36 for the Wolverines’ best starting field position by 31 yards.

It took the Wolverines just four plays — including a sensational one-handed catch by Schoonmaker for 22 yards down to the one-yard line — to put seven more points on the board. Haskins punched it in for his second of the day and his school record-breaking 20th touchdown of the season, giving Michigan a 28-3 advantage with just over 11 minutes remaining in the game.

After forcing another three-and-out — the fourth in 11 Iowa drives — the Wolverines marched right back down the field for extra emphasis. McNamara found Erick All for 38 yards up the left sideline, Haskins accumulated 17 rushing yards, punt blocker Johnson ripped a 17-yard rush, and All capped it off with an acrobatic one-handed five-yard touchdown reception from McNamara to give the Wolverines a 35-3 edge with 5:24 left to go.

Michigan put the final touch on the masterful victory with a one-yard touchdown run from Edwards to end the scoring. The 42 points matched the jersey number 42 worn by Tate Myre, one of four victims of the tragic school shooting at nearby Oxford High School. The Wolverines wore multiple decals on their uniforms to honor the victims, and were joined on the field for the pregame coin toss by Myre’s family.

NO. 3/4/2 ALABAMA FOOTBALL WINS ITS 29TH SEC CHAMPIONSHIP, WITH A 41-24 WIN OVER NO. 1/1/1/ GEORGIA

ATLANTA – In the 30th Southeastern Conference Championship Game, the No. 3/4/2 Alabama football team beat No. 1/1/1 Georgia, 41-24 in Mercedes Benz Stadium Saturday. With the win, the Crimson Tide has now won 29 SEC Championships, including 10 coming via the SEC Championship Game.

After falling behind 10-0 to start the game, Alabama exploded in the second quarter, piling on 24 points, before adding 17 more in the second half to account for the final 17-point win.

Quarterback Bryce Young was named the game’s MVP after setting an SEC Championship Game record with 421 passing yards on a night when he completed 26-of-44 passes for three touchdowns. He added 40 rushing yards on three attempts including a touchdown. Young’s 461 yards of total offense (421 pass, 40 rush) is also a championship game record.

Wide receiver Jameson Williams hauled in 184 receiving yards on seven catches, including two touchdowns, while John Metchie III added 97 yards and a touchdown on six catches. Brian Robinson Jr. tallied 55 rushing yards on 16 carries. Williams’ 184 yards receiving ties for the second-most in the championship game with Alabama’s DeVonta Smith (184 in 2020).

Defensive back Jordan Battle returned an interception 42 yards for a pick-six, the Tide’s final touchdown of the day. Defensive back DeMarcco Hellams led the Alabama defense with nine total tackles. Hellams, Henry To’oTo’o and Josh Jobe all tallied six solo stops against Georgia to lead the Tide. Will Anderson Jr. totaled six tackles including two tackles for loss and a sack.

Will Reichard added a pair of field goals (33 and 41 yards) and five extra points on the day.

Postgame Notes

Saturday’s win gave the Crimson Tide the most wins all-time over the Associated Press’ No. 1-ranked team with 10, breaking the tie it was previously in with Miami.

Alabama’s 365 yards of total offense in the first half is more than all but one of Georgia’s opponents recorded in an entire game this season (11 of 12 opponents). The Tide finished with 536 yards of offense.

After punting on its first two drives in the game, the Crimson Tide scored on its next five straight (three touchdowns receiving, one touchdown rushing, one field goal).

Alabama bettered its season record for passing touchdowns, notching three in the SEC Championship Game.

In the first half, Bryce Young had 286 passing yards (17-of-27), scoring a pair of touchdowns.

That is more passing yards than all but one of Georgia’s opponents recorded in an entire game this season (11 of 12 opponents).

His 286 passing yards set the Southeastern Conference Championship Game record for most passing yards in the first half. Cam Newton of Auburn previously held the record on 281 first half passing yards in 2010.

Jameson Williams hauled in a 67-yard touchdown pass in the first half and a 55-yard touchdown pass in the second half of the SEC Championship Game.

Williams has caught 11 passes of 50 yards or more this season, with 10 of those resulting in a touchdown, while he has caught eight passes of 65 yards or more this season, with seven of those resulting in a touchdown.

Williams has caught seven passes of 67 yards or more this season, with all seven of those resulting in a touchdown.

Williams’ 67-yard touchdown catch in the first half is the longest in SEC Championship Game history.

Jameson Williams had 112 yards receiving in the first half.

It marked the sixth time a player recorded 100-plus receiving yards at the half.

It marked the third consecutive championship game Alabama has had a 100-yard receiver (DeVonta Smith 184 in 2020, Jaylen Waddle 113 in 2018).

DeMarcco Hellams recorded his third interception this season, tying a team high, taking over the ball on Alabama’s 12-yard line on Georgia’s first drive in the third quarter.

It marked the Crimson Tide’s 14th interception this season.

Jordan Battle recorded a 42-yard interception return for a touchdown in the third quarter, his second interception return for a touchdown this season.

It marked the 12th interception return for a touchdown in the SEC Championship Game, with the last instance happening by Alabama against Florida in 2016.

The game captains against Georgia were linebacker Will Anderson Jr., defensive lineman Phidarian Mathis and quarterback Bryce Young.

CINCINNATI FOOTBALL RUNS PAST HOUSTON TO WIN AAC CHAMPIONSHIP, 35-20

CINCINNATI – Led by three touchdown passes from senior quarterback Desmond Ridder and 187 rushing yards and two scores from junior running back Jerome Ford, the No. 3/4-ranked Cincinnati football team captured its second consecutive American Athletic Conference Championship on Saturday at Nippert Stadium.

The Bearcats improved to 13-0 for the first time in school history and put themselves in position to be the first-ever non-Power 5 team to be selected for the College Football Playoff at 12 p.m. ET on Sunday.

Cincinnati made big plays on offense and defense, winning for the 27th straight time inside Nippert Stadium in front of a raucous capacity crowd of 37,978.

Ford was named the AAC Championship Game MVP after rushing for 187 yards on 17 carries with game-breaking touchdown runs of 79 and 42 yards.

The Bearcats defense allowed 216 yards in the first half, but shut down the Cougars after halftime, allowing just 120 yards and just seven points after the break.

Led by senior middle linebacker Joel Dublanko (two sacks) and senior defensive tackle Curtis Brooks (1.5), UC recorded eight sacks, its most since Sept. 20, 2014 against Miami (Ohio).

After entering halftime with a 14-13 lead, Cincinnati scored three quick touchdowns at the start of the second half to run away from Houston.

“What a special, special night,” Cincinnati head coach Luke Fickell said. “What a game, too. I give a lot of credit to Houston. That is a really good football team. The way we came out in the second half…we weren’t going to be denied. The seniors stepped up right before we came out at halftime. Coby Bryant, Desmond Ridder and some of those guys stepped up and said ‘we are going to go out in the second half and take control’. They came out in the second half on a mission.”

Cincinnati received the ball coming out of the break and Ridder quickly found senior wide receiver Alec Pierce for a 44-yard reception.

A Houston pass interference penalty on Cincinnati’s 4th-and-3 play from the Cougars’ 19-yard line gave Cincinnati a second chance on the drive. Ridder found senior tight end Leonard Taylor for an 8-yard touchdown to put the Bearcats in front, 21-13, three minutes into the third quarter.

On Houston’s next possession, Dublanko intercepted Cougars’ quarterback Clayton Tune. Ridder found Pierce for a 21-yard touchdown two plays later to put Cincinnati in front 28-13 with 11 minutes remaining in the third.

Cincinnati scored a third touchdown in the third quarter’s first eight minutes when Ford found daylight for a 42-yard touchdown at the 7:38 mark.

“Going in at half was a battle and I don’t know if we did a great job defensively,” Fickell said. “We hadn’t had the ball that many times offensively. They were doing a good job moving and scoring. With the energy I just wasn’t really sure and I looked into the guys eyes. It kind of went onto the shoulders of those seniors. I felt really good about what they were talking about and how we would come out in the second half. To put the ball in Desmond Ridder and those guys hands to start the half was huge.” 

Senior defensive linemen Myjai Sanders and Marcus Brown rounded out the game by sacking Tune for the eighth sack of the game in the fourth quarter.

Both teams’ offenses started fast in the first quarter.

After Houston got on the board first with a 37-yard field goal at the 11:55 mark in the first quarter, Cincinnati quickly marched down the field, covering 82 yards on five plays as Ridder completed his first four passes and found sophomore receiver Tyler Scott for a 25-yard touchdown to put the Bearcats in front, 7-3.

The Cougars answered back when Tune found slot receiver Nathaniel Dell for a 16-yeard score to make the score 10-7 with 4:23 remaining in the first quarter.

Cincinnati held a 14-10 advantage at the end of the first quarter after Ford darted through a hole and sprinted 79 yards for the score on Cincinnati’s first play of its second possession. The play was Cincinnati’s 67th touchdown of the year which set a new single-season school record.

Houston added a 46-yard field goal the Cougars’ first drive of the second quarter to pull within a point, 14-13, three minutes into the second quarter.

The first punt for either team did not come until the 6:32 mark in the second quarter.

UP NEXT

The Bearcats will find out their College Football Playoff seeding during the selection show that begins at 12 p.m. ET. UC is guaranteed a second consecutive New Year’s Six bowl berth by being the highest ranked non-Power 5 conference champion.

BAYLOR HOLDS ON FOR BIG 12 TITLE, KNOCKS OKLA ST OUT OF CFP

ARLINGTON, Texas (AP) Dezmon Jackson came up inches short on a desperate, fourth-down dive with 24 seconds remaining and fifth-ranked Oklahoma State fell to ninth-rated Baylor 21-16 in the Big 12 championship game Saturday, knocking the Cowboys out of contention for a playoff spot.

Blake Shapen threw three TDs while completing his first 17 passes as Baylor (11-2, College Football Playoff No. 9) took a 21-3 lead.

The Cowboys (11-2, CFP No. 5) rallied back, then went 89 yards on 17 plays on their final drive. But their Big 12 and national championship hopes wound up just shy.

After having first-and-goal from 2 following a pass interference penalty, Jackson gained a yard and was held for no gain before an incomplete pass by Spencer Sanders.

On fourth down from the 1, Jackson tried to sweep wide left, but with safety Jairon McVea in pursuit, he barely missed while trying to reach the pylon in the front corner of the end zone.

“When I saw the running back with the ball, I thought I’ve got to run this guy down,” McVea said, who wasn’t even sure where the ball was when the tackle was made. “The ref signaled not a touchdown, so when I saw that I was pretty happy.”

“They made a good play. It’s not 27’s fault,” Oklahoma State coach Mike Gundy said, referring to Jackson.

There would need to be some chaos, in form of an upset or two in other conference title games later in the day, for third-time Big 12 champion Baylor to have a chance to be in the final four for the first time when the CFP rankings come out Sunday.

Baylor coach Dave Aranda passed on politicking for the playoff.

“I’m sure it will work out the way it’s supposed to,” he said.

Baylor was 2-7 in Aranda’s debut last year, when the pandemic wiped out spring drills when he was coming off a national championship as LSU defensive coordinator. The 11 wins match a school record.

Shapen started his second game in a row for injured quarterback Gerry Bohanon (right hamstring), and the Bears won even with only 242 total yards of offense. They had only 36 yards after halftime, while Shapen finished 23 of 28 for 180 yards passing overall.

Aranda recalled Oklahoma State’s Mike Gundy telling him “that winning is hard” before an earlier meeting between the teams.

“And I think today was an example of it,” Aranda said.

Sanders threw four interceptions, one by McVea, and the Cowboys were without leading rusher Jaylen Warren because of his lingering ankle and shoulder issues.

After Oklahoma State took a 3-0 lead on Tanner Brown’s 23-yard field goal set up after all-purpose Baylor back Trestan Ebner fumbled on the opening drive of the game, the Bears scored 21 consecutive points.

Sanders threw picks on the next two drives, setting up Baylor with short fields for three-play TD drives – a 2-yard TD pass to wide-open tight open Ben Sims and Drew Estrada’s 4-yard scoring catch.

Baylor had a 21-3 lead – the largest deficit this season for the Cowboys -after an incredible 13-yard diving catch by Tyquan Thornton with a defender on his back, and able to get both feet down in bounds, with 5 1/2 minutes left in the first half.

The Cowboys were within 21-16 on Brown’s 20-yard field goal with 8:17 left. That was set up after Ebner muffed a punt recovered by Korie Black, who had ended the first half by deflecting a field goal attempt that came up woefully short.

McVea had his interception early in the second half, but Baylor failed to get a first down. Instead of punting from their own 36, the Bears went for it on fourth down and Shapen had to just throw the ball away without an open receiver. Eight plays later, Dominic Richardson scored on a 4-yard run for the Cowboys.

“I told the team in the locker room how proud I was that they’ve done everything we’ve asked them to do since January,” Gundy said. “Came up just a few inches short, but I also made them aware of that doesn’t have anything to do with what they’ve accomplished this year.”

THE TAKEAWAY

Baylor: The Bears won the 2013 Big 12 title outright and shared in 2014 with TCU, both of those coming during a six-season stretch when there wasn’t a championship game for the conference. Baylor lost to Oklahoma in the title game two years ago.

Oklahoma State: Sanders had seven interceptions in the two games this season against Baylor, though the Cowboys won the first meeting 24-14 on Oct. 2. The first pick Saturday was right to the defender, and the second one was picked off by leaping linebacker Matt Jones when Sanders, under pressure, tried to throw off his back foot toward the sideline. The other two interceptions were tipped passes. … Oklahoma State, also without standout center Danny Godlevske had only 70 yards rushing on 40 carries (1.8 yards per carry).

UP NEXT

Baylor: A New Year’s Six bowl game, going to the Sugar Bowl if not in the playoff.

Oklahoma St.: Waiting to find out which bowl game awaits.

AP SOURCE: NAPIER GETS 7-YEAR, $51.8M CONTRACT AT FLORIDA

GAINEVILLE, Fla. (AP) Billy Napier more than tripled his salary while moving from the Sun Belt to the Southeastern Conference.

A person familiar with negotiations says Florida’s newest football coach agreed to a seven-year, $51.8 million contract that makes him the fifth-highest-paid coach in the powerhouse SEC. He could get bumped to sixth depending on Lane Kiffin’s new deal at Mississippi.

The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity Saturday night because neither Florida nor Napier has publicly released contract details.

Napier will make $7.1 million in his first season and will get a $100,000 raise annually before each of the remaining six years, the person said. Only Alabama’s Nick Saban ($9.75 million), Texas A&M’s Jimbo Fisher ($9 million), new LSU coach Brian Kelly ($8.6 million) and Georgia’s Kirby Smart ($7.13 million) are due to make more in the SEC next season.

ESPN reported Kiffin’s agreement was “in the range of $7.5 million annually.”

The Gators are expected to provide Napier’s full memorandum of understanding when he’s formally introduced Sunday afternoon in Gainesville.

Napier signed a new contract at Louisiana-Lafayette before the 2021 season that nearly doubled his pay, raising his total compensation to $2 million annually. That deal included a $3 million buyout.

His new contract is similar to what the Gators had been paying former coach Dan Mullen. Mullen signed a three-year contract extension in June that raised his annual salary to $7.6 million.

Mullen was fired last month following the team’s fourth loss in five games. Mullen’s deal included a $12 million buyout that will be paid over seven installments, with a $6 million payout coming this month. Mullen will then get $1 million every July 15 through 2027.

Florida targeted and landed the 42-year-old Napier shortly after moving on from Mullen, whose stunningly swift downfall ended a tumultuous two seasons that included mounting losses, numerous public relation missteps and NCAA sanctions.

Napier remained with ULL through the Sun Belt Conference championship game, which the 20th-ranked Ragin’ Cajuns won 24-16 on Saturday. Napier improved to 40-12 in four seasons in Lafayette, including 33-5 the past three years.

Napier is a former receivers coach at Alabama under Saban and a former offensive coordinator at Clemson and Arizona State. He has been one of college football’s rising stars and hottest names in recent years. He was in the mix for openings at Virginia Tech and TCU.

He also turned down Mississippi State after the 2019 season and backed away from South Carolina and Auburn following the 2020 season. His name has been connected to other SEC openings, too, including Mississippi and Missouri.

He takes over a Florida program that’s been in disarray for more than a year but is close to opening an $85 million football facility that could help the team catch up in recruiting. And that could help the Gators close the gap on SEC superpowers Georgia and Alabama.

STEELERS LB T.J. WATT OFF COVID-19 LIST, ELIGIBLE VS. RAVENS

PITTSBURGH (AP) The Pittsburgh Steelers activated star linebacker T.J. Watt off the COVID-19 list on Saturday, giving their beleaguered defense a boost before Sunday’s visit by AFC North-leading Baltimore.

Pittsburgh placed Watt on the list Monday, a day after a 41-10 loss to Cincinnati dropped the Steelers to 5-5-1. He did not practice during the week, remaining away from the team’s facility as part of the league’s COVID-19 protocols.

Watt’s 12 1/2 sacks rank second in the league, and his presence should help Pittsburgh in its attempt to keep Ravens quarterback Lamar Jackson in check.

While Watt will be available, cornerback Joe Haden will miss his third straight game with a sprained foot. The status of defensive end Cam Heyward is uncertain after he missed practice on Friday with an illness, though he has not been placed on the COVID-19 list.

NO. 16 ALABAMA TAKES DOWN NO. 3 GONZAGA 91-82

SEATTLE (AP) When Nate Oats said yes to the idea of Alabama making the trip to the Pacific Northwest and playing a glorified home game against Gonzaga, he knew it would be an early test of where the Crimson Tide stood.

Alabama’s coach also knew his team could end up being a tough opponent for what was supposed to be a showcase event for Gonzaga.

“With the way we play, we can be dangerous at times with how many threes that we shoot and they knew that,” Oats said. “We hit a few tonight and that helped a little bit.”

Jaden Shackelford scored 20 of his 28 points in the first half, Jahvon Quinerly and JD Davison both hit key 3-pointers, and No. 16 Alabama held off Gonzaga’s big second-half rally for a 91-82 win over the third-ranked Bulldogs on Saturday night.

The Crimson Tide (7-1) made 10 of their 13 3-pointers in the first half, led by Shackelford’s sharp shooting from deep. Alabama led by 16 at halftime and withstood every charge the Bulldogs made in the second half to hand Gonzaga its second loss in three games.

Gonzaga trailed by as many as 18 at the beginning of the second half, but pulled within 76-72. The Bulldogs missed several chance to cut the deficit, and Davison and Quinerly hit consecutive 3-pointers to give the Crimson Tide a big cushion.

Shackelford made 10 of 16 shots and all six of his 3-pointers came in the first half. He tied his career high in points, set during the 2019-20 season against Auburn. Davison finished with 20 points off the bench and Quinerly added 17.

“Obviously, playing for coach who gives you the freedom and draws stuff up for you, so just going out there and taking the right shots,” Shackelford said. “When you take the right shots, you’re rewarded for it.”

Drew Timme led Gonzaga (7-2) with 23 points, but it was another sputtering offensive performance for the Zags, who lost to Duke last week in Las Vegas and looked lethargic in a win over Tarleton State earlier this week.

Julian Strawther had 13 points, and Anton Watson and Chet Holmgren 10 each for Gonzaga, but the Bulldogs didn’t hit perimeter shots at key times and struggled badly at the free-throw line.

“Played much better defense the second half, played with way better energy, spirit and got us back into it,” Gonzaga coach Mark Few said. “And then, again, we just weren’t good that last four minutes.”

Alabama led 53-35 in the opening seconds of the second half, Gonzaga pulled within 74-70 and 76-72 on Watson’s rebound basket with 5:27 left, the closest the Bulldogs had been since late in the first half.

Gonzaga was empty on its next three possessions and Davison’s 3-pointer pushed the Alabama lead back to seven with 3:33 left. Quinerly added a 3 the next time down for Alabama and the lead was 10.

The Crimson Tide had missed five straight 3-point attempts before Davison’s make.

“Both those guys showed they’re big-time players,” Oats said. “It was time to step up and make some plays and our defense got some stops.”

WELCOME BACK

It was the return of Gonzaga playing one game per season in Seattle. The event had lost its luster and some of its marquee opponents from when the game first started in the early 2000s. The last game was in 2015, a 86-79 win over Tennessee.

There was also the lack of a place to play in recent years while Climate Pledge Arena was undergoing its transformation. But the operators of the arena made a big push for Gonzaga to be the first marquee basketball game played in the building – aside from some Seattle University home games.

“It was a spectacular environment in there and really cool to be back in Seattle,” Few said.

BIG PICTURE

Alabama: Shackelford was nearly perfect in the first half, making 7 of 8 shots and six 3-pointers. His step-back 3 at the halftime buzzer gave Alabama a 51-35 lead at the break. Shackelford had not made more than five 3s in a game yet this season. More than half of Alabama’s first-half field goals came from behind the 3-point line with 10 3s and just eight field goals inside the arc.

Gonzaga: The Zags were terrible at the free-throw line, finishing 13 of 25 and missing the front end of one-and-one situations several times. Entering the game, the Bulldogs were 71.2% from the line.

UP NEXT

Alabama: Hosts No. 15 Houston on Saturday.

Gonzaga: Hosts Merrimack on Thursday.

NO. 4 BAYLOR DOMINATES ARKANSAS-PINE BLUFF FOR 99-54 WIN

WACO, Texas (AP) LJ Cryer and the fourth-ranked Baylor Bears were ready to get back to playing together, a week after getting home from winning a title in the Bahamas.

Cryer came off the bench to score 20 points, leading five players in double figures for the undefeated Bears in their 99-54 victory over Arkansas-Pine Bluff on Saturday.

“It was very important,” Cryer said about being back on the court in the first game since wrapping up the Battle 4 Atlantis tournament championship on Nov. 26. “We don’t want to take too much time off and continue to build chemistry with a game like this, so it was very important.”

Jonathan Tchamwa Tchatchoua added 14 points and 13 rebounds off the bench for the Bears (8-0), while Matthew Mayer led Baylor starters with 14 points – making 4-of-5 3-pointers – and seven rebounds. Jeremy Sochan scored 12 points and Kendall Brown had 11. Flo Thamba pulled down 10 rebounds to help Baylor’s 49-24 advantage on the boards.

Baylor’s reserves outscored its starters 59-40.

“I thought the bench was tremendous,” coach Scott Drew said. “We got a lot of people minutes, and now it’s on to Villanova and finals.”

The defending national champion Bears get another long break before hosting sixth-ranked Villanova on Dec. 12 in a rematch of last year’s Sweet 16 matchup. That’s right before final exams start on the Waco campus.

Baylor had a 10-point lead when Brown made a layup with 14:14 left in the first half. The Golden Lions never got the margin back to single digits.

Brandon Brown was 8 of 11 from the floor and led Arkansas-Pine Bluff (1-8) with 19 points. The Golden Lions shot 40% from the floor and didn’t attempt their first free throw until about four minutes left in the game.

Arkansas-Pine Bluff coach Solomon Bozeman was unavailable after the game for comment.

BIG PICTURE

Arkansas-Pine Bluff: The team was locked down by Baylor’s defense and forced to fire up contested long-range shots as the shot clock expired. They didn’t try to get offensive rebounds on many possessions, with their guards backpedaling to try to keep the Bears out of transition.

Baylor: The Bears didn’t play their cleanest game offensively, especially with eight first-half turnovers, but cruised with their depth and defense. The Bears limited the Golden Lions to a 12% (3 for 25) from beyond the arc, and Baylor shot 62.5% in the second half.

POLL IMPLICATIONS

Baylor could move into the top three after No. 1 Duke lost to unranked Ohio State over the past week.

UP NEXT

Arkansas-Pine Bluff: Hosts Arkansas State on Wednesday.

Baylor: Has a week off before hosting No. 6 Villanova on Dec. 12.

JOYNER SCORES 20, MISSISSIPPI BEATS NO. 18 MEMPHIS 67-63

OXFORD, Miss. (AP) When Mississippi coach Kermit Davis scanned the final stat sheet, he chose the obvious explanation after the Rebels defeated No. 18 Memphis 67-63 on Saturday.

“It’s free throws. We analyze a lot of things as coaches and sometimes it’s real simple” Davis said. “It wasn’t a pretty game offensively for either team, but it was good for us at the end.”

The Rebels (6-2), led by Jarkel Joyner with 20 points and eight rebounds, built a 62-51 lead on a jumper by Luis Rodriguez with 2:10 remaining. They relied on the free throw shooting to send Memphis (5-3) to its third straight loss.

Nysler Brooks made three free throws in the final 32 seconds to preserve the win.

Matthew Murrell added 19 points for the Rebels, including 4 of 9 from 3-point range. Ole Miss shot 18 of 51 (35%) from the field, but compensated by hitting eight 3-point shots and going 23 of 29 (79%) from the free throw line.

“It was big for me, but it was big for all of us,” said Murrell, a Memphis native. “I had been waiting for this game since COVID canceled it last year. I’ve played against these guys all my life and this was big.”

DeAndre Williams scored 13 points and Earl Timberlake had 11 points for Memphis, which closed to 63-61 with 14 seconds remaining on a pair of foul shots by Tyler Harris.

“We did a lot of positive things in a hostile environment,” Memphis coach Penny Hardaway said. “We didn’t do enough at the end to finish the game.”

The Tigers had two turnovers in the final seconds and 20 overall.

Memphis struggled from the field, shooting 19 of 49 (38%) from the field and only 2 of 11 (18%) from the 3-point line. The Tigers were 23 of 37 (62%) from the free throw line.

“If we hit the free throws in the first half, we are up,” Hardaway said. “It’s a whole different game. We missed plenty of free throws and it made a big difference.”

INJURY STATUS

In the opening minute of the second half, Ole Miss forward Robert Allen crumpled in the corner in front of the Memphis bench with a left knee injury. Allen returned to the bench with the help of crutches in the final three minutes.

“He will have an MRI tomorrow,” Davis said. “We just don’t know but it could be serious. Just hate it for him.”

BIG PICTURE

Memphis: After an impressive start, the Tigers have not played well since Thanksgiving. The chemistry and talent have not meshed and Hardaway has not been shy about challenging his veterans to make it work. The schedule provides no favors as more highly regarded SEC opponents, No. 16 Alabama and No. 13 Tennessee, follow a dangerous 6-1 Murray State before Christmas.

“We’re going to play the players that care about this team, this program, this city,” Hardaway said. “It’s a tug of war in the locker room about who is the man and that’s not how it supposed to be. I haven’t played the players that care enough and that’s on me.”

Ole Miss: Flying under the national radar, the Rebels got a postseason tournament resume building win prior to SEC play. The Rebels are 4-0 against ranked opponents stretching back to last season. Davis, with a well-earned reputation for multiple player rotations, mixed the right defensive combinations against increasingly frustrated Memphis.

“This was important to our players and it’s a win that means a lot,” Davis said. “Memphis will be just fine and they’ll win a lot of games. But good for us today.”

POLL IMPLICATIONS

A third consecutive loss figures to drop Memphis from the poll, especially since no three-loss teams are ranked.

UP NEXT

Memphis: The Tigers host Murray State on Friday.

Ole Miss: The Rebels, with a four-game home stand before Christmas, host Western Kentucky on Saturday.

NFL CAPSULES/PREVIEWS WEEK 13

TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS (8-3) AT ATLANTA FALCONS (5-6)

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2021 // 1:00 PM ET // MERCEDES-BENZ STADIUM // REFEREE: TONY CORRENTE

LEADER: All-time series tied, 28-28

STREAKS: Buccaneers have won past 3

LAST GAME: 9/19/21: Falcons 25 at Buccaneers 48

LAST GAME AT SITE: 12/20/20: Buccaneers 31, Falcons 27

QB TOM BRADY leads NFL with 30 TD passes & has 9 seasons with 30+ TDs, tied-2nd most all-time. Ranks 2nd with 3,403 pass yards in 2021. Passed for 5 TDs vs. 0 INTs for 129.2 rating in Week 2 meeting. Incl. postseason, is 9-0 with 2,973 pass yards (330.3 per game) & 24 TDs vs. 3 INTs for 114.2 rating in 9 career starts vs. Atl. • RB LEONARD FOURNETTE had 7 catches, 131 scrimmage yards (100 rush, 31 rec.) & career-high 4 TDs (3 rush, 1 rec.) last week. Rushed for 2 TDs in last road meeting. Needs 25 scrimmage yards for 3rd-career 1,000-yard season. • WR MIKE EVANS had 75 rec. yards & 2 rec. TDs in last meeting. Ranks tied-1st in NFL with 10 rec. TDs & leads all players with 71 rec. TDs since 2014. WR CHRIS GODWIN has 9 rec. TDs in his past 6 vs. Atl. & aims for his 7th in row vs. Atl. with TD catch. TE ROB GRONKOWSKI had 30th-career 100-yard game last week & joined HOFer TONY GONZALEZ (31) as only TEs all-time with 30+ 100-yard games. Had 2 rec. TDs in Week 2 meeting. • LB LAVONTE DAVID had 1st FR of season last week. Has 13 TFL in 9 career games at Atl. & aims for his 10th in row at Atl. with TFL. LB DEVIN WHITE had 12 tackles, 4 TFL, 3 sacks & 2 PD in last road meeting. LB SHAQUIL BARRETT had season-high 2 sacks, FF & FR last week. Had INT in last meeting. DT NDAMUKONG SUH had sack last week & in last meeting. S MIKE EDWARDS had FF last week. Had 2 INT-TDs in last meeting. S ANTOINE WINFIELD JR. had 3rd-career INT in Week 12.

QB MATT RYAN passed for 356 yards & 3 TDs vs. 0 INTs for 110.6 rating in last home meeting. Has 21 TDs vs. 4 INTs for 106.7 rating in 13 career home starts vs. TB. Needs 383 pass yards for 12th-consecutive 3,000-yard season. • RB CORDARRELLE PATTERSON had 135 scrimmage yards (career-high 108 rush, 27 rec.) & 2 rush TDs last week, his 4thcareer game with 2+ scrimmage TDs. Had 2 TDs (1 rush, 1 rec.) in last meeting. Has career-highs in rec. yards (500), rush yards (411) & TDs (9). Needs 89 scrimmage yards for 1st 1,000-yard season. Is 1 of 3 (AUSTIN EKELER & DEEBO SAMUEL) with 5+ rec. TDs (5) & 4+ rush TDs (4) in 2021. • TE KYLE PITTS (rookie) ranks 3rd among NFL TEs in rec. yards (661) & 3rd among NFC TEs in receptions (45). Had 5 catches for 73 yards in last meeting. WR RUSSELL GAGE led team with 6 catches & 62 rec. yards & had 7th-career rec. TD last week. Has 5+ receptions in 3 of his past 4. Had 5 catches in last meeting. • LB FOYESADE OLUOKUN had 9 tackles last week. Ranks 3rd in NFL with career-high 119 tackles. Aims for his 3rd in row at home with 10+ tackles. Had 9 tackles & FF in last meeting. LB DEION JONES has sack in 2 of his past 3 vs. TB. Needs 8 tackles for 5th-career 100+ tackle season. LB DANTE FOWLER had sack & FF last week, his 10th-career FF. Had sack & FF in last meeting & aims for his 3rd in row vs. TB with sack. CB A.J. TERRELL had 2 PD in last meeting. Has 5 PD in his past 4 & aims for his 3rd in row with PD.

ARIZONA CARDINALS (9-2) AT CHICAGO BEARS (4-7)

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2021 // 1:00 PM ET // SOLDIER FIELD // REFEREE: JEROME BOGER

LEADER: Bears lead all-time series, 57-28-6

STREAKS: Bears have won 2 of past 3

LAST GAME: 9/23/18: Bears 16 at Cardinals 14

LAST GAME AT SITE: 9/20/15: Cardinals 48, Bears 23

QB KYLER MURRAY needs 31 pass yards to become 4th youngest QB all-time to reach 10,000 pass yards. Has 12 TDs (10 pass, 2 rush) vs. 2 INTs for 118 rating in 4 road starts in 2021. Has 4 games with 120+ rating in 2021, tied-most in NFL. • RB JAMES CONNER leads NFC in rush TDs (12) & scrimmage TDs (13). Has rush TD in 4 of his past 5 on road. Has 4 games with 2+ TDs, tied-most in NFL in 2021. Aims for his 6th in row with TD, longest active streak in NFC. • WR DEANDRE HOPKINS has 4 rec. TDs in 4 road games this season. Had 54 rec. yards & TD catch in his only career game vs. Chi. (9/11/16 w/ Hou.). WR CHRISTIAN KIRK had 90 rec. yards in last meeting. Has 5+ catches & 70 rec. yards in 4 of his 6 road games this season. WR RONDALE MOORE ranks 5th among rookies with 47 receptions. Had career-high 11 catches in Week 11. TE ZACH ERTZ had 7th-career game with 2 rec. TDs in Week 11. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. Chi. with 100+ rec. yards & TD catch. • LB CHANDLER JONES had 2 sacks & FF in Week 11 & aims for his 3rd in row on road with sack. Had sack in last meeting. Needs 2 sacks for 7th-career 10+ sack season. LB MARKUS GOLDEN leads team with 10 sacks, his 3rd-career 10-sack season. Is only player with 10+ sacks & 4+ FFs (4) this season. Aims for his 4th in row on road with sack. LB ISAIAH SIMMONS had 1st full sack of season in Week 11 & aims for his 7th in row with 6+ tackles. S BUDDA BAKER had 10 tackles, 2 TFL & 0.5 sacks in last meeting.

QB JUSTIN FIELDS (rookie) has TD pass & 80+ rating in 2 of his past 3 starts. Aims for his 6th start in row with 20+ rush yards. QB ANDY DALTON passed for 317 yards & TD vs. INT for 85.1 rating last week, his 30th-career 300-yard game. Has 2+ TD passes & 90+ rating in 3 of his 4 career starts vs. Az. • RB DAVID MONTGOMERY had 74 scrimmage yards (46 rush, 28 rec.) in Week 12. Has 50+ scrimmage yards in 13 consecutive games, longest active streak in the NFC. Has 6 rush TDs in his past 6 at home. • WR DARNELL MOONEY had 5 catches for team-high 123 yards last week. Is 1 of 5 WRs with 3+ games (3) with 120+ rec. yards in 2021. Aims for his 3rd in a row overall with 120+ rec. yards & 7th in row at home with 5+ catches. TE COLE KMET led team with career-high 8 receptions & had 65 rec. yards last week. TE JIMMY GRAHAM had 1st rec. TD of season last week & ranks 4th all-time among TEs with 83 career rec. TDs. • LB ROBERT QUINN had sack in Week 12 & leads team with 11 sacks, his 5th-career 10+ sack season. Aims for his 4th in row with sack & 6th in row with TFL. Has 11 sacks in 12 career games vs. Az. LB ROQUAN SMITH ranks 4th in NFL with 113 tackles, his 4th-consecutive 100+ tackle season. DT AKIEM HICKS had sack & FF in last meeting. LB TREVIS GIPSON had 2nd-career FF & 1st-career FR in Week 12. CB JAYLON JOHNSON had 6 tackles & 1st-career FF last week. Aims for his 3rd in row at home with PD.

LOS ANGELES CHARGERS (6-5) AT CINCINNATI BENGALS (7-4)

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2021 // 1:00 PM ET // PAUL BROWN STADIUM // REFEREE: SHAWN HOCHULI

LEADER: Chargers lead all-time series, 21-14

STREAKS: Chargers have won past 2

LAST GAME: 9/13/20: Chargers 16 at Bengals 13

LAST GAME AT SITE: 9/13/20

QB JUSTIN HERBERT completed 28 of 44 atts. (63.6 pct.) for 303 yards & 2 TDs vs. 2 INTs last week, his 14th-career game with 300+ pass yards, most-ever by player in 1st 2 seasons. Aims for 3rd in row with 300+ pass yards & 2+ TD passes. Has 55 career TD passes, 2nd-most ever by player in 1st 2 seasons. • RB AUSTIN EKELER had 99 scrimmage yards (season-high 68 rec., 31 rush) & TD catch last week. Aims for 4th in row with rec. TD. Rushed for 84 yards in last meeting. Has 115+ scrimmage yards & 3+ TDs in 2 of 3 games vs. AFC North this season. Is 3rd undrafted player in common-draft era with 5,000+ scrimmage yards (5,057) in 1st 5 seasons. Ranks 2nd in NFL with 14 TDs. • WR KEENAN ALLEN led team with 7 catches for 85 yards last week. Aims for 8th in row with 5+ catches & 50+ rec. yards & 5th in row with 85+ rec. yards. Tied for fastest player ever to reach 700 career receptions (111 games). Is only player in NFL with 80+ catches in each of past 5 seasons. WR MIKE WILLIAMS had 4 catches for 69 yards in last meeting. Has 95+ rec. yards & TD catch in 2 of 3 games vs. AFC North this season. TE JARED COOK had 3rd TD catch of season in Week 12. • DE JOEY BOSA had sack & FF last week. Aims for 5th in row with sack. Has FF in 2 of past 3. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. Cin. with sack. LB KYZIR WHITE led team with 12 tackles last week. S DERWIN JAMES had 7 tackles & 2nd INT of season in Week 12. Aims for 4th in row with PD. Has FF in 2 of 3 games vs. AFC North this season. Ties for lead among all DBs with 92 tackles.

QB JOE BURROW completed 20 of 24 atts. (career-high 83.3 pct.) for 190 yards & TD vs. INT for 96.2 rating & rushed for 1st TD of season last week. Aims for 3rd in row with 90+ rating. Has 70+ comp. pct. in 2 of past 3. • RB JOE MIXON rushed for career-high 165 yards with 2 TDs last week. Aims for 9th in row with TD, 5th in row with 2+ TDs & 4th in row with 110+ scrimmage yards. Has 209 scrimmage yards (104.5 per game) & rush TD in 2 career games vs. LAC. Has 100+ scrimmage yards & rush TD in 4 of his past 5 vs. AFC West. Ranks 3rd in NFL with career-high 11 rush TDs. • WR JA’MARR CHASE (rookie) has 5+ catches in 4 of 5 home games this season. Leads rookies with 906 rec. yards & 8 rec. TDs & can become 3rd Cin. rookie ever with 1,000+ rec. yards (A.J. GREEN & CRIS COLLINSWORTH). WR TEE HIGGINS led team with 6 catches for season-high 114 rec. yards & TD last week. Has 75+ rec. yards in 3 of past 4. TE C.J. UZOMAH ranks tied4th among TEs with career-high 5 rec. TDs this season. • DE TREY HENDRICKSON aims for 8th in row with sack & 3rd in row with FF, longest active sack streak in NFL. Had 1.5 sacks in only career game vs. LAC (10/12/20 w/ NO). Has sack in 4 of 5 career games vs. AFC West. Is 1 of 4 with 10+ sacks in each of past 2 seasons. CB MIKE HILTON had 24-yard INT-TD last week, his 1st-career TD. CB ELI APPLE aims for 3rd in row with INT. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. AFC West with FR & PD. LB SAM HUBBARD aims for 4th in row with sack & 3rd in row with FR.

MINNESOTA VIKINGS (5-6) AT DETROIT LIONS (0-10-1)

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2021 // 1:00 PM ET // FORD FIELD // REFEREE: CRAIG WROLSTAD

LEADER: Vikings lead all-time series, 79-39-2

STREAKS: Vikings have won past 8

LAST GAME: 10/10/21: Lions 17 at Vikings 19

LAST GAME AT SITE: 1/3/21: Vikings 37, Lions 35

QB KIRK COUSINS passed for 238 yards & 2 TDs vs. INT last week. Aims for his 9th in row on road with 2+ TD passes & 14th in row on road with 90+ rating. Has 1,297 pass yards (324.3 per game) & 13 TDs (11 pass, 2 rush) vs. 0 INTs for 127.3 rating in 4 career starts at Det. Passed for 275 yards & TD vs. INT in Week 5 meeting. • RB ALEXANDER MATTISON had 1st rush TD of season last week. Had 7 receptions, 153 scrimmage yards (113 rush, 40 rec.) & TD catch in Week 5 meeting. Had 145 scrimmage yards (95 rush, 50 rec.) & rec. TD in last road meeting. • WR ADAM THIELEN had 2 rec. TDs in Week 12 & became 4th undrafted WR since 1967 with 50+ career TDs. Ties-1st in NFL with 10 TD catches in 2021 & is 4th undrafted player since 1967 with multiple 10+ TD catch seasons. WR JUSTIN JEFFERSON had 7 catches & 124 rec. yards in last meeting. Had 9 catches for 133 yards in last road meeting. Has 1,027 rec. yards, his 2ndconsecutive 1,000-yard season. • LB ERIC KENDRICKS ranks 5th in NFL with 109 tackles, his 6thconsecutive 100-tackle season. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. Det. with INT. S HARRISON SMITH led team with season-high 11 tackles & had 1st INT of season last week. Ranks 3rd among DBs with 29 INTs since 2012. Has INT in 3 of his past 4 vs. Det. S XAVIER WOODS has PD in 5 of his past 6 & aims for his 4th in row with PD. DE D.J. WONNUM had 2nd sack of season last week. Had sack in last meeting.

QB JARED GOFF completed 21 of 25 atts. (career-high 84 pct.) for 2 TDs vs. 0 INTs & 121.8 rating last week. Passed for 465 yards & career-high 5 TDs vs. 0 INTs for 158.3 rating, highest attainable mark, vs. Min. (9/27/18 w/ LAR). Has 90+ rating in 4 of his 5 home starts this season. • RB D’ANDRE SWIFT had 104 scrimmage yards (53 rec., 51 rush) & rush TD in Week 5 meeting. Leads all RBs in receptions (56) & ranks 3rd in rec. yards (429). RB JAMAAL WILLIAMS had 5 catches & 83 scrimmage yards (65 rush, 18 rec.) last week. Had 65 scrimmage yards (57 rush, 8 rec.) in last meeting. Has 60+ scrimmage yards in 3 of his 4 home games this season. • TE T.J. HOCKENSON had 3rd rec. TD of season last week. Leads NFC TEs in receptions (57) & ranks 3rd in rec. yards (534). Has 8+ catches in 2 of his past 3 at home. WR JOSH REYNOLDS had 70 rec. yards & 1st TD catch of season last week. Rookie WR AMON-RA ST. BROWN had season-high 7 receptions & 65 rec. yards in last meeting. • CB AMANI ORUWARIYE had 2 PD & INT last week. Has career highs in INTs (5) & PD (9) in 2021. Aims for his 3rd in row with INT & 4th in row with PD. S TRACY WALKER had 9 tackles, TFL & PD in last meeting. Had 11 tackles & sack in last home meeting. Aims for his 5th in row vs. Min. with TFL. LB ALEX ANZALONE had 9 tackles & 2 PD last week. Aims for his 3rd in row with 2 PD. Had INT in last meeting. LB CHARLES HARRIS had sack in last meeting.

INDIANAPOLIS COLTS (6-6) AT HOUSTON TEXANS (2-9)

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2021 // 1:00 PM ET // NRG STADIUM // REFEREE: RONALD TORBERT

LEADER: Colts lead all-time series, 30-9

STREAKS: Colts have won past 3

LAST GAME: 10/17/21: Texans 3 at Colts 31

LAST GAME AT SITE: 12/6/20: Colts 26, Texans 20

QB CARSON WENTZ completed 27 of 44 atts. (61.4 pct.) for 306 yards & 3 TDs vs. 2 INTs last week. Passed for 223 yards & 2 TDs vs. 0 INTs for 127.7 rating in Week 6 meeting. Has 0 INTs in 3 of 4 games vs. division this season. Has 8 TDs (7 pass, 1 rush) vs. 0 INTs for 101 rating in 5 road starts this season. • RB JONATHAN TAYLOR rushed for 83 yards & TD last week. Can become 1st player since HOFer LADAINIAN TOMLINSON in 2004 with rush TD in 10 straight games within single season. Has 100+ rush yards in 3 of past 4. Rushed for 145 yards & 2 TDs in Week 6 meeting. Has 388 scrimmage yards (112.7 per game) & 4 TDs (3 rush, 1 rec.) in 3 career games vs. Hou. Aims for 5th in row on road with 100+ scrimmage yards. Leads NFL with 1,541 scrimmage yards (1,205 rush, 336 rec.) & 16 TDs (14 rush, 2 rec). • WR MICHAEL PITTMAN had 4 catches for 53 yards in Week 12. Has 50+ rec. yards in 5 of past 6. Aims for 3rd in row vs. division with 5+ catches & 70+ rec. yards. Has TD catch in 2 of past 3 on road. WR T.Y. HILTON had 1st rec. TD of season last week. Had season-high 80 rec. yards in Week 6 meeting & aims for his 4th in row vs. Hou. with 70+ rec. yards. TE JACK DOYLE led team with season-high 81 rec. yards & had TD catch last week. • LB DARIUS LEONARD led team with season-high 15 tackles & had FF & PD in Week 12. Ranks 2nd in NFL with career-high 5 FFs. Aims for 3rd in row vs. Hou. with 7+ tackles & FF. DT DEFOREST BUCKNER had sack & PD last week. Has 7 sacks & FF in 4 career games vs. Hou. Aims for 5th in row vs. Hou. with sack.

QB TYROD TAYLOR completed 17 of 26 atts. (65.4 pct.) for 158 yards & 2 TDs vs. INT for 91.5 rating & rushed for 30 yards last week. Completed 14 of 19 atts. (73.7 pct.) for 195 yards & TD vs. 0 INTs & 123.8 rating & rushed for 41 yards in only career start vs. Ind. (9/13/15 w/ Buf.). Aims for his 3rd start in row at home with 2+ TD passes & 90+ rating. • RB DAVID JOHNSON had season-high 55 scrimmage yards (39 rush, 16 rec.) last week. Has 50+ scrimmage yards in 2 of his past 3 at home. Has rush TD in 2 of his past 3 at home vs. division. RB REX BURKHEAD had season-high 54 scrimmage yards (27 rush, 27 rec.) in Week 12. • WR BRANDIN COOKS had 45 rec. yards & 3rd TD catch of season last week. Had 6 catches for 89 yards in Week 6 meeting. Aims for his 5th in row vs. Ind. with 5+ catches & 50+ rec. yards. Has 85+ rec. yards in 3 of his past 4 vs. division. Aims for his 3rd in row at home with TD catch. Is 1 of 4 WRs with 550+ rec. yards in each of past 8 seasons. WR DANNY AMENDOLA had 53 rec. yards in his last game vs. Ind. (11/1/20 w/ Det.). Rookie TE BREVIN JORDAN had 2nd-career TD catch in Week 12. • LB ZACH CUNNINGHAM tied for team lead with 8 tackles & had season-high 2 TFL last week. Aims for 4th in row with 8+ tackles & 3rd in row with TFL. LB KAMU GRUGIER-HILL had 7 tackles & 2nd sack of season in Week 12. Aims for 4th in row with 7+ tackles. Has TFL in 2 of past 3 at home. LB JACOB MARTIN aims for 4th in row with sack. Has TFL in 3 of past 4 at home.

NEW YORK GIANTS (4-7) AT MIAMI DOLPHINS (5-7)

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2021 // 1:00 PM ET // HARD ROCK STADIUM // REFEREE: BRAD ALLEN

LEADER: Giants lead all-time series, 7-2

STREAKS: Giants have won past 4

LAST GAME: 12/15/19: Dolphins 20 at Giants 36

LAST GAME AT SITE: 12/14/15: Giants 31, Dolphins 24

QB DANIEL JONES passed for 202 yards & TD vs. 0 INTs for 94 rating last week. Is 1 of 4 NFC QBs (KIRK COUSINS, AARON RODGERS & MATTHEW STAFFORD) with 8+ games (8) with 90+ rating in 2021. • RB SAQUON BARKLEY had 53 scrimmage yards (40 rush, 13 rec.) last week. Has 50+ scrimmage yards in 3 of his 4 road games this season. Had 143 scrimmage yards (112 rush, 31 rec.) & 2 rush TDs in last meeting. • WR STERLING SHEPARD had 9 catches for 111 yards in last meeting. WR KENNY GOLLADAY led team with 50 rec. yards last week. WR DARIUS SLAYTON had a TD catch in last meeting. Rookie WR KADARIUS TONEY leads team in receptions (35) & rec. yards (392). • S XAVIER MCKINNEY led team with season-high 8 tackles & had 2 PD & INT last week. Ranks tied-1st among safeties (KEVIN BYARD & JORDAN POYER) with career-high 5 INTs in 2021. Has 7 PD in his past 6. LB TAE CROWDER had 1st-career INT in Week 12. Aims for his 10th in row with 6+ tackles. Is 1 of 2 LBs (DARIUS LEONARD) with 75+ tackles (79) & 5+ PD (5) in 2021. CB JAMES BRADBERRY ranks 2nd in NFL with 76 PD since 2016 & is only DB with 10+ PD in each of past 6 seasons. Has PD in 4 of his past 5 on road. CB JULIAN LOVE had 1st 0.5 sacks of his career & 1st-career FR last week. Aims for his 3rd in row overall & 4th in row on road with PD. DL LEONARD WILLIAMS has TFL in 3 of his 4 career games at Mia.

QB TUA TAGOVAILOA completed 27 of 31 atts (87.1 pct. – career high as starter) for 230 yards & TD vs. 0 INTs for 108.3 rating last week. Become 2nd-youngest player ever with 85+ comp. pct. in single game (min. 30 atts.). Is 4th player ever with 80+ comp. pct. (min. 30 atts.) in consecutive games. Aims for 4th in row with 100+ rating. Has 0 INTs in 3 of 4 home starts in 2021. • RB MYLES GASKIN rushed for 49 yards & career-high 2 TDs last week. Aims for 3rd in row with 50+ scrimmage yards & TD. Had 72 scrimmage yards (43 rush, 29 rec.) in last meeting. Has 50+ scrimmage yards in 3 of his past 4 at home. Aims for his 6th in row vs. NFC with TD. RB PHILLIP LINDSAY rushed for 42 yards last week in Mia. debut. • WR JAYLEN WADDLE (rookie) led team with 9 catches for career-high 137 yards & 4th rec. TD of season in Week 12. Aims for 5th in row with 60+ rec. yards & 3rd in row with 8+ catches. Leads rookies with 77 catches, 2nd-most every by player in 1st 12 career games. Can become 1st Mia. rookie ever with 85 catches. TE MIKE GESICKI had 47 rec. yards in last meeting. Is 1 of 4 TEs with 50+ catches in each of past 3 seasons. • CB XAVIEN HOWARD had 25th-career INT last week & became fastest player (67 games) to reach 25 INTs since 1990. Aims for 3rd in row with PD. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. NFC with INT. Rookie S JEVON HOLLAND had INT & FR last week. Aims for 5th in row with PD & 3rd in row with FR. LB JAELAN PHILLIPS had 3 sacks last week, most by rookie in single game since 2019.

PHILADELPHIA EAGLES (5-7) AT NEW YORK JETS (3-8)

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2021 // 1:00 PM ET // METLIFE STADIUM // REFEREE: CLAY MARTIN

LEADER: Eagles lead all-time series, 11-0

STREAKS: Jets have won past 11

LAST GAME: 10/6/19: Jets 6 at Eagles 31

LAST GAME AT SITE: 9/27/15: Eagles 24, Jets 17

QB JALEN HURTS rushed for 77 yards last week & became 4th QB since 2000 (LAMAR JACKSON, CAM NEWTON & MICHAEL VICK) with 50+ rush yards in 6 consecutive games. Has 30+ rush yards in each of his 1st 16 career starts. • RB MILES SANDERS rushed for 64 yards last week. Has 50+ scrimmage yards in 6 of his past 7 on road. Had 64 scrimmage yards (49 rec., 15 rush) in last meeting. RB BOSTON SCOTT rushed for 64 yards & had 4th rush TD of season last week. Has rush TD in 3 of his past 4 on road & aims for his 4th in row on road with 60+ scrimmage yards. RB JORDAN HOWARD had rush TD in last meeting & aims for his 3rd in row vs. NYJ with rush TD. • WR DEVONTA SMITH leads NFC rookie WRs in receptions (48) & rec. yards (686). Has 60+ rec. yards in 3 of his past 4. TE DALLAS GOEDERT needs 9 rec. yards for 3rd-consecutive 500+ rec. yard season. • DT JAVON HARGRAVE had sack last week & leads team with career-high 7 sacks in 2021. DT FLETCHER COX had 2 TFL in last meeting. LB ALEX SINGLETON led team with 12 tackles & had career-high 3 TFL in Week 12. Needs 4 tackles for 2ndconsecutive 100-tackle season. Aims for his 3rd in row with PD. CB DARIUS SLAY aims for his 3rd in row with PD. Leads NFL with 3 defensive TDs in 2021. Had INT in his only career game at NYJ (9/28/14 w/ Det.). CB STEVEN NELSON aims for his 3rd in row with PD.

QB ZACH WILSON (rookie) completed 14 of 24 atts. (58.3 pct.) for 145 yards & rushed for 1st-career TD last week. Aims for his 3rd home start in row with 200+ pass yards. • RB TEVIN COLEMAN led team with season-high 67 rush yards last week. Rushed for TD in his last game vs. Phi. (9/6/18 w/ Atl.). Aims for his 3rd in row vs. Phi. with 45+ scrimmage yards. RB TY JOHNSON rushed for season-high 42 yards in Week 12. • WR JAMISON CROWDER has 6+ catches in 4 of his past 5 at home. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. NFC East with TD catch & 4th in row vs. NFC East with 5+ catches & 75+ rec. yards. Rookie WR ELIJAH MOORE had 4 catches for 46 yards last week. Has rec. TD in 3 of past 4. Aims for 3rd in row at home with TD catch. Ranks 5th among rookies with 461 rec. yards & can join ROBBY ANDERSON as only NYJ rookie WRs with 500+ rec. yards since 2000. WR COREY DAVIS had 9 catches for 161 yards & TD in only career game vs. Phi. (9/30/18 w/ Ten.). Has 90+ rec. yards in 2 of his past 3 at home. WR BRAXTON BERRIOS had 47 rec. yards last week, his 3rd game this season with 45+ rec. yards. • LB C.J. MOSLEY had 8 tackles & PD last week. Aims for his 10th in row with 7+ tackles. Had 13 tackles & FF in only career game vs. Phi. (12/18/16 w/ Bal.). LB QUINCY WILLIAMS had 7 tackles & 2nd sack of season last week. Aims for 3rd in row with 7+ tackles & TFL. DE JOHN FRANKLIN-MYERS had career-high 2 sacks & 1st-career INT in Week 12. DT QUINNEN WILLIAMS had 6th sack of season last week. Had 5 tackles in last meeting.

JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS (2-9) AT LOS ANGELES RAMS (7-4)

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2021 // 4:05 PM ET // SOFI STADIUM // REFEREE: CLETE BLAKEMAN

LEADER: Rams lead all-time series, 4-1

STREAKS: Rams have won past 2

LAST GAME: 10/15/17: Rams 27 at Jaguars 17

LAST GAME AT SITE: 10/6/13: Rams 34, Jaguars 20

QB TREVOR LAWRENCE (rookie) completed 23 of 42 atts. (54.8 pct.) for 228 yards & TD vs. INT & rushed for career-high 39 yards last week. Has 0 INTs in 3 of his past 4 starts. Ranks 2nd among rookies in completions (231), pass yards (2,369) & TD passes (9) this season. • RB JAMES ROBINSON led team with 115 scrimmage yards (86 rush, 29 rec.) last week, his 4th game with 100+ scrimmage yards this season. Has rush TD in 2 of past 3. Has 75+ scrimmage yards in 2 of his past 3 on road. Has 7 rush TDs this season & joined MAURICE JONES-DREW (2006-07) as only players in franchise history with 7+ rush TDs in each of 1st 2 seasons. RB CARLOS HYDE has 7 TDs (6 rush, 1 rec.) in his past 5 vs. LAR. • WR MARVIN JONES had TD catch in his last game vs. LAR (10/16/16 w/ Det.). Has 50+ rec. yards in 6 of his past 7 vs. NFC West. Leads team with 529 rec. yards, his 8th season with 500+ rec. yards. WR LAVISKA SHENAULT aims for 3rd in row with 5+ catches. WR TAVON AUSTIN had 1st TD catch of season in Week 12. Had rec. TD in only career game vs. LAR (12/15/19 w/ Dal.). Had 24 total TDs in 5 seasons (2013-17) with Rams. • LB MYLES JACK aims for 3rd in row with 8+ tackles. Had TFL in last meeting. DE/LB JOSH ALLEN aims for his 3rd in row vs. NFC West with 6+ tackles & TFL. DE ROY ROBERTSON-HARRIS aims for 3rd in row with sack. Had TFL in his last game vs. LAR (10/26/20 w. Chi.). Rookie CB TYSON CAMPBELL had 3 PD & 1stcareer INT last week. Has PD in 2 of past 3.

QB MATTHEW STAFFORD passed for 302 yards & 3 TDs vs. INT for 96.6 rating last week. Ranks 2nd in TD passes (27), 3rd in pass yards (3,316) & 4th in rating (105.2) in 2021. Needs 3 TD passes for 3rd-career season with 30+ TD passes. Has 1,572 pass yards (314.4 per game) & 13 TDs vs. 3 INTs for 108.4 rating in 5 home starts this season. • RB DARRELL HENDERSON had 3rd rec. TD of season last week. Has career highs in scrimmage yards (820) & TDs (8) in 2021. • WR COOPER KUPP had 7 catches & 96 rec. yards last week. Leads NFL in receptions (92) & rec. yards (1,237) & ties-1st in rec. TDs (10). Has 5+ catches in 15 consecutive games, longest active streak in NFL. Aims for his 7th in row with 95+ rec. yards. WR ODELL BECKHAM JR. had 5 catches for 81 yards & 1st rec. TD of season last week. Had 11 catches for 111 yards in his last game vs. Jax. (9/9/18 w/ NYG). • DL AARON DONALD needs 2 sacks to become 4th player since 1982 with 8+ sacks in each of his 1st 8 seasons. Had sack & FF in last meeting. LB LEONARD FLOYD has sack in 3 of his past 4 at home. LB VON MILLER has 4 sacks & FF in 3 career games vs. Jax. & aims for his 4th in row vs. Jax. with sack. Leads all active players with 110.5 career sacks. CB JALEN RAMSEY was selected by Jax. with No. 5 pick in 2016 NFL Draft & had 45 PD & 9 INT in 51 games (2016-19). S JORDAN FULLER had 2 PD last week. Leads all NFC DBs with 82 tackles. Aims for his 9th in row at home with 5+ tackles.

WASHINGTON FOOTBALL TEAM (5-6) AT LAS VEGAS RAIDERS (6-5)

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2021 // 4:05 PM ET // ALLEGIANT STADIUM // REFEREE: ADRIAN HILL

LEADER: Raiders lead all-time series, 7-6

STREAKS: Washington has won past 3

LAST GAME: 9/24/17: Raiders 10 at Washington 27

LAST GAME AT SITE: 9/29/13: Washington 24, Raiders 14 (Oakland)

QB TAYLOR HEINICKE completed 27 of 35 atts. (77.1 pct.) for TD vs. INT & 90.5 rating last week. Aims for his 4th start in row with 70+ comp. pct. & 7th start in row with TD pass. • RB ANTONIO GIBSON had career-high 146 scrimmage yards (season-high 111 rush, 35 rec.) & career-high 7 receptions last week. Aims for his 4th in row with 75+ scrimmage yards. Needs 95 scrimmage yards for 2nd-consecutive season with 1,000+ scrimmage yards. RB J.D. MCKISSIC had 5 catches & 2nd-career game with both rush & rec. TD last week. Has 50+ scrimmage yards in 5 of his past 6 & aims for his 5th in row on road with 50+ scrimmage yards. Since 2020, leads all RBs with 123 receptions & ranks 2nd in rec. yards (986). • WR TERRY MCLAURIN had team-high 51 rec. yards in Week 12. Has 50+ rec. yards in 4 of his past 5 & aims for his 4th in row with 50+ rec. yards. WR CURTIS SAMUEL had 5 catches in his only career game vs. LV (9/13/20 w/ Car.). TE LOGAN THOMAS has rec. TD in 2 of his past 3 on road. • CB KENDALL FULLER had season-high 3 PD last week & had 10+ PD (11) for 4th time in past 5 seasons. Had sack in his last game at Raiders (9/15/19 w/ KC). LB COLE HOLCOMB had 1st-career FR last week. Needs 8 tackles for 2nd-career 100+ tackle season. S LANDON COLLINS led team with 7 tackles & had 7th-career FF last week. Has 5+ tackles in 9 of his past 10 games. S KAMREN CURL had 3rd-career sack last week. Aims for his 6th in row on road with 5+ tackles.

QB DEREK CARR passed for 373 yards & TD vs. 0 INTs for 101.8 rating last week, his 4th game with 350+ pass yards this season, tied with TOM BRADY for most in NFL. Aims for 4th in row with 90+ rating. Has 300+ pass yards & 100+ rating in 2 of 3 games vs. NFC East this season. Has 30,310 career pass yards, 4th-most ever by QB in 1st 8 seasons. • RB JOSH JACOBS had season-high 112 scrimmage yards (seasonhigh 87 rush, 25 rec.) & rushed for TD last week. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. NFC East with 95+ scrimmage yards. Has rush TD in 2 of 3 career games vs. NFC East. Is 1 of 4 in NFL with 6+ rush TDs in each of past 3 seasons. RB KENYAN DRAKE rushed for 86 yards in his last game vs. Was. (9/20/20 w/ Az.). Has 75+ scrimmage yards in 2 of 3 games vs. NFC East this season. • TE DARREN WALLER is 1 of 3 TEs (MARK ANDREWS & TRAVIS KELCE) with 600+ rec. yards in each of past 3 seasons. WR HUNTER RENFROW set career highs in catches (8) & rec. yards (134) last week. Has 5+ catches in 6 of his past 7 at home. Aims for his 4th in row vs. NFC East with 7+ catches. WR DESEAN JACKSON had 102 rec. yards & TD catch in Week 12. Has 60+ rec. yards in 4 of his past 5 vs. Was. • DE YANNICK NGAKOUE aims for 3rd in row with sack. Has 5 sacks in 3 games vs. NFC East this season. LB DENZEL PERRYMAN had 7 tackles last week & ranks 2nd in NFL with career-high 121 tackles this season. Has TFL in 2 of past 3 at home. S JOHNATHAN ABRAM aims for 4th in row with 10+ tackles.

BALTIMORE RAVENS (8-3) AT PITTSBURGH STEELERS (5-5-1)

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2021 // 4:25 PM ET // HEINZ FIELD // REFEREE: SCOTT NOVAK

LEADER: Steelers lead all-time series, 27-23

STREAKS: Steelers have won past 2

LAST GAME: 12/2/20: Ravens 14 at Steelers 19

LAST GAME AT SITE: 12/2/20

QB LAMAR JACKSON passed for 165 yards & rushed for 68 yards last week. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. Pit. & 6th in row vs. division with 65+ rush yards. Leads QBs with 707 rush yards & is 1 of 3 in AFC (NICK CHUBB & DERRICK HENRY) with 700+ rush yards in each of past 3 seasons. • RB DEVONTA FREEMAN rushed for 52 yards last week & aims for his 5th in row with 50+ scrimmage yards. • WR MARQUISE BROWN had team-high 8 catches for 51 yards in Week 12. Aims for 5th in row with 5+ catches. Has 50+ rec. yards in 3 of past 4. Had 85 rec. yards & TD catch in last meeting. Has rec. TD in 3 of 4 career games vs. Pit. Has TD catch in 6 of his past 7 vs. division. Is 1 of 2 in AFC (TYREEK HILL) with 6+ rec. TDs in each of past 3 seasons. TE MARK ANDREWS led team with 65 rec. yards & had TD catch last week. Aims for 5th in row on road with 5+ catches & 60+ rec. yards. Has TD catch in 2 of past 3. Ranks 2nd among TEs with 60 catches & 761 rec. yards this season & is 1 of 2 TEs (TRAVIS KELCE) with 700+ rec. yards in each of past 3 seasons. • CB MARLON HUMPHREY had 8 tackles & 2 PD last week & has 2 PD in 3 of past 4. Aims for 9th in row with PD, longest active streak in NFL. Had 7 tackles, 2 FFs & 2 PD in last meeting. Is 1 of 3 in NFL (JAMES BRADBERRY & MARSHON LATTIMORE) with 10+ PD in each of past 5 seasons. LB TYUS BOWSER aims for 3rd in row with sack & PD. Had INT in last meeting. Rookie LB ODAFE OWEH had sack, FF & FR last week. Has sack in 2 of past 3.

QB BEN ROETHLISBERGER aims for 3rd in row with 250+ pass yards. Has 100+ rating in 2 of past 3 & 90+ rating in 5 of past 6. Completed 36 of 51 atts. (70.6 pct.) for 266 yards in last meeting. Has 5 TDs vs. 0 INTs for 106.8 rating in his past 3 at home. • RB NAJEE HARRIS (rookie) has 703 scrimmage yards (117.2 per game) & 4 TDs (2 rush, 2 rec.) in 6 home games this season. Has 125+ scrimmage yards in 4 of his past 5 at home. Leads rookies in scrimmage yards (1,059), rush yards (708) & rush TDs (5). Joins LE’VEON BELL (2013) as only Pit. rookies with 1,000+ scrimmage yards since 2000. RB BENNY SNELL had 93 scrimmage yards (60 rush, 33 rec.) in last meeting & has 90+ scrimmage yards in 2 of past 3 meetings. • WR DIONTAE JOHNSON led team with 9 catches for 95 yards last week. Aims for 4th in row with 7+ catches & 80+ rec. yards. Had 8 catches in last meeting. Aims for his 4th in row vs. division with 95+ rec. yards. WR CHASE CLAYPOOL aims for 3rd in row with 80+ rec. yards. Had 6 catches for 52 yards in last meeting. Rookie TE PAT FREIERMUTH aims for 3rd in row with rec. TD. Has TD catch in each of 3 games vs. division this season. Ranks 2nd among rookies with 6 rec. TDs. • LB T.J. WATT had 3 TFL & 2 sacks in last meeting. Aims for 3rd in row vs. Bal. with sack. Has 6 sacks, 4 PD & FF in his past 3 at home. Ranks 2nd in NFL with 12.5 sacks. DT CAMERON HEYWARD had sack last week. S MINKAH FITZPATRICK had 8 tackles & 1st INT of season last week. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. Bal. with PD.

SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS (6-5) AT SEATTLE SEAHAWKS (3-8)

SUNDAY, OCT. 5, 2021 // 4:25 PM ET // LUMEN FIELD // REFEREE: ALEX KEMP

LEADER: Seahawks lead all-time series, 28-17

STREAKS: Seahawks have won past 3

LAST GAME: 10/3/21: Seahawks 28 at 49ers 21

LAST GAME AT SITE: 11/1/20: Seahawks 37, 49ers 27

QB JIMMY GAROPPOLO passed for 230 yards & TD vs. INT for 90.2 rating last week. Has 7 TDs (4 pass, 3 rush) vs. 0 INTs for 111.6 rating in 4 road starts in 2021. Amis for his 5th in row on road with 100+ rating. Is 4-1 as starter on road w/ SF vs. division. • RB ELIJAH MITCHELL (rookie) had career-high 168 scrimmage yards (133 rush, 35 rec.) & 4th rush TD of season last week. Leads all rookie RBs & is only NFC RB with 4 100+ rush yard games in 2021. Leads all rookies in scrimmage yards per game (100.1). Has 50+ scrimmage yards in each of his 1st 8 career games & aims for his 6th in row with 75+ scrimmage yards. • TE GEORGE KITTLE has 5+ catches in 3 of his past 4 vs. NFC West & 50+ rec. yards in 4 of his past 5 vs. division. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. NFC West in 2021 with rec. TD. Since 2018, ranks 2nd among TEs in rec. yards (3,489) & tied-3rd in receptions (256). WR BRANDON AIYUK led team with 91 rec. yards last week. Has 85+ rec. yards in 3 of his past 4. Had 8 catches for 91 yards & rec. TD in last road meeting. WR JAUAN JENNINGS had 2nd rec. TD of season last week. • DL NICK BOSA leads NFL in TFL (16) & ranks tied-1st in NFC with career-high 11 sacks. Has 8 sacks & 11 TFL in 5 road games in 2021 & aims for his 6th in row on road with sack. Had sack in Week 4 meeting. LB AZEEZ AL-SHAAIR led team with 8 tackles & had 2nd-career INT & 2nd-career FR last week. Had 10 tackles in last meeting. CB JOSH NORMAN leads NFL with career-high 7 FFs & aims for his 3rd in row with FF.

QB RUSSELL WILSON passed for 247 yards & 2 TDs vs. 0 INTs for 110.6 rating last week. Has 79 games with 100+ rating since 2012, most in NFL. Has 279 career TD passes, 3rd-most by QB in 1st 10 seasons all-time. Had 3 TDs (2 pass, 1 rush) vs. 0 INTs for 116 rating in last meeting. Is 8-1 with 21 TDs vs. 3 INTs for 109.9 rating in 9 career home starts vs. SF. • RB ALEX COLLINS had 78 scrimmage yards (44 rush, 34 rec.) & rush TD in Week 4 meeting. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. SF with rush TD. • WR DK METCALF has 4 rec. TDs in his past 4 vs. SF. Aims for his 3rd in row at home vs. SF with 6+ catches, 80+ rec. yards & rec. TD. Needs 3 catches for 3rd-consecutive season with 50+ catches. Is 1 of 3 WRs (MIKE EVANS & TYREEK HILL) with 7+ rec. TDs in each of past 3 seasons. WR TYLER LOCKETT led team with 96 rec. yards last week. Aims for his 3rd in row at home with 115+ rec. yards. Has TD catch in 2 of his past 3 at home vs. SF. TE GERALD EVERETT had 2nd rec. TD of season last week. • LB BOBBY WAGNER leads NFL with 128 tackles, his 10thconsecutive 100+ tackle season. Aims for his 10th in row at home vs. SF with 6+ tackles. Had 11 tackles, 3 TFL & 2 sacks in last home meeting. LB JORDYN BROOKS had 14 tackles last week & ranks 5th in NFL with career-high 112 tackles. Had sack in last meeting. S JAMAL ADAMS had 2nd INT of season last week. Aims for his 5th in row with 8+ tackles. Is only DB with 75+ tackles in each of past 5 seasons.

DENVER BRONCOS (6-5) AT KANSAS CITY CHIEFS (7-4)

SUNDAY, DEC. 5, 2021 // 8:20 PM ET // ARROWHEAD STADIUM // REFEREE: CARL CHEFFERS

LEADER: Chiefs lead all-time series, 67-54

STREAKS: Chiefs have won past 11

LAST GAME: 12/6/20: Broncos 16 at Chiefs 22

LAST GAME AT SITE: 12/6/20

QB TEDDY BRIDGEWATER completed 11 of 18 atts. (61.1 pct.) for 129 yards & TD for 101.4 rating & rushed for TD last week. Aims for 5th in row with 0 INTs. Has 100+ rating in 3 of past 4. Completed 36 of 49 atts. (73.5 pct.) for 310 yards & 2 TDs vs. 0 INTs for 103.3 rating in last his last start vs. KC (11/8/20 w/ Car.). Has 90+ rating in 6 of his past 7 starts vs. AFC West. • RB MELVIN GORDON rushed for 83 yards last week. Has 85+ scrimmage yards in 2 of past 3 & TD in 4 of past 5. Rushed for 131 yards in last meeting. Has rush TD in 2 of his past 3 vs. KC. Aims for his 4th in row at KC with 120+ scrimmage yards. Is only RB with 750+ scrimmage yards in each of past 7 seasons. Rookie RB JAVONTE WILLIAMS tied career high with 111 scrimmage yards (career-high 57 rec., 54 rush) & had rush TD in Week 12. Has 100+ scrimmage yards in 2 of past 3. • WR COURTLAND SUTTON aims for his 4th in row vs. KC with 75+ rec. yards. Has 50+ rec. yards in 7 of his past 8 vs. division. WR TIM PATRICK had career-high 2 rec. TDs in last meeting. Has 85+ rec. yards in 2 of his past 3 on road. TE ERIC SAUBERT had 1st-career TD catch in Week 12. • S JUSTIN SIMMONS had 8 tackles, TFL & 2 PD last week. Aims for 3rd in row with 6+ tackles & 6th in row with PD. Has TFL in 2 of past 3. Had 8 tackles & TFL in last meeting. Rookie CB PAT SURTAIN II had 2 INTs, incl. 70-yard INT-TD, last week. Aims for 8th in row with PD. Leads rookies with 3 INTs & ties for lead with 11 PD. LB MALIK REED aims for 4th in row with 0.5+ sacks.

QB PATRICK MAHOMES aims for 3rd in row with 250+ pass yards. Has 9 TDs vs. 2 INTs for 112.9 rating in his past 5 vs. Den. Aims for his 6th in row vs. Den. with 95+ rating. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. division with 3+ TD passes. Has 3,242 pass yards (324.2 per game) & 105.5 rating in 10 career starts on SNF. • RB CLYDE EDWARDS-HELAIRE had 76 scrimmage yards (63 rush, 13 rec.) & 1st rush TD of season in Week 11. Has 75+ scrimmage yards & TD in 3 of his past 4. Rushed for TD in only career game vs. Den. (10/25/20). Aims for his 4th in row vs. division with TD. RB DARREL WILLIAMS has 75+ scrimmage yards in 3 of past 4. • TE TRAVIS KELCE had 5 catches for 74 yards in Week 11. Aims for 4th in row with 5+ catches & 65+ rec. yards. Had 8 catches for 136 yards & TD in last meeting & has 125+ rec. yards in 2 of past 3 vs. Den. Leads TEs with 67 catches & 821 rec. yards & is only player in NFL with 800+ rec. yards in each of past 8 seasons. WR TYREEK HILL aims for 3rd in row with 7+ catches & 75+ rec. yards. Has TD catch in 3 of his past 4 vs. Den. Is only player in NFL with 6+ rec. TDs in each of past 6 seasons. • DT CHRIS JONES had career-high 3.5 sacks & had FF, FR & PD in Week 11. Had PD in last meeting. Has TFL in 4 of his past 5 at home. DE FRANK CLARK had sack & FF in Week 11. Had PD in last meeting. CB CHARVARIUS WARD had 7 tackles, season-high 3 PD & 1st INT of season in Week 11. Aims for 3rd in row at home with PD. S L’JARIUS SNEED had 3 PD & INT in Week 12.

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS (8-4) AT BUFFALO BILLS (7-4)

MONDAY, DEC. 6, 2021 // 8:15 PM ET // HIGHMARK STADIUM // REFEREE: BILL VINOVICH

LEADER: Patriots lead all-time series, 76-45-1

STREAKS: Bills have won past 2

LAST GAME: 12/28/20: Bills 38 at Patriots 9

LAST GAME AT SITE: 11/1/20: Bills 24, Patriots 21

QB MAC JONES (rookie) completed 23 of 32 atts. (71.9 pct.) for career-high 310 yards & 2 TDs vs. 0 INTs for 123.2 rating last week. Can become 3rd rookie since 1970 with 70+ comp. pct. (min. 20 atts.) in 4 straight games. Aims for 4th in row with 95+ rating. Has 3 TDs vs. 0 INTs for 101.8 rating in 3 starts vs. division. Can become 3rd rookie QB ever (DAK PRESCOTT & BEN ROETHLISBERGER) to win 1st 6 career road starts. • RB DAMIEN HARRIS had 52 scrimmage yards (40 rush, 12 rec.) & rush TD last week. Aims for 3rd in row with 50+ scrimmage yards. Has rush TD in 6 of past 7. Rushed for 102 yards & TD in last road meeting. Has 100+ rush yards in 2 of 3 games vs. division this season. Rookie RB RHAMONDRE STEVENSON has 75+ scrimmage yards in 3 of past 4. • WR JAKOBI MEYERS had 5 catches for season-high 98 yards last week. Had 6 catches for 58 yards in last road meeting. Has 5+ catches in 3 of his past 4 vs. division. WR KENDRICK BOURNE had 5 catches for 61 yards & season-high 2 TDs in Week 12. Has 60+ rec. yads & TD catch in 2 of past 3. WR NELSON AGHOLOR has rec. TD in 2 of 3 career games vs. Buf. • DB J.C. JACKSON aims for 3rd in row with INT & 5th in row with PD. Had INT in last road meeting. Leads NFL with 24 INTs since 2018, tied for 2nd-most by player in 1st 4 seasons since 1970. LB KYLE VAN NOY had career-high 3 PD & FF last week. Aims for 3rd in row with PD. Has FF in 2 of past 3. LB MATTHEW JUDON aims for 3rd in row with sack & 6th in row with 0.5+ sacks.

QB JOSH ALLEN completed 23 of 28 atts. (career-high 82.1 pct.) for 260 yards & 4 TDs for 115.2 rating & rushed for 43 yards last week. Aims for 4th in row overall & 6th in row vs. division with 2+ TD passes. Has 115+ rating in 2 of past 3. Passed for 320 yards & 4 TDs vs. 0 INTs for 138.7 rating in last meeting. Has 100+ rating in 4 of his past 5 vs. division. Aims for his 4th in row on MNF with 320+ pass yards, 3+ TD passes & 105+ rating. • RB MATT BREIDA had 55 scrimmage yards (29 rec., 26 rush) & TD catch last week. Aims for 4th in row with 50+ scrimmage yards. Has rec. TD in 2 of past 3. Rushed for 86 yards in his last game vs. NE (12/20/20 w/ Mia.). Has 125+ scrimmage yards & 2 TDs in 2 of his past 3 on MNF. RB DEVIN SINGLETARY rushed for 86 yards in last home meeting. Has rush TD in 2 of his past 3 vs. division. • WR STEFON DIGGS led team with 7 catches for 74 yards & TD last week. Aims for 4th in row with rec. TD. Has 70+ rec. yards in 3 of past 4. Had 9 catches for 145 yards & 3 TDs in last meeting. Aims for 3rd in row vs. NE with 6+ catches & 90+ rec. yards. TE DAWSON KNOX had 2 rec. TDs in Week 12 & is 1 of 3 TEs with 2 rec. TDs in 2 games in 2021. Had 51 rec. yards in last meeting. • S JORDAN POYER had 5th INT of season last week & has INT in 2 of past 3. Has 11 tackles in 2 of his past 3 vs. NE. Aims for his 3rd in row vs. division with INT. LB TREMAINE EDMUNDS aims for 3rd in row with 8+ tackles. Had 5 tackles in last meeting. DE MARIO ADDISON had 2 TFL & 4th sack of season in Week 12.

CELTICS START FAST, ROUT TRAIL BLAZERS 145-117

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) Jayson Tatum and Dennis Schroder scored 31 points apiece and the Boston Celtics rode a sizzling start to a 145-117 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Saturday night.

Enes Freedom grabbed 15 rebounds off the bench for the Celtics, who made 14 of their first 15 shots and built a 21-point, first-half lead.

Coach Ime Udoka believes Tatum’s recent success has been the product of attacking the basket. Tatum scored 37 on Friday night against Utah as well.

“He’s had some success driving to the basket and getting to the free throw line,” Udoka said. “That’s been encouraging him to drive more and not settle as much. With some of their guys out, we felt we could attack some mismatches and get to the basket without a ton of rim protection and he did that very well.”

CJ McCollum scored 24 points for the Trail Blazers.

Portland chipped away behind its bench before Boston took a 64-58 lead into halftime.

“I’ve never seen a team that needs its bench to inspire its starters,” Portland coach Chauncey Billups said. “It should be the other way around.”

Boston took control in the second half with a good start to the third quarter. The Celtics pushed their lead to as high as 26 before Portland pulled its starters with 5:51 remaining.

The Celtics continued to pour it on. Former Oregon star Payton Prichard scored 16 points in the final six minutes, sending the Celtics bench into a frenzy. The bench was called for a taunting technical for celebrating Prichard’s 3-pointer to put Boston up 145-114.

“You want to see him do well,” Udoka said. “The crowd was very supportive of a hometown hero but it got a little out of hand with our guys getting overzealous and getting a technical. I did apologize to Chauncey at the end for that. I didn’t mean for it to get out of hand like that. You’re happy for him, but there’s a line not to cross there.”

Boston’s 145 points were the most ever scored in regulation by a visiting team in Blazers history.

NEW START

Saturday night’s game was Portland’s first following the firing of President of Basketball Operations Neil Olshey. With Joe Cronin assuming the role of interim general manager, Billups expressed his respect for Cronin’s new position and excitement about working together.

“I’m very much looking forward to building with Joe,” Billups said. “In all honesty right now, Joe is the man. I’m not overlooking that, I don’t think anybody should. He’s been in the game for a long time, he’s well thought of by many people and I think Joe is as qualified as most people. He’s very good. It’s easy to jump over that and look for the next move. But right now, Joe is the next move.”

FIRST TIME FOR EVERYTHING

Udoka was in his hometown for the first time as an NBA head coach, something he wasn’t taking for granted.

“There’s a first for everything, as I mentioned. But this one obviously means more coming home,” Udoka said. “A ton of family and friends here and the first time in this capacity, so obviously it means a lot. For me, it’s great to come back and see family and friends briefly, but it’s also time to handle business.”

Udoka visited Jefferson High School before the game.

TIP-INS

Celtics: Romeo Langford missed the game with a right ankle sprain. . Jaylen Brown remains out with hamstring tightness and Udoka said he won’t return until he’s “100 percent, not 85 or 90”. Al Horford sat out with a stiff lower back. Grant Williams started in his place.

Trail Blazers: Anfernee Simons (right ankle sprain), Damian Lillard (abdomen) and Nassir Little (left ankle sprain) all missed Saturday’s game.

UP NEXT

Celtics: At the Los Angeles Lakers on Tuesday night.

Trail Blazers: Host the Los Angeles Clippers on Monday night.

BUCKS ROUT SHORT-HANDED HEAT 124-102 WITHOUT ANTETOKOUNMPO

MILWAUKEE (AP) It wasn’t exactly a revenge game for the Milwaukee Bucks, though it felt good.

Pat Connaughton made seven 3-pointers and scored 23 points, and the Bucks avenged an embarrassing loss from the second game of the season, beating the Heat 124-102 on Saturday night despite playing without Giannis Antetokounmpo.

Milwaukee led by as many as 31 points against a depleted Heat team missing Jimmy Butler and Bam Adebayo due to injuries. Antetokounmpo sat out with a right calf injury.

The Heat routed Milwaukee 137-95 in Miami but the Bucks dominated this time behind Khris Middleton, Connaughton and Jrue Holiday.

“We just wanted to go out there and build good habits, just be the best team we can on a day-to-day basis,” said Bucks center Bobby Portis, who had 19 points and a career high-tying 16 rebounds. “It’s not about the Miami Heat and us playing against them.”

Connaughton was 7 of 13 on 3s, tying his career high, and Middleton had 22 points, nine assists and six rebounds in 30 minutes. Holiday scored all of his 16 points in the first half as Milwaukee sprinted to a 17-point lead at intermission.

“I thought he was great,” Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. “We needed that burst out of the gate. We got a little bit of separation in the first quarter (34-23) which I thought was important.”

The Bucks extended their lead to 105-76 after three quarters as Middleton and Portis took over.

DeMarcus Cousins added 11 points in his second game with the Bucks and Thanasis Antetokounmpo had 10. Cousins joined the team earlier in the week to help make up for the absence of Brook Lopez, out indefinitely after undergoing back surgery.

“He’s another big that we really needed,” Portis said. “We were thin on big men and he came in and did his thing. We can feed him in the post and he’s a great passer. He can shoot the ball and get to the free throw line. He can do a lot of things and he’s still a force.”

Max Strus scored 25 points for Miami, making five 3-pointers. Caleb Martin had 16 points and Herro scored 15.

The Bucks scored 26 second-chance points and outscored Miami in the paint, 48-26. Milwaukee also did a solid job on Herro and Duncan Robinson, who were a combined 8 for 27 from the field.

RINGING OUT

P.J. Tucker played a huge role in the Bucks’ playoff run to the NBA title last season, and he received a thunderous standing ovation from the Fiserv Forum crowd as he received his championship ring prior to the game.

The 36-year-old forward, who played physical defense against Brooklyn’s Kevin Durant in the Eastern Conference semifinals, is now making an impact as Miami’s starting power forward.

“It’s been a great fit,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. “We have a lot of similar values in how we view competition. We’ve been a fan of his for a long time.

“Tonight is a special night as well. He was a big key to their championship run last year, and we want to celebrate that with him. It’s the toughest thing to do in this profession, to come collectively together and try to win a championship.”

Tucker soaked in the moment as he received his ring and said, “I love you forever, Milwaukee. We’ll always be dogs.”

WELCOME BACK

Veteran guard Wesley Matthews was back with the Bucks after signing a one-year deal Friday. The former Marquette player, who was with the Los Angeles Lakers last season, had not signed with any NBA team this season.

Matthews averaged 7.4 points and shot 36.4% from 3-point range in 67 games (all starts) with Milwaukee during the 2019-20 season.

“Wesley is a guy who always takes pride in taking the best perimeter player on the other team,” Bucks coach Mike Budenholzer said. “He has incredible attention to detail and is a focused defender. Offensively, he has ability to spread the court and make shots, make 3s. I think we really need him and he’s going to help us in the short term and the long term, too.”

Matthews played 11 minutes and had three points.

TIP-INS

Heat: Butler missed his fourth straight game after injuring his tailbone in a fall against the Chicago Bulls on Nov. 27. Butler leads Miami in scoring at 23.6 points per game. Adebayo is sidelined with a torn ligament in his right thumb.

Bucks: Giannis Antetokounmpo missed his second consecutive game with a right calf injury and starting guard Grayson Allen was out with illness. Veteran backup guard George Hill also was out with a right knee injury and two-way player Javonte Smart filled in as the backup point guard and had eight points in 29 minutes in his NBA debut. … Rookie Sandro Mamukelashvili made his first NBA start. … Antetokounmpo had played in all 21 games prior to Wednesday night in Toronto, when he sat out in Milwaukee’s 97-93 loss. . Team officials surprised retired broadcaster Jim Paschke by dedicating the Bucks interview room in his name. Paschke retired earlier this year after 35 years with the team.

GRIZZLIES HANG ON TO BEAT MAVERICKS 97-90 AFTER 73-POINT WIN

DALLAS (AP) The next time the Memphis Grizzlies trail in what is expected to be about two weeks without Ja Morant will be the first.

Desmond Bane scored a career-high 29 points, and the Grizzlies held on to beat the Dallas Mavericks 97-90 on Saturday night in their first game since setting an NBA record with a 73-point victory.

Tyus Jones had 16 points and seven assists for the Grizzlies, who haven’t trailed at all while going 4-0 since Morant, their star guard and leading scorer, was sidelined with a left knee sprain.

Memphis is the first team in the 25 seasons of the statistic being tracked to lead at least four consecutive games without even being tied after 0-0, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.

“I think we’ve been getting off to good starts,” said Bane, who was 12 of 20 from the field. “We’ve been playing well on the defensive side, and that’s been allowing us to get out and run. That’s our best offense. The more we can get stops and get out in transition, the more I like our chances.”

The Mavericks dropped to 0-4 this season without young sensation Luka Doncic. They were also missing his European sidekick, Kristaps Porzingis, and lost their fourth consecutive game without their top two scorers going back to last season.

Dallas had little punch offensively until it was too late in a fourth consecutive home loss, shooting 34% in their second game since setting a franchise record at 68.7% in a 32-point victory at New Orleans.

Tim Hardaway Jr. scored 20 of his 29 points in the fourth quarter for the Mavericks, who cut a 15-point deficit to five in the final five minutes but couldn’t get closer.

“You can get discouraged when you’re not playing well at home,” Dallas coach Jason Kidd said. “I think the mental part is strong because it would be easy for them to let go of the rope, having the built-in excuse of no Luka and no (Porzingis) and end up losing by 20. But those guys that were in uniform fought and gave themselves a chance to get back in the game.”

Steven Adams had 11 points and 13 rebounds, and Jaren Jackson Jr. scored 13 points for Memphis.

Doncic sat the second night of a back-to-back with left ankle soreness, which Kidd said was related to a sprain of his ankle, along with his left knee, sustained almost three weeks ago. Kidd said the two-time All-Star had an MRI but wouldn’t reveal the results.

“It’s just been a busy stretch of games for us,” Kidd said before the game. “So we’ll see how he feels tomorrow.”

The oft-injured Porzingis was out for a second consecutive game with a left knee contusion.

Two nights after a 152-79 victory at home against Oklahoma City, Memphis went up 10 points in the first six minutes and led by as many as 17 before holding on late and improving to a season-best three games over .500 (13-10).

“The first couple of possessions our activity, especially defensively, has been good for us,” coach Taylor Jenkins said. “That has allowed us to play with confidence on the offensive end. I think our spacing and ball movement is getting better, and now we are making some shots.”

The Mavericks have lost consecutive home games on either side of the victory at New Orleans that was the best shooting night in the NBA in almost 24 years. Dallas is at 37% in the two games since then, including a 107-91 loss to the Pelicans to finish a home-and-home set.

TIP-INS

Grizzlies: F Brandon Clarke was out with right knee soreness, while rookie F Ziaire Williams, the 10th pick in the draft, missed his third consecutive game with left knee soreness. Coach Taylor Jenkins indicated both could return soon. … Bane’s previous career high was 28 at Utah on Nov. 22.

Mavericks: C Willie Cauley-Stein missed his fourth consecutive game, the past three of which have been for personal reasons. … G Frank Ntilikina (right calf strain) played for the first time since Nov. 21, scoring three points in 13 minutes. He was active a night earlier against New Orleans but didn’t play.

HOW SWEET IT IS

Bane, who spent four years on the other side of the Dallas-Fort Worth area at TCU, scored 11 points in the fourth quarter to help keep the lead comfortable until a late Dallas surge. He also set a career best with nine rebounds.

The 30th pick in the 2020 draft uses all the teams that passed on him as motivation, but that’s especially true with the franchise closest to his college home. “I’m glad we got the win tonight, let me just say that,” Bane said.

FILLING DONCIC’S SHOES

Jalen Brunson, starting in place of Doncic when he normally replaces him off the bench, was just 7 of 21 from the field, including a missed jumper that could have pulled Dallas within three with a minute remaining. He had 15 points and eight assists.

UP NEXT

Grizzlies: At Miami on Monday to complete the season series. The Heat won the first meeting.

Mavericks: Kevin Durant, James Harden and the Brooklyn Nets visit Tuesday. Dallas swept the two-game series last season, but Durant missed the first game and Harden the second.

DAVIS’ 28 LEAD KINGS TO 2ND STRAIGHT WIN OVER CLIPPERS

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) Terence Davis scored 23 of his 28 points in the second half and the Sacramento Kings beat the Los Angeles Clippers for the second time in four nights with a 104-99 victory Saturday.

Davis made all four of his 3-point attempts in the third quarter and finished 6 of 11 from beyond the arc.

“I think he’s getting a little more comfortable in stuff,” Kings interim coach Alvin Gentry said. “I think with him, the whole idea is behind what is a good shot and what is not, or when do you shoot it and when do you not shoot it. I think he did a good job tonight of picking those opportunities.”

Tyrese Haliburton added 18 points, six rebounds and five assists for Sacramento, which beat the Clippers 124-115 on Wednesday in Los Angeles. De’Aaron Fox had 17 points, seven rebounds and five assists, and Marvin Bagley III recorded his first double-double of the season with 12 points and 11 rebounds.

“When you make shots, everybody’s feeling good,” Haliburton said. “It feels like you’re throwing a rock in the ocean. It feels like everybody’s going and everybody’s having fun. It definitely feels good for us and we’ve just got to keep this momentum going.”

Marcus Morris Sr. led the Clippers with 21 points and nine rebounds. Reggie Jackson added 18 points.

Paul George had 15 points and nine assists, but shot just 5 of 21 from the field. Ivica Zubac had 12 points and 11 rebounds.

“Terence Davis comes in to make six 3s, big shots, and momentum killers,” Clippers coach Tyronn Lue said. “He had a great game – two great games. He was aggressive. Tonight he hurt us.”

Sacramento used a 12-2 run early in the fourth quarter to open its biggest lead of the game at 90-76. Los Angeles answered with nine straight points to get within 90-85, but Davis’ three-point play pushed the lead back to eight with 4:24 remaining.

Morris made a deep 3-pointer with 10.4 seconds remaining to cut the Kings’ lead to 102-99, but Buddy Hield made two free throws to seal the win.

Sacramento held the Clippers to just 38% shooting from the field, including 13 of 34 from 3-point range. The Kings shot 42%.

“I thought defensively, obviously, we were really good,” Gentry said. “We have to try to get to that consistent level where we’re doing it every night.”

Los Angeles opened the game on a 9-2 run and led by as many as eight in the first half. Sacramento went on a 10-0 run late in the second quarter to take a 50-45 lead into halftime.

IT’S BEEN A WHILE

The Kings’ win marked their first home victory against the Clippers since March 19, 2013, snapping a 15-game losing streak.

TIP-INS

Clippers: Nicolas Batum missed his eighth straight game in the league’s health and safety protocols, but Lue said that he was nearing a return. … Morris was assessed a technical foul in the third quarter.

Kings: Harrison Barnes (right foot sprain) missed his fifth straight game and Moe Harkless (left knee soreness) missed his fourth straight. Gentry was hopeful both could play next game. … Bagley returned to the lineup after missing two games with a non-COVID-19 illness. … Chimezie Metu had a career-high five blocks.

UP NEXT

Clippers: At Portland on Monday night.

Kings: Host Orlando on Wednesday night.

OVECHKIN BEATS TARASOV FOR 750TH GOAL, CAPITALS TOP COLUMBUS

WASHINGTON (AP) Alex Ovechkin found a new goaltender to score on for another milestone goal, though this time the name rang a bell.

Ovechkin beat Daniil Tarasov for his 20th goal of the season and 750th of his NHL career to help the Washington Capitals beat the Columbus Blue Jackets 3-1 Saturday night and snap a two-game skid.

“I think I play against his father back in Russia,” Ovechkin said.

He wasn’t joking. Ovechkin went up against against Vadim Tarasov during three seasons in the Russian Superleague from 2002-05 before coming to North America. His son is the 152nd goalie Ovechkin has scored against in the NHL.

Daniil Tarasov remembers growing up watching Ovechkin. That was more fun than trying to stop a shot from the best goal-scorer of this generation.

“It’s pretty hard,” Tarasov said. “I think all goalies say he has one of the hardest shots in the league.”

Ovechkin became the second-fastest player to reach the 750-goal mark, doing so in his 1,222nd regular-season game. Wayne Gretzky, whose record of 894 Ovechkin is chasing, got to 750 in 1,001 games.

“It’s a pretty cool number,” Ovechkin said. “Just keep going.”

Ovechkin reached the 20-goal mark in his 25th game of the season. The Capitals’ captain joined Marcel Dionne, Jaromir Jagr and Mats Sundin as the only players to score 20 or more goals in each of his first 17 seasons in the NHL.

After ending a two-game goal drought, Ovechkin now trails Jagr by 16 goals for third on the career list. The 36-year-old Russian superstar needs one more on the power play to tie Dave Andreychuk for the most power-play goals in league history.

Capitals rookie Aliaksei Protas scored his second career goal by following his own rebound in the first. Garnet Hathaway sealed it with an empty-netter with 1:27 remaining in regulation.

Tarasov, playing his second game for Columbus after making his NHL debut Thursday at Dallas, gave up a lot of rebounds early before settling down. He denied Washington’s Connor McMichael with a sliding right-pad stop late in the second, the most impressive of his 29 saves on 31 shots.

“It’s more comfortable when you have a lot of shots,” Tarasov said. “It’s much easier to play, so you just be focused on the game, don’t thinking about wrong things in your head. You just keep it in the game.”

Capitals goalie Ilya Samsonov made 17 saves for his 10th win in 11 starts this season. He was at his best when the Blue Jackets tilted the ice toward him during a penalty kill in the first, and Samsonov turned aside Zach Werenski on a point-blank scoring chance soon after when play returned to 5-on-5.

Despite missing center Nic Dowd and defenseman Trevor van Riemsdyk because they’re in league COVID-19 protocol, the Capitals got a boost with the return of wingers T.J. Oshie and Conor Sheary after matching six-game absences. Oshie had missed 16 of the previous 17 games with lower-body injuries.

“They’re both key players for us,” Ovechkin said. “Obviously we’re going right now through injuries, through COVID protocol, but different guys come in and stepping up.”

Eric Robinson scored the only goal of the night for the the Blue Jackets, who lost their fourth in a row in regulation. They have been outscored 18-6 during this losing streak.

“We’re learning some hard lessons here,” said Columbus’ Brad Larsen, one of four active NHL head coaches who played against Ovechkin. “No one’s going to come hand you a game. They’re not. You got to go get it, and you’re going to have to find a way and grind through not just for 10 minutes or 12 minutes. It’s going to have to be shift after shift.”

NOTES: Defenseman Matt Irwin made his Capitals debut, dressing for the first time this season. … Capitals winger Daniel Sprong was a healthy scratch for the third time in four games. … Forward Gregory Hofmann replaced Jack Roslovic in the Blue Jackets lineup. Roslovic was a healthy scratch for the first time this season. … Players from the National Women’s Soccer League champion Washington Spirit received a standing ovation when shown on video screens. Ovechkin and wife Nastya are part of the Spirit’s ownership group.

UP NEXT

Blue Jackets: Return home to face the San Jose Sharks on Sunday.

Capitals: Continue their four-game home stand Monday against the Anaheim Ducks.

TOP INDIANA NEWS/RELEASES

HOOSIERS HANDLE HUSKERS IN BIG TEN OPENER

BLOOMINGTON, Ind. – Bench to the rescue?

You’d better believe.

During Saturday afternoon’s Big Ten opener against Nebraska, with Indiana’s starters struggling and turnovers multiplying, coach Mike Woodson didn’t hesitate.

He went to the second unit.

The result — a 10-point early deficit morphed into a 68-55 victory at Simon Skjodt Assembly Hall. The Hoosiers (7-1) bounced back from their double-overtime loss at Syracuse four days earlier.

“We came out very slow and not into the game,” Woodson said. “We were flat. It’s the first time I’ve seen that. I tried to let them play themselves out of it.”

It soon became apparent that wouldn’t work.

In came Anthony Leal, Rob Phinisee, Tamar Bates, Jordan Geronimo and Michael Durr. Their impact was immediate.

“I had to change it up,” Woodson said. “Our bench was fantastic.”

Added starting forward Race Thompson: “We believe in them and trust them to make plays. That’s what makes a good team.”

This was a huge turnaround considering the bench was basically a no-show at Syracuse.

“That’s what it’s all about,” Bates said. “It’s how we respond to adversity. We didn’t play as well (at Syracuse). We talked about it. We wanted to make sure provided a spark.”

IU had a 26-17 advantage in bench points. It’s the result, Woodson said, of fiercely competitive practices.

“The second unit pushes the first unit,” Woodson said. “In scrimmages, there have been times the second unit has won. They do not succumb to the first unit.

“It showed today. They did what they’re supposed to do. I played Anthony and those guys like nine to 10 minutes straight.”

Consider Leal, who had only played in three games, and not at all in the last two.

He finished with three points, two assists and a steal. His plus-minus impact of 9 was third on the team to Bates’ 16 and Thompson’s 12.

“Nothing was holding him back,” Thompson said. “He is searching for a spot. We have a lot of good players at guard.

“You see him every day going 125%. He deserves this. None of us are surprised. Hopefully he can keep it going.”

Added Woodson: “He’s been very competitive in practice. I came in know I would play him. He responded. That was nice to see.”

No Hoosier responded more effectively than Bates, whose 13 points included three three-pointers. He had 11 points in 11 first-half minutes, which helped propel IU from a 10-point deficit to a four-point halftime lead.

Misses, he said, don’t bother him.

“I will keep shooting. I can miss 10 threes. I will shoot No. 11.

“It’s staying confident and believing in myself and knowing my teammates believe in me. They keep swinging it to me.”

Woodson wouldn’t want it any other way.

“He’s not scared of the moment. He’ll take a big shot. Sometimes it’s a bad shot. I like everything about him. That’s why he’s here.”

Forward Trayce Jackson-Davis, after scoring 43 and 31 points in his previous two games, finished with 14 along with seven rebounds.

Thompson had 11 points and 11 rebounds for his sixth career double-double while exploiting his size advantage.

“He’s played that way all season,” Woodson said. “They were playing small ball. We tried posting him against a smaller guy. That’s something we will explore if teams play our 4s with smaller people. You’ve got to exploit it.”

IU’s victory hopes started with cutting down the turnovers. Committing 25 against Syracuse lifted its season average to 16.7, five more than Woodson wanted.

Yet, despite the practice emphasis, the Hoosiers turned it over on the game’s first possession. They had six in the first eight minutes, 11 at halftime. They settled down in the second half and finished with 15.

“All we could do is talk about it,” Woodson said. “We show it on film. When you play offense, don’t give it to the defense. You play offense to score and have fun while doing it.

“We got a little better in the second half. We were able to build a lead by not turning it over. It all goes hand in hand.”

IU’s three-point defense at home remains solid. It its last four home games, it’s held opponents to 19.4 percent from beyond the arc.

After four minutes, IU was just 1-for-6 from the field with two turnovers. Nebraska (5-4) jumped to a 9-2 lead.

Turnovers mounted. The deficit grew along with missed shots. After eight minutes, IU trailed 14-4.

Then the bench started asserting itself. Bates hit a jumper, then hit a pair of three-pointers. Leal had a three-pointer. Dorr and Geronimo scored inside.

A Thompson steal and dunk tied it at 20-20. Bates’ second three-pointer pushed the Hoosiers ahead 23-20.

IU ratcheted up its defense. Nebraska was just 3-for-13 in the last 10 minutes. An off-balance Bates three-pointer helped give the Hoosiers a 26-22 halftime lead.

The Hoosiers opened the second half with a Parker Stewart three-pointer and a steal and basket by Xavier Johnson for a 31-24 lead. They got it to eight. Phinisee three-point and two-point baskets, and a monster dunk from Thompson, made it 43-30.

Stewart ended a 6-0 Nebraska run with a three-pointer, then followed it a few minutes later with another three. IU led 51-36.

Nebraska surged back to within seven. Jackson-Davis had a pair of free throws and an inside basket. Xavier Johnson hit two throws. IU was up 59-46, and had control it never lost.

IU, which is 7-0 at home this season, will end the early Big Ten schedule run with a trip to No. 21/23 Wisconsin (6-1) on Wednesday.

“Our goal is not to lose at home,” Woodson said. “We’ll figure it out on the road.”

WRESTLING PLACES SEVEN, FINISHES SIXTH AT CKLV

LAS VEGAS, Nev. – Senior Devin Schroder became Purdue wrestling’s fifth three-time placewinner at the Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational on Saturday, posting his second career runner-up performance and leading the Boilermakers to a sixth-place team showing with 85.5 points. Schroder was one of a program record seven placewinners at the event, surpassing the previous mark of five achieved in 2004 and 2019.

Purdue amassed 85.5 team points over the two-day tournament at the Las Vegas Convention Center, marking the fourth time the Boilermakers have scored more than 80 points at CKLV (2004, 2008, 2019), and their second straight top-six finish at the historically prestigious tournament.

Schroder secured his place in the finals with a come-from-behind 8-6 win over Oregon State’s Brandon Kaylor in the semifinals, rallying from a 5-1 deficit in the second period to secure his 10th win of the season. He posted two takedowns in the second period to pull within one, and then scored a takedown and a ride-out to finish the rally. In the finals Schroder was bested by second-ranked and top-seeded Patrick Glory of Princeton.

Junior Thomas Penola finished off an incredible tournament, picking up five day-two wins on his way to a third-place effort at 197 pounds. He opened Saturday with a major decision over Stanford’s Nick Stemmet to secure his spot on the podium, and then continued climbing with wins over No. 8 seed Jacob Cardenas of Cornell and No. 5 seed Louis Deprez of Binghamton. Both matches came down to the wire as he needed overtime to take out Cardenas and secured a takedown in the final 30 seconds in his win over Deprez. After a medical forfeit from Michigan’s Patrick Brucki, Penola squared off with top-seeded and sixth-ranked Jake Woodley of Oklahoma in the third-place match. Woodley built a 4-1 lead in the first period, but Penola recovered with a four-point move in the second period and an escape to start the third period as he picked up the 6-5 decision and his team-best 13th win of the season.

Senior Parker Filius and junior Kendall Coleman took sixth place at 141 and 157 pounds, respectively, while senior Max Lyon finished seventh at 184 pounds and freshman Matt Ramos and sophomore Gerrit Nijenhuis were eighth at 133 and 174. Senior Michael Woulfe came up just shy of the heavyweight podium, advancing to the blood round where he suffered an 8-6 loss to No. 8 seed Joe Doyle of Binghamton.

The Boilermakers are off next weekend, and return to action December 19, facing No. 13 Iowa State at Humboldt High School in Humboldt, Iowa. The north central Iowa town is home to both Purdue head coach Tony Ersland and Cyclone head coach Kevin Dresser.

Cliff Keen Las Vegas Invitational

Las Vegas Convention Center

SIXTH PLACE – 85.5 POINTS

Team Scores

1: Nebraska – 125

2: Ohio State – 104

3: Michigan – 94.5

4: Northwestern – 91.5

4: Wyoming – 91.5

6: PURDUE – 85.5

7: Cornell – 81

8: Oregon State – 79

9: Princeton – 63.5

10: Cal Poly – 60.5

125: #2 Devin Schroder (R-Senior) – SECOND PLACE

Round 1: Jack Creamer (Oklahoma) – W, TF 17-2 (7:00)

Round 2: Yusief Lillie (Utah Valley) – W, TF 18-0 (3:00)

Quarterfinals: #7 Jacob Allen (Navy) – W, D 1-0

Semifinals: #6 Brandon Kaylor (Oregon State) – W, D 8-6

Finals: #1 Pat Glory (Princeton)

133: #6 Matt Ramos (R-Freshman) – EIGHTH PLACE

Round 1: Josh Koderhandt (Navy) – L, D 7-2

Conso. Round 2: Nick Masters (Princeton) – W, Fall 0:43

Conso. Round 3: Anthony Petrillo (Sacred Heart) – W, D 4-1

Round of 12: #2 Chance Rich (Cal State Bakersfield) – W, MFF

Consolation Quarterfinals: Josh Koderhandt (Navy) – L, D 7-0

7th-Place Match: #10 Anthony Sobotker (Binghamton) – L, D 5-4

141: #5 Parker Filius (R-Senior) – SIXTH PLACE

Round 1: Tyler Hunt (Navy) – W, D 8-3

Round 2: Michael Zarif (Binghamton) – W, D 2-0

Quarterfinals: #4 Grant Willits (Oregon State) – W, D 9-4

Semifinals: #1 Clay Carlson (South Dakota State) – L, D 6-1

Consolation Semifinals: Cole Mattin (Michigan) – L, Fall 3:21

5th-Place Match: #4 Grant Willits (Oregon State) – L, Fall 6:28

149: Trey Kruse (Sophomore)

Round 1: #10 Cory Crooks (Oregon State) – L, MD 13-5

Conso. Round 1: Sam Turner (Nebraska-Kearney) – L, MD 8-0

157: #4 Kendall Coleman (R-Junior) – SIXTH PLACE

Round 1: Logan Gumble (Binghamton) – W, Fall 4:03

Round 2: Kenny O’Neil (South Dakota State) – W, D 8-2

Quarterfinals: #5 Jacob Wright (Wyoming) – W, D 7-5

Semifinals: #1 Ryan Deakin (Northwestern) – L, Fall 2:55

Consolation Semifinals: #7 Will Lewan (Michigan) – MFF

5th-Place Match: #3 Peyton Robb (Nebraska) – MFF

165: Emil Soehnlen (R-Sophomore)

Round 1: Bye

Round 2: #3 Carson Kharchla (Ohio State) – L, TF 20-5 (6:30)

Conso. Round 2: Clayton Wilson (Nebraska) – L, Fall 2:23

174: #7 Gerrit Nijenhuis (Sophomore) – EIGHTH PLACE

Round 1: Kekana Fouret (Utah Valley) – W, D 5-4

Round 2: #10 Anthony Mantanona (Oklahoma) – W, D 8-6

Quarterfinals: #2 Ethan Smith (Ohio State) – L, MD 14-6

Round of 12: #12 Tyler Eischens (Stanford) – W, Fall 4:50

Consolation Quarterfinals: #6 Troy Fisher (Northwestern) – L, D 8-4

7th-Place Match: #4 Hayden Hastings (Wyoming) – L, MD 11-2

184: #6 Max Lyon (R-Senior) – SEVENTH PLACE

Round 1: Jackson McKinney (Oregon State) – W, D 12-5

Round 2: Colin McCracken (Kent State) – W, D 6-2

Quarterfinals: #3 Jonathan Loew (Cornell) – L, D 6-3

Round of 12: Jacob Hansen (Cal State Bakersfield) – W, D 9-5

Consolation Quarterfinals: #7 Travis Stefanik (Princeton) – L, D 10-6

7th-Place Match: Jacob Armstrong (Utah Valley) – W, Injury Default (0:22)

197: #6 Thomas Penola (R-Junior) – THIRD PLACE

Round 1: Nick Marcenelle (Harvard) – W, MD 22-10

Round 2: #11 Alan Clothier (Northern Colorado) – L, D 3-2

Conso. Round 2: Arick Lopez (Cal Baptist) – W, MD 11-3

Conso. Round 3: #14 Nick Stemmet (Stanford) – W, MD 13-5

Round of 12: #8 Jacob Cardenas (Cornell) – W, SV 3-1

Consolation Quarterfinals: #5 Louis DePrez (Binghamton) – W, D 7-5

Consolation Semifinals: #2 Patrick Brucki (Michigan) – W, MFF

3rd-Place Match: #1 Jake Woodley (Oklahoma) – W, D 6-5

285: Michael Woulfe (R-Senior)

Round 1: #5 Lucas Davison (Northwestern) – L, SV 4-2

Conso. Round 2: Nick Copley (Sacred Heart) – W, TF 16-0 (4:19)

Conso. Round 3: Jacob Cover (Kent State) – W, TB 2-1

Round of 12: #8 Joe Doyle (Binghamton) – L, D 8-6

All numbers represent tournament seeds

VOLLEYBALL’S NCAA RUNS ENDS AT TOP-SEEDED LOUISVILLE

LOUISVILLE, Ky. – – The Ball State women’s volleyball team saw its magical season come to an end Saturday evening with a 3-0 (29-27. 25-11, 25-19) loss at top-seeded Louisville in the second round of the NCAA Division I Women’s Volleyball Championship.

However, the BSU Cardinals (30-4) did not make it easy for the top ranked UofL Cardinals (30-0), trading body blows in a thrilling opening set which saw the hosts escape with a 29-27 victory.

“I don’t think I learned anything new about our team,” head coach Kelli Miller Phillips said when asked about playing the nation’s top team. “I think it just reinforced what I do know about this team; that we don’t back down from any challenge. We are excited for opportunities, and I did not think that we played at all tentative, we were ourselves and we play the best version that we could versus a really good number one seeded Louisville team.”

Louisville had three early set-points, pulling ahead 24-21, but Ball State would not go down quietly, starting with a block from junior middle Marie Plitt and freshman setter Megan Wielonski. That pressure forced an attack error on the next rally, while Plitt followed with a kill after a UofL timeout to tie the score at 24.

Louisville scored the next point, for its fourth set point, but graduate student outside attacker Jaclyn Bulmahn found the L&N Arena floor on the next play to even the score. Then, an UofL attack error gave BSU a chance to close out the set ahead 26-25.

BSU could not capitalize on the opportunity, or on another at 27-26, and Louisville went on to win the set at 29-27.

“I think our first set speaks to the competitiveness of our group,” Phillips said. “It doesn’t matter who’s on the other side of the court, we belong because we’ve earned the right to be in this position. We feel confident in who we are. It takes a lot of people, a lot of time, and a lot of hard work to be in the position that we’re in. We were going to enjoy it and we did that. And certainly, we’d like a different outcome, but with all things considered, we competed. That’s the type of people we have in this program; ultimate competitors not afraid of whatever challenge is going to be ahead.”

Unfortunately, Ball State could not quite capture the opening-set magic the rest of the night as Louisville won the next two frames to snap BSU’s winning streak at a program-record tying 20 matches.

Despite the season-ending loss, Ball State finished the year with 30 wins for just the fourth time in program history and set a program record with a .882 (30-4) winning percentage. It was a solid year for the Cardinals, who look to return all but three players from this season’s squad.

“We’re returning a large group and they are still in a position where we’re just not satisfied with being here,” Phillips added. “We want to continue to get better, but they have a great perspective and the ability to soak in a moment and enjoy it. They understand we want to get better, we want more, and we’ll continue to fight for more. Our goals will continue to be high, and we will continue to push the envelope and raise our goals every single year.”

One night after smashing a career-high 20 kills in a five-set win over Michigan, BSU’s second over a Big Ten opponent this season, Plitt once again led the offense with seven kills. She also tallied a team-best three total blocks and a pair of digs.

While Louisville was able to limit the Ball State attack to a .057 (29-23-105) attack percentage in the match, it did not stop BSU from finishing the season with a program-record .265 attack percentage.

Leading the way was sophomore middle Lauren Gilliland who finished the season pacing the Mid-American Conference with a .364 attack percentage. Gilliland added six kills in Saturday’s match versus UofL. Pitt was not far behind, ranking second in the MAC with a .360 rate of success on the year.

Rounding out Ball State’s top contributors on offense versus Louisville were junior opposite Natalie Mitchem with six kills, Bulmahn with four and sophomore outside Cait Snyder going a perfect 3-for-3.

On the defensive end, Ball State turned in another solid effort by limiting the nation’s fourth-ranked offense to a .240 (39-16-96) rate of success. UofL entered the tournament with a .303 attack percentage.

Junior libero Maggie Huber led the way with 10 digs, while junior outside Natalie Risi was second on the squad with eight to go along with her two kills.

Wielonski was right behind with seven digs, including six in the opening set which saw BSU force 12 UofL attack errors and hold the hosts to a .128 (18-12-47) hitting mark.

Wielonski also dished out 26 assists and added three more service aces to her season total, finishing the year with 58. The total ties as the sixth-best single season mark in program history.

Despite the strong defensive effort, Aiko Jones led the top-ranked Cardinals with 10 kills, while Anna DeBeer was right behind with nine. UofL libero Elena Scott added a match-high 15 digs.

The Ball State women’s volleyball team ends the season as the MAC regular season and tournament champions and earned just the third NCAA tournament victory in program history Friday versus Michigan.

IRISH PUNCH TICKET TO COLLEGE CUP IN THRILLER

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — The No. 4-seed Fighting Irish are College Cup bound after advancing past No. 5-seed Pittsburgh in penalty kicks (4-2) on Saturday night in front of a packed crowd at Alumni Stadium.

Notre Dame will head to Cary, N.C. for the program’s second College Cup appearance in the past eight seasons, and first for head coach Chad Riley.

Goalkeeper Bryan Dowd produced the heroics, making two saves in the shootout to send the Irish to the semifinals.

The Irish goal was scored in the 67th minute, as an Ethan O’Brien free kick was headed in by Paddy Burns to level the game at 1-1.

Notre Dame will play the winner of Oregon State and Clemson, a match that is played later on Saturday evening. The two semifinal matches will take place at WakeMed Soccer Park in Cary, North Carolina on Friday, Dec. 10 at 6 p.m. ET and 8:30 p.m. ET and will air on ESPNU.

HOW IT HAPPENED 

The Irish were on the front in the opening stages of play, asking questions early and putting pressure on the Pitt defense. However, it was the Panthers who struck first, scoring the opener in the 25th minute to take a 1-0 lead. The goal came when an errant Pitt shot that was redirected in from Guilherme Feitosa.

Notre Dame pushed for the equalizer for the rest of the first half but were unable to find the back of the net, as they trailed 1-0 at the halftime intermission.

Ben Giacobello nearly found Lynn with a dangerous cross but it just went over Lynn’s head in the 51st minute.

Fifteen minutes later the Irish leveled the score at 1-1, sending the Alumni Stadium crowd into a frenzy. Burns earned a free kick on the left flank in the attacking third. O’Brien served in a delicious ball and Burns jumped, spun in air, and glanced his header to beat the Pitt keeper.

Notre Dame nearly found the winner towards the end of regulation but the match headed to overtime.

The Irish had a golden chance in the first overtime session, as Dawson McCartney fired a shot on target but the Panthers’ keeper made a diving stop to keep the visitor’s season alive. No team was able to break the deadlock in the second overtime, sending the match to penalties to decide which side would advance to Cary, North Carolina.

Notre Dame scored all four of its attempts, as Jack Lynn, Burns, McCartney and Philip Quinton converted from the spot. Pitt was successful on its first two attempts before Dowd made back-to-back saves to send the Irish to the College Cup with a 4-2 shootout win.

McFARLAND FAMILY MEN’S HEAD SOCCER COACH CHAD RILEY’S TAKE

On the performance…

“I’m so proud of the team and so happy for them. Nights like this aren’t about the coaches as we talked to the players before the game. It was their night. Like they have done so many times they stepped up and put in an unbelievable performance. You just knew they weren’t going to be denied tonight. We played well but didn’t get the winning goal in regulation or OT but they are confident in penalties and knew how to finish the job.”

On fighting back after trailing for the first time in the tournament…

“I think we knew that would be the response but we hadn’t had that moment in tournament play yet so we knew it would be an important moment for us and I think they really excelled. There was no panic at halftime and they refocused. They turned up the volume in the second half and we were all over [Pitt].”

On the team’s ability to win shootouts…

“I don’t know, they just have that belief. They have prepared well. I give them a lot of credit in their preparation, they take it very seriously and do a great job and have that belief.”

On the crowd and atmosphere at Alumni Stadium…

“It means so much. I want to thank all the students and community for coming out to the game. I honestly don’t know if I have coached or played in front of a better, more vocal, crowd that was supporting our team tonight and I know it meant a huge deal. I can’t thank everyone enough for coming out, especially the students. It is a busy time and they came out and supported their classmates and it means the world to them.”

ND NOTES

The Irish improve to 22-20-3 in NCAA Tournament matches in program history.

Notre Dame is now 21-7-3 against Pitt in the all-time matchup, winning all three matches this season.

The Irish advance to the NCAA College Cup for the second time in program history and first time in Riley’s career.

Notre Dame has allowed just one goal over the last seven matches, all coming in NCAA or ACC tournament play.

The Irish defensive scoreless streak ended at 650 minutes of match play, the longest stretch since the program joined a conference during the 1988 season.

Notre Dame hasn’t allowed a goal in the second half of a game since Virginia scored in the last minute of a Notre Dame 2-1 victory on Oct. 1.

Burns’ goal was the sophomores third of the season and second of the NCAA Championships.

Dowd has allowed just two of eight penalty attempts taken against him this season to be converted, making five saves.

UP NEXT

The Irish travel to Cary, North Carolina, for the College Cup and will face the winner of the No. 1 Oregon State vs. No. 8 Clemson matchup that will be played later this evening. The NCAA semifinals will be played on Friday, Dec. 10 at 6 p.m. ET and 8:30 p.m. ET. Both matches will air on ESPNU.

LEIVERMANN AND ROLSTON LEAD #8 IRISH PAST #18 OHIO STATE 5-1

SOUTH BEND, Ind. — No. 8 Notre Dame used first period goals by Nick Leivermann and Ryder Rolston to build a 2-0 lead en route to defeating No. 18 Ohio State 5-1 on Saturday night at the Compton Family Ice Arena (5,117) to close out the weekend series with a split.

Leivermann and Rolston each notched a goal and an assist for the Irish who improved to 11-4-0 on the year (5-3-0-2-0-0 B1G).

I thought we played a good 60-minute hockey game,” head coach Jeff Jackson said. “We’re getting scoring from every line, it was good to see the power play have success and the penalty kill got back on track tonight and if you’re going to win you need to have good special teams.”

Five different skaters each tallied a goal for the Irish for the second time this season (Oct. 9 vs. Long Island).

The Irish finished with a 40-25 shot advantage as Ryan Bischel collected 24 saves for Notre Dame while Ohio State’s Jakub Dobeš made 27 stops in net and Ryan Snowden had eight saves in relief for the Buckeyes.

Notre Dame was 2-for-3 on the power play including Jesse Lansdell’s first career power-play goal. The Irish were also 5-for-5 on the penalty kill.

How It Happened

Notre Dame started fast and struck first on a Nick Leivermann goal that snuck across the goal line at 4:08 of the first period, with assists from Ryder Rolston and Grant Silianoff.

The Irish earned their first power play of the night after an Ohio State minor. Rolston followed with a goal immediately following the penalty after the Irish won the faceoff in Ohio State territory and Max Ellis and Leivermann set up the score at 5:51.

The Buckeyes cut the advantage to 2-1 on a Jaedon Leslie goal at 7:37 off a faceoff win from Dalton Messina. 

A second power play came just over eight minutes into the period for the Irish, but the Buckeyes held tough. A scoreless next 11 minutes would ensue, and the Irish headed into the first intermission with a 2-1 lead.

Early in the second period an Irish penalty gave the Buckeyes their first power play attempt of the night, but a save by Bischel just before the Irish were back to full strength killed off the OSU effort.

Credit the Slaggert brothers with the second period highlight, as their 2-on-1 conversion gave Notre Dame the 3-. A steal by Graham at the defensive blue line sent his brother Landon streaking towards the OSU goal on the opposite side of the ice. Spinning away from the nearest Buckeye, Graham’s lead pass hit Landon in stride and led to a close-range goal over the left shoulder of Dobes.

Not quite five minutes into the third period, a series of quick shots and rebounds from in close ended with a Cam Burke goal, with the assists going to Adam Karashik and Jake Boltmann, putting the Irish up 4-1.

A Buckeye goaltender interference penalty put the Irish on their third power play of the game, and just over a minute later, Jesse Landsell found the back of the net for his fourth goal of the season after two quick passes from Jack Adams and Hunter Strand.

The Irish would commit three more penalties over the remainder of the third period but did not allow the Buckeyes to get any closer.

Notes

With an assist, Max Ellis extended his point streak to nine games (8-5-13).

With a goal and an assist, Ryder Rolston extended his point streak to seven games (5-6-11).

With a goal and an assist, Nick Leivermann extended his point streak to six games (3-6-9).

The Irish are now 7-2-0 at home this season, 8-1-0 when scoring first and 10-0-0 when leading after two periods of play.

Five different skaters each tallied a goal for the Irish for the second time this season (Oct. 9 vs. Long Island).

Jesse Lansdell scored his first career power-play goal.

Next Up

Notre Dame closes out the first semester next weekend by playing host to Michigan State on Dec. 10-11 at the Compton Family Ice Arena (tickets).

Both games will be broadcast on NBCSN, with Friday’s game starting at 7:30 p.m. and Saturday’s game slated for 7 p.m.

LATE LAYUP FROM NEESE PUSHES SYCAMORES PAST MIAMI OHIO, 69-68

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – Xavier Bledson found Cooper Neese on a cut to the basket for the game-winning layup with 1.6 seconds remaining to help the Sycamores to a 69-68 victory over Miami Ohio Saturday afternoon at Hulman Center.

After time expired the RedHawks (5-3) heaved a half-court shot that went in, but a second too late as Indiana State ended a four-game losing streak and improved to 4-5 on the season.

It was a highly contested game that featured 16 lead changes and nine ties. Miami took its largest lead at 56-47 with 13:02 left to play before ISU began to chip away with Neese playing a key role in the comeback with 10 second-half points.

With Miami Ohio leading 58-50 with 9:50 remaining to play, Indiana State reeled off a 10-0 run to take a 60-68 lead. Bledson kickstarted the run with a layup in transition off a MU turnover before Neese answered with a 3-pointer on the fast break to make it a one-possession game at 58-55.

ISU was able to tie the game on a second-chance opportunity after freshman Cameron Crawford corralled a rebound and kicked the ball to an open Micah Thomas on the win to tie the game. Thomas then put the Sycamores ahead with a layup at the 4:30 mark.

Both squads traded baskets as Bledson converted an and-one opportunity to put the Sycamores on top 63-62 before an Elijah McNamara dunk put the RedHawks back in front 64-63 with 1:46 left.

Mekhi Lairy scored the final four points for MU as Crawford and Henry answered with buckets of their own before Neese put ISU in front for good.

Seven Sycamores saw action as Cameron Henry scored a game-high 21 points in the win while also pulling down eight rebounds and dishing five assists. Neese recorded his sixth career 20-point performance as the guard hit four of his 10 3-point attempts. Forward Simon Wilbar joined Henry and Neese in double figures with a 10-point outing. Bledson added seven points, four assists and a trio of rebounds.

Indiana State shot 44.3 percent (27-61) from the field and 28.6 (8-28) from distance while Miami Ohio was 43.1 percent (28-65) from the field and 30 percent (6-20) from deep. The RedHawks won the rebounding battle 38-33 but ISU was able to take advantage of MU miscues, turning 13 turnovers into 16 points.

Lairy led Miami Ohio with 18 points and five rebounds while Dalonte Brown added 15 points and 10 rebounds.

Indiana State returns to action on December 13 when the team travels to Fargo to take on North Dakota State.

GLANTON’S DOUBLE-DOUBLE NOT ENOUGH TO GUIDE SYCAMORES PAST WESTERN MICHIGAN

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. – Indiana State’s second-half rally fell short against Western Michigan on Saturday evening as the Sycamores fell to the visiting Broncos in Hulman Center, 68-67.

Mya Glanton posted her first collegiate double-double with a dominant 22-point, 16-rebound performance to pace the Sycamores (3-5) as Indiana State rallied back from a 15-point third-quarter deficit to tie the game up at 59-59 with 6:06 remaining in the fourth quarter. Del’Janae Williams posted seven steals, three in the fourth quarter, to help provide a late spark in the Sycamores’ full-court defensive set and added 15 points in her third consecutive double-digit scoring effort.

After ISU tied the game up at 59-59 on the Williams layup at the 6:06 mark, the Broncos responded with a 9-0 run over the next four minutes with Reilly Jacobson’s layup at the 2:37 mark giving WMU (5-2) the 68-59 lead.

Indiana State mounted one final comeback late as Glanton and Williams again took the lead with duo combining for six straight points to cut the margin down to three with 1:08 left to play. Tonysha Curry added a layup with 41 seconds left to cut the WMU margin down to one point.

Marie Hunter drew an offensive foul on the ensuing Western Michigan possession to swing possession back to the Sycamores. Out of the timeout, Williams drew the ball in isolation, but her drive was cut short by Jacobson and possession swung back to the Broncos to close out the contest.

Glanton’s 22-point performance gave the Sycamores three consecutive games with a player hitting the 20-point mark, while her 16-rebounds left her just shy of the top-10 mark in the ISU record book. Glanton went 9-of-13 from the floor and 4-of-6 from the free throw line with most of her damage on the glass coming on the offensive end with nine offensive boards.

Williams added 15 points, five assists, and seven steals, while Hunter finished the contest with nine points and three assists in the loss.

Lauren Ross led all players with 25 points in the WMU win as the guard went 9-of-13 from the floor and 2-of-4 from the three-point line. Taylor Williams added 18 points and nine rebounds, while Jacobson finished the game with 11 points and six steals.

First Half

The first quarter swung back-and-forth with neither team able to take more than a six-point lead in the first quarter as Natalia Lalic put the Sycamores up 10-4 with 1:34 left in the frame. The Broncos closed out the quarter on a 7-0 stretch with Hannah Spitzley capping the run with a three-pointer with four seconds remaining to give WMU the 11-10 lead.

The Broncos continued to put the pressure on the Sycamores as the WMU lead reached 11 points at the 6:47 mark on a Williams three-pointer to give the visitors the 24-13 lead. ISU steadily fought their way back with a 9-0 run sparked by an Arianna Smith layup to cut the score down to 24-22 with 2:01 remaining. The margin was back to five on a Maddie Watters jumper to give the Broncos the 27-22 halftime lead.

Second Half

The teams battled through the early part of the third quarter with another Lalic three-pointer cutting the WMU lead down to 30-29 with 7:42 remaining. Western Michigan stretched the lead back out to seven on two separate occasions before taking a double-digit lead with 2:14 remaining in the quarter on a quartet of Ross free throws to give the Broncos the 51-39 lead.

WMU’s lead reached 56-41 with 1:24 remaining in the third quarter before the Sycamores mounted their comeback. ISU went on an 11-0 run spanning the third and fourth quarters with Glanton pulling down an offensive rebound and putting it back up to cut the WMU lead down to 56-52 with 8:35 to play. The Sycamores continued to battle back with Williams driving in for a layup at the 6:06 mark to tie the contest up at 59-59.

It became a battle of runs late with WMU going on a 9-0 stretch highlighted by Ross’ five points, before ISU’s late comeback just before the buzzer fell short.

Inside the Statistics

Indiana State shot 45.6% from the floor, 30.0% from the three-point line, and 70.6% from the free throw line in the loss.

Western Michigan shot 47.1% from the floor, 33.3% from the three-point line, and 65.0% from the free throw line in the win.

Paced by Mya Glanton’s nine offensive rebounds, the Sycamores held the 15-10 edge in second-chance points and the 46-30 advantage on points in the paint.

ISU also turned 24 Western Michigan turnovers into 28 points.

The Sycamores held the 14-3 edge in fast-break points.

Western Michigan held the lead for 29:49 in the contest.

The game featured three lead changes and two ties.

News & Notes

Mya Glanton shattered her previous career-high of 10 points set earlier this season against Georgia Souther as the redshirt sophomore scored 22 points over 35:08 minutes.

Glanton also set career-highs in field goals made (9) and attempted (13), while her 16 rebounds marked her second career double-digit rebounding effort.

Del’Janae Williams’ seven-steal game marked her second consecutive game with the number and third of her career.

Williams’ five assists also tied a career-high, equaling the mark she set three previous times.

Up Next

Indiana State is back on the road on Saturday, December 11, as the Sycamores make the trip to Lincoln, Neb. for a nonconference matchup against the Cornhuskers in Pinnacle Bank Arena. Tipoff is set for 2 p.m. ET.

MASTODONS ROLL NORTHERN KENTUCKY 71-57 FOR HORIZON LEAGUE WIN

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – A swarming defensive performance lifted the Purdue Fort Wayne men’s basketball team to a 71-57 Horizon League victory over Northern Kentucky on Saturday (Dec. 4).

The Mastodons limited the Norse to 36.2 percent (21-of-58) shooting in the contest and forced 18 NKU turnovers.

Purdue Fort Wayne took a 36-20 lead to the break with their best defensive effort in a half since limiting Denver to 14 points in the first half on Feb. 26, 2020. NKU was 7-of-30 in the first 20 minutes. The Norse crashed the boards and picked up 11 offensive rebounds in the half, but turned them into only four second chance points. Jalon Pipkins had two dunks in the half, including a one-handed alley-oop throw down on a feed from Damian Chong Qui.

Northern Kentucky increased the defensive pressure in the second half, trying to get back in the game. It worked for a bit, scoring seven straight points and making it a 43-33 game with 10:55 left. But it was as close as the Norse would get. An 8-2 Mastodon run followed to put the game away. Ra Kpedi scored all nine of his points in the second half to help ice the contest.

Jalon Pipkins had a game-high 21 points in the game, shooting 7-of-12 from the floor, with four steals. Jarred Godfrey contributed 14 points with five assists. Kpedi had a game-high nine rebounds including four on the offensive glass.

The ‘Dons didn’t miss a free throw on Thursday against Wright State, and their eye continued on Saturday, making 14-of-16 from the charity strip against the Norse.

Northern Kentucky was led by Trey Robinson’s 16 points

The Norse fall to 2-5 (0-2 Horizon League). The ‘Dons improve to 4-4 (1-1 Horizon League). The Mastodons return to non-league play next week with a road trip to SIUE on Wednesday (Dec. 8).

JAGUARS EARN BACK-TO-BACK #HLWBB WINS AFTER DEFEATING OAKLAND, 74-49

ROCHESTER, Mich. – The IUPUI women’s basketball team earned their third straight win and second straight Horizon League conference win after defeating Oakland Saturday afternoon, 74-49. Macee Williams and Destiny Perkins led the Jags with 14 points each. Williams added 12 rebounds while Perkins collected eight rebounds and six assists. Sophomore transfer Rachel Kent followed with 13 points and one assist.

“It was important for us to go 2-0 on this road trip and we did that,” said head coach Austin Parkinson. “Destiny had one of her best games of her career, highlighted by her eight rebounds.”

Williams, Perkins and Kent started for the Jaguars along with Rachel McLimore and Madison Wise. McLimore scored six points with four rebounds and five assists while Wise scored two points with five rebounds. IUPUI out-rebounded Oakland 45 to 27. 

“Rachel McLimore did a great job defending the other team’s leading scorer,” said Parkinson. “Anna Mortag continues to be an offensive boost off the bench and Morgan Allen stepped up in a big way today as well.”

Mortag came off the bench and scored 10 points with three rebounds and one assist. Allen added eight points and four rebounds while Ali Berg scored three points with three rebounds. Natalie Andersen and Jacquel Bronaugh each added two points.

The Jags started the game off strong and took the lead early scoring 19 points in the first quarter and held the Golden Grizzlies to eight points. Oakland was unable to take the lead as IUPUI held onto a lengthy lead throughout all four quarters. The Jaguars took their largest lead of 28 with five minutes left in the fourth quarter.

IUPUI finished the game at 45.8 percent (27-for-59) and 38.5 percent (10-for-26) at the three-point line while holding the Golden Grizzlies to 32.1 percent (18-for-56) from the floor. The Jags totaled 17 assists and five steals.

The Jaguars return to the Jungle to take on in-state foe, Ball State on Wednesday, Dec. 8 at 7:00 PM ET. Game coverage will be on ESPN+.

MAXWELL TALLIES SEASON-HIGH 19 IN LOSS TO OAKLAND

INDIANAPOLIS – Graduate transfer B.J. Maxwell pumped in a season-high 19 points but it wasn’t nearly enough as Oakland capitalized on a slew of IUPUI turnovers and coasted to a 78-45 victory inside Indiana Farmers Coliseum on Saturday (Dec. 4). The visiting Golden Grizzlies converted 23 IUPUI turnovers into 32 points and outscored the Jags 28-7 at the free throw line in a dominating performance.

Maxwell hit 8-of-18 shots and grabbed a game-high nine rebounds in the loss to pace the Jaguars. Meanwhile, Jalen Moore had 15 points, six assists and three steals for the Golden Grizzlies and Jamal Cain added 14 points and eight boards in the victory. Both Micah Parrish and Trey Townsend also tallied 14 apiece as Oakland shot just 39.3 percent, but committed only eight turnovers.

“I think it was a mixture of both,” head coach Matt Crenshaw said when asked about his team’s inexperience combined against Oakland’s length. “Even some of our more experienced guys turned the ball over.

“I think our tentativeness forced us into some turnovers, actually. When we made plays aggressively and stuck to the game plan, we actually did well at times. Their zone had some different looks at times and had us on our heels.”

Oakland (7-2, 2-0 HL) surged out to a 13-6 lead, fueled by a 9-0 run after Maxwell had staked the Jaguars to an early 6-4 advantage. The Jags turned the ball over 17 times in the opening half, allowing the Golden Grizzlies to cash in on 23 points. By the time the dust settled at halftime, the Jags were in a 36-20 hole.

IUPUI put together a modest 7-0 run early in the second half to get within 15 as Mike DePersia converted a three-point play and then stuck back a Maxwell miss in amongst the trees on the Jaguars’ next possession. After another defensive stand, KJ Pruitt went coast-to-coast and finished with a runner to make it 45-30 with 12:52 left.

However, that would be IUPUI’s last field goal for the next five-plus minutes as Oakland scored the game’s next 16 points, many of which came at the foul line. Oakland was in the bonus at the 11:38 mark of the second half while IUPUI didn’t draw a seventh team foul on the Golden Grizzlies until the guests’ bench had been emptied with 2:42 to play.

Moore was a perfect 10-of-10 at the stripe for the victors, earning as many attempts as the entire IUPUI team. Parrish was also flawless at the line at 7-of-7.

Maxwell’s 19 points matched his career-high in Division I play as he also had a 19-point game at Abilene Christian back in January 2019. He has led IUPUI in scoring in all seven games in which he’s played.

“I think we’re still trying to identify ourselves,” Crenshaw said. “B.J. Maxwell’s got to show that he wants to be the lead horse and now we need to identify those second and third guys and right now, nobody has really taken that role and been consistent.”

While IUPUI allowed a season-high 78 points, Crenshaw was still pleased with a defense that held Oakland below 40 percent shooting and 22 percent from three-point range.

“I think it starts with our defensive side, honestly. As I told our team after the game, (Oakland) shot 39 percent and 22 percent from three, which was even lower before they hit those three threes late in the game,” Crenshaw said. “Defensively, we’re actually playing solid.

“If we can not foul, get in transition and get some easy looks at the basket and not always having to play (offense) in the half court, it’s going to help our offense.

IUPUI shot 35.3 percent and hit just 2-of-16 (12.5 percent) from three-point range. DePersia finished with nine points and four boards off the IUPUI bench and Pruitt added four points, six boards and four assists as the primary ball handler.

Freshman Chuks Isitua had four points and three boards before fouling out in 19 minutes of action.

The loss snapped IUPUI’s three-game winning streak against the Golden Grizzlies.

The Jaguars will return to non-conference play on Friday, Dec. 10 when they head south to face Tennessee State as part of a home-and-home series. IUPUI defeated TSU in last season’s opener inside Indiana Farmers Coliseum. Friday’s game will tip-off at 7:00 p.m. Eastern and be aired on ESPN+.

ACES GRIND OUT 59-51 WIN OVER TENNESSEE TECH

EVANSVILLE, Ind. – Freshman Blake Sisley was one of four double digit scorers for the University of Evansville, who overcame a furious rally by Tennessee Tech to finish with a 59-51 victory on Saturday at the Ford Center.

Shamar Givance and Jawaun Newton were the top scorers for the Purple Aces (4-7, 0-1 MVC), each finishing with 15 points.  Both also led the team with 7 rebounds.  Givance posted the top tallies with 3 assists and 3 steals.  Blake Sisley and Antoine Smith Jr. recorded 12 points apiece.  Smith shot 4-for-6 from long range and blocked two shots.  Sisley knocked down 5 of his 6 attempts to finish with 12 points, his top collegiate effort.

“This was a really competitive game.  I thought our guys were on point on the defensive end,” Aces head coach Todd Lickliter commented.  “Tennessee Tech is a nice team and I really like how they play, so for us to stay focused and play the way we did is a strong accomplishment.”

Jr. Clay tied for the game high with 15 points to lead the Golden Eagles (2-6).  John Pettway finish the day with 10.

Both teams had trouble finding the bottom of the net, combining to miss the opening eight shots before Shamar Givance grabbed a steal and took it the other way for a layup.  Jawaun Newton grabbed a defensive rebound and took it the length of the floor for a dunk to cap off a 6-2 start.  A triple by Blaise Beauchamp stretched the lead to 9-4.

Tennessee Tech countered with its first big run of the game, registering the next seven tallies to take its first lead at 11-9.  After a layup by John Pettway tied it at 9-9, Diante Wood knocked down a layup to put the Golden Eagles on top just past the midway point of the half.  On Evansville’s ensuing trip down the floor, Preston Phillips hit his first shot to tie it back up.  It ended a scoreless drought of 5:24 with UE missing seven shots in a row.

A back-and-forth sequence followed as the teams swapped the lead on ten occasions in the first 20 minutes.  With TTU up 21-20, Givance drained two free throws before Antoine Smith Jr. connected on his second triple of the day to give Evansville a 25-21 lead.  Blake Sisley capped off the first-half scoring with 90 ticks remaining, hitting a triple to send UE to the break with a 28-23 advantage.

The first two baskets of the second half belonged to Tennessee Tech, making it a 1-point game before Antoine Smith Jr. knocked down his third 3-pointer of the contest to push the advantage back to 31-27 in the opening four minutes.  Evansville began the final period 2-of-11 from the field, allowing the Golden Eagles to cut the deficit to a pair (33-31) before Blake Sisley converted a feed from Evan Kuhlman to get back on the scoreboard.

Four of the next five field goal attempts found the bottom of the net with UE taking a 40-33 lead as the halfway point of the second half passed by.  Evansville’s largest lead came at the 5:32 mark when a jumper by Shamar Givance padded the lead at 46-38.  Two minutes later, the lead for the Aces stood at 51-44.  After scoring three in a row, the Golden Eagles amped up the pressure and forced a UE turnover, which Keishawn Davidson turned into a triple that made it just a 1-point game.

What may have been the biggest shot of the game for UE came on the ensuing trip down the floor when Noah Frederking found Smith open in the corner for a triple that put the lead back at two possessions.  Kuhlman blocked a TTU shot on the next possession before Jawaun Newton knocked down both free throws to make it a 56-50 lead entering the final minute.  Tennessee Tech would not close any further with the Aces taking the game by a 59-51 final.

UE finished the game shooting 42.3% while Tennessee Tech shot 37.0%.  The Golden Eagles finished with a 38-32 rebounding lead.

On Wednesday, the Aces take to the road for a contest at Southeast Missouri State.

FINAL FOUR BOUND! HOUNDS CAGE TIGERS, BOOK TICKET TO COLORADO SPRINGS

INDIANAPOLIS – The dream season continues for the University of Indianapolis men’s soccer team, who has booked its second straight NCAA Tournament Final Four ticket after a 2-0 win over Fort Hays State to claim the Super Region 3 championship.

HOW IT HAPPENED

Both teams played tough in the first half, but neither were able to gain the upper hand on the scoreboard. Finally, the Hounds broke through when Vincent Stone delivered a cross into the box where Bryan Moreira one-timed a beautiful ball past a diving goalkeeper.

UIndy sealed the deal in the 90th minute when Alejandro Steinwascher took on a defender in front of the net and fired a shot on a line off the top crossbar and into the net.

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

-UIndy managed a game-high 17 shots while Fort Hays State had 10.

-Dimitrios Karousos notched five saves and earned his ninth clean sheet of the season.

-The Greyhounds only had four fouls through 90 minutes of action. FHSU had 12.

UP NEXT

The Greyhounds will now travel to Colorado Springs, CO to play at Switchbacks FC Stadium in the Final Four. The match is set to take place on Thursday, Dec. 9 with a time and opponent to be announced later. 

KNIGHTS TAKE CARE OF TAYLOR 67-52

Upland, Ind. – The No. 24 Marian men’s basketball team upended Taylor on Saturday afternoon, jumping ahead early and taking control for a 67-52 victory. The win puts the Knights at 7-2 overall and gets them back to .500 in the Crossroads League at 2-2.

Taylor took an early 3-2 lead out of the gates, but the Knights took control after back-to-back three-pointers from Christian Stewart and Malek Edmonds. Marian’s lead stayed at around five in the opening 10 minutes as both teams traded points. Stewart nailed another jumper to give the Knights a 12-7 advantage with 13:48 left. Jason Hubbard almost single-handedly kept Taylor in the game early, scoring eight-straight points for the Trojans from the 15 to 11-minute marks. Hayden Langkabel’s three-pointer stopped Hubbard’s scoring streak, putting Marian up 18-11 halfway through the opening half.

Langkabel followed up his three-ball with a pair of free throws after a foul, then Stewart made a jumper to extend the Knights’ lead to 11 points. Marian’s defense held Taylor from making a field goal until 6:09 left before halftime. However, Marian failed to take advantage of those defensive stops as they failed to score over a four-minute stretch. The Trojans reduced the deficit down to 22-17 with 4:34 in the half. Christian Harvey scored his first points to snap the cold streak and put Marian up seven. The Trojans benefitted from Marian’s foul trouble, getting into the double bonus with several minutes left before halftime. Jackson Lewis got Taylor within four points with 2:48 left in the first. Marian responded and went on a 9-2 run to close the half. Luke Gohmann started the run with a three-pointer, followed up by two free throws made by Stewart and a Brody Whitaker jumper. Stewart made the last shot of the half with 10 seconds left, taking the Knights to a 33-22 lead into half. Stewart scored 13 points in the opening 20 minutes as the Knights made four three-pointers and went 7-of-8 from the charity stripe in the opening half. Taylor was held to 28.6 percent shooting to begin the game, but they converted on 10-of-13 free throws.

Marian began to creep away as the second half went along. Edmonds made his second three-pointer after a Taylor dunk, putting the Knights ahead 38-24 a few minutes into the second half. Following a couple of Trojan points, Gohmann nailed a trifecta to extend Marian’s advantage to 15 points. Gohmann would make another three-ball and Whitaker followed that up with a two-pointer, forcing Taylor to call a timeout as they trailed by 17 points. The attempted regroup by the Trojans did not slow down Marian, as Stewart hit another jumper and Whitaker made one of two free throws to keep the score 53-38 Marian with 10 minutes left in regulation.

Nolan Foster grew Marian’s lead back to 17 points after his first make with 8:18 remaining. Neither team could score more than four points consecutively as the defenses held firm. Hubbard added a slam for the Trojans making it 58-44 with 5:30 left, but Taylor did not build any momentum from the exclamation point. Tyrie Johnson hit on the next Marian possession, and the Knights continued to lead by double-digits. After an Edmonds steal, Harvey scored the hoop-and-harm for a three-point play, making it 63-48 with just over a couple minutes left. Taylor hit the final shot in the final minute, but the Knights dribbled out the clock for a 67-52 win.

Stewart tallied 17 points to lead the Knights, going 5-for-11 from the floor and 6-for-6 from the free-throw line. Johnson added 11 points, also making all of his free throws (4-4). Marian shot 42 percent from the floor and 40 percent from three-point range. Marian also shot at an 81-percent clip from the free-throw line (17-of-21). The Knights won the rebounding battle 39-25 which included nine offensive boards.

The Knights will be back on campus next weekend for a couple of non-conference games. Miami-Middletown will face the Knights on Saturday with a 3 PM scheduled tip-off. The Knights will face Saint Ambrose for a second time this season on Sunday at 3 PM.

MARIAN BATTLES FOR 60-56 VICTORY AT TAYLOR

Upland, Ind. – The No. 9 Marian women’s basketball team earned their seventh-straight win of the season, taking a 60-56 win at Taylor on Saturday afternoon. The Knights are 9-2 overall and stay perfect in the Crossroads League with a 4-0 record.

Scoring came at a premium to begin the contest as both teams combined to make five shots in the opening five minutes. Abby Downard hit a jumper just a few feet inside the three-point line to put Marian on the board first. The Knights force three turnovers on Taylor’s first handful of possessions but did not cash in on those opportunities. The Trojans took their first lead after trading baskets with the Knights for most of the quarter, converting a layup to make it 8-6 just under four minutes left. Kinnidy Garrard finished a layup to tie it back up, and Downard hit another jumper a minute later to make it 10-9 Marian. The Knights went on a 7-0 run to take a 15-9 lead, but Taylor scored on their last two trips down the court to make it 17-13 after one quarter.

Things stayed close between Marian and Taylor to open the second quarter. Ella Collier finished a three-point play to put the Knights up 21-17 two and half minutes into the second chapter. The Trojans responded with a couple of three-pointers to grab a two-point lead. Imani Guy tied things up at 23-23 after a pair of free throws with five minutes until halftime. The Knights’ defense stepped up to close the quarter, holding Taylor to two points over the final handful of minutes before the break. Jayla Wehner’s three-pointer put the Knights up 26-23. After Taylor’s final basket of the half, the Knights bolted on a 7-0 run. Downard got the run started by making two free throws, while Garrard and Guy also added layups to give Marian a 33-25 lead at the break. Garrard led the Knights with 10 points in the first half as Marian shot 40 percent from the floor and 70 percent (7-10) from the free-throw line.

The Knights took their largest lead to open the third quarter, going up 35-25 after another Garrard layup. Both teams traded baskets throughout most of the third quarter as Marian still led by 10 points following Downard’s mid-range jumper with 6:16 left. Taylor followed that up with a three-pointer, but Allison Bosse made her first shot of the day to make it 41-32 midway through the quarter. Foul trouble haunted Marian to close the third quarter as the Trojans were able to convert from the charity stripe. Guy hit a jumper and a layup to keep Marian’s lead at nine points with 1:38 left. Lauren James answered for the Trojans, making four-straight from the free-throw line to make the score 47-42 after three quarters.

Marian fought to keep the lead, finding answers after Taylor would get within one possession. Guy and Downard converted their jumpers to keep the Knights up seven points through the first couple of minutes. The Trojans got the deficit to three points after James’ bucket and free throws, but Garrard hit a short jumper and Guy followed up with another two points to get Marian back ahead 55-48 with 5:21 left. The Trojans made another run for the lead, going on a 6-0 run to get the deficit down to a point with 3:05 remaining. Downard made a crucial jumper that put Marian back up three points, and Collier grabbed a rebound after a couple of Taylor misses. Garrard came away with a huge three-point play on Marian’s next trip, giving the Knights a critical 60-54 lead with 1:51 left in the fourth. Taylor scored to make it a four-point game, but the Knights made stops on back-to-back trips defensively to hang on for the 60-56 victory.

Garrard led the Knights with a career-high 19 points on 8-of-14 shooting. Guy tallied another double-double with 16 points and 13 rebounds in 32 minutes of work. Downard also reached double-digits with 12 points. Marian managed the victory despite shooting 43 percent from the floor and 2-of-12 from behind the three-point arc. The Knights won the turnover battle 12-9 and held the Trojans to a 34 percent shooting percentage and 21 percent in three-point shooting.

The Knights will look for their 10th win of the season back at the MU Arena. Marian will host Michigan-Dearborn on Wednesday with a 7 PM tip-off.

CAREER NIGHT BY THOMPSON III LEADS NO. 7 WILDCATS OVER NO. 1 SAINT FRANCIS

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – No. 7 Indiana Wesleyan men’s basketball used a second half surge Saturday to top No. 1 the University of Saint Francois, 100-89. The Wildcats totaled 11 offensive rebounds and a 52-point scoring outburst in half two, handing the Cougars their second straight loss as the No. 1 team in the NAIA.

IWU would tie things up at 15 and 48, but USF would lead the entire first half.

Neither team found rhythm on the defensive end as both teams shot over 50%.

The red and gray punched with a 9-0 run in the second half to build a 14-point advantage.

3 – The number of turnovers IWU had in the first half.

30 – How many longs balls USF shot, the second-most by an IWU opponent this season.

10 – How many more free throw IWU shot compared to USF.

19 – Total number of assists on 33 made buckets.

5 – The amount of Wildcats who scored in double figures.

15 – How many second-chance points IWU had in the second half.

Michael Thompson III – 25 points, good for a new career-high

Dan Largey – 23 points, 8 rebounds, 7 assists, 1 turnover

Tim Adetukasi – 17 points, 5 rebounds

Seth Maxwell – 13 points, 4 rebounds

Spencer Piercefield – 13 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists

WILDCATS HOLD OFF COUGARS LATE SURGE

MARION, Ind. – No. 13 Indiana Wesleyan held off University of Saint Francis’ late run to hold on to a 81-70 victory this afternoon.  Four Wildcats found themselves in double figures.

Lilli Frasure and Klair Merrell fueled a 7-0 run to end the 1st quarter

Wildcats started the second quarter on a 10-3 run, leading by as much as 15 points in the first half.

Cougars didn’t score a field goal until the 4:59 mark in the third quarter. Up to that point, all six of their second half points were free throws as the Wildcats lead grew to 15.

Late push by the Cougars saw them pull within seven points before the Wildcats sank five free throws in the final minute of the game to hold off the Cougars surge.

17 of 20 – points scored by Merrell and Frasure in the first quarter of play

50% – Wildcats connection from long distance with 10 made 3’s

26 – Frasure’s new career-high points scored

1 – Rylie Parker charge changed momentum in the second quarter

47 – fouls called throughout the contest

Frasure poured in a new-career high with 26 points.

Kelli Damman posted her second 20+ game in a row connecting on 5-6 from the arc.

Jade Nutley and Merrell followed in double-digits with 12 and 11 points respectively.

Wildcats head to Georgetown, Kentucky for some non-conference play against Georgetown College on Thursday December 9.  Tip off is scheduled for 6pm.

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL: IU EAST 77, CARLOW 46

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – A fast start by the Indiana University East women’s basketball team paved the way for a 77-46 victory over Carlow University on Saturday, Dec. 4.

With the win, IU East is now 9-2 overall and 3-0 in the River States Conference, which puts the Red Wolves in second place in the East Division behind No. 19 University of Rio Grande (13-0, 5-0). The Celtics fall to 4-9, 0-4.

“This game got ugly at times and we definitely still see some spots we need to improve on,” IU East coach Tiffani Selhorst said. “Carlow did exactly what they needed to do to stay in the game.”

“I was very happy with the kids that came off the bench,” Selhorst added. “We had several kids step up and play their roles tonight. We will focus on getting better this week in our weak areas and be ready to go next Saturday against a very good Rio Grande team.”

Kennedy Griffin led the Red Wolves with 17 points in the contest at Oakland Catholic High School as 11 players scored for IU East.

Marissa Quiroz was the only other IU East player in the double digits with a dozen points. Taylor Browning tossed in nine points and grabbed a team-high eight rebounds.

“I thought today we played as a team, but this game showed what we need to work on,” Griffin said. “We were a little sloppy during the first half, but it is only going to help us get better. It feels good to be 3-0 in the conference and we are excited to get to work on Rio Grande for next weekend.”

The Red Wolves jumped out to a 10-1 lead when Browning scored at the 4:52 mark of the opening period.

IU East led 19-12 after the first quarter before the Red Wolves built a 40-29 advantage by halftime. By the end of the third, IU East led 54-35.

The Red Wolves entertain Rio Grande on Saturday, Dec. 11. The conference contest gets underway on Lingle Court at 3 p.m.

MEN’S BASKETBALL: IU EAST 102, CARLOW 44

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – The Indiana University East men’s basketball team completed a perfect week against the River States Conference’s two Pittsburgh-based programs with a win against Carlow University on Dec. 4.

Final score from Oakland Catholic High School: IU East 102, Carlow 44.

The Red Wolves evened their overall record at 6-6 and improved to 3-0 in RSC play. IU East is one of three RSC teams without a conference loss, along with WVU Tech and Alice Lloyd College.

Carlow is 1-8 overall and 0-3 in the league. IU East improved to 13-0 all-time against the Celtics.

Bryce Long scored a career-high 27 points for IU East. Long outscored the Celtics by himself through the first 10 minutes (13 to 12) as the Red Wolves built a double-digit lead that got bigger throughout the afternoon.

“Our defense, especially early, turned into offense, giving us a ton of easy buckets,” Long said. “Shots started falling, and we never really looked back.”

IU East hit the century mark in scoring for the first time this season on Dionte Raines’ 3-pointer from the left wing with 90 seconds remaining. Raines finished with 18 points.

Two of IU East’s true freshmen enjoyed productive afternoons. Gabe McNary (14 points, 12 rebounds) posted his first career double-double. Kobe Ward’s line of 6 points, seven rebounds and four assists represented season-bests across the board.

IU East has no weekday games on the schedule this coming week to allow the Red Wolf players to focus on final exams. IU East returns to action Dec. 11 with a home game against the University of Rio Grande. Tipoff is at 1 p.m. in the opening game of the first men’s-women’s doubleheader of the 2021-22 season on Lingle Court.

LATE SURGE NOT ENOUGH FOR MBB

RICHMOND — The Earlham College men’s basketball team made up a 6-point halftime deficit to be in contention for a win in its opening round of Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference play against Manchester University on Saturday afternoon. However, the Spartans would not be denied as they took a 75-71 win in Druley Performance Gym.

Kolden Vanlandingham and Jaden Terry paced the Earlham offense, both scoring over 20 points (25 and 22 respectively).

The Quakers struggled from distance in the first half as they only made one 3-pointer off of nine attempts. Despite the struggles, Earlham led for most of the early stages of the first half, before relinquishing the advantage with 4:46 remaining on the clock.

The Spantans scored a 15-2 run during the final five minutes of the half which propelled them ahead after taking the lead. Earlham netted a pair of jumpers in the final minute and trailed by six going into the locker rooms.

The Quakers came out of the break firing on all cylinders and with a 21-4 run in the opening 10 minutes of the frame, took the lead back. At the 6:46 mark of the second half, it was Earlham who held a 6-point lead, piggybacking off of Vanlandingham’s 3-pointer accuracy.

Undeterred, the Spartans rallied back and tied the score at 62 just over two minutes later. Heading into the final minute, Manchester led 71-67 with the Quakers attempting a final rally. Earlham had opportunities for shots after fouling Manchester to stop the clock, but missed three 3-point shots in the final minute of action while the Spartans made enough free throws to hold onto the lead.

Earlham’s next contest will be a road game at Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology on Wednesday at 7:30 pm in Terre Haute.

SLOW SECOND HALF STALLS WBB IN CONFERENCE PLAY

RICHMOND — Despite holding a head early and carrying it into the halftime break, the Earlham College women’s basketball team fell 67-49 to Manchester University on Saturday afternoon.

The Quakers continue their losing skid at 0-6 (0-1 HCAC) while the Spartans improve to 5-1 (2-0 HCAC).

Amari Bradford topped the scoresheet with a 16-point performance. The freshman also took five steals and recorded a block on the afternoon. Janaiya Bright also hit double-digits with 10 points and five assists.

Alexis Gibson brought in a team-high nine boards and also put up nine points.

As a team, the Quakers shot at a 47% clip in the first frame and it helped to leverage the home squad to a lead of as many as 10 points in the period. The Spartans scored a 4-point play in the final minute of the quarter with a steal returned for a layup.

After the hot starter, Earlham struggled offensively in the second quarter, and managed just eight points in the period. Combined with a consistent showing from Manchester, the home side held a slim 4-point advantage heading into halftime.

The Spartans tied the score at 24 just 30 seconds into the third quarter. Earlham posted a similar shooting percentage to the first quarter (46%) but allowed 25 points from Manchester in the frame.

Leading by five points going into the fourth quarter, Manchester kept the pressure on and saw the Quakers struggle to score points again in the final quarter.

Earlham will continue HCAC play in search of its first win of the season on Wednesday when Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology comes to Druley Performance Gym for a 7:30 pm contest.

EARLY WABASH LEAD WILTS AWAY IN TWO-POINT LOSS TO OBERLIN

Wabash saw a 17-point first-half lead evaporate in the second half in an 87-85 home loss to Oberlin College in North Coast Athletic Conference basketball played Saturday afternoon at Chadwick Court.

Wabash (4-3, 1-1 NCAC) came out out red-hot from start, scoring the first eight points of the game before eventually leading 36-19 with 8:03 left in the first half. Oberlin (3-4, 1-1 NCAC) kept cutting into the lead. The Yeomen used an 11-0 scoring run to get as close as two points at halftime with the score 43-41 in favor of Wabash.

The Little Giants maintained their advantage in the second half. A basket from Tyler Watson with 15:24 remaining in the game built the cushion back up to 10 points at 55-45. Once again, the visiting Yeomen mounted a rally, outscoring Wabash 9-0 over the next two minutes to cut the lead to 55-54.

Wabash regained a five-point margin twice in the final 12 minutes of play before a three-point basket from Dorde Otasevic and free throws from Wolf Moser tied the game at 63-63. The two teams traded baskets before Oberlin put together a 4-0 run to jump in front 71-67.

The Little Giants tied the game at 80-80 with 2:46 remaining when Jack Davidson canned a three-point jumper for two of his 17 points in the game. Once again Oberlin responded by scoring the next six points to take an 86-80 lead in the final 30 seconds of the game. Ahmoni Jones scored a layup to cut the lead to four points, but Yuuki Okubo hit one of his two free-throw attempts in the closing seconds to push the Yeomen lead back to five points. A Davison three-pointer ahead of the buzzer created the two-point final swinging in favor of the visitors from Oberlin.

Wabash shot 50.8 percent overall from the field, going 32-of-63 overall. The Little Giants finished 10-of-29 from three-point range and shot an uncharacteristic 64.7 percent from the free-throw line (11-of-17). Wabash came into the game averaging  85.5 percent free-throw shooting for the season.

Oberlin finished 30-of-57 from the field for 52.6 percent and shot 50 percent (13-of-26) from three-point range. The Yeomen went 14-of-21 from the free-throw line.

Kellen Schreiber led the Little Giants with 22 points. Watson added 18 points and had six assists. Davidson recorded a double-double with 17 points and 10 rebounds. He also gave out three assists. Jones put four Wabash players into double-figure scoring by adding 13 points for the game.

Five Oberlin players scored in double figures, led by Moser and Aidan Oliver with 17 points apiece. Dimitrije Radusinovic scored 15 points. Otasevic and Darien Knowles each scored 13 points.

Wabash travels to Ohio Wesleyan University for a 7 p.m. conference game on Wednesday.

RECAP | FOUR GRIZZLIES REACH DOUBLE FIGURES, FRANKLIN COLLECTS FIRST HCAC WIN OF THE YEAR

FRANKLIN, Ind. – The Franklin College women’s basketball team played in front of their home crowd for the final time in 2021 on Saturday (Dec. 4) afternoon, taking on the Defiance Yellow Jackets in search of their first conference win.

The Grizzlies (3-3, 1-1 HCAC) had four players score in double figures and pulled away from the Yellow Jackets (4-3, 0-2 HCAC) late to earn a 74-62 win.

How it Happened

Defiance came out with the hot hand, taking an early 11-4 lead three minutes into the game. Franklin would shake off a slow start on the offensive end to take the lead before the end of the quarter, and the teams sat tied at 20 after 10 minutes of play. Sarah O’Day opened the second quarter with a basket that put the Grizzlies in front for good, as Franklin led by as many as nine before taking a 42-35 lead into the locker room.

A bit of a slow stretch on offense by Franklin allowed Defiance to get back within a pair at 48-46 with five minutes to go in the third quarter. However, Franklin would put the game out of reach before the end of the period; closing out the third with a 10-4 run that made it 58-50 with 10 minutes to go. Defiance could only close the gap to six over the final 10 minutes of play.

Inside the Box Score

-Franklin shot a season-best 46.3% (25-for-54) from the floor, knocking down two triples and 22 free throws.

-Destinee Cross had a team-high 15 points on 7-for-14 shooting.

-Sophomore CiCi Bailey chipped in with 13 points and grabbed a game-high 15 rebounds. The Milan, Ind.-native has a double-double in all three of Franklin’s home games.

-Maddie Barnes and Kayla Bruner both had 11 points coming off the bench, with the total a new career-high for Barnes. Barnes, Bailey and Bruner combined to score all 35 of the Grizzlies’ bench points.

-Rebounds were 42-31 in Franklin’s favor and the Grizzlies finished with a 42-20 advantage on points in the paint.

Up Next

Franklin will have a week to get ready for their next contest, which takes place next Saturday (Dec. 11) afternoon at Manchester. Tip-off is set for 1:00 p.m.

RECAP | GRIZZLIES’ WINNING STREAK HALTED BY DEFIANCE ON SATURDAY

FRANKLIN, Ind. – The Franklin College men’s basketball team returned home after more than a month’s worth of road contests for a Saturday (Dec. 4) afternoon league matchup with the Defiance Yellow Jackets.

Senior Matt Krause grabbed a season-high 15 rebounds and added 10 points for his second double-double of the year. But the low-scoring contest went the way of the visitors, as the Grizzlies (3-2, 1-1 HCAC) had their three-game winning streak halted by the Yellow Jackets (3-4, 2-0 HCAC), 62-59.

How it Happened

The opening 20 minutes saw three ties and six lead changes as the two teams jockeyed for position on the scoreboard. Defiance held their biggest lead of the afternoon at 28-19 with four minutes to go before the break thanks to a 12-2 run. Franklin countered with a run of their own before the half, netting the final 10 points of the first frame to take a 29-28 lead into the locker room.

Back-to-back buckets from Krause out of the break gave Franklin their largest lead of the night, but the Yellow Jackets had an answer each time the Grizzlies looked poised to go on a run. The final 20 minutes featured another seven ties and nine lead changes and came down to the final possession, but the Grizzlies weren’t able to get a shot off before the final horn.

Inside the Box Score

-Franklin shot 40.7% (22-for-54) from the field, a season-low shooting percentage. The Griz connected on 7-of-13 threes and were a perfect 8-for-8 from the free throw line.

-Ty Wright led Franklin with 15 points, the fourth game in a row that the sophomore forward led Franklin in scoring. Ryan Wiggins had nine points to go along with six boards.

-Rebounds were 37-31 in Franklin’s favor.

-The Grizzlies turned it over 15 times to nine for the Yellow Jackets, with Defiance out-scoring FC 16-9 in points off mistakes.

Up Next

The Grizzlies are on the road for each of their next two contests. The first comes on Wednesday (Dec. 8) night, when Franklin travels to Louisville, Ky. for a meeting with Spalding.

Tip-off is set for 7:00 p.m.

MEN’S BASKETBALL OPENS HCAC PLAY WITH WIN AT TRANSY

LEXINGTON, Ky. — Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology men’s basketball opened Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference action with a win against Transylvania University 72-69.  Rose-Hulman improved to 4-2 overall and 1-0 in the HCAC, while Transylvania fell to 3-2 and 0-2 in HCAC play.

Rose-Hulman led at the halftime buzzer 36-27, after Max Chaplin and Trey Wurtz combined for 18 points on 6-for-10 shooting from the floor.  Dillon Duff added seven points and Terry Hicks already had eight rebounds at the break.

The Pioneers cut the Rose-Hulman deficit to five points early in the second half, but Rose-Hulman engineered an 11-4 run to an eventual 14-point lead with just over five minutes in the game.

Transylvania, for the second time, cut the Rose-Hulman lead using an 11-2 run of their own.  Inside the one-minute mark in the game, Transylvania’s Zach Larimore grabbed a defensive rebound and finished the possession with a layup, bringing the score to 68-66 in Rose-Hulman’s favor.

Hicks scored three points with 15 seconds remaining, which Larimore followed with two of his own.  With only 3.6 seconds remaining, the Pioneers game-tying three point attempt was blocked by Duff and the ball went out of bounds.  The Pioneers last-second attempt was off the mark, securing the Rose-Hulman victory.

Five Fightin’ Engineers finished in double-digit scoring, led by Chaplin with a career-high 18 points in 31 minutes off the bench.  Hicks recorded his third double-double of the season with 14 points and a team-high 10 rebounds.

Vuk Djuric added 11 points and nine rebounds on 5-for-6 shooting from the floor.  Duff and Wurtz each added 10 points.

Larimore recorded a game-high 24 points on 9-for-17 shooting, and added 10 rebounds to his effort.

Rose-Hulman shot 46.3% in the game, including 8-for-19 from the behind the arc.  The Pioneers tallied a 38.7% shooting clip for the game.

The Fightin’ Engineers return home to Hulbert Arena on Wednesday, December 8 to battle Earlham College in the John Mutchner Cup Game.

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL BATTLES #12 TRANSYLVANIA BEFORE FALLING 64-57

LEXINGTON, Ky. – For the second consecutive game, Rose-Hulman Institute of Technology battled a top-15 ranked women’s basketball team tightly for all four quarters before falling 64-57 to No. 12 Transylvania University on Saturday afternoon.

Rose-Hulman narrowly dropped a 64-54 decision to No. 10 ranked DePauw last weekend before hanging close for all 40 minutes against Transylvania.

Rowan Hein led the Fightin’ Engineer offense with 19 points and four steals.  Jamie Baum added 11 points and a team-high 6 assists.

Rose Burnham contributed 9 points and a career-high 12 rebounds to the performance.  Nola Wilson and Ashley Black scored 6 points each, and Jordan Barlow contributed 4 points and 6 rebounds to the effort.

Kennedi Stacy led Transylvania with 26 points in the victory.

Rose-Hulman trailed just 39-32 at the half and 53-44 after the third quarter, before outscoring the Pioneers 13-11 in the final 20 minutes.  A 3-pointer by Wilson and a score by Hein helped Rose-Hulman close within 59-53 in the final four minutes before the hosts held on for the victory.

Transylvania improved to 7-0 on the season, while Rose-Hulman dropped to 2-4.  The Fightin’ Engineers return to action on Wednesday at Earlham College.

MEN’S BASKETBALL: ANDERSON SURGES PAST MOUNT ST. JOSEPH IN SECOND HALF

After trailing in the first half, the Anderson University men’s basketball team came back to secure a 63-55 victory over the Mount St. Joseph University Lions on Saturday. Maurice Knight and Tate Ivanyo led the Ravens (5-2, 1-1) in a Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC) victory over the Lions (3-3, 0-1).

HOW IT HAPPENED

Anderson opened up the first half with the lead. Tate Ivanyo got the game started with a layup at 19:08. Mount St. Joseph answered with a jumper to make it a 2-2 game with 16:45 remaining in the half.

Ivanyo then hit a three to give the Ravens a 5-2 lead.

With 14:48 on the clock, the Lions tied up the game 5-5 before following with a 3-pointer to take the lead. Mount St. Joseph would hold on to the lead for the remainder of the half.

Before heading into the locker rooms for halftime, the Ravens would close in on the Lions lead. Austin Lyons made it a two-point game after rebound the ball and making a layup. The Lions led 24-22 with 2:13 on the clock.

At halftime, the Lions held a five-point lead as they led the Ravens 27-22.

Coming out of halftime, the Ravens applied pressure offensively. At the 17:22 mark, the Ravens finally took back the lead after Fred Shropshire made a layup to put the Ravens ahead by one. Anderson led 30-29.

The Ravens and Lions would be tied up once again at 32 apiece before the Ravens took the lead back and ran with it.

A three from Austin Lyons with 15:54 remaining gave the Ravens the lead that would last for the remainder of the game.

As Mount St. Joseph came within five points, Tate Ivanyo knocked down a 3-pointer with 2:30 left in the game, giving Anderson a 55-47 lead.

Multiple Ravens put their name on the board as time was ticking down.

Francis Uzorh closed out the game with a dunk for the Ravens.

The Lions would get one more point before the final whistle blew. Anderson secured a 63-55 victory over Mount St. Joseph University.

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

Anderson led Mount St. Joseph in points in the paint, securing 28 points while holding the Lions to 18.

Off the bench the Ravens secured 15 points.

Maurice Knight led the Ravens in points, bringing in 18 points, six rebounds, three assists.

Tate Ivanyo earned his first career start as a Raven. Ivanyo recorded 17 points, five rebounds, and one assist.

Francis Uzorh led the Ravens with seven rebounds

COACH OWEN HANDY’S COMMENTS

This is an immensely satisfying win. We’ve dropped two games in a row on the road to really good opponents, and to eke out a win on the road against a third really good opponent took a lot of courage and toughness.

We’ve had a number of different players step up in our wins this season, and [on Saturday] Tate Ivanyo got the chance. He kept us in the game offensively in the first half and buried a huge three down the stretch to give us some breathing room.

I give Mount St. Joseph a lot of credit for making things difficult for us in the first half, and I give our guys a lot of credit for correcting some of those things coming out of halftime.

UP NEXT

The Ravens will be back in action Saturday as they are set to host the Earlham College Quakers (1-4, 0-1) in HCAC action. Tipoff is set for 1PM inside O.C. Lewis Gymnasium.

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL: LIONS FIGHT OFF RAVEN COMEBACK IN PHYSICAL CONTEST

In the opening game of the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference (HCAC) season, the Anderson University women’s basketball team took on the Mount St. Joseph University Lions in a physical matchup in Cincinnati. The Ravens (1-5, 0-1) fell to the Lions (3-3, 1-1) by a final score of 89-76 on Saturday.

HOW IT HAPPENED

Lexi Dellinger opened the game, draining a three to get the Ravens on the board first. The Lions quickly answered with a three of their own.

Anderson then went on a 5-0 run over the Lions to take the lead in the first quarter.

At the end of the first quarter, the Ravens held a 21-19 lead over the Lions after Payton Moore made two free throws.

The Lions came back immediately in the second quarter and took the lead. They spent the remainder of the quarter building a lead over the Ravens, at one point leading by 13 points with 2:51 left before the half.

Heading into halftime, the Ravens trailed the Lions 47-37.

During the third quarter, the Ravens tried to close the Lions lead, coming within five points two separate times, but the Lions would pull away with a 61-46 lead heading into the final quarter.

A tough battle would ensue as the Ravens tried to come back. Ultimately, Mount St. Joseph secured an 89-76 victory over Anderson.

INSIDE THE BOX SCORE

From the 3-point range, the Ravens shot 13-of-35 (37.1 percent) outshooting the Lions who went 11-of-32 (34.4 percent)

By the end of the game, there was a total of 59 fouls, with the Ravens receiving 35 and the Lions receiving 24.

The Ravens capitalized on second-chance points, picking up 14 during the contest.

Lexi Dellinger once again led the Ravens with another high scoring game. She went 11-for-20 from the field, made 8-of-15 from the perimeter, and 6-of-9 from the free-throw line for a total of 36 points. Dellinger’s 36-point game tied her for sixth place in the Anderson University record books for points in a game. She is also tied in third place for draining eight 3-pointers in the game. During the game, Dellinger contributed five rebounds, and led the team with five assists, three steals, and two blocks.

Payton Moore led the Ravens with nine rebounds.

UP NEXT

The Ravens now return back to O.C. Lewis Gymnasium for a five-game home stint. Starting Monday with a non-conference matchup, the Ravens welcome the Eagles of Spalding University (3-4). Tip-off between the Ravens and Eagles is set for 7:30PM.

CONKLIN LEADS WAY AS THUNDER FINISH NINTH

ADA, Ohio — The Trine University men’s wrestling team finished in ninth place at the Ohio Northern Invitation with 59.5 team points in the event.

Seven members of the Thunder earned points for the team in the event. Coming in with a high was senior Owen Conklin (West Lafayette, Ind. / Harrison) who finished in fourth place in the 174-weight class. Conklin opened the day with three straight wins to reach the semifinal match of the championship bracket. He tallied technical fall victories in the first two rounds before earning a major decision in the quarterfinals. After a tough loss in the semis he won the semifinals of the consolation bracket by technical fall to earn a spot in the third-place match. Another tough loss gave him the fourth-place finish.

Also, with a strong performance in the 174-weight class was sophomore John Browning (Novi, Mich. / Detroit Catholic Central) who finished seventh. After receiving a loss in the second round, Browning reeled off three straight wins, one by decision and two by pin, to earn the seventh-place finish.

The second highest point getter for the team was sophomore Isaac Hawkins (Fremont, Ind. / Fremont) who started the competition with three straight wins in the 149-weight class to end up in the semifinal match. He would unfortunately drop his next three matches, but finished in sixth after the early success.

Sophomore Andrew Williamson (Mount Gilead, Ohio / Mount Gilead) finished the day with an eighth-place finish to earn 8.5 points for the team from the 184-weight class. In the 141-weight class, sophomore Joseph Langeman (Carmel, Ind. / Carmel) earned seven points for the team with three wins, finishing just outside of placing.

Rounding out the counting performances for the team were sophomore Ethan Nash (Franklin, Ind. / Franklin Community) in 165, sophomore Andrew Captain (Bluffton, Ind. / Norwell) in 285 and freshman Bryce Timm (Battle Creek, Mich. / Harper Creek) in 125.

Trine will return to a dual meet format in their next competition when they travel to face Ancilla on Thursday, Dec. 9. The match is set to start at 7 p.m.

WILSON SCORES TWICE AS THUNDER WIN

FOND DU LAC, Wis. — Senior Brandi Wilson (Fenton, Mich.) scored first and last in the contest, as the Trine University women’s hockey game came up with a win over Marian University by the score of 4-1.

Wilson tallied her first goal in the eighth minute of play, it would be the lone goal of the first period. Freshman Abby Martin (Chippewa Falls, Wis.) came up with the loose puck, after the Marian defense cleared the zone, and quickly passed it off to Wilson who beat the goalie for the 1-0 lead.

Under a minute into the second period the team added to their lead. A wild pass from the Sabres in their offensive made its way the length of the ice, bouncing off the board back toward the net. Freshman Kailey Mleko (Hoffman Estates, Ill.) beat out the Marian skaters collecting the puck just in front of the net and firing a shot past the left side of the goalie.

Marian was able to answer the goal under two minutes later cutting the deficit to one once again.

The Thunder made it two again in the 12th minute of the period. Freshman Payton Hans (Johnson Creek, Wis.) scored the goal after two quick passes got her the puck directly in front of the net. Sophomore Grace Hicks (Layton, Utah) and senior Hannah Nelson (Libertyville, Ill.) were delivered those passes and earned assists for their efforts.

After an uneventful end to the second and most of the third, Marian pulled their goalie to try to get back in the game. Wilson made them pay for the attempt netting her second goal of the game to ice the game and give the team the 4-1 victory.

Freshman Ryleigh Furlong (Lakeville, Minn.) earned the win in net for the Thunder on the back of 32 saves.

The team improves 2-9-1 overall and 1-4-1 in Northern Collegiate Hockey Association (NCHA) play following the victory. They will return home to face off with Marian again next weekend in a pair of non-conference games. The first game is scheduled for 7 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 10.

THUNDER HOLD OFF SABRES TO FINISH WEEKEND SWEEP

ANGOLA, Ind. — The Trine University men’s hockey team netted three goals in the first, but needed to fend off a late period comeback attempt to come up with the 4-3 victory over visiting Marian University, to finish the weekend with a 2-0 record.

The first Thunder goal came in just the sixth minute of play. Freshman Bobby Price (Sault Ste. Marie, Mich.) came up with a neutral zone steal and quickly passed off the puck to senior Garrett Hallford (McKinney, Texas) who carried the puck into the offensive end. From there he passed it to a trailing Justin Meers (St. Charles, Mo.) who netted the goal to give the team a 1-0 lead.

Less than a minute later the team added to that lead. This time it was sophomore Jacob Berg (Plano, Texas) who forced the turnover in the neutral zone by tipping a pass. Freshman Tyler Fox (Marshall, Mich.) collected the loose puck and moved quickly into the offensive zone where he fired a perfect shot on net for the first goal of his career.

Marian cut into the lead with their first goal of the game in the ninth minute of play, taking advantage of a defensive miscue by the Thunder.

Trine netted their third goal of the period in the eleventh minute. Junior Frank Trazzera (Keller, Texas) won the contested puck inside of the offensive faceoff circle before passing it off to freshman Drew Welsch (Trenton, Mich.) who moved in front of the net before firing a shot on goal, which was saved. Sophomore Thad Marcola (Almont, Mich.) picked up the rebound and passed it back to Welsch who fired the puck by the scrambling goalie for a 3-1 lead.

Another miscue in the defensive zone let the Sabres shrink the deficit back to one before the end of the period, making the score 3-2 in favor of the Thunder at the first intermission. The offenses cooled in the second period and the score would hold well into the third period.

In the 12th minute of the final stanza, junior Brett Tierney (West Chicago, Ill.) sent a puck flying down the ice that seemed destined to end in an icing call, but Trazzera showed off some tough skating to beat out the stoppage and wrestle control of the puck in the offensive end. Marcola skated in behind the play and received a pass from Trazzera before cashing in. The goal gave the team a 4-2 lead.

Again the Sabres were ready with an answer pulling back within one again just over a minute later. They then applied ample pressure over the final six minutes of play, including pulling their goalie for the final two minutes, but sophomore Elias Sandholm (Stockholm, Sweden) was up to the task in net for the Thunder. Sandholm finished the game with 29 saves and his fourth win in goal for the team.

Trine improves to 9-3 overall and 4-2 in Northern Collegiate Hockey Association (NCHA) play following the win. They will hit the road for their next contest, traveling to face Aurora University next weekend. The first game is scheduled for Friday, Dec. 10 at 8 p.m. ET.

PILOTS DROP SECOND STRAIGHT WITH LOSS TO GRACE

MISHAWAKA – Bethel Men’s Basketball was overwhelmed by No. 13 Grace in the Wiekamp Athletic Center on Saturday, losing 88-67. Nathan Aerts led the Pilots with 13 points, 6 rebounds, and 2 assists.

GAME VITALS

Score: Grace def. Bethel 88-67

Records: Bethel (6-5, 2-2) | Grace (11-0, 4-0)

NAIA Top 25 Coaches’ Poll:  Bethel – NR | Grace – No. 13

Location: Wiekamp Athletic Center | Bethel University | Mishawaka, Ind.

STAT TRACKER

Nathan Aerts: 13 pts, 6 reb, 2 ast

Brandon Hunt: 11 pts, 3 reb

Drew Greene: 11 pts, 2 reb

Jared DeHart: 10 pts, 2 reb

INSIDE THE BOXSCORE

The Lancers opened the game with dunks on four of their first eight possessions and made 15 of their first 19 shots from the field, racing out to a 34-17 lead 12 minutes into the game. The Pilots never got the margin within 13 points the remainder of the game.

The Lancers outscored the Pilots 52-22 on points in the paint.

The Lancers capitalized on the Pilots’ miscues, turning just 11 Bethel turnovers into 17 points.

NEXT TIME OUT

The Pilots host Judson in non-conference play on Saturday, December 11 at 12:00 pm in the Wiekamp Athletic Center.

PILOTS LOSE TO GRACE

MISHAWAKA – Bethel Women’s Basketball lost a rivalry game on Saturday to Grace 74-51 in the Wiekamp Athletic Center. Maiah Shelton led the Pilots with 13 points and 6 steals in the game.

GAME VITALS

Score: Grae def. Bethel 74-51

Records: Bethel (6-6, 2-2) | Grace (6-4, 1-3)

NAIA Top 25 Coaches’ Poll:  Bethel – NR | Grace – NR

Location: Wiekamp Athletic Center | Bethel University | Mishawaka, Ind.

STAT TRACKER

Maiah Shelton: 13 pts, 3 reb, 6 stl

Caroline Morris: 12 pts, 5 reb, 5-7 fg

Abby Williams: 7 pts, 3 reb

Maggie Deboy: 3 pts, 9 reb

INSIDE THE BOXSCORE

The Pilots turned the ball over 34 times and the Lancers scored 35 points off turnovers.

The Lancers led by as many as 26 but the Pilots had the deficit down to as few as 13 points in the second half.

NEXT TIME OUT

The Pilots travel across town to take on IU South Bend on Wednesday at 6:00 pm.

SEVENTH-RANKED TIGERS ROLL TO SECOND NCAC WIN

Wooster, Ohio – Seventh-ranked DePauw never trailed on the way to an 87-47 North Coast Athletic Conference win at Wooster. The Tigers improved to 7-0 overall and 2-0 in the NCAC, while the Fighting Scots dropped to 1-7 overall and 0-2 in conference play.

Wooster was still within seven at 27-20 with three minutes left in the second period, but the Tigers closed the first half with an 8-2 run and opened the third quarter with a 15-2 stretch to expand the lead to 26 and put the game away.

Maeve Summerville led five DePauw double-figure scorers and matched a career-high with 14 points, while Moira McGinley added 11 points and four steals. Grace Kinsey, Mya Shannon and Ainsley Boras each scored 10 in the win. Lydia Stullken grabbed six rebounds and blocked three shots with Maura Fitzgerald dishing out seven assists.

Jenna Stanton scored 10 for Wooster and hauled down nine rebounds.

DePauw shot 48.5 percent for the game including 58.8 percent in the second half. The Fighting Scots shot 28.6 percent from the floor. DePauw held a 46-33 rebounding edge and outscored Wooster in the paint, 48-14.

The Tigers host Wittenberg on Wednesday, December 8, at 7 p.m.

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL KNOCKS OFF HCAC FOE BLUFFTON

HANOVER, Ind. The Hanover women’s basketball team remained perfect at home as they defeated Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference foe Bluffton on Saturday afternoon, 63-53.

With the win, Hanover moves to 4-2 overall, 1-0 HCAC.

Hanover was led in the contest by freshman Katherine Benter (Brownstown, Ind.) with a double double. Benter netted a game-high 21 points, while pulling in 14 rebounds. Freshman Grace Bezold (Covington, Ky.) added 14 points and sophomore Maddi Sears (Carmel, Ind.) poured in 10 points.

The opening quarter would see the Panthers on the wrong end of a 9-7 advantage when a sophomore Addie Gardner (Anderson, Ind.) jumper at the 7:24 mark in the second stanza pushed HC in front 14-13. Benter deemed clutch moments later as she hit a deep ball from the top of the key that extended the Hanover advantage. The Blue and Red entered the half with the 26-21 lead.

The second half saw the Panthers continue to apply pressure as they captured their largest lead of the afternoon at the 3:26 mark following a Sears three-pointer, 43-28. However, Bluffton slowly climbed the mountain as they were able to cut the deficit to as little as three points in the fourth quarter when Sears sealed the deal at the free throw line.

Hanover returns to action on Saturday, Dec. 11 when they travel to Defiance. Game time is set for 2:00 PM.

BALANCED ATTACK LEADS PANTHERS PAST BLUFFTON

HANOVER, Ind. – The Hanover men’s basketball team remained perfect as they knocked off Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference opponent Bluffton, 75-64.

With the win, Hanover moves to 5-0 overall, 2-0 HCAC.

The Panthers saw four players finish in double figures led by sophomore Matt Munoz (Indianapolis, Ind.) with a double double. Munoz tied a team-high 17 points with 13 rebounds. Sophomore Max Greenamoyer (Zionsville, Ind.) tied a team-high 17 points, while senior Isaac Hibbard (New Albany, Ind.) netted 16 points and junior Ty Houston (Union, Ky.) added 11 points.

Bluffton soared out of the gate taking the 14-7 advantage when Houston hit a runner in the paint at the 15:05 mark to steal the momentum. Hanover claimed the lead minutes later as Greenamoyer connected from downtown to push HC on top.

The Panther never looked back as they entered the half gripping to the 41-33 lead following a last second layup by Hibbard.

The second half saw the hot shooting continue for the Blue and Red as a Munoz three-pointer at the 14:21 mark gave HC the 50-36 advantage. They continued to fire on all cylinders capturing their largest lead at the 12:25 mark following a corner three-pointer by Hibbard. The Panthers outscored the Beavers 34-31 in the half to claim the HCAC victory.

Hanover returns to action on Saturday, Dec. 11 when they travel to Defiance. Game time is set for 4:00 PM.

LATE PUSH AT EARLHAM GETS MANCHESTER BACK INTO WIN COLUMN

RICHMOND, Ind. – The Manchester University men’s basketball team used a late 17-9 push over the game’s final five minutes to earn a gritty 75-71 win at Earlham College on Saturday afternoon.

First-year guard Ty Lynas (Crawfordsville, Ind./Crawfordsville) scored 5 points at the beginning of the late run that helped the Spartans retake the lead for good in Saturday’s game. CJ Hampton (Hammond, Ind./Griffith) and Brandon Christlieb (Ashley, Ind./Prairie Heights) also made tough, contested baskets in the paint during Manchester’s late surge.

Christlieb led all scorers with a career-best 28 points – 17 of which he scored in the 1st half. Christlieb shot 11-23 from the field and added 4 rebounds. Lynas scored a career-high 13 points in just 10 minutes off the bench. Lynas finished 5-6 from the field.

Both CJ Hampton and Ian Snelling (Erlanger, Ky./Dixie Heights) scored in double figures for the Black & Gold. Hampton once again filled the stat sheet with 13 points, 9 rebounds, 5 assists, and 3 steals while Snelling contributed 10 points and 8 rebounds in the winning effort.

The Spartans shot 41.5 percent (27-65) in Saturday’s win while outrebounding the Quakers 41-29.

Earlham shot 42.6 percent (26-61) but were limited to just 22.7 percent (5-22) shooting from three-point territory.

Manchester (2-6, 1-1 HCAC) picked up its first Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference win on Saturday. The Black & Gold will have a week to prepare for its next opponent – Franklin College – who will visit Stauffer-Wolfe Arena on Saturday December 11 at 3 p.m.

Earlham College (1-4, 0-1 HCAC) will travel to Rose-Hulman on Wednesday December 8 for a 7:30 matchup against the Fightin’ Engineers.

SECOND HALF SURGE SENDS SPARTANS TO FIFTH STRAIGHT WIN

RICHMOND, Ind. – The Manchester University women’s basketball team won its fifth straight game on Saturday afternoon following a 67-49 victory at Earlham College.

The Spartans scored 47 points in the 3rd and 4th quarters. Manchester outscored the Quakers 47-25 over the game’s final two periods on Saturday.

Leading the 2nd half surge for Manchester was senior Miranda Bieghler (Plainfield, Ind./South Putnam). Bieghler led all scorers on Saturday with a career-high 21 points. Bieghler shot 4-9 from the field and was a perfect 3-3 from beyond the three-point arc. Bieghler also finished 10-12 at the free throw line and added 8 rebounds, 5 assists, and 5 steals.

Joining Bieghler in double figures were fellow seniors Macy Miller (Huntertown, Ind./Carroll) and Bridget Nash (Carmel, Ind./Bishop Chatard). Miller posted her third career double-double with 16 points and a career-high 13 rebounds. Miller also blocked a pair of shots. Nash added 11 points in the win over the Quakers.

Earlham was held to 32.7 percent (18-55) shooting by the Manchester defense. The Spartans also forced Earlham into 20 turnovers on the afternoon. The Black & Gold also outrebounded Earlham 39-25.

The Black & Gold once again came up clutch at the free throw line in the win. Manchester finished 27-37 (73 percent) and were a +17 at the charity stripe.

The Spartans (5-1, 2-0 HCAC) won for the fifth consecutive outing and will have a week off before welcoming Franklin College to Stauffer-Wolfe Arena on Saturday December 11. Game time is scheduled for 1 p.m.

Earlham (0-6, 0-1 HCAC) will host Rose-Hulman on Wednesday December 8 at 7:30 p.m.

HU DISMANTLES MOUNT VERNON 96-46

HUNTINGTON, Ind. – Playing in front of their home crowd, the Huntington men’s basketball team dismantled Mount Vernon, 96-46, Saturday afternoon at Platt Arena. The 50-point spread is HU’s heftiest win of the season.

The victory moves Alford and crew to 8-3 overall, 2-2 in league play while the Cougars drop to 8-4 which includes a 1-3 CL record.

From opening tip, the Foresters made it clear they were the heavy favorites. HU put ten points on the board before their visitors finally scored at the 15:44 mark. Over the next six minutes, Huntington allowed just two more points to make for a 23-4 difference with nine minutes left in the half. The debacle continued for a 45-17 halftime discrepancy with more to come in the final 20 minutes.

The Foresters’ dominance continued after intermission as they gave up just 29 points in the second period while pouring in 51 points at the other end of the floor to make for the lopsided affair.

“This was our most complete 40 minutes of the season on both sides of the ball,” said Coach Kory Alford. “We were able to consistently get stops and rebound and it led to efficient offense.

“Zach and Peyton set the tone early with their ball pressure and I thought our bigs were extremely active, especially on the glass. Our bench also did a great job keeping the same energy on defense and providing scoring.”

Huntington’s defensive success was well documented. The Cougars coughed up the ball 15 times with 11 of those TOs coming by way of HU steals. The hosts gave up a mere two offensive boards in addition to allowing MVNU just 14 field goals on 27.5 percent shooting.

The last time a Huntington squad gave up fewer points dates back to 2015 when the Foresters cruised to an 82-38 win over Moody Bible Institute.

On this given day, HU generated 20 more shots than their guests compliments of committing a season-low seven miscues and collecting 11 of their own misses to which they cashed in for nine points. Alford’s crew scored 32 points in the paint and outscored Mount Vernon 23-2 in points off turnovers. For the game, HU connected on 49.3 percent of their shots by going 35-for-71.

Zach Goodline fueled the Foresters’ offense by dropping in 21 points. The 6-1 guard went 9-for-11 from the floor and 2-for-3 from the line for a near-flawless performance. Lane Sparks also missed just two field goals on the afternoon to finish with 15 points off the bench.

Caleb Middlesworth drilled three three-pointers on the way to scoring 13 points. Joel Dyer rounded out HU’s double-digit scoring with 11 points while Peyton West did a little bit of everything for his team by posting eight points, six rebounds, six assists and three steals. Hank Pulver pulled down a game-best nine rebounds.

Kade Ruegsegger logged 16 points as the only Cougar to log double figures.

Next up for HU is a matchup with Simmons College of Kentucky on Tuesday at 6:00 p.m. at Platt Arena.  

#21 MVNU EVENTUALLY PULLS AWAY FOR WIN OVER HU

HUNTINGTON, Ind. – The #21 Mount Vernon Cougars had their hands full Saturday afternoon at Platt Arena before pulling away in the final few minutes to log a 74-63 win over the Forester women’s basketball team. With the win, MVNU remains perfect in league play at 4-0 and 9-2 overall.

Trailing by as many as 14 in the second frame, Huntington wasn’t about to go away. Celeste Ryman’s triple, her fourth of the contest, with five minutes remaining knotted things up at 60-60. It capped off a 13-0 run that spanned the first half of the of the fourth quarter.

Ruby Bolon started things off for HU with a jumper from the top of the key after which five other Foresters put the ball in the hole over the next five minutes to grind out the comeback. 

Unfortunately, a timeout got the visitors back on track. MVNU, who came into the afternoon averaging over 77 points per game, scored on every possession to close out the game to secure their double-digit win by the final horn.

After trading the lead in the first few minutes of the game, Mount Vernon took the lead midway through the quarter on the way to enjoying a 23-17 lead by the first break. The Foresters spent the next stanza outscoring their guests by two to make for a four-point spread of 41-37 by halftime.

HU also put two more points on the board than Mount Vernon in the fourth but the third was their demise. MVNU enjoyed a 19-10 tilt in the third to make for an uphill battle for Culler and crew the rest of the way.

Celeste Ryman led a balanced Huntington attack by pouring in a season-tying 14 points to go along with four assists and two steals. Emily Seboe chipped in ten points and claimed a team-best eight rebounds.

Bolon came off the bench to add a career-high nine points in addition to pulling down three offensive boards. Maddy Robrock finished with eight points. Dazia Drake and Jenessa Hasty sparked HU off the bench by scoring seven points each as well as collecting four rebounds apiece.

Maggie Coe, the league’s second leader scorer, topped MVNU with 20 points. Sage Brannon and Rylee Pireu tossed in 13 points apiece while Maggie Coblentz finished with 11.

The Foresters (2-9, 0-4) take a break from CL action to tip-off with IU Kokomo on Wednesday at 5:30 p.m.

NO. 1 COUGARS DEFENSE STRUGGLES IN SECOND HALF AS THEY FALL TO NO. 7 IWU WILDCATS 100-89

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – On Saturday afternoon, the No. 1 University of Saint Francis Cougars (10-2; 2-2 Crossroads) faced their biggest challenge of the season thus far when they played host to the No. 7 Indiana Wesleyan University Wildcats (10-1; 4-0 Crossroads) in Hutzell Athletic Center, but lost a tough one 100-89 as the Wildcats offense took off in the second half.

The Cougars came out firing on all cylinders to begin the game. A quick three-pointer by junior guard Antwaan Cushingberry got the scoring started just 11 seconds into the game. As the first five minutes of the first half expired, Saint Francis had started the game their way by building an early 15-8 lead.

But in less than two minutes, the Wildcats showed why they are No. 7 in the NAIA as they quickly scored seven unanswered points to tie the score. Then the Cougars went back to work to build another seven-point lead, but leading 31-25 with eight minutes left in the first half, the Wildcats showed they were not going away quietly and spent the last minutes of the first half keeping up with the Cougars.

As the half ticked down to the final minute, the Cougars still held a five-point lead at 48-43. A couple free throws and a three-pointer drew the score back even at 48-48, but a jump shot by David Ejah at the buzzer put Saint Francis back ahead 50-48 as the game went to halftime.

Heading into the second half, the script changed. Just over two minutes in the Cougars had lost their lead and were trailing for the first time in the game. Then a back-and-forth battle ensued through the next several minutes.

But then with the score tied at 67, the Wildcats made consecutive three-pointers to go ahead by six, and never looked back after that. They made the free throws when they needed to, and the Cougars couldn’t manufacture enough offense to catch them as they dropped their second straight game.

Throughout the game, the Cougars shot 50 percent from the floor, 50 percent from beyond the three-point line, and 70 percent from the free throw line. Freshman guard Zane Burke led the Cougars in scoring with 23 points and went 7-for-12 from beyond the arc, while Jalan Mull and Antwaan Cushingberry each had six assists to lead the team.

The Cougars resume play on Friday evening when they travel to Lake Wales, Florida to face the Warner University Royals (8-3) in a non-conference game beginning at 6:00 pm.

LATE SURGE FALLS SHORT AS LADY COUGARS FALL TO NO. 13 IWU WILDCATS

FORT WAYNE, Ind. – The University of Saint Francis Lady Cougars (5-5; 2-2 Crossroads) played host to the No. 13 Indiana Wesleyan University Wildcats (9-2; 3-1 Crossroads) Saturday afternoon at Hutzell Athletic Center but despite a strong effort and late surge, fell 81-70.

As the game got underway both teams exchanged blows in the early going. But with the Wildcats leading 10-9 with four minutes left in the first half, Indiana Wesleyan went on to score 10 of the next 14 points to pull ahead 20-13 after the frame.

The Wildcats offense proved even tougher in the second quarter building a 12-point lead before the Lady Cougars had to call a timeout.

The deficit stayed in double digits for the Lady Cougars throughout the remainder of the second quarter, and although their offense produced more than the first, Saint Francis still trailed 42-31 as the game went to halftime.

Entering the third quarter though, the Wildcats picked up where they left off with offense extending their lead up to 17 points in the first several minutes of the frame and it stayed there through three as the Lady Cougars still trailed 63-46 heading into the fourth.

But then in the fourth quarter, the Lady Cougars found momentum on offense and went on to close the gap.

Despite some costly turnovers and missed opportunities, Saint Francis clawed their way back to make it a six-point game in the final two minutes.

But once they reached 70 points to trail by just six, no more scoring was done for the Lady Cougars in the game as they suffered the loss to fall back to .500 in conference play.

“First of all, Indiana Wesleyan is an excellent basketball team, and they came out and started the game how we wanted to,” Head Coach Jason Ridge said. “They were more proactive, and we were very reactive. With that said, I was very proud of the fight we had that got us back in the game. We are going to continue to learn, and we will keep getting better.”

Throughout the game the Lady Cougars shot 37 percent from the floor, 26 percent from beyond the three-point line, and 78 percent from the free throw line. Sophomore guard Reganne Pate led the team in scoring with 16 points while junior forwards Meleah Kunkel and Cassidy Crawford each chipped in with 12 and 11 points of their own while Crawford led the team in rebounds with six.

The Lady Cougars resume play on Friday evening when they play host to the Blackburn College Beavers (1-7) in an exhibition game at Hutzell Athletic Center beginning at 7:00 pm.

LATE RALLY NOT ENOUGH AS SMWC DEFEATS IU SOUTHEAST 58-56

St. Mary’s, Ind. – A late fourth quarter rally by the IU Southeast women’s basketball team came up just short as the Grenadiers would fall to St. Mary-of-the-Woods 58-56 on Saturday.

Emmy Ralph led the Grenadiers in scoring with 16 points. Leah Miller scored 15 points and Brynna Blackburn added 10 points in starting roles. Lettie Nice added 18 rebounds in the contest.

IU Southeast (5-6, 2-2 RSC) dominated the first quarter, extending their lead to as many as 12 points. A 9-0 run gave IU Southeast an 11-2 lead, and a Brynna Blackburn three gave the Grenadiers an 18-7 lead after one.

The Grenadiers maintained the lead for the entire second quarter despite getting outscored 20-14 in the period. The big turn started with 6:51 left in the second. An Emmy Ralph jumper gave IU Southeast a 24-9 lead, but SMWC answered with a 12-0 run to bring the score to within three at 24-21. The Grenadiers held a 32-27 lead at the half.

SMWC would tie the game 36-36 in the third quarter, but IU Southeast seemed to have an answer for every run. After SMWC tied the game, IU Southeast answered with four straight points. Despite the scare, the Grenadiers led 44-40 after three quarters.

The fourth quarter was where the tide of the game turned. SMWC scored the first six points of the quarter to take their first lead of the game. An Emmy Ralph layup tied the game, but SMWC answered with five straight points to take a 51-46 lead. A Maddie Knight three brought the lead down to two, but SMWC responded yet again, extending their lead to nine at 58-49. 

IU Southeast scored the final seven points of the game, but ultimately it was not enough as SMWC would go on to win 58-56.

Both teams shot under 40 percent from the field. The Grenadiers hit six of their 25 threes, and SMWC hit four of their 11 attempts from deep. There were only nine total free throw attempts in the game.

IU Southeast returns home to take on Kentucky Christian on Wednesday.

STIFLING DEFENSE SENDS IU SOUTHEAST PAST SMWC

St. Mary’s, Ind. – The IU Southeast men’s basketball team held St. Mary-of-the-Woods to just 20 points in the first half en route to a 76-52 win on Saturday.

Jared Osborne sparked the Grenadier offense in the first half, scoring 14 points in the opening 20 minutes and 10 of the first 14 points for IU Southeast. He finished with 18 points in the contest to lead IU Southeast. Glenn Hill Jr. had 10 of his 12 points in the first half and Gabriel Casiilas Cruz had 10 points and eight rebounds in the win.

The best defensive performance of the season for the Grenadiers helped them pull away late in the first half,

The Grenadiers held the Pomeroys to 25 percent shooting from the field in the first half (8-of-31) and forced eight turnovers. The Pomeroys shot 33 percent from the field in the game.

IU Southeast fell behind 14-8 seven minutes into the contest before outscoring the Pomeroys 32-6 for the remainder of the half.

IU Southeast only led 23-16 with 5:30 to play in the first half but back-to-back steals by Jaren Starks and Anthony Wales Jr. led to baskets by Jathan Ritter and Wales which pushed the lead to double figures.

A Richard Lang dunk extended the lead to 31-18 and a three-point play by Wales moved the lead to 36-18. IU Southeast led 40-20 at halftime.

Seven different Grenadiers scored in the first half and 11 different players recorded points in the contest. IU Southeast shot 44 percent from the field in the opening half and 41 percent for the game.

In the second half, Cruz opened the period with a three-pointer and then scored on a layup on consecutive possessions which took any chance of securing momentum away from the Pomeroys. Though the Pomeroys shot almost 40 percent in the second half, the deficit was too large to overcome.

The IU Southeast bench outscored the Pomeroys’ 29-15 and the Grenadiers were dominant on the glass, outrebounding SMWC 53-38.

IU Southeast travels to No. 16 Georgetown College on Tuesday at 7 p.m.

MEN’S BASKETBALL SURVIVES EAGLES COMEBACK ATTEMPT FOR FIFTH STRAIGHT VICTORY

KOKOMO, Ind. – The Indiana University Kokomo men’s basketball streak continued Saturday afternoon as the Cougars withstood a late comeback effort by the Midway University Eagles. The Cougars defeated the Eagles 78-68 to move to 10-2 overall on the year and 4-1 in River States Conference action.

The Eagles high-scoring offense is averaging nearly 87 points on the season and shooting 51 percent from the field. IU Kokomo’s defense held the Eagles to just 38 percent from the field and 11 percent from beyond the arc.

IU Kokomo got off to a quick start against the Eagles, something they have not done much this season. Just eight minutes into the contest, the Cougars built an eight-point advantage when Trequan Spivey scored a transition bucket on the long pass from Desean Hampton. Minutes later, Hampton gave the Cougars their first double digit lead of the game, hitting a triple off the Julien Hunter assist.

With 7:04 left to play in the half, Hunter White gave IU Kokomo its largest lead of the half at 15 points. The Cougars would remain in control for the duration of the half. Spivey hit a jumper with just over a minute left to give IUK a 42-29 lead that would hold until the halftime horn.

Spivey led all scorers with 12 points at the break. Hampton pulled down seven rebounds in the opening frame.

IU Kokomo came out of the locker room and built their lead to 17 points after Hunter put back an Allante Harper miss at the 14:45 mark. A pair of Midway free throws would cut the IUK lead to 15 and momentum began swinging in favor of the Eagles. Over the next five minutes the Eagles would go on a 17-3 run to cut their deficit to one point with just over nine minutes to play in the game.

The veteran led IU Kokomo squad weathered the storm and answered with a short 8-0 run to build their lead back to nine points. The Cougars would withstand one final push from Midway who cut the IUK lead to three points with 5:26 to play. The IU Kokomo defense held Midway to just seven points for the duration of the game while scoring 14 to close out their fifth straight victory.

Spivey finished with a game-high 19 points to go with seven assists while Hampton added 13 points and a game-high 14 rebounds. Hunter White also chipped in with 13 points. The Cougars shot 52 percent from the field.

The Cougars’ bench outscored the Eagles’ bench 27-11 in the win.

Up next the Cougars will take a pause from conference action as they host Wilberforce University on Tuesday, December 7. Tipoff is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL FALLS TO MIDWAY 77-58

KOKOMO, Ind. – The Indiana University Kokomo women’s basketball team dropped a conference matchup to Midway University Saturday afternoon inside the Student Activities and Events Center. The first half was tightly contested but a dominant third quarter performance from Midway proved to be the difference in a 77-58 defeat for the Cougars.

The Eagles of Midway held a five-point lead over the Cougars three minutes into the game, but IU Kokomo scored five straight to tie the game at eight. Midway outscored IUK 10-6 in the remaining minutes of the opening quarter to lead 18-14.

IU Kokomo battled Midway toughly in the second quarter, but the Cougars were unable to take a lead despite coming within a point of the Eagles on two separate occasions. Midway took a 38-32 lead into the halftime break.

The third period was dominated by the Eagles, who outscored IU Kokomo 28-8 in the third quarter. The Cougars shot just 18.8% from the field in the quarter and allowed Midway to shoot 73.3%.

IU Kokomo responded to the tough third quarter by ending the game on a high note. The Cougars were able to outscore Midway by seven points in the fourth quarter but ultimately fell to the Eagles, 77-58.

Tia Chambers led IU Kokomo with 10 points and seven rebounds and was the only Cougar in double figures. Anya Friend had three triples for nine points. Jadah Anderson added seven points.

The Cougars will return to action Wednesday, December 8, as they welcome Huntington University to town for a non-conference matchup. Tipoff is set for 5:30 p.m.

WOMEN’S BASKETBALL PICKS UP NON CONFERENCE VICTORY AGAINST LINCOLN CHRISTIAN SATURDAY

GARY, Ind. — The Indiana University Northwest women’s basketball team won their fifth game in a row as the RedHawks rolled past Lincoln Christian, 73-44, at the Savannah Center, Saturday.

TEAM RECORDS

IU Northwest (7-3) | Lincoln Christian (1-4)

QUARTER BREAKDOWN

1st Quarter: IU Northwest 17, Lincoln Christian 13

2nd Quarter: IU Northwest 21, Lincoln Christian 15

Halftime Score: IU Northwest 38, Lincoln Christian 28

3rd Quarter: IU Northwest 19, Lincoln Christian 4

4th Quarter: IU Northwest 16, Lincoln Christian 12

Final Score: IU Northwest 73, Lincoln Christian 44

IU NORTHWEST LEADERS

Points: Michaela Schmidt (22), Lauren Smolen (15)

Rebounds: Lauren Smolen (9)

Assists: Meghan Long (7)

Blocks: None

Steals: Meghan Long (5)

GAME RECAP

IU Northwest went up 7-0 early after Michaela Schmidt made a layup and a three-pointer then Tiara Jackson hit a layup. LCU made a short come back scoring a 5-1 run.

Schmidt responded with a three-pointer then Meghan Long made a basket to make it 13-5 IU Northwest. The Red Lions fought back again and made it 15-13 IUN then Samantha Martin hit a layup towards the end of the quarter to give the RedHawks a 17-13 lead.

Alyna Santiago started the second quarter with a layup then Mikayla Smith scored five straight points to cut it back down to one. Sam Martin and Long responded with back-to-back buckets.

Katelyn Halfacre made a layup to give IU Northwest their first double-digit lead of the night (31-20) with 4:13 left in the half. Both teams traded baskets the rest of the half as the RedHawks went into the break ahead 38-28.

The RedHawks outscored the Red Lions 19-4 in the third quarter including big baskets by Lauren Smolen and Michaela Schmidt. IU Northwest led the game 57-32 going into the final frame.

Smolen opened up the fourth quarter with a layup then moments later she expanded the lead to 67-35 with back-to-back buckets which was their biggest advantage of the game. LCU responded with baskets but then Kaitlyn Foutz and Madison Wirey expanded it to 73-41.

IU Northwest ended up winning 73-44.

UP NEXT

IU Northwest will be back in action and resume Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference play as the RedHawks travel to Milwaukee, Wis. to take on Cardinal Stritch Tuesday, December 7 starting at 7 p.m. CT.

MEN’S BASKETBALL ROLLS PAST LINCOLN CHRISTIAN BEHIND JOHNSON’S DOUBLE-DOUBLE SATURDAY

GARY, Ind. — The Indiana University Northwest men’s basketball team had five players reach double figures including Jared Johnson getting a double-double as the RedHawks defeated Lincoln Christian, 90-70, at the Savannah Center, Saturday.

RECORDS

Indiana Northwest (7-3) | Lincoln Christian (3-7)

IU NORTHWEST LEADERS

Points: Jared Johnson (27), Jerron Tatum (12), Brian Hernandez (11), Marshaud Watkins (11), Damond Crosby (10)

Rebounds: Jared Johnson (10)

Assists: Brian Hernandez (7)

Blocks: Jason Peace (2)

Steals: Jared Johnson (3)

HALF BREAKDOWN

1st Half: IU Northwest 45, Lincoln Christian 34

2nd Half: IU Northwest 45, Lincoln Christian 36

Final Score: IU Northwest 90, St. Francis (Ill.) 70

GAME RECAP

Both teams traded early baskets making it 6-all. IU Northwest responded with a 7-0 run after Jerron Tatum hit a three-pointer and Brian Hernandez and Jared Johnson made back-to-back baskets.

LCU cut it to 19-16 IUN with 13:05 then the RedHawks went on a 12-0 run to make it 31-16 capped off by a dunk by Tromon Weston. The Red Lions responded right away with three straight buckets to make it 31-22.

Johnson took over the last four minutes of the half. The junior scored the last 10 points for the RedHawks of the half to give IU Northwest a 45-34 lead at the break.

Lincoln Christian started out the second half with back-to-back layups to make it 45-38 IUN. IU Northwest was able to respond and score 13 unanswered capped off by a jumper by Marshaud Watkins and a three by Tatum made it 58-38 with 16:13 left in the game.

The Red Lions looked to fight back but back-to-back baskets by Damond Crosby and Jason Peace expanded the lead to 72-51. LCU responded with a bucket by then Jimmie Washington and Crosby made baskets to give the RedHawks their biggest lead of the day at 23 (76-53) with 9:10 left in the game.

Weston ended the game with back-to-back baskets for IU Northwest. The RedHawks won the contest 90-70.

UP NEXT

IU Northwest will be back in action and resume Chicagoland Collegiate Athletic Conference play as the RedHawks travel to Milwaukee, Wis. to take on Cardinal Stritch Tuesday, December 7 starting at 7 p.m. CT.

THIRD-QUARTER RUN GIVES TITANS WIN AT TRINITY CHRISTIAN

PALOS HEIGHTS, Ill. – A strong start in the second half proved to be the difference, as IU South Bend secured a 63-42 win at Trinity Christian in CCAC play on Saturday afternoon.

With a seven-point lead at the half, the Titans (8-3, 3-2 CCAC) held their opponents to just four points in the third period, while building a 20-point advantage behind 11 points in the third from Rachael Robards. The senior was a perfect 3-for-3 from three-point range in the third quarter, and finished the game with a season-high 17 points off the bench on 6-of-7 shooting.

Maddie Gard led the Titans with 19 points in the win, along with a game-high eight rebounds. Emma Fisher finished with 12 points and five boards on the day.

After the Trolls (9-4, 5-3 CCAC) opened the game with a three, IU South Bend went on a 16-0 run to quickly take a double-digit lead in the first quarter. Trinity Christian battled back in the second period, cutting the Titan lead down to six at the 2:37 mark.

A bucket to open the second half made it a five-point IUSB lead, but the Titans would give up just one field goal over the next 11 minutes of play to pull away. Robards fueled the run with back-to-back threes with 3:48 left in the third quarter, then buried another in the closing seconds of the period to give the Titans a 49-29 lead going into the fourth quarter.

The win marks the fourth in a row for the Titans over Trinity Christian, and the lowest total of points surrendered by IUSB in the series since 2011.

The Titans return to the Student Activities Center for a pair of mid-week, non-conference matchups. IUSB hosts Bethel (Ind.) on Wednesday, Dec. 8, and Oakland City (Ind.) on Thursday, Dec. 9. Tipoff with the Pilots is scheduled for 6:00 p.m.

NATIONAL CHAMPS: GRACE CLAIMS NCCAA TITLE

KISSIMMEE, Fla. – A sweeter script could not be written. Grace 2, Ottawa 1.

The Lady Lancers’ women’s soccer team won its first national championship on Saturday, completing a memorable season as the 2021 NCCAA national champs.

The final buzzer pierced the Florida night air at Austin-Tindall Regional Park with one clear message. Grace College. National champs.

Grace netted a pair of first-half goals, then defended late in the game to defeat a talented Ottawa squad.

JJ Aalbue was named the NCCAA Tournament Most Outstanding Player, and Madison Tuma was named to the NCCAA All-Tournament Team alongside Aalbue.

Alexis Larimore was a constant threat on the right side of the field in the first half. It proved costly to the Spirit.

Larimore made a dazzling, speedy run into the box and sliced her shot inside the far post, giving the Lady Lancers an early 1-0 lead in the sixth minute.

The game settled into a midfield battle for the middle portions of the half. Each team had a handful of dangerous advances, but few clear chances arose.

Ottawa’s best chances came from set pieces, including a pair of free kicks.

With nine minutes left in the half, Grace earned a corner kick. The play resulted in a header that glanced off the crossbar before being cleared away from danger.

One minute later, Grace doubled its lead. Aalbue split two defenders, sped by a third and pounded her shot into the left corner of the net.

Grace claimed a 2-0 lead at halftime. Ottawa had seven shots, the majority from well outside the penalty area. Bethany Blackwood only needed to make one save in the first half to keep Ottawa scoreless.

Eight minutes into the second half, Larimore and Aalbue combined for a run on the right side of the field. The play resulted in a shot in the box from Tuma that was saved.

Aalbue also had a few chances that came up empty, including a sliding chance and a free kick.

With 22 minutes remaining, Ottawa put serious pressure on Grace. During one of its first threatening moments of the half, the Spirit had a free kick. The deep shot hit the crossbar and then was headed in from close range to cut Grace’s lead to one.

With 15 minutes left in the game, the Spirit had another strong chance with a header. But Blackwood made a full-extension save to push the ball wide of the net.

She made another save a few minutes later, charging off her line to deny an attempt in the penalty box.

Grace used its substitutes wisely in the game, getting key contributions late from Tori Calizo and Adelee Gartner to extend possession and help kill the clock. The Lady Lancers defended well down the stretch, allowing the clock to finally expire and secure Grace’s national championship aspirations.

Blackwood registered three saves to record the victory in the final game of her sterling Grace career. She was protected well by defenders Amber Meade, Victoria Lucido, Lea Moessinger, Kimberly Aalbue, Erin Crew and Anna Kuhl.

Grace is coached by Michael Voss, the all-time leader in wins in team history.

Grace’s athletic department has now won eight national championships in school history, including six in the past three seasons.

LANCERS WIN AGAIN AS WIN STREAK REACHES 11

MISHAWAKA, Ind. – Grace’s men’s basketball improved its perfect start to 11-0 after claiming a 88-67 win over Crossroads League rival Bethel.

The Lancers were dominant in a wire-to-wire performance that helped them improve upon their 2nd best start in program history.

The Lancers were led by Jake Wadding who exploded for 26 points on 12-17 shooting.

Grace (11-0, 4-0 CL) looked to establish their presence in the paint early. Grace had four dunks in the first seven minutes including emphatic slams from Frankie Davidson and Elijah Malone.

Four of the Lancer starters scored in the opening minutes  as they built a 12-7 lead over Bethel (6-5, 2-2 CL).

Following his dominance inside, Malone was left all alone beyond the arc and hit a trifecta, much to the delight of the Lancer faithful who had made the trek north.

On the next possession Wadding began imposing his will on the Pilot defense. Wadding crashed the glass to grab an offensive board and get the put back basket.

Following a Bethel timeout Cade Gibbs entered for the first time this season after being medically cleared to return to action. Gibbs first play was an acrobatic and-1 which he converted for his first points of the season..

Offensively the Lancers ball movement was clinical and back-to-back three pointers pushed them ahead 30-17.

By the midway point of the half the Lancers were outscoring the Pilots 20-2 in the paint and had hit on three of their four 3-point shots.

The Lancers continued to frustrate the Bethel offense who struggled to find any sense of sustained success.

Wadding continued his offensive showcase as Grace blew the game wide open. The standout forward scored on three straight possessions to make the advantage 21 in the closing moments.

Davidson and Gibbs would score to close out the half with Grace leading 47-26

Wadding paced the Lancers with 17 points as Grace shot a sizzling 63% from the floor in the first half. The Lancers forced 9 turnovers and outscored the Pilots 30-10 in the paint.

As the 2nd half started, it looked to be more of the same for Grace. The Lancers first four buckets of the half all came in the paint.

Bethel began to get into a rhythm offensively scoring on three straight possessions and slowly cutting into Grace’ lead. However the Pilots were unable to find an answer for Wadding who helped Grace maintain their 20-point advantage.

A slick no-look pass from Wadding found Davidson in the corner who buried his first 3-point shot of the game giving Grace a 63-42 lead with 14 minutes remaining.

Nearing the midpoint of the half, the Pilots looked to make one last run. Bethel had chipped the Lancers’ lead down 16 when Malone answered the Pilot run. The dominant center refused to be denied inside as he fought through a double team for the bucket and the foul.

After weathering a final push from the Pilots, the Lancers would score on four straight possessions to push the lead back to 82-59 with five minutes left.

Grace emptied its bench late and salted the game away for the 88-67 victory.

The Lancers finished the game shooting 58% from the floor and 41% from beyond the arc compared to 40% and 21% from the Pilots.

The Lancers dominated in the paint, out scoring the Pilots by 30 (52-22) in that area.

Malone had 16 points, 6 rebounds and 4 blocks. Eddie Gill IV added 10 points and nabbed two steals. Gibbs added seven points.

Grace will next be in action on Wednesday at 8 p.m. as they travel to Illinois to take on St. Xavier.

RYMAN’S 42 POWERS GRACE PAST BETHEL

MISHAWAKA, Ind. – Grace’s women’s basketball team won its 11th straight game over Bethel, winning by the score of 74-51 on Saturday.

Maddie Ryman was sensational, pouring in a career-high 42 points in the rout. She shot 15 of 28 from the floor and 9 of 20 on 3-pointers.

In a fast-paced affair, Grace was cleaner and more efficient to defeat the Pilots. Grace shot 41 percent from the floor as a team compared to 34 percent for the Pilots. Bethel also turned the ball over 34 times.

Ryman powered Grace’s offense to start the day. She scored 10 quick points to give Grace an early boost.

Grace led 13-3 at the onset, forcing Bethel to burn an early timeout.

The teams turned the ball over often in the first quarter. The teams combined for 16 turnovers in the period — 10 of which by the Pilots.

The Pilots struggled to break down Grace’s defense in the period and were held to just 18 percent shooting. At the end of the quarter, Grace held a 24-8 lead.

Ryman scored 13 points, and Kensie Ryman and Peyton Murphy each hit triples off the bench.

Grace continued where it left off to start the second quarter. The Pilots were largely muted on offense, not reaching double digits in points until midway through the second quarter.

The Lady Lancers’ long-range shooting cooled off in the second quarter. Grace missed six of its eight 3-point tries in the period, which prevented Grace from building on its lead.

Grace went into halftime with a 38-24 advantage. The Lady Lancers held Bethel to 32 percent shooting with 18 turnovers. Bethel did get to the foul line often with 12 free throws compared to none for the Lady Lancers.

Maddie Ryman starred, nearly outscoring Bethel by herself in the half with 23 points.

Grace started the third quarter with five straight points to open up a 19-point lead, forcing another timeout from the Pilots.

Bethel managed to trim Grace’s cushion down to 13, but Grace ended the quarter on a 10-2 run to grab a comfortable 24-point margin after three quarters. Karissa Lukasiewicz buried a baseline jumper in the final second to put Grace ahead 56-32.

The Pilots were unable to generate any sort of comeback in the fourth quarter. Grace coasted to the 23-point margin of victory.

Ten players registered a point for Grace. Karlee Feldman had six points and five rebounds, Kiersten Poor had 5 points, 6 assists and 3 steals, and Kaylee Patton tallied 5 points, 4 steals and 2 assists.

Lukasiewicz produced 4 points, 5 boards and 4 steals, and Kenzie McMahon tallied six boards and two steals.

The Lady Lancers are home twice next week. Grace will host Olivet Nazarene on Thursday at 6 p.m. and Judson on Saturday at 2 p.m.

MEN’S BASKETBALL PICKS UP FIRST CONFERENCE WIN OVER SAU

GOSHEN, Ind. – On Saturday afternoon, the Goshen men’s basketball team reversed their losing streak and picked up their first conference win of the season. The Leafs beat Spring Arbor at home 62-56.

“Our guys came out today and really embraced being defensively ready, and it paid off,” said head coach Jon Tropf.

While Goshen typically held the lead in the first half, it was close throughout. The Maple Leafs led 34-31 at the break but could slightly separate after halftime. A crucial stretch of the game occurred with about eight minutes to go. The score was tied 48-48, and Goshen went on a 9-0 run that took three minutes and 44 seconds. Baskets and free throws by Ryan Mansbarger, Greg Johnson, and Austin Branagan brought GC to a 57-48 lead with over four minutes to go.

Despite a Spring Arbor three-pointer to cut the lead to five, the Leafs had enough margin to end the night with their first Crossroads League win this year and a 62-56 win.

“I’m really proud of our guys,” Tropf shared. “This was a tremendous win, and we got it done on the defensive end.” Goshen held the Cougars to shooting .167 from three – which is the best they have done against any opponent this season. Goshen held Spring Arbor to hitting .375 overall, the second-best this year (Roosevelt shot .316).

With just 56 points given up, this game marks the team’s best defensive conference game since allowing just 52 points to Huntington during a win on February 6, 2016.

Elias Ramirez scored 18 points and scored double figures in nine of his ten games. Michael Johnson scored 12, Greg Johnson had nine, and Mansbarger and Robert Sanders added seven.

“Every team goes through peaks and valleys – you often have to reset and refocus. We earned our bricks today,” Tropf added, referencing the team’s mantra of building the house brick by brick.

The Maple Leafs have erased their seven-game losing streak and now have a .500 record at home. Goshen takes a break for final exams but will be back in action next Saturday, December 11, at home. They will face Lincoln Christian University at 2:00 pm in Gunden Gymnasium. The women will play beforehand at noon.

LEAFS GET BACK TO .500 IN CONFERENCE WITH 14-POINT WIN OVER SPRING ARBOR

GOSHEN, Ind. – The Maple Leafs women’s basketball team got back to a .500 record in the Crossroads League with an emphatic 70-56 win over the Spring Arbor Cougars at home on Saturday. This season, the win makes Goshen 2-2 in conference and 3-2 at home.

The game was back and forth early on, and the Cougars led 9-6. Goshen responded in the latter half of the first quarter and into the next period with a 19-2 stretch. Goshen led by 14 with a 25-11 score, and they held a 9-point lead at the half, 37-28.

GC outscored Spring Arbor by six in the third, and the Leafs led by as many as 18 with four minutes to go before coming out with a 70-56 Crossroads League victory.

Head coach Stephanie Miller emphasized the importance of conference wins by comparing them to building blocks. “Each block that we add to the win wall adds confidence four our players and allows us one step closer to our team goals,” she mentioned. “I think a team like ours has needed time to learn the blend of old and new on the floor. Day by day, we really see growth in these ladies.”

TaNiece Chapman scored 18 points and shot 75% for the day. Graysen Cockerham and Sa’drea Rougeau each scored in double digits as well.

Three other players stepped into more prominent roles for the team today. Kiarah Copeland neared a double-double with nine points and eight boards. Kiana Oelling had an impressive day. She scored eight points with four rebounds, three assists, and two steals. She was 3-4 from the field and made both of her free throws. Lastly, Janara Flowers scored eight points and dished out five assists during her 23 minutes on the court. Miller appreciated Copeland’s ability to lean into her role, Oelling’s all-around play, and Flowers’ poise and decision-making. “These three were really impressive in step-up roles today.”

After losing the previous seven, Goshen has now won two straight against Spring Arbor. The team will now fully devote themselves to final exams before gearing up for a non-conference match next Saturday, December 11, at home against Blackburn College. That game will take place at noon at home in Gunden Gymnasium. The men will play at home at 2:00 pm that day as well.

TAYLOR ATHLETICS | TROJANS DROP HOME BOUT WITH NO. 24 MARIAN

UPLAND, Ind. – Taylor faced a nationally-ranked opponent for the first time this season, falling by a 67-52 score to No. 24 Marian on Saturday afternoon.

The Trojans struggled against the NAIA’s fifth-rated scoring defense, shooting 36.2 percent from the field and three-of-15 from beyond the arc against the Knights (7-2, 2-2 CL).

The shooting woes were magnified in the opening half, with TU shooting just six-of-21 from the floor and zero-of-six from deep. Taylor managed to stay within striking distance early by going 10-of-13 from the charity stripe in the opening 20 minutes and pulled to within 24-20 late in the half.

MU did not let Taylor pull any closer, finishing the half on a 9-2 run and maintaining a comfortable double-digit lead throughout the entire second half.

Taylor performed well defensively yet again, holding Marian to a 42.0-percent clip from the field but the guests sank eight triples and went 17-of-21 from the free throw line to protect the lead.

Jason Hubbard led TU in scoring with 20 points, while Aaron Hahn went for seven points and five rebounds and Jeff Clayton added six points, six boards, three blocks and two assists.

Taylor (4-7, 2-2 CL) will return to action on Tuesday against Indiana Tech (9-4) for a 7:00 pm tip inside Odle Arena.

TAYLOR ATHLETICS | TAYLOR BATTLES NO. 9 MARIAN IN FOUR-POINT LOSS INSIDE ODLE ARENA

UPLAND, Ind. – The Taylor University women’s basketball team hung tight with No. 9 Marian (9-2, 4-0 CL) inside Odle Arena on Saturday afternoon but walked off the court with a four-point loss, the scoreboard reading 60-56.

The final three minutes of the first half proved to be the decisive stretch of play throughout the game, with the Trojans losing four turnovers that transformed a one-point Marian lead into a seven-point Taylor deficit at the half.

Taylor played a clean second half, though, committing just two turnovers while outscoring the Knights 31-27. The four-point second half swing for the Trojans, however, was not enough to overcome Marian’s seven-point halftime lead.

Senior, Lauren James, led the way on offense for Taylor, scoring 19 points, seven of which came on a perfect shooting percentage from the free-throw line.

Fellow senior, Kayla Kirtley, contributed six more from the charity stripe on an equally perfect shooting percentage, en route to 11 total points.

Claycee West and Taylor Westgate rounded out the TU scoring leaders, West with nine points, closely followed by Westgate with eight.

The Trojans shot at a 41.7 percent clip in the first quarter, their best quarterly percentage for the game. Marian answered with a first-quarter shooting percentage of 53.3 percent, however, as Taylor trailed 17-13 at the end of the first frame.

Strong play by West energized the Trojans as they cut the Marian lead to one with three minutes to play before half. Unfortunately, the half’s final three-minute stretch of play stymied the Trojan momentum as Taylor turnovers helped nurture a seven-point Marian lead heading into the locker room.

The third quarter presented a series of well-earned gifts for the Trojans, as aggressive offense cultivated nine trips to the free throw line where James and Kirtley capitalized for seven points. The score read 47-42, with Marian on top heading into the fourth.

Two more Kirtley free throws made it a one-point game with 3:05 left to play. The shots went cold for Taylor down the stretch, though, as Marian closed the game on a 5-2 mini run, winning by a score of 60-56.

The Trojans (5-7, 1-4 CL) will be back in action on Wednesday, December 8th, when they begin a three-game stretch of non-league play at Governors State (4-6) at 6:00 pm ET.

TRAILBLAZERS FALL IN ROAD REGION 24 MATCHUP WITH SOUTHWESTERN ILLINOIS

BELLEVILLE, Ill – The Vincennes University Trailblazers fell to 0-2 in Region 24 play after a 61-34 loss at Southwestern Illinois Saturday afternoon.

VU got off to a slow start against the Blue Storm, falling behind quickly 13-2 to begin the game.

The Trailblazers attempted to rally together to keep from falling behind too much but only managed to keep the game at an 11-point margin throughout the rest of the opening half.

Vincennes headed into the locker room facing a 28-17 deficit against host Southwestern Illinois.

Southwestern Illinois began building their lead in the second half, outscoring the Blazers 20-6 to begin the second half of play, giving the Blue Storm a 48-23 advantage.

The Blazers looked to cut into the deficit late in the second half, but made shots were hard to find for the Blue and Gold as the Blue Storm defended their home floor well and game away with a 61-34 win over Vincennes.

“We can’t hit a shot,” VU Hall of Fame Head Coach Todd Franklin said. “We can’t hit a shot and then we multiply that with enough weak ball-handling plays that lead to layups to make it even worse. We gave up 28 points in the first half and 33 in the second, if you take away the five or six easy layups we gave up because of bad ball-handling, SWIC would have shot well into the 30-percent range and we would have had more than enough stops. We had more than enough stops, SWIC had 16 turnovers, we did some things that bugged them on that end of the floor. That effort defensively, minus the easy layups, we should have won this game.”

“Southwestern tried to pressure Brevin and bother him, because everybody is going to do that,” Franklin added. “They were determined to do some things that were going to bug Thow and Shilo and they were able to do that because they were able to compress everything off the wings defensively. They allowed us to pass the ball back out and get an open shot outside and we didn’t make it. Those are shots that college basketball players have to be able to hit and when we recruited these guys we thought they could hit that shot.”

“We have guys like Thow who go 2 for 12, Brevin 3 for 10, Shilo 1 for 4 and Deatrick 0 for 4, so we were 1 for 8 on plays in the post where we should be at least 5 for 8. The problem is, for those guys, when anything extra is going to be around them, they aren’t strong enough at this point to beat that. We hoped they would, we hope they will, but they are not. Now they are going to have extra guys around them because teams don’t respect our wings. That was the strategy of this game and we knew it from the first minute. We don’t have players that we can put in at the moment, so change is going to have to come from players stepping up. If it’s in them, they need to start getting it out. If they are not there yet, then they need to get in the gym until it is.”

The Trailblazers were led offensively by freshman Grant Brown (Fairmount, Ind.) who was the only VU scorer to reach double-figures with 10 points and three steals on the night.

Freshman Brevin Jefferson (Indianapolis, Ind.) was the next highest scorer with seven points to go along with a pair of assists and rebounds on the game.

Freshman Thow James Biel (Calgary, Alberta) led Vincennes in rebounding, finishing with eight boards, four coming off the offensive glass, while also adding four points and a block.

“When you shoot 19-percent from the floor, we have every kind of action you can run to move people around and get people open, but nothing is going to work when we shoot 19-percent,” Franklin said. “We’ve wasted plenty of games where we’ve gotten enough stops defensively to win. Our stops have been better than people might think because our offense gives up easy buckets. Our offense not only doesn’t score, but it helps the other team score. I don’t take away anything from tonight system-wise that we can work on. Defensively we have to play more zone than we would like, but we’re being successful at it mostly. We’re getting plenty of stops and keeping guys out of foul trouble, so that has been okay and hopefully it stays that way.”

“Southwestern couldn’t score consistently on our defense and we got them to turn it over 16 times,” Franklin added. “Those things were fine, but all of that does not matter when you literally cannot put the ball in the hole. 19-percent, there is bad, then there is historically bad and then there’s that. We’re sitting there helpless on the sideline because we know exactly what they are going to do and we couldn’t find anybody to score. We’re not going to win with that. SWIC averages over 80 points a game and we held them down as well as anybody has this season but we still can’t be in the game because we can’t score the ball.”

VU will hit the road again to begin next week as the Blazers travel to Ullin, Ill. as Vincennes will take on Shawnee Community College, Wednesday, Dec. 8. Tip-off time is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. eastern.

“We have to protect the ball and finish shots. That’s it,” Franklin said. “If we are looking ahead based on what we did tonight, we have to be able to hit an open shot, not give away some sloppy turnovers, just be stronger with the ball, be stronger on the finish around contact and somebody be able to hit an open shot on the back end of what we’re doing. Because I believe Shawnee, they may pressure us more and they will give you things on the back end of that and they will be there. We don’t have a problem knowing where there is going to be a shot that we should be able to make with full scholarship players.”

“If we hit those shots, which we should make at a high rate because they were easy open inside-out shots, if we just hit those at a little below average rate, we would have been in this game all the way to the end,” Franklin added. “That’s going to have to come from those guys in the locker room. It just is. That has to be rectified at some point and I wish I could rectify it on my own, but I can’t. There’s not any drill that we haven’t done that will get these guys to hit these open shots. We could emphasis it more than we already are. I don’t know anything else that we could do strategically and if I did I would do it. I’ve been in most every situation over the years and we’ve had pretty good answers over the years and right now I don’t have an answer.”

“I don’t know if it means getting in the gym more, I don’t know, but I’ve never been around this problem before in my life. All we needed tonight was guys being a little tougher with the ball and finishing some plays and some guys hitting some shots on the wings that we know are coming and this game could have been very winnable to the very end because the stops and the things defensively are there. I hope the stops stay there, because we really haven’t had a game this year where we haven’t gotten enough stops against high level competition. Rebounding has been okay. It hasn’t been great but it’s been good enough, it’s just our ball-handling and our shooting and skills that these guys are on scholarship to do, it’s not that it’s not good enough, it’s not even in the realm of being good enough. Right now we have to do some soul searching to find the guy. I don’t know who that guy will be, because right now it’s none of them. We’re trying everybody that we’ve got but what I want to see going forward is us being tougher with the ball and protect the ball. It’s going to have to come from our locker room. I’ll keep doing everything I can to work and scheme and try to find a way to get it done. When the game starts Wednesday, I guess we will find out. We’ll get in and practice it but until we prove that we can handle it, we’re going to keep seeing it from other teams.

THORNTON AND GRANT LEAD LADY BLAZERS TO REGION 24 WIN AT SOUTHWESTERN ILLINOIS

BELLEVILLE, Ill. – The VU Lady Trailblazers picked up their second Region 24 win Saturday afternoon, winning 90-54 at Southwestern Illinois College.

Vincennes found themselves in a battle early with the two teams even at 10-all midway through the first quarter.

The Lady Trailblazers closed out the opening quarter on an 11-2 scoring run to take a 21-12 lead after the first 10 minutes of play.

VU continued to put the pressure on the Lady Blue Storm, continuing the scoring run to an 18-2 run before SWIC was able to find a basket.

The Lady Blazers held tough defensively in the second quarter, only allowing Southwestern Illinois to score six points in the quarter to head into halftime with a commanding 46-18 lead.

Southwestern Illinois attempted to mount a comeback early in the second half, opening the third quarter with a 16-6 run to cut the deficit down to 18 points.

Vincennes was able to recover and close out the third quarter on an 11-3 run of their own to take a 63-37 lead into the fourth quarter.

The Lady Blazers put the game away early in the fourth quarter, growing their lead to 37 points midway through the period before finishing off the game and getting the 90-54 win over the host Blue Storm.

“We’re used to playing on the road, we’ve played some really good teams on the road this year. Southwestern’s got a good basketball team,” VU Hall of Fame head coach Harry Meeks said. “They are quite a bit better than they have been in the past and I was very impressed with some of their young players.”

“I’m really excited about our girls,” Meeks added. “We’re playing a lot of freshmen, a lot of big minutes. I thought we did a pretty good job both offensively and defensively. I was really pleased with how the girls shot the ball today. I’m pleased with how we rebounded the ball and just the way we competed overall. We had a couple of flat spots but that was maybe two times at a minimum. We played hard, our girls were excited to play and they really liked winning.”

The Lady Blazers were led offensively by freshman Day’Lynn Thornton (Lafayette, Ind.) who finished with 18 points off the bench for the Blue and Gold. Thornton also led VU with three steals in the game.

Sophomore Laila Grant (Derwood, Md.) ended her day with 17 points, 15 of which coming in the first half, while also adding three rebounds and two assists.

Sophomore Nina Blade finished the game with 14 points, 10 of which came in the first half, along with five rebounds.

Freshmen Cherrelle Newsom (Indianapolis, Ind.) and Kylee Shelton (Bloomfield, Ind.) each finished with 10 points, with Newsom adding a team-high eight assists on the night.

Freshman Trinitee Harris (Elkhart, Ind.) continued to be an all-around contributor for the Blazers with nine points, seven assists and five rebounds for the game.

“Day’Lynn has been coming off the bench for us and she is that spark plug that we need,” Meeks said. “She lights a fire when she comes into the game and plays extremely hard both on offense and defense. She’s making progress, she comes in the gym and shoots any chance she gets. Her shooting has gotten better and better, so I’m not surprised that she’s making three’s for us. She knows when to shoot it and she knows when to pass it. She’s done an outstanding job for us.”

“Laila did a really good job today,” Meeks added. “I thought she had a couple of performances lately that were not up to her standard and today she played really well and I think she’s got it turned around now.”

“The rest of the team played really well. I thought Cherrelle did a really good job handling the ball and pushing the ball up the floor for us.”

Vincennes will travel to Ullin, Ill. to begin next week when VU takes on Shawnee Community College Wednesday, Dec. 8. Tip-off time is set for 6:30 p.m. eastern.

“Against Shawnee, we need to win this game,” Meeks said. “Shawnee the last couple of years has had teams that can really push you to the limit. I know last year we had some trouble with them and I don’t see that changing a whole lot. I expect they will play very hard against us, especially with us playing down there.”

“I’m sure by Wednesday we will have a good idea of how they play and what they do,” Meeks added. “We’re looking forward to our trip going down there and seeing how well we can play. I’m more worried about how my team plays more than anything and if my team plays well, we should never be out of the basketball game. We want to be consistent and play hard. We want to shoot well and do all the facets of the basketball game, passing, running the floor, all the things that lead to having an outstanding team.”

NFL STANDINGS

AMERICAN FOOTBALL CONFERENCE
EAST DIVISION
 WLTPCTGBPFPAHOMEROADVS. CONFVS. DIVSTREAK
NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS840.6670.03361903-4-05-0-06-1-02-1-06 W
BUFFALO BILLS740.6360.53261823-2-04-2-05-4-03-0-01 W
MIAMI DOLPHINS570.4173.02342793-3-02-4-04-5-02-2-04 W
NEW YORK JETS380.2734.51993342-3-01-5-03-6-00-4-01 W
 
WEST DIVISION
 WLTPCTGBPFPAHOMEROADVS. CONFVS. DIVSTREAK
KANSAS CITY CHIEFS740.6360.02812504-2-03-2-02-4-01-1-04 W
LOS ANGELES CHARGERS650.5451.02732933-3-03-2-04-3-02-1-01 L
LAS VEGAS RAIDERS650.5451.02592953-3-03-2-04-3-01-2-01 W
DENVER BRONCOS650.5451.02281963-3-03-2-03-4-01-1-01 W
 
NORTH DIVISION
 WLTPCTGBPFPAHOMEROADVS. CONFVS. DIVSTREAK
BALTIMORE RAVENS830.7270.02632405-1-03-2-05-3-01-1-02 W
CINCINNATI BENGALS740.6361.03092263-2-04-2-05-2-03-1-02 W
PITTSBURGH STEELERS551.5002.52242673-2-12-3-03-4-01-2-02 L
CLEVELAND BROWNS660.5002.52542674-2-02-4-03-5-01-2-01 L
 
SOUTH DIVISION
 WLTPCTGBPFPAHOMEROADVS. CONFVS. DIVSTREAK
TENNESSEE TITANS840.6670.03042904-2-04-2-05-3-03-1-02 L
INDIANAPOLIS COLTS660.5002.03402833-4-03-2-05-3-02-2-01 L
HOUSTON TEXANS290.1825.51642921-4-01-5-02-6-02-1-01 L
JACKSONVILLE JAGUARS290.1825.51732832-5-00-4-02-5-00-3-03 L
 
NATIONAL FOOTBALL CONFERENCE
EAST DIVISION
 WLTPCTGBPFPAHOMEROADVS. CONFVS. DIVSTREAK
DALLAS COWBOYS840.6670.03532674-2-04-2-06-1-02-0-01 W
WASHINGTON FOOTBALL TEAM560.4552.52292823-3-02-3-05-2-01-0-03 W
PHILADELPHIA EAGLES570.4173.03042731-4-04-3-04-4-00-2-01 L
NEW YORK GIANTS470.3643.52022533-3-01-4-03-5-01-2-01 W
 
WEST DIVISION
 WLTPCTGBPFPAHOMEROADVS. CONFVS. DIVSTREAK
ARIZONA CARDINALS920.8180.03102023-2-06-0-05-2-04-0-01 W
LOS ANGELES RAMS740.6362.02992633-2-04-2-05-3-01-2-03 L
SAN FRANCISCO 49ERS650.5453.02802482-4-04-1-05-4-01-3-03 W
SEATTLE SEAHAWKS380.2736.02092261-4-02-4-01-6-01-2-03 L
 
NORTH DIVISION
 WLTPCTGBPFPAHOMEROADVS. CONFVS. DIVSTREAK
GREEN BAY PACKERS930.7500.02832425-0-04-3-07-2-02-1-01 W
MINNESOTA VIKINGS560.4553.52812763-2-02-4-04-3-02-0-01 L
CHICAGO BEARS470.3644.51792542-3-02-4-02-4-02-1-01 W
DETROIT LIONS0101.0458.01742890-5-00-5-10-7-00-4-02 L
 
SOUTH DIVISION
 WLTPCTGBPFPAHOMEROADVS. CONFVS. DIVSTREAK
TAMPA BAY BUCCANEERS830.7270.03472535-0-03-3-05-3-01-1-02 W
ATLANTA FALCONS560.4553.01993021-4-04-2-02-5-01-2-01 W
CAROLINA PANTHERS570.4173.52362532-4-03-3-03-5-02-0-02 L
NEW ORLEANS SAINTS570.4173.52742762-4-03-3-04-5-01-2-05 L

NBA STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
ATLANTIC DIVISION
 WLPCTGBHOMEROADDIVCONFLAST 10STREAK
BROOKLYN167.6968-58-24-013-57-31 L
BOSTON1311.5423.56-47-73-38-86-41 W
PHILADELPHIA1211.5224.05-57-60-57-74-61 W
NEW YORK1112.4785.05-86-43-28-104-63 L
TORONTO1013.4356.03-87-53-38-83-71 W
 
CENTRAL DIVISON
 WLPCTGBHOMEROADDIVCONFLAST 10STREAK
CHICAGO168.6677-49-42-110-56-43 W
MILWAUKEE159.6251.08-47-54-011-69-11 W
CLEVELAND1310.5652.55-68-41-09-55-54 W
INDIANA916.3607.56-63-101-35-123-74 L
DETROIT418.18211.02-82-101-53-111-98 L
 
SOUTHEAST DIVISION
 WLPCTGBHOMEROADDIVCONFLAST 10STREAK
WASHINGTON149.6098-36-63-49-74-61 L
MIAMI1410.5830.56-38-73-18-55-51 L
CHARLOTTE1311.5421.57-26-94-29-66-43 L
ATLANTA1211.5222.08-34-83-17-68-21 L
ORLANDO519.2089.52-83-110-52-162-81 L
 
WESTERN CONFERENCE
NORTHWEST DIVISION
 WLPCTGBHOMEROADDIVCONFLAST 10STREAK
UTAH157.6829-46-34-09-27-33 W
DENVER1111.5004.07-44-72-26-63-71 W
MINNESOTA1112.4784.57-64-60-17-87-32 L
PORTLAND1113.4585.010-31-101-26-95-52 L
OKLAHOMA CITY616.2739.04-72-90-26-91-98 L
 
PACIFIC DIVISION
 WLPCTGBHOMEROADDIVCONFLAST 10STREAK
GOLDEN STATE194.82612-27-25-111-38-21 L
PHOENIX194.82610-29-23-213-49-11 L
LA CLIPPERS1212.5007.59-73-51-49-103-71 L
LA LAKERS1212.5007.58-74-51-46-84-61 L
SACRAMENTO1014.4179.54-86-64-38-114-62 W
 
SOUTHWEST DIVISION
 WLPCTGBHOMEROADDIVCONFLAST 10STREAK
MEMPHIS1310.5658-55-52-111-57-34 W
DALLAS1111.5001.56-55-66-29-63-72 L
SAN ANTONIO813.3814.04-64-70-33-104-64 W
NEW ORLEANS718.2807.03-84-102-26-105-51 W
HOUSTON616.2736.55-51-110-23-125-55 W

NHL STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
ATLANTIC DIVISION
 GPWLOTLPTSROWGFGAHOMEROADL10
FLORIDA PANTHERS2417433716936714-1-03-3-37-2-1
TORONTO MAPLE LEAFS2517623617775610-3-17-3-18-1-1
TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING231454321274648-3-26-2-27-2-1
DETROIT RED WINGS251393291271789-2-24-7-16-3-1
BOSTON BRUINS211281251161567-4-15-4-06-3-1
BUFFALO SABRES24813319770906-6-12-7-22-7-1
MONTREAL CANADIENS26617315659934-8-12-9-22-7-1
OTTAWA SENATORS22615113657864-8-02-7-13-7-0
 
METROPOLITAN DIVISION
 GPWLOTLPTSROWGFGAHOMEROADL10
WASHINGTON CAPITALS251546361588628-1-47-3-26-2-2
NEW YORK RANGERS231643351568578-1-18-3-29-1-0
CAROLINA HURRICANES231661331675527-3-09-3-15-4-1
PITTSBURGH PENGUINS241185271069675-5-26-3-36-3-1
COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS2212100241070718-3-04-7-05-5-0
NEW JERSEY DEVILS2299422865766-4-23-5-22-6-2
PHILADELPHIA FLYERS2189420850654-4-24-5-22-6-2
NEW YORK ISLANDERS19510414536580-4-15-6-30-8-2
 
WESTERN CONFERENCE
CENTRAL DIVISION
 GPWLOTLPTSROWGFGAHOMEROADL10
MINNESOTA WILD2417613514927110-2-07-4-17-2-1
ST. LOUIS BLUES241284281080707-3-15-5-34-4-2
NASHVILLE PREDATORS2413101271268688-5-05-5-15-5-0
COLORADO AVALANCHE211272261185717-2-15-5-17-2-1
DALLAS STARS211272261160588-2-14-5-18-2-0
WINNIPEG JETS231184261068658-3-13-5-34-5-1
CHICAGO BLACKHAWKS23813218651735-5-13-8-16-4-0
ARIZONA COYOTES24517212543892-7-13-10-14-5-1
 
PACIFIC DIVISION
 GPWLOTLPTSROWGFGAHOMEROADL10
CALGARY FLAMES241545351379484-2-311-2-28-1-1
EDMONTON OILERS221660321485659-1-07-5-06-4-0
ANAHEIM DUCKS251384301284749-4-24-4-25-4-1
SAN JOSE SHARKS2413101271362625-4-18-6-06-4-0
VEGAS GOLDEN KNIGHTS2313100261278717-5-06-5-06-4-0
LOS ANGELES KINGS2299422859626-6-23-3-23-4-3
SEATTLE KRAKEN24913220972846-6-03-7-25-4-1
VANCOUVER CANUCKS25815218760803-7-15-8-13-7-0