User Showcase
I'm Just Saying - Family/Personal Style
Category: User Showcase
Tags: ScottJax

I have been gone for a while and I probably will be for another three weeks. This has got to have been the worst two months of my life.

First, while at work, I get a phone call from my sister telling me that mom has fallen and they called 911. They told me which hospital they were taking her too so I told my supervisor and they let me off the night. Got to the hospital before the ambulance showed up and it took me 35 minutes to get there. They show up 10 minutes later. We got my mom checked in and they started tests. Turns out she had a heart attack.

Okay mom is taken care of, and the next day (Sunday) my wife starts complaining about stomach pain. She says she will call the doctor on Monday. Monday she calls the doctor and he has appointments available. I tell her to go to the hospital. She wants to go to the doctor so I tell her if the doctor has no appointments when she calls on Tuesday we go to the satellite emergency room (the hospital has a 10 bed emergency room right next to my developmenty). Calls doctor tuesday and there is nothing available. We go to the emergency room and they take e-rays and blood work. The emergency room calls the hospital and they get a room available for critical care. They have to wait about 20 minutes for the room to be ready. I leave my wife and head home to feed and walk the dog and then put him in his room. I get to her room at the hospital just as is being set in bed. Doctor comes in and tells us she has a blockage in her stomach. She goes the operating room and I go to the waiting area. After a couple of hours the doctor comes out and tells my son and I that they found 7 large objects in her stomach as large as walnuts. We can't figure out how that could possibly have happen. Try putting a large walnut down your throat would cause a gag reflex. Okay, so who is going to dispute a doctor.

Things look like its going well and then my wife is starting to complain about her stomach. She is still bleeding internally. They go in again and find a small tear in her small intestines. So she finally gets out of the hospital and goes to a rehab center and guess what...they find she is still bleeding. She goes back to the hospital and they run more tests. Turns out she has hemmoroids..They figure that can wait for another time and they send her back to the rehab center except they can't because there are no rooms available. So after three extra days in the hospital she finally goes back to the rehab center  where she is still at.

During all this I end up with a huge ulcer which took two operations to fix. I am now out of the hospital and completed rehab. Now I have in-house rehab which I'm doing at my mom and sister's house for anothetr two weeks.

I do want to wish all a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Sunday Musings #176
Category: User Showcase
Tags: NewEnglandPatriots NFL AlabamaCrimsonTide CollegeFootball CollegeBasketball HighSchoolBasketball BryanBurwell YouthSports

 

 

While kind of irritated about some things I found out this week...

Follow me on Twitter - @TheOneTrueJay

NFL

In last week's column, I included a link to a story detailing the struggles of former Buffalo Bills player Darryl Talley. The story prompted a surge of support for Talley with money being raised to help him out. It culminated during the Bills' player introductions last Sunday as former star QB Jim Kelley showed his support by wearing Talley's jersey. You can read a brief article about it HERE.

Former Minnesota Vikings QB legend Fran Tarkenton had some interesting things to say about Adrian Peterson, Ray Rice, PEDS and Robert Griffin III in this interview with Jenny Vrentas of TheMMQB.com

New England Patriots - The Patriots squared off against the Packers last Sunday night and despite an overall entertaining football game, came away with a 26-21 loss. there was a lot of talk about how this could be a preview of the Super Bowl. I really hope it isn't, at least in terms of how the Patriots played. I know it is only a five point loss so it isn't like the Patriots weren't in the game. But there were a lot of issues with the Patriots as the game progressed.

The running game was abandoned early by offensive coordinator Josh McDaniels and finished with just 84 yards on the ground total. This despite the fact that LeGarrette Blount ran for over 5 yards a carry when he got the ball. Brandon Bolden (shown below) added a nice 6 yard TD run though.

The Packers had their way with the Patriots defense for a majority of the game. It may not led to as many points as they wanted because the Patriots stiffened up as the Packers approached the red zone (particularly during the first half), but Green Bay rolled up 347 yards in total offense in the first half. They finished with 478 total yards to New England's 320. Aaron Rodgers threw for 282 yards in the first half (368 for the game). He also passed for two touchdowns.

The Patriots did rack up 3 sacks but otherwise seemed to have trouble generating a pass rush. Late in the first half, Aaron Rodgers actually had 12 seconds of perfect protection before having to throw the ball away. And the Patriots could not get off the field on third down with the Packers converting a ridiculous 10 of 17 3rd down opportunities.

It wasn't all bad news for the Patriots though, setting aside the loss I mean. Tom Brady threw for 245 yards and hit Brandon LaFell (see below) for 2 TDs. Julian Edelman caught 7 passes and Rob Gronkowski tallied 98 yards on his 7 catches.

Speaking of LaFell, anyone else notice that he's been developing into a vital cog in the Patriots offense? At the start of the season, he kicked things off much like Chad Johnson did during his year with the Patriots. He struggled, didn't seem in sync with Brady and was likely still trying to fully grasp the playbook. But unlike Johnson, LaFell turned the corner and has become a reliable threat for Brady and the team to use in the passing game.

You gotta love when hard work and effort start paying off!

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

As the season heads into conference title games and the countdown to finding out which bowls will get which teams, the silly season of coaching hirings and firings got into full swing with Nebraska, Florida and Michigan making the biggest news.

In Nebraska, they fired Bo Pelini after 7 years of at least 9 wins a season. Despite that success, the blowout losses and inability to contend much less win titles was enough to force the surly and prickly Pelini out of Lincoln. Barney Cotton will be the interim coach for the team's bowl game but the school wasted little time in hiring Pelini's replacement. Despite managing just a 5-7 record this year at Oregon State, Mike Riley is still considered a hot enough property that Nebraska lured him away from the Beavers. He has taken over immediately.

This last thing raises the spectre of a subject I have harped on before. And that is the notion of coaches finishing a job. I hate when coaches leave before a job is finished. For me that includes a bowl game appearance. Since the Beavers are ineligible this year, I have no truck with Riley. But I kind of dislike that Pelini wasn't allowed to coach HIS team for the bowl game. You could fire the guy after the bowl game, it isn't like his dismissal would've been much of a surprise. 

Brady Hoke's firing at Michigan was pretty much a foregone conclusion as well. With the Wolverines not even close to a bowl game, they essentially just ran out the string on Hoke's four year tenure, fired him and then released a BS statement filled with as much malarkey as they could to make you wonder why they were firing him in the first place. The losing culture that was taking hold and failure to develop offensive players was a big reason why Big Blue is looking for a new coach. And the new AD has already stated that the school will not be using "A Michigan Man" as a measuring stick for candidates this time around.

Florida hired Colorado State coach Jim McElwain to be their new coach. It could very well be a great hire as McElwain is from the Nick Saban coaching tree and likes to use the Saban blueprint "The Process" to build his programs as well. Something tells me the SEC is going to be VERY interesting next season.

But what bugs me here is that not only did McElwain leave Colorado State in the lurch (a very Saban-like move, remember the Dolphins?) but he and Florida acted like CSU should just roll over and play dead for his desire to leave. In his contract, there was a 7.5 million dollar buyout clause. And instead of abiding to the terms of the contract, The McElwain-Florida Syndicate acted like they were trying to shake down CSU to pay less for him to get out of his deal.

For a while, Colorado State held firm to the terms of the clause but in the end they gave in a little. The buyout was whittled down to 5 million dollars. Florida will pay 3 million of that cost while McElwain will pay the remainder. And McElwain did himself no favors in the eyes of his Rams players while all this was going on. Their focus should've been on preparing for the bowl game they'll be playing and instead they had to watch the coach who preached at them about accountability whore himself out for a better offer. As if Florida couldn't have waited a month for a new coach, they've been waiting for a good one since Urban Meyer left.

Despite all that coaching news, the worst story to come out of college football this past week was that the University of Alabama-Birmingham shut down their football program in full. The team had their best season in years (6-6) and were bowl eligible. While they were likely going to be left out of a bowl game because there aren't enough slots for the qualified teams and they lose out in those unnavigable tiebreakers, even if they had been invited, the school wasn't going to send them.

I fully grasp the financial aspects of a losing football team being a drain on a school's coffers, so I understand the decision to shutter the program. But the way the decision was arrived at and then announced was a demonstration of how utterly gutless school officials and athletic administrators truly are. They left those players hung out to dry and despite public protestations to the opposite, did it in such a callous and unfeeling way that you have to wonder why any player would believe them ever again.

Alabama - The Crimson Tide simply rolled over Missouri during yesterday's SEC championship game, coming out with a 42-13 victory. The win pretty much guarantees Bama a spot in the college football playoff.

The Tigers got dominated in most every statistical category (save passing yards). Alabama outgained them 504-313, including a 242-41 edge in rushing yards.

Blake Sims (shown below) was 23-27 for 262 yards with two TD passes while setting the single season passing yardage record, passing A.J. McCarron.

Christion Jones caught one of those TD passes while DeAndrew White had 4 catches for 101 yards (including a 58 yard TD catch, shown below). Amari Cooper caught 12 passes on the game as well.

Derrick Henry (shown below) ran for a career high 141 yards and 2 scores. T.J. Yeldon added two TD runs of his own.

At 12-1, the SEC Champion Alabama Crimson Tide are sure to keep their #1 ranking in the playoff system when the new rankings come out.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL

There was some sad news this week as it seems the condition of Mount Saint Joseph's Lauren Hill has started to worsen. She signed up for hospice care this week. You can read this article for more details.

In good news, the tickets I ordered for the Boston College women's basketball games arrived in the mail yesterday. WHOO HOO!

For some recaps, photos and video of games played earlier this week, check out my Mid-Week College Basketball Round Up blog post.

Catholic University - While the Cardinals improved to 4-3 with their 75-69 victory over Moravian, Amber didn't see any court time in the game.

Missouri State - After starting the season 0-6, Missouri State picked up their first win of the season in their home opener. They knocked off SIU-Edwardsville 75-69. Lexi Hughes (pictured below) scored a career high 22 points to lead the team and Hillary Chvatal added 15 points and 10 boards. Kenzie Williams had 14 points, Aubrey Buckley hit for 11 points and NiJay Gaines finished with 10 points.

Boston College Men - The Eagles hosted the Providence College Friars on Friday night. My buddy Brian, the rabid PC alum and Friars season ticket holder, went to the game and probably went home very disappointed as the Eagles got a surprising 69-60 win. I had talked to Brian in the morning before the game and he was pretty confident that the Friars could win the game. I did tell him that the Eagles had three really good scorers on the team this year. We both agreed that it would be a close game though.

The game was tied at 34 at halftime. In the second half, the Eagles were tied at 40 when they went on a 7-0 run to take a 47-40 lead and never trailed again as they improved to 4-3. The Eagles outrebounded Providence 41-28. 

Olivier Hanlan (shown below 1st) had a huge game with 24 points, 8 rebounds, 3 assists and 3 steals (he also led the team with 5 turnovers). Aaron Brown (shown 2nd) added 16 points and 7 boards while Dimitri Batten scored 11 points.

(Photos from BC Game Photo Gallery)

You can see highlights of the game below.

FANTASY FOOTBALL

Does a second straight week of going 1-1 in my fantasy leagues count as an improvement?

HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL

Wareham Girls Varsity - I had time off from work on Friday afternoon and ended up attending the Wareham girls scrimmage vs. West Bridgewater. After looking over the schedule of games I want to attend this year, I saw that West Bridgewater would be a team I'd see three times during the season, so getting an early look at them was a good idea. And with the Wareham varsity team appearing to have 6 former players of mine on the roster, it was also a good idea to check them out.

Unfortunately, as you might expect for a first scrimmage, the quality of play from both teams was incredibly ragged. While there was some good sequences over the course of the scrimmage, for the most part it was some ugly basketball that exposed early season team building flaws on both sides.

For West Bridgewater, they are rebuilding after losing four seniors. The majority of their height is gone as well. For Wareham, they lost four seniors who accounted for the majority of their scoring. From what I saw, they only have two true ball handlers on the team and they had trouble finding Wareham's center during the game. Pass after pass got picked off or deflected.

One bright spot for me personally was seeing my ex-player Gabby knock down 4 out of 6 three pointers in the game. She's probably not going to start out the season as a starter on varsity but she did make the team and will see plenty of time.

Bristol-Plymouth Girls Varsity - I was informed earlier in the week by her mom that Savahna had made varsity. That part wasn't really a surprise given that she's a senior, but I was happily surprised to learn that Savahna was also picked as a tri-captain for the season. It is nice to see her dedication to playing getting some recognition. The team has a new coach this year so I'll be looking forward to seeing what the coaching change might bring about for the team's success and any potential individual success for Savahna.

YOUTH SPORTS

Remember the buzz around Little League pitcher Mo'ne Davis this summer? She took her team to the Little League World Series and set the world on fire with her performance throughout the qualifying rounds and during her time in Williamsport. For her efforts, she's been named SIKids.com's Sports Kid of the Year. You can read more HERE.

As for youth sports news related to me, I ran into the new president of the youth basketball league here in town. It wasn't the guy they announced would be president. Instead it is Big Mack, the Alabama football fan I've written about briefly in the past (he gets great Alabama BBQ for Bama title game viewing parties). I joked with him, asking did he lose a bet and had to become president. He took the ribbing good naturedly and said that he wanted to get me back in the league. He added he wanted to get me back to running the website, coaching two teams, etc.

I laughed and said (for the umpteenth time, to the umpteenth person) that I was retired and not coming back. Undeterred Mack added he wanted to get me back for the 2015-2016 season (while also mentioning the petty infighting he has to deal with) and that I love coaching the kids.

While that may be true, as I wrote on my Facebook page, I just can't stomach the notion of re-entering the rat race particularly given that people I loathe are still involved with the league. I did my 25 years, and just don't have a desire to go back. It is too bad because I like Mack but I'm simply done. One person who responded on the page said that it was nice to be wanted and that it was too bad I didn't want to go back because I was a good coach and role model.

BRYAN BURWELL

The columnist for the St. Louis Post-Dispatch and panelist on The Sports Reporters passed away this week after a short battle with cancer. I came across his writing via the columns he wrote for the USA Today. I also saw him numerous times on The Sports Reporters. I liked his work, though I really haven't kept up with him once he joined the Post-Dispatch and stopped writing for the USA Today. He had both a literary voice in his work and an ear catching speaking voice he employed so well as a panelist.

You can read more about his passing and see a tribute video from a couple of his colleagues HERE.

Pardon The Interruption host Michael Wilbon had a nice post on his Facebook page about Burwell's passing. Burwell's co-worker at the Post-Dispatch, Bernie Miklasz, penned a heartfelt column as well.

MISCELLANEOUS

TV - This past week saw a two part crossover event between the shows The Flash and Arrow. Pop-topia.com recapped both episodes: The Flash V. Arrow and The Brave and the Bold. The midseason finale of The Flash is this coming Tuesday and the writer responsible for the episode recaps offers up some theories on the identity of the Reverse Flash, a character that will loom large in this week's episode.

 

Comics - As a huge fan of the Firefly / Serenity universe, I was very happy to see that the graphic novel collection of the recent comic book series Serenity: Leaves on the Wind had hit #1 on the New York Times Best Seller List. You can read about that HERE.

Music - As the year winds down, the Best of Lists for every conceivable topic will be coming out. I've got two best of music lists that will be out soon. My choices for rock and metal CDs of the year will be for KNAC.com where I am a contributor. The other list includes music genres amongst the rock and metal. That is for the Classic Rock Bottom message board where I'm one of the voting members for our year end awards as well. Those will all be out sometime in mid-December.

In the meantime, I've got a couple of CD reviews for you to check out. They were the last two remaining albums I had for the 2014 calendar year. You can check out what I had to say about Tesla's Simplicity album via this KNAC.com link. As for what I thought about the Joe Bonamassa CD Different Shades of Blue, here's the link to my Pop-topia.com review.

 

Some rare footage of the band Night Ranger was posted on Youtube this past week. It is from 1981 when they were still called Ranger. It's a nearly 25 minute concert performance. You can see it below.

Sunday Musings #175
Category: User Showcase
Tags: HighSchoolSports NFL FantasyFootball HartfordHawksWomensBasketball BostonCollegeFootball BostonCeltics CollegeBasketball CollegeFootball

 

 

While enjoying the last day of my 4 1/2 day weekend...

 

Don't forget to follow me on Twitter: @TheOneTrueJay

 

HIGH SCHOOL SPORTS

Wareham Football - Despite being 1-9 going into the game with a mostly anemic-slash-pathetic offense, the Wareham Vikings had themselves a hell of a game on Thanksgiving Day against arch-rival Bourne. They rolled to a 44-8 victory to at least give a nice exclamation point to the rather awful season they had this year.

By the way, my former player Josh caught an 18 yard TD in the game, you can see a photo of the catch below. (Both photos by Adam K. Ellis of the Wareham Courier.)

Basketball - With the Thanksgiving holiday over, thoughts will now turn towards the high school basketball season. Tryouts are coming up once the kids head back to school. And it looks like I'll be going to 5 schools again this year after all.

There's the Wareham girls that have Gabby, Erica and Tieyanna (amongst others), the ORR JV team will have Jillian, the Sturgis East varsity will have Isabella, the Bristol-Plymouth varsity will have Savahna and the Upper Cape varsity will have Michaela plus the rest of the team that has become my adopted team to root for. The Upper Cape JV team will have at least one former player of mine (Ann Marie) plus the possibility of others.

I've already arranged to get out of work for a 1/2 day for the Upper Cape home opener so I can see both games.

And speaking of my ex-players, their talents extend further than the athletic courts and fields. Check out this video of Savahna performing the song "Titanium" at her school's talent show.

THE POLICE BLOTTER

Yet another of my former players has been arrested. This time it was for possession of pot, coke and for an unlicensed gun and ammunition. And he had nearly 1400 bucks on him when arrested. Hmmmm...wonder what he does for "work".

Just shaking my head at the stupidity.

And in the case of me being at least semi-evil, I also had myself a silent chuckle because the guy is the son of one of the people primarily responsible for kicking me out of the basketball league.

BOSTON CELTICS

There's no Celtics Report blog post this week. I wrote about their 94-88 loss to the Portland Trail Blazers in another blog post earlier in the week. Other than the up and down nature of James Young's week with the Celtics and Maine Red Claws, there wasn't much going on with the Celtics this week until Friday's afternoon game against the Chicago Bulls.

The Celtics started out strong in the game holding an 11 point lead after the first quarter. They were up 6 at both half-time and at the end of the third quarter. But once again, Boston showed their inability to close out games when they were outscored 24-11 in the fourth as they lost 109-102. The loss drops them to 4-9.

In the fourth quarter, the Celtics shot just 5-26 from the floor.

Jared Sullinger (pictured below) scored 23 points and grabbed 10 rebounds to lead the Celtics. Avery Bradley added 18 points. Brandon Bass had 16 points and Evan Turner scored 13 points. Rajon Rondo scored 8 points and dished out 9 assists. He missed both foul shots he took in the game and is now shooting a pathetic 32% (9-28) from the line for the season.

The usual way the Celtics have been losing has been for either their offense or defense to fail them. But now this game shows that both parts of their game can let them down at the same time and when it does, the results are even less pretty than before. Talk about frustrating.

COLLEGE FOOTBALL

Boston College - In the Eagles regular season finale, there was a lot a stake. A win would bump them into position for a marginally better bowl slot. It was Senior Day at the Heights and the school was celebrating the 30th anniversary of the famed Flutie to Phelan Hail Mary pass against Miami. You don't want to lose on a day like that.

And the Eagles did what they needed to do as they carved out a 28-7 win that saw fireworks right from the very beginning. The opening kickoff was returned 95 yards for the score by Myles Willis. You can see the TD run below.

Quarterback Tyler Murphy (see below) ended up being named MVP of the game for throwing for 160 yards and a TD (he did get sacked three times). He ran for 20 more yards which gave him the new ACC single season rushing record (1079 yards) for a quarterback. He passed Clemson's Woodrow Dantzler's.

The passing TD was a 26 yard strike to Sherman Alston (see the catch below).

Boston College's defense did a remarkably good job at containing the Syracuse offense all afternoon. They held them to just 136 total yards while racking up 3 sacks and 2 interceptions.

As for the Eagles ground game, they accounted for two touchdowns on the day while they ground down the Orange defense. Jon Hilliman had a 7 yard TD run while Tyler Rouse (pictured below) led the individual rushing stat line with 59 yards, including a 42 yard TD scamper.

For the second straight year, the Eagles finish with a 7-5 regular season record (4-4 in ACC play). I'll be looking forward to seeing where they end up for a bowl game and hope that this season ends with a big win.

Coach Steve Addazio mentioned in the post game press conference that the next two weeks will see him and his staff out on the road recruiting. This is a good thing given the uncertainty surrounding next year's team. They'll be looking to replace QB Tyler Murphy for one thing and for that matter, you might end up seeing a need for a new coach if Addazio is snatched away by the open Florida Gators job.

You can check out all the highlights from the game in the video below.

Alabama - After what coach Nick Saban termed the "worst half of football we've played since I've been here", the Crimson Tide won a shootout in the second half to win the Iron Bowl over Auburn 55-44.

The first half saw Alabama with a 14-6 lead before Auburn's offense dialed up a number of big plays against the Bama defense and took a 26-21 lead going into the break. Bama QB Blake Sims was awful in the first half. He threw 3 interceptions in the first half (on 15 passes) and after the game it was revealed that he very nearly got pulled from the game.

But Saban stuck with Sims and that faith paid off when Sims ended up rallying Bama back. He finished with 20-27 for 312 yards and four TDs. He was sacked once to go along with those three picks. He also ran for a TD. (see below)

Alabama's defense got torched for a total of 630 yards, including 456 yards passing (with 3 TDs) from Auburn's Nick Marshall. They did sack him three times and picked him off once, but the videotape of this game is not going to be must see TV for the Bama defense.

Bama's run game tallied 227 yards on the ground. T.J. Yeldon (pictured 1st) had 127 of those yards and scored twice. Derrick Henry (pictured below 2nd) ran for 72 yards and a score.

Receiver Amari Cooper (pictured below) had a huge day. He caught 13 passes for an Iron Bowl record 224 yards and scored 3 TDs.

You can see video of those TD catches below.

DeAndrew White (pictured below) caught the other TD from Sims.

Alabama is now 11-1 for the season and despite giving up a ton of yardage and points, will almost certainly remain atop the playoff rankings when they come out this week. But it sure was a scary game watching Alabama flounder for much of the first half.

COLLEGE BASKETBALL

Mount St. Joseph's - Just a quick update on Lauren Hill. There has now been more tan $350,000 raised in her name for cancer research. Also, her high school team announced they were retiring her jersey. You can read more about that HERE.

Mount Ida -  Breanna is another of my former players on a college roster. She isn't playing this season as she recovers from an injury but you can see a photo of her in uniform below. She's on the right in the picture.

Catholic University - Before heading off on Thanksgiving break, the Cardinals put a 76-45 beatdown on Bridgewater (Va.) to improve to 3-1 on the season. My ex-player Amber saw 7 minutes of playing time. She was 0-4 from the floor (including 0-1 from three point range), but had 2 rebounds, 2 assists and a steal while committing 1 foul.

Missouri State - The Lady Bears dropped to 0-4 with a 70-57 los to Oral Roberts University. Before the game freshman Liza Fruendt (pictured below) was named MVC Newcomer of the Week. 

As for the game, Missouri State got 15 points and 5 boards from Kenzie Williams. But they couldn't overcome their 4-24 three point shooting and missed 9 of 28 foul shots. Oral Roberts turned 12 MSU turnovers into 18 points.

Hillary Chvatal scored 9 oints, grabbed 15 rebounds and had 4 steals. All those numbers are new career highs for her. The team played in the Omni Classic on Friday and Saturday. They played Colorado on Friday night and ended up losing 87-59. Liza Fruendt was the only Bear player in double figures with 17 points. Onye Osemenam had 6 points with a team leading 8 rebounds. Lee Ann Polowy (pictured below) hit 3 out of 5 three point attempts for 9 points.

Missouri State ended up facing TCU in the consolation game of the tournament on Saturday night. Despite a number of Bears players hitting for career or season highs in points or rebounds, they couldn't do enough to stop TCU rolling to an 82-68 win. TCU hit 17 of 30 shots in the second half (56.7%). the scored 24 points off of 24 MSU turnovers.

Liza Fruendt scored a career high 20 points for Missouri State and was named to the all-tournament team. Nijay Gaines (pictured below) had a career high 14 points and a season high 7 boards. Kenzie Williams added 9 points. Aubrey Buckley had a career high 8 points. Riley Israel added 7 points and Rachel added a career high 7 rebounds.

Missouri State is now 0-6 on the season.

Hartford - The Hawks found this week a tough go as they lost to Lafayette 74-59. Deanna Mayza scored 14 points to lead Hartford. She dished out 7 assists in the game but had 4 turnovers as well. Cherelle Moore scored 13 points and Janelle Harrison (pic below) scored 10 points with 7 rebounds. Amber Bepko added 10 points but fouled out of the game.

The team then headed off to Mexico for three games in the Cancun Challenge. Things didn't start off well as the Hawks lost to Furman 53-42. Cherelle Moore had 13 points and 11 boards while Deanna Mayza added 11 points. The biggest problem for the Hawks in this game was their shooting. They shot 17-64 from the floor (26.6%) and hit just 3 of 18 three pointers. They forced 17 turnovers by Furman but managed to convert them into just 8 points.

On Saturday, Hartford played Washington. Despite a career high 26 points from Cherelle Moore (pictured below), the Hawks lost the game 81-70. Amber Bepko scored 16 points while Deanna Mayza added 13 points and 7 assists (4 turnovers).

The Hawks having 14 turnovers would seem to have been a big factor in helping to decide the game. Washington scored 18 points off of those turnovers. This despite the fact that Hartford managed to get 19 points of their own off of the turnovers by the Huskies.

On Saturday, Hartford's stay in Mexico ended after they played against Florida State. Unfortunately for the Hawks, the Seminoles took the game 69-59 to send Hartford home with an overall 3-4 record. Cherelle Moore (who ended up being named to the All-Tournament team) had 18 points and 7 boards to lead Hartford, while Amber Bepko added another 18 points (hitting 5-10 on 3 point tries). Deanna Mayza added 11 points.

But Hartford got almost no help from their bench (just 2 points) and turned the ball over 21 times. The Hawks are going to be looking to get themselves back on track as their strong start to the season has gone for naught with their winless tournament appearance.

Tennessee LADY VOLS - The Lady Vols opened up their week by destroying Tennessee State 97-46. Nia Moore (pic below) scored a career high 25 points and grabbed 11 boards to power the Tennessee offense.

Bashaara Graves (pic below 1st) added 14 points while Jaime Nared (pic below 2nd) added 11 points and 6 rebounds. Cierra Burdick finished the game with 10 points.

 

(All photos from Tennessee game photo gallery)

The Lady Vols did hit a snag on Wednesday night though. They went on the road to play Chattanooga and for the 2nd straight year lost to the Mocs. This time the score was 67-63. The Mocs led by 16 points at halftime and despite the Lady Vols tying the game up four times in the second half (the last was at 63 all), they squeaked out the win by hitting four foul shots to provide the final margin of victory.

Tennessee shot just 37.7% from the floor. They were led by a career high 21 points (18 in the 2nd half) by Jasmine Jones and 11 points from Ariel Massengale. The loss dropped the team to 4-1.

Boston College Women - There was a quick 3 minute weekly news conference with women's coach Erik Johnson at the beginning of the week. You can see that below.

The Eagles are in Maine this weekend to play in Maine's Black Bear Tournament. But weather challenges forced a change to the tournament when Wright State was unable to make it to play. BC played Brown on Friday afternoon and ended up taking a 90-80 overtime win.

Nicole Boudreau led the BC offense with 18 points and Kelly Hughes added 17. Emilee Daley scored a career high 15 points. Ashley Kelsick finished with 10 points and established her career high assist mark thus far with 9. The win was the 100th head coaching victory for BC's Erik Johnson.

The Eagles play Maine at 1pm today.

MISCELLANEOUS SPORTS ARTICLE OF NOTE

Do you remember Darryl Talley of the Buffalo Bills? He was one of their superstars during their Super Bowl glory days. But this article from the Buffalo News lays bare the now sad and tragic story of his life after football. It makes for some harrowing reading.

FANTASY FOOTBALL

I know this will come as big a surprise as it did to me, but I actually won one of my leagues last week. I lost in the other one so it was a 1-1 break even week. The most interesting thing about the league I picked up the victory in was that it was against the first place team.

MISCELLANEOUS

TV - Here's the Pop-topia.com recap and review of the "Power Outage" episode of The Flash.

Music - You can check out the official video for the title track to the new AC/DC album Rock or Bust below.

Movies - The first teaser trailer for the new Star Wars movie has been released. The new title is Star Wars: The Force Awakens and the 88 second trailer can be seen below. The movie is due out in December 2015. And I can pretty much guarantee that I'll be seeing it on opening weekend. I'm not a huge fan of J.J. Abrams but if doesn't try to put too much of his own imprint on the movie and instead lets it be a Star Wars movie that he happens to be the director of, things should be okay.

Thanks to the long weekend, I decided to take in a movie on Friday afternoon. I saw The Hunger Games - Mockingjay Part 1. Like most movies that are split into two parts from one book, a lot of the stuff in the first part seemed geared towards making the audience come back for part 2. There was some stuff that was good of course, but overall, I found this to be a merely decent movie. It is better than the first one but not as good as the second film was. Still worth watching however.

 

Ferguson
Category: User Showcase

Too many disjointed thoughts here, but I'm pissed:

I'm torn to be honest.  I don't know what to think, but I do know this much, I'm sick to death of all this outrage and I'm sick to death of the violence.  Qwazier said it best today:  What did the businessmen do to the people of Ferguson to deserve being torched?  Well guess what Ferguson, your problems just grew worse because what businessman would want to do business in your town?

The death of Michael Brown was tragic, but WHERE THE FUCK IS THE OUTRAGE FOR THE SENSELESS VIOLENCE KILLING THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE IN CHICAGO, LOS ANGELES, OAKLAND, and everywhere else - many victims being innocent children?  Where is the outrage at the criminals who do this shit?  I can never reconcile this FACT.   Where is Magic Johnson, Kobe Bryant, Steve Nash, and LeBron James when it comes to this stuff?  For that matter where is President Obama?  Isn't Chicago one of his hometowns?  So I just want to get this straight NBA players - what you are telling me by your ignoring it is that it's OK for the persistent death and violence to roll through places, so long as a cop isn't involved.  That's what you seem to be saying without saying it.

Here's the bottom line - and I've said it before - our generation has failed.  We've abdicated our responsibility as leaders, communicators, parents, role models and everything else.  We can't think straight, and we can't think critically.  By every conceiveable measure we are leaving our children worse off than we were, and I'm disgusted.  

President Obama likes to talk about hope and change - we have neither of either.  Too bad because those are Good words (not catch phrases or buzzwords).  It's too bad nobody listened, including himself because we could have moved on to greater things, but we had to be stuck in a never ending cesspool of violence and mistrust.

Last Saturday on my way to Jerry's ball game on the way out of town I passed a gun show, and guess what?  The place was packed and it got me to thinking - nobody on either side trusts the cops to keep the peace, so where are we as a society gonna be in 5 years?  Armed to the teeth, just like the wild west - that's where.

Boston Sports Weekend Wrap Up
Category: User Showcase
Tags: NBA BostonCeltics BostonCollegeEaglesBasketball NewEnglandPatriots NewEnglandRevolution BostonBruins BostonRedSox

 

Despite a lengthy blog entry yesterday, there is still a bunch of news and recaps for the various Boston area sports teams that I follow to talk about.

This would be due to the fact that a lot of the teams were in action yesterday.

So let's get started...

NEW ENGLAND REVOLUTION

The pro soccer team beat the New York Red Bulls 2-1 in the first leg of the Eastern Conference Finals. I have no idea what that means but I'm guessing that is a good thing.

BOSTON BRUINS

I really haven't been following the Bruins too closely thus far. I know they are dealing with a ton of injuries. But you can check out this ESPNBoston.com report for the latest news on the team.

BOSTON RED SOX

After their 71-91 season, the Red Sox seem to be determined not to flounder their way through another season next year. While they still haven't gotten their heads out of their butts about signing a legitimate #1 starter (JON LESTER!), news reports today have the Sox signing Hanley Ramirez to a five year $90 million dollar deal. If he could ever get healthy, his bat could be a help in the lineup. But he won't be the shortstop with Xander Bogaerts pretty well established in the position.

The other news that broke today has Boston also picking up Pablo Sandoval for 5 years and nearly $100 million dollars. Given that Will Middlebrooks is not the answer at third base, Sandoval is of course going to take over at the hot corner.

BOSTON CELTICS

The Celtics dropped to 4-8 on the season after their 94-88 loss to the Portland Trailblazers. They led after the first quarter, but were behind in the fourth. They rallied to cut the deficit to 92-88 but failed to hit any shots in the last minute of the game and went down in a stinging defeat.

Jared Sullinger (photo below) had 19 points to lead the Celtics. He added 7 rebounds and 4 assists as well.

(Photo from Celtics Twitter Feed)

Jeff Green also scored 19 points while Rajon Rondo (both players pictured below) had 13 points, 8 assists and 6 rebounds.

 

(Photos from the Boston Globe game photo gallery)

The big question I have about the team besides how do they straighten things out and start winning some of these tight games they seem to find themselves in, is what the heck is going on with Kelly Olynyk? He played 27 minutes last night and had 8 rebounds but failed to score in the game. He only took 3 or 4 shots the entire time he was out of the court to begin with.

I think frustration is really starting to set in with the team and something is going to come to a boiling point if the losing continues unabated.

NEW ENGLAND PATRIOTS

As the Detroit Lions headed into Foxboro, they were the #1 ranked defense in the NFL and I was rather worried that the billing of their defense would shut down the Patriot offense. Oh me of little faith apparently.

The Patriots put a whipping on the Lions to the tune of 34-9. The win improves their record to 9-2 on the season.

The defense gave up field position to the Lions in the early part of the game, but limited the damage to just field goals. They sacked Matthew Stafford twice and picked him off once. And once the offense for the Patriots took over, it wasn't long before the Lions were playing a very demoralized brand of football.

Tom Brady (pictured below) threw for 349 yards with 2 TDs (to tight end Tim Wright) and got picked off once.

Besides Wright's (#81 pictured below) 2 TD catches, the Patriots pass receivers were in fine form, led by 11 catches for 89 yards by Julian Edelman. Brandon LaFell caught 9 passes for a team leading 98 yards.

With last week's game hero Jonas Gray benched for being late to practice on Friday, newly signed (for a second tour of duty) running back LeGarrette Blount (pictured below) was called on to lead the way in the ground attack. He had 78 yards on the day and scored twice. I'm still not happy about how he quit on the Steelers, but it is hard to be unhappy with a couple of extra TDs.

(All Photos from the Patriots.com Game Photo Gallery)

BOSTON COLLEGE BASKETBALL

Men - The Eagles finished off their slate of games at the Puerto Rico Tip-off with a matchup against Dayton. Unfortunately, the Eagles never really seemed to get things going to really be a threat to win the game. Eddie Odio led BC with 11 points as the Eagles lost 65-53 to the Flyers. Olivier Hanlan (pictured below) was the only other Eagle in double figures with 10 points. Dennis Clifford had 6 points and a team high 9 rebounds as BC dropped to 2-3 on the season.

(Photo from Yahoo Sports game article)

Women - The women's team hosted Bryant University yesterday afternoon at Conte Forum. They improved to 3-1 on the season after a 90-79 victory. You can see some game highlights in the video below.

Kelly Hughes (pic below) was the team leader on offense with 23 points, including 5-8 from three point range. She added 9 rebounds and 5 assists as well.

Freshman Katie Quandt (pic below) fouled out of the game but finished with 16 points and 6 rebounds.

Nicole Boudreau added 13 points and 6 boards while Karima Gabriel (pic below) filled the stat line with 13 points, 5 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 blocks and a steal.

Gabriel has really been looking good on the court this year, which is a marked improvement from last season when after viewing her performances in person, I was very unimpressed. But if they can get this kind of production on a consistent basis from her, perhaps the team's fortunes will take a turn for the better once the ACC conference schedule gets started.

(All photos from the BC Facebook photo gallery)

You can see the post game press conference with coach Erik Johnson below.

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