Joe's Morning Sports-Friday, May 7, 2021

The LA Clippers are third in the Western Conference following a 118-94 pounding of the Los Angeles Lakers.  Paul George led seven Clippers in double figures with 24 points and Kawhi Leonard had 15 points, eight rebounds and six assists in the blowout win.  Kyle Kuzma dropped in a team-high 25 points for the Lakers, who played without LeBron James and received just four points from Anthony Davis on 2-9 shooting.  Davis left the game at halftime with back spasms.

The Los Angeles Angels are dropping a Hall of Fame candidate.  Albert Pujols has been designated for assignment, abruptly ending the 41-year-old superstar slugger’s decade with his second major league team.  Pujols is fifth in major league history with 667 career homers, and 13th with 3,253 hits.  The oldest active player in the majors is batting just .198 this season with five homers and twelve RBIs.  Pujols joined the Angels in late 2011 after eleven successful seasons with the St. Louis Cardinals.

Texas linebacker Jake Ehlinger, the younger brother of former Longhorns quarterback Sam Ehlinger, has been found dead near the Austin campus. Police did not detail how they found him yesterday, but said the death is not considered suspicious.  No cause of death was immediately released.  The 20-year-old had not played the last two seasons.  Sam Ehlinger was drafted last week by the Indianapolis Colts.  Their father, Ross, died in 2013 while competing in a San Francisco triathlon at age 46.

Triston McKenzie bounced back from a rugged start to pitch one-hit ball into the sixth inning of the Cleveland Indians’ 4-0 shutout of the Kansas City Royals.  Franmil Reyes launched his eighth home run, and Cesar Hernandez and Rene Rivera each had three hits to help Cleveland complete a four-game sweep.  The Royals drop to 16-14 and trail the Indians by one game for first place in the American League Central.

Nebraska-Omaha men’s basketball has announced the addition of former Creighton Prep standout and Nebraska transfer Akol Arop for the 2021-22 season.  A 6’5, 203-pound forward, Arop began his collegiate career with two seasons as a Husker from 2019-21.  The rising sophomore redshirted last season after a surgical procedure and appeared in 21 contests off the bench as a true freshman in 2019-20.  Arop played in at least 20 minutes of NU's final three games that year, including the Big Ten Tournament.  His prep career saw him tabbed the top senior prospect in the state of Nebraska in 2019, and he was a three-time all-state selection at Creighton Prep.  Arop earned the 2019 Gatorade Nebraska Player of the Year award after averaging 19.4 points, 10.9 rebounds and 2.6 blocks per game as a senior with 19 double-doubles.  He joins Bellevue West product Frankie Fidler, Omaha Central product and Wichita State transfer Isaiah Poor Bear-Chandler and former Sweden National Team member and Salt Lake City CC transfer Felix Lemetti to make up the Mavericks' class of newcomers for next season.

The Norfolk Catholic track & field squad held their 20th annual invitational yesterday.  In the girls’ competition, Pierce was the champion with 131 points, O’Neill was second at 123, and the Lady Knights took third place with 119 points.  Norfolk Catholic’s Mary Fennessy won the Discus & Shot Put breaking the school records in the process.  She threw the Discus 138’0 which eclipsed the previous mark of 134’0 and also set the meet record.  Fennessy recorded a mark of 44’1.50 in the Shot Put which bested the previous school record of 43’9.  The Pierce girls 4X400 relay team also set a new meet record in 4:11.1.  In the boys’ standings, Pierce was the champion with 165 points while the Knights totaled 129 to finish second.  Champions for Norfolk Catholic on the day included Fennessy (Discus & Shot Put); Channatee Robles (HJ); Jackson Clausen (100 & 200); Ben Hammond (3200); & Kade Pieper (Shot Put).

The Norfolk Catholic boys golf team competed in yesterday’s Battle Creek Invitational at Evergreen Hill Golf Course.  Pierce was the champion with a 332 team score.  They won by four strokes.  The Knights finished sixth at 387.  Battle Creek’s Payton Frederick was the medalist after carding a 70.  He won by four strokes.  Norfolk Catholic’s Jacob Cerny shot 90 to place 15th.  

Checking out the local schedule for today, in baseball, Norfolk High faces Lincoln High at Millard South in the opening round of the A-1 District Tournament at 4:00, Creighton is in Indianapolis, Indiana to play Butler at 3:00, Nebraska-Omaha visits Fargo to play North Dakota State in a 3:00 doubleheader, and the Omaha Storm Chasers host St. Paul at 7:05.  Elsewhere, the Lutheran High Northeast boys golf team competes in the Stanton Invite at Elkhorn Acres Golf Course at 9:00 AM and the Norfolk High girls tennis team entertains Kearney in a 4:00 dual.

Local Scores:  Omaha Storm Chasers 4 St. Paul 3 (11 Inn.) (Bsbl).

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AMERICAN LEAGUE

Final    Houston    7    N.Y. Yankees    4    

Final    Texas    4    Minnesota    3    

Final    Cleveland    4    Kansas City    0    

Final    Boston    12    Detroit    9    

Final    Toronto    10    Oakland    4    

Final    Tampa Bay    8    L.A. Angels    3    

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NATIONAL LEAGUE

Final    Philadelphia    2    Milwaukee    0    

Final    N.Y. Mets    4    St. Louis    1    

Final    Atlanta    3    Washington    2    

Final    Miami    3    Arizona    1    

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NATIONAL BASKETBALL ASSOCIATION

Final    Chicago    120    Charlotte    99    

Final    Dallas    113    Brooklyn    109    

Final    Detroit    111    Memphis    97    

Final    Indiana    133    Atlanta    126    

Final OT    Washington    131    Toronto    129    

Final    Golden State    118    Oklahoma City    97    

Final    L.A. Clippers    118    L.A. Lakers    94    

___

NATIONAL HOCKEY LEAGUE

Final    New Jersey    2    N-Y Islanders    1    

Final    Pittsburgh    8    Buffalo    4    

Final    Toronto    5    Montreal    2    

Final    Boston    4    N-Y Rangers    0    

Final OT    Chicago    2    Carolina    1    

Final    Vancouver    6    Edmonton    3   

In other news

The Atlanta Hawks have advanced to the NBA's Eastern Conference finals for the first time since 2015.  Kevin Huerter dropped in 27 points with seven rebounds and Trae Young added 21 points with ten assists as the Hawks ousted the top-seeded 76ers in Philadelphia, 103-96 in Game Seven of thei…

The depleted Brooklyn Nets never led in a 104-89 loss to Milwaukee last night in their NBA Playoff Semifinal Game Six.  Khris Middleton scored 38 points with ten rebounds and five assists and Giannis Antetokounmpo added 30 points and 17 boards to force a seventh game in their NBA second-roun…