Regional Sports March 6

sports3Paxton 3 scoreless IP; M's lose to Indians 8-5
James Paxton allowed two hits in three scoreless innings and Nick Franklin drove in two runs Wednesday in the Seattle Mariners' 8-5 loss to the Cleveland Indians. Cleveland starter Travis Banwart lasted just two-thirds of an inning and allowed four runs and three hits, including a leadoff homer by Abraham Almonte.

Banwart left with the bases loaded, and Nick Hagadone walked Michael Saunders and gave up Franklin's two-run single. Pinch-hitter Francisco Lindor, a 20-year-old top prospect, hit a tiebreaking double off Danny Farquhar in a three-run ninth. Ryan Raburn made it 5-all with a two-run homer in a four-run seventh against Lucas Luetge. Seattle started position players who all could be on its opening-day roster. Robinson Cano singled and scored, and Kyle Seager doubled and scored.

Blazers Rout Hawks 102-78; Korver's Streak Ends
Nicolas Batum had 14 points and a career-high 18 rebounds and the Portland Trail Blazers routed Atlanta 102-78, a loss that marked the end of Hawks guard Kyle Korver's NBA-record streak of 127 games with a 3-pointer. Korver had surpassed Dana Barros' record of 89 straight, set from 1994-96, earlier this season. He was 0 for 5 from 3-point range against the Blazers. Mo Williams added 15 points off the bench for Portland, which had six players in double figures. Portland, which led by as many as 29 points, has won six of its last seven games while keeping pace as one of the teams battling for the top four seeds in the West. Cartier Martin had 16 points off the bench for the Hawks, who have lost four straight and 12 of their last 13 as they fight to stay in the Eastern Conference playoff picture.

No. 3 Arizona beats Oregon State 74-69
Nick Johnson scored 25 points and No. 3 Arizona beat Oregon State 74-69 on Wednesday night in a back-and-forth game that wasn't decided until the final minutes. Kaleb Tarczewski added 12 points and nine rebounds for the Wildcats (28-2, 15-2 Pac-12), who had already clinched the regular season conference title. Roberto Nelson scored 25 points and Devon Collier had 14 points and 11 rebounds for the Beavers (15-14, 7-10). Arizona built several leads during the game but couldn't pull far away from a feisty Oregon State team. Arizona opened the game on a 7-0 run before Oregon State responded and took a 10-9 lead on a steal and layup by Hallice Cooke at the 14:13 mark. The Wildcats gradually crept away, and an alley-oop pass from T.J. McConnell to Johnson for a dunk that put the Wildcats up 31-22 with 3:53 left in the half, their largest lead of the game. Arizona led 36-33 at halftime.

Stanford favorite for Pac-12 tournament
Stanford is going to the NCAA tournament again, likely as a No. 1 seed. California, Oregon State and Arizona State are almost assured of joining the Cardinal after all finished with at least 21 wins in the regular season. The question for the Pac-12 is whether anyone else can play their way into the NCAAs with a strong performance in the conference tournament this week at KeyArena in Seattle. The tournament gets started on Thursday with UCLA facing Colorado; USC against Arizona; Washington State against Oregon and Washington taking on Utah. Stanford, California, Oregon State and Arizona State all received first-round byes after finishing in the top four of the conference standings. Right now, those four are almost locks for the NCAAs. But the next tier - USC and Washington especially - could play themselves in.

Suspended CB Brandon Browner reinstated by NFL
Former Seattle Seahawks cornerback Brandon Browner has been reinstated by the NFL following his suspension in December for violating the league's policy on substance abuse. The NFL and NFL Players Association announced the decision in a joint statement Wednesday, a day after Browner revealed the news on Twitter. Browner was suspended indefinitely without pay by the league Dec. 18. Browner's contract with the Seahawks expires March 11, and he will be eligible to sign with a club and participate in offseason and preseason activities. If he complies with the terms of the substance abuse policy and program, he will be fully reinstated after serving a four-game suspension without pay at the start of the regular season and forfeiting an additional four weeks of pay.

Donor Gives Beavers $2 Million Toward Track Center
The Oregon State Beavers have received a $2 million challenge gift to help complete the school's Whyte Track and Field Center. The gift by a donor who wishes to remain anonymous will go toward the second phase of the facility's construction, which includes grandstands, a hammer throw area and a scoreboard. The total budget for the phase is estimated at $4.5 million. All previous donations and pledges to the project, totaling $550,000, will be counted toward the challenge. The deadline for donations is Dec. 31. The Whyte Track and Field Center opened in September 2012 as the Beavers have rebuilt their track program under coach Kelly Sullivan. The sport was dropped by Oregon State after the 1988 season. Construction for the new phase is expected to start next spring.

March 6, 2014