Minnesota Sports Briefs: Bryant scores 31 in Lakers win over T-WolvesMinnesota Sports
-- A masked Kobe Bryant scored 31 points, grabbed seven rebounds and dished out eight assists to lead the Lakers to a 104-85 win over the Timberwolves last night at the Staples Center.
LOS ANGELES - A masked Kobe Bryant scored 31 points, grabbed seven rebounds and dished out eight assists to lead the Lakers to a 104-85 win over the Timberwolves last night at the Staples Center.
Bryant was playing with a broken nose, so he wore a protective mask. Minnesota, meanwhile, was playing without its star player Kevin Love. The power forward sat out the game with flu-like symptoms. Andrew Bynum had 13 points and 13 boards for the Lakers, who have won six-of-eight. Martell Webster and Michael Beasley had 14 points apiece for the Wolves, who had won their previous two. Minnesota plays at Phoenix tonight.
Prior to last night's game against the Lakers, the Timberwolves announced they have re-assigned rookie guard Malcolm Lee to the Sioux Falls Skyforce of the NBA Developmental League. Lee is expected to play tonight for Sioux Falls against Bakersfield. This is his second stint with the D-League this season. Per league rules, a first- or second-year player can be assigned the affiliate a maximum of three times per season.
The University of Minnesota men's basketball team returns to Minneapolis on Saturday afternoon to host Nebraska in their regular season finale. Minnesota beat the Cornhuskers earlier this season in Lincoln. The Gophers suffered a 52-45 setback at 15th-ranked Wisconsin on Tuesday to fall to 17-13 overall and 5-12 in the Big Ten.
The University of Minnesota women's basketball team plays Wisconsin in the opening round of the Big Ten Tournament this afternoon in Indianapolis. The Golden Gophers enter today's game with a 14-16 overall record and a 6-10 mark in the Big Ten. Minnesota is the eighth-seed in the event. Wisconsin is the nine-seed and is 9-19 on the season with a 5-and-11 league record. Tip-off today is set for 5 p.m. at the Fieldhouse.
Here is Thursday's schedule of first-round women's basketball games at the Big Ten Tournament in Indianapolis, Indiana:
Michigan vs. Illinois, 10:30am
Nebraska vs. Northwestern, 12:30pm
Minnesota vs. Wisconsin, 5pm
Michigan State vs. Indiana, 7pm
(Ohio State, Iowa, Purdue, and Penn State receive first-round byes)
>>NSIC Men's Quarterfinals
(Undated) -- Here are quarterfinal results from Wednesday night's NSIC men's basketball postseason tournament:
Bemidji State 57, Wayne State 53 (final)
Southwest Minnesota State 99, Minnesota-Duluth 92 (final)
Minnesota State-Moorhead 91, Augustana 83 (final)
Winona State 64, St. Cloud State 53 (final)
(Undated) -- Here is Saturday's semifinal schedule for the NSIC men's basketball postseason tournament in Rochester:
Bemidji State vs. Minnesota State-Moorhead, 2:30pm (Saturday)
Southwest Minnesota State vs. Winona State, 7:30pm (Saturday)
>>NSIC Women's Quarterfinals
Here are quarterfinal results and schedule from in the NSIC women's basketball postseason tournament:
Augustana 89, Minnesota State-Moorhead 77 (final)
Wayne State 74, Northern State 42 (final)
U-Mary 76, Winona State 67 (final)
Minnesota State-Mankato at Minnesota-Duluth, today, 3pm
(Undated) -- Here is Saturday's semifinal schedule for the NSIC women's basketball postseason tournament in Rochester:
Minnesota State-Mankato/Minnesota-Duluth winner vs. Wayne State, noon (Saturday)
U-Mary vs. Augustana, 5pm (Saturday)
Twins infielder Luke Hughes threw for the first time this spring training during a workout yesterday. Hughes is recovering from a shoulder strain he suffered prior to reporting to camp. Hughes says his shoulder is feeling better with each day and he doesn't feel that far behind his teammates. His throwing session yesterday consisted of 60-foot tosses, a distance he hopes to increase by a few feet each day of spring training. The Twins play a "B" game today against the Red Sox and then officially open spring training with a game on Saturday against Tampa Bay.
Several area baseball and softball players have received accolades. Golden Gopher right-handed pitcher T.J. Oakes has been named the Big Ten Pitcher of the Week after notching a 1-0 win over Wisconsin-Milwaukee over the weekend. He is the son of Gopher pitching coach Todd Oakes. In addition, Minnesota State-Mankato pitcher Bryce Bellin of Kimberly, Wisconsin is the NSIC Pitcher of the Week. His teammate Patrick Dockendorf of Eagan is the NSIC Player of the Week. Minnesota State-Mankato softball pitcher Kendra Huettl of Mankato is the NSIC Softball Pitcher of the Week. Augustana infielder Matley Jones of Lincoln, Nebraska is the league's Player of the Week.
The Minnesota Wild departs on a brief two-game road trip this evening against the Montreal Canadiens at the Bell Centre. The Wild are coming off a 4-0 loss to the Los Angeles Kings on Tuesday to fall to 28-26-and-9 on the season. Minnesota wraps up the road swing tomorrow evening at Detroit.
The WCHA has honored four players for their performances last weekend. Minnesota-Duluth sophomore forward J.T. Brown is the league's Offensive Player of the Week. He helped the Bulldogs to a key sweep of Colorado College. Minnesota sophomore Nate Schmidt of St. Cloud was named the conference's Defensive Player of the Week after helping the Golden Gophers to a sweep at Nebraska-Omaha. He shares the weekly award with Wisconsin sophomore Frankie Simonelli of Bensenville, Illinois. And, Golden Gopher forward Kyle Rau of Eden Prairie was named this week's WCHA Rookie of the Week. This is the third time he's earned the weekly award.
Here is the schedule of games in the WCHA Women's Hockey Final Face-Off in Duluth this weekend at AMSOIL Arena:
Friday - Minnesota-Duluth vs. Wisconsin, 4:30pm
Friday - Minnesota vs. North Dakota, 7:30pm
Saturday - Championship Game, 7pm
Here is Thursday's semifinal schedule of women's hockey games in the MIAC Tournament:
Wednesday - Bethel at Gustavus Adolphus, 7pm
Wednesday - St. Thomas at Concordia-Moorhead, 7pm
The MIAC has named its weekly award winners in men's and women's hockey. St. Olaf freshman goaltender Steve Papciak of Des Plaines, Illinois is the men's winner, while Gustavus Adolphus sophomore forward Amanda Cartony of Stillwater is the women's winner.
The 2012 Minnesota State Boys' Swimming and Diving Meet begins today at the University of Minnesota Aquatic Center in Minneapolis. Fergus Falls is the defending Class 1A champion, while Minnetonka is back to defend its Class 2A crown. The meet will conclude on Saturday.
The 2012 Minnesota State Wrestling Tournament gets underway this morning at the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul. The three-day format features team competition Thursday and individual matches on Friday and Saturday. All three 2011 state team champions return to defend their titles. The Jackson County Central Huskies in Class 1A, the Simley Spartans in Class 2A and the Apple Valley Eagles in Class 3A. In the individual competition, 20 state champions are returning for more gold medals.
The National Lacrosse League has named Minnesota Swarm goalie Evan Kirk as its Rookie of the Week. He stopped 43 of 50 shots in a Swarm win over Washington on Friday, claiming his first road win in his first road start. The Hobart College product also netted the award two weeks ago after winning his first home start of the season. The Swarm play at Calgary on Saturday.