Liz Brenner had 17 kills and 17 digs to help fifth-seeded Oregon sweep the final three sets and upset top-seeded Penn State on Thursday...
Oregon stuns Penn State,
advances to title game
Liz Brenner had 17 kills and 17 digs to help fifth-seeded Oregon sweep the final three sets and upset top-seeded Penn State on Thursday night in the NCAA women’s semifinals in Louisville, Ky.
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The Ducks (30-4) won 21-25, 30-28, 25-22, 25-19 to advance to the title game Saturday night against third-seeded Texas (28-4), a 25-11, 21-25, 23-25, 25-12, 15-11 winner over unseeded Michigan.
Alaina Bergsma and Katherine Fischer each had 16 kills for the Ducks, who are appearing in their first Final Four. Bergsma added 15 digs, Fischer 12 as Oregon was 63 percent on team attacks.
“I’m probably not supposed to say this, but I have no idea how we won that match because they are really good,” Oregon coach Jim Moore said about the Nittany Lions (33-3).
The Ducks ended Penn State’s bid to win its fifth national title in six years.
Watson next Ryder captain
Weary of two decades of defeat in Europe, the Americans are breaking from precedent with a captain uniquely suited for the 2014 Ryder Cup in Scotland.
Tom Watson, 63, will officially be the oldest man to fill the role and the first repeat captain for the U.S. since 1987. But he’s also the last American to lead the team to victory on the road, and he knows how to win in the blustery Scottish weather.
The Americans have lost seven of the past nine Ryder Cups and have not won away from home since 1993, when Watson was the captain at The Belfry in England. They are coming off a staggering loss this year at Medinah, where Europe strung together a remarkable rally from a 10-6 deficit going into the final day to win by one point.
Watson is the first repeat U.S. captain since Jack Nicklaus in 1987.
Irish coach honored
Notre Dame coach Brian Kelly won the FWAA/Eddie Robinson Coach of the Year Award after leading to the Fighting Irish to their first unbeaten regular season since 1988 and a spot in the BCS national championship game.
Coach gets extension
Mississippi coach Hugh Freeze received a one-year extension and a $500,000 raise, increasing his base salary to $2 million per season after leading the Rebels to a bowl appearance in his first season.
Rutgers suspends coach
Rutgers suspended men’s coach Mike Rice three games and fined him $50,000 for a violation of department policy. Athletic director Tim Pernetti said the suspension was a result of inappropriate behavior and language, not NCAA violations.
Labor talks wrap up
Two days of talks between the NHL, the players union and federal mediators still haven’t provided any answers about how to end the lockout. Representatives from the fighting sides made it into the same room with a federal mediator. They just didn’t make any noticeable progress.
Violence-marred match hurts Brazil’s image
Brazilian authorities began investigations into allegations that security personnel beat members of a visiting Argentine club at halftime of their Copa Sudamericana match in São Paulo.
South American officials described it as the most serious incident in decades in the country that will host the 2014 World Cup — raising fears about Brazil’s ability to secure the event and putting a blemish on the country’s reputation just months before the Confederations Cup.
Wednesday’s final was called off and São Paulo was awarded the title when Argentina’s Tigre, trailing 2-0, refused to take the field for the second half.
Miller out until February
American star Bode Miller likely won’t start his season until February as part of his cautious return from left knee surgery. There’s also a chance he might sit out the entire World Cup season.
• Jamie Weisner had 16 points and 10 rebounds as host Oregon State (6-3) beat Cal State Fullerton 54-36 in women’s basketball.
• Michael Josifovski kicked a 35-yard field goal on the final play of regulation to force overtime and hit a 26-yarder in the extra session to give Marian (Ind.) a 30-27 victory over Morningside (Iowa) in the NAIA title game in Rome, Ga.
• Juan Mata scored an early goal, a resurgent Fernando Torres doubled the lead in the opening minute of the second half and Chelsea (England) beat Monterrey (Mexico) 3-1 in Yokohama, Japan, to advance to the final of the Club World Cup against Brazil’s Corinthians.
• Defender Rafa Marquez was released by the New York Red Bulls after 2 ½ frustrating seasons and signed with Leon of the Mexican league.
• Larry Merchant is leaving his job as a ringside boxing commentator for HBO Sports after 35 years.
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