Sports, December 18th

HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL

Tonight, the Glenwood Demons host the Roaring Fork Rams. The Lady Demons tip off at 6 and the boys will follow up at 7:30. Both games will be broadcast live on KMTS.

BRONCOS

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) – Eric Decker was the first of Peyton Manning’s workout buddies, sneaking onto high school football fields in the spring to work on his rhythm and rapport with his new quarterback. The sessions helped Manning regain his arm strength and rediscover his old form after a series of neck operations that sidelined him all of last season and led to his departure from Indianapolis. They were just as helpful for Decker, who was recovering from a sprained left knee he hurt in the playoffs. All those hours together are paying off now.
Decker leads the Denver Broncos (11-3) with nine touchdown grabs and he’s 77 yards shy of joining fellow third-year receiver Demaryius Thomas with his first 1,000-yard season. No Denver duo has accomplished that feat since 2004.

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) – Authorities have completed their investigation into the deaths of Kansas City Chiefs linebacker Jovan Belcher and his 22-year-old girlfriend, formally ruling them a murder-suicide. Jackson County prosecutors closed the case Friday. Newly released police reports show Belcher sent a text message to a girlfriend several weeks before he killed Kasandra Perkins on Dec. 1. Afterward, he drove to the team’s practice site and committed suicide in front of his coach and general manager. In the text, he wrote he “would shoot” Perkins “if she didn’t leave him alone.” Belcher and Perkins were the parents of a 3-month-old daughter. Belcher also told his girlfriend that Perkins had “threatened to take all his money and his child if they split up.”

UNDATED (AP) – The Golden State Warriors are back home following a sensational 6-1 road trip that included wins at Brooklyn, Miami and Atlanta. It was the team’s best trip of at least six games since winning four of seven during the 1970-71 season.

The East Coast trek has the Warriors sitting fifth in the NBA’s Western Conference heading into tonight’s game against the New Orleans Hornets, who own the worst record in the West at 5-18. The Hornets will be hard-pressed to end their seven-game losing streak.

Denver has a rare home game as the Nuggets host the San Antonio Spurs. The Nuggets have played just seven of their first 25 games in Denver, going 6-1. They take on a Spurs team that leads the league with 11 road wins and is second in the West at 19-6.

The NBA slate begins with Cleveland hosting Toronto and Atlanta at Washington. The Hawks are third in the East at 14-7, one game behind the Southeast Division-leading Miami Heat.

The Heat entertain Minnesota while Utah visits Brooklyn. The Timberwolves enter tonight’s action riding a four-game winning streak that leaves them 12-9.

Boston is at Chicago, Indiana visits Milwaukee and Dallas hosts Philadelphia before the Los Angeles Lakers entertain Charlotte. The Bobcats have lost 11 straight since a surprising 7-5 start.

T25 BASKETBALL SCHEDULE

Wildcats head top 25 slate

UNDATED (AP) – The highest-ranked men’s basketball team in action tonight is No. 4 Arizona, which tips off at home against Oral Roberts.

The early games have seventh-ranked Ohio State hosting Winthrop, No. 9 Kansas entertaining Richmond and 20th-ranked Michigan State at Bowling Green.

Later on, it’s 25th-ranked N.C. State against Stanford and No. 18 San Diego State versus Point Loma Nazarene.

BOEHEIM’S 900TH

Boeheim wins 900th, appeals for action on firearms

SYRACUSE, N.Y. (AP) – With his wife, Juli, looking on at the postgame press conference and his young children close by, Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim’s (BAY’-hymz) final remarks were not about his milestone 900th career victory.

Instead, he was thinking about two 6-year-old boys who were buried Monday, victims along with 18 other children and six adults in a shooting massacre last week at an elementary school in Connecticut.

Speaking after Syracuse’s 72-68 victory over Detroit on Monday night, Boeheim said, “If we cannot get the people who represent us to do something about firearms, we are a sad, sad society.”

It was a sobering end to a memorable evening for Syracuse basketball. The victory by the third-ranked Orange made Boeheim just the third Division I men’s coach to reach 900 wins.

MLB-LUXURY TAX-YANKEES

Yanks’ luxury tax increases $400k to $19.3 million

NEW YORK (AP) – The New York Yankees’ luxury tax bill for this year has gone up by nearly $400,000.

Major League Baseball sent a revised accounting to the team today, raising New York’s payment to more than $19.3 million. The change reflected how one player’s salary was accounted for.

New York is the only team to pay the luxury tax this year. The Yankees’ final payroll for luxury tax purposes climbed to $223.4 million.

The Yankees pay at a 42.5 percent rate on the amount over the $178 million threshold. The luxury tax uses average annual values of contracts and includes benefits.

MLB-SIGNINGS

AP source: Red Sox agree to deal with Stephen Drew

BOSTON (AP) – A person familiar with the negotiations tells The Associated Press that shortstop Stephen Drew and the Boston Red Sox have agreed to a $9.5 million, one-year contract.

Drew will take a physical before the deal can be finalized, the person said, speaking on condition of anonymity because the agreement was not complete.

Drew hit .250 with five homers and 16 RBIs in 39 games for the Oakland Athletics last season after being traded by Arizona on Aug. 20. In 40 games with the Diamondbacks, he hit .193 with two homers and 12 RBIs. Drew, brother of former Boston outfielder J.D. Drew, had been with Arizona for his entire big career until the trade.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL-WESTERN MICHIGAN

Fleck to be introduced today

UNDATED (AP) – Western Michigan will hold a news conference today to introduce new head football coach P.J. Fleck, who’s been an assistant coach in the NFL and college since 2006. Fleck has worked for Bucs coach Greg Schiano (shee-AH’-noh) the past three years, serving as the receivers coach at Rutgers before following Schiano to Tampa Bay this season to do the same job.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL-COACH AWARD

NDSU coach honored as national coach of the year

FARGO, N.D. (AP) – North Dakota State University football coach Craig Bohl has been honored as the national coach of the year in the NCAA’s Football Championship Subdivision.

Bohl was awarded the Eddie Robinson Award last night in Philadelphia.

Bohl has led the Bison to a repeat appearance in the FCS title game. He says the honor is recognition of the entire NDSU football program.

The Bison take on Sam Houston State, the team they beat for the title last year, Jan. 5.

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