Sports editor: Mark Rountree . . . . . . . . .548-8153 email@example.com Reporter: Bruce Campbell . . . . . . . . . . . .548-8144 firstname.lastname@example.org
Tuesday June 1, 2010 Page designed by: Bruce Campbell
JUNIOR COLLEGE WORLD SERIES Devin Thaut of Paradise Valley throw to first over Jordan Bourque of LSU Eunice Monday during the NJCAA World Series. (Staff Photo by BILLY HEFTON)
NEWS, NOTES AND ANECDOTES
Pierce expects battle with Artest By Howard Ulman AP Sports Writer
WOC eyes payback LSU Eunice pitcher Chance Mistric delivers a pitch against Paradise Valley Monday during the NJCAA World Series. (Staff Photo by BILLY HEFTON)
LSU Eunice’s rout of Paradise Valley sets up long-awaited showdown
WALTHAM, Mass. — Paul Pierce is excited to return to the NBA finals and his hometown for the next round in the league’s greatest rivalry. Boston’s best player isn’t exactly thrilled Los Angeles’ welcoming committee includes Ron Artest, a physical, tenacious defender. “He likes to bang you,” Pierce said Monday, “grab you, hold you, pull your shorts down. He’s going to try anything.” The NBA’s past two champions will go for another title beginning Thursday night when the Celtics face the Lakers in front of an array of Hollywood stars and, very likely, a large number of Pierce’s friends and family who will root against their local team. Boston’s captain cherishes that support, though it comes with a price. “It’s always special just to be a part of the finals,” he said a few hours before the Celtics boarded a plane for their cross-country trip. “To do it in a place where I grew up, it makes it even more special. The only negative thing about it is tickets for me. I mean, it’s going to be pretty expensive.” That was a small inconvenience two years ago when Pierce won his first NBA title in 10 seasons as the Celtics beat the Lakers in six games. Boston clinched it with a 131-92 win at home for its ninth championship in 11 finals matchups with the Lakers. But Artest didn’t join the Lakers until last July. Pierce averaged 18.3 points per game in the regular season, and 19.1 over the first three rounds in the postseason. He averaged 24.3 in the Eastern Conference finals against the Orlando Magic, collecting 31 points and 13 rebounds in the clincher. But he scored just 13 points per game as Boston and Los Angeles split their two-game season series. “I matched up with him the last 10, 11 years. He’s one of the best defenders I’ve ever played against,” Pierce said of Artest. “He’ll try anything just to try to get into his opponent’s head. But I think just from playing against him over the years I’ve become used to the things that he tries to do and I just try to go out there and play my game, not really get into the antics with him.” Artest relieves Kobe Bryant of the burden of defending the opponent’s best scorer, allowing the Lakers star to focus more on his own offense. Artest “makes a difference,” Boston coach Doc Rivers said. “He’s been perfect because it’s allowed Kobe not to have to guard the best player every night. ... You can see it in Kobe’s (offensive numbers). He’s as fresh as I’ve ever seen him in the playoffs, and I think it’s due to Ron Artest.” Bryant scored 37 points in Saturday night’s 111-103 win over the Phoenix Suns that put the Lakers in the finals, his 10th 30point playoff game in his last 11. Artest also can be an offensive threat. He hit the winning layup at the buzzer in Game 5 then scored 25 points to help the Lakers clinch the Western Conference finals in Game 6 in Phoenix. Artest and his teammates will play before a friendly crowd Thursday that will include a small pocket of Pierce partisans. “My friends,” Pierce said, “really grew up (as) L.A. fans and, all of a sudden, are Celtic fans because of me. So it’s a little weird for them and family.” The crowd for Game 1 of the best-of-seven series will see the newest installment of a rivalry that goes back more than 50 years — to the 1959 finals when Boston swept the Minneapolis Lakers in four games. The franchises clashed in six finals in the ’60s. Then came the ’80s and three Larry BirdMagic Johnson championship rounds, two of them won by the Lakers. It took more than 20 years for the teams to match up again in 2008 when the Celtics captured their NBA-high 17th title.
By Mark Rountree Sports Editor
LSU Eunice whipped Western Oklahoma State 21-11 last year in the NJCAA Division II World Series. Ever since, the Pioneers have been looking for payback. Tonight, they get their chance. The two junior college powers meet at 7 tonight at David Allen Memorial Ballpark in a much-anticipated winner’s bracket game. Eunice (49-12) was ranked No. 1 in the nation for much of the regular season and currently is No. 3. Western (54-5) is ranked No. 1. The probable starters are Casey Sadler for Western and Dane Amedee for Eunice. Sadler is 9-1 with a 3.29 ERA. Amedee is 4-0 with a 4.14 ERA. Tonight’s matchup will feature a clash of baseball powerhouses and a clash of cultures.
See PAYBACK, Page B3
Tritons win in a walk
Kiermaier, Parkland oust No. 2 Frederick
By Chris Dell Staff Writer
By Mark Rountree Sports Editor
Kevin Kiermaier was the MVP of the NJCAA Division II World Series last year, leading Parkland (Ill.) College to the national championship. The talented centerfielder is making another bid for the tournament’s top individual honor this week at David Allen Memorial Ballpark. One day after a big game in a win over Lenoir (N.C.) College, Kiermaier delivered the key hit Monday as the Cobras outlasted second-ranked Frederick (Md.) College 11-8 in an elimination game. Kiermaier stroked a two-run double to right-
See KIERMAIER, Page B3
Iowa Central Tritons took advantage of 11 walks, defeating the University of Connecticut at Avery Point 9-1 in eight innings Monday to stay in the winner’s bracket of the National Junior College Division II World Series at David Allen Memorial Ballpark. Four walked batters ended up scoring for the Tritons. In a two-run sixth inning, Avery Point pitchers Sean Donatello and Kyle Florio combined to walk five straight batters. Iowa Central took advantage of the free passes by stealing five bases to put runners in scoring position. After getting a bye Sunday after their first round win, the Tritons will get today off while they
NJCAA Division II World Series David Allen Memorial Ballpark May 29 - June 5 Sunday’s late results Parkland, Ill. 11, Lenoir,N.C., 8 Monday’s results LSU Eunice 11, Paradise Valley, Ariz. 2, 7 innings Parkland 11, Frederick 8 Iowa Central 9, UConn-Avery Point 1 Today’s schedule Noon — Madison vs. Paradise Valley 3:30 —-Parkland vs. Avery Point 7 — LSU Eunice vs. Western
PLAYER OF THE DAY LSU Eunice right-hander Chance Mistric, a 25year-old Marine Corps veteran pitching on Memorial Day, was impressive in six innings of work in an 112 win over Paradise Valley. Mistric allowed two runs on four hits with four strikeouts to improve to 12-1 this season. Mistric is 27-1 in the last two years.
See TRITONS, Page B2
Sooners draw ORU NORMAN (AP) — Oklahoma and Oral Roberts have deliberately avoided playing each other in baseball for six seasons. On Monday, the NCAA reunited the in-state rivals for a postseason matchup. Oklahoma (44-15), the No. 1 seed will host fourth-seeded Oral Roberts (35-25) at 1p.m. Friday in the first round of the double-elimination Norman Regional. No. 2 seed California (29-23) plays No. 3 seed North Carolina (36-20) at 7. OU coach Sunny Golloway coached at ORU for eight years before returning to the Sooners in 2004. His assistant, Rob Walton, succeeded him at ORU. Walton guided the Golden Eagles to their 13th straight Summit League tournament title. Because of their friendship, Golloway and Walton decided not to schedule each other’s team during the regular season. “I took a tremendous amount of pride in building that program and Rob has done a tremendous job continuing that tradition,” Golloway said Monday. “We don’t see a benefit playing each other and making our relationship more difficult. We knew this day would come. Rob Walton is
SCHEDULE Friday’s Games Game 1 — Oral Roberts (35-25) at Oklahoma (4415), 1 p.m. Game 2 — North Carolina (36-20) vs. California (29-23), 7 p.m. Saturday’s Games Game 3 — Game 1 loser vs. Game 2 loser, 1 p.m. Game 4 — Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner, 7 p.m. Sunday’s Games Game 5 — Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 loser, 1 p.m. Game 6 — Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner, 7 p.m. Monday’s Game Game 7 — Game 4 winner vs. Game 5 winner, 7 p.m., if necessary.
a good friend and a good man and on Friday, we’ll compete, and the game will come and go and our relationship will prosper.” OU closed with a flourish, winning nine of its final 10 games to finish second in the Big 12 Conference regular-season standings behind Texas. It’s the second straight year the Sooners will host an NCAA regional and the third time in the past five years.
See SOONERS, Page B2
Chicago Blackhawks right wing Marian Hossa scores against Philadelphia Flyers goalie Michael Leighton in Game 2 of the Stanley Cup finals Monday. (AP Photo)
Blackhawks take 2-0 edge CHICAGO (AP) — Marian Hossa and Ben Eager scored 28 seconds apart late in the second period, Antti Niemi had 33 saves and the Chicago Blackhawks beat the Philadelphia Flyers 2-1 on Monday night for a 2-0 lead in the Stanley Cup finals. After a wild scoring display when Chicago won the opener 6-5, Game 2 featured tightened-up defenses with goalies Niemi and Michael Leighton of the Flyers stepping up. Niemi fought off a late flurry — 15 of his saves came in the final period when Philadelphia had a 16-4 shots advantage.
June 1, 2010 Chicago Blackhawks right wing Marian Hossa scores against Philadelphia Flyers goalie Michael Leighton in Game 2 of the Stanley...