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New Braunfels Herald Zeitung (Newspaper) - April 19, 2001, New Braunfels, Texas Contact Sports Editor Bryan Adams at 625-9144 ext. 223. Sports Thursday April 19, 2001 IBStars, Oilers ready to untie knot in Game 5 By Stephen Hawkins AP Sports Writer DALLAS — The Edmonton Oilers proved this year’s playoff series with the Dallas Stars is different. After being eliminated by the Stars in five games or fewer in the playoffs for three straight years, Edmonton heads back to Dallas for Thursday’s Game 5, with the first-round Western Conference series tied 2-2. “The confidence level is higher than the past,” Edmonton defenseman Janne Niinimma said. “We know we can beat these guys. We really do know.” Rookie Mike Comrie’s power-playHITCHCOCK goal 17:19 into the first overtime Tuesday night gave the Oilers a 2-1 victory. Not only did it even the series, it assured a Game 6 on Saturday in Edmonton. And Edmonton’s goal wasn’t just to take the series to six games. “We want to win the series,” forward Dan Cleary said. This is now a best-of-three series, with the Stars holding home-ice advantage. If necessary, Game 7 would be Monday in Dallas. “They had to come back and regroup, they did a great job,” Stars coach Ken Hitchcock said. “Now it’s our turn ... our building, our fans, our turn to respond. “These (losses) are only devastating if you don’t respond. They can either be motivators or they can be situations that make you crumble.” Stars forward Shaun Van Allen said, “We’re fine. We’ve still got home-ice advantage.” Just like the four previous playoff series between the Stars and Oilers, this one has been close. Three of the games have gone to overtime, and all four have been decided by one goal. Of the 25 playoff games between the two teams since 1997, when Edmonton won the series in seven games, 18 have been one-goal games. Dallas is 13-5 in the one-goal affairs, and won their 10th straight with a 2-1 overtime victory in Game I before Edmonton bounced back with a 4-3 win in the second game. “The desperation in their players is evident. When you get it slammed down your throat so many times, you want to do some good things,” Hitchcock said. “We’ve been able to be on the winning side of these overtime, these See STARS/2B Playoffs CONFERENCE QUARTERFINALS Stars vs Oilers (series tied 2-2) Game 1 Dallas 2, Edmonton 1 (OT) Game 2 Edmonton 4, Dallas 3 Game 3 Dallas 3, Edmonton 2 (OT) Game 4 Edmonton 2, Dallas 1 Thursday’s game Edmonton at Dallas, 8 p.m. Saturday’s game Dallas at Edmonton, 6 p.m. Monday, April 23 (lf necessary) Edmonton at Dallas, 6 p.m. Sonics blast Spurs 105-67 in season finale SEATTLE (AP) — Gary Payton scored 31 points and rookie Desmond Mason added a season-high 25 as the Seattle Supersonics beat the San Antonio Spurs 105-67 Wednesday night. No Spur was even in double figures until Shawnelle Scott hit his 10th point on a free throw with 3:23 left in the third quarter. Scott got the start in place of David Robinson, who was resting a stiff back before the playoffs. Tim Duncan played only 19 minutes. Scott led San Antonio with 14 points and 14 rebounds and was the only Spur to hit double figures. Somaki Walker finished with ll rebounds. Danny Ferry led the Spurs with six points in the first half. Seattle (44-38) was play- Playoffs NBA PLAYOFFS Spurs vs Timberwolves Saturday’s game Minnesota at San Antonio ing its last game of the season after being knocked out of the playoffs last week. Mason shot 11-of-19 from the field. His previous high of 22 points came against Minnesota on Jan. 19. San Antonio (58-24) had already clinched the NBA’s best record with a 99-93 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Tuesday. The Spurs are the top playoff seed in the Western Conference and will have home-court advantage throughout. They open at home against Minnesota on Saturday. Vander Wal, Pirates ruin Reynolds’ return PITTSBURGH (AP) — John Vander Wal went 4-for-4 with a home run and two RBIs as the Pittsburgh Pirates spoiled Shane Reynolds’ return with an 8-4 win over the Houston Astros on Wednesday night. Reynolds (0-1) was making his first start since July 29. His 2000 season ended early of degenerative disks in his lower back and he was late to spring training because of surgery to repair his left knee, which he injured while jog- Wednesday’s game Pirates 8, Astros 4 Astros’ next game: vs. Florida Marlins, 7:05 p.m. Friday ging in December. Reynolds allowed four earned runs and nine hits in 5 2-3 innings. He walked two and struck out five.Texas Christian’s Tomlinson ready to live out NIL draft dreams By Stephen Hawkins AP Sports Writer FORT WORTH — As a child, LaDainian Tomlinson watched the NFL draft every year and imagined being part of it. “I dreamed about being in the green room waiting for my name to be called out, be there wearing a suit and then putting on a team’s hat,” he said. After leading the NCAA’s in rushing the last two seasons and being a Heisman Trophy finalist, Tbmlinson will five out that scene Saturday. The likely first-round pick from Texas Christian is among the players the NFL invited to New York for the draft. “That it is happening is overwhelming for me,” he said. The last two seasons, Tomlinson overwhelmed defens es, rushing for 4,008 yards and 40 touchdowns. His 2,158 yards as a senior were the fourth-most in NCAA history. As a junior, he gained 1,850 yards, including a Division I-A single-game record of 406. The 5-foot-11, 220-pound Tbmlinson ranks sixth on the NCAA career rushing list with 5,263 yards and eighth with 54 rushing TDs. “He’s got a combination of See TOMLINSON/2B Canyon comes up short in Fredericksburg CHRIS PACE/Herald-ZeitungCanyon’s Keith Brangan, left, tags out a Fredericksburg runner during a game earlier this season at Cougar Field. Canyon lost to Fredericksburg late Tuesday night in Fredericksburg 10-4. From staff reports Matt Schriewer pitched a complete game for the Canyon baseball team late Tuesday night, but the Cougars came up short in Fredericksburg, 10-4. Scott Segner started for the Battlin’ Billies and went five innings before Billy Bob Ersch came in to pitch the sixth and seventh innings. Canyon’s Chad Gregson and Keith Brangan started a Cougar rally in the first with a pair of singles. Brandon Bugosh drove in one run with a single and Justin Thompson ripped an RBI-double to give the Cougars a 2-0 lead after one inning of play. Fredericksburg scored four in the second inning to take a 4-2 lead. Bugosh was 2-for-4 with a double in the game. Wes Michalec had an RBI sin gle in the fourth driving in Korry Leverett who was hit by a pitch, stole second and advanced to third on a Tyler Tun-nell’s single. Fredericksburg took a 10-3 lead with six runs in the bottom of the fourth inning. In the fifth, Scott Schnieder and Schriewer hit back-to-back two-out singles before Tanner Henk hit a double to drive in Schnieder. Canyon scored four runs on IO hits and committed three errors. Fredericksburg had IO runs on 14 hits and made one error. Canyon’s record fell to 5-18 overall and 0-7 in District 27-4A play. The Cougars host the New Braunfels Unicorns on Parents’ Night at 7 p.m. Friday at Cougar Field.District 27-4A - District 27-4A Baseball Standings All Dist Boerne    22-4-1    5-2 Smithson Valley    16-7    5-2 New Braunfels    13-13-1    4-3 Kerrville Tlvy    15-5-2    4-3 Fredericksburg    13-9    3-4 Canyon    5-18    0-7 Tuesday’s games Fredericksburg 10, Canyon 4 Boerne 4, Kerrville 0 Wednesday’s game S.Valley, N.Braunfels Friday’s games N.Braunfels at Canyon, 7 p.m. Kerrville at S.Valley, 7 p.m. F’burg at Boerne, 7 p.m. SV runs past NB Rangers hang six in first inning; Fuller strikes out 14 Unicorns K. JESSIE SLATEN/Herald-Zeitung Smithson Valley base runner Ryan Yates avoids the tag by New Braunfels first baseman Cody Reimer (19) as Clint Haney, left, takes third and pitcher Craig Crow (22) looks on during Wednesday’s game at Unicorn Field. Smithson Valley beat New Braunfels 8-2. Reininger said. “Then he made a mistake and left one out over the plate. I made him pay for it.” The rally did not stop there. Kyle Mandelbaum singled before Michael Pawelek reached on an error. Mandelbaum’s courtesy runner Clint Haney scored when Ryan Yates laid down a bunt and reached on the fourth NB error of the inning. Chris Dabbs and Chris Van Kleef followed with RBI-singles to give the Rangers a 6-0 lead. “(Tuesday) we came out really pumped up and pretty confident,” Reininger said. “After the rains came we found out we had to start over at 0-0. We were pretty upset, but that didn’t change the way we came out and played (Wednesday).” Reininger was 4-for-5 in the game, scored twice and stole a base. Mandelbaum went 2-for-5 with a double and a run batted in. Dabbs racked up three singles in four trips to the plate. NB threathened to score in the second inning with one out after Andrew Aguirre was hit by a pitch, Jason Mirori singled and Austin Chandler walked to load the bases. Fuller then See BASEBALLS By Bryan Adams Sports Editor Smithson Valley jumped out to a 5-0 lead against New Braunfels Tuesday at Unicorn Field before rain postponed the game until Wednesday. Starting from scratch, the Rangers hung six runs on the Unicorns in the first inning Wednesday and pitcher Cody Fuller struck out 14 Unicorns en route to an 8-2 win. “This is a great win for us,” SV head coach Matt Gustafson said. “This is the one we had to have. First, we needed to even things up with (New Braunfels) since they got us the first time at our place. Second, we need it to stay in the race for the aistrict title.” With the win the Rangers (16-7 overall) pulled even with Boerne in first place at 5-2 in District 27-4Aplay. “Our chances are as good as any right now to win the district,” Fuller said. “We’re really starting to roll. I said a long time ago, we have to find the right time to peak, and I think we’re starting to do that now.” SV got things going early in the first inning with a little help from two Unicorn errors before J.D. Reininger stepped to the plate. After falling behind 0-2 against NB pitcher Craig Crow, Reininger fouled off a pitch and looked at three straight balls. On the next pitch, Reininger parked one over the left field fence to give the Rangers a 3-0 lead. “He threw me two perfect pitches right off the bat on the outside corner,” ;