Category: Sports Written by Associated Press
FAVORITE--Tiger Woods tees off on the first hole during a practice round for the Masters April 9, in Augusta, Ga. (AP Photo/Charlie Riedel)
by Tim Dahlberg
AUGUSTA, Ga. (AP) — He's got a swing he can finally trust, a putter that shows flashes of the old magic, and a string of wins to prove that it's all finally coming together.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 April 2013 18:18
Category: Sports Written by Associated Press
BALTIMORE (AP) — Former Baltimore Ravens linebacker Brendon Ayanbadejo says up to four NFL players may soon come out as gay, according to a published report.
Last Updated on Tuesday, 09 April 2013 18:54
Category: Sports Written by Associated Press
TRAILBLAZER--Boxer Jack Johnson is shown signing contracts in this undated photo. (AP Photo/file)
by Ramit Plusnick-Masti
HOUSTON (AP) — Relatives and hometown supporters of the nation's first Black heavyweight boxing champion are turning to YouTube to convince President Barack Obama to posthumously pardon him of a 1913 conviction for accompanying a White woman across state lines.
Last Updated on Monday, 08 April 2013 12:40
Category: Sports Written by Aubrey Bruce
Time keeps on slippin’, slippin’, slippin’ into the future. Time keeps on slippin’, slippin’, slippin’ into the future. I want to fly like an eagle, to the sea. Fly like an eagle let my spirit carry me. I want to fly like an eagle till I’m free, oh, Lord, through the revolution. (Steve Miller Band) Oh Lord the 2013 Pirates are at 1-5 with a winning percentage of .167. Now let’s see. Can we blame pitching? H’mm Pittsburgh has played 6 games, with a 1-5 record with a 5th best E.R.A of 2.82. So it is not the boys’ on the hill that we should be yelling and screaming at. Hey but wait the “slumber company” is dead last in the NL in hitting with a .119 batting average with 8 RBIs and 1 homerun in 6 games. Lord, Lord, Lord if this atrocious offense does not pick up in the next 6 games, someone somewhere had better bring out their microscope and begin seriously evaluating talent in the minors. Although in some circles that might be cutting off one’s nose to spite one’s face because the present day Pirates are considered by many baseball aficionados as just another minor league team. A few of my associates have adopted what they consider to be a “revolutionary spirit.” They say things like; “I will not go to the ballpark just to sit and watch the Pirates lose.” My response is always; “Well if you stay at home and watch them lose on “ROOT” Sports they may still lose but if they win you have blown the opportunity to take the family on an outing to witness the beginning of a possible Bucco’s winning streak. See boys’ and girls’ if your squad is fifth in pitching and dead last in hitting the chances of the team being at or near the top of the leader board in any baseball league whether it is little league, pony league, rum league or the big leagues is slim to none. Pirates starting pitcher James McDonald lost a 3-2 heartbraker to the Chicago Cubs last week and was very benevolent about the Pirates hitting or lack thereof.
He said, “It’s not frustrating, those guys play hard behind me every day. It’s only a matter of time until we start scoring four or five runs a game ... 12 runs. You’ll see us put up runs soon.” McDonald being the team player that he is spoke highly of a Pirates offense that has been up to this point in the season, should I say less than stellar. Cleanup man Pedro Alvarez, who went 1 for 6 with runners in scoring position, struck out on three pitches with no outs in the ninth inning with the tying run at third base and the winning run at first. Time keeps on slippin’, slippin’, slippin’ into the future. All this talk about we are gonna win soon, well the formula does not seem like it will be discovered or rediscovered in 2013 or any year, anytime soon. Well I must admit the last sentence might have been a bit too cynical. Plus I really, truly believe that in spite of their atrocious start the Pirates still have a chance even though you might not be able to tell by some of the comments of the current crop of players or their manager. As of the writing of this column, the Pirates were preparing to face the Arizona Diamondbacks who were sporting a 5-1 record, exactly opposite the 1-5 albatross that the Pirates were dragging around. The Diamondbacks will be facing Wandy Rodriguez (1-0, 0.00 ERA), who helped the Pirates (1-5) to their only win, 3-0 over the Chicago Cubs last Wednesday. Rodriguez surrendered two hits, one walk and struck out six over 6 2/3 innings. After the masterful shutout Pirates manager Clint Hurdle said; “He’s a pro.” Well what is that saying? Are the rest of his pitchers, not pro’s. Rodriguez who sported a 12-12 record in April before his start against the D-Backs must have been a pro 50 percent of the time and not a pro the other 50 percent of the time. The Pirates have to find and get on a high horse and ride it until it collapses. They may not make it to the finish line but they have to “ride their pony, get on their pony and ride” either to victory or oblivion. Let’s forget all of the talk about big markets, small markets, free agency, salary caps, rich owners or not so rich owners (show me a rich or not so rich owner). Baseball like any other sport has to be about desire and heart; and taking responsibility. Although there has been season after season of the Pirates standing in the “losers circle” now is the time to put up or shut up. The infielders have to dive and do a few cartwheels attempting to stop a ball from leaving the infield. Outfielders have to run over, around and through hail, sleet and rain and scorching sun to track down balls within and oftentimes balls on their way to the stratosphere. The time for woe is me is past. These guys get paid like everybody else and should be expected like everyone else to perform above and beyond their ability. Don’t boycott the team, go to the games buy a hotdog and a soda. Boo them into the next galaxy when their play is less than expected and cheer them to Valhalla when they play well…..nuff said
Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 April 2013 10:01
Category: Sports Written by Courier Newsroom
by Thomas Leturgey
Each and every year, the Joe Abby Memorial tournament becomes more and more important to the Megastars of the Keystone State Wrestling Alliance. This year it was never more important for Jay Flash and the “Ice Man” Tony Johnson.
When the tournament—named for the late Lawrenceville wrestler “Killer” Joe Abby—first started it was a launching pad for wrestlers who wanted their shot at the KSWA’s Heavyweight Championship. However, with the growing popularity of January’s "Battle Bowl” battle royal, KSWA owner Bobby O and the Championship Committee decided to change the Joe Abby Tournament into one that showcased tag team competition.
The wrestlers made their way to the packed semi-finals at the KSWA Arena in Lawrenceville on March 23. The “Mercenaries,” made up of “Nasty” Nick Crane and “Sniper” stomped their way to the ring before their competition, Jonny Axx and Bobby Badfingers of the “Legion of the Apocalypse.” Both teams were matched up well, with similar size, strength and experience. Neither team was known for exceptional sportsmanship and it was Crane who used his own Canadian national flag and its pole to jab Badfingers in the ribs. Teammate Sniper went for the pin on Badfingers but was met instead with Axx’s elbow from the corner. Axx and Badfingers moved onto the finals.
In the other semi-final match, Mitch Napier and Ric Rumsky took on Flash and Johnson. Unlike the previous contest, all four wrestlers shook hands in showings of good gamesmanship. The match itself was one of superior athletic ability, quickness and technical prowess, especially when Johnson and Napier matched up. That was before destiny got into the way. Another tag team, Edric Everhart and Tyler Cross—who had recently been recruited by the villainous VIP’s—attacked Rumsky from behind. Normally, their interference would have immediately cost Flash and Johnson the match. But in the case of the Joe Abby tournament, the match was allowed to continue with Napier going alone against Flash and Johnson. The odds were too much for Napier and he lost the match.
Flash, billed from South Beach, Florida, said it was “too bad” that Rumsky couldn’t continue; the scale of this opportunity was too great. Johnson, from St. Louis, Missouri, said that the teams will “meet again” somewhere down the road.
In the tournament finals, Axx and Badfingers took a more controlling attitude into the match. There was no handshake of respect to start this contest. Axx and Badfingers used their superior size and strength to their advantage. Flash and Johnson answered with fast-moving quickness and doggedness. Toward the end of the showdown, Johnson perched Badfingers on his knee and Flash jumped onto his opponent from the ropes. That set Badfingers up for Flash’s Cannonball splash from the top rope and the one, two, three victory, making Flash and Johnson the winners of the Joe Abby Memorial Tournament and new #1 Contenders for Pittsburgh’s premier tag team titles.
Flash and Johnson have already made impressions on wrestling fans in and out of Pittsburgh. In addition to performing in Pittsburgh’s only professional wrestling organization, the duo have worked at smaller, regional promotions in McKeesport, Elizabeth and Wheeling, West Virginia.
On December 4, 2010 Johnson became the KSWA’s first-ever Jr. Heavyweight Champion by winning a five-competitor Gauntlet Match. Flash was even one of the competitors he faced at FanFest/Toy Drive, the KSWA’s principal event. Johnson defended the belt often and held onto it for 286 days. Incredibly, he won the belt back the very next day and held it for another 77 days. He finally lost the championship for the second time 364 days after winning it.
The next match will be more serious for the growing and improving twosome. They know they have a legitimate shot at the KSWA’s tag team belts, currently held by Millvale’s own pompous “King” Del Douglas and zany, dancing “The Jester.” That team is still riding high after beating Party Gras, a team anchored by local Pittsburgh wrestling legend Lord Zoltan. Party Gras held the tag team belts for a record 75 weeks.
The Joe Abby Memorial Tournament was named for the wrestler who repossessed cars when he wasn’t selling food products for Kraft foods. He made his name working with other local wrestlers like Frank Durso and Bobby “Hurricane” Hunt. All three were inducted into the KSWA Hall of Fame in past years. Within the past few months, the organization has tapped more international stars like “The Living Legend” Bruno Sammartino and George “The Animal” Steele for Hall of Fame induction. Upon his enshrinement, Steele called Pittsburgh the “home” of “The Animal” character, as it was created here.
Last Updated on Friday, 05 April 2013 07:39
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