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Top-25 College Basketball

In  a double-overtime  thriller,  Naadir  Tharpe's floater  proved  to be  the
difference  as  the No. 9  Jayhawks returned  the favor by downing 14th-ranked
Oklahoma  State  on its  home  court,  68-67, in  a  pivotal  matchup for  top
positioning in the Big 12 conference. Despite missing its first seven shots in
the  extra  sessions, Kansas  (22-4, 10-3  Big 12) trailed  by just one before
Tharpe's  tear-drop floater with 20 seconds remaining in the second OT put the
visitors on top by one. The Cowboys (19-6, 9-4) had two chances on their final
possession,  but Markel Brown's jumper misfired and Phil Forte, after grabbing
the  offensive  rebound, turned it  over as  Oklahoma State saw its seven-game
winning streak come to an end.

Elsewhere in the Top-25:

(3) Gonzaga 85, Santa Clara 42
(8) Syracuse 84, Providence 59
(11) Georgetown 90, DePaul 66
(12) Arizona 70, Washington 52
(18) Ohio State 71, Minnesota 45
(19) Wisconsin 69, Northwestern 41
(21) Memphis 81, Houston 74
UNLV 61, (22) Colorado State 59

National Basketball Association

Trading  James  Harden in the  offseason came back  to haunt the Oklahoma City
Thunder  on Wednesday  night. Harden poured in a career-high 46 points against
his  former team, including 16 in the final frame, to lift the Houston Rockets
to  a 122-119  come-from-behind victory over the Thunder at Toyota Center. The
third  overall pick  in the  2009 draft  knocked down  a career-high  seven 3-
pointers  and  added eight rebounds  and six assists  to help Houston earn its
fifth straight home victory.

Elsewhere in the NBA:

Detroit Pistons 105, Charlotte Bobcats 99
Indiana Pacers 125, New York Knicks 91
Memphis Grizzlies 88, Toronto Raptors 82
Miami Heat 103, Atlanta Hawks 90
Cleveland Cavaliers 105, New Orleans Hornets 100
Brooklyn Nets 97, Milwaukee Bucks 94
Minnesota Timberwolves 94, Philadelphia 76ers 87
Dallas Mavericks 111, Orlando Magic 96
Golden State Warriors 108, Phoenix Suns 98
Los Angeles Lakers 113, Boston Celtics 99

National Hockey League

Jakub  Voracek  completed his first  career hat  trick thanks to recording the
game-winning  goal with  1:31 left  in regulation  as the  Philadelphia Flyers
gutted  out  a 6-5 win  over the Pittsburgh  Penguins at CONSOL Energy Center.
Wayne  Simmonds added two  goals and one assist for the Flyers, who avenged an
opening-day  3-1 home  loss to their bitter rivals and completed a season-long
six-game road trip with two straight wins to finish at 3-3-0. Nicklas Grossman
also  tallied, while  Claude Giroux posted a pair of assists as Ilya Bryzgalov
picked up the victory with 27 saves.

Elsewhere in the NHL:

Colorado Avalanche 1, St. Louis Blues 0 (OT)
Los Angeles Kings 3, Calgary Flames 1

HOCKEY


The  Buffalo Sabres have relieved head coach Lindy Ruff of his duties, general
manager  Darcy  Regier announced Wednesday.  Ruff had been the longest-tenured
active head coach in the NHL, having served behind the Sabres' bench since the
1997-98  season. He led the club to the 1999 Stanley Cup Finals  in his second
year  at the helm, but Buffalo failed to make the playoffs last season and  is
currently tied  for 11th in the Eastern Conference  with a 6-10-1 record. Ruff
compiled a 571-432-78-84 overall mark in his 15 seasons with the organization.
Ron Rolston, head coach of the Sabres' AHL affiliate in  Rochester, will  take
over Ruff's duties on an interim basis for the remainder of the season.

Anaheim signed  goaltender Viktor Fasth  to a two-year  contract extension  on
Wednesday.  The  30-year-old Fasth has been  quite impressive in his first NHL
season,  going  8-0-0 with  a  1.78  goals-against  average  and a  .933  save
percentage.  He is  one victory  shy of  matching Ray  Emery's record  of nine
consecutive wins to start an NHL career. Fasth signed a one-year contract with
the Ducks  in May to be  Jonas Hiller's backup  after starring  in the Swedish
Elite League, where he won the Honken Trophy as the Goaltender of the Year for
both the 2010-11 and 2011-12 campaigns.

AUTO RACING

Dale  Earnhardt  Jr.  will have  to  start  from  the  rear of  the  field  in
Thursday's  first qualifying race for the Daytona 500 due to an engine change.
During  Wednesday's  practice at Daytona International Speedway, Earnhardt Jr.
blew  a motor in his No. 88 Hendrick Motorsports Chevrolet. He suffered engine
failure  halfway through  the  first  of the  two  practice  sessions for  the
Budweiser Duel (twin-qualifiers). Earnhardt Jr. finished 11th in last Sunday's
time trials for the Daytona 500 and had earned the sixth starting position for
race one in the twin qualifiers.

GOLF

The opening round of WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship in Marana, Arizona,
was suspended Wednesday because of accumulating snow on the course at The Golf
Club  at  Dove  Mountain.  Play  will resume  Thursday  at  10:30  a.m.  (ET).
Wednesday's  lead  match -- Sergio Garcia  vs. Thongchai Jaidee -- had reached
the  16th  green. Garcia has  a putt to  win the match as  he held a 2-up lead
at  the  time play was  stopped. None  of the four  top seeds -- Rory McIlroy,
Tiger  Woods, Luke Donald and Louis Oosthuizen -- had teed off before the snow
started falling.

 

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