Lillard, Blazers on fire; GS next

WEDNESDAY 4CAST: NBA, Pac-12 men, Hawks Reunion, Timbers/Thorns
Staff report

Another 30+ performance by Damian Lillard, and fabulous team defense carried the Portland Trail Blazers to their eighth-straight win Tuesday night, 111-87, over the New York Knicks at the Moda Center.

Lillard went off for 37 points, a night after scoring 39 in a comeback win over the Lakers, and had Knicks coach Jeff Hornacek talking about post-season honors.

"The guy is playing fantastic," Hornacek told reporters. "He might be one of those guys you've got to start talking about that MVP too with the way he's playing."

Lillard is averaging a career-best 26.8 points per game this season.

"I said after I won Rookie of the Year, I said I think I can be MVP in this league," Lillard said. "Being in the discussion, it's an honor to be mentioned, but I don't look at that and think `Oh they mentioned me in the MVP discussion.' I feel that's the level of player I can be."

Portland improved to 39-26 with a home game against Golden State on tap for Friday.


Oregon and Oregon State get into action in the Pac-12 men's basketball tournament in Las Vegas today with game in the evening.

Oregon State, the 10th seed, plays seventh seed Washington at 6 p.m., while Oregon, the sixth seed, plays 11th seeded Washington State at 8:30 p.m. Both games are available on the Pac-12 Network.

Also, Oregon sophomore Payton Pritchard was named to the all-conference second team, and freshman Kenny Wooten was named all-conference first team for defense.


Portland's Ty Kolle scored with just over three minutes left to lift the Winterhawks to a 4-3 win at Prince George, B.C., Tuesday night. The Hawks play at Everett, Wash., tonight, then return for home games Saturday and Sunday.

The Hawks added Marty Standish for the reunion of the 1998 Memorial Cup champions Saturday. The will honor the '98 squad with a Hall of Fame induction for four of the key members: Marian Hossa, Andrew Ference, Brendan Morrow and Todd Robinson, who plan to attend.


The Portland Timbers continue the early part of their season in New York Saturday, with three more road games before their home opener, April 14, at Providence Park.

The Portland Thorns open their sixth season in the National Women's Soccer League March 15 in North Carolina, and begin play at home April 15.






Blazers keep surging

TUESDAY 4CAST: Portland rallies, Thorns, Hawks reunion, PSU hoop
Staff report

Damian Lillard kept the Portland Trail Blazers winning streak going Monday night with another stellar performance.

Lillard scored a game-high 39 points, including 19 points in the fourth quarter as Portland rallied past the Los Angeles Lakers, 108-103, at the Staples Center.

Portland (38-26) won for the seven-consecutive game, and stayed a game ahead of three teams in the race for third place in the Western Conference. The Blazers play host to the New York Knicks tonight.

Lillard scored 19 points in the fourth quarter, hitting 4 of 5 three-point shots.

The win was also the 15th-straight over the Lakers.


Christine Sinclair scored two goals to lead Canada to a 3-0 win over South Korea in the third round of Group Stage play at the Algarve Cup, but the Canadians will play only for fifth in the 25th annual tournament. Sweden, which beat Canada 3-1 on the first day of the tournament in Portugal, will play the Netherlands Wednesday for the title.

Sinclair's two goals gave her 172 for her international career - within reach of Abby Wambach's record 184. Portland begins its regular season March 24 at North Caroina.


THe Western Hockey League honored Portland's Cody Glass as the Player of the Week, and goaltender Andrew Farkas as the Goaltender of the Week for the work in keeping the Hawks battling for a top playoff seed.

After a pair of road games tonight and Wednesday, the Hawks return homre and will honor the 1998 Memorial Cup champions with a reunion and team Hall of Fame induction for four of the key members: Marian Hossa, Andrew Ference, Brendan Morrow and Todd Robinson.


Portland State got 24 points from Sidney Reilly and beat Northern Arizona to open the Big Sky Tournament Monday. The Vikings face third-seed Eastern Washington Wednesday.

The PSU men's team opens the Big Sky tournament today against Sacramento State.



Columnist Derek Weber looks over the NBA's strategy to address high school players using colleges for one year only.


Timbers drop opener, 2-1

Blanco scores, but Savarese era starts with road loss
Staff report

The Giovanni Savarese era started quietly Sunday night - with a loss to the Los Angeles Galaxy.

Portland gave up a pair of first-half goals in the span of less than three minutes, and lost 2-1 at the StubHub Center.

Sebastian Blanco scored Portland's first goal of the season in the 66th minute off an assist by Fanendo Adi, and the team worked newcomer Samuel Armenteros into the line-up to create offense in the final 30 minutes.

Portland returns to action Saturday in New York City against the Red Bulls, who will be playing their season opener.

The Timbers closed the game with seven shots on goal to just three by the Galaxy, and had a 6-4 edge in corner kicks.

Jake Gleeson started in goal.


Timbers primed for season

Portland begins Sunday in Los Angeles
By Cliff Pfenning,

Season eight is just about active for the Portland Timbers, and their many fans.

After an off-season of trades, signings and a new coach, the Timbers will begin the Major League Soccer regular season Sunday at the StubHub Center in Los Angeles against the Galaxy.

Portland will enter the pitchas the top returning team from the Western Conference last season, although that resulted in a playoff loss immediately, which kept the franchise from the CONCACAF Cup, which would have been its second foray into the North American Champions League.

The Timbers did, though, regain the Cacadia Cup by virtue of its three wins against the Vancouver Whitecaps and a pair of draws against the Seattle Sounders. Portland had eight differenct players score its nine Cup goals and secured the Cup for the first time since 2012 after having held it in 2009 and 2010 while playing the USL.

Portland will be looking to win its second MLS title, three years after winning its first.

Giovanni Savarese takes over as head coach after Caleb Porter capped a very successful five-year run. In the past two months, the team signed a handful of international players geared toward making the team's offense much more impressive.

And, the Timbers traded much beloved midfielder Darlington Nagbe to Atlanta.

The MLS season begins with 23 teams as LAFC joins the league. The season begins Saturday.

Miami and Nashville have been awarded franchises as the league moves toward 26 teams by 2021.


Portland keeps hot streak going

4CAST: Blazers, Oregon, OSU men, Western Oregon, Timbers eSports
Staff report

A 108-99 win over visiting Minnesota moved the Portland Trail Blazers a game closer to third place in the Western Conference and extended their win streak to five.

Damian Lillard scored 35 points after missing his first seven shots, and CJ McCollum added 19 for Portland, which is just 0.5 games behind Minnesota in the race for third place in the West. The Blazers trailed 78-75 entering the fourth quarter, but outscored Minnesota 33-21 the rest of the way and split their four-game series at 2-all.

There are three other teams within a game of the Timberwolves in the tightly-knit conference race, which includes three other teams battling for a playoff spot.

Portland plays host to Oklahoma City - one of the third-place hopefuls - Saturday.


Both the Oregon and Oregon State men's basketball teams lost by a basket Thursday night to rivals in Washington.

The Ducks, who swept the Arizona schools last weekend at home, fell 78-76 at Washington State, while the Beavers lost 79-77 at Washington.

The schools swap opponents for games Saturday night.


Western Oregon's men's basketball team gets its first action in the Great Northwest Athletic Conference tournament today against Seattle Pacific University. The Wolves, who won the GNAC regular-season title, beat SPU both times the faced each other this season, both of which were in the team's current 20-game win streak. Today's game, in Alaska-Anchorage, leads into the NCAA Div. II Western Region next week.


Edgar Guerrero of McMinnville is the first signee of the Portland Timbers' eMLS team, the club announced Thursday. Guerrero will lead an 11x11 team in the 19-team, expansion eMLS, which uses a Playstation 4 and expects to launch in April with a tournament in Boston.



Blazers back to business

TUESDAY 4CAST: Portland looks to Dame for 50 again, women's hoop, Timbers, Winterhawks
Staff report

The Portland Trail Blazers play host to the Sacramento Kings tonight at the Moda Center with fans looking for Damian Lillard to possibly score more than 50 points, Lillard having done so in the last game with the Kings, Feb. 10.

Portland enters the game with a three-game win streak and has won five of its last six games to pull within three games of third place in the Western Conference standings, which are now led by Houston.


The 12th-ranked George Fox women's basketball team will head into action Friday at Weverly, Iowa, in the first-round of the NCAA Div. III Tournament, which features 64 teams just as the Div. I tournament does. The Bruins will face Saint Benedict of St. Joseph, Minn., in the first round, with a game against either host Wartburg or Webster Saturday.

George Fox is making its 14th trip to the tournament, having won the title in 2009. It reached the Final 8 two seasons ago. Senior Kaitlin Jamieson, a 6-3 senior from Forest Grove, leads the team at 11.9 points per game.

The tournament field includes MIT from Boston, but no other team from the West Coast.


The Portland Timbers today announced the club has entered into a multiyear, multifaceted partnership with Sightbox, as the club’s official vision care partner. As part of the collaboration, Sightbox, the season presenting partner for the Timbers, holds exclusive logo rights on all Timbers training apparel to be worn during training sessions and pregame.

Alaska Airlines will still be on the front of the Timbers' game kit.

Portland's MLS season begins Sunday in Los Angeles against the Galaxy.


Portland's Winterhawks play at Tri-Cities tonight, then prepare for a string of five games in six days, including a four-game road swing that starts Saturday. The Hawks play Seattle at Memorial Coliseum Friday, then hop on their bus for games at Tri-Cities Saturday, Seattle Sunday and Prince George, B.C., on Tuesday and Wednesday.

Portland has already clinched a WHL playoff spot with 11 games left in the regular season.


Oregon men beat ASU, Arizona next

Pac-12 men's basketball, women's basketball, Blazers, Timbers
Staff report

The Oregon men's basketball team opened a key weekend with a 75-68 win over Arizona State Thursday night at Matthew Knight Arena in Eugene, but now comes the big game: Arizona.

The Ducks take on the Wildcats Saturday night in a nationally-televised game on ESPN in what is effectively a playoff-preview.

Oregon's pair of losses last weekend in Los Angeles dropped it out of contention for second place in the Pac-12 Conference and put the team in a win-or-else situation to reach the NCAA Tournament. Oregon needs to win the conference tournament and Arizona (23-6, 14-1) is atop the conference standings ranked No. 14 in the nation.

Game time is 7:15 p.m. Saturday.

Elijah Brown led the Ducks (18-10, 8-7) Thursday with 19 points and seven rebounds. He hit eight of his 12 field-goal attempts.

Oregon State (13-14, 5-10) lost to Arizona 75-65 in Corvallis Thursday and takes on Arizona State Saturday at 5 p.m.

Both Oregon schools close out their regular season next week with games in Washington.

The conference tournament begins March 7 in Las Vegas.


The Oregon women's basketball team, having moved up to No. 8 in the nation, is two wins from taking the conference regular-season title, with only games at Arizona State tonight and Arizona Sunday in the way. Oregon is 25-4, 14-2, and a game ahead of Stanford in the conference standings.

No. 12 Oregon State (21-6, 12-4) takes its five-game win streak to Arizona tonight and Arizona State on Sunday.


Portland's All-Star Game break ends tonight with a game at Utah followed by a game at Phoenix Saturday night. The Blazers enter the weekend two games ahead of the Jazz in the Western Conference standings.

With Oklahoma City winning Thursday night, the Blazers dropped a full game out of fifth place in the Western Conference standings, but the Los Angeles Clippers lost at Golden State and dropped a half-game further behind the Blazers in the race for the eight playoff spots.


The Portland Timbers will take on Sporting Kansas City Saturday in their final preseason match at the Kino Sports Complex in Tucson, Ariz.

Portland's eighth season in Major League Soccer begins March 4 in Los Angeles against the Galaxy.



Portland Timbers Schedule

Major League Soccer

2018 Schedule
4      At Los Angeles Galaxy, LOSS 2-1
10    At New York Red Bulls, LOSS 4-0
24    At FC Dallas, DRAW 1-1
31    At Chicago Fire

8      At Orlando City FC
14    Minnesota United FC
22    New York City FC

5      At San Jose Earthquakes
13    Seattle Sounders
19    Los Angeles FC
26    At Colorado Rapids

2      Los Angeles Galaxy
9      Sporting Kansas City
24    At Atlanta United FC
30    At Seattle Sounders

7      San Jose Earthquakes
15    At Los Angeles FC
21    Montreal Impact
28    Houston Dynamo

4      Phildelphia Union
11    Vancouver Whitecaps
15    At DC United
18    At Sporting Kansas City
26    Seattle Sounders
29    Toronto FC

1      At New England Revolution
8      Colorado Rapids
15    At Houston Dynamo
19    Columbus Crew
22    At Minnesota United
29    FC Dallas

6      At Real Salt Lake
21    Real Salt Lake
28    At Vancouver Whitecaps

Portland Thorns Schedule




24    At North Carolina Courage, LOSS 2-1
31    At Chicago Red Stars

15    Orlando Pride
20    Washington Spirit
28    At Utah Royals

3      Seattle Reign
9      At Houston Dash
12    Orlando Pride
19    At Washington Spirit
25    Utah Royals
30    North Carolina Courage

16    At Chicago Red Stars
22    At Houston Dash
27    Sky Blue FC
30    At Seattle Reign

6      Utah Royals
15    Houston Dash
21    At Sky Blue FC

5      At North Carolina Courage
11    At Orlando Pride
18    Chicago Red Stars
22    Sky Blue FC
25    At Washington Spirit

7      Seattle Reign

4CAST Thursday: Timbers get preseason win

MLS, Oregon basketball, Winterhawks, Prep
Staff report

The Portland Timbers got a 4-1 win over the New York Red Bulls Wednesday in one of their final preseason tests in Tucson, Ariz.

Recent signee Samuel Armenteros scored his second goal of the preseason, and three other players scored for Portland.

Julio Cascante, Andy Polo and Victor Arboleda all scored for the Timbers, who have one preseason match remaining.

Portland will play Saturday against an as yet unnamed opponent.


The Portland Winterhawks led 1-0 early in the first period, but gave up three consecutive goals, including two on power plays, and fell 3-1 to the Kamloops Blazers Wednesday at the Moda Center.


The Oregon men's basketball team will play host to its final regular season games this weekend in Eugene starting with Arizona State tonight. Oregon State will do the same in Corvallis starting with Arizona tonight.

The Oregon women's team, which moved up to No. 8 in the national rankings, and Oregon State, ranked No. 12, play at Arizona and Arizona State this weekend.


After the second and third round of high school state championships played out Friday and Saturday with wrestling and swimming, OSAA sports get a weekend off before the first three boys and girls basketball finals begin. But, non-OSAA sports have a championship weekend upcoming with bowling.

The Oregon bowling championships begin Friday in Klamath Falls, with nordic and alpine finals set for March.



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