Sports News-March 4, 2014

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LeBron James torched Charlotte for a career-high 61 points and the Miami Heat picked up their eighth straight win by knocking off the Bobcats 124-107.  James made 22 of his 33 shots, including his first eight three-point attempts.  James also broke Glen Rice's franchise record of 56 points set in April 1995.

The Creighton men's basketball team has fallen from ninth to 13th in the Associated Press poll after dropping their lone game to Xavier last Saturday 76-69.  The 23-5 Bluejays return to action tonight when they visit the nation's capital to play Georgetown.  Florida remains first followed by Wichita State, Arizona, Duke, & Virginia.

The Nebraska women's basketball team remains 16th in the Associated Press poll after splitting two games in the last week.  They beat Illinois at home last Thursday 72-65 and then dropped an 82-66 decision at Purdue on Sunday.  The 22-6 Huskers return to action when they face either Minnesota or Wisconsin in the Big Ten Tournament on Friday.  Connecticut remains first followed by Notre Dame, Louisville, Stanford, & South Carolina.

Nebraska's Jordan Hooper is the women's basketball player of the year in the Big Ten and the Cornhuskers' Connie Yori has been named coach of the year for the second straight season.  Hooper earned first-team All-Big Ten honors yesterday for the third straight season.  She's the fourth player in school history to be named a conference player of the year.  The 6'2 senior forward from Alliance is averaging 20 points and better than nine rebounds.  Sophomore guard Rachel Theriot joins Hooper on the first team.  Junior forward Emily Cady and junior guard Tear'a Laudermill were named to the second team, and junior forward Hailie Sample was named to the all-defense team.  Yori was named a conference coach of the year for the fourth time in her 24-year head coaching career.

The Norfolk Catholic boys basketball team's season has reached the end of the road.  The Knights were beaten in the C-1-4 District Final by Omaha World Herald fourth ranked Wayne 71-46 at Wisner/Pilger High School.  Norfolk Catholic trailed 34-28 at halftime before being outscored in the second half 37-18.  David Engelhaupt & Beau Schommer each scored nine points to lead the Knights.  Schommer added six rebounds.  Jalen Barry led three Blue Devils in double figures with 28 points.  Wayne improves to 23-4 while Norfolk Catholic's season ends at 14-11.

Boys Basketball District finals highlight the local schedule for today.  In a game that can be heard on Newstalk WJAG 105.9 FM & WJAG.com, Norfolk High takes on host team Lincoln Southeast at 7:00 in the A-7 District Final.  Pregame coverage at 6:40.  Columbus faces Beatrice in a B-4 District Semifinal at Lincoln High at 5:45.  In Class 'D-1' games at 7:00, in a game that can be heard on Lite Rock 97.5 & Literock97.com, Howells/Dodge meets Randolph at Norfolk Catholic at 7:00.  Pregame coverage at 6:40.  In other 7:00 games in Class 'D-1', Fullerton meets Shelton at Grand Island Central Catholic High School and Clearwater/Orchard takes on Sandhills/Thedford at Burwell.  In Class 'D-2', 7:00 district final games, Bancroft/Rosalie meets High Plains Community at Clarkson, and Wynot tangles with Spalding/Spalding Academy at Northeast Community College.  Elsewhere in basketball, the Creighton are in Washington D.C. to play Georgetown at 6:05, and the Creighton women host Butler at 7:05.

The ninth ranked in both polls in Class 'A' Norfolk High boys basketball team is 20-4 on the year and one step away from the State Tournament after beating Lincoln East 57-49 in an A-7 District semifinal game last Saturday at Lincoln Southeast High School.  It was the second time this year the Panthers have beaten the Spartans.  Norfolk, who is currently seventh in power points in Class 'A', is beating their opponents by an average score 64.2-54.2.  Their opponents have a record of 254-326 for a win percentage of .438.  The Panthers return to action tonight when they face the Lincoln Southeast Knights in the A-7 District Final at 7:00.  Norfolk lost to this team on January 24th in Lincoln 61-59 in overtime on a Luke Gifford tip-in at the buzzer.  Tonight's game can be heard on Newstalk WJAG 105.9 FM & WJAG.com starting at 6:40.

The Norfolk High girls basketball team's season reached the end of the road seven days ago after a 55-53 loss to Lincoln Southwest in an A-3 District semifinal from Fremont.  Their final record was 12-12.  Norfolk outscored their opponents on average 50.5-49.2.  Their opponents have a record of 288-251 for a win percentage of .534. Junior Jaycee Bradley is the current all-time leading scorer in program history with 1048 points.  She has a 325 point lead with one more year to go.  The Lady Panthers will lose Mariah Buchholtz, Shelby Gansebom, Skyler Starkel, Chelsea Johnson, Haley Jensen, and Shae Wattier to graduation but will return Bradley, Michaela Heimes, Tierra Wilson, and Taleah Williams.  The team was 9-2 on January 11th after a win over South Sioux City and then was 9-9 after a loss to Fremont on February seventh.  

The Lincoln Journal Star sixth ranked in Class 'C-1' Norfolk Catholic girls basketball team's season reached conclusion on February 18th to Pierce 47-27 in the C-1-8 Sub-District Final at Norfolk High School.  Their final mark was 15-9.  Norfolk Catholic outscored their opponents on average 48.1-45.7.  Their opponents have a record of 363-212 for a win percentage of .631. The Knights will lose Jennifer Keenan, Brittany Kelberlau, Morgan Hauser, Morgan Molacek, Ashlen Pospisil, and Michaela O'Brien to graduation but will return Geena Piper, Bailey Barnes, Joelle Heng, Maddie Love, Bailey Ehlers, Courtney Schindler. 

The NJCAA 24th ranked in Division I Northeast Hawks women's basketball team is 26-4 after dropping the Region XI Championship Game 80-62 at Iowa Western Community College last Saturday.  Alison Klostergard led three players in double figures for the Hawks with 15 points.  The 14-0 start to this season for Northeast is the best start in program history.  They are outscoring their opponents by an average score of 80.4-62.4.  Northeast's season is now in limbo before deciding if they will receive an at-large berth to the National Tournament. 

Local Schedule:  Nfk High at Lincoln SE (A-7 BBB Dist. Final-7:00); Creighton at Georgetown at Washington D.C. (MBB-6:05); Kansas St. At Nebraska (Bsbl-Ppd to April 9); Creighton at Kansas at Lawrence, KS (Bsbl-Ppd. To March 12); Butler at Creighton (WBB-7:05).

Tonight:  The Norfolk High boys basketball team faces host team Lincoln Southeast in the A-7 District Final at 7:00.  Pregame coverage at 6:40 on Newstalk WJAG 105.9 FM & WJAG.com.  Also, the Boys D-1-2 District Final from Norfolk Catholic High School has Randolph meeting Howells/Dodge at 7:00.  Pregame coverage at 6:40 on Lite Rock 97.5 & Literock97.com.

Thursday:  The Girls State Basketball Tournament gets underway in Lincoln.  The Class 'C-1' Defending State Champion 20-4 Pierce Lady Bluejays faces 20-4 Chadron in the opening round of the Class 'C-1' bracket at the Bob Devaney Sports Center at 2:00.  Pregame coverage at 1:40 on Lite Rock 97.5 & Literock97.com.  Also, 23-2 Humphrey St. Francis takes on 19-4 Boyd County in the Class 'D-1' bracket from Lincoln North Star High School at 3:45.  Pregame coverage at approximately 3:25 on 106 KIX & 106KIX.com.

Area Class 'C' & 'D' BBB District Finals:  Columbus Scotus 66 Milford 44 (C-1); Battle Creek 78 Twin River 64; Ainsworth 66 Hartington CC 65 (C-2).

     BOYS BASKETBALL
 A-1 Tournament
 Finals
     Omaha Benson 42, North Platte 31
 A-2 Tournament
 Finals
     Omaha Central 55, Omaha Northwest 42
 A-3 Tournament
 Finals
     Omaha South 55, Omaha Creighton Prep 51
 A-4 Tournament
 Finals
     Omaha Westside 63, Papillion-LaVista 52
 A-5 Tournament
 Finals
     Bellevue West 51, Fremont 46
 A-6 Tournament
 Finals
     Lincoln Northeast 38, Millard West 36
 B-1 Tournament
 Semifinal
     Lincoln Pius X 34, Norris 29
     Waverly 54, Plattsmouth 47
 B-2 Tournament
 Semifinal
     Elkhorn South 53, Gretna 46
     Omaha Skutt Catholic 49, Ralston 47
 B-3 Tournament
 Semifinal
     Bennington 61, Blair 45
     Omaha Roncalli 43, Elkhorn Mount Michael 28
 B-4 Tournament
 Semifinal
     Beatrice 56, Columbus 49
     York 63, Seward 45
 B-5 Tournament
 Semifinal
     Aurora 58, Lexington 40
     Grand Island Northwest 54, Holdrege 39
 B-6 Tournament
 Semifinal
     Gering 60, McCook 48
     Scottsbluff 57, Sidney 50
 Class C1 District Tournament
 Finals
 District C1-1
     Falls City 37, Lincoln Christian 36
 District C1-2
     Bishop Neumann 86, Boys Town 49
 District C1-3
     Columbus Scotus 66, Milford 44
 District C1-4
     Wayne 71, Norfolk Catholic 46
 District C1-5
     Kearney Catholic 51, Grand Island Central Catholic 49
 District C1-6
     Cozad 66, Valentine 57
 Class C2 District Tournament
 Finals
 District C2-1
     Freeman 58, Yutan 45
 District C2-2
     Archbishop Bergan 65, Winnebago 58
 District C2-3
     Battle Creek 78, Twin River 64
 District C2-4
     Sutton 43, Doniphan-Trumbull 39, 2OT
 District C2-5
     Ainsworth 66, Hartington Cedar Catholic 65
 District C2-6
     Kimball 56, Ravenna 55

     NATIONAL  BASKETBALL  ASSOCIATION
    
      Final    Memphis          110    Washington      104
      Final    Miami              124    Charlotte        107
      Final    Brooklyn          96    Chicago              80
      Final    Detroit            96    New  York            85
      Final    Milwaukee      114    Utah                    88
      Final    Minnesota      132    Denver              128
      Final    L-A  Lakers    107    Portland          106
      Final    Sacramento      96    New  Orleans      89
    
    
          NATIONAL  HOCKEY  LEAGUE
    
      Final    Columbus            2    Toronto        1
      Final    Dallas                3    Buffalo        2
      Final    Minnesota          3    Calgary        2
      Final    Los  Angeles      2    Montreal      1
    
    
          TOP-25  COLLEGE  BASKETBALL
    
      Final    (14)  North  Carolina      63    Notre  Dame      61
    
    
          TOP-25  WOMEN'S  COLLEGE  BASKETBALL
    
      Final    (  1)  UConn                      68    (  3)  Louisville          48
      Final              Texas                      65    (18)  Oklahoma  St.      58
      Final              South  Florida      60    (24)  Rutgers                51

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