No 21 Saint Mary’s routs Portland 74-33

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PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) Calvin Hermanson scored a career-high 27 points and No. 21 Saint Mary’s shut down the Portland Pilots for a 74-33 victory Thursday night.

Jock Landale added eight points and 10 rebounds for the Gaels (15-1, 5-0 West Coast Conference), who led by as many as 44 points. Evan Fitzner also had eight points. Hermanson was the only Gael in double figures.

Alec Wintering, who leads the conference with an average of 21 points a game, was held to just four points for the Pilots (9-6, 2-1). Jazz Johnson led Portland with 13 points.

The Pilots’ lowest-ever point total was 27 points, in a 43-27 loss to Pacific Lutheran in 1947-48.

The Gaels arrived in Portland on Wednesday night following an unusual snowstorm that dumped as many as 14 inches on parts of the city. With little melting on Thursday during the day, and freezing temperatures after the sun went down, the game was sparsely attended.

The Pilots had already postposed a game against No. 5 Gonzaga, which was set for last Saturday night at Chiles Center, because of an earlier storm in Portland.

Portland announced Thursday that the game against the Bulldogs was rescheduled for Jan. 23 at the Chiles Center.

The Pilots are playing their first season under former NBA player and coach Terry Porter. His son, Franklin, Porter’s oldest son, played as a freshman at Saint Mary’s but transferred to Portland to play for his dad and is redshirting this season.

Saint Mary’s has won 11 of the last 12 meetings, with the lone loss coming during the 2015 WCC Tournament quarterfinals. Joe Rahon’s layup with 2.7 seconds left gave Saint Mary’s a 74-72 victory at Chiles Center last year.

The Gaels’ only loss this season came at home against Texas-Arlington on Dec. 8. They were coming off a 63-52 win at San Francisco last Saturday.

Saint Mary’s took a 14-2 lead after Emmett Naar’s 3-pointer. Hermanson’s layup extended the lead to 24-4.

Wintering hit a jumper that ended a scoring drought of more than 4 minutes for the Pilots, but they still trailed 29-9. Portland would not score again and the Gaels led 37-9 at halftime.

The Pilots’ point total matched the low for a half this season in Division I.

Hermanson, who is from the Portland area and went to Lake Oswego High School, led all scorers with 17 points in the first half. His 3-pointer put the Gaels up 45-12 early in the second half.

BIG PICTURE

Saint Mary’s: The Gaels remain atop the WCC standings with one more game played than Gonzaga, which beat Loyola Marymount 93-55 on Thursday night to remain the nation’s only undefeated Division I basketball team. The Bulldogs are 16-0 overall and 4-0 in the WCC. The teams meet Saturday.

Portland: The Pilots were coming off a 70-42 loss at Santa Clara. … Center Philip Hartwich sustained a concussion in the first half and did not return.

ABOUT THOSE ZAGS:

Portland’s postponed game against Gonzaga was a sellout. Tickets purchased for the original game will be honored on Jan. 23, and fans who cannot attend the rescheduled game will be offered a ticket to a future game, based on availability. The Pilots said Thursday that it is expected that the rescheduled game will be televised, but details have not yet been worked out.

UP NEXT

Saint Mary’s: The Gaels visit Gonzaga on Saturday in a showdown of the league’s top two teams.

Portland: The Pilots host Loyola Marymount on Saturday.

More AP college basketball: http://www.collegebasketball.ap.org and https://twitter.com/AP-Top25.

Kentucky moves scrimmage to Eastern Kentucky for flood relief

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LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky will play its annual Blue-White men’s basketball scrimmage in Eastern Kentucky to benefit victims of the devastating summer floods.

The school announced that the Oct. 22 event at Appalachian Wireless Arena in Pikeville will feature a pregame Fan Fest. Ticket proceeds will go through Team Eastern Kentucky Flood Relief.

Wildcat players will also participate in a community service activity with local organizations in the relief effort.

Kentucky coach John Calipari said the team was excited to play for Eastern Kentucky fans and added, “We hope we can provide a temporary escape with basketball and community engagement.”

The scrimmage traditionally is held at Rupp Arena. It will occur eight days after its Big Blue Madness public workout at Rupp.

Kentucky’s Tionna Herron recovering from open-heart surgery

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LEXINGTON, Ky. — Kentucky coach Kyra Elzy says freshman Tionna Herron is recovering from open-heart surgery to correct a structural abnormality.

The 6-foot-4 post player learned of her condition after arriving at school in June and received other opinions before surgery was recommended. Senior trainer Courtney Jones said in a release that Herron underwent surgery Aug. 24 at Texas Children’s Hospital in Houston and is recovering at home in DeSoto, Texas.

Elzy said Herron “is the definition of a warrior” and all are grateful to be on the other side of the player’s surgery. Herron is expected back on campus early next month and will continue rehabilitation until she’s cleared to return to normal activity.

“Her will and determination to eventually return to the court is inspiring, and it’s that `game-on’ attitude that is what makes her such a perfect fit in our program,” Elzy said in a release. “We are so thrilled for Tionna’s return to our locker room; it’s not the same without our full team together.”

Herron committed to Kentucky during last fall’s early signing period, rated as a four-star prospect and a top-70 player in last year’s class. Kentucky won last year’s Southeastern Conference Tournament and reached the NCAA Tournament’s first round.

Emoni Bates charged with 2 felonies

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SUPERIOR TOWNSHIP, Mich — Emoni Bates, a former basketball prodigy who transferred to Eastern Michigan from Memphis, was charged with two felonies after police found a gun in a car during a traffic stop.

The 18-year-old Bates failed to stop at an intersection Sunday night and a search turned up the weapon, said Derrick Jackson, a spokesman for the Washtenaw County sheriff’s office.

Defense attorney Steve Haney told The Associated Press that the vehicle and the gun didn’t belong to Bates.

“I hope people can reserve judgment and understand there’s a presumption of innocence,” Haney said. “This was not his vehicle. This was not his gun. … We’re still gathering facts, too.”

Bates was charged with carrying a concealed weapon and altering identification marks on a firearm. He was released after his lawyer entered a not guilty plea. Bates’ next court hearing is Oct. 6.

“This is his first brush with the law,” Haney said in court. “He poses no threat or risk to society.”

Less than a month ago, the 6-foot-9 Bates transferred to Eastern Michigan to play for his hometown Eagles. Bates averaged nearly 10 points a game last season as a freshman at Memphis, where he enrolled after reclassifying to skip a year of high school and join the class of 2021.

“We are aware of a situation involving one of our student athletes,” EMU spokesman Greg Steiner said. “We are working to gather more details and will have further comment when more information is available.”

Bates was the first sophomore to win the Gatorade national player of the year award in high school basketball in 2020, beating out Cade Cunningham and Evan Mobley. Detroit drafted Cunningham No. 1 overall last year, two spots before Cleveland took Mobley in the 2021 NBA draft.

Bates committed to playing for Tom Izzo at Michigan State two years ago, later de-committed and signed with Memphis. Bates played in 18 games for the Tigers, who finished 22-11 under Penny Hardaway. Bates missed much of the season with a back injury before appearing in Memphis’ two NCAA Tournament games.

In 2019, as a high school freshman, the slender and skilled guard led Ypsilanti Lincoln to a state title and was named Michigan’s Division 1 Player of the Year by The Associated Press. His sophomore season was cut short by the pandemic and he attended Ypsi Prep Academy as a junior, his final year of high school.

UConn to pay Kevin Ollie another $3.9 million over firing

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STORRS, Conn. — UConn announced Thursday it has agreed to pay former men’s basketball coach Kevin Ollie another $3.9 million to settle discrimination claims surrounding his 2018 firing.

The money is in addition to the more than $11.1 million in back salary Ollie has already been paid after an arbitrator ruled in January that he was improperly fired under the school’s agreement with its professor’s union.

“I am grateful that we were able to reach agreement,” Ollie said in a statement Thursday. “My time at UConn as a student-athlete and coach is something I will always cherish. I am pleased that this matter is now fully and finally resolved.”

Ollie, a former UConn point guard who guided the Huskies to a 127-79 record and the 2014 national championship in six seasons as head coach, was let go after two losing seasons. UConn also stopped paying him under his contract, citing numerous NCAA violations in terminating the deal.

In 2019, the NCAA placed UConn on probation for two years and Ollie was sanctioned individually for violations, which the NCAA found occurred between 2013 and 2018. Ollie’s attorneys, Jacques Parenteau and William Madsen, accused UConn of making false claims to the NCAA for the purpose of firing Ollie “with cause.”

The school had argued that Ollie’s transgressions were serious and that his individual contract superseded those union protections.

Ollie’s lawyers had argued that white coaches, including Hall-of-Famers Jim Calhoun and women’s coach Geno Auriemma, had also committed NCAA violations, without being fired, and indicated they were planning to file a federal civil rights lawsuit.

The school and Ollie said in a joint statement Thursday they were settling “to avoid further costly and protracted litigation.”

Both sides declined to comment further.

Ollie, who faced three years of restrictions from the NCAA on becoming a college basketball coach again, is currently coaching for Overtime Elite, a league that prepares top prospects who are not attending college for the pros.

Dream’s McDonald returning to Arizona to coach under Barnes

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TUCSON, Ariz. — Atlanta Dream guard Aari McDonald is returning to Arizona to work under coach Adia Barnes.

The school announced that McDonald will serve as director of recruiting operations while continuing to fulfill her WNBA commitments. She will oversee all recruiting logistics, assist with on-campus visits, manage recruit information and social media content at Arizona.

McDonald was one of the best players in Arizona history after transferring from Washington as a sophomore. She was an All-American and the Pac-12 player of the year in 2020-21, leading the Wildcats to the national championship game, which they lost to Stanford.

McDonald broke Barnes’ single-season scoring record and had the highest career scoring average in school history before being selected by the Dream with the third overall pick of the 2021 WNBA draft.