Tuesday, December 12, 2017
Sports

Sports in brief

Soccer: EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIP

RIDICULED ITALY BLANKS BELGIUM

PARIS — Italy opened with an impressive victory over Belgium, while defending champion Spain beat the Czech Republic at the European Championship on Monday.

Ridiculed by Italian media as one of the country's worst tournament teams, Italy's 2-0 victory sent the Azzurri to the top of Group E after Sweden and Ireland drew 1-1.

"We did really well to prepare this game so well and prove all the critics wrong, because the critics were all against us," said Italy coach Antonio Conte, who got a bloody nose in celebrations after Emanuele Giaccherini's first-half goal.

Said center back Leonardo Bonucci, who was a big part of a strong defense: "We showed some typical Italian qualities. Sacrifice, humility, physical fitness, desire."

Spain got a late goal from Gerard Pique to win 1-0.

NFL

Former DT Robinson dies in Milwaukee

Bryan Robinson, who played 14 seasons as a defensive lineman for the Rams, Bears, Dolphins, Bengals and Cardinals before retiring after the 2010 season, died Saturday after he was found unresponsive in a Milwaukee hotel room. He was 41. Milwaukee police said there were no obvious signs of trauma and are treating the incident as a sudden death. Robinson is probably best remembered for blocking a field goal for the Bears as time expired against the Packers on Nov. 7, 1999, Chicago's first game after Walter Payton's death. "He was kind of a jerk to me but if you took it the right way it was helpful, especially to me as a rookie," said former Bears linebacker Brian Urlacher. "He became one of my better friends on the team.

MORE NFL: Eagles defensive tackle Fletcher Cox agreed to a six-year deal worth $103 million. The first-round pick in 2012 has 308 tackles and 22 sacks in his career. … Saints outside linebacker Hau'oli Kikaha has an anterior cruciate ligament injury in his left knee, the same knee in which the 2015 second-round pick had ACL repairs twice during college, and is reportedly out for the season. … The Lions will have cheerleaders for the first time since 1974. President Rod Wood said the cheerleaders will elevate game-day entertainment.

et cetera

tennis: Steve Johnson of the United States beat fourth-seeded Richard Gasquet 7-6 (7-2), 6-2 in the Wimbledon warmup tournament at Queen's Club in London. The other main draw matches were postponed by rain.

wnba: Minnesota (10-0) can break its league record for best start, set in 2012, against Indiana tonight.

Times wires

Comments

Girls soccer: Land O’Lakes 5, River Ridge 1

LAND O'LAKES – They might not have been ready to play at the very start, but Land O'Lakes came around. Sydny Nasello scored two goals as the Gators (8-2) took over first place in Class 3A, District 8 with a 5-1 defeat of visiting Rive...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Live from Disney: Winter meetings update, day 2

Live from Disney: Winter meetings update, day 2

The Rays have talked about a lot of things but not done much so far at the winter meetings, but that could change today.They have offers on the table for closer Alex Colome, and some of the interested teams – such as the Cardinals and Rockies &...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Rick and Tom podcast: Piling on Bucs head coach Dirk Koetter

Rick and Tom podcast: Piling on Bucs head coach Dirk Koetter

Is there a rift between Jameis Winston and Dirk Koetter as the 4-9 Bucs are eliminated from the playoffs for a 10th straight season?In their latest podcast, Rick Stroud and Tom Jones discuss what impact this has going forward for the Bucs and whether...
Updated: 10 minutes ago
NFL Network suspends three analysts over sexual assault allegations; Warren Sapp accused of harassment

NFL Network suspends three analysts over sexual assault allegations; Warren Sapp accused of harassment

NFL Network has suspended analysts Marshall Faulk, Heath Evans and Ike Taylor "pending an investigation" into allegations of sexual harassment and assault, the network announced late Monday.The allegations were made in a lawsuit by former NFL Network...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Tyre McCants, USF’s brawny bruiser of a receiver

Tyre McCants, USF’s brawny bruiser of a receiver

TAMPA — Having spent 11 games watching Tyre McCants in the flesh — all 236 pounds of it — USF coach Charlie Strong seems convinced his team’s leading receiver down the stretch could be someone’s leading rusher down the road."I think he can do a whole...
Updated: 1 hour ago
MLB ump Dale Scott retires rather than risk more concussions

MLB ump Dale Scott retires rather than risk more concussions

LAKE BUENA VISTA — As a big league umpire, Dale Scott saw maybe 1 million pitches from the field. His final call, it turned out, was the easiest of all. Rather than risk yet another concussion, Scott has decided to retire at 58. "I’m done," he told T...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Explosives? On 40-yard plays, Bucs among NFL’s worst

Explosives? On 40-yard plays, Bucs among NFL’s worst

Bucs coach Dirk Koetter has key statistics that he puts great value in, finding a close correlation between success in those areas and success on the scoreboard. Winning the takeaway battle is always first among those priorities, but he and his staff...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Eagles confirm QB Wentz is done for season

Eagles confirm QB Wentz is done for season

PHILADELPHIA — Carson Wentz got the Eagles this far. Now, it’s up to Nick Foles to deliver Philadelphia its first Super Bowl title. Wentz has a torn left ACL and will miss the rest of the season and playoffs, forcing the NFC East champions to turn to...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Lions-Buccaneers Turning Point, Week 14: A coach's future hangs in the balance

Lions-Buccaneers Turning Point, Week 14: A coach's future hangs in the balance

TAMPA — The season started in August with “Hard Knocks,” packed bleachers at training camp and cheers for coach Dirk Koetter.It ended Sunday with a 24-21 loss to the Lions, a lot of empty seats and chants of “We want Gruden ba...
Updated: 11 hours ago

Tampa Bay Rays make a small deal, acquire INF Joey Wendle

While continuing discussions on bigger topics, the Rays made a small deal Monday, acquiring INF Joey Wendle from the A's for a player to be named later or cash.Wendle, 27, spent part of the last two seasons in the majors, hitting .266 over 36 games. ...
Updated: 11 hours ago