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Updated: 15 min 54 sec ago

Wolves beat injury-riddled Thunder

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 22:56
Six players had two steals each in a victory over Oklahoma City.
Categories: Local

Hartman: Vikings offense having a tough time adjusting

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 22:35
With all their missing players and a rookie QB, the team simply has not been able to score.
Categories: Local

What to watch for in soccer, football playoffs

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 21:56
A look at what to watch for as the soccer and football playoffs begin while the girls’ state tennis tourney is around the corner.
Categories: Local

Souhan: How much pain can rookie coach Zimmer take?

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 21:38
Categories: Local

Mark Craig's 5 Extra Points

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 21:16
Categories: Local

Gophers found a way to win, know they have to do better

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 21:04
A coach’s estimate: The Gophers won despite giving their best effort for only 25 of the 60 minutes.
Categories: Local

Wild notes: Vanek finding ample shots but no goals

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 20:04
Categories: Local

Associated Press/Coaches college football polls

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 19:22
Categories: Local

Everson Griffen shines, not satisfied in loss

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 18:35
Vikings defensive end Everson Griffen tied a career-high three sacks and a forced fumble in the 17-16 loss to the Bills on Sunday at Ralph Wilson Stadium, and he didn’t feel any personal satisfaction for his individual performance. “No man, we want the victory,” Griffen said. “It feels better if you get the victory. Three sacks doesn’t mean anything when you lose. We just have to keep going out there, grind next week, get back to the basics and finish better.” The Vikings defense recorded six sacks and eight quarterback hits, applying pressure on Bills quarterback Kyle Orton for the entire game. The unit played well up until the final drive when the Bills scored on a two-yard touchdown catch by Bills rookie wide receiver Sammy Watkins with one second left to take the lead. “It all starts with the team,” Griffen said. “We run together as a team, we lose together as a team. We just have to go back to the basics and finish. We’re of the mindset that you’re not going to score if you don’t get the sack, if you don’t get the turnover and if you don’t finish the play. I think that’s going to work out for us. We just have to bounce back from this tough loss. We played our tails off today. Many questioned why the Vikings re-signed Griffen to a five-year deal worth up to $42.5 million in the “Without my team, I wouldn’t be able to get three sacks,” Griffen said. “I’m just very happy to be playing with these guys, and we just have to bounce back and win the game. That’s all we have to do.”
Categories: Local

Losing Sullivan hurt Vikings

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 17:53
The veteran center left Sunday's loss because of a concussion.
Categories: Local

Flip starts unusual lineup vs. OKC in Tulsa

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 17:51
Wolves start unusual lineup based on Saturday's practice performance
Categories: Local

Bridgewater inconsistent, overthinking in third career start

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 17:47
Vikings quarterback Teddy Bridgewater said he was overthinking in the first half, which resulted in the two interceptions thrown during the 17-16 loss to the Bills on Sunday at Ralph Wilson Stadium. The rookie finished 15 of 26 for 157 passing yards with a touchdown and two interceptions. Bridgewater, who has started three career games, has thrown five interceptions in the last two games. “That was just me trying to be perfect,” Bridgewater said on his first half performance. “I think I went back to the old training camp days of trying to be perfect in every area instead of just trusting my God given ability, trusting this offense and trusting the system. I am going to continue to get better, just get a rhythm.” Both interceptions occurred in the second quarter. Bridgewater had a pass deflected off the back of a Bills defender and into Leodis McKelvin’s hands with 12:24 left in the first half. On the next offensive series, Bridgewater was picked off by McKelvin again on the first play. The Bills took the lead on the following possession on Bills rookie wide receiver Sammy Watkins’ 26-yard touchdown catch. After the second interception, Bridgewater felt he settled down after a conversation with wide receiver Greg Jennings. “Greg came up to me and he told me, ‘Hey, you know whatever is going on up in that head, up in that computer of yours, just reboot it,’” Bridgewater said. Bridgewater followed it up with his best drive this season, driving the Vikings down the field for his first career touchdown pass. On the five-play, 60-yard drive, Bridgewater was 3 for 3 for 57 yards and hit wide receiver Cordarrelle Patterson for a four-yard touchdown pass. “I feel I played all right,” Bridgewater said. “It could have been better. There were some times where I had to fight back, and I did a great job of fighting back and the guys showed their support, and they are willing to stand behind me no matter how my play is going.” It was another learning lesson for Bridgewater, who likely will have plenty more before the season ends.
Categories: Local

Zimmer positive despite crushing Vikings loss

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 17:02
Vikings head coach Mike Zimmer was upbeat despite a heartbreaking 17-16 loss to the Bills on Sunday at Ralph Wilson Stadium. Bills rookie wide receiver Sammy Watkins scored on a two-yard touchdown with one second left to hand the Vikings their third consecutive defeat. Zimmer felt the defense played well up until the final series – a 15-play, 80-yard drive that lasted 3:06. “Obviously you’re going to second guess a lot of calls you made throughout the course of the ballgame,” Zimmer said. “I’m still going to take away that I’m proud of our effort. There was a lot of negativism going on all over the place about how we are and what we do. By no means were we perfect today, but I do feel like this football team improved today. We didn’t improve enough to win, but I felt like we improved. So we’ve just got to keep going. We keep putting ourselves in these situations, and we’ll give ourselves a chance to win.” Last week, Zimmer was very critical about his team’s performance after losing to the Lions. He was the exact opposite during his press conference after the game. Zimmer felt there were a lot of positives to take away. He mentioned how rookie running back Jerick McKinnon had 103 rushing yards against the top rushing defense in the NFL and how the defense forced four turnovers and recorded six sacks. None of that will show in the win-loss column, however, as the Vikings dropped to 2-5. “‘Ifs’ and “buts’ are candies and nuts,” Zimmer said. “But if we knock that last ball down then we’re all happy in here today. “You never, ever, ever want to lose, and I don’t ever want to either. But I have to keep reminding myself about where we are, and where we have to continue to go.”
Categories: Local

Craig: Quick reaction to Vikings' 17-16 loss to Buffalo

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 16:49
My initial reaction from Buffalo, where the Vikings lost 17-16 on a 2-yard pass from Kyle Orton to Sammy Watkins with two seconds left? When did I wake up in 2013? The four-minute offense and the two-minute defense collapsed late in the same game and the Vikings walked off the field shaking their heads following a game-losing touchdown. Sounds like Chicago, Cleveland and Dallas from last season. And sort of like Baltimore, although that was the wildest scoring exhibition by both teams at the end of a game in the history of the NFL. Because the Vikings couldn’t close the deal, a lot of good performances get lost as the team falls to 2-5. For instance: . Outside linebacker Anthony Barr took an even bigger step toward proving he’s going to be one of the better linebackers in the league. His pass defense on Watkins on second-and-goal in the red zone was the kind of play that an instinctive, quick player with really long arms can make. . Never have I seen two offensive linemen leave the game for good on the same play until center John Sullivan and right guard Vladimir Ducasse did so in the first half. That put second-string center Joe Berger and third-string guard Mike Harris in the game. They actually played pretty well, which helped Jerick McKinnon rush for 103 yards against the league’s No. 1-ranked run defense. The Bills hadn’t allowed a 20-yard rush all season until McKinnon broke two tackles during a 29-yard run. . Teddy Bridgewater did a nice job bouncing back from two interceptions. But I fear that he is starting to sense pressure even when it’s not there. I saw that on a deep incomplete pass to Cordarrelle Patterson in the first half. But who can blame him. The offensive line played better today that last week, when Bridgewater was sacked eight times. But back-to-back sacks after getting that first-and-goal at the 7 tells you the line — particularly the tacklwes — still has a long way to go to live up to expectations. So where do the Vikings go from here now that they’re 2-5. Well, the played well enough for most of today’s game to make you believe they can win the next two games at Tampa Bay and home to Washington. If they can get to the bye at 4-5, they will have stabilized the sting that people are feeling after they botched a game they should have won today.
Categories: Local

Quick makes 40 saves for Los Angeles, Wild drops second straight

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 16:46
The Wild generated more than enough chances to win, but Jonathan Quick challenged, sprawled and contorted his Los Angeles Kings bunch to a 2-1 win.
Categories: Local

Sunday Meltdown: Gophers overcame; Vikings did more of the same

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 16:04
Anyone who has watched enough football knows there are two specific scenarios that give fans a bad feeling about what’s to come: 1) A missed extra point early in the game coming back to haunt and 2) Missed opportunities to pad a lead coming back to haunt. The Gophers (scenario 1) and the Vikings (scenario 2) played games this weekend that followed both of those scripts, and the way both games played out says everything you need to know about each team right now. 1) The moment the Gophers missed an extra point against Purdue, particularly in the manner in which it happened (doinking the upright following a penalty that moved the try back five yards), the hardened football fan was wondering if the Gophers would be chasing that point all day. Sure, they were still up 20-14 after the miss, but giving away a free point is dangerous. Sure enough, Purdue rattled off the next 17 to take a 31-20 halftime lead. Not only did it feel like the miss had altered momentum, but also it led to a score gap that made the failed extra point feel particularly important. So the Gophers scored next, of course, then chased that missed point with a trick play on their next conversion. It failed again, leaving them down 31-26. By the time it was 38-29 Purdue late in the third quarter, both failed conversions felt like they very well could determine the margin of defeat for the Gophers – and derail a promising season. Instead, of course, the Gophers rallied for a touchdown to make it 38-36 and then what proved to be the winning field goal with five minutes left – a 52-yarder by freshman Ryan Santoso, the very guy who set the chain of events in motion. One could even speculate that if the score had been tied 38-38 (with both attempts converted for one point, or the second converted for two points), the Gophers would have had to think twice before trying such a long field goal, since the risky kick is easier to justify when trailing than when tied. Regardless, Minnesota persevered and overcame a potentially fatal mistake because that’s what good teams do. 2) The Vikings, on the other hand, forced four turnovers against Buffalo and had two great chances late to create a two-score lead. Set up with 1st-and-goal from Buffalo’s 7 early in the fourth quarter and already leading 13-10, they looked very much like the 2013 Vikings by taking back-to-back sacks and settling for a field goal that kept it a one-score game. Uh-oh. Given a reprieve by the defense, and after moving the ball near midfield with under five minutes to play, the Vikings probably needed another 15 yards for a chance at a Blair Walsh field goal that would have made it 19-10. Instead, the drive stalled, the Vikings punted, and Kyle Orton did to the Vikings what so many quarterbacks did a year ago. Different year, same Vikings. Better offense would have meant the 4th-and-20 allowed by the defense was a frustrating side note. Instead, Vikings fans were left to curse the fact that their fears with a six-point lead were realized while Gophers fans reveled in that team’s ability to overcome a mistake.
Categories: Local

Buffalo's last-second TD sinks Vikings

Sun, 10/19/2014 - 15:53
Categories: Local

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