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Handling Bigger Ice Key for Team USA in 2014 Olympics

Posted on 27 August 2013 by Ed Frankovic

On day two of Team USA orientation camp at Kettler IcePlex this afternoon General Manager David Poile didn’t beat around the bush when discussing the biggest challenge his squad faces heading into the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia. It’s all about how his squad performs on the bigger ice surface.

“We know what the challenges are here, we haven’t had any success in Europe on the big ice. The United States hasn’t won any medals in the last two Olympics played on the big ice,” stated the long time NHL GM.

Yes, Team USA won silver in Vancouver in 2010 and also in Salt Lake City back in 2002, but both of those tournaments were played on NHL sized rinks. The Olympic surface is wider, which changes several aspects on how the game is played.

“Angles and spacing really [is the difference]. More so the angles are quicker to adjust, it’s more of a read. At the NHL level you are approximated to the boards so you can use it as a gauge. Here, if you rely on that you are out of position pretty quickly. The one good thing is the zones are all a little different sizes but the paint is always in the same spot. I think that’s a key thing for everyone to understand and realize that from a spacing issue to try to use the faceoff circles and dots because they are actually in the same position as an NHL rink, almost,” said Kings winger Dustin Brown.

In 2010, Team USA used its ability to be physical to its advantage but with more room, taking the body is not as easy and is not as much of a factor.

“There’s more to being physical than the big hits. It’s rubbing guys out, grinding guys out. There’s still opportunities for the big hit, you just have to be patient and let it come to you. You can’t be running out of position because it’s just that much further you have to go to get back,” added Brown.

Most of the players seemed comfortable with going to the bigger rink size and some, like Carolina defensemen Justin Faulk, didn’t think the change was going to be real difficult.

“It’s probably easier going from big ice for smaller ice. You get more room. I don’t think it’s a big deal, I’ve done it many times personally. Everyone in here has played on big ice at some point. Obviously it’s a little bit different game and style,” stated Faulk.

Several other players acknowledged the ice surface challenge but it was clear that Poile, who has been in hockey long before every one of Team USA’s players was born, believes that addressing the rink size issue is paramount to his clubs success.

“The challenge for us is we’ve never had any success on European soil. We owe it to ourselves to to go over every facet of what we’ve done in the past on it. We’ve talked to former players and coaches and the thing that comes up constantly is you have to have speed. I don’t think we’ll need that truculence element as much. It’s just an adjustment and making the players aware of the differences in the ice size and making sure. You don’t want it to be the excuse. The fact that we’ve won two silver medals in North America and got nothing in Europe – I can’t accept that. These are good players, they’re smart players, they’re skilled players. It’s different – yes. Ok, so let’s go figure it out…it could be coaching, it could be systems, it could be the players that we take over there,” concluded Poile.

As for the roster make up itself, there were 48 players invited to the orientation camp and this is the deepest pool of talent Team USA has ever had. The team appears strongest in net where the club has the likes of Jonathan Quick, Jimmy Howard, Craig Anderson, Ryan Miller, Cory Schneider, and John Gibson. Up front they are led by Patrick Kane, Zach Parise, Ryan Kesler, Joe Pavelski, and Bobby Ryan while on defense Ryan Suter and Erik Johnson are the logical leaders. Poile indicated that this would be the toughest team these players would ever have to make and he stated that about half of the spots are likely already locked up based on the performances of some in the 2010 Olympics.

“As we’ve told the players, the body of work they’ve had in their career to this point is important but what they do in October, November, and December will be the deciding factor. I favor the guys from 2010, not only because of the success they had but how they’ve matured as hockey players. The age group we have right now is excellent. At times we thought we were too young in 2010 but now, four years later, we are bang on at the right age.”

It is apparent that the roster decisions are going to be extremely tough and many players will suffer the disappointment of missing out on representing their country, but Poile relishes that process.

“This is going to be the toughest decisions that I have to make, but I want it to be tough…We want the hard decisions, we’ve never really had in USA hockey to make that many hard decisions because we’ve never really had the depth and quality we presently have, so bring it on.”

Notes: The Caps were represented at the orientation camp by defensemen John Carlson, who scored the Gold Medal winning goal for Team USA in the 2010 World Junior Championships…Poile called Kettler “as good as any facility I’ve ever seen”…Erik Johnson was very critical of his game with Colorado last year and made it clear he needs to be more consistent…the Team USA jerseys were unveiled by the players to a sold out Kettler IcePlex. NHL Network televised the event.





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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 16 February 2013 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: NBA-Toronto Raptors @ Washington Wizards (Tuesday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet), Denver Nuggets @ Washington Wizards (Friday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet), Houston Rockets @ Washington Wizards (Saturday 7pm from Verizon Center live on Comcast SportsNet), Washington Wizards @ Toronto Raptors (Monday 7pm from Toronto live on Comcast SportsNet); Soccer: MISL Milwaukee Wave @ Baltimore Blast (Saturday 7:35pm 1st Mariner Arena), Team USA U-20 vs. Costa Rica (Friday 6:30pm from Puebla, Mexico live on Fox Soccer Channel); Boxing: Friday Night Fights-Lamont Peterson vs. Kendall Holt (Friday 5pm DC Armory); ShoBox: Art Hovhannisyan vs. Alejandro Perez (Friday 11pm from Cabazon, CA live on Showtime), Cornelius Bundrage vs. Ishe Smith (Saturday 9pm from Detroit live on Showtime); Vyacheslav Glazkov vs. Malik Scott (Saturday 10:30pm from Huntington, NY live on NBC Sports Network); Women’s College Basketball: Duke @ Maryland (Sunday 3pm from Comcast Center live on ESPN2); Tennis: ATP Tour U.S. National Indoor Tennis Championships (Saturday 1pm & 4pm Sunday 4pm live on Tennis Channel)

10. Shinedown/P.O.D./Three Days Grace (Tuesday 7pm 1st Mariner Arena); Dirty Heads/Shiny Toy Guns (Wednesday 8pm Rams Head Live), Wale (Thursday 9pm Rams Head Live); Imagine Dragons (Friday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Matisyahu (Tuesday 8pm Rams Head on Stage); Matchbox Twenty (Monday 8pm Modell Performing Arts Center at The Lyric); Robert Randolph Presents: The Slide Brothers available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday)

Shinedown is that band you’ve always liked but never fully admitted to it…

I could listen to Wale’s first full record on repeat for like a week straight.

Imagine Dragons not only does one of your favorite songs but also MY favorite song from Madden 13…

I will sign up for ANY amount of more Robert Randolph.

9. Joel McHale (Sunday 7:30pm Towson Center); Eddie Griffin (Friday & Saturday Magooby’s Joke House); “Argo” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday); “Snitch” out in theaters (Friday); Baltimore Winter Wine Celebration (Friday-Monday); “The Gathering” (Saturday 3pm The Castle at Keswick Hampden)

I saw Joel McHale after Preakness a few years ago. He was LEGITIMATELY funny. Also there’s this.

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Morgan takes short trip to face MEAC foe Howard Monday night

Posted on 11 February 2013 by WNST Staff

Game Dates: Monday, Feb. 11 2013
Opponent: Howard Bison
Site: Burr Gymnasium, Washington, D.C.
Game Time: 7:30 p.m.
Record:  MSU 7-13 (4-5); HU 6-18 (3-7)
MSU Coach: Todd Bozeman (116-98 – 7th yr)

Morgan State will face Beltway rival Howard on Monday night at the Burr Gymnasium is set for 7:30 p.m. (ET). The Bears will enter the game coming off of an 80-51 blowout victory at Coppin State on Saturday. Justin Black led the Bears with a career-high 23 points and DeWayne Jackson added 16 points. Howard won its second straight following a 63-44 win against Md-Eastern Shore on Saturday night at The Burr. Mike Phillips led the Bison with 21 points. The meeting with Howard will be the 100th all-time between the schools, with the Bears leading the head-to-head series, 58-41.

Bear Bits:

• Coach Todd Bozeman has directed the Bears to the most regular-season conference wins with 99.

• After opening the season with a 71 point effort in a win against UTSA, the Bears have gone 7-13 while averaging 67 points and 43 percent shooting.

• Morgan State, who shot 67.6 percent from the line last season, continues to have hard times from the stripe … through the first 20 games the Bears are ranked last in the conference by shooting 57.7 percent (280-485 FT).

• The Bears, who held Coppin State to 3 of 19 from 3-point range, have allowed an average of 70 points and opponents are shooting 30 percent from 3-point territory.

• Morgan State shot a season-high 53.3 percent against South Carolina State and a season best 65.0 percent from the stripe, with 11 steals versus the South Carolina Gamecocks.

• DeWayne Jackson has scored 290 points in 20 games and ranks among the MEAC’s scoring leaders ranked No. 4 (14.5 ppg).

• Justin Black was just shy of posting a triple-double at Liberty. The junior guard finished with a career-high 12 rebounds to go along with nine points and nine assists … he has been the Bears leading scorer in 7 of the last 12 games and ranks No. 8 in the MEAC in scoring at 14.0 ppg.

• DeWayne Jackson is ranked among the top theft artists in school history. Jackson has collected 158 steals with the Bears and currently ranks No. 1 (No. 1 in the MEAC). The school record for career steals is held by Terrence Wright (1992-96) with 186 career steals … Jackson is 29 steals away from becoming the school’s new leader.

• Shaquille Duncan leads the Bears in blocked shots. The sophomore ranks T-No. 4 (36) in the MEAC by averaging 2.3 blocks per game.

• The combination of DeWayne JacksonAnthony Hubbard and Justin Black have provided almost 60 percent of the scoring for the Bears so far this season.

• The Bears’ first 10 games of the 2012-13 season were on the road where they finished 3-7.

• The Bears used seven different lineups this season, but Coach Bozeman used a lineup eight times this season that puts DeWayne Jackson at forward with Justin BlackBlake BozemanAnthony Hubbard and Ian Chiles.

• Redshirt junior Ian Chiles, who stands at 7-foot-2, 270-pounds, enters Saturday’s contest with 448 career points and 78 blocked shots … he’s currently averaging 8.9 ppg and 5.4 rpg.

February, 6, 2012 — The Bears lost their shooting touch in the second half. Morgan State made only three field goals out of 20 attempts in the last 20 minutes and Howard pulled away late in a 54-46 victory over the Bears at Hill Field House. Howard started fast, going up 6-1 on a couple of Samuel Frazier three-point baskets with 18:02 remaining. Then Morgan got it going later on with the three-point shooting of DeWayne Jackson, who led Morgan State with 10 points. Jackson hit two straight to pull the Bears within 8-7 with 16:44 remaining. The Bears would go ahead 11-10 on a Kevin Thompson lay-up with 13:32 remaining.

The Bison welcome back 10 veterans, including four starters, from a squad that posted a 10-21 overall record, finished 10th in the MEAC with a 6-10 ledger. Mike Phillips leads the Bison in scoring and rebounding by averaging 12.0 points and 6.9 rebounds per game. Calvin Thompson (11.2 ppg) is the only other player averaging double-figures for the Bison. Head coach Kevin Nicklebery (Virginia Wesleyan ’86) enters his third season as the Bison’s head coach and he currently holds a 26-66 (.513) record.

Morgan State was picked to finish third in the 2012-13 Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference men’s basketball preseason poll behind Savannah State and Delaware State.

Morgan State senior DeWayne Jackson was selected to the Preseason All-MEAC First Team by the conference head coaches and sports information directors. Junior center Ian Chiles was selected to the Second Team.

Morgan State will face six teams this season that the program has never met in its basketball history. The first time opponents are: UTSA, Old Dominion, Holy Cross, South Carolina, Illinois State and San Diego. The Bears do not see a familiar foe until the Nov. 29 matchup at Liberty (MSU leads, 1-0), their fifth game of the season. The other five opponents MSU previously has played are University of Virginia (trails, 0-1), Loyola Marymount (leads, 2-0), and Saint Joseph’s (trails, 0-1).

DeWayne Jackson is the lone returning senior who saw action for Morgan State last year. There are seven (7) juniors, four (4) sophomores and two (2) freshmen on the Bears roster.

The Bears will look to rebound from last year’s dismal season in which the Bears recorded a 9-20 finish. It marked Todd Bozeman‘s worst season as a head coach, and it was Morgan State’s worst season since going 4-26 in 2005-06.

Morgan State senior DeWayne Jackson was selected to the Preseason All-MEAC First Team by the conference head coaches and sports information directors. Junior center Ian Chiles was selected to the Second Team.

DeWayne Jackson (1,446, 493 rebs., 157 asts) needs 55 points to surpass Harry Johnson (1,500 points – 1958-62) to become the school’s No. 8 all-time leading scorer. Jackson is one of three Bears on MSU’s all-time scoring list who have been coached by Todd BozemanKevin Thompson(2009-12) ranks No. 9 (1,487 points) and Reggie Holmes (2007-10) is the school’s all-time scoring leader with 2,051 points.

Morgan State has eight players from the Metropolitan-D.C. area, including one from Baltimore. Senior DeWayne Jackson (Bowie High) and sophomore Blake Bozeman (Solebury Prep) are both from Bowie. Transfer guard Daryl Traynham is from Melwood (Wise High), walk-on Daon Riley is from Severn (Old Mill High), and Cedric Blossom is from Columbia (Montrose Christian). Anthony Hubbard is a product of Woodbridge (Va.), while junior Justin Black attended DeMatha High, Willis Turnipseed played at City High, and Donte Pretlow was a standout at Dunbar High in Baltimore.

Todd Bozeman, now in his seventh season as head coach of the Bears, has an overall win percentage of .544 (117-98) after 215 games at Morgan State. That winning mean is the second highest among 15 head coaches in the history of the Morgan State men’s basketball program. Nathaniel Frazier’s winning percentage of .578 (166-121) is the highest percentage in Morgan State history.

During his tenure in Baltimore, Todd Bozeman has coached seven (7) different players to All-Conference honors, including four Players of the Year selections: Ron Timus (2007 2nd Team), Boubacar Coly (2008 Defensive POTY, 1st Team), Jamar Smith (2008 Offensive POTY, 1st Team), Marquise Kately (2008 & 2009 2nd Team), Reggie Holmes (2007 All-Rookie, 2008 2nd Team, 2009 Offensive POTY, 2009 & 2010 1st Team), Kevin Thompson (2009 All-Rookie, 2010 Defensive POTY, 2010 1st Team, 2011 2nd Team), DeWayne Jackson (Rookie of the Year, 2011 1st Team).

In the first 19 games of the season, three Bears average more than 12 points a game DeWayne Jackson leads with 14.5 points per game, whileJustin Black is averaging 14.0 ppg. Anthony Hubbard is averaging 12.4 points and 7.1 rebounds on the boards.

Senior DeWayne Jackson is filling the stat sheet this season, averaging 14.5 points (ranked No. 4), 5.4 rebounds, 2.5 assists and 2.1 steals (ranked No. 2) per game. Jackson has also registered 15 blocks. He has recorded 19 double-digit scoring games, including a season-high 32-point effort at Virginia (Dec. 19).

Morgan State ranks No. 1 in the MEAC averaging 15 offensive rebounds per game and has recorded double-digit offensive boards in 17 of 20 games. MSU averaged 12.1 offensive rebounds per game last season.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 31 December 2012 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Boxing-Friday Night Fights: Rances Barthelemy vs. Arash Usmanee (Friday 10pm from Miami live on ESPN2); Women’s College Basketball: Florida State @ Maryland (Sunday 1:30pm from Comcast Center live on ESPNU); High School Basketball: Perry Hall @ Dundalk (Wednesday 6:30pm), Perry Hall @ Chesapeake-Anne Arundel County (Friday 7pm)

10. Badfish (Friday 8pm Rams Head Live); Ryan Cabrera/Teddy Geiger (Sunday 8pm Baltimore Soundstage); Wale (Tuesday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Delta Rae (Saturday 7pm 9:30 Club); Pat McGee Band (Friday & Saturday 7:30pm Birchmere)

I wish I could say I wasn’t familiar with Ryan Cabrera. I wish more that I could say I didn’t enjoy this song.

Wale is a Redskins fan. As much as that bothers me, I still enjoy this tune.

Delta Rae likely the best band you weren’t listening to in 2012…

I genuinely enjoy Pat McGee.

9. “Looper” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday); “Texas Chainsaw 3D” out in theaters (Friday); Cirque Eloize iD (Saturday 8pm Sunday 1pm & 5:30pm Modell Performing Arts Center at The Lyric); Glenn Clark’s New Year’s Day plans (Tuesday parts unknown)

Honestly, you really don’t want to know what I do to celebrate the New Year. I’ll give you a hint. It doesn’t involve pants.

(Continued on Page 2…)

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Morgan takes short trip to Howard for Saturday showdown

Posted on 19 October 2012 by WNST Staff

Morgan State (3-3, 2-1 MEAC) continues the 2012 season play in a Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference matchup against Howard on Saturday at 1 p.m. ET at Greene Stadium. The game will mark Homecoming for Howard.  The Bison enter the 2012 season under the leadership of second-year head coach Gary “The Flea” Harrell. The Bison (4-2, 3-1) are coming off a disappointing 38-10 loss at North Carolina A&T.  The Bears fell in the last seconds to  North Carolina Central 24-20 in Hughes Stadium.

• The Bears and Bison will meet for the 66th time since 1931. Morgan leads the series 40-24-1.
•  Morgan State posted a 14-9 win against Howard last year at the New York Urban League Football Classic in front of 24,996 fans in attendance… redshirt-freshmanRobert Council threw the first touchdown of his career when he connected with tight end Kristian Johnson for a 3-yard score.  Council led the Bears by completing 12 of 18 passes for 119 yards.
• The last time the Bears were in Greene Stadium was on Oct. 18, 2008 … RB Devan James rushed for a career-high 219 yards and scored two touchdowns, including one in overtime to help Morgan State beat Howard 31-30 in double-overtime, handing a Howard Homecoming loss before 6,843 fans at Greene Stadium.

• Travis Davidson currently leads the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC) in rushing with 619 yards (103.2 avg/g). He also ranks No. 1 the MEAC in scoring (60 Pts).
•  QB Robert Council, making his second career start, completed 8-of-18 passes for 91 yards and was sacked three times against North Carolina Central.
•  Cornerback Joe Rankin registered his 9th interception of his career, picking off Savannah State quarterback Antonio Bostic in the 1st quarter…He currently leads the MEAC in INTs with four in six games…he also leads the league in passes defended (10).
• The MSU defense has collected 10 interceptions (FCS T-8th) through the first six games of 2012.
•  The Bears continue to be among the top scoring offenses in the league, entering Saturday’s contest as the MEAC’s No. 3 ranked scoring offense (26.0 avg/g).
•  True freshman LB Elandon Roberts currently ranks No. 7 in the MEAC in tackles by posting 53 tackles so far this season … he recorded a season-high 14 tackles against N.C A&T and was named Rookie of the Week.
•  Redshirt sophomore DE Chris Robinson posted seven tackles and two sacks vs. N.C. Central … he currently leads the MEAC with five sacks (5).
•  Travis Davidson currently has 1,351 yards and sits 101 yards away from surpassing James Fields at No. 10 on the school’s all-time rushing list.
•  Earvin Gonzalez currently ranks No. 1 in the MEAC by connecting on 10-of-14 field goals and is a perfect 18-of-18 on PATs and booted a career-high 47-yard field goal against N.C. Central.

• Howard ranks among the nation’s top black college football teams The Bison currently rank No. 8 in the Heritage Top 10 Poll, No. 9 in the BoxToRow HBCU Media Top 10 Poll and No. 9 in the Sheridan Poll.
• In 2011, Howard finished with a 5-6 overall record and 4-4 in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference (MEAC).
• Sophomore QB Greg McGee leads the Bison on offense this season. The 6-3, 200-pounder from Pittsburgh (Pa.) has completed 37 of 70 for 386 yards and a touchdown with four interceptions. He has also rushed for 127 yards on 35 carries (3.6 avg) with two touchdowns.
• Through the first six games, RB Aquanius Freeman (5-10, 213) has been the Bison’s leading ground gainer and is among the league’s rushing leaders (Ranked 7th). The sophomore from New Orleans, La. has recorded 57 carries for 370 yards (6.5 avg), including 5 TDs.  He was named MEAC Offensive Player of the Week following a a career-high 212 yards on 13 carries with two touchdowns to lead Howard to a 56-9 victory over Savannah State.
• MSU’s offense will have to account for the Bison’s All-American linebacker Keith Pough. Pough currently ranks among the league leaders with 49 tackles (ranks 3rd), 8.5 tackles for loss (ranked 2nd) and 3.5 sacks (T-7th).
• Through six games, the Howard defense has allowed 145.0 rushing yards per game, which ranks 5th in the MEAC. The Bison also rank 3rd in sacks (17) and 5th in total defense (359.2).

After Saturday’s contest versus Howard, the Bears will play at home against the Delaware State Hornets. The matchup is set for Thursday, October 25 and will be televised by ESPNU. Kickoff at 7:30 p.m.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 15 October 2012 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Golf-PGA Tour The McGladrey Classic (Thursday-Sunday 11am from Sea Island, GA live on Golf Channel); WNBA Finals: Indiana Fever vs. Minnesota Lynx (Game 2 Wednesday 8pm from Minneapolis live on ESPN, Game 3 Friday 8pm from Indianapolis live on ESPN2 Game 4 if necessary Sunday 8pm from Indianapolis live on ESPN2); Boxing: Danny Garcia vs. Erik Morales II (Saturday 8pm from Brooklyn live on Showtime)

10. Rebelution (Thursday 8:30pm Rams Head Live), Indigo Girls (Saturday 9pm Rams Head Live); Flobots (Tuesday 7pm Recher Theatre); All Mighty Senators (Saturday 8pm 8×10 Club); Blues Traveler (Sunday 8:30pm Rams Head Center Stage), Big Bad Voodoo Daddy (Monday 8pm Rams Head on Stage); Passion Pit (Tuesday 7pm 9:30 Club), Ben Kweller (Friday 7pm 9:30 Club), Pietasters/Spring Heeled Jack (Saturday 7pm 9:30 Club); Jonny Lang (Tuesday 8pm Baltimore Soundstage Wednesday & Thursday 8pm Howard Theatre); Three Days Grace (Tuesday 7pm U Street Music Hall); John Oates Blues Band (Saturday 8:30pm The Hamilton); Anberlin “Vital” available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday)

I’ll start by saying there is absolutely ZERO about Blues Traveler that doesn’t kick ass…

SNL might have been your first chance to get a taste of Passion Pit. That doesn’t make you a bad person. No, no it does…

You say you haven’t heard of Ben Kweller? Yeah you have…

Holy hell Spring Heeled Jack is still a thing? My 10th grade year was so much better because of them…

9. Baltimore Beer Week (Friday-Monday throughout Charm City); Russian Festival (Friday-Sunday Holy Trinity Russian Orthodox Church); Maryland Renaissance Festival (Saturday & Sunday Revel Grove); Aries Spears (Thursday-Saturday Baltimore Comedy Factory);  Kathy Griffin (Friday 8pm D.A.R. Constitution Hall); Kevin Hart (Saturday 8pm Verizon Center); Jay & Silent Bob Get Old (Tuesday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Bill Clinton (Tuesday 8pm Meyerhoff Symphony Hall); Mike Birbiglia (Thursday 7:30pm Meyerhoff Symphony Hall); “Moonrise Kingdom” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday)

If there’s anything worth devoting an entire week to around these parts, I’d say beer would be about #1 to #20 on the list. My fall go to?

And say whatever you want, Jay & Bob were a defining part of my adolescence. I still make conversational references to “The Amy Story” or “Good Will Hunting 2: Hunting Season” at least once a week…


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The Caps do the improbable, they win in Detroit, 5-3.

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Ovechkin Steps Up in Motown

Posted on 19 March 2012 by Ed Frankovic

Just when the Washington Capitals appeared to be in big trouble in the race for the playoffs, their star players finally put together a huge effort as the Caps went into Motown and stunned the Detroit Red Wings, 5-3, behind 30 saves from Braden Holtby. This Wings team set an NHL record for consecutive home victories this season (23 games) and they’d only lost on home ice in regulation four times in 2011-12.

But Alexander Ovechkin (two goals) and company had no need for history on this night and a huge first period, one in which the Caps outscored Detroit 3-0, resulted in one of the biggest victories of the season for Washington. The win keeps them in eighth place, just two points ahead of a streaking Buffalo Sabres team and four points ahead of 10th place Winnipeg. The Caps also pull within three points of the Southeast Divison leading Florida Panthers, who are in Philadelphia tomorrow night to take on the Flyers. It is hard to believe, but Capitals fans will be cheering for Danny Briere, Jaromir Jagr, and company on Tuesday night.

After a terrible first period in Chicago on Sunday night, this Capitals team looked totally different in Detroit. Washington came out skating and they drew a couple of early penalties. Ovechkin scored twice with the man advantage by moving into prime scoring position. On the first tally, Marcus Johansson gave him a sweet feed in the slot and the Gr8 went upper left top shelf. Mike Knuble then scored following a great breakout pass from Mike Green that led to some sweet passing between Mathieu Perreault and Jason Chimera before Papa Knoobs buried the biscuit setting the stage for Ovie’s 32nd goal of the season. Ovechkin fired the puck from the top of the slot but he alertly, like a basketball player, followed up his shot and went to the net for the rebound. Brooks Laich kept it alive and the Gr8 banged home the puck to give the Caps a huge early cushion.

From there it was hang onto to your seats as the inevitable Wings full court press was due to come. In the second frame they cut it to 3-1 but then Keith Aucoin buried one in front after some super work by Alexander Semin and Roman Hamrlik on the boards. When Todd Bertuzzi made it 4-2 just 36 seconds in to period three, the Wings assault ramped up even more. Dan Cleary scored after a Knuble giveaway with just over seven minutes left but Holtby closed the door and Chimera hit the empty net for the final marker.

It was an impressive victory and many players turned in solid efforts. The Caps need Ovechkin to carry them down the stretch and he did it on this night. Laich, after a subpar outing in Chicago, was excellent as 1st line center and when the Gr8 has someone playing well at the pivot position for him he can be lethal. Semin had two assists and put in his best game in weeks while Green finally looked totally comfortable on the ice. He was making great breakout passes, ended up with an assist, and was +2 in 22:52. All four of those guys, Ovechkin, Laich, Semin, and Green have to be good in the last nine games for the Capitals to make the playoffs.

Holtby got the call with Tomas Vokoun nursing a creaky groin and Michal Neuvirth having played the night before. #70 had the tough task of going against a team that creates traffic in front of the opposing goaltender better than any other club in the NHL, so kudos to Braden for staying strong in his crease and playing a big role in the Caps win. Goaltending is ultra important in hockey and Holtby delivered that on Monday night.

So the Caps come home late tonight to their own beds but will practice at least once at Kettler IcePlex before going to Philadelphia for a date with the Flyers on Thursday night. This five game road trip, that looked to possibly be a disaster after Sunday’s blowout in the Windy City, is now 2-2. They have a chance to make it a huge success on Broad Street on Thursday, but Philly is playing well, so a victory there won’t be easy.

But for tonight, the Capitals did the improbable, knocking off one of the best teams in the NHL in their own building. Good things happen when you crash the net and the Capitals stars delivered on a night when they were sorely needed.

Notes: The Caps defensive pair of Jeff Schultz and John Carlson were on the ice for all three Detroit goals. #55 did not play well while Hamrlik (+2) did, so we’ll probably see Dmitry Orlov back in for Sarge on Thursday in Philly…Chimera’s empty net goal came on the power play so Washington was 3 for 4 on the evening while the Wings went 1 for 3…Joel Ward was scratched and Jeff Halpern returned to the lineup. Halpern was 3-2 on face-offs but the Wings won 32 of the 56 total draws.


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Coppin’s Gallo, Cephas Honored By MEAC

Posted on 05 March 2012 by WNST Staff

NORFOLK, Va. — Coppin State senior Tony Gallo has been selected to the Mid-Eastern Athletic All-Conference First Team and freshman Taariq Cephas was named to the All-Rookie Team the league announced on Sunday as selected by the conference head coaches and sports information directors.

Gallo was joined on the first team by Player of the Year Kyle O’Quinn of Norfolk State, Darrion Pellum of Hampton, Jay Threatt of Delaware State and Dominique Sutton of North Carolina Central.

Gallo was the Eagles most consistent player during the season and led the team averaging 17.0 points per game and 78 three-point baskets. He also averaged 3.8 assists, 2.6 rebounds and 1.3 steals per game.

He reached double figures in scoring in 24 games this season and topped 20 points in 13 different games.

Cephas earned All-Rookie honors after averaging 5.7 points and 2.0 rebounds per game. He also shot 39.7 percent from the three-point line and averaged 2.4 assists per game.

Coppin State will open MEAC Tournament play on Tuesday (March 6) against Florida A&M at 9 p.m. in the Lawrence Joel Veteran’s Memorial Coliseum in Winston-Salem, N.C.

He was joined on the All-Rookie Team by Rookie of the Year Tahj Tate of Delaware State, Tyshawn Bell of Delaware State, Prince Okoroh of Howard and Ishaq Pitt of Maryland Eastern Shore.

The all-conference second team was comprised of Ray Willis of North Carolina Central, Tate of Delaware State and Marques Oliver, Chris McEachin of Norfolk State and Deric Rudolph and Rashad Hassan of Savannah State.

O’Quinn was also named the Defensive Player of the Year and Horace Broadnax of Savannah State was named the Coach of the Year.

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Top 10 Baseball Distractions

Posted on 28 February 2012 by Glenn Clark

Honorable Mention: Golf-PGA Tour Honda Classic (Thursday & Friday 3pm live on Golf Channel, Saturday & Sunday 3pm live on NBC); Boxing-Friday Night Fights: Joan Guzman vs. Cosme Rivera (Friday 9pm from Hollywood, FL live on ESPN2); Women’s College Basketball: ACC Tournament-Maryland vs. Virginia/Boston College (Friday 8pm from Greensboro, NC live on Comcast SportsNet PLUS); Tennis: ATP Tour Delray Beach International Tennis Championships (Final Sunday 3pm from Delray Beach, FL live on Tennis Channel), ATP Tour Dubai Duty Free Tennis Championships (Tuesday-Thursday 7am, Friday & Saturday 8am from Dubai, UAE live on Tennis Channel); High School Basketball: MPSSAA Playoffs-Games include Springbrook vs. Mervo, Paint Branch vs. Kenwood, Westminster vs. Blake, Sherwood vs. Southwestern, Glen Burnie vs. Meade, Leonardtown vs. North Point, North County vs. Old Mill, Arundel vs. Chesapeake (Anne Arundel), Milford Mill vs. Aberdeen, C. Milton Wright vs. Woodlawn, City vs. Digital Harbor, Franklin vs. Patterson, Centennial vs. Howard, Stephen Decatur vs. Atholton, Annapolis vs. J.M. Bennett, Reservoir vs. Wilde Lake, Lake Clifton vs. Chesapeake (Baltimore County), Dundalk vs. Owings Mills, Randallstown vs. Douglass, Loch Raven vs. Edmondson Westside, Patterson Mill vs. Harford Tech, Elkton vs. Edgewood, Perryville vs. New Town, Bohemia Manor vs. Sparrows Point, Havre de Grace vs. Overlea, Western STES vs. Pikesville (Games Thursday-Sunday)

10. Brad Paisley (Thursday 7:30pm 1st Mariner Arena); Boyz II Men (Friday 7pm Rams Head Live), Chevelle/Middle Class Rut (Monday 6:30pm Rams Head Live); Fun. (Friday 7pm Recher Theatre); O.A.R. (Tuesday-Friday 9:30 Club); Chiddy Bang (Tuesday 8pm U Street Music Hall); Lauryn Hill (Wednesday 8pm Warner Theatre); Young Jeezy (Saturday 8pm Fillmore Silver Spring); Carolina Chocolate Drops “Leaving Eden” available in stores/on iTunes (Tuesday)

You probably don’t know how much I enjoy Chevelle. It’s fine, I’m not mad. But someone will have to accept the responsibility of passing along a few tickets my way. I don’t care which one of you takes the responsibility, just make sure it gets done.

I’m doing the Tuesday night gig from Jerry DePizzo and the boys in DC. Unlike Chevelle, you all know EXACTLY how much I love the guys from Of A Revolution…

Lauryn Hill is one of the greatest musicians in the history of the planet. This dates back to her days at St. Francis School in California…

Not familiar with Carolina Chocolate Drops? Probably about time for you to take a few minutes…

9. Tim Meadows (Friday & Saturday Baltimore Comedy Factory); Donnell Rawlings (Thursday-Saturday Magooby’s Joke House); John Oliver (Friday & Saturday DC Improv); “Hugo” available on Blu-Ray/DVD (Tuesday)

Here’s the thing. I don’t always think every comedian that comes to the area is very funny. That’s not the case with the group hitting the Mid-Atlantic this weekend. They’re all freaking funny.

“Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story” wasn’t very funny, but Tim Meadows was pretty funny in “Walk Hard: The Dewey Cox Story” (Language Semi-NSFW)…

You may remember Donnell Rawlings better as “Ashy Larry” from Chapelle’s Show. (Language definitely NSFW)…

John Oliver is just freaking brilliant…

I wish I had more time to watch The Daily Show.

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Morgan Looks For Consistency Monday at Delaware State

Posted on 27 February 2012 by WNST Staff

Game 27
Monday, February 27, 2012 – 7:30 p.m. (EST)
Morgan State (7-19, 4-10 MEAC) at Delaware State (14-12, 11-3 MEAC)
Dover, Del. – Memorial Hall
Radio: N/A

Head Coach: Todd Bozeman
Alma Mater/Year: Rhode Island/1986
Record at MSU/Year: 108-82/6th
Career Record: 143-144  
Basketball SID:  Leonard L. Haynes IV

•   Morgan State will face the Delaware State Hornets in a rematch on Monday, Feb. 27 set to tip at 7:30 p.m. MSU will attempt to bounce back its 58-57 loss Saturday at MD-Eastern Shore. Delaware State will look to build upon a 63-46 home victory against Howard.

MSU’s 91 points against the Eagles were the most points the Bears have scored this season, and also the most points scored by the Bears since defeating Florida A&M 94-68 on Feb. 7, 2010.

The Bears had four players score in double-figures during their one-point loss at UMES. Aric Brooks and Ian Chiles scored 11 points apiece and Kevin Thompson added 10 and Ameer Ali recorded a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds.

Freshman guard Jeremy Canty had a season-high 12 points during the Bears win at Coppin State.

MSU will look to improve upon a 3-10 road record.

At UMES, MSU struggled from the free throw line the entire game as they shot just 2 of 19 (47 percent) from the free throw line and was just 2 of 19 (10 percent) from 3-point territory.

• The Bears have used seven (8) different starting lineups in their first 26 games.

Kevin Thompson has scored in double-digits in 15 of 26 games, and has posted six double-doubles (pts & rebs) so far this season.

Redshirt sophomore Ian Chiles (7-foot-2) is the first 7-footer since MSU legend Marvin Webster to grace the campus of Morgan State University … Chiles, a Cliffside Park, N.J. product, is currently averaging 9.2 points, 4.0 rebounds and 1.8 blocks so far this season.

The Bears completed the 2010-11 season with a 17-14 mark and posted a 10-6 conference record.

Morgan State was selected to win the MEAC Regular Season Title, edging out last year’s MEAC Tournament Champion Hampton. The Bears received eight (8) first place votes and a totaled 616 points to take hold of the conference’s top spot going into the season.

The Morgan State men’s basketball program recognized four seniors who have helped accumulate several lofty achievements during their tenures. PG Larry Bastfield, G/F Aric Brooks, F Ameer Ali and F/C Kevin Thompson will be playing in their final season.

Nearly all of DeWayne Jackson’s numbers improved this season from last season, with one notable: Steals. Through his first 25 games, Jackson is averaging 1.8 steals per game (No. 5 in the MEAC), up from 1.4 during the 2010-11. He has recorded 118 thefts in his career and collected a career-high 5 steals in the Bears win against Liberty in a Sears Bracketbusters matchup.

•  Give the Bears a 5-10 record in the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference.

•  Give Todd Bozeman his 109th victory as MSU’s head coach.

• Give the Bears its third road victory of the season and its second conference road win.

• Give the Bears its 48th win against Delaware State.

• Monday night’s game will be the 88th meeting between Morgan State and DSU in men’s basketball. The Bears hold a 47- 40 advantage in the series

•  MSU has won eight of the last 10 meetings against the Hornets.

•  MSU’s last time at Memorial Hall – Delaware State defeated the Bears on Jan. 22, 2010. Jay Threat hit two free throws and Casey Walker drained a 3-pointer in the final moments to help Delaware State snap the Bears’ 3-game winning streak with a 70-65 victory Saturday night before a packed crowd at Memorial Hall. Justin Black led the Bears with 14.

•  DSU has won its last two games, including nine of its last 10 … the one defeat was a 57-56 non-conference loss at Gardner-Webb in a Sears Bracketbusters matchup.

•  Junior guard Tahj Tate (Hyattsville, Md.) is among the conference leaders in the scoring department. Tate ranks as the No. 5 leading scorer by averaging 16.1 points per game and is shooting 77.1 percent from the free throw line (No. 7 in MEAC).

•  DSU is the league leaders in blocked shots by averaging 6.8 blocks per contest. The Hornets also rank No. 2 in the league in 3-point field goal percentage (.351) and No. 6 in field goal percentage (.425).

•  The Hornets are 4-7 in road games so far this season, but has gone 4-7 in home contests.

Morgan State currently ranks No. 4 in the MEAC in blocked shots by averaging 4.6 blocks per game.

MSU will travel to Tallahassee (Fla.) to take on Florida A&M on Thursday, March 1. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:30 p.m.

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