Sports briefs

Yankees boast league’s best attendance

For the third straight year, the Pulaski Yankees has topped attendance in the Appalachian Minor League Baseball League. The Yankees recorded 77,880 total attendance this past season for an average of 2,360 per game.

The closest other team was the Johnson City Cardinals who reported 65,202 for an average of 1,976. Greenville was third in the league with a total of 35,305 for an average of 1,139 fans per game.

Over the past three years, the Yankees has seen a constant increase. In 2015, the team recorded 57,023 in attendance with an average of 1,677, while last year, 57,995 people attended Yankees games. That’s an average was 1,871.

Jones Big South freshman of week

Redshirt freshman guard Carlik Jones turned his sensational opening weekend of the 2017-18 season into a Big South Freshman of the Week honor, the league office announced Monday evening.

The Cincinnati, Ohio native did not play and redshirted the 2016-17 season, but he’s already shown he belongs on the court through two games this year.

In the season opener, he came off the bench to lead the Highlanders in scoring with 15 points on 5-of-9 shooting including a 2-for-5 performance from behind the arc. He added four rebounds and an assist, igniting Radford in the second half and paving the way to a 72-63 victory over Georgia Southwestern.

Then, under the bright lights of Value City Arena, Jones came off the bench to lead the Highlanders in scoring once again vs. the Ohio State Buckeyes. Radford dropped the contest, 82-72, but Jones dropped a brutally efficient 19 points on 6-for-8 shooting including a perfect 4-for-4 mark from 3-point range. He posted a career-high three assists and two steals as well. He did all of that in front of approximately 100 friends and family who came to watch him play in his home state of Ohio.

RU signs golfer

Radford men’s golf head coach, Mike Grant, announced his first signee of the 2018 class as Nicholas Taliaferro signed his NLI on Monday afternoon.

Taliaferro will join the Highlanders from James River High School in Richmond, where he played on his varsity golf team since 2014. As of July, he is ranked the 13th best golfer in the state of Virginia.

Taliaferro is a 2017 Richmond Golf Association Jr. champion. He finished inside the top 10 Virginia State Junior Championship in 2017. Finally, he was named 2016-17 First Team All-Richmond Metro and 2016-17 first team all-state. Taliaferro finished second or higher in five of the seven tournaments he competed in over the past year.

Nitro benefit game

The New River Nitro semi-pro football is holding a benefit game on Sunday, December 10 at 2 p.m. at the New River Sports Complex in Radford. The contest against the Mountain Mayhem will help collect toys for kids in the community. Admission is $5 or new unwrapped toys valued at $5.

The field is located at 160 New River Drive next to the baseball field at Bisset Park.

ACC wrestler of the week

Redshirt sophomore David McFadden has been named Co-ACC Wrestler of the Week after going 3-0 and winning an individual title at the Journeymen Collegiate Classic last weekend, the conference announced Wednesday.

McFadden shares the award this week with NC State’s Kevin Jack.

The West Milford, N.J., native is now ranked No. 5 at 165 pounds by Intermat and is 8-0 on the season. McFadden returns in 2017-18 after sitting out last season while recovering from a torn ACL that he suffered at the 2016 NCAA Championships. He placed sixth at nationals that season and was named 2016 ACC Freshman of the Year.

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