Bob­cats top Idaho, will face St. Peter’s

Pear­son’s 16 points help lead Bob­cats to CIT quar­ter­fi­nals.

Austin American-Statesman - - SPORTS - Klyt­tle@states­ Wire ser­vices Con­tact Kevin Lyt­tle at 512445-3615. By Keff Ciardello Amer­i­can-States­man Correspondent

Cir­cuit of the Amer­i­cas launches its 2017 race sea­son this weekend with the Hoosier SCCA Su­per Tour South­west Shootout.

The Hoosier Tour is the Sports Car Club of Amer­ica’s top-level ama­teur road rac­ing se­ries, and this will be the first time in four years that a pre­mier SCCA ama- teur se­ries has vis­ited COTA.

More than 450 cars from across the South and South- west re­gions, in­clud­ing more than a dozen teams from the Austin area, will be on hand Fri­day through Sun­day, com­pet­ing in 28 classes and seven race groups.

The cars range from Porsches to Corvettes to

An ap­peals court over­turned the con­vic­tion of a for­mer Bay­lor foot­ball player whose sex­ual as­sault case helped ig­nite a scan­dal that en­gulfed the na­tion’s largest Bap­tist school.

The Texas 10th Court of Ap­peals said in a rul­ing Wed­nes­day that text mes­sages be­tween the ac­cuser and friend should not have been ex­cluded from the tes­ti­mony in Sam Uk­wuachu’s 2015 trial in Waco. The court or­dered that a new trial be held for the for­mer stand­out de­fen­sive end for the Bears.

The ac­cuser ex­changed text mes­sages with a friend be­fore and af­ter the of­fense. But the trial court two years ago al­lowed tes­ti­mony­based only on the texts that came after­ward, in which the ac­cuser told her friend that Uk­wuachu raped her.

But Uk­wuachu ar­gued that the ear­lier texts showed the woman had con­sented to sex.

“In this case, the text mes­sages were made im­medi- ately prior to the of­fense and ap­peared to po­ten­tially re­late to prior oc­ca­sions where the vic­tim and Uk­wuachu had en­gaged in some type of sex­ual con­duct,” jus­tices de­ter- mined in their rul­ing.

John Clune, the at­tor­ney for the woman, said Thurs- day in an email that the jus­tices is­sued an “un­for­tu­nate rul­ing” that ul­ti­mately will be de­cided by the Texas Court of Crim­i­nal Ap­peals, which is the high­est crim­i­nal court in the state.

“The trial court ruled that these text mes­sages had no bear­ing on con­sent and we re­main op­ti­mistic that the higher court will agree,” Clune said. “Ei­ther way, the vic­tim will con­tinue to co­op­er­ate with the prose- cu­tion and see this case to its proper end.”

Uk­wuachu was sen­tenced to six months in jail but ended up serv­ing an ab­bre­vi­ated sen­tence.

Uk­wuachu’s lawyer, Wil­liam Brat­ton III, said the for­mer player had “great confi- Alfa Romeos to open-cock­pit ma­chines.

The weekend of rac­ing is free, and fans can park in Lot A near­est to the track’s main en­trance. Fri­day qual- ify­ing runs from 1-4:30 p.m. On Satur­day, a sec­ond round of qual­i­fy­ing starts at 8 a.m., with rac­ing go­ing from 12:30-4:30 p.m. On Sun­day, the rac­ing schedule be­gins at 8:30 a.m. and wraps up about 4:15 p.m.

COTA also will have watch par­ties Sun­day for the For­mula One and Mo­toGP sea­son open­ers. The Aus­tralian Grand Prix will be broad­cast on big-screen TVs in the Ve­loc­ity Lounge on a tape-de­lay ba­sis from 8-10 a.m. The Mo­toGP at Qatar will roll at 1 p.m. There is dence” his con­vic­tion would be over­turned.

“He needs a fairer run at this case than he had the first time,” Brat­ton said.

A spokes­woman for the McLen­nan County Dis­trict At­tor­ney’s Of­fice de­clined to com­ment, say­ing a state- ment might be re­leased later Thurs­day.

Uk­wuachu trans­ferred from Boise State Univer­sity in 2013 af­ter be­ing dis­missed for un­spec­i­fied rea­sons, but he never played for Bay­lor. He was in­el­i­gi­ble in 2013 and sus­pended in 2014.

Me­dia cov­er­age of his case and the 2014 sex­ual as­sault con­vic­tion of an­other for­mer player, Tevin El­liott, led the school to hire Philadelphia law firm Pep­per Hamil­ton to in­ves­ti­gate how the univer­sity and the foot­ball pro­gram han­dled re­ports of as­sault.

The univer­sity faces sev­eral law­suits from women who say Bay­lor mis­han­dled, ignored or sup­pressed their claims of as­sault for years, in­clud­ing sev­eral cases in­volv­ing foot- ball play­ers. The school also no charge for ad­mis­sion and con­ces­sions will be avail- able for pur­chase.

The track will have two free days of Mo­toAmer- ica test­ing Tues­day and Wed­nes­day. A 43-r i der slate is headed by two-time de­fend­ing Mo­toAmer­ica Su­per­bike champ Cam- eron Beaubier, his team- mate, Josh Hayes, and the two Yoshimura Suzuki rid­ers, Toni Elias and Roger Hay­den.

The test­ing will fea­ture four 50-minute ses­sions per class, be­gin­ning at 8:30 a.m. Tues­day and end­ing at 4:30 p.m. Wed­nes­day, along with Q&A ses­sions for fans. faces a fed­eral civil rights in­ves­ti­ga­tion.

In other news, a for­mer Bay­lor foot­ball player was ar­rested af­ter a grand jury in­dicted him on three sec- ond-de­gree felony sex­ual as­sault counts aris­ing from a 2013 in­ci­dent while he was with the Bears.

The Waco Tri­bune-Her­ald re­ported that for­mer tight end Tre’Von Arm­stead was ar­rested Wed­nes­day near his home­town of Port Arthur. The McLen­nan County grand jury handed down the in­dict­ment last week, but it re­mained sealed un­til Wed­nes­day.

Arm­stead was jailed in Beau­mont with bonds to­tal­ing $150,000. Jail records listed no at­tor­ney for the 22-year-old.

The in­dict­ment al­leges Arm­stead forced a woman to per­form sex acts in midApril 2013.

Last week, Arm­stead was ar­rested in Las Ve­gas and charged with do­mes­tic bat­tery, re­sist­ing ar­rest and dam­ag­ing a po­lice ve­hi­cle af­ter a dis­tur­bance be­tween Arm­stead and a woman.

Texas State’s men’s basketball team has ad­vanced to the quar­ter­fi­nals of the Col­legeIn­ Tour­na­ment with a 64-55 win over Idaho on Wed­nes­day night.

The Bob­cats (22-13) host Saint Peter’s (20-13) on Satur­day.

Three Bob­cats scored in dou­ble fig­ures, with freshman guard Ni­jal Pear­son lead­ing the way with 16. He was 5 of 10 from the field, in­clud­ing 3 of 6 from 3-point range. He also added four as­sists and two steals.

Kavin Gilder-Til­bury and Ojai Black, both se­niors, added 14 and 13 points, re­spec­tively.

“It’s fun to be able to go out there and still play with our se­niors,” Pear­son said. “Our sea­son was sup­posed to be over af­ter the tour­na­ment, but we’re one of the few teams still play­ing. We’re a close-knit team, and the fact that we get to keep play­ing with each other and get to go to war to­gether is a bless­ing.”

As a team, Texas State shot only 4 of 19 on 3-point­ers but went 14 of 18 from the free-throw line, well above its 65.7 per­cent sea­son av­er­age. Pear­son had all but one of those threes; Bobby Con­ley, an­other se­nior, was 1 of 5 from the field, but the lone make was a three; he fin­ished with eight points and seven re­bounds.

The Bob­cats led 24-23 at half­time be­fore pulling away, scor­ing 40 points in the sec­ond half and in­creas­ing their lead to as high as 13.

“We started slow, but the crowd helped,” Bob­cats coach Danny Kas­par said. “I would still like to see more people there since we are so deep in the play­offs. I think our play­ers’ play is wor­thy of 6,000, 7,000.

“The crowd was good; don’t get me wrong. The people that were here were great. I wish more people would come be­cause I think we are putting out a pretty good prod­uct.”

Sun Belt honors Rupp: Ju­nior Randi Rupp was named the Sun Belt’s soft­ball pitcher of the week, her first honor this sea­son but the sixth of her ca­reer.

“The of­fense has been do­ing a great job putting runs up early,” Rupp said. “For that, it’s just been much eas­ier to go out there and just throw. Not to think too much about it, not to get too up­tight or tight at all up there. For them to put up runs early makes the de­fense re­lax a lit­tle bit and just play ball.”

In three wins last week, Rupp al­lowed no earned runs and had 26 strike­outs while hold­ing the op­pos­ing teams to a .136 bat­ting av­er­age. She al­lowed nine hits through 19 in­nings.

Rupp (13-2) has 67 ca­reer wins, which puts her in a third-place tie in the school record books. She’s had 10 or more strike­outs five times this sea­son, in­clud­ing 13 in a 4-1 win over Ap­palachian State on Sun­day. Rupp has 134 strike­outs for the sea­son, which ranks her 11th in the na­tion.

The Bob­cats have won nine straight games af­ter two wins in a dou­ble­header against South­ern Univer­sity (10-8) on Tues­day, im­prov­ing their record to 22-4. Their 5-0 record in con­fer­ence puts them on top of the Sun Belt stand­ings.

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