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Sports Brief: February 19-23

College Baseball is Back

D1 baseball unveiled its latest Top 25 rankings, highlighting the powerhouses of the collegiate baseball scene. Wake Forest stood tall at the top spot after a flawless 3-0 start, showcasing their prowess on the field. The Demon Deacons also signaled their intent for a remarkable season ahead, boasting a roster with several first-round MLB Draft prospects. 

The SEC asserted its dominance with Arkansas, LSU and Florida securing the next three spots in the rankings, showcasing the conference’s formidable talent pool. TCU rounded out the top five, reflecting the fierce competition brewing across the nation. 

The latest Top 25 rankings from D1 Baseball painted a picture of the early season landscape: 

Wake Forest






Oregon State 

Texas A&M 



 East Carolina 


 NC State 


 North Carolina



Iowa Texas 


 South Carolina

 UC Santa Barbara 


 Kansas State

 Coastal Carolina

 While top-tier teams maintained their positions, there was a subtle shift within the rankings. Northeastern bowed out of the Top 25 following a challenging 1-2 start, making way for Indiana’s impressive rise after a stellar season-opening series. 

As the season unfolds, each game promises excitement, surprises and the relentless pursuit of collegiate baseball glory. With a long journey ahead, the stage is set for thrilling showdowns and unforgettable moments on the diamond.

OKC Thunder Show Out After All-Star Break

A brewing rivalry in the NBA has fans anticipating the matchup between the Oklahoma City Thunder and the LA Clippers. Stemming from a blockbuster trade in 2019 involving Paul George and Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, the teams have developed a natural rivalry, especially as they both vie for championship contention.

In their recent clash, Gilgeous-Alexander, facing his former team, showcased his MVP-caliber skills with 31 points, four rebounds, seven assists, a steal and two blocks. He was ably supported by Luguentz Dort, who contributed 19 points while maintaining defensive pressure on the Clippers’ star trio. Rookie standout Chet Holmgren also made his presence felt with 17 points, 10 rebounds, three assists and three blocks.

The Thunder set the tone early with a fast-paced game, seizing a narrow lead after the first quarter. Despite a strong response from the Clippers, Oklahoma City maintained a two-point advantage heading into halftime. Their momentum surged in the third quarter, allowing them to establish a commanding lead of 96-82 by the end of the period.

As the game entered its final stretch, the Thunder continued to dominate, securing a decisive victory over the Clippers. Jalen Williams stepped up in the fourth quarter, contributing 18 points to seal the win.

Looking ahead, the Thunder will face the Washington Wizards before hosting the Clippers in their next matchup. With a remarkable 37-17 record this season, Oklahoma City remains a formidable contender, bolstered by a favorable schedule down the stretch. Maintaining their top-three position in the NBA standings will require consistency, but the Thunder are poised for success as they navigate the remainder of the season.

Recap of NBA 2024 All-Star Weekend in Indianapolis

The 2024 State Farm All-Star Saturday Night featured the inaugural NBA vs. WNBA 3-Point Challenge. Stephen Curry, widely regarded as one of the greatest shooters in NBA history, showcased his prowess by edging out New York Liberty’s Sabrina Ionescu in a thrilling showdown. Despite Ionescu’s impressive performance, sinking seven consecutive shots en route to a score of 26, Curry drained every rack to secure a victory of 29-26. The friendly competition between Curry and Ionescu added an extra layer of excitement to the event.

In other events, Damian Lillard successfully defended his title in the Starry 3-Point Contest, while Mac McClung captured his second-straight AT&T Slam Dunk contest crown with a jaw-dropping dunk over Hall of Famer Shaquille O’Neal, aptly nicknamed the “Mac-A-Shaq.” Lillard’s dramatic victory in the 3-Point Contest added to the night’s entertainment, showcasing his skill and composure under pressure.

The presence of Indiana basketball legends Oscar Robertson and Larry Bird added a nostalgic touch to the All-Star festivities, with Bird’s legendary “Who’s coming in second?” line from the 1986 3-Point Contest echoing through the weekend as a reminder of his competitive spirit and confidence on the court.

The 2024 NBA All-Star Game also returned to its Eastern Conference versus Western Conference format, with the Eastern Conference emerging victorious with a historic 211-186 win over the Western Conference. The game marked the first time a team had surpassed the 200-point mark in All-Star Game history. NBA Commissioner Adam Silver noted how the return to the original format was well-received by players, providing a more familiar and enjoyable experience for all involved.

Overall, the 2024 NBA All-Star weekend in Indianapolis was a resounding success, filled with memorable moments and record-breaking performances that captivated basketball fans around the world.

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