Page 2B SPORTS East Oregonian Friday, January 26, 2018 Men’s College Basketball Tillie scores 27 points as No. 15 Gonzaga thumps Portland By ANNE M. PETERSON AP Sports Writer PORTLAND — Killian Tillie had a big night against Portland. Now his coach wants to see him do it again the next game. Tillie had 27 points and seven rebounds, and No. 15 Gonzaga cruised to a 95-79 victory on Thursday night. Developing consistency is key to the sophomore forward’s development, Gonzaga coach Mark Few said. He’d like to see the same strong performance at home on Saturday against San Francisco. “He can really do some things, but I just told him in the locker room tonight, he needs to follow it up,” Few said. Tillie agreed. “Of course,” he said. “Usually when I get good games like that, I get bad games after. So I’ve got to WCC #15 Gonzaga Portland 95 79 be more consistent and have more of these games.” Corey Kispert added a season-high 23 points and 10 rebounds for the Bull- dogs (18-4, 8-1 West Coast Conference), who won their 20th straight conference road game. It was Gonzaga’s 10th straight win over the Pilots (8-14, 2-7). The Bulldogs are 27-2 against Portland under Few. Freshman Marcus Shaver Jr. had 16 points for the Pilots (8-14, 2-7), who trailed by as many as 28 points in the second half. Portland went into the game with a two-game winning streak after losing AP Photo/Craig Mitchelldyer Gonzaga forward Killian Tillie, left, reacts after scor- ing against Portland forward Tahirou Diabate, center, and center Philipp Hartwich, right, during the second half of Thursday’s college basketball game in Portland. it first six conference games. The Pilots got road wins against San Diego and Loyola Marymount last week. “We didn’t do a good job offensively at times, and they took us out of some things,” Portland coach Terry Porter Gymnastics said. “And they just owned us on the boards. When we did have good defensive possessions, they were able to get offensive rebounds. Really kind of hurt us.” Gonzaga outrebounded Portland 40-25. The Bulldogs stumbled last week, falling 74-71 at home against St. Mary’s, but rebounded from their lone conference loss with a 75-60 win at Santa Clara. Gonzaga fell two spots in the AP Top 25 as a result of the loss. Gonzaga opened with a 3-pointer from Josh Perkins and built an early 12-3 lead while the young Pilots strug- gled, going 1 of 5 from the field. Tillie’s dunk stretched the Bulldogs’ lead to 36-16 with 4:04 left in the half. The Zags, boosted by a crowd that appeared equally divided between Gonzaga and Portland fans, led 46-30 at the half. Tillie led all scorers with 13 points, and his final total matched his season high. Gonzaga had eight 3-pointers in the first half, and finished with 11. Gonzaga stretched the lead to 22 points in the second half after Kispert’s layup and free throw. Portland, with three freshmen starters, simply could not keep up. Pilots 7-foot-2 center Philipp Hartwich fouled out with just over six minutes to go. “I thought by and large that we were really good on offense all night and we had enough stretches on defense to give us some separation,” Few said. The Zags won the first game of the series 103-57 in Spokane on Jan. 11. Silas Melson had 23 points including seven 3-pointers. ASSESSING THE SEASON Few said he is happy with where his team is, midway through the conference schedule. “At the turn, 8-1 is pretty good,” he said. “Obviously we lost one we didn’t want to lose the other night at home. But 8-1 at the turn, and we’ve got a bunch of tough games in the second half of the league.” Football Sponsors flee scandal-plagued Look what’s back: WWE head USA Gymnastics; future cloudy McMahon resurrects XFL Associated Press INDIANAPOLIS — Staring at an uncertain future after the departure of several sponsors, USA Gymnastics faces a steep climb as it tries to regroup in the wake of the sexual abuse scandal that has rocked the national governing body of the sport. The loss of corporate partners is a financial blow to the organization, which had total revenues of $34.4 million and net assets of just over $3 million in 2016, according to Internal Revenue Service documents. USA Gymnastics received nearly $3 million from the USOC last year, a figure that fluctuates annually between Olympic cycles. Adding to the woes are pending legal matters. Scores of gymnasts who were abused by former sports doctor Larry Nassar are suing USA Gymnastics, Nassar and Michigan State University, where he also worked. “USA Gymnastics is facing a crisis, one that will influence sponsor decision-making for years,” said Professor T. Bettina Cornwell, academic director of Warsaw Sports Marketing Center at the University of Oregon. “Partnerships in sport are all about sharing valued associations. Brands want to associate with things like ruggedness, grace, passion, joy, success and even trying hard in the face of failure. They are fearful to associate with an organiza- tion tied to the horrific Larry Nassar.” The 54-year-old Nassar was sentenced Wednesday to 40 to 175 years in prison, capping a seven-day hearing in a Michigan courtroom that featured several of his victims. The list of companies that have dropped sponsorship includes Under Armour, AT&T, Kellogg, Proctor & Gamble, and Hershey. A statement from AT&T on Tuesday said the company was suspending its ties “until it (USA Gymnas- tics) is re-built and we know that the athletes are in a safe environment.” The company said it remained committed to helping the athletes and hoped to find other ways to accomplish that, adding that it was ready to return as a sponsor once USA Gymnas- tics has fully addressed the crisis. Under Armour issued a similar statement when it ended its partnership with USA Gymnastics in December. “We stand with these athletes and hope our decision to end this partner- ship resounds with USAG leadership and helps to facilitate necessary change,” the statement said. In an open letter to Team USA on Wednesday, U.S. Olympic Committee CEO Scott Blackmun called for all current USA Gymnastics directors to resign and threatened decertification if changes aren’t made. USA Gymnastics issued a statement in response, supporting an investigation and accepting “the abso- lute need of the Olympic family to promote a safe environment for all of our athletes.” It did not respond to Blackmun’s call for more resignations. Paul Parilla, who led USA Gymnastics during the sex abuse scandal, board vice chairman Jay Binder, and treasurer Bitsy Kelley already have resigned. Ronald Goodstein, asso- ciate professor of marketing at Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Busi- ness, said USA Gymnastics can rebuild, but more change is needed and recovering won’t happen quickly. “There is a way to recover, but they can’t be in a rush to find sponsors,” Goodstein said. “The first thing they have to do is identify the root cause, why it fell through the cracks, and fix it.” Installing some of the victims as leaders of the board “would go a long way” toward restoring confidence, and whatever measures are taken have to convince the public that there is no more threat of abuse, Goodstein said. “There has to be tangible action the public can see,” Goodstein said. “This all has to happen before they seek sponsors.” Goodstein said USAG also needs to support the affected athletes and their families and seek organiza- tions to help with therapy. “What’s being done to help these young women? It is not providing them with money,” he said. Associated Press STAMFORD, Conn. — The XFL is no longer an ex-football league. The sexed-up, second- rate football league formed as the early 2000s brain- child of WWE ringleader Vince McMahon is set for a surprising second life in 2020. The league that spawned “He Hate Me” and placed TV cameras in the bathroom flamed out in 2001 after one wild season. Interest in the league was reignited when ESPN aired the “This Was the XFL” documentary that chronicled the spectacular football failure. McMahon is back in charge, pumping $100 million into the XFL through his new private entity, Alpha Entertain- ment. “I’ve always wanted to bring it back,” the 72-year-old McMahon said on Thursday. “I think the most important thing that we learned with the older XFL and now the new XFL is the quality of play. We have two years now to really get it right.” McMahon, who will continue as chairman and CEO of WWE, offered few other details about the football comeback. The XFL will launch with eight teams, 40-man active rosters and a 10-week regular-season schedule. McMahon said the schedule, designed to fill the seven-month gap without the NFL, could begin as early as ined.” This could be the end of January. a gimmick-free No cities or TV XFL, perhaps partners were without nick- named. names such as The league Rod Smart’s will own the eight “He Hate Me” teams. stitched on the The original back of his XFL was founded uniform. by the wrestling McMahon McMahon company and jointly owned by NBC, said the XFL did not want and opened to massive TV players with a criminal ratings. But the audience record and even a DUI did not stick around on would exclude an athlete Saturday nights to watch from a contract. McMahon bad football, lascivious wanted his players to stand cheerleader shots, soph- for the national anthem, omoric double entendres though stopped short of and other gimmicks that saying it was mandatory. “As far as our league saw ratings plummet and quickly doomed the league. is concerned, it will have The XFL in 2001 had nothing to do with poli- eight teams, mostly in tics,” McMahon said. “And major markets, such as nothing to do with social Chicago, Los Angeles and issues, either. We’re there San Francisco. McMahon to play football.” The XFL and WWE said the selection of cities in the new XFL will be will have no crossover, announced in the next few unlike the first incarnation months, and a mix of major when wrestling announcers and mid-major markets and personalities such as former Minnesota Gov. will be considered. The XFL postseason Jesse Ventura dominated will have two semifinal the football telecast. McMahon promised games and a championship game. XFL salaries have a safer football league, yet to be decided, though though he again offered players will be paid more no specifics for a league to win. He wants a 2-hour that unveiled a human coin game and even tossed out toss the first time around the idea of eliminating — players scrambled from each team to grab the foot- halftime. “We will present a ball to decide it. One player shorter, faster-paced, separated his shoulder family-friendly and easier fighting for the ball. “We’re going to listen to to understand game,” McMahon said. “It’s still medical experts and heed football. But it’s profes- their advice,” McMahon sional football reimag- said. KNIGHTS: Shot 50 percent from floor in second half, 9 for 10 from free throw line Continued from 1B me and got going.” Both teams’ defenses controlled the game in the first half, as the Knights and Vikings (15-5, 3-2) combined to shoot just 12 for 45 (26 percent) from the floor with 18 turnovers for 34 points. The second half, though, played out completely different as the offenses took over with 64 combined points and just 10 turnovers. There were seven lead changes and seven ties in the second half, with the Knights holding the lead for the final 2:42. “The last few games with us all could’ve gone either way and came down to who can execute the best down the stretch, including this one,” Irrigon coach Davie Salas said. “The last time, we had a lead with two minutes left, too, but we got careless with the ball, tonight we didn’t. “It was a fun, exciting game and my hat’s off to them (Umatilla). These are tough, emotional games but these are fun games and who every pays money to see these are lucky.” Behind Phillips, Eric Carillo scored 14 points and hit some big shots in the second half and Adrian Roa finished with 10 points. Irrigon was a near-perfect 9 for 10 from the free throw line and shot 50 percent from the floor in the second half. Kaden Webb scored a game-high 21 points for Umatilla and Sebastian Garcia nailed four 3-pointers to boost him to a 17-point performance as well. The Vikings struggled inside the 3-point arch, shooting 7 for 27 (26 percent), including 0 for 4 in the final quarter. But coach Scott Bow said his team coming up short in the game isn’t exactly a disappointment. “You add 30 seconds on the clock, like the game at our house, and they could’ve went either way,” Bow said. “This was one of those games where you have 32 minutes to figure it out, and at the end they had the two-point lead just like we had the lead at our place. So it’s not really disappointing because the kids played tough, played really well.” The win gives Irrigon a two-game lead over Umatilla and Nyssa for the lead in the Eastern Oregon League, but Salas said the Knights can’t get too comfortable with it. “I told the kids to have fun tonight and enjoy it, but we don’t want to stop here,” Salas said. “We still have a lot of work left to do and our goals are bigger than just beating Umatilla. But it feels good to get this one and give us some confidence going down the road. “And if we both keep doing what we’re doing and don’t lose focus, we’ll probably see each other again soon.” ———— UHS IHS 13 12 5 4 14 16 16 — 48 18 — 50 UMATILLA — K. Webb 21, S. Garcia 17, C. De Loera 4, T. Durfey 2, S. Cranston 2, G. Armenta 2, M. Garcilazo. IRRIGON — J. Phillips 16, E. Carillo 14, A. Roa 10, D. Vera 6, L. Covarrubia 2, P. Holcomb 2, O. Vera, A. Gomez, K. Fleming. 3-pointers — UHS 6, IHS 4. Free throws — UHS 16-21, IHS 9-10. Fouls — UHS 15, IHS 11. GIRLS BASKETBALL IRRIGON 56, UMATILLA 36 — At Irrigon, the home Knights moved into sole possession of first place in the Eastern Oregon League with a big win over Umatilla on Thursday night. Jada Burns led the Knights (16-3 overall, 5-2 EOL) with a game-high 19 points and Ana Zacarias scored 12 points, 10 of which came in the third quarter alone. Taylor Davis also had a big game, scoring nine points with 10 rebounds, seven steals and five assists. “Defensively we played hard and forced some turn- overs in the first half to build a nice lead,” Irrigon coach Mike Royer said. “I liked the way we passed the ball tonight.” Devina Monreal led the Vikings (3-16, 0-5) with nine points and Lauryn Journot added six. ———— UHS 4 5 9 18 — 36 IHS 17 13 18 8 — 56 UMATILLA — D. Monreal 9, L. Journot 6, Reyes 4, Ford 4, Alvarez 4, Ortiz 4, Lorence 3, Picker 2. IRRIGON — J. Burns 19, A. Zacarias 12, T. Davis 9, N. Romero 7, B. Rice. O. Luna 2, M. Davis 2, A. Luna 2. 3-pointers — UHS 6, IHS 2. Free throws — UHS 6-10, IHS 8-12. ———— Contact Eric at esinger@ eastoregonian.com or 541-966-0839. Follow him on Twitter @ByEricSinger. HALL OF FAME: Jones becomes fifth Brave from 90s dynasty to reach Cooperstown Continued from 1B thousands of questions struggled for answers to the proposed Hall-for-title swap. Not winning a title left holes in their resumes and egos. “It’s very heartbreaking, I have to tell you,” Thome said. “It’s something that you will never lose sight of. You will never lose what it meant to prepare all winter and then to finally be introduced in a World Series is just the ulti- mate. ... A day like today is special, but I can only envi- sion what it would have been like to win a World Series. Thome reached the World Series only one other time, in 1997. The Indians were two outs from a title before the Florida Marlins rallied in the bottom of the ninth and won Game 7 in 11 innings. Hoffman, a minor league infielder for three seasons before switching to the mound, made his only appearance when the San Diego Padres got swept by the New York Yankees in 1998. He made it to the mound in just one game, allowing Scott Brosius’ go-ahead three-run homer in the eighth inning of Game 3. “I think you selfishly prepare and you unselfishly become a teammate,” Hoffman said. “And so I’ll stand on the fence and basi- cally say both are pinnacles in our game.” Guerrero’s only Series appearance was in his next- to-last season, when the Texas Rangers lost to the San Francisco Giants over five games in 2010. He hit a go-ahead RBI single against Tim Lincecum in his first at-bat, then went hitless in his next 13 along with a sacrifice fly. “Even though we did not win the World Series, it is an experience that I’ll share for a long time,” he said through a translator. Jones was in the playoffs each year from 1995-2005 and again in 2012, and he hit .273 with one homer and six RBIs in 16 World Series games. A year after the Braves beat the Indians, they took a 2-0 Series lead against the Yankees only to lose four in a row. In 1999, they got swept by New York. He joins teammates Greg Maddux, John Smoltz and Tom Glavine in the Hall along with manager Bobby Cox and general manager John Schuerholz. In winning a record 14 straight division crowns, the Braves expected to keep on winning the World Series — as did their fans. “We get bashed for only winning one,” Jones said.