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Patriots sign ex-Terp Vellano to roster from practice squad

Joe Vellano is returning to the Patriots' active roster, and just in time for Sunday's AFC championship game.

The New England Patriots signed defensive lineman Joe Vellano (Maryland) to the 53-man roster from the practice squad ahead of today's AFC championship game against the Indianapolis Colts. The 6-foot-2, 300-pound Vellano, 26, joined the Patriots as an undrafted free agent in 2013. He has played in 21 games with eight starts for the Patriots and had 54 tackles and three sacks. He played in the first five games in 2014 and had six tackles and one sack before he was released Oct. 7 and signed to the practice squad the next day.

Et cetera

MASL's Blast improves to 12-0 with 9-6 win at Detroit

After a tough victory over the Milwaukee Wave on Friday night, the Blast triumphed in another hard-fought Major Arena Soccer League game, beating the host Detroit Waza Flo, 9-6, for its 12th win in a row. Diego Zuniga led the visiting Blast with a hat trick and two assists. Lucio GonzagaMike Deasel, Pat Healy, Tony DonatelliLevi Houpeau, Vini Dantas and Adriano Dos Santos also scored. The Blast (12-0) improved to 2-0 against the Waza Flo (3-10) this season. Blast goalkeeper William Vanzela and the defense were strong throughout the game.

Hunting: Maryland's first-ever winter turkey hunting season begins Thursday and will run through Saturday statewide. The bag limit is one turkey of either sex. Hunters who killed a turkey in the fall season may not harvest any in the winter. Hunting hours are a half-hour before sunrise to a half-hour after sunset. Complete regulations, check-in procedures and information on opportunities to hunt on public land can be found online at dnr.maryland.gov/huntersguide or in the 2014-2015 Maryland Guide to Hunting & Trapping.

Lacrosse: The Stevenson men's coaching staff will host a one-day prospect camp for student-athletes Feb. 7 on its Owings Mills campus from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. The camp will be open to juniors and sophomores. Cost for the camp is $125. Participants must register in advance and provide their own equipment. For more information, contact Tim Puls at 443-352-4298 or gtpuls@stevenson.edu.

Boxing: Sam "Vanilla Gorilla" Crossed of Baltimore Boxing Gym will face Glen Burnie's Jeff Knight for the East Coast super-heavyweight championship in the main event of "Slugfest" on Friday at Michael's Eighth Avenue in Glen Burnie. Crossed, a former college football player, set a record by knocking out Adrien Bean in 4 seconds in August 2013. In the co-feature, Allan Burris of Baltimore Boxing Gym will fight Lamont White. Tommy Koe Jr. will appear on the card in a special-attraction bout. Koe Jr. is scheduled to appear in this year's nationals. Among other bouts, Courtney Hartlove will face Melissa "Million Dollar Baby" Wilson in a showdown of women who work in Federal Hill. "Slugfest" is promoted by Baltimore Boxing Promotions. Tickets starting at $25 are available at baltimoreboxing.com or by calling 410-375-9175. VIP seats for $50 and VIP tables of 10 for $500 are also available. VIP ticket-holders get free hors d'oeuvres from 7 p.m. to 8p.m. There will be a 50/50 raffle, with all proceeds benefiting Baltimore Boxing's amateur program. Doors open at 6:30 p.m., and the first fight begins at 8:15 p.m. For more information, go to baltimoreboxing.com.

Minor league baseball: Manager Lance Burkhart, pitching coach Joe Gannon and hitting coach Jeremy Owens will return this season for the Southern Maryland Blue Crabs of the independent Atlantic League of Professional Baseball. Gannon is a former Orioles minor leaguer.

Community: The Cal Ripken Sr. Foundation's juvenile-crime prevention and mentorship program, Badges for Baseball, is returning to 21 states and expanding its program sites throughout the country in 2015.

From Sun staff and news services

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