SANTA FE, - The New Mexico Supreme Court unanimously ruled on Thursday to allow same-sex marriage statewide, ending a patchwork arrangement that saw the unions permitted in some counties while prohibited in others. The ruling makes New Mexico the 17th U.S. state to legalize gay and lesbian marriage. The governors of Hawaii and Illinois signed bills into law last month to permit same-sex nuptials in their states.
BOSTON - Target Corp said hackers have stolen data from up to 40 million credit and debit cards of shoppers who visited its stores during the first three weeks of the holiday season in the second-largest such breach reported by a U.S. retailer. In terms of the speed at which the hackers were able to access large numbers of credit cards, the data theft was unprecedented. The operation was carried out over just 19 days during the heart of the crucial Christmas holiday sales season: from the day before Thanksgiving to this past Sunday.
The Atlanta Braves picked up catcher/outfielder Ryan Doumit in a trade with the Minnesota Twins on Wednesday for left-handed pitching prospect Sean Gilmartin. Doumit, 32, bolsters the Braves' catching depth after Brian McCann left via free agency for the New York Yankees. The versatile Doumit also plays first base and the outfield.
The Sports Xchange
EDEN PRAIRIE, Minn. -- With coach Leslie Frazier still trying to save his job near the end of a lost season and quarterback Matt Cassel coming off a 382-yard passing performance in an 48-30 upset win over the Eagles, it's pretty obvious the season will end without the Minnesota Vikings getting a second chance to evaluate Josh Freeman on the field. Cassel is the unquestioned starter at the Cincinnati Bengals on Sunday. The Vikings (4-9-1) are 2-1 this month in part due to Cassel's play, and 6-2 in the past two Decembers. Beating the Bengals (9-5), who lead the AFC North and are 6-0 at home this season, would further boost Frazier's argument that he deserves another year to establish himself as an NFL head coach, as well as Cassel's contention that he's capable of once again being a regular starter, either here or somewhere else.
OSLO - A kind of rock that often contains diamonds has been found in Antarctica for the first time, hinting at mineral riches in the vast, icy continent where mining is banned. No diamonds were found, but researchers said they were confident the gems were there. "It would be very surprising if there weren't diamonds in these kimberlites," Greg Yaxley of the Australian National University in Canberra, who led the research, said in a telephone interview.
SAINT PAUL, Minn. -- Something about the shootout seems to perplex the Vancouver Canucks. The Canucks went 0-for-3 in the skills-competition tiebreaker, losing to the Minnesota Wild 3-2 on Tuesday. "We (stink) in the shootout. We do," Canucks coach John Tortorella said. "We've got to try different people I guess, because we stink at it."
By Mike Shalin, The Sports Xchange
MINNEAPOLIS -- Vikings running back Matt Asiata, two months removed from tragedy, until recently relegated to third string, is the perfect example of what happened to the Philadelphia Eagles Sunday at Mall of America Field. Hungry backups, including Asiata and the majority of the Minnesota secondary, led the Vikings to a 48-30 upset of the Eagles that could derail coach Chip Kelly's bid for the playoffs in his rookie season in the NFL. Asiata, playing because of injuries to Adrian Peterson and Toby Gerhart, tied a Vikings record with three touchdown runs. Asiata scored twice in the fourth quarter, including a short plunge with 1:08 to play as the Vikings (4-9-1) whipped the Eagles (8-6), breaking Philadelphia's five-game winning streak and putting its NFC East title hopes in peril with a big game next week against Chicago.
DENVER - A student opened fire at a Colorado high school on Friday before apparently taking his own life, and at least two other students were injured in the violence, law enforcement officials said. One of the victims was in serious condition with gunshot wounds at a local hospital, Arapahoe County Sheriff Grayson Robinson said at a televised news conference. The second victim suffered minor injuries and may not have been hit by bullets.