Wednesday State Sports Briefs: UW's Nuttycombe named Big Ten Coach-of-the-YearMinnesota Sports
-- University of Wisconsin Men's Track and Field Head Coach Ed Nuttycombe has been named the Big Ten’s Outdoor Track Coach-of-the-Year. That’s after the Badger men’s team won the league meet this past weekend in Madison.
MADISON - University of Wisconsin Men's Track and Field Head Coach Ed Nuttycombe has been named the Big Ten’s Outdoor Track Coach-of-the-Year. That’s after the Badger men’s team won the league meet this past weekend in Madison.
It was the 21st career coach-of-the-year award for Nuttycombe, and his first since being named the league’s top indoor coach in 2008. Also, Wisconsin’s Mohammed Ahmed and Dan Block were named to the all-conference first team. Ahmed won the five-thousand meters in a record time for the meet. And Block won the discus title with a school-record throw. Wisconsin’s 16-hundred-meter relay team of Garret Payne, Brady Hammon, Kyle Jefferson, and Drew Simmons were named to the all-league second-team. Three other Badgers also won second-team honors – Derek Steinbach in the javelin, Japheth Cato in the pole vault, and Elliot Krause in the 10-thousand meters.
Wisconsin and Marquette both finished in the Top-15 in men’s basketball attendance for the NCAA’s Division-One schools. The Badgers and Golden Eagles both saw their home crowds drop slightly from previous year. But Wisconsin still had the fifth-biggest home crowds, averaging 17,181 at the Kohl Center. Marquette was 13th, averaging 15,138 per game at the Bradley Center. Sports Business Daily said either Kentucky or Syracuse led the country in men’s basketball attendance in each of the last 36 years. Kentucky was this season’s biggest draw, with 23,721 per game at Rupp Arena.
Randy Wolf has a personal five-game winning streak over the Houston Astros. And he’ll try to make it six tonight, when the Milwaukee Brewers open a two-game series in Houston. The left-hander Wolf has an ERA of just 1.32 in his last seven starts against the Astros – and he has given up just one run in each of his last two appearances at Minute Maid Park. Wolf is 2-and-3 overall this season with a 5.63 ERA. Wolf threw six scoreless innings in a no-decision last Friday night against the Chicago Cubs. Houston will send right-hander Bud Norris to the mound. Norris is 3-1 with a 3.95 ERA. He’s coming off a win at Pittsburgh last Friday, when he struck out eight in six innings with giving up a run on three hits. Norris has lost all three of his recent starts against Milwaukee, while averaging 10 earned runs every nine innings in those games. The Brewers are in fourth place in the National League Central division at 16-20. Houston and the Cubs are tied for last in the Central at 15-21. The Astros have lost four straight, while Milwaukee is coming off an 8-0 rout of the Mets in New York.
The Beloit Snappers have taken over sole possession of first place in the Midwest League’s Western Division. And the Wisconsin Timber Rattlers have fallen a game back in second. The Rattlers lost at Kane County 11-5 last night, while Beloit edged Clinton at home, 1-0. Kane County remains in third place, three games off the pace. Tonight, Beloit opens a home series against Quad Cities, while Wisconsin returns home to face Burlington. Brewers’ center-fielder Carlos Gomez will start a four-game rehab assignment with the Rattlers, who are the Brewers’ lower Class-“A” affiliate. Gomez is coming off a strained left hamstring that landed him on the disabled list May fifth. Also in the Midwest League this evening, Kane County is at Cedar Rapids. Peoria plays at Clinton. East leader Lansing hosts Fort Wayne. Lake County plays at South Bend. Bowling Green hosts Dayton. And West Michigan is at Great Lakes.
Former UW-Green Bay star Julie Wojta had four points and two rebounds for the W-N-B-A’s Minnesota Lynx, in an 82-61 exhibition victory over the Chicago Sky last night. Wojta is expected to find out this week whether she’ll make the Minnesota roster, after she was taken as the 18th overall pick in the recent WNBA Draft. The Lynx plan to start making cuts today, as they get ready to open their regular season this weekend. Wojta has played in two exhibition games for Minnesota, averaging four-and-a-half points and four-and-a-half boards.
Edgewood College is tied for 35th place after the first round of the NCAA Division-III golf tournament. And Carroll University of Waukesha is tied for 37th among the 41 schools in the four-day event at Howey-in-the-Hills, Florida. Edgewood shot a 42-over-par-330 yesterday, and Carroll was at 43-over. Oglethorpe is the team leader at three-under-285. Sam Luedtke is Carroll’s top individual, tied for 83rd at 78. Brent Quade leads Edgewood with 80. He’s tied for 126th.
UW-Eau Claire junior golfer Catherine Wagner has made the coaches All-American first team. Wagner, who won the NCAA Division III individual crown last Friday, is one of six players who made the top squad. Mary Welch of UW-Stevens Point, who finished eighth at the nationals, was an honorable mention along with Sara Mattes of Eau Claire, who tied for 24th last week.
The UW-Milwaukee baseball team lost to Northern Illinois yesterday, 10-4 at home. The game was tied in the bottom of the third inning, but the Huskies took control with five unanswered runs. Milwaukee’s defense committed a season-high five errors which led to six unearned runs for Northern Illinois, which improved to 15-37. Brett Frantini homered and drove in four runs for the Huskies, in a game which had a 94-minute rain delay. UW-Milwaukee fell to 23-25.
Three Wisconsin baseball teams will play their opening games today in the NCAA Division III regional at UW-Whitewater. The Warhawks, who are seeded fourth, will open the tournament at 10 this morning against Concordia-Chicago. At one o’clock, Saint Norbert of De Pere takes on top-seeded Saint Thomas of Saint Paul. Game-Three starts at four o’clock between North Park and Saint Scholastica. And tonight, WIAC champion UW-La Crosse takes on Aurora. The double-elimination tournament runs through either Saturday or Sunday. The winner of the Whitewater regional will advance to the national finals at Fox Cities’ Stadium near Appleton.
Three players are sharing the WIAC’s baseball position player-of-the-year award. Senior first baseman Jay Fanta of La Crosse was chosen for the top honor by the league’s coaches, along with sophomore third baseman Jared Fon of Whitewater and freshman first baseman Marty Herum of the Warhawks. Also, junior right-hander Cam Seidl of Stevens Point was named the WIAC’s pitcher-of-the-year. All four players also made the 20-member All-Conference first team. Fanta leads the league with a .420 batting average and a .492 on-base percentage. Fon ranks second with 69 hits, and he’s third with a .397 batting average. Herum is the WIAC’s leader for hits with 73 while batting .412. Seidl has the lowest opponents’ batting average among conference pitchers at .179, and is second with a one-point-six-seven ERA. Justin Jirschele of Stevens Point is a three-time all-conference pick. Chris Schwarz of WIAC champion La Crosse is the coach-of-the-year. Garrett Scray of La Crosse and Jake Duske of Stout are the sport’s top scholar athletes.
Two Wisconsin players have made the 15-member All-Conference baseball team in the Northern Athletics Conference. They are sophomore second baseman Garrick Day of Wisconsin Lutheran, and senior utility player Mike Ruzek of Lakeland. Three players from the Badger State are among 10 on the all-NAC second team – pitcher Alex Raver and outfielder Brett Youngbeck, both of Wisconsin Lutheran, and outfielder Jake Zadra of Madison Edgewood. Youngbeck also made the all-Freshman team, along with outfielder Josh Gruenke of Marian and Brad Clark of Edgewood. Anthony Even of Concordia-Chicago is the NAC’s position player-of-the-year. Drew Gay of Aurora is the pitcher-of-the-year. Eric Palmer of Aurora is the top rookie. And Shaun Neitzel of Aurora and Steve Hardman of Dominican have been named the NAC co-coaches of the year.
The University Wisconsin women’s openweight rowing team will compete in the NCAA Championships for the fifth year in a row. The Badgers are among 16 schools that received bids yesterday to compete on Lake Mercer in New Jersey May 25th-through-27th. Wisconsin’s highest national finish was seventh in 2010. The Badgers finished ninth a year ago. This is the seventh time in eight seasons that Wisconsin coach Bebe Bryans is taking a team to the nationals.
Yesterday, it was reported that former Packers’ quarterback Ty Detmer was the only person with Wisconsin ties to be named to the College Football Hall-of-Fame. But actually, there were two. Former Notre Dame and Raiders’ tight end Dave Casper played his senior year of high school football in Chilton in 1969. That was after he spent three years at a Catholic school in Elgin, Illinois. Chilton went undefeated in the year Casper played there in 1969, outscoring its opponents 363-0. The 60-year-old Casper will join Detmer and 12 others at an induction banquet on December fourth in New York.
In the Midwest League…
Kane County 11, Wisconsin 5
Beloit 1, Clinton 0
Cedar Rapids at Quad Cities, rained out
Peoria 2, Burlington 0
Lansing 2, Dayton 1
Lake County 4, Great Lakes 1
Fort Wayne 5, West Michigan 4
Bowling Green 5, South Bend 4