Sports News-March 21, 2013

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The Miami Heat seem to be able to switch on their game anytime they want.  Two days after winning their 23rd straight game by overcoming a 17-point deficit at Boston, the streaking Heat rallied from 27 down in the third quarter to shock Cleveland 98-95.  The win tied for the biggest comeback in the NBA this season.  LeBron James paced the Heat's victory against his former team with 25 points, twelve rebounds and ten assists.  He scored 14 of his points in the fourth quarter when the Heat outscored Cleveland 30-18.  Miami is now nine games away from equaling the NBA record of 33 straight wins set by the 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers.

The reconfigured Big East officially got three new members yesterday in Creighton, Butler, and Xavier.  The league will start play next season with its tournament at Madison Square Garden and a lucrative broadcasting contract from Fox.  The reworked league, put together after a split with the old Big East was completed earlier this month, will feature the so-called Catholic 7 schools from the old conference plus the three new arrivals.  Together, the basketball-oriented schools have a twelve-year deal with Fox worth about $600 million, according to a person with knowledge of the details.  Creighton is departing the Missouri Valley Conference while Butler and Xavier are leaving the Atlantic 10.  They join Georgetown, Villanova, Marquette, St. John's, Providence, Seton Hall and DePaul.

Missouri Valley Conference commissioner Doug Elgin says there's no rush to replace Creighton, which is leaving for the new Big East.  Elgin said his league, which will be down to nine members June 30, is studying potential candidates.  He said preference would be given to schools in the geographic footprint of the Valley and with a strong basketball tradition.  Media reports list Denver, Milwaukee and Belmont as possibilities.  Creighton athletic director Bruce Rasmussen said the Big East will provide an opportunity to recruit the highest level of players and help the school achieve its goal of being a consistent Top 25 men's basketball program.  Valley spokesman Mike Kern says Creighton will forfeit about $325,000 in distributions because it's leaving with less than a year's notice.

When three-point specialist Ethan Wragge is on, Creighton is almost unbeatable.  When he's not, well, they aren't.  The 27-7 Bluejays' plan against 22-11 Cincinnati on Friday in the NCAA Midwest Regional in Philadelphia will be the same as in any other game.  Creighton wants to get Doug McDermott and Gregory Echenique established inside first, which will allow the 6’7 Wragge to do what he does best behind the three-point line.  Wragge is hitting 44% of his attempts.  The Bluejays are 10-0 when he scores in double figures.  Creighton is 28-1 the past three seasons when Wragge shooters better than 50% from long distance.  In Bluejays’ 27 wins this season, he shot 48%.  That dropped to 22% in Creighton’s seven losses.

Nebraska will have seven wrestlers involved in the opening day of the NCAA Championships at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines, Iowa today at 11:00.  2012 All-American James Green will be making his second NCAA appearance at 157 pounds after a runner-up finish at the Big Ten Championships.  Green is the four seed in his bracket.  174-pound Robert Kokesh is also a four seed.  Josh Ihnen will be making his fourth NCAA appearance after finishing eighth at 184 pounds last season as the eight seed.  Jake Sueflohn will be the nine seed at 149 pounds after a 22-5 season.  Three Huskers earned at-large berths in Ridge Kiley (141), Austin Wilson (165), and Caleb Kolb (197).  Last year at the NCAA Championships, Nebraska tied for 21st with 28 points.  The event concludes on Saturday.

Nebraska-Omaha senior guard Paige Frauendorfer was named to the Summit League Academic All-League Team.  The award comes as no surprise, as Frauendorfer was named a third-team Capital One Academic All-American in February, becoming the fourth Maverick all-time to receive academic all-America honors and the first since 1996-97.  She is the first Maverick women's basketball player to be named to the Summit League Academic All-League Team.  A three-time Summit League Player of the Week this season, Frauendorfer led the Mavericks with 15 points per game and 8.3 rebounds per game in her senior year, and she was voted to the All-Summit League First Team. The former Humphrey High standout holds a 3.94 GPA majoring in biology with an emphasis in pre-pharmacy.

Sophomore Kelcie Bormann went 4-7 at the plate with four RBI’s and four runs scored while pitching a complete game five-hitter with eight strikeouts in the second game to help the Wayne State softball team split at Nebraska-Kearney yesterday in non-conference action.  The host Lopers scored in the bottom of the seventh to win the opener 8-7 while Bormann’s pitching and hitting led the ‘Cats to a 6-1 win in the second game.  WSC is now 9-5 on the season while UNK is 6-14.

The Mid States Conference has announced its all-conference boys basketball team.  Connor Ketter was the lone honoree from Norfolk Catholic. Also on the team were Hartington Cedar Catholic’s James Kaiser, Wayne’s Grant Anderson & Jalen Barry, O’Neill’s Charley Burtwistle & Derrick Hostert, Boone Central/Newman Grove’s Tyler Hedlund, Beau Bremer, & Derek Gentrup, along with Lane Rohrich from Pierce.

Bre Hagedorn of the Norfolk High girls basketball team has signed a letter of intent to play basketball at Doane College.  This past season, Hagedorn averaged 8.7 points and 6.6 rebounds.  Norfolk finished the 2012-2013 campaign with a 16-9 record.

Local Schedule:  Nfk High at Columbus (G&B Socc.-5:00); Lincoln North Star at Nfk High (Bsbl DH-5:00); Nfk High at Lincoln High Inv. At Highlands GC (BG-Ppd. (Inclement Weather).

Saturday Morning:  Sportstalk on 106 KIX & from 9:00-10:00 AM from Hy-Vee West.  In the final show of the season, get the lowdown with the coaches.

Local Scores:  (8) Cal State Fullerton 10 Nebraska 4 (Bsbl); Nebraska-Kearney 11 Air Force 10 (Bsbl); North Dakota St. 13-0 Nebraska 0-11 (SB DH); Nebraska-Kearney 8-1 WSC 7-6 (SB DH); South Dakota St. At Creighton (Bsbl-Ppd. Inclement Weather).

      Final          Miami                    98    Cleveland              95
      Final          Charlotte          107    Toronto                101
      Final          Atlanta                98    Milwaukee              90
      Final          New  York            106    Orlando                  94
      Final          New  Orleans        87    Boston                    86
      Final          Brooklyn            113    Dallas                    96
      Final  OT    Memphis                90    Oklahoma  City      89
      Final          Houston              100    Utah                        93
      Final          San  Antonio      104    Golden  State        93
      Final          Washington          88    Phoenix                  79
      Final          L-A  Clippers    101    Philadelphia        72
      Final            Toronto          4    Tampa  Bay      2
      Final            Minnesota      4    Detroit          2
      Final            Colorado        4    Dallas            3
      Final  2OT    San  Jose        4    Edmonton        3  (SO  San  Jose  2-1)
      Final            Anaheim          4    Chicago          2

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