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HHS' Ruder makes way back from neck injury -4/20/2014, 8:05 PM

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Indian swimmers seventh in Salina -4/18/2014, 10:23 AM

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Final home games for Tigers -4/18/2014, 10:14 AM

Tiger softball No. 8 in first region rankings -4/18/2014, 10:13 AM

Indian track competes at Valley Center -4/18/2014, 10:13 AM

Hayes is KSU's next big 'Cat -4/17/2014, 10:44 AM

New group for Plainville track -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Otis track team deals with injuries, illness -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Jets land former Titan Chris Johnson -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

HDN Area Track & Field honor roll, April 17 -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Freeman winds up with N.Y. Giants -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Tigers win on grand slam -4/17/2014, 10:16 AM

Weber gets extension at K-State -4/17/2014, 10:15 AM

HHS' Weigel becomes a Cowboy -4/17/2014, 10:15 AM

Humburg jumping well for Ness City -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Doubles team rolls at HHS Invitational -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

HHS soccer improves to 6-2, beats Great Bend -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Prep golf results, April 15 -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Tiger tennis ends MIAA season in loss -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Tiger golfers ninth in St. Charles, Mo. -4/16/2014, 9:59 AM

Track results, Redmen Relays, April 15 -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP boys win at Ellsworth -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP softball sweeps Ellis -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP soccer suffers loss at Garden City -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP boys' golf third at Goodland -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

TMP baseball rolls past Ellis -4/16/2014, 9:58 AM

HHS baseball splits with Junction City -4/15/2014, 9:53 AM

TMP softball swept at Colby -4/15/2014, 10:10 AM

TMP golf begins season today -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

HHS soccer rallies for victory -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

Rare time off for Tiger softball -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

KSU, WSU Barnstormers coming to Hays -4/15/2014, 10:09 AM

Watson wins Masters -4/14/2014, 10:08 AM

Royals swept by Twins -4/14/2014, 10:07 AM

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Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

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Decker jokes about tackling himself on return

Published on -1/14/2014, 10:04 AM

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By PAT GRAHAM

Associated Press

ENGLEWOOD, Colo. -- This was one field trip Eric Decker would rather forget.

Even a day later, the Denver Broncos receiver who doubles as a punt returner was still kicking himself for letting his feet get in the way of a sure touchdown. Decker broke free on a return and had clear sailing to the end zone, only to be brought down by, well, himself.

At least Decker had a sense of humor about tripping himself up, joking that he ran into an "invisible fence." Still, he got quite a bit of ribbing for his stumble after the Broncos' 24-17 win against the San Diego Chargers on Sunday that moved them into the AFC championship game against New England.

Never mind that he returned the punt 47 yards -- shedding several tackles -- before his fall late in the first half, Decker's less-than-fancy footwork will be what's remembered, not the distance.

Asked if he received more congratulations from friends for moving on to face the Patriots on Sunday or his tackle of himself, Decker laughed and said: "More of a hard time for tripping myself. ... That's something to be proud of."

It's the second time something like that has happened to Decker, too, and against the Chargers in both instances, no less. Last season, Decker caught a pass from Peyton Manning and had no one in his path for a score, but stumbled over the 45-yard line.

The divisional playoff contest against San Diego wasn't exactly one of Decker's finest performances. He also had a pass from Manning bounce off him in the end zone that led to an interception and later bobbled an onside kick that San Diego recovered.

But each time Decker has had a lackluster game this season, he's bounced back in a big way.

Cases in point:

-- In the season opener against Baltimore, he had two catches. The next week he hauled in nine passes on the road versus the New York Giants.

-- On Nov. 24 in New England, Decker hauled in one pass for 5 yards in blustery conditions. The following week at Kansas City he had eight catches for a career-high 174 yards and four TDs.

-- In a loss to San Diego on Dec. 12, he was held to two catches for 42 yards. At Houston the next week, Decker had a career-high 10 catches for 131 yards and two scores.

"You can't always rely on one person," explained Decker, a third-round pick in 2010 out of the University of Minnesota. "For us, it's just being in the right position because 18 (Manning) is going to get us the ball."

Decker is definitely eager to face the Patriots again. That's a game the Broncos let slip away after racing out to a 24-0 halftime lead. A punt that bounced off blocker Tony Carter set up Stephen Gostkowski's 31-yard winning field goal for the Patriots.

"We didn't finish -- a hard lesson learned," Decker said. "I thought we've had a couple of those this year. We faced a lot of adversity and when you look at this week, you have to capitalize and make sure you minimize all mistakes throughout the game."

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