Update on the latest sports
Bueckers and UConn top Syracuse 83-47, advance to Sweet 16
SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Paige Bueckers (BEK’-ers) scored 20 points and Aaliyah Edwards added 19 to help No. 1 seed UConn beat eighth-seeded Syracuse 83-47 and advance to the Sweet 16 of the women’s NCAA Tournament. Once again, the Huskies were missing coach Geno Auriemma, who is still recovering from COVID-19. Chris Dailey filled in for the Hall of Fame coach, who celebrated his 67th birthday on Tuesday and could potentially rejoin the team this weekend for its next game.
In other Tuesday action:
— Haley Jones scored 17 points and Stanford unleashed another barrage of 3-pointers as the overall No. 1 seed in the NCAA Tournament booked yet another trip to the Sweet 16 with a 73-62 win over No. 8 Oklahoma State. Stanford made the Sweet 16 for the 27th time in pursuit of their first national title since 1992. The Cardinal made 13 3-pointers. Neferatali Notoa scored 14 for Oklahoma State.
— Reigning women’s national champion Baylor is going to its 12th consecutive NCAA Sweet 16. Moon Ursin and DiJonai Carrington both had 21 points as the 27-2 Lady Bears beat Virginia Tech 90-48. Queen Egbo had a double-double with 12 points and 13 rebounds, along with seven blocked shots. AP All-American forward NaLyssa Smith finished with 15 points.
— Leigha Brown scored 23 points and Naz Hillmon added 19 to lead No. 6 seed Michigan to its first Sweet 16 appearance with a 70-55 win over third-seeded Tennessee in the women’s NCAA Tournament. The Wolverines had been 0-5 in the second round before pulling off the victory over the Lady Vols.
— Lotta-Maj Lahtinen scored 22 points, Lorela Cubaj had 21 points and 12 rebounds, and No. 5 seed Georgia Tech used a big third quarter to beat No. 4 West Virginia 73-56 in the second round of the women’s NCAA Tournament. Georgia Tech advanced to the Sweet 16 for the second time in program history and first since 2012. Esmery Martinez scored 13 points to lead West Virginia.
— Aliyah Boston scored 19 points and top seed South Carolina dominated after a close first quarter to beat eighth-seeded Oregon State 59-42 in the women’s NCAA Tournament, advancing to its seventh straight Sweet 16.
Emmert to meet with protesters
UNDATED (AP) — The National College Players Association says NCAA President Mark Emmert has informed a group of basketball players that he will meet with them after March Madness.
The players started a social media campaign to protest inequities in college sports. Michigan’s Isaiah Livers, Rutgers’ Geo Baker and Iowa’s Jordan Bohannon are pushing for the NCAA to change its rules restricting athletes from earning money for personal sponsorship deals, online endorsements and appearances.
Shawnee State wins program’s first NAIA Tournament title
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — James Jones had 27 points and 10 rebounds for his third double-double of the season and Shawnee State (Ohio) claimed the program’s first NAIA Tournament championship with a 74-68 victory over Lewis-Clark State (Idaho). Shawnee State, a No. 5 seed, won its 27th straight game — including four tournament victories in five days.
Jokic’s 12th triple-double leads Nuggets past Magic 110-99
UNDATED (AP) — Nikola Jokic (NEE’-koh-lah YOH’-kich) had 28 points, 15 rebounds and 10 assists for his 12th triple-double of the season, and the Denver Nuggets built a big lead before holding off the Orlando Magic 110-99. Denver had a 24-point advantage early in the second half that was trimmed to five. But the Nuggets won their sixth consecutive road game to tie a franchise record set twice previously, most recently in 2018. Jamal Murray scored 21 points for Denver. Michael Porter Jr. had 18 points and seven rebounds. Evan Fournier scored 31 points for the Magic.
In other Tuesday action:
— James Harden had 25 points and 17 assists to lead the Brooklyn Nets to a 116-112 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers. Jeff Green finished with 20 points, 15 in the first half and a pair of free throws to close it out with 4.8 seconds left. Nicolas Claxton had 16 points and nine rebounds off the bench for Brooklyn. Enes Kanter had 19 points, 19 rebounds and six assists, while Damian Lillard had 22 points and nine assists for the Trail Blazers.
— Tobias Harris hit a go-ahead jumper with 3:44 to play, scored another basket on the next possession and finished with 25 points and 13 rebounds to help the Philadelphia 76ers hold off the Golden State Warriors 108-98. Harris also converted a free throw on Draymond Green’s technical foul with 2:47 remaining. Ben Simmons added 22 points and eight rebounds for the Sixers, who pulled off their second consecutive road win after a 101-100 victory at New York on Sunday. Eastern Conference-leading Philadelphia improved to 31-13 with its ninth victory in 10 games.
— Devin Booker scored 23 points and the Phoenix Suns stretched their road winning streak to seven games by beating the slumping Miami Heat 110-100. Deandre Ayton scored 17 points and grabbed 16 rebounds for the Suns. Former Heat forward Jae Crowder had 13 for the Suns and Mikal Bridges scored 12. Kendrick Nunn led the Heat with 25 points, while Bam Adebayo scored 16 and Jimmy Butler added 14. Miami has dropped four consecutive games.
— Brandon Ingram scored a season-high 36 points, Zion Williamson had 27 points and nine rebounds, and the New Orleans Pelicans defeated the Los Angeles Lakers 128-111. The 20-year-old Williamson became the first NBA player younger than 21 to score at least 20 points in 21 straight games. Josh Hart grabbed 15 rebounds to go with five steals. The Lakers lost their third straight while playing without injured stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Montrezl Harrell scored 18 points for Los Angeles.
— Julius Randle scored 37 points to spark the New York Knicks to a 131-113 rout of the Washington Wizards. The All-Star was one of six players to finish in double figures for New York, which evened its record at 22-22. RJ Barrett scored 21, Alec Burks added 20 and Mitchell Robinson had 16 points and 11 rebounds. Bradley Beal scored 22 points for the Wizards, who lost for the ninth time in 11 games.
LaMelo Ball undergoes surgery to repair broken wrist
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) —The Hornets say rookie point guard LaMelo Ball underwent successful surgery on his fractured right wrist. Ball’s wrist will be immobilized and he will be reevaluated in four weeks. The team said additional updates will be provided at that time. A person familiar with the situation told The Associated Press earlier this week that Ball is expected to miss the remainder of the NBA season. Ball sustained the injury during Charlotte’s loss to the Clippers on March 20.
In other NBA news:
— Brandon Ingram scored a season-high 36 points, Zion Williamson had 27 points and nine rebounds, and the New Orleans Pelicans defeated the Los Angeles Lakers 128-111. The 20-year-old Williamson became the first NBA player younger than 21 to score at least 20 points in 21 straight games. The Lakers lost their third straight while playing without injured stars LeBron James and Anthony Davis. Montrezl Harrell scored 18 points for Los Angeles.
— The Charlotte Hornets will allow approximately 5,000 fans to attend NBA home games beginning March 26 against Miami, or about 25% percent of the Spectrum Center’s seating capacity. That’s a 10% increase from the 3,000 fans that were allowed to attend home games beginning March 13. North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper is allowing sports venues were allowed to increase fan attendance to 50% of capacity. But to comply with social distancing guidelines the Hornets were only able to expand to 25% capacity.
VIRUS OUTBREAK-COLLEGE FOOTBALL
Georgia Tech practice is on hold
ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia Tech has delayed the start of spring football practice because of positive COVID-19 tests. The Yellow Jackets were scheduled to hold their first practice on Tuesday.
Coach Geoff Collins says Georgia Tech had prepared for the possibility by building extra days into its practice schedule. He said the Yellow Jackets “fully intend to still hold our 15 practices allowed by the NCAA this spring.” The school will hold off practicing until getting clearance from its medical experts. Georgia Tech is coming off a 3-7 season and is 6-16 in two years under Collins.
Canadiens games postponed through Sunday due to COVID-19
MONTREAL (AP) — The NHL announced the Montreal Canadiens have had their games through Sunday postponed.
The league made the announcement Tuesday, a day after the Canadiens’ game against the visiting Edmonton Oilers was postponed following the addition of Montreal forwards Joel Armia and Jesperi Kotkaniemi to the NHL’s COVID protocol list. The NHL said the decision was made by the medical groups from the league, the NHL Players’ Association and the Canadiens. The league said it’s expected that the Canadiens will be able to re-open their facilities for practice on Monday pending COVID-19 test results over the next few days.
Lightning extend dominance over Stars with 2-1 victory
UNDATED (AP) — Steven Stamkos and Yanni Gourde scored in the second period and Andrei Vasilevskiy recorded his franchise-record 12th straight win as the Tampa Bay Lightning beat the Dallas Stars 2-1 and extended their dominance in the season series between last year’s Stanley Cup finalists. Vasilevskiy made 16 saves as the NHL-leading Lightning won their fifth straight overall and improved to 4-0-0 this season against the Stars.
In other Tuesday action on the ice:
— Phil Kessel and Lawson Crouse rallied Arizona with goals in the third period, Christian Dvorak got the shootout clincher and the Coyotes beat Colorado 5-4, ending the Avalanche’s seven-game winning streak. Nick Schmaltz and Conor Garland also scored for the Coyotes in the shootout. Joonas Donskoi scored for the Avalanche, but Nathan McKinnon missed wide right against Adin Hill, who stopped 35 shots as Arizona rallied from a 4-2 deficit. The Coyotes killed off a penalty on Schmaltz in the extra period, with Hill making two outstanding saves during the power play.
— Michael McLeod, Kyle Palmieri, Yegor Sharangovich and Travis Zajac scored and the New Jersey Devils beat the Philadelphia Flyers 4-3 Tuesday night. The Flyers dropped their third straight game. Joel Farabee scored his 14th goal and Sean Couturier added two goals late in the third. Goalie Carter Hart is just 2-5. The Flyers host the Rangers on Thursday and Friday, as they try to gain ground in the East.
Juuse Saros made 31 saves for his first shutout of the season as the Nashville Predators beat the Detroit Red Wings 2-0 Tuesday night. Mikael Granlund and Mathieu Olivier scored for Nashville, which has won four of its last five games. Thomas Greiss had 22 saves for Detroit, which has lost two straight.
— Kevin Lankinen made 33 saves, Patrick Kane had two assists and the Chicago Blackhawks stopped a four-game slide by holding off the Florida Panthers for a 3-2 win. Dominik Kubalik, Pius Suter and Carl Soderberg scored for Chicago in the opener of a six-game homestand. It was the Blackhawks’ first victory against the Panthers in five games this season.
Hendricks to start on Opening Day for Cubs
CHICAGO (AP) — Chicago manager David Ross says Kyle Hendricks will get the ball when the Cubs begin the season against Pittsburgh on April 1 at Wrigley Field. The right-hander tossed a three-hitter in a 3-0 victory over Milwaukee on opening day last summer. The 31-year-old Hendricks went 6-5 with a 2.88 ERA in 12 starts during the pandemic-shortened season, helping Chicago win the NL Central.
Elsewhere in the majors:
— The Minnesota Twins have optioned prized prospect Alex Kirilloff to their alternate training site. The move leaves a wide-open competition for playing time in left field. It also gives the 2016 first-round draft pick more time to develop.
— Arizona Diamondbacks starting pitcher Zac Gallen has a hairline fracture in his right forearm, casting more doubt on his ability to open the season on the active roster. The 25-year-old Gallen hurt his forearm after getting jammed while taking batting practice nearly two weeks ago.
Watson faces new allegation
HOUSTON (AP) — An attorney for Houston Texans quarterback Deshaun Watson, who’s accused of sexual assault and harassment in lawsuits filed by 16 women, is questioning the allegations against the NFL player, claiming they were made following a failed attempt to blackmail his client for $30,000.
In lawsuits, Watson is accused of exposing himself and inappropriately touching the women while getting massages. Watson’s attorney, Rusty Hardin, alleges his legal team has “strong evidence” an accusation made by a woman they believe filed one of the lawsuits is false. Hardin accuses the woman of trying to blackmail Watson over a consensual encounter. The attorney for the women says the lawsuits are not about money.
King staying with Packers
GREEN BAY, Wis. (AP) — Cornerback Kevin King is staying with the Green Bay Packers after agreeing to a one-year deal worth $6 million. King’s agent, Chad Speck, confirmed the agreement on Tuesday. The move enables the Packers to keep both their starting cornerbacks from last season with Pro Bowl selection Jaire Alexander entrenched at the other spot.
In other NFL developments:
— Marcus Mariota has agreed to take a pay cut to remain as backup quarterback for a second season for the Las Vegas Raiders. Mariota had been due to be paid $10.5 million in the second year of his contract with the team after making $7.5 million last year. The Raiders were unwilling to pay that much for Mariota to be Derek Carr’s backup and reached agreement to bring him back on a cheaper deal.
— Safety Kareem Jackson has agreed to return to the Denver Broncos. The deal is for one year and could be worth up to $5 million. Jackson had become a free agent when the Broncos declined to exercise his $10 million option for 2021.
— The Pittsburgh Steelers have released veteran cornerback Steven Nelson. Nelson had claimed on Twitter the team was holding him “hostage.” The 28-year-old Nelson was about to enter the final season of a three-year, $25.5 million deal he signed in 2019. Nelson became expendable when the team re-signed Cam Sutton to a two-year contract last week.
— The Chicago Bears have signed offensive lineman Elijah Wilkinson to a one-year contract. The 6-foot-6, 329-pound Wilkinson played in 45 games and made 26 starts with Denver from 2017 to 2020.
— The New York Giants have signed cornerback Adoree Jackson to a three-year, $39 million contract. He started 41 of 46 games with the Titans over the past four seasons.
— Jonnu Smith’s choice to leave behind the Tennessee Titans franchise that drafted him in 2017 and sign a four-year, $50 million deal with the Patriots has placed him near the top of New England’s growing free agent class. Smith says he’s looking forward to playing in a system that has had success utilizing a two-tight end attack.
— The Tennessee Titans have agreed to terms on a one-year deal with wide receiver Josh Reynolds. Tennessee lost starting wide receiver Corey Davis in free agency to the New York Jets last week.
— The Panthers agreed to terms on a one-year deal with starting right guard John Miller and added free agent linebacker and special teams player Frankie Luvu from the New York Jets.