University of Arizona softball senior catcher Callista Balko and senior pitcher Taryne Mowatt were named Wednesday to the Amatuer Softball Association’s watch list for USA Softball National Player of the Year.
Balko will be a fourth-year starter this season. The Canyon del Oro High School graduate has caught every pitch for the Wildcats for the past two seasons.
“It’s an honor to be recognized as one of the potential impact players in the country,” she said. “But at the same time, I think both Taryne and I realize that the work needs to be done on the field.”
Last year, Balko threw out 31 percent of base stealers and allowed only 37 stolen bases, the second lowest total in the Pac-10. She also hit 10 home runs with 32 RBI.
For Mowatt, this is the second time she’s named to the preseason watch list. Last year, the National Fastpitch Coaches Association second-team All-America selection captured Women’s College World Series Most Outstanding Player honors after setting WCWS records for innings pitched (60), victories (6), complete games (8) and strikeouts (76).
The watch list is comprised of 50 players from 34 schools and 14 conferences.
Red Wings top Coyotes
DETROIT – The Detroit Red Wings waited until the third period to strike, and that was good enough.
Nicklas Lidstrom’s goal with 7:28 left completed a comeback and lifted the NHL-leading Red Wings to their fifth straight win, 3-2 win over the Phoenix Coyotes on Wednesday.
It was the sixth goal for Lidstrom, who also had two assists. Martin Hanzal and Ed Jovanovski scored for Phoenix and Ilya Bryzgalov stopped 36 shots.
“Detroit was lucky to get a point and lucky to get a win,” Bryzgalov said. “We have to win this game.”
It was the fourth time this season Phoenix failed to hold a 2-1 lead against Detroit.
Thrashers 4, Penguins 1: In Atlanta, the Thrashers snapped a five-game losing streak, but leading scorer Ilya Kovalchuk left the game with an apparent knee injury. The Penguins fell to 2-2-1 since losing captain Sidney Crosby to a high ankle sprain.
Wild 5, Ducks 1: In St. Paul, Minn., Brian Rolston, Marian Gaborik and Mikko Koivu scored less than two minutes apart in the second period to lead Minnesota.
Sabres 1, Panthers 0: In Sunrise, Fla., Thomas Vanek scored a power-play goal in the first minute of the second period and Ryan Miller stopped 32 shots in Buffalo’s win over Florida.
Avalanche 6, Black-hawks 3: In Denver, Marek Svatos scored twice and Colorado broke through against Chicago’s Nikolai Khabibulin.
Flames 5, Sharks 4: In Calgary, Alberta, Owen Nolan’s hat trick gave Calgary its fourth straight win.
UConn women roll
HARTFORD, Conn. – Maya Moore scored 23 points and Renee Montgomery added 21 as top-ranked Connecticut beat South Florida 71-48 on Wednesday night, giving the Huskies 20 wins for the 15th consecutive season.
Connecticut (20-0, 7-0 Big East), is the only undefeated team in Division I, and has won 33 consecutive regular season games. Over that span, the Huskies have beaten their foes by an average of over 29 points per game.
Moore has scored in double figures in all 20 games. That’s the longest such streak for a UConn player since Diana Taurasi scored in double digits in 31 consecutive games between Feb. 19, 2003 and Jan. 27, 2004.
Nadal skips Peru match
Rafael Nadal thinks Spain has a better chance of beating Peru in the first round of the Davis Cup without him. He’s skipping Spain’s match on clay in Lima from Feb. 8-10 because of fatigue after traveling back from the Australian Open.
By Citizen Staff Report, Wire