Local Sports 6-19-2020

Nebraska head football coach Scott Frost and head men’s basketball coach Fred Hoiberg will each donate a portion of their salaries for the upcoming fiscal year back to the Husker Athletic Department’s general operating fund to aid during the coronavirus pandemic.  The amount of the pay cut is now known yet, pending the finalization of Nebraska’s athletic department budget for 2020-2021.  Hoiberg is set to receive a one million dollar stay bonus on July 1st, while making three million dollars in salary.  Nebraska athletic director Bill Moos said Frost and Hoiberg volunteered to reduce their salaries and Nebraska did not request or mandate they do so.


Nebraska junior outfielder Aaron Palensky has signed a free agent deal with the New York Yankees.  Palensky started every game for the Huskers the last two seasons and led Nebraska’s offense in most categories during that span.  Last year, he batted .302 with four home runs and 19 rbi’s before the season was canceled by the coronavirus pandemic.


The Nebraska football team is losing a commitment from its 2021 recruiting class.  Inside linebacker Christopher Paul of Cordele, Georgia decommitted from the Huskers yesterday.  The decommitment followed a recent scholarship offer from Tennessee.  Paul originally committed to the Huskers in March.  With Paul’s decommitment, Nebraska now has nine commits in its class, including four linebackers.


The Nebraska-Kearney men’s and women’s basketball teams will play a 22 game league only schedule for the upcoming 2020-2021 season.  To help alleviate costs brought on by the COVID-19 crisis, all NCAA Division II men’s and women’s basketball programs are playing a maximum of 22 games this winter.  The MIAA and several other conferences got rid of non conference games as a way to meet the new limit.  In addition, the MIAA Tournament will now feature eight teams instead of ten and the event will last four days instead of five days.  It will remain in Kansas City at the Municipal Auditorium.


Hastings Five Points Bank will begin the American Legion baseball season tonight with a single game against Lexington at Duncan Field.  Hastings finished 35-15 last year and advanced to the semifinals of the regional tournament.  Lexington was 5-23.  First pitch will be at 6:00pm.  We’ll have it on 1230AM KHAS beginning with the pre-game show at 5:45pm. Because of COVID 19 restrictions, only immediate family members will be allowed to attend the game.  Those restrictions will be lifted on Monday.


Hastings Johnson Imperial Homes will begin their season this weekend at the Platteview Tournament.


In action last night, Kearney Runza swept a doubleheader from Grand Island Home Federal.  Kearney scored 9 runs in the first inning and went on to beat Grand Island 18-2 in the first game.  Mason Casper was the winning pitcher.  Trevor Johnson took the loss.  Kearney hammered out 15 hits in the opener.  Jaxson Worley picked up the win in the second game as Kearney beat Grand Island 3-0. Kearney Runza will play a doubleheader at Mount Michael Benedictine on Saturday.


Danica Badura of Aurora won the Nebraska Girls Match Play Championship yesterday at the Oakland Country Club.  The South Dakota commit downed Nicole Kolbas of Lincoln 2 and 1 in the championship match.  Reed Malleck of York will play Josh Kramer of Omaha in the boys championship today.


Concordia University has hired Caleb Lang as the lead baseball assistant on the Bulldogs staff.  Langer was an assitant coach at NCAA Division II Flagler College in Florida this past season.  He takes over for Bryce Berg, who now works with the Minnesota Twins organization as a hitting coach.


SEC> SEC commissioner Greg Sankey threatened to not host any future conference championship events in Mississippi until the state changes its flag.  Mississippi is the only state that still has the Confederate symbol, a blue cross with the 13 stars on the flag.  The SEC last ran a championship event in Mississippi in May of 2016, when Mississippi State hosted the softball tournament in Starkville.  The NCAA already banned any of  its predetermined postseason events from being held in Mississippi because of the flag.


MLB> The Major League Baseball Players Association proposed a 70 game regular season schedule on Thursday, a plan immediately rejected by Major League Baseball commissioner Rob Manfred.  The plan would have expanded the playoff field  to 16 teams in 2020 and 2021.  Major League Baseball proposed a 60 game schedule on Wednesday with full prorate salaries.  That plan was immediately rejected by the players association.

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