Afternoon State Sports Briefs: River Falls loses in state girls soccer tourneyWisconsin Sports
-- Kimberly was the first to advance this afternoon, as the state girls’ high school soccer tournament got underway in Milwaukee. Kimberly needed two overtimes to defeat River Falls, 2-1, in the first Division-One quarter-final.
MILWAUKEE - Kimberly was the first to advance this afternoon, as the state girls’ high school soccer tournament got underway in Milwaukee. Kimberly needed two overtimes to defeat River Falls, 2-1, in the first Division-One quarter-final.
River Falls suffered its first loss of the season in being eliminated. Kimberly will play either Madison Memorial or Appleton North in the D-One semi-finals tomorrow.
Memorial and North were playing in today’s second quarter-final. The others have Grafton playing Whitefish Bay – and unbeaten Waukesha West going against Kenosha Tremper. Semis will also be played tomorrow in Divisions 2 and 3 – and both those groups have returning champions coming back. Waukesha Catholic Memorial is defending its Division-Two crown, and New Holstein is back to defend its D-3 title. Championship games in all three divisions are set for Saturday.
Both Wisconsin golfers in the U.S Open started their first rounds early this afternoon. Steve Stricker of Madison and Pewaukee native Mark Wilson were both at two-over-par after six holes of at the Congressional Country Club near Washington. Y.E Yang was the early afternoon clubhouse leader at three-under-par 68. Francesco Molinari was also three-under after five holes.
In the NBA, Milwaukee Bucks’ assistant Kelvin Sampson is said to be one of two top candidates to become the next head coach of the Detroit Pistons. The Detroit News says Sampson will be interviewed before the end of the week. Sampson has been one of Scott Skiles’ assistants for three years in Milwaukee. Former Atlanta Hawks’ coach Mike Woodson is also being considered for the Pistons’ job. Whoever gets it is expected to face a roster overhaul, after Detroit missed the playoffs for the second straight year. The Pistons fired John Kuester a few weeks ago.
In Northwoods League baseball, the Madison Mallards will try to move into first place in the South Division tonight when they play at Green Bay. The Mallards are a half-game behind division leader Battle Creek, and Green Bay is one-and-a-half games back in third place. Madison won a 13-8 slugfest over Eau Claire last evening, while Green Bay was rained out at home against Wisconsin Rapids. Eau Claire is at home against Battle Creek tonight. Rapids is also at home against the Wisconsin Woodchucks, who lost to Waterloo 9-6. Waterloo faces the Loggers in La Crosse tonight. The Loggers are coming off a 10-4 victory over Battle Creek. Also, Duluth plays at Mankato tonight. Rochester hosts Saint Cloud. Brainerd is at Alexandria. And Thunder Bay entertains Willmar.
Milwaukee pitching prospect Tyler Thornburg has improved to 7-0 for the Class-“A” Wisconsin Timber Rattlers. The 22-year-old right-hander tossed a two-hitter last night, when the Rattlers won the opener of a double-header at Peoria 2-1. Thornburg struggled in the third inning, when he gave up a walk and a wild pitch. But he recovered to finish his second complete game of the season. Thornburg is fourth in the Midwest League with 76 strikeouts, and he has the third-best ERA at one-point-five-seven. Thornburg was a third-round draft pick by the Brewers last June. Wisconsin also won the second game last night, 6-2, and they’ll play at Peoria again tonight. Beloit topped Cedar Rapids 6-5 at home, and those two teams will play again tonight in southern Wisconsin. Also this evening, first-half Western Division champion Burlington is at home against Kane County. East leader Lansing hosts South Bend. Clinton entertains Quad Cities. Dayton is at Fort Wayne. Lake County hosts Great Lakes. And West Michigan is at Bowling Green.
The Milwaukee Bucks might have auditioned their first-round draft pick yesterday. Some observers expect the Bucks to take Washington State shooting guard Klay Thompson with the 10th pick in next Thursday night’s NBA Draft. After his workout, he said he would be a perfect fit next to Bucks’ point guard Brandon Jennings. The 6-7 Thompson averaged almost 22 points a game last season as a junior at Washington State. He shot 42-percent from the floor and 90-percent from the foul line. With those kinds of numbers, Thompson could provide a shooting touch that the Bucks were missing last season – when they failed to make the playoffs for the fourth time in five years. Thompson was cited in March for marijuana possession. He admitted going down the wrong path, and he’s been straightening himself out since then. Klay Thompson is the son of 12-year NBA veteran Mychal Thompson.
The agent for Green Bay Packers’ corner Josh Bell wants to know why his client is not getting a Super Bowl ring. The Packers are getting their rings tonight in a private ceremony at Lambeau Field – and agent Frederick Lyles says it’s unfortunate that Bell is being left out. He joined the Packers in late November of 2009 after Al Harris blew out a knee. Bell later played in four games for Green Bay. But at last summer’s Family Night Scrimmage, Bell injured a foot and was ruled out for the season three days later. He’s not expected to return to Green Bay after the NFL owners’ lockout. But Lyles says Bell is still on the Packer roster – and he’s the only injured reserve player not to be offered a Super Bowl ring. Lyles said Bell was part of the team, and he should get a ring. Packers’ spokesman Aaron Popkey would not comment on why Bell’s not getting a ring. He said it’s an internal matter quote, “out of respect for everyone involved.”
The organizers of Milwaukee’s Lakefront Marathon say they’ll honor a contestant who was killed this week while training. Authorities said Scott Birk was running across a street near his home in Austin Texas, when he was hit by an SUV. Police said the vehicle was crossing an intersection on a green light, and no charges are being sought. Birk had signed up to run in the Milwaukee marathon, to be held October second. He’s a native of Waukesha, and he graduated from Marquette in 1985. He moved to Austin in 1990. The head of that city’s marathon said Birk was quote, “one of the truly great guys in the running community … and he’ll be missed.”