Denver beats rival Colorado State 80-70
FORT COLLINS, Colo. (AP) - Brett Olson scored 24 points as Denver beat Colorado State 80-70 on Wednesday night for its first road victory over its in-state rival since 1979.
Leading by 2 and nearing the midway point of the second half, Denver (3-5) went on a 12-4 run to extend its lead to 61-51 with 7:13 to play. Colorado State (7-4), which had won 11 in a row over the Pioneers at home, never got closer than seven points the rest of the contest.
Chris Udofia and Dom Samac each went 5-for-8 from the field for Denver, scoring 15 and 12, respectively. Denver shot 50.9 percent.
Daniel Bejarano scored 17 and J.J. Avila had 16 for Colorado State. The Rams shot 54.3 percent from the field.
Denver has now won 3 of 4 after dropping its first four games of the season. Colorado State has lost six of its past seven.
Kelly Clark off to smooth start in Olympic quest
BRECKENRIDGE, Colo. (AP) - Kelly Clark began her quest for a third Olympic medal in strong fashion Wednesday, finishing first on the halfpipe in preliminaries of the season's opening Olympic qualifier.
Clark, who won gold in 2002 and bronze in 2010, scored 94.8 on her second run and will get to go last in Saturday's finals of the Dew Tour iOn Mountain Championships, the first of five halfpipe events that will determine the U.S. Olympic team.
Others making the final included defending Olympic champion Torah Bright of Australia, 2006 silver medalist Gretchen Bleiler and 13-year-old Chloe Kim of California, who isn't old enough to be eligible for the Olympics.
Shaun White is on the mountain Thursday for halfpipe qualifying. He'll also be riding in the slopestyle contest, one of the new Olympic events. Slopestyle qualifying is Friday.
Welker ruled out against Chargers with concussion
ENGLEWOOD, Colo. (AP) - As expected, coach John Fox has officially ruled out Wes Welker for Denver's game against San Diego on Thursday night because of a concussion.
The NFL's protocol for concussed players would have allowed Welker only to participate in light practice Thursday and only if he had passed baseline cognitive tests earlier in the week.
For competitive purposes, Fox had been coy about Welker's status during the week, other than to say the receiver's health was the team's top priority.
Welker was going low to catch a pass Sunday when Tennessee safety George Wilson legally hit him in the side of his neck, knocking him from the game.
Welker also sustained a concussion Nov. 17 against Kansas City but played the following week at New England.
NEW MEXICO BOWL
New Mexico Bowl to feature teams in transformation
ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) - Two teams with long college football bowl game appearance droughts will face off in the New Mexico Bowl on Dec. 21.
The matchup between Colorado State (7-6) and Washington State (6-6) in Albuquerque will mark the first meeting between the teams and comes as both are turning around their long-struggling programs.
Second-year Colorado State Rams coach Jim McElwain told reporters Wednesday he is happy to get his team back in a bowl game after a five-year post-season absence. He says his upperclassmen have never had the experience and the game will help with recruiting.
Mike Leach, Washington State's second-year coach, says the Cougars are largely made up of freshmen and sophomores. But he says his seniors have been through "dry times" and are excited to play in at least one bowl game.
Vonn to skip St. Moritz, return on Dec. 21
PARK CITY, Utah (AP) - The U.S. Ski Team says Lindsey Vonn will skip this weekend's World Cup races in St. Moritz, Switzerland, and is planning to compete in a downhill on Dec. 21 at Val d'Isere, France.
Vonn returned to racing last week at Lake Louise, Alberta, 10 months after tearing two ligaments in her right knee and breaking a bone in that leg during a crash at the world championships.
She finished 40th in her season debut Friday, a downhill, then 11th in another downhill Saturday, and fifth in a super-G on Sunday.
The 29-year-old American, who won two medals at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics, said Sunday she would work with her coaches to figure out a schedule leading up to the Sochi Games, which start in less than two months.
NATIONAL FINALS RODEO
Wright brothers at top of saddle bronc standings
LAS VEGAS (AP) - Saddle bronc rider Jake Wright took over the season standings lead from his brother, Cody, during round seven of the National Finals Rodeo on Wednesday.
Jake Wright of Milford, Utah, won the round with an 84.5 on Special Time and took over first place in the standings with $156,905 and in event earnings with $68,810. He is third in the aggregate standings with 491.5 points for six rides.
Wright's brother and previous standings leader, two-time world champion Cody Wright, also of Milford, tied for fourth with a 79.5 on Get Smart and is now second with $154,244.
A third Wright brother, Jesse, is fifth in the standings with $132,388.
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