Sports News-February 26, 2013

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The New England Patriots have a lot more cap room, thanks to their starting quarterback.  Brady has received a three-year extension from the Patriots worth about $27 million.  The new deal clears nearly $15 million from New England's salary cap.  The 35-year-old two-time league MVP was signed through 2014, and has said he wants to play five more years.  The three-time Super Bowl champion will make far less in those three seasons than the going rate for star quarterbacks.  Brady currently has a four-year, $72 million deal with $48 million guaranteed.

Creighton forward Doug McDermott is among 25 finalists for the 2013 Lou Henson Award.  The award is presented annually to the top mid-major player in college basketball.  For the second straight year is working with Point3 Basketball to promote the Lou Henson award “fan vote,” which will constitute 33% of the final vote.  The Lou Henson Award is presented annually to the top Mid-Major player in Division I college basketball.  The award is named in honor of Lou Henson who retired after a spectacular coaching career that lasted 41 years.  McDermott is averaging 22.4 points and 7.6 rebounds per game while shooting 54% from the field, 48% from three-point range and 86% at the free-throw line.  Creighton is 22-7 on the season heading into Wednesday's game at Bradley.  The 2013 Award will be presented at the awards banquet in Atlanta, site of the men's NCAA Basketball Championship.

Shavon Shields of the Nebraska men’s basketball team has been named the Big Ten's freshman of the week for his performance in the Cornhuskers' win over Iowa.  Shields scored twelve of his 17 points in the second half of Saturday's 64-60 come-from-behind victory in Lincoln.  He also had seven rebounds and shot 56% from the field in 37 minutes.  Shields, from Kansas, is freshman of the week for the second time this season.  His efforts Saturday helped the Huskers overcome a 19-point deficit against the Hawkeyes.  It was the third-largest comeback in program history.

The NCAA Division I women's volleyball committee has selected Nebraska to host a regional site for the 2013 championship according to the Omaha World Herald.  Nebraska will join Southern California, Kentucky and Illinois.  The Huskers most recently hosted a regional in 2012 in Omaha, as well as the national championship in 2006 and 2008.  The 2013 regional competition will be played in the newly renovated Devaney Center.

The Nebraska-Omaha hockey team jumped from 14th to 13th in the latest poll from the website and re-entered the rankings in the USA Today/USA Hockey Magazine at 15th.  UNO only played an exhibition game last week and return to play this week when they host Wisconsin on Friday.  Nebraska-Omaha is 18-12-2 overall and 14-8-2 in the Western Collegiate Hockey Association.

The Wayne State baseball team swept Northern Sun Conference Baseball Player of the Week honors as Tadd Johansen was named Pitcher of the Week while CJ Nolen collected Player of the Week honors for their play in last Thursday’s sweep over Bemidji State at the Metrodome in Minneapolis.  Johansen, a senior left-hander from Elkhorn, improved to 2-0 on the season by throwing a complete game four-hitter in a 3-2 win over the Beavers.  Nolen, a first baseman from Sioux City, went 5-7 at the plate with two runs scored to lead the Wildcats in a pair of 3-2 wins over the Beavers last Thursday.  Wayne State, 3-3 on the season, resumes play on Sunday, March 3rd when the Wildcats travel to Davenport, Florida for their spring break trip.  The Wildcats play Ohio Dominican in the opener of the six-game trip at 2:00.

The Wayne State College men’s and women’s cross country teams have received the 2012 U.S. Track and Field and Cross Country Coaches Association All-Academic Team Awards.  To qualify as a USTFCCCA All-Academic cross country team, the school must have had a cumulative team grade point average of 3.00 or better and have compiled a team score at their respective NCAA regional championship.  The Wildcat women’s cross country team had a 3.022 grade point average and was one of 127 institutions in NCAA Division II to receive the honor.  It was the third time in the last four years the WSC women’s cross country team earned the academic team award.  The Wayne State men’s cross country team recorded a 3.045 grade point average and was one of 88 institutions representing 21 conferences to receive the honor.  It was the second time in the last three years that the Wildcat men’s cross country team received the coaches association academic honor.

The Lutheran High Northeast boys basketball team is going back to the dance.  For the second year in a row and third time in school history the Eagles are State Tournament bound after beating Oakland/Craig in the C-2-3 District Final last night in Wisner 39-26.  Shaka Taylor had eleven points and Kenny Blank added nine points, four steals, and four rebounds in the win.  Lutheran High Northeast led at halftime 15-12.  They improve to 21-5 and have won three games in a row.  The Eagles are projected to be the sixth seed in the Class “C-2” bracket and will be playing third seeded 21-3 Southern Valley in the opening round on Thursday, March 7th at 3:45.

The Northeast Hawks women & men’s basketball teams postseason schedule has been announced.  The 16-14 Northeast men will visit NJCAA fifth ranked in Division I 28-2 Iowa Western in Council Bluffs on Wednesday in the Region XI Tournament semifinals at 7:00.  The Reivers swept the Hawks this year 83-67 on January 26th in Norfolk and 88-67 last Saturday in Council Bluffs.  The NJCAA eleventh ranked in Division I 27-3 Northeast women will also visit 18th ranked 25-5 Iowa Western in Council Bluffs for the Region XI Championship on Saturday at 5:00.  They split two games this year.  The Hawks won at home on January 26th 76-65 and the Reivers won last Saturday in Council Bluffs 85-65.

Northeast Community College has landed another volleyball recruit to its newly reinstated program.  Maggie Earney of Whitney, Nebraska has signed a letter of commitment to play next fall.  The standout for Chadron High School was named team MVP during all four years of high school.  Northeast has already signed Overton’s Grace Ecklund, Allen’s Brittany Sullivan, Nazya Thies of Winside, Randolph’s Kirsten Fink, Stanton’s Kennedy Cheyney, Wisner/Pilger’s Emma Heerman, and Sarah Maxson of Wayne.  The college has reinstated volleyball after the program was disbanded in 2002-2003 with Amanda Schultze being named as the head coach.

High School boys basketball district finals highlight the area schedule for today.  In Class “D-1”, Howells/Dodge meets Randolph at Norfolk Catholic High School in the D-1-3 final at 7:00, O’Neill St. Mary’s battles Burwell at St. Paul at 7:30 in the D-1-4 final.  Humphrey High faces Spalding/Spalding Academy at Norfolk High in the D-2-2 final at 7:00 and Wynot plays Wausa in the D-2-3 final at Hartington Cedar Catholic at 7:00.

Local Schedule:  Nebraska at Wisconsin at Madison, WI (MBB-8:00).

Thursday:  We’ve four basketball games from the Girls State Tournament in Lincoln.  On Lite Rock 97-5 &, Osmond takes on Deshler in the “D-2” bracket at 10:45 at Lincoln Northeast High School.  Pregame coverage at 10:25.  On 106 KIX &, Norfolk Catholic battles Kearney Catholic at 2:00 at Pershing Center in the “C-1” bracket.  Pregame coverage at 1:40.  On 106 KIX &, Lindsay Holy Family takes on Wauneta/Palisade at 7:00 in the “D-2” bracket at Lincoln East High School.  Pregame coverage at 6:40.  On Lite Rock 97-5 &, Pierce meets Minden in the “C-1” bracket at 8:45 PM at Pershing Center.  Pregame coverage at 8:25.

Class “C-1” & “C-2” Area Boys Basketball District Final scores:  LHNE 39 Oakland/Craig 26; Crofton 51 Hartington CC 50 (C-2); Boone Central/Newman Grove 51 Wayne 38; Gibbon 54 O’Neill 43 (C-1); York 56 Columbus 45 (Class “B” Semifinal). 

      Final          Washington      90    Toronto            84
      Final          Atlanta          114    Detroit          103
      Final  OT    Boston            110    Utah                107
      Final          Denver            119    L-A  Lakers    108
      Final            Toronto              4    Philadelphia      2
      Final  2OT    Ottawa                2    Montreal              1  (SO  Ottawa  2-1)
      Final  OT      Nashville          5    Dallas                  4
      Final  OT      Chicago              3    Edmonton              2
      Final            Los  Angeles      5    Anaheim                2
      Final  OT    (  6)  Kansas            108              Iowa  St.          96
      Final          (22)  Marquette        74    (12)  Syracuse          71
      Final          (13)  Kansas  St.      75              Texas  Tech      55
      Final    (  1)  Baylor      86    Oklahoma      64

 A-1 Tournament
     Omaha Central 66, Omaha Burke 51
 A-2 Tournament
     Omaha South 59, Millard North 42
 A-3 Tournament
     Papillion-LaVista 57, Kearney 49
 A-4 Tournament
     Omaha Benson 78, Bellevue West 69
 A-5 Tournament
     Millard West 69, Omaha Creighton Prep 64, OT
 B-1 Tournament
     Beatrice 58, Norris 56, OT
     Waverly 55, Plattsmouth 37
 B-2 Tournament
     Gretna 55, Elkhorn South 50
     Ralston 49, Omaha Skutt Catholic 40
 B-3 Tournament
     Bennington 57, Omaha Roncalli 41
     South Sioux City 59, Elkhorn 49
 B-4 Tournament
     Seward 50, Crete 47
     York 56, Columbus 45
 B-5 Tournament
     Aurora 47, Holdrege 44
     Grand Island Northwest 58, Hastings 52
 B-6 Tournament
     McCook 75, Sidney 36
     Scottsbluff 74, Alliance 55
 Class C1 District Tournament
 District C1-1
     Lincoln Christian 51, Falls City 45
 District C1-2
     Wahoo 69, Boys Town 62
 District C1-3
     Adams Central 71, Milford 66
 District C1-4
     Boone Central/Newman Grove 51, Wayne 38
 District C1-5
     Gibbon 54, O'Neill 43
 District C1-6
     Kimball 51, Gothenburg 40
 Class C2 District Tournament
 District C2-1
     Sutton 55, Johnson County Central 47
 District C2-2
     Archbishop Bergan 44, Malcolm 32
 District C2-3
     Lutheran High Northeast 39, Oakland-Craig 26
 District C2-4
     Crofton 51, Hartington Cedar Catholic 50
 District C2-5
     Southern Valley 58, Hastings St. Cecilia 38
 District C2-6
     North Platte St. Patrick's 51, Hemingford 43

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