Loyola of Chicago advances to men’s Sweet 16: Roundup

WEST REGIONMICHIGAN 64, HOUSTON 63WICHITA, Kan. — Michigan freshman Jordan Poole drained a long 3-pointer at the buzzer after Houston squandered a chance to lock up a spot in the Sweet 16, giving the third-seeded Wolverines a heart-stopping victory.Devin Davis had a chance to seal the win, but the Cougars' gritty forward missed a pair of foul shots with 3.6 seconds left. The Wolverines (30-7) called timeout to set up a final play, and Muhammad-Ali Abdur-Rahkman found Poole on the wing, and the shot hit nothing but net.The officials reviewed it to make sure, but Poole had clearly gotten the shot away.Michigan advanced to Los Angeles for a West Regional semifinal against North Carolina or Texas A&M this week.Rob Gray scored 23 points and Davis finished with 17 for the Cougars (27-8), who were trying to reach their first Sweet 16 since the last of the Phi Slama Jama teams went to the Final Four in 1984.GONZAGA 90, OHIO STATE 84BOISE, Idaho — Zach Norvell Jr. had 28 points, Rui Hachimura added 25 and Gonzaga reached the Sweet 16 for the fourth straight season.Norvell hit the late tiebreaking 3-pointer against UNC-Greensboro in the opening round to help the Zags (32-4) advance. The confident freshman made 6 of 11 from beyond the arc against Ohio State.The Bulldogs jumped out to a big early lead, withstood a second-half Ohio State charge and made the big plays down the stretch to earn a spot in the West Region semifinals against the Xavier-Florida State winner in Los Angeles.The resilient-all-season Buckeyes (25-9) rallied from an abysmal start and an 11-point halftime deficit to take a brief second-half lead before Gonzaga went on an 11-0 run to snatch it back. Keita Bates-Diop had 28 points for Ohio State, and Kam Williams finished with 19.SOUTH REGIONLOYOLA OF CHICAGO 63, TENNESSEE 62DALLAS — Clayton Custer made a go-ahead jumper with 3.6 seconds left, sending 11th-seeded Loyola of Chicago to the Sweet 16.Custer's winner, which took a friendly Continue Reading

Boys basketball final Press Elite 11 and lookahead

The Press Elite 111. Shawnee 29-52. Trenton Catholic 20-103. Wildwood Catholic 26-34. Atlantic City 25-55. Camden Catholic 23-76. Haddonfield 29-47. Camden 21-68. Moorestown 24-69. Delsea Regional 25-610. Timber Creek 20-711. Eastern 20-9Look aheadWildwood Catholic returns center Taj Thweat and guard Jahlil White as well as  perimeter shooter Jacob Hopping. That makes the Crusaders, as of now, the team to beat in the Cape-Atlantic League. St. Augustine and Atlantic City are perennial contenders. Millville is a team to watch with guard Rynell Lawrence. Continue Reading

St. Joe grad LaFragola seeks podium spot at NCAA Wrestling Championships

The easiest part of C.J. LaFragola’s road to the NCAA Division I national wrestling tournament was the selection process.The rest of it was hard. In fact, some would say it almost cost him an eye and a leg.The junior Brown University wrestler will compete in his second national tournament starting noon Thursday at the Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland. He, like the 31 other wrestlers in the 184-pound bracket, hope for an All-American honor, which is a top-eight on the podium.The three-day tournament runs through Saturday.“It’s awesome, man,” the 20-year-old Little Egg Harbor resident and 2015 St. Joseph High School graduate said Monday evening. “This year was cool because I didn’t have to get the wild card spot. I punched my ticket after the conference tournament.”Last year, LaFragola had an underwhelming performance at the Eastern Intercollegiate Wrestling Association Championships, having to rely on earning an at-large bid. This year, he took fifth in a competition where the top seven are guaranteed a spot in the national tournament.That was the easy part. The hard part was overcoming a pair of injuries that could have been major setbacks.Just weeks before the season, LaFragola suffered a nasty eye injury that caused him to miss the season-opener Nov. 12. He returned Nov. 18 to win the Navy Classic in Annapolis, Maryland.But at the Midlands Championships in Illinois on Dec. 30, LaFragola injured his ankle and missed three crucial weeks of his season. He is 100 percent healthy now, and had a strong end to his season which included placing at the EIWA Championships in Hempstead, New York.“He’s been dealt some adversity through the season,” Brown coach Todd Beckerman said. “That’s what helped him get back. Nothing is always perfect in our sport. You always have to be able to bounce back.”LaFragola is 19-8 this season, including 4-7 against wrestlers in his bracket.The unseeded LaFragola will Continue Reading

Sapong signs new deal with Philadelphia Union

CHESTER — The Philadelphia Union have signed forward CJ Sapong to a new contract that will keep him at the club until 2020. Sapong, 29, signs a new deal with Philadelphia after he set the Union’s all-time record for goals in a season (16), also a personal-best single-season total for the Manassas, Virginia native.“We are pleased to complete this agreement with CJ, a critical part of the spine of our team,” Union Sporting Director Earnie Stewart said in a statement. “He fits perfectly in our system with his nose for goal and his hold-up play. We’d like to thank him for his hard work and commitment to the Philadelphia Union and we look forward to working with him for years to come.”Ahead of the 2015 season, Philadelphia acquired Sapong from Sporting in exchange for the 10th overall selection in the 2015 MLS SuperDraft. He has scored at least seven goals in each of his three seasons with the Union, including a career- and club-record best 16 in 2017. Continue Reading

Eagles Free Agency Updates: Patrick Robinson close to signing with Saints

2:45 p.m.: Patrick Robinson is close to signing with the Saints, according to the reports. The #Eagles and Patrick Robinson got close on a contract extension on Monday. Then stalled. … then his window opened. And the #Saints jumped in and locked him down. He’s a former #Saints first round pick.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) March 14, 2018 12:20 p.m.: Eagles defensive tackle Beau Allen is expected to sign with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers when the league year starts at 4 p.m. today, according to reports. Eagles DT Beau Allen expected to sign with Bucs https://t.co/ZquBtJTr0o— JennaLaineESPN (@JennaLaineESPN) March 14, 2018 10:00 a.m. : Eagles linebacker Nigel Bradham will be returning to the Super Bowl Champions next season, according to the club.“Nigel plays with tremendous energy and fire and has made a number of impact plays for us at the linebacker position. Keeping him here was a priority of ours and we are looking forward to his future here in Philadelphia,” according to a statement from the club. Eagles' LB Nigel Bradham is signing a 5-year, $40 million deal, per source.— Adam Schefter (@AdamSchefter) March 14, 2018 9:00 a.m.: Tight end Brent Celek will be playing for another NFL team in 2018.The Philadelphia Eagles released the popular veteran on Tuesday, thus ending an 11-year career in Philadelphia."Brent Celek defines what it means to be a Philadelphia Eagle," the team said Tuesday in a statement. "His dedication to his profession and this organization is unmatched and he will go down as one of the best tight ends in franchise history."Brent embodied the City of Philadelphia’s temperament and character with his toughness and grit. He has been a huge part of everything we have been building over the last decade and it is only fitting that he was able to help us win our first Super Bowl last season."In addition to releasing Celek, who was the longest-tenured Eagle, the team also restructured tackle Lane Continue Reading

Tebow sent to minor league camp by Mets

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. (AP) — Tim Tebow was reassigned by the New York Mets to their minor league camp on Tuesday after he went 0 for 4 with four strikeouts in an exhibition against the Houston Astros.The former NFL quarterback and 2007 Heisman Trophy winner hit .056 (1 for 18) with 11 strikeouts in seven big league exhibition games. The 30-year-old, who is not on the Mets' 40-man roster, has been hampered by a left ankle sprain."I'll just continue to work in all the areas we've been working and making progress. That's really the focus — to continue the process and the journey and keep working," Tebow said to reporters following the game.Tebow's only hit was a hard single to center off Washington's Erick Fedde on March 2. He has been used solely as a designated hitter or pinch hitter because of the injury."The ankle was kind of disappointing. I got to put in a lot of good work and feel like I'm improving. It's getting there," Tebow said.Earlier in spring training, Mets general manager Sandy Alderson said he thinks Tebow will be in the major leagues one day. Tebow said that was not his focus right now."It's definitely the goal, and we'll be putting in work every day to one day get that opportunity, but you can't just be focused on the end result. It's got be on every day in the process," Tebow said. "It's having a long-term mindset with a here-and-now focus."Tebow, an outfielder, can appear in games for New York but would have to be brought over from the minor league side.He said being in a major league clubhouse for the first time was rewarding."It was a lot different being around the guys all the time, being able to learn a lot more, go through drills when I could and get some meaningful at-bats, too," Tebow said.New York also reassigned right-hander Kevin McGowan to the minor league camp on Tuesday and optioned right-handers Gerson Bautista, Marcos Molina, Jamie Callahan and Corey Oswalt to minor league affiliates.___More AP baseball: Continue Reading

Atlantic City would love March Madness: Weinberg

I can see it now.The 2019 edition of March Madness is taking place. Thousands of college basketball fans are crammed into state-of-the-art sports books at Borgata Hotel Casino & Spa, Caesars Atlantic City, Golden Nugget Atlantic City, Hard Rock Hotel & Casino, Ocean Resort Casino and other properties.Tiny Jacksonville University, my daughter Ashley's alma mater, is about to become the first No. 16 seed in NCAA men's basketball tournament history to beat a No. 1 seed. The Dolphins upset mighty Kansas, producing loud cheers - and even some tears - from the bettors who put down $50 at 5000-1 odds on the game.I'm holding out hope that the U.S. Supreme Court soon rules to legalize sports betting nationwide, thus allowing Atlantic City casinos to reap the benefits that previously have been reserved for Nevada.Until then, I'm stuck filling out yet another bracket in hopes of winning some prizes. My chances are pretty slim. According to the American Gaming Association, I'm among 24 billion people who fill one out.I've been doing it for decades without success. I usually do my research, study algorithms and follow popular trends. I always pick a few 12, 13 and 14 seeds to earn first-round upsets and tend to stick with higher-ranked teams the rest of the way. And yet I've never won so much as a Wawa gift card.I usually do OK in the first round, and then my bracket falls apart and has more holes than my Mountaineer Health Club t-shirt that I bought in 1979 during my days at Appalachian State.So this year, I'm taking a different approach. I'm going with my gut - which is in dire need of reducing before the Escape the Cape Triathlon in June - and even some advice from non-experts in hopes of finally ending my slump.Let's start with the Midwest region, where I'm picking Arizona State to win its play-in game against Syracuse on Wednesday, then beat No. 6 seed TCU. The Sun Devils are among my picks for several reasons. First of all, our son Kyle is an ASU grad. Also, coach Continue Reading

WATCH: Ocean City trails Ewing 25-14 after first quarter

The Ocean City Red Raiders trail Ewing 25-14 at the half in the girls Group III semifinal at Deptford High School.Ewing up 13-12 after first quarter - OC getting dominated on the boards— Michael McGarry (@ACPressMcGarry) March 10, 2018 The game was originally scheduled to be played Wednesday but was postponed and rescheduled for Thursday because of the storm.OC warming for state Semifinal #HSLive pic.twitter.com/Pi7bg7et1O— Michael McGarry (@ACPressMcGarry) March 9, 2018 It was postponed again Thursday morning until Friday night because of the storm's lingering effects.The other Group III semifinal between Old Tappan and Somerville will be played at 7 p.m. Friday at Ramapo High School.The winners advance to Sunday’s state final at Toms River. Continue Reading

WATCH: Live updates from Ocean City vs. Ewing starting at 7 p.m. Friday

The Ocean City Red Raiders meet Central Jersey champion Ewing Township at 7 p.m. Deptford High School.The game was originally scheduled to be played Wednesday but was postponed and rescheduled for Thursday because of the storm.It was postponed again Thursday morning until Friday night because of the storm's lingering effects.The other Group III semifinal between Old Tappan and Somerville will be played at 7 p.m. Friday at Ramapo High School.The winners advance to Sunday’s state final at Toms River. Continue Reading

Wildwood Catholic graduate to play for NCAA bid Wednesday night

 A former Cape-Atlantic League basketball standout stands on the verge of the NCAA Tournament.Wildwood Catholic High School graduate Jordan Robertson will play for Colgate University (19-12) when it meets Bucknell (24-9) for the Patriot League championship 7:30 p.m. Wednesday. The game will be shown on the CBS Sports Network. The winner earns a spot in the NCAA Tournament.Robertson, a Cape May Court House resident, comes off the bench to average 12.9 minutes and 5.3 points for Colgate. The 6-foot-3 Robertson scored two points as Colgate  beat Layafette 76-54 in the Patriot League quarterfinals. He scored four points in Colgate’s 62-55 semifinal win over Holy Cross.As a Wildwood Catholic senior, Robertson led the Crusaders to the 2014 CAL title. He was The Press Player of the Year, averaging 18.7 points.Robertson isn’t Colgate’s only connection to South Jersey. Head coach Matt Langel starred for Moorestown High School in the mid-1990s.Bucknell swept the season-series from Colgate, winning 63-51 on Jan. 15 and 65-64 on Feb. 12. Continue Reading