November 24, 2011 in Sports

In brief: Ching made top expansion pick

 

Soccer: The Montreal Impact made Houston forward Brian Ching (Gonzaga University) the first pick in the Major League Soccer expansion draft, even though he has threatened to retire rather than leave the Dynamo.

The Impact become the league’s 19th team next season and selected 10 players Wednesday from 272 left unprotected.

“We have the utmost respect for Brian, both as a player and a person,” Impact coach Jesse Marsch said. “He made it clear he does not want to come here, but we think he represents good value. There are teams in the league who think the same thing. I want to consider what is best for Brian’s future but I also want to consider what it best for the future of our club.”

If unable to persuade Ching, 33, to play in Montreal, the Impact may trade him back to the Dynamo or elsewhere.

Montreal also took Seattle defender James Riley. Riley then was traded to Chivas USA for forward Justin Braun and midfielder Gerson Mayen.

In a separate waiver draft, Philadelphia took Vancouver’s Nizar Khalfan.

Cougars take on Oklahoma

Men’s basketball: Washington State will open the 76 Classic tonight with a nationally televised game with Big 12 power Oklahoma.

The game, scheduled for 8:30 p.m. on ESPN2, is the first meeting between WSU (2-1) and the Sooners (2-0).

Junior 6-foot-10 post Brock Motum leads the Cougars, averaging 17.7 points and 6.7 rebounds. Senior guard Faisal Aden averages 17 points a game.

The tournament, at the Anaheim Convention Center in Southern California, also includes Boston College, Saint Louis, New Mexico, Santa Clara, UC Riverside and Villanova.

Vince Grippi

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