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Monticello Girls Host Warrensburg-Latham Tonight on WEZC; WEZC Announces Monticello Holiday Hoopla Coverage

>>Monticello Girls Basketball Hosts Warrensburg-Latham Tonight
 
The Monticello Lady Sages will play host to the Warrensburg-Latham Lady Cardinals tonight at Monticello High at 7:30 pm in non-conference girls basketball action.
 
The Lady Sages defeat Decatur St. Teresa 49-37 Saturday afternoon and are 6-0 on the season. 
 
The Lady Sages will host Mattoon Saturday before taking a nine day hiatus and returning to action for the annual Holiday Hoopla at Monticello High School December 28-30.
 
Hear tonight's action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailyews.com.
 
>>WEZC Sets Monticello Holiday Hoopla Coverage
The Monticello Holiday Hoopla Schedule has been set and you can hear five games across the three day event on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com.
 
The Holiday Hoopla features a two four-team pool with a boys and girls schedule. 
 
Starting Thursday morning at 11:30 am, the boys squad will take on Argenta-Oreana, then return to action at 7:30 pm to take on Tuscola.
 
On Friday afternoon at 2 pm, the girls squad takes on Ridgeview then at 3:30 pm hear the boys squad take on Ridgeview. 
 
Action concludes Saturday with placement games with tip times to be determined.
 
The opposite pool of the boys tournament includes GCMS, Neoga, PBL, and Fithian-Oakwood. 
 
Hear all the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com. 

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Illinois, Bradley Win in Routs

>>Illinois Routs Longwood
 
Aaron Jordan scored 22 points, Trent Frazier added 20, and Illinois beat Longwood 92-45 on Wednesday night.
 
Michael Finke scored 19 points and grabbed seven rebounds. He hit the first basket of the game on a baseline jumper, buried his first two shots from downtown, and scored 14 of his 19 points in the first half.
 
The Lancers held a 12-10 lead with roughly 12 minutes remaining in the first half, but after a 3 by Finke, Longwood would never take the lead again. Illinois finished the half on an 18-4 run and entered the break with a 26-point lead.
 
Jordan, who leads the Illini with 29 made 3-pointers, was 4 of 8 from beyond the arc.
 
Illinois (8-4) outrebounded Longwood 52 to 23 and shot 51.4 percent in the first half.
 
Longwood (3-7) committed 24 turnovers and struggled to operate under Illinois' pressure. The Lancers shot 34 percent from the field, 31.3 percent from beyond the arc and hit 16 field goals.
 
JaShaun Smith scored 10 points for the Lancers (3-7). Leading scorer Isaiah Walton, averaging 18.9 points per game, was held to four points in 14 minutes before leaving the game with a lower leg injury.
 
The Illini will have a few days off before heading to Chicago on Saturday. Illinois is scheduled to face New Mexico in the Dynegy Shootout.
 
>>Bradley Blasts Arkansa-Little Rock
 
Donte Thomas scored 12 points to lead five in double figures as Bradley shot 61 percent from the floor to rout Little Rock 86-46 on Wednesday night.
 
Bradley (8-2) bounced back from a 75-52 loss at San Diego State on Sunday, and improved to 6-0 at home while allowing the fewest points by an opponent this season.
Nate Kennell, Darrell Brown, Luuk van Bree and Ryan Stipanovich each added 11 points for the Braves, who made 31 of 51 field goals, including 10 3-pointers. Brown had five of the Braves' 21 assists.
 
Bradley entered with the nation's eighth-ranked defense at 59.9 points per game, and forced 20 Little Rock turnovers.
 
Cameron Corcoran scored 14 points and Jaizec Lottie chipped in 12 for Little Rock (2-8), which shot 35.6 percent (16 of 45) from the field. The Trojans made 9 of 25 (36 percent) from beyond the arc, just the second team to shoot over 30 percent from 3-point range against the Braves this season.

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Bulls Stay Hot, Beat Jazz; Pacers Lose

>>Bulls Stay Hot, Edge Jazz
 
Nikola Mirotic scored 29 points, Kris Dunn hit a clutch jumper with 22 seconds left and the Chicago Bulls beat the Utah Jazz 103-100 on Wednesday night for their fourth straight victory.
 
Mirotic made 11 of 18 shots from the field and grabbed nine rebounds in his best performance since he returned last week after missing the start of the season with facial fractures. The 6-foot-10 forward got hurt in a practice fight with teammate Bobby Portis, throwing the future of both players in question, but the Bulls are perfect since Mirotic returned to the court.
 
Robin Lopez added 16 points for Chicago, and Dunn finished with 13 points, eight assists and eight rebounds. Portis scored each of his nine points in the fourth after he got off to a slow start.
 
Donovan Mitchell led Utah with 32 points on 15-for-26 shooting, but the Jazz dropped their fourth straight game. Rodney Hood scored 15 points after missing the previous seven games with left ankle soreness.
 
Mitchell's driving layup trimmed Chicago's lead to 98-96 with 1:28 left. Following a couple of empty possessions, Dunn made a stepback jumper over Alec Burks to restore the Bulls' four-point advantage.
 
Chicago struggled at the line in the final seconds, giving Utah one final chance. But Mitchell missed a running 3-point try as time expired.
 
Ricky Rubio added 14 points for Utah, which has dropped the first two on a six-game road trip. Burks finished with 13 points.
 
Chicago played without rookie forward Lauri Markkanen, who missed his second straight game due to back spasms. Markkanen, who is averaging 14.7 points and 8.1 rebounds, was originally listed in the starting lineup, but was replaced by Mirotic shortly before the game.
 
Utah trailed by as many 12 in the second quarter, but closed the half with a 17-6 run and kept up its solid play at the start of the third. Jonas Jerebko's reverse layup with 7:06 left gave the Jazz a 63-58 lead, leading to a timeout by the Bulls.
 
The Bulls visit Milwaukee on Friday night.
 
>>Thunder Beat Pacers in Geogre's Return to Indiana
 
On a night the four-time All-Star was repeatedly booed and couldn't seem to make a shot, Paul George finally sunk two free throws with 10.7 seconds left Wednesday to seal Oklahoma City's 100-95 victory at Indiana.
George went 3 of 14 from the field, 2 of 7 on 3-pointers, had two rebounds and four turnovers. But spurned fans who are still upset George's camp went public with his free agent intentions last summer made sure the box score was the most pleasant part of George's night.
 
Steven Adams finished with 23 points and 13 rebounds while reigning MVP Russell Westbrook recorded his ninth triple-double of the season - 10 points, 17 rebounds and 12 assists.
 
Victor Oladipo, one of the returning pieces in the George trade with Oklahoma City, led Indiana with 19 points and nearly brought them all the way back from an 11-point deficit with 5:16 left. The Pacers got to 96-94 with 1:07 to go and had a chance to tie it when they got the ball with 15.2 seconds left and down 98-95.
 
Bojan Bogdanovic had 15 points while Thaddeus Young had 11 points, 10 rebounds and seven steals. 
 
Domentas Sabonis, the other player the Pacers acquired for George, wound up with eight points and six rebounds.
 
The Pacers host Detroit on Friday, seeking a seventh straight home win in the series.

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Cardinals Acquire Marcel Ozuna From Marlins

Not long after missing out on Giancarlo Stanton, the Cardinals have reportedly acquired a different hard-hitting Marlins outfielder: on Wednesday, St. Louis reportedly completed a trade for Marcell Ozuna. Craig Mish of Sirius XM and Jesse Sanchez of MLB.com have each reported that the deal is done, pending a physical. 
 
Ozuna, 27, is coming off an excellent 2017 in which he slashed .312/.376/.548 (145 OPS+) with 37 home runs in 159 games. In trading for Ozuna, the Cardinals are betting that he's capable of repeating such a breakout performance, as he had a career OPS+ of 103 coming into last season. 
 
It's expected they'll be receiving multiple pitching prospects and at least one position prospect. Jon Heyman reports that right-hander Sandy Alcantara is one of those arms. The 22-year-old right-hander made eight relief appearances for the Cardinals last season. He has elite fastball and sinker velocity and also mixes in a hard slider. 
 
If Alcantara continues making progress with his changeup, then he may have a future as a rotation cornerstone (of his 72 minor-league appearances, 68 were starts). 
 
The Marlins will also reportedly acquire outfield prospect Magneuris Sierra.

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Blackhawks Win; Blues Lose

>>Kane Lifts Blackhawks Past Panthers
 
Patrick Kane scored 2:24 into overtime to lift the Chicago Blackhawks to their third straight win, 3-2 over the Florida Panthers on Tuesday night.
 
Kane gained a step on Florida's Mike Matheson, broke in on James Reimer and beat the goalie with a high shot on the stick side for his 11th goal.
 
Chicago captain Jonathan Toews tied it at 2 with 6:02 left in the third period, breaking in alone and also beating Reimer high on the stick side after a terrific pass from Brandon Saad. It was Toews' third goal in five games and No. 9 on the season.
 
Toews and Saad each had a goal and an assist. Blackhawks rookie Alex DeBrincat added two assists.
 
Nick Bjugstad scored in the second for Florida, and Jamie McGinn put the Panthers in front with his fifth of the season 3:53 into the third. Reimer made 25 saves.
 
Corey Crawford had 35 stops for the Blackhawks, who had lost five in a row before their win streak.
 
The Blackhawks had the better chances in the first and broke through when Saad opened the scoring with 3:11 left in the period.
 
Saad partially fanned on a one-timer at the edge of the crease after taking DeBrincat's nifty feed from behind the net, but the puck slid in past Reimer's outstretched left skate.
 
Bjugstad tied it 11:12 into the second when he beat Crawford low on the stick side on a breakaway. Bjugstad got the puck behind Chicago's defense after Aleksander Barkov flipped it from inside the Panthers zone.
 
Chicago center Artem Anisimov missed on a point-blank chance late in the second, and McGinn scored in the third after the Blackhawks lost control of the puck just inside their blue line.
 
McGinn skated in for a 2-on-1 with Vincent Trochek, and then found himself alone on the left side of the crease after Chicago defenseman Brent Seabrook fell down. He beat Crawford on the short side, lifting a shot between the goalie's right shoulder and the left post.
 
After Toews tied it, Anisimov tipped a shot off the post with two minutes left in regulation.
 
The Blackhawks visit Winnipeg on Wednesday.
 
>>Lightning Blank Blues
 
Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 32 shots, Nikita Kucherov and Brayden Point scored and the Lightning beat the St. Louis Blues 3-0 on Tuesday night in a matchup of the NHL's top two teams.
Tyler Johnson added an empty netter as Tampa Bay (22-6-2) earned its fifth straight win. It was Vasilevskiy's third shutout of the season and the seventh of his career.
 
Jake Allen made 22 saves for St. Louis, which had won four in a row. The Blues (21-9-2) were shut out for the third time at home this season.
 
Point put Tampa Bay in front when he lifted in a rebound of his own shot at 19:15 of the first period. From the side of the net, Johnson fed Point in the slot. His shot hit the crossbar and caromed to the right. Point alertly followed the puck and extended his point streak to five games, setting a career high.
 
Vasilevskiy had several nice saves, turning away Vladimir Tarasenko on a 2-on-1 breakaway in the second period. Vasilevskiy leads the league in wins with 20, and Allen is second with 17.
 
The Lightning got to Allen again when Kucherov scored on a wrist shot at 15:37 of the final period. It was his 21st goal of the season.
 
The Blues host Anaheim on Thursday.

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Bears, Packers Notes

>>Rodgers Cleared To Play
 
Aaron Rodgers has been "medically cleared to return" to action after missing seven games with a broken right collarbone, the Green Bay Packers quarterback announced on Instagram Tuesday night.
 
Rodgers was hurt during a loss to Minnesota on Oct. 15 and had surgery four days later. He returned to practice on Dec. 2 and is eligible to rejoin the 53-man roster on Friday, which means the two-time MVP could suit up for Green Bay's game at Carolina on Sunday.
 
"It's been a long road ... but I'm happy to say I've been medically cleared to return," Rodgers wrote on Tuesday night.
 
The Packers (7-6) likely need to win their final three games to make the playoffs.
 
Rodgers had his collarbone scanned on Monday morning. That afternoon, with the team in the middle of game-planning for Carolina, coach Mike McCarthy wasn't sure whether Rodgers or backup Brett Hundley would be his quarterback.
 
The Packers were 4-2 in Rodgers' six starts, including the Minnesota game, where he was hurt on the second possession on a hit by Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr. In the three prior games, he threw 10 touchdown passes with only one interception in in consecutive victories over Cincinnati, Chicago and Dallas.
 
After playing the Panthers, who at 9-4 are in position for the top NFC wild card, the Packers have a rematch against NFC North-leading Minnesota before finishing the season at Detroit. Green Bay's final three opponents have a combined record of 26-13.
 
The Packers went 3-4 in Hundley's seven starts, including back-to-back overtime wins over Tampa Bay and Cleveland that kept their playoff hopes alive and made Rodgers' return a tantalizing possibility.
 
>>Former Bears Special Teams Star, Devin Hester, Announces Retirement
 
Devin Hester, the all-purpose speedster who holds the NFL record for kick return touchdowns with 20, has announced his retirement from the NFL.
 
In a post on social media, the 35-year-old Hester said had realized it was time .
 
"Good news: Commissioner Goodell, you can put the kickoff back at the 30," Hester wrote. "Bad news: Y'all will have to find a new favorite returner."
 
Hester played for Atlanta, Baltimore and Seattle, but his best years were with the Chicago Bears, which took him in the second round (57th overall) out of Miami in 2006. At the end of his rookie season, he took the opening kickoff of the Super Bowl 92 yards for a touchdown against Indianapolis, though the Colts won the game.
 
He is the third-leading punt returner in NFL history and was selected to the Pro Bowl in 2006, 2007, 2010 and 2014.

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Cubs Notes; Ohtani Could Have Elbow Damage

>>Cubs Announce Signing of RP Brandon Morrow
 
Brandon Morrow has agreed to a two-year contract with the Chicago Cubs, taking one of the top free-agent relievers off the market.
 
The 33-year-old Morrow went 6-0 with a 2.06 ERA and two saves in 45 appearances for the NL champion Los Angeles Dodgers last season. He also pitched in 14 playoff games, helping the Dodgers eliminate the Cubs in the NLCS.
 
Morrow could step into the closer role for Chicago. Wade Davis had a career-high 32 saves for the Cubs and made the NL All-Star team this year, but he is a free agent.
 
Morrow's contract includes a 2020 club option that could become guaranteed depending on his performance.
 
The Cubs also announced Tuesday night they had agreed to a two-year deal with left-hander Drew Smyly. He is recovering from Tommy John surgery in June and might not be able to return next season.
 
>>Cubs Extend Radio Announcer Ron Coomer
 
Chicago Cubs radio analyst Ron Coomer has agreed to a multiyear contract extension.
 
The team and Entercom, the company that owns its flagship radio station, announced the agreement on Tuesday.
 
The 51-year-old Coomer has been working alongside play-by-play announcer Pat Hughes since 2013. Primarily a corner infielder during his nine major league seasons, he made the All-Star team with the Minnesota Twins in 1999 and played for the Cubs in 2001.
 
Coomer is from the Chicago area.
 
>>Hyped Prospect Ohtani Could Have Damage in Pitching Elbow
 
Last Friday, new broke that the Angels were the team that landed Japanese phenom Shohei Ohtani. The two-way star wants to keep hitting, but most teams were after him for his pitching, which includes a 102-mph fastball in his arsenal. Interestingly, Ohtani's medicals included news that he had a platelet-rich plasma injection in his right (pitching) elbow back in October. 
From Tom Verducci at Sports Illustrated: 
 
Quote - "MLB circulated Ohtani's medical history. Sources from two of the teams say the report included a notation that Ohtani underwent a platelet-rich plasma injection on his right elbow in October".
 
Having PRP injection sometimes helps pitchers avoid Tommy John surgery (Masahiro Tanaka comes to mind), but could also be used just to deal with inflammation. In Ohtani's case, he had a first-degree sprain in his ulnar collateral ligament, according to Jeff Passan of Yahoo! Sports.
 
The Angels released a statement late Tuesday night about their newest acquisition. Per USA Today's Bob Nightengale via Twitter:
 
Quote - "Angels statement on Ohtani/ Based on the readings of the MRI’s there are no signs of acute or new trauma in the elbow. His elbow looked consistent with pitchers at his age and usage level. We were pleased with the results of the physical and we are happy to have the player."
 
Ohtani only made five starts last season due to thigh and ankle injuries. He was 3-2 with a 3.20 ERA and 29 strikeouts in 25 1/3 innings. In 2016, he was 10-4 with a 1.86 ERA and 174 strikeouts in 140 innings. 

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Monticello Blows By Fisher

Luke Stokowski recorded his first double-double this season and the Monticello defense held Fisher to 23% shooting for the game as the Sages blew by Fisher 55-28 at Monticello High School in non-conference boys basketball action Tuesday night.

 

Stokowski’s 14 points and 14 rebounds were a game high. He scored eight of his 14 points in the first quarter.

 

Calvin Fisher finished with 10 points, picking up two personal fouls in the first minute-and-a-half of the game, forcing him to the bench until about the five minute mark of the second quarter, when he scored six points of his 10 points.

 

Ben Singleton added nine points and four rebounds.

 

Stokowski also dished out four assists for a game high.

 

Monticello held the Bunnies to single digit scoring in all four quarters and only Jaden Jones-Watkins scored in double figures for Fisher, finishing with 11 points.

 

The Sages again won the battle of the boards, with a 35-24 advantage. They also controlled the paint, with a 40-8 scoring advantage.

 

The Sages are on the road for their next two ballgames, at Sullivan Friday night and then at Paxton-Buckley-Loda next Tuesday night before they return home for Holiday Hoopla action the Thursday through Saturday after Christmas.

 

Hear Friday night’s action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com.

 

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Monticello vs Fisher

The Sages win the game with a score of 55-28.

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Stars Outlast Rangers in Shootout

Jason Spezza scored in the shootout, and the Stars snapped a three-game losing streak with a 2-1 victory over the Rangers.
 
Kari Lehtonen made 24 saves for Dallas in the opener of its four-game East Coast road trip against the Metropolitan Division. It was Lehtonen's 299th career NHL victory.
 
Dallas outshot New York 45-25, but Pavelec kept the Rangers in the game with an outstanding performance in goal.
 
The Stars had a 1-0 lead before Rick Nash tied it for the Rangers when he tipped in Brady Skjei's wrist shot with 3:41 left in regulation. Nash made contact with Lehtonen but the goalie was well outside the blue paint. Hitchcock challenged the play, but the referees stayed with the original call.
 
Julius Honka put Dallas in front when he drove a slap shot past Pavelec at 6:30 of the second period for his first of the season. The 2014 first-round pick rejoined the lineup after sitting for the previous three games.

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Bulls Blow Out Celtics

Nikola Mirotic scored 24 points, Bobby Portis added a career-high 23 and the Chicago Bulls blew out Boston 108-85 on Monday night with Celtics star Kyrie Irving sidelined because of a bruised left quadriceps.
 
Owners of the NBA's worst record, the Bulls built an 18-point lead in the second quarter against the Eastern Conference leaders. And when Boston cut it to 12 in the fourth, the Bulls simply pulled away for their third straight win.
 
Mirotic made his first start of the season with leading scorer Lauri Markkanen sidelined because of back spasms. The 6-foot-10 forward hit 9 of 14 shots and grabbed eight rebounds in his third appearance.
 
Portis shot 10 of 15 and nailed all three 3-pointers.
 
Before Monday night, Mirotic and Portis had only made headlines together this season for the wrong reasons. Mirotic missed the first 23 games with facial fractures he suffered in a fight at practice with Portis.
 
Al Horford scored 15 for Boston. Jaylen Brown, Marcus Smart and Terry Rozier added 13 points apiece in the Celtics' most lopsided loss of the season.
 
Boston got within 12 in the fourth quarter when Portis hit a jumper and Mirotic made a 3 to make it 90-73 with just under eight minutes left. The Bulls remained in control the rest of the way.
 
Mirotic came through with 16 points as Chicago grabbed a 56-42 halftime lead. Portis scored 15 in the first half.
 
The Bulls wiped out a four-point deficit and led 52-34 after a 24-2 run in the second quarter. Portis scored 10 during that stretch, nailing two 3s, and Mirotic finished it with a short hook.

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Villanova College Basketball's New No 1; Arizona State Jumps

The Associated Press top 25 poll saw a major shakeup on Monday thanks to a combined six losses suffered by the previous top 10 teams over the past week -- including three top 10 teams losing to sub-75 KenPom teams.
 
Duke fell from its perch at No. 1 to No. 4 after losing to Boston College; previous No. 2 Kansas dropped to 13 after losing twice this week as favorites; and last week's No. 5, Florida, sunk all the way to No. 22 after losing twice to put an exclamation mark on one of the wackiest weeks of weird upsets the sport has seen in awhile.
 
The mayhem ushered in a new No. 1 in the sport in Villanova, which now sits atop the rankings with a perfect 10-0 record after jumping from No. 4 a week ago. The Wildcats are the only team other than Duke, which was No.  1 dating all the way back to the preseason until this week, to sit atop the AP poll so far this season.
 
>>Ducks Escape Southern Texas
 
Payton Pritchard scored 16 points, and Troy Brown had 10 points and 12 rebounds as Oregon struggled to down winless Texas Southern 74-68 on Monday night.
 
The difference-maker was Kenny Wooten with 13 points and four blocks for the Ducks (7-3), who started the second half on a 16-2 run to open a 48-33 lead but still couldn't shake the Tigers (0-9).
Texas Southern trailed 65-64 with 3 1/2 minutes to play before driving layups by Pritchard and Paul White gave Oregon some breathing room. White had 11 points as six Ducks scored in double figures.
 
Brown scored seven of Oregon's last 12 points, capped by a 3-pointer of an assist from Pritchard.
 
Donte Clark led the Tigers with 17 points and Demontrae Jefferson had 16.
 
The Ducks were 13 of 17 at the foul line in the second half after shooting just five free throws in the first 20 minutes.
 
The Ducks shot 13 of 25 in the second half to finish 25 of 59 for the game (42.4 percent). Wooten was 6 of 7 from the floor and Pritchard 5 of 8.
 
Oregon hosts Portland State on Wednesday night.

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All-Americans Released in For College Football

After a weekend of awards in college football, the AP All-America team was announced on Monday with new Heisman Trophy winner Baker Mayfield and Oklahoma leading the way on the first team. Oklahoma led all schools with three first team selections, while the Big Ten had was the most well-represented conference on the first team (7), and Clemson had the most players selected to all three teams (6).  
 
FIRST TEAM
 
QB: Baker Mayfield (Oklahoma)
RB: Bryce Love (Stanford), Rashaad Penny (San Diego State)
OT: Orlando Brown (Oklahoma), Mike McGlinchey (Notre Dame)
OG: Quenton Nelson (Notre Dame), Braden Smith (Auburn)
C: Billy Price (Ohio State)
TE: Mark Andrews (Oklahoma)
WR: James Washington (Oklahoma State), Anthony Miller (Memphis)
AP: Saquon Barkley (Penn State)
K: Matt Gay (Utah)
DE: Bradly Chubb (NC State), Clelin Ferrell (Clemson)
DT: Hercules Mata'afa (Washington State), Maurice Hurst (Michigan)
LB: Roquan Smith (Georgia), Josey Jewell (Iowa), T.J. Edwards (Wisconsin)
CB: Josh Jackson (Iowa), Denzel Ward (Ohio State)
S: Minkah Fitzpatrick (Alabama), DeShon Elliott (Texas)
P: Michael Dickson (Texas)
 
SECOND TEAM
 
QB: Lamar Jackson (Louisville)
RB: Jonathan Taylor (Wisconsin), Kerryon Johnson (Auburn)
OT: Mich Hyatt (Clemson), Isaiah Wynn (Georgia)
OG: Cody O'Connell (Washington State), Will Hernandez (UTEP)
C: Bradley Bozeman (Alabama)
TE: Troy Fumagalli (Wisconsin)
WR: David Sills V (West Virginia), Michael Gallup (Colorado State)
AP: Dante Pettis (Washington)
K: Daniel Carlson (Auburn)
DE: Sutton Smith (Northern Illinois), Nick Bosa (Ohio State)
DT: Ed Oliver (Houston), Christian Wilkins (Clemson)
LB: Malik Jefferson (Texas), Ogbonnia Okoronkwo (Oklahoma), Dorian O'Daniel (Clemson)
CB: Jalen Davis (Utah State), Carlton Davis (Auburn)
S: Derwin James (Florida State), Justin Reid (Stanford)
P: Johnny Townsend (Florida)
 
THIRD TEAM 
 
QB: Mason Rudolph (Oklahoma State)
RB: Ronald Jones II (USC), Devin Singletary (FAU)
OT: David Edwards (Wisconsin), Jonah Williams (Alabama)
OG: Beau Benzschawel (Wisconsin), Tyrone Crowder (Clemson)
C: Frank Ragnow (Arkansas)
TE: Jaylen Samuels (NC State)
WR: Steve Ishmael (Syracuse), A.J. Brown (Ole Miss)
AP: D.J. Reed (Kansas State)
K: Eddy Piniero (Florida)
DE: Austin Bryant (Clemson), Mat Boesen (TCU)
DT: Vita Vea (Washington), Harrison Phillips (Stanford)
LB: Micah Kiser (Virginia), Tremaine Edmunds (Virginia Tech), Devin Bush (Michigan)
CB: Andraez Williams (LSU), Jack Jones (USC)
S: Armani Watts (Texas A&M), Quin Blanding (Virginia)
P: Mitch Wisnowsky (Utah) 

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Maroons Top Rochester

Seth Westfall led four Clinton scorers in double figures with 19 points as the Maroons beat Rochester 66-56 Saturday night in non-conference boys basketball action from Rochester High School.
 
The Maroons jumped out early on the Rockets, leading 18-5 after one quarter, a deficit Rochester could not overcome. 
 
With the lead trimmed to 45-42 after three quarters, the Maroons closed the game out with a 21-14 fourth quarter edge.
 
Maroons Coach Clay Haurberg said quote - "We got out to a hot start, and that proved to be pivotal, as we had a rough time during the middle two periods. Shots weren’t dropping and we gave up a batch of second and even third shots to them. We kept positive and the kids kept their energy high which served us well in the 4th. Seth Westfall really played well in the paint tonight and our guards got some big shots in that last quarter. We struggled mightily at the foul line throughout the game, but hit the big ones down the stretch. Our guys showed great composure when things looked a little shaky.”
 
Dalton Smith added 14 points for the Maroons, Austin Rauch chipped in with 12 points and Chase Reynolds added 11. 
 
Austin Baker shot 6-for-8 from the free throw and finished with eight points.
 
The Maroons shot 18-for-30 from the line.
 
Jordan Leach led Rochester with 16 points and Jayden Reed added 11 points.
 
The Rockets shot only six free throws and committed 23 fouls. 
 
Rochester drops to 0-4 overall while the Maroons are 6-4.
 
The Maroons are off for another week when they return to action next Saturday afternoon at the Jacksonville Shootout taking on Illini West at approximately 4:15. Hear the action on The Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM and online at dewittdailynews.com.

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Monticello Tops St. Teresa

Another balanced scoring attack helped the Monticello Lady Sages beat Decatur St. Teresa 49-37 Saturday afternoon in non-conference girls basketball action from Decatur St. Teresa High School.
 
The Lady Sages were led by Zanna Myers with 19 points. Emily Wilson scored 11 points and Tatum McCall added 10 points.
 
The Lady Sages improve to 7-0 on the season with the win.
 
The Lady Sages return to action Thursday night when they host Warrensburg-Latham. Hear the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com.

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Illinois, Illinois State Lose Saturday

>>UNLV Beats Illinois
 
Jovan Mooring shot 50 percent from the field and scored 27 points to lead UNLV to an 89-82 victory over Illinois on Saturday night at the MGM Grand Garden.
 
After squandering an 11-point lead and falling behind by three points with 10:25 left, the Runnin' Rebels closed on a 33-23 run to seal the win.
 
Brandon McCoy scored 22 points and grabbed 10 rebounds for UNLV (8-2), while Shakur Juiston and Jordan Johnson each had 10 points.
 
Illinois (7-4) was led by Mark Smith, who had 17 points, and Trent Frazier, who added 16 points for the Illni.
 
After UNLV opened the second half with two free throws from Kris Clyburn, the Illni went on an 18-5 run to take a 54-52 lead, with all of the Rebels' points coming from the charity stripe. UNLV's first field goal of the second half came from Tervell Beck at the 11:52 mark, tying the game at 54-all.
 
The Runnin' Rebels wasted no time with their offensive game, hitting their first six shots from the field, while opening a 14-4 lead before back-to-back baskets by Shakur Juiston made it 29-19 midway through the first half.
 
But Illinois answered with a 12-0 run to take a two-point lead with six minutes left in the half. UNLV answered with a 14-2 run of its own, culminated by Anthony Smith, who soared above the rim for an impressive put-back slam dunk.
 
The Runnin' Rebels hit 16 of 31 from the field in the first half. After its slow start, the Illni shot 44.8 percent (13 of 29) from the field, including 5 of 11 from 3-point range, over the first 20 minutes.
 
Illinois hosts Longwood on Tuesday.
 
>>Murray State Topples Illinois State
 
Terrell Miller Jr. scored 25 points, Shaq Buchanan added 16, and Murray State held off Illinois State 78-72 on Saturday to win its fifth straight.
 
The Racers scored 11 straight and pulled ahead 47-34 early in the second half for its largest lead of the game. The Redbirds closed to 70-68 on William Tinsley's 3, but Jonathan Stark replied with a 3 and the Racers led 75-70 on Jalen Durpree's layup with 1:26 left. Milik Yarbrough's jumper made it a three-point game, but Ja Morant sealed it with three free throws in the final 20 seconds.
 
Morant scored 15 points with nine rebounds, Stark had 13, and the Racers (6-1) outshot the Redbirds 50 percent to 41 percent.
 
Yarbrough scored a career-high 30 points on 10-of-19 shooting and Taylor Bruninga added 11 points for Illinois State (4-6).

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Bears, Packers Win Sunday

>>Tribusky, Howard Lead Bears Past Bengals
 
Rookie Mitchell Trubisky threw for a touchdown and ran for another in his best showing yet, and the Chicago Bears ended a five-game losing streak by routing the lackluster Cincinnati Bengals 33-7 on Sunday, their most lopsided victory in five years.
 
Jordan Howard ran for 147 yards and a pair of touchdowns as the Bears (4-9) dominated a matchup of the NFL's worst offenses. Their rookie quarterback took full advantage of an injury-depleted defense, completing a career-high 25 passes out of 32 attempts for 271 yards. He also ran 4 yards for a score.
 
The Bengals (5-8) were coming off a 23-20 loss to the Steelers on Monday night that crushed their playoff hopes and gutted their defense.
 
The Bears piled up a season-high 482 yards against a unit missing starting cornerbacks Adam "Pacman" Jones and Dre Kirkpatrick as well as linebackers Vontaze Burfict and Nick Vigil.
 
It was Cincinnati's worst home drubbing since a 34-3 loss to Baltimore in 2008. Many of the 52,002 fans headed for the exits early in the fourth quarter.
 
Everyone in the NFL's lowest-ranked offense had a big game. Tarik Cohen ran for 80 yards, and Kendall Wright caught 10 passes for 107 yards - the first Bears receiver to top 100 yards this season.
 
Andy Dalton was picked off for the first time since Oct. 22 in Pittsburgh, ending his career-best streak of 193 attempts without an interception. The interception set up Trubisky's 1-yard touchdown pass that put the Bears in control 26-7 early in the fourth quarter, their biggest lead of the season.
 
The Bears play at Detroit on Saturday. They lost to the Lions 27-24 on Nov. 19.
 
>>Packers Storm Back To Beat Browns; Rodgers To Return Against Carolina
 
Brett Hundley threw a 25-yard touchdown pass to Davante Adams in overtime as the Packers rallied from a two-touchdown deficit in the fourth quarter for a 27-21 win on Sunday over the winless and luckless Cleveland Browns.
 
Hundley pulled out his third win — and second straight in OT — since replacing Rodgers, and now the Packers (7-6) will get back their quarterback after their season appeared doomed when he broke his collarbone in October.
On third-and-6 in overtime, Hundley threw a short pass to Adams , who spun out of Myles Garrett's arms and went in untouched with 5:05 left as the Packers set the stage for Rodgers' return. He returned to practice this week, and as long as he's cleared by Green Bay's medical staff, Rodgers will be back on the field next Sunday when the Packers play Carolina.
 
It was another devastating loss for the Browns (0-13), who made several critical mistakes late in regulation before Kizer's poor decision on his final throw.
 
Kizer was rolling to his left and tried to throw across his body to Rashard Higgins when his arm was hit by linebacker Clay Matthews.
 
A 65-yard punt return by Trevor Davis set up Green Bay's score, which came after Hundley was ruled down inside the 1 after an apparent 6-yard scoring run. Out of timeouts, coach Mike McCarthy elected not to risk a run and Hundley rifled his pass into the corner for Adams, who beat Jason McCourty on the play.
 
Hundley's tight spiral was reminiscent of so many thrown by Rodgers, who stayed warm on the sideline inside a large green sideline jacket.
 
Hundley finished 35 of 46 with three touchdowns and made the big plays when he had to against the lowly Browns.
 
Cleveland was in position to run out the clock before overtime but rookie tight end David Njoku dropped a key third-down pass. Cleveland's punt team couldn't bring down Davis, who weaved his way to the Browns 25.
 
Kizer threw three touchdown passes, one to Josh Gordon, and went 20 of 28 for 214 yards.
 
Isaiah Crowell rushed for 121 yards on 19 carries. Gordon, playing his first home game since Dec. 14, 2014, had three catches for 69 yards and caught an 18-yard TD pass in the first quarter that he celebrated by putting on sunglasses.
 
The Packers travel to Carolina on Sunday.

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Blackhawks, Blues Win

>>Blackhawks Down Coyotes
 
Corey Crawford made 31 saves, Artem Anisimov scored with 4:47 left in the third period and the Chicago Blackhawks beat the Arizona Coyotes 3-1 on Sunday night.
 
Tommy Wingels and Nick Schmaltz also scored in the third as Chicago earned its second straight win after dropping five in a row. Patrick Kane had two assists to run his career total to 781 points, breaking a tie with Doug Wilson for fifth on the franchise scoring list.
 
Kane found an open Anisimov in the right circle for the center's team-high 13th goal, giving the Blackhawks a 2-1 lead. The connection occurred just 71 seconds after Anthony Duclair tied it at 1 with his seventh goal for Arizona, tipping home Alex Goligoski's pass in front.
 
Kane then set up Schmaltz with a slick pass with 3:02 left. It was Schmaltz's first goal since Nov. 27 and No. 5 on the season.
 
Scott Wedgewood made 34 saves for Arizona, which dropped its fourth straight game.
 
Wedgewood and Crawford were locked in a scoreless duel when John Hayden made a nice pass to set up Wingels' one-timer 7:36 into the third period. Wingels also scored a tying short-handed goal in the third during Chicago's 3-2 overtime win against Buffalo on Friday night.
 
The Coyotes were coming off a 1-0 loss at Columbus on Saturday night, but they skated right with the Blackhawks for most of the game.
 
Goligoski rattled the cage behind Crawford on a power-play shot in the second period. Kevin Connauton also had an open backhander stopped by Crawford with about eight minutes left in the second.
 
The Blackhawks host the Florida Panthers on Tuesday night.
 
>>Blues Hold Off Sabres
 
Vladimir Tarasenko scored with 36 seconds left in overtime, and the short-handed St. Louis Blues beat the Buffalo Sabres 3-2 on Sunday night.
 
Brayden Schenn and Paul Stastny also scored, and Joel Edmundson recorded two assists as the Blues topped the Sabres for the 10th time in their last 11 meetings. Jake Allen made 22 saves, improving to 5-1 in six career starts against Buffalo.
Evan Rodrigues, in just his third game this season after coming back from a hand injury, scored both goals for the Sabres, who have lost six of seven. Robin Lehner made 42 saves.
 
Tarasenko used his speed to get around the Sabres defense and notch his 14th goal of the season. Tarasenko tried to go backhand-forehand, but the puck deflected off Lehner's outstretched stick and into the net before he could finish the move.
 
The Blues won their fourth straight despite being without second-leading scorer Jaden Schwartz and top defenseman Alex Pietrangelo, taking 58 combined points out of the St. Louis lineup.
 
Schenn scored his 16th goal of the season just 40 seconds into the game to give the Blues a 1-0 lead. It was ninth goal in 18 career games against the Sabres.
 
Stastny scored his first goal in seven games to make it 2-0 with 3:43 left in the second period. Stastny put home a rebound off a shot by Tarasenko that went wide but caromed off the end boards right to his stick.
 
Rodrigues scored on a power play early in the third. Rodrigues was left unmarked at the side of the net when an Evander Kane pass deflected off of Sam Reinhart directly to his tape.
 
Rodrigues tied the game moments after the Sabres pulled Lehner for an extra attacker, putting home a rebound off a slap shot by Marco Scandella with 1:27 left.
 
The Blues host Tampa Bay on Tuesday.

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Pacers Roll Nuggets In Overtime

Victor Oladipo, who starred in college at Indiana University, had a career-high 47 points and added seven rebounds and six assists to lead the Pacers to a 126-116 overtime win over the Denver Nuggets on Sunday.
 
The Pacers trailed 114-106 with 2:54 remaining in the fourth before scoring eight straight points, capped by Thad Young's putback with 5 seconds left to tie it. Then, Indiana got the first nine points in overtime to secure its fourth straight win - all at home - while outscoring the Nuggets 12-2 in the extra period.
On a night where most will remember all the baskets Oladipo made, the most crucial of his plays came with his drive to the basket with 7 seconds left that pulled defenders away from the rim and allowed Young to tip in his miss.
 
Myles Turner finished with 24 points and eight rebounds, and Lance Stephenson had 12 points, six rebounds and six assists for the Pacers.
 
Wilson Chandler keyed a hot start for Denver by scoring eight of the Nuggets' first 10 points on the way to a 35-22 lead heading into the second quarter. And that deficit grew. Indiana trailed by as many as 19 in the second quarter after a slow start on offense. But the key moment of the game came near the end of the first half when the Pacers hit their stride, climbing back into the game with a 21-8 scoring run to head into halftime trailing 66-59.
 
Trey Lyles led the Nuggets with a career-high 25 points, Gary Harris and Will Barton each had 21 points, and Chandler finished with 18.
 
The Pacers host Oklahoma City on Wednesday night, when former Pacers forward Paul George is set to make his first return to Indianapolis.
 
Oladipo's made six 3-pointers with the biggest coming with 2:10 to play in the third quarter to give Indiana its first lead of the game.

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Cubs Sign RHP Chatwood

Right-hander Tyler Chatwood and the Chicago Cubs have agreed to a $38 million, three-year contract.
 
The Cubs announced the agreement on Thursday.
 
Chatwood is joining a team with three straight NL Championship Series appearances and a World Series title in 2016. He figures to slot into the rotation behind Jon Lester, Kyle Hendricks and Jose Quintana.
 
Chatwood, who turns 28 next week, was 8-15 with a 4.69 ERA in 33 appearances, including 25 starts, for Colorado last year. He is 40-46 with a 4.31 ERA over six seasons with the Los Angeles Angels (2011) and Rockies (2012-14, 2016-17). He was limited to four starts in 2014 and missed the 2015 season because of Tommy John surgery.

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Maroa-Forsyth Drops Argenta-Oreana

The Maroa-Forsyth Trojans used a 24-11 third quarter and opened up a 54-32 advantage heading into the fourth quarter, allowing them to get by Argenta-Oreana 65-48 Thursday night in non-conference boys basketball action from the Macon County Tournament Thursday night from Cerro-Gordo Bement High School. 
 
Drew Hicks hit a pair of threes in the third quarter outburst and Daahnish Mahmood also had six points in the third. 
 
Mahmood scored 22 of his game high 30 points in the first half. Aaron Agee scored 12 points for the Trojans.
 
Drew Johnson paced a balanced scoring attack for the Bombers with 12 points. 
 
Nate Logan and Logan Batson each added eight points apiece and Kyle Rigsby chipped in with seven points.
 
The Trojans improve to 3-4 overall and host Warrensburg-Latham next Thursday.
 
The Bombers are at Unity next Tuesday. 

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Packers Head To Cleveland For Crucial Matchup With Browns

Pressure comes in different forms on Sundays in the NFL, a fact that will be on full display at FirstEnergy Stadium in Cleveland when the Browns host the Green Bay Packers.
 
The Browns (0-12) are trying to avoid being the only team other than the 2008 Detroit Lions to lose every game in a 16-game season. There certainly is pressure there, particularly since they're playing in front of their home crowd.
 
The Packers (6-6) are still in the hunt for a wild-card spot in the NFC, but they can't afford to lose, especially to a winless team. The Detroit Lions and Dallas Cowboys are also 6-6 while the Seattle Seahawks and Carolina Panthers are 8-4 and the Atlanta Falcons sit at 7-5. Only two wild-card spots are available to those six teams.
 
Helping Green Bay is a head-to-head win over the Seahawks in the opener and a date with the Panthers in Charlotte a week after playing the Browns.
 
Star quarterback Aaron Rodgers, recovering from a broken collarbone, is eligible to return for the game with the Panthers. That game won't have much meaning, though, if they don't beat the Browns first.
 
Third-year quarterback Brett Hundley will be starting for Green Bay in place of Rodgers. He was the winning quarterback in the Packers' 26-20 overtime victory against the Buccaneers last week, but he did it completing 13 of 22 passes for 84 yards. He was sacked twice and posted a 48.3 passer rating.
 
The Packers ran for 199 yards against the Buccaneers. Rookie Jamaal Williams rushed for 113 yards and a touchdown on 21 carries.
 
Both teams are dealing with injuries. Inside linebacker Jake Ryan (neck/illness), cornerback Davon House (shoulder) and defensive lineman Quinton Dial (chest/knee) did not practice with the Packers on Wednesday.
 
Safety Jabrill Peppers (knee), cornerback Briean Boddy-Calhoun (knee) and defensive lineman Danny Shelton (chest/ribs) did not practice with the Browns.

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Blues Blank Stars

Jake Allen posted his first zero of the season with 29 saves, helping the St. Louis Blues beat the Dallas Stars 3-0.
 
Brayden Schenn got his team-leading 14th goal two days after netting a hat trick against Montreal. Colton Parayko and Vladimir Tarasenko also scored.
 
Allen got his 16th career shutout, tying Glenn Hall (1967-71) for third on the franchise's career list.
 
Dallas has lost two in a row since a season-high five game winning streak. Kari Lehtonen stopped 24 shots.
 
The Blues scored twice on the power play after connecting on just 2 of 17 chances in their previous four games. Schenn, acquired in an offseason trade with Philadelphia, pounced on a rebound from close range midway through the first period for a 1-0 lead.
 
Parayko blasted a shot from just inside the blue line that eluded Lehtonen early in the third period.
 
Tarasenko scored into an empty net with 47.6 seconds left, ending a six-game scoreless streak.
 
Dallas is 0-6 against the top three teams in the Central Division - St. Louis, Winnipeg and Nashville. The Stars have been outscored 25-8.
 
The Blues are at Detroit on Saturday afternoon.

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Bears At Bengals Sunday

The Cincinnati Bengals are not ready to concede their playoff campaign quite yet as they prepare to host the Chicago Bears on Sunday afternoon at Paul Brown Stadium.
 
However, it will take a miracle finish for Cincinnati (5-7) to climb back into the postseason picture. The Bengals are looking to bounce back from a penalty-filled, injury-riddled game Monday night against the Pittsburgh Steelers.
 
The violent ruckus in Cincinnati's 23-20 loss left players on both sides seriously injured, including Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict (concussion) and running back Joe Mixon (concussion).
 
Bengals safety George Iloka initially was suspended one game for delivering a head shot against Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown, but Iloka's suspension was overturned on appeal.
 
On the opposite side of the field, the Bears will take anything they can get. Chicago has lost a season-worst five straight games and is dead last in the NFL in total offense at 275.8 yards per game.
 
Trubisky, the No. 2 overall pick in the 2017 draft, will make his ninth career start. He has a 74.6 passer rating for the season (1,237 passing yards, five touchdowns, four interceptions), and he is averaging 6.7 yards per scramble with 194 rushing yards.
 
The Bears offer another challenge on the ground with running back Jordan Howard, who needs 115 rushing yards to lock up his second consecutive 1,000-yard effort. Undersized rookie running back Tarik Cohen, whose game reminds many of a young Darren Sproles, also is proving effective with 578 yards from scrimmage (267 rushing, 311 receiving).
 
The Bengals will counter on offense with quarterback Andy Dalton, who is 180 passing yards shy of hitting 25,000 for his career.
 
Dalton will face Chicago for only the second time in seven seasons. 

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Clinton Lady Maroons Fall to Central A&M

In a game heard on WHOW, the Clinton Lady Maroons fell to the Central A&M Lady Raiders by a score of 72-39 on Thursday night. The Country Financial representative Brad James Maroons Player of the Game Madi Filkin, led the Maroons with 15 points.

 

The Lady Raiders were led by sophomore Channing Reed with 16. Junior Channing Collins added 12 points.

 

With the loss, the Lady Maroons fall to 4-6 overall and 1-1 in the Central Illinois Conference. With the win, Central A&M improves to 6-5 on the season, and 2-0 in conference action.

 

Tune in Thursday, December 14, as the Lady Maroons travel to St. Teresa. You can hear the game live on the Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM WHOW, online at dewittdailynews.com, and on the WHOW app.

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Illinois Escapes Austin Peay

Michael Finke scored 17 points and grabbed eight rebounds to help Illinois squeeze out a 64-57 victory over Austin Peay on Wednesday night.
 
The Illini (7-3) shot just 39.6 percent from the field and made just 21 field goals, but it was enough to snap a three-game losing streak.
 
Illinois made 6 of 9 shot attempts to start the game and jumped out to an early 13-6 lead but went scoreless for almost six minutes. The Governors went on an 11-0 run to take the lead but weren't able to sustain an offensive rhythm either, shooting only 41.4 percent from the field.
 
The turning point came with just under five minutes left in the game. Locked at 50, Kipper Nichols stole an entry pass to the post and pushed the ball ahead. On the other end, Da'Monte Williams spotted up on the right wing, and nailed a 3-pointer to push the Illini ahead for good.
 
With 19.6 seconds left, Te'Jon Lucas was fouled on a layup attempt. He knocked down both free throws to make it a two-possession game and seal the victory.
 
In his first career start, Williams finished with five points, four rebounds and a team-high three steals.
 
The Governors were led by freshman Terry Taylor and senior Averyl Ugba. Both players combined for 28 points and 15 rebounds, but their performances weren't enough to help Austin Peay (4-5) steal a victory from its fourth Power Five opponent of the season.
 
Illinois has now won 12 consecutive non-conference home games.

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Clinton 8th Grade Girls Fall To Chatham-Glenwood At Taylorville Sectional

The Clinton Lady Maroons 8th grade girls basketball team fell to Chatham-Glenwood 43-30 Wednesday night in the IESA Class 4A Sectional from Taylorville Junior High School.
 
The Lady Maroons were led by Kaitlyn Rauch with 12 points.
 
Two Chatham-Glenwood scorers reached double figures.
 
Chatham-Glenwood moves on to the state tournament Saturday morning where they will play Normal Parkside.

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Caps Blast Blackhawks

Tom Wilson had two goals and two assists and Alex Ovechkin had a goal and three assists in the Washington Capitals' 6-2 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks on Wednesday night.
 
Nicklas Backstrom ended a 21-game stretch without a goal and added two assists, and Washington's top-line trio each scored a goal in the first period when the Capitals opened a 3-0 lead. Backstrom hadn't scored since Oct. 14 in Philadelphia.
 
Braden Holtby made 37 saves for Washington to help the Capitals win for the sixth time in seven games. Brett Connolly scored in his third straight game, and Evgeny Kuznetsov added a goal. Wilson had his first four-point game, and Ovechkin also extended his goals streak to three games.
 
Lance Bouma and Jonathan Toews scored for Chicago. The Blackhawks are 0-3-2 in their last five.
 
Anton Forsberg, starting in place of the injured Corey Crawford, was pulled after Ovechkin's goal made it 3-0 with 4:38 left in the first. J.F Berube finished in goal for Chicago.
 
Washington has won seven of its last eight against the Blackhawks. Chicago has lost seven in a row in Washington since January 2006.
 
Backstrom ended his goal drought ended at 11:54 of the first when he finished a tic-tac-toe sequence by one-timing Ovechkin's pass past Forsberg for his fourth of the season.
 
Wilson's spinning shot from the left circle eluded Forsberg with 5:07 to go, and Ovechkin scored his 21st goal when he cleaned up 29 seconds later after Forsberg made the initial save on Wilson's breakaway.
 
The Blackhawks host Buffalo on Friday night.

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Pacers Rally Past Bulls

Victor Oladipo scored 27 points, including a clutch 3-pointer with 31.1 seconds left, and the Indiana Pacers beat the Chicago Bulls 98-96 on Wednesday night.
 
Bojan Bogdanovic had 17 points for Indiana, and Darren Collison finished with 14. Myles Turner had 11 points and blocked four shots, and Thaddeus Young finished with 10 points and nine rebounds.
 
The lowly Bulls led by as many as 17, but couldn't hold off the Pacers in the final moments. Oladipo's 3 gave Indiana its first lead at 97-96, and he tacked on a free throw with 12.8 seconds left.
 
Lauri Markkanen missed a potential game-winning 3-pointer in the final seconds of Chicago's 10th straight loss.
 
Kris Dunn had 18 points, six rebounds and six assists for the Bulls (3-20), and Robin Lopez scored 16 points. Denzel Valentine finished with 15 points and eight boards.
 
The Bulls play at Charlotte on Friday while the Pacers host Cleveland on Friday.

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BYU Downs Illinois State

Elijah Bryant scored 17 points with nine rebounds and nine assists, TJ Haws scored 20 points and BYU defeated Illinois State 80-68 on Wednesday night.
 
Bryant started off with a 3-pointer and Yoeli Childs and Jahshire Hardnett each added jumpers three minutes in and the Cougars never trailed. BYU went on an 11-0 run in which the Redbirds went close to five minutes without scoring. Bryant made back-to-back 3s for a 28-7 lead with 6:55 before intermission.
 
BYU led 39-17 at halftime and Illinois State managed just 7-for-30 shooting (23 percent), which included 15 missed 3-point attempts. The Cougars made half their 30 shots.
 
Childs added 17 points and seven rebounds for BYU (7-2), winners of four straight. The Cougars passed out 22 assists on 31-of-58 shooting for 53.4 percent.
 
Phil Fayne led Illinois State (4-5) with 19 points, Taylor Bruninga had 18, Milik Yarbrough, 15 and Keyshawn Evans had 14.

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Bears' Kyle Long Goes On IR

The Chicago Bears have placed right guard Kyle Long on injured reserve for the second straight season.
 

The three-time Pro Bowler has been trying to play through a left shoulder injury he suffered in 2016. He aggravated it during Sunday's loss to the San Francisco 49ers and sat out the second half.
 
Long also suffered a season-ending ankle injury last season and has dealt with a finger issue this season. Coach John Fox had said the Bears (3-9) might hold him out of the final four games, and they made it official Tuesday with the move to IR.
 
The Bears placed defensive lineman Mitch Unrein (knee) on injured reserve and signed linebacker Howard Jones and offensive lineman Cameron Lee from the practice squad.

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Blues Outlast Canadiens

Braden Schenn scored three goals as St. Louis ended a three-game skid with a 4-3 victory over the Montreal Canadiens on Tuesday night.
 
Scottie Upshall also scored for St. Louis, which outshot the Canadiens 30-25 and had the edge in play for most of the game.
 
Shea Weber scored twice and Jordie Benn also had a goal for Montreal, which had won five in a row. Goaltender Carey Price lost for the first time in six games since returning from a lower-body injury.
 
Schenn scored five minutes into the game, set up by Jaden Schwartz from behind the net.
 
The Canadiens didn't get their first shot on goal until after the 12-minute mark, but then it didn't take long to score as Benn's point shot through traffic got by Jake Allen at 15:28. Benn, who tied a career high with his fourth of the season, has six goals in 41 games for Montreal after scoring 11 in 302 games for Dallas.
 
Andy McDonald and David Backes retained the Blues' team record with goals six seconds apart in 2010.
 
Andrew Shaw won a draw back to Weber for a low shot inside the right post at 17:04. It was Weber's 500th career point.
 
Shaw won another faceoff to Weber for another low blast that went through Allen's legs to tie the game 6:34 into the third.
 
Schenn's third goal, which broke a tie with 7:49 left to play, was no fault of Price's. The Blues star threw the pass in front intended for Jaden Schwartz and saw the puck go in off defenseman David Schlemko's skate.
 
The Blues host Dallas on Thursday night.

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Monticello Dominates Auburn

In a game heard on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com, the Monticello Sages dominated the Auburn Trojans 60-23 Tuesday night in non-conference boys basketball action from Monticello High School.

 

Calvin Fisher paced Monticello with 17 points, six rebounds, five assists and four steals. Luke Stokowski added 11 points and seven rebounds.

 

The Sages shot 61% for the game and scored 48 points in the paint to Auburn’s six. The Sages dominated the glass 36-13 and forced the Trojans into 18 turnovers that resulted in 21 points.

 

Ben Singleton scored eight points. Alek Bundy and Devin Graham scored six points apiece off the bench. The Sages bench scored 21 points Tuesday.

 

The Sages held the Trojans to two points in the second and fourth quarters. They led 29-11 at the half and 46-21 after three quarters.

 

Auburn drops to 0-2 and Monticello is 2-0.

 

They have a week off before a game next Tuesday at home hosting Fisher at 7:30 pm. Hear all the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com.

 

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Monticello vs Auburn

Monticellowins the game with a score of 60-23.

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Duke Atop Latest Polls

For the fifth consecutive week, Duke is the No. 1 team in the AP top 25 poll which was updated on Monday.
 
The Blue Devils were the unanimous No. 1 team a week ago, and were once again in the Week 5 rankings after dumping Indiana on the road and South Dakota comfortably in Durham this week. With St. Francis PA and Boston College on tap this week, the odds are favorable that the five-week streak of being on top will become six.
Elsewhere in the rankings, Kansas, Michigan State and Villanova held steady at Nos. 2 through 4. Previous No. 5 Notre Dame dropped to 9 after falling to Michigan State in East Lansing while Florida moved up one spot to 5. Wichita State, which notched a massive non-conference win over Baylor this weekend, moved to No. 6.
 
Duke remains the No. 1 team in the latest USA Today Coaches Poll, a slot it earned in the preseason and has held throughout the early season thanks to a flawless 10-0 record.
 
The Blue Devils received all but two first place votes this week, splitting with Kansas and Michigan State, which got one a piece.
 
Behind the Blue Devils is a mostly familiar top 5 of Kansas, Michigan State and Villanova, with Florida making a leap after previous No. 5 Notre Dame fell to No. 9 after losing to Michigan State. The Gators are 5-1 with their lone loss to No. 1 Duke, and have a grueling schedule ahead beginning this week with Florida State and Cincinnati.

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Pacers Win, Bulls Lose Monday

>>Cavs Beat Bulls
 
Dwyane Wade and Kevin Love each scored 24 points, LeBron James had 23 and the Cleveland Cavaliers beat the Chicago Bulls 113-91 Monday night for their 12th straight win.
 
Backed by a trio of stars, the Cavaliers matched their longest winning streak since the 2014-15 season.
Wade made 9 of 13 shots in his first game in Chicago since agreeing to a buyout with his hometown team in late September. Love grabbed 13 rebounds and made 8 of 13 from the field. James finished 9 of 15 with seven rebounds and six assists. The Cavaliers shot just under 52 percent.
 
Kris Dunn led Chicago with 15 points. Robin Lopez and Justin Holiday scored 14 apiece as the Bulls fell to 3-19 with their ninth straight loss.
 
The matchup between the three-time defending Eastern Conference champions and the team with the NBA's worst record went as expected.
 
Third in the league in scoring coming into the game, the Cavaliers grabbed a 61-45 halftime lead.
 
James scored 15 in the half, driving hard and hitting from the perimeter while Wade chipped in with 12 points.
 
James' shot from atop the key in the closing seconds of the first quarter sparked a 13-0 run that broke open a five-point game. Wade scored six points during that stretch, helping Cleveland bump its lead to 40-22.
 
Love had 10 of his team's first 13 points in the third as Cleveland increased it to 74-50. And the Cavaliers remained in control the rest of the way.
 
The Bulls visit Indiana on Wednesday night.
 
>>Pacers Topple Knicks
 
Thaddeus Young scored 20 points to lead seven Indiana players in double figures as the Pacers routed the Knicks 115-97 on Monday night.
Bojan Bogdanovic scored 19 points and Victor Oladipo added 16 for the Pacers (13-11), who led by 26 at half and 95-65 after three quarters.
 
The Knicks (11-12) were without leading scorers Kristaps Porzingis (25.8 ppg) and Tim Hardaway Jr. (17.8 ppg) for a second consecutive loss. Porzingis is dealing with a sprained right ankle and illness and Hardaway has a lower left leg injury.
 
Reserve Willy Hernangomez led the Knicks with 14 points.
 
Wednesday the Pacers host Chicago, which lost at home to Indiana 105-87 on Nov. 10.

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Monticello Holds Off Central A&M

Zanna Myers scored 29 points and Tatum McCall added 20 points as Monticello held off Central A&M 75-58 in non-conference girls basketball action Monday night at Monticello High School.

 

McCall scored 14 of her 20 points in the third quarter while Myers scored 20 first half points to pace all scorers.

Myers also drained 13-of-16 free throws and McCall finished 5-for-6 from the stripe and the Lady Sages made 26-for-34 free throws as a team.

 

Jayna Burger added eight points off the bench and Emily Wilson chipped in with seven.

 

Taryn Sams led the Lady Raiders with 22 points, McKenna Denton added 15 points off the bench and Channing Collins finished with 13 points.

 

Central A&M drops to 5-5 overall while the Lady Sages are 5-0.

 

The Lady Sages are at Decatur St. Teresa High School Saturday afternoon and return home for a game with Warrensburg-Latham before the Holiday Hoopla Tournament after Christmas.

 

Hear the action against Warrensburg-Latham on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com.

 

Tune in tonight to 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com as the boys basketball squad hosts Auburn for their home opener.

 

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Unity Drops Clinton

Unity held the Clinton to a six-point second quarter, stretching a lead at the half to 30-19 and then used a 19-8 third quarter to roll past the Maroons 57-35 in non-conference boys basketball action from Unity High School Saturday night.
 
JT Wheeler paced three Unity players in double figures with a game hight 18 points. Cale Shonkwiler finished with ten points and Jonathan Decker added 12.
 
Seth Westfall led the Maroons with 20 points and Clinton shot a dismal 3-for-10 from the foul line.
 
Coach Clay Haurberg said this one boiled down to rebounding and lack of defensive intensity.
 
Quote - "We gave up too many second shots tonight. We've got to rebound better as a team. Our defense has been up and down thus far, and tonight we did not have the kind of intensity on defense that is necessary to be successful. Offensively, we were out of sync and turned the ball over too often, especially in middle two periods of the game."
 
The Maroons are at Rochester Saturday night for a 6:30 pm tipoff.

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Illinois, Bradley Lose Sunday

>>Illini Rally Falls Short Against Maryland
 
Anthony Cowan scored 27 points, including the game-winning free throw, to lift Maryland past Illinois 92-91 in overtime on Sunday.
 
Justin Jackson scored 20 and Kevin Huerter added 17 for Maryland (7-3, 1-1 in Big Ten).
 
Leron Black led Illinois (6-3, 1-1), while Mark Alstork scored 17 and Aaron Jordan added 15.
 
Maryland held a commanding 45-26 lead at the half, led by Cowan's 16 points, 9 from outside the 3-point line.
 
In the first half, the Terrapins shot 73.1 percent from the field, while Illinois was held to 32.4 percent at the mid-point. Illinois got hot in the second half, shooting 70 percent from the field to Maryland's 40.7 percent.
 
Illinois mounted a furious comeback in the second half, taking its first lead of the game 74-73 with 1:51 left in regulation. Bruno Fernando tipped in a shot at the buzzer to send the game into overtime with the score tied at 75. Cowan sank a free throw with six seconds left left in overtime for the win.
 
It was the third loss in a row for the Illini, after losing at Wake Forest and in overtime at Northwestern in its conference opener. Maryland also was coming off two losses, at Syracuse and to Purdue at home.
 
After both teams turned over the ball to open the game. Maryland went on a 10-0 run before Illinois coach Brad Underwood went to the bench early, removing all five starters. Illinois slowly crept back into the game, at one point pulling to within three points, 14-11, before the Terrapins began to systematically pound the ball inside and outside against a smaller Illinois team for its commanding halftime lead.
 
Illinois plays Austin Peay at home on Wednesday.
 
>>San Diego State Blows Out Bradley
 
Redshirt freshman Jalen McDaniels came off the bench to help spark an opening 22-3 run and finished with 14 points and 12 rebounds in San Diego State's 75-52 victory against Bradley on Sunday.
 
Malik Pope and Jeremy Hemsley scored 13 apiece for SDSU (7-2), which won its second straight game.
 
Darrell Brown scored 12 for Bradley (7-2), which had its five-game winning streak snapped.
 
McDaniels came in less than five minutes into the game and had an immediate impact en route to his first career double-double. With the Aztecs leading 11-3, he had a put-back and a tip-in on consecutive possessions. After Nolan Narain made a layup, McDaniels hit a 3-pointer for a 20-3 lead. Hemsley finished an 11-0 burst with two free throws for a 19-point lead just 9:48 into the game.
 
McDaniels' 14 points were a season-high and his 12 rebounds were one shy of his season-high.
 
Bradley made just one of its first eight shots and shot only 33.3 percent in the first half. SDSU led 37-23 at halftime.
 
SDSU guard Trey Kell missed his second straight game with a sprained right ankle.
 
Bradley hosts Little Rock on Wednesday night.

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Packers Win, Bears Lose Sunday

>>Packers Beat Buccaneers
 
Aaron Jones' 20-yard scoring run on his only carry , with 5:59 left in overtime, gave Green Bay a 26-20 win Sunday over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.
 
With the passing game struggling, the Packers (6-6) wore down the Buccaneers on the ground. Aaron Rodgers' replacement, Brett Hundley, had runs of 18 and 7 yards on the drive to start overtime.
Getting seven sacks from the defense along with a blocked punt by Kyler Fackrell, the Packers grinded out a win to keep their postseason hopes alive. They still trail NFC North leader Minnesota by four games, but there is renewed optimism at Lambeau Field with the possibility of Rodgers returning from a collarbone injury in a couple weeks.
 
Jameis Winston threw two touchdown passes to Cameron Brate in the quarterback's shaky return from a shoulder injury. But the defense couldn't hold up in overtime for the last-place Buccaneers (4-8).
 
Winston had defenders in his face all day and had trouble holding on to the ball. Linebacker Clay Matthews had 2 1/2 sacks of Green Bay's seven sacks.
 
Back after missing three games with a right shoulder injury, Winston fumbled on a sack by Kenny Clark in the second quarter. Defensive lineman Dean Lowry snatched the loose ball in the air and rumbled 62 yards for a touchdown and Lambeau leap with a 17-7 lead.
 
Hundley finished 13 of 22 for 84 yards, adding seven carries for 66 yards. Jamaal Williams ran for 113 yards on 21 carries for Green Bay.
 
The Packers visit the Cleveland Browns on Dec. 10.
 
>>San Francisco Edges Chicago
 
Robbie Gould kicked a 24-yard field goal in the closing seconds, Jimmy Garoppolo threw for 293 yards in his first San Francisco start, and the 49ers beat the Chicago Bears 15-14 on Sunday.
 
Gould made five field goals in his first appearance at Soldier Field since Chicago cut him prior to the 2016 opener. The Bears' all-time leader in points and field goals made, he shouted at their sideline after he nailed the winner.
 
Garoppolo was solid in his first start since the 49ers (2-10) acquired him from New England before the trade deadline in October. The suburban Chicago product completed 26 of 37 passes with an interception. And the 49ers picked up the win after losing their first five road games.
 
Chicago (3-9) dropped its fifth straight, and coach John Fox fell to 12-32 in three seasons with the Bears.
 
Mitchell Trubisky was 12 of 15 for 102 yards and a touchdown.
 
Tarik Cohen returned a punt 61 yards for a touchdown. That made him the first NFL rookie with rushing, receiving, passing and punt return TDs in a season since Gale Sayers in 1965
 
The 49ers were trailing 14-12 when Garoppolo connected with Trent Taylor on third down for a 33-yard pass to the Chicago 18 with two minutes left. Kyle Juszczyk kept the drive going with a 3-yard run on third-and-2 at the 10.
 
Garoppolo threw for 172 yards in the first half. But the 49ers committed six penalties and headed to the locker room trailing 14-9.
 
The Bears grabbed a 7-3 lead in the closing seconds of the first quarter when Trubisky hit Dontrelle Inman in the back of the end zone for an 8-yard touchdown. Kyle Fuller set that up when he ripped the ball out of Louis Murphy's hands for an interception at the Chicago 41.
 
Cohen made it 14-6 in the second quarter with his big punt return, racing to the end zone after he initially ran about 15 yards in the wrong direction.
 
The Bears visit Cincinnati on Dec. 10.

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Kings Stop Blackhawks

Jonathan Quick made 24 saves, Christian Folin scored the game's first goal midway through the third period and the Los Angeles Kings beat the Chicago Blackhawks 3-1 on Sunday night for their fifth straight win.
 
Folin's shot from the right point sailed over Anton Forsberg's glove with Anze Kopitar screening at 9:29. Dustin Brown scored an empty-net goal with 2:03 left to make it 2-0, and Kopitar added another empty-netter after Chicago's Jonathan Toews scored with Forsberg pulled for an extra skater.
 
Chicago has lost four straight. Forsberg made 21 saves in his second straight start in place of Corey Crawford, who's out with a lower-body injury.
 
The Kings have allowed six goals during their streak, which has them atop the Pacific Division and second in the Western Conference. The run follows a 1-6-1 slide.
 
Quick turned aside some tough chances before losing a bid for his third shutout this season.
 
The Kings' Adrian Kempe narrowly missed on a point-blank tip-in attempt midway through the second, then a loose puck tipped off the right post during a goalmouth scrum.
 
A point shot by Chicago's Cody Franson glanced of Brandon Saad's skate at the edge of the crease and clanged off the left post with 5:20 left. Quick then came through with a snappy glove save on Ryan Hartman's backhander with 1:58 left.
 
Marian Gaborik broke in alone just under two minutes into the third after stealing the puck from Patrick Sharp at the Chicago blue line. Forsberg stopped Gaborik point-blank with a glove save.
 
The Blackhawks pPlay at Washington on Wednesday night.

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Cardinals Among Two Final Offers for Stanton

NL MVP Giancarlo Stanton's time with the Miami Marlins appears to be about up.
 
That's because the Marlins have agreed to the "general framework" of trades with both the San Francisco Giants and St. Louis Cardinals, contingent on whether Stanton will agree to either deal, per MLB Network's Jon Paul Morosi:
 
Quote - "Sources: #Marlins have agreed to general framework of Giancarlo Stanton trades with both #STLCards and #SFGiants; the deals are on hold, while Marlins wait for Stanton to inform them whether he’d accept either trade. @MLB @MLBNetwork"
 
Adding, quote - "Worth saying again: Giancarlo Stanton is in control here, due to full no-trade. If he wants to wait on the #Dodgers, he can — even if that means saying no to everyone else this offseason and revisiting in July/August or next winter. @MLB @MLBNetwork"
 
Stanton has a full no-trade clause.
 
In recent days, Stanton or his representatives have met with both the Cardinals and the Giants, suggesting he's better positioned than not in order to make a decision. Sunday morning, Jon Heyman reported Stanton was open to joining both clubs, but might favor the Giants.
 
It's unclear who the Marlins would be getting in return. Names like Joe Panik, Chris Shaw, and Tyler Beede have been bandied about on the Giants' side, while the Cardinals have a slew of young pitchers to offer the Marlins. Right-hander Sandy Alcantara is said to be part of the St. Louis offer.
 
The primary motivator on the Marlins' side has been saving money, so it's fair to assume they won't be getting an appropriate amount of talent in return -- not for one of the best players in baseball.

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Final Polls Released, Including CFP

The debate is over. The College Football Playoff is now set, and three of the four teams making the final field are conference champions that clinched their spots by virtue of wins on Saturday.
 
1. Clemson (12-1)
2. Oklahoma (12-1)
3. Georgia (12-1)
4. Alabama (11-1)
That means the Tigers will take on the Crimson Tide in the Sugar Bowl -- a rematch of the last two national championships -- while the Sooners and Bulldogs will square off in the Rose Bowl in a pair of CFP Semifinal games on Monday, Jan. 1.
 
It also means No. 5 Ohio State (11-2) was left out of the top four due in large part to its 31-point road loss to Iowa and despite the Buckeyes winning a conference championship and two games against teams in the final top 10. Slotting in at No. 6 is Wisconsin (12-1), ahead of Pac-12 champion USC (11-2).
 
The committee is sending several messages, some of which people have not wanted to hear, with the selection of Alabama over Ohio State.  The first of those is that they have no problem selecting two teams from the same conference.  Conference champion Georgia and SEC West division runner-up Alabama are both in the field.
 
Another message is that conference championships do not mean a lot.  We learned that last year, too, but people do not like to hear that. The committee has said all along that being a conference champion is just a tiebreaker, which means that the committee did not feel that it was close between Alabama and Ohio State.
 
The two major polls are in, and they're in agreement: Clemson, Oklahoma, Georgia and Alabama are the best four teams in the country.
 
The Tigers and Sooners maintain the top two spots, Georgia moved up three spots to No. 3 after topping Auburn 28-7 in the SEC Championship Game and Alabama moves up one spot to No. 4 -- one spot ahead of Ohio State, which topped Wisconsin on Saturday night in the Big Ten Championship Game.
 
In the AP Top 25, it's the Crimson Tide. Coach Nick Saban's crew chimed in above the Buckeyes despite not winning their division. Clemson maintained the top spot, with Oklahoma holding strong at No. 2 and Georgia jumping from No. 6 to No. 3 after dominating Auburn 28-7 in the SEC Championship Game.

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Illinois State beats Tulsa 65-58

Milik Yarbrough had 22 points, six rebounds and four assists, Phil Fayne added 17 points and eight boards, and Illinois State beat Tulsa 65-58 on Saturday night.
 
Lawson Korita gave Tulsa its first lead, 49-47, since it was 4-2.
 
Yarbrough made two free throws with 1:43 left to extend Illinois State's lead to 60-51. After Sterling Taplin hit a 3-pointer to cut it to six, Phil Fayne dunked and Illinois State held on.
 
Keyshawn Evans scored 12 points with five assists for Illinois State (4-4), which had 11 steals and forced 21 turnovers.
 
Yarbrough had 15 points in the first half as the Redbirds led by four points.
 
Junior Etou had 10 points and eight rebounds for Tulsa (4-4), which was held to 36 percent shooting. Jaleel Wheeler grabbed a team-high nine rebounds as Tulsa outrebounded the Redbirds 49-29.
 

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Bradley cruises to 67-5 win over Eastern Illinois

Elijah Childs scored 14 points to go with nine rebounds, Dwayne Lautier-Ogunleye got his first career double-double and Bradley slipped past Eastern Illinois 67-56 on Friday night.
 
Trailing by four in the first half, Bradley (7-1) got a 3-pointer from JoJo McGlaston to spark a 16-3 run that put the Braves on top for good.
 
Lautier-Ogunleye finished with 13 points and 10 boards. Jayden Hodgson added 12 points and Darrell Brown scored 11 for Bradley, which shot 52 percent from the field to win its fifth straight.
 
Eastern Illinois (2-5) tightened the gap to 35-33 early in the second half with a 9-0 spurt capped with Muusa Dama's free throw, but that was as close as the Panthers got as Bradley pulled away again with an 11-2 run that included Hodgson's 3-pointer.
 
Dama led Eastern Illinois with 20 points on 7-for-14 shooting and Terrell Lewis added 13 points.

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Northwestern outlasts Illinois in overtime, 72-68

Scottie Lindsey scored five of his game-high 22 points in overtime and Northwestern trailed for much of the evening before pulling out a 72-68 victory over Illinois on Friday night in the Big Ten opener for both teams.
 
Vic Law added 16 points before fouling out in overtime and Bryant McIntosh had 14 points and six assists for Northwestern (5-3).
 
Leron Black led Illinois (6-2) with 15 points, whle Te'Jon Lucas and Mark Alstork had 14 points apiece.
 
Lindsey, the Wildcats' second-leading scorer this season, did not start after going 0 for 8 from the floor in Northwestern's 52-51 loss to Georgia Tech on Tuesday night.
 
His two free throws with 59 seconds left broke a 68-68 tie. Dererk Pardon had two key blocked shots in the final minute.
 
It was the earliest Big Ten game in Illinois' century-long history in the league. The Big Ten season was moved up because the league will hold its conference tournament a week early in order to stage it at Madison Square Garden in New York.

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Monticello Holds Off Bismarck-Henning

The Monticello Sages played a sharp first half of basketball and held on against a frantic Bismarck-Henning team Friday night in the season opener of boys basketball action from Bismarck-Henning High School.

 

Monticello opened a 39-18 halftime advantage shooting 19-for-23 from the floor but the Blue Devils started making threes in the second and got within 11 before the Sages held on down the stretch.

 

Luke Stokowski led the Sages with 21 points and nine rebounds. Calvin Fisher added 16 points and Ben Singleton chipped in with 14 points.

 

Monticello shot 73% from the floor.

 

Bismarck-Henning’s Wyatt Edwards led all scorers with 29 points.

 

Monticello attempted only one three pointer and outscored Bismarck-Henning 58-12 and dominated the glass 29-9.

 

The Blue Devils fall to 4-2 overall while the Sages open the year 1-0.

 

The Sages will host Auburn Tuesday night at Monticello High School. Hear all the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com.

 

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Clinton Maroons Defeat Maroa Forsyth

As heard on WHOW, the Clinton Maroons defeated the Maroa Forsyth Trojans by a score of 63-46 on Friday night. The Maroons were led by senior Seth Westfall with 15 points, and was the Country Financial representative Brad James Maroons Player of the Game. Senior Austin Baker chipped in with 14 points.

 

The Trojans were led by junior Aaron Agee with 15 points.

 

With the win, the Maroons improve to 5-1 and Maroa falls to 0-2.

 

Tune in Thursday, December 7 as the Lady Maroons are on the road at Central A&M. You can hear the game live on the Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM WHOW, online at dewittdailynews.com, and on the WHOW app.

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Monticello Opens New Season Tonight

Fresh off the school's first final four appearance in the IHSA state basketball tournament, the Monticello Sages have their sights set high for this year.
 
Head Coach Kevin Roy is excited about bringing back a good amount of experience from last year's squad and is pleased his team has the goal of going back to Peoria in March.
 
 
Coach Roy says this year's team has the potential to be deeper and more athletic, which should help them play any style of basketball.
 
 
The Sages open the season tonight at Bismark-Henning at 7:30 pm. Hear the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com. 
 
The Sages open the home slate Tuesday night, hosting Auburn.
 
Hear Sages basketball all season on WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com. 

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Nuggets Rally Past Bulls

Will Barton provided the early spark, then delivered in the final moments to help the Denver Nuggets escape with a narrow victory.
 
Barton capped a career-high 37 points with a driving layup with 3.2 seconds left and the Nuggets overcame the loss of Nikola Jokic to beat the Chicago Bulls 111-110 on Thursday night.
 
Gary Harris added 21 points, and Kenneth Faried had 14 points and 13 rebounds for Denver, which lost another big man to injury when Jokic was hurt.
 
Lauri Markanen and Robin Lopez had 20 points each for Chicago, and Kris Dunn added 19. The Bulls have lost seven straight to finish 2-13 in November and drop to 3-17 overall.
 
Chicago led 68-62 at halftime but Denver rallied to briefly take the lead in the third quarter. Grant hit a 3-pointer at the end of the third to put the Bulls ahead 92-91.
 
The Bulls host Sacramento tonight.
 

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Stars Get By Blackhawks in Overtime

Mattias Janmark scored his second goal of the game 51 seconds into overtime and the Dallas Stars beat the Chicago Blackhawks 4-3 on Thursday night.
 
Radek Faksa had a goal and an assist and Remi Elie also scored for Dallas, which has won three straight and five of six. Ben Bishop made 19 saves.
Janmark skated in and beat Corey Crawford over the goaltender's right shoulder for his sixth of the season, giving the Stars the opener of the home-and-home series between division rivals. Dallas hosts Chicago on Saturday night.
 
Patrick Kane had a goal and an assist for the Blackhawks, who dropped to 1-1-1 in a seven-day stretch with five games. Alex DeBrincat and Artem Anisimov also scored, and Nick Schmaltz had two assists.
 
Chicago trailed 3-2 before Kane redirected defenseman Gustav Forsling's shot past Bishop at 4:34 of the third. Kane has at least one point in eight of his last nine games.
 
Elie, who replaced an ailing Martin Hanzal in the lineup, had three good looks at a potential go-ahead score with about 5 1/2 minutes left, but Crawford turned him away each time. Crawford finished with 31 saves.
 
Dallas led 2-1 after a strange first period. The Stars jumped in front when Janmark stuffed home a wraparound off Crawford's left skate at 14:46, but the Blackhawks responded nine seconds later on DeBrincat's wrist shot by Bishop on the stick side.
 
It was DeBrincat's fourth goal in his last three games and 10th of November, making him the first rookie in franchise history with 10 goals in a calendar month, according to the Elias Sports Bureau.
 
Chicago had four power plays in the opening period and was still outscored by Dallas with the man advantage. Faksa buried his first career penalty shot after Kane was called for hooking on a short-handed breakaway, making it 2-1 at 17:20.
 
Faksa has four goals in his last two games. He had a natural hat trick in Dallas' 3-0 win at Vegas on Tuesday night.
 
Chicago's fourth power-play opportunity carried over into the second, and it took advantage. With Elie in the box for slashing, Kane made a terrific pass to Anisimov in front for his ninth goal in November and his team-leading 12th on the season.
 
Elie made up for the costly penalty later in the second. He went in all alone on Crawford after a nice pass from Faksa and scored his third of the season with a nifty move, making it 3-2 at 14:04.
 
Following the trip to Dallas, Chicago returns home to face the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday night.

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Bears, Packers Notes

>>Bears Host 49ers Sunday
 
Jimmy Garoppolo will make his first start for the 49ers and the third of his career when he and his teammates visit the Chicago Bears on Sunday afternoon at Soldier Field. 
 
It is familiar territory for Garoppolo, who grew up in the Chicago suburb of Arlington Heights, Ill., and played at Rolling Meadows High School before earning a scholarship to play at Eastern Illinois.
The 49ers acquired him from the New England Patriots in exchange for a 2018 second-round pick on Halloween, and Garoppolo spent the past month on the sideline learning the offense under first-year coach Kyle Shanahan.
 
An injury to fellow signal-caller C.J. Beathard last week opened the door for Shanahan to make the change at starter. Garoppolo came off the bench after Beathard got hurt, and he completed both of his pass attempts for 18 yards and a touchdown.
 
Chicago (3-8) also has pinned its future hopes on a young quarterback with a big arm and little experience. Mitchell Trubisky will make his eighth start as he looks to rebound from a career-worst 38.3 passer rating in a 31-3 loss to the Philadelphia Eagles.
 
Trubisky, 23, has passed for 1,135 yards, four touchdowns and four interceptions since the Bears selected him No. 2 overall in the 2017 draft. San Francisco initially owned the No. 2 pick but accepted a generous package of additional draft picks from Chicago in exchange for moving one spot down to No. 3.
 
Including his time in New England behind future Hall of Famer Tom Brady, Garoppolo has thrown 96 NFL passes without an interception. 
 
Chicago needs a victory to avoid, at least for the moment, its fourth consecutive losing season.
 
>>Packers Look To Right The Ship Against Bucs Sunday
 
Heading into Sunday's game at Lambeau Field, the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Green Bay Packers are limping to the finish line.
 
The Packers were 4-1 before Aaron Rodgers went down with a broken collarbone. They've won just one of their last six games with Brett Hundley orchestrating the offense and are clinging to scant playoff hopes at 5-6.
With third-year quarterback Jameis Winston, the Buccaneers won two of their first three games before enduring a five-game losing streak.
 
The Buccaneers hope to get a lift with the return of Winston, who missed the past three games with an injured right (throwing) shoulder, though they did go 2-1 with Ryan Fitzpatrick.
 
Winston and his productive group of pass catchers will get an inviting matchup against Green Bay's beleaguered pass defense. While Hundley has struggled during Green Bay's slump, its secondary hasn't been any better, with opposing quarterbacks averaging 304 passing yards the past five games. Pittsburgh's Ben Roethlisberger set seasons highs for completion percentage, passing yards and touchdowns and led a last-second scoring drive to beat the Packers 31-28 on Sunday night.
 
Tampa Bay's defense hasn't been any better, mostly because it can't get off the field other than by forcing turnovers. Last year, the Buccaneers had the NFL's best third-down defense. This year, it owns the worst.
 
Injuries have chewed up both teams. While Winston could return, Tampa Bay put two of its top offensive linemen, right tackle Demar Dotson and center Ali Marpet, on injured reserve Wednesday.
 
Moreover, cornerback Vernon Hargreaves (hamstring), receiver DeSean Jackson (foot) and running back Doug Martin (concussion) were among six players who did not practice.
 
For the Packers, two top defensive players who missed the Pittsburgh game, defensive tackle Kenny Clark (ankle) and outside linebacker Clay Matthews (groin), returned to practice, as did running back Aaron Jones (knee). Cornerback Kevin King, who has been bothered by a shoulder injury for months, did not practice. At 6-foot-3, he'd provide size against 6-5 Buccaneers receiver Mike Evans.
 
Rodgers remains on injured reserve for the Packers, though he could return to practice on Saturday. If the Packers can beat the Buccaneers on Sunday and the Browns next week to stay in the playoff chase, Rodgers could return to face Carolina on Dec. 17.
 
>>Bears Demps Returns To Practice
 
Chicago Bears safety Quintin Demps has practiced for the first time since breaking his left arm in late September.
His return to practice on Thursday opened a 21-day window for the Bears to decide whether to activate him from injured reserve or have him miss the remainder of the season. Demps started the first three games. He was injured against Pittsburgh on Sept. 24.
 
Demps says it "felt great" to practice, though he doesn't think he will be ready to play against San Francisco on Sunday. Injuries have left the Bears short-handed at safety.
 
Chicago re-signed safety Chris Prosinski while waiving linebacker Howard Jones on Thursday. Prosinski played for the Bears from 2015-16, appearing in 29 games and making six starts.
 
>>Packers Trying To Recoup Ex-TE Bennet's Bonuses
 
Just when you thought the Martellus Bennett saga had come to an end with the Patriots placing the tight end on injured reserve with shoulder and hamstring injuries, the Packers are going after the money. According to a report from ESPN.com's Rob Demovsky, the Packers have filed paperwork in an attempt to collect a portion of Bennett's signing bonus. 
 
Bennett signed a three-year, $21 million deal (that contained $6.3 million guaranteed) with the Packers this offseason. He began publicly musing about retirement after 2017 once Packers quarterback Aaron Rodgers was injured on a hit by Vikings linebacker Anthony Barr and the Packers' offense dropped off. 
 
Eventually he told the Packers he wanted to have season-ending surgery for a shoulder injury. Rather than shutting him down, the Packers released him and claimed that he had previously failed to report the injury. 
He had only 24 catches and 233 yards in seven games with Green Bay. 
 
The Patriots claimed Bennett off waivers, and then he played for them a few days later. 

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Tiger 3-Back of Loaded Leader Board in Bahamas

Tommy Fleetwood leads at 6 under, but he's trailed closely by Rickie Fowler and Matt Kuchar at 5 under. Following those two are Kevin Chappell, Justin Rose, Dustin Johnson and Jordan Spieth at 4 under at the 2017 Hero World Challenge 
 
Then at 3 under are Tiger Woods, Justin Thomas and two others. Woods had five birdies and two bogeys, but impressed throughout.

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Monticello Rolls Mt. Pulaski

Zanna Myers scored 16 of her game high 31 points in the second quarter and the Monticello Lady Sages rolled past Mt. Pulaski 85-46 in non-conference high school girls basketball action Thursday night at Monticello High School.

 

Myers had 24 points at the break and was 14 for 14 at the foul line in the first half and finished 14 for 15 for the game.

 

Tatum McCall finished with 21 points.

 

The Lady Sages shot 28 for 38 from the charity stripe as a team.

 

Skylar Hayes led Mt. Pulaski with 21 points.

 

The Lady Hilltoppers fall to 3-3 overall and Monticello moves to 4-0.

 

The Lady Sages host Central A&M Monday night. Hear the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com.

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Lady Sages vs Mt Pulaski

The Lady Sages win the game with a score of 85-46.

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Tri-Valley Topples Clinton

Four Tri-Valley starters scored in double figures as the Vikings used a balanced attack to hand the Clinton Maroons their first loss of the season with a 74-47 loss Tuesday night in non-conference boys basketball action from Downs.
 
Clayton Liepold led all scorers with 19 points for the Vikings, including five three pointers. Mason Cagley added 18 points and Kolton Weichman added 13 points. Nolan Anderson also contributed 12 points.
 
The Maroons turned the basketball over nine times in the second quarter. They committed 16 turnovers overall for the game. 
 
Austin Baker led the Maroons with 15 points. Jacob Hospelhorn had 10 points. Seth Westfall had eight points and eight rebounds.
 
The Vikings outrebounded the Maroons 44-28 as Tri-Valley's John Symanski pulled down a game high 11 rebounds. 
 
Maroons coach Clay Haurberg said quote - "We did not play up to our ability tonight. To their credit, Tri-Valley was very disciplined defensively and really forced us out of our rhythm. We, in turn didn't communicate well defensively and got hung up on screens too frequently because of it. This gave them great looks at the rim from various spots on the floor, which they capitalized on. We allowed them too many offensive rebounds, several of which they kicked out for open 3's. They played well, we played poorly. Right now, we have to go back to our gym, work on those things we didn't do well and work to get better for the next game."
 
The Maroons are at home for the first time Friday night when they host Maroa-Forsyth.

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Wake Forest Hands Illinois First Loss

Bryant Crawford led four players in double figures with 20 points as Wake Forest knocked Illinois from the ranks of the unbeaten in an 80-73 win in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge Tuesday night.
 
Doral Moore, Mitchell Wilbekin, and Brandon Childress added 12 points apiece for Wake Forest (3-4), which held Illinois to 38.7 percent shooting using a stingy 2-3 zone defense.
 
Aaron Jordan came off the bench to lead Illinois with 20 points, with Kipper Nichols adding 14 and Leron Black finishing with 10. Jordan, who entered the game leading the NCAA in 3-point percentage (15 of 23, 65.2 percent), made 4 of 6 against the Deacons.
 
It was the first loss for the Illini (6-1), who played their first six games at home and were seeking their first non-conference road win since beating Boston University in the NIT on March 19, 2014.
 
Leading 35-34 at halftime, the Deacons used an 11-0 run early in the second half to take a 49-39 lead. Illinois closed to within 1 at 56-55 on a 3-pointer by Black with 9:25 left but could get no closer.
 
Wake Forest is now 12-5 in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, tied with Virginia for second most wins
 
Illinois got a great lift from its bench after several starters encountered early foul trouble. The Illinois bench outscored Wake Forest 43-24, but its defensive lapse in the second half allowed Wake Forest to shoot 57.7 percent.
 
Illinois will begin Big Ten Conference play at Northwestern on Friday, December 1.

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Suns Beat Bulls

Devin Booker scored 33 points, and the Phoenix Suns held off the Chicago Bulls for a 104-99 win on Tuesday night.
 
Booker looked just fine after sitting out a game because of inflammation in his right big toe, nailing five 3-pointers and grabbing nine rebounds.
T.J. Warren scored 25 for Phoenix, and Alex Len tied a career high with 18 rebounds. The Suns dominated on the glass 57-41 while snapping a three-game losing streak.
 
The rebuilding Bulls are a league-worst 3-16 after dropping their sixth straight.
 
Justin Holiday made six 3-pointers on his way to 25 points for Chicago. Kris Dunn added 24 points, hitting all four from long range, and eight assists.
 
Phoenix came out on top after Chicago cut a 15-point fourth-quarter lead to three in the final minute.
 
Bulls rookie Lauri Markkanen hit a 3 to make it 102-99 with 22.5 seconds left. But Warren hit two free throws and blocked a 3 by Markkanen to help preserve the win.
 
The Suns went on a 12-point run in the third to go up 63-49, with Tyler Ulis hitting a 3 and converting a three-point play and Booker nailing two from long range.
 
The Bulls cut it to three heading into the fourth. But the Suns went on a 14-2 run to start the quarter, with Troy Daniels nailing a 3 to make it 87-72 with 8:22 left.
 
The Bulls visit Denver on Thursday.
 
>>Bulls' F Mirotic Attends First Game Since Altercation with Portis
 
Bulls forward Nikola Mirotic is attending a game for the first time since a preseason altercation with teammate Bobby Portis left him with several broken bones in his face as well as a concussion.
 
Mirotic was at the United Center for Tuesday's game against the Phoenix Suns. He remains sidelined with the injuries from the altercation at practice on Oct. 17. Portis served an eight-game suspension.
 
Coach Fred Hoiberg says the two have not talked as far as he knows. Mirotic started practicing with the team again on Monday, and they did go against each other at times.
 
Mirotic and forward Zach LaVine (torn ACL) will practice with the G League's Windy City Bulls while Chicago heads to Denver for a game on Thursday.

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Alabama Out of CFP After Auburn Loss

The penultimate College Football Playoff Rankings were released Tuesday night, meaning the stage is officially set for conference championship week as the top teams in the nation will vie for the four spots that will be selected on Sunday.
 
The defending champion Clemson Tigers are the new No. 1 team in the nation, but the ranking that is getting the most attention is Auburn at No. 2. Those Tigers have beaten No. 5 Alabama and No. 6 Georgia, both of whom were previously ranked No. 1, at home over the last three weeks.  They trounced the Bulldogs, who they will play for the SEC title this week in a more neutral Atlanta.  Auburn beat Alabama last week in a game that the Crimson Tide led late in the third quarter before the Tigers turned it on and put Bama away.
 
At 10-2, Auburn is the first major conference team to be ranked in the top 10 and ahead of another major conference team with fewer losses in the first four years of the CFP Rankings.  Undefeated Wisconsin is No. 4, which begs the question, "If the Bulldogs win the rematch with the Tigers, would Auburn stay ahead of Alabama in the final rankings?"  That could open the door for a team to lose its conference championship game and still make the playoff -- something that may happen eventually, though this is not the circumstance I would have imagined for that to play out.  The guess here is Alabama would be higher ranked in the end, but it is not definite.
 
Not only might Alabama need an Auburn win on Saturday to have a chance but so might Ohio State.  If there is a chance the committee would keep a losing Auburn team ahead of Alabama, there is probably a greater chance they would keep them ahead of the Big Ten champion Buckeyes.  Ohio State would have some nice wins, including the one over Penn State, but Auburn can better those and they would not have lost to Iowa by 31 points.  Buckeyes fans are probably sick of hearing about that, but it is the most prominent part of Ohio State's resume.
 
No. 3 Oklahoma was jumped by Auburn after blowing out West Virginia on Saturday.  The Sooners are still in position where a second victory over TCU, this time in the Big 12 title game, will be enough to secure a spot in the playoff. No. 4 Wisconsin, No. 6 Georgia and No. 7 Miami also control their own fate for a playoff spots.  Miami lost at Pittsburgh last Friday and took the biggest hit in the top 10 this week but can rebound with a win over No. 1 Clemson in the ACC title game on Saturday night.

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Bears Notes

>>Bears Waive WR McBride
 
The Chicago Bears have waived receiver Tre McBride.
 
Claimed off waivers on Sept. 3, McBride appeared in eight games for Chicago and had eight catches for 144 yards. He had 92 yards receiving in a loss at New Orleans on Oct. 29. In three seasons with the Tennessee Titans and Bears, McBride has 10 receptions for 152 yards.
 
The Bears (3-8) host the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday.
 
>>'Niners Announce Chicago Area Native Garoppolo To Start Sunday
 
The San Francisco 49ers will start Jimmy Garoppolo at quarterback this week.
 
The 49ers said coach Kyle Shanahan met with his quarterbacks Tuesday to tell them Garoppolo will make his first start for San Francisco (1-10) this weekend at Chicago (3-8).
 
The Niners acquired Garoppolo on Oct. 31 from New England for a 2018 second-round pick to be the franchise's long-term quarterback.
 
After taking time to learn the new offense, Garoppolo made his San Francisco debut in Sunday's 24-13 loss to Seattle after starter C.J. Beathard left with injuries to his hip and knee with just over a minute left.
 
Garoppolo completed both passes, including a 10-yard touchdown pass to Louis Murphy.

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Clinton Lady Maroons Stung by Heyworth Lady Hornets

In a non-conference game heard on WHOW, the Clinton Lady Maroons fell to the Heyworth Lady Hornets by a score of 59-45 on Tuesday night. The Lady Maroons were led by senior Alyssa Saulsbery with 16 points. Saulsbery was selected as the Country Financial representative Brad James Maroons Player of the Game. Senior Madi Filkin also chipped in with 13 points.

 

For Heyworth, they were led by Stephanie Brown with 17 points and Chassidy Hays added 14. Heyworth played the whole game with their five starters.

 

With the loss, the Lady Maroons fall to 2-4 on the season and Heyworth improves to 4-1.

 

Tune in Thursday, December 7, as the Lady Maroons take on Central A&M. You can hear the game live on the Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM WHOW, online at dewittdailynews.com, and on the WHOW app.

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Pacers Topple Magic

Victor Oladipo scored 26 points to help the Pacers beat the Magic 121-109, handing the Orlando its ninth straight loss.
 
Oladipo made his first 11 shots before finishing the game 11-for-14. He also grabbed six rebounds - all on the defensive end of the floor - and added five assists.
 
The Pacers had five players in double figures as Bojan Bogdanovic added 22 points, Domantas Sabonis scored 19 points and Myles Turner and Lance Stephenson each added 18.
 
Jonathan Simmons led Orlando with 21 points.
 
The Pacers are at Houston on Wednesday night.

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Blackhawks Blast Ducks

Alex DeBrincat had three goals and an assist, Patrick Sharp stopped a 16-game scoring drought and the surging Chicago Blackhawks beat the Anaheim Ducks 7-3 on Monday night.
 
Nick Schmaltz had a goal and two assists and Artem Anisimov scored his team-high 11th goal as Chicago won for the fourth time in five games. Brandon Saad also scored and Patrick Kane collected three assists, extending his season-high point streak to seven games.
DeBrincat, who turns 20 on Dec. 18, became the second-youngest player in franchise history to record a hat trick, trailing Jeremy Roenick by four days. The rookie has nine goals and three assists in 11 November games.
 
The banged-up Ducks dropped their fourth consecutive game. Ryan Kesler, Ryan Getzlaf and Patrick Eaves remain out with long-term injuries, Rickard Rakell missed his second straight game with an upper-body injury and defenseman Brandon Montour left midway through the third, favoring his right side as he skated off the ice.
 
Chris Wagner had two goals for Anaheim, and Jakob Silfverberg had a goal and an assist. John Gibson made 18 saves on 22 shots before he was replaced by Ryan Miller in the second period.
 
Chicago grabbed control with three in the first period. Sharp beat Gibson on a one-timer at 8:57 for his first goal since Oct. 14. DeBrincat then scored his eighth of the season off a slick pass from Schmaltz, and Saad made it 3-0 when he stole the puck from Derek Grant and banked one in off the left post with 1:49 left in the period.
 
The Blackhawks were only getting started.
 
Silfverberg got one back when his centering pass went off the stick of Chicago defenseman Brent Seabrook and in 6:14 into the second. But DeBrincat responded with a rebound goal and then scored again off a pass from Kane, making it 6-2 at 14:14.
 
Schmaltz added his fourth of the season at 5:48 of the third, tapping in a beautiful pass from Kane.
 
Ryan Hartman had two assists for Chicago, and Corey Crawford finished with 25 saves.
 
The Blackhawks visit Nashville on Tuesday night.

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Duke No. 1 In CBB Polls

For the fourth consecutive week, the Duke Blue Devils top the Associated Press Top 25 poll.
 
Duke (8-0), is fresh off a clean sweep of the motion bracket of the PK80 in Portland, with wins over Portland State, Texas and Florida. And although the Blue Devils had to mount comebacks of 16 and 17 points against the Longhorns and Gators in each of their last two games, respectively, they continue to overcome in-game adversity and have shown the mettle of a title team early. Duke, which received all 65 first-place votes, could be 6-2 as easily as its 8-0. But with Marvin Bagley III emerging as an early player of the year candidate, it's looking like the Blue Devils will continue to be a tough out all season.
The biggest mover in the AP poll this week is Arizona, which fell from No. 2 to completely unranked after a disappointing 0-3 outing at the Battle 4 Atlantis. Sean Miller's Wildcats fell to unranked foes NC State and SMU before No. 20 Purdue dispatched them from the Bahamas winless and breaks a streak of 100 consecutive appearances in the AP rankings by Arizona.
 
Outside the top two in Duke and Kansas, the top 10 of the USA Today Coaches Poll has a completely new look thanks to some curveball results on the hardwood this past week.
 
As far as results go, nothing was more surprising than former No. 4 Arizona dropping three-straight at the Battle 4 Atlantis. The Wildcats fell to two unranked opponents in the Bahamas, and Purdue sent them packing winless with an 89-64 defeat, causing them to plummet from the top 4 to unranked in just a one week span.
 
As a result, Michigan State and Notre Dame moved up in the top 5. Florida, Kentucky, Cincinnati and Texas A&M all moved up in the top 10 as well, while Wichita State, North Carolina and Southern California dropped.
 
Duke, a consensus No. 1 team in the Associated Press top 25, garnered all but one first place vote after improving to 8-0 on the season Sunday evening with a come-from-behind win over No. 7 Florida. The Blue Devils were forced to overcome two double digit deficits in each of their last two games, but came out unscathed with a perfect 3-0 record in the PK80 Motion bracket in Portland.
 
>>Tiger Woods To Return With This Weekend's Hero World Challenge
 
Tiger Woods will make his return at the Hero World Challenge in the Bahamas this week and he will be paired with Justin Thomas to kick things off on Thursday. It's one of several fascinating pairings in Round 1 on Thursday.
 
Others include Patrick Reed and Daniel Berger, Dustin Johnson and Brooks Koepka and Matt Kuchar and Jordan Spieth. This is as good of a field as this tournament has ever had with eight of the top 10 players in the world in attendance (only Jon Rahm and Rory McIlroy are not there).
 
Matsuyama is the defending champion as he beat Stenson by two at this course last year.

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Maroons Win Cerro Gordo Holiday Tournament

The Clinton Maroons used a 17-4 second quarter to blow by Windsor-Stew-Stras 56-38 in the championship game of the Cerro Gordo Turkey Tournament.
 
The Maroons trailed 13-12 heading to the second frame and held Windsor-Stew-Stras to four second quarter points then outscored them 19-9 in the third quarter for a commanding 48-26 advantage after three quarters.
 
Austin Rauch led the Maroons with 14 points. Dalton Smith tallied 13 and Seth Westfall had 10 for the Maroons who swept the four game tournament and opens their campaign 4-0 overall.
 
Coach Clay Haurberg said quote - "Big night for our team and our kids. We started a little slow, but settled into our game nicely as the game progressed. They came out with a lot of fire, but we took control by way of limiting their open looks at the rim and really going on the attack in transition. Dalton Smith hit some big shots in the first half to steady us when we were a little off, and we had some great defensive efforts by a bunch of kids, including our bench. Austin Rauch had a great middle two quarters to help spark us to a lead that we never relinquished. We're just extremely thrilled about our guys winning this tournament. They're a tremendous group of young men."
 
The Maroons are at Tri-Valley tomorrow night.

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Heat Blow By Bulls

Goran Dragic scored 24 points and the Miami Heat followed the lowest-scoring first quarter in team history with their highest-scoring one of the season to beat the Chicago Bulls 100-93 on Sunday.
After scoring seven points in the first quarter, Miami had 38 in the second to take a 45-42 lead.
 
Wayne Ellington added 19 points, James Johnson had 15 points, seven rebounds and six assists, and Hassan Whiteside had 11 points and 10 rebounds. Jerian Grant led Chicago with 24 points. Denzel Valentine had 14 points and career highs of 13 rebounds and seven assists.
 
Ellington ignited the Heat after the 2-for-19 first-quarter from the field, scoring 10 points and hitting three 3-pointers as Miami shot 68.4 percent in the second quarter.
 
Tyler Johnson and Kelly OIynyk added 10 points apiece off the bench as four members of the Heat's second unit reached double figures.
 
Justin Holliday added 15 points for Chicago.
 
The Bulls host Phoenix on Tuesday night.

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Bears, Packers Lose Sunday

>>Eagles Rout Bears
 
Carson Wentz tossed three touchdown passes and the NFL-leading Eagles beat the Chicago Bears 31-3 Sunday for their ninth straight win.
 
The Eagles (10-1) reduced their magic number to clinch the NFC East to one with their fourth consecutive win by at least 23 points and third in a row by exactly 28. Philadelphia would secure its first division title since 2013 if the Cowboys (5-6) lose or tie Washington on Thursday night.
Wentz had 227 yards passing, LeGarrette Blount ran for 97 yards and Zach Ertz caught 10 passes for 103 yards and one TD.
 
The defense shut down rookie quarterback Mitchell Trubisky and the inept Bears (3-8), holding them to zero first downs in the first half and 140 total yards in the game.
 
The Bears won the turnover battle (3-2), but couldn't do anything with excellent field position. They started consecutive drives at midfield and Philadelphia's 42 but Cairo Santos missed a 54-yard field goal.
 
Wentz threw a 17-yard TD pass to Ertz to give the Eagles a 7-0 lead on their second drive. Jay Ajayi ran 2 yards on fourth-and-1 to keep the drive going and Wentz connected with Alshon Jeffery for 14 yards on third-and-8 one play before the TD.
 
Wentz had a 15-yard TD pass to Nelson Agholor, who flipped over defenders into the end zone to make it 14-0 in the second quarter. Wentz spun away from a blitzer and ran 16 yards on third-and-9 to extend the drive. Then a holding penalty on Bears cornerback Prince Amukamara negated an incomplete pass on third-and-12, and the Eagles scored on the next play.
 
Another holding penalty on Amukamara gave the Eagles a first down late in the second quarter. Wentz then lofted an 8-yard TD pass to Jeffery to extend the lead to 24-0.
 
Ajayi ran 30 yards and fumbled at the Bears 5, but Agholor recovered in the end zone for a touchdown and a 31-3 lead.
 
The Bears host the San Francisco 49ers (1-9) next Sunday.
 
>>Steelers Hold Off Pesky Packers
 
A 53-yard field goal from Chris Boswell helped the Steelers escape with a 31-28 win Sunday night over the Green Bay Packers.
 
Pittsburgh (9-2) won its sixth straight behind Antonio Brown, who finished with 10 receptions for 169 yards and two touchdowns. Yet the biggest grab was a 23-yard toe-tap along the sideline on the first snap of his team's last-gasp drive that put the Steelers near the fringe of Boswell's range.
 
A more conventional 14-yard reception on the next snap pushed the Steelers closer. Boswell's career-long blast slipped inside the left upright to keep Pittsburgh tied with New England atop the AFC.
 
Brett Hundley completed 17 of 26 for 245 yards and three touchdowns for the Packers (5-6) in his best start since taking over when Rodgers went on injured reserve with a broken collarbone last month. Jamaal William ran for 66 yards, including a 4-yard leap into the end zone with 2:02 that tied it at 28.
 
Ben Roethlisberger threw for 351 yards with four touchdowns and two interceptions. Le'Veon Bell ran for 95 yards and added another 88 yards receiving but also had a fumble that stalled a drive early in the fourth quarter. The Steelers outgained Green Bay 462-307 and had the ball for nearly 34 minutes.
 
Yet the Packers counterpunched repeatedly behind Hundley, who threw touchdown passes of 39, 54 and 55 yards then later guided Green Bay on a 12-play, 77-yard drive that was nearly enough to send the game to overtime.
 
The Packers host Tampa Bay next Sunday. Green Bay is 0-3 at home since Rogers was injured.

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Clemson College Football's New No. 1

Clemson not only earned a nod from the Coaches Poll but also the AP Top 25 poll, making it the unanimous (for now) new No. 1 team in the country according to the new college football rankings. 
 
Oklahoma and Wisconsin both finished within 75 points of the Tigers, and the Sooners were just a few votes shy of taking the No. 1 spot. Now all three teams enter conference championship week with what appears to be a "win and you're in" scenario for the College Football Playoff.
Elsewhere in the rankings, Stanford moved up six spots to No. 14 and Notre Dame dropped six spots to No. 15 after the Cardinal defeated the Irish on Saturday night. Alabama dropped to No. 5 after losing to Auburn -- now No. 4 -- and Miami ended up five spots lower at No. 7 after losing to Pitt. 
 
After both Alabama and Miami lost over the weekend, the new college football rankings are going to set the debate as to who is the best team in the country. 
 
The new Coaches Poll has Clemson as the new No. 1 team, leading the way with 25 first-place votes. Oklahoma rose to No. 2, but the Sooners have nine less first-place votes than undefeated Wisconsin, which finished in third-place in the balloting. Even two-loss Auburn received four first-place votes after beating Alabama, which dropped four spots to No. 5. 
 
Stanford made the biggest move up in the Coaches Poll after beating Notre Dame and advancing to the Pac-12 Championship Game (by virtue of Washington's Apple Cup win), jumping up five spots to No. 15, and the Irish made the biggest move down in the poll, down eight spots to No. 17.

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Michigan State, Duke Win PK80 Invitational

>>Michigan State Routs North Carolina
 
Joshua Langford made five 3-pointers and scored 23 points and No. 4 Michigan State used a record-setting defensive performance to topple No. 9 North Carolina 63-45 on Sunday night to win the ''Victory Bracket'' of the PK80 Invitational. 
Sparty held the Tar Heels to the worst shooting performance in school history. The Tar Heels shot 24.6 percent. They were 1 of 18 on 3s, also the worst effort in the school's history. The 45 points tied for the second-fewest scored by the Tar Heels with Williams as head coach.
 
In the three games in Portland, the Spartans allowed 57, 51 and 45 points. 
 
Langford was key in the first half as the Spartans (5-1) built a 13-point halftime lead despite Miles Bridges and Jaren Jackson Jr. being limited with foul trouble. Langford had 14 points in the first half as Michigan State used an 11-4 run to take control and were never threatened by the Tar Heels.
 
Bridges finished with 11 points and the Spartans felt they got a bit of redemption after stumbling in their first matchup with a top 10 team losing 88-81 to Duke on Nov. 14.
 
Theo Pinson led North Carolina (5-1) with 16 points, but Joel Berry II and Luke Maye both had awful nights. The Tar Heels trimmed the 21-point deficit to 12 with 4:30 left, but Bridges stemmed the run with a driving layup.
 
>>Duke Edges Florida
 
Marvin Bagley III had 30 points and 15 rebounds, and the Blue Devils came back from a 17-point deficit with 10 minutes left to beat the Gators 87-84 on Sunday night for the Motion Bracket championship at the Phil Knight Invitational tournament.
Fellow freshman Gary Trent Jr., who had a pair of free throws that pulled the Blue Devils (8-0) in front and a key steal in the final moments, finished with 15 points.
 
Bagley has six double-doubles in eight games this season. He was named the bracket's Most Valuable Player.
 
Jalen Hudson had 24 points and 10 rebounds for Florida (5-1), while KeVaughn Allen added 17 points.
 
Duke closed within 78-70 on consecutive jumpers from Wendell Carter Jr. and a pair of free throws from Bagley. Grayson Allen's 3-pointer got Duke to 82-79 with 3:07 left, putting the Blue Devils fans on their feet.
 
Bagley's layup closed the gap to 84-83 and Trent made free throws to put Duke in front 85-84 with 1:12 left.
 
Hudson missed a free throw to tie it before Trent's steal with 12 seconds left. Trent made another pair from the line for the final margin.
 
The teams were among the 16 Nike teams that took part in the three-day tournament, dubbed the PK80, that started on Thanksgiving and took a hiatus Saturday for college football.
 
The event honored Nike co-founder Phil Knight's 80th birthday.

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Clinton Defeats Urbana at Cerro Gordo Turkey Tournament

The Clinton Maroons defeated Urbana Uni-High by a score of 60-54 on Friday night as part of the Cerro Gordo Turkey Tournament. The Maroons were led by Austin Rauch with 21 points. Seth Westfall added 11 points and Austin Baker added 10.

 

Urbana was led by Camden Coleman with 13 points. Paul D'Angelo chipped in with 12.

 

Clinton improves to 3-0 and Urbana falls to 2-1.

 

Tune in Friday, December 1, as the Maroons take on the Maroa Forsyth Trojans. You can hear the game live on the Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM WHOW, online at dewittdailynews.com, and on the WHOW app.

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Clinton Defeats Villa Grove at Cerro Gordo Tourney

The Clinton Maroons defeated Villa Grove Heritage by a score of 67-34 on Friday night. The Maroons were led by Austin Rauch with 16 points and Seth Westfall with 15. Dalton Smith chipped in with 11 points and Chase Reynolds added 10.

 

Villa Grove-Heritage was led by Jared Stevens with 11 points with Evan Wilson adding 9.

 

With the win, the Maroons improve to 2-0 and Villa Grove falls to 0-2.

 

Tune in Friday, December 1, as the Maroons take on the Maroa Forsyth Trojans. You can hear the game live on the Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM WHOW, online at dewittdailynews.com, and on the new WHOW app. Game time is set for seven with pregame beginning shortly before.

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Bradley holds off late charge by Georgia Southern, 62-57

Darrell Brown hit three free throws in the final 18 seconds to help Bradley hold off a late charge by Georgia Southern and secure a 62-57 victory Saturday afternoon.
 
Both teams came into the contest with 5-1 records - which equals the Braves' best start in 32 years. The home team has won all five games in the all-time series.
 
Brown, who finished with 19 points, hit a pair of late free throws to send Bradley into intermission with a 29-28 advantage, but Georgia Southern took a brief lead to start the second half on Montae Glenn's tip-in. Elijah Childs put the Braves back on top with a jumper and Bradley eventual built a double-digit lead in the second half before the Eagles rallied.
 
Mike Hughes, who finished with 16 points, hit three-straight free throws to get Georgia Southern within three, 53-50, with 4:06 remaining, but got no closer.

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Charleston Southern sneaks by Illinois State 64-62 in OT

Javis Howard hit the only field goal in the extra period as Charleston Southern sneaked by Illinois State 64-62 in overtime on Saturday night.
 
Phlandrous Fleming Jr and Christian Keeling made three free throws in the final seconds to secure Charleston Southern's fourth straight win. Phil Fayne made three free throws for Illinois State's only points in overtime.
 
Fayne had hit a jumper to give the Redbirds a 59-57 lead with 3:27 left in regulation. Neither team could score until Christian Keeling drove for a layup with :31 left to tie the game and send it to overtime. The Redbirds' William Tinsley had a clear shot at a 3-pointer in the final seconds of regulation, but failed to connect.
 
Fleming and Keeling had 13 points apiece for the Buccaneers. Travis McConico added eight with 11 rebounds.
 
Keyshawn Evans led Illinois State (3-3) with 26 points.

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GCMS edges Maroa-Forsyth for first-ever state football championship

It felt like multiple games all rolled into one -- there were just that many plot twists.
 
It ended in a 38-32 win for Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley, a Class 2A state championship that is the school's first-ever in football.
 
The acts of the play? First Maroa-Forsyth receiver Aaron Inda took a screen pass 55 yards for a touchdown in the early first quarter to make it 6-0. Then GCMS' star running back Mitch McNutt finished a drive with a 2-yard touchdown to grab the lead at 7-6 in the mid first quarter. Finally in that action-packed period, sophomore quarterback Ian Benner hit Max Davenport in the corner of the end zone for a 12-7 Trojan lead.
 
In the second quarter, the teams traded another round of Inda and McNutt touchdowns and Maroa-Forsyth took a 19-15 lead over GCMS into the half. The Falcons had averaged 6.2 points per game leading up to Friday's game.
 
The second half began with another Trojan touchdown, a 36-yard touchdown scamper from senior All-State pick Deondre Gregory. That's when the Trojans suddenly lost the 26-15 lead. McNutt and Brooks Schmitt reeled off a pair of touchdown runs to make it 30-26.
 
It looked as if Maroa-Forsyth might gain back the lead for good when Aaron Inda broke off another long run, this one 52 yards for the touchdown.
 
But the final act of the play had an even more dramatic ending in store, as GCMS' Isaiah Chatman caught a 23-yard pass from Nathan Garard with just 1:08 left in the game. The result was a 38-32 score and the first state title in Falcons history.

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Maroa-Forsyth, GCMS Meet for 2A State Title Today

As the GCMS Falcons and Maroa-Forsyth Trojans get set to battle it out for a 2A state title, each side recognizes they are in for a challenge.
 
The Trojans run a balanced offense that Head Coach Josh Jostes says is about taking what the defense gives them. 
 
 
Coach Mike Allen at GCMS says the Maroa-Forsyth tradition speaks for itself but recognizes the Trojans do a lot of things well that make them a tough matchup.
 
 
The Falcons will want to control the ball and the clock with their power run game and Coach Jostes says his team has to make them throw the ball.
 
Playing on turf could come in to play. Coach Allen says it might take some getting used to for their kids but Coach Jostes doesn't see it being a factor, though he notes, GCMS is probably going to like it.
 
 
Kickoff from Husky Stadium at Northern Illinois University of 1 pm this afternoon.
 
Other state title matchups today:
 
1A:
 
Lena-Winslow 10 am
Tuscola
 
3A: 
 
Elmhurst IC Catholic 4pm 
Pleasant Plains
 
4A:
 
Morris 7 pm
Rochester
 
Class 5A:
 
Chicago (Phillips) 10 am (Saturday)
Dunlap

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