State Sports Briefs: UW men's hockey opens at home vs. Northern MichiganWisconsin Sports
-- The University of Wisconsin men’s hockey team will open its next season on October seventh with a pair of games against Northern Michigan at the Kohl Center.
MADISON - The University of Wisconsin men’s hockey team will open its next season on October seventh with a pair of games against Northern Michigan at the Kohl Center.
The Badgers announced a 34-game schedule today. Twelve of those games will be against teams in last spring’s NCAA Tournament – Denver, North Dakota, Nebraska-Omaha, and national champion Minnesota-Duluth just in WCHA play alone. The Badgers will play an exhibition on New Year’s Eve against the U.S. Under-18 team. For the second year in a row, Green Bay will be one of the NCAA’s regional sites, leading up to the Frozen Four on April fifth-and-seventh in Tampa.
Green Bay Packers’ head coach Mike McCarthy says there’s value in players working out together without their coaches. But at his charity golf outing in Green Bay, McCarthy stopped short of saying he wished the team would have some more informal practices. McCarthy cannot talk to his players during the NFL owners’ lockout. He said he watched TV news coverage of Donald Driver’s charity softball game last Sunday, just to see what kind of shape the players might be in. About 25 Packers were at that event. The players who were interviewed said they were working out on their own. So far, the only organized practice that we know was in Nashville last week, when the offensive line got together for a few days. McCarthy said he has definite workout plans if the lockout ends sometime before the Fourth of July. But that’s apparently so uncertain, that an Internet report from News-Core said the NFL was working on an eight-game schedule, as long as the new players’ bargaining agreement can be signed by the first part of November at the latest.
Lakeland College of Sheboygan is looking for a new baseball coach, after Chris Thousand resigned. His wife Danielle has taken a new job in Madison, and the family will be moving. Thousand spent five years as Lakeland’s head coach. He was also an assistant for four years, after he played with Lakeland until 2002. Thousand was 75-111 in his five years. The 2010 Muskies had their first 20-win season since 2005, and Thousand was named the Northern Athletics Conference coach-of-the-year for that campaign.
Game-Four of the NBA Finals will be played tonight in Dallas. The Mavericks are down two-games-to-one to the Miami Heat. Former Marquette University guard Dwayne Wade has taken the lead role in the Heat’s charge toward a second championship in six years. Wade has averaged 29 points, nine rebounds, and five assists in the first three games against Dallas. Five years ago, Wade was the Finals’ MVP as he scored 35 a game in leading Miami to its first crown – also over Dallas.
Stevens Point native Chris Solinsky – the American record-holder in the 10-kilometer – aggravated an injury during a major event in Eugene, Oregon. Solinsky dropped out of the Prefontaine Classic 10K race with 18 laps to go, due to nagging pain in his left hamstring. Mo Farah of Britain won the race in 26-minutes, 46-point-47 seconds, about 13 seconds faster than Solinsky’s U-S record at the Payton Jordan Cardinal Invitational last year. Solinsky hopes to be ready for the USA national championships in Eugene in about three weeks.
After a day off, the Class-“A” Midwest League returns tonight. The Wisconsin Timber Rattlers are back home to face Lake County, and the Beloit Snappers return home to play Fort Wayne. Beloit hopes to return to .500, after falling 10-and-a-half games behind first-place Burlington in the Western Division with two weeks left in the season’s first half. Wisconsin is three above .500, in a tie for third at eight-and-a-half back. Burlington is at home against South Bend tonight. East leader Lansing is at Quad Cities. Bowling Green plays at Kane County. Clinton entertains Dayton. Great Lakes is at Cedar Rapids. And Peoria hosts West Michigan.
In the Northwoods League, the Madison Mallards will try to improve to 6-1 tonight with a home victory over the Wisconsin(Wausau)Woodchucks. The Mallards beat the ‘Chucks 3-1 last night. Madison remains tied with Battle Creek for first place in the South Division. Battle Creek plays at Green Bay this evening, where the Bombers from Michigan topped the Bullfrogs 7-6 on Monday. Eau Claire will try to make it two-in-a-row over La Crosse at home, on the heels of a 5-2 Express victory. Wisconsin Rapids plays at Waterloo again, after an 8-7 Rapids loss. Also, North Division leader Mankato plays at Duluth. Brainerd hosts Saint Cloud. Willmar is at Alexandria. And Rochester plays in Canada at Thunder Bay. Mankato remains the only unbeaten team in the Northwoods League at 6-0.
Yeah, it was a gimmick. But the Green Bay Bullfrogs’ baseball team hopes people can move on from Brett Favre after they retired Number-Four. Favre’s legendary number was retired last night before the Bullfrogs hosted the Battle Creek Bombers in a Northwoods League game. And the ceremony had a link to the Packers, as offensive lineman T.J. Lang threw out the first pitch. A Bullfrogs’ assistant coach had been wearing Number-Four, but he agreed to trade it for Number-15. The Bullfrogs had never retired a number – but they say they’ll do it if one of their players ever makes the Major Leagues. Five dozen Northwoods players have made the big leagues since 1994.