Minnesota Sports Briefs: Defense helpes T-Wolves top DallasMinnesota Sports
-- A short-handed Minnesota Timberwolves team played brilliant defense and beat the Dallas Mavericks 90-82 last night in Texas.
DALLAS -- A short-handed Minnesota Timberwolves team played brilliant defense and beat the Dallas Mavericks 90-82 last night in Texas.
Minnesota was playing without Kevin Love, Ricky Rubio, J.J. Barea, Brandon Roy, Chase Budinger, and newly-injured Nikola Pekovic. Pekovic started last night's game, but twisted his ankle in the second half, leaving the Wolves with eight players. And, Minnesota still won the game behind the Russian combo of Alexei Shved and Andrei Kirilenko, who each scored 16 points. Kirilenko had 11 rebounds. Minnesota hosts Charlotte tomorrow night.
University of Minnesota women's basketball forward Micaella Riche of Cloucester, Ontario is this week's Big Ten Player of the Week. The junior averaged nearly 25-points and ten rebounds per game in a pair of victories over the weekend. She helped Minnesota to the championship of their own tournament. The Gophers host another tourney this weekend.
The University of Minnesota football team will be back on the practice field later today, getting ready for the toughest game on their schedule to date. Nationally-ranked Nebraska will host the Golden Gophers on Saturday in Lincoln. Minnesota beat Illinois 17-3 this past Saturday to secure bowl eligibility. Nebraska knocked off Penn State and remains atop the Big Ten Legends Division Lead. Kickoff on Saturday is set for 2:30 p.m.
University of Illinois linebacker Mason Monheim of Orrville, Ohio has been named the Big Ten Freshman of the Week for turning in a 15-tackle performance against the University of Minnesota last Saturday. This was Monheim's second Freshman of the Week honor. Minnesota beat Illinois in the game 17-3.
Minnesota-Duluth senior quarterback Chase Vogler of Inver Grove Heights is this week's NSIC Offensive Player of the Week. The former Rosemount High School star rushed for 224 yards and five touchdowns in a Bulldog win over Northern State last Saturday. Minnesota-Crookston senior kicker Stephen Henderson is this week's Special Teams Player of the Week by hitting a career long 43-yard field goal to push his club to a 37-36 win over U-Mary. U-Mary sophomore linebacker Grant Singer of Turtle Lake, North Dakota is the league's Defensive Player of the Week.
Three student-athletes have been given weekly honors in MIAC football. St. Thomas senior Ayo Idowu of Woodbury is the MIAC Defensive Player of the Week after helping the Tommies to a 35-21 win over St. Olaf. Saint John's kicker Jimmie Mattson of Eau Claire, Wisconsin is the MIAC Special Teams Player of the Week after hitting all three of his field goal attempts in a loss to Bethel. Concordia-Moorhead running back Brett Baune of Fargo is this week's Offensive Player of the Week after becoming the school's all-time touchdown leader in a 29-10 win over Gustavus Adolphus on Saturday.
The Minnesota Vikings came out of their Sunday game not only with a victory, but also a mostly clean bill of health. Head coach Leslie Frazier says they should be at nearly full health when they next hit the field on November 25th in Chicago. He says star receiver Percy Harvin, who missed Sunday's win, should be healed up and ready to play for that Bears game. The Vikings are off this week and Frazier says the players will not practice at all this week to allow for physical and mental rest.
The NSIC has named its weekly award winners in volleyball. Concordia-St. Paul junior Kayla Koenecke of Delano is the Offensive Player of the Week after helping the No. 2 Golden Bears to a win over No. 1 Southwest Minnesota State. Her teammate Amanda Konetchy, a junior from Victoria, is the league's Setter of the Week. And, Upper Iowa senior Kayla Wagner of Ottumwa, Iowa is the Defensive Player of the Week.