Other Sports

Sports briefs: Dec. 29


Vick, Brady, Akers, 4 rookies, no Bengals named to Pro Bowl

Michael Vick's sensational comeback now includes a Pro Bowl start. The Eagles quarterback, who sat out two seasons while serving a federal sentence for dogfighting, will start for the NFC in the Jan. 30 Pro Bowl in Honolulu. Also chosen from the Eagles were receiver DeSean Jackson, tackle Jason Peters, cornerback Asante Samuel and place-kicker David Akers, a Tates Creek graduate.

Atlanta, which leads the NFC with a 12-3 record, had the most Pro Bowlers with seven, including quarterback Matt Ryan, receiver Roddy White and defensive end John Abraham.

New England (13-2), the AFC leader, had six Pro Bowlers, led by quarterback Tom Brady, the league's top passer who will make his sixth trip to the game — providing the Patriots don't make the Super Bowl. Baltimore, Green Bay and Dallas also had five players voted in by players, coaches and fans.

Four rookies were chosen, with defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh of Detroit a starter for the NFC. Cornerback Devin McCourty of New England, kick returner Marc Mariani of Tennessee and center Maurkice Pouncey of Pittsburgh made the AFC squad.

The only teams not represented were Buffalo, Cincinnati, Seattle and Tampa Bay.

Webb, Peterson lead Vikings past Eagles

Joe Webb threw for 195 yards and ran for a touchdown in his first career start filling in for an injured Brett Favre, and the lowly Minnesota Vikings beat Michael Vick and the NFC East champion Philadelphia Eagles 24-14 in the NFL's first Tuesday game since 1946. Adrian Peterson ran for 117 yards and a score, helping the Vikings (6-9) knock host Philadelphia out of contention for a first-round playoff bye. The Eagles (10-5) could've secured a first-round bye with a victory over the Vikings and Dallas and with a loss by either Chicago or Atlanta next week. Now the Eagles are locked into the NFC's No. 3 seed and will host the No. 6 seed on Jan. 8 or 9.

Men's college basketball

Morehead extends home winning streak

Morehead State snapped a three-game losing skid and extended its home winning streak to 20 games with a 76-59 non-conference win over Kent State. Four of the five Eagle starters scored in double figures, led by Kenneth Faried's 24-point, 10-rebound double-double. Faried and former South Laurel star Ty Proffitt, who scored 10 points, combined for 13 of Morehead's final 15 points of the first half to spur a 13-4 run. Demonte Harper finished with 18 points, two shy of his fifth 20-point game this season.

Aaron Miller, who starred at Henry Clay, scored a game-high 21 points and grabbed eight rebounds in Thomas More's 87-70 loss to Marian (Ind.) in the final game of the Coach Connor Classic in Crestview Hills.

Tyshwan Edmondson (University Heights) scored 23 points as Austin Peay rolled to a 101-46 victory over Brescia. Edmondson, the Ohio Valley Conference's leading scorer, hit a three-pointer from the wing 36 seconds into the contest and the Governors (9-6) went on to score the game's first 17 points. Josh Terry (Henderson County) added 19 points for Austin Peay.

Women's college basketball

Louisville routs Tennessee-Martin

Louisville rolled to a 92-67 home victory against Tennessee-Martin, which next plays Kentucky in Memorial Coliseum on Thursday. Freshman Shoni Schimmel led the Cardinals with 24 points and had career highs in assists (12) and steals (seven). Former Fern Creek standout Monique Reid added 20 points and Tia Gibbs (Butler) had 11. Heather Butler scored 29 for the Skyhawks.

Ashar Harris scored 11 of her game-high 15 points in the second half to lead Morehead State to a 61-50 victory against Marshall in Huntington, W.Va. Harris also had 11 rebounds and three steals, and Chynna Bozeman had 14 points and six rebounds.


Magic hit 19 threes, beat Cavaliers

Gilbert Arenas scored 22 points, fellow newcomer Jason Richardson added 20, and the Magic made a season-high 19 three-pointers in a 110-95 victory over the host Cavaliers. Orlando won its fourth straight by breaking open a close game in the fourth quarter with leading scorer Dwight Howard on the bench. Howard went out with his fourth foul late in the third period and didn't play in the fourth as the Magic extended a one-point lead to 102-85 with 4:23 to play. Former Louisville standout Earl Clark scored 12 points for Orlando.

Dwyane Wade scored 15 of his season-high 40 points in the fourth quarter, LeBron James and Chris Bosh each finished with 18 points and 10 rebounds, and the Heat held off a late comeback to beat New York 106-98 for Miami's 15th win in its last 16 games overall and its seventh straight over the visiting Knicks.

Paul Pierce scored 21 points and Ray Allen added 17 to help the Celtics beat the Pacers 95-83 in Indianapolis. Boston point guard Rajon Rondo missed his fifth straight game with a sprained left ankle. The Celtics improved to 4-1 without him and maintained the best record in the Eastern Conference.

Tony Parker scored 23 points and the Spurs, backing up their NBA-best record against the defending champions, beat Kobe Bryant and the visiting Lakers 97-82. DeJuan Blair had 17 points and 15 rebounds to help San Antonio hand Los Angeles its third straight loss. Bryant finished with 21 points on 8-for-27 shooting. He missed 13 in a row at one point.

Horse racing

Rock N Roll Heaven tops harness awards

Rock N Roll Heaven was voted the top 3-year-old pacer and 11 other horses earned Dan Patch Awards as divisional champions.Rock N Roll Heaven closed out his career on a 10-race winning streak. The winner of the Little Brown Jug and the Breeders Crown was voted on 129 of the 131 ballots cast by members of the U.S. Harness Writers Association. Rock N Roll Heaven has been retired to stud. Buck I St Pat, the older female trotter for a third straight year, was the only unanimous selection. The trotter, pacer and horse of the year winners will be announced Feb. 27.

The other division winners were: Pastor Stephen (2-year-old male trotter), Big Jim (2-year-old male pacer), Crys Dream (2-year-old filly trotter), See You At Peelers (2-year-old filly pacer), Lucky Chucky (3-year-old male trotter), Bar Slide (3-year-old filly trotter), Put On A Show (3-year-old filly pacer), Enough Talk (older male trotter), Won The West (older male pacer) and Dreamfair Eternal (older female pacer).


Ex-Tigers general manager Lajoie dies

Former Detroit Tigers general manager Bill Lajoie, who guided the team during its 1984 World Series championship season, died Tuesday. He was 76. Lajoie served the Tigers as scouting director and assistant general manager before becoming general manager in 1984, a job he held till 1990. After leaving Detroit, Lajoie served as an assistant for the Red Sox, Dodgers, Reds, Braves and Brewers. Lajoie was working as a special assistant to the Pittsburgh Pirates.

The last word

The New Orleans Saints clinched the opportunity to defend their Super Bowl title with a 17-14 victory Monday night against Atlanta, and they still have a shot at a No. 1 seed in the playoffs. If the Saints beat Tampa Bay (9-6) on Sunday in the Superdome and Atlanta loses at home to 2-13 Carolina, New Orleans will be the No. 1 seed. Otherwise, the Saints will be No. 5. But linebacker Jonathan Vilma said he won't be watching the scoreboard:

"Let's win first, then figure out what happens after that. Let the mathematicians and the NFL figure out who is the one seed and all that good stuff."