NW Sports from the AP

AP-NW–1st SportsMinute,322
Here is the latest Washington, Oregon and Alaska sports news from
The Associated Press

ATLANTA (AP) – Joe Johnson scored 24 points and came up with a
key defensive play down the stretch, leading Atlanta to its fourth
win in a row since losing All-Star center Al Horford, 92-89 over
the Portland Trail Blazers last night. The Hawks closed the third
period on a 14-0 run, but Portland responded with a 13-0 spurt
starting the fourth to tie it up. It was tight the rest of the way.

SEATTLE (AP) – It’s still very early in the conference season,
but after three weeks of Pac-12 play, Washington, Stanford and
California all are at the top of the standings with just one
conference loss each. And with Washington playing the Bay Area
schools just once this season due to changes in the conference
scheduling plan, a premium is being placed on this week’s matchups
between the Huskies and Golden Bears tonight and Washington and
Stanford on Saturday afternoon.

SEATTLE (AP) – The Seattle Mariners have signed left-handed
pitcher Oliver Perez to a minor league contract with an invite to
major league spring training. The deal with the nine-year veteran
was announced yesterday. He spent all of the 2011 season with
Double-A Harrisburg in the Washington Nationals organization. He’s
also pitched for Pittsburgh and San Diego in his career.

SEATTLE (AP) – Washington has plucked another coach from the
staff at California, making Eric Kiesau the Huskies’ new offensive
coordinator. Kiesau’s hiring was announced Wednesday. He’ll replace
Doug Nussmeier who is expected to take the same position at Alabama
after serving as the Huskies’ offensive coordinator for the past
three seasons.

TUKWILA, Wash. (AP) – The Seattle Sounders FC have signed
19-year-old forward Cordell Cato from Trinidad and Tobago. The
signing of the young prospect was announced yesterday, pending
receipt of his international transfer clearance and his visa. Cato
trained with the Sounders last summer and coach Sigi Schmid says
Cato can provide speed and versatility up front.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

AP-NY-01-19-12 0531EST