Morning State Sports Briefs: Bucks' Jennings receives NBA Player of the Week awardWisconsin Sports
-- Milwaukee Bucks’ point guard Brandon Jennings says he’s humbled to receive the Player-of-the-Week award in the NBA’s Eastern Conference.
MILWAUKEE - Milwaukee Bucks’ point guard Brandon Jennings says he’s humbled to receive the Player-of-the-Week award in the NBA’s Eastern Conference.
He scored 21 points in Friday night’s win at Boston, plus the game-winning three-pointer on Saturday night against Cleveland. Jennings had 26 assists in those two contests. The weekly award was Jennings’ first since his rookie year, after he scored 55 points against Golden State in just his seventh game as a pro. He says he needs to keep playing smart, with as much intensity as possible.
Milwaukee Bucks’ rookie forward John Henson fully participated at practice yesterday, for the first time since he sprained his left knee on October 16th in an exhibition against Chicago. Coach Scott Skiles said the former North Carolina star displayed his considerable talent – and it should not be too long before he’s quote, “back in the groove.” Barring any setbacks, the 6-11 Henson hopes to make his NBA regular season debut tomorrow night, when the 2-0 Bucks host Memphis. Henson injured his knee when he went up for an offensive rebound, and crumpled under the basket. He said he was a bit winded after yesterday’s practice – but his recovery has been progressing well.
Milwaukee Brewers’ prospect Hunter Morris has been named the Topps player-of-the-year in the Double-“A” Southern League. The 24-year-old Morris had been named the league’s MVP earlier. He batted .303 in 136 games for Huntsville this year. Morris led the league in a number of offensive categories including homers with 28, RBI’s with 113, hits with 158, and slugging percentage at .563. And he won a Gold Glove Award as the best defensive first baseman in the minor leagues. Morris committed just six errors at first, for a .995 fielding percentage. Also yesterday, the Brewers signed right-handed reliever Jairo Asencio to a minor league contract and a chance to make the big club at Spring Training. The 28-year-old Asencio went 1-1 with a four-point-nine-one ERA in 30 appearances for Cleveland and the Chicago Cubs this year.
The UW-Milwaukee men’s basketball team just barely got by UW-Parkside 68-67 in a home exhibition last night. The Division II Rangers led by 15 at the half. The Division-One Panthers stepped up their defense coming out of the intermission – but Parkside was still up by one with five seconds left when they fouled Jordan Aaron. He made two free throws, and Nick Neari missed a running three-pointer at the buzzer as Milwaukee escaped the upset. The small Kenosha school out-shot the Panthers 53-to-49-percent, and UWM only made 12-of-its-27 free throw attempts. Conrad Krutwig led all scorers with 22 for Parkside, which almost beat Milwaukee for the first time since 2006. Demetrius Harris had 18 points and six rebounds for UWM, which will open its regular season on Friday night at home against the University of Mary, also a Division II school.
The Marquette University women's basketball team closed out their exhibition season with an 88-55 home win over Division II UW-Parkside. The Golden Eagles had an early 14-0 run to go up by 17. Junior forward Katherine Plouffe scored 24 points for the Golden Eagles, who shot 52-percent from the floor. Parkside shot 36-percent, making only 6-of-26 in the second half. Senior guard Sierra West led the Rangers with 15 points. Marquette had a 51-to-25 rebounding edge – and they out-scored Parkside in the paint 56-26. Eagles’ coach Terri Mitchell said it was a good opportunity for her players to develop chemistry on the court, but their defense still needs some work. Marquette will open its regular season on Saturday night at home against Butler.
Three women’s soccer teams from Wisconsin were named last night to the Field-of-64 for their NCAA Division I tournament. Marquette was one of four teams to earn a No. 4 seed. The Big East champion Golden Eagles will host Illinois State in the first round on Friday night. UW-Milwaukee was also among 30 teams to get automatic berths by winning their respective conference tournaments. The Horizon League champion Panthers will play at Notre Dame on Friday night. UW-Madison was among 34 schools getting at-large berths. They’ll play UCLA in Los Angeles on Saturday night. The Bruins blanked Wisconsin 2-0 back on August 31st.
Laurie Bell of UW-Milwaukee and Sam Krenzien of Green Bay were named yesterday to the all-Horizon League men’s soccer first team. Bell is a sophomore midfielder, and Krenzien is a junior who plays in the middle. Milwaukee defenseman James Ashcroft and midfielder Declan Rodriguez were both named to the all-Horizon second team. Rodriguez and fellow Milwaukee freshman Aaron Horvat were chosen to the All-Newcomer squad, along with Jordan Dover of Green Bay. UW-Milwaukee is one of six teams in the Horizon League men’s soccer tournament which opens tonight. The fifth-seeded Panthers play at Number-four Valparaiso in the first round.