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BREAKING NEWS

National Sports

Smith leads Louisiana Tech past Hawaii 31-14 in Hawaii Bowl

By KALANI TAKASE, Associated Press HONOLULU (AP) — Skip Holtz felt the need to refocus his players after they spent the better part of a week in paradise. The sixth-year Louisiana Tech coach dressed down his team one night before the bowl game and it certainly appeared to pay off. J'Mar ...

No. 22 Army routs Houston 70-14 in Armed Forces Bowl

By The Associated Press FORT WORTH, Texas (AP) — Army quarterback Kelvin Hopkins Jr. ran for 170 yards and an Armed Forces Bowl-record five touchdowns and the No. 22 Black Knights overwhelmed Houston 70-14 on Saturday to reach 11 wins for the first time in program history. The Black Knights ...

Rivers, Chargers’ offense sputter against Ravens

By DAN GREENSPAN, Associated Press CARSON, Calif. (AP) — The tables were turned on Philip Rivers and the Los Angeles Chargers' offense. Instead of controlling the clock, avoiding mistakes and putting the pressure on the Baltimore Ravens' run-heavy offense and rookie quarterback Lamar ...

George has 43 and 14 as Thunder hold off Jazz, 107-106

By MATTHEW COLES, Associated Press SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Paul George hasn't stopped thinking about last season's playoff exit against the Utah Jazz. "I've owed this to this team. I didn't like the way I finished in this arena last time I was here. That was on my mind," said George, who had ...

Durant scores 29 points, Warriors hold off Mavericks 120-116

By JANIE McCAULEY, AP Sports Writer OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — On this night, Jonas Jerebko ignited the home crowd much the way Stephen Curry typically does when the two-time MVP throws his arms in the air begging for a little help and noise. And Draymond Green got back to his trash-talking ...

Martin scores 19, hits late 3 as No. 6 Nevada beats Akron

By EMERSON MARCUS, Associated Press RENO, Nev. (AP) — Nevada ought to have plenty to celebrate this Christmas, but coach Eric Musselman is bringing a sour mood into the holiday. Caleb Martin and Jordan Caroline scored 19 points apiece, and Martin hit a 3-pointer with 45 seconds left to help ...

Jermall Charlo keeps title, twin Jermell loses his

By BARRY WILNER, AP Sports Writer NEW YORK (AP) — Jermall Charlo had every reason to be distracted when he entered the ring to defend his WBC interim middleweight championship. Minutes before his bout with Matt Korobov, Jermall's twin, Jermell, lost a unanimous decision to Tony Harrison, ...

Blaine Gabbert keeps Titans’ hopes alive, beating Redskins

By The Associated Press NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Blaine Gabbert threw a 2-yard touchdown pass to MyCole Pruitt with 4:30 left and the Tennessee Titans kept their playoff hopes alive by rallying to beat the Washington Redskins 25-16 on Saturday. Gabbert came off the bench for the third time ...

No. 4 Michigan stays unbeaten, routs Air Force 71-50

By NOAH TRISTER, AP Sports Writer ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) — Air Force came out against No. 4 Michigan in what looked like a zone defense. For a few minutes, it was working. "I think it took a while for our guys just to look at the defense and figure out what it was — even the coaches. They ...

Clemson has edge in playoff experience over Notre Dame

By PETE IACOBELLI, AP Sports Writer CLEMSON, S.C. (AP) — Amari Rodgers was a freshman trying to fit into Clemson's plans a year ago when the Tigers opened practice for the College Football Playoff. He didn't have to go far to have any questions answered. "Last year, it was my first time, so ...

Alabama fans embrace Jalen Hurts from field to stage

By JOHN ZENOR, AP Sports Writer TUSCALOOSA, Ala. (AP) — They cheered Jalen Hurts as he picked up his diploma, and applauded his every big play this season. Sometimes, Alabama fans gave the backup quarterback a nice hand for even stepping on the field — especially for his fifth game, which ...

Bears, Texans give last-place teams hope for 2019

By ROB MAADDI, AP Pro Football Writer There's hope in 2019 for the Jaguars, Raiders, Giants and other teams who will finish last in the division this year. The Chicago Bears (10-4) already won the NFC North to complete a worst-to-first turnaround, and the Houston Texans (10-4) are on the ...

George scores 43, Westbrook has triple-double in Thunder win

By ROB GLOSTER, Associated Press SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Oklahoma City coach Billy Donovan thought his team spent too much time shooting 3-pointers in two losses earlier this season to the Sacramento Kings. But on Wednesday night, the Thunder focused on their inside game and came away with ...

Lillard scores 24, Blazers down the Grizzlies 99-92

By ANNE M. PETERSON, AP Sports Writer PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — The Trail Blazers' bench is proving to be difficult to stop when all five players come together. Portland's reserves were key in the team's 99-92 victory over the Grizzlies on Wednesday night, outscoring the Memphis bench ...

Ingles, Gobert help Jazz edge Warriors 108-103

By JOHN COON, Associated Press SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Playing strong defense has typically proven to be a winning formula for Utah. Getting to that point has taken more turns and detours than the Jazz anticipated this season. Beating the defending NBA champions offers evidence that Utah is ...

Ohio wins Frisco Bowl for Solich, oldest head coach in FBS

By SCHUYLER DIXON, AP Sports Writer FRISCO, Texas (AP) — Ohio running back A.J. Ouellette doesn't think of Frank Solich as the oldest head coach in FBS. He sees him as the guy who stuck around a smaller program long enough to run it for going on 15 years. Ouellette gave Solich and the ...

Penguins end Capitals’ five-game win streak with 2-1 victory

By DAVID GINSBURG, AP Sports Writer WASHINGTON (AP) — The calendar said December. The intensity felt like late spring. The third meeting this season between longtime rivals Pittsburgh and Washington featured tight checking, strong goaltending and more than a few punches. The Penguins won ...

Collier helps No. 1 UConn women rally past Oklahoma, 72-63

By CLIFF BRUNT, AP Sports Writer NORMAN, Okla. (AP) — Connecticut fell behind Oklahoma by 12 points in the second half, and Huskies coach Geno Auriemma couldn't have been happier. The challenge, he believes, snapped his players back into reality. Napheesa Collier had 23 points and a ...

Booker, Ayton carry Suns past Celtics for 4th straight win

By KEN POWTAK, Associated Press BOSTON (AP) — It appears the Phoenix Suns have finally figured things out. Devin Booker had 25 points and eight assists, and rookie Deandre Ayton added 23 points and 18 rebounds to lead the suddenly resurgent Suns past the Boston Celtics 111-103 on Wednesday ...

MLB, union, Cuba reach deal for players to sign

By Michael Weissenstein and Ronald Blum Associated Press HAVANA (AP) — Major League Baseball, its players’ association and the Cuban Baseball Federation reached an agreement that will allow players from the island to sign big league contracts without defecting, an effort to eliminate ...