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MINNESOTA SPORTS ROUND-UP: Bengals hand Vikings a beatdown loss

CINCINNATI -  Andy Dalton threw for 366 yards and four touchdowns as Cincinnati took down Minnesota, 42-14, on Sunday. 

Dalton  did  so on 27-of-38 efficiency,  connecting with A.J. Green twice then Jermaine  Gresham and  Mohamed  Sanu once  each for  the  Bengals (10-5),  who locked  up a playoff  berth for the third straight season thanks to the Bills' 19-0 win over Miami.  In addition, with Baltimore's 41-7 home loss to New England, Cincinnati became AFC North champions for the first time since 2009.  Vikings QB Matt  Cassel was  held to  114 yards,  one score  to Jarius  Wright and  three interceptions  on 13-of-27  passing for  the Vikings  (4-10-1), who  failed to maintain  momentum from  their 48-point  performance against  the Eagles  last week.  Adrian Peterson returned after a one-game absence due to a knee injury and was limited  to 45  yards  on 11  carries. Cordarelle  Patterson  added a  rushing touchdown in defeat.


Vikings Schedule And Results

(Eden Prairie, MN)  --  Here is the 2013 Vikings schedule and results:

Sunday, September 8 - Detroit 34, Minnesota 24 (final) Sunday, September 15 - Chicago 31, Minnesota 30 (final) Sunday, September 22 - Cleveland 31, Minnesota 27 (final) Sunday, September 29 - Minnesota 34, Pittsburgh 27 (final) Sunday, October 6 - BYE WEEK Sunday, October 13 - Carolina 35, Minnesota 10 (final) Monday, October 21 - NY Giants 23, Minnesota 7 (final) Sunday, October 27 - Green Bay 44, Minnesota 31 (final) Sunday, November 3 - Dallas 27, Vikings 23 (final) Thursday, November 7 - Minnesota 34, Washington 27 (final) Sunday, November 17 - Seattle 41, Minnesota 20 (final) Sunday, November 24 - Minnesota 26, Green Bay 26(final-overtime) Sunday, December 1 - Minnesota 23, Chicago 20 (final-overtime) Sunday, December 8 - Baltimore 29, Minnesota 26 (final) Sunday, December 15 - Minnesota 48, Philadelphia 30 (final) Sunday, December 22 - Cincinnati 42, Minnesota 14 (final) Sunday, December 29 - vs. Detroit, noon


Cam Talbot stopped 24 shots in goal as the Rangers earned a 4-1 win over the Wild at Madison Square Garden.  Carl Hagelin and Mats Zuccarello each scored in the second period while Derick Brassard ended with two assists.  Former Wild forward Benoit Pouliot and Chris Kreider also scored for New York, which won for just the second time in eight games.  Jason Pominville had the lone goal for Minnesota in defeat.  Niklas Backstrom turned away 32 shots as the Wild lost their fourth in six games.  Wild conclude the pre-holiday break schedule with a trip to Philadelphia tonight to face the Flyers at 6:30 p.m. CT.


MInnesota Wild center Mikael Granlund returned from injury last night in the Wild 4-1 loss in New York.  Granlund missed all but :30 seconds of the last 14 games with an upper body injury.  He returned to center the second line and provided the second assist on Jason Pominville's goal to open the scoring.


The Wild wrap up their pre-holiday schedule tonight with a stop in Philadelphia to take on the Flyers.  It's a rematch from December 2nd in St. Paul when the Wild won 2-0 thanks to 21 saves by goaltender Josh Harding.  While the Flyers lost on Saturday night in Columbus to drop their fifth-in- a-row on the road, at home they've been remarkable -- winning eight straight dating back to early November.  Puck drops at 6:30 tonight from Wells Fargo Center in Philly.


Jamal Crawford  scored the final four points  of regulation and Chris Paul made crucial free throws down the stretch in  overtime as the Los Angeles Clippers survived with a thrilling 120-116 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves from Staples Center. Blake Griffin paced the Clippers with 32 points and 10 rebounds before fouling out early in the extra session.  Paul, who scored 19 points with 13 assists, carried the load from there, sinking 5-of-6 from the foul line in the final seconds to help LA secure its fifth straight win. Crawford added 22 points, Darren Collison went for  a season-high 18  off the bench and DeAndre Jordan grabbed 17 rebounds in the  triumph. Minnesota's  starting frontcourt tandem of Kevin Love and Nikola Pekovic  was dominant despite the loss. Love filled it up, tallying 45 points, 19  rebounds and  six assists, while Pekovic scored a career-high 34 points to go with 14 boards.


Rachel Banham's 1,500th career point came on a three-point shot late in the first half Sunday afternoon as the University of Minnesota women's basketball team defeated Auburn, 67-54, at Williams Arena in the final game of the Subway Classic  The victory gave Minnesota the tournament title, which was decided by a points-allowed tiebreaker after all three teams finished 1-1 over the weekend.  A game-high from Banham, who scored 22 points, and strong contributions from Amanda Zahui B. (16 points, 7 rebounds, 6 blocks) and Sari Noga (9 points, 5 rebounds, 3 steals) kept the Gophers in front of the Tigers for most of the game's final 30 minutes. Minnesota never trailed in the second half, leading by as many as 15 en route to the victory.


The University of Minnesota football team arrived in Houston, Texas to prepare for the Texas Bowl next Friday.  They'll take on the Syracuse Orange at 5 p.m. CT as they look for their ninth win of the season.  Sunday the Golden Gophers practiced at St. Thomas High School in Houston which was their host last year as well.