Local Sports

Illinois Downs Michigan

Kofi Cockburn scored 27 points and Alfonso Plummer had 26, helping No. 15 Illinois beat Michigan 93-85 on Sunday.

 

Plummer had 23 points at halftime after making 7 of 11 shots, including 5 of 8 3-pointers, and 4 of 6 free throws.

 

The Fighting Illini (20-8, 13-5 Big Ten) led by eight at halftime and were ahead by 15 midway through the second half before the Wolverines (15-12, 9-8) rallied to give themselves a shot at a comeback win.

 

Caleb Houstan's 3-pointer with 2:03 pulled Michigan within two points, and Cockburn quickly responded with a jump hook.

 

Trent Frazier made a 3-pointer with 45.2 seconds left - just before the shot clock expired - for a seven-point lead. The win pulled Illinois within a game of Big Ten-leading and 13th-ranked Wisconsin.

 

Michigan was without suspended coach Juwan Howard, who missed the second of five games for hitting a Wisconsin assistant coach a week ago. Phil Martelli again filled in for Howard.

 

Frazier finished with 17 points and Andre Curbelo scored 12 for the Illini.

 

DeVante' Jones had a season-high 25 points and matched a career-high with 10 assists for the Wolverines. Houstan scored 21 points, matching the season-high he set in his previous game.

 

Hunter Dickinson had 13 points on 4-of-13 shooting and 11 rebounds, playing in a matchup that he missed last month due to the effects of COVID-19 as Illinois won 68-53 at home.

 

After losing three of the previous five games, the Illini put together a strong performance on the road to stay in the Big Ten championship race.

 

Illinois made 71% of its shots in the first half, finishing at 57% shooting, and Michigan connected on 51% of its attempts.

 

Illinois finishes the regular season at home against Penn State on Thursday and No. 25 Iowa on Sunday.

0
comments


Illinois Baseball Drops Saturday Double Dip

Illinois dropped its first game of the day at Springs Brooks Stadium to Middle Tennessee State on Saturday, 17-10. The two teams combined for 26 hits and 27 runs as 10 combined pitchers were used over the course of the nine innings.

 

Sophomore OF Danny Doligale was once again impressive at the plate, picking up his third consecutive multi-hit game with a 2-for-3 performance. Doligale also doubled in his third-straight game while scoring a pair of runs against the Blue Raiders. Junior INF Branden Comia tallied his second consecutive multi-hit game as well, going 3-for-4 with two RBI and two doubles at the dish. Freshman INF Ryan Moerman was the third Illini to record two hits on the afternoon.

 

The Illini (2-3) loaded the bases in two of the first three innings but only plated two runs. Middle Tennessee (3-5) would score six runs in two innings, holding on to a 6-4 lead until the top half of the seventh, when a two-out rally for the Illini sparked a three-run inning to retake the lead. The Blue Raiders took the lead back with an eleven-run seventh inning as the Illini went through four pitchers to record three outs. Illinois tacked on three more runs in the home half of the ninth.

 

The Illini then dropped the third and final game of the weekend series at Coastal Carolina on Saturday night, 6-2. Junior catcher Jacob Campbell extended his hitting streak to six games with a 2-for-4 day at the plate. Branden Comia, Cam McDonald, and Taylor Jackson also picked up hits in the loss to the Chanticleers. Comia also launched his first homer of the season, a solo shot to right field in the sixth inning.

 

The Illini jumped ahead in the first inning but gave the lead back to Coastal in the third. The Chanticleers added another four runs while Illinois tacked on just one in the remaining eight innings. Sophomore RHP Jack Wenninger threw 4.0 innings in relief, giving up just one run on two hits while striking out five of the 15 batters he faced.

 

Illinois is back on the road next weekend at the Cambria College Classic at U.S. Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Illini will take on Notre Dame on Friday, followed by West Virginia on Saturday and one more game against Kansas on Sunday.

0
comments


Illinois State Sweeps Western Carolina

The Illinois State baseball team posted their first sweep since 2019 as the Redbirds defeated Western Carolina, 9-5, at Hennon Stadium on Sunday.

 

Eight players had hits for Illinois State (4-2), led by junior Jake McCaw, who smacked a home run for the third straight game (first Redbird to do that since Collin Braithwaite in 2018), adding two RBIs, three runs scored, a HBP, walk, and a stolen base. Sophomore Ryan Cermak also homered with two RBIs and a run scored.

 

In his first start as a Redbird, junior Connor Olson posted a pair of hits with an RBI and run scored.

 

Junior Derek Salata recorded the win, striking out a career-high seven Western Carolina (4-4) batters. Junior Jared Hart impressed out of the Redbird pen once again, firing two scoreless innings. Hart fanned two and now has multiple strikeouts in all four of his appearances in 2022.

 

McCaw blasted the first pitch of the 2nd inning over the right-center field wall to start the game's scoring.

 

WCU responded with a solo shot of their own in the 3rd inning but five runs in the 4th inning for the 'Birds broke the game open. Cheng, Woltman, and Soberano all recorded RBI hits before Cermak and McCaw walked with the bases loaded. 

 

The Catamounts got three back in the 6th inning, but Illinois State matched them in 7th inning to extend the lead back out to five as Cermak homered before senior Nick Gile RBI doubled and Olson singled home a run.

 

This weekend's sweep was the first series sweep of three or more games since April 2019 at Southern Illinois.

 

Illinois State is 4-2 for the first time since 2019.

 

Illinois State is scheduled to travel to Arkansas State from March 4-6 for a three-game series.

0
comments


Blues Blank Blackhawks

David Perron scored two goals, Jordan Binnington made 30 saves and the Blues beat the Chicago Blackhawks 4-0 on Sunday for their fourth straight win.

 

The 33-year-old Perron left St. Louis' 3-2 overtime loss at Chicago on Nov. 26 after he was hit by Blackhawks defenseman Jake McCabe in the first period. He was sidelined for a month before returning on Dec. 29.

 

Perron, Jordan Kyrou and Pavel Buchnevich scored during St. Louis' dominant second period, and Perron tacked on a third-period goal in the opener of a four-game trip. Brayden Schenn had two assists for St. Louis, and Binnington recorded his second shutout of the season - both against Chicago.

 

The Blues improved to 3-0-1 against the Blackhawks, closing out their season series. They also pounded Chicago in their previous meeting, winning 5-1 in St. Louis on Feb. 12.

 

Marc-Andre Fleury made 31 stops for Chicago, turning away several quality chances for St. Louis. The Blackhawks (19-27-8) lost for the fourth time in their last five games.

 

Blues F Oskar Sundqvist was held out because of a lower-body injury. He left Friday night's win against Buffalo in the first period. Dakota Joshua replaced him in the lineup.

 

Blackhawks D Jake McCabe returned to the lineup after missing Friday night's 8-5 victory over New Jersey with lower back soreness. D Calvin de Haan missed his second straight game because of a right groin strain. C Tyler Johnson could play Thursday against Edmonton. Johnson had neck surgery on Dec. 3.

 

The Blues are at the New York Rangers on Wednesday night while the Blackhawks host the Edmonton Oilers on Thursday night.

0
comments


Larson Holds Off Teammate Elliot, Suarez To Win at Fontana

Just two races into the new year in the new car, Kyle Larson no longer has to wonder — although his path to victory included a fateful collision with furious teammate Chase Elliott on a wild day at Fontana.

 

The defending NASCAR Cup Series champion held off Austin Dillon and Daniel Suarez in a tense finish Sunday, surviving a restart with four laps left to win at Auto Club Speedway for the second time.

 

Before the chaotic finish, Larson and Elliott made contact with just under 20 laps to go, with Larson pinching his Hendrick Motorsports teammate into the wall while he fought to stay in front of Joey Logano. Larson apologized for the collision over the radio, saying he hadn’t seen Elliott making a bold move to get past him — but Elliott, who finished 26th, and his team were decidedly displeased.

 

Larson then had victory in sight with eight laps to go when Elliott spun, forcing a race-record 12th caution. NASCAR fans went wild with online speculation that Elliott’s spin was a deliberate attempt to hurt Larson’s chances to win.

 

Larson and crew chief Cliff Daniels dismissed that notion, and they believe there won’t be long-term damage to their Hendrick relationship.

 

The brouhaha with Elliott colored another superb race for Larson, who surprisingly hadn’t won any races anywhere yet in 2022. After starting at the rear under penalty, the relentless multidisciplinary competitor and Northern California native roared to another win at Fontana in an entertaining race featuring ample passing, plenty of mistakes and thrilling top-to-bottom moves on the seasoned five-wide asphalt.

 

Larson made it out of the pits first after the final caution, and he led off the final restart. He was neck-and-neck with Suarez, who briefly got in front with two laps left before Dillon got into the draft to take his own shot at the leader.

 

Larson hung on through it all and raced to his 17th career victory, the 11th in his year-plus at Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet. But he only added another famed surfboard trophy to his 2017 award after clinging to the lead through an exciting finish in the first race for NASCAR’s Next Gen car on an intermediate track.

 

Dillon came in second, and Suarez slipped to fourth behind Erik Jones as Chevrolets took the top four spots.

 

Logano was fifth, while Daytona 500 champ and Fontana polesitter Austin Cindric finished 16th.

 

Tyler Reddick won the first two stages and led 90 laps Sunday — more than he had led in his entire previous Cup career combined — but his race fell apart from the lead with 48 laps to go. He got a flat shortly before William Byron got loose and ran him into wall, ending Byron’s day.

 

Reddick returned but finished 24th. The California native also was leading the Clash at the Coliseum three weeks ago before he was sidelined by a prop shaft failure.

The West Coast swing continues at Las Vegas Motor Speedway on March 6. Larson won Vegas’ spring race last year.

0
comments


Mast scores 22 to lead Bradley over Valparaiso 79-55

Rienk Mast had 22 points and 11 rebounds as Bradley won its seventh straight home game, easily defeating Valparaiso 79-55 on Saturday night.

 

Connor Hickman had 14 points for Bradley (17-13, 11-7 Missouri Valley Conference). Ari Boya added 13 points and five blocks. Terry Roberts had seven assists and six rebounds.

 

Kobe King and Kevion Taylor had 16 points each for Valpo (13-17, 6-12). Ben Krikke had 10 points and seven rebounds.

 

The Braves improved to 2-0 against Valpo on the season. Bradley defeated Valparaiso 71-56 on Jan. 26.

0
comments


Reeves leads Illinois State to 86-66 romp over Indiana State

Antonio Reeves scored 28 points as Illinois State routed Indiana State 86-66 on Saturday.

 

Howard Fleming Jr. added 20 points for the Redbirds (12-19, 5-13 Missouri Valley Conference), who snapped a five-game losing streak. Mark Freeman had 17 points and six assists.

 

Zach Hobbs had 15 points for the Sycamores (11-19, 4-14), whose losing streak stretched to five games. Julian Larry added 12 points and six rebounds. Kailex Stephens had 11 points.

 

The Redbirds evened the season series against the Sycamores. Indiana State defeated Illinois State 60-57 on Feb. 12.

0
comments


IHSA Boys Basketball Regional Scores

Class 2A Regional:

 

At Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond

 

Teutopolis  48

Newton      45

 

At Beardstown

 

Pleasant Plains     37

Quincy Notre Dame   48

 

At Bloomington Central Catholic

 

Warrensburg-Latham   47

Bloomington Central Catholic   62

 

At Maroa-Forsyth

 

Normal U-High   58

Maroa-Forsyth    62

 

At Wilmington

 

El Paso-Gridley   60

Seneca                 38

 

Class 1A Regional Final:

 

At Arcola

 

Tuscola    56

Arcola       33

 

At Brimfield

 

Peoria Christian   52

Abingdon-Avon    40

 

At Champaign St. Thomas More

 

Champaign St. Thomas More   53

Decatur LSA                              56

 

At Milford

 

Milford                57

LeRoy                 44

 

At Roanoke-Benson

 

Heyworth                 57

Lexington                 66

 

At Stewardson-Strasburg

 

Meridian           73

Neoga               67

 

Class 3A Regional Final:

 

At Limestone

 

Peoria Notre Dame        33

Peoria Manual                36

 

At Chatham-Glenwood

 

Chatham-Glenwood        64

Jacksonville                     25

 

At Decatur MacArthur

 

Decatur MacArthur       62

Springfield Southeast    57

 

At Mahomet-Seymour

 

Lincoln                        28

Mahomet-Seymour     31

 

At Morton

 

Morton                                  29

Champaign Centennial         43

 

At Peoria Richwoods

 

Metamora                               60

Washington                            46

 

At Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin

 

Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin      63

Springfield Lanphier                        57

 

At Normal Community

 

Normal Community         63                   

Bradley-Bourbonnais      30

0
comments


Monticello Gets By Prairie Central in Overtime for Regional Title

With 1:05 left in regulation, Monticello trailed 47-43, Dylan Ginalick buried a three-pointer with 45 seconds left to tie the game at 47 and the Sages were able to rally past Prairie Central in overtime for a 55-51 Regional Championship Friday night from GCMS High School in Class 2A high school boy's basketball action.

 

Ginalick was at the line with Monticello trailing 47-43 making the first of the double-bonus pair and chased down a loose ball rebound on the wing and was left all alone and buried the three-pointer to tie the game at 47.

 

The Hawks missed a final shot at the buzzer to send the game to overtime. 

 

Prairie Central went up 50-47 to start overtime but Ben Cresap buried a three-pointer on the left wing to tie the game at 50. After Andy Krenz made one of two free throws to put the Hawks up 51-50, Trevor Fox was fouled and made both free throws to put the Sages up for good, 52-51. 

 

30 seconds later, Cresap made two more free throws to put Monticello up 54-51. After the Hawks were forced to foul with 3.7 seconds left, Triston Foran missed both free throws but Tanner Buehnerkemper hauled in his game-high ninth and final rebound, perhaps his biggest of the season and made the second of two free throws to seal the Regional title for the Sages.

 

Monticello struggled mightily from the free throw line early, going just 1-for-6 through the first three quarters but finished 11-for-18 in the fourth quarter and overtime. 

 

The Sages shot just 27-percent from the floor in the first half and were outrebounded 38-29.

 

Cresap led Monticello with 15 points while Ginalick added 14 points. Buehnerkemper scored nine points with nine rebounds. 

 

The Sages had ten assists on its 17 baskets with just six turnovers. 

 

Monticello had 20 second-chance points on 12 offensive rebounds.

 

After shooting 55-percent in the first half, Monticello was able to limit the Hawks to 39-percent for the game.

 

Monticello went just 9-for-26 from distance while Prairie Central went 4-for-14. 

 

There were six ties and seven lead changes for the game. 

 

Prairie Central finishes the season 24-8 overall.

 

Monticello moves to 29-3 overall and will take on Herscher in the Clifton Central Sectional semifinal Tuesday night at 7 pm. 

 

Hear a replay of Friday night's Regional Championship at noon on Saturday at noon on 95.9 FM WEZC and catch the Sectional Semifinal on Tuesday on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com. 

0
comments


Clinton Lady Maroons Seniors Reflect On Record Setting Season

 

The Clinton Lady Maroons recently wrapped up the most successful season in school history.  The program's 27-wins in the 2021-2022 basketball season was the most ever at Clinton Community High School.  A trio of seniors that led the way for Clinton...


Mallory Cyrulik leaves the program as one of it's top scorers, and the top rebounder in Clinton history.  She's also the first Lady Maroon to top one-thousand in both stat categories.  Kaitlyn Rauch also topped one-thousand points in her career, and Kylie Raymer provided a steady consistency on both ends of the floor.  The girls say the record season wasn't really on their minds until Coach Josh Williams clued them in...

 

 

The three seniors are split on if pursuing history added any extra pressure to their postseason.  The Lady Maroons secured the record 27th win in a tough Regional Semifinal win over CIC conference rival Warrensburg-Latham...

 

 

In addition, the Lady Maroons completed an undefeated Central Illinois Conference season.  All three point to a road conference win at Tuscola as their biggest win of the year...

 

 

Cyrulik plans to continue her basketball career at Parkland College in Champaign.  Rauch and Raymer both plan to pursue nursing at Southern Illinois Edwardsville in the fall.  

 

Here is the full nearly 20-minute conversation with the trio.....

 

0
comments


Monticello to Go For Regional Title Tonight

The Monticello Sages boy's basketball team will go for a Class 2A Regional title tonight when they take on Prairie Central from the GCMS Regional.

 

Monticello beat PBL for a second time this season, 53-30 Wednesday night to advance to tonight's Regional championship game. The Hawks edged Iroquois West 53-48 Wednesday to advance.

 

At 28-3, the Sages have won eight straight, and their last defeat came at the hands of Prairie Central on Tuesday, January 25 at Fairbury, a 65-61 loss.

 

Monticello will be looking to avenge that loss tonight and advance to the Clifton Central Sectional next week.

 

Game time tonight from GCMS High School is 7 pm. Hear the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com. 

 

Class 2A Regional final action tonight:

 

At Arthu-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond

 

Teutopolis 7:00pm

Newton

 

At Beardstown

 

Pleasant Plains 7:00pm

Quincy Notre Dame

 

At Bloomington Central Catholic

 

Warrensburg-Latham 7:00pm

Bloomington Central Catholic

 

At Maroa-Forsyth

 

Normal U-High 7:00pm

Maroa-Forsyth

 

At Wilmington

 

El Paso-Gridley 7:00pm

Seneca

 

Class 1A Regional Final action tonight:

 

At Arcola

 

Tuscola 7:00pm

Arcola

 

At Brimfield

 

Peoria Christian 7:00pm

Abingdon-Avon

 

At Champaign St. Thomas More

 

Champaign St. Thomas More 7:00pm

Decatur LSA

 

At Milford

 

Milford 7:00pm

LeRoy

 

At Roanoke-Benson

 

Heyworth 7:00pm

Lexington

 

At Stewardson-Strasburg

 

Meridian 7:00pm

Neoga

 

Class 3A Regional Final action tonight:

 

At Limestone

 

Peoria Notre Dame 7:00pm

Peoria Manual

 

At Chatham-Glenwood

 

Chatham-Glenwood 7:00pm

Jacksonville 

 

At Decatur MacArthur

 

Decatur MacArthur 7:00pm

Springfield Southeast

 

At Mahomet-Seymour

 

Lincoln 7:00pm

Mahomet-Seymour

 

At Morton

 

Morton 7:00pm

Champaign Centennial

 

At Peoria Richwoods

 

Metamora 7:00pm

Washington

 

At Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin

 

Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin 7:00pm

Springfield Lanphier

 

At Normal Community

 

Normal Community 7:00pm

Bradley-Bourbonnais

 

>>High School Girl's Postseason Scores, Postponeed Matchups

 

Class 1A Scores from Thursday:

 

At Blue Ridge

 

Ridgeview 45

Champaign St. Thomas More 29

 

Class 1A postponed matchups from Thursday:

 

At Tuscola

 

Effingham St. Anthony 5:30pm

Neoga

 

Class 2A Scores from Thursday:

 

At Illinois Valley Central

 

Normal U-High 39

Canton 36

 

Class 2A Postponed matchups from Thursday:

 

At Monticello

 

Pana 6:30pm

Paris

 

At Peotone

 

St. Joseph-Ogden 7:00pm

Fieldcrest

 

Class 3A scores from Thursday:

 

At Joliet Central

 

Edwardsville 57

Normal Community 45

0
comments


No. 22 Ohio State Holds Off No. 15 Illinois

Freshman Malaki Branham scored 31 points to lift No. 22 Ohio State to an 86-83 win over No. 15 Illinois on Thursday night.

 

The result dealt a serious blow to Illinois’ Big Ten title hopes, dropping them a full game behind leaders Purdue and Wisconsin two weeks left in the regular season.

 

The Illini (19-8, 12-5 Big Ten) mounted a furious 10-0 run to cut their deficit to two points with 1:49 left in the game on Jacob Grandison’s layup, and Trent Frazier buried a 3 with 14.6 seconds left to pull Illinois within one point.

 

After Ohio State’s Kyle Young split two shots at the line, Frazier drove to the basket, but turned the ball over when he misplaced a pass out to Grandison at the 3-point line with four seconds left.

 

With the win, the Buckeyes (18-7, 11-5 Big Ten) are in fourth place in the conference — a game-and-a-half behind Purdue and Wisconsin and one behind Illinois.

 

Illinois guard Alfonso Plummer hit his first four attempts from 3-point range, helping Illinois jump out to a 21-8 lead in the opening 10 minutes. Plummer finished with 26 points, while Grandison had 14 and Frazier and Cockburn, who fouled out in the second half, each had 12.

 

Ohio State forward E.J. Liddell was questionable with the flu before the game, but made the start and finished with 21 points and six rebounds. Young had 18 points and a team-high seven rebounds.

 

The Buckeyes started the game 3 of 13 from the field, but closed the half by making 9 of their final 14 attempts. Ohio State finished the half on a 28-16 run, trailing 37-36 at the break. Liddell knocked down a jumper on the Buckeyes’ opening possession of the second half to edge them ahead, 38-37, for the first time of the night.

 

The Buckeyes pieced together an 14-2 run early in the second half, taking a 50-39 lead on Branham’s jumper with 15:42 to play.

 

Illinois coach Brad Underwood was ejected with 6:17 to play after picking up his second technical foul. He pumped the home crowd into a frenzy before leaving the court at the insistence of his staff.

 

It was his first ejection in five seasons at Illinois.

 

Illinois is at Michigan on Sunday.

0
comments


Bulls Stop Hawks

DeMar DeRozan scored 37 points while extending an NBA-record streak and the Eastern Conference-leading Bulls squeezed by the Atlanta Hawks 112-108 on Thursday night.

 

DeRozan pushed his league mark of scoring at least 35 points while shooting 50% or better to eight consecutive games. The five-time All-Star made 15 of 21 shots and had five points in the final minute, helping the Bulls rally from three down to win for their sixth straight victory.

 

DeRozan also made it nine games in a row with 30 points or more, the longest such streak by a Bulls player since Michael Jordan did it in 10 straight from Dec. 25, 1990, to Jan. 14, 1991.

 

Zach LaVine scored 20 points after missing the final three games prior to the All-Star break because of his ailing left knee. The high-flying guard had platelet-rich plasma therapy, a cortisone injection and fluid drained in Los Angeles last week, hoping the treatment will help him get through the remainder of the season.

 

Nikola Vucevic added 12 points and 10 rebounds. Tristan Thompson provided a lift off the bench, with 11 points and six rebounds in his Bulls debut. And Chicago moved a half-game ahead of idle Miami in the East.

 

Atlanta's Bogdan Bogdanovic set a season-high with 27 points and matched one with five 3-pointers. Danilo Gallinari scored 26 points, and Clint Capela finished with 14 points and 17 rebounds.

 

Trae Young had a rough game, making just 3 of 17 shots while missing all five 3-pointers. The two-time All-Star finished with 14 points and 10 assists.

 

The Bulls trailed 108-105 when Atlanta got called for a shot-clock violation with 58 seconds remaining. But with DeRozan leading the way, they pulled out the tight win.

 

DeRozan hit a pull-up jumper. Ayo Dosunmu blocked Young's driving layup as the crowd chanted ''De-fense! De-fense!''

 

DeRozan then got fouled by Bogdanovic as he nailed a turnaround, fallaway jumper. He hit the free throw to complete the three-point play, putting Chicago on top 110-108 with 15.1 seconds remaining.

 

Bogdanovic missed a 3, and Javonte Green hit two free throws for the Bulls to make it a four-point game with 4.5 seconds remaining.

 

The Bulls host Memphis on Saturday night.

0
comments


NASCAR Heads Back to Fontana

After last week's eventful Daytona 500 that featured a return of a capacity crowd at the World Center of Racing, NASCAR heads back to Fontana, California and the Auto Club Speedway.

 

Austin Cindric held off Bubba Wallace to win the Daytona 500. Cindric’s victory came in his eighth career start in NASCAR’s top series. Brad Keselowski and Martin Truex Jr. are second and third in the standings. Truex won both stages. Three-time 500 winner Denny Hamlin failed to finish for the first time in 17 Daytona 500s.

 

Practice will be at 2 pm ET Saturday and qualifying at 2:35 pm ET. The green flag drops at 3:30 pm ET Sunday. 

 

The X-Finity Series will practice at noon ET Saturday and its qualifying will be at 12:30 pm ET with the race at 5 pm ET Saturday afternoon. 

 

Austin Hill won at Daytona in his first start as a full-time driver in the series.Hill edged ahead of A.J. Allmendinger just before a caution froze the field, making Hill the winner. Allmendinger is the points leader by four ahead of Hill. Defending series champion Daniel Hemric finished 28th, four laps down.

 

The truck series returns to action next week in Las Vegas.

0
comments


Monticello Up To No. 6 in Latest High School Basketball Polls

The Monticello Sages high school boy's basketball team is up to No. 6 in the latest top 10 poll as the postseason opened over the weekend.

 

The Sages were part of a three-way tie for seventh last week but sit alone at No. 6 this week. Chicago Leo is the unanimous top team in 2A. Chicago Clark, DePaul College Prep, El Paso-Gridley and Nashville round out the top five.

 

Following the Sages at No. 6, Chicago Perspectives Charter Leadership, Breese Central, Breese Mater Dei, and Rockford Lutheran round out the top 10 in 2A.

 

Yorkville Christian is the top team in Class 1A this week with ten first-place votes. Scales Mound is No. 2 with four first-place votes. Peoria Christian, Tuscola and Meridian come in eight through ten, respectively, in this week's rankings. Fulton, Liberty and Altamont round out the top five wile Concord Triopia and Steeleville are 6-7, respectively. 

 

In Class 3A, Chicago Simeon remains No. 1 with 11 of 12 first-place votes. Hillcrest received the other first-place vote at No. 4 this week. East St. Louis moved up a spot to No. 2 followed by Harvey Thornton at No .3. Hyde Park rounds out the top 5. 

 

Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin is No. 6 this week followed by Burlington Central, Chicago Mt. Carmel, Centralia and Metamora to round out the top 10. 

 

Lincoln received a vote in this week's polling but did not make the top 10.

 

In Class 4A, Glenbard West is the unanimous No. 1 while Normal Community is up to No. 3 in this week's poll. 

0
comments


Monticello Rolls PBL To Advance to Regional Final

In a game heard on WEZC and at dewittdailynews.com Wednesday night, Paxton-Buckley-Loda did not score for the first 10 minutes and 17 seconds of the game and Monticello used suffocating defense to roll to a 53-30 win in Class 2A Regional semifinal high school boy's basketball action from GCMS High School. 

 

In that stretch, the Sages built a 17-0 lead and after Mason Bruns' layup at the 5:43 mark of the second quarter, Monticello answered with an 8-0 run to open a 25-2 lead with a 1:12 left in the first half and Garrett Sanders corner three-pointer with 53 seconds to play was the only other basket for the Panthers in the first half. 

 

The Sages led 27-5 at the intermission.

 

Out of the break, PBL started the third quarter on a 12-2 run, getting within 29-17 after Kayden Snelling hit a three-pointer with 4:45 to play in the third quarter, but the Sages answered with at 9-3 finish to the period. 

 

The Sages led by as many as 28 late in the fourth quarter.

 

Monticello's defense held the Panthers to 26-percent shooting, going 10-for-38 for the game. The Sages dominated the glass 35-21 and scored ten points off 14 offensive rebounds. 

 

Monticello turned over PBL 20 times for 23 points and scored 28 of its 53 points in the paint, 12 coming in transition.

 

The Sages shot 50-percent for the first half, a slow start to the second half had the Sages finish at a 45-percent clip, 21-for-47. Monticello went just 4-for-16 beyond the arc.

 

The Sages dished out 16 assists on its 21 baskets, committing 12 turnovers. 

 

The win is the eighth straight for Monticello who will battle Prairie Central Friday night for the Regional Championship. The Sages are 28-3 on the season. PBL finishes its season 16-13. 

 

Game time Friday is 7 pm. Hear all the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com.

0
comments


Maroa-Forsyth Holds Off Williamsville for a Regional Semifinal Win

Maroa-Forsyth shot 13-for-20 from the foul line in the fourth quarter, just good enough to hold off Williamsville 66-63 in a Class 2A Regional semifinal matchup Wednesday from Maroa-Forsyth High School in boy's basketball postseason action.

 

Leading 40-34 after three quarters, the Bullets mounted a frantic comeback led by Pryor Reynolds who scored 16 of his team-high 18 points and 16 of Williamsville's 19 points in the frame and made four three-pointers. 

 

Egan Franze scored 14 of his game-high 28 points in the fourth quarter, including going 5-for-6 at the foul line. 

 

Zayn Giles and Ethan Willoughby each scored 11 points for Maroa-Forsyth who advances to a Regional final Friday night against Normal U-High.

 

The Trojans improve to 18-11 overall and Williamsville finishes its season 16-14. 

 

Class 2A Regional Semifinal scores from Wednesday:

 

At Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond

 

Teutopolis 68

Shelbyville 36

 

At Beardstown

 

Pleasant Plains 63

Warsaw 61

 

At Bloomington Central Catholic

 

Warrensburg-Latham 49

Tri-Valley 38

 

BCC 65

Olympia 55

 

At Kankakee McNamara

 

No. 2 Kankakee McNamara 49

No. 6 Beecher 65

 

No. 3 Momence 40

No. 5 Herscher 48

 

At Tolono Unity

 

St. Joseph-Ogden 43

Fithian-Oakwood 34

 

Tolono Unity 46

Bismarck-Henning 42

 

At Wilmington

 

El Paso-Gridley 68

Braidwood Reed-Custer 44

 

No. 4 Pontiac 65 F-OT

No. 7 Seneca 69

 

Class 1A Regional Semifinal action Wednesday:

At Arcola

Tuscola 54

Georgetown Notre Dame de La Salette 23

 

Bethany-Okaw Valley 57

Arcola 65

 

At Brimfield

 

Peoria Christian 64

Elmwood 36

 

At Champaign St. Thomas More

 

Champaign St. Thomas More 65

Georgetown-Ridge Farm 31

 

Decatur LSA 71

Salt Fork 58

 

At Decatur St. Teresa

 

Cerro Gordo 80

Argenta-Oreana 70

 

Decatur St. Teresa 62

Mt. Pulaski 59

 

At Illini Central

 

Augusta Southeastern 52

Illini Central 30

 

Delavan 40 F-OT

Havana 44

 

At Milford

 

LeRoy 63

Watseka 55

 

At Roanoke-Benson

 

Flanagan-Cornell 46

Heyworth 47

 

Bloomington Cornerstone Christian Academy 48

Lexington 53

 

At Stewardson-Strasburg 

 

Meridian 63

Casey-Westfield) 56

 

Stewardson-Strasburg 40

Neoga 44

 

Class 3A Regional semifinal action Wednesday:

 

At Limestone

 

Peoria Notre Dame 48

East Peoria 31

 

Galesburg 33

Peoria Manual 46

 

At Decatur MacArthur

 

Decatur MacArthur 77

Decatur Eisenhower 59

 

Springfield Southeast 66

Charleston 56

 

At Mahomet-Seymour

 

Lincoln 53

Urbana 49

 

Mahomet-Seymour 55

Danville 53

 

At Morton

 

Morton 51

Bloomington45

 

Champaign Centennial 50

Normal West 48

 

At Peoria Richwoods

 

Metamora 77

Peoria Richwoods 55

 

Washington 35

Peoria 33

 

At Springfield (acred Heart-Griffin

 

Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin 69

Springfield 33

 

Mt. Zion 60

Springfield Lanphier 63

 

At Normal Community

 

Normal Community 60

Pekin 25

0
comments


Missouri State Topples Bradley

Isiaih Mosley had 33 points and 11 rebounds as Missouri State beat Bradley 83-67 on Wednesday night.

 

Donovan Clay had 17 points and seven rebounds for Missouri State (21-9, 12-5 Missouri Valley Conference). Gaige Prim added 14 points. Lu'Cye Patterson had five steals.

 

Connor Hickman had 15 points for the Braves (16-13, 10-7). Malevy Leons added 15 points. Ville Tahvanainen had seven rebounds.

 

The Bears improve to 2-0 against the Braves on the season. Missouri State defeated Bradley 71-69 on Jan. 5.

 

The Braves wrap up the regular season Saturday hosting Valpo and then it's off to the Missouri Valley Tournament next weekend in St. Louis.

0
comments


ISU Falls to Southern Illinois

Ben Coupet Jr. had 22 points as Southern Illinois easily defeated Illinois State 90-69 on Wednesday night.

 

Marcus Domask had 16 points and nine assists for Southern Illinois (16-13, 9-8 Missouri Valley Conference), which earned its fourth straight win. Lance Jones added 16 points. Steven Verplancken Jr. had 12 points.

 

The 90 points were a season best for Southern Illinois.

 

Antonio Reeves had 18 points for the Redbirds (11-19, 4-13), whose losing streak stretched to five games. Kendall Lewis added 14 points. Mark Freeman had 12 points.

 

The Salukis improve to 2-0 against the Redbirds on the season. Southern Illinois defeated Illinois State 75-69 on Feb. 5.

 

The Redbirds wrap up the regular season slate Saturday at Redbird Arena hosting Indiana State, then its off to next weekend's Missouri Valley Tournament in St. Louis.

0
comments


Bulls Open Second Half at Atlanta Tonight

Two of the league's top scorers - DeMar DeRozan and Trae Young - meet up when the Chicago Bulls take on the Atlanta Hawks tonight in Atlanta to open the second half of the regular season. 

 

DeRozan ranks third in the NBA averaging 28.1 points per game and Young is fourth in the league averaging 27.8 points per game.

 

The Bulls are 23-13 in Eastern Conference games. Chicago is third in the Eastern Conference scoring 112.6 points while shooting 48.3% from the field.

 

The Hawks have gone 17-18 against Eastern Conference opponents. Atlanta is fourth in the Eastern Conference scoring 112.2 points per game and is shooting 46.8%.

 

The teams meet for the third time this season. The Bulls won 131-117 in the last matchup on Dec. 30. Zach LaVine led the Bulls with 25 points, and Young led the Hawks with 26 points.

 

The Bulls will be opening the second half still pretty banged up, they'll be without Patrick Williams: out (left wrist), Alex Caruso: out (wrist), and Lonzo Ball: out (knee). Zach LaVine, who participated in some All-Star weekend activities, is day to day with a knee injury.

0
comments


Packers Anticipate Answer Soon on Aaron Rodgers' Future

Green Bay Packers general manager Brian Gutekunst says he’s not giving Aaron Rodgers any deadlines on when to decide on a possible return and he believes the four-time MVP will reach a resolution soon.

 

Rodgers has said he hasn’t made up his mind regarding his plans for next season and hasn’t ruled out returning to the Packers, retiring or requesting a trade. Gutekunst said Wednesday they are confident they will have his decision "shortly".

 

Rodgers, who won his second straight MVP award this past season, has said he’d like to make a decision by the time the free agency period starts next month. He wants to give the Packers enough time to prepare for life with or without him.

 

Gutekunst acknowledges Rodgers’ decision will factor into other choices the Packers make as they build their roster for the 2022 season and noted the 38-year-old quarterback is well aware of that.

 

Rodgers said Tuesday on “The Pat McAfee Show” on YouTube and SiriusXM that the postseason conversations he had with Gutekunst, Packers coach Matt LaFleur and executive vice president/director of football operations Russ Ball were much more positive than usual. Rodgers had skipped the Packers’ mandatory minicamp last year in a standoff with team management.

 

Rodgers’ status is the most pressing of several offseason issues facing the Packers, who fell in the divisional playoffs this past season after two straight NFC championship game losses.

 

The Packers are nearly $43 million over the salary cap according to overthecap.com and have several noteworthy potential free agents, including All-Pro wide receiver Davante Adams and linebacker De’Vondre Campbell.

 

Gutekunst confirmed that the Packers restructured defensive tackle Kenny Clark’s contract and added that “there will be many more (contracts) that we touch along the way.” But he doesn’t believe the Packers’ cap situation should cause them to make major cuts to their roster.

 

One option the Packers have is to give Adams a franchise tag. The window for applying franchise tags started Tuesday and runs through March 8.

 

Gutekunst said he’d rather avoid taking that step with Adams, but acknowledged it’s a possibility.

 

Gutekunst also addressed other team-related issues.

 

He expressed confidence that left tackle David Bakhtiari can make a successful return from the torn anterior cruciate ligament that sidelined him for most of the 2021 season.

 

Bakhtiari, who injured his left knee on Dec. 31, 2020, returned to play 27 snaps in Green Bay’s regular-season finale against Detroit but didn’t play in the Packers’ 13-10 playoff loss to the San Francisco 49ers.

 

He said there’s a possibility the Packers keep outside linebacker Za’Darius Smith, but acknowledged the Packers’ cap situation complicates matters. Smith played just one regular-season game because of a back injury but returned for the playoffs and had a sack against the 49ers.

0
comments


Monticello Opens Postseason Play at GCMS Regional

The Monticello Sages boy's basketball team opens postseason play tonight at the GCMS Regional taking on Paxton-Buckley-Loda.

 

The Sages finished the regular season 27-3 overall and won the Illini Prairie Conference title with a 9-1 conference mark. The only blemish in conference action was a road loss at Prairie Central, who is the fourth seed in the Clifton Central sub-sectional. 

 

Monticello toppled PBL 59-43 back on January 21 at the Sievers Center at Monticello High School. The Panthers rolled Clifton Central 59-35 Saturday in Regional quarterfinal action. 

 

The winner of tonight's semifinal game takes on the winner of the second semifinal matchup tonight between Prairie Central and Iroquois West. 

 

Game time tonight from GCMS High School is 6 pm and can be heard on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com. 

 

Class 2A Regional semifinal action tonight:

 

At Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond

 

Teutopolis 6:00pm

Shelbyville

 

Newton 7:30pm

Paris

 

At Beardstown

 

Pleasant Plains 6:00pm

Warsaw 

 

At Bloomington Central Catholic

 

Warrensburg-Latham 6:00pm

Tri-Valley

 

Bloomington Central Catholic 7:30pm

Olympia

 

At Maroa-Forsyth

Normal U-High 6:00pm

Riverton

 

Maroa-Forsyth 7:30pm

Williamsville

 

At Tolono Unity

 

St. Joseph-Ogden 6:00pm

Fithian-Oakwood

 

Tolono Unity 7:30pm

Bismarck-Henning

 

At Wilmington

 

El Paso-Gridley 6:00pm

Braidwood Reed-Custer

 

Pontiac 7:30pm

Seneca  

 

Class 1A Regional semifinal action tonight:

 

At Arcola

 

Tuscola 6:00pm

Georgetown Notre Dame de La Salette

 

Bethany Okaw Valley 7:30 pm

Arcola

 

At Brimfield

 

Peoria Christian 6:00pm

Elmwood

 

Brimfield 7:30pm

Abingdon-Avon

 

At Champaign St. Thomas More

 

Champaign St. Thomas More 6:00pm

Georgetown-Ridge Farm

 

Decatur LSA 7:30pm

Salt Fork

 

At Decatur St. Teresa

 

Cerro Gordo 6:00pm

Argenta-Oreana

 

Decatur St. Teresa 7:30pm

Mt. Pulaski

 

At Kewanee Wethersfield

 

Peoria Quest Charter Academy 7:30pm

Woodhull AlWood

 

At Illini Central

 

Augusta Southeastern 6:00pm

Illini Central

 

Delavan 7:30pm

Havana

 

At Milford

 

LeRoy 7:30pm

Watseka

 

At Roanoke-Benson

 

Flanagan-Cornell 6:00pm

Heyworth

 

Bloomington Cornerstone Christian Academy 7:30pm

Lexington

 

At Stewardson-Strasburg 

 

Meridian 6:00pm

Casey-Westfield

 

Class 3A Regional semifinal action tonight:

 

At Limestone

 

Peoria Notre Dame 6:00pm

East Peoria

 

Galesburg 7:30pm

Peoria Manual

 

At Chatham-Glenwood

 

Chatham-Glenwood 6:00pm

Bethalto Civic Memorial

 

Taylorville 7:30pm

Jacksonville 

 

At Decatur MacArthur

 

Decatur MacArthur 6:00pm

Decatur Eisenhower

 

Springfield Southeast 7:30pm

Charleston

 

At Mahomet-Seymour

 

Lincoln 6:00pm

Urbana

 

Mahomet-Seymour 7:30pm

Danville 

 

At Morton

 

Morton 6:00pm

Bloomington

 

Champaign Centennial 7:30pm

Normal  West

 

At Peoria Richwoods

 

Metamora 6:00pm

Peoria Richwoods

 

Washington 7:30pm

Peoria

 

At Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin

 

Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin 6:00pm

Springfield

 

Mt. Zion 7:30pm

Springfield Lanphier

 

Class 4A Regional semifinal action tonight:

 

At Normal Community

 

Normal Community 6:00pm

Pekin

 

Girl's Class 1A Sectional semifinal action Tuesday:

 

At Blue Ridge

 

Mt. Pulaski 43

Ridgeview 48

 

Watseka 29

Champaign St. Thomas More 32

 

At Tuscola

 

Neoga 41

Tuscola 34

 

Class 2A Sectional semfinal action:

 

At Illinois Valley Central

 

Sherrard 47

Normal U-High 49

 

At Monticello

 

Pana 54

Marshall 36

 

Teutopolis 33

Paris 39

 

At Peotone

 

St. Joseph-Ogden 58

Prairie Central 48

 

At Peotone

 

Fieldcrest 56

Paxton-Buckley-Loda 33

 

Class 3A Section semifinal action Tuesday:

 

At Lincoln

 

Decatur MacArthur 57

Lincoln 72

 

Mahomet-Seymour 34

Rochester 33

 

Class 4A Sectional semifinal action:

 

At Joliet Central

 

Normal Communit) 66

Joliet West 35

0
comments


Blues Roll Flyers

Jordan Binnington rebounded from three awful starts, making 25 saves, and Vladimir Tarasenko scored the go-ahead goal in the third period to lead the St. Louis Blues to a 4-1 victory over the Philadelphia Flyers on Tuesday night.

 

In his last three starts, Binnington went 0-3 while allowing 18 goals. He looked more like the goalie who led the Blues to the Stanley Cup in 2019.

 

St. Louis, which was playing in Philadelphia for the first time since Jan. 7, 2019, has won two straight and four of five. Binnington got his first career start on the Blues' last trip to Philly, a 3-0 shutout in which he made 25 saves. And he was sharp again in the City of Brotherly Love.

 

Ivan Barbashev had a goal and an assist, and Brayden Schenn and Brandon Saad also scored for the Blues, who completed a 3-1 road trip. St. Louis avoided losing to two of the NHL's worst teams in less than a week. The Blues lost 3-2 in overtime last Thursday at Montreal, which snapped the Canadiens' 10-game losing streak.

 

Oskar Lindblom scored for the Flyers, who lost their sixth in a row and 19th in the last 21.

 

Tarasenko notched his team-leading 19th goal to put the Blues up 2-1 with 11:09 remaining, finishing from the slot as he fell to the ice. It also was his 46th point, tops on the Blues.

 

Schenn opened the scoring 11:50 in when he finished a wild sequence in front of the net for his 15th goal. Jordan Kyrou's initial shot caromed off the post and went to Barbashev, whose attempt from the middle of the ice was denied with a stellar stick save by Martin Jones. But then Schenn pounced on the rebound. Officials initially ruled the puck didn't cross the goal line before the decision was reversed after video review.

 

The Blues outshot Philadelphia 11-7 while controlling the second period. They had several chances to go up more but couldn't convert. St. Louis' best opportunities came when Tarasenko's try caromed off the post two minutes into the period and Ryan O'Reilly was denied from close range by a good save from Jones.

 

Giroux nearly tied it with 11:38 left in the second, but his slap shot on a 2-on-1 also went off the post.

 

Barbashev and Saad converted empty-netters in the final minute.

 

The Blues host the Buffalo Sabres on Friday.

0
comments


Girl's Basketball Sectional Semifinal Action Tonight

Class 1A

 

At Blue Ridge

 

Mt. Pulaski 6:00pm

Ridgeview

 

Watseka 7:30pm

Champaign St. Thomas More

 

At Tuscola

 

Neoga 7:30pm

Tuscola

 

Class 2A

 

At Illinois Valley Central

 

Sherrard 6:00pm

Normal U-High

 

At Peotone

 

St. Joseph-Ogden 6:00pm

Prairie Central

 

Fieldcrest 7:30pm

Paxton-Buckley-Loda

 

Class 3A

 

At LaSalle-Peru

 

Morton 6:00pm

Galesburg

 

Geneseo 7:30pm

Washington

 

At Lincoln

 

Decatur MacArthur 6:00pm

Lincoln

 

Mahomet-Seymour 7:30pm

Rochester

 

Class 4A

 

At Joliet Central

 

Normal Community 7:00pm

Joliet West

0
comments


Loyola-Chicago Holds Off ISU

Aher Uguak registered 17 points and seven rebounds as Loyola Chicago got past Illinois State 59-50 on Monday night.

 

Tate Hall had 11 points and seven rebounds for the Ramblers (21-6, 12-4 Missouri Valley Conference). Tom Welch added 10 points. Braden Norris had nine rebounds.

 

Antonio Reeves had 15 points to pace the Redbirds (11-18, 4-12), who have lost four straight. Reeves also had seven turnovers. Josiah Strong added 11 points. Howard Fleming Jr. had seven rebounds.

 

The Ramblers improve to 2-0 against the Redbirds this season. Loyola Chicago defeated Illinois State 78-64 on Feb. 2.

 

The Redbirds head to Southern Illinois Wednesday evening.

0
comments


Illinois Salvages Weekend Series Finale

The Illinois Fighting Illini won the third and final game of this weekend's three-game series on Sunday against Kansas, 7-1. Illinois (1-2) picked up their first win of the season after dropping the first two games of the weekend series with the Jayhawks. 

 

Sophomore LHP Payton Hutchings impressed in his first career start on the mound, earning his first career win and allowing just one run on eight hits in 6.0 innings of work. The Illini racked up 12 hits to take down the Jayhawks on Sunday afternoon in Corpus Christi.

 

The Orange and Blue jumped out to a lead in the third inning as junior INF Branden Comia drove in his first run of the season on a single to left field. Junior INF Kellen Sarver followed with his first homer of the season, a two-run shot down the right field line to extend the Illini lead to three heading into the fourth inning.

 

Illinois would tack on four more, allowing Kansas (2-1) to score just one in the remaining five frames. Sarver went 3-for-5 on the afternoon, finishing a triple shy of the cycle and tallying 2 RBIs, while sophomore OF Danny Doligale added two hits and two RBIs. Sophomore INF Cal Hejza was the third Illini with a multi-hit game, going 2-for-3 with two runs scored.  

 

Illinois will travel to Conway, South Carolina next weekend for games against Middle Tennessee and Coastal Carolina, followed by UNC-Wilmington in Wilmington, N.C. to wrap up the weekend.

0
comments


Illinois State Drops Weekend Finale to No. 2 Arkansas

The Illinois State baseball team scored in the 2nd inning but fell, 4-2, against second-ranked Arkansas in the series rubber match on Sunday at Baum-Walker Stadium in front of more than 10,400 fans.

 

The Redbirds (1-2) stranded six runners in the first four innings as the Razorbacks (2-1) held ISU to 0-6 with runners in scoring position and 1-for-13 with runners on base for the game.

 

Third-year sophomore Ryan Cermak smacked a solo home run in the 8th inning to bring the Redbirds back to within one.

 

In the 2nd inning, fifth-year senior Nick Gile grounded home third-year sophomore Adrian Flores to put the 'Birds up, 1-0.

 

In his first career start, fourth-year junior Derek Salata provided three scoreless innings to start the game, but the Razorbacks tied it in the 4th inning before plating two runs in the 5th inning.

 

Fifth-year junior Jared Hart escaped the two-out, bases-loaded jam in the 5th inning en route to recorded six outs without allowing a run and fanning three.

 

Cermak got the 'Birds to within 3-2 but Arkansas added a run in the 8th inning.

 

First-year freshman JP Gauthier recorded his first career hit in the 9th inning, but the Redbirds were unable to cut the deficit.

 

The Redbirds head to Cullowhee, North Carolina for a three-game set against Western Carolina starting Friday afternoon. 

0
comments


Panthers Drop Blackhawks

Aleksander Barkov had a goal and two assists and the surging Florida Panthers beat the Chicago Blackhawks on 5-2 on Sunday for their third straight win.

 

Aaron Ekblad, Brandon Montour, MacKenzie Weegar and Anton Lundell also scored as Eastern Conference-leading Florida won for the seventh time in eight games and finished a five-game road trip at 4-1-0.

 

The Panthers are 3-0 following the All-Star break and gelling when away from South Florida. They're an impressive 23-3-0 at home and have improved to 12-7-5 on the road.

 

According to Florida coach Andrew Brunette, there's no need for the high-scoring Panthers to be flashy all the time.

 

Florida entered the game leading the NHL in scoring at 4.14 goals and 36.5 shots per game. In this one, the Panthers got three goals from defensemen.

 

Ekblad, one of the NHL's top offensive blueliners, scored his 13th goal. Weegar and Montour each added their fifth.

 

Patrick Kane had a goal and an assist for Chicago, which dropped its third straight overall and seventh in a row at home (0-6-1). The Blackhawks haven't won at the United Center since beating Anaheim on Jan. 15 and are 8-13-4 in their rink this season.

 

Caleb Jones added a late goal in the third just as a Chicago power play ended to make it closer.

 

Kane's assist gave him 720 for his career, all with Chicago, and moved him past Hall of Famer Denis Savard for second on the team's career list.

 

Sergei Bobrovsky made 22 saves for Florida. Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 20 shots for Chicago.

 

The Blackhawks matched tempo with the Panthers for much of the game.

 

Chicago outshot Florida 11-3 in the first, but the Panthers started to dominate as the period went on.

 

Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews missed his ninth game under concussion protocol. 

 

The Blackhawks host New Jersey on Friday.

0
comments


Rookie Cindric Takes Home Daytona 500 Win

Austin Cindric worked with teammate Ryan Blaney over the closing laps to win the Daytona 500 as a celebration of Penske’s 85th birthday.

 

It was just one year ago that Penske drivers Cindric, Joey Logano and Brad Keselowski all crashed while racing for the win on the final lap at Daytona International Speedway. It took time for tempers to thaw as Roger Penske made his expectations clear to his drivers.

 

Penske had one rule at the Daytona 500 for his drivers: Do Not Wreck Each Other.

 

Cindric was the leader at the start of the two-lap overtime shootout with Blaney beside him. He was driving the No. 2 Ford, the flagship car at Team Penske that was vacated at the end of last season when Keselowski left the organization, and now Keselowski was behind him determined not to get beaten by his replacement.

 

But Cindric switched lanes as soon as he’d cleared Blaney to drop in front of his teammate so the duo could hook together for two final trips around the track. Blaney made one desperate attempt up high to get around Cindric, but Cindric threw a huge block that forced Blaney into the outside wall.

 

Bubba Wallace then surged even with Cindric in the bottom lane, forcing Cindric to forget about Blaney behind him and focus on beating Wallace to the finish line.

 

It was the first career Cup victory for the 23-year-old Cindric, who was promoted from the Xfinity Series to replace Keselowski and run for NASCAR’s rookie of the year honors.

 

The win was the third Daytona 500 victory for Penske, who also picked up the trophy in 2008 with Ryan Newman and 2015 with Logano. Ford Motor Co. has won the Daytona 500 17 times, including two in a row.

 

Wallace finished second for the second time in his career in the Daytona 500.

 

A trio of Ford drivers rounded out the top five with Chase Briscoe third, followed by Blaney and Aric Almirola.

 

Kyle Busch was sixth to join Wallace as the only Toyota drivers in the top 10. Michael McDowell was seventh, followed by David Ragan and Keselowski, and finally Chase Elliott in the only Chevrolet to finish inside the top 10.

0
comments


Cockburn leads No. 12 Illinois past slumping No. 19 Spartans

Kofi Cockburn scored 27 points, Jacob Grandison had a season-high 24 and No. 12 Illinois held off No. 19 Michigan State 79-74 on Saturday.

 

Illinois (19-7, 12-4 Big Ten) moved ahead of No. 15 Wisconsin and into a first-place tie with No. 5 Purdue in the conference standings.

 

Tyson Walker scored a season-high 26 points and A.J. Hoggard had 15 for the Spartans (18-9, 9-6), who never led and trailed by as many as 16 points in the second half. Michigan State has lost four of five.

 

The Spartans rallied down the stretch, cutting the lead to two points several times in the final two minutes, before Trent Frazier made a 3-pointer with 25 seconds left to put the game out of reach. Frazier finished with 12 points.

 

Michigan State shot 31% from the floor in the first half and trailed 34-22 at the break but heated up after halftime, finishing the game at 46.8% shooting to Illinois’ 45%.

 

Cockburn scored in double figures for the 36th straight game, the third-longest such streak in the nation.

0
comments


Leons scores 21 to carry Bradley over Illinois St. 72-64

Malevy Leons tied his season high with 21 points as Bradley topped Illinois State 72-64 on Saturday.

 

Leons converted all 12 of his free throws. He added nine rebounds.

 

Terry Roberts had 18 points for Bradley (16-12, 10-6 Missouri Valley Conference), which earned its sixth straight home victory. Rienk Mast added 17 points.

 

Antonio Reeves had 20 points for the Redbirds (11-17, 4-11). Josiah Strong added 12 points. Mark Freeman had 10 points and six rebounds.

The Braves leveled the season series against the Redbirds. Illinois State defeated Bradley 74-65 on Jan. 16.

0
comments


IHSA Boys Basketball Regional Championship Scores

Scores from Saturday's Class 2A Regional quarterfinal action:

 

Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond 41    
Shelbyville 54

 

Illinois Valley Central 73    
Spring Valley Hall 68

 

Tri-Valley     58    
Tremont 49

 

Iroquois West 62   
G.C.M.S. 52

 

Dee-Mack     29    
Olympia 30

 

Paris    44     
Sullivan    34

 

Paxton-Buckley-Loda 59    
Clifton Central 35

 

Williamsville 73     
Buffalo Tri-City 43

 

Class 1A Regional quarterfinal action from Saturday

 

Arcola     54   
Villa Grove  27

 

Argenta-Oreana 71   
Fisher 32

 

Bethany Okaw Valley 52    
Chrisman 13

 

Bloomington Cornerstone Christian Academy 73     
Ridgeview 30

 

Cerro Gordo 2   
Decatur Christian 0

 

Champaign St. Thomas More 70  
Danville Schlarman 37

 

Decatur LSA 81    
Armstrong 53

 

Decatur St. Teresa 89    
DeLand-Weldon 32

 

Delavan    48     
Hartsburg-Emden 21

 

Georgetown-Ridge Farm 71  
Champaign Judah Christian 60

 

Heyworth     69    
Normal Calvary Christian Academy 53

 

LeRoy    68     
Donovan 18

 

Lexington     68    
Roanoke-Benson 56

 

Meridian     75    
Central A & M 49

 

Illini Central 70    
Astoria  36

 

Mt. Pulaski      63    
Blue Ridge 28

 

Tuscola     76    
Broadlands Heritage 22

 

Class 3A regional quarterfinal action:


East Peoria     48   
Limestone 38

 

Mattoon     49    
Decatur Eisenhower 51

 

Springfield    46    
Rochester 44

0
comments


Riverton Outlasts Maroons In Regional Quarterfinal

In a game heard Saturday afternoon on WHOW, the Clinton Maroons fell to the Riverton Hawks, 54-47, in Class 2A Regional Quartfinal action. 
 

The game was back and forth throughout, but Riverton outscored Clinton 25 to 18 in the second half.  
 

Clinton was lead by Mason Walker, who paced all scorers with 18.  The sophomore was named the Serv-Pro of Piatt & Dewitt County "Player of the Game."   Dawson Graves added 14; Brooks Cluver dropped in 7; and Trevor Scott contributed 6 for the Maroons. 
 

Riverton was led by Garrett Yard with 17, and Antonyo Davis with 12.  The Hawks (14-19) advance to play Normal U-High at Maroa Wednesday night at 6p. 
 

Clinton ends its season at 11-21 overall.  
 

0
comments


IHSA Girls Basketball Regional Championship Scores

2A:

 

Pana 59, Tolono Unity 29, F

Peotone 43, Prairie Central 49, F

St. Joseph-Ogden 51, Kankakee McNamara 17, F

Dee-Mack 29, Normal U-High 50, F

Fithian Oakwood 40, PBL 55, F

Sherrard 45, IVC 28, F

 

1A:

 

Mt. Pulaski 51, Cerro Gordo 39, F

Champaign St. Thomas More 50, LeRoy 39, F

 

3A:

 

Lincoln 56, Champaign Centennial 27, F

Springfield 63, Decatur MacArthur 68, F

Peoria Notre Dame 37, Washington 44, F

Mahomet-Seymour 53, Bloomington 37, F

Peoria 27, Morton 31, F

Rochester 31, Springfield Southeast 23, F

0
comments


Lady Maroons Fall In Regional Championship

In a game heard Friday night on WHOW, the Clinton Lady Maroons saw their record setting season come to an end at the hand of the Paris Tigers, 63-38. 
 

Paris entered the contest ranked 6th in the state in Class 2A, while the Lady Maroons were ranked 12th.  Clinton jumped out to an early lead, but Paris got hot from outside midway through the first quarter, and never slowed down.  The Tigers hit a dozen three pointers in the game, pulling away in both the second and fourth quarters.  
 

The 27-4 Tigers were led by Madyson Rigdon with 18, Katelyn Littleton with 16, and Kendra Young with 12.  
 

Clinton ends the season with a record of 27-6. The 27 wins is the most in a season in program history.   Mallory Cyrulik was named the Serv-Pro of Piatt & Dewitt County "Player of the Game."  The senior led Clinton with 17 points. She ends her career among school leaders in scoring and rebounds with over a thousand of each.  Senior Kaitlyn Rauch added 9, and ends her Maroons career with over a thousand points scored as well.  Senior Kylie Raymer also added 9 for Clinton. 
 

Raymer and Makayla Koeppel of the Maroons also advanced to the Sectional round of the state 3-point shootout Friday night.  They'll join Paris' Littleton and Maroa-Forsyth's Leah Adlaugh in advancing to the next round.  
 

0
comments


Clinton Lady Maroons Go for Regional Title Tonight

The Clinton Lady Maroons girl's basketball team has racked up the most wins in a single season in school history and tonight will look to continue its fantastic season with a Class 2A Regional title.

 

It'll be a tough road for the Lady Maroons will take on Paris at Clinton High School. Paris, at 26-4 overall, is ranked sixth in this week's Class 2A high school girl's basketball poll. For thie first time this season, the Lady Maroons received votes in the 2A poll.

 

The Lady Maroons are 27-5 overall. They beat Warrensburg-Latham Tuesday night to advance to tonight's matchup with Paris who beat Sangamon Valley Tuesday. 

 

Game time tonight is 7 pm and can be heard on WHOW and all its digital platforms.

 

Class 2A Regional final action tonight:

 

At Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond

 

Pana 7:00 pm

Tolono Unity

 

At Braidwood Reed-Custer

 

Peotone 7:00 pm

Prairie Central

 

At Kankakee McNamara

 

St. Joseph-Ogden 7:00 pm

Kankakee McNamara

 

At Normal U-High

 

Dee-Mack 7:00 pm

Normal U-High

 

At Paxton-Buckley-Loda

 

Fithian Oakwood 7:00pm

Paxton-Buckley-Loda

 

At Princeton

 

Sherrard 7:00pm

IVC

 

At Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin

 

Quincy Notre Dame 6:30pm

Williamsville

 

Class 1A Regional Final Action tonight:

 

At Cerro Gordo

 

Mt. Pulaski 7:00pm

Cerro Gordo

 

At Ridgeview

 

Milford 7:00pm

Ridgeview

 

At LeRoy

 

Champaign St. Thomas More 6:00pm

LeRoy

 

At Meridian (SATURDAY)

 

Central A & M 1:00pm

Tuscola

 

Class 3A Regional Final Action:

 

At Champaign Central

 

Lincoln 7:00pm

Champaign Centennial

 

At Jacksonville 

 

Springfield 7:00pm

Decatur MacArthur

 

At Metamora

 

Peoria Notre Dame 7:00pm

Washington

 

At Normal West

 

Mahomet-Seymour 7:00pm

Bloomington

 

At Peoria 

 

Peoria 7:00pm

Morton

 

At Rochester

 

Rochester 7:00pm

Springfield Southeast

0
comments


Clinton Boy's Basketball Team Wraps Up Regular Season Tonight; Takes on Riverton Saturday in Regional Action

It'll be a frantic finish to the season for the Clinton Maroon's boy's basketball team as they wrap up regular season play tonight at Meridian and finish with a road game for a Regional quarterfinal matchup at Riverton.

 

The Hawks of Meridian have aspirations of a state title this March. They are ranked seventh in the latest Class 1A high school boy's basketball state rankings, coming into action tonight at 22-7 overall. 

 

The Maroons are winners of 6 of their last 12 with an overall record of 11-19.

 

Game time tonight from Meridian is 7:30 pm.

 

Then tomorrow, the Maroons hit the road for an afternoon contest with Riverton in Regional quarterfinal action. Game time from Riverton High School is 1 pm. You can hear Saturday's action on WHOW and all its digital platforms.

0
comments


Illinois Baseball Opens Season This Weekend

The Illinois baseball team begins its 2-22 season today with a trip to Corpus Christi, Texas. The Illini are scheduled to play a three-game series against Kansas at Whataburger Field.

 

This season, the team has 24 players returning from the 2021 roster and welcomes 13 newcomers. Four of the 13 newcomers are transfers.

 

The four newcomer transfers are OF Tyler Thompson, RHP Johnny Czeslawski  from North Iowa C.C., RHP Tommy Green from Mercer, and RHP Jack Wenninger from Murray State.

 

The Illini offense ranked first in the Big Ten last year in team batting average (.276) and hits (411). Additionally, Illinois was third in runs per game (6.6) and third in runs (290). 

 

Illinois has had the Big Ten regular season batting champion the last three full seasons with  DH/1B Justin Janas taking the 2021 honors. Grant Van Scoy was the 2019 batting champ and Bren Spillane won it in 2018.

 

Illinois finished the season 22-22 and seventh in the Big Ten in 2021. Illinois has finished at or above .500 in 16-of-17 seasons under head coach Dan Hartleb.

 

Sophomore left-hander Cole Kirschsieper will get the start for the Illini on Friday. Kirschsieper went 3-4 overall in 2021 with a 5.82 ERA in 38.2 innings. The Frankfort, Illinois native is the No. 4 left-handed pitching prospect out of the Big Ten for the 2022 MLB draft. 

 

Janas and C/OF Jacob Campbell were Perfect Game Preseason All-Big Ten selections. 

 

Illinois will send sophomore righty Jack Wenninger to the mound for Saturday's contest, followed by sophomore LHP Payton Hutchings for the series finale on Sunday.

0
comments


Illinois State Baseball Opens Season This Weekend

The Illinois State baseball team will open the 2022 season with a three-game set at second-ranked Arkansas, marking the first time the Redbirds have ever started the season with a ranked opponent and the first time since 2004 that ISU has opened with a Power Five school. 

 

Illinois State adds 17 players (5 freshmen, 12 transfers) to its roster for the 2022 season. Key contributors are expected to be Charlotte transfer RHP Kolton Scherbenske, Cabrillo College transfer C Adrian Flores, Sacramento City College transfer SS Greg Nichols, among others. The Redbirds also expected to return a healthy RHP Mason Burns (shoulder), LHP Trey Krause (Ewing's Sarcoma), and RF Jonathan Sabotnik (redshirt) from its 2021 roster.

 

Arkansas went 50-13 in 2022, winning the SEC and going 30-8 at home. The Razorbacks fell in the Super Regional to NC State.

 

ISU turns to right-hander Jordan Lussier in Friday afternoon's game. In 2021 Lussier finished 6-3, 74.1 IP, 67 K, 4.36 ERA, earning Honorable Mention All-MVC in 2021. LHP Sean Sinisko gets the ball Saturday. He went 5-5, 71.0 IP, 52 K, 4.44 ERA in 2021 also earning Honorable Mention All-MVC. Derek Salata makes his first career start Sunday.  In 2021 he came out of the bullpen to go 2-4, 36.1 IP, 31 K, 4.95 ERA.

0
comments


Canadiens Get By Blues

Cole Caufield forced overtime with 8.7 seconds left in regulation and then scored the winner in overtime to help the Montreal Canadiens snap a 10-game skid with a 3-2 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Thursday night.

 

Paul Byron also scored and Samuel Montembeault stopped 26 shots for the Canadiens, whose last win came on Jan. 18 at Dallas.

 

The victory was the first for interim coach Martin St. Louis, who was 0-3-0 since taking over for the fired Dominique Ducharme.

 

Robert Thomas and Pavel Buchnevich scored for the Blues, and Ville Husso made 27 saves.

 

With 1:19 to go and the game tied at 1, Buchnevich powered his way to what looked to be the winning goal with a slap shot from the right faceoff circle.

 

But Caufield forced overtime on a one-timer with less than nine seconds remaining. The rookie wasn't done there, giving Montreal the win off another one-timer.

 

The players gave the game puck to their coach.

 

Playing in his 500th NHL game, Byron got his first goal of the season and gave Montreal a rare opening marker this season by scoring at the 7:13 mark of the first period.

 

The Blues tied it on a short-handed effort with 1:34 to go in the first when Thomas and Buchnevich exchanged passes on the rush and Thomas beat Montembeault with his seventh goal of the season.

 

St. Louis is at Toronto Maple Leafs on Saturday.

0
comments


Blue Jackets Blast Blackhawks

Red-hot Patrik Laine scored three goals to lead the Columbus Blue Jackets past the Chicago Blackhawks 7-4 on Thursday night.

 

Boone Jenner, Yegor Chinakhov and Max Domi each had a goal and assist for Columbus, which has won three of four to move above .500 at 24-23-1. Oliver Bjorkstrand also scored as the Blue Jackets took the finale of a five-game road trip to go 4-1-0 on the swing.

 

Laine's first hat trick with Columbus extended his points streak to eight games, matching the second-longest of his career. The fleet Finnish forward has 10 goals and six assists in the span, and 16 goals on the season.

 

Laine connected on three of five shots in this one.

 

Elvis Merzlikins made 28 saves for the Blue Jackets, who are 6-2-0 in their last eight.

 

Philipp Kurashev and Ryan Carpenter each had a goal and an assist for the Blackhawks, who had won six straight against Columbus. Alex DeBrincat notched his team-leading 29th goal and MacKenzie Entwistle also scored.

 

The 22-year-old Soderblom made 30 saves his second NHL start and third appearance.

The Blackhawks came up short in the opener of a six-game homestand that's critical to any hope of them climbing into playoff contention.

 

Chicago top defenseman Seth Jones skated against the Blue Jackets, his team for the six previous seasons, for the first time since the Blackhawks acquired him in a trade last July. Jones was in COVID-19 protocol when the teams met in Columbus on Jan. 11.

 

Jones narrowly missed scoring late in the second when he cut to the net and tipped Patrick Kane's feed off the post.

 

The Blackhawks host Dallas on Friday.

0
comments


Keselowski Leads RFK Racing to Victory Lane at Daytona Duels

Brad Keselowski took Jack Roush to victory lane for the first time since 2017 as their rebranded team showed its ready for the Daytona 500.

 

Keselowski and Chris Buescher won the 150-mile qualifying races at Daytona International Speedway on Thursday night to put them side-by-side starting from the second row in NASCAR’s sold-out, season-opening spectacular.

 

He won the race on the 60th and final lap of the second qualifying race for the Daytona 500 when leader Joey Logano wrecked trying to block Buescher’s run. Logano, who was visibly angry after wrecking his Team Penske Ford, said he misjudged Buescher’s closing rate.

 

Keselowski celebrated a huge first night of Daytona racing as both the team owner and its driver. He left Penske in November for an ownership stake of Roush’s organization — now called RFK Racing for Roush Fenway Keselowski — and is now driver of Roush’s flagship and original No. 6 Ford.

 

Keselowski and Buescher will start Sunday behind NASCAR champion Kyle Larson and his Hendrick Motorsports teammate Alex Bowman. The Chevrolet drivers locked down the front row in Wednesday night time trials.

 

Six teams came to Daytona battling for four “open” spots in Sunday’s 40-car field. Two spots were filled in time trials — former Formula One champion Jacques Villeneuve will make his Daytona 500 debut, as will Noah Gragson for Beard Motorsports — and one spot was available in each of the two qualifying races.

 

Grala earned one of them with a pass for 18th on the final lap of the first race. NY Racing, a team owned by Black entrepreneur John Cohen, raced its way into the Daytona 500 in the second race. The team pulled Greg Biffle out of semi-retirement and at 52, Biffle will be the oldest driver in the field Sunday when he makes his 15th career Daytona 500 start.

 

The 500 has been sold out for about a month with an expected crowd Sunday of more than 120,000.

 

Larson led a race-high 34 laps from the pole, but finished seventh. He will lead the field to green Sunday in the debut of NASCAR’s new Next Gen car.

 

The racing Thursday night was extremely conservative until Logano’s last-lap block — because of the slow rollout of the Next Gen, the car missed its initial deadline by a year because of the pandemic — teams simply don’t have enough race cars.

0
comments


Monticello Up A Spot in Latest 2A Poll

The Monticello High School boy's basketball team is up a spot in the latest Class 2A state rankings.

 

In a three-way tie for seventh, the Sages are up a spot with Chicago Perspectives Charter Leadership and Rockford Lutheran.

 

Chicago Leo is the top team in 2A followed by DePaul College Prep, El Paso-Gridley, Chicago Clark, and Nashville round out the top 5. Breese Central checks in at No. 6 this week and Chicago Orr rounds out the top 10.

 

In the latest Class 1A poll, Meridian is down to No. 7 this week from No. 4 last week. Tuscola is new to the poll this week tied for ninth with Peoria Christian and Steeleville. 

 

Scales Mount remains the top team in the state. Yorkville Christian and Fulton swapped spots for no. 2 and no. 3, respectively. Liberty is up a spot to No. 4 and Altamont is new the poll this week, all the way to No. 5, tying with Concord Triopia to round out the top 5.

 

In Class 3A, Chicago Simeon is the top team. Hillcrest, East St. Louis, Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin and Hyde Park round out the top 5. SHG received a first-place vote.

 

Harvey Thornton, Burlington Central, Centralia, Chicago Mt. Carmel and Marian Catholic round out the top 10.

 

In Class 4A, Glenbard West is the unanimous No. 1 team.

0
comments


Lincoln Girl's Basketball Team Falls Out of Latest 3A Poll; Clinton Lady Maroons Receive Votes

The Lincoln Lady Railsplitters girl's basketball team will go for a Regional title this week but it wasn't enough to keep them in the latest Class 3A high school girl's basketball state rankings.

 

With the postseason underway, the Lady Railers have fallen out of the latest 3A poll. Nazareth and Geneseo swapped spots at No. 1 and No. 2, respectively. Peoria Central stayed at No. 3 while Peoria Notre Dame and Sycamore swapped places at No. 4 and No. 5, respectively.

 

Matoon, Morton, Washington, Montini, and Mahomet-Seymour round out the top 10.

 

In the latest 2A rankings, Winnebago, Pana, Quincy Notre Dame, Illini West and Chicago Noble Stree Butler are the top 5 teams. 

 

Fieldcrest and Paris tied for sixth, Peotone is No. 8 and Carterville and Teutopolis round out the top 10. The Clinton Lady Maroons received votes in this week's poll.

 

In Class 1A, Brimfield is the No. 1 team followed by Okawville, Tri-County, Galena, and Brown County in the top 5.

 

In Class 4A, Chicago Stevenson is the top team followed by Benet Academy, Edwardsville, Loyola Academy and Barrington in the top 5.

0
comments


Rutgers Blows Away Illinois

No. 12 Illinois became the fourth straight ranked team to fall to the Rutgers Scarlet Knights, getting beat 70-59 on Wednesday night. Rutgers' run is almost sure to get Steve Pikiell's team a ranking for the first time this season and a berth in the NCAA Tournament for a second straight season.

 

Pikiell wasn't ready claim anything after the game, saying he will wait under March 13 for the official NCAA Tournament announcement.

 

Cliff Omoruyi had 15 points, 13 rebounds and a reverse alley-oop dunk in a game-breaking second run for Rutgers.

 

The winning streak against ranked teams is the longest in school history for the Scarlet Knights (16-9, 10-5 Big Ten). There's a chance to continue the streak with games next week at No. 5 Purdue and home against No. 15 Wisconsin. The last team to win four straight against ranked teams in the regular season was Michigan State in 2019-20.

 

Ron Harper Jr. added 16 points and eight rebounds and had the assist on Omoruyi's second-half dunk. It was the second basket in a 12-0 run that ballooned the Scarlet Knights' lead to 47-28. Paul Mulcahy added 13 points and Caleb McConnell had 11.

 

Center Kofi Cockburn was the only consistent threat for Illinois (18-7, 11-4), finishing with 20 points and 10 rebounds. Trent Frazier added 11 points and RJ Melendez had 10.

 

The Illini shot 38% from the field, including 6 of 23 from 3-point range. But they missed their first 13 shot attempts and were never in the game.

 

Rutgers improved to 13-2 at home, and its biggest lead was 60-37 with about six minutes to play.

 

Rutgers' recent run has combined good shooting and defense, and that was evident in the early as the Scarlet Knights opened the game with a 17-7 spurt, featuring six points by Harper. Cockburn had all the Illini points inside.

 

Illinois couldn't find its shooting touch in the first 20 minutes, shooting 32% and connecting the last of its 14 3-point attempts.

 

Rutgers led 33-24 at half, a season-low first-half point total for Illinois.

 

Harper seemed to jam a hand late, but Pikiell had no information on his injury.

 

Illinois is at No. 19 Michigan State on Saturday.

0
comments


Bulls Get By Kings

DeMar DeRozan scored 38 points in breaking a mark set by Hall of Famer Wilt Chamberlain, and the Chicago Bulls beat the Sacramento Kings 125-118 on Wednesday night.

 

DeRozan, who made 16 of 27 field goals, became the first player in NBA history to score 35 or more points and shoot 50% or better in seven consecutive games. Chamberlain did it in six straight twice - during the 1960-61 and 1962-63 seasons.

 

It was also DeRozan's eighth game in a row with 30 or more points. It's the longest such streak by a Bulls player since Michael Jordan did it in eight straight in January 1996.

 

Coby White set a season high with 31 points and matched one with six 3-pointers. Nikola Vucevic added 21 points and 10 rebounds as the Bulls won their fifth straight.

 

They also moved a half-game ahead of Miami for the Eastern Conference lead even though Zach LaVine missed his third in a row because of soreness in his left knee. They are guaranteed at least a share of first place at the All-Star break, with the Heat visiting Charlotte on Thursday.

 

De'Aaron Fox led Sacramento with 33 points and nine assists. Domantas Sabonis added 22 points, 12 rebounds and eight assists in his fourth game since a trade from Indiana.

 

Justin Holiday made six 3s and scored 18 points. Harrison Barnes added 17 points, but the Kings dropped their second straight after winning two in a row.

 

The Bulls host the Atlanta Hawks on Feb. 24.

0
comments


Pacers Down Wizards

Tyrese Halibutron had 21 points and 14 assists, Tristan Thompson finished with a season-high 17 points and the Pacers beat the Washington Wizards 113-108 in Thompson's final game with Indiana.

 

Pacers Coach Rick Carlisle announced that Thompson will be waived Thursday and is is expected to sign with the Chicago Bulls.

 

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope led the Wizards with 27 points. Kyle Kuzma finished with 26 points, 15 rebounds and matched his season-best with six 3-pointers as Washington lost for the fourth time in six games. Kristaps Porzingis continued to sit out with a bruised right knee, and coach Wes Unseld Jr. also ruled out Porzingis for Thursday's game against Brooklyn.

 

With both teams starting the day below the Eastern Conference's play-in round cutline and the long break looming, the game, predictably, lacked energy.

 

Indiana appeared to take control when it scored six straight points to grab a 76-63 lead late in the third quarter. But Washington steadily cut into the lead, closing to 86-82 early in the fourth and eventually making it 95-94 when Caldwell-Pope made a 3-pointer with 5:18 remaining.

 

But Indiana answered with six straight and after Caldwell-Pope made back-to-back baskets to twice make it a two-point game in the final 90 seconds, Oshae Brissett's dunk with 21.3 seconds left finally helped Indiana close it out.

 

Buddy Hield had 15 points, seven assists and five rebounds. Brissett had 17 points and six rebounds. Lance Stephenson finished with 11 points, six rebounds and four assists. 

 

Indiana has had losing streaks of seven and six games as well as three four-game skids and two three-game losing streaks. The Pacers are 1-7 in February.

 

The Pacers host Oklahoma City on Feb. 25.

0
comments


Kyle Larson Takes Pole for Dayton 500

Reigning NASCAR Cup Series champion Kyle Larson has started 2022 off the way he ended 2021 – out front. The 29-year-old Hendrick Motorsports driver won the pole position for Sunday’s Daytona 500 season-opener with a lap of 181.159 mph in the No. 5 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet Wednesday night at Daytona International Speedway.

 

And for a record fifth consecutive year, Larson’s Hendrick Motorsports teammate Alex Bowman has also earned a front-row starting position in the Daytona 500. He’ll start the No. 48 Chevrolet second.

 

All four of the Hendrick Motorsports cars advanced to the final round with 10 drivers and ultimately were among the five fastest qualifiers. Only the front row was set Wednesday night with the remaining Daytona 500 field finalized in Thursday’s Bluegreen Vacations Duel 150 qualifying races.

 

This is the seventh Daytona 500 pole position in eight years for the team. And it’s Larson’s career-best starting position.

0
comments


Southern Illinois Edges Past Bradley

Marcus Domask had a season-high 25 points as Southern Illinois beat Bradley 65-57 on Tuesday night.'

Ben Coupet Jr. had 19 points and seven rebounds for Southern Illinois (14-13, 7-8'= Missouri Valley Conference). Lance Jones added 11 points.

 

Southern Illinois dominated the first half and led 41-22 at the break. The Braves' 22 first-half points were a season-low for the team.

 

Terry Roberts had 11 points for the Braves (15-12, 9-6). Rienk Mast added 10 points and nine rebounds.

 

Bradley Hosts Illinois State Saturday afternoon.

0
comments


Northern Iowa Holds Off Illinois State

Noah Carter had 23 points and Northern Iowa edged Illinois State 72-70 on Tuesday night.

 

AJ Green added 20 points and six rebounds for the Panthers. Trae Berhow had 10 points and six rebounds for Northern Iowa (15-10, 11-4 Missouri Valley Conference).

 

Antonio Reeves had 27 points for the Redbirds (11-16, 4-10). Kendall Lewis added 15 points and 14 rebounds. Howard Fleming Jr. had 10 points.

 

The Panthers improve to 2-0 against the Redbirds for the season. Northern Iowa defeated Illinois State 79-64 on Jan. 29.

 

The Redbirds head up I-74 Saturday for a matchup at Bradley.

0
comments


Blues Blast Senators

Vladimir Tarasenko scored twice and had an assist, and the St. Louis Blues beat the Ottawa Senators 5-2 on Tuesday night.

 

Tarasenko's first goal put the Blues up 2-1 in the second period, and his second was an empty-netter that came with about two minutes left in a game that was well in hand by then. He now has 18 goals this season.

 

Brayden Schenn, Robert Thomas and Oskar Sundqivst also scored for the Blues, and Ville Husso made 18 saves.

 

Tim Stutzle and Parker Kelly scored for the Senators. Goalie Matt Murray made 27 saves before he was injured when Sundqvist fell on top of him in the third period. Anton Forsberg came in and stopped four shots.

 

Schenn kicked off the scoring with about 7 minutes left in the first period, extending his point streak to five games. Ottawa pulled even when Stutzle scored on the power play, with an assist by Brady Tkachuk, with 3 1/2 minutes left in the first. This was the Senators' first power-play goal in February as they had gone 0-for-14 to that point.

 

Tarasenko's first goal was early in the second period on a power play, followed about three minutes later with a goal from Thomas (assisted by Tarasenko) to put the Blues up 3-1.

 

Halfway through the third period, the Blues pulled away with Sundqvist's fourth goal of the season. Tarasenko padded St. Louis' lead with his empty netter.

 

The Blues are at Montreal on Thursday, the second of a four-game trip.

0
comments


Bucks Get By Pacers

Giannis Antetokounmpo scored a season-high 50 points, two off his career-best, and pulled down 14 rebounds to lead the Milwaukee Bucks past the skidding Indiana Pacers 128-119 on Tuesday night.

 

The Bucks (36-23) swept the four-game season series from the Pacers and have won eight straight against their Central Division foe.

 

Antetokounmpo, who didn't play in Milwaukee's loss to Portland on Monday night because of a sore left ankle, showed no ill effects as he racked up 12 first-quarter points that included a pair of thunderous dunks and a 3-pointer.

 

Antetokounmpo set a career high with his seventh 40-point game of the season and scored 50 for the first time since the memorable title-clinching game in the NBA Finals last season against Phoenix, which gave the Bucks their first championship in 50 years. It was the fourth 50-point game of his nine-year career, including the postseason.

 

Milwaukee bounced back after consecutive double-digit losses to hand Indiana (19-40) its seventh consecutive defeat.

 

Antetokounmpo scored 12 points in the first quarter, six in the second, 13 in the third and 19 in the final period. He made 17 of 21 shots from the field and was 14 of 18 at the foul line.

 

Buddy Hield scored a season-high 36 points and Tyrese Haliburton had 17 points and eight assists for Indiana.

 

The Bucks led 34-27 after the first quarter before the Pacers grabbed a short-lived lead midway through the second. A pair of 3-pointers by reserve guard Lindell Wigginton sparked a 12-2 surge that grew the lead to double digits. Milwaukee led 69-63 at halftime, paced by Antetokounmpo's 18 points.

 

Milwaukee built a pair of nine-point leads in the third but couldn't shake the Pacers. When Indiana got close again in the fourth, Antetokounmpo swished a 3 and added a pair of free throws after a clear-path foul and Milwaukee eventually increased its lead to 14 before holding off the Pacers down the stretch.

 

Chris Duarte (sore left big toe), F Isaiah Jackson (right ankle sprain), G Malcolm Brogdon (sore right Achilles) and C Myles Turner (left foot issue) all sat out for Indiana.

 

The Pacers host the Washington Wizards tonight.

0
comments


UPDATED (With Playoff Scores): Lady Maroons Advance to Regional Final

In a game heard Tuesday night on WHOW, the Clinton Lady Maroons downed the Warrensburg-Latham Lady Cardinals, 43-32, to advance to the 2A Regional Championship at Clinton High School Thursday night.  

 

Clinton jumped out to a 9-3 lead after the first quarter, but the Cards fought back to tie it at 15 apiece at the half.  Clinton rode a late surge in the third to lead, 29-21, going into the fourth.  Warrensburg rallied to tie it at 31-31 with 2:30 left to play, but Clinton outscored them 12-1 to close it out. 

 

The Maroons were led by Mallory Cyrulik with 17 points.  Kaitlyn Rauch added 10 as well.  The Serv-Pro of Piatt & Dewitt County "Player of the Game" was Reagan Filkin, who provided a 10 point outburst off the bench in the third quarter to boost the Maroons.  

 

Warrensburg-Latham was led by Brooke Oakley with 10, and Jocelyn Turner with 9.  The Cardinals end their season with a record of 21-12. 

 

The Lady Maroons improve to 27-5 overall with the win.  The 27 wins is the most in one season in school program history.  

 

Clinton takes on Paris for the Regional Championship Thursday night at 7p at Clinton High School.  Hear all the action on all WHOW platforms! 

 

Class 2A Regional semifinal scores from Tuesday:

 

At Clinton

 

Paris 62

Sangamon Valley 12

 

At Normal U-High 

 

Olympia 39

Dee-Mack 45

 

Bloomington Central Catholic 37

Normal U-High 57

 

At Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin

 

Quincy Notre Dame 50

Pleasant Plains 34

 

Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin 33

Williamsville 34

 

Class 1A Regional semifinal scores:

 

At MMeridian

 

Salt Fork 28

Central A & M 37

 

Tuscola 45

Okaw Valley 23

 

Class 3A Regional semifinal scores from Tuesday:

 

At Jacksonville

 

Springfield 42

Jacksonville 17

 

Decatur MacArthur 60

Chatham Glenwood 30

 

At Rochester

 

Rochester 56

Mt. Zion 43

 

Springfield Southeast 62

Springfield Lanphier 51

0
comments


Maroa-Forsyth Rolls Sullivan

Four players scored in double figures as Maroa-Forsyth rolled Sullivan 72-47 in non-conference high school boy's basketball action from Maroa-Forsyth High School.

 

Jaxson Grubbs scored 18 points, Egan Franzen scored 16 points, and Zayn Giles and Ethan Willoughby each added 14 points.

 

 The Trojans opened up a 39-17 at the intermission and led 63-30 lead after three. 

 

Maroa-Forsyth moves to 17-10 overall and wraps up the regular season Friday night at home hosting PORTA.

0
comments


Big Third Quarter Buffers Monticello Past Tolono Unity

Joey Sprinkled scored the first eight points of the third quarter en route to a season-high 17 points as Monticello held off Tolono Unity 58-45 and clinched the Illini Prairie Conference regular season title in high school boy's basketball action from the Sievers Center at Monticello High School.

 

In a game heard on WEZC and online at dewittdailnews.com, Sprinkle had another terrific game on the glass with a game-high eight boards. He scored eight of his 17 in the frame as Monticello held a 20 point lead after the three quarters. 

 

The Rockets reduced the lead to 12 at one point in the fourth quarter but Monticello did enough to keep them at bay. Triston Foran scored 11 of his 15 points off the bench in the second half and had seven in the fourth quarter to help keep Monticello ahead by double digits throughout the fourth quarter.

 

Sprinkle and Foran were the Piatt/DeWitt County co-Players of the Game. 

 

Dylan Ginalick added ten points for Monticello who finish the regular season 26-3 overall and 8-1 in the Illini Prairie Conference.

 

The Sages scored 40 of its 58 points in the paint and shot 56-percent from the floor after a 60-percent shooting performance in the first half. 

 

Monticello had 15 assists on its 23 field goals and only turned the ball over five times. 

 

The Sages now head to Regionals next Wednesday where they will take on the winner of Saturday's quarterfinal game between Paxton-Buckley-Loda and Clifton Central. The Sages are the top seed in the Clifton Central sub-sectional. Game time from GCMS next Wednesday is 6 pm and can be heard on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com. 

0
comments


Lady Maroons Outlast Warrensburg; Advance To Regional Championship

In a game heard Tuesday night on WHOW, the Clinton Lady Maroons downed the Warrensburg-Latham Lady Cardinals, 43-32, to advance to the 2A Regional Championship at Clinton High School Thursday night.  
 

Clinton jumped out to a 9-3 lead after the first quarter, but the Cards fought back to tie it at 15 apiece at the half.  Clinton rode a late surge in the third to lead, 29-21, going into the fourth.  Warrensburg rallied to tie it at 31-31 with 2:30 left to play, but Clinton outscored them 12-1 to close it out. 
 

The Maroons were led by Mallory Cyrulik with 17 points.  Kaitlyn Rauch added 10 as well.  The Serv-Pro of Piatt & Dewitt County "Player of the Game" was Reagan Filkin, who provided a 10 point outburst off the bench in the third quarter to boost the Maroons.  
 

Warrensburg-Latham was led by Brooke Oakley with 10, and Jocelyn Turner with 9.  The Cardinals end their season with a record of 21-12.  
 

The Lady Maroons improve to 27-5 overall with the win.  The 27 wins is the most in one season in school program history.  
 

Clinton takes on Paris for the Regional Championship Thursday night at 7p at Clinton High School.  Hear all the action on all WHOW platforms! 

0
comments


Lady Maroons Outlast Warrensburg; Advance To Regional Championship

In a game heard Tuesday night on WHOW, the Clinton Lady Maroons downed the Warrensburg-Latham Lady Cardinals, 43-32, to advance to the 2A Regional Championship at Clinton High School Thursday night.  
 

Clinton jumped out to a 9-3 lead after the first quarter, but the Cards fought back to tie it at 15 apiece at the half.  Clinton rode a late surge in the third to lead, 29-21, going into the fourth.  Warrensburg rallied to tie it at 31-31 with 2:30 left to play, but Clinton outscored them 12-1 to close it out. 
 

The Maroons were led by Mallory Cyrulik with 17 points.  Kaitlyn Rauch added 10 as well.  The Serv-Pro of Piatt & Dewitt County "Player of the Game" was Reagan Filkin, who provided a 10 point outburst off the bench in the third quarter to boost the Maroons.  
 

Warrensburg-Latham was led by Brooke Oakley with 10, and Jocelyn Turner with 9.  The Cardinals end their season with a record of 21-12.  
 

The Lady Maroons improve to 27-5 overall with the win.  The 27 wins is the most in one season in school program history.  
 

Clinton takes on Paris for the Regional Championship Thursday night at 7p at Clinton High School.  Hear all the action on all WHOW platforms! 

0
comments


Monticello Goes for Outright Illini Prairie Conference Title Tonight

The Monticello Sages will go for an outright Illini Prairie Conference title tonight when the eighth-ranked Monticello Sages host Tolono Unity in the regular-season finale for Monticello on Senior Night at the Sievers Center in high school boy's basketball action.

 

The Sages put a five-game win streak on the line tonight when they host their longtime rivals. Monticello is coming off wins Friday night over Champaign St. Thomas More and then Saturday against Decatur St. Teresa.

 

The Rockets come into play tonight 18-8 overall and 5-4 in the Illini Prairie Conference. Unity has won four of its last six but its most recent game was a 70-63 loss to IVC Saturday night. 

 

Game time tonight is 7 pm. Hear all the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com. 

0
comments


Lady Maroons Open Postseason Action Tonight

The postseason is meant to challenge the best of the best and the Clinton Lady Maroons Regional will do just that as they kick off high school girl's basketball postseason action tonight.

 

The 26-5 Lady Maroons open the postseason tonight at their own Regional hosting Warrensburg-Latham. Tonight's matchup with the Lady Cardinals will be the third in less than a month. 

 

Clinton beat Warrensburg-Latham 47-23 on January 25 at the Central Illinois Conference tournament in Tuscola. Then last Thursday night they toppled the Lady Cardinals again 51-35.

 

Warrensburg-Latham rolled Tri-Valley Saturday in Regional quarterfinal action 63-31 to make tonight's Regional semifinal round. 

 

Tonight's winner takes on the winner of tonight's 6 pm matchup between second-seeded Paris and Sangamon Valley. 

 

Both games are Clinton High School. The Regional final is Thursday at 7 pm.

 

Hear tonight's Clinton girl's game at 7:30 pm on 92.3 FM/106.5 FM WHOW and on all the WHOW mobile and digital platforms.

 

Class 1A high school girl's basketball Regional semifinal scores:

 

At Cerro Gordo

 

Mt. Pulaski 58

Decatur LSA 28

 

Cerro Gordo 42

Urbana University 28

 

At Ridgeview

 

Ridgeview 32

Cissna Park16

 

At LeRoy

 

Decatur St. Teresa 44

Champaign St. Thomas More 57

 

Heyworth 29

LeRoy 38

 

At Watseka

 

Lexington 45

Grant Park 14

 

Class 2A High School girl's basketball Regional Semifinal action Monday:

 

At Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond

 

Pana 81

Monticello 53

 

Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond 31

Tolono Unity 45

 

At Braidwood Reed-Custer

 

Prairie Central 62

Herscher 58

 

At Kankakee McNamara

 

St. Joseph-Ogden 53

Clifton Central 22

 

At Paxton-Buckley-Loda

 

Paxton-Buckley-Loda 38

Hoopeston 24

 

Class 3A high school girl's basketball Regional semifinal scores:

 

At Champaign Central

 

Lincoln 71

Danville 27

 

Champaign Central 39

Champaign Centennial 53

 

At Metamora

 

Peoria Notre Dame 65

Dunlap 35

 

Metamora 49

Washington 50

 

At Normal West

 

Mahomet-Seymour 68

Rantoul 26

 

Normal West 43

Bloomington 46

0
comments


Bulls Topple Spurs

DeMar DeRozan scored 19 of his 40 points in the fourth quarter and the Chicago Bulls beat the San Antonio Spurs 120-109 on Monday night for their fourth straight victory.

 

It was DeRozan's seventh consecutive game with at least 30 points, extending his career-high. The All-Star is the first player with such a streak for the Bulls since Michael Jordan during the 1996-97 season.

 

DeRozan leads the NBA with 431 fourth-quarter points.

 

Nikola Vucevic had 25 points and 16 rebounds for Chicago, which lost 131-122 at San Antonio on Jan. 28. Coby White made five 3-pointers and finished with 24 points.

 

The Bulls played without All-Star Zach LaVine, who missed his second straight game due to periodic soreness in his surgically repaired left knee. Donovan said LaVine also will miss Wednesday night's matchup with Sacramento.

 

San Antonio had won three of four. Lonnie Walker IV scored 21 points for the Spurs, and All-Star Dejounte Murray had 19 points and 11 assists. Doug McDermott also scored 19 points.

 

San Antonio closed the third quarter with an 8-2 spurt for an 89-83 lead. Walker had nine points in the period, including a layup with 24.5 seconds left.

 

But DeRozan opened the fourth with a three-point play, and he poured it on from there. He scored 13 points in the first four minutes of the quarter. His layup with 7:20 left gave Chicago a 102-99 lead.

 

DeRozan went 16 for 24 from the field. He is shooting 61% (89 for 146) over his last six games.

 

The4 Bulls host the Sacramento Kings on Wednesday night. The teams split the two-game season series last year.

0
comments


Blackhawks Get By Jets

Alex DeBrincat scored his 28th goal midway through the third period and the Chicago Blackhawks defeated the Winnipeg Jets 3-1 on Monday night.

 

DeBrincat beat Jets goalie Connor Hellebuyck with a high shot at 9:42 to break a 1-all tie. Patrick Kane had a goal and an assist, and Brandon Hagel added an empty-netter.

 

Marc-Andre Fleury made 31 saves for the Blackhawks (18-24-7), who have won twice in their last six games (2-4-0). The 37-year-old goalie is in his 18th NHL season.

 

Mark Scheifele scored for the Jets (20-18-8), and Hellebuyck stopped 21 of the 23 shots he faced.

 

Winnipeg was 2-0-1 in its previous three games.

 

There was no scoring in the first period and Chicago led 1-0 after the second.

 

Winnipeg outshot the Blackhawks 11-8 in the opening period. The Jets had the only power play, but Fleury turned aside two shots, including one from Winnipeg's leading scorer, Kyle Connor.

 

The Blackhawks picked up the pace in the second and were rewarded with Kane's 12th goal of the season.

 

Using Kirby Dach skating ahead of him as a bit of a screen, Kane snapped a low shot through Hellebuyck's pads at 10:21.

 

Kane also had a shot sail wide of an open net and rang one off the crossbar.

 

Chicago had a power play early in the period but couldn't get a shot on net.

 

Jets forward Adam Lowry got a short-handed breakaway, but Fleury appeared to throw his stick attempting a poke check and it hit Lowry's stick to nix a good shot.

 

Winnipeg had a 9-8 edge in shots in the second.

 

Scheifele evened the score at 6:17 of the third when he banged in a puck that had bounced off a player and landed at the side of the crease.

 

DeBrincat gave Chicago the lead again and Hagel added to it at 19:04.

 

The Blackhawks host the Columbus Blue Jackets on Thursday in the opener of a six-game homestand.

0
comments


Timberwolves Get By Pacers

Anthony Edwards celebrated a milestone Sunday by scoring 37 points and leading the Minnesota Timberwolves to a 129-120 victory over the Indiana Pacers.

 

Edwards became the fourth-youngest player in NBA history to reach the 2,500-point mark when he made his first basket of the game. The second-year forward is 20 years, 192 days old. LeBron James, Kevin Durant and Devin Booker are the only younger players to achieve the feat.

 

The Timberwolves snapped a two-game losing streak overall and a three-game losing streak at Indiana as they compete to finish among the top six in the Western Conference and avoid the play-in round.

 

Edwards made seven 3-pointers and had five rebounds, four assists and four steals on a day Karl Anthony-Towns was in foul trouble.

 

Oshae Brissett had a season-high 22 points and matched his career-high with 13 rebounds for Indiana, which has lost six in a row.. Tyrese Haliburton added 22 points and 16 assists, one short of tying his career-high in just his second game with the Pacers.

 

The difference was Minnesota's size and depth.

 

Indiana opened with a quick scoring flurry, but the Timberwolves cut the deficit to 37-33 at the end of one quarter then took charge in the second. Malik Beasley's 3-pointer gave the Timberwolves the lead and spurred a 13-0 run that allowed the Timberwolves to build a 56-44 lead.

 

They extended the margin to 18 early in the second half - before the Pacers finally charged back. Indiana closed to 96-94 in the final minute of the third quarter and made it a two-point game again when Terry Taylor opened the fourth by making two free throws. But Minnesota answered with an 8-2 run.

 

Towns had 15 points and 13 rebounds and D'Angelo Russell had 23 points and six assists. Beverley and Naz Reid each scored 13 points, Jaden McDaniels had 11 and Beasley finished with 10. 

 

Minnesota was 18 of 34 on 3s.

 

Lance Stephenson had 21 points for Indiana. Jalen Smith had 17 points and 12 rebounds, Buddy Hield had 13 points and Terry Taylor added 10 points and five rebounds. Haliburton had 10 assists in the first half.

 

The Pacers visit Milwaukee on Tuesday.

0
comments


Illinois Survives Northwestern

Kofi Cockburn scored 19 points and grabbed 15 rebounds to help No. 13 Illinois stave off a late comeback by Northwestern to beat the Wildcats 73-66 on Sunday.

 

Illinois led by 18 points after Alfonso Plummer’s 3-pointer with 13:05 left, but Northwestern responded with a 19-2 run to pull within one point with 6:16 to go.

 

The Illini (18-6, 11-3 Big Ten) turned to 7-foot center Cockburn for an answer, and he obliged, scoring six straight points to make it a 61-56 lead with 4:19 to play. He scored the team’s final three buckets.

 

The home win keeps the Illini in sole possession of first place in the Big Ten, sitting a half-game ahead of Purdue and one game ahead of Wisconsin after a week in which all three teams lost.

 

Ty Berry came off the bench to lead the Wildcats (12-11, 5-9 Big Ten) with 16 points on 5-of-8 shooting, including going 4 of 6 from 3-point range. Chase Audige added 12 points and Pete Nance tacked on 10.

 

Illinois took a 44-30 lead into halftime thanks in part to its 9-of-16 shooting from 3-point range in the first half, including four treys from Plummer and a pair from freshman RJ Melendez.

 

Plummer finished the game with 19 points, including making 5 of his 11 3-point attempts. Melendez added a career-high 14 points and six rebounds.

 

A bucket from Cockburn, then dunks from Omar Payne and Melendez helped Illinois build an 18-point lead before the under-12 timeout. Payne blocked a shot by Elyjah Williams, then Coleman Hawkins started the Illini on a fastbreak, providing a smooth dish for a Melendez dunk that made it 50-32 with 14:37 to play.

 

The Illini have now won 25 of their last 29 games in Big Ten play.

 

Illinois is at Rutgers on Wednesday.

0
comments


Bulls LaVine Reportedly to See Knee Specialist

Chicago Bulls All-Star guard Zach LaVine will reportedly head to Los Angeles to see a specialist about the continued soreness in his left knee, per ESPN's Adrian Wojnarowski. He still plans on participating in All-Star Weekend, where he is set to compete in the 3-point contest and is a member on Team Durant for the NBA All-Star Game on Feb. 20. 

 

However, LaVine will miss Chicago's next two games before the All-Star break against the San Antonio Spurs and Sacramento Kings, per NBC Sports Chicago's K.C. Johnson.

 

LaVine first injured his left knee during an early January matchup against the Golden State Warriors. He received an MRI in which no structural damage was shown, but he missed five games to ensure the injury didn't worsen. He came back to the lineup and continued his usual scoring dominance, but he's still been experiencing discomfort in that knee since his return. 

 

LaVine missing more time isn't ideal for a Bulls team that is already dealing with their fair share of injuries. Alex Caruso is still recovering from surgery to a fractured wrist, while Lonzo Ball is sidelined after having surgery to repair a torn meniscus. Both Caruso and Ball are expected to be sidelined for at least a few more weeks, and perhaps more depending on their rehab process. 

 

Despite the number of key injuries on Chicago's roster, the Bulls have managed to maintain the success they saw early in the season. The Bulls currently sit second in the Eastern Conference with a 36-21 record, in large part due to the consistent performance from DeMar DeRozan. In the last five games alone DeRozan is averaging 38.4 points, 6.2 rebounds and 5.2 assists, as he's often carrying the Bulls to many of their wins as LaVine deals with the discomfort in his knee. 

0
comments


Bears Round Out Coaching Staff

New Chicago Bears coach Matt Eberflus finalized his staff by hiring three more assistants Friday.

 

The Bears added former NFL linebacker Carlos Polk as assistant special teams coach, assistant defensive line coach Justin Hinds and coaching assistant Kevin Koch.

 

Polk, a Rockford, Illinois, native, had a similar job with Jacksonville this past season. He has 11 years of NFL coaching experience and 12 overall. A linebacker, Polk played seven seasons for San Diego (2001-07) and Dallas (2008) after starring at Nebraska.

 

Hinds was defensive coordinator at Western Carolina in 2021 after spending the previous two years as Central Michigan’s defensive line coach.

 

Koch spent the past five seasons on Pat Fitzgerald’s staff at Northwestern as a defensive graduate assistant and then a defensive quality control analyst. A product of suburban Elmhurst, Illinois, he played quarterback at College of DuPage and at Minnesota State Moorhead.

 

The Bears fired general manager Ryan Pace and coach Matt Nagy following a 6-11 season and replaced them with longtime Kansas City Chiefs executive Ryan Poles and Eberflus, who’s leading an NFL team for the first time after spending the past four years as Indianapolis’ defensive coordinator.

0
comments


Neese propels Indiana State past Illinois State 60-57

Cooper Neese had 28 points as Indiana State held off Illinois State 60-57 on Saturday.

 

Neese made 10 of 11 from the free-throw line and added six rebounds for the Sycamores (11-14, 4-9 Missouri Valley Conference). Xavier Bledson had 11 points. Kailex Stephens had eight rebounds and Cameron Henry grabbed seven. Henry sank two free throws with 2 seconds left to help preserve the win.

 

Liam McChesney and Antonio Reeves had 13 points apiece for the Redbirds (11-15, 4-9). Josiah Strong scored 12.

0
comments


Mast scores 15 to carry Bradley over Drake 68-59

Rienk Mast had 15 points and seven rebounds as Bradley beat Drake 68-59 on Saturday night.

 

Mikey Howell had 14 points for Bradley (15-11, 9-5 Missouri Valley Conference), which earned its fifth straight home victory. Terry Roberts added 11 points.

 

Tucker DeVries had 20 points and seven rebounds for the Bulldogs (17-9, 8-5). Roman Penn added 11 points.

0
comments


Maroa-Forsyth Rolls Argenta-Oreana

Egan Franzen scored 19 of his game-high 23 points in the first half helping Maroa-Forsyth in a back-and-forth first half to beat Argenta-Oreana 82-57 in non-conference high school boys' basketball action from Argenta-Oreana Middle School Saturday night.

 

The Bombers led 20-17 after one quarter but the Trojans dropped 25 points, led by Franzen's 10 in the frame, and used a quad of three-pointers to open up a 34-29 lead at the half then led 64-37 after a 28-8 third quarter. 

 

Jaxson Grubbs scored nine of his 18 points in the third quarter. Ethan Willoughby scored seven of 11 points in the third quarter while Kaeden Maurer scored six of his 10 in the big third for the Trojans. Connor Kelly came off the bench and buried a trio of triples to finish with nine points.

 

Landon Lawson scored 11 of his team-high 17 points in the first half and Jamario Barbee added 11 points for the Bombers.

 

The Bombers drop to 6-18 overall while the Trojans are 16-10 overall. Maroa-Forsyth finishes the regular season next week with home games against Sullivan Tuesday and PORTA Friday night. 

0
comments


Monticello Girls Get By Shelbyville in Regional Quarterfinal Action

Seniors Renni Fultz and Lizzie Stiverson helped lead Monticello past Shelbyville 59-46 in Class 2A high school girl's Regional quarterfinal action Saturday afternoon from the Sievers Center at Monticello High School.

 

Fultz had a double-double with 19 points and 11 rebounds while Stiverson was a rebound short of a double-double with a game-high 23 pionts and nine rebounds. 

 

The Lady Sages scored 36 of its 59 points in the paint and used 14 offensive rebounds to get 14 second-chance points. 

 

The Lady Rams, led by Mia Wades 18 points, had 13 points off 14 Monticello turnovers. 

 

Trinity Wade scored 11 points for the Lady Rams who finish its season at 16-13 overall.

 

The Lady Sages move to 19-11 overall and will take on top-seeded Pana Monday night at 6 pm from the Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond Regional.

0
comments


Monticello Surges Past Decatur St. Teresa

The Monticello Sages opened the game with a blistering start from beyond the three-point line and gradually pulled away from Decatur St. Teresa in a 68-48 win Saturday night in non-conference high school boy's basketball action from the Sivers Center at Monticello High School.

 

In a game heard on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com, the two sides traded a pair of three-pointers and Dylan Ginalick's corner three that tied the game at 6-6 started an 11-0 run in the next 2:05. 

 

Ater Camdyn Wilkins got St. T within 18-10 at the 1:52 mark of the first quarter, it was all Monticello the rest of the way. 

 

The Sages made 6-of-10 first-half three-pointers and used nine Bulldogs' first-half turnovers into 13 points and had six offensive rebounds for ten second-chance points.

 

The Bulldogs shot the ball well as a team, going for 46-percent from the floor and 6-for-15 from beyond the arc but the Sages shot 60-percent from the game, including going 14-for-20 in the second half and had 32 of its 58 points come in the paint.

 

Ben Cresap helped Monticello open its 34-19 halftime lead to as many as 26 late in the third quarter when he finished off a dominant quarter with a nifty step-back shot fake and an explosive finish for a layup. Cresap scored six of his 14 points in the third quarter.

 

Cresap and Ginalick paced Monticello with 14 points apiece. Ginalick's 14 points, four assists, and four rebounds earned him the ServPro of Piatt/DeWitt County Player of the Game. 

 

Cresap added four boards and four assists to his 14 points.

 

The Sages had 13 assists to just eight turnovers and finished with 19 points off 15 Bulldogs turnovers as well as 14 points on nine offensive rebounds.

 

Monticello senior Joey Sprinkle continued his dominance on the glass with eight points and six rebounds.

 

Trevor Fox added eight points for Monticello, all in the first half. Tanner Buehnerkemper scored seven.

 

Wilkins led the Bulldogs with game-highs of 15 points and eight rebounds as St. T dropped to 15-8 overall.

 

Monticello has won six straight moving to 26-3 overall and will wrap up its regular season Tuesday night hosting rival Tolono Unity. The Sages can win the Illini Prairie Conference title outright with a win at the Sievers Center.

 

Game time Tuesday is 7 pm and can be heard on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com. 

0
comments


Maroa-Forsyth Rolls North Mac

Four players scored in double-figures and Maroa-Forsyth rolled North Mac 62-37 Friday night in Sangamo Conference high school boy's basketball action in Virden.

 

Zayn Giles scored 8 of his game-high 14 points in the first quarter helped the Trojans jump out to a quick14-8 lead after the first frame then the Maroa-Forsyth used a trio of triples to blow the game open to a 31-17 halftime lead.

 

Kaiden Maurer and Ethan Willoughby scored 11 points apiece and Eagan Franzed added ten to lead the Trojans in a balanced attack as they improve to 15-10 overall and 5-3 in league action.

 

The Trojans are at Argenta-Oreana tonight before they return home for its final two games of the regular season hosting Sullivan Tuesday night and the regular-season finale against PORTA Friday.

 

Maroa-Forsyth is the fourth seed in the Olympia subsectional. They'll play the winner of next Saturday's Regional quarterfinal matchup against Buffalo Tri-City in a Regional semifinal at Maroa-Forsyth High School on Tuesday, February 22. 

0
comments


Clinton Maroons Fall To Warrensburg-Latham

In a game heard Friday night on WHOW, the Clinton Maroons fell to the Warrensburg-Latham Cardinals in CIC action, 63-30. 
 

The Cardinals outpaced Clinton 17-0 in the first quarter, and led 31-17 at the half.  Warrensburg pulled away in the third, out scoring the Maroons 26-8 in the quarter.  
 

The Maroons were led by Dawson Graves with 12 points.  The WHOW/Serv Pro of Piatt & Dewitt County "Player of the Game" went to Brooks Cluver, who had 11 points. 
 

Warrensburg was led by MJ Murphy and Ethan Yaroch, who both had 14. 
 

The Cardinals improve to 20-7 on the seasons, and 4-2 in the CIC.  The Maroons fall to 11-19 overall, and 3-3 in conference. 
 

Clinton travels to Meridian to wrap up the regular season next Friday night.  The Maroons then travel to Riverton the next day (Saturday, February 19th) for the first round of the 2A Regionals.  Tip time for the Regional game has not been announced. 

0
comments


Monticello Gets By Champaign St. Thomas More

Monticello held Champaign St. Thomas More scoreless for the first 7 minutes and 15 seconds and pulled away for a 48-28 win Friday night in Illini Prairie Conference high school boy's basketball game from the Sievers Center at Monticello High School. 

 

Ben Cresap scored nine of his game-high 20 points in the third quarter and Joey Sprinkle led a strong rebounding effort for the Sages who controlled the glass 25-11. 

 

Monticello shot 55-percent from the floor and scored 24 of its 48 points in the paint. The Sabres shot just 37-percent from the floor, 4-for-11 from distance and went just 2-for-7 from the free-throw line.

 

Dylan Ginalick scored 11 points. Tanner Buehnerkemper scored seven points and grabbed six rebounds. 

 

Monticello had 12 assists on its 18 field goals.

 

The Sabres had a six-game win streak snapped, dropping to 17-12 overall and 5-3 in the Illini Prairie Confernce. 

 

The Sages have won its last five to move to 25-3 overall and 7-1 in the Illini Prairie Conference. 

 

Monticello has a quick turnaround hosting Decatur St. Teresa Saturday night at 6 pm at the Sievers Center. Hear the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online dewittdailynews.com. 

0
comments


Clinton Downs Warrensburg-Latham in Season Finale

The Clinton was led by a trio of scorers and toppled Warrensburg-Latham 51-35 Thursday night from Clinton High School in girl's basketball action, completing a perfect run through the Central Illinois Conference slate for the Lady Maroons. 

 

The Lady Maroons were defeated by Tuscola in the conference tournament title game a few weeks ago but tournament games do not count towards the regular-season conference record.

 

Kaitlyn Rauch led all scorers with 28 points and Mallory Cyrulik scored 17 points and Heidi Humble chipped in with six points. The trio of seniors were the only players to score for Clinton.

 

The Lady Cardinals kept things close through the first quarter of play but the Lady Maroons blew things open in the second quarter leading 32-18 at the half and never looked back.

 

The Lady Maroons finish the regular season 26-5 overall and run the table in the CIC, finishing 8-0. 

 

It's off to the postseason next for Clinton. They'll await the winner of Saturday evening's matchup between Warrensburg-Latham and Tri-Valley. 

0
comments


Aaron Rodgers Wins Second Straight MVP Award

The Associated Press 2021 NFL awards had a bit of everything, starting with Aaron Rodgers becoming the fifth player to repeat as Most Valuable Player.

 

Despite the turmoil of training camp and the headlines created by the Green Bay quarterback when he misled the public on his COVID-19 vaccination, Rodgers’ play on the field was superb. So much so that he earned 39 votes from a nationwide panel of 50 media members who regularly cover the NFL. Not even one of Tom Brady’s best performances — in his final season — came close in the MVP race, with the Buccaneers quarterback getting 10 votes.

 

Only Peyton Manning with five MVP awards is ahead of Rodgers, who said no announcement on his future in the NFL is imminent.

 

Rams wide receiver Cooper Kupp got one vote for MVP, but he easily took top offensive player honors. Kupp and Cincinnati quarterback Joe Burrow (Comeback Player) and wideout Ja’Marr Chase (Offensive Rookie) will face off in Sunday’s Super Bowl.

 

Kupp led the NFL with 138 receptions, 1,829 yards receiving and 15 touchdown catches while leading Los Angeles to the NFC West title. A unanimous All-Pro, he received 35 votes, far in front of Colts running back Jonathan Taylor (10).

 

Steelers edge rusher T.J. Watt, a unanimous All-Pro like Kupp, led the NFL in sacks with a record-tying 22 1/2. He joined brother J.J., a three-time winner of Defensive Player of the Year.

 

Dallas linebacker Micah Parsons, who came in second to Watt for top defensive player — but 37 votes behind — was a unanimous choice for Defensive Rookie of the Year. Parsons not only helped the Cowboys turn around their defensive performance this season, but he was so dynamic he helped coordinator Dan Quinn win the assistant coach award.

 

Mike Vrabel’s work with the Titans earned him Coach of the Year. Despite using a record for a non-strike season 91 players, and losing his very best, running back Derrick Henry, for half the schedule, Vrabel led Tennessee to the AFC South crown and the conference’s top seed.

 

Rams veteran tackle Andrew Whitworth, who also played for the Bengals, won the league’s Walter Payton Man of the Year award.

0
comments


Devils Outlast Blues

Nico Hischier and Yegor Sharangovich triggered a five-goal blitz in the third period and Jon Gillies made 27 saves as the New Jersey Devils rallied for a 7-4 victory over the St. Louis Blues on Thursday night.

 

New Jersey, playing its third game in four nights, won back-to-back road games for the first time this season after beating Montreal on Tuesday.

 

Brayden Schenn had two goals for the Blues. Klim Kostin and Justin Faulk also scored.

 

St. Louis, playing its first game in 12 days, had won 12 of the previous 13 meetings between the teams.

 

Hischier scored twice, including an empty-net goal with nine seconds left.

 

Vesey, Jesper Boqvist, P.K. Subban and Michael McLeod also scored for the Devils, who jumped out to a 2-0 lead in the first period.

 

St. Louis answered with three straight goals, but New Jersey scored five in a span of 10:42 in the final period.

 

Hischier broke a 3-all tie by firing a shot past goalie Jordan Binnington with 8:26 left. Vesey pushed the lead to 5-3 before Schenn brought the Blues within one with 1:43 to play. Just 24 seconds later, Boqvist made it 6-4.

 

Sharangovich tied it at 3 off a pass from Hischier with 10:52 remaining.

 

Binnngton gave up two goals on the first nine shots he faced and fell to 11-10-3.

 

The Blues host the Chicago Blackhawks on Saturday.

0
comments


Monticello Remains at No. 8 in Latest High School Boy's Basketball Poll

The Monticello Sages boy's basketball team remained steady at No. 8 in the latest high school boy's basketball Class 2A state rankings. 

 

Since last week's poll, Monticello has defeated Petersburg PORTA at the Illini Prairie/Sangamo Conference shootout at Maroa-Forsyth High School Saturday evening. They then went on the road again Tuesday for a thrilling one-point victory over Pontiac. 

 

Chicago Leo is the unanimous No.1 team in the state this week followed by DePaul College Prep, Chicago Clark, El Paso-Gridley and Nashville in the top 5.

 

Chicago Orr and Breese Central tied for No. 6 this week. After Monticello at No. 8, Rockford Lutheran checks in at No. 9 and Breese Mater Dei and Chicago Perspectives Charter-Leadership tied for the tenth spot. 

 

In Class 1A, there was only a reshuffling of the top 10 as there were no newcomers to the latest poll. Scales Mound is the No. 1 team with five first place followed by Fulton who jumped Yorkville Christian, who received seven first place votes. Meridian jumped Libertyville to round out the top 5.

 

Tuscola stayed at No. 6 this week. Peoria Christian moved up to No. 6 from No. 10. Concord Triopa swapped spots with South Beloit for 8-9, respectively and Jacksonville Routt fell a spot to No. 10 to round out the poll.

 

In Class 3A, Chicago Simeon is the No. 1 team. Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin moved up a spot to No. 3 and received a first place vote this week. 

 

In Class 4A, Normal Community stayed at No. 4 this week. Glenbard West is the unanimous No. 1 team in the poll. The Ironman were jumped in the poll by Kenwood who moved up to No. 3 swapping spots with New Trier who fell to No. 5 from No. 3.

0
comments


Lincoln Girl's Basketball Team No. 9 in this Week's 3A Poll

The Lincoln Lady Railsplitters basketball team fell a spot in the latest Class 3A high school girl's basketball poll.

 

The Lady Railers are down a spot to No. 9 from No. 8 last week, swapping spots in the poll with Metamora. 

 

Geneseo is the top team this week with six first place votes. Peoria Central remained No. 3 in the poll with a first place vote. The Lady Lions saw the teams above them and below them swap spots as Nazareth jumped to No. 2 from No. 4 last week swapping places with Sycamore. Both Nazareth and Sycamore received first place votes. 

 

Peoria Notre Dame fell to No. 5 this week from No. 2 last week. 

 

Mattoon and Morton swapped spots at 6-7, respectively. And Montini comes in at No. 10 again this week.

 

In Class 2A, Pana moved up a spot to No. 3. Quincy Notre Dame is the No. 1 2A team this week and Fieldcrest stayed put at No. 8.

 

In Class 1A, Brimfield is the No. 1 team. 

 

In Class 4a, Normal Community enters the top 10 at No. 10 with Chicago Stevenson the unanimous No. 1 team. 

0
comments


Illinois State Gets By Valpo

Antonio Reeves had a career-high 34 points as Illinois State narrowly defeated Valparaiso 78-75 in overtime on Wednesday night.

 

The Redbirds led for all of overtime.

 

Liam McChesney had 16 points and 10 rebounds for Illinois State (11-14, 4-8 Missouri Valley Conference), which ended its five-game losing streak. Josiah Strong added 10 points.

 

Kevion Taylor scored a season-high 26 points for Valpo (11-13, 4-8). Kobe King added 14 points. Ben Krikke had 12 points and four blocks.

 

The Redbirds leveled the season series against Valpo. Valparaiso defeated Illinois State 81-76 on Jan. 2.

 

ISU will travel to Indiana State Saturday afternoon. 

0
comments


Bradley Upsets Loyola-Chicago

Malevy Leons had 14 points to lead five Bradley players in double figures as the Braves defeated Loyola Chicago 68-61 on Wednesday night.

 

Mikey Howell and Zek Montgomery added 12 points apiece for the Braves (14-11, 8-5 MVC). Ville Tahvanainen and Terry Roberts chipped in 11 points each.

 

Braden Norris had 14 points for the Ramblers (18-5, 9-3). Lucas Williamson added 13 points and six assists. Chris Knight had 12 points and three blocks.

 

The Braves leveled the season series against the Ramblers. Loyola Chicago defeated Bradley 78-71 on Jan. 8.

 

Bradley hosts Drake Saturday night. 

0
comments


Bulls Top Hornets

DeMar DeRozan scored 36 points, Nikola Vucevic added 18 points, 15 rebounds and eight assists, and the Chicago Bulls handed the Charlotte Hornets their sixth consecutive loss, 121-109 on Wednesday night.

 

Zach LaVine chipped in with 27 points for the Bulls (34-21), who pulled within one game of the Eastern Conference-leading Miami Heat.

 

It was DeRozan's fourth straight 30-point game and he has averaged 37.5 points over that span.

 

DeRozan even heard ''MVP! MVP!'' chants in the second half from a small, but vocal contingent of Bulls fans at the Spectrum Center in Charlotte.

 

LaMelo Ball had 33 points and nine rebounds for Charlotte, which continued to struggle with its 3-point shooting, making just 13 of 43. During their six-game losing streak, the Hornets are shooting 27.9% (66 of 236) from beyond the arc.

 

Charlotte (28-28) has lost its last six games by an average of 11.8 points and wrapped up a homestand with an 0-4 record to fall to ninth place in the conference. The recent struggles could prompt general manager Mitch Kupchak to make some moves before the trade deadline.

 

Both teams entered the game short-handed.

 

The Bulls played without Lonzo Ball, Alex Caruso, Patrick Williams, Ayo Dosunmu and Derrick Jones Jr., while the Hornets were missing Gordon Hayward, Cody Martin and Jalen McDaniels.

 

The Bulls opened a 15-point lead the final minute of the second quarter behind a contested 3-pointer by DeRozan, who 8 of 11 for 18 points from the field in the first half.

 

Chicago held a double-digit lead for most of the game, and LaVine hit a 3-pointer at the end of the third quarter to give the Bulls an 89-76 lead after the Hornets had made a run.

 

Chicago stretched its lead to 21 in the fourth quarter as DeRozan and LaVine continued to knock down jumpers. The Bulls shot 56.1% from the field for the game, including 48.5% from 3-point land.

 

The Bulls host Minnesota on Friday night, the start of a six-game homestand.

0
comments


Blackhawks Return From All-Star Break With Win Over Edmonton

Alex DeBrincat had a goal and two assists as the Chicago Blackhawks got off to fast start and beat the Edmonton Oilers 4-1 Wednesday night.

 

Brandon Hagel, Dylan Strome and Kirby Dach also scored for the Blackhawks, who snapped a three-game losing streak. Marc-Andre Fleury stopped 40 shots - the fourth time this season he's had at least that many.

 

The Oilers allowed the game's first goal again - this one coming on Chicago's first shot - as DeBrincat blasted a power-play one-timer past goalie Mike Smith less than two minutes into the opening period for his 27th of the season. It was the 29th time in the last 35 games that the Oilers have allowed the first goal.

 

Smith also allowed a goal on Chicago's second shot of the game just 1:03 later as DeBrincat fed a pass across to Hagel, who scored his 13th on a stick-side shot.

 

Leon Draisaitl scored for the Oilers, who have lost two in a row and have just three wins in their last 11 at home. Smith had 26 saves.

 

There was a scary moment late in the first period when Oilers defenseman Duncan Keith crashed hard into the boards and appeared to briefly lose consciousness. He was helped off the ice and did not return.

 

Edmonton finally got one past Fleury six minutes into the second period as a mad scramble in front of the Blackhawks net resulted in a power-play goal by Draisaitl, his 33rd of the campaign, tying him with the New York Rangers' Chris Kreider for the league lead.

 

The Oilers outshot the Hawks 20-6 in the middle period, with Fleury stopping 19 shots.

 

Chicago made it 3-1 on the power play a minute into the third as Strome tipped DeBrincat's shot past Smith.

 

Midway through the third, the Blackhawks padded their lead as Dach was left alone in front to chip in his seventh.

 

The Blackhawks are at St. Louis on Saturday night in the middle game of a three-game trip.

0
comments


Purdue Rolls Illinois for Share of Big Ten Lead

Eric Hunter scored all nine of his points during a game-changing run to start the second half and Jaden Ivey scored 26 points, 22 coming after he got angry, to help the Boilermakers run away from No. 13 Illinois 84-68.

 

Illinois (17-6, 10-3) was led by Kofi Cockburn, who had 18 points and seven rebounds. Andre Curbelo added 15 points as the Fighting Illini had a four-game winning streak snapped.

 

The hype for this game began almost as soon as the final buzzer sounded in Purdue's double-overtime victory last month and took on even more urgency when conference officials moved the game up two days from the initial schedule for a clash between conference contenders.

 

The rematch didn't disappoint.

 

A boisterous, early-arriving crowd kept the decibel level high all night - especially as the Boilermakers started pulling away midway through the second half. But it also energized Purdue, which had a slow start and endured a series of back-and-forth moments.

 

But after Curbelo drove the length of the floor for a buzzer-beating layup to give Illinois a 38-36 halftime lead, Hunter opened the second half with nine points during a 16-8 spurt that put Purdue up 52-46 and whipped the crowd into a frenzy. The Boilermakers never trailed again and sealed the victory with a 14-2 run.

 

Tuesday's loss is not debilitating. The Illini are tied with Purdue and No. 14 Wisconsin atop the Big Ten. But it certainly makes the championship journey more challenging, especially after getting swept by the Boilermakers. Expect Illinois to rebound quickly and in impressive fashion.

 

Illini guard Trent Frazier had the biggest scare of the night when he fell to the floor clutching his left knee with 8:15 to play. Replays appeared to show his knee and Ivey's knee collided. Frazier needed help to reach the bench, though he returned a short time later and finished the game.

 

Illinois hosts in-state rival Northwestern on Sunday.

0
comments


Hawks Blow Away Pacers

Trae Young scored 34 points and the Atlanta Hawks regained their 3-point touch, overwhelming the trade-depleted Indiana Pacers 133-112 on Tuesday night.

 

After making only 5 of 25 3s in Sunday's 103-94 loss at Dallas, the Hawks sank 17 of 33 long-range shots. They set a season high by making 51.5% of their 3s.

 

Young was 6 of 9 on 3s after missing each of his six in the loss at Dallas.

 

The Hawks regrouped after losing two straight games and three of four. Young, Collins and most starters sat out the fourth quarter.

 

Chris Duarte led the Pacers with 25 points. Lance Stephenson had 24 points, nine rebounds and eight assists in his first start of the season.

 

The Pacers had only eight healthy players. Thursday's six-player trade sent three players, including two-time All-Star forward Domantas Sabonis, to Sacramento.

 

Malcolm Brogdon (right Achilles soreness) and F Isaiah Jackson (right ankle sprain) were held out with injuries. Terry Taylor had seven points and 10 rebounds. Oshae Brissett had 15 points.

 

The Pacers host Cleveland on Friday night.

0
comments


Pacers Trade Sabonis to Kings in Six-Player Blockbuster Deal

The Indiana Pacers traded two-time All-Star Domantas Sabonis to the Sacramento Kings on Tuesday in a 6-player deal.

 

Sacramento is sending Tyrese Haliburton, Buddy Hield and Tristan Thompson to the Pacers.

 

The Kings will get Justin Holiday, Jeremy Lamb and a second-round draft pick plus Sabonis, who is averaging 18.9 points, 12.1 rebounds and 5.0 assists per game. He leads the Pacers in all three categories.

 

It’s the second major deal Indiana has made in less than a week. The Pacers also sent Caris LeVert to the Cleveland Cavaliers for the injured Ricky Rubio and three draft picks including a lottery-protected first-round selection this summer. Rubio has already been ruled out for the rest of this season and has an expiring contract.

 

Sabonis and Indiana shot-blocker Myles Turner have been the speculation of trade rumors for weeks.

 

Indiana appears to be regrouping after a roster severely depleted by injuries and COVID-19 issues have left the Pacers near the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings. The moves also could help the Pacers become a bigger player in free agency next summer.

 

Haliburton is averaging 14.3 points, 7.4 assists and is tied for sixth in the league with 1.7 steals. He’s also 11th in assists. Hield is third in the NBA in 3-pointers this season and Thompson should fill a need inside with the Pacers scrambling with post play because of injuries.

 

The Kings, meanwhile, are getting Sabonis — who has become a double-double machine over the past couple of seasons — and two more scorers in Holiday and Lamb. Holiday is averaging 11.0 points while Lamb averages 7.1 while coming off the bench this season. Lamb also has an expiring contract.

0
comments


Packers Name Special Teams Coordinator

The Green Bay Packers are counting on former Raiders interim head coach Rich Bisaccia to upgrade their beleaguered special teams.

 

The Packers announced Tuesday that Bisaccia will joining Matt LaFleur’s staff as the team’s third special teams coordinator in as many seasons. The Packers had a punt and a field goal blocked in an NFC divisional playoff loss to the San Francisco 49ers and had the NFL’s worst special teams during the regular season, according to Football Outsiders efficiency metrics.

 

The Packers are getting one of the league’s most respected special teams coaches in Bisaccia, who is going back to his roots after helping the Raiders reach the playoffs as interim head coach.

 

Bisaccia took over after the resignation of Jon Gruden and went 7-6, including the Raiders’ wild-card loss to Cincinnati. The Raiders opted against making Bisaccia their permanent head coach and instead hired New England Patriots offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels.

 

Even so, Bisaccia earned plenty of compliments from Raiders players for the way he kept the team together amid turmoil that included Gruden’s forced resignation over offensive emails and wide receiver Henry Ruggs III’s arrest in a deadly crash in Las Vegas.

 

Bisaccia has 20 seasons of special teams coordinator experience with the Raiders, Cowboys, Chargers and Buccaneers. He now has the challenge of solidifying a unit that has long been the Packers’ biggest weakness.

 

LaFleur fired Shawn Mennenga as special teams coordinator after the 2020 season and replaced him by promoting Maurice Drayton, who had been assistant special teams coordinator from 2018-20. The Packers’ special teams got even worse this season.

 

In a 13-7 loss at Kansas City on Nov. 7, the Packers had a field-goal attempt blocked and had a fumbled punt return that set up a Chiefs field goal. Green Bay beat the Chicago Bears 45-30 on Dec. 12 despite allowing Jakeem Grant to score on a 97-yard punt return and failing to recover an onside kick.

 

Things were worse in the playoffs.

 

The Packers led 7-0 when San Francisco’s Jimmie Ward easily got through the line and blocked Mason Crosby’s 39-yard field-goal attempt on the final play of the first half. Green Bay still led 10-3 until Jordan Willis blocked Corey Bojorquez’s punt. Talanoa Hufanga picked up the loose ball and returned it 6 yards for a game-tying touchdown with 4:41 left.

 

The Packers also had only 10 men on the field when San Francisco’s Robbie Gould kicked the game-winning 45-yard field goal as time expired. LaFleur blamed the error on a miscount from the coaches’ box.

0
comments


Monticello Rallies Past Pontiac

With the game tied at 56, Joey Sprinkle made a the front-end of two free throws with 2.4 seconds left in regulation completing an 11-2 finish in the final five minutes as the Sages rallied past Pontiac 57-56 in a thrilling high school boy's basketball matchup from Pontiac High School.

 

In a game heard on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com, the Sages trailed 54-45 with 5:04 left in the fourth quarter after the Indians opened the final quarter on a 9-0 run but Monticello and its senior-led group never waivered against a young Indians squad. Ben Cresap scored seven of the final 11 points for the Sages and forced a couple of key turnovers late in the game.

 

Pontiac sophomore Riley Weber stepped up and buried a pair of free throws to tie the game at 56 with 44-seconds left and the Sages held for a final shot.

 

After a timeout with 18-seconds left, Pontiac doubled Cresap on the inbound and he passed from the left wing to Triston Foran in the left corner. Foran drove to the block and found Sprinkle under the basket and a late rotating Indians defense could only foul the Sages big man with 2.8 seconds left.

 

After Sprinkle missed the back-end of the two-shot foul, the Indians called a timeout immediately on the rebound. 

 

Inbounding from under the Monticello basket and the length of the court to go, Sprinkle tipped the inbound pass on the denial and the ball never crossed center court with the clock expiring and Monticello escaped with a tough road victory.

 

The Sages shot 45-percent for the game while Pontiac shot 42-percent. The Indians went 10-for-22 from distance as the three-point game was where they were most successful. The Sages struggled from distance Tuesday going just 5-for-16. 

 

Pontiac outrebounded Monticello 31-26 and turned nine offensive rebounds into 8 second-chance points while the Sages also scored eight second-chance points on six offensive rebounds.

 

Ben Crespap recorded his first career double-double and was two assists shy of the first triple-double in Monticello school history. He had 13 points, 13 rebounds, and added eight assists to only three turnovers. 

 

As a team, Monticello had 14 assists on its 22 baskets and only seven turnovers for the game. 

 

Tanner Buehnerkemper added 13 points for Monticello, all in the first half.

 

The Indians were led by sophomores Kerr Bauman and Henry Brummel with 15 points apiece and Logan Barnett had a double-double for Pontiac with 10 points and 10 rebounds. 

 

Sprinkle finished with nine points for Monticello. 

 

The Illini Prairie thriller featured nine ties and 13 lead changes.

 

Pontiac had a three-game winning streak snapped and dropped to 14-12 overall and 5-3 in the Illini Prairie Conference.

 

The Sages have won four straight improving to 24-3 overall and are 7-1 in the Illini Prairie.

 

Tuesday night's game was the final road game of the season for the Sages. They host Champaign St. Thomas More Friday night at 7 pm followed by a Saturday matchup against Decatur St. Teresa and then finish out the regular season at home next Tuesday night hosting Tolono Unity for a 7 pm finish.

 

Hear all the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com. 

0
comments


Suns Edge Bulls

Devin Booker got off to a big start while helping Phoenix build a huge lead. The NBA-leading Suns remained in control the rest of the way and came away with yet another win.

 

Booker scored 38 points, and Phoenix beat the Chicago Bulls 127-124 on Monday night.

 

The Suns led by as many as 27 points in the third quarter and withstood a push down the stretch to win for the 13th time in 14 games. They improved to 43-10 overall and a league-leading 21-5 on the road.

 

Booker hit the 30-point mark for the third time in four games. The All-Star made 14 of 23 shots, including five 3-pointers.

 

Chris Paul added 19 points and 11 assists. JaVale McGee finished with 16 points and eight rebounds, and Mikal Bridges scored 15.

 

Chicago's DeMar DeRozan scored 38, coming off a season-high 45-point performance in Sunday's loss to Philadelphia.

 

Zach LaVine added 32 points after missing the previous two games because of back spasms. Malcolm Hill scored the final eight points, including a layup at the buzzer. But it was easy to see why coach Billy Donovan said the box score ''without question'' did not reflect how lopsided this one really was.

 

The Bulls fell into a third-place tie in the Eastern Conference with Cleveland, 1 1/2 games behind Miami and a half-game back of defending NBA champion Milwaukee.

 

The Bulls are missing their two best perimeter defenders with Lonzo Ball and Alex Caruso injured. But Donovan expects more from the players who are available.

 

Phoenix was rolling along with an 88-61 lead midway through the third after Booker hit a 19-footer, then withstood a push down the stretch by Chicago.

 

A three-point play by DeRozan cut it to 113-104 with 5:56 left in the game. Jae Crowder came through with a 3 to quiet the crowd and stop the momentum. Deandre Ayton scored on a hook and hit 1 of 2 free throws to make it a 15-point game with 4:42 left.

 

The Suns took control in the second quarter while building a 67-49 halftime lead.

 

Booker scored 22 in the half, going 8 of 10 from the field with three 3-pointers. The Suns went on a 17-3 run early in the second quarter to stretch a five-point lead to 19. And a three-point play by Bridges midway through the quarter bumped the lead to 58-37.

 

The Bulls visit Charlotte on Wednesday.

0
comments


Lady Maroons Three-Seed in Monticello Sub-Sectional

The Clinton Lady Maroons are the three-seed in the Monticello sub-Sectional.

The girl's postseason opens next Monday night and the Lady Maroons will take on the winner of a Regional quarterfinal matchup between Warrensburg-Latham and Tri-Valley. The Lady Maroons have beaten Tri-Valley and have defeated the Lady Cardinals this season.

 

The Regional semifinal matchup will be next Tuesday night at 7:30 pm at Clinton High School.

 

The two-seed is Paris who will match up next Tuesday night at 6 pm against either Maroa-Forsyth or Sangamon Valley with the winners of Tuesday night's games to meet at 7 pm Thursday night for the Regional Championship.

 

The winner of the Regional will move on to the Monticello sectional. 

 

In the Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond Regional, Monticello will take on Shelbyville in a Regional quarterfinal game at Monticello High School Saturday. The winner gets top-seeded Pana Monday night at Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond. 

0
comments


Blackhawks Interview Blues Executive for GM Job, Also Talk to Cubs Executive

The Chicago Blackhawks have interviewed longtime NHL executive Peter Chiarelli for their general manager job.

 

Chiarelli, 57, is the vice president of hockey operations for the St. Louis Blues. He was the GM for the Boston Bruins from 2006-2015 and the Edmonton Oilers from 2015-2019.

 

The Blackhawks announced the interview with Chiarelli on Sunday. They also have interviewed interim GM Kyle Davidson, Carolina Hurricanes assistant GM Eric Tulsky and former NHL forward Scott Mellanby for the role.

 

Former Blackhawks forwards Eddie Olczyk, Marian Hossa and Patrick Sharp are helping the team with its GM search, and CEO Danny Wirtz has said the organization plans to interview candidates “both inside and outside of hockey.” But the team has yet to announce a candidate from outside the sport.

 

Davidson was elevated to the interim job after longtime general manager Stan Bowman resigned in October in the wake of a report by an outside law firm that found the organization mishandled allegations that an assistant coach sexually assaulted a player during the team’s Stanley Cup run in 2010.

 

The report also played a role in the departure of Al MacIsaac, another of Chicago’s top hockey executives, and the NHL fined the team $2 million for “the organization’s inadequate internal procedures and insufficient and untimely response.”

 

Chicago Cubs assistant general manager Jeff Greenberg has interviewed with the NHL’s Chicago Blackhawks for their GM opening, becoming the first known candidate for the job from outside professional hockey.

 

The Blackhawks confirmed the interview on Monday. CEO Danny Wirtz, the son of team owner Rocky Wirtz, promised last month that the process would include candidates “both inside and outside of hockey.”

 

Greenberg took on his current role with the Cubs in 2020. He joined the franchise in 2012 as a baseball operations intern. He also has served as the Cubs’ director of pro scouting and baseball operations.

 

Greenberg has degrees from Columbia Law School and the University of Pennsylvania. He also interned with Major League Baseball’s labor relations department.

 

The Blackhawks also have interviewed interim GM Kyle Davidson, Carolina Hurricanes assistant GM Eric Tulsky, former NHL forward Scott Mellanby and longtime NHL executive Peter Chiarelli for the role.

 

Former Blackhawks forwards Eddie Olczyk, Marian Hossa and Patrick Sharp are helping the team with its GM search.

0
comments


Bears Bring in Cardinals Assistant as New TEs Coach

The Chicago Bears hired Arizona assistant Jim Dray as tight ends coach on Monday.

 

Dray joins new coach Matt Eberflus’ staff after spending the past three seasons as an offensive quality control coach — with Cleveland in 2019 and the Cardinals in 2020 and ’21. He was an offensive assistant at Stanford, his alma mater, in 2018.

 

The 35-year-old Dray played eight seasons in the NFL as a tight end with the Cardinals (2010-13 and 2017), Cleveland (2014-15), Buffalo (2016) and San Francisco (2016). He caught 56 passes for 605 yards and three touchdowns in 94 games.

 

The Bears also hired Austin King as assistant offensive line coach. He recently completed his first season as the Las Vegas Raiders’ tight ends coach after serving as offensive quality control coach for them in 2020.

 

Chicago went 6-11 this season.

 

Eberflus is in his first NFL head coaching job, replacing the fired Matt Nagy, after he spent the past four years as Indianapolis defensive coordinator. Chicago has a new general manager, too, with Ryan Poles taking over for Ryan Pace.

 

The Bears also announced Monday they are raising season-ticket package prices by 6% because they are scheduled to play a ninth regular-season home game instead of a second preseason matchup at Soldier Field. The team said the increase is “is due solely to the variable pricing aspect of the ticket package with the addition of a regular-season home game in place of a preseason home game in 2022.”

 

The renewal deadline is March 18.

0
comments


Blackhawks Fire AHL Trainer After Sexual Harassment Allegations

The Chicago Blackhawks fired a longtime minor-league trainer in November after he was accused of sexual harassment.

 

The alleged harassment by Rockford IceHogs trainer D.J. Jones occurred in 2014, the Blackhawks said Sunday night in a statement. The allegations were reported to the team on Oct. 27, a day after it released a report by an outside law firm that found the organization mishandled allegations that an assistant coach sexually assaulted a player in 2010.

 

ESPN was the first to report on the accusations against Jones.

 

The Blackhawks said in their statement under our new leadership, nothing is more important than the safety and well-being of its players and employees, and there is a zero-tolerance policy for any violation of the standards of conduct in the organization.

 

Jones was in his 16th season with the IceHogs of the American Hockey League. John Walter was promoted to head athletic trainer after Jones’ departure.

 

The Blackhawks’ announcement comes as the organization is working to rebuild its reputation after the October report by Jenner & Block detailed how senior leaders with the team largely ignored Kyle Beach’s allegations after he said he was assaulted by then-video coach Brad Aldrich just days before the team won its first Stanley Cup title since 1961.

 

Longtime general manager Stan Bowman resigned after the team received the report, and it also played a role in the departure of Al MacIsaac, another top hockey executive. The NHL fined the team $2 million for “the organization’s inadequate internal procedures and insufficient and untimely response.”

 

Two lawsuits related to Beach’s allegations were resolved in December. But three more people are weighing suits against the Blackhawks for the team’s handling of the matter, according to a Chicago attorney representing the men.

 

Facing questions Wednesday for the first time since the law firm’s report, owner Rocky Wirtz angrily refused to address how the team handled Beach’s accusations. Wirtz, 69, ended up apologizing for his reaction.

 

A day later, Wirtz said he should have let his son, Danny, the Blackhawks’ CEO, and President of Business Operations Jaime Faulkner share the organization’s work when it comes to improving the culture.

0
comments


Lady Maroons Down Hawks

In a game heard Monday night on WHOW, the Clinton Lady Maroons downed the Meridian Hawks, 58-15.

 

Clinton jumped out to a 17-2 first quarter lead, and never looked back.  The Maroons defense held the Hawks without a field goal in both the first and fourth quarters. 

 

It was Senior Night for the Lady Maroons, and they were paced by their three seniors. Mallory Cyrulik led the way with 21, including 7 of 12 shooting from the line.  Kaitlin Rauch added 17, including four 3-pointers. Kylie Raymer added 6 with two three's of her own.  All three seniors were named Co-Serv Pro of Piatt & Dewitt Counties Players of the Game. 
 

Meridian was led by Aleita Hale with 7.  The Hawks fall to 8-18 overall, and 0-6 in conference. 
 

Clinton improves to 25-5 on the season, and 6-0 in the CIC.  They travel to Warrensburg Thursday night to wrap up the regular season.  The Lady Maroons will next be heard on WHOW

next Tuesday night at 7:30 in a regional semi at Clinton High School. Be listening for details. 
 

0
comments


Sixers Get By Bulls

Joel Embiid had 40 points and 10 rebounds and the 76ers overcame DeMar DeRozan's season-high, 45-point game for Chicago to beat the Bulls 119-108 on Sunday.

 

The 76ers won the matchup between two of the Eastern Conference's top teams after letting a 17-point lead early in the fourth quarter shrink to four.

 

They hung on down the stretch to beat the Bulls for the 10th straight time. They also knocked Chicago a half-game behind first-place Miami and pulled within 1 1/2 games of the idle Heat. With the 76ers' victory, Miami clinched the best record in the East through Sunday, sending Erik Spoelstra and his Heat staff to the All-Star Game in Cleveland to coach Team Durant.

 

Embiid finished with 40 or more points for the seventh time this season. The NBA's leading scorer, he hit 14 of 23 shots.

 

Tobias Harris added 23 points, and Tyrese Maxey had 16, helping the Sixers shake off losses against Washington and Dallas to win for the sixth time in eight games.

 

DeRozan did all he could to carry the Bulls, with Zach LaVine (back spasms) and guard Coby White (strained right adductor) missing their second consecutive games. The All-Star finished seven points shy of his career high.

 

Nikola Vucevic scored 23. Javonte Green added 17 points. The Bulls fell to 0-3 against Philadelphia, though they stayed competitive against a good team despite having a long list of key players out with injuries. That includes Lonzo Ball and Alex Caruso.

 

The Sixers looked as if they were ready to put this one away, leading 98-81 early in the fourth quarter after a 13-0 run that started in the third. The Bulls answered with 13 straight, pulling within four on DeRozan's 19-footer, and it remained tight until the closing minutes.

 

Chicago's Ayo Dosunmu made a 3 to make it 112-106 with just over three minutes remaining. Seth Curry answered with a floater and Harris drove for a layup to bump Philadelphia's lead to 10 with two minutes remaining.

 

DeRozan, who played 41 minutes, was 18 of 30 from the field and 9 of 11 at the foul line.

 

The Bulls host the Western Conference-leading Phoenix Suns on Monday night.

0
comments


Cavs Get By Pacers, Trade for LeVert

Cedi Osman scored 22 points and Kevin Love had 19 as the Cleveland Cavaliers rallied from 20 down to beat Indiana 98-85 on Sunday night, shortly after agreeing to acquire shooting guard Caris LeVert from the Pacers.

 

Osman and Love combined to score the first 19 points in the fourth quarter, completing a 25-3 run that gave the Cavaliers an 80-68 lead. Osman finished with 18 in the period, while Love had nine points and drew two charging fouls on Pacers rookie Chris Duarte.

 

Jarrett Allen had 15 points and 17 rebounds, and Rajon Rondo added 15 points and a season-high 12 assists off the bench for Cleveland, which is one game behind East-leading Miami. The Cavaliers made their first eight 3-pointers in the fourth.

 

Duarte paced Indiana with 22 points, Duane Washington Jr. scored 17 and Domantas Sabonis had nine points and 11 rebounds. The Pacers, who jumped out to a 34-14 lead, have lost three straight and seven of nine.


LeVert, who is averaging 18.7 points and 4.4 assists, will be acquired for injured guard Ricky Rubio - and his expiring $17.8 million contract - and three draft picks, a person familiar with the trade told The Associated Press.

 

Cleveland also will receive a 2022 second-round pick in the transaction, adding needed backcourt help after losing Rubio and Collin Sexton to season-ending knee injuries. All-Star point guard Darius Garland missed his fourth straight game with a sore lower back.

 

Carlisle announced the trade had been completed 90 minutes before the opening tip, pending approval from the NBA.

 

Osman's running floater with 10:23 remaining put the Cavaliers in front for the first time at 69-68. Garland ran down the sideline to greet his teammates after each of Indiana's three timeouts that failed to stop the surge.

 

The Pacers went into intermission with a 47-36 lead after Cleveland missed 24 of its first 29 shots, including all nine 3-pointers.

 

Indiana scored the first five points and jumped in front 23-5, ending the quarter with a 27-12 advantage. Sabonis had six points and eight rebounds in eight minutes, returning from a three-game stay in the NBA's health and safety protocols.

 

The Pacers visit Atlanta on Tuesday night.

0
comments


Bears Hire Richard Hightower as Special Teams Coordinator, James Rowe DB Coach

The Chicago Bears hired Richard Hightower as special teams coordinator under new coach Matt Eberflus on Sunday.

 

Hightower spent the past five seasons as San Francisco’s special teams coordinator and has 15 years of NFL coaching experience. He replaces Chris Tabor in Chicago, where Hightower was assistant special teams coach on John Fox’s staff in 2016.

 

Special teams played a big role in San Francisco’s NFC championship game run this season. The 49ers blocked a punt and returned it for a tying touchdown in the fourth quarter of their divisional-round game at Green Bay, and former Bear Robbie Gould kicked the winning field goal. San Francisco also blocked a field goal by Green Bay at the end of the first half.

 

The 49ers then lost to the Los Angeles Rams in the NFC championship game.

 

From 2017-2020, the 49ers tied for second in the NFL in made field goals (124) and fifth in field goal percentage (88.6). San Francisco’s punt coverage ranked second in that span, holding opponents to 6.2 yards per return.

 

The Bears now have all three coordinators in place, with Hightower joining offensive coordinator Luke Getsy and defensive coordinator Alan Williams.

 

The Chicago Bears hired James Rowe as defensive backs coach on Friday.

 

Rowe is the latest assistant to follow new coach Matt Eberflus from Indianapolis to Chicago after coaching the Colts’ cornerbacks this past season. The list includes defensive coordinator Alan Williams, linebackers coach Dave Borgonzi and assistant defensive backs coach David Overstreet II.

 

Rowe has coached for 15 years — four in the NFL. The Colts ranked second in the league with 33 takeaways and tied for third in interceptions with 19 in his lone season with them. Cornerback Kenny Moore II made his first Pro Bowl after finishing with four interceptions and a team-high 13 passes defensed.

 

Rowe was also an assistant with the Washington Commanders from 2017 to 2019.

 

Eberflus was hired last week for his first NFL head coaching job, replacing the fired Matt Nagy, after he spent the past four years as Indianapolis’ defensive coordinator. The Bears also have a new general manager, with Ryan Poles taking over for Ryan Pace.

0
comments


Packers Name TE Coach Replacement

The Green Bay Packers have promoted John Dunn to take over as tight ends coach for Justin Outten, who left to become the Denver Broncos’ offensive coordinator.

 

The Packers announced the move Saturday. The team also confirmed Maurice Drayton won’t return as special teams coordinator; his departure had been reported on Tuesday.

 

Dunn worked as a senior analyst for the Packers this season, coached the New York Jets’ tight ends from 2019-20 and was an assistant with the Chicago Bears from 2016-17.

 

He also has college experience as UConn’s offensive coordinator (2018), Maryland’s tight ends coach (2011-15) and as an LSU offensive graduate assistant (2008-09) and offensive intern (2010). He started his coaching career at North Carolina as a student assistant (2004), offensive quality control coach (2005) and offensive graduate assistant (2006-07).

 

Dunn was a walk-on quarterback and tight end at North Carolina from 2001-03 before a neck injury ended his playing career.

 

Outten coached the Packers’ tight ends for the last three seasons before following new Broncos coach Nathaniel Hackett from Green Bay to Denver. Hackett had been the Packers’ offensive coordinator for the last three seasons.

0
comments


Boya lifts Bradley over Evansville 76-41

Ari Boya tallied 10 points and 14 rebounds and Jayson Kent had 14 points and Bradley throttled Evansville in a 76-41 win on Saturday.

 

Ville Tahvanainen added 12 points for Bradley (13-11, 7-5 Missouri Valley Conference).

 

Evan Kuhlman had 11 points for the Purple Aces (5-16, 1-9). Shamar Givance, who led the Purple Aces in scoring coming into the contest at 14 points per game, finished 1-for-7 shooting. Bradley held Evansville to 27.1% shooting.

 

Bradley defeated Evansville 79-47 on Jan. 12.

0
comments


Jones leads S. Illinois over Illinois St. 75-69

Lance Jones had a career-high 31 points as Southern Illinois topped Illinois State 75-69 on Saturday night.

 

Jones shot 5 for 6 on 3-pointers. He added five steals. Marcus Domask had 18 points and five assists for Southern Illinois (12-12, 5-7 Missouri Valley Conference). Ben Coupet Jr. added 12 points. Dalton Banks had seven assists.

 

Josiah Strong had 18 points and six rebounds for the Redbirds (10-14, 3-8), who have lost five games in a row. Liam McChesney added 12 points and eight rebounds. Ryan Schmitt had 10 points.

0
comments


Frazier, No. 18 Illinois surge in 2nd half past Indiana

Trent Frazier made all three of his shots inside the arc, went 2 of 3 from 3-point range and hit both free throws to finish with 23 points while leading the Fighting Illini to a 74-57 victory at Indiana.

 

Kofi Cockburn played a solid game. He finished with 17 points and eight rebounds, falling two rebounds short of his 41st career double-double.

 

Indiana (16-6, 7-5) was led by Race Thompson with 13 points and six rebounds. Xavier Johnson had 12 points, five rebounds and five assists on a day preseason All-American Trayce Jackson-Davis missed the final 15 1/2 minutes of the first half because of foul trouble.

 

Frazier and Jacob Grandison finally gave Illinois the upper hand in the last 10 minutes.

 

Grandison started a decisive 16-3 run with back-to-back 3s, the second giving Illinois a 48-45 lead - its first since less than three minutes into the game. Cockburn and Frazier combined to score the remaining points in the spurt as Frazier capped it with a 3 to put Illinois ahead 58-49 with 7:45 to play.

 

Illinois spent the rest of the game pulling away and Indiana lost its second home game of the season without making another serious challenge.

0
comments


Monticello Pulls Away from PORTA at Illini Prairie/Sangamo Conference Shootout

Ben Cresap scored 14 of his 23 points in the second half, Dylan Ginalick scored 12 of his 19 points in the second half and Monticello pulled away from the PORTA-AC Blue Jays in the second half to win 57-45 in the Illini Prairie/Sangamo Conference Shootout from Maroa-Forsyth High School Saturday evening.

 

The Sages led 24-23 at the intermission and after Cole Roberts tied the game at 28 with 4:12 to play in the third quarter, Monticello went on a 10-0 run over the next 1:26 highlighted by a pair of Ginalick three-pointers. 

 

Gavin Arthony opened the fourth quarter with a three and brought the Blue Jays to 41-35 but it was Monticello the rest of the way. 

 

Cresap's 21 led all scorers and Ginalick added 17 for Monticello. The Sages were outrebounded 25-24 but scored 18 points off 12 turnovers. They shot 50-percent from the floor and scored 24 points in the paint.

 

PORTA-AC drops to 19-6 overall while Monticello moves to 23-3. Monticello is back in action Monday at Pontiac. Hear all the action on 95.9 FM WEZC and online at dewittdailynews.com starting at 7 pm. 

0
comments


Clinton falls to Warrensburg-Latham in CIC Tournament

As heard on WHOW,the Clinton Maroons fell to the Warrensburg-Latham Cardinals by a score of 72-39 Friday night at the CIC Tournament at Meridian High School. ServPro of Piatt/DeWitt Counties Player of the Game Dawson Graves led the Maroons with 18 points. Sophomore Mason Walker added 8.

 

The Cardinals were led by senior Jacob Six with 23 points. Sophomore MJ Murphy had 20 and senior Greg Allen added 11.

 

With the loss, the Maroons fall to 10-19. Warrensburg improves to 18-6 and will finish third place in the CIC Tournament.

 

Tune in Monday, February 7, as the Lady Maroons take on Meridian for senior night. You can hear the game live on the Big 1520 AM/92.3 FM/106.5 FM WHOW, online at dewittdailynews.com, on the WHOW mobile app, and on Amazon Alexa.

0
comments


Raptors Use Overtime to Get By Bulls

Pascal Siakam had 25 points and 13 rebounds, Chris Boucher added 16 points and 10 rebounds, and the Toronto Raptors beat the Chicago Bulls 127-120 in overtime on Thursday night.

 

Scottie Barnes scored 21 points, including the go-ahead basket with 1:44 left in OT, and Gary Trent Jr. added a decisive 3-pointer with 16 seconds remaining.

 

Trent scored 16 points, ending his career-best streak of 30-point games at five.

 

Fred VanVleet and OG Anunoby each scored 21 as Toronto won its fourth straight overall and snapped a five-game losing streak against the Bulls.

 

Toronto finished with 113 field goal attempts, while the Bulls had 90. The Raptors also had 22 offensive rebounds, compared to 10 for Chicago.

 

Chicago committed 17 turnovers, leading to 22 points for the Raptors.

 

Vucevic matched his season high with 30 points and had 18 rebounds, his ninth double-double in 10 games.

 

DeMar DeRozan scored 28 points against his former team. Coby White had 16 points, LaVine had 15, Javonte Green 13 and Ayo Dosunmu 11 for the Bulls, who came in as the Eastern Conference leaders.

 

The Raptors led 103-93 after VanVleet's 3 with 5:50 to go in regulation, but DeRozan tied it at 112 on a jump shot with 47 seconds left, capping a personal six-point run.

 

VanVleet lost the ball out of bounds and, after the officials initially ruled in Toronto's favor, Chicago successfully challenged and got possession, taking the lead on Vucecvic's basket with 8.6 seconds left.

 

VanVleet came up empty on a driving shot attempt at the other end, but Barnes tipped in the missed shot to tie it with 0.7 seconds left. Vucevic got a final shot off, but didn't come close.

 

Toronto led 26-24 after one, and got nine points from Siakam to extend its lead to 54-50 at halftime.

 

Vucevic scored 10 points in the third but VanVleet answered with nine for Toronto as the Raptors took an 87-81 lead to the fourth. The Raptors shot 4 for 17 from 3-point range in the first half but went 6 for 11 from distance in the third.

 

The Bulls visit Indiana on Friday.

0
comments


Bears Hire Defensive Coordinator, QB Coach

The Chicago Bears hired Minnesota Vikings assistant Andrew Janocko as their quarterbacks coach on Thursday.

 

Janocko joins new coach Matt Eberflus’ staff after spending the past seven years in a variety of roles under Mike Zimmer in Minnesota, most recently as the Vikings quarterbacks coach this past season. He replaces John DeFilippo, who was also Chicago’s pass game coordinator in 2021.

 

The Bears also hired Tyke Tolbert as wide receivers coach and pass game coordinator and David Overstreet II as assistant defensive backs coach. Tolbert has coached 19 years in the NFL — the past four as the New York Giants wide receivers coach. Overstreet spent the past four seasons in Indianapolis, as defensive quality control coach from 2018 to 2020 and defensive backs coach in 2021, while Eberflus was the Colts defensive coordinator.

 

Janocko goes from working with veteran Kirk Cousins to trying to get the most out of Justin Fields. Cousins threw for 4,221 yards with 33 touchdowns and seven interceptions this season. Fields had a shaky rookie season after being drafted out of Ohio State with the No. 11 overall pick, though he also showed some potential.

 

Janocko was an offensive quality control coach his first two seasons in Minnesota and assistant offensive line coach in 2017. He shared offensive line coaching duties with tight ends coach Clancy Baron in 2018 following the death of Tony Sparano, then went back to assistant offensive line coach in 2019 with the hiring of Rick Dennison.

He was promoted to receivers coach in 2020, and helped Justin Jefferson deliver a Pro Bowl rookie season with 1,400 yards and seven TDs on 88 receptions.

 

Janocko played college ball at Pittsburgh from 2007 to 2010. New Bears offensive coordinator Luke Getsy was a graduate assistant there in 2010 on Dave Wannstedt’s staff.

 

The Bears decided to make major changes following a 6-11 season, firing general manager Ryan Pace and coach Matt Nagy. They hired new GM Ryan Poles out of Kansas City’s front office and Eberflus, hoping they can turn around a franchise mired in mediocrity the past decade.

 

The Chicago Bears hired Alan Williams as defensive coordinator under new coach Matt Eberflus on Wednesday.

 

Williams spent the past four seasons as the Colts’ safeties coach while Eberflus was their defensive coordinator. It was his second stint with Indianapolis after coaching defensive backs for 10 seasons from 2002 to 2011.

 

Williams was Minnesota’s defensive coordinator in 2012 and 2013. He has 30 years of coaching experience, including 21 in the NFL.

 

Eberflus was hired last week for his first NFL head coaching job.

 

The Bears also added Dave Borgonzi and Chris Morgan to their staff on Wednesday. Borgonzi is going to coach the team’s linebackers, and Morgan is the new offensive line coach.

 

Williams replaces Sean Desai in Chicago and will call plays for a team transitioning to a 4-3 scheme that is drastically different from the 3-4 the Bears played over the past seven seasons. It reverts to a style they used for nine seasons under former coach Lovie Smith, who led the 2006 team to Chicago’s most recent Super Bowl appearance.

Williams’ two years as the Vikings defensive coordinator were unremarkable.

0
comments


NASCAR's Team Penske To Be First Team with Electric Truck at Track

Team Penske will make history at the Los Angeles Coliseum this weekend when it becomes the first NASCAR team to use an all-electric truck to get its car to the track.

 

The No. 2 Ford set to be driven by rookie Austin Cindric in the exhibition Busch Light Clash was loaded Thursday into a trailer at Penske Truck Leasing in Ontario to be pulled by Freightliner’s eCascadia tractor roughly 50 miles to the Coliseum. It marks the first time in NASCAR history an electric truck will be used by a team at an official venue.

 

Both the truck and Cindric’s car for The Clash are painted in a matching blue schemes that highlight the eCascadia.

 

A fully-charged eCascadia can drive roughly 250 miles. The one headed to the Coliseum was charged in Ontario and will be able to make the round trip up and back Interstate 10 without a stop at a charging station.

0
comments


NASCAR At LA Coliseum This Weekend

NASCAR is hitting Los Angeles a week ahead of the Super Bowl, grabbing the spotlight with its wildest idea yet: The Clash, the unofficial season-opening, stock-car version of the Pro Bowl, will run at the iconic Coliseum in a made-for-Fox Sports spectacular.

 

Yes, that’s correct. A temporary track has been built inside the Coliseum, where race cars will rattle around a quarter mile of asphalt carefully laid over the grass field that has hosted two summer Olympics, the USC Trojans and the hometown Rams for four seasons until their new stadium opened in 2020.

 

The first Super Bowl in 1967 was played at the Coliseum, but the Rams will play for the NFL championship 10 miles away at Sofi Stadium a week from Sunday. NASCAR is offering an appetizer with its season-opening event, until now raced every year since its 1979 inception at Daytona International Speedway in Florida.

 

Run under different formats with different presenting sponsors over the years, The Clash was the opening event of Speed Weeks and a warmup for the Daytona 500 — NASCAR’s own version of Super Bowl. But NASCAR has been willing to look beyond cookie-cutter tracks in traditional markets.

0
comments


Monticello Up to No. 8 in Latest High School Boy's Basketball Poll

The Monticello Sages are up a spot in this week's high school boy's 2A basketball poll.

 

Up to No. 8 from No. 9 last week, Rockford Lutheran and Chicago Charter1Leadership enter the poll at No. 9 and 10, respectively. 

 

Chicago Leo, DePaul College Prep, and Breese Central remain steady 1-3 from last week. Chicago Clark moved up to No. 4 from No. 5 last week and El Paso-Gridely jumped to No. 5 from No. 7 last week. 

 

Nashville moved up to No. 6 this week from No. 8 last week while Chicago Orr dropped to No. 7 from No. 4 last week. 

 

In the Class 1A poll, Meridian is down a spot to No. 5 from No. 4 last week. They swapped places with Liberty who received a first place vote. Scales Mound, Yorkville Christian, and Fulton remained the top three teams in the latest poll.

 

Tuscola moved up a spot to No. 6  from No. 7 last week. Meridian and Tuscola will meet for the Central Illinois Conference tournament title this week. 

 

South Beloit swapped spots with Tuscola to No. 7 this week. Concord Triopia enters the rankings all the way to No. 8 while Jacksonville Routt and Peoria Christian round out the 1A top 10.

 

In Class 3A, Chicago Simeon remains the unanimous No. 1 followed by Hillcrest, East St. Louis, Springfield Sacred Heart-Griffin and Hyde Park in the top 5. 

 

Burlington, Chicago Mt. Carmel, Centralia, and Harvey Thornton are No. 6-9 while Chicago Heights Marian Catholic and Metamora enter the rankings and tied for No. 10 in the 3A poll.

 

In Class 4A, Glenbard-West is the unanimous No. 1 and Normal Community moves up a spot to No. 4 this week.

0
comments


Lincoln Lady Railersplitters Up to No. 8 in This Week's 3A Poll

The Lincoln Lady Railsplitters continue a fantastic season moving up to No. 8 the latest girl's basketball Class 3A state rankings released Wednesday afternoon.

 

The Lady Railers were up from No. 9 last week while Metamora moved up to No. 9 from tenth last week. Montini and Bethalto Civic Memorial are back in this week's rankings tied at No. 10. 

 

Geneseo remains No. 1 with four first-place votes followed by Peoria Notre Dame who moved up a spot with two first place votes. Peoria Central moved up a spot to No. 3 witha first place vote. Nazareth and Sycamore round out the top five in the latest girl's 3A poll. 

 

Morton dropped to No. 6 while Mattoon remained No. 7 in this week's poll.

 

In Class 1A, the top four remained unchanged with Okawville at No. 1 with six first-place votes followed by Brimfield who received three first-place votes and Tri-County, Mendon Unity and River Ridge round out the top 5.

 

Brown County and Galena moved up a spot each to No. 6-7, respectively. Orangeville enters the poll at tying with Sarena for No. 8 and Cowden-Herrick checks in at No. 10 this week. 

 

In Class 2A, the top six remain unchanged this week with Quincy Notre Dame at the top spot with seven first place votes, followed by Winnebago at No. 2 with three first place votes then Illini West, Pana, and Paris round out the top five and Carterville is No. 6 this week, the same order as last week. 

 

Chiacgo Noble Street-Butler moved up from No. 9 to No. 7 this week. Fieldcrest comes in at No. 8 then Teutopolis at No. 9 and Peotone enters the rankings at No. 10.

 

In Class 4A, Chicago Stevenson is the unanimous No. 1 and Normal Community received votes in this week's poll but did not crack the top 10.

0
comments


No. 18 Illinois Drops No. 11 Wisconsin

Kofi Cockburn had 37 points and 12 rebounds and No. 18 Illinois beat No. 11 Wisconsin 80-67 on Wednesday night.

 

Cockburn had 20 first-half points on 10-of-12 shooting, including two rim-rattling dunks. He finished 16 of 19, making his last five shots for the Illini (16-5, 9-2 Big Ten).

 

Wisconsin matched up a pair of 7-footers, Steven Crowl and Chris Vogt, with Cockburn, but they were unable to limit his impact.

 

Johnny Davis led Wisconsin (17-4, 8-3) with 22 points and 15 rebounds.

 

Illinois took a 42-38 lead into halftime after shooting 19 of 34 from the field in the first half. The Illini opened the second half on a 12-4 run, including a 3 from Alfonso Plummer that made it 51-40.

 

Badgers guard Brad Davison fouled Plummer while shooting another 3 a couple of minutes later, and he made the ensuing three free throws to put Illinois up 12.

 

Jacob Grandison added 14 points, seven rebounds and four assists for Illinois. He was 3 of 6 from 3-point range, a significant improvement after going 1 of 10 from 3 in wins over Michigan State and Northwestern.

 

The Illini find themselves alone atop the Big Ten standings as the season runs into February, winning three straight games after back-to-back losses to Purdue and Maryland. Few opponents can muster an answer for Cockburn when he’s playing well, although a rematch with No. 4 Purdue and center Zach Edey looms on Feb. 8.

 

Illinois is at Indiana on Saturday.

0
comments


Loyola-Chicago Gets Past Illinois State

Lucas Williamson had a career-high 27 points as Loyola Chicago topped Illinois State 78-64 on Wednesday night.

 

Williamson made 6 of 9 3-pointers.

 

Ryan Schwieger had 18 points for Loyola Chicago (17-4, 8-2 Missouri Valley Conference).

 

Loyola Chicago dominated the first half and led 42-22 at the break. The Redbirds' 22 points in the first half marked a season low for the team.

 

Antonio Reeves had 20 points for the Redbirds (10-13, 3-7), who have now lost four consecutive games. Josiah Strong added 13 points. Liam McChesney had three blocks.

 

Illinois State will look to end a four-game losing streak on Saturday when they host Southern Illinois.

0
comments


Northern Iowa Topples Bradley

Noah Carter and Trae Berhow scored 19 points apiece as Northern Iowa beat Bradley 78-65 on Wednesday night.

 

AJ Green added 18 points for the Panthers (12-9, 8-3 Missouri Valley Conference), Bowen Born scored 15.

 

Terry Roberts had 18 points and six assists for the Braves (12-11, 6-5), whose four-game winning streak came to an end. Rienk Mast added 12 points and eight rebounds. Jayson Kent had 10 points.

 

The Panthers leveled the season series against the Braves. Bradley defeated Northern Iowa 71-69 on Dec. 1.

 

The Braves had won five of its last six games and will look to stay hot Saturday when they travel to Evansville.

0
comments


Magic Beat Pacers

Gary Harris scored 22 points and Wendell Carter Jr. had 19 points and 18 rebounds to rally the Orlando Magic past the Indiana Pacers 119-118 on Wednesday night.

 

Harris scored 10 points in the fourth quarter, including two key 3-pointers. He finished 6 of 11 from beyond the arc.

 

Indiana led by 17 midway through the third, but the margin had dwindled to two by the end of the quarter. Orlando outscored the Pacers 33-21 in the period.

 

Caris LeVert led the Pacers with 26 points, and rookie Terry Taylor posted his first career double-double with 24 points and 16 rebounds. Torrey Craig added 22 points.

 

Indiana sank 10 of 19 3-pointers in the first half to lead 67-53 at halftime. The Pacers shot 54.2% in the first half while the Magic hit 44.9% from the field.

 

Domantas Sabonis missed his second consecutive game because of health and safety protocols. Sabonis is expected to miss Friday's game against Chicago as well. Oshae Brissett (sore right ankle) and Goga Bitzade (sore right foot) also were sidelined.

 

The Pacers host the Chicago Bulls in the finale of a three-game homestand Friday night.

0
comments


Wild Blank Blackhawks

Cam Talbot made 30 saves for his first shutout of the season and the Minnesota Wild beat the Chicago Blackhawks 5-0 on Wednesday night to extended their points streak to 10 games.

 

Mats Zuccarello, Kevin Fiala and Frederick Gaudreau each had a goal and an assist for surging Minnesota. The Wild head into the NHL's All-Star break on a 9-0-1 roll.

 

The 34-year-old Talbot, named an All-Star for the first time, had his 25th career shutout.

 

Fiala extended his career-high points streak to 12 games, matching Mikael Granlund's Wild record set in 2017.

 

The Blackhawks lost their third straight and are 1-5-2 in their last eight. Marc-Andre Fleury allowed five goals on 30 shots before being relieved by Collin Delia late in the third.

 

Chicago played again without captain Jonathan Toews. He missed his third straight game because of a concussion.

 

The Blackhawks are at Edmonton on Wednesday, Feb. 9.

0
comments


Next Two Clinton Basketball Games Rescheduled

This week's winter storm has caused adjustments to high school basketball calendars across the area.  For Clinton High School...

 

The Clinton Girls basketball Thursday night at home against Meridian has been postponed to Monday night.  JV at 6p followed by Varsity Senior Night around 7:30pm Monday. 

 

The Clinton Maroons Boys Varsity basketball game for third place in the CIC tournament Friday has been rescheduled to a 7pm start Friday night at Meridian.

 

Hear both of those varsity games on all WHOW platforms!

0
comments


Maroa-Forsyth Rolls Riverton

Three players scored in double figures and Maroa-Forsyth used balanced scoring in a rout of Sangamo Conference rival Riverton in a 70-46 win Tuesday night from Maroa-Forsyth High School.

 

The Trojans led 37-20 at the intermission as they opened up a 53-33 lead at the end of the third quarter.

 

Egan Franzen paced the Trojans with 15 points. Kaiden Maurer scored 13 points and Jaxson Grubbs chipped in with 12 points. Mitch Williams, Zayn Giles, and Ethan Willoughby each added seven points and Braxton Mitchell scored six points.

 

With the victory, the Trojans improve to 4-1 in the Sangamo and are 13-8 overall. 

 

The Trojans take on Pleasant Plains Friday night on the road then host the Illini Prairie/Sangamo Conference shootout and host Prairie Central in the nightcap of the day's action.

 

Boy's basketball scores from Tuesday:

 

Clinton - 44 CIC Tourney Semifinal

Tuscola - 73

0
comments


Bulls Get By Magic

DeMar DeRozan scored 29 points, Zach LaVine added 24 and the Chicago Bulls beat the Orlando Magic 126-115 on Tuesday night.

 

DeRozan scored 20 points in the first half, before the Bulls survived a frantic rally by the Magic midway through the fourth quarter.

 

Wendell Carter Jr. scored 24 points for the Magic, including 11 in the first quarter.

 

The Bulls, who were up 113-103 with 7:38 left in the game, failed to score a field goal in the next four minutes. The Magic tied the game, but LaVine's baseline shot with 3:35 left snapped the Bulls' drought and enabled them to regain a 117-115 lead.

 

Ayo Dosunmu made two shots to highlight an 11-0 run to finish the game.

 

The Bulls have won four of their last five. The Magic have dropped four of their last six.

 

DeRozan has scored 70 points in his last two games against the Magic.

 

The Bulls led by nine on three occasions in the third quarter, highlighted by a fadeaway shot by DeRozan with 0.7 seconds left for a 103-94 lead.

 

Baskets by Coby White and DeRozan gave the Bulls their first double-figure lead to open the fourth quarter.

 

Orlando shot 60.9% in the first quarter and made 28-of-50 field-goal attempts in the first half.

 

But the Magic didn't shoot their first free throw until 3:17 remaining in the second quarter, when Cole Anthony sank a shot to complete a three-point play.

 

The Bulls went on an 7-2 run in the final 1:09 to take a 70-63 halftime lead. Anthony was assessed a technical foul after hanging on the rim too long following his dunk of a missed shot.

 

DeRozan added two baskets, including a three-point play with 36.6 left, and Carter. Jr. was called for a technical after throwing the ball against the stanchion.

 

The Bulls avenged a 114-95 loss to the Magic on Jan. 23 and won the season series 3-1.
 

Dosunmu was selected to the Rising Stars game.

 

The Bulls are at Toronto on Friday night.

0
comments


Monticello Gets By Rantoul

Monticello shot 61-percent from the floor and got by a pesky Rantoul team for a 70-50 win Tuesday night in Illini Prairie Conference boy's basketball action from the Sievers Center at Monticello High School.

 

Ben Cresap led the Sages in scoring with 21 points, Dylan Ginalick added 17 points and Triston Foran came off the bench for 10 points as the Sages scored 46 points in the paint and added 16 points off 18 Eagles turnovers. 

 

Cresap and Trevor Fox each had three steals, Tanner Buehnerkemper grabbed a team-high six rebounds wile Cresap grabbed five boards for the Sages.

 

Monticello shot just 3-for-9 from beyond the arc.

 

Freshman Conner Smith came off the bench and scored 21 points to lead Rantoul. All 21 of Smith's points were from beyond the arc as he shot 7-for-9 from distance. The Eagles as a team went 10-for-18 from distance, allowing them to keep the game at a respectable deficit throughout the second half.

 

Rantoul drops to 0-26 on the season and 0-6 in the Illini Prairie Conference. 

 

Monticello is now 22-3 overall and is 6-1 in the Illini Prairie Conference.

 

The Sages are off until Saturday evening when they take PORTA from the Illini Prairie/Sangamo Conference Shootout at Maroa-Forsyth High School. Game time Saturday is 6 pm and can be heard on 95.9 FM WEZC and at dewittdailynews.com. 

0
comments


Packers Promote Stenavich to Offensive Coordinator

The Green Bay Packers have promoted Adam Stenavich from offensive line coach to offensive coordinator as they fill the vacancy created when Nathaniel Hackett left to become Denver Broncos head coach.

 

Stenavich has coached the Packers’ offensive line in each of Matt LaFleur’s three seasons as head coach and helped that unit withstand numerous injuries. He added the title of running game coordinator this season.

 

Green Bay earned the NFC’s No. 1 overall seed each of the last two seasons. The Packers lost 13-10 to the San Francisco 49ers in a divisional playoff game this season after falling in the NFC championship game each of the two previous seasons.

 

Hackett had been Green Bay’s offensive coordinator the last three years before the Broncos hired him. The Packers also have lost quarterbacks coach/passing game coordinator Luke Getsy, who left to become the Chicago Bears’ offensive coordinator.

 

The Packers led the NFL in points per game (31.8) and time of possession and tied for second in the league in fewest sacks allowed (21) in 2020 with a line that featured All-Pro left tackle David Bakhtiari and center Corey Linsley.

 

Before coming to Green Bay, Stenavich was a San Francisco 49ers assistant offensive line coach from 2017-18. The former Michigan offensive tackle also has worked in college at his alma mater (2011-13), Northern Arizona (2014) and San Jose State (2015-16).

0
comments


Bears Filling Out Coaching Staff

The Chicago Bears hired Luke Getsy as offensive coordinator on Sunday, raiding the staff of rival Green Bay to find the assistant they feel is best suited to install a successful scheme for Justin Fields.

 

Getsy spent the past two seasons as the quarterback's coach and passing game coordinator for Aaron Rodgers and the Packers. Since Getsy moved into his previous role at the start of the 2020 season, Rodgers has 24 games with multiple touchdown passes and zero interceptions.

 

Getsy’s hire likely will be the most scrutinized selection for Matt Eberflus’ first staff in Chicago. Eberflus was hired Thursday for his first head coaching job in the NFL after he spent the past four years as Indianapolis’ defensive coordinator.

 

New Bears general manager Ryan Poles announced Saturday night that Ian Cunningham had been hired as his assistant general manager. Cunningham was the director of player personnel for the Philadelphia Eagles.

 

Poles and Eberflus are hoping Getsy can help Fields continue to develop in his second year in the NFL.

 

In his rookie season, Fields showed the arm, speed and poise that convinced Chicago to trade up nine spots with the New York Giants to draft him with the No. 11 overall pick. But the former Ohio State star also has plenty of room to grow.

 

Getsy, who turns 38 on Feb. 16, played quarterback at the University of Akron and began his coaching career as a graduate assistant at his alma mater. He has seven seasons of NFL coaching experience — all with Green Bay.

0
comments


FanDuel, United Center Announce Gambling Lounge

Online gaming company FanDuel Group and the United Center announced plans Monday to open a FanDuel Sportsbook lounge inside the arena.

 

The venture needs approval from the Illinois Gaming Board. It would bring sports wagering inside the home of the NBA’s Chicago Bulls and the NHL’s Chicago Blackhawks.

 

Plans for the FanDuel Sportsbook at the United Center include a two-story venue adjacent to the arena’s atrium. It would be equipped with state-of-the-art viewing and sports wagering technology, the announcement said.

 

While awaiting approval of the sportsbook from the Illinois Gaming Board, the United Center and FanDuel will develop a non-wagering space adjacent to the United Center atrium that will have FanDuel branding and allow fans to watch live sports action while attending United Center events.

0
comments


Pacers Beat Clippers

Isaiah Jackson scored 26 points, grabbed 10 rebounds and posted his first double-double in his first career start, leading the Pacers past the Los Angeles Clippers 122-116 on Monday night.

 

The first-round draft pick out of Kentucky spent most of Indiana's first 51 games scrapping for minutes and avoiding fouls. But with Indiana's top three centers out of action, the Pacers challenged Jackson and he impressed everyone.

 

Jackson was 12 of 19 from the field, posted season highs in points and rebounds, blocked two shots and even made a 3-pointer all without being called for a single foul. Duane Washington Jr. added 16 points, including four 3s in the fourth quarter, to help the short-handed Pacers earn their second win in six games.

 

Rick Carlisle became the second coach in the franchise's NBA history to win 200 career games. Frank Vogel had 250 wins in five seasons with the team and this one looked awfully good to Carlisle.

 

The worn-out Clippers also were caught off guard. Amir Coffey finished with 27 points and Reggie Jackson had 21 as their five-game winning streak against Indiana came to an end.

 

Injured All-Stars Paul George and Kawhi Leonard were out again for the Clippers, and the Pacers played without two-time All-Star Domantas Sabonis, who entered the COVID-19 health and safety protocols earlier Monday.

 

Not surprisingly, it turned this game into a grind-it-out contest.

 

Indiana took a 30-27 lead after one quarter and a 60-55 halftime advantage. Even when it appeared the Clippers had taken control with a 14-5 run late in the third period, they couldn't put it away. Instead, the Pacers answered with 10 straight points to retake an 84-82 lead - only to give it back on Nicolas Batum's 3 to end the third.

 

Batum opened the fourth with another 3 to make it 88-84 and this time Indiana answered with 12 points in a row, including three consecutive 3s by Washington, to make it 99-89. Los Angeles never led again.

 

Caris LeVert had 17 points, seven rebounds and nine assists for the Pacers. Terry Taylor had 15 points and eight rebounds. Justin Holiday finished with 13 points, including a 3 to seal the win in the waning minutes. He also had five rebounds and six assists. Lance Stephenson had 10 points, three rebounds and four assists.

 

The Pacers host the Orlando Magic on Wednesday in the second game of a three-game homestand.

0
comments


Local Weather - Sponsored By:
 
Townhall Top of the Hour News

 

SRN News