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Player improving after passing out

ON TARGET: Brittney Griner, center, takes a jumper over Notre Dame’s Natalie Achonwa, left, and Markisha Wright in the second half of her 24-point, 14-rebound performance for Baylor.

Associated Press

ON TARGET: Brittney Griner, center, takes a jumper over Notre Dame’s Natalie Achonwa, left, and Markisha Wright in the second half of her 24-point, 14-rebound performance for Baylor.

SALT LAKE CITY — A Utah State player who collapsed at practice and had to be revived after he stopped breathing is improving and making good progress, school officials said Wednesday night, though he remains in critical condition.

Danny Berger is awake and talking to his family in a Salt Lake City area hospital, team doctor Trek Lyons said at a news conference in Logan. Tubes used to help Berger breathe have been removed.

"He recognizes his family, his doctors and the instructions he is given," Lyons said. "It is a good sign and a sign of improving."

Doctors don't know what caused Berger, 22, to collapse on the court during a practice Tuesday in Logan. Berger doesn't have any known pre-existing condition or heart problems, Lyons said.

"As a well-conditioned athlete, he goes through a stress test every day," Lyons said. "It just reminds us that some things are still unpredictable."

A team of doctors — including cardiologists, pulmonologists and trauma specialists — is running tests on Berger in the intensive care unit at Intermountain Medical Center in a Salt Lake City suburb, hospital spokesman Jess Gomez said.

Berger is responding the way "doctors want him to," older brother John said Wednesday afternoon.

"As of right now, things are looking good," John Berger said in a statement he read to reporters. John Berger was with his sister, Lauren Berger. They did not take any questions.

Despite the improvements, Berger remains in critical condition, Gomez said.

Longtime Utah State assistant athletic trainer Mike Williams is being credited with saving Berger's life.

In the middle of practice, Berger collapsed into the arms of teammate Kyisean Reed as he moved toward the sideline. He was not breathing when he hit the court, Lyons said.

Within a minute or two, Williams used a defibrillator on Berger, who was in full cardiac arrest, he said. The shocks helped Berger regain a pulse.

NO. 18 NEW MEXICO 75, USC 67: Hugh Greenwood had 17 points and Alex Kirk 13 plus 13 rebounds for the host Lobos (9-0).

NO. 19 MICH. ST. 76, ARK.-PINE BLUFF 44: Garry Harris scored 13 and Travis Trice 12 for the host Spartans (7-2), who held the Golden Lions scoreless for almost 10 minutes.

Women: USF at 7-0

TAMPA — Andrell Smith had 19 points and Inga Orekhova added 15 as USF beat Florida Gulf Coast 67-46 to improve to 7-0 for the first time since the 2007-08 season.

"This was a very good win for our group," coach Jose Fernandez said. "We just have to keep moving and take one game at a time."

The Bulls pulled away in the second half, hitting 5 of 9 3-pointers and holding the Eagles to 5-of-26 shooting (19.2 percent).

NO. 3 BAYLOR 73, NO. 5 NOTRE DAME 61: Brittney Griner had 24 points and 14 rebounds, three other Bears scored in double figures and visiting Baylor (7-1) won a rematch of last season's national championship game. The Fighting Irish (5-1), with two starters returning, could do little to slow Griner and Baylor, which brought back every starter from its 40-0 team.

NO. 21 UNC 64, RADFORD 44: Waltiea Rolle had 24 points and Xylina McDaniel 16 points and eight rebounds for the host Tar Heels (8-1), who bounced back from Sunday's blowout loss to Tennessee.

CREIGHTON 66, NO. 25 NEBRASKA 57: Marissa Janning scored 19 off the bench on 7-of-10 shooting for the host Bluejays, who upset the Cornhuskers (6-3) for their first win over a ranked team since 2008.

Player improving after passing out 12/05/12 [Last modified: Thursday, December 6, 2012 12:27am]
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