AP Monday Sports Roundup
Big upset in the Big East
UNDATED (AP) — Seton Hall made a huge statement as it tries to land a berth in the NCAA Tournament for the first time in 10 years.
Desi Rodriguez had career highs of 27 points and 12 rebounds as the unranked Pirates whipped the fifth-ranked Xavier Musketeers 90-81. Isaiah Whitehead had 22 for Seton Hall, which led 45-26 at halftime and improved to 21-7 overall.
Xavier scored 55 points in the second half but was unable to catch the Pirates. James Farr and Trevon Bluiett had 17 points apiece for the Musketeers, who dropped to 25-4 and fell two games behind Big East-leading Villanova.
In other top-25 finals:
— Denzel Valentine's 19 points, eight rebounds and six assists led sixth-ranked Michigan State to an 88-57 rout of Penn State. Deyonta Davis and Bryn Forbes scored 15 points each as the Spartans earned their fourth straight win to improve to 24-5 overall, 11-5 in the Big Ten.
— Ohio State upset eighth-ranked Iowa 68-64 behind Marc Loving's 25 points. Keita Bates-Diop added 19 points for the Buckeyes, who trailed by six before closing on a 12-2 run.
— No. 13 Oregon earned an 86-73 win over Washington as Elgin Cook matched his career-high with 26 points. Dillon Brooks added 19 points to help the Ducks improve to 23-6 and earn their 25th consecutive home win.
— Jamel Artis scored 17 points and Pittsburgh gave its NCAA Tournament hopes a needed jolt by thumping No. 15 Duke 76-62. Senior point guard James Robinson added 14 points, seven assists and three rebounds as the Panthers improved to 20-8 and 9-7 in the ACC.
— Ben Moore scored 16 points and Sterling Brown added 15 as No. 24 SMU ripped Tulane 74-53. The Mustangs moved back into a first-place tie with Temple in the American Athletic Conference at 12-4.
Cavs stumble while LeBron sits
UNDATED (AP) — The Cleveland Cavaliers struggled this afternoon after LeBron James was given the day off.
James looked on as Washington Wizards guard John Wall contributed 21 points, 13 assists and seven rebounds in a 113-99 win over the Cavaliers. Wall was able to sit out the fourth quarter after the Wizards carried a 26-point lead into the period.
Otto Porter also had 21 points as the Wizards dealt the Eastern Conference leaders their second straight loss.
Kyrie Irving was the lone Cavalier with more than 12 points, finishing with 28.
The outcome gave Toronto a chance to pull within one game of the conference lead, but the Raptors ended a four-game winning streak with a 114-101 loss at Detroit. Reggie Jackson topped the Pistons with 19 points and Andre Drummond posted his league-leading 51st double-double, finishing with 14 points and 18 rebounds.
Also in the NBA:
— Al Horford had 13 points and a season-high 16 rebounds as Atlanta whipped 87-76. Kent Bazemore had a team-high 14 points for the Hawks, who end a five-game homestand with back-to-back wins after dropping the first three games.
— Atlanta remains a half-game off the Southeast Division lead after Dwyane Wade delivered 26 points, seven rebounds and six assists in Miami's 98-81 win at New York. Hassan Whiteside added 16 points and 11 rebounds off the bench for the Heat.
— Damian Lillard had 33 points and the Portland Trail Blazers won for the eighth time in nine games by downing the Pacers 111-102 at Indianapolis. CJ McCollumn and Gerald Henderson each scored 19 points as the Blazers sent the Pacers to their third loss in four games.
— Chandler Parsons scored 13 straight Dallas points and finished with 29 as Dallas hammered Minnesota 128-101. Parsons hit four of his seven 3-point attempts and was 10 of 15 from the floor in the Mavericks' sixth straight victory over the Timberwolves.
— Nik Vucevic, Victor Oladipo and Aaron Gordon combined for 78 points and Orlando shot 57 percent in a 130-116 win over Philadelphia. Vucevic and Oladipo each had 28 points and Gorden finished with 22 as the Magic dealt the 76ers their eighth consecutive loss.
Hawks regain conference lead
UNDATED (AP) — The Chicago Blackhawks are back atop the NHL's Western Conference standings after knocking off the Eastern Conference leaders.
Jonathan Toews scored the tiebreaking goal in the second period and Dennis Rasmussen added the eventual game-winner with 7:13 remaining as the Hawks downed the Washington Capitals 3-2 in Chicago. Corey Crawford turned back 28 shots to help the Blackhawks move one point ahead of the slumping Dallas Stars in both the conference and Central Division standings.
Marcus Johansson and Evgeny Kuznetsov scored for the Capitals, who still have a league-high 94 points and a 16-point lead in both the East and Metropolitan Division races.
Elsewhere on NHL ice:
— Anaheim is within two points of the Pacific Division lead after Corry Perry scored a hat trick in the Ducks' 4-2 win over the division-leading Kings. Perry snapped a 2-2 tie early in the third period and David Perron added an insurance tally as the Ducks improved to 15-1-1 in their last 18 games.
— Robby Fabbri, Kyle Brodziak and Alex Pietrangelo each had a goal and an assist as St. Louis knocked off Carolina 5-2 to halt a three-game losing streak. Jake Allen stopped 32 shots for the Blues, who won for the fifth time in six road games to stay two points behind the West-leading Blackhawks.
— Joe Pavelski and Tomas Hertl scored 2:28 apart in the third period of San Jose's 4-1 verdict over the Canucks in Vancouver. Martin Jones stopped 23 shots and Marc-Edouard Vlasic added two assists as the Sharks climbed within six points of the Pacific Division-leading Kings.
— Minnesota had dropped nine straight at home before Erik Haula and Jason Pominville scored in the third period of the Wild's 3-1 win over Florida. Devan Dubnyk stopped 17 shots as the Wild moved two points behind Colorado for the second Western Conference wild card playoff spot.
— Cam Talbot stopped 36 shots and the Edmonton Oilers ended a seven-game losing streak by scoring three times in the third period of a 3-1 win over the New York Islanders. The Oilers trailed 1-0 until Anton Lander and Leon Draisaitl scored 55 seconds apart midway through the final stanza, dropping the Isles to 3-1 on their seven-game road trip.
— The Panthers' lead in the Metropolitan Division is down to two points over Tampa Bay after Ryan Callahan scored twice and Steven Stamkos converted a penalty shot in the Lightning's 4-1 downing of Boston. Ben Bishop turned back 32 shots to help the Lightning pick up their sixth consecutive win and break a second-place tie with Boston in the division.
Hurricanes jettison Staal, Versteeg
UNDATED (AP) — Veteran NHL center Eric Staal is leaving one brother and joining another.
The New York Rangers have acquired the 31-year-old Staal from the Carolina Hurricanes for center prospect Aleksi Saarela and second-round picks in each of the next two drafts. He's now on the same roster as older brother Marc Staal after sharing ice time with Jordan Staal in Carolina.
Eric Staal is a former 100-point scorer who has registered 322 goals and 453 assists in 909 NHL games over 12 seasons. He has struggled this season, scoring just 10 goals and 33 points in 63 games.
Staal can become a free agent after the season.
Carolina continued to shed payroll after dealing Staal, sending Kris Versteeg to the Kings for prospect Valentin Zykov and a conditional fifth-round draft pick. Versteeg had 11 goals and 22 assists in 62 games for the Hurricanes.
In other NHL news:
— The Capitals have acquired forward Daniel Winnik and a 2016 fifth-round pick from Toronto for forward Brooks Laich, defenseman Connor Carrick and a second-round pick in the June draft.
— Flyers forward Michael Raffl has agreed to a multiyear contract extension rather than test free agency this summer. The third-year player has eight goals and nine assists in 61 games this season, a year after scoring a career-best 21 goals.
Report: Davis wants back in the NFL
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Former San Francisco 49ers offensive lineman Anthony Davis apparently wants to end his retirement. A person with knowledge of the decision says Davis plans to file for reinstatement after he retired in June last year following a head injury.
Davis had always left open the possibility of making a comeback after sitting out a year to get healthy. The 49ers still have has his rights.
Notes from spring training
UNDATED (AP) — Free agent shortstop Ian Desmond has finally found a new team.
A baseball official with knowledge of the deal says Desmond has agreed to a one-year, $8 million deal with the Rangers and will sign once he passes a physical. Desmond had spent his seven-year major league career with the Washington Nationals, hitting .264 with 110 home runs, 432 RBIs and 122 stolen bases. He hit 19 homers and drove in 62 runs last year while compiling a career-worst .233 average.
Desmond has played at least 154 games each of the last three seasons and is a better hitter than a fielder, averaging 24 errors a year since 2013. He is expected to play outfield for the Rangers.
Also in the majors:
— The Blue Jays have signed former All-Star closer Rafael Soriano, who posted a 6.35 ERA in six games with the Chicago Cubs. Soriano last pitched a full major league season in 2014, going 4-1 with 32 saves and a 3.19 ERA in 64 games for the Nationals.
— Veteran infielder Juan Uribe has formally signed a one-year contract with the Indians and will most likely start the season as the Tribe's third baseman. Uribe has a .256 batting average with 192 home runs with six teams over 15 big league seasons.
— The Dodgers have announced that Clayton Kershaw will be their opening-day pitcher for the sixth straight year. Kershaw was 16-7 last season with a 2.13 ERA and 301 strikeouts.
HAMPTON, Ga. (AP) — Jimmie Johnson has climbed up NASCAR's all-time victory list by taking the second race of the Sprint Cup season.
Johnson used pit strategy and a late yellow to claim the 76th victory of his career at Atlanta Motor Speedway, tying Dale Earnhardt for seventh on the career wins list. He won the race in overtime, crossing the line under yellow following the only wreck of the day.
Dale Earnhardt Jr. finished second, followed by Kyle Busch, Kurt Busch and Carl Edwards. Kyle Busch won the pole Friday but had to start last after his car failed a post-qualifying inspection.
Kevin Harvick led a race-high 131 laps but ceded the lead after he made his last green-flag pit stop nine laps after Johnson.
Scott takes over first
PALM BEACH GARDENS, Fla. (AP) — Adam Scott closed with an even par 70 to win the PGA's Honda Classic. Scott ended a 33-month winless drought on the tour by finishing play at 9-under, one shot in front of Sergio Garcia.
Blayne Barber and Justin Thomas tied for third at minus-5.
CHONBURI, Thailand (AP) — American Lexi Thompson has won her seventh LPGA title by taking the event in Thailand. She closed with a 68 that completed a six-stroke victory over In Gee Chun of South Korea.
The 21-year-old Thompson hit an eagle on the 10th to go along with three birdies and a lone bogey for a 20-under-par total of 268 to become the first American winner of the tournament.
SOLDEU-EL TARTER, Andorra (AP) — The always gutsy Lindsey Vonn was able to take part in an Alpine combined event a day after fracturing her left knee. Wearing braces on both knees, the four-time overall World Cup champion extended her overall World Cup lead by placing 13th in the event.