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Local Nielsen ratings snapshot (Thurs., Aug. 30)

Meaningless or not, Thursday night's final Dallas Cowboys pre-season game wasn't about to lose to a passel of reruns.

The team's disinterested loss to the Minnesota Vikings, with both teams mostly benching their starters, drew a dominating 343,420 homes from 7 to 10 p.m. on CBS11. The most-watched competing attraction, Fox4's local 9 p.m. newscast, managed 112,038 homes.

That's a wrap for the Cowboys' four pre-season games. Here's how the other three played out in D-FW:

Cowboys-Colts -- 486,601 homes
Cowboys-Broncos -- 361,760 homes
Cowboys-Texans -- 336,113 homes

CBS11's 10 p.m. newscast, delayed until 10:05 p.m. by a big block of commercials and a brief game wrapup, held off Belo8 to win in both total homes and with 25-to-54-year-olds, the main advertiser target audience for news programming.

Belo8, in a very rare occurrence, came within an eyelash of getting skunked in the four major local newscast competitions. It's only trip to the winner's circle was a first-place tie at 5 p.m. with NBC5 among 25-to-54-year-olds.

Fox4 easily beat all comers at 6 a.m. in total homes and the 25-to-54 demo. The 7 to 9 a.m. portion of its Good Day also returned to the practice of whipping the three network morning shows.

NBC5 won at 5 and 6 p.m. in total homes and also by an unusually large margin at 6 p.m. with 25-to-54-year-olds. Its 74,620 viewers in that age group came close to doubling the crowds for runnersup Fox4 and Belo8 (40,180 apiece).