Morning State Sports Briefs: UWGB leads whole way over Houston BaptistWisconsin Sports
-- The UW-Green Bay men never trailed in a 77-61 home victory over Houston Baptist.
GREEN BAY - The UW-Green Bay men never trailed in a 77-61 home victory over Houston Baptist.
The Phoenix were coming off two straight Horizon League losses – and they led at the half last night for only the fifth time in 16 games this season. Green Bay was up by as many as 20 in the second half, while out-shooting Houston Baptist 42-to-38 percent. Jarvis Williams had 14 points and a career-high 12 rebounds. Rahmon Fletcher and Daniel Turner also scored 14 for Green Bay, which improved to 7-9. Andrew Gonzalez led all scorers with 29 for Houston Baptist, which fell to 1-11. Green Bay’s next game is on Saturday, when it hosts Milwaukee.
UW-Stevens Point dropped four places to eighth in the national small college men’s basketball poll from D3hoops.com. The defending national champs are 9-and-2, winning four straight after a loss to number-five Saint Thomas on December 22nd. UW=River Falls rose one spot to 15th in the new poll. Saint Norbert fell four places to 16th. Carthage dropped out of the Top-25 after being 24th in the pre-Christmas poll. Ripon College also received votes. Wooster of Ohio is still the men’s number-one.
In the D-Three women’s poll, Stevens Point is the highest-ranked Wisconsin school at number-10, same as the last poll before Christmas. Whitewater rose two spots to 15th. Carthage remains at number-16. Saint Norbert debuts in the 25th spot. La Crosse fell out of the Top-25, after being 23rd in the last survey. The Eagles still received votes, as did River Falls, and Wisconsin Lutheran. Amherst of Massachusetts remains at number-one.
Milwaukee Rufus King leads Division-One in the season’s first AP boys’ state high school basketball poll. King is 7-0. Appleton East is second at 9-0. Germantown and Madison Memorial are tied for third, both with one loss. In Division-Two, Onalaska leads the way, followed by Monroe and Waunakee. All three teams are 8-0. Racine Saint Catherine’s is the leader in Division-Three, with La Crosse Aquinas second and East Troy third. Blair-Taylor tops Division-Four. Marathon, Oostburg, and Racine Lutheran are all tied for second. And Randolph leads the new Division-Five, with Benton and Sheboygan Lutheran in the two-and-three spots.
In the AP girls’ poll, Milwaukee Pius XI is the Division-One leader at 9-0. Glendale Nicolet and Milwaukee Vincent are next, both with one loss. Luxemburg-Casco tops Division-Two, followed by Pewaukee and New Berlin Eisenhower. Richland Center is the Division-Three leader, and Whitefish Bay Dominican and Freedom are tied for second. Eau Claire Regis tops Division-Four, followed by Algoma and Osseo-Fairchild. And Wausau Newman leads the new Division-Five poll, with Seneca and South Wayne Black Hawk at second-and-third.
The Milwaukee Bucks will play the flaming Miami Heat twice in the next four nights, starting this evening in South Florida. The Bucks are coming off a second upset of Dallas on New Year’s Night. Miami has won 18-of-its-last-19, after beating the Bobcats in Charlotte 96-82 last night. LeBron James had 38 points and nine rebounds for the Heat, and former Marquette guard Dwayne Wade added 31 points and 11 boards. Both were named the NBA Eastern Conference co-players-of-the-month yesterday. Wade averaged 28 points, seven rebounds, and four assists in December – only the fourth NBA player to have monthly averages that high in the past 10 years. The Bucks are 0-1 against Miami this season, losing by 10 at the Bradley Center on December sixth.
Packers Head Coach Mike McCarthy says the team will need a strong defense to have success in the playoffs. The offense has been up-and-down this year, but the Packer defense has been solid despite some key injuries. They only gave up 15 points a game in the regular season – the NFL’s second-lowest behind Pittsburgh. And they held the Chicago Bears to a field goal last Sunday despite the absence of defensive end Cullen Jenkins and safety Atari Bigby – both out with injuries – plus those who’ve been lost for the season such as linebackers Nick Barnett and Brandon Chillar. Erik Walden, a mid-season pick-up who was out of football for a month, had two sacks and 11 total tackles for Green Bay last Sunday. Defensive coordinator Dom Capers says he’s been impressed with the way the lesser-known defensive players have stepped up. The Packers will play at Philadelphia on Sunday in the weekend’s final Wild Card Game. McCarthy says Jenkins, Bigby, linebacker Frank Zombo, and fullback Korey Hall are all making progress from their injuries. They’ll be tested again today, to see if they can practice tomorrow.
Former Milwaukee Brewers’ pitcher Chris Capuano will join the New York Mets. He signed a one-year contract yesterday, after the Brewers let him go last month. The 32-year-old Capuano wants to start again – but general manager Doug Melvin said the Brewers didn’t have any more room in the rotation after trading for starters Zack Greinke and Shaun Marcum. Capuano has recovered from two Tommy John elbow reconstructive surgeries. He went 4-4 last season with a 3.95 ERA in nine starts and 15 relief appearances. Capuano had been with the Brewer organization since 2003, and was an All-Star in ’06.
The U.S. men’s hockey team lost to Canada 4-1 last night in the semi-finals of the World Junior Championships in Buffalo. John Ramage – the only Wisconsin player on the squad – did not figure in the scoring. He played a penalty-free game but did not get a shot off. Chris Brown of the University of Michigan scored the Americans’ only goal. They’ll play Sweden tomorrow for third place.
In men’s college basketball…
U-W Whitewater 63, Occidental 60
Concordia-Mequon 66, La Verne 59
Cal-Tech 73, Wisconsin Lutheran 58
Lakeland 80, Finlandia 55
Marian 68, Northland 48
In women’s college basketball…
Alverno 54, Lawrence 52
Milwaukee School of Engineering 77, Mount Mary 53
Lakeland 56, Finlandia 53
Marian 55, Northland 43