Mitch's Sports Report: UVM's Trae Bell-Haynes To Test NBA Draft; Jays Literally Leap Over Cardinals

Apr 26, 2017

The America East player of the year has declared his intention to jump from college to the pros.

UVM's Trae Bell-Haynes says he will make himself eligible for the 2017 NBA draft, but the junior point guard is doing so without an agent, declaring himself among more than 130 early entrants for the draft selection process. By not hiring an agent, Bell-Haynes is leaving the door open to returning to UVM for his senior season. He has until ten days after the NBA draft combine, taking place from May 9th through the 14th in Chicago, to pull his name from the draft and retain his college eligibility. he says he'll do so if he doesn't draw any interest from a pro squad. Bell-Haynes had a break-out season for the Catamounts last year, averaging 11 points and nearly 4 assists per game and crossing the 1,000 career point threshold, but no UVM player in school history has ever been drafted by an NBA team.

In college men's lacrosse the Norwich Cadets improved to 9-7 on the year with a 13-5 win over Ana Maria yesterday. Nolan Aurelia had two goals and two assists and senior Nick Imbriani also had a four-point game with three goals and a helper, as the Cadets also bump their record over North Atlantic Conference foes to 5-2.

Elsewhere, St. Michael's gave Bentley all it could handle, falling only after yielding the game winning goal in the final minute of play in a 10-9 loss in Waltham, Massachusetts yesterday. Brian Loughlin led the Purple Knights offense with three goals in the losing effort.            

In college baseball action Plattsburgh State swept a double-header from the Norwich Cadets, winning 8-2 in game one and 3-1 in the second contest.

The Castleton Spartans also played two, and took both ends of a double header against Lyndon State yesterday. Devin Hayes was terrific on the hill for Castelton in game one, giving up just four hits in a complete game 7-inning performance in which he struck out five. The Spartans took the second game 7-2, scoring five times in the top of the second inning to complete the sweep.

The Spartans also took two from Lyndon State in softball in a relentless attack over two games that saw the Castleton women pound out a total of 31 hits and 29 runs, winning game one 13-0 and the nightcap 16-1. The Spartans are having a great season, 17-7-1 overall, and 9-1 in the North Atlantic Conference. The Hornets are still struggling for their first win of the year.

Two other college softball games, St. Michael’s at St. Anselm, and New England College at Johnson. were postponed due to the weather.

That was the case at Fenway Park in Boston, where the Red Sox and Yankees had their first meeting of the season delayed by Mother Nature, and at Citi Field in Queens, where the Mets and Braves were also rained out.

No such problem in St. Louis, where the Cardinals and Toronto Blue Jays went 11 innings before the Blue Jays won 6-5, and while the Jays are really scuffling in the early going, they gave their fans a "how about that?" highlight reel goodie in their win last night when Chris Coghlan jumped clean over catcher Yadier Molina to score on a play at the plate in the 7th inning.

Coghlan was chugging around the bases on a triple that got over the head of Stephen Piscotty, who collected the ball and threw a three-hop throw that reached Molina a bit up the line but there in plenty of time to have Coghlan dead to rights, but Coghlan saw Molina crouch down to grab the low throw and timed a perfect leap over the catcher, somersaulting to land right on home plate. Worth a look here:

The Jays didn't actually win the game until the top of the 11th, though, when pitcher Marcus Stroman doubled as a pinch hitter for his first ever major league hit and eventually came around to score on a throwing error. This will no doubt be used as evidence by National League partisans that the designated hitter is a blasphemy and pitchers should always be allowed to hit, but Stroman was only pinch hitting in that situation because the Jays were out of position players, he was filling in for another pitcher when he went to the plate, had been 0 for 5 previous to that hit, and if you watch closely on the replay, you can see him closing his eyes before he swings. I'm joking, of course. It was a clutch hit by Stroman, but it does nothing to change my mind about the superiority of the designated hitter.

In the NBA playoffs, the Houston Rockets are moving on after taking their opening round series from the Oklahoma City Thunder four games to one, winning game five 105-99 last night despite 47 points from OKC star Russell Westbrook.

The Utah Jazz are now up 3 games to 2 over the L.A. Clippers after a 95-92 win last night, and the San Antonio Spurs are also up 3-2 on the Memphis Grizzlies after a 116-103 rout.

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