Sports News-September 11, 2012

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In an epic, four-hour, 54-minute men's title match at the U.S. Open, Olympic champion Andy Murray outlasted second-seed and defending champion Novak Djokovic 7-6, 7-5, 2-6, 3-6, 6-2 to win his first Grand Slam title.  Murray is the first man to bring a major championship back to Britain since Fred Perry in 1936.  It's Murray's first Grand Slam title after failing in four previous major tournament finals.  Murray vs. Djokovic was a test of will as much as skill.  The match tied the record for longest U.S. Open final.  The first-set tiebreaker's 22 points set a tournament mark.  Fred Perry won Britain's last Grand Slam men's title 76 years ago at the U.S. Championships, the Open's predecessor.

Nebraska coach Bo Pelini says running back Rex Burkhead's status for this week's Saturday 11:00 game against Arkansas State remains uncertain.  Burkhead missed last Saturday's game at UCLA because of a left knee ligament sprain sustained in the opener against Southern Mississippi.  Pelini said yesterday that Burkhead continues to be "day-to-day."  The coach said the athletic training staff initially thought Burkhead had a "10-20-day injury" but the senior's recovery seems to be ahead of schedule.  Burkhead rushed for more than 1,300 yards and was named All-Big Ten last season.  His replacement, Ameer Abdullah, ran for 119 yards and two touchdowns in the 36-30 loss to UCLA.  In other Husker football news, the September 22nd home game with Idaho State will kick off at 2:30.

The Omaha Storm Chasers baseball team visit the Reno Aces in Nevada tonight in Game One of the Pacific Coast League Championship Series at 9:05.  The Aces will also host game two on Wednesday while Omaha will host a game three and possible four & five Friday-Sunday.  The Storm Chasers defeated Albuquerque in five games of the American Conference Championship Series while Reno beat Sacramento in five games in the Pacific Conference Championship Series.  The two teams split four games in early August in Omaha.  The Storm Chasers finished 83-61 in the regular season while the Aces finished 81-63.

Darin Ruf, a member of the Creighton baseball team from 2006-09, is skipping Triple-A and has been added to the 40-man roster for the Philadelphia Phillies.  He becomes CU's 20th Major Leaguer, and is likely to become the first to debut since Kevin Frederick in 2002.  Ruf could also be the first big leaguer from Creighton to appear in a Major League game since Mike Mahoney on Sept. 24, 2005.  Ruf learned the news Sunday, making the jump from Double-A Reading after being named Eastern League Most Valuable Player and Rookie of the Year.  Ruf led all of minor league baseball with 38 home runs in 2012, and led the Eastern League in RBI’s with 104.  He has been a first baseman for most of his minor league career, but has also seen time at third base and left field since former NL MVP Ryan Howard seems ingrained at first base for the long haul.

Nebraska volleyball freshman Meghan Haggerty was honored by the Big Ten Conference yesterday as she was named the Big Ten Freshman of the Week.  Haggerty earned the award after helping Nebraska to the 2012 Ameritas Players Challenge team title.  She hit .600 for the week as the Huskers beat Oklahoma and 19th ranked Kentucky.  Haggerty averaged 2.4 kills and 1.6 blocks per set over the weekend.  The award marks her second consecutive Freshman of the Week honor.

Creighton volleyball’s Kelli Browning was named Missouri Valley Conference Defensive Player of the Week after her performance at the Northern Colorado Classic.  She earned a spot on the All-Tournament Team.  Browning hit .362 and averaged 2.80 kills, and 2.60 blocks per set in wins over three NCAA Tournament teams from a year ago.  This was her second consecutive All-Tournament honor, and her first career recognition as MVC Defensive Player of the Week.  Creighton is in action next when they open MVC play this weekend when they Bluejays host Missouri State on Friday at 6:00.  

Nebraska-Omaha men’s soccer freshman midfielder Devin Diego was named Summit League Offensive Player of the Week yesterday after leading the Mavs to a 3-2 win over Seattle on Sunday at the UNO Soccer Field.  Diego is the first UNO student-athlete ever to receive a weekly award from The Summit League.  Playing in his first-ever collegiate game against Seattle, Diego played a huge role in the Mavs' win with two goals and one assist.  In 44 minutes of playing time, the Las Vegas native became the first Maverick in team history to score two goals in a game, and with five points was also the first to have more than two points in a single game.

Wayne State slipped six spots to 18th in this week’s American Volleyball Coaches Association Division II Top 25 Coaches Poll.  The Wildcats are 6-2 on the season.  They went 3-1 over the weekend at the Mountain Lion Invitational in Colorado Springs, Colorado sweeping Fort Lewis, Midwestern State of Texas and Franklin Pierce of New Hampshire while suffering a loss to host UC-Colorado Springs.  WSC will be in action this weekend when they open conference play at home, hosting Winona State Friday evening at 7:00.

Jared Curry of the Wayne State football team was named the Northern Sun Conference Defensive Player of the Week today following his play in Saturday’s 20-6 Wildcat win over Minot State.  It’s the first time that Curry has received NSIC Player of the Week honors.  Curry, a 6-1 200 pound sophomore linebacker from Ponca, recorded a team-high eleven tackles with two sacks, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery against the Beavers.  He registered eight solo stops with three assists and his two sacks accounted for minus six yards as Wayne State improved to 2-0 on the season with the win.  Wayne State will be on the road this Saturday traveling to Bemidji, Minnesota for a 1:00 conference game against the Beavers.

The Omaha World Herald & Lincoln Journal Star have updated their high school volleyball rankings.  In the Omaha World Herald, Papillion La Vista South remains number one in the “Nebraska Top 10” & Class “A” while Omaha Gross stays at number one in Class “B”.  In Class “C-1”, Kearney Catholic is once again first, Columbus Scotus stays at number two, and Norfolk Catholic moves up from sixth to fifth.  In Class “C-2”, Lutheran High Northeast is the new number one after moving up from third, Hartington Cedar Catholic remains second, Wisner/Pilger enters the rankings at number ten, and Twin River falls from the rankings.  In Class “D-1”, Howells/Dodge stays at number one, West Point Guardian Angels jumps from third to second, and O’Neill St. Mary’s moves up from ninth to fifth.  In Class “D-2”, Humphrey High is once again first, Ewing stays at number five, Stuart remains sixth, and Winside drops out of the rankings.  In the Lincoln Journal Star, Papillion La Vista South remains number one in Class “A” while Omaha Gross is the new number one in Class “B”.  In Class “C-1”, Kearney Catholic is once again first, Columbus Scotus stays at number two, and Norfolk Catholic moves up from seventh to sixth.  In Class “C-2”, Lutheran High Northeast is the new number one after moving up from fifth, Hartington Cedar Catholic remains second, West Holt stays at number seven, Wakefield enters the rankings at number ten, and Wisner/Pilger falls from the rankings.  In Class “D-1”, West Point Guardian Angels stays at number one, Howells/Dodge remains second, and O’Neill St. Mary’s stays at number seven.  In Class “D-2”, Humphrey High is the new number one, Ewing enters the rankings at number nine, Stuart falls from sixth to tenth, and Wynot & Osmond drop out of the rankings.

The Omaha World Herald & Lincoln Journal Star have updated their high school volleyball rankings.  The Two-time Defending State Champion Lutheran High Northeast Eagles are the new number one in both media in Class “C-2”.  The Lady Eagles are 10-1 on the season after winning the Wakefield Invite last Saturday.  They will be in action next when they visit second ranked in Class “C-2” 10-2 Hartington Cedar Catholic on Thursday.  Lutheran High Northeast beat them in the championship match of the Wakefield Invite last Saturday in three sets.  Norfolk Catholic jumped from sixth to fifth in the Omaha World Herald and moved up from seventh to sixth in the Lincoln Journal Star in Class “C-1”.  The Lady Knights are 6-1 on the year after sweeping Wahoo High in three sets last Thursday.  Norfolk Catholic will be in action next when they visit Hartington Cedar Catholic tonight at 7:30.

The Norfolk Catholic girls golf team won yesterday’s O’Neill Invite.  They Lady Knights totaled a 382 team score while O’Neill was second with a 425.  Individually, Norfolk Catholic’s Paige Marsden was the medalist shooting a 90.  Teammate Lexi McCoy was second with a 93, Ashlen Pospisil placed third carding a 98, Molly Langel took fifth with a 101, and Hannah Baldacci was eighth shooting a 104.

The Norfolk High boys tennis team competed in yesterday’s Lincoln East Invitational.  The Panthers finished sixth out of eight teams.  The host team was the champion with 44 points while Lincoln North Star was second with 38.  Norfolk totaled 22.  Keaton Kreikemeier & Nick Collins went 2-2 in #1 Doubles to place fourth, Landon Marotz & Alex Busskohl recorded a 2-2 mark to place fourth in #2 Doubles, Mitch Dudley went 1-3 in #1 Singles, & Jonathan Ingram recorded a 1-3 mark in #2 Singles.

Local Schedule:  Nfk High Vs. Lincoln SW-5:00; Vs. Fremont-6:00 (Lincoln SW VB Tri.); Nfk Cath at Hartington CC (VB-7:30); Lincoln SW at Nfk High (SB DH-5:00); Nfk High at Columbus (B. Tenn. Dual-4:30); Nfk Cath at Wayne Inv. (CC-5:00).

Local Scores:  David City Aquinas 7 LHNE 0 (SB); Nfk High 175 Fremont 205 (GG Dual).

NFL Scoreboard:  Baltimore 44 Cincinnati 13; San Diego 22 Oakland 14.

      Final            Minnesota              7    Cleveland              2
      Final            Chi  White  Sox      6    Detroit                  1
      Final            Oakland                  3    L.A.  Angels          1
      Final            Philadelphia        3    Miami                      1
      Final            Cincinnati            4    Pittsburgh            3,  14  Innings
      Final            Washington            5    N-Y  Mets                1
      Final            Chi  Cubs                4    Houston                  1
      Final            Milwaukee              4    Atlanta                  1
      Final            Colorado                6    San  Francisco      5
      Final            San  Diego            11    St.  Louis              3

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