Tag Archive | "Belmont"

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I’ll Have Another on to Belmont Stakes

Posted on 21 May 2012 by WNST Staff

BALTIMORE, 05-20-12 – I’ll Have Another’s connections loaded their Preakness Stakes winner onto a van Sunday morning at Pimlico Race Course to begin their journey to Belmont Park in their continuing quest to sweep racing’s Triple Crown.

In front of a record crowd of 121,309, Reddam Racing’s chestnut colt edged Bodemeister by a neck in the 137th Preakness Saturday afternoon to become the first horse since Big Brown in 2008 to win the first two legs of the series. He will try to become the 12th horse to capture American racing’s most treasured prize – and the first since Affirmed in 1978 – in the Belmont Stakes on June 9.

Trainer Doug O’Neill said the colt and his team are ready for the challenge.

“My dreams always ended with winning the Kentucky Derby,” he said. “They never were followed up with winning the Preakness and going to the Belmont. That’s a new dream now I’m waiting to pull off.”

O’Neill said that I’ll Have Another came out of the race well and was happy with his appearance when he arrived at the barn at 6 a.m. Sunday morning.

“He looked great,” O’Neill said. “He had licked his feed tub. Once we cleaned the poultice off, his legs were ice cold. He had good energy.”

I’ll Have Another was loaded onto a van at 9:05 a.m. for the journey to Belmont Park.

The thrilling Preakness victory pushed I’ll Have Another’s record to 4-0 this season. He returned from a nearly five-month layoff due to sore shins with a win in the Robert Lewis (G2) on Feb. 4. On April 7, he added the Santa Anita Derby (G1) to his resume before winning the Kentucky Derby on May 5. O’Neill said the colt is well-suited to handle the demanding 1 ½-mile Belmont Stakes, the longest of the three races and called “The Test of the Champion.”

“He’s got the mind,” O’Neill said. “You’ve seen the way he’s handled the attention in Kentucky and here in Baltimore. He’s got a great confidence about him and he’s got the stride of a horse that a mile and a half won’t be a problem. He’s got the pedigree; so much stamina on the female side.

“And he’s lightly raced. After winning the Bob Lewis it enabled us to give him plenty of time before his next start. He’s still a fresh, happy, thriving horse that just seems to be getting better and better.”

Meanwhile, O’Neill is prepared for the attention and demands on his time that will come his way between the Preakness and the Belmont Stakes.

“Bring it on,” he said. “We’re ready.”

O’Neill spent a few hours at the post-race party in the barn area hosted by the Maryland Jockey Club, but ended his celebrating around 10 p.m.

“Lynette and I and the kids ended up going back to the hotel and getting room service,” he said. “And the kids were doing a lot of gymnastics moves off the bed. It was kind of a mellow evening once we got back into the hotel.

“Here it was just a fun house party. We kept saying ‘I hope mom and dad don’t show up. We’re all going to be in trouble.’ It’s something I had never experienced before in my life, the amount of enthusiasm and positivity and love for horse racing. It was a dream come true for anyone involved in the business.”

Assistant trainer Jack Sisterson and several members of O’Neill’s staff went with the colt to Belmont Park. O’Neill and his family were scheduled to fly home to California on owner J. Paul Reddam’s private jet. After checking on his horses at Hollywood Park and Santa Anita, O’Neill said he would probably travel to New York in about a week.

In all likelihood, O’Neill said, he won’t make any changes in I’ll Have Another’s training program during the three weeks leading up to the Belmont Stakes.

“We’ll have to play that by ear,” he said. “It depends on the weather and all that stuff, but we’ll maintain the same type of exercise that he’s had. There’s the old line about you can’t take a sprinter and train him two miles and make a router out of him and you can’t take a router and work them three-eighths every week and make a sprinter out of him.

“If we’ve got a true route horse, which we do, he’s going to maintain his fitness and his exercise. If they can go a mile and a half they will. And he will.”

While the Derby and Preakness had similar storylines with I’ll Have Another catching and passing Bodemeister near the wire, O’Neill said his personal emotions watching the stretch runs were not the same.

“Winning the Derby was an out-of-body experience. It was like, ‘Oh, my God, I can’t believe it.’” he said. “The Preakness, the expectations were obviously a lot higher. It was almost like, ‘C’mon boy, C’mon.’”

O’Neill acknowledged that there were moments in the duel through the stretch that it looked like I’ll Have Another might not overtake Bodemeister.

“He was running such a brilliant race and even if he had run second he would have run brilliantly,” O’Neill said. “You don’t want to run second when you run that good, and I’m glad he didn’t.”

BODEMEISTER – After another agonizingly tough loss to I’ll Have Another in the Preakness, Zayat Stables and Michel and Tiffany Moreno’s colt was flown back to California Sunday morning. He will remain in training, but will skip the Belmont Stakes.

“I’ve had enough,” Hall of Fame trainer Bob Baffert quipped.

Baffert said that Bodemeister appeared to be in good condition before leaving the Pimlico Stakes Barn for Baltimore-Washington International Airport.

“He was actually pretty happy today,” Baffert said. “He ate up, got on a plane and headed back to California. He came out of it really well.”

Bodemeister set the pace in the Derby and the Preakness and each time I’ll Have Another managed to catch and pass him near the finish line. The Arkansas Derby winner turned in gallant performances in defeat.

“He’s a pretty amazing animal,” Baffert said. “He didn’t act tired. After the race, he came back to the barn and he wasn’t as tired as he was after the Derby.”

Baffert said I’ll Have Another and Bodemeister showed in the Derby and the Preakness that they are at the top of a talented crop of 3-year-olds.

“They are two really good horses,” he said. “On any given year they could probably win those races. It was a tough year.”

Baffert said that the Zayat Stables’ colt Paynter might start in the Belmont Stakes.  Paynter, who won an allowance race in convincing style Saturday at Pimlico, was shipped to Belmont Park Sunday morning.

“We’re going to train him there,” Baffert said. “If it looks like he snapped out of his race, we’ll run him in the Belmont if he looks really good.”

CREATIVE CAUSE – The third-place finisher in Preakness 137 boarded a van Sunday morning to head for Baltimore-Washington International Airport for a scheduled 9 a.m. flight back to Los Angeles and his home base of Hollywood Park.

“He came out of the race OK,” said trainer Mike Harrington minutes before putting the son of Giant’s Causeway on the van.  “Back to California, regroup.”

Harrington surprised some observers when he sent Creative Cause home after his fifth-place finish in the Kentucky Derby, before bringing him back to Pimlico the following week for the Preakness. He said he is now contemplating one more cross-country venture to compete in the Belmont Stakes.

“I’d say right now it’s 50-50,” said Harrington, who was scheduled to get on a flight Sunday evening with assistant/exercise rider John Cisneros for the trip home.

“He ran his heart out,” Cisneros said. “He didn’t have any trouble at all. He ran hard, and I thought he was going to win it. Today he was very alert and happy. Actually he was jumping up and down when he was walking.”

The Belmont would be Creative Cause’s sixth race midway through his sophomore season. The San Felipe (G 2) winner has only been out of the money once in 10 career starts, that coming in his fifth-place finish in the Derby.

ZETTERHOLM – Trainer Richard Dutrow Jr. said Sunday that the Winter Park Partners’ Zetterholm appeared to come out of his fourth-place finish in the Preakness in good order.

The New York-bred son of Silver Train was shipped back to Dutrow’s barn at Aqueduct Sunday morning.

“I got what I wanted from the race,” Dutrow said. “I was hoping and praying for a third or fourth-place finish.  We got the fourth-place finish and we left there satisfied, but I did not see my horse run big. I know he put in his little effort there, but I thought he could have run better. He didn’t change leads, which is very unlike him, and he didn’t get along so well with the track.”

TEETH OF THE DOG – Trainer Michael Matz reported that J. W. Singer’s Teeth of the Dog exited his fifth-place finish in Saturday’s Preakness in good condition.

“I was happy with the way he ran. He’s kind of inexperienced and he’s probably not as good as those horses right now,” said Matz from Fair Hill Training Center Sunday morning.

Teeth of the Dog will be not run in the Belmont Stakes, but Matz has the horse that may well be Kentucky Derby and Preakness winner I’ll Have Another’s most dangerous foe in his quest for a Triple Crown sweep. Union Rags, who finished a troubled seventh in the Kentucky Derby, was held out of the Preakness to train for the Belmont Stakes.

Union Rags captured the Champagne Stakes (G1) at Belmont Park last fall. Matz is confident that Union Rags will be well suited to the 1 ½ -mile oval, the sweeping turns and the relatively deep racing surface.

“I don’t think it’s going to be a problem,” Matz said. “He’s won there before, so I don’t think that part of it will be a problem.”

OPTIMIZER – Trainer D. Wayne Lukas, who won back-to-back stakes races on the Preakness undercard but finished sixth in the main event, exited Pimlico shortly after dawn with his entourage early Sunday for the long van ride back to Louisville.

“He’s fine; he came out of the race in good shape,” Lukas said by phone while on the highway home. “We’re going to get home and Mr. Kelley (owner Brad) and I talked last night and we’re going to talk a little bit further when we get back.”

Lukas said before the Preakness he believed the son of English Channel was probably better suited to the 1 ½-mile Belmont Stakes than either the Kentucky Derby or Preakness. He finished 11th in the Derby in some traffic, then got going late to split the field in the Preakness at odds of 23-1.

“I would say we’re probable for the Belmont just because of the distance and the different configuration of the race track,” said Lukas, who has won the Belmont Stakes four times in his storied career. Lukas last took the Belmont in 2000 with long shot Commendable, following three consecutive victories from 1994-96 with Tabasco Cat, Thunder Gulch and Editor’s Note.

“I’d say it’s 50-50 right now,” he said. “The winner (I’ll Have Another) is a nice horse, but we’re not going to hand it (the Triple Crown) to him. He’s got to earn it.”

COZZETTI – The seventh-place finisher in Preakness 137 returned to his home base at Churchill Downs Sunday, where trainer Dale Romans will decide whether to continue on to Belmont or embark on a grass campaign to take advantage of his attractive turf pedigree.

“I’m not sure,” Romans said when asked if he would go onto the Belmont Stakes with Albaugh Family Stable’s son of grass champion Cozzene. “We’ll regroup. We’ve got to figure out why he’s not running better. He’s a better horse than he’s shown. Once we get back to Kentucky, we’ll figure him out.”

Even if Romans bypasses the Belmont with Cozzetti, he has another candidate that he’s more than a little excited about in Dullahan.

“He worked Saturday morning (five furlongs in 1:00.20, second-best of 26) at Churchill,” Romans said of the Blue Grass winner and Kentucky Derby show finisher. “He’s on track for a big Belmont.”

Romans, who won the 2011 Preakness with Shackleford, decided not to run in the Preakness and give Dullahan extra rest for the Belmont Stakes.

“It should help him,” he said. “He’ll be a fresher horse.”

WENT THE DAY WELL – Team Valor International and Mark Ford’s Went the Day Well was reported to have come out of  a 10th-place finish in the Preakness in good order.

“He seems OK. He has a couple of scrapes, but all in all, he’s good,” said trainer Graham Motion from Fair Hill Training Center Sunday morning.

Motion could offer no concrete reason for the disappointing effort that followed a strong fourth-place finish in the Kentucky Derby.

“Maybe the Derby took more out of him that I realized. I just don’t know,” Motion said.

Went the Day Well is unlikely to go on to the Belmont Stakes.

“I think we’ll point to some of the summer races like the Travers,” Motion said.

TIGER WALK – Trainer Ignacio Correas and his eighth-place Preakness runner were back at Kevin Plank’s Sagamore Farm Sunday morning, having departed Pimlico Saturday night for the 20-minute van ride home.

“He came out of the race good,” Correas said. “He just walked today. He was probably a little tired.”

The Preakness was Tiger Walk’s fourth race as a 3-year-old, all stakes, but his only in-the-money finish came in the Withers (G3) at Aqueduct in February in his seasonal debut.

Correas said he thought the son of Tale of the Cat would probably not be heading to New York for the Belmont Stakes in three weeks.

“I don’t think so,” he said. “I haven’t talked to Kevin about it yet. We’re going to talk during the week, but I don’t think so.”

PRETENSION – Trainer Chris Grove reported from Bowie Training Center that Kidwells Petite Stable’s Pretension came out of his 11th-place finish in Saturday’s Preakness Stakes in good order.

“He’s in great shape. No problems, “I think we’ll probably head for the Mike Lee in late June,” said Grove, referring to the Belmont Park stakes that’s restricted to New York-bred horses.

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Your Monday Reality Check-Horse Racing, Orioles in similar spot for three weeks

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Your Monday Reality Check-Horse Racing, Orioles in similar spot for three weeks

Posted on 21 May 2012 by Glenn Clark

I’ve attempted to put events I’ve attended into words for years.

Baltimore Ravens football games, University of Maryland football and basketball games, a multitude of local hoops and lacrosse games and even a press conference or twenty have quickly turned into 600-1400 words worth of type off my fingers.

Almost every time I’ve written something, even the columns I’ve been particularly pleased with, I’ve looked somewhere else on the web and thought to myself “damn, that person can WRITE” after reading what they had to say about the same event.

Such was the case again this weekend. I had already decided my Monday morning column would be related to the 137th running of the Preakness Stakes, but I hadn’t exactly decided what angle I was going to take. It only took me a trip to my friend Kevin Van Valkenburg (of ESPN The Magazine/Hug It Out Radio fame and late Baltimore Sun)’s Facebook page for me to once again utter the phrase.

It wasn’t because of something KVV had written this time though. It was one of his colleagues’ stories he had linked, and it made me say “damn, Jeff MacGregor can WRITE.”

MacGregor scribed this exceptional postscript to an incredible victory from Kentucky Derby champ I’ll Have Another, celebrating the excitement of an underdog champ at the coming buildup to a Triple Crown chance in the context of a fledgling sport.

Many commenters on ESPN.com and throughout social media however were turned off by the nature of MacGregor’s tone, most notably this line…

“None of which matters, because horse racing is dead.”

MacGregor didn’t really say anything we haven’t already accepted as fact, we’ve just been more apt to use a kinder term like “struggling” or “suffering” instead of flat out placing the industry in a black bag and shipping it to the morgue.

Horse racing HAS been troubled for some time. The depth of the fall has been particularly evident in the state of Maryland, where “the sport of kings” has been all but nonexistent for years. Sure, the industry shines for a few days each spring at Pimlico and each fall at Laurel Park, but even on the brightest day the problems in the industry are obvious.

Unlike some, I have no interest in fighting with MacGregor. I think he’s absolutely right. I just feel as though the potentially monumental turn for horse racing in the next month can be celebrated whether or not the sport is staring into the face of imminent doom.

I’ll Have Another’s charge to the wire Saturday was breathtaking. 14 days earlier we had no way to know that an unknown trainer (Doug O’Neill) and jockey (Mario Gutierrez) had a longshot in position to track down the exceptional favorite (Bodemeister) trained by the Hall of Famer (Bob Baffert) and ridden by a Hall of Famer (Mike Smith) as well. On Saturday we knew it was possible but found it no less amazing.

“There’s no way this can happen again.”

You definitely heard me make the argument for Bodemeister throughout the week. “There’s no speed horse to take Bodemeister out to a dangerous speed this time. The race is 1/16 of a mile shorter. There are nine fewer horses to crowd things at the front and push the favorite too much early. There’s just no way things can shape up for I’ll Have Another as perfectly as they did in Louisville.”

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Dominguez replaces Desormeaux aboard Tiger Walk

Posted on 18 May 2012 by WNST Staff

DOMINGUEZ TO REPLACE DESORMEAUX ON TIGER WALK IN PREAKNESS

BALTIMORE – 5-18-12 – Jockey Ramon Dominguez will ride Tiger Walk in the 137th Preakness Stakes Saturday, replacing Kent Desormeaux, trainer Ignacio Correas IV said Friday.

Correas trains the colt for Sagamore Farm.

Desormeaux failed a Breathalyzer test at Belmont Park Friday and was removed from his three mounts on the program. He has not been suspended, but the New York State Racing and Wagering Board is conducting an investigation.

“It was a team decision,” Correas said. “Ramon is a great rider. We’re happy to have him.”

New York’s new rule that went into effect on April 27 requires every jockey named to ride to undergo a test for alcohol consumption. Mark Stuart, an attorney for the New York board, notified Maryland’s stewards that Desormeaux, 42, had failed the test.

Dominguez, 35, has won the Eclipse Award as the outstanding jockey the last three years. He led the nation in earnings in 2011 for a second straight year with a career-best $20,264,822. He was the leading rider in Maryland in three of the five years he rode in the state.

Tiger Walk will be Dominguez’ 10th Preakness mount. His best finishes were seconds aboard Scrappy T in 2005 and First Dude in 2010.

“I’m excited to ride the horse, not necessarily the way it happened. I’m happy that they chose me to ride this horse,” Dominguez said. “I know very little (about him). I rode against him a couple of times in New York, and I will have to go look at a couple of replays to take a look at his running style.”

-mjc-

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Kentucky Favorite, Loyola Given Longest Odds to Win NCAA Tournament

Posted on 12 March 2012 by WNST Staff

“As of this morning we have already seen some trends on who the public is liking to take this thing down. Florida State who won the ACC and who we opened at 40-1 have dropped down to 30-1 and are a heavy liability for us already.  Syracuse at 10-1 as a #1 seed has also taken quite a bit unlike Kentucky who are clear cut favorites at 9/4 but not seeing too much action at that short price. Michigan State took quite a lot of money when they were as high as 40-1 at one point during the season but now at 17/2 I guess some bettors feel they missed the boat on that one.”

-Kevin Bradley, Bovada.lv Sportsbook Manager 

Odds to Win the 2012 NCAA Men’s Basketball Championship 

Kentucky (1)                                          9/4

Ohio State (2)                                        11/2

North Carolina (1)                                   13/2

Michigan State (1)                                  17/2

Missouri (2)                                           10/1

Kansas (2)                                            10/1

Syracuse (1)                                          10/1

Duke (2)                                                20/1

Marquette (3)                                         30/1

Florida State (3)                                     30/1

Baylor (3)                                              35/1

Wisconsin (4)                                        35/1

Louisville (4)                                          35/1

Vanderbilt (5)                                         35/1

Wichita State (5)                                    40/1

Georgetown (3)                                      40/1

New Mexico (5)                                      50/1

Indiana (4)                                             60/1

Florida (7)                                              65/1

Memphis (8)                                          65/1

Cincinnati (6)                                         75/1

Kansas State (8)                                    75/1

Connecticut (9)                                      75/1

Michigan (4)                                          80/1

Belmont (14)                                          100/1

Temple (5)                                             100/1

UNLV (6)                                               100/1

Murray State (6)                                     100/1

Notre Dame (7)                                      100/1

St. Mary’s (7)                                         125/1

Gonzaga (7)                                          125/1

West Virginia (10)                                  125/1

San Diego State (6)                                150/1

St. Louis (9)                                          150/1

Alabama (9)                                           150/1

Creighton (8)                                          150/1

Texas (11)                                             100/1

Purdue (10)                                           100/1

NC State (11)                                        100/1

Iowa State (8)                                        200/1

Virginia (10)                                           200/1

VCU (12)                                               250/1

Harvard (12)                                           250/1

California (12)                                        250/1

Southern Miss (9)                                  250/1

Long Beach State (12)                            250/1

Colorado State (11)                                300/1

Colorado (11)                                         300/1

South Florida (12)                                  300/1

Montana (13)                                         300/1

New Mexico state (13)                            300/1

Ohio (13)                                               300/1

Davidson (13)                                         300/1

BYU (14)                                               300/1

Iona (14)                                                300/1

St. Bonaventure (14)                               300/1

South Dakota State (14)                         300/1

Lehigh (15)                                            450/1

Norfolk State (15)                                   450/1

Detroit (15)                                            450/1

Mississippi Valley State (16)                   500/1

Western Kentucky (16)                           500/1

NC-Ashville (16)                                     500/1

Long Island (16)                                     500/1

Lamar (16)                                             500/1

Vermont (16)                                         500/1

Loyola Maryland (15)                              500/1

Odds to Win the South Region           

Kentucky (1)                              5/7

Duke (2)                                    5/1

Baylor (3)                                  11/2

Wichita State (5)                        8/1

Indiana (4)                                 12/1

UNLV (6)                                   25/1

Connecticut (9)                          30/1

Notre Dame (7)                          40/1

Iowa State (8)                            60/1

Xavier (10)                                 60/1

VCU (12)                                   100/1

Colorado (11)                             150/1

New Mexico State (13)               200/1

South Dakota State (14)             200/1

Lehigh (15)                                200/1

Western Kentucky (16)               200/1

Mississippi Valley State (16)       225/1

Odds to Win the West Region 

Michigan State (1)                      11/5

Missouri (2)                               9/4

Marquette (3)                             13/2

Louisville (4)                              13/2

New Mexico (5)                          9/1

Florida (7)                                  14/1

Memphis (8)                              14/1

Murray State (6)                         25/1

St. Louis (9)                              30/1

Virginia (10)                               50/1

Long Beach State (12)                75/1

Davidson (13)                             100/1

BYU (14)                                   100/1

Colorado State (11)                    150/1

Iona (14)                                    150/1

Norfolk State (15)                       200/1

Long Island (16)                         200/1

Odds to Win the East Region  

Ohio State (2)                            8/5

Syracuse (1)                              9/4

Vanderbilt (5)                             9/1

Florida State (3)                         10/1

Wisconsin (4)                            10/1

Kansas State (8)                        15/1

Cincinnati (6)                             18/1

Gonzaga (7)                              30/1

West Virginia (10)                      30/1

Texas (11)                                 30/1

Southern Mississippi (9)             60/1

Harvard (12)                               60/1

Montana (13)                             100/1

St. Bonaventure (14)                   150/1

Loyola Maryland (15)                  200/1

NC-Ashville (16)                         200/1

Odds to Win the Midwest Region        

North Carolina (1)                       8/5

Kansas (2)                                2/1

Georgetown (3)                          10/1

Michigan (4)                              15/1

Temple (5)                                 18/1

Purdue (10)                               18/1

Belmont (14)                              18/1

NC State (11)                            20/1

St. Mary’s (7)                             25/1

San Diego State (6)                    30/1

Creighton (8)                              35/1

Alabama (9)                               40/1

California (12)                            50/1

South Florida (12)                      100/1

Ohio (13)                                   100/1

Detroit (15)                                150/1

Lamar (16)                                 200/1

Vermont (16)                             225/1

Courtesy of Bovada (formerly Bodog), www.Bovada.lv,  Twitter: @BovadaLV. 

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Towson Opens Home Slate Saturday Against Oregon State

Posted on 25 November 2011 by WNST Staff

TOWSON, Md. - After starting the season with four games away from home, the Tigers are set to open up their home slate Saturday against Pac-12 foe Oregon State on Saturday, Nov. 26 at 2 p.m. The game can be seen nationally on ESPN3.

Scott Garceau will handle play-by-play duties for ESPN3 while Towson coaching legend Vince Angotti will provide the color commentary. 

Under first-year head coach Pat Skerry, Towson has played the 15th toughest non-conference schedule in the country thus far, facing off against No. 13 Kansas, No. 17 Michigan, Belmont and UNC Greensboro. Including Oregon State, the Tigers have opened the season against four squads ranked in the top 100 of the RPI in just five games played.

Oregon State enters the weekend 4-1 after dropping a hard-fought battle to No. 18 Vanderbilt, 64-62, in the championship game of the TicketCity Legends Classic in New Jersey.

The Beavers are led by Jared Cunningham‘s 22.6 points per game. Sophomore forward Devon Collier registered a game-high 19 points in their loss to the Commodores Monday.

The Tigers are paced by Robert Nwankwo’s 13.8 points and 9.3 rebounds per contest. The senior forward is coming off a season-high 17 point performance against UNC Greensboro and he’s recorded a pair of double-doubles this season, both coming against nationally-ranked opponents.

Towson has won five straight home openers.

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Towson Hoops Faces Belmont Saturday in Murfeesboro

Posted on 18 November 2011 by WNST Staff

Tigers Take on Belmont in “Maui on the Mainland”

Robert Nwankwo Leads Towson Averaging 15 Points & 10 Rebounds Per Game

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Towson will continue its extremely tough non-conference schedule Saturday, Nov. 19 as the Tigers take on Belmont in the opening round of the “Maui on the Mainland” Tournament being held on the campus of Middle Tennessee State University.

Towson and Belmont, which is receiving votes in the latest Associated Press Top 25 poll, will tip off at 2:30 p.m. from the Murphy Center. That game will be followed by Middle Tennessee State taking on UNC Greensboro. The winners will face off in the championship game on Sunday at 3:30 p.m. while the losers will play in the consolation game at 1:00 p.m.

Both Towson (0-2) and Belmont (0-2) have faced all nationally-ranked opponents thus far. The Tigers fell at No. 13 Kansas and at No. 17 Michigan to open the Pat Skerry era while Belmont fell by just one at No. 6 Duke before losing at No. 10 Memphis Tuesday.

The Tigers are led by senior forward Robert Nwankwo, who has started the season off by recording consecutive double-doubles against the Jayhawks and Wolverines. He enters the weekend averaging team-highs of 15 points and 10 rebounds.

Belmont is led by sophomore guard JJ Mann and senior forward Mick Hedgepeth. Mann has averaged 15 points per game while Hedgepeth has pulled down 7.5 rebounds per contest through the Bruins’ first two outings.

Saturday will be the first all-time meeting between the squads.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 15 November 2011 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Mixed Martial Arts-UFC 139: Mauricio “Shogun” Rua vs. Dan Henderson (Saturday 9pm from San Jose, CA live on Pay-Per-View), Strikeforce Antwain Britt vs. Lumumba Sayers (Friday 11pm from Las Vegas live on Showtime), Bellator Fighting Championships 58 (Saturday 7pm from Hollywood, FL live on MTV2); Soccer: Team USA @ Slovenia (Tuesday 12pm from Ljubljana, Slovenia live on ESPN2/ESPN3.com); MLS Cup: Houston Dynamo @ Los Angeles Galaxy (Sunday 9pm from Carson, CA live on ESPN); College Soccer: NCAA Tournament-Xavier/West Virginia @ Maryland (Sunday 5pm Ludwig Field); High School Soccer: MPSSAA Boys & Girls Finals (Thursday-Saturday UMBC Stadium); Boxing: Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. vs. Peter Manfredo (Saturday 10:30pm from Houston live on HBO); Women’s College Basketball: Towson @ Maryland (Wednesday 7pm Comcast Center), Maryland @ UMBC (Saturday 7pm RAC Arena); High School Football: MPSSAA Regional Finals-4A North Catonsville @ Poly (Friday 7pm), 3A North Aberdeen @ North Harford (Friday 7pm), 2A North Chesapeake-Baltimore County @ Edmondson (Saturday 4pm Poly HS), 1A South Surrattsville @ Dunbar (Saturday 1pm Poly HS), 1A North New Town @ Overlea (Friday 7pm CCBC-Essex), 1A East Cambridge @ Perryville (Friday 7pm); College Field Hockey: Final Four-Maryland vs. Old Dominion (Friday 4:30pm from Louisville, KY live on NCAA.com), NCAA Championship Game (Sunday 12pm from Louisville, KY live on NCAA.com); Canadian Football League Playoffs: Eastern Conference Finals-Hamilton Tiger-Cats @ Winnipeg Blue Bombers (Sunday 1pm from Winnipeg live on ESPN3.com), Western Conference Finals-Edmonton Eskimos @ BC Lions (Sunday 4:30pm from Vancouver live on ESPN3.com)

10. Hank3 (Wednesday 7pm Rams Head Live), Airborne Toxic Event (Thursday 7:30pm Rams Head Live), Brett Dennen (Friday 7pm Rams Head Live), Robert Randolph and the Family Band (Saturday 7pm Rams Head Live), Five Finger Death Punch (Monday 6:30pm Rams Head Live); Chris Robinson Brotherhood (Tuesday 8pm Baltimore Soundstage); Bob Schneider (Sunday 8:30pm Rams Head On Stage); Owl City (Wednesday 5:30pm 9:30 Club), Mike Doughty and His Band Fantastic (Thursday 7pm 9:30 Club), The Kooks (Sunday 7pm 9:30 Club); Ray Davies (Tuesday 7pm Fillmore Silver Spring), Kid Rock (Wednesday 8:30pm Fillmore Silver Spring), LMFAO (Thursday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring), Warren Haynes (Saturday 7pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Straight No Chaser (Saturday 8pm Meyerhoff Symphony Hall); Drake “Take Care” available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday)

I start with Brett Dennen, whose tune “Comeback Kid (That’s My Dog)” I play regularly on “The Reality Check”-a fine radio program that airs Monday-Friday 2-6pm on AM1570 WNST.net. You should really be listening…

Then there’s Robert Randolph. Holy hell I have no idea how many times I could possibly post this video. It’s just…it’s just…it’s just amazing.

Bob Schneider’s “Honeypot” is one of the most underrated songs of 2011…

Does the Chris Robinson Brotherhood play Black Crowes songs? I’ll bring my lighter…

9. Cirque du Soleil Quidam (Thursday-Sunday Verizon Center); Russell Brand (Thursday 8pm Patriot Center); Tony Rock (Thursday-Saturday Magooby’s Joke House); Bob Marley (Thursday-Sunday DC Improv); “Pirates of The Caribbean: On Stranger Tide” available on DVD/Blu-Ray (Tuesday)

Instead of Russell Brand doing stand-up in Fairfax, is there any chance we could get a concert featuring Aldous Snow and Infant Sorrow???

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3t6beljyjyA

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Towson Thursday: Good Graduation Rate News, Hoops Team Preps for Maui Invitational

Posted on 27 October 2011 by WNST Staff

NCAA ANNOUNCES TIGER STUDENT-ATHLETES GRADUATING AT IMPRESSIVE RATE
Tiger Gymnastics and Tennis Teams Post Perfect GSRs
TOWSON, Md. – According to the Graduation Success Rate (GSR) Report released by the NCAA this week, Towson University student-athletes continue to graduate at an impressive rate.
The NCAA released the Federal Graduation Rates for all institutions, as well as the Graduation Success Rate, an NCAA formula that accounts for transfers in and out of each program.
The NCAA report revealed that student-athletes who entered Towson during the 2004-05 academic year had a GSR of 82 percent. On a national level, all NCAA schools posted an average GSR of 82 percent, the highest mark that has ever been achieved.
According to the Federal Graduation Rate, Towson student-athletes graduated at a rate of 79 percent, some 13 percent higher than the graduation rate of all students (66 percent) at Towson University.
Student-athletes at Towson University ranked in the upper half of Colonial Athletic Association with their 82 percent GSR.  In fact, seven of the 12 CAA schools recorded a GSR above 80 percent.
“We are proud of the academic progress of our student-athletes,” said Mike Waddell, Towson’s Director of Athletics. “The word student comes before athlete for a reason and we have put more emphasis on developing Total Tigers from the day they set foot on campus to the day they leave with a diploma. Although our 82 percent GSR is good, I know we can do better and we will.”
Seven of the Tigers’ 19 intercollegiate athletic teams had a GSR of at least 90 percent. The TU gymnastics team and the women’s tennis team each posted perfect a 100 percent GSR. The field hockey team had a 95 percent GSR followed by women’s soccer (94 percent), women’s basketball (91 percent), women’s lacrosse (90 percent) and volleyball (90 percent).
Towson University currently has 20 intercollegiate athletic teams. Since the start of this GSR period, the women’s golf program was  added as the 20th sport.
The NCAA developed the Graduation Success Rate to more accurately assess the academic success of student-athletes. The rate holds institutions accountable for transfer students, unlike the federal graduation rate. The GSR also accounts for midyear enrollees and is calculated for every sport.
The most recent Division I Graduation Success Rates are based on the four entering classes from 2001-2002 through 2004-05. Nearly 105,000 student-athletes are included in the most recent four classes using the GSR methodology, as compared to about 76,500 in the federal rate.
The NCAA began compiling these figures with the entering freshmen class of 1995.

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Trips to Kansas, Michigan and Visit from Oregon State Highlight Towson Hoops Schedule

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Trips to Kansas, Michigan and Visit from Oregon State Highlight Towson Hoops Schedule

Posted on 13 September 2011 by WNST Staff

TOWSON RELEASES 2011-12 MEN’S BASKETBALL SCHEDULE

Tigers to Face Six NCAA Tournament Teams

TOWSON, Md. – Contests against six teams that reached the 2011 NCAA Tournament highlight the 2011-12 Towson University men’s basketball schedule, it has been announced by Pat Skerry, the Tigers’ first-year coach.

The Tigers will open the 2011-12 season by participating in the EA Sports Maui Invitational. After opening the season at the University of Kansas on Nov. 11, the Tigers will travel to the University of Michigan for a Nov. 14 game against the Wolverines. The Jayhawks advanced to the NCAA Tournament’s Southwest Region final last year while Michigan reached the NCAA Tournament third round.

Towson will continue play at the EA Sports Maui Invitational by facing Belmont, a team that played in the NCAA Tournament second round last year, on Nov. 19. The Tigers will play either UNC Greensboro or Middle Tennessee State on Nov. 20.

The Tigers open their home schedule against Oregon State on Nov. 26. That is the start of a stretch of four of five home games. After a visit to the University of Massachusetts on Nov. 30, the Tigers open their Colonial Athletic Association schedule at home against George Mason on Dec. 3, the first of two meetings against the Patriots. The two teams will also face each other at the Patriot Center on Jan. 21.

The Tigers resume their non-conference schedule by hosting La Salle on Dec. 7 and UMBC on Dec. 10 before visiting Coppin State on Dec. 14. They will finish the month of December with games against Manhattan College (Dec. 20), the University of Vermont (Dec. 23) and the University of Virginia (Dec. 30).

“As you can see, we are playing a national schedule against several of the nation’s top programs,” Skerry said. “The players want to play against the best competition much like they have during their entire basketball careers. We look forward to using these games and experiences to prepare us for a very tough CAA.”

The Tigers resume their CAA schedule on Jan. 2 by hosting Northeastern at the Towson Center in the first of two meetings between the two teams. Towson will also play Delaware, Drexel, James Madison, CAA champion Old Dominion and Final Four participant Virginia Commonwealth in a home-and-home series during the 2011-12 season while facing the other four CAA teams once.

In addition, the Tigers will play in an ESPN BracketBusters game on the weekend of Feb. 17-19 against an opponent to be determined.

The CAA Championship will be played Mar. 2-5 at the Richmond Coliseum with the CAA winner receiving an automatic berth into the NCAA Tournament.

Note: Schedule follows on next page

Your browser may not support display of this image.
2011-12 Towson University Men’s Basketball Schedule

November
11 at Kansas ^ Lawrence, Kan. 7 p.m.
14 at Michigan ^ Ann Arbor, Mich. TBA
19 vs. Belmont ^ Murfreesboro, Tenn. TBA
20 vs. UNC Greensboro/Middle Tenn. St. Murfreesboro, Tenn. TBA
26 OREGON STATE Towson Center TBA
30 at Massachusetts Amherst, Mass. TBA

December
3 GEORGE MASON * Towson Center TBA
7 LA SALLE  Towson Center 7 p.m.
10 UMBC Towson Center 7 p.m.

14 at Coppin State Baltimore, Md. 7:30 p.m.
20 MANHATTAN COLLEGE Towson Center 7 p.m.
23 VERMONT Towson Center 7 p.m.
30 at Virginia Charlottesville, Va. 7 p.m.

January
2 NORTHEASTERN * Towson Center TBA
4 at Drexel * Philadelphia, Pa. TBA
7 at Old Dominion * Norfolk, Va. TBA
11 WILLIAM & MARY * Towson Center TBA
14 at Georgia State * Atlanta, Ga. TBA
18 OLD DOMINION * Towson Center TBA
21 at George Mason * Fairfax, Va. TBA
23 at Delaware * Newark, Del. TBA
25 VIRGINIA COMMONWEALTH * Towson Center TBA
28 UNC WILMINGTON * Towson Center TBA

February
1 at Hofstra * Hempstead, N.Y. TBA
4 DREXEL * Towson Center TBA
8 at Virginia Commonwealth * Richmond, Va. TBA
11 JAMES MADISON * Towson Center TBA
17-19 at ESPN BracketBusters vs. TBA TBA TBA
22 DELAWARE * Towson Center TBA
25 at James Madison * Harrisonburg, Va. TBA

March
2-5 at CAA Tournament Richmond, Va. TBA

Home games listed in BOLD
* – Colonial Athletic Association game
^ – EA Sports Maui Invitational

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Morning Reaction Tuesday Top 7: Sporting Events You Would Have Camped Out To Have Great Seats For

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Morning Reaction Tuesday Top 7: Sporting Events You Would Have Camped Out To Have Great Seats For

Posted on 22 June 2011 by Glenn Clark

Today’s Tuesday Top 7 (on a Wednesday) topic was generated in honor of the folks who camped out at M&T Bank Stadium Tuesday night to get the best spots on the field to see U2.

The topic was “The Top 7 Sporting Events You Would Have Camped Our To Have Great Seats For.” As always, it seems pretty self-explanatory.

Glenn Clark’s list…

7. USA-USSR “Miracle On Ice” 1980 Olympics

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qYscemhnf88[/youtube]

6. Colts/Giants 1958 NFL Championship Game

http://bob520.files.wordpress.com/2011/04/1958_cut.jpg

5. Secretariat dominates 1973 Belmont Stakes

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cS4f6wiQJh4[/youtube]

4. Kentucky/Texas Western 1966 NCAA Championship Game

texaswestern

3. 1998 NBA Finals Game 6-Michael Jordan over Bryon Russell

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vdPQ3QxDZ1s[/youtube]

2. Hulk Hogan body slams Andre the Giant at WrestleMania III

hogan

1. Andre Agassi/James Blake 2005 US Open

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BAMhwNDwB6Y[/youtube]

Drew Forrester’s list:

7. Toni Linhart “field goal in the fog” 1975

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oEJhi_f-nV8[/youtube]

6. 2007 Winter Classic Penguins @ Sabres

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9je3EGSbrnQ[/youtube]

5. 2004 ALCS Game 7 Red Sox @ Yankees

alcs

4. Jason McElwain scores 20 points in four minutes

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1fw1CcxCUgg[/youtube]

3. Dale Hunter beats the Flyers 1988 NHL Playoffs

[youtube]http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7b5C-0Fj-as[/youtube]

2. Jackie Robinson’s first game 1947

jackierobinson

1. Miracle On Ice

miracle on ice

If you missed the explanation of why these players made the list on “The Morning Reaction” Wednesday on AM1570 WNST, hit the BuyAToyota.com Audio Vault here at WNST.net!

Flexing my mic muscles since 1983…

-G

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