MINNESOTA SPORTS ROUNDUP: Twins lose to Tampa Bay
PORT CHARLOTTE, Florida -- Minnesota sluggers Oswaldo Arcia and Brandon Waring both hit solo homers but the Twins lost 6-3 to the Tampa Bay Rays in a spring training game in Port Charlotte yesterday. Jorge Polanco plated the other run for Minnesota, which fell to 2-and-1 in spring play. New Minnesota pitcher Ricky Nolasco worked two scoreless innings in his first game action for the Twins. The Twins play a pair of games today, with a split squad hosting Toronto in Fort Myers, while another group takes on the Orioles today in Sarasota.
Minnesota’s Bill Pohlad is celebrating a best picture Oscar win for producing “12 Years A Slave.” The film topped “Gravity,” “American Hustle,” and five other flicks last night in Los Angeles. Bill Pohlad is the brother of Minnesota Twins owner Jim Pohlad and was also behind the movies “Into the Wild” in 2007 and “Brokeback Mountain” in 2005.
The University of Minnesota baseball team beat Louisiana Tech 6-1 yesterday to close out a three-game weekend series with a 2-and-1 record. Golden Gopher pitcher Ben Meyer tossed seven innings of two-hit ball to earn the win. Minnesota is 6-and-3 on the season and will play in a tournament in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina this coming weekend.
The 19th-ranked Golden Gopher softball team rebounded from an upset loss to Florida International yesterday morning, with a huge upset of No. 3 Arizona State yesterday afternoon. F-I-U beat Minnesota 3-1 before the Gophers rebounded with a 3-2 win over the Sun Devils. Minnesota pitcher Sara Moulton of Eagan did not pitch in the first game, but earned the win in the Arizona State game, working seven innings, allowing four hits and striking out eight. The win was the 95th of her career and 99th career complete game. The Gophers took three of four games in the invitational in Arizona to push its season record to 15-and-2, including a 2-and-1 record against ranked teams. Minnesota travels to Oklahoma State this coming weekend to play in a tournament there.
The University of Minnesota women's basketball team closed out the regular season schedule with a dominating 74-57 home win over Ohio State yesterday. Junior guard Rachel Banham scored 27 points in the win. The Lakeville product finished the season with a 23.3-points per game average, making her the 2014 Big Ten scoring champion. She also broke the single season record for three-point field goals with 76. Freshman Amanda Zahui of Stockholm, Sweden scored 14 points and grabbed 18 rebounds in the win. The Golden Gophers finished the regular season with a 19-and-11 overall mark and an 8-and-8 Big Ten record. Minnesota plays Wisconsin in the opening round of the Big Ten Tournament in Indianapolis on Thursday night.
The Minnesota Golden Gopher men's team closed out its road schedule with a 66-56 loss to 16th-ranked Michigan on Saturday night in Ann Arbor. Austin Hollins scored 16 points and Andre Hollins had 10 for the Gophers, who have lost three-of-four to dip to 18-and-12 on the year and 7-and-10 in the Big Ten. Minnesota hosts Penn State in its final game of the regular season this Saturday.
The Minnesota Timberwolves wrap up their five-game west coast road trip tonight in Denver against the Nuggets. Minnesota is 3-and-1 so far on the trip following Saturday's 108-97 win in Sacramento. The T'wolves are back at the .500 mark at 29-and-29. The Nuggets have lost five straight and 10-of-11 overall to dip to 25-and-33 on the year. Tonight's game begins at 8 p.m.
The Minnesota Wild are back home to clash with the Calgary Flames tonight at Xcel Energy Center. Minnesota is coming off a 2-1 shootout win over the Canucks on Friday in Vancouver to improve to 33-21-and-7. The Wild are now 33-21-and-7 on the season. The Flames are 23-30-and-7. Tonight's game is set for a 7 p.m. opening faceoff in St. Paul.
The Final Faceoff field is set for the postseason WCHA women's tournament, scheduled to take place in Bemidji this coming weekend. Top-ranked Minnesota swept St. Cloud State to earn a spot into the tourney's semifinals this weekend. The Gophers will take on Minnesota-Duluth, who dispatched Ohio State two-games-to-one over the weekend. The matchup between the Gophers and Bulldogs is set for Friday at 7 p.m. The other semifinal pits North Dakota against Wisconsin at 4 p.m. on Friday. The Friday winners play on Saturday night at 7 p.m. at the Sanford Center in the Final Faceoff Championship.
Scouts from several NFL teams will be on the University of Minnesota campus to watch a handful of former Golden Gopher football players in workouts and drills. The annual Gopher "Pro Day" begins at 8 a.m. this morning at the team's football complex. Among the outgoing Gopher players scheduled to workout for the scouts today are defensive tackles Ra'Shede Hageman and Roland Johnson, linebackers James Manuel and Aaron Hill, defensive backs Brock Vereen, Jeremy Baltazar, and Martez Shabazz, and long snapper Jake Filkins. The Vikings are scheduled to scout the day.