Sports News-December 3, 2013

Big Ten Live on the Big Ten Network weekdays from 5:00-6:00 PM & ESPN Radio at 105.9 WJAG-FM & 780 WJAG-AM Mon-Fri at 6:00 PM; Sat & Sun at 4:00!

Russell Wilson passed for 310 yards and three touchdowns as the Seattle Seahawks silenced New Orleans 34-7 to become the first NFL team to wrap up a playoff berth.  The 11-1 Seahawks allowed just twelve first downs and 188 yards in holding the Saints to their lowest point total under head coach Sean Payton.  Drew Brees was held to 147 passing yards as the 9-3 Saints fell into a first-place tie with Carolina in the NFC South.

Steve Sarkisian has been named the head coach at Southern California, leaving Washington after going 34-29 in five seasons with the Huskies.  The former Trojans assistant under Pete Carroll is the permanent replacement for Lane Kiffin, his former CO-offensive coordinator at USC under Carroll.  Sarkisian was selected over Ed Orgeron, who led the Trojans to a 6-2 record after replacing Kiffin on an interim basis in October.
 
The NFL says Sunday night's officiating crew should have stopped play and eliminated confusion about the down and distance at the end of the Giants' 24-17 victory at Washington.  With New York leading by seven points just after the two-minute warning, a catch by the Redskins' Pierre Garcon on second-and-five was spotted short of a first down at the Washington 45.  Referee Jeff Triplette signaled third down, but the head linesman incorrectly motioned for the crew to advance the chains.

The Detroit Tigers have traded starting pitcher Doug Fister to the Washington Nationals for infielder Steve Lombardozzi, left-hander Ian Krol and minor league lefty Robbie Ray.  The 29-year-old Fister was 14-9 with a 3.67 ERA this year, and 32-20 in two-plus seasons with the Tigers.

The Big Ten Conference has issued a public reprimand of Nebraska football coach Bo Pelini and fined the school $10,000 for Pelini's comments about the officiating in the Cornhuskers' game against Iowa last week.  Pelini used an expletive at his postgame news conference while discussing a pass interference penalty against the Huskers.  Pelini was penalized for unsportsmanlike conduct during the game for swiping his hat at, and nearly hitting, the head linesman.  The Big Ten said yesterday that Pelini violated the league's sportsmanship policy, which requires "civility toward all, and respect, particularly toward opponents and officials."  Nebraska athletic director Shawn Eichorst said he was disappointed with Pelini's actions and addressed it with the coach.  Eichorst noted Pelini issued an apology Saturday.

Eleven Nebraska football players were honored by the Big Ten yesterday, earning all-conference honors as announced by the league office.  Three Huskers were named first-team All-Big Ten selections by either the conference coaches or a media panel.  Junior running back Ameer Abdullah and sophomore defensive end Randy Gregory were first-team All-Big Ten selections on both the media and coaches teams.  Senior defensive back Ciante Evans joined Abdullah and Gregory on the coaches All-Big Ten first team.  In addition to being a first-team choice on the coaches' team, Evans was a second-team All-Big Ten pick by the media panel. Two other Huskers earned second-team accolades yesterday.  Cornerback Stanley Jean-Baptiste was a second-team choice on both teams, while senior center Cole Pensick earned second-team honors from the Big Ten coaches.  Six other Huskers earned honorable-mention all-conference honors on Monday. That list included defensive end Jason Ankrah, wide receiver Kenny Bell, safety Corey Cooper and offensive linemen Andrew Rodriguez and Jeremiah Sirles, and place-kicker Pat Smith.

The Creighton men's basketball team dropped out of the Associated Press poll after being ranked 20th last week.  They went 1-2 in the past week at the Wooden Legacy Tournament.  Creighton beat Arizona State 88-60 and then lost to San Diego State 86-80 and George Washington 60-53.  The 6-2 Bluejays return to action this week when they visit Long Beach State on Tuesday night & host Nebraska on Sunday evening.  Michigan State remains first followed by Arizona, Kentucky, Syracuse, and Ohio State.

The Nebraska women's basketball team dropped from tenth to 15th in the Associated Press poll after beating UMass/Lowell 77-42 and then falling to Washington State 76-72.  The 6-1 Huskers return to action this week when they visit North Carolina and host Utah State on Wednesday & Sunday respectively.  Connecticut remains first followed by Duke, Tennessee, Notre Dame, & Kentucky.

The Nebraska volleyball team improved from tenth to ninth in the American Volleyball Coaches Association poll after beating Iowa 3-0 and falling to Penn State 3-1 last week.  The 23-6 Huskers return to action this week when they host 19-12 Fairfield in a first round match of the NCAA Tournament on Friday at 7:00.  Texas remains first followed by Penn State, Stanford, Missouri, & Washington.

Jordan Spencer of Wayne State was named yesterday the Northern Sun Conference Women's Basketball Player of the Week for her play in four games last week.  It's the second time this season and third time in her career that Spencer has received Northern Sun Conference Player of the Week honors.  The 5'11 junior forward averaged 22.3 points and nine rebounds per game last week as Wayne State defeated eleventh ranked Augustana and picked up three wins in three days at the North Star Invitational in Fairbanks, Alaska where Spencer was named Most Valuable Player of the tournament.

The Lutheran High Northeast boys basketball team gets their season underway on Friday when they host Wisner/Pilger as part of the Northeast Nebraska Tip-Off Classic.  They will then play the second game on Saturday at Emerson/Hubbard against a team to be determined.  The Eagles have new leadership in coach Josh Clark, who replaces Greg Rathke.  The team returns nine players with varsity experience in Ryan Freudenburg, Shaka Taylor, Austin Wingate, Andrew Wik, Myles Kant, Cody Boche, Kevin Sullivan, Kyle Rosberg, and Kale Kucera.  Lutheran High Northeast's home schedule includes games with Wisner/Pilger, Homer, Seward, Battle Creek, Pierce, Omaha Nation, Hartington Cedar Catholic, and West Point Guardian Angels.  

The Norfolk High wrestling team gets their season underway on Friday when they compete in the Fremont Invitational. The Panthers have 60 wrestlers out this season and return six state qualifiers in TeJai Clausen, Cameron Dickie, Dylan Grey, Christian Hernandez, Caleb Licking, and Kyle Temple.  Temple placed third and Licking was fifth at last year's State Championships.  Norfolk will participate in tournaments at the Northeast Nebraska Duals in Columbus, the Grand Island Flatwater Fracas, Lincoln North Star, West Holt, Omaha Burke, and the Greater Nebraska Athletic Conference Meet at North Platte.  They will host their own invite on February 1st and a district meet on February 15th.  They will also host duals with Sioux City West and Millard West while visiting Columbus and Fremont for duals.  

The Northeast Hawks women's basketball has won ten games in a row to start the season after defeating Northeastern Junior College of Colorado at home last Tuesday night 74-56.  Their ten victims this year include North Dakota State College of Science, Iowa Lakes, Des Moines Area, Cloud County, the Doane JV, the Mt. Marty JV, North Platte Community College, Kirkwood of Iowa, Southeastern of Iowa, and Northeastern of Colorado by an average score of 78.1-56.  The Hawks return to action on Tuesday when they visit Cloud County Community College of Kansas.  The Hawks beat them on November 12th at home 81-67.

Local Schedule:  Dordt JV at NECC (MBB-7:00); Creighton at Long Beach St. At Long Beach, CA (MBB-9:00 PM); Waldorf at Nebraska-Omaha (MBB-7:05).

Thursday Evening:  The Norfolk High girls & boys basketball squads visit Bellevue East in their opener starting with the girls game at 5:30.  The boys game will follow at approximately 6:45.  Pregame coverage at approximately 5:10 on Newstalk WJAG 105.9 FM & WJAG.com.

NFL Scoreboard:  Seattle 34 New Orleans 7. 

     NATIONAL  BASKETBALL  ASSOCIATION
    
      Final            Washington        98    Orlando      80
      Final  3OT    New  Orleans    131    Chicago    128
      Final            San  Antonio    102    Atlanta    100
      Final            Utah                  109    Houston    103
      Final            Portland          106    Indiana    102
    
    
          NATIONAL  HOCKEY  LEAGUE
    
      Final    Winnipeg            5    N-Y  Rangers        2
      Final    Montreal            3    New  Jersey          2
      Final    Minnesota          2    Philadelphia      0
      Final    Los  Angeles      3    St.  Louis            2
    
    
          TOP-25  COLLEGE  BASKETBALL
    
      Final    (12)  UConn            65    (15)  Florida      64
      Final    (17)  Iowa  St.      99              Auburn        70
    
    
          TOP-25  WOMEN'S  COLLEGE  BASKETBALL
    
      Final    (12)  South  Carolina      79    NC  Central      27
      Final    (24)  Gonzaga                    82    Fairfield        42

On Air

Rick Dees Weekly Top 20
6pm - 8pm

Star Athlete of the Week

Tyler Pflueger
of the Lutheran High Northeast Wrestling Team

Sponsored by Spracklen Physical Therapy of Norfolk