The top sports stories in today’s Herald:
Looking far and wide for hits and runs
M’s hitting coach Alan Cockrell spent the offseason criss-crossing the West looking for ways to help Seattle hitters. Unfortunately for Cockrell, M’s general manager Jack Zduriencik spent most of the offseason criss-crossing names like Matt Holliday, Jason Bay and Jermaine Dye off his free agent wishlist.
Rise and shine, Grizzlies
The Glacier Peak boys basketball team found out Sunday that it’ll be playing the 9 a.m., Egg McMuffin game in Wednesday’s state tournament opener. Good thing for the Grizzlies we’re having a mild winter in the Northwest and they’re done hibernating.
Just call him the new King(ma) of Snohomish County
Forget Jon Brockman, there’s a new King(ma) of Snohomish County. Fresh off helping the Timberwolves run to the 4A state title game, Jackson’s Brett Kingma was signing autographs at his sisters’ game at Hec Edmundson Pavilion on Sunday. Get used to it, kid. Soon a bunch of overweight guys in sweater vests will want your signature too.
The future is next year
On Senior Day, it was the underclassmen who led the UW women’s basketball team to a win over Oregon, including Kristi Kingma. That caps quite a week for the Kingma clan, which won’t be topped until a year from now when Brett leads the Wolves to a state title and Kristi leads the UW women into the NCAA women’s tournament.
Dawgs and the Bubble
Coming off two big wins in the final week of Pac-10 play, the UW men’s basketball team may need a few more wins to secure a spot in the field of 65. Of course they could win the Pac-10 tourney and extinguish all doubt. Except that would mean winning three straight road games, which is like a shrimp like Nate Robinson winning three straight slam dunk contests. OK, bad example.
THE WARMUP PITCH
Zags advance to familiar territory
Gonzaga’s Steven Gray overcomes a painful hand injury to lead the Bulldogs over Loyola Marymount and into the West Coast Conference championship game. Of course what will be even more painful for Gonzaga fans will be watching Gray and Co. bow out of the NCAA tournament in round 2 once again.
Controversy surrounds Mariners Idol
Donning grass skirts and coconuts, the trio of Matt Tuiasosospo, Kanekoa Texeira and Steven Baron, or Hawaiian Punch, won the Mariners’ American Idol-like competition despite a little controversy. Apparently Simon Cowell didn’t think the trio didn’t had enough bass hits.
A hitch in Seahawks’ Marshall plan?
A day after Seattle hosted Brandon Marshall and gave him the full free-agent press, the Broncos said they’re sticking to their original asking price of a first-round draft pick. So that’s the going rate for a woman-abusing, practice-avoiding, pot-stirring malcontent? The Closer wouldn’t give the Broncos a bag of walnuts and tire iron for Mr. Marshall.
Tebow coming to town
The Closer knew Pete Carroll had an affinity for college quarterbacks, but Tim Tebow? Really?!? Tebow is reportedly coming to town for a private workout with the Seahawks, but The Closer thinks it’s just a smokescreen to get the guy he really wants: Eric Crouch.
Barnes and Bryant go toe-to-toe
Orlando’s Matt Barnes and Kobe Bryant got into a little back-and-forth during Sunday’s game, which escalated into Barnes faking a throw into Kobe’s face on an in-bounds play (see below). When your behavior makes Kobe look like Ghandi you know you’ve really done something.
Wild and wacky news from the world of sports:
Jake and the Soldier man
The Closer took in the Oscars last night and couldn’t shake the feeling he’d seen The Hurt Locker’s Jeremy Renner before. Then he got it: Jake Peavy, who could be Renner’s twin. Peavy better hope he’s healthy and wins 20 games this season or Ozzie Guillen is going to stuff Peavy into his very own Hurt Locker.
Despite the fact he has yet to throw a game for the Mariners, Cliff Lee has apparently been photographed in the wild by Topps. Like a photo of the elusive Sasquatch, the baseball card company has a photo Lee in his natural habitat (the mound) in Mariner blue. But wait just a minute. What’s that “HK” patch on his left breast? Oh that’s the patch the Phillies wore last season. Now if we could just get this computers to “make” Matt Holliday a Mariner and we might have something.
Roy Williams inserts Heel in mouth
Earlier in the season, North Carolina men’s basketball coach Roy Williams equated the Tar Heels’ going-down-in-flames season to the catastrophe in Haiti. Uh, not a good move, Roy. So what did the Crazies in Cameron do about it over the weekend? How about a sign that read: “Text 90999 to donate $10 to the UNC bball disaster relief fund.” Now that’s a sign.