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The North Platte Community College softball team has added two student athletes to the 2020-21 recruiting class.

Kyleigh Sullivan joins the Knights out of Brewer High School in Fort Worth, Texas.

“After taking a year off, I started researching, and NPCC is my perfect fit,” Sullivan said. “I cannot wait to play the sport I love and become a Knight. I’m excited to make new friends and further my education to become a teacher and hopefully a coach.”

NPCC head softball coach Janelle Higgins said Sullivan will bring more depth to the pitching staff.

“After taking a year off from the game, she is hungry to be back on the field and ready to do a lot of work in the circle for us,” said Higgins.

Jenny Singer will join NPCC from Browness High School in Alberta, Canada. Singer competed for the Thunder Creek Titans traveling team.

“North Platte Community College will help me perform at my best ability,” Singer said. “I’m looking forward to advancing my play at a higher level, meeting new people and becoming more of a family with the new team. I’m excited to be coached from a different perspective and also have the chance to be coached at a college level.”

Higgins said Singer will add versatility to NPCC’s program. Singer is a pitcher and a first baseman.

“She will also add depth to our pitching staff and infield,” Higgins said. “I’m excited to have both of these young ladies joining our family and can’t wait to see what the team can do as a whole.”




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Lincoln – The Nebraska basketball program added another backcourt performer on Wednesday, as Head Coach Fred Hoiberg announced the signing of Elijah Wood for the upcoming season. Wood, a 6-foot-6, 180-pound guard from Potomac, Md., has reclassified from the class of 2021, where he was going to attend Hargrave Military Academy.

“Elijah is a versatile guard who can play several spots in our system,” Nebraska Coach Fred Hoiberg said. “He has the offensive skillset to create his own shot and the athletic ability to finish at the rim. He also will help us defensively, as he possesses the length and size to guard multiple positions.”

Wood was ranked among the top-150 players in the country by both Rivals and 247 Sports and a four-star recruit by both websites in the spring of 2019, but fell out of the rankings after not playing AAU basketball after his junior year. He spent his senior year at Berkmar (Ga.) High School, helping Coach Greg Phillips’ squad to a 18-10 record and a Class AAAAAAA quarterfinals appearance.

Wood, who originally signed with Rhode Island in the fall of 2019, played his sophomore and junior seasons at Bethesda-Chevy Chase High School. As a junior, he averaged 11 points, 5.4 rebounds, 4.1 assists and 1.8 blocks per game.  Wood reached double figures in 12 of 19 contests and dished out five or more assists eight times as a junior. During his sophomore year, he moved into the lineup and averaged 11.5 points, 5.3 assists and 4.5 rebounds per game. His season was highlighted by a 10-point, 11-assist double-double vs. Northwest.

Wood, who chose Nebraska over schools such as Florida, Mississippi, Providence and TCU among others, played AAU basketball with Team Thrill.

Wood joins a recruiting class which includes grad transfer Kobe Webster (Western Illinois), transfers Trey McGowens (Pittsburgh) and Trevor Lakes (University of Indianapolis), junior college transfers Teddy Allen (Western Nebraska CC) and Lat Mayen (Chipola College) and freshman Eduardo Andre.




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NEW YORK (AP) — Major League Baseball has issued a 60-game schedule that will start July 23 or 24 in empty ballparks as the sport tries to push ahead amid the coronavirus following months of acrimony. This will be MLB’s shortest season since 1878. Each team will play 10 games against each of its four division rivals and four games against each of the five clubs in the corresponding division in the other league, according to details obtained by The Associated Press. The sides expanded the designated hitter to games involving National League teams and will start extra innings with a runner on second base.

TORONTO (AP) — The Canadian government is open to Major League Baseball playing in Toronto this summer, but the league has not submitted the required plan to Canadian authorities. A senior federal government official says if MLB were to submit an acceptable restart plan to the government, an exemption letter similar to the one provided to the NHL could be provided. Ontario’s chief medical officer also says Major League Baseball hasn’t submitted a plan to local health authorities that is needed for the Blue Jays to play in Toronto amid the pandemic.

St. PETERSBURH, FL. (AP) — The Tampa Bay Rays have reached terms with first-round draft pick Nick Bitsko, giving the Pennsylvania high school pitcher a $3 million signing bonus. The 18-year-old right-hander was the 24th overall selection after going 4-2 with a 1.27 ERA and 68 strikeouts in two seasons at Central Bucks East High. Several months after announcing plans to graduate a year early, Bitsko’s final prep season was canceled this spring due to the coronavirus pandemic.

UNDATED (AP) — A federal judge has denied a request by American women’s soccer players to allow an immediate appeal of his decision to throw out their claim of unequal pay against the U.S. Soccer Federation. U.S. District Judge R. Gary Klausner in Los Angeles has scheduled a trial for Sept. 15 on the players’ remaining claim of discriminatory work conditions. Lawyers for the women had asked him to enter a final judgment on his decision to dismiss the pay claim, which would have allowed them to take the case to the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco.

UNDATED (AP) — The rope found hanging in Bubba Wallace’s garage at Talladega Superspeedway was not a hate crime. Federal authorities say the rope had been hanging at the Alabama track since at least October. Video evidence showed it had been hanging from the garage door but was the only one fashioned as a noose. Wallace coincidentally was assigned that garage. NASCAR stood by its decision to investigate the discovery found in the stall of its only Black driver. Wallace successfully called for a ban of the Confederate flag and has become an activist for the sport during a push for racial equality.




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TALLADEGA, Ala. (AP) — Ricky Stenhouse Jr. edged Ryan Blaney to win the second stage of a rain-delayed race at Talladega Superspeedway in Alabama. The day began with a show of support for driver Bubba Wallace. Fellow drivers lined up and pushed his car to the front of pit road in a show of solidarity after which Wallace climbed out, sat on the window ledge and sobbed. The move came one day after a crew member found a noose in his garage stall. Wallace is the only fulltime Black driver in the top NASCAR series. Two weeks ago, he successfully pushed NASCAR to ban the Confederate flag at its facilities.

MIAMI (AP) — The Toronto Raptors arrived in southwest Florida today, set to begin their preparations for next month’s restart of the NBA season. If the Raptors return to the NBA Finals, they could be in Florida for nearly four full months. The reigning NBA champions will start training for the season restart later this week at Florida Gulf Coast University in Fort Myers, making that school their home base until they head north to the Disney complex near Orlando, Florida, around July 7. They landed in Fort Myers on Monday afternoon, then boarded buses for the team hotel.

CHICAGO (AP) — The Chicago Cubs have signed first-round draft pick Ed Howard to a minor league contract that includes a $3,745,500 bonus. The 18-year-old shortstop was a prep star at Mount Carmel High School on Chicago’s South Side. He also started for the 2014 Jackie Robinson West Little League team that advanced to the finals of the Little League World Series. Howard had committed to the University of Oklahoma. He received a signing bonus equal to his assigned slot value.

NEW YORK (AP) — Major League Baseball plans to unilaterally issue a 60-game schedule for its shortest season since 1878 after the players’ association rejected a negotiated deal of the same length, putting the sport on track for a combative and possibly unhappy return to the field amid the coronavirus pandemic. Six days after baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred and union head Tony Clark negotiated to expand the playoffs from 10 teams to 16, widen use of the designated hitter to National League games and introduce an experiment to start extra innings with a runner on second base, the deal was rejected by the union.




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(Battle of Omaha Tournament) 

Friday 
Home Federal 11 
Bears 4 

Friday 
Home Federal 7 
St Charles Cops 2 

Sunday 
Home Federal 16
St Charles Capitals 2

Sunday 
Home Federal 9 
Bellevue West 6 

Now 4-2 on the season. Next action Wednesday June 24th hosting North Platte at Ryder Park for a double header starting at 5pm. 




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(SATURDAY) 
Ogallala 9 
Cozad 0 

(SUNDAY) 
Ogallala 12 
Broken Bow 4 

Next Game: Ogallala at Chappell 6/23 

(Friday) 

North Platte 4  
Gering 1 

North Platte 7 
Gering 5 

(Sunday)
North Platte 15 
Ft Morgan 8 

North Platte 10 
Ft Morgan 1 

Next Game: North Platte at Grand Island 6/24 




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LOS ANGELES (AP) — This was a different version of The ESPYS. No red carpet, no nattily dressed athletes, no house band or monologue poking fun at the past year’s top athletes and moments. The focus was on honors, the pandemic and racial justice. Kevin Love of the Cleveland Cavaliers received the Arthur Ashe Award for Courage for sparking a national conversation about mental health. Nelson Cruz of the Minnesota Twins was honored as the Muhammad Ali Sports Humanitarian of the Year for helping his hometown in the Dominican Republic acquire public service needs. Sunday night's show was hosted remotely by NFL quarterback Russell Wilson, soccer star Megan Rapinoe and Sue Bird of the WNBA.

TALLADEGA, Ala. (AP) — NASCAR says it's investigating the discovery of a noose in the garage stall of Bubba Wallace on Sunday at the NASCAR race in Talladega, Alabama. Wallace is the only full-time Black driver in NASCAR’s elite Cup Series. Two weeks ago, he successfully pushed for NASCAR to ban the Confederate flag at its tracks and properties.

TALLADEGA, Ala. (AP) — The NASCAR Cup Series races today at Talladega Superspeedway after thunderstorms washed out the race on Sunday. The race is now scheduled for 2 p.m. CDT today. It's the first amid the coronavirus pandemic in which NASCAR opened the gates for up to 5,000 fans.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Players will consider their next move today in the drawn-out talks to start the pandemic-delayed baseball season. The executive committee of the players’ association was set to vote and reject Major League Baseball’s latest offer for a 60-game season on Sunday. Players want 70 games and $275 million more than teams are offering.

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Max Tuerk, an All-America offensive lineman at Southern California who was drafted by the Chargers, has died. He was 26. Tuerk’s family says he died while hiking with his parents on a favorite trail in Cleveland National Forest north of San Diego. Tuerk played for the Trojans from 2012-15. He was a freshman All-American and an All-Pac-12 first-team selection in 2014. As a three-year starter, he played under three head coaches — Lane Kiffin, Steve Sarkisian and Clay Helton. He was taken by the Chargers in the 2016 NFL draft, and played one game for the Arizona Cardinals before being cut in 2018.




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Nebraska junior outfielder Aaron Palensky became the latest Husker to join professional baseball, as he signed with the New York Yankees organization, it was announced on Thursday.

“A childhood dream came true today and I’m thrilled for what the future holds with the New York Yankees,” Palensky said. “I am forever grateful for what Nebraska has done for me, playing under Coach Bolt and Coach Erstad during the last couple years. I’m looking forward to the opportunity and believe joining the Yankees organization gives me the best chance to the make it to the big leagues.”

“Aaron has been a model ambassador for Husker baseball and an absolute joy to coach,” Nebraska Head Coach Will Bolt said. “His talent, work ethic and demeanor will allow him to excel at the professional level. It will be fun to see him climb the ranks and pursue his dream.”

Palensky, who started every game for the Huskers in each of the last two seasons, led Nebraska’s offense in most categories during that span. In 2020, Palensky recorded at least one hit in 11 of his 15 games, including four multi-hit efforts, before the season was cut short due to the COVID-19 pandemic. He batted .302 (16-for-53) and led the team in runs scored (15), doubles (5), walks (15) and RBIs (19), while sharing the team high in home runs (4) during the season.

During his first year at Nebraska in 2019, Palensky received second-team All-Big Ten honors after batting .320, which ranked eighth in the conference and led the Huskers. He also led the team in hits (71), runs scored (43), home runs (7) and total bases (107), while sharing the team high in doubles (11) and triples (2). In addition, Palensky compiled 35 RBIs and went 6-for-6 stealing bases.

A native of Papillion, Neb., Palensky spent his first season of college baseball at Southeast Community College before transferring to Nebraska. He batted .417 with 18 home runs, 77 RBIs, 72 runs scored, 24 stolen bases and 43 extra-base hits, while posting an .850 slugging percentage and .515 on-base percentage. Palensky graduated from Papillion La Vista South in 2017 after receiving second-team Super-State accolades as a senior.

The MLB Draft, which was held from June 10-11, was shortened to five rounds in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic after previously consisting of 40 rounds. With the draft concluded, teams are permitted to sign an unlimited number of undrafted free agents to fill out their systems.




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Nebraska Head Football Coach Scott Frost and Head Men’s Basketball Coach Fred Hoiberg will each donate a portion of their salaries for the upcoming fiscal year back to the Husker Athletic Department’s general operating fund. The amount donated to the department will be determined as the Athletic Department finalizes its budget in the near future.

A native of Wood River, Neb., Frost is in his third year as the Huskers’ head football coach. He was a two-year letterwinner at quarterback for Nebraska in 1996 and 1997, leading the Huskers to the 1997 national championship. His parents are both University of Nebraska-Lincoln graduates and his mother, Carol, is a member of the Nebraska Athletics Hall of Fame.

“These are difficult times across our country and in college athletics, and Nebraska Athletics is not immune to the financial crunch,” Frost said. “This athletic department has been so important to my family for several decades. Before I ever played or coached here, I was a Nebraska Cornhusker fan first. I wanted to do my small part to help ensure our athletic department and all of our teams have the necessary resources to compete for championships moving forward.”

Hoiberg is entering his second season leading the Nebraska men’s basketball program and has deep family roots to the University of Nebraska. Both of his parents are Nebraska graduates and his grandfather, Jerry Bush, was the Huskers’ men’s basketball coach from 1954 to 1963.

“When I took this job, one of the things that stood out to me most about Nebraska was its complete commitment to the student-athlete, not just in football or men’s basketball, but in all sports,” Hoiberg said. “After a little more than a year here, I am even more impressed with the resources available to our young men and women. It is important to me to contribute to keeping Nebraska a leader in student-athlete support and services.”

 




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Kearney, Neb. – The Nebraska-Kearney women's soccer team's adjusted 2020 schedule has the Lopers opening the fall at home against the Washburn Ichabods.

To help alleviate costs brought on by the Covid-19 crisis, all NCAA Division II women's soccer programs are playing a maximum of 14 games this fall. The revised schedule hasn't changed too much from the original but UNK does lose four non-conference games as well as a non-league contest vs. Emporia State.

At this time the Lopers will host WU on Sunday, September 13, to kick off the year with Emporia State (Sept. 25), Newman (Oct. 2), Central Oklahoma (Oct. 4), Northwest Missouri State (Oct. 9), Missouri Western State (Oct. 11) and Fort Hays State (Nov. 1) also coming to Ron & Carol Cope Stadium at Foster Field. Schools can change three dates if they both agree to the switch; those dates would be Sept. 13 to Sept. 11, Sept. 20 to Sept. 18 and Nov. 1 to Oct. 30. The move would push up a Sunday game to a Friday afternoon or evening. UNK is at Hays on Sept. 20.

It'll be "Flex Weekend" on Sunday, November 8, as the top eight teams in the league standings will face each other. The eighth seed will travel to the first place team, number two hosts seven etc. The four winners advance to the MIAA Tournament at the highest remaining seed on November 13 and 15. The schools that are in places nine through 12 will play on November 8 as well with the match ups based on geographic proximity.

Finally UNK currently has home scrimmages vs. Nebraska Wesleyan (Aug. 22) and Central C.C.-Columbus (Aug. 29). The team, currently going through voluntary workouts that began June 1, will report to fall camp in mid-August.

 




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Kearney, Neb. – The Nebraska-Kearney volleyball team's adjusted 2020 schedule has the Lopers playing 20 MIAA matches this fall.

To help alleviate costs brought on by the Covid-19 crisis, all NCAA Division II women's volleyball programs are playing a maximum of 20 dates this fall. Teams can play multiple matches on a date and thus UNK and many other schools are aiming to combine a weekend schedule onto a single day. This will open up dates to allow for non-conference action.  

If some switches are made the Lopers begin the year as scheduled at the Colorado School of Mines Tournament (September 4-5) with opponents to be determined. UNK is hopeful its annual home tournament can take place the following weekend (September 11-12) but that is TBD as well.

There are currently four MIAA weeks where things might change to one site. They are September 25-26 (opponents are Newman and Central Oklahoma), October 6 & 9 (Central Missouri and Fort Hays State), October 23-24 (NU and UCO), and November 3 & 7 (UCM and Hays). More switches could take place as long as all parties agree; UNK's travel partner is Hays.

Currently the Lopers have 10 home and 10 away matches. The first scheduled home match comes September 18 vs. Emporia State. The MIAA Tournament, which was moved to Kansas City last fall, returns to campus this season. That event will come the week of November 16-21.

UNK, currently going through voluntary workouts that began June 1, reports to fall camp in mid-August.

 




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Kearney, Neb. – Nebraska-Kearney head men's basketball coach Kevin Lofton announced today that Australian Patrick Fraser has signed on with the Lopers.

A 6-5, 190 pound wing with four years of eligibility remaining, Fraser is UNK's fourth recruit to date. The previously announced members of the class are junior guard Myles Arnold (Fontana, Calif.), freshman forward Thomas "TJ" Fritz (Wamego, Kan.) and junior forward Darrian Nebeker (West Jordan, Utah). Kearney graduated guard Chase Winchester and forwards AJ Jackson, Kyle Juhl and Morgan Soucie off last year's squad. ​

Fraser prepped at the Sydney Church of England Grammar School (commonly known as the "Shore School"), located on the Lower North Shore of Sydney, New South Wales. This past season he came in at 18.9 points, 8.4 rebounds, 4.1 assists, 2.7 steals and 0.9 blocks per game while shooting 77% at the line and almost 40% from behind the arc.

Setting a new school record for made threes in a career, Fraser leaves as the program's fourth all-time leading scorer. A two-time first-team all-conference selection he also was a New South Wales Under-18 and Under-20 representative. Finally Fraser joins junior Matt Brien (New Zealand) as UNK’s international players in 2020-21.

The Lopers went 16-13 (10-9 MIAA) in 2019-20, qualifying for the MIAA Tournament, having two four-game winning streaks and recording victories over NCAA Tourney qualifiers Rogers State and Colorado School of Mines.




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CANTON, Ohio (AP) — The Pro Football Hall of Fame is still evaluating its options and says no decisions have been made about the Aug. 6 game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Pittsburgh Steelers. But Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine says it’s “highly unlikely” that crowds of 20,000 or so would be allowed for the game or the induction ceremony two nights later. DeWine says: “If the question was could that event occur today, the answer would be no. It would be extremely dangerous.”

OTTAWA (AP) — The NHL has settled on a format but not the locations where it will resume playoffs, if the coronavirus pandemic allows. The league has said it would like to have the games played in two hub cities and released a list of 10 candidates. Those include three Canadian cities, but the NHL says not if players are subject to the 14-day quarantine currently in effect at the border. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says his government is “open” to hosting games, as long as local health authorities are too.

BUFFALO, N.Y. (AP) — The Buffalo Sabres did not make the NHL's proposed 24-team expanded playoff, so they’ve decided to move on from their general manager. Jason Botterill is out, despite an apparent vote of confidence from the team’s owners just three weeks ago. Cost-cutting appears to be a priority. Owner Terry Pegula says the teams needs to be effectively, efficiently and economically run. He sums up the situation this way: “We're going to get leaner.”

UNDATED (AP) — Longtime fan favorite Dale Earnhardt Jr. will join his late father in NASCAR's Hall of Fame next year, the feature attraction in the class of 2021. Junior won 26 races during his Cup career, including two Daytona 500s and the 2001 Pepsi 400 — four months after his father's death at the same track in February. The late Mike Stefanik also was elected along with Red Farmer from the pioneer ballot. Ralph Seagraves was chosen as the Landmark Award winner for outstanding contributions to the sport.

CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. (AP) — The University of Virginia will change its athletics logos to remove a design element that refers to the school’s history with slavery. A statement from the school's athletics department says fans raised objections to the curves put on the handles of the crossed sabres below the V. The curves were meant to mimic serpentine walls on campus that were designed by Thomas Jefferson to hide the university's slaves from public view. The school's athletics director says she was made aware of the negative connotation.




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Lincoln -- A pair of Nebraska football greats are among 78 players from the Football Bowl Subdivision announced as finalists Tuesday for the College Football Hall of Fame.

Outland Trophy winners Zach Wiegert and Larry Jacobson will represent Nebraska on the 2021 ballot.  Wiegert is making his sixth appearance on the ballot, while Jacobson is a finalist for the third time.

Wiegert was a 1994 unanimous first-team All-American and is one of eight Huskers to win the Outland Trophy. A native of Fremont, Neb., Wiegert helped lead the Huskers to 1994 National Championship after NU played in the 1993 title game. The Huskers averaged 340 rushing yards per game in 1994, and Wiegert led Nebraska with 113 pancake blocks. He even earned one first-place vote for the Heisman, finishing tied for ninth with 27 points. In addition to winning the Outland, he was a finalist for the Lombardi Award, a consensus All-American, the UPI Lineman of the Year and the Touchdown Club of Columbus Offensive Lineman of the Year. His No. 72 jersey was retired before the 1995 season.

Jacobson was a stalwart on Nebraska's first national title teams in 1970 and 1971. A consensus first-team All-American in 1971, Jacobson won the Outland Trophy as a senior, as he tallied 73 tackles, including 12 tackles for loss, to become the program's first major award winner. He led the Blackshirts to top-five national rankings in rush defense (85.9, second), total defense (202.9, fifth) and scoring defense (8.2, third) en route to a 13-0 record and a second straight national title. During his three seasons at Nebraska, the Sioux Falls, S.D., product led the Huskers to a 33-2-1 mark with two national titles and three conference crowns. His No. 75 jersey was retired in 1994.

The announcement of the 2021 College Football Hall of Fame Class Presented by ETT will be made in early 2021.

Eric Crouch will become the 19th Nebraska player in the College Football Hall of Fame when he is inducted later this year. Other recent Husker enshrines include Aaron Taylor (2018), Trev Albers (2015), Tommie Frazier (2013), Will Shields (2011), Grant Wistrom (2009) and Mike Rozier (2006).




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Kearney, Neb. – The Nebraska-Kearney football team's adjusted 2020 schedule has the Lopers with five home and five away games.

Due to the Covid-19 crisis and to help alleviate costs, all NCAA Division II football programs are playing a maximum of a 10-game schedule this fall. The MIAA decided to have each school play five home and five away games; the previously released 11-game schedule had some schools with six home contests. The new schedule was determined by a blind draw with each institution keeping one previously announced home date. 

Returning to Ron & Carol Cope Stadium at Foster Field this fall is Northwest Missouri State (Sept. 12), Pittsburg State (Oct. 10) and Central Oklahoma (Oct. 24) with UNK heading to Lincoln (Sept. 19) and Missouri Southern State (Nov. 7) again. Homecoming is set for October 10. 

The remaining road dates are at Central Missouri (Sept. 26), Washburn (Oct. 17) and Northeastern State (Oct. 31) with Missouri Western State (Oct. 3) and Fort Hays State (Nov. 14) the other home opponents. UNK will not face Emporia State in 2020.

All Loper home game kick off times will be announced at a later date. The team, currently going through voluntary workouts that began June 1, will report to fall camp in mid-August.

 

Sept. 12                Vs. Northwest Missouri State (TBA)

Sept. 19                @ Lincoln (TBA)

Sept. 26                @ Central Missouri (1 p.m.)

Oct. 3                    Vs. Missouri Western State (TBA)

Oct. 10                  Vs. Pittsburg State (TBA – Homecoming)

Oct. 17                  @ Washburn (1 p.m.)

Oct. 24                  Vs. Central Oklahoma (TBA)

Oct. 31                  @ Northeastern State (TBA)

Nov. 7                   @ Missouri Southern State (TBA)

Nov. 14                 Vs. Fort Hays State (TBA)




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Catie Whitehead, a 6’1” forward for the North Platte Community College Knights, has accepted an offer to continue her basketball and academic collegiate career at York College in York. Whitehead, of New Port Richey, Fla., graduated with an associate degree from NPCC while carrying a 3.10 cumulative GPA.

Whitehead played in 30 games for the Knights this past season and led the Knights in blocks with 39. She averaged 4.4 points and 4.7 rebounds per game while helping to lead the Knights to a 10-21 record during the 2019-20 season along with a Region IX and District F championship.

“We could not be more excited and happier for Catie on her commitment to York College,” said NPCC head women’s basketball coach Jeff Thurman. “She has worked very hard and diligently in her one year here at NPCC.”

Thurman said Whitehead was an amazing teammate and student-athlete during her time at NPCC.

“It has been a pleasure getting to know Catie, and we are excited that she has the opportunity to play at the next level,” said Thurman. “Plus, she is just a couple hours away, so we will definitely catch a game or two.”




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NEW YORK (AP) — “It’s just a disaster for our game.” That’s Major League Baseball Commissioner Rob Manfred’s view of the breakdown in talks between teams and the players’ union over an abbreviated season. At issue is how to split up the revenues. Manfred tells ESPN there could very well be no season at all. The league has also revealed several players have tested positive for COVID-19.

UNDATED (AP) — NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell says the league should have listened to players’ earlier on issues of racial injustice, including Colin Kaerpernick. In an appearance on ESPN, Goodell also says he’d like to see Kaepernick back in the NFL this season. The 32-year old quarterback hasn't played the past three seasons. Kaepernick was with the San Francisco 49ers in 2016 when he kneeled during the national anthem to protest racial injustice.

FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — The PGA Championship is scheduled for Aug. 6-9, and now we know where. The San Francisco Chronicle reports public health officials have approved plans for it to be held at Harding Park with no fans.

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — The San Francisco 49ers have rewarded coach Kyle Shanahan with a new six-year contract after he took the team to the Super Bowl in his third season at the helm. The Niners are replacing the three years remaining on Shanahan’s original six-year contract signed in 2017 to keep him under contract through 2025. ESPN first reported the new extension.

LAS VEGAS (AP) — The Vegas Golden Knights have signed Ryan Reaves to a two-year contract extension worth $3.5 million. The rugged forward announced the deal in a video on the Golden Knights’ Twitter page, saying he now has a shot at winning a Stanley Cup this year. He also conceded he has no shot at a scoring title. Reaves had eight goals and seven assists for 15 points this season — 95 short of Leon Draisaitl’s (DRY'-sy-tulz) league-leading 110. Still, Reaves led the NHL with 316 hits.




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Lincoln – Home games in the ACC/Big Ten Challenge and against Creighton highlight the 2020-21 Nebraska men’s basketball non-conference schedule released Monday.  The 11-game slate also includes previously announced games against Kansas State in Kansas City, and three games in the Myrtle Beach Invitational in mid-November.

“This non-conference schedule will help prepare us for Big Ten play,” Hoiberg said. “The Myrtle Beach Tournament will give us an early measuring stick with a strong field and three games in a four-day stretch. We also have opportunities with games against Creighton, Kansas State and the ACC/Big Ten Challenge, as well as several regional opponents.”

The 2020-21 season opener will feature a family matchup as the Huskers open against Cleveland State at Pinnacle Bank Arena on Tuesday, Nov. 10. The Vikings are guided by second-year coach Dennis Gates, who is the brother of Husker assistant coach Armon Gates. The meeting is the first between the two programs and one of two first-time foes for the Huskers this season.

Following a game with Purdue Fort Wayne on Saturday, Nov. 14, the Huskers will travel to Conway, S.C., for the Myrtle Beach Invitational from Nov. 19-22. The eight-team field includes Charlotte, Dayton, Loyola (Ill.), Missouri, Penn, Pittsburgh and Utah State. The tournament bracket will be announced later this summer.

The Huskers will return home on Wednesday, Nov. 25 to take on Lamar in the first matchup between the two teams and NU’s final tuneup for the ACC/Big Ten Challenge and the start of Big Ten play. The annual ACC/Big Ten Challenge will take place the week of Nov. 30 with the opponent and date announced by the Big Ten and ESPN at a later date. NU will begin conference play with a pair of games following the ACC/Big Ten Challenge.

Following the start of Big Ten play, NU will return to non-conference action with a pair of highly anticipated games. The Huskers will host Creighton on Saturday, Dec. 12, as the Bluejays most of their roster from a team that won a share of the Big East title.  The following weekend, the Huskers will renew one of its oldest rivalries, as Nebraska travels to Kansas City for the meeting with old conference foe Kansas State on Saturday, Dec. 19. It is the start of a three-year series which includes games in Lincoln (2021-22) and Manhattan (2022-23).

Nebraska returns to Pinnacle Bank Arena to close out non-conference action against UMKC (Mon., Dec. 21) and Florida A&M (Tues, Dec. 29) before resuming conference action in early January. The Big Ten will release the 20-game conference schedule later this summer.

The Huskers’ first action will be an exhibition contest against Peru State on Monday, Nov. 2. It will mark the third straight year that NU has taken on an in-state foe as an exhibition contest.

This season, the Huskers return a pair of starters, including rising senior Thorir Thorbjarnarson, who led NU in 3-pointers and ranked second on the team in rebounding, and sophomore Yvan Ouedraogo, who set a school record for rebounds by a Husker freshman. NU adds a trio of sit-out transfers in Dalano Banton, Shamiel Stevenson and Derrick Walker along with a seven-member recruiting class. 

 

 




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Megan Hernandez-Belew has signed a Letter of Intent to continue her softball and academic career with Midland University, in Fremont. Belew, an outfielder and captain for the Knight’s softball team the last two seasons, helped lead NPCC to a 16-29 record in 2019 and a 4-8 record in 2020 due to a shortened season.

Belew, of Broomfield, Colo., finished her career with the Knights hitting .367 with 52 hits, six doubles, 17 RBI and 16 stolen bases in the 55 games she played. She also finished with 73 putouts for the Knights on defense.

“Playing at North Platte Community College has taught me how to become a better person, and because of that I’ve become a better player,” said Hernandez-Belew. “Hard work and dedication will always beat out talent. This is an important lesson I’ve learned through this program. This program does community service, which teaches the team how to work hard and how to work hard together. I’ve made so many great memories over the past two years. I have made lifelong friends because of this program, and I am so very thankful for that.” 

Hernandez-Belew said she is excited to become a part of such a competitive and successful program at Midland University.

“I am very thankful that I get to continue my education while still playing the sport I love,” said Hernandez-Belew. “Midland University has a great education program, and I can’t wait to be a part of that as well. Midland will be a great fit for me, and I can’t wait to see what the future holds. I am very excited to bring all the life lessons I’ve learned at North Platte Community College to help me through my time at Midland University.” 

NPCC head softball coach Janelle Higgins said Hernandez-Belew is the type of athlete she wishes she could keep for two more years.

“Megan has grown into a more confident and vocal leader here at NPCC,” Higgins said. “She has been our captain for the last two years even though she was very quiet when she arrived. When I had her start giving future Knights and their parents campus tours, she definitely found her voice.”

Higgins said Hernandez-Belew’s work ethic, grit and determination set her above and beyond other athletes while also setting an example for them and encompassing the culture that NPCC softball strives to attain.

“Those traits alone will take her far at Midland University, but even farther in life,” said Higgins. “We wish Megan the very best and will miss her endless Spongebob quotes and sense of humor.”

 




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FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — On the day the PGA paused to pay tribute to George Floyd, one of the tour’s four black players vaulted atop the leaderboard at the Charles Schwab Challenge at Colonial. Harold Varner III is tied at 7-under with Justin Rose, who also fired a 63 Thursday in Fort Worth. One player said the absence of fans made the day seem like a competitive practice round. Tom Lehman, a 61-year-old former champion at Colonial, got in on the act with a 65.

NEW YORK (AP) — The NFL is committing $250 million over 10 years to social justice initiatives, targeting what it calls “systemic racism” and supporting “the battle against the ongoing and historic injustices faced by African Americans.” But Niners cornerback Richard Sherman says in addition to throwing money at the effort, the league also needs to be “calling out bigotry.”

UNDATED (AP) — The NCAA football oversight committee is attempting to wrap up a plan for extending the preseason to give teams additional time for walk-throughs. Final approval is expected Tuesday by the Division 1 Council. The plan includes allowing teams to conduct the maximum six hours of unpadded walkthroughs per week while also requiring two days off for the players.

GRAHAM, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina judge has said not so fast to a small stock-car track for violating state limits on crowd sizes due to the pandemic. The judge says he would issue a temporary restraining order preventing the operators of Ace Speedway in Alamance County from holding events. Media outlets had reported weekend crowds at the speedway exceeding 2,000 people, even as gatherings are limited to just 25 people.

NEW YORK (AP) — Jockey Jose Ortiz notched his 2,000th career victory on Thursday, riding Creed to a win in the fourth race at Belmont. The 26-year-old rider’s win total includes 17 from his native Puerto Rico. Ortiz has purse earnings of more than $156 million since his first North American victories in 2012. He won the 2016 Belmont Stakes with Tapwrit and has three Breeders' Cup victories.

DYERSVILLE, Iowa (AP) — Major League Baseball is building a field a few hundred yards down a corn-lined path from the famous movie site for “Field of Dreams” in eastern Iowa. Unlike the original, it’s unclear whether teams will show up for a game this time as the league struggles during a coronavirus-shortened season. Those who live near the Field of Dreams say the country could use a boost like seeing the scheduled Aug. 13 game between the New York Yankees and Chicago White Sox.




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Tommy Gunz
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