The Latest – February 17, 2012 17 Feb 12

Jets Edge Wild In Shootout
(St.Paul, MN) — The Minnesota Wild earned a point before falling to the Jets 4-3 in a shootout last night at the Xcel Energy Center. The Wild went oh-three-and-one on the homestand as their winless streak reach six games. Evander Kane scored the game-winner in the shootout plus two regulation goals for Winnipeg. Devin Setoguchi had a pair of goals and an assist for Minnesota and Mikko Koivu lit the lamp for the first time since December 29th. Goaltender Niklas Backstrom stopped 24 of 27 shots in defeat. Thousands of Jets fans made the trip from Winnipeg to St.Paul to see an exciting game. The Wild play at St.Louis Saturday afternoon.

Zidlicky Scratched Again
(St.Paul, MN) — Wild defenseman Marek Zidlicky [[ zhid-LIT-skee ]] was a healthy scratch against Winnipeg last night. Wild head coach Mike Yeo decided to sit Zidlicky the day after his agent said he would waive his no-trade clause to go to New Jersey. Yeo told reporters he made the assumption that Zidlicky’s head would not be in the right place to play the game. Wild GM Chuck Fletcher has reportedly been to talking to other teams about Zidlicky after he requested a trade in late January. The NHL trade deadline is Monday February 27th.

Gopher Women Top Illinois On Senior Night
(Minneapolis, MN) — The University of Minnesota women’s basketball team celebrated a 60-53 victory over Illinois on Senior Night at Williams Arena. Freshman Rachel Banham of Lakeville scored a team-high 19 points while senior Kiara Buford of St.Paul had 12 points, seven rebounds, five assists and three steals. The Gophers hit six free throws in the final minute to seal the victory. Minnesota improved to six-and-eight in the Big Ten and 14-and-14 overall. The Fighting Illini fell to four-and-ten in conference play. The Gophers have a bye this weekend before traveling to Ohio State next Thursday.

Mbakwe Pleads No Contest In Florida Assault
(Miami, FL) — Injured Gopher forward Trevor Mbakwe [[ em-BOCK-way ]] was placed on one-year probation after pleading no contest to an assault charge Thursday in Miami, Florida. The 23-year-old from St.Paul sought to put an end to the nearly three-year long case. Mbakwe was charged with felony assault in May of 2009 at Miami Dade College when a woman claimed he punched her and tried to pull down her pants. His attorneys claimed all along it was a case of mistaken identity. Mbakwe was suspended for the 2009-2010 season at Minnesota because the case was not resolved. The Gophers plan to file a waiver this spring requesting a sixth year of eligibility for Mbakwe.

Gophers-UNLV Football Opener Moved Up
(Minneapolis, MN) — The University of Minnesota and UNLV have agreed to move their 2012 football matchup from Saturday September 1st to Thursday August 30th. The game at Sam Boyd Stadium in Las Vegas is the season opener for both teams and first-ever meeting on the gridiron. U-of-M associate atheltics director Mark Ryan says they have agreed to these type of schedule changes in the past for early-season, non-conference road games and Coach Jerry Kill felt there were a number of positives for the program. The Rebels will visit TCF Bank Stadium to open the 2013 season.

No Vikings Three-Peat For Moss
(Eden Prairie, MN) — The Minnesota Vikings will not consider bringing wide receiver Randy Moss back for a third time next season. Moss announced on his 35th birthday this week that he plans to come out of retirement and return to the NFL. Vikings GM Rick Spielman said “Randy was a great player… but our focus is more on trying to get a young team.” Moss caught just one touchdown pass during a brief stint with Minnesota in 2010. The Chicago Slaughter of the Indoor Football League has offered the 35-year-old wide-out a contract. Former Pro Bowl receiver Terrel Owens recently signed with the Allen Wranglers of the IFL.

Twins on FOX Sports North
(Minneapolis, MN) — FOX Sports North will again be the exclusive television home of the Minnesota Twins for the 2012 season. FSN will broadcast 150 regular season games and five spring training broadcasts. The Twins will also appear on several nationally-televised games. The first spring training broadcast on FOX Sports North is March 5th against the Boston Red Sox. FSN’s first regular season broadcast will be the opener April 6th at Baltimore. Twins pitchers and catchers report to Spring Training in Fort Myers tomorrow.

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Palm/dmz

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