NCAA MEN’S BASKETBALL TOURNAMENT
Mike Krzyzewski and the Duke Blue Devils have their fifth NCAA championship following the work of their four freshmen.
Tyus Jones, Jahlil Okafor, Justise Winslow and Grayson Allen carried the Blue Devils to a 68-63 comeback victory over Wisconsin at Indianapolis. Duke trailed 48-39 with about 13 1/2 minutes to play before the four frosh scored every one of the Blue Devils’ points the rest of the way.
Allen began the comeback by outscoring the Badgers 8-3 before Tyus Jones hit 13 of his 23 points over the final 11 minutes, including a pair of 3-pointers. Jones hit a trey to give the Blue Devils their biggest lead of the night at 66-58 with 1:12 remaining. Jones was named the Most Outstanding Player of the tournament.
Allen scored 10 of his 16 points in the second half and was 5-for-8 from the field. Winslow chipped in 11 points, nine rebounds and three blocks, while Okafor contributed 10 points in just 22 minutes. Okafor and Winslow each finished the game with four fouls and missed large chunks of playing time, which allowed Allen to shine in the biggest game of his life. Allen entered the game averaging four points and 8.9 minutes before giving the Blue Devils 21 productive minutes. Remarkably, Duke’s comeback began with Okafor and Winslow on the bench.
Krzyzewski joins John Wooden as the only coaches to win at least five NCAA men’s basketball titles.
Wisconsin appeared ready to pull away in the second half, two days after ending Kentucky’s bid for a perfect season. But the Badgers were held to just 15 points after scoring 17 in the first 6 1/2 minutes of the second half.
AP Player of the Year Frank Kaminsky had team highs of 21 points and 12 rebounds for the Badgers, who continue to seek their first national championship since 1941.
MLB-RESULTS-ROYALS WIN OPENER
— For one unsettling moment, it appeared opening day had taken a terrible turn for Yordano Ventura and the Kansas City Royals.
Ventura crumpled to the ground in the seventh inning with a cramp in his right thumb, ending a strong outing that helped the AL champion Royals rout the Chicago White Sox 10-1 yesterday. Ventura will be evaluated later this week, but Royals manager Ned Yost said he does not anticipate the hard-throwing righty missing a start.
Alex Rios had a three-run homer among his three hits in his Kansas City debut, and Ventura pitched six-plus solid innings. He went down after throwing a strike to Adam LaRoche and was replaced by Kelvin Herrera.
Alcides Escobar and Mike Moustakas, the one, two hitters, went a combined 4 for 7 with two walks and scored five runs. Moustakas homered the opposite way for the first time in his career in the fifth off Jeff Samardzija. The Royals won their season opener for the first time in seven years.
— The Oakland Athletics entered last night with a major league-record 10-game losing streak on opening day when Sonny Gray took the mound against Texas. Gray almost made his own history as the A’s crushed the Rangers 8-0. Gray no-hit the Rangers until Ryan Rua led off the eighth with a single, ending the right-hander’s bid to join only Bob Feller among pitchers with a no-hitter in a season opener. It was the lone hit allowed by Gray, who struck out three, walked one and hit a batter over eight innings. Ben Zobrist hit a two-run homer in his A’s debut, and Stephen Vogt added a three-run blast.
In other season openers:
— Angel Pagan was 3-for-4 with two RBIs to support World Series hero Madison Bumgarner in San Francisco’s 5-4 triumph at Arizona. Bumgarner held the Diamondbacks to a run and six hits with three strikeouts in seven innings. Brandon Crawford drove in a pair, and Joe Panik had three hits and two runs scored for the defending champs.
— Felix Hernandez struck out 10 and allowed only two hits over seven innings of Seattle’s 4-1 win over the Los Angeles Angels. Hernandez improved to 6-0 in opening day starts and blanked the Angels following Mike Trout’s solo homer in the first inning. Seth Smith had three extra-base hits and two RBIs in his Seattle debut.
— Jimmy Rollins provided the biggest hit in his first game as a Los Angeles Dodger, crushing a tiebreaking, three-run homer in the eighth inning of a 6-3 win over the Padres. Howie Kendrick doubled home the tying run in the seventh inning of his Dodgers debut. Reigning NL Cy Young winner Clayton Kershaw left the game trailing 3-2 after allowing six hits in six innings.
— Max Scherzer received no support in his Washington Nationals debut, a 3-1 loss to the New York Mets. Scherzer took a no-hitter into the sixth inning but was victimized by two costly errors, leading to three unearned runs. Lucas Duda hit a go-ahead, two-run single and Bartolo Colon held the Nationals to a run and three hits in six frames.
— Homers by Alejandro De Aza, Steve Pearce and Ryan Flaherty powered the Baltimore Orioles to a 6-2 triumph against Tampa Bay. Chris Tillman allowed a run and four hits in 6 2/3 innings to outpitch David Archer, who was reached for four runs in 5 2/3 innings. Tillman had a shutout until Evan Longoria led off the bottom of the seventh with a homer.
— David Price came within one out of a shutout in the Tigers’ 4-0 victory over the Minnesota Twins. Price retired the first 13 Minnesota batters and allowed five hits before being pulled with two on and two out in the ninth. Joe Nathan struck out Torii Hunter for the save as the Twins lose in their first game under new manager Paul Molitor.
— Cincinnati beat Pittsburgh 5-2 on Todd Frazier’s tiebreaking, three-run homer in the eighth inning. Pirates outfielder Andrew McCutchen hit a two-run homer in the seventh after Johnny Cueto held the Bucs to four hits while striking out 10 in six innings. Jay Bruce hit a solo homer for the Reds.
— The Blue Jays beat the Yankees 6-1 in New York as Edwin Encarnacion hit a two-run homer to support Drew Hutchison, who allowed a run and three hits in six innings. The game marked the return of Alex Rodriguez, who received a loud ovation when introduced as the Yankees’ designated hitter. Batting seventh A-Rod went 1-2.
— Dallas Keuchel and two relievers combined on a three-hitter to pitch Houston past Cleveland 2-0. George Springer and Jake Marisnick each drove in a run for the Astros after Corey Kluber no-hit the Astros for nearly six innings. Jose Altuve broke up the no-hit bid with two out in the sixth before stealing second and scoring on Springer’s single.
— Julio Teheran scattered eight hits in six-plus innings before Atlanta’s revamped bullpen came through in a 2-1 triumph at Miami. The Braves’ relievers escaped a no-out, bases-loaded jam in the seventh before Jason Grilli worked a perfect ninth, one day after closer Craig Kimbrel was traded to San Diego.
— Kyle Kendrick pitched seven innings and also got two hits as the Rockies trounced the Brewers 10-0 on opening day in Milwaukee. Corey Dickerson and Nolan Arenado each homered and drove in four runs while Troy Tulowitzki doubled twice, singled and scored three times.
— Boston newcomer Hanley Ramirez and veteran Dustin Pedroia each hit two home runs and Clay Buchholz threw three-hit ball over seven innings as the Red Sox beat the Philadelphia Phillies 8-0 in an interleague opener. Buchholz struck out nine and pitched like the guy who went 12-1 in 2013. Ramirez made quite an impression in his first game since singing a free agent deal worth $88 million over four years. He hit a solo homer in the fifth and a grand slam off Jake Diekman in the ninth.
It was a light night in the NBA with the NCAA title game on the docket. Brooklyn won the league’s lone game as Brook Lopez poured in 32 points and had nine rebounds in a 106-96 triumph over Portland. Deron Williams added 24 points and 10 assists as the Nets won for the ninth time in 11 games to strengthen their hold on an Eastern Conference playoff berth. Brooklyn sits seventh in the conference, one game ahead of Boston and two in front of Indiana and Miami.
The Trail Blazers left LaMarcus Aldridge and others home for the makeup of a game that was postponed by weather on Jan. 26.