Capitals

Top 25 Capsules

Top 25 Capsules

ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) Glenn Robinson III had 14 points, including a pair of crucial dunks in the second half, and No. 2 Michigan equaled its best start to a season with a 62-47 victory over Nebraska on Wednesday night.

The Wolverines (16-0, 3-0 Big Ten) overcame their shakiest shooting performance in a while, holding the lead for the entire second half. The only other Michigan team to start 16-0 was the 1985-86 squad that went on to win the Big Ten title.

Ray Gallegos scored 19 points for Nebraska (9-7, 0-3), which held the Wolverines to 39 percent shooting. Michigan, which beat its first two conference opponents by 28 points apiece, went 3 of 17 from 3-point range.

Trey Burke scored 18 points for the Wolverines and Tim Hardaway Jr. added 15 points and 11 rebounds.

NO. 3 LOUISVILLE 73, SETON HALL 58

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - Gorgui Dieng had 16 points and 14 rebounds - both season highs - to lead the Cardinals to their ninth straight win.

Freshman Montrezl Harrell, starting in place of injured Chane Behanan, tied his career best with 14 points, and Luke Hancock hit two 3-pointers in a late, game-breaking 12-2 run that gave the Cardinals (14-1, 2-0 Big East) the win.

The Cardinals won despite getting a combined 4-for-17 shooting performance from starting guards Russ Smith and Peyton Siva.

Brandon Mobley had 18 points and seven rebounds for the Pirates (12-4, 1-2), who lost their second straight. Eugene Teague added 14 points and 10 rebounds, while leading scorer Fuquan Edwin was limited to 13 - most coming after the game was decided.

NO. 6 KANSAS 97, IOWA STATE 89, OT

LAWRENCE, Kan. (AP) - Freshman Ben McLemore had a career-high 33 points, including a tying 3-pointer with a second left in regulation, and the Jayhawks rallied to beat the Cyclones.

McLemore was 10 of 12 from the field and perfect on six 3-pointers for the Jayhawks (13-1, 1-0 Big 12), who scored the first nine points of overtime to wrap up their 12th straight win.

The eight-time defending Big 12 champions sure were tested, though.

Iowa State (10-4, 0-1) poured in 14 3-pointers, and had forged a 79-76 lead with 8.4 seconds left in regulation. But the Jayhawks' Elijah Johnson found McLemore on the wing, and he banked in a 3-pointer from well beyond the arc with a single tick on the clock to force overtime.

NO. 7 SYRACUSE 72, PROVIDENCE 66

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - C.J. Fair scored 23 with 11 rebounds, and Michael Carter-Williams scored 17 with six assists and the Orange rallied from a nine-point, first-half deficit to beat the Friars.

Rakeem Christmas scored 15 with eight rebounds for the Orange (15-1, 3-0 Big East), who won their fifth consecutive game since a Dec. 22 loss to Temple at Madison Square Garden that is their only defeat of the season.

Bryce Cotton scored 24 for Providence (8-7, 0-3), which lost its fifth in a row.

NO. 8 MINNESOTA 84, NO. 12 ILLINOIS 67

CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (AP) - Joe Coleman scored 29 points and Andre Hollins added 22 to help the Gophers top the Illini and remain undefeated in the Big Ten.

The Gophers (15-1, 3-0 Big Ten) held off a charge by the 12th-ranked Illini midway through the second half.

Joseph Bertrand pulled Illinois within at 44-42 on a short jumper with 12:37 left.

But the physical matchup took its toll on the Illini (14-3, 1-2). And as Illinois piled up fouls, Trevor Mbakwe connected on layup with 6:15 to play for a 62-49 lead that Illinois couldn't overcome.

Mbakwe added 19 points and 11 rebounds.

Brandon Paul led Illinois with 21 points

NO. 11 FLORIDA 77, GEORGIA 44

GAINESVILLE, Fla. (AP) - Mike Rosario scored 19 points, Erik Murphy added 11 despite playing with a broken rib and the Gators opened Southeastern Conference play with a victory over the Bulldogs.

The Gators improved to 12-5 in league openers under Donovan, including 7-0 at home. They also extended their recent dominance against the Bulldogs, winning for 16th time in the last 19 meetings.

The latest one was no big surprise since the Gators (11-2) have played well most of the season while Georgia (6-8) has struggled against just about everyone on its schedule.

The Bulldogs, though, had won four in a row after losing six of seven. Georgia turned the ball over 19 times and fell to 0-3 against ranked teams this season.

Kentavious Caldwell-Pope, the team's lone bright spot, led the Bulldogs with 11 points.

NO. 14 BUTLER 72, SAINT JOSEPH'S 66

PHILADELPHIA (AP) - Rotnei Clarke scored 28 points and Andrew Smith had 24 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Bulldogs over the Hawks.

Clarke made six 3-pointers to help the Bulldogs (13-2, 1-0 Atlantic 10) win their 10th straight game. Butler made its A-10 debut after leaving the Horizon League.

Chris Wilson scored 15 points, and Ronald Roberts Jr. had 12 points and nine rebounds for the Hawks (8-5, 0-1).

Langston Galloway airballed a 3-pointer, then missed a second attempt on the same possession in the final minute to end Saint Joseph's chances. Halil Kanacevic also missed a pair of 3-point attempts with the Hawks down four.

NO. 20 N.C. STATE 83, GEORGIA TECH 70

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - Lorenzo Brown had 21 points and 10 assists and the Wolfpack pulled away late to beat the Yellow Jackets for their ninth straight win.

Scott Wood added 20 points and C.J. Leslie had 19 in his 11th straight game in double figures for the Wolfpack (13-2, 2-0 Atlantic Coast Conference).

The nation's most accurate shooting team shot 50.9 percent and needed a late surge to remain on a roll heading into its biggest game of the season - a visit Saturday from top-ranked Duke.

Robert Carter Jr. had 15 points and 10 rebounds and Mfon Udofia added 13 points for the Yellow Jackets (10-4, 0-2).

NO. 23 WICHITA STATE 82, SOUTHERN ILLINOIS 76

WICHITA, Kan. (AP) - Cleanthony Early scored 39 points to help Wichita State beat Southern Illinois, two days after the Shockers jumped back into the poll.

Early's 39 points were the most for a Wichita State player since Xavier McDaniel had 44 in 1985.

Wichita State (15-1, 4-0 Missouri Valley) needed everything Early could do as Southern Illinois rode a hot-shooting first half to keep it close into the final minute.

Desmar Jackson scored 28 points and Anthony Beane added 14 for the Salukis (7-8, 0-4).

Ehime Orupke had 10 points and nine rebounds for Wichita State, which has won 16 straight games at home.

NO. 25 NEW MEXICO 65, NO. 24 UNLV 60

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - Alex Kirk had 23 points and nine rebounds to lead the Lobos over the Rebels in the Mountain West opener for both teams.

Justin Hawkins hit a 3-pointer with 3:25 left to cap a 7-0 UNLV run that gave it a 58-56 lead. Then New Mexico (14-2, 1-0) took over, closing the game on a 9-2 run.

Kendall Williams hit a 3-pointer with 2:09 left to put New Mexico up for good at 60-58. The Lobos, however, struggled from the line down the stretch, at one point going 3 for 8 to give the Rebels (13-3, 0-1) life. Trailing 63-60, UNLV's Katin Reinhardt's 3-pointer caromed off the front of the rim with 13.5 seconds left and Tony Snell made both free throws to finally clinch it for the Lobos.

Anthony Bennett had 12 points for UNLV (13-3, 0-1).

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Capitals have been their own worst enemy, and they were again on Friday

Capitals have been their own worst enemy, and they were again on Friday

The Capitals managed to earn a point on Friday in a 6-5 shootout loss to the Florida Panthers, but the game felt like a missed opportunity for Washington. After giving up four goals in the first period, seven power plays including two 5-on-3s, and two power play goals, the Caps knew they had no one to blame but themselves for the loss.

“We were still not quite there maybe emotionally,” Lars Eller said.

At least not for the first period. The Caps allowed four goals in the opening 20 minutes to dig themselves into a 4-1 hole. Each goal came from the slot as the Caps had no control over the front of their own net.

“Just tough to start that way, to kind of dig ourselves a big hole,” Brett Connolly said. “Obviously, it’s good to come back and get a point but we don’t need to do that to ourselves. It takes a lot of energy to get back in that game.”

Washington battled back to tie the game at 4, but penalties ultimately derailed their momentum, allowing Florida to retake the lead.

After scoring three straight goals, the Caps took three minor penalties in the final three minutes of the second period.

Alex Ovechkin was called for interference on Aaron Ekblad as he made no attempt to play a loose puck that trickled past the Florida defenseman. He was clearly focused on delivering the hit and nothing else.

Less than a minute later, Eller was caught on the ice a tad early, and Washington was called for too many men.

“I see Backy coming for a change, they had full possession,” Eller said. “I don't see behind my back, I think the guys are telling me he has one skate over so I think it was an unnecessary call, but what am I going to say? It's a tough one.”

With 1:15 of a two-man advantage to work with, Jonathan Huberdeau scored the go-ahead goal late in the period.

Even after a furious comeback, the Caps could not escape the second with the score tied because of the penalties.

Just 43 seconds after Huberdeau’s goal, Washington went right back to 5-on-3. Evgeny Kuznetsov was tossed from a faceoff by the linesman and argued the call, eventually earning himself an unsportsmanlike conduct penalty.

“He said something he shouldn't have said to the referee,” Reirden said of the call.

The Caps' penalty problems were exacerbated by the continued problems of the penalty kill.

Heading into Friday's game, Washington was only killing off 72.2 percent of the power plays they faced. They allowed another two power play goals Friday as they continued to struggle when facing the extra man.

“We have room for improvement for sure,” Reirden said of his penalty kill. “It’s a new system, new with the way we’re killing, its new personnel. We’re learning. We’re missing a key guy in Tom on that as well. It’s not easy, either, when you’re 5-on-3 when they’ve got talented players that can convert in that spot. It’s definitely a work in progress and I didn't expect it to go smoothly to start with. That’s one of the areas that we knew was gonna be new to our team this year and it’s gonna continue to take some work. It’s something that definitely is a work in progress.”

Mistakes put the Caps down 4-1, they put them down 5-4, they cost them a valuable point against a previously winless Panthers team before a four-game road trip through Canada, and they are ultimately why the defending Stanley Cup champions are only 3-2-2 to start the season.

And they know it.

“We’re still trying to find our game,” Connolly said. “Would we have liked to have picked up where we left off? Yes. But it’s not easy. We played a lot of hockey last year and a short summer and you come in here and there’s a lot of distractions, a lot of that kind of stuff. We’ve done some good things and we’ve done some not so good things.

"I think if you look at last season we weren't very good either at the start. We weren't at our best. Just take the positives and know that we can overcome that. It hasn’t been disastrous. We’re still getting points, we’re still above .500 right now with a tough couple back-to-backs to start the year. So not the worst start, but obviously we have another level.”

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Panthers head coach calls for league to review Ovechkin’s hit to Pysyk

Panthers head coach calls for league to review Ovechkin’s hit to Pysyk

The Florida Panthers played over half of Friday’s game with five defensemen after a hit from Alex Ovechkin ultimately knocked Mark Pysyk out of the game.

Early in the second period, Ovechkin attempted to enter the offensive zone with the puck, but it was swept away at the blue line back to Pysyk. Pysyk quickly chipped the puck away and then was on the receiving end of a hit from Ovechkin.

In real time, the hit did not appear to be a big one. It wasn't even the biggest hit Ovechkin delivered in the game, as in the third period he sent Aleksander Barkov flying with a shoulder hit. But Pysyk went down to the ice after the hit and left the game soon after.

After the game, Florida head coach Bob Boughner did not mince words.

“Pysyk got a high hit to the head,” he said.

When asked if he thought the league should review the hit, Boughner said, “I hope they do because if you see the replay, it's high. It's a head shot. And the league's trying to clamp down on that. Whether there's no call, I don't blame the refs. Maybe they missed it. That happens. But those are the kind of plays that need to be reviewed.”

Based on the replay, it is hard to determine if the principal point of contact was the head. Ovechkin does not launch himself, but does appear to take an upward trajectory into Pysyk. Still, it seems like a hard sell to say Ovechkin was targeting the head.

But the hit did send Pysyk out of the game, and in today’s NHL, when head hits are a big topic of conversation and when a player is injured on a play, the NHL has shown it takes those plays more seriously.

Pysyk returned to the game for one more shift after receiving the hit, but left the game after and did not return.

“Right now we're still getting him checked out, but we'll see more in the morning,” Boughner said.

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