Senior forward Blanca Millan plans to return to the University of Maine women’s basketball team next year.

Millan, who was the America East player of the year and defensive player of the year as a junior, suffered a season-ending knee injury in Maine’s sixth game of the season on Nov. 29, a 57-31 loss to Arizona State. When the season ends, Maine plans to apply for a medical hardship waiver, which would allow the 6-foot-1 Millan to return for a fifth season.

“She loves it here,” said Maine Coach Amy Vachon. “She has said this has been the best four years of her life. She loves her teammates, she loves Maine. She wants to finish what she started.”

Millan, from Santiago de Compostela, Spain, was averaging 18.2 points and 6.3 rebounds when she tore the anterior cruciate ligament in her left knee. She ranks eighth on Maine’s all-time scoring list with 1,547 career points. She spoke to Vachon several times about what her options were.

“There are a lot of options,” said Vachon. “I told her, ‘As much as I want what’s best for the program, I want what’s best for you.’ She wants to play professionally. She wants to play at the highest level. We talked about the best way to do it.”

Millan isn’t the only injured senior looking to return next year. Center Fanny Wadling, who hasn’t played a game after suffering  a concussion in the team’s second exhibition game, plans to come back next year as well.

Maine, which has won three of its last four games to improve to 7-11 (3-1 in America East), also announced Monday that senior guard Sierra Tapley, from Bar Harbor and Mt. Desert Island High, will miss the rest of the season with a knee injury. Vachon said Tapley will have surgery on Wednesday.

Also, junior forward Kira Barra and junior center Kat Williams, are on pace to graduate next May and will not return for their senior seasons, according to the press release.

TOP 25: South Carolina moved up three spots to No. 1 in The Associated Press poll after the top three teams from the previous week all lost.

It was a rough week for ranked teams, with 11 of them losing at least one game, including Nos. 1-3 falling in a four-day span. The last time the top three teams in the AP Top 25 lost within a span of seven days was during the 2011 NCAA Tournament.

Baylor jumped up four spots to No. 2 after beating then-No. 1 UConn. The Lady Bears, who received seven first-place votes from the 30-member national media panel, were followed by Stanford, UConn and Louisville. Oregon, UCLA, Oregon State, N.C. State and Mississippi State rounded out the top 10.

MEN’S BASKETBALL

ST. JOSEPH’S 95, BOWDOIN 86: Jack Casale scored 45 points and grabbed seven rebounds as the Monks (6-7) beat the Polar Bears (5-8) in Brunswick.

Nicholas Curtis added 22 points and Griffey Foley had 10 for St. Joseph’s. Tatsuaki Sakai had 12 rebounds.

Sam Grad had 23 points and eight rebounds for Bowdoin. Manav Randhawa added 14 points, while both Morgan Edwards and David Reynolds had 13.

NORTH CAROLINA: Forward Brandon Robinson was hurt in a weekend car crash and the school says the injuries are not serious.

The other motorist was charged with driving while impaired, according to Carrboro police. An incident report said the driver of the other car early Sunday, drove into the opposite lane and hit Robinson’s car near an intersection.

TOP 25: Baylor leapfrogged Kansas and Duke into the second spot in The Associated Press poll. They finished with 1,567 points in voting by 65 media members who regularly cover the game, just seven back of top-ranked Gonzaga – even though Baylor had 31 first-place votes and the Bulldogs had 30.

The Blue Devils fell to third in the AP poll, followed by unbeaten Auburn and Butler. The Jayhawks were next with another unbeaten, San Diego State, staying at No. 7. Oregon, Florida State and Kentucky rounded out the top 10.

FOOTBALL

ARIZONA STATE: The school extended Coach Herm Edwards’ contract two years through the 2024 season.

The contract announced Monday must be approved by the Arizona Board of Regents. Terms of the deal are expected to be announced before the board meeting.

Edwards returned to coaching in 2018 to lead the Sun Devils after eight years as an ESPN analyst. He became an immediate fan favorite in Tempe with his engaging personality and community engagement.

TENNESSEE: The school has self-reported an NCAA violation that involved a football player advertising the sale of a replica version of his jersey on Facebook.

The incident was among seven Level III and Level IV violations that Tennessee reported over the last six months. The reports were obtained Monday through a public records request.


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