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Sportshorts for April 10, 2014

Published: Thursday, April 10, 2014 12:12 a.m. CDT

MEN’S BASKETBALL

Embiid leaving Kansas for NBA

Seven-foot Kansas freshman Joel Embiid has declared for the NBA draft.

Projected to be a top-three pick in June, Embiid missed Kansas’ final two regular-season games, the Big 12 tournament and the NCAA tournament because of a stress fracture in his lower back.

Embiid, who is from Cameroon, broke the Jayhawks’ freshman record with 72 blocked shots and was named the Big 12 Defensive Player of the Year.

UMass hoopster reveals he’s gay

University of Massachusetts’ Derrick Gordon is the first openly gay Division I men’s basketball player.Gordon, a starter who averaged 9.4 points per game last season, gathered his teammates to tell them he was gay 1 week ago and had come out to his parents only days before.

He drew courage from fellow athletes, including Jason Collins and Michael Sam.

Michigan State fan dies of cancer

Lacey Holsworth, an 8-year-old girl with cancer who had a heart-warming bond with Michigan State basketball star Adreian Payne, has died.

Her father, Matt Holsworth, told The Associated Press that Lacey died late Tuesday at their St. Johns, Mich., home “with her mommy and daddy holding her in their arms.”

Lacey met Payne after being diagnosed with neuroblastoma – a fetal-nerve cell cancer – and during a hospital stay 2 years ago, at which point the two became close and part of each other’s lives. She wore a blond wig because chemotherapy caused her to lose her hair.

The 6-foot-10 Payne carried her around the court on senior night at Michigan State.

NEWS

Pistorius shown photo of girlfriend

A South African prosecutor forced Oscar Pistorius on Wednesday to look at a forensic photograph that showed the head of his girlfriend Reeva Steenkamp, after it was blown open by a hollow-point bullet fired by the Olympic and Paralympic track star.

In a dramatic opening to his cross-examination of Pistorius, prosecutor Gerrie Nel made him admit he had killed Steenkamp then later confronted him with the photograph showing the side and back of her skull, her hair matted with blood and brains.

 

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