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Friday Night Lights

Decatur St. Teresa vs. Central A&M 7:00 PM at Central A&M 
 
Tuscola vs. Clinton 7:00 PM at Clinton 
 
Shelbyville vs. Warrensburg-Latham7:00 PM at Warrensburg-Latham 
 
Macon Meridian vs. Sullivan 7:00 PM at Sullivan High School
 
Monticello vs. Bloomington Central Catholic 7:00 PM at BCC
 
St. Joseph-Ogden vs. Pontiac 7:00 PM at Pontiac
 
Prarie Central vs. Illinois Valley Central 7:30 PM at IVC
 
Olympia vs. Tolono Unity Sat 1:00 PM
 
St. Thomas More vs. Rantoul Sat 7:00 PM

Browns beat Jets for first win since 2016

For the first time in 635 days, the Cleveland Browns won.
 
Baker Mayfield showed them how.
 
The No. 1 overall pick replaced injured starter Tyrod Taylor and sparked the Browns, who got two 1-yard touchdown runs from Carlos Hyde and beat the New York Jets 21-17 on Thursday night for their first win since Dec. 24, 2016.
 
And so ends Cleveland's 19-game winless streak, the NFL's second-longest since the 1970 AFL-NFL merger.
 
The Browns (1-1-1) trailed 14-0 in the first half before Mayfield came in for Taylor and led four scoring drives while winning an unexpected matchup against Jets rookie quarterback Sam Darnold. Cleveland passed on taking Darnold in the draft and instead chose Mayfield, the Heisman Trophy winner from Oklahoma.
 
Mayfield finished 17 of 23 for 201 yards in a little more than a half after coming in after Taylor suffered a concussion.
 
Darnold had one last chance, but was intercepted by Terrence Mitchell with 11 seconds left.
 
When the final seconds ticked off the clock, Cleveland fans, who had endured a 0-16 season and waited nearly two years to see their Browns win, erupted in celebration.
 
Refrigerators around the city stocked with Bud Lights were finally unlocked, and there figured to be more than a few beverages consumed in the hours ahead.
 
This was just one win, and while it was an ending, it also felt like a beginning - because of Mayfield.
 
Isaiah Crowell had two touchdown runs for the Jets (1-2), who seemed in control when they took a 14-0 lead and knocked Taylor from the game.
 
Newly signed Browns kicker Greg Joseph made field goals of 45 and 27 yards after being signed just three days ago.
 
Browns coach Hue Jackson got just his second win in 35 games since being hired by owners Dee and Jimmy Haslam, and this win will ease some of the pressure he's been feeling to get Cleveland turned around. Jackson could also be faced with a difficult choice - either stick with Mayfield or go back to Taylor when he's healthy.
 
The decision might not be as tough now.
 
Jackson wouldn't commit to staying with Mayfield, but referred to the performance as ''his coming out party'' several times.
 
Mayfield made his NFL debut with 1:42 left in the second quarter, replacing an injured Taylor after Cleveland's starter was sacked for the third time. Taylor struggled getting to his feet after being dragged down by linebacker Avery Williamson, but he had absorbed several hard blows before that - and had been ineffective.
 
With Cleveland's crowd roaring, Mayfield completed a 14-yard pass to Jarvis Landry on his first pass as a pro and then found tight end David Njoku for 17 yards. Mayfield drove Cleveland into field-goal position and Joseph, who signed with the team on Monday following a tryout, drilled a low line drive to pull the Browns within 14-3.
 
Cleveland's plan was to have Mayfield watch and learn this season.
 
Taylor's injury may change everything.
 
For Darnold, a promising start ended with his second loss in three games. He completed 15 of 31 passes for 169 yards, but threw two picks late in the fourth as he tried to rally the Jets.
 
Hyde's 1-yard TD run pulled the Browns within 14-12 and Cleveland tied it with a trick 2-point play .
 
Mayfield shifted to the left and the ball was snapped directly to running back Duke Johnson, who ran right and gave the ball to Landry on a reverse. Landry then lofted a pass into the end zone to Mayfield, whose conversion tied it and sent Cleveland fans into a frenzy.
 
Crowell scored his second TD with 7:54 left in the second quarter, and was flagged for excessive celebrating when he squatted and wiped the ball on his backside before flinging it into the crowd.
 
Crowell's untouched 7-yard run TD run came five plays after Jets linebacker Kevin Pierre-Louis got a hand on Britton Colquitt's attempted punt and New York took over at Cleveland's 28.
 
On the first play of the second quarter, Crowell took an inside handoff and raced into the end zone before firing the ball into the stands in celebration. Crowell spent four seasons with the Browns before signing a three-year, $12 million free agent contract with New York as a free agent in March.

White Sox past Indians 5-4

The Chicago White Sox finally found a way to win at Progressive Field.
 
Matt Davidson hit a run-scoring single with two out in the 11th inning to lift the White Sox to a 5-4 win over the Indians on Thursday night, Chicago's first victory at Cleveland this season.
 
The White Sox were outscored 58-19 in dropping their first eight games, including a 4-1 loss on Wednesday when Jason Kipnis hit a grand slam in the ninth.
 
Cleveland has split four games since wrapping up its third straight AL Central title. The Indians open a three-game series Friday night at home against Boston, which clinched the AL East on Thursday. The teams split four games at Fenway Park last month.
 
Yolmer Sanchez doubled off Adam Cimber (0-3) to start the 11th and moved to third on a groundout. After Avisail Garcia was intentionally walked, Ryan Cordell struck out before Davidson singled to right.
 
Hector Santiago (6-3) pitched three scoreless innings. Eric Haase was hit by a pitch to start the 11th, but Santiago retired Fransico Lindor on a fly ball, struck out Michael Brantley and got Jose Ramirez on a groundout to end the game.
 
Kipnis batted with runners on first and second and two outs in the 10th. He sent a grounder to the right side, but the ball struck Brandon Barnes, who was on first base, ending the inning. Kipnis was credited with a single.
 
Cleveland tied the game with two runs in the eighth on a wild pitch and a bases-loaded walk. Lindor and Brantley, who hit back-to-back homers in the third, started the rally.
 
Lindor tripled off Aaron Bummer and scored on a head-first slide when a pitch in the dirt skipped away from catcher Omar Narvaez.
 
A single by Brantley and two walks loaded the bases with one out. Juan Minaya, the fourth reliever of the inning, struck out Yandy Diaz, but walked Melky Cabrera, tying the game. Kipnis popped out.
 
Chicago starter James Shields allowed two runs in six innings. He worked out of a bases-loaded jam in the first and got out of the third and sixth with double plays.
 
Narvaez hit a solo homer in the third while Moncada had a two-run double in the second. Garcia's RBI single gave Chicago a first-inning lead.
 
Josh Tomlin allowed four runs and eight hits in four innings. The right-hander began the season in Cleveland's rotation, but was moved to the bullpen in May.
 
Tomlin has started twice in the last week. Francona has juggled his rotation to get Corey Kluber and Carlos Carrasco in line to pitch the first two games of the Division Series that begins Oct. 5.
 
Up next for the White Sox: RHP Reynaldo Lopez (6-9. 4.05 ERA) will pitch the opener against the Cubs. He's 2-0 with six no-decisions in his last 10 starts.

Diamondbacks win over Cubs 9-0

Christian Walker and Chris Owings homered off Cole Hamels, and Robbie Ray held the Chicago Cubs to one hit over six innings in the Arizona Diamondbacks' 9-0 win over the Cubs on Wednesday night.
 
Walker and Owings, mainly used off the Arizona bench, were part of a Diamondbacks lineup that featured only two regulars in the field players - Nick Ahmed and Ketel Marte. The group did most of its damage against Hamels (9-10), who had yet to lose a start since joining the Cubs via trade from Texas on July 27.
 
Ray (6-2) struck out eight and walked four. Walker and Owings drove in three runs each.
 
Jeff Mathis added a two-run home run off Cubs reliever Allen Webster, who'd been called up from Triple-A Iowa earlier in the day.
 
The Cubs' lead in the NL Central dropped to 2 1/2 games over Milwaukee, which beat Cincinnati earlier Wednesday.
 
Arizona avoided a series sweep put an end to a four-game losing streak and gained a game on St. Louis for the second wild card, although they still trail the Cardinals by five games.
 
The Diamondbacks tagged Hamels for four runs and five hits in the first inning. Walker's homer, his third of the season, sailed onto the overhang in left-center field with Ildemaro Vargas and Marte on base.
 
Later in the inning, Owings blooped a single to shallow right field, and Patrick Kivlehan scored after he'd tripled to make it 4-0.
 
Kivlehan became the second Diamondback this season to triple multiple times in a game when he did it again in the sixth inning. He scored on Ahmed's single, and Ahmed scored on Owings' fourth home run of the year.
 
Mathis went deep to left in the eighth for his first home run of the season.
 
Hamels allowed seven runs and nine hits, tying the most earned runs he's given up in a start this season.
 
The Cubs completed a stretch of 30 scheduled games in 30 days with 18 wins.
 
Up next for the Cubs: After a long-awaited day off Thursday, the Cubs are back in Chicago to open a three-game series against their crosstown rival White Sox. LHP Jose Quintana (13-10) is the scheduled starter in Friday's opener, and makes his first career start against his former team.

Indians beat White Sox 4-1

Jason Kipnis' game-ending grand slam and 1,000th career hit came on one big swing.
 
Kipnis homered with one out in the ninth inning and the Cleveland Indians rallied for a 4-1 win over the Chicago White Sox on Wednesday night.
 
Kipnis hit a 3-2 pitch from Ian Hamilton into the right field seats for his milestone hit and was doused with water buckets by his teammates as he conducted a postgame television interview.
 
While the Indians have already clinched their third straight AL Central title, the season has been a difficult one for Kipnis. He's struggled at the plate and was moved from second base to center field two weeks ago.
 
The Indians were held to two hits through eight before their comeback.
 
Josh Donaldson started the ninth with an infield hit. Pitcher Juan Minaya fielded the ball that rolled about 30 feet up the third base line, but Donaldson beat the throw to first. Chicago challenged the play but the ruling was upheld.
 
Pinch-hitter Yandy Diaz bounced a single through the left side that moved pinch-runner Rajai Davis to second.
 
Melky Cabrera popped up a bunt attempt to the mound that was caught by reliever Caleb Frare (0-1). Hamilton replaced Frare, but hit Yan Gomes with the first pitch to load the bases.
 
Oliver Perez (1-1) recorded the final out in the ninth for the Indians.
 
Daniel Palka homered for the White Sox, who remained winless at Progressive Field this season, falling to 0-8.
 
Indians starter Carlos Carrasco struck out 11 in 6 2/3 innings, but gave up Palka's home run to center with one out in the sixth.
 
Chicago's strong pitching made the lead hold up until the ninth. Dylan Covey allowed two hits in six innings and struck out Yonder Alonso with the bases loaded to end the third.
 
White Sox slugger Jose Abreu was released from a Cleveland hospital Wednesday after being treated for an infection in his right thigh.
 
Donaldson, acquired from Toronto on Aug. 31, turned in two outstanding plays at third base, both against Ryan Cordell.
 
Donaldson went to his knees to make a backhand stop of a third-inning grounder, jumped to his feet and made a strong throw to first. He speared a hard-hit ground ball in the seventh and made another strong throw for the out.
 
The 2015 AL MVP is batting .167 (3 for 18) with four strikeouts in six games with Cleveland.
 
Donaldson played on consecutive days for the first time since joining the Indians. Francona said he'll be off on Thursday.
 
Palka moved into a tie with Atlanta's Ronald Acuna Jr. for the major league lead in rookie home runs.
 
Up next for the White Sox RHP James Shields (7-16, 4.53 ERA) takes on Indians RHP Josh Tomlin (1-5, 6.49 ERA) in the three-game series finale. Shields leads the AL in losses.

Braves snap losing streak with win over Cardinals 7-3

Freddie Freeman spent the previous four seasons playing for an Atlanta team that averaged 90 losses a year.
 
Now that the Braves are back challenging for a division title, the All-Star first baseman knows his club can't afford any long losing streaks.
 
Freeman hit a two-run homer and drove in three runs, Touki Toussaint pitched into the sixth inning and the NL East-leading Braves snapped a four-game skid with a 7-3 victory over the St. Louis Cardinals on Wednesday.
 
It was a critical win for Atlanta, which is 5 1/2 games ahead of the second-place Phillies and opens a four-game home series against them on Thursday. Philadelphia blanked the New York Mets 4-0 on Wednesday night.
 
The Braves have a magic number of six over Philadelphia to clinch their first division title since 2013.
 
St. Louis, which had won three straight, trails Milwaukee by three games for the top NL wild card but leads Colorado by 1 1/2 games for the second spot. The Rockies lost 5-2 at Dodger Stadium.
 
Atlanta closer A.J. Minter, working in a non-save situation in the ninth, walked two to load the bases, but he ended it by striking out Jose Martinez and getting Paul DeJong to pop up.
 
Freeman's 23rd homer, an opposite-field shot to left-center, put the Braves up 2-0 in the fourth against Jack Flaherty. Freeman went 3 for 3 and is hitting .405 over his past 11 games.
 
Toussaint (2-1) allowed five hits, two runs, three walks and struck out eight in 5 2/3 innings. A rookie making his fourth career start, Toussaint was chased after Yadier Molina's RBI single cut the lead to 5-2 in the sixth.
 
Flaherty (8-8) gave up five hits, a season-high five runs and two walks with six strikeouts in 4 2/3 innings. Facing the Braves for the first time, Flaherty began the game as the NL rookie leader in strikeouts, winning percentage and opponents' batting average. He had gone 4-1 with 1.69 ERA in his previous eight starts.
 
Flowers doubled to begin the three-run fifth and scored on a wild pitch. Freeman chased Flaherty with an RBI single, and the lead swelled to four runs on a double steal by Ender Inciarte and Freeman. The Braves successfully challenged to get the call overturned that Freeman had been tagged out.
 
Atlanta added a run to make it 6-2 in the seventh. Inciarte doubled and scored when second baseman Kolten Wong threw errantly to first on a potential double play grounder.
 
Jedd Gyorko's sacrifice fly in the eighth cut the lead to 6-3. Flowers' eighth homer in the bottom half of the inning made it 7-3.
 
At least for one game, Atlanta played well at home, where it had dropped 14 of 18 and has won just one of its past seven series.
 
Freeman, who became the first Braves first baseman with 20 homers and 10 stolen bases in a season since Dale Murphy in 1978, wants his teammates to enjoy the pennant race and not press.
 
Up next for the Cardinals: RHP John Gant (7-6, 3.53 ERA) will start when St. Louis, following a day off, opens a three-game home series against San Francisco. He allowed six hits and six runs in his previous start, a 17-4 loss to the Dodgers.

White Sox pitcher Kopech has Tommy John surgery

Chicago White Sox pitcher Michael Kopech had Tommy John surgery on his right elbow Tuesday and will miss the 2019 season.
 
Kopech, the top pitching prospect in the organization, is expected to be ready for spring training in 2020. The surgery was performed by Dr. Neal ElAttrache in Los Angeles.
 
Kopech, 22, was 1-1 with a 5.02 ERA in four starts this season. He was placed on the 60-day disabled list with a torn elbow ligament Sept 8.
 
Kopech was acquired in the trade that sent star pitcher Chris Sale to Boston following the 2016 season. He was drafted by Boston in the first round in 2014.

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