Parrish nets 17, No. 13 Oregon tops USC to end skid

LOS ANGELES — Sydney Parrish hit four 3-pointers and scored 17 points off the bench and No. 13 Oregon ended a three-game losing streak with a 72-48 win over USC on Sunday.

The Ducks, who lost to three-straight Top 10 teams, matched their season high with 12 3-pointers on 28 attempts and shot 48% overall (27-56), their best shooting performance after seven games of shooting between 32 and 43%.

Erin Boley added 13 points and eight rebounds for Oregon (13-7, 10-6 Pac-12 Conference), which has won 10 straight in the series. Nyara Sabally and Sedona Prince both scored 11. Te-Hina Paopao had eight assists and Parrish four steals.

Alissa Pili scored 14 points for the Trojans (10-10, 8-9), who shot just 33% (18 of 55). 

Taylor Chavez and Boley opened the game with 3-pointers and the Ducks never trailed. USC tied the game at 14 but Oregon scored the next six. A 10-0 run in the middle of the second quarter, featuring back-to-back Sabally and Parrish 3’s, made it 34-20 and the lead was in double figures the rest of the way. 

Oregon went 2-9 from 3-point range and was just 6 of 16 overall in the third quarter but limited the Trojans to 10 points.

The Ducks are scheduled to play rival Oregon State on home next Sunday to close the regular season. USC wraps up at No. 8 UCLA on Sunday.

Press, Rapinoe score, US beats Brazil 2-0 in SheBelieves Cup

ORLANDO, Fla. — Christen Press scored in the 11th minute, Megan Rapinoe added a late goal and the U.S. women beat Brazil 2-0 in the SheBelieves Cup on Sunday.

The U.S. sits atop the SheBelieves Cup standings with two wins. Canada and Argentina were to play later Sunday in the round-robin tournament.

The United States, winner of the last two World Cups, is unbeaten in 36 straight games overall and 52 straight at home.

The Americans have won five straight over Brazil and are unbeaten in the last seven matches. The team is 20-0-2 against Brazil on American soil.

Press took a pass from Lindsey Horan and rushed forward, fooling a defender before a powerful strike to the far corner of the net. It was Press’ 10th goal in her last 13 national team games and 59th international goal.

Moments later, Crystal Dunn’s sliding tackle prevented Debinha on the breakaway. Brazil had a good chance in the 82nd minute when Marta found Debinha in the box, but the shot went just wide.

It was the 10th straight shutout for U.S. goalkeeper Alyssa Naeher.

Alex Morgan made her first start for the national team since giving birth to daughter Charlie last year. Morgan and Press were subbed out in the 71st minute and replaced with Rapinoe and Carli Lloyd.

Horan served the ball into the box for Rapinoe, who scored in the 88th minute. After she scored, Rapinoe made a baby-rocking gesture in honor of teammates Ali Krieger and Ashlynn Harris, who recently adopted daughter Sloane.

The Brazilians are led by Pia Sundhage, who coached the U.S. from 2008-12. Sundhage took Brazil over last summer and has an 8-2-3 record.

The U.S. beat Canada 1-0 in its SheBelieves Cup opener on Thursday.

Brazil beat rival Argentina 4-1 on Thursday. Brazil is making its second overall appearance in the tournament, now in its sixth year.

New dad Polasek wins 1st major doubles title in Australia

MELBOURNE, Australia — Filip Polasek has had a weekend he’ll never forget, winning his first Grand Slam title a day after his second daughter was born.

Little wonder the 35-year-old Slovakian let out a triumphant roar and fell into Croatian partner Ivan Dodig’s arms after the pair beat defending champions Rajeev Ram and Joe Salisbury 6-3, 6-4 on Sunday in the Australian Open men’s doubles final.

Back and left leg injuries forced Polasek to retire in 2013 and he was sidelined from the men’s tour for five years, confined to coaching junior players, until he was convinced to make a comeback in the middle of 2018.

He took a month off coaching, without pay. It has finally paid off.

In his first Grand Slam final, Polasek was the best player on the court with brilliant returns complementing a steady serve to help set up the victory.

Polasek had little sleep on Saturday night before his partner delivered their second daughter at a hospital near Bratislava about midnight Friday in Melbourne time.

“It’s quite sad,” to miss the birth, he said, “but to end it up this way here, it’s very nice.

“I have the pictures and videos. That night I didn’t have much sleep, I have to say. The good thing was we had another day extra and I can sleep well before the final.”

For Dodig it was a second major title, after the French Open doubles with Marcelo Melo in 2015.

Avs beat Golden Knights 3-2 in delayed Lake Tahoe game

STATELINE, Nev. — Everyone knew playing an outdoor game on a golf course near Lake Tahoe instead of in a stadium would provide a unique experience.

Few could have imagined how it all turned out with the game starting with breathtaking views in the sunshine, taking an eight-hour break because of bad ice conditions and ending late at night.

Nathan MacKinnon scored a dazzling goal more than nine hours after assisting on another to highlight a most unusual and lengthy outdoor game that the Colorado Avalanche won 3-2 over the Vegas Golden Knights on Saturday.

“It was weird. It feels like a blur honestly,” MacKinnon said. “The ice was bad but we never thought of stopping. I never thought that was a possibility. I thought we would grind it out. ... This was definitely more enjoyable, the second and third tonight.”

The game started in bright sunshine that led to a delay of more than eight hours following the first period because of poor ice conditions and ended in the dark 10 hours, 37 minutes later.

“It was a unique one and a game that people will remember for a long time,” Colorado captain Gabriel Landeskog said. “Maybe not for the hockey game but for everyone falling in the first period this morning. Nonetheless it was a great experience and hope the fans who were able to stay up for this game were able to see how special a place this is.”

Rockies OF Ian Desmond opts out for 2nd straight season

DENVER — Colorado Rockies veteran outfielder Ian Desmond is opting out for a second straight season.

Desmond announced Sunday on his Instagram account that his “desire to be with my family is greater than my desire to go back and play baseball under these circumstances. I’m going to train and watch how things unfold.” He added “for now” in his statement to opt out, leaving the door open for a possible return.

The 35-year-old Desmond is in the final year of a five-year, $70 million deal he signed in December 2016. He is scheduled to make $8 million this season. Colorado has a $15 million option for 2022 with a $2 million buyout.

In opting out last season during the coronavirus-shortened season, Desmond cited a desire to spend more time with his family and to help grow youth baseball in his Florida hometown. He also added the COVID-19 pandemic made the baseball season one that “is a risk I am not comfortable taking.”

On Sunday, Desmond wrote of his decision: “This impacts a lot of people, some positively and some negatively, and I own that. At the end of the day, this weighs on me more than anyone but I’m following my heart and I feel good about my decision.”

Desmond added that he’s informed teammates, the coaching staff and front office and they’ve all been “extremely understanding and supportive.”

“I wish nothing but the best for the entire Rockies organization and have let them know I am willing to do whatever I can to help them from afar,” Desmond wrote. “Thank you.”

Northwestern’s Paddy Fisher wins Lott Trophy

NEWPORT BEACH — Northwestern linebacker Paddy Fisher won the Lott IMPACT Trophy, which goes to college football’s defensive player who has made the biggest impact on his team.

The announcement was made Sunday night at the Pacific Club. The award is usually given in December, but was delayed because of the coronavirus pandemic. IMPACT stands for integrity, maturity, performance, academics, community and tenacity.

Fisher had 86 tackles, 4 1/2 for loss, one interception, a forced fumble and a fumble recovery during the 2020 season. The senior from Katy, Texas, was also named Big Ten linebacker of the year. He finished his career with 404 tackles, most among active players.

Northwestern’s general scholarship fund will receive $25,000. Fisher is the first winner from Northwestern since the award named for Hall of Famer Ronnie Lott began in 2004.

The other finalists were Talanoa Hufanga of Southern California, Joseph Ossai of Texas, Jeremiah Owusu-Koramoah of Notre Dame, Tarron Jackson of Coastal Carolina, and Patrick Surtain II of Alabama.

Napoli’s Osimhen remains in hospital after head trauma

BERGAMO, Italy — Napoli forward Victor Osimhen will remain overnight in hospital under observation after being knocked unconscious during the final minutes of Sunday’s Italian league match at Atalanta.

Osimhen fell awkwardly after a collision with Atalanta defender Cristian Romero and hit his head on the field. The Nigerian international was conscious as he was stretchered off and rushed to the hospital.

Napoli released a brief statement saying that “following his injury and head trauma ... he had undergone tests with negative results.”

The southern-based club said Osimhen would remain under observation in Bergamo until Monday.

The incident occurred in stoppage time of Atalanta’s 4-2 win over Napoli.

Osimhen joined Napoli from Lille at the end of July for a fee of around 80 million euros. He was injured on international duty in November and then tested positive for coronavirus over the winter break. The 22-year-old Osimhen only returned to action on Jan. 24 after an absence of more than two months.

Alaska hockey, gymnastics seek more time to save programs

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The hockey and gymnastics programs at the University of Alaska Anchorage have asked for a fundraising deadline extension to save their programs from elimination. 

The University of Alaska Board of Regents voted in September to eliminate three sports, including alpine skiing, hockey and gymnastics because of budget cuts. The cuts would have saved $2.5 million a year from the athletic budget, or more than $9 million in the 2019 academic year, officials said. 

The board also said it would consider reinstating any program that could raise two years of operating costs before its next meeting on Feb. 25. 

The extension would push the deadline for hockey to Aug. 30. It would also extend the deadline for gymnastics to June 30 to raise the first year of operating costs and June 30, 2022 for the second year.

The hockey program has so far raised $1.8 million of the $3 million needed in pledges and donations, while the gymnastics interim head coach Marie-Sophie Boggasch said her program has raised $380,000 of the $888,000 needed.

The board voted last month to reinstate the alpine ski team after the program reached its fundraising goal of $628,000 in December. The University of Alaska Foundation certified the donations before the vote.

“Through collaborative efforts between the UAA administration and Save Seawolf Hockey, we have arrived at a solution for reinstatement of Seawolf hockey that honors the community support already demonstrated, and will allow fundraising efforts to continue,” Save Seawolf Hockey volunteer Heidi Embley said on Friday.

The university’s Interim President Pat Pitney and Interim Chancellor Bruce Schultz will lead the discussion on the fundraising deadline extension request and to reinstate the programs provided they raise enough money.

“Among all of the challenging choices that have been made because of the $34 million cut to UAA’s budget, we fully acknowledge that these are some of the most difficult decisions,” Schultz said in a joint statement with Director of Athletics Greg Myford last week. “Community support is essential in moving forward with sustainability for all athletic programs. We are very impressed and grateful for the outpouring of support from the community in Alaska and beyond for these programs that have been put to the test.”

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