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Takeover Policy and Gilmer on Legislative Agenda

The Gilmer Free Press

When he was challenged on the wisdom of state takeovers of troubled school districts, Martirano, the State Superintendent said he had been asking “why we do what we do,” indicating that the policy is under review.

Delegate Allen Evans, R-Grant, asked him about takeovers, noting that, after the Grant County school system was taken over by the state board, test scores dropped and the school system was debt by $150,000.

Martirano said that, since he became state superintendent, he has been having “great conversations” about the philosophy of takeovers.

In July, five counties were under the control of the state board, he said, but since then, three have returned to local control.

“It is my hope that we can return the two additional counties to local control as soon as possible because I feel that best decisions are made with the local control with the support from the state Department of Education and the state officials in that sense,” Martirano said. “But there are extreme times in the categories of why we would take [districts] over where they do need some additional support and we do need to provide sufficient monitoring. So my concern is when we return an individual county to local control that there’s an ongoing opportunity for monitoring.”

Districts need to be financially solvent, have necessary academic support and have facilities in good shape, Martirano said. When they get out of compliance, the state needs to provide governance and support, he said.

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“Good lord, it seems like the state board of education should lose their ability to do anything.
They screwed up Grant County.
They screwed up Gilmer County.
I know some other counties with problems.
You all have a terrible track record, and you’re supposed
to be the savior of the counties.”
Delegate Bob Ashley


Nelson asked whether it would make sense to have a sister district take over a troubled district. Martirano said, “There are some models in the United States where struggling school systems in various states across the nation have had challenges and a process has existed where then the neighboring county would provide that assistance and provide that support.” But he added that West Virginia has not vetted that process.

Delegate Bob Ashley, R-Roane, also expressed concern about state takeovers, noting that the takeover of the Gilmer County school system led to a questionable land purchase for a new school. “The state school department has done a terrible job in Gilmer County,” he said.

Martirano referred the question to Deputy Supt. Chuck Heinlein, who explained that the county superintendent appointed by the state superintendent had determined that it would cost too much to build a road to the original site, so the land was sold for a loss and the system then received a flat piece of land for one dollar.

Ashley questioned the rationale for that and whether the state board of education should be allowed to do such takeovers. “Good lord, it seems like the state board of education should lose their ability to do anything,” he said. “They screwed up Grant County. They screwed up Gilmer County. I know some other counties with problems. You all have a terrible track record, and you’re supposed to be the savior of the counties.”

Disagreeing, Heinlein said, “In particular, with Grant County, I think Grant County is a success, not because of the state board and the state Department of Education but because of the citizenry there and the board of education of Grant County, as well as the leadership of the superintendent who was appointed there. It was a great collaboration among people that enabled Grant County to move from intervention status outward very quick. I think that’s a success.”

Then he said there are issues with Gilmer County that should be discussed privately rather than at a public hearing.

~~  Jim Wallace ~~

Bears Have It Right When It Comes to Winter

Sub-zero temperatures always get me thinking about how wildlife copes with severe winter conditions. Black bears have developed an admirable strategy. They gorge themselves in the fall, sleep through winter’s worst and give birth to cubs before emerging in the spring.

It sounds odd, but black bear reproduction is timed to minimize its effect on eating. Bears mate in early summer when food is abundant, but the embryos do not implant on the uterus until late fall. This enables adults to concentrate on finding and eating food — everything from fruits, nuts and roots to insects, bird eggs and small mammals. Bears accumulate up to four inches of subcutaneous fat during the fall feeding frenzy.

In late fall, bears find a hollow log, a hollow tree or even a large brush pile. There they sleep on a bed of leaves and grasses, but it’s not the deep sleep characteristic of true hibernators.

During a bear’s winter dormancy, its resting heart rate drops from about 66 beats per minute to 8 to 22 beats per minute. Its body temperature drops several degrees, but does not approach ambient temperature. They do not eat, drink, urinate or defecate while dormant. Bears lose 25 to 40% of their body weight over winter.

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In just a few weeks, black bears will begin giving birth; litter size usually ranges from one to four cubs, but two are typical. Because the sow’s body temperature is only a few degrees below normal, they can rouse fairly quickly if disturbed, and they can care for their cubs after giving birth.

By any standard, newborn black bears are tiny. Blind, helpless and covered with just a coat of fuzz, cubs measure six to eight inches long and weigh just seven to 12 ounces at birth — about the size of a guinea pig.

By the time cubs reach six weeks of age, their eyes open, they are well furred and weigh about two pounds. At eight weeks, they may leave the den with their mother for short periods, weigh about five pounds and begin learning how to be a bear. Cubs stay with their mother well into fall and may even den with her during their first winter. After that, young bears become independent.

Though six to seven months pass from the time of mating to giving birth, the functional gestation period is only eight to ten weeks. This, coupled with the small size of the cubs, is another adaptation for reproducing during winter dormancy. Even during this stressful time, sows have plenty of fat to nourish both themselves and their cubs.

Though black bears are often called hibernators, they simply don’t qualify physiologically. In fact, few mammals are true hibernators. Let’s compare a true hibernator to what we now know about bears.

Meadow jumping mice are common, seldom seen, tiny mammals (they weigh less than one ounce). They have huge rear feet and a tail that’s a good bit longer than the body. When hurried or frightened, they hop in zig-zag fashion and can jump six to ten feet.

Jumping mice are true hibernators. Like bears, they feed furiously during the fall frenzy when they devour seeds, berries, roots, nuts, underground fungi and invertebrates — up to half their body weight each day.

By late October or early November, they’re ready for the big sleep. Though they live and nest above ground during the spring and summer, fall sends them underground. They dig a burrow that may extend three feet below the surface and build a grapefruit-sized nest of grass and leaves.

When the nest is complete, they plug the tunnel and assume a distinctive sleeping position. Jumping mice curl into a tight ball by placing the nose between the hind legs and wrapping the tail around the body. Hibernation can last up to six months. Body temperature drops to 35 to 40 degrees Fahrenheit, and the heart and breathing rates slow drastically. These extreme changes in metabolism qualify jumping mice as true hibernators.

True hibernation is physiologically traumatic. More than half of hibernating jumping mice die during the experience, so breeding to replenish the population dominates the rest of the year.

~~  Dr. Scott Shalaway - 2222 Fish Ridge Road, Cameron, WV 26033 ~~

Nominations Requested for National Sesquicentennial Leadership Recognition Award

The Gilmer Free Press

Wild, Wonderful West Virginia (GoToWV) encourages sesquicentennial committees and organizations that hosted or organized celebrations to submit nominations for the national Sesquicentennial Leadership Recognition Award, which recognizes and honors the hard work of groups whose events made significant contributions to the Civil War Sesquicentennial.

Nominations for the national Sesquicentennial Leadership Recognition Award are being accepted by the Virginia Sesquicentennial of the American Civil War Commission and Partner Organizations.  Sesquicentennial committees and organizations can submit a nomination by completing the nomination form via the Virginia Civil War website: www.virginiacivilwar.org/leadershipaward/doc/Sesqui-award-application-for-local-recognition.docx.  The nomination period ends Tuesday, February 17, 2015. 

Recipients of the Sesquicentennial Leadership Recognition Award will be notified in early May and will be recognized at a special ceremony to be held Memorial Day 2015 in conjunction with the Sesquicentennial Finale Concert.

For more information about the award, contact Cheryl Jackson, Executive Director of the Virginia Sesquicentennial of the American Civil War Commission, at .

Find your adventure in West Virginia at www.GoToWV.com or by calling 800.225.5982.

You can also join the conversation and share your wild, wonderful stories on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GoToWV or on Twitter and Instagram @GoToWV with #GoToWV.

West Virginia News   150125

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PIERPONT AND ALDERSON BROADDUS TEAM UP TO PREPARE STUDENTS FOR GAS AND OIL INDUSTRY JOBS

A West Virginia community college and 4 year institution will work together to prepare graduates for lucrative, long lasting jobs in the oil and gas industry in the state.

According to Stephen Santilli, marketing spokesperson for Pierpont Community & Technical College, an articulation agreement was signed Friday, January 23 between Pierpont and Alderson Broaddus University in Philippi.

At Pierpont, students can already earn a 2 year applied sciences degree in petroleum technology.

ABU is developing a 4 year bachelor’s of science program in petroleum management.

ABU explained the curriculum in a relase stating:

“The petroleum technology program at Pierpont Community & Technical College includes 60 credits of study; 15 credits in general education courses and 45 credits specific to the petroleum industry.  Alderson Broaddus will accept the credits from Pierpont Community & Technical College, and provide additional 61-64 credits of study to round out the requirements for a Bachelor of Science degree in petroleum management.“

Students who graduate from the Pierpont program can transfer credits, without issue, directly to the ABU program to finish their degrees.

“The articulation agreement that was signed today between Alderson Broaddus University and Pierpont Community & Technical College makes our petroleum technology graduates even more employable in the extraction industry,” said Santilli.

According to Santilli, enrollment in the 2 year program is exploding; and students who graduate begin jobs immediately with drilling and preparation companies across the state.

“Our petroleum technology students are graduation and starting literally the Monday after they graduate,” he said.

Average salaries for students with the 2 year degree are between $35,000 and $60,000.  Students with a 4 year degree and a few years of experience can earn up to six figures said Santilli.

“They don’t need to leave the state of West Virginia.  They can stay here with good employment and a great education.  It also will reduce the amount of folks coming from other states into the state of West Virginia to do these jobs,” said Santilli.

Tuition at Alderson Broaddus University and Pierpont is significantly different.  Santilli said ABU is working on financial aid packages for interested students.

According to ABU officials, the program will launch there in the fall of 2015.


OFFICIALS: FOAM FOUND ON WV RIVER LIKELY NATURAL

West Virginia officials say foam found on the surface of the Coal River tested negative for soap or other harmful materials.

Officials said Saturday the foam was likely a natural occurrence related to the decay of plants and other organic materails.

The discovery Friday prompted the closing of the water intakes in Lincoln County and the St. Albans water systems.

Testing was conducted by the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection and the Lincoln County Public Service District.

DEP inspectors also searched along the river and feeder streams Friday and saw no indications of any leaks or spills.


REPORT: WV MANUFACTURING JOBS PAY BETTER THAN OTHER JOBS

A report by the Economic Policy Institute says the average manufacturing worker makes nearly $3 more an hour than other workers in West Virginia.

The report says that the average manufacturing worker makes $19.02 an hour compared with $16.31 for other workers. That’s an annual wage difference of more than $5,600 a year.

Manufacturing jobs make up more than 6% of total state employment in West Virginia. Nationally, West Virginia ranks 35th in the country by share of manufacturing jobs. In total numbers, West Virginia ranks 39th in manufacturing jobs with 48,500.


WV HIGHER EDUCATION GROUP TO HELP WITH FINANCIAL AID FORMS

West Virginia students seeking help with their financial aid application forms can get free assistance from the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission.

The commission says students and their families can get help over the telephone or set up an appointment with a financial aid counselor.

The commission is also conducting financial aid workshops at high schools across West Virginia.

The commission says anyone thinking about going to college should complete federal financial aid forms as soon as possible.


U.S. GRAND JURY INDICTS WESTERN MD LAWYER IN BANK FRAUD CASE

A federal grand jury in Baltimore has indicted a western Maryland lawyer on charges of conspiracy and bank fraud stemming from a series of property sales.

Oakland attorney Angela Blythe said Friday she will plead not guilty to the charges against her.

The four-count indictment alleges Blythe acted as a settlement attorney for fraudulent real estate transactions allegedly perpetrated by Samuel VanSickle in western Maryland and West Virginia from 2001 to 2005.

VanSickle was indicted in February along with Lewis Strosnider, who pleaded guilty in August to bank fraud conspiracy. VanSickle has pleaded not guilty and is scheduled for trial in March.

The indictment seeks forfeiture of $1.7 million in alleged proceeds from the alleged scheme.


1 FATALLY SHOT, 1 WOUNDED IN KANAWHA COUNTY SHOOTING

Kanawha County authorities have released the identity of a man who was found fatally shot in Rand.

Cpl. Brian Humphreys of the sheriff’s office says deputies found a vehicle flipped Friday morning. The dead man was outside the vehicle and a wounded woman was found inside.

Humphreys identified the male as 27-year-old Christopher Carey of Rand, while 28-year-old Latisha Crawford of Rand was taken to a hospital for treatment of gunshot wounds to the right leg, right arm and upper torso. Her condition wasn’t immediately known.

Humphreys says evidence shows multiple guns were used during the shooting.

No arrests have been made in the shooting, which prompted four area schools to be closed as a precaution while deputies searched for the suspect.


WV LAWMAKERS SEEK TO IMPROVE PUBLIC PERCEPTION OF CORRUPTION

West Virginia lawmakers are considering a proposal that would prohibit companies owned by government officials or their immediate family members from doing business with many state agencies.

Republicans want a law in place to counter a perception that public corruption is rampant in West Virginia.

The contract ban would apply to officials elected or appointed to state office.

The proposal calls for prohibiting elected and governor-appointed state officials from doing business with agencies they manage or oversee.

The bill also would prohibit companies owned by government officials from having a contract worth $25,000 or more with any state agency.

The prohibition would apply to new contracts or those up for renewal, but not existing contracts.

Movie Review: Seven Big Lies ‘American Sniper’ Is Telling America

The film American Sniper, based on the story of the late Navy Seal Chris Kyle, is a box office hit, setting records for an R-rated film released in January. Yet the film, the autobiography of the same name, and the reputation of Chris Kyle are all built on a set of half-truths, myths and outright lies that Hollywood didn’t see fit to clear up.

Here are seven lies about Chris Kyle and the story that director Clint Eastwood is telling:


1. The Film Suggests the Iraq War Was In Response To 9/11: One way to get audiences to unambiguously support Kyle’s actions in the film is to believe he’s there to avenge the 9/11 terrorist attacks. The movie cuts from Kyle watching footage of the attacks to him serving in Iraq, implying there is some link between the two.


2. The Film Invents a Terrorist Sniper Who Works For Multiple Opposing Factions: Kyle’s primary antagonist in the film is a sniper named Mustafa. Mustafa is mentioned in a single paragraph in Kyle’s book, but the movie blows him up into an ever-present figure and Syrian Olympic medal winner who fights for both Sunni insurgents in Fallujah and the Shia Madhi army.

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3. The Film Portrays Chris Kyle as Tormented By His Actions: Multiple scenes in the movie portray Kyle as haunted by his service. One of the film’s earliest reviews praised it for showing the “emotional torment of so many military men and women.” But that torment is completely absent from the book the film is based on. In the book, Kyle refers to everyone he fought as “savage, despicable” evil. He writes, “I only wish I had killed more.” He also writes, “I loved what I did. I still do. If circumstances were different – if my family didn’t need me – I’d be back in a heartbeat. I’m not lying or exaggerating to say it was fun. I had the time of my life being a SEAL.” On an appearance on Conan O’Brien’s show he laughs about accidentally shooting an Iraqi insurgent. He once told a military investigator that he doesn’t “shoot people with Korans. I’d like to, but I don’t.”


4. The Real Chris Kyle Made Up A Story About Killing Dozens of People In Post-Katrina New Orleans: Kyle claimed that he killed 30 people in the chaos of New Orleans after Hurricane Katrina, a story Louisiana writer Jarvis DeBerry calls “preposterous.“  It shows the sort of mentality post-war Kyle had, but the claim doesn’t appear in the film.


5. The Real Chris Kyle Fabricated A Story About Killing Two Men Who Tried To Carjack Him In Texas: Kyle told numerous people a story about killing two alleged carjackers in Texas. Reporters tried repeatedly to verify this claim, but no evidence of it exists.


6. Chris Kyle Was Successfully Sued For Lying About the Former Governor of Minnesota:Kyle alleged that former Minnesota Governor Jesse Ventura defamed Navy SEALs and got into a fight with him at a local bar. Ventura successfully sued Kyle for the passage in his book, and a jury awarded him $1.845 million.


7. Chris Kyle’s Family Claimed He Donated His Book Proceeds To Veterans’ Charity, But He Kept Most Of The Profits: The National Review debunks the claim that all proceeds of his book went to veterans’ charities. Around 2% – $52,000 – went to the charities while the Kyles pocketed $3 million.


Although the movie is an initial box office hit, there is a growing backlash against its simplistic portrayal of the war and misleading take on Kyle’s character. This backlash has reportedly spread among members of the Academy of Motion Picture of Arts and Sciences, which could threaten the film’s shot at racking up Oscars. 

Movie Review: ‘Spare Parts’

The feel-good story “Spare Parts” — an inspirational underdog drama about four undocumented immigrant kids from a Phoenix high school who go toe-to-toe against a team of MIT whiz kids in an underwater robotics contest — is just about as cornball and sappy as it sounds. It’s also pretty darn thrilling.

And — oh, by the way — it’s also pretty much true.

Loosely inspired by the 2005 Wired magazine article “La Vida Robot,” “Spare Parts” stars comedian George Lopez as the science teacher who coaches and mentors the misfit robotics club profiled in the article. Lopez, whose character is a fictionalized amalgam of the two teachers who actually oversaw the unexpected performance of a robot jerry-rigged from plumbing supplies and pool noodles, is one of the biggest names in the film. Jamie Lee Curtis, as the goofball school principal, provides comic relief, with Marisa Tomei bringing a touch of class as Lopez’s love interest.

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But it is the four young actors who play the students who truly shine, and who elevate the formulaic film above and beyond its familiar proceedings. Carlos PenaVega plays the team’s square-jawed straight arrow and motivational leader, Oscar. David Del Rio plays sweetly shy math nerd Cristian. José Julián is the law-bending grease-monkey Lorenzo. And Oscar Gutierrez is gentle giant Luis, the club’s muscle.

But despite sounding like pages out of the catalogue of casting cliches, these four parts are written in such a way (by Elissa Matsueda, adapting Joshua Davis’s article) that they feel as real as their inspirations. (A documentary on the same subject, “Underwater Dreams,” is available on Amazon Instant.) It also helps that the acting ensemble brings enormous sensitivity and appeal to the roles, ultimately overriding any reservations you may have about the cheese content of the film.

Lopez, for his part, also is surprisingly good, in a role that calls for his character to do more than teach about servo motors. Taking his name from real-life teachers Fredi Lajvardi and Allan Cameron, Lopez’s Fredi Cameron offers more to his four teenage charges than guidance — including, in Lorenzo’s and Cristian’s case, surrogate fathering. Lopez sidesteps both clownishness and bathos, bringing an appropriate straightforwardness to a part that is essentially a supporting role. Like the character of Fredi, who cannot provide outside help in the boys’ robot-building effort, the actor sublimates his own ego in the service of the larger story, which is about the four boys, not their supervisor.

The theme of immigration reform plays a part in the film as well. The threat of deportation looms large over the heads of these adolescents, especially Oscar, who dreams of serving in the U.S. military.

Without giving too much away — and for reasons that have nothing to do with whether they win or lose the competition — the characters in “Spare Parts” all go through changes that are true to many immigrants’ decidedly mixed experiences in the American melting pot.

★ ★ ★

PG-13. Contains some coarse language and a fistfight. 113 minutes.

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Sports News   150125

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►   Extra Points: Pro Bowl jumped the shark before Dalton

When it comes to the Pro Bowl, it’s time to tap out.

And pulling the plug on the NFL’s All-Star game wouldn’t exactly be comparable to Daniel Cormier begging off to Jon Jones on the UFC’s biggest stage.

Ending this fruitless exercise would be more like a tree falling in the forest and it’s not going to spark any meaningful debate with the dozens and dozens who actually still care about it.

Interestingly it was Andy Dalton’s Pro Bowl recognition on Tuesday that set Twitter off as if an average quarterback playing in a meaningless football game is some kind of calamity.

The laughable aspect of Dalton’s inclusion to the detractors is the fact that he was the seventh alternate at his particular position, a development that really highlighted the ridiculousness of the process.

Originally, six QBs were named to the Pro Bowl and just two remain from that pool, Andrew Luck and Tony Romo.

Ben Roethlisberger and Peyton Manning were the first to drop out due to injury and top alternate Drew Brees was tabbed to replace “Big Ben.“ Philip Rivers was next in line to take Peyton’s place but the veteran Chargers star begged off due to his own injury.

Third alternate Russell Wilson is busy with Super Bowl business so the fourth option, Detroit’s Matthew Stafford, got Manning’s spot.

When the Patriots won the AFC Championship Game last Sunday, that took Tom Brady, who was part of the original six, out of the equation and No. 5, Atlanta’s Matt Ryan, stepped up.

It was only a matter of time before likely MVP Aaron Rodgers would throw his get-out-of-jail-free card into the middle of the table because of his high- profile calf injury and that domino fell Tuesday, making room for Baltimore’s Joe Flacco expect for the fact “January Joe” had no interest because his wife is expecting their third child.

And that’s how you end up with the seventh alternate playing quarterback in the Pro Bowl.

I’m expecting my invitation on Saturday.

While Dalton’s presence magnifies the nonsense that is the actual game, the real jump-the-shark moment for the Pro Bowl came last year when the NFL pulled the plug on the traditional conference format to cater to the millennial audience with a “fantasy football for real” mentality.

These days players are assigned to two teams through a draft and this year Pro Football Hall of Fame receivers Cris Carter and Michael Irvin are serving as alumni team captains for their Pro Bowl squads—Team Carter and Team Irvin.

Fellow Hall of Famers and former teammates John Randle (Team Carter) and Darren Woodson (Team Irvin) serve as defensive co-captains and the ex-Vikings and former Cowboys handled the draft process while being assisted by two active player captains and the winner of the NFL’s Fantasy Coach of the Year program.

Full disclosure forces me to admit a deep dislike for fantasy football, an activity that’s lone contribution to society in my mind is FXX’s laugh-out- loud sitcom “The League.“

However, it would be disingenuous to say fantasy hasn’t proven to be a cash cow for the NFL and everything from the Red Zone channel to rule changes skewed toward the offense have been put in place with an eye on picking the pocket of the short-attention-span crowd.

And from a purely business perspective it’s a sound short-term strategy. On an average week, I’ll do about a dozen radio hits across the country and the “who should I play this week” people now far outnumber the astute football fans, who are actually invested in the strategy of the game.

Catering to the least common denominator, though, is never the long-term solution because they’re moving on quickly and not really invested in the product.

Even fellow fantasy fans have no interest in watching one of their own live out his wet dream while Rich Eisen pretends it’s relevant.

Which brings me to my biggest fantasy, halting the goofy game known as the Pro Bowl.  ~~  John McMullen ~~


►   No proof of misconduct by Steelers security boss

The Allegheny County Sheriff says there is no proof of misconduct by a deputy who moonlights as the chief of security for the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Sheriff William Mullen called Lieutenant Jack Kearney a “model employee” in the wake of an ESPN report that labeled Kearney a “cleaner” who has helped several Steeler players who ran into legal trouble.

Kearney, who leads the fugitive squad, has worked with the Steelers since 2001. Mullen says there has only been one complaint against Kearney in that time, when a federal marshal claimed Kearney overstepped his boundaries while marshals attempted to track down a member of the team’s practice squad who was wanted for questioning in a prostitution ring.

The team says it is not aware of any conflict of interest between Kearney’s job with the sheriff’s office and his role with the Steelers.


►   Steelers sign punter Brad Wing to 1-year extension

The Pittsburgh Steelers are sticking with punter Brad Wing.

The team signed Wing to a one-year contract extension on Friday. The 23-year-old Wing averaged 43.7 yards per punt in 2014, the fifth-best mark by a rookie punter in team history. Nearly a third of Wing’s punts were downed inside the opponent’s 20.

Wing joined the Steelers last January. He originally entered the NFL as an undrafted free agent with the Philadelphia Eagles in 2013. Wing, who played at LSU, was expected to battle Adam Podlesh for the starting job but Podlesh never joined the team following a family emergency in training camp.



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►   Area High Schools Boys Basketball Game Results

(Saturday, January 24)


#6 Greenbrier East 74     #4 Gilmer County 49

Ritchie County 67     Braxton County 57

#6 Notre Dame 61     #8 Charleston Catholic 38

Grafton 68     #5 Lincoln 46

Weirton Madonna 88     Tyler Consolidated 53

Bishop Donahue 69     Williamstown 57

St. Marys 84     Parkersburg Catholic 57


►   Area High Schools Girls Basketball Game Results

(Saturday, January 24)


Ritchie County 39     Braxton County 29

George Washington 53     #9 Bridgeport 48

Parkersburg South 85     Wintersville Indian Creek, Ohio 50


►   Big Atlantic Classic Schedule


High school schedule


Monday, January 26

Game 1 — Moorefield vs. Greater Beckley Christian (boys A), 7:25 PM

Game 2 — Sherman vs. Gilmer County (boys A), 9 PM


Tuesday, January 27

Game 3 — Wyoming East vs. Westside (boys AA), 7:25 PM

Game 4 — Liberty Raleigh vs. Scott (boys AA), 9 PM


Wednesday, January 28

Game 5 — Game 1 loser vs. Game 2 loser (boys A consolation), 3:45 PM

Game 6 — Game 3 loser vs. Game 4 loser (boys AA consolation), 5:30 PM

Game 7 — Oak Hill Academy (VA) vs. Blue Ridge (boys national), 7:20 PM

Game 8 — Morgantown vs. Huntington (girls), 9 PM


Thursday, January 29

Game 9 — Brooke vs. George Washington (girls), 4 PM

Game 10 — Wyoming East vs. St. Albans (girls), 5:45 PM

Game 11 — Game 1 winner vs. Game 2 winner (boys A championship), 7:25 PM

Game 12 — Greenbrier East vs. Oak Hill (girls), 9 PM


Friday, January 30

Game 13 — Game 9 loser vs. Game 10 loser (girls co-consolation), 2 PM

Game 14 — Parkersburg South vs. Princeton (boys AAA), 4 PM

Game 15 — Shady Spring vs. Martinsburg (boys AAA), 5:40 PM

Game 16 — Greenbrier East vs. Hampshire (boys AAA), 7:20 PM

Game 17 — Woodrow Wilson vs. Washington (boys AAA), 9 PM


Saturday, January 31

Game 18 — Game 8 vs. Game 12 loser (girls co-consolation), 9 AM

Game 19 — Game 14 loser vs. Game 15 loser (boys AAA co-consolation), 10:40 AM

Game 20 — Game 16 loser vs. Game 17 loser (boys AAA co-consolation), 12:20 PM

Game 21 — Game 3 winner vs. Game 4 winner (boys AA championship), 2 PM

Game 22 — Game 8 winner vs. Game 12 winner (girls co-championship), 4 PM

Game 23 — Game 14 winner vs. Game 15 winner (boys AAA co-championship), 5:40 PM

Game 24 — Game 9 winner vs. Game 10 winner (girls co-championship), 7:20 PM

Game 25 — Game 16 winner vs. Game 17 winner (boys AAA co-championship), 9 PM



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►   MEC Men’s Basketball Game Results

(Saturday, January 24)


Wheeling Jesuit 102, No. 5 West Liberty 80 | Final Stats

Wheeling Jesuit handed fifth-ranked West Liberty its second-straight loss, 102-80, on Thursday night at the ASRC.

The Cardinals (8-7, 4-6) shot 60% from the field in the game and made 11-of-20 from behind the arc. WJU led the entire game. West Liberty (14-2, 9-2) shot 44% from the field and made just 6-of-22 from three-point range. The ‘Toppers also struggled from the free throw line making just 14-of-30. 

Justin Fritts led WJU with 24 points, five assists and four rebounds. Eric Siefert had 18 points, seven assists and four rebounds. Pat Moseh had 15 points, Haywood Highsmith tallied 13 and Tim Goff registered 11.

C.J. Hester led West Liberty with 19 points and 10 rebounds. Devin Hoehn had 14, and Seger Bonifant was limited to 10 points.


Notre Dame 85, Urbana 82 | Final Stats

Najeeb Johnson’s three-pointer with 14 seconds left proved to be the difference in an 85-82 win over Urbana on Thursday night at the Grimes Center.

The Blue Knights led by as many as 16 points in the second half, and Notre Dame’s first and only lead came after Johnson’s three. The Falcons outscored Urbana 15-2 in the final 3:05.

Lawrence DeArmond led NDC (10-7, 6-5) with 22 points and 14 rebounds. Kyauta Taylor scored 20 and Tyree Gaiter and Will Vorhees each added 13. Johnson finished with 14 points for the Falcons.

Urbana (4-13, 1-10) was led by 20 points from Mike Newton. Matt Csuhran had 18 and John Summers turned in 11 points.


Concord 92, UVa-Wise 55 | Final Stats

Concord handled UVa-Wise, 92-55, on Thursday night at the Carter Center.

The Mountain Lions (11-5, 7-4) shot 53% form the field and out-rebounded UVa-Wise by a 49-24 margin. CU was led by 13 points from Rob Reed, and got 11 points apiece from B.J. Hamlet and Taylor Smith.

Brian Sydnor had 16 points and 18 rebounds for UVa-Wise (1-15, 0-11). Matt Day scored 14 and Tyler Maggard finished with 11 points.


Fairmont State 89, Shepherd 77 | Final Stats

 Fairmont State overcame a seven-point halftime deficit and defeated Shepherd, 89-77, on Thursday night at Joe Retton Arena. 

FSU (11-6, 8-3) shot 63% and made 6-of-9 from three-pointers in the second half to aid its comeback. The Falcons committed just 10 turnovers and had a 30-26 edge over the Rams on the glass.

Fairmont State’s Nick Harney led all scorers with 27 points on 12-of-17 shooting to go with eight rebounds. Chase Morgan drained four three-pointers on his way to 17 points, and Jamel Morris had 15 points. Thomas Wimbush had a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds and Brandon Vega handed out seven assists.

Shepherd (10-7, 5-6) was led by 18 points from Austin Cunningham. Naim Muhammad had 16 and A.J. Carr contributed 12. 


Glenville State 71, West Virginia Wesleyan 66 | Final Stats

Glenville State managed a 71-66 win over West Virginia Wesleyan on Thursday night at the Rockefeller Center.

The Pioneers (13-4, 9-2) never trailed in the second half, but WVWC (7-10, 5-6) was able to get to within a bucket at 68-66 after a three from Chris Dewberry. The Bobcats had the ball and a chance to tie, but Dewberry’s jumper wouldn’t fall this time, and the Pioneers got the rebound and Donte Morales sank two free throws to essentially ice the game.

GSC shot 51% from the field and were led by 21 points from Brett Morris, including 15 points from behind the three-point line. Reggie Williams added 17 for the Pioneers.

Taylor Price had 18 points on 7-of-9 shooting for the Bobcats. Dewberry scored 16 and Tanner McGrew had 15 points to go with 14 rebounds.


Charleston 82, West Virginia State 70 | Final Stats

Charleston outscored West Virginia State 14-4 in the final 6:03 to secure an 82-70 win over the Yellow Jackets.

UC improves to 13-4 overall and 8-3 in the league, while WVSU drops to 3-15 overall and 3-7 in the MEC.

Chris Evans led the Golden Eagles with 19 points, and Vincent Dillard came off the bench to add 18. Jevonte Hughes was 6-of-8 from the field on his way to 15 points, and Octavius Green finished with 13.

WVSU shot 52% from the field and got a huge performance from Markee Mazyck with 34 points. Dominic Phillips had 15 points and five assists.


►   MEC Women’s Basketball Game Results

(Saturday, January 24)


Charleston 63, Fairmont State 61 | Final Stats

Monet Saunders scored a game-high 23 points and hit the game-clinching free throws to lift Charleston to a 63-61 win over Fairmont State at Eddie King Gymnasium.

Fairmont State led by six at halftime, but UC battled back in a close second half that saw seven ties. FSU built a 59-55 lead with 4:04 to go, but the Golden Eagles managed to hold the Falcons to just two more points the rest of the way and scored eight of their own to secure the victory. 

Saunders added 12 rebounds to go with her 23 points to lead UC (14-4, 9-3). LeAnne Ross added 10 points and eight rebounds.

Fairmont State (14-4, 8-4) was led by 20 points and five assists from Emily Puskarich. Hailey Garrett scored 16 and Emily Lohr finished with 10.


Glenville State 92, Concord 67 | Final Stats

Glenville State rolled to a 92-67 win over Concord on Saturday afternoon at the Carter Center.

Katrina Salins led Glenville State (8-8, 6-6) with 21 points. Julie Bishop scored 14, Keyanna Tate had 13, and Tayana Stewart came off the bench to add 10.

Rachel Artrip scored 18 and Jaqueline Kestner added 17 to lead Concord (5-11, 5-7).


UVa-Wise 84, West Virginia Wesleyan 74 | Final Stats

 UVa-Wise shot over 50% from the field and had five players reach double figures in an 84-74 win at the Rockefeller Center.

Taylor Sandidge led the Cavs (6-12, 5-7) with 17 points while also recording five rebounds and four assists. Blair Harding had 14 points and a game-high seven assists, and Katie Jo Dockery also finished with 14 points. Kehana Grayer added 12 and Allison Ball came off the bench to score 11.

The Bobcats (1-14, 1-11) got huge performances from Mari Stewart (26 points) and Adrian Cunningham (25 points) in the loss. 


West Liberty 83, Urbana 62 | Final Stats 

Kailee Howe scored 18 points and handed out 15 assists to lead West Liberty to an 83-62 win over Urbana. 

The Hilltoppers (12-6, 9-3) finished with 13 threes in the game, six of which came from Jenn Mohney, who finished with 18 points. Hillary Southworth scored 16 and Liz Flowers had 14 for WLU.

Tori Purk led Urbana (1-17, 1-11) with 16 points. Kate Francisco added 14, Jeni Jordan had 13 and Kennedy Boggs turned in 11 points to go with seven rebounds.


Shepherd 103, West Virginia State 79 | Final Stats

Shepherd shot an MEC record 65% from the field in a 103-79 win over West Virginia State on Saturday.

The Rams (13-5, 10-2) connected on 41-of-63 attempts in the game. Cara Mason went for a game-high 26 points on 10-of-13 shooting, including 4-of-4 from three-point range. Rachel Johnson had 13 points and seven assists, Briana Vaden and Kristina Prange each had 12, and Gabby Flinchum scored five.

Deyahnna Styles led WVSU (5-11, 3-8) with 20 points. Shealyn Shafer had 15 points and eight rebounds, and Trina Current and Alexus Hobbs each scored 12.


Wheeling Jesuit 55, Notre Dame 49 | Final Stats

Wheeling Jesuit won for the fourth time in five games after picking up a 55-49 win over Notre Dame on Saturday at the McDonough Center. The Cardinals outscored the Falcons 16-3 in the final five minutes of the game.

Jaila Bryant led all scorers with 20 points and added eight rebounds to lead WJU (10-5, 7-4). Breanna Butler contributed 14 points and Jaana Motton finished with 12.

Notre Dame (11-7, 7-5) shot just 29% from the field and Martha Nagbe was the only player to reach double figures with 10 points.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   West Virginia earns last-second win over TCU

Juwan Staten and Devin Williams each scored 18 points, and the 18th-ranked West Virginia Mountaineers survived a wild overtime period to beat the TCU Horned Frogs 86-85 on Saturday.

With seven seconds to go in the extra period, Daxter Miles Jr. hit a go-ahead 3-point shot for the Mountaineers to give them their first lead since regulation, but Trey Zeigler put TCU back on top by hitting a jumper with a second left.

Jevon Carter then got behind the Horned Frogs’ defense on the inbounds pass, and after being fouled attempting a layup as time expired, hit a pair of free throws to send West Virginia to the win.

“I have no comment on that,“ said TCU coach Trent Johnson. “I’m going to take the high road and my team won’t make excuses.“

Williams pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds and Staten handed out 12 assists. Jonathan Holton added 15 points and eight boards for the Mountaineers (16-3, 4-2 Big 12).

TCU (14-5, 1-5) received a game-high 22 points from Kyan Anderson, but it was his foul that sent Carter to the line for the winning free throws. Charles Hill Jr. chipped in 13 points and Kenrich Williams and Amric Fields each contributed 11.

Chase Connor’s 3-pointer with nine minutes to play in the second half extended West Virginia’s lead to 58-50, but the Horned Frogs went on an 8-0 run to draw even for the first time in the second half. Hill’s triple cut their deficit to four, and a pull-up jumper from Chris Washburn tied the game with 6:23 left.

After the teams traded leads several times late in regulation, Zeigler penetrated and hit a jumper to put TCU up 72-70 with eight seconds to play. At the other end, Miles fought through contact and had just enough on his layup to tie the game.

Zeigler almost found Anderson streaking into the frontcourt with a long inbounds pass, but it ended up out of bounds to give the Mountaineers one more chance. Devin Williams received the ball in the paint, but missed the layup as time expired.

Karviar Shepherd’s dunk on the first possession of OT gave the Frogs an early advantage, and they led by as many as five when Anderson hit a 3-pointer with 1:20 to go to make the score 80-75.

Miles’ first triple of overtime pulled West Virginia within 82-81 with 30 seconds left, and Kenrich Williams only hitting 1-of-2 from the line at the other end gave the Mountaineers life before Miles’ go-ahead trey.

“When Juwan passed to him and he made that, he proved he’s in the gym,“ said Mountaineers coach Bob Huggins. “They know who’s in the gym, just like I do.“

Devin Williams’ dunk with a little more than two minutes to go in the first half gave West Virginia its largest lead of the game at 34-25. The Horned Frogs went into the locker room on a 10-2 run, however, to trail 36-35 at the break. Anderson scored eight of those points, including a 3-pointer from just inside halfcourt before the shot clock expired.

Game Notes

West Virginia swept the season series and is now 6-0 all-time against TCU ... The Frogs have lost 28 straight road games against ranked opponents ... West Virginia shot just 40.8% ... West Virginia’s rifle team was presented with its national championship rings during the game ... The Mountaineers travel to Kansas State on Tuesday, while TCU returns home to face Kansas on Wednesday.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Baylor shuts down struggling Oklahoma

Lester Medford scored 17 points and dished out five assists to help No. 21 Baylor exact some revenge on slumping Oklahoma with a 69-58 victory over the 19th-ranked Sooners.

Kenny Chery went 3-of-5 from beyond the arc in a 13-point effort for the Bears (15-4, 3-3 Big 12), who turned the tables on the Sooners to reverse a 73-63 loss in Norman earlier this month.

Oklahoma held Baylor to a 37.3 field goal percentage in the previous meeting, but the Sooners shot just 38.7% in Saturday’s rematch to fall for the fourth time in five games.

Buddy Hield, the Big 12’s leading scorer, went 0-for-7 on 3-point tries and 6- of-17 overall to finish with 12 points for Oklahoma (12-7, 3-4). The Sooners managed only a 6-of-24 rate from long distance.

Oklahoma also had to deal with limited duty from its second-leading scorer, Isaiah Cousins, who played just 18 minutes and sat out most of the second half with an injured wrist.


►   Texas Tech pulls off upset over Iowa State

Devaugntah Williams had 22 points and seven rebounds to lead Texas Tech in a 78-73 win over No. 9 Iowa State on Saturday.

Toddrick Gotcher scored 17 points, while Robert Turner gave 13 points and 10 rebounds for the Red Raiders (11-9, 1-6 Big 12), who snapped a six-game losing streak.

Monte Morris scored 20 points, Matt Thomas added 12 and Georges Niang gave 10 for the Cyclones (14-4, 4-2), who had won their previous two coming in.

Texas Tech held a double-digit lead until Thomas hit a pair of free throws and Jameel McKay slammed the ball home to make it a 67-58 game with under five minutes to play.

After Aaron Ross hit 1-of-2 from the line to give the Red Raiders a 72-62 advantage, Morris and Dustin Hogue were each fouled while making a basket, hitting the ensuing free throw to make it a four-point gave with 1 1/2 minutes left.

Following a pair of free throws from Turner, Niang made a 3 to get Iowa State within three, but Gotcher followed with two from the line.

Thomas then hit a bank shot with 22.7 seconds to play, and a turnover from Ross gave Iowa State have a chance to tie the game. Morris, though, missed a 3-pointer, and Williams hit two free throws at the other end to seal the win.

With the score close early in the first half, Gotcher hit three straight 3- pointers to kick off a 15-0 run that was capped on a Ross layup for a 23-8 lead with 11 1/2 minutes left in the first half.

The Red Raiders maintained a healthy lead throughout the first half, but Thomas hit a pair of 3s to close the opening 20 minutes and cut the Cyclones’ deficit to 36-25 at the break.

Iowa State used and 8-0 run early in the second half to cut its deficit to six, but Texas Tech responded with an 11-3 run and held a 50-36 advantage with 13 minutes to play.

Game Notes

Iowa State hosts Texas on Monday ... Texas Tech plays at Oklahoma on Wednesday ... The Cyclones still lead the series, 14-12, and the two schools will meet at Iowa State on February 07.


►   Kansas tops Texas for key road win

Cliff Alexander led four Jayhawks in double figures with 15 points and No. 11 Kansas played a clean second half to take down 17th-ranked Texas 75-62 for a key road victory that could help determine the Big 12 regular season.

Perry Ellis and Brannen Greene scored 14 points apiece and Frank Mason III had 12 for Kansas, which committed all three of its season-low three turnovers in the first half.

Alexander scored all of his points and grabbed all nine of his rebounds in the final 21:54 of the game.

“We worked the middle,“ he said. “That’s what coach told us, ‘Just get the ball to the middle, it’s open every time.‘ That’s what we did, just got the ball to the middle and got easy shots.“

Kansas (16-3, 5-1 Big 12) has won two straight since dropping a road game against Iowa State.

The Jayhawks have won or held a share of a remarkable 10 straight Big 12 regular-season crowns, but many believed Texas had a chance to threaten that run this season.

Isaiah Taylor had 23 points to pace the Longhorns (14-5, 3-3), who have dropped three of their last five games.

“It did feel like we let just a couple (of possessions) get away from us,“ said Taylor. “They beat us to loose balls, they got in transition some, got offensive rebounds and just hit open shots. They came out and played man (defense) the second half and I mean, we tried to respond to it, but we couldn’t respond fully.“

Texas opened the game with an 11-2 run, but 3-pointers from Wayne Selden and Greene on consecutive possessions before the first media timeout had Kansas right back in the game. Mason assisted on both 3s.

Greene then scored five straight during a 9-0 run as Kansas climbed in front.

Cameron Ridley netted five in a row to tie the game at 28 late in the first half, but Alexander answered with a pair of dunks and Kansas led 32-30 at halftime.

Myles Turner hit a jumper 5 1/2 minutes into the second half, giving the Longhorns a 44-39 lead, but it quickly disappeared. Alexander threw down a jam on a feed from Perry Ellis, then kicked out to Selden for a 3 from the left wing. Greene followed with another triple, and the Jayhawks led by three.

It was 53-50 with seven minutes to play when Greene’s well-contested 3-ball from the corner sparked a 9-2 burst that just about put the game out of reach.

Kansas went 6-for-6 from the foul line in the final two minutes to seal it.

Game Notes

Kansas has won seven of the last eight games in the series ... Kansas’ bench produced 31 points compared to just eight from the Texas reserves ... Texas went 3-for-18 from 3-point range ... Jonathan Holmes scored 14 points for UT ... The teams will meet again in Lawrence on February 28.



<The Gilmer Free Press

►   Top-25 College Men’s Basketball Game Results

(Saturday, January 24)


Final Score: (1) Kentucky 58, South Carolina 43

Devin Booker scored 18 points and top- ranked Kentucky put forth a dominating defensive effort to stay unbeaten with a 58-43 victory over South Carolina on Saturday. Aaron Harrison added 13 points for the Wildcats (19-0, 6-0 SEC), who held South Carolina to just 22.6 percent from the field and blocked nine shots. Kentucky is off to its best start since the 2009-10 squad also opened the season with 19 straight wins. Sindarius Thornwell was South Carolina’s lone player in double figures with 14 points. The Gamecocks (10-8, 1-5) have lost three straight and five of their last six games.


Final Score: (3) Gonzaga 91, Pacific 60

Przemek Karnowski and Gary Bell Jr. each had 13 points to lead No. 3 Gonzaga to a 91-60 rout of Pacific on Saturday. Silas Melson scored 12 points, while Byron Wesley added 11 points and Domantas Sabonis gave 10 points and eight rebounds for the Bulldogs (20-1, 9-0 WCC), who have ripped off 13 straight wins. Eric Thompson and T.J. Wallace each scored 12 points for the Tigers (10-11, 2-7), who have lost their past two.


Final Score: (6) Wisconsin 69, Michigan 64 (OT)

Frank Kaminsky had 22 points and nine rebounds as No. 6 Wisconsin held on for a 69-64 overtime victory against Michigan on Saturday. Sam Dekker scored 15 points, Bronson Koenig added 13 and Nigel Hayes gave 10 for the Badgers (18-2, 6-1 Big Ten), who have won their past three. Derrick Walton Jr. scored 17 points with five rebounds and Zak Irvin donated 12 points for the Wolverines (12-8, 5-3), who had won their previous two coming in.


Final Score: (7) Arizona 73, California 50

Stanley Johnson finished with 18 points and nine rebounds as No. 7 Arizona cruised to a 73-50 victory over California on Saturday. Dusan Ristic scored 12 points on 5-of-6 shooting from the floor and Kaleb Tarczewski added 10 for the Wildcats (18-2, 6-1 Pac-12), who have won their last four games. David Kravish netted 16 points with 11 rebounds, Jordan Mathews also provided 16 points and Tyrone Wallace chipped in with 13 in the Golden Bears’ (11-9, 1-6) sixth straight loss.


Final Score: Texas Tech 78, (9) Iowa State 73

Devaugntah Williams had 22 points and six rebounds to lead Texas Tech in a 78-73 win over No. 9 Iowa State on Saturday. Toddrick Gotcher scored 17 points, while Robert Turner gave 13 points and 10 rebounds for the Red Raiders (11-9, 1-6 Big 12), who snapped a six-game losing streak. Monte Morris scored 20 points, Matt Thomas added 12 and Georges Niang gave 10 for the Cyclones (14-4, 4-2), who had won their previous two coming into the game.


Final Score: (11) Kansas 75, (17) Texas 62

Cliff Alexander led four Jayhawks in double figures with 15 points and No. 11 Kansas played a clean second half to take down 17th-ranked Texas 75-62 for a key road victory that could help determine the Big-12 regular season. Perry Ellis and Brannen Greene scored 14 points apiece and Frank Mason III had 12 for Kansas, which committed all three of its season-low three turnovers in the first half. Alexander scored all of his points and grabbed all nine of his rebounds in the final 21:54 of the game. Kansas (16-3, 5-1 Big 12) has won two straight since dropping a road game against Iowa State. The Cyclones, who are in action this afternoon against Texas Tech, also have one conference loss. The Jayhawks have won or held a share of a remarkable 10 straight Big 12 regular-season crowns, but many believed Texas had a chance to threaten that run this season. Isaiah Taylor had 23 points to pace the Longhorns (14-5, 3-3), who have dropped three of their last five games.


Final Score: (15) North Carolina 78, Florida State 74

Brice Johnson posted 18 points and 14 rebounds as 15th-ranked North Carolina kept up its strong recent play with a 78-74 victory over Florida State. Marcus Paige added 19 points and Justin Jackson put up 14 in the Tar Heels’ ninth triumph in their last 10 outings. North Carolina (16-4, 6-1 ACC) will take a five-game win streak into a difficult upcoming stretch against Syracuse, Louisville and No. 2 Virginia. Florida State (10-10, 2-5) hung tough for most of the afternoon, with Xavier Rathan-Mayes’ career-high 35 points keeping the Seminoles in it, before ultimately being dealt its fourth loss in its last five in ACC play.


Final Score: (18) West Virginia 86, TCU 85 (OT)

Juwan Staten and Devin Williams each scored 18 points, and the 18th-ranked West Virginia Mountaineers survived a wild overtime period to beat the TCU Horned Frogs 86-85 on Saturday. With seven seconds to go in the extra period, Daxter Miles Jr. hit a go-ahead 3- point shot for the Mountaineers to give them their first lead since regulation, but Trey Zeigler put TCU back on top with a second left. Jevon Carter got behind the defense on the inbounds pass, and after being fouled attempting a layup as time expired, hit a pair of free throws to send West Virginia to the win. Williams pulled down a game-high 12 rebounds, and Staten handed out 12 assists. Jonathan Holton added 15 points and eight boards for the Mountaineers (16-3, 4-2 Big 12). TCU (14-5, 1-5) received a game-high 22 points from Kyan Anderson, but it was his foul that sent Carter to the line for the winning free throws. Charles Hill Jr. chipped in 13 points, and Kenrich Williams and Amric Fields each contributed 11.


Final Score: (21) Baylor 69, (19) Oklahoma 58

Lester Medford scored 17 points and dished out five assists to help No. 21 Baylor exact some revenge on slumping Oklahoma with a 69-58 victory over the 19th-ranked Sooners. Kenny Chery went 3-of-5 from beyond the arc in a 13-point effort for the Bears (15-4, 3-3 Big 12), who turned the tables on the Sooners to reverse a 73-63 loss in Norman earlier this month. Oklahoma held Baylor to a 37.3 field goal percentage in the previous meeting, but the Sooners shot just 38.7 percent in Saturday’s rematch to fall for the fourth time in five games. Buddy Hield, the Big 12’s leading scorer, went 0-for-7 on 3-point tries and 6-of-17 overall to finish with 12 points for Oklahoma (12-7, 3-4). The Sooners managed only a 6-of-24 rate from long distance.


Final Score: (22) Dayton 63, Richmond 60

Dyshawn Pierre scored 21 points and 22nd- ranked Dayton survived a challenge from Richmond to earn a 63-60 victory in an Atlantic 10 clash. Kendall Pollard added 14 points, including a clutch hook shot with 2:16 remaining that snapped a 55-55 tie. Dayton (16-3, 6-1 A-10) stayed in front the rest of the way to avoid a second straight conference loss and extend its home win streak to 16 games. Richmond (10-9, 3-3) was able to overcome a 37-27 halftime deficit to hold a slim lead with three minutes left, but couldn’t hold it down the stretch en route to a 10th consecutive road defeat. T.J. Cline netted 10 of his 14 points in the second half for the Spiders, with Terry Allen, ShawnDre’ Jones and Alonzo Nelson- Ododa each finishing with 11 points in the loss.


Final Score: Purdue 67, (25) Iowa 63

Rapheal Davis scored a career-high 24 points, including the game-winning 3-pointer in the final minute, and Purdue got a boost from seldom-used wing Basil Smotherman to knock off No. 25 Iowa on Saturday, 67-63. With Kendall Stephens’ left hand heavily wrapped because of a broken finger, Smotherman saw extended minutes and took advantage, providing 13 points on 5-of-6 shooting and pulling down the game’s two biggest defensive rebounds. Purdue held a two-point lead following Davis’ 3 with 50 seconds remaining, and Smotherman flew in to grab Mike Gesell’s missed jumper at the other end. After he split a pair from the foul line, Peter Jok launched a triple and again Smotherman went up high to haul it in. He made 1-of-2 from the line once more, producing the final tally. Purdue’s center tandem of A.J. Hammons and Isaac Haas added 23 points between them on 9-of-11 from the field. The win snaps a 13-game losing streak against ranked teams for Purdue (12-8, 4-3 Big Ten). Iowa nearly overcame the loss of star forward Aaron White thanks to late heroics by Gesell and a dominant effort on the glass, but ultimately fell short. White, Iowa’s leading scorer and rebounder, left the game in the first half with a right shoulder stinger. Gesell scored 12 of his 18 points in the game’s final six minutes, and Gabriel Olaseni pulled down a career-best 16 rebounds, including 11 on the offensive end. Iowa (13-7, 4-3) had 24 offensive rebounds as a team.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   NBA Game Results

(Saturday, January 24)


Final Score: Charlotte 76, New York 71

In a game with each team missing their leading scorer, the Charlotte Hornets came from behind to top the New York Knicks, 76-71, on Saturday. Knicks star Carmelo Anthony rested after playing 42 minutes in a 113-106 win over Orlando on Friday, while Charlotte’s Kemba Walker sat out with knee soreness. Stepping into the lineup to replace the injured Walker, Brian Roberts led the Hornets with 17 points on their way to their fourth win in five games. Gerald Henderson added 14 points and Michael Kidd-Gilchrist contributed 10. Al Jefferson blocked seven shots to tie a career high. The Knicks’ season-long three-game winning streak came to an end despite 25 points, six rebounds and five assists from Tim Hardaway Jr. Lance Thomas chipped in 16 points, and Cole Aldrich had 13 rebounds.


Final Score: Milwaukee 101, Detroit 86

O.J. Mayo had 20 points and the Milwaukee Bucks rolled to a 101-86 win over the Detroit Pistons on Saturday in a game that wasn’t as close as the final score. The Bucks scored the first 10 points of the third quarter after leading by 14 at halftime and went ahead by as many as 30 in the frame. Things were even worse than that for the Pistons, who lost point guard Brandon Jennings near the end of the third to what the team called a left leg injury. Jennings was guarding Brandon Knight on an inbounds pass and didn’t appear to make much contact with the Bucks guard before going down. He was helped off the court and into a wheelchair behind the basket. Khris Middleton added 16 points and Knight had 14 for the Bucks, who snapped a two-game losing streak and ended 2-2 on a four-game homestand.


Final Score: Memphis 101, Philadelphia 83

Zach Randolph registered 17 points with 14 rebounds to help the Memphis Grizzlies in a 101-83 win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Saturday night. Jeff Green led the Grizzlies with 18 points and Vince Carter added 13 points off the bench. Memphis, which defeated the Sixers 120-115 in overtime on Dec. 13, has taken five straight against them in the series. Jerami Grant deposited a career-high 16 points and Michael Carter-Williams posted 10 points with six assists for Philadelphia, which has dropped five straight games overall.


Final Score: Utah 108, Brooklyn 73

Gordon Hayward scored 24 points and the Utah Jazz rolled to a 108-73 win over the Brooklyn Nets on Saturday night. Trey Burke added 19 points and Joe Ingles scored 16 for the Jazz, who have won two in a row and three of their last five. Jarrett Jack had 16 points to lead the Nets, who have dropped two in a row and 10 of their last 12. The Nets played for the first time since learning Friday that they will be without Mirza Teletovic for the rest of the season after the forward was found to have multiple blood clots in his lungs.


Final Score: Portland 103, Washington 96

LaMarcus Aldridge was unexpectedly in the Portland lineup on Saturday night and the All-Star power forward helped his team snap a two-game losing streak. Aldridge scored 26 points with nine rebounds in the Trail Blazers’ 103-96 win over the Washington Wizards. The Blazers announced earlier in the day that Aldridge will hold off having surgery on a torn radial collateral ligament in his left thumb. He was originally slated for surgery next week and expected to miss 6-8 weeks. That decision proved to be beneficial for Portland. Damian Lillard deposited 20 points with seven assists and Wesley Matthews added 19 points in the win. John Wall led the Wizards with 25 points and nine assists, while Paul Pierce registered 19 points and Bradley Beal chipped in with 16 points.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Athletics agree to 1-year deal with Abad

The Oakland Athletics and left-handed pitcher Fernando Abad agreed to terms on a one-year contract Friday, avoiding arbitration.

Abad finished his first season in the Bay Area with a 2-4 record and career- low 1.57 earned run average over 69 appearances.

The 29-year-old native of the Dominican Republic held opponents to a .175 batting average and right-handed hitters batted just .162 against him.

Over five major-league seasons with Houston, Washington and Oakland, Abad is 3-18 with a 3.61 ERA in 179 2/3 innings over 196 games.


►   Cubs legend Banks dies

Chicago Cubs Hall of Fame first baseman and shortstop Ernie Banks passed away Friday at the age of 83.

WGN in Chicago reports Banks died at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

Dubbed “Mr. Cub,“ Banks suited up on Chicago’s North Side from 1953-71, slugging 512 home runs over 19 seasons. A 14-time All-Star, he was elected to Cooperstown in 1977.

“Words cannot express how important Ernie Banks will always be to the Chicago Cubs, the city of Chicago and Major League Baseball. He was one of the greatest players of all time,“ Cubs chairman Tom Ricketts said. “He was a pioneer in the major leagues. And more importantly, he was the warmest and most sincere person I’ve ever known.

“Approachable, ever optimistic and kind hearted, Ernie Banks is and always will be Mr. Cub. My family and I grieve the loss of such a great and good- hearted man, but we look forward to celebrating Ernie’s life in the days ahead.“

Banks was also active in the Chicago community during and after his tenure with the Cubs. In 2013, he a was a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest honor given to citizens in the United States.

He was the National League Most Valuable Player in 1958 and 1959. Banks hit 47 home runs with 129 RBI in 1958 and followed up with 45 homers and 143 RBI in 1959.

During his career, Banks hit 512 home runs, 277 of which came at shortstop. That still stands as the most in the National League for a shortstop. He hit .274 and drove in 1,636 runs.

Banks also became the first African American to manage a major league team on May 08, 1973 when he took over for the ejected Whitey Lockman. He was also the first player in Cubs history to have his number retired in 1982 and was voted to Major League Baseball’s All-Century Team in 1999. He was the first Cub to be honored with a statue at Wrigley Field on March 31, 2008.

Banks expressed his love of baseball in two catchphrases, “It’s a great day for baseball” and also “Let’s play two” for his expressive wish to play a doubleheader each day.

He is the Cubs’ leader in games played (2,528), at-bats (9,421), plate appearances (10,395) and extra-base hits (1,009).



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Bruins to host Canadiens in 2016 Winter Classic

Another heated rivalry will be featured in the 2016 Winter Classic, as the NHL announced Saturday that the Boston Bruins will host the Montreal Canadiens in the next edition of the outdoor showcase.

The longtime enemies will play next January 1 at Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, the 68,756-seat home of the NFL’s New England Patriots.

Boston will become the first team to host the Winter Classic twice. The Bruins and Philadelphia Flyers played the 2010 contest at Fenway Park.

Montreal, meanwhile, has yet to play in the league’s featured event and will become just the second Canadian team to take part. The Toronto Maple Leafs played the Detroit Red Wings at Michigan Stadium in 2014.

The Bruins and Canadiens are two of the NHL’s Original Six teams and have a storied history that includes last spring’s seven-game playoff series won by Montreal.

Also Saturday, the NHL announced two other outdoor games for next season as part of the league’s “Stadium Series.“

On February 21, 2016, the Minnesota Wild will host the Chicago Blackhawks at TCF Bank Stadium on the campus of the University of Minnesota. Six days later, the Red Wings will visit the Colorado Avalanche at Coors Field in Denver, home of the Colorado Rockies of Major League Baseball.

Minnesota and Colorado will take part in an outdoor game for the first time, while the Blackhawks and Red Wings have each played in the Winter Classic twice. Chicago played at Washington in this year’s Winter Classic.


►   World Cup of Hockey to return in 2016

The NHL announced the return of the World Cup of Hockey after a 12-year absence.

The two-week tournament, a joint effort of the NHL, NHL Players Association and the International Ice Hockey Federation, features eight teams and will take place in September 2016 in Toronto.

“We are thrilled to partner with the NHLPA in planning and producing what we expect will be the world’s best international hockey tournament,“ said NHL commissioner Gary Bettman on Saturday. “The 2016 World Cup of Hockey will highlight not only our global reach, but also the skill and passion of the world’s best athletes. We would like to thank our international partners—the IIHF and their members—for their cooperation in helping to make this event a reality.“

The last World Cup took place in 2004 when Canada beat Finland in the final for the championship. The first tournament was held in 1996. The United States won that event, beating Canada in a best-of-three final.

Six countries—Canada, the United States, Russia, Sweden, Finland and the Czech Republic—will take part in the 2016 edition. The other two teams will be called Team Europe and Team North American Youngstars.

The Team Europe squad will be made up of players from European nations other than Russia, Sweden, Finland and the Czech Republic, allowing players from Slovakia, Switzerland, Denmark, Germany, Norway and Slovenia to fill out the roster.

The North American Youngstars will be selected from a pool of the best young players aged 23 and under from Canada and the United States.

“We expect the 2016 World Cup of Hockey to be the most competitive tournament of its kind, with the world’s top players and best athletes,“ said NHLPA executive director Don Fehr. “We look forward to working with the NHL, and the IIHF and its federations on this extraordinary event. We expect that this is the initial step in a series of events that will elevate our game over the next few years, including a World Cup in 2020.“

Each of the eight teams will feature 23 players—20 skaters and three goalies. The teams will be split into two groups and play a round-robin competition before moving on to a one-game semifinal round. The final round will be a best-of-three format between the two semifinal winners.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Djokovic, Wawrinka roll on in Melbourne

Former champions Novak Djokovic and Stan Wawrinka continued to plow through the top half of the draw at the Australian Open with third-round wins Saturday.

The top-seeded Djokovic had his first minor test of the fortnight with a first-set tiebreaker, then rolled from there to capture a 7-6 (10-8), 6-3, 6-4 victory over Spain’s Fernando Verdasco.

Wawrinka, the defending champion and this year’s fourth seed, cruised to a 6-4, 6-2, 6-4 triumph over Finnish veteran Jarkko Nieminen.

Djokovic has yet to lose a set in his first three matches. The four-time champ barely broke a sweat this week before Saturday, dropping a total of 14 games in his first two outings.

Verdasco, though, made him work in the first set. A semifinalist in 2009, the 31st-seeded Spaniard matched Djokovic for 60 minutes before finally faltering in the first-set tiebreak. The Serb then broke once in each of the next two sets to finish in 2 hours and 21 minutes.

“It was the turning point probably, winning the tiebreaker as close as it was,“ said Djokovic. “I thought it was a good match. It was a big challenge for both of us. He was a former top-10 player. Somebody that loves playing on the big stage, a powerful game. I’m glad to go through in straight sets.“

Verdasco slammed 10 aces in the opening set, but did himself in with 28 unforced errors. Djokovic had 12 unforced errors of his own in the first set, but had just 12 more the remainder of the match.

Next up for Djokovic will be Gilles Muller, as the lefty from Luxembourg ousted American John Isner in straight sets, 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (8-6), 6-4.

Wawrinka ended Djokovic’s three-year run as Aussie Open champ last year in the quarterfinals and went on to capture his first career Grand Slam title. The Swiss veteran has yet to lose a set this week, as well.

On Saturday, Wawrinka blasted 55 winners to just 18 for Nieminen

“It was a really good match from me today,“ said Wawrinka. “I was playing great, tried to be more aggressive than normal.“

A familiar opponent awaits Wawrinka in the fourth round, as Spain’s Guillermo Garcia-Lopez advanced Saturday with a 6-2, 6-4, 6-4 rout of Canada’s Vasek Pospisil. Garcia-Lopez knocked off Wawrinka last year in the first round of the French Open.

“He’s been playing really good,“ said Wawrinka of his fourth-round foe. “I saw him a little bit this tournament. I lost against him last year French Open first round. We had some tough battles in the past. It’s never easy.“

Other winners Saturday included U.S. Open runner-up Kei Nishikori, Spain’s David Ferrer and Canada’s Milos Raonic.

The fifth-seeded Nishikori rallied after dropping the first set against American Steve Johnson, pulling out a 6-7 (7-9), 6-1, 6-2, 6-3 win. Next up for the rising Japanese star will be the ninth-seeded Ferrer, who also went four sets to eliminate France’s Gilles Simon, 6-2, 7-5, 5-7, 7-6 (7-4).

Losses Saturday by Johnson and Isner ended the American men’s hopes in Melbourne.

The eighth-seeded Raonic also eased into the fourth round with a 6-4, 6-3, 6-3 victory over Germany’s Benjamin Becker and will next play Spain’s Feliciano Lopez. The 12th seed beat Poland’s Jerzy Janowicz, 7-6 (8-6), 6-4, 7-6 (7-3).

Fourth-round play starts Sunday with Rafael Nadal and Andy Murray among those in action. The third-seeded Nadal will square off against South Africa’s Kevin Anderson, while the sixth-seeded Murray will close the night session at Laver Arena against 10th-seeded Grigor Dimitrov of Bulgaria.

Andreas Seppi of Italy will try to build off his monstrous upset of Roger Federer, but will likely have the crowd against him when he takes on Aussie Nick Kyrgios. Another unseeded Aussie favorite will also play Sunday when Bernard Tomic faces seventh-seeded Czech Tomas Berdych.


►   Serena, Venus rally at Aussie Open

The Williams sisters are through to the fourth round at the Australian Open, but both top seed Serena and No. 18 seed Venus had to rally from a set down Saturday.

Serena, a five-time Aussie champion, came back to down 26th-seeded Ukrainian Elina Svitolina, 4-6, 6-2, 6-0. Venus, a seven-time Grand Slam champion, topped talented Italian Camila Giorgi, 4-6, 7-6 (7-3), 6-1.

Meanwhile, two-time Wimbledon champion Petra Kvitova’s struggles continued at the year’s first major championship. American Madison Keys pulled off a 6-4, 7-5 upset, sending the fourth-seeded Kvitova to an early exit for the fifth time in her seven visits to Melbourne.

It was a rough start for Serena, who fell behind 5-2 in the first set, but then won the next two games. Svitolina came back to hold at love the next game to take the set.

The final two sets were completely different, as the 18-time Grand Slam champion and reigning U.S. Open queen won the first four games of the second and throttled her opponent in the third.

“My next match I’m just going to have a longer warmup, more intense warmup. But as long as I was able to come through today, I can always have an opportunity for tomorrow,“ Serena said.

There was a brief opening for Svitolina in the third game of the final set, but she blew a pair of break point chances.

Revenge could be a factor in Serena’s next match. She was the defending champion headed into the 2014 French Open, but lost in the second round to Spain’s Garbine Muguruza.

Muguruza, the 24th seed here, set up her match with Serena with a win over Switzerland’s Timea Bacsinszky, 6-3, 4-6, 6-0.

“It was a good loss,“ Serena said of her loss to Muguruza. “As angry as I was, it was the best loss I had the whole year last year. Had a lot of them. But that one in particular made me realize what I needed to work on. It opened my eyes towards a lot of things.“

Venus was two points away from losing the match to Giorgi, but then rallied. Giorgi double-faulted 16 times.

This will be the first time Venus has reached the round of 16 at a major since Wimbledon 2011.

“It’s definitely been a lot of work and a lot of learning and a lot of perseverance,“ Venus said. “It will continue to be that for me. Just have to come to terms with it.“

Next up for Venus is sixth seed Agnieszka Radwanska of Poland. The Wimbledon runner-up surged past American Varvara Lepchenko, the 30th seed, 6-0, 7-5.

Four Americans are alive in the top half of the draw, as Keys and Madison Brengle will join the Williams sisters in the fourth round.

Keys, coached by three-time Grand Slam champion Lindsay Davenport, came up with the biggest victory of her young career with the stunner against Kvitova. She broke serve twice in the first set and three times in the second, the last for a 6-5 lead before holding to finish the match in an hour and 24 minutes.

“I think my hands are still shaking,“ said the 19-year-old Keys after the match. “I’m really happy that I served that (last) game out so well.“

Keys will next play Brengle, a 6-3, 6-2 winner over fellow American Coco Vandeweghe.

Kvitova has been past the third round just twice at this event, reaching the quarterfinals in 2011 and the semifinals in 2012. She exited in the first round last year after a second-round setback the year before.

“In the end of the day I did better than the last year and the year before, so I need to be happy, but I’m not,“ said Kvitova. “I expect little bit more from this tournament unfortunately.“

Two-time Australian Open champion and former world No. 1 Victoria Azarenka defeated 25th-seeded Barbora Zahlavova Strycova, 6-4, 6-4. Unseeded this year, Azarenka will next play 11th-seeded Dominika Cibulkova, a 7-5, 6-2 winner over Frenchwoman Alize Cornet.

Fourth-round play begins Sunday, featuring second-seeded Maria Sharapova and third-seeded Simona Halep. Sharapova will take on China’s Peng Shuai and Halep will open the night session at Laver Arena against Belgium’s Yanina Wickmayer.

Also Sunday, seventh-seeded Canadian Eugenie Bouchard will face Romania’s Irina-Camilia Begu to start the day and 10th-seeded Russian Ekaterina Makarova will meet Germany’s Julia Goerges.


►   Australian Open Men’s Doubles Tennis Update - January 24

Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia

Total Prize Money: $2,600,000

SATURDAY’S SECOND ROUND MATCHES

B.Bryan/M.Bryan (1) defeated C.Berlocq/L.Mayer, 5-7, 6-3, 6-1
J.Benneteau/E.Roger-Vasselin (2) defeated S.Giraldo/J.Sousa, 7-5, 6-4
I.Dodig/M.Melo (4) defeated A.Golubev/D.Istomin, 6-2, 3-6, 7-6 (7-3)
O.Marach/M.Venus defeated A.Peya/B.Soares (5), 6-4, 7-6 (7-5)
J.Erlich/T.Huey defeated R.Lindstedt/M.Matkowski (9), 6-3, 6-2
P.Herbert/N.Mahut defeated J.Cabal/R.Farah (11), 6-3, 6-4
E.Butorac/S.Groth (12) defeated P.Andujar/D.Brown, 7-6 (7-1), 6-4
A.Bolt/A.Whittington defeated J.Chardy/L.Kubot, 2-6, 7-5, 7-5


►   Australian Open Men’s Tennis Update - January 24

Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia

Total Prize Money: $14,000,000

SATURDAY’S THIRD ROUND MATCHES

Novak Djokovic (1) defeated Fernando Verdasco (31), 7-6 (10-8), 6-3, 6-4
Stan Wawrinka (4) defeated Jarkko Nieminen, 6-4, 6-2, 6-4
Kei Nishikori (5) defeated Steve Johnson, 6-7 (7-9), 6-1, 6-2, 6-3
Milos Raonic (8) defeated Benjamin Becker, 6-4, 6-3, 6-3
David Ferrer (9) defeated Gilles Simon (18), 6-2, 7-5, 5-7, 7-6 (7-4)
Feliciano Lopez (12) defeated Jerzy Janowicz, 7-6 (8-6), 6-4, 7-6 (7-3)
Gilles Muller defeated John Isner (19), 7-6 (7-4), 7-6 (8-6), 6-4
Guillermo Garcia-Lopez defeated Vasek Pospisil, 6-2, 6-4, 6-4


►   Australian Open Women’s Tennis Update - January 24

Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia

Total Prize Money: $14,000,000

SATURDAY’S THIRD ROUND MATCHES

Serena Williams (1) defeated Elina Svitolina (26), 4-6, 6-2, 6-0
Madison Keys defeated Petra Kvitova (4), 6-4, 7-5
Agnieszka Radwanska (6) defeated Varvara Lepchenko (30), 6-0, 7-5
Dominika Cibulkova (11) defeated Alize Cornet (19), 7-5, 6-2
Venus Williams (18) defeated Camila Giorgi, 4-6, 7-6 (7-3), 6-1
Garbine Muguruza (24) defeated Timea Bacsinszky, 6-3, 4-6, 6-0
Victoria Azarenka defeated Barbora Zahlavova Strycova (25), 6-4, 6-4
Madison Brengle defeated Coco Vandeweghe, 6-3, 6-2


►   Australian Open Women’s Doubles Tennis Update - January 24

Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia

Total Prize Money: $2,600,000

SATURDAY’S SECOND ROUND MATCHES

S.Errani/R.Vinci (1) defeated M.Barthel/M.Minella, 6-0, 6-2
E.Makarova/E.Vesnina (3) defeated D.Cibulkova/K.Flipkens, 6-4, 5-7, 6-2
C.Garcia/K.Srebotnik (7) defeated S.Rogers/D.Vekic, 6-3, 3-6, 6-3
A.Hlavackova/L.Hradecka (9) defeated M.Adamczak/O.Rogowska, 6-3, 6-2
B.Mattek-Sands/L.Safarova defeated T.Babos/K.Mladenovic (10), 4-6, 7-6 (7-2), 6-4
K.Bertens/J.Larsson defeated A.Medina Garrigues/Y.Shvedova (11), 3-6, 6-2, 6-4
Y.Chan/Z.Jie (14) defeated L.Arruabarrena/I.Begu, 6-4, 6-3
J.Goerges/A.Groenefeld (16) defeated Z.Diyas/C.Scheepers, 7-6 (7-4), 6-2



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Bad weather postpones Frank Whiteley Jr. Stakes

Poor track conditions have forced Laurel Park officials to cancel live racing Saturday for the third time this week.

Maryland Jockey Club vice president and general manager Sal Sinatra announced Friday night that Laurel Park will not conduct its nine-race card on Saturday afternoon, forcing the postponement of the $100,000 Frank Whitely Jr. Stakes for 3-year-olds.

“Given the questionable surface we have had all week with the freeze and thaw and pending sleet and freezing rain tonight it is in the best interest to preserve the racetrack,“ Sinatra said.

Live cards were also canceled Monday and Friday for the same reason.

Sinatra indicated the $100,000 Frank Whitely Jr. Stakes will be run next week.

Live racing is scheduled to resume Thursday, January 29.

Racing has also been canceled at Aqueduct and Parx Racing due to the winter weather conditions. Racing at both tracks is expected to resume Sunday.


►   Frank Whiteley Jr. Stakes redrawn for Thursday

Post positions were redrawn for the $100,000 Frank Whitely Jr. Stakes for Thursday after Saturday racing at Laurel Park was canceled due to poor track conditions.

Most of the original nine 3-year-olds have been re-entered for the seven- furlong stakes with trainer Chad Brown taking advantage of the postponement to enter his stakes winning gelding Majestic Affair.

Majestic Affair, owned by James Covello, Thomas Coleman and Doheny Racing Stable, will break from the far outside post with Kendrick Carmouche keeping his spot in the saddle.

The chestnut 3-year-old won the Frank Capossela Stakes on January 2 at Aqueduct by 5 3/4 lengths. He was second on November 15 in Laurel Park’s James F. Lewis Stakes.

Majestic Affair won his career debut last July at Canterbury Park, but five weeks later was eighth at 5-1 in the Saratoga Special. He came back in October with an allowance victory at Parx Racing. The gray gelding has earned $124,000.

Golden Years, the original 9-5 program favorite, has drawn post 6 with Victor Carrasco again riding. The colt is trained by Rodney Jenkins for Hillwood Stable.

The 3-year-old has made all prior starts at Laurel winning three of four, including the Maryland Million Nursery on October 18 and Marylander Stakes on December 6. He was fourth in the Lewis Stakes.

“He is doing fine. I gave him two or three weeks off after his last start doing nothing but walking and jogging to try to freshen him up. I went a little strong with him at the end of the year,“ Jenkins said. “He might be a hair short for this one but he’ll try real hard. The last work (January 17), we galloped him out 7/8th’s and he got a little tired but I think it helped him. The horse is very intelligent and he picks up on things real quick. If you look into his eyes he is a very, very intelligent and he is one of the best moving horses I have ever had.“

Golden Years has banked $146,760 as he begins his 2015 season.

Here is the field for the Frank Whitely from the rail out: Governmentshutdown, Julian Pimentel; One More Time, Erik Ramirez; Sizzling Quatorze, Angel Serpa; Notional Debt, Sheldon Russell; Bodhisattva, Victor Santiago; Golden Years, Victor Carrasco; Measured, Horacio Karamanos; Mini Cosmo, Frankie Pennington and Majestic Affair, Kendrick Carmouche.

Post time will be approximately 4:27 PM ET.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Grace tops Warren to win Qatar Masters

Branden Grace picked up five strokes over the final seven holes on Saturday and fended off Marc Warren to win the Qatar Masters.

Grace fired a bogey-free, 6-under 66 to end at 19-under-par 269. The South African, who won for the sixth time on the European Tour, raised his record to 6-0 when owning at least a piece of the 54-hole lead.

“It was a great day, it was a great week. It’s another great trophy to put in the cupboard,“ Grace said. “I got off to great start today, then I fell a bit asleep.“

Warren closed with a his second straight 67 to end one back at minus-18. He had shared the third-round lead with Grace, Bernd Wiesberger and Emiliano Grillo.

Wiesberger posted a 4-under 68 and ended alone in third at 17-under-par 271, while Eddie Pepperell (67) took fourth at minus-16.

Grillo managed a 2-under 70 in the final round at Doha Golf Club and finished at 15-under 273. He was joined there by Byeong-hun An and Gregory Bourdy, who both fired 65s in the final round.

Alejandro Canizares (69) took eighth at minus-14 and Alexander Noren (65) was one stroke further back at 13-under 275.

Grace birdied the first, but followed that with 10 consecutive pars. In that span, he varied from one behind to tied for the lead.

Late in Grace’s run of pars, there was a brief seven-way tie for the lead at minus-14. Wiesberger, who was paired with Grace in the final round, dropped in three straight birdies from the 10th to break free from that pack and move to 16-under.

Grace matched Wiesberger’s birdie at the 12th. Wiesberger ran off five pars in a row from No. 13 to stay at minus-16.

After a par on 13, Grace grabbed a share of the lead as he birdied the 14th. At the short par-4 16th, Grace’s drive stopped five feet from the hole.

The South African poured that in for eagle. Now two clear of the field, Grace parred the 17th and that allowed Warren to join him at minus-18 as Warren birdied the 16th and 17th.

Grace answered at the par-5 closing hole. His third shot rolled over the left edge of the hole and stopped three feet from the cup. He kicked that in for a closing birdie and 19-under.

“The form has been there, and I stuck to my routine this week and I played great, and I managed to come out on top,“ said Grace.

Warren, who was in the final group, had a 25-foot putt to force a playoff, but it stayed above ground.

NOTES: Grace earned 353,257 euros for the win ... Grace won in December at the Alfred Dunhill Championship and has won two of the last four European Tour events ... Henrik Stenson, the 2006 champion, fired a 66 to finish tied for 13th, while Justin Rose carded a 68 to end alongside Stenson at minus-10 ... Last year’s winner Sergio Garcia closed with a 3-under 69 and ended in a tie for 46th ... Stephen Gallacher is expected to defend his title next week at the Omega Dubai Desert Classic.

The Gilmer Free Press


References
ABC - American Broadcasting Company
CBS - Columbia Broadcast System
FOX - Fox Entertainment Group
NBC - National Broadcasting Company
JIP - Joined in Progress
DSS - DIRECTV
TSN - Sports Network (Canada)
SNET/SN - Rogers SportsNet (Canada)
RDS - Reseau des sports
MSG - Madison Square Garden Network
TNT - Turner Network Television
TBS - Turner Broadcasting System
SNY - SportsNet New York
CBSSN - CBS - College Sports Network
CSN - Comcast SportsNet
TCN - The Comcast Network
NBCSN - NBC Sports Network
NESN - New England Sports Network
MASN - Mid-Atlantic Sports Network
ROOT - Root Sports (Pittsburgh, Northwest, Rocky Mountain)
CST - Cox Sports Television
FCS - FOX College Sports
FS - FOX Sports Regional
RSN - Regional Sports Networks
CPTV - Connecticut Public Broadcasting
TVG - Horse Racing Channel
FS1 - FOX Sports 1
TWC - Time Warner Cable Sports Channel
* - If Necessary


SUNDAY, JANUARY 25, 2015
National Football League
Pro Bowl, 8:15 PM - ESPN
National Basketball Association
Miami at Chicago, 1:00 PM - ABC
Oklahoma City at Cleveland, 3:30 PM - ABC
Minnesota at Atlanta, 6:00 PM - FS-North, SportSouth, DSS
Dallas at New Orleans, 6:00 PM - FS-Southwest, New Orleans, DSS
Indiana at Orlando, 6:00 PM - FS-Indiana, Florida, DSS
LA Clippers at Phoenix, 6:00 PM - FS-Prime Ticket, Arizona, DSS
Detroit at Toronto, 7:00 PM - FS-Detroit, SportsNet, DSS
Milwaukee at San Antonio, 7:00 PM - FS-Wisconsin, Southwest, DSS
Washington at Denver, 8:00 PM - CSN-DC, Altitude, NBA TV, DSS
Boston at Golden State, 8:00 PM - CSN-New England, Bay, DSS
Houston at LA Lakers, 9:30 PM - ROOT-Southwest, Time Warner, DSS
National Hockey League
All-Star Game, 5:00 PM - NBCSN, CBC
College Basketball
South Florida at Connecticut, 12:00 PM - CBSSN
Boston College at Georgia Tech, 1:00 PM - NESN, RSN, ESPN3.com
Virginia at Virginia Tech, 1:00 PM - ACC Network, ESPN3.com
Indiana at Ohio State, 1:30 PM - CBS
Rowan at Princeton, 2:00 PM - Ivy League Digital Network
St. Bonaventure at Rhode Island, 2:00 PM - Ocean State Network
Duke at St. John’s, 2:00 PM - FOX
Cincinnati at UCF, 2:00 PM - CBSSN
Vermont at UMass Lowell, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Drake at Wichita State, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Seton Hall at Butler, 3:00 PM - FSN, MASN2
Northern Iowa at Illinois State, 4:00 PM - ESPN U
Louisville at Pittsburgh, 4:00 PM - CBS
Notre Dame at NC State, 6:30 PM - ESPN U
Belmont at Tennessee State, 6:30 PM - American Sports Net, MASN
Creighton at Villanova, 7:00 PM - FS1
Northwestern at Maryland, 7:30 PM - Big Ten Network
Washington at Utah, 8:30 PM - ESPN U
Women’s College Basketball
Arkansas at Florida, 12:00 PM - ESPN U
Vanderbilt at Alabama, 1:00 PM - FSN, ESPN3.com
Lafayette at Lehigh, 1:00 PM - CSN-Philadelphia
Georgia at Tennessee, 2:00 PM - SEC Network
Utah at Washington, 2:00 PM - Pac-12 Network
Northwestern at Penn State, 2:00 PM - Big Ten Network+
Wake Forest at Florida State, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
UCF at SMU, 2:00 PM - ESPN U
Fairfield at Monmouth, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Ohio State at Purdue, 2:00 PM - Big Ten Network+
Wisconsin at Michigan State, 2:00 PM - Big Ten Network+
Butler at Xavier, 2:30 PM - FS1
Northeastern at Elon, 3:00 PM - TCN-Philadelphia
Illinois State at Missouri State, 3:00 PM - ESPN3.com
NC State at Syracuse, 3:00 PM - RSN, ESPN3.com
Maryland at Indiana, 3:00 PM - Big Ten Network
Connecticut at Cincinnati, 3:00 PM - ESPN 2
Tulane at South Florida, 4:00 PM - CBSSN
Kentucky at Missouri, 4:00 PM - SEC Network
Colorado at Washington State, 4:00 PM - Pac-12 Network
Oregon State at Arizona State, 4:00 PM - Pac-12 Network
Iowa State at Texas, 4:30 PM - FS1
Vermont at UMass Lowell, 4:30 PM - ESPN3.com
Duke at North Carolina, 5:00 PM - ESPN 2
Miami-Florida at Louisville, 5:00 PM - RSN, ESPN3.com
Minnesota at Rutgers, 5:15 PM - Big Ten Network
California at UCLA, 6:00 PM - Pac-12 Network
Stanford at USC, 8:00 PM - Pac-12 Network
International Soccer
Juventus FC vs. AC ChievoVerona, 8:55 AM - beIN Sport
Athletic Club vs. Malaga CF, 10:55 AM - beIN Sport
ACF Fiorentina vs. AS Roma, 2:40 PM - beIN Sport
Golf
PGA - Humana Challenge, 3:00 PM - Golf Channel
CHAMPIONS - Mitsubishi Electric Championship, 7:00 PM - Golf Channel
Tennis
Australian Open, 3:00 AM - ESPN 2
Australian Open, 9:00 PM - ESPN 2

Inside the Uniform, Under the Hood, Longing for Change

The Gilmer Free Press

From January 04-12, 2015, Witness Against Torture (WAT) activists assembled in Washington D.C. for an annual time of fasting and public witness to end the United States’ use of torture and indefinite detention and to demand the closure, with immediate freedom for those long cleared for release, of the illegal U.S. prison at Guantanamo.

Participants in our eight-day fast started each day with a time of reflection. This year, asked to briefly describe who or what we had left behind and yet might still carry in our thoughts that morning, I said that I’d left behind an imagined WWI soldier, Leonce Boudreau.

I was thinking of Nicole de’Entremont’s story of World War I, A Generation of Leaves, which I had just finished reading.  Initial chapters focus on a Canadian family of Acadian descent. Their beloved oldest son, Leonce, enlists with Canada’s military because he wants to experience life beyond the confines of a small town and he feels stirred by a call to defend innocent European people from advancing “Hun” warriors. He soon finds himself mired in the horrid slaughter of trench warfare near Ypres, Belgium.

I often thought of Leonce during the week of fasting with WAT campaign members.  We focused, each day, on the experiences and writing of a Yemeni prisoner in Guantanamo, Fahed Ghazi who, like Leonce, left his family and village to train as a fighter for what he believed to be a noble cause.  He wanted to defend his family, faith and culture from hostile forces.  Pakistani forces captured Fahed and turned him over to U.S. forces after he had spent two weeks in a military training camp in Afghanistan.  At the time he was 17, a juvenile.  He was cleared for release from Guantanamo in 2007.

Leonce’s family never saw him again.  Fahed’s family has been told, twice, that he is cleared for release and could soon reunite with his wife, daughter, brothers and parents.  Being cleared for release means that U.S. authorities have decided that Fahed poses no threat to the security of people in the U.S. Still he languishes in Guantanamo where he has been held for 13 years.

Fahed writes that there is no guilt or innocence at Guantanamo.  But he asserts that everyone, even the guards, knows the difference between right and wrong. It is illegal to hold him and 54 other prisoners, without charge, after they have been cleared for release.

Fahed is one of 122 prisoners held in Guantanamo.

Bitter cold had gripped Washington D.C. during most days of our fast and public witness.  Clad in multiple layers of clothing, we clambered into orange jumpsuits, pulled black hoods over our heads, our “uniforms,” and walked in single file lines, hands held behind our backs.

Inside Union Station’s enormous Main Hall, we lined up on either side of a rolled up banner.  As readers shouted out excerpts from one of Fahed’s letters that tell how he longs for reunion with his family, we unfurled a beautiful portrait of his face. “Now that you know,” Fahed writes, “you cannot turn away.”

U.S. people have a lot of help in turning away.  Politicians and much of the U.S. mainstream media manufacture and peddle distorted views of security to the U.S. public, encouraging people to eradicate threats to their security and to exalt and glorify uniformed soldiers or police officers who have been trained to kill or imprison anyone perceived to threaten the well-being of U.S. people.

Often, people who’ve enlisted to wear U.S. military or police uniforms bear much in common with Leonce and Fahed.  They are young, hard pressed to earn an income, and eager for adventure.

There’s no reason to automatically exalt uniformed fighters as heroes.

But a humane society will surely seek understanding and care for any person who survives the killing fields of a war zone.  Likewise, people in the U.S. should be encouraged to see every detainee in Guantanamo as a human person, someone to be called by name and not by a prison number.

The cartoonized versions of foreign policy handed to U.S. people, designating heroes and villains, create a dangerously under-educated public unable to engage in democratic decision-making.

Nicole d’Entremont writes of battered soldiers, soldiers who know they’ve been discarded in an endless, pointless war, longing to be rid of their uniforms.  The overcoats were heavy, sodden, and often too bulky for struggling through areas entangled with barbed wire.  Boots leaked and the soldiers’ feet were always wet, muddy, and sore. Miserably clothed, miserably fed, and horribly trapped in a murderous, insane war, soldiers longed to escape.

When putting on Fahed’s uniform, each day of our fast, I could imagine how intensely he longs to be rid of his prison garb. Thinking of his writings, and recalling d’Entremont’s stories drawn from “the war to end all wars,” I can imagine that there are many thousands of people trapped in the uniforms issued by war makers who deeply understand Dr. Martin Luther King’s call for revolution:

“A true revolution of values will lay hands on the world order and say of war, ‘This way of settling differences is not just.’ This business of burning human beings with napalm, of filling our nation’s homes with orphans and widows, of injecting poisonous drugs of hate into the veins of peoples normally humane, of sending men home from dark and bloody battlefields physically handicapped and psychologically deranged, cannot be reconciled with wisdom, justice, and love.”

~~  Kathy Kelly ~~

NATIONAL and Local FEEDER & STOCKER CATTLE SUMMARY - WEEK ENDING 01.23.2015

image

RECEIPTS:    Auctions     Direct    Video/Internet     Total
This Week     302,500     29,700        75,100        407,300 
Last Week     302,000     30,100        47,900        380,000 
Last Year     328,100     57,300         7,600        393,000


Compared to last week, the downtrend continues in the feeder cattle markets as feeder cattle and calves traded 5.00-15.00 lower this week.

CME cattle futures over the last couple of weeks have latched onto a lead balloon and have weighed heavily on the feeder cattle markets.

The wide spread massive long liquidation selling has just swamped cattle futures.

Overall demand remains good for lightweight stockers under 550 lbs. to make yearlings of, but the overall availability of these lightweight feeders normally gets tighter as we roll into spring; with thoughts that these lightweight calves can achieve cheap gains when pasture develops.

Heavier weight feeders, of which the supply is more readily available, felt the full pressure of price declines this week.

Many major salebarns in the Northern and Southern Plains are seeing some of their heaviest receipts of the year with the unfortunate timing of the volatile feeder cattle and futures market.

Cattle buyers have paid high premiums for feeder cattle and now break evens are much higher than the futures with the June Live Cattle board closing near 143.00 as contacts continued their free-fall on Friday.

Cattle contracts closed limit down on Friday finding only bearish friends.

Keep in mind that the record highs in the cattle future prices last year were supported from fund buying and now the funds are pulling back looking like they have had their belly full of the cattle markets.

At some point this break will be deemed overdone, but when is the question.

However, there were some impressive sales of hardened winter proof feeders around the auction circuit, in Bassett, NE on Wednesday feeder steers under 650 lbs. sold with very good demand for summer grazing.

Near 550 head of steers averaging 577 lbs. sold with a weighted average prices of 299.22 and over 200 head of thin steers averaging 624 lbs sold with a weighted average prices of 291.35.

Summer grazing will likely take these kinds of cattle to unprecedentedly large weights on pasture to avoid any kind high feed costs.

Beef demand has worries over rising meat supplies of pork and chicken and at this time is taking presence over tight cattle supplies.

The feeder and fed cattle markets along with the futures seem to be tiring of news about tight supplies.

Friday’s afternoon Cattle on Feed Report had January 01 inventory at 101%; placements at 92%; marketing’s came in at 95%.

Inventory was slightly lighter than expected, with marketing’s slightly smaller than expected.

This week’s auction volume consisted of 58% over 600 lbs. and 38% heifers.

AUCTION RECEIPTS:  302,500   Last Week:  302,000   Last Year:  328,100

Buckhannon Livestock, Buckhannon, WV
Weighted Average Report for Wednesday January 21, 2015

Cattle Receipts:  32 

Slaughter cows made up 47% of the offering, slaughter bulls 6%,
replacement cows 22%, and feeders 25%.

The feeder supply included 38% steers, and 63% heifers.

Near 38% of the run weighed over 600 lbs.

Feeder Steers                Medium and Large 1 - 2
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    270-270    270       235.00         235.00
    1    435-435    435       220.00         220.00
    1    470-470    470       185.00         185.00   SMOKE

Feeder Heifers                Medium and Large 1 - 2
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    2    525-535    530    206.00-210.00     208.02
    2    638-638    638       190.00         190.00
    1    675-675    675       165.00         165.00   SMOKE

Bred Cows                  Medium and Large 1 - 2 Young
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    2    940-1100  1020   999.00-1300.00    1300.00   Per Head  1-3 Months Bred
    1   1195-1195  1195   999.00-1400.00    1400.00   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
                            Medium and Large 1 - 2 Middle Aged
    1   1420-1420  1420   999.00-1800.00    1800.00   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
    2    960-1000   980   999.00-1350.00    1178.57   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred
                            Medium and Large 1 - 2 Aged
    1   1115-1115  1115   999.00-1135.00    1135.00   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred

Slaughter Cows                 Boner 80-85% Lean
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    835-835    835       130.00         130.00   Low Dressing
    5   1115-1300  1205    106.00-115.00     110.47
    3   1035-1345  1200     76.00-100.00      87.20   Low Dressing
    1   1490-1490  1490       101.50         101.50   Low Dressing
                                Lean 85-90% Lean
    1   1290-1290  1290        99.00          99.00
    4    915-1225  1071     54.50-85.00       67.75   Low Dressing

Slaughter Bulls                Yield Grade 1-2
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1   1455-1455  1455       125.00         125.00
    1   1790-1790  1790       130.00         130.00   High Dressing

South Branch Livestock, Moorefield, WV
Weighted Average Report for Wednesday January 21, 2015

Cattle Receipts:  110 

Slaughter cows made up 33% of the offering, slaughter bulls 8%,
replacement cows 11%, other cows 1%, and feeders 47%.

The feeder supply included 31% steers, 52% heifers, and 17% bulls.

Near 21% of the run weighed over 600 lbs.

Feeder Steers                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    445-445    445       280.00         280.00
    5    520-527    524    228.00-234.00     230.38
    2   1135-1145  1140    132.00-151.00     141.46
    1   1160-1160  1160       119.00         119.00
    1   1225-1225  1225       125.00         125.00
    1   1265-1265  1265       148.00         148.00
    1   1380-1380  1380       127.00         127.00
                             Medium and Large 2
    1    840-840    840       161.00         161.00   Yearlings

Feeder Heifers                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    250-250    250       217.00         217.00
    1    310-310    310       178.00         178.00
    2    388-388    388       206.00         206.00
    4    460-478    469    184.00-199.00     191.64
    3    518-518    518       213.00         213.00
    1    535-535    535       185.00         185.00   Red
    3    563-563    563       190.00         190.00
    1    600-600    600       197.00         197.00
    1    650-650    650       181.00         181.00
                             Small 1
    1    390-390    390       127.00         127.00
    1    470-470    470       135.00         135.00
                             Medium and Large 2
    1    295-295    295       192.00         192.00
    1    430-430    430       175.00         175.00
    1    520-520    520       194.00         194.00

Feeder Bulls                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    3    250-250    250       251.00         251.00
    2    452-452    452       253.00         253.00
    2    510-535    523    223.00-230.00     226.42

Bred Cows                  Medium and Large 1 - 2 Young
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    855-855    855   999.00-1180.00    1180.00   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred
    6    905-1120  1026   999.00-1625.00    1429.77   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred
    1   1210-1210  1210   999.00-1585.00    1585.00   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred
                            Medium and Large 1 - 2 Aged
    2   1265-1315  1290   999.00-1315.00    1234.10   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred

Slaughter Cows                Breaker 70-80% Lean
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    4   1355-1375  1365     88.00-100.00      93.02
    3   1400-1485  1453     94.00-101.00      97.40
                               Boner 80-85% Lean
    7   1015-1325  1221     94.00-98.00       95.80
    3   1200-1385  1263    104.50-113.50     107.84   High Dressing
    1   1325-1325  1325        75.00          75.00   Low Dressing
    1   1530-1530  1530        94.50          94.50
                                Lean 85-90% Lean
    6    980-1165  1095     85.00-97.00       89.65
    1   1310-1310  1310       100.00         100.00   High Dressing
    2   1100-1215  1158     80.00-83.50       81.84   Low Dressing
    2   1415-1445  1430     92.00-93.00       92.49

Heiferettes                  Medium and Large 1 - 2 Young
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1   1130-1130  1130       111.00         111.00   

Slaughter Bulls                Yield Grade 1-2
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1   1010-1010  1010       127.00         127.00
    3   1700-2035  1852    118.50-127.00     122.93
    3   1550-1870  1753    104.00-114.00     108.97   Low Dressing

Riverton, Riverton, WV
Weighted Average Report for Sunday January 18, 2015

Sheep Receipts:  83 

Slaughter & Feeder Lambs
 Head	Wt Range	Price Range
   10	60-80		210.00
   34	80-100		190.00
   33   100-125		170.00

Slaughter Rams
 Head	Wt Range	Price Range
    1   150-200		78.00

Slaughter Ewes
Head			Price Range
   2	Thin		58.00
   3    Fleshy		78.00 

Weston Livestock Marketing, Weston, WV
Weighted Average Report for Saturday January 17, 2015

Cattle Receipts:  170 

Slaughter cows made up 25% of the offering, slaughter bulls 4%,
replacement cows 3%, other cows 1%, and feeders 67%.

The feeder supply included 25% steers, 51% heifers, and 24% bulls.

Near 20% of the run weighed over 600 lbs.

Feeder Steers                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    2    325-325    325    255.00-257.50     256.25
    1    335-335    335       190.00         190.00   Exotic
    3    380-390    385    240.00-250.00     245.04
    1    430-430    430       240.00         240.00
    1    460-460    460       243.00         243.00
    1    465-465    465       197.50         197.50   RWF
    1    510-510    510       225.00         225.00
    1    600-600    600       214.00         214.00
    1    690-690    690       205.00         205.00
                             Small 1
    1    345-345    345       180.00         180.00
                             Medium and Large 2
    2    365-385    375    220.00-250.00     235.40
    1    455-455    455       255.00         255.00
    1    500-500    500       237.50         237.50
    1    565-565    565       220.00         220.00   Red
    1    690-690    690       190.00         190.00
                             Holstein Medium and Large  2 - 3
    3    817-817    817       139.00         139.00

Feeder Heifers                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    2    315-340    328    215.00-230.00     222.79
    2    410-445    428    205.00-225.00     215.41
    1    425-425    425       180.00         180.00   RWF
    2    450-450    450    205.00-210.00     207.50
   16    528-545    533    205.00-215.00     211.07
    1    545-545    545       195.00         195.00   Exotic
    1    550-550    550       210.00         210.00
    2    600-625    613    185.00-190.00     187.45
    1    700-700    700       170.00         170.00
                             Small 1
    1    365-365    365       197.50         197.50
    2    410-410    410       175.00         175.00
                             Medium and Large 2
    1    275-275    275       230.00         230.00
    3    320-348    339    220.00-230.00     226.85
    3    355-395    375    200.00-215.00     209.07
    2    355-355    355       200.00         200.00   Red
    2    418-418    418       200.00         200.00
    2    500-505    503    185.00-197.50     191.22

Feeder Bulls                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    295-295    295       270.00         270.00
    2    330-345    338       250.00         250.00
    2    375-395    385    235.00-250.00     242.31
    1    415-415    415       225.00         225.00
    2    480-490    485    220.00-235.00     227.42
    1    455-455    455       210.00         210.00   Exotic
    1    505-505    505       237.50         237.50
    1    515-515    515       215.00         215.00   Red
    1    560-560    560       225.00         225.00
    3    610-630    623    202.00-210.00     205.71
    1    625-625    625       192.50         192.50   Red
    1    660-660    660       204.00         204.00
    2    705-740    723    180.00-197.50     188.54
                             Small 1
    1    285-285    285       175.00         175.00
    1    650-650    650       180.00         180.00

Bred Cows                  Medium and Large 1 - 2 Young
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1   1015-1015  1015   999.00-1450.00    1450.00   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
                            Medium and Large 1 - 2 Middle Aged
    1    975-975    975       900.00         900.00   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
                            Medium and Large 1 - 2 Aged
    1   1150-1150  1150       910.00         910.00   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
    1   1415-1415  1415   999.00-1460.00    1460.00   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred

Slaughter Cows                Breaker 70-80% Lean
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    2    975-1240  1108    100.00-104.00     101.76
    2   1335-1390  1363    116.00-120.00     117.96   High Dressing
    5   1435-1675  1511    111.00-122.00     114.19   High Dressing
                               Boner 80-85% Lean
    6    940-1270  1168     97.00-107.00     100.42
    3   1065-1255  1143    109.00-114.00     111.80   High Dressing
    5    955-1290  1138     82.00-93.00       88.25   Low Dressing
    2   1510-1525  1518     93.00-101.00      97.02
                                Lean 85-90% Lean
    1   1255-1255  1255        91.00          91.00
    2    815-1250  1033    111.00-113.00     112.21   High Dressing
    5    930-1250  1082     80.00-90.00       86.51   Low Dressing

Heiferettes		Medium and Large 1 - 2 Young
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1   1090-1090  1090       118.00         118.00   

Slaughter Bulls                Yield Grade 1-2
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1   1410-1410  1410       124.00         124.00
    2   1740-1885  1813    118.00-129.00     123.28
    2   1590-1895  1743    132.00-139.00     135.81   High Dressing

Cow/Calf Pairs
 Head	Wt Range			Price Range
    1   Over 8 w/calf under 250lb	1475.00

Baby Calves
 Head		Beef 		Dairy
    5  		385.00		75.00-275.00

Slaughter Barrows&Gilts
 Head	Wt Range	Price Range
    3   200-250		100.00-102.50

JACKSON COUNTY REGIONAL LIVESTOCK, RIPLEY, WV
Weighted Average Report for Saturday January 17, 2015

Cattle Receipts:  454 

Slaughter cows made up 13% of the offering, slaughter bulls 2%,
replacement cows 5%, other cows 1%, and feeders 80%.

The feeder supply included 36% steers, 44% heifers, and 21% bulls.

Near 20% of the run weighed over 600 lbs.


Feeder Steers                Medium and Large 1 - 2
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    220-220    220       300.00         300.00
    1    225-225    225       235.00         235.00   RED
    3    280-280    280    270.00-280.00     276.67
    1    267-267    267       227.50         227.50   RWF
    9    315-340    324    220.00-305.00     283.77
    1    315-315    315       200.00         200.00   RED
    1    325-325    325       205.00         205.00   RWF
    8    362-395    377    270.00-305.00     289.18
    1    355-355    355       300.00         300.00   RED
    5    405-437    421    272.50-304.00     294.07
    3    440-445    442    202.50-280.00     228.53   RED
    2    405-425    415    200.00-270.00     234.16   RWF
   17    460-495    479    240.00-292.50     272.99
    4    450-475    460    230.00-270.00     250.30   RED
   16    505-547    530    244.00-274.00     260.00
    2    530-535    533    213.00-257.00     234.90   RED
    2    502-502    502       190.00         190.00   RWF
    2    542-542    542       248.00         248.00   SMOKE
   18    550-590    564    200.00-258.00     234.80
    6    615-638    630    210.00-216.00     214.05
    1    610-610    610       188.00         188.00   RWF
    1    655-655    655       181.00         181.00   RED
    2    787-787    787       180.00         180.00   RED

                             Medium and Large 2
    2    280-280    280       260.00         260.00
    2    330-340    335    170.00-205.00     187.24
    1    375-375    375       287.50         287.50
    6    425-445    438    245.00-291.00     276.01
    1    525-525    525       170.00         170.00
    1    515-515    515       137.50         137.50   RWF
    1    500-500    500       176.00         176.00   SMOKE
    2    612-612    612       181.00         181.00
    1    660-660    660       175.00         175.00
    2    862-862    862       178.00         178.00


                             Medium and Large 3
    3    405-445    418    145.00-156.00     152.10
    1    485-485    485       130.00         130.00



Feeder Heifers                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    2    345-345    345       265.00         265.00
    1    450-450    450       251.00         251.00


                             Medium and Large 1 - 2
    1    240-240    240       240.00         240.00
    1    290-290    290       200.00         200.00
    1    270-270    270       205.00         205.00   RED
    1    305-305    305       230.00         230.00
   17    350-395    373    180.00-271.00     229.30
    1    350-350    350       227.50         227.50   RED
    1    355-355    355       185.00         185.00   RWF
   22    400-445    427    235.00-264.00     254.51
    3    420-445    433    187.50-252.00     212.62   RED
    3    443-443    443       246.00         246.00   SMOKE
   11    450-495    474    244.00-264.00     252.43
    3    465-490    477    210.00-235.00     221.56   RED
    1    495-495    495       225.00         225.00   RWF
   13    502-540    514    221.00-249.00     242.28
   11    550-590    569    179.00-232.50     210.53
    6    555-560    556    210.00-247.00     240.79   RED
    2    550-580    565    213.00-230.00     221.27   SMOKE
    4    617-645    630    176.00-206.00     185.16
    1    635-635    635       181.00         181.00   RED
    1    615-615    615       221.00         221.00   SMOKE
    3    665-665    665       204.00         204.00
    1    745-745    745       169.00         169.00
    3    710-740    725    130.00-188.00     162.72   RED
    3    813-813    813       166.00         166.00
    1    810-810    810       167.00         167.00   SMOKE
    1    860-860    860       172.00         172.00   RED
    1    920-920    920       166.00         166.00


                             Small 1 - 2
    1    300-300    300       160.00         160.00


                             Medium and Large 2
    1    325-325    325       232.00         232.00
   10    410-440    424    150.00-210.00     179.98
    2    400-425    413    170.00-175.00     172.42   RED
    3    410-410    410       185.00         185.00   RWF
    3    455-460    458    165.00-226.00     195.33
    1    505-505    505       210.00         210.00
    1    595-595    595       150.00         150.00   RED
    4    610-645    626    134.00-260.00     192.65
    1    630-630    630       168.00         168.00   RED
    1    665-665    665       165.00         165.00


                             Medium and Large 3
    2    320-330    325    160.00-175.00     167.62
    1    410-410    410       160.00         160.00
    1    470-470    470       160.00         160.00
    1    470-470    470       163.00         163.00   RWF
    2    500-540    520    150.00-161.00     155.71
    2    630-630    630    105.00-160.00     132.50
    1    690-690    690       135.00         135.00



Feeder Bulls                Medium and Large 1 - 2
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    310-310    310       290.00         290.00
    2    355-375    365    265.00-270.00     267.57
   14    400-445    423    237.50-300.00     275.10
    6    455-497    487    217.50-266.00     245.40
    2    480-490    485    180.00-252.50     215.88   RED
    1    450-450    450       210.00         210.00   RWF
    1    450-450    450       180.00         180.00   SMOKE
    3    525-540    530    135.00-200.00     170.90
    1    525-525    525       200.00         200.00   SMOKE
    8    550-595    572    191.00-235.00     213.20
    1    560-560    560       220.00         220.00   RED
    5    600-645    623    179.00-212.00     188.87
    1    610-610    610       170.00         170.00   RED
    1    610-610    610       171.00         171.00   SMOKE
    2    655-695    675    186.00-190.00     187.94
    1    675-675    675       178.00         178.00   RED
    1    650-650    650       195.00         195.00   SMOKE
    6    710-730    719    160.00-184.00     177.29
    1    765-765    765       187.00         187.00
    1    785-785    785       168.00         168.00   RED
    3    820-845    837    163.00-175.00     169.28
    1    855-855    855       164.00         164.00
    1   1155-1155  1155       130.00         130.00

                             Medium and Large 2
    1    270-270    270       160.00         160.00   RWF
    1    380-380    380       230.00         230.00
    2    400-425    413    190.00-205.00     197.73
    1    480-480    480       140.00         140.00   RWF
    1    605-605    605       185.00         185.00   RED

                             Medium and Large 3
    1    395-395    395       128.00         128.00   RWF
    1    400-400    400       152.50         152.50   RWF
    1    680-680    680       140.00         140.00
    2    750-780    765    141.00-163.00     151.78


Bred Cows                  Medium and Large 1 - 2 Young
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    730-730    730   999.00-1150.00    1150.00   Per Head  1-3 Months Bred
    1   1345-1345  1345   999.00-1400.00    1400.00   Per Head  1-3 Months Bred
    2    850-865    858   999.00-1375.00    1286.74   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
    1    900-900    900   999.00-1410.00    1410.00   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
    2    805-850    828   999.00-1250.00    1147.28   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred
    2    980-1115  1048   999.00-1725.00    1713.31   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred

                            Medium and Large 1 - 2 Middle Aged
    6    905-1030   976   925.00-1500.00    1299.77   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
    2   1075-1110  1093   999.00-1750.00    1521.40   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred
    4   1210-1340  1276   999.00-1775.00    1519.54   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred

                            Medium and Large 1 - 2 Aged
    3    935-1170  1068   850.00-1175.00    1056.46   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred

Slaughter Cows                 Boner 80-85% Lean
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    
    6    690-850    790     80.00-106.00      89.87   Low Dressing
   25    910-1370  1120     95.00-123.00     105.38
    2   1025-1115  1070    129.00-130.00     129.48   High Dressing
   17    915-1390  1120     80.00-94.00       89.04   Low Dressing
    5   1400-1565  1481    100.00-105.00     102.00

                                Lean 85-90% Lean
    1   1190-1190  1190        75.00          75.00   Low Dressing


Heiferettes                  Medium and Large 1 - 2 Young
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    2    755-830    793    146.00-147.50     146.71   Per Head

                            Medium and Large 1 - 2 Middle Aged
    1   1055-1055  1055       126.00         126.00   Per Head

Slaughter Cattle
 Head
    5   1060-1130     128.00-149.00

Slaughter Bulls                Yield Grade 1-2
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    3   1250-1450  1347    115.00-140.00     125.63
    2   1705-1735  1720    119.00-131.00     125.05
    2   1875-1925  1900    134.50-135.00     134.75   High Dressing




Cow Calf Pairs
 Head
    2     2-8yrs old w/calf under 250lbs
          2-8yrs old w/calf over 250lbs      2350.00
          Over 8 w/calf under 250lbs         1250.00
          Over 8 w/calf over 250lbs
  
Baby Calves
 Head
    1     400.00


Goats                        Sel 1          Sel2
 Head     Sm Billies        
          Bg Billies        100.00-200.00
          Sm Nannies         85.00-95.00
          Big Nannies       145.00-210.00

Feeder Lambs 
 Head
    4    77lbs    251.00

Sows
 HEad
    1    44.00

Slaughter
 Head
    6    215-325   67.50-105.00

Feeder Pigs
 Head
    5   65.00-95.00

Shoats
 Head
    6    85-155lbs    70.00-85.00/lb

Pocahontas Producers Cooperative, Marlinton, WV
Weighted Average Report for Saturday January 17, 2015

Cattle Receipts:  17 

Slaughter cows made up 76% of the offering, slaughter bulls 6%, and feeders 18%.

The feeder supply included 33% steers, and 67% heifers.

Near 100% of the run weighed over 600 lbs.

Feeder Steers                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    830-830    830       185.00         185.00

Feeder Heifers                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    860-860    860       162.00         162.00
    1    860-860    860       160.00         160.00   EXOTIC

Slaughter Cows                Breaker 70-80% Lean
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1   1385-1385  1385       105.00         105.00
    1   1490-1490  1490       105.50         105.50
    1   1860-1860  1860       107.00         107.00   High Dressing
                               Boner 80-85% Lean
    4   1000-1270  1133    100.00-100.50     100.11
    2   1210-1325  1268       107.00         107.00   High Dressing
    1   1390-1390  1390        92.50          92.50   Low Dressing
    1   1415-1415  1415        99.00          99.00
                                Lean 85-90% Lean
    2    885-900    893     96.00-98.50       97.26   High Dressing

Slaughter Bulls                Yield Grade 1-2
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1   1020-1020  1020       138.00         138.00


 feeder lambs
 1  80lbs     195.00
 6  108lbs    175.00

Greenbrier Valley Livestock Market, Caldwell, WV
Weighted Average Report for Friday January 16, 2015

Cattle Receipts:  132 

Slaughter cows made up 37% of the offering, slaughter bulls 5%,
replacement cows 14%, and feeders 44%.

The feeder supply included 28% steers, 28% heifers, and 45% bulls.

Near 29% of the run weighed over 600 lbs.

Feeder Steers                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    370-370    370       257.50         257.50
    2    415-445    430    220.00-240.00     230.35
    1    575-575    575       240.00         240.00
    3    566-566    566       252.00         252.00   Value Added
    4    635-635    635       232.50         232.50
                             Medium and Large 2
    1    515-515    515       166.50         166.50
    1    585-585    585       190.00         190.00
                             Small 2
    1    305-305    305       247.50         247.50
                             Medium and Large 3
    1    500-500    500       144.50         144.50
                             Holstein Medium and Large  2 - 3
    1    715-715    715       170.00         170.00

Feeder Heifers                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    3    460-460    460       240.00         240.00
    2    590-590    590       220.00         220.00
    4    636-636    636       209.00         209.00
    1    885-885    885       167.00         167.00
                             Medium and Large 2
    1    375-375    375       235.00         235.00
    1    435-435    435       247.50         247.50
    1    470-470    470       202.50         202.50
    1    540-540    540       212.50         212.50
    2    595-595    595       205.00         205.00

Feeder Bulls                Medium and Large 1
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1    345-345    345       245.50         245.50
    1    450-450    450       247.00         247.00
    4    560-560    560       227.50         227.50
    2    625-625    625       224.50         224.50
                             Medium and Large 1 - 2
    1    670-670    670       210.00         210.00
    1    655-655    655       140.00         140.00   RED
    1    700-700    700       160.00         160.00   RWF
    1    850-850    850       161.00         161.00
                             Medium and Large 2
    2    397-397    397       235.00         235.00
    1    416-416    416       200.00         200.00
    1    425-425    425       195.00         195.00   RWF
    1    520-520    520       215.00         215.00
    4    550-560    555    156.00-225.00     181.52
    1    620-620    620       212.00         212.00
                             Small and Medium 2
    1    500-500    500       135.00         135.00
                             Small 2
    2    490-490    490       212.50         212.50
                             Small 3
    1    485-485    485       140.00         140.00

Bred Cows                  Medium and Large 1 - 2 Young
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1   1100-1100  1100   999.00-1375.00    1375.00   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
    4    950-1125  1038   999.00-1675.00    1434.94   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred
                            Medium and Large 1 - 2 Middle Aged
    2   1320-1485  1403   999.00-1600.00    1498.82   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
    2   1715-1750  1733   999.00-1875.00    1872.48   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
    1   1035-1035  1035   999.00-1025.00    1025.00   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred
    1   1213-1213  1213   999.00-1325.00    1325.00   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred
    1   1770-1770  1770   999.00-1675.00    1675.00   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred
                            Medium and Large 1 - 2 Aged
    1   1165-1165  1165   999.00-1725.00    1725.00   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
    2   1210-1315  1263   999.00-1245.00    1226.77   Per Head  4-6 Months Bred
    3   1395-1445  1412   999.00-1450.00    1356.21   Per Head  7-9 Months Bred

Slaughter Cows                Breaker 70-80% Lean
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1   1445-1445  1445       104.00         104.00
    1   1485-1485  1485       112.00         112.00   High Dressing
                               Boner 80-85% Lean
    1    865-865    865        70.00          70.00   Low Dressing
   21   1005-1385  1245    102.00-111.00     106.08
    4   1125-1390  1239    113.00-134.00     119.02   High Dressing
    8    920-1310  1153     82.50-99.00       91.74   Low Dressing
    9   1410-1655  1515    100.00-110.00     106.21
    3   1440-1595  1503    109.00-115.00     112.22   High Dressing
                                Lean 85-90% Lean
    1   1065-1065  1065        86.00          86.00

Slaughter Bulls                Yield Grade 1-2
 Head   Wt Range   Avg Wt    Price Range   Avg Price
    1   1495-1495  1495       133.00         133.00
    1   1910-1910  1910       133.50         133.50
    5   1740-2365  2008    139.00-149.00     142.18   High Dressing

cow/calf Pairs
	1  2-8yrs old w/calf ocer 250lbs    2300
	4 Over 8 w/calf under 250lbs        1475-1600
	2 Over 8 w/calf over 250lbs         2575

Goats 
	1 Sm Nannies 155
	2 Big Nannies 135
	1 20-40  40
Ewes
	7 100-130lbs 195-172.5
Rams
	2 175lbs 90-170

Slaughter Barrows&Gilts
	5 210-300 .61-.75

Bon Appétit: Banana, Oat & Chocolate Bars

The Gilmer Free Press

Ingredients:

  2 1/2 cups rolled oats
  1/2 cup natural seed mix 
with pine nuts
  1/3 cup dried cranberries
  1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  1/4 cup coconut oil
  1/4 cup rice malt syrup
  2 ripe bananas, mashed
  1 egg
  5 oz. Well Naturally No Added Sugar 
Dark Chocolate bar, melted


Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350°F fan forced. Line a 16 x 26cm slice pan with baking paper, allowing the sides to overhang. Combine the oats, seed mix, cranberries and cinnamon in a large bowl and make a well in the center.

Combine the coconut oil and rice malt syrup in a microwave-safe jug. Microwave on Medium for 1 minute or until melted 
and smooth. Cool for 2 minutes.

Add coconut oil mixture, banana and egg to the well. Stir until just combined. Spread over prepared pan. Bake for 35 minutes or until firm to touch. Cool in pan for 10 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Cut into 16 triangles. Drizzle with the melted chocolate and set aside to set. 
Store in an airtight container in the fridge 
for up to 5 days.

GFP - 01.25.2015
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TRUTH OR TRADITION?  – #307

image

Self-Righteousness.
“And he spake this parable unto certain which trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others:  Two men went up into the temple to pray; the one a Pharisee, and the other a publican.”  Luke 18:9-10.  When two people disagree, the human tendency is to believe, “I’m right You’re wrong!”  What’s the problem here?  To whom is Jesus speaking?  Certain which “trusted in themselves that they were righteous.”


The Problem.
The parable is about two different men from different walks of life, who were at the right place (the temple), for the right purpose (to pray), yet one left justified in the sight of God, and the other not.  What’s the problem here?  Attitude…the attitude of pride vs. the attitude of humility.  The Pharisee told God what a good fellow he was.  The publican told God what a sinner he was and his need for mercy.


Unacceptable Worship.
God has never allowed man to design his own worship.  Not all worship is pleasing and acceptable unto Him.  He was not pleased with Cain’s worship (Genesis 4:3-5) ,  nor did He accept the worship of Nadab and Abihu (Leviticus 10:1-2) .  Neither was he pleased with Saul when he brought back the best of the flocks and herds for sacrifice (1 Samuel 15:18-23) .


Wrong Attitudes.
Because our constitution offers freedom of worship, many today seem to feel that God has also granted us the freedom to choose.  We often hear, “Worship in the church of your choice.”  Is that not saying it doesn’t matter what God says about worship, you find a church that teaches and practices what pleases you?  “Let your conscience be your guide.”  Is that not suggesting we turn our backs on what the Bible says, and worship in the way that seems right to us?  Little wonder there is so much religious division in the world.  “Worship is pleasing and acceptable unto God just as long as you are honest and sincere.”  There’s no reason to question the honesty and sincerity of Cain, of Nadab and Abihu, of Saul, of the Pharisee in the parable,  yet God was not pleased, and did not accept the worship of any of these.


True Worship.
In His conversation with the woman at Jacob’s Well, Jesus spoke of two elements which must be present for worship to be acceptable unto God, when He said:  “God is a Spirit:  and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.”  John 4:24.  To worship “in spirit” means we must have the right attitude:  humility, honesty, sincerity, submission to God’s will.  To worship “in truth” means our worship must be, not according to our own will, but according to the truth revealed in God’s Word.


Steer Creek Church of Christ,  3466 Rosedale Road,  Stumptown WV 25267
Minister: Gene H Miller, 3281 Rosedale Road, Shock WV 26638-8410.
Phone:  304.462.0384     E-Mail:  “ghmiller@frontier.com”  Web Site:  steercreekchurchofchrist.org

G-MM™: Meditation Moment   150125

image

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come; Thy will be done, on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

For Thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, forever and ever.

Amen


Psalm 67

God be merciful to us and bless us,
And cause His face to shine upon us,
That Your way may be known on earth,
Your salvation among all nations.

Let the peoples praise You, O God;
Let all the peoples praise You.
Oh, let the nations be glad and sing for joy!
For You shall judge the people righteously,
And govern the nations on earth.

Let the peoples praise You, O God;
Let all the peoples praise You.
Then the earth shall yield her increase;
God, our own God, shall bless us.

God shall bless us,
And all the ends of the earth shall fear Him.


James 1:1-8

James, a bond-servant of God and of the Lord Jesus Christ,

To the twelve tribes who are dispersed abroad: Greetings.

2 Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, 3 knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. 4 And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

5 But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him. 6 But he must ask in faith without any doubting, for the one who doubts is like the surf of the sea, driven and tossed by the wind. 7 For that man ought not to expect that he will receive anything from the Lord, 8 being a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.


Notes on the Scripture

Reintroduction to James

We have a guest commentary today, from Dr. Ken Boa of Atlanta. Because of the interruption of the Christmas season, we will reintroduce the series with notes on the first verses of the book. and then move forward to James 2.

As we began to look at the book of James, the wisdom literature of the New Testament, we see that tests of faith are a normal part of the Christian’s experience (Jas. 1:1-4). James counsels that the attitude we should maintain during such times of adversity is a joyful anticipation of the Christlike character these tests are designed to forge in our lives. This divine perspective can help us respond with trust in God in spite of our circumstances.

Even so, it is difficult for most of us to move from the level of belief to the level of behavior. We may believe that there is no progress in the spiritual life without problems, but how do we turn theory into practice? This is where James 1:5 comes in: “But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all men generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.” As we have already seen, wisdom is not a matter of intellectual attainment but of moral and spiritual discernment. Knowledge is theoretical, but wisdom enables one to apply the truth in very practical ways.

All of us face times of testing when we find ourselves bankrupt in the area of practical wisdom. Whenever this happens, James encourages us to turn to the source of wisdom who generously bestows this gift upon those who ask for it. God gives “generously and without reproach”—“Ask, and it shall be given to you; seek, and you shall find; knock, and it shall be opened to you. For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it shall be opened” (Matt. 7:7-8). When we ask God for the wisdom to see our circumstances from an eternal perspective so that we can take the right course of action, we can be assured of a yes answer.

The only condition is that we “ask in faith without any doubting” (Jas. 1:6). The word for doubt in this verse means to be in two minds. The one who wavers in unbelief bobs up and down like a ship in a stormy sea, tossed around by circumstances. Because of his lack of trust, such a person cannot “expect that he will receive anything from the Lord” (Jas. 1:7). This “double-minded” (literally, double-souled) man is unsteady (“unstable in all his ways,” Jas. 1:8) because he is not anchored in the assurances of God’s promise.

We need God’s wisdom to apply the principles of Scripture to our specific problems, and when we expectantly ask for this wisdom it will be granted—we have God’s word on it.

Freda L. Dennison

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Freda L. Dennison

Age 85, of Tallmadge, WV passed away January 23, 2015.

She was born on November 17, 1929 in Falls Mills, WV to the late Clyde and Edith Teter.

Freda was very creative and loved sewing and crafts. Above all, she loved spending time with her family.

In addition to her parents, she was preceded in death by her husband, Kenneth; son, Bryan; and sisters, Grey Mick and Thelma Zerr.

She will be deeply missed by her daughters, Brenda Dennison and Patty (Jason) Bonecutter; sons, Hubert (Esther) Dennison and Lee (Sheila) Dennison; six grandchildren; twelve great-grandchildren and one on the way; sister, Anna Lee (Slim) Ellis; brothers, Dana (Polly) Teter, Harold (Melva) Teter, and Arlis Teter.

Family and friends will be received on Monday, January 26, 2015 from 5-8 PM at NEWCOMER FUNERAL HOME, 131 N. Canton Road, Akron.

Graveside services will be held Wednesday, January 28, 2015 at Falls Mills Cemetery in Falls Mills, WV at 11:00 AM.

Stockert-Paletti Funeral Home of Flatwoods will be assisting the family will the local arrangements .

Maryland Virginia Dye Ingram

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Maryland Virginia Dye Ingram

Passed away peacefully Wednesday morning, January 21, 2015.

She was a beloved wife, mother and grandmother. Her family was the joy of her life.

Maryland was born December 29, 1932 in Coal Fork, Calhoun County, West Virginia, daughter of Harold Glen and Estie Greathouse Dye.

She graduated from Calhoun County High School in Grantsville, West Virginia and attended business college in Clarksburg, West Virginia.

She married the love of her life, Chester H. Ingram Jr. September 20, 1953 in Grantsville, West Virginia.

In 1962 they moved to Salt Lake City, Utah where they were sealed for time and all eternity in the Salt Lake Temple.

They were blessed with five children.

She was an active member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and loved doing genealogy and family history work.

She was a wonderful cook and loved gardening and sewing and loved sharing her talents with her daughters and granddaughters. Maryland loved to travel, collect antiques and depression glassware. After 26 years of service, she retired as a supervisor from Beehive Clothing Mills in Salt Lake.

Maryland is survived by her eternal companion, Chester; children, Bruce Ingram, Jennifer (Randall) Forbes, Stephanie (Kent) Wilkey, Marc Ingram; 15 grandchildren; 16 great-grandchildren; siblings, Donald Dye, Keith (Wanda) Dye, Ruth Ellen (Harold) Bell.

She was preceded preceded in death by her parents; brothers, Johnny Dye, Dennis (Midge) Dye and Donnie (Martha) Dye; son, Lesley Wayne Ingram.

“In our hearts forever”

Funeral services will be held Thursday, January 29, 2015, 11:00 AM at the Kearns 14th Ward, 4232 West 5015 South.

Viewings will be held Wednesday, 6-8 PM at McDougal Funeral Home, 4330 South Redwood Road and Thursday at the church, 10-10:45 AM.

Interment, Redwood Memorial Estates.

Ellen “Louise” Heater

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Ellen “Louise” Heater

Age 59, of Turnip Drive Roanoke, WV passed away at 10:25 AM on Friday January 23, 2015 in the comfort of her home, surrounded by her loving family, following a courageous journey with liver cancer.

She was born in Buckhannon, WV on November 30, 1955 a daughter of Ellen LaVern Bond Shifflett and Benny Shifflett of Walkersville.

On January 08, 1979 she married Jake Heater and they celebrated 36 years of marriage.

She is also survived by three children: Casey Heater Lough and husband William of Roanoke, Amanda Heater and fiancé Brandon Keller of Weston, and Chris Alderman and fiancé, Crissy Miller of Frenchton; eight grandchildren: Eva, Emilie, and Bailey Lough, Jacob and Jada Heater, and Patience, Raven, and Colin Alderman; three soon-to-be grandchildren: Madisson, Corey and Kaiden Miller; great grandson, Eli Alderman; two sisters: Darlene Parker of Walkersville and Vicky Conrad and husband Bobby of Crawford; two sisters-in-law: Patty Workman and companion Tim Myers of Roanoke, and Jean Heath of Roanoke; brother-in-law, Billy Heater of Roanoke; father-in-law, Lawrence Heater of Roanoke; several nieces and nephews; and Toby, her beloved YorkiePoo, who misses her dearly.

She was preceded in death by one brother, Ricky Cottril; one sister, Micky Ables; one grandson, Nehemiah Christopher Alderman, and her grandparents, Delbert and Ernestine Bond.

Louise was a homemaker who loved spending time with her family, especially her grandchildren, who were the light of her life. She was dedicated to supporting and encouraging them any way she could and she loved to watch their sporting events.

She was a member of the Seventh-day Adventist Church in Buckhannon.

Friends and family will gather at the Pat Boyle Funeral Home and Cremation Service at 144 Hackers Creek Road in Jane Lew from 4-7 PM on Monday January 26, 2015.

Funeral Services will be held at 11 AM on Tuesday from the Pat Boyle Funeral Home Chapel with Pastor Rick Cutright officiating.

Interment will follow in the Mitchell Cemetery in Roanoke.

The Pat Boyle Funeral Home and Cremation Service is honored and privileged to serve the family of Ellen Louise Heater.

Betty Lou Sponaugle

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Betty Lou Sponaugle

Age 89, of Gassaway, WV passed away January 23, 2015 at home.

She was born November 06, 1925 a daughter of the late Okey and Veda Hacker Sponaugle.

Betty was a homemaker and a caretaker. She was very independent.

She attended the Gassaway United Methodist Church and the Mid-State Church of God, Gassaway.

She was preceded in death by brothers, Roy and James Sponaugle; sister, Mary Helen Sponaugle Barker.

Betty is survived by sister, Elsie Mae Shaver of Strange Creek; several nieces and nephews.

Service will be 11 AM Tuesday, January 27, 2015 at Richard M. Roach Funeral Home, Gassaway with Rev. Rodney England officiating.

Burial will be in the Beall’s Mill Cemetery, Gassaway.

Friends may call from 6 to 9 PM Monday at the funeral home.

Arrangements by Richard M. Roach Funeral Home, Gassaway.

Waildia Madge (Strader) Brown

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Waildia Madge (Strader) Brown

Age 93, of Burnsville, WV passed away on Friday, January 23, 2015 at her home surrounded by her loving family.

She was born October 27, 1921: first daughter of the late Okey Lawrence and Mary (Posey) Strader on Road Run.

She was preceded in death by her husband: Edward Brown, daughter: Yvonne Brown Lease, her four brothers: Ronald, Harry, and Daniel Strader and Frank Strader at age 7 and a sister: Wilmouth Strader at birth.

She leaves behind three sisters: Dora Ella Childers, Mary and her husband Freeman Riffle and Deignese and her husband Neil Crabbe all of Ohio.

Mrs. Brown is survived by her sons: Jerry Brown and wife Wilma of Kernersville, NC, Sidney Brown and his wife Dianna of Ventura CA, and her daughters: Mary Ann Mackey and her husband John of Berkley Springs, WV, Lillian Pritt and her husband Everett of Burnsville, WV and Sonnie James and her husband Mark of Glenville, WV .Madge has 10 grandchildren: ,Philip Mackey and his wife Beverly of Stephen City, VA, Shawn Mackey and wife Debbie of Knoxville, MD, Stephanie Jankowski and her husband Jack of Kernersville, NC, Steven Brown and his wife Carol of Oak Ridge, NC, Tarah Brown of Ventura, CA, Marista Brown of North Ridge, CA, Frank Brown and his wife Haydee of Hope Mill, NC, Matthew Blake and his wife Erica of Burnsville, WV, Autumn McCraw of Fairmont, WV and Hollie McCraw of Charleston, WV, 17 great grandchildren, and three great great grandchildren. She also leaves behind a large extended family of nieces, nephews, cousins and friends.

Madge loved her flowers, especially yellow roses and old time gospel music but most of all she was a homemaker and caregiver of children, lovingly caring for her own and many other young ones in her neighborhood. She will be missed. We have lost our mother and will remember her, please help others retain their memories by giving generously to your local Alzheimer’s Foundation or the Hospice Care of Burnsville, WV.

Family and friends will be received at the Hardman-Paletti Funeral Home 730 N. Main Avenue Weston on Friday, January 30, 2015 from 4-8 PM.

Funeral services will be held on Saturday at 1:00 PM from the Hardman-Paletti Funeral Home chapel with Reverend Bryon Bukovesky officiating.

Interment will follow services in Forest Lawn Memorial Gardens of Jane Lew, WV.

Hardman-Paletti Funeral Home of Weston is honored and privileged to serve the family of Waildia Madge (Strader) Brown.

Comics - Deflaegate

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2015 Hunting and Fishing Show in Charleston

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The annual West Virginia Hunting and Fishing Show is this weekend at the Charleston Civic Center.

The largest outdoor theme gathering in the state is now in its 29th year.

The show features more than 200 exhibitors, including approximately 30 new vendors for 2015.

The exhibitors include product vendors and hunting and fishing outfitters from around the world.

All will be set up in the Civic Center’s Grand Hall from Friday thorough Sunday.

Hours are 9:00 AM - 9:00 PM Saturday, 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM Sunday.

Admission is $8 for adults, children 6-12 $1, and under 6 admitted free.

G-TechNote™: Windows 10

Microsoft doesn’t just want you to use Windows 10
It wants you to love it.

Microsoft doesn’t just want you to use its products. It wants you to love them.

In a lengthy presentation streamed live over the Web on Wednesday, Microsoft chief executive Satya Nadella said multiple times that he not only wants consumers to choose Microsoft products, but to “ “love Windows on a daily basis.“  From start to finish, the company took pains to show it was turning a page and eager to show that it, too, can innovate and possibly even inspire the kind of cult-like following that its competitors Apple and Google enjoy.

To that end, executives showed off half a dozen new products, ranging from the practical—its latest operating system, Windows 10— to the fantastic—a headset with a see-through display that overlays holographic objects you can manipulate in the real world. Microsoft’s take on smartglasses, the “Microsoft Hololens,“ does not yet have a firm release date. But it will be released within the lifetime of Windows 10, said inventor Alex Kipman, and will not need to be paired with a phone to work.

“These are the kinds of magical moments that we live for,“ Nadella said while onstage at the company’s headquarters in Redmond, Wash. “We want to move people from needing Windows, to choosing Windows to loving Windows.“

It’s a smart bit of recasting for the company, said Al Hilwa, an analyst at International Data Corporation. “They realize that, in the new consumer world, the dynamic is different,“ he said. “They’re showing a vulnerable face deliberately. They’re asking for love.“

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One way to ramp up the affection, of course, is to give out freebies. Microsoft said it will offer Windows 10 as a free upgrade to anyone running Windows 8.1 and Windows Phone 8.1 devices. Those running Windows 7 will also be eligible for the deal, for a year.

The new system fixes several things that Microsoft users hated about the company’s previous operating system, Windows 8. The new system will work more easily across computers, tablets and mobile device. It’s touchscreen-friendly, while eliminating much of the clunky layout that plagued Windows 8.

The system doesn’t completely abandon Windows 8’s distinctive, blocky layouts—users can opt for a start screen that keeps the tiled, cluttered layout that many people dislike—but it also lets users chose a more traditional Windows background. Windows 10 touchscreen devices will be able to sense when a user plugs in a keyboard and mouse and will then switch automatically to a more traditional layout.

Windows 10 is also deeply integrated with Microsoft’s Cortana voice assistant, which will be able to tell users the weather, compose e-mails by dictation and control users’ music playlists across devices. The company also showed off a new, forthcoming Web browser—codenamed “Spartan”—that works with Cortana and has new reading and note-taking modes.

Windows 10 also works with Microsoft’s gaming console, the Xbox One, and an Xbox app will come standard on all devices. The new system will also allow players to stream their games to tablets and PCs within their homes. Console players and PC players will be able to fight it out across platforms.

Microsoft executive Joe Belfiore, corporate vice president of the operating systems group, said that the company is developing several apps that will work seamlessly across Microsoft computers, tablets, phones and the Xbox One.

All of Wednesday’s announcements support Nadella’s vision for a unified Microsoft focused on a “mobile-first, cloud-first” strategy across its many divisions. That’s been Nadella’s guiding tenet since he took over the top spot last February.

And it appears the strategy is working—at least within Microsoft.

“Bringing all the different assets into one tightly knit set of capabilities and devices is what they have to do,“ Hilwa said, “and it looks like they’re doing it.“

The real test, of course, will be how consumers react when the new system is officially released. Microsoft didn’t give a release date for Windows 10, but did say it will release a new version to those in its “Insider” program next week and will send the first early build to phones in February.

Wild, Wonderful West Virginia (GoToWV) Unveils 2015 Official State Travel Guide

Wild, Wonderful West Virginia (GoToWV), joined by the Greater Parkersburg Convention and Visitors Bureau, local businesses, and travelers, unveiled the 2015 Official State Travel Guide at the I-77 South Welcome Center in Williamstown, West Virginia.

“This year’s travel guide provides folks with everything they need to plan a fun and exciting getaway with friends and family.  Combined with recommendations from our knowledgeable and friendly staff at our Welcome Centers, this guide can help you map out your wild, wonderful West Virginia adventure,” Commissioner of Tourism Amy Shuler Goodwin said.

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Mark Lewis, President and CEO of The Greater Parkersburg Convention and Visitor’s Bureau, said he was pleased to assist in hosting the official debut of the 2015 Official State Travel Guide. He went on to say, “The guide showcases all the gems that make West Virginia shine. Here in the Greater Parkersburg area, that includes a variety of unique attractions, from the 19th century elegance of Blennerhassett Island Historical State Park to the promise of outdoor adventure on the North Bend Rail Trail.”

The 2015 Official State Travel Guide, produced by Miles, features whitewater rafting on the cover. The guide is divided into nine geographic travel regions and offers suggestions for outdoor recreation; craft beer, wine and spirits; dining; entertainment; and more. A 2015 calendar of events is listed in the back of the guide.

Request your free copy of the 2015 Official State Travel Guide online, from a member of the GoToWV Team at 800.225.5982 or pick up one at one of the many Welcome Centers and tourist attractions in West Virginia.

Find your adventure in West Virginia at www.GoToWV.com or by calling 800.225.5982.

You can also join the conversation and share your wild, wonderful stories on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GoToWV or on Twitter and Instagram @GoToWV with #GoToWV.

West Virginia News   150124

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IRS WARNS OF IRS PHONE SCAM HITTING ALL 50 STATES

The government is issued a warning Thursday about a scam targeting people all over the country claiming you owe the IRS money.

The IRS is warning to be on high alert for threatening phone calls, like the one below:

“Before there is an arrest warrant issued on your name with the county sheriff officer’s office, I want you or your attorney to give us a call back.“

Just in time for tax season, callers pretending to be IRS agents claiming you owe the IRS money and demanding immediate payment.

Officials said it’s happening in all 50 states, nearly 3,000 people have already been victims scammed out of more than $14 million.

The IRS said it will never call demanding immediate payment, never require payment with prepaid cash cards or ask for credit card numbers. The IRS also said it will not threaten to arrest you.


WV SENATE PASSES BILL DELAYING LAST PAYCHECK FOR WORKERS

The West Virginia Senate has passed a bill that would delay some paychecks for employees no longer with their companies.

The GOP-led chamber passed the proposal 24-7 Friday, with only Democrats casting dissenting votes.

When someone is let go, quits or resigns, the bill would let employers wait until the next pay day to pay them.

Currently, the employee would have to be paid within four business days, or the next pay day, whichever comes first.

If employees aren’t paid on time under the bill, they would be eligible for damages of twice the unpaid amount, in addition to the paycheck they’re due.

Currently, employees are due their paycheck and three times the amount.

The bill moves to the House of Delegates for consideration.


THREE SENT TO HOSPITAL AFTER HOUSE FIRE IN HARRISON COUNTY

A Thursday night fire in Harrison County resulted in three individuals being sent to hospitals.

According to officials, the fire started at around 11:30 PM on the back porch and spread to the attic in the home along Second Street in Gypsy, damaging most of the structure but not to the point where it is considered a total loss.

Crews from Shinnston, Spelter, Lumberport, Nutter Fort, Worthington, Monongah and the Harrison County EMS responded to the scene. HealthNet was called in to fly a woman to Ruby Memorial Hospital. An adult male and child were transported to United Hospital Center.

No word on the conditions or identities of the victims at this time.

The state Fire Marshall’s Office was requested to investigate the scene.


WVU SEEKING APPLICANTS FOR MOUNTAINEER MASCOT

The hunt is on for one of the most high-profile positions in West Virginia: the Mountaineer mascot.

A West Virginia University selection committee is looking for the next buckskin-clad, musket-packing mascot to cheer on the Mountaineers.

Applications are available for students who want to step into the fringed boots of the mascot for the 2015-15 school year. Besides an application, prospects will also have to write an essay and provide references.

A selection committee of students and staff will review the applications and interview candidates on February 14. The top four finalists will participate in a “cheer off” at the WVU Coliseum on February 16.

The university’s new mascot will be named during the second half of the men’s basketball game on February 24.


TSA: MORE WEAPONS FOUND DURING WV AIRPORT CHECKS IN 2014

The Transportation Security Administration is reporting an increase in the number of firearms that were discovered by TSA officers at checkpoints at West Virginia airports.

In 2014, the TSA says 6 firearms were detected at three West Virginia airports. That’s up two firearms from 2013.

At Yeager Airport, four firearms were found by TSA officers in 2014, double the number found in 2013.

At Tri-State Airport in Huntington, two firearms were found. That’s up by one from the previous year.

At Raleigh Airport, officers reported finding no weapons at the checkpoint. One was found in 2013.


OPPONENTS OF PROPOSED GAS PIPELINE RALLY IN RICHMOND

Environmentalists and western Virginia property owners rallied Friday at the state Capitol in opposition to a proposed 550-mile natural gas pipeline.

Richmond-based Dominion Resources is partnering with other utilities to build the $5 billion Atlantic Coast Pipeline, which would cross the Blue Ridge Mountains to deliver gas from Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia.

Friday’s rally was organized by the Sierra Club and Friends of Nelson, a group of property owners in Nelson County who live along the proposed pipeline route.

Environmentalists say the project would contribute to global warming because of the extraction method, known as hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,“ used to get the gas out of the ground.

Property owners whose land would be crossed by the pipeline say the utilities are trampling on their property rights.


4 WV SCHOOLS CLOSED AS PRECAUTION AFTER SHOOTING

Kanawha County authorities say four schools have been closed after a shooting that killed a man and wounded a woman.

Cpl. Brian Humphreys of the sheriff’s office says the Friday morning shooting in Rand did not occur near a school, but the schools were closed as a precaution while deputies searched for the suspect.

According to media outlets, deputies responding to reports about multiple shots being fired found a vehicle flipped over. The dead man was found outside the vehicle and the wounded woman inside.

Names of the victims and the woman’s condition were not immediately available.


MCDOWELL MAN CONVICTED IN SHOTGUN SLAYING

A 55-year-old McDowell County man has been convicted in the shooting death of another man.

The Bluefield Daily Telegraph reports that a jury on Thursday found Wesley Owen Payne of War guilty of second-degree murder in the death of 52-year-old Donald Lee Baker of Beartown. Baker was shot once in the chest with a shotgun at his camper home in May 2013. Payne faces up to 40 years in prison.

Prosecuting Attorney Ed Kornish told the jury that Payne was upset because his girlfriend of more than 20 years had moved in with Baker.

The defense claimed that Payne never owned a gun. Payne testified that he found the loaded shotgun on the hood of a vehicle and fired after Baker shot at him with a rifle.


WV TREASURER UNHAPPY WITH GOVERNOR TAPPING UNCLAIMED PROPERTY CASH

State Treasurer John Perdue is criticizing Governor Earl Ray Tomblin for banking on $15 million from an unclaimed property account to balance the next budget.

Perdue thinks the move would make it difficult to pay claims to unclaimed property owners or survivors within 90 days, as required by law.

The $21.5 million fund includes various liquidated assets, like sold unclaimed stock and mutual funds, and insurance company payments for unclaimed benefits. Perdue said Tomblin used $6 million from the account this budget.

Unclaimed property ranges from dormant bank accounts to jewelry in abandoned safe deposit boxes.

Tomblin spokesman Chris Stadelman says that agencies were asked to operate with less money, and this program is no exception. He said the transfer is normal.

The Legislature Today 01.23.2015

At the legislature today, as the first full week of the session comes to a close, bills are slowly moving through the legislative process.

We’ll review the week with some of our colleagues who are also covering the issues for their perspective.

And, we’ll profile Senator Donna Boley of Pleasants County.

A veteran lawmaker she has gone from the only Republican in the Senate to now, the only woman there.

Movie Review: ‘Little Accidents’

There are two tragedies at the center of “Little Accidents,” the feature debut of writer-director Sara Colangelo. The first takes place at a mine, where 10 men are killed and only one young worker, Amos (Boyd Holbrook), survives. The second is the disappearance of a high school student, who happens to be the son of one of the mine executives that could be at fault for the disaster.

If that all sounds a little too convenient, the events never come across as anything but realistically coincidental since they take place in a small coal town where everyone knows everyone else’s business. Besides, the movie is less an example of cinema verite than a well-crafted meditation on how the truth can be an unwieldy burden.

Amos, for example, may or may not remember what happened on the day of the accident, but plenty of people make it clear what version of events he should recall. The miners union leader would like Amos to tell lawyers something that will ensure a lucrative lawsuit for the victims’ families, while those still working in the mine just want to keep their jobs. Instead, Amos keeps to himself, listlessly shuffling around town with a cane that makes him look decades older than his years.

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Another similarly themed tale unfolds in parallel as Owen (Jacob Lofland), the son of one of those dead miners, knows what happened to missing teenager JT Doyle (Travis Tope). But he can’t bring himself to go to the police.

Owen’s and Amos’s paths cross with that of Diane (Elizabeth Banks), JT’s mother. She lives on the wealthy side of town, and she’s unraveling in the wake of both tragedies. She knows neither what happened to her son nor whether her husband is to blame for the mining deaths, but she’s hoping some combination of wine and Bible study might prove therapeutic.

“Little Accidents” is a well-executed film with a strong sense of place. The blue-gray palette is an ominous fog that envelops every scene, and the slow music, reminiscent of Appalachian strings, communicates both the setting and the mood.

The acting across the board is top-notch, especially by Banks, who is probably best known for her comedic roles. She doesn’t get to flex any of those muscles here; “Little Accidents” is a serious movie, but, to its credit, it’s never entirely bleak. Revealing the truth always remains an option, just waiting to set the characters free.

★ ★ ★

Unrated. Contains strong language, brief violence and sexual situations. 105 minutes.

G-Eye™: Gas Prices

Gas prices at Knoxville, TN on 01.23.2015
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~~ A Traveling Local Mountaineer ~~

AC650xxx001

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Sports News   150124

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►   4 WVU Football Players Cited for Possession of Marijuana

Four West Virginia University football players were cited for possession of marijuana at a dorm earlier in the week.

According to WVU Police, Xavier Preston, Yodny Cajuste, Jaleel Fields and Dravon Henry were all cited at Lincoln Hall.

Henry, 19, started all 13 games at free safety in the last season. Preston, 18, played in nine games on defense and special teams. Cajuste, 18, and Field, 19, are both redshirt freshmen.

“We are aware of the situation, and the matter will be handled internally,“ said Dana Holgorsen, head football coach.

According to WVU Football Sports Information Director Mike Montoro, the incident will be turned over to student conduct at the University as it is with all students.



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►   NFL: Early evidence supports Pats using deflated balls


The NFL issued a statement Friday regarding its investigation into allegations the New England Patriots used underinflated balls during the AFC Championship Game and said the early evidence supports the initial conclusion but that the process is ongoing.

The Patriots rolled to a 45-7 win over the Indianapolis Colts last Sunday in a rain-soaked game at Gillette Stadium and reports began to surface in the hours after the contest that balls were not correctly inflated, which would apparently allow for a better grip in inclement weather.

Citing league sources, ESPN.com reported Tuesday night that 11 of the 12 balls used by the Patriots during the game were underinflated by two pounds of air pressure per square inch (PSI).

NFL rules mandate game balls, which are inspected by the referee, be inflated to 12 1/2 to 13 1/2 PSI.

“The playing rules are intended to protect the fairness and integrity of our games,“ the league said in its statement Friday. “We take seriously claims that those rules have been violated and will fully investigate this matter without compromise or delay.

“The investigation is ongoing, will be thorough and objective, and is being pursued expeditiously. In the coming days, we expect to conduct numerous additional interviews, examine video and other forensic evidence, as well as relevant physical evidence.

“While the evidence thus far supports the conclusion that footballs that were underinflated were used by the Patriots in the first half, the footballs were properly inflated for the second half and confirmed at the conclusion of the game to have remained properly inflated.

“The goals of the investigation will be to determine the explanation for why footballs used in the game were not in compliance with the playing rules and specifically whether any noncompliance was the result of deliberate action. We have not made any judgments on these points and will not do so until we have concluded our investigation and considered all of the relevant evidence.“

The league said Friday the investigation is being led jointly by NFL executive vice president Jeff Pash and Ted Wells of the law firm of Paul Weiss. Wells was the league’s investigator into last season’s bullying scandal involving the Miami Dolphins.

According to the statement Friday, the league began its investigation Sunday night and has already conducted nearly 40 interviews. Game officials and Patriots personnel were among those included in those early discussions, although New England quarterback Tom Brady said Thursday he had not yet been contacted.

On Thursday, both Brady and Patriots coach Bill Belichick addressed the situation and each denied any wrongdoing.

Belichick was first to speak on Thursday morning and said he was “completely and totally unaware” of the issue, adding he was “shocked” to hear the reports on Monday morning.

Brady on Thursday afternoon said he “didn’t alter the balls in any way” and “would never break the rules.“

The Patriots, who will play Seattle in the Super Bowl, have pledged their full support of the investigation and have made personnel, as well as other information, available to the league.

If the NFL finds the Patriots deflated footballs intentionally, they could be subject to penalties similar to ones levied after the team was found to have videotaped defensive signals used by the New York Jets during a game in September 2007.

Those penalties included a $500,000 fine for Belichick, a $250,000 fine for the team and the loss of a draft pick.


►   Raiders add Tice to coaching staff

Oakland Raiders head coach Jack Del Rio continued to build his staff Friday, adding former Vikings head coach Mike Tice to the group.

Tice will coach the offensive line for the Raiders after spending the 2014 season in the same role with the Atlanta Falcons. He was Minnesota’s head coach from 2002-05, compiling a record of 32-33 with a 1-1 record in the playoffs.

The former NFL tight end also worked under Del Rio in Jacksonville, serving as assistant head coach and tight ends coach with the Jaguars from 2006-09.

Del Rio also named Todd Downing as quarterbacks coach, Marcus Robertson as defensive backs coach and Sal Sunseri as linebackers coach.

Downing was Buffalo’s quarterbacks coach last year and also spent three years in the same position with the Detroit Lions. Robertson was the Raiders’ assistant defensive backs coach last year, while Sunseri last coached in the NFL from 2002-08 with Carolina and spent the last two years as a defensive coach at Florida State.


►   Steelers extend P Wing

The Pittsburgh Steelers signed punter Brad Wing to a one-year contract extension on Friday.

Wing punted 61 times over 16 games for 2,668 yards and placed 20 of his attempts inside the opponents’ 20-yard line during his rookie season with the Steelers.

His average of 43.7 yards per punt ranked fifth among first-year punters in franchise history.

The LSU product signed with the Steelers on January 3, 2014 after previously signing with the Philadelphia Eagles as an undrafted free agent following the 2013 NFL Draft.


►   Ravens plan to release Terrence Cody

The Baltimore Ravens will terminate the contract of nose tackle Terrence Cody after the Super Bowl, the team announced Friday.

Cody was set to become an unrestricted free agent on March 10.

Cody is under investigation for animal cruelty, according to the Baltimore Sun. He hasn’t been charged with a crime.

According to multiple sources, the case involves the death of Cody’s dog.

In 2014, Cody played only one game after being on the physically unable to perform list for the first nine weeks of the season.


►   Jets tab Kacy Rodgers as new defensive coordinator

The New York Jets and new head coach Todd Bowles continued crafting the coaching staff Friday by hiring Kacey Rodgers as defensive coordinator and Bobby April as special teams coordinator.

Rodgers served as the Dolphins’ defensive line coach over the past seven seasons. During his tenure with Miami, Rodgers’ defensive lines helped compile 287 sacks, which was the third most in the NFL during that span.

Bowles previously coached with Rodgers in Dallas (2005-07) and Miami (2008-11).

April will join his eighth NFL team after spending the past two seasons as Oakland’s special teams coordinator. He also served in the same capacity with Philadelphia (2010-12), Buffalo (2004-09), St. Louis (2001-03), Pittsburgh (1994-95) and Atlanta (1991-93).

The Jets also hired Mike Caldwell as assistant head coach and inside linebackers coach, Mark Collins as outside linebackers coach, Joe Danna as defensive backs coach, Karl Dorrell as wide receivers coach and Robby Brown as offensive quality control coach.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Area High Schools Boys Basketball Game Results

(Friday, January 23)


Doddridge County 65     Clay-Battelle 35

#7 Williamstown 71     Tyler Consolidated 37

Robert C. Byrd 49     Liberty 31

Saint Marys 53     South Harrison 43

Parkersburg South 90     University 76

Williamstown 71     Tyler Consolidated 37

Wood County Christian 30     Cross Lanes Christian 26

Nicholas County vs. Liberty Raleigh ——Postponed

Parkersburg vs. Woodrow Wilson ——Postponed


►   Area High Schools Girls Basketball Game Results

(Friday, January 23)


#7 Clay County 53     #8 Gilmer County 47

Roane County 77     Calhoun County 23

Webster County 48     Doddridge County 36
Lewis County 58     Elkins 44

Ritchie County 59     St. Marys 49

Robert C. Byrd 49     Liberty Harrison 31

#9 Bridgeport 39     East Fairmont 17

#2 North Marion 73     Lincoln 53

Wood County Christian 42     Cross Lanes Christian 36

Nicholas County vs. PikeView ——Postponed

Philip Barbour vs. Preston ——Postponed

Woodrow Wilson vs. Parkersburg ——Postponed



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Mountaineers try to sweep away Texas loss by sweeping TCU

In the week since absorbing a 27-point beatdown at Texas, the program’s worst loss in 24 months, West Virginia’s players have recalculated and reassessed what made them a top-25 team.

“We’ve got to bring back that pride and that energy that we had,” said forward Devin Williams. “It’s a reality check.”

TCU (14-4, 1-4), after also being dealt some reality by Texas on Monday night, visits the No. 18 Mountaineers (15-3, 3-2) on Saturday afternoon. It’s the first sellout of the season in Morgantown thanks partly to a “Family Day” promotion that lumps four tickets, hot dogs and sodas into a $60 package.

West Virginia already beat TCU 78-67 in Fort Worth, a scheduling quirk of the Big 12 round-robin that has these teams completing their home-and-home series within a three-week span. Considering the Mountaineers took the first meeting with Juwan Staten too ill to dress, this rematch might seem elementary. But the sting from a 77-50 loss in Austin reminds the Mountaineers otherwise.

“Bouncing back from a loss shouldn’t be hard,” coach Bob Huggins said Friday. “We don’t have a lot of character if we don’t do that. And I think we do have character.”

The 24.1% shooting against the Longhorns’ 2-3 zone marked the worst game for West Virginia since making only 20% in a 62-39 loss to Cincinnati in 2008. (The 13 field goals were the lowest by WVU since 1951, two years before Huggins was born.) Surely more zone defense awaits the Mountaineers, whose 3-point accuracy ranks 294th out of 351 Division I teams.

TCU doesn’t possess the length that Texas does, yet it ranks fourth nationally in field-goal defense at 34.7 percent—just behind Kentucky, Virginia and, yes, Texas.

“I know we can’t underestimate them,” said freshman guard Jevon Carter. “We’ve got to play as hard as we do each and every other game.”

No. 18 West Virginia (15-3, 3-2) vs. TCU (14-4, 1-4)

Tipoff: 2 PM in Morgantown (ESPNU)

Scouting the Frogs: TCU snapped a 23-game conference losing streak by winning 62-42 at Texas Tech last Saturday. Some 48 hours later the Frogs fell 66-48 at home to Texas. … Point guard Kyan Anderson (13.4 points) is the lone double-digit scorer for TCU this season but produced just two points vs. Texas. The senior scored 19 in the first meeting vs. West Virginia. … Pitt transfer Trey Ziegler produced 17 points, six rebounds and four assists against the Mountaineers, but fouled out and committed a season-high four turnovers. … TCU commits 20.6 fouls per game, second only to WVU (22.3) in the Big 12. … The Frogs score 70.4 per game while WVU averages 77.4, but TCU is the second-most efficient offense in the conference and West Virginia ranks fourth. Both squads average 1.09 points per possession, tied for second in the league.

Coaching the Frogs: Trent Johnson (260-233 in 16 seasons overall, 34-47 in third year at TCU) is aiming to make the Frogs competitive, a difficult charge considering they are 3-40 in Big 12 play. That includes five losses to West Virginia. … Johnson previously reached a combined five NCAA tournaments at Nevada, Stanford and LSU.

Mountaineer musings: Juwan Staten (15 points, 4 assists, 3.1 rebounds) was among 25 players named to the Lute Olson Award midseason watch list this week. He’s in a 2-of-16 slump the past two games, which Huggins attributed to the point guard getting fewer shooting reps while dealing with sickness. “Now Chase Conner can walk in the gym after not being in there for three weeks and make shots,” the coach said. “Wannie doesn’t have great technique but what he has is a will to practice and practice and practice. I think he’ll be fine. It’s a long, long year.” … Jonathan Holton (9.6 points, 6.2 rebounds) hasn’t scored in double figures in six games. After fouling out in eight minutes against Texas, Holton’s 3.2 fouls per game are second in the Big 12 to K-State’s Nino Williams (3.5). … Devin Williams (10.7 points,  7.6 rebounds) is coming off a season-worst five turnovers at Texas—a performance in which he fouled out and snapped a string of four double-digit scoring games. … WVU has a healthy national lead in forced turnovers (22.1 per game) over runner-ups Eastern Kentucky (20.5) and Stephen F. Austin (18.6).



<The Gilmer Free Press

►   Top-25 College Men’s Basketball Game Results

(Friday, January 23)


Final Score: (16) VCU 63, Saint Louis 61

Treveon Graham scored the game-winning basket with 0.9 seconds remaining as No. 16 VCU edged Saint Louis 63-61 on Friday night. Graham finished with 21 points and six rebounds and Briante Weber scored 15 points for the Rams (16-3, 6-0 A-10), who have won 11 straight games. Milik Yarbrough had 15 points and six boards and Austin McBroom netted 12 points for the Billikens (9-10, 1-5), who have lost six straight games against ranked opponents.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Nets’ Teletovic has blood clots in lungs

Brooklyn Nets forward Mirza Teletovic has been diagnosed with multiple blood clots in his lungs and will miss the remainder of the season.

Teletovic left Thursday’s game against the Clippers and was taken to a Los Angeles hospital after experiencing shortness of breath. Tests, including a CT scan, revealed the blood clots.

The Nets on Friday said Teletovic will remain hospitalized and will undergo further tests while also being administered blood thinners. The use of blood thinners will force him to sit out the rest of the campaign.

In 40 games this season, Teletovic averaged 8.5 points and 4.9 rebounds. The third-year pro owns career averages of 7.0 points and 3.4 rebounds in 165 games.


►   Nuggets’ Lawson arrested on DUI charge

Denver Nuggets guard Ty Lawson was arrested Friday morning on suspicion of drunk driving.

According to the Denver Sheriff Department, Lawson also faces speeding and careless driving charges. He was released from jail after posting $1,500 bond and has a court date set for January 27.

The Nuggets released a statement on Friday, saying they were aware of the incident.

“We have been made aware of an incident involving Ty Lawson early this morning,“ the statement read. “Per team policy and out of respect for the legal process, we will have no further comment at this time.“

KUSA-TV in Denver reported that Lawson was arrested at 1:19 AM MT. He was pulled over by police after driving 60 mph in a 35-mph zone and failed a field sobriety test.

Lawson is Denver’s leading scorer, averaging 16.7 points in 41 games this season. He is also third in the league in assists, averaging 9.9.


►   Nothin’ but Net: My All-Star ballot

Congratulations, NBA fans.

I don’t think you did a terrible job in voting for the NBA All-Star Game starters. That was a compliment. With 10 choices, you did brilliantly for nine of them.

The fans chose Golden State’s Steph Curry and the Los Angeles Lakers’ Kobe Bryant in the backcourt, alongside New Orleans’ Anthony Davis, the Los Angeles Clippers’ Blake Griffin and Memphis’ Marc Gasol.

In the East, it’ll be John Wall of the Washington Wizards with Kyle Lowry of the Toronto Raptors in the backcourt. Some guy named LeBron, Pau Gasol of the Chicago Bulls and Carmelo Anthony of the New York Knicks will be the frontcourt.

Bryant shouldn’t start. We all know this. But, fans vote and that’s what we get. For a while, I championed an idea of voting spectators being forced to pass a written exam to earn the privilege of All-Star selecting, but it seemed snobby.

I had no problem with Anthony, namely because I don’t know an Eastern Conference frontcourt player who was disrespected by not getting the job over Melo, who, by the way, is playing in his home arena for the All-Star game.

With Kobe starting, it takes away the gig from James Harden, who rightfully deserves it. That’s not the case with Melo, plus the Bryant injustice will be righted since he tore his rotator cuff and will most likely miss the game on February 15.

The shocker was Lowry getting in ahead of Dwyane Wade. A late push sent the Raptors point guard to his first All-Star game and he’ll start, nonetheless.

That makes the Eastern Conference reserves a little trickier. Does Wade still get in or does this open the door for a fourth Atlanta Hawks player, namely, Kyle Korver? (Late spoiler alert - I have three Hawks.)

The other question in the Western Conference is how many old-guard players get the vote? In other words, do the coaches even bother to pay attention or just select Tim Duncan and Dirk Nowitzki out of habit? Both are having good seasons on good teams, but are there are better candidates?

With that, here is who I would vote for if I was a head coach in the NBA. I need two backcourt players, three frontcourt players and two wild-cards. Some were harder than others, feelings will always be hurt, but here’s my picks. And remember, this isn’t necessarily who I believe will get the nods, although I don’t actually think it’s going to be far off.


WESTERN CONFERENCE BACKCOURT


JAMES HARDEN, Houston Rockets; RUSSELL WESTBROOK, Oklahoma City Thunder


Harden is the MVP of the league, so let’s save time and not detail why he should go to New York.

Westbrook has played 28 games and it’s enough for me. He’s averaging a staggering 25.1 points per game at the point guard position, but he’s also posting 7.4 assists per game, which is a half an assist higher than last season. Westbrook is dominating games for the Thunder, while still allowing Kevin Durant to be himself. Plus, Westbrook is a premiere defender who can wreak havoc on a game from that side of the floor. He leads the NBA in steals and has done enough to get the call.


WESTERN CONFERENCE FRONTCOURT


LAMARCUS ALDRIDGE, Portland Trail Blazers; DEMARCUS COUSINS, Sacramento

Kings; TIM DUNCAN, San Antonio Spurs

Aldridge is a no-brainer and the Blazers are having a fantastic season. They deserve representation and Aldridge is having another amazing campaign. He’s averaging 23.2 points and 10.2 rebounds per game, while shooting 51.2% from 3-point range, although the sample size is small. He’s out for the next 6-8 weeks, so he’ll need a replacement, but should get a unanimous nod.

Cousins ranks fourth in the league in scoring and third in rebounding. Those are strong positions and the knock on Cousins will be the Kings’ record, which is 16-26. However, Cousins missed 11 games, mostly because of a serious illness, and Sacramento’s record with him in the lineup is 14-17. That’s respectable and his numbers are outstanding enough to warrant inclusion.

Duncan was the toughest choice in the West. Durant only played 19 games to this point and it’s just not enough. Plus, are we comfortable having two OKC players in the game when it isn’t even a postseason team? Duncan has missed only five games and he’s playing the most minutes a night since the 2009-10 season. Duncan is averaging 14.7 ppg, which is down from seasons past, but he’s also getting 10.0 rpg and is a legitimate NBA Defensive Player of the Year candidate. Normally, I frown on lifetime achievement awards in All-Star selections, but he’s anchoring a San Antonio team still entrenched in the postseason.


WESTERN CONFERENCE WILD-CARDS


DAMIAN LILLARD, Portland Trail Blazers; KLAY THOMPSON, Golden State Warriors


Lillard’s scoring is up. His assists are up. His rebounding is up. His steals are up. His field-goal percentage is up. And all those numbers are up after a season in which he made the All-Star team. Portland is great, so it’s pretty simple to pencil Lillard into the game.

Thompson is the second-best player on the best team in the conference. Simply put, the Warriors deserve two All-Stars and Thompson deserves to be the other one. He’s averaging 21.9 ppg and every other statistical category shows significant increases from last season. Thompson is fifth in 3-point shooting percentage and has become an elite wing defender.


BONUS WESTERN CONFERENCE INJURY REPLACEMENTS FOR KOBE BRYANT AND


LAMARCUS ALDRIDGE


KEVIN DURANT, Oklahoma City Thunder; MONTA ELLIS, Dallas Mavericks


I feel much better putting Durant in as a replacement. The 19 games is not enough, but his impact on the Thunder is undeniable. Plus, he’s the second- best player in the league, thus, a case can be made for his inclusion automatically (plus, I think the coaches are putting him in, no matter what).

You may have noticed there are no Dallas Mavericks previously listed. They are the best team without representation to this point and Ellis, not Nowitzki, is the most deserving Dallas player. Ellis averages 20.0 ppg, 4.5 apg and shoots 33% from long range. He’s been ignored for All-Star games in the past because of the perception he’s just a scorer, but his season and a half in Dallas proved he’s more.

OTHERS UNDER CONSIDERATION: DIRK NOWITZKI, Dallas Mavericks; CHRIS PAUL,

Los Angeles Clippers; MIKE CONLEY, Memphis Grizzlies


EASTERN CONFERENCE BACKCOURT


JIMMY BUTLER, Chicago Bulls; JEFF TEAGUE, Atlanta Hawks


Butler is an obvious choice. In just a minute more per game, Butler’s scoring is up 7.4 ppg, his assists are up 0.6 a night and his rebounding is 1.1 better. His shooting percentages are 46 from the floor, 35 from 3-point range and 83 from the foul line. Butler is a stout defender, plays the most minutes in the league and has been the best thing about a Bulls team that is in line to host a first-round playoff series.

Career highs in scoring, assists, rebounding and field-goal percentage make Teague an attractive option. The fact his team is six games ahead in the Eastern Conference helps. Atlanta’s dominance is going to send a lot of Hawks to New York and Teague is the most undisputed of them all. He’s also a solid defender.


EASTERN CONFERENCE FRONTCOURT


AL HORFORD, Atlanta Hawks; PAUL MILLSAP, Atlanta Hawks; CHRIS BOSH, Miami Heat

This group is admittedly thin. Preseason, we all assumed Kevin Love would be in this mix, if not starting, but the Cavs have underachieved, and, despite very solid numbers (17.7 ppg/10.4 rpg), Love can’t be voted in here. There’s no rational justification for having three Cleveland players on the roster. Damn. Spoiler alert for the wild cards.

Horford missed most of last season and it was easy to forget he’s a two-time All-Star. Upon his return, Horford’s numbers are down from seasons prior, but that’s because head coach Mike Budenholzer employs a more passing-friendly offense than previous Hawks head coaches. Horford has very good scoring and field-goal percentage stats; however, his rebounding is down considerably from prior campaigns. Still, Horford is the defensive anchor for a team that is first in opponents’ scoring.

Millsap is more-polished than Horford offensively and his 3-point shooting has become a legitimate weapon. He’s the second-best player on the best team in the conference and that’s enough. The Hawks deserve massive representation because they are clearly better than all. Millsap is a guy whose numbers don’t jump out at you, but watch him and you’ll know he’s one of the six best frontcourt players in the Eastern Conference.

Bosh actually emerged as the most obvious candidate. His scoring is up over five ppg since LeBron took his talents home. Rebounding has improved. Assists are better. Three-point shooting is surprisingly strong. Miami still passes for a playoff team in the 2014-15 version of the Eastern Conference.


EASTERN CONFERENCE WILD-CARD


KYRIE IRVING, Cleveland Cavaliers; EH ... I NEED MORE TIME TO THINK

I don’t know what to make of Irving’s season. With James and Love in town, you’d expect Irving’s scoring to go down and his assists would go up. That’s false. Irving’s scoring is up from last season to 21 ppg and his assists sank from 6.1 per game in 2013-14 to 5.3 in 2014-15. Uncle Drew’s field-goal and 3- point percentages are both ahead of last season. It’s been a strange campaign in Cleveland, but Irving’s numbers and impact are enough to get him into the show, where he won MVP last year.

Oh man.

Wade or Korver?

It’s a classic philosophical All-Star debate: Do you reward winning over all else or do you reward better individual achievement, coupled with name recognition?

Here’s the case for Wade. He’s averaging 21.8 ppg, which ranks 12th. His assists are at 5.5 per game and his rebounding is at 4.0 and those are really impressive posts for a shooting guard. Wade has played 32 games and has Miami in the mix in the Eastern Conference.

However, the Heat are six games under .500. Can we justify having two Miami players with a losing record?

Now, for Korver’s case. The Hawks are six games clear of everyone. They’ve done it in Budenholzer’s style, which is Gregg Popovich’s style of teamwork and passing. Individually, Korver’s scoring is at its highest since the 2006-07 season at 13.1 ppg. His 3-point shooting is an astronomical 53.5%, his field-goal percentage is at 51.8 and his free-throw percentage is 92.2. If that continues, Korver will become the second player in NBA history to have a season of 50/50/90 and the other was Steve Kerr, who is, coincidentally the coach of the Western Conference All-Stars. Kerr did it as a bench player. Korver is doing it as a starter. Korver is also the most clutch shooter in the NBA with eye-opening numbers in the fourth quarter and overtime.

Part of me wanted to hedge my bet and get a second Washington player like Marcin Gortat or Bradley Beal in there. Or, maybe Jonas Valanciunas from the Toronto Raptors could justify their strong season with a second selection.

All right, a man has to make tough decisions.

I’m going with KYLE KORVER, Atlanta Hawks.

I can’t justify two Heat All-Star players with the team six games under .500, especially in the Eastern Conference. The other factor is Korver’s clutch factor in the fourth quarter and overtime. Korver is a better all-around player than he gets credit for, so I’ll take four Hawks.


OTHERS UNDER CONSDIDERATION: DWYANE WADE, Miami Heat; MARCIN GORTAT

and BRADLEY BEAL, Washington Wizards     ~~  Jim Brighters ~~


►   Stretching the Field: Rose gets message across

There are several ways to motivate people.

Some are more egregious than others.

Chicago Bulls guard Derrick Rose opted to call out his teammates in a postgame interview following Monday’s loss to the Cleveland Cavaliers.

“Everybody has to be on the same page. Until then, we’re going to continue to get our (expletive) kicked,“ Rose said. “We’re not communicating while we’re on the floor to one another. Everybody is quiet. Trust plays a part, but communicating on defense in a team sport is huge.

“We’ve got to give a better effort. It seems like we’re not even competing. It’s (expletive) irritating.“

The Bulls were handed their sixth loss in eight games by the Cavaliers and shot 37.5% from the field. They were out-rebounded by a 54-40 margin and Rose scored 18 points on 5-of-14 field-goal shooting.

Rose should be one of the last players to preach about having an edge and communicating when he’s been heavily criticized for not playing through pain and sacrificing for his teammates. He has missed plenty of time with various injuries and probably would sit two or three games with a hangnail.

This is the same Rose who said he is worried about his future and doesn’t want to go to meetings or his son’s graduation “all sore.“ Suck it up, Derrick. Your concern about long term doesn’t hold much weight, and now is when the Bulls need you the most.

Including the Cleveland game, Rose shot no better than 35% five times over a 12-game stretch. Everybody has a bad game here and there, but Rose is supposed to be the leader of the Bulls and one of the top guards in the league. By no means am I trying to question Rose’s ability or imply he’s soft because he is still a top scorer in the league and hasn’t proven it on a consistent basis.

Bulls coach Tom Thibodeau said his team isn’t giving multiple efforts or concentrating on the floor. The Bulls aren’t doing their jobs and that must change, according to the gritty and defensive-minded coach.

Forward Taj Gibson got some things off his chest, too.

“We have to practice harder,“ Gibson said. “We can’t be taking days off. We have to play with some energy.

“We have the personnel. It comes from within. There’s nothing more you can say. It’s all about how much heart you have and how determined you’re going to be.“

All the talk must have resonated with the Bulls, who came out like wild banshees with Thursday’s 104-81 beating of the defending champion San Antonio Spurs. Rose scored a game-high 22 points and the defensive effort was there, holding the Spurs below 100 points and 37% shooting.

San Antonio’s big four of Tim Duncan, Tony Parker, Manu Ginobili and Kawhi Leonard were all present and didn’t produce much, leading coach Gregg Popovich to say his team’s effort was “humiliating and embarrassing.“ It has to be an accomplished feeling to get under the skin of one of the top coaches the likes of which the NBA has never seen before.

“You go through ups and downs through the course of a season and it’s how you navigate through those things,“ Thibodeau said. “The important thing is to be mentally tough through adversity and concentrate on what’s important and that’s trying to improve.“

The Bulls will be tested through the course of the next eight games, with seven of those coming on the road, including Friday’s Big D showdown with the Dallas Mavericks. Chicago is going through the gauntlet against Atlanta, Cleveland, San Antonio, Dallas, Miami, Golden State, Phoenix and Houston. Its mettle will be tested on all accounts.

Rose and the Bulls will make the playoffs this season and are currently the No. 4 seed in the East. Before that happens, there will probably be some soul searching once again, private meetings and inspirational words. The Bulls responded positively in their recent hiccup, so there’s hope they can steer clear of any controversy moving forward.

Like Thibodeau said, there will be ups and downs, and it’s all about handling adversity the right way. Responding to criticism and pulverizing the defending NBA champions is a good stepping-stone for Chicago on the path of success.    ~~  Shawn Clarke ~~


►   Kobe Bryant reportedly expected to miss rest of season with shoulder injury

Los Angeles Lakers star Kobe Bryant may have made the NBA all-star team, announced Thursday night, but he likely won’t play in it. The veteran guard is expected to miss the rest of the 2014-15 season, as we recovers from a torn rotator cuff in his right shoulder, ESPN’s Ramona Shelburne reported on Friday.

The Lakers would not confirm the information, but noted the diagnosis of the torn rotator cuff was correct and surgery, which would render Bryant’s season over, was discussed.

“Bryant is scheduled to be examined by Dr. Neal ElAttrache of the Kerlan Jobe Orthopaedic Clinic on Monday, and a decision is expected to be made at that time,” the team said on the Lakers’ Web site.

Bryant sustained the injury during the third quarter of Wednesday night’s loss to the New Orleans Pelicans when he went up for a two-handed dunk.

“It felt fine when I went up, didn’t feel too good when I came down,” Bryant said after the game (via The Washington Post’s Michael Lee).

The results of an MRI taken in San Antonio on Thursday were enough to warrant a trip straight back to Los Angeles for Bryant, who was undergoing further tests on Friday. His teammates remained in Texas, where they will meet the Spurs on Friday.

Lakers coach Bryan Scott expressed his concerns on Friday about the future of the 19-season veteran who still has one more year on his contract.

“Yeah I’m worried,” Scott said. “We all in the organization are worried about it.”

Bryant, meanwhile, is feeling good enough to make jokes, as well as thank his fans for their support.


►   Stephen Curry overtakes LeBron James for most votes as NBA announces all-star starters

Guards made the news as the NBA announced its starters for this year’s All-Star Game. Golden State point guard Stephen Curry can make a claim now as the league’s most popular player after finishing first in the voting, edging out perennial favorite LeBron James of Cleveland.

Curry racked up 1,513,324 votes, although James was close behind with 1,470,483. Meanwhile, the Eastern Conference will feature a pair of first-time starters in its back court: Washington’s John Wall and Toronto’s Kyle Lowry.

According to the NBA, a late voting push moved Lowry past Miami’s Dwyane Wade, as the Raptors point guard finished with 805,290 votes to the Heat shooting guard’s 789,839. Wall became the first Wizard voted in as a starter by the fans since Gilbert Arenas in 2007.

L.A. Lakers superstar Kobe Bryant joins Curry in the West’s backcourt, but Bryant’s availability for the February 15 game appears very much in doubt after he suffered a torn rotator cuff on Wednesday. Houston’s James Harden, currently leading the NBA in scoring, would be a likely candidate to replace Bryant if the injury forces him to miss the game.

The game will feature a Gasol Brothers showdown, as Chicago’s Pau Gasol joins James and New York’s Carmelo Anthony in the East’s frontcourt, while Memphis’s Marc Gasol teams up for the West with the L.A. Clippers’ Blake Griffin and New Orleans’s Anthony Davis.

Here are the starting lineups for the all-star game:

EAST

Frontcourt

LeBron James, Cavaliers; Carmelo Anthony, Knicks;  Pau Gasol, Bulls

Backcourt

John Wall, Wizards; Kyle Lowry, Raptors

WEST

Frontcourt

Blake Griffin, Clippers, Marc Gasol, Grizzlies; Anthony Davis, Pelicans

Backcourt

Stephen Curry, Warriors; Kobe Bryant, Lakers

Who do you think was left off the list? Who should the coaches pick as reserves?


►   NBA Game Results

(Friday, January 23)


Final Score: Toronto 91, Philadelphia 86

Kyle Lowry came alive late and Greivis Vasquez made the go-ahead basket with 25.9 seconds left to lift the Toronto Raptors over the Philadelphia 76ers, 91-86, on Friday. Michael Carter- Williams made a 3-pointer, then stole the ball before making a layup to give the Sixers an 86-85 lead with 41.9 seconds remaining. Lowry missed from beyond the arc but DeMar DeRozan pulled down the offensive rebound. Vasquez then made a layup to put Toronto in front. Carter-Williams drove to the hoop and turned the ball over, leading to a pair of Jonas Valanciunas free throws with 10.6 seconds to go. Henry Sims air-balled a 3-pointer at the other end and the ball went out of bounds off Philadelphia. Lowry capped his 17-point fourth quarter with two free throws to seal the game. Lowry, who was named an NBA All-Star starter on Thursday, ended with 21 points and three steals for the Raptors, who have won seven straight against Philadelphia.


Final Score: Atlanta 103, Oklahoma City 93

The Atlanta Hawks have become the most dominant team in the NBA over the past two months. They now have a franchise- record 15 consecutive victories. Paul Millsap, had 22 points and 10 rebounds, Jeff Teague scored 17 with nine assists and the Hawks pulled away for a 103-93 win over the Oklahoma City Thunder Friday night. Atlanta, which hasn’t lost since Dec. 26 at home against Milwaukee, has won 29 of its last 31 games. Its only other defeat in the stretch came at Orlando when Tobias Harris nailed a jumper at the buzzer on Dec. 13. That marked the end of a home-and-home set. The Hawks previously won 14 in a row Nov. 16 - Dec. 14, 1993, the last season in which the Hawks won a division title. Al Horford posted 14 points and 12 boards, and DeMarre Carroll and Dennis Schroder each had 13 points for Atlanta. Russell Westbrook scored 22 with 11 assists, and Kevin Durant chipped in 21 points for Oklahoma City, which had a four-game winning streak broken.


Final Score: Cleveland 129, Charlotte 90

Facing a defense that has not allowed a team to score more than 80 points in three straight games, the Cleveland Cavaliers put up 75 in the first half en route to a 129-90 win over the Charlotte Hornets on Friday. LeBron James led the scorching-hot Cavs with 25 points and added nine assists and four steals in their fifth straight win. J.R. Smith made 7-of-11 shots from 3-point range on his way to a 21 point game, Kyrie Irving chipped in 18 points, and Timofey Mozgov added 14 points and 10 rebounds. Cleveland shot 15-of-28 from long range and hit 51.7 of its attempts overall. The Cavs outrebounded Charlotte 56-42 and held a 27-9 fastbreak points advantage. The Hornets saw their three-game winning streak end despite 22 points and 11 boards from Al Jefferson. Michael Kidd-Gilchrist contributed 15 points and seven rebounds.


Final Score: Miami 89, Indiana 87

Dwyane Wade’s 13th point of the contest, a free throw with 6.9 seconds left in regulation, was the difference as the Miami Heat nearly blew a large lead but held on to beat the Indiana Pacers by an 89-87 count on Friday. Luol Deng netted 23 points and Chris Bosh added 19 for the Heat, who had lost two in a row and won for the first time at home since Jan. 4 against the Nets. Chris Andersen totaled four points in 28-plus minutes but recorded a game-high 13 rebounds. Luis Scola came off the bench to post 14 points for the Pacers, who dropped their seventh straight contest. George Hill and CJ Watson each contributed 13 points while David West had 12 with nine boards in the setback.


Final Score: New York 113, Orlando 106

Carmelo Anthony scored 25 points as the New York Knicks stayed hot with a 113-106 win over the Orlando Magic on Friday. Jason Smith supplied 19 points and five rebounds, Lance Thomas netted 16 points and Langston Galloway had 15 points and eight boards for the Knicks, who won three game in a row for the first time this season. Despite Nikola Vucevic tying a season-high with 34 points and grabbing 18 rebounds, the Magic lost their fourth straight game. Victor Oladipo and Channing Frye scored 15 and 14 points, respectively, in defeat.


Final Score: Chicago 102, Dallas 98

Derrick Rose’s Monday night call-out has reaped immediate benefits. Jimmy Butler had 20 points, eight rebounds and six assists, Pau Gasol added 13 points and 16 boards and the Chicago Bulls held off the Dallas Mavericks 102-98 on Friday night. After being handed a sixth loss in eight games following a 108-94 blowout loss to the Cavaliers in Cleveland, Rose preached for better effort from his teammates during a postgame press conference. The Bulls listened to their star. Chicago routed the reigning-champion San Antonio Spurs 104-81 on Thursday night prior to the triumph in Dallas. Rose netted 18 of his 20 points in the first half for Chicago, which outrebounded Dallas 47-30. Dirk Nowitzki supplied 24 points, Monta Ellis provided 17 points and five steals and Tyson Chandler posted 10 points and 12 boards for the Mavericks, who had their three-game winning streak snapped.


Final Score: New Orleans 92, Minnesota 84

Anthony Davis had 21 points and 12 rebounds in the New Orleans Pelicans’ 92-84 win over the Minnesota Timberwolves on Friday. Eric Gordon added 20 points and five assists for the Pelicans, who have won two in a row. Tyreke Evans and Dante Cunningham tallied 17 and 14 points, respectively, with Evans also dishing out eight assists. Thaddeus Young ended with 15 points for the Timberwolves, who have lost 10 straight at home. Gorgui Dieng contributed 14 points and 15 rebounds.


Final Score: San Antonio 99, LA Lakers 85

Tony Parker scored 17 points to lead the San Antonio Spurs to a comfortable 99-85 win over the Los Angeles Lakers on Friday. Kawhi Leonard scored 15 points and grabbed 14 rebounds, and Manu Ginobili also added 15 points to help the Spurs win for the fourth time in five games. Tim Duncan chipped in 14 points and seven boards. The Lakers lost their seventh straight game hours after confirming Kobe Bryant tore a rotator cuff, putting his season in jeopardy. Nick Young led Los Angeles with 17 points, and Carlos Boozer, Jordan Hill, Wayne Ellington and Jordan Clarkson joined him in double figures.


Final Score: Boston 100, Denver 99

Avery Bradley hit the go-ahead three-pointer with 1:24 left in regulation and Boston slipped out of Denver with a 100-99 victory at Pepsi Center. Bradley finished with a team-best 18 points for the Celtics, with Brandon Bass picking up 17 points, nine rebounds and five assists and Jared Sullinger had 14 and eight boards. Jameer Nelson poured in a game-high 23 points on 9-of-20 shooting for the Nuggets, who dropped their fifth straight contest. Arron Aflalo picked up 20 points and J.J. Hickson totaled 15 with 14 rebounds.


Final Score: Houston 113, Phoenix 111

James Harden scored 33 points and hit the winning jumper at the buzzer to lift the Houston Rockets to a 113-111 triumph over the Phoenix Suns. Donatas Motiejunas scored 15 for the Rockets, who blew a 16-point lead halfway through the fourth quarter but bounced back to win for the seventh time in 10 games. Josh Smith, Patrick Beverley and Corey Brewer all posted 14 points for the Rockets. Houston lost forward Dwight Howard to a right ankle sprain in the first quarter. He twisted his ankle after landing on a Suns player. Eric Bledsoe had 25 points, nine assists and eight rebounds for the Suns, who had their four-game overall and seven-game home winning streak broken. Isaiah Thomas scored 22 and Markieff Morris totaled 21 points for the Suns.


Final Score: Golden State 126, Sacramento 101

There was a groan at Oracle Arena when Klay Thompson misfired on his first field goal attempt of the fourth quarter. They were giving him a standing ovation just a few minutes later. Thompson turned a Sacramento Kings’ third-quarter lead into a Golden State Warriors rout all by himself. The sharp-shooting guard set an NBA record for points in a quarter on Friday night, netting 37 of Golden State’s 41 in the third en route to a 126-101 Warriors blowout win over the Kings. Thompson, who finished with 52 points after departing at the 9:28 mark of the fourth, made all 13 of his shots in the third, with nine of them coming from beyond the arc. He broke George Gervin and Carmelo Anthony’s previous mark of 33 points for a quarter. During a 5:25 span of the third, Thompson poured in 19 straight Golden State points and potted five triples during the stretch. He outscored the Kings 37-22 in the period. Thompson finished 16-of-25 from the field overall and was 11-of-15 from long distance. Marreese Speights had 19 points off the bench, while Stephen Curry added 10 points and 11 assists for Golden State, which has won four straight and 12 of its last 13 games. DeMarcus Cousins tallied 28 points and 11 boards to lead the Kings, who have dropped six straight games.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Marlins reportedly sign Ichiro

The Miami Marlins have reportedly reached a one-year agreement with outfielder Ichiro Suzuki.

The Miami Herald, citing a source with direct knowledge of the deal, is reporting the agreement is in the $2 million range.

Suzuki hit .284 with one homer, 22 RBI and 42 runs scored in 143 games with the Yankees last season, his 14th year in a league.

A 10-time All-Star, Suzuki has 2,844 major league hits and 4,122 professional hits when counting his time in Japan. He had 10 straight 200-plus hit seasons starting in his rookie year of 2001 with the Seattle Mariners, leading the league in the category seven times.

With Miami, he will likely serve as a fourth outfielder and pinch-hitter.


►   Cubs ink Fowler to 1-year deal

The Chicago Cubs reportedly signed recently-acquired outfielder Dexter Fowler to a one-year contract on Friday, avoiding arbitration.

Fowler will earn $9.5 million over the upcoming season, according to the Chicago Tribune.

The 28-year-old veteran was acquired from Houston on Monday in exchange for pitcher Dan Straily and infielder Luis Valbuena.

Fowler batted .276 with 35 RBI and eight home runs over 116 games for Houston in 2014 after spending his previous six seasons with Colorado.

The experienced switch-hitter has hit .271 with 245 RBI, 48 home runs, 94 stolen bases and 57 triples in 783 career games.


►   Braves bring in Jonny Gomes

The Atlanta Braves and outfielder Jonny Gomes have agreed to a one-year contract.

Financial terms were not disclosed, but MLB.com reported it to be worth $4 million. The deal also includes a vesting option for 2016.

Gomes split last season with Boston and Oakland, batting .234 with six homers and 37 runs batted in over 112 games. He was traded to the Athletics as part of the Jon Lester deal at the July 31 deadline.

The 34-year-old veteran owns a career average of .244 with 155 homers and 500 RBI in 1,108 games with Tampa Bay, Cincinnati, Washington, Oakland and Boston.



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Seppi upsets Federer at Australian Open

Andreas Seppi knew he couldn’t relax.

Up two sets against Roger Federer, the 30-year-old Italian was eying a big upset but remained wary of the opponent on the other side of the net.

“It’s never comfortable playing Roger,“ Seppi said in an on-court interview with a TV reporter.

He should know.

Seppi lost his first 10 matches against Federer before finally finding the all-time great’s number in a monster upset on one of tennis’ biggest stages.

Seppi handed the second-seeded former world No. 1 Federer his earliest exit at the Australian Open in 14 years, gutting out a four-set win in the third round on Friday that took three hours to complete and ended with one of the unheralded Italian’s best shots on match point in a fourth-set tiebreak.

Following a hard serve, Seppi found himself in no man’s land on Federer’s return but got the ball back. It drew Federer to the net, but Seppi was able to track the next shot down in the corner, looping a forehand over Federer and down the line for a winner.

It finished off a 6-4, 7-6 (7-5), 4-6, 7-6 (7-5) win that ended Federer’s run of 11 consecutive semifinal appearances at the season’s first Grand Slam event.

“To beat Roger first time, especially in a Grand Slam, best-of-five, is a special moment for me,“ said Seppi. “Of course, at the beginning, I just went on the court to enjoy the match and to play my best tennis. I was pretty calm. I have to say, from the beginning [and] also in the important moments.“

Federer hadn’t lost this early at the Aussie Open since he was also ousted in the third round way back in 2001.

“[It was] just a bad day,“ admitted Federer. “I wish I could have played better, but clearly it was tough losing the first two. [I] had chances to get back into it. I let it slip, I mean, both times in some ways. I guess I won the wrong points out there today. I knew how important that second set tiebreak was, so clearly that hurt, losing that one. The end wasn’t pretty. It wasn’t easy to play with the shadow. But it was the same for both of us. [It was] just a disappointing loss.“

The four-time Aussie champion—his last win came in 2010—Federer aced Seppi 15 times but also committed nine double faults, including one to go down 15-30 in the 12th game of the fourth set.

The Swiss star fought back and won the game with an ace to force a tiebreak.

Federer holds a men’s-record 17 Grand Slam titles, but it’s the three-time ATP champion Seppi who moved on to face Aussie Nick Kyrgios.

Meanwhile, third-seeded former No. 1 Rafael Nadal got past Israeli Dudi Sela 6-1, 6-0, 7-5 and No. 6 seed Andy Murray, a three-time Aussie Open runner- up, eased to a 6-1, 6-1, 7-5 win over Portuguese Joao Sousa and will next face No. 10 Grigor Dimitrov, who battled Marcos Baghdatis for 3 hours, 27 minutes before besting the 2006 Melbourne runner-up 4-6, 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, 6-3 win.

The 14-time Grand Slam champion Nadal beat Federer in the 2009 Aussie final and is a two-time runner-up in Melbourne, including last year when he was stunned by Stan Wawrinka in the final. Nadal, of course, is the reigning French Open king.

Nadal’s fourth-round opponent will be tall South African Kevin Anderson.

In other third-round action involving seeds, No. 7 former Wimbledon runner-up Tomas Berdych handled Serb and last week’s Sydney champion Viktor Troicki 6-4, 6-3, 6-4 and a No. 14 Anderson dismissed No. 24 Frenchman Richard Gasquet 6-4, 7-6 (7-3), 7-6 (8-6).

Up next for Berdych will be dangerous Aussie Bernard Tomic.

Also on Day 5, the promising crowd favorite Kyrgios doused Tunisian Malek Jaziri 6-3, 7-6 (8-6), 6-1 and an all-Aussie affair saw Tomic knock out Sam Groth 6-4, 7-6 (10-8), 6-3.

The third round will resume here on Saturday, including matches for current world No. 1 Novak Djokovic, the fourth-seeded reigning Oz champion Wawrinka and fifth-seeded U.S. Open runner-up Kei Nishikori. Djokovic will take on 31st-seeded Spaniard Fernando Verdasco, while Wawrinka will encounter Finnish veteran Jarkko Nieminen and the Japanese Nishikori will be opposed by American two-time NCAA singles champion Steve Johnson.

The reigning Wimbledon champ Djokovic is a seven-time major titlist, including four Aussie crowns. He captured the title at Melbourne Park three straight years from 2011-13.

Also slated for action Saturday are eighth-seeded Canadian Milos Raonic, ninth-seeded former Roland Garros finalist David Ferrer and 19th-seeded towering American John Isner.


►   Sharapova, Halep, Bouchard move on in Oz

French Open champion Maria Sharapova, Roland Garros runner-up Simon Halep and Wimbledon finalist Eugenie Bouchard were among Friday’s third-round winners at the 2015 Australian Open.

The second-seeded former world No. 1 Sharapova blitzed helpless 31st-seeded Kazakhstani Zarina Diyas 6-1, 6-1 in 61 minutes at Laver Arena.

“I started really focused, I knew I had a tough, long match previously, so I wanted to start off strong and finish strong,“ said Sharapova.

“I think I did a good job of that.“

Sharapova captured the Aussie Open in 2008 and was the runner-up here in 2007 and 2012. The five-time major champ will face Chinese Peng Shuai in the fourth round on Sunday.

Meanwhile, the No. 3 seed Halep fought past American Bethanie Mattek-Sands for a 6-4, 7-5 decision. Halep led 4-1 in the second set before Mattek- Sands mounted a mini comeback, only to fall short in the end.

Up next for the Romanian Halep will be Belgian Yanina Wickmayer.

The seventh-seeded Canadian star Bouchard had a tough first set but ended up cruising in the second to get past capable Frenchwoman Caroline Garcia 7-5, 6-0.

“I don’t think it was the prettiest tennis out there today,“ admitted Bouchard, who has a big fan base in Australia.

Her fourth-round opponent will be Romania’s Irina-Camelia Begu.

Tenth-seeded Russian left-hander Ekaterina Makarova defeated 22nd-seeded Czech and last week’s Sydney runner-up Karolina Pliskova 6-4, 6-4, while Wickmayer pulled off an upset of 14th-seeded Italian and former French Open runner-up Sara Errani, 4-6, 6-4, 6-3.

In some other third-round action, the 21st-seeded Peng battled her way past Kazakhstan’s Yaroslava Shvedova 7-6 (9-7), 6-3, German Julia Goerges topped Czech Lucie Hradecka 7-6 (8-6), 7-5, and Begu dismissed German Carina Witthoeft 6-4, 6-4. Goerges should have her hands full with Makarova on Sunday.

The third round is scheduled to conclude on Saturday, including matches for top-seeded five-time Aussie champion Serena Williams, fourth-seeded Wimbledon titlist and last week’s Sydney winner Petra Kvitova and 18th-seeded former Aussie finalist Venus Williams.

The 18-time Grand Slam champion and reigning U.S. Open queen Serena will take on 26th-seeded Elina Svitolina, while the left-handed Kvitova will tangle with rising American Madison Keys and the former No. 1 and seven- time Grand Slam champion Venus will encounter talented Italian Camila Giorgi.

Also on Day 6, sixth-seeded former Wimbledon runner-up Agnieszka Radwanska will meet 30th-seeded American Varvara Lepchenko; 11th-seeded 2014 Aussie runner-up Dominika Cibulkova will battle 19th-seeded Frenchwoman Alize Cornet; 25th-seeded Czech Barbora Zahlavova Strycova will face former world No. 1 star Victoria Azarenka; and Coco Vandeweghe will lock horns with fellow American and last week’s Hobart runner-up Madison Brengle. Cibulkova was last year’s Aussie runner-up to since-retired Li Na.

The two-time Aussie Open champ and two-time U.S. Open runner-up Azarenka titled in Melbourne back-to-back in 2012 and 2013 before being slowed by a foot injury last year. She appears to be completely healthy now and ready to make a deep run at this fortnight.


►   Australian Open Men’s Tennis Update - January 23

Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia

Total Prize Money: $14,000,000

FRIDAY’S THIRD ROUND MATCHES

Andreas Seppi def. Roger Federer (2), 6-4, 7-6 (7-5), 4-6, 7-6 (7-5)
Rafael Nadal (3) def. Dudi Sela, 6-1, 6-0, 7-5
Andy Murray (6) def. Joao Sousa, 6-1, 6-1, 7-5
Tomas Berdych (7) def. Viktor Troicki, 6-4, 6-3, 6-4
Grigor Dimitrov (10) def. Marcos Baghdatis, 4-6, 6-3, 3-6, 6-3, 6-3
Kevin Anderson (14) def. Richard Gasquet (24), 6-4, 7-6 (7-3), 7-6 (8-6)
Nick Kyrgios def. Malek Jaziri, 6-3, 7-6 (8-6), 6-1
Bernard Tomic def. Sam Groth, 6-4, 7-6 (10-8), 6-3

SATURDAY’S THIRD ROUND MATCHES

Novak Djokovic (1) vs. Fernando Verdasco (31)
Stan Wawrinka (4) vs. Jarkko Nieminen
Kei Nishikori (5) vs. Steve Johnson
Milos Raonic (8) vs. Benjamin Becker
David Ferrer (9) vs. Gilles Simon (18)
Feliciano Lopez (12) vs. Jerzy Janowicz
John Isner (19) vs. Gilles Muller
Vasek Pospisil vs. Guillermo Garcia-Lopez


►   Australian Open Men’s Doubles Tennis Update - January 23

Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia

Total Prize Money: $2,600,000

FRIDAY’S SECOND ROUND MATCHES

J.Rojer/H.Tecau (6) def. C.Guccione/L.Hewitt, 6-4, 6-2
F.Lopez/M.Mirnyi def. R.Bopanna/D.Nestor (7), 7-5, 6-3
A.Qureshi/N.Zimonjic (8) def. P.Carreno Busta/G.Garcia-Lopez, 7-6 (11-9), 6-4
S.Bolelli/F.Fognini def. R.Klaasen/L.Paes (10), 2-6, 6-4, 6-1
B.Becker/A.Sitak def. J.Knowle/V.Pospisil (13), 1-2, retired
D.Inglot/F.Mergea (14) def. D.Schwartzman/H.Zeballos, 7-6 (8-6), 4-6, 6-2
J.Murray/J.Peers (16) def. O.Jasika/J.Smith, 6-2, 6-3
P.Cuevas/D.Marrero def. A.Krajicek/D.Young, 6-2, 6-2

SATURDAY’S SECOND ROUND MATCHES

B.Bryan/M.Bryan (1) vs. C.Berlocq/L.Mayer
J.Benneteau/E.Roger-Vasselin (2) vs. S.Giraldo/J.Sousa
I.Dodig/M.Melo (4) vs. A.Golubev/D.Istomin
A.Peya/B.Soares (5) vs. O.Marach/M.Venus
R.Lindstedt/M.Matkowski (9) vs. J.Erlich/T.Huey
J.Cabal/R.Farah (11) vs. P.Herbert/N.Mahut
E.Butorac/S.Groth (12) vs. P.Andujar/D.Brown
J.Chardy/L.Kubot vs. A.Bolt/A.Whittington


►   Australian Open Women’s Tennis Update - January 23

Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia

Total Prize Money: $14,000,000

FRIDAY’S THIRD ROUND MATCHES

Maria Sharapova (2) def. Zarina Diyas (31), 6-1, 6-1
Simona Halep (3) def. Bethanie Mattek-Sands, 6-4, 7-5
Eugenie Bouchard (7) def. Caroline Garcia, 7-5, 6-0
Ekaterina Makarova (10) def. Karolina Pliskova (22), 6-4, 6-4
Yanina Wickmayer def. Sara Errani (14), 4-6, 6-4, 6-3
Peng Shuai (21) def. Yaroslava Shvedova, 7-6 (9-7), 6-3
Julia Goerges def. Lucie Hradecka, 7-6 (8-6), 7-5
Irina-Camelia Begu def. Carina Witthoeft, 6-4, 6-4

SATURDAY’S THIRD ROUND MATCHES

Serena Williams (1) vs. Elina Svitolina (26)
Petra Kvitova (4) vs. Madison Keys
Agnieszka Radwanska (6) vs. Varvara Lepchenko (30)
Dominika Cibulkova (11) vs. Alize Cornet (19)
Venus Williams (18) vs. Camila Giorgi
Garbine Muguruza (24) vs. Timea Bacsinszky
Barbora Zahlavova Strycova (25) vs. Victoria Azarenka
Coco Vandeweghe vs. Madison Brengle


►   Australian Open Women’s Doubles Tennis Update - January 23

Melbourne Park, Melbourne, Australia
Total Prize Money: $2,600,000
FRIDAY’S SECOND ROUND MATCHES

G.Dabrowski/A.Rosolska def. S.Hsieh/S.Mirza (2), 7-6 (7-5), 6-4
M.Hingis/F.Pennetta (4) def. D.Hantuchova/K.Knapp, 6-3, 6-7 (5-7), 6-2
R.Kops-Jones/A.Spears (5) def. V.Diatchenko/M.Niculescu, 6-1, 3-6, 7-6 (7-5)
K.Jans-Ignacik/A.Klepac def. G.Muguruza/C.Suarez Navarro (6), 7-6 (8-6),


6-4
A.Kudryavtseva/A.Pavlyuchenkova (12) def. A.Panova/H.Watson, 6-0, 6-2
M.Krajicek/B.Zahlavova Strycova (13) def. J.Gajdosova/A.Tomljanovic, 7-5,


6-3
S.Kuznetsova/S.Stosur def. A.Rodionova/A.Rodionova, 6-2, 6-4
S.Soler-Espinosa/M.Torro-Flor def. P.Shuai/X.Yi-Fan, 7-5, 6-2
FRIDAY’S FIRST ROUND MATCH

D.Cibulkova/K.Flipkens def. C.Vandeweghe/Y.Wickmayer, 6-3, 6-4
SATURDAY’S SECOND ROUND MATCHES

S.Errani/R.Vinci (1) vs. M.Barthel/M.Minella
E.Makarova/E.Vesnina (3) vs. D.Cibulkova/K.Flipkens
C.Garcia/K.Srebotnik (7) vs. S.Rogers/D.Vekic
A.Hlavackova/L.Hradecka (9) vs. M.Adamczak/O.Rogowska
T.Babos/K.Mladenovic (10) vs. B.Mattek-Sands/L.Safarova
A.Medina Garrigues/Y.Shvedova (11) vs. S.Stephens/T.Townsend
Y.Chan/Z.Jie (14) vs. L.Arruabarrena/I.Begu
J.Goerges/A.Groenefeld (16) vs. Z.Diyas/C.Scheepers



The Gilmer Free Press

►   Grace, Wiesberger remain among Qatar Masters leaders

Branden Grace and Bernd Wiesberger both birdied the final hole on Friday to remain tied for the lead after three rounds of the Qatar Masters.

Grace and Wiesberger both shot 4-under 68 in round three. They were joined atop the leaderboard at 13-under-par 203 by Marc Warren and Emiliano Grillo, who both carded 5-under 67s on Friday at Doha Golf Club.

Eddie Pepperell fired a 7-under 65, the low round of the day by two strokes, to soar into a share of fifth place at minus-11. He stands alongside Alejandro Canizares (68) and George Coetzee (70). Coetzee had shared the 36-hole lead with Grace and Wiesberger.

Oliver Fisher posted a 3-under 69 and he is alone in eighth place at 9-under 207. Former U.S. Amateur winner Byeong-hun An (72) and 2003 champion Darren Fichardt (71) are among six players tied for ninth at 8-under-par 208.

Grace opened with a birdie at the first, but he faltered to a back-to-back bogeys at three and four. He quickly recovered those strokes as he birdied the Nos. 5 and 6. His birdie at the fifth came after a remarkable wedge shot from the trees.

“I actually didn’t hit that bad a tee shot. I thought I was just in the rough on the right and my ball must have had a big bounce to the right. Where it finished, I thought, this is going to take some magic,“ Grace said of the fifth. “I could only hit a big, snap hook wedge and when I hit it, I couldn’t see the ball. We heard the claps and next thing you know, I managed to make a nice little 5-footer for birdie. That definitely got it kick started.“

The South African parred three in a row from the seventh. Around the turn, Grace birdied the 10th to move to 11-under. After a pair of pars, he inched within one of the lead as he birdied the 13th. Grace rolled in a 6-foot birdie effort at the 18th to gain a piece of the lead.

Wiesberger birdied the second and third to move into the lead at minus-11. After he was joined there, Wiesberger again moved in front as he birdied the par-3 eighth from 15 feet out.

The Austrian birdied the 12th to climb to 13-under, where he led by one. At the drivable 16th, he pulled his tee shot left of the green. He failed to reach the green with his second.

Wiesberger’s third ran well by the hole and he 2-putted for bogey to slip one back. He atoned for that mistake with a 5-foot birdie putt at the last.

“It was just that bad swing on 16, which cost me a bogey there, so it’s really a 2-shot swing on a short hole like that,“ Wiesberger stated. “I finished nicely with a birdie and it gives me a bit of momentum for tomorrow.“

Warren birdied the second and sixth, both for the second day in a row. He converted consecutive birdie tries at nine and 10.

The Scotsman dipped to 11-under as he bogeyed the 14th. Warren came right back with birdies at 15 and 16 to grab a share of the lead. He closed with a pair of pars to end at minus-13.

Grillo ran off sixth consecutive pars to open his round. He caught fire starting with a birdie at the seventh. Grillo poured in three straight birdie efforts from the ninth to jump into a tie for the lead at minus-12.

After four pars in a row, Grillo 2-putted for birdie from just short of the green at No. 16. He parred the final two holes to cap a bogey-free round.

NOTES: Of the four leaders, Grillo is the only one without a European Tour victory ... Grace earned his fifth tour win in December at the Alfred Dunhill Championship, while Warren picked up his third title last year and Wiesberger won twice in the 2012 campaign ... Grace is 5-0 when owning at least a piece of the 54-hole ... Defending champion Sergio Garcia dropped seven strokes in six holes as he struggled to a 5-over 77, which left him a 1-under 215 ... World No. 2 Henrik Stenson posted his second straight 71 and stands at minus-4, while former U.S. Open champion Justin Rose shot 3-under 69 and is tied for 22nd at 6-under-par 210 ... Canizares last made a bogey in the final round at Abu Dhabi last week and has played 68 bogey-free holes since.

The Gilmer Free Press


References
ABC - American Broadcasting Company
CBS - Columbia Broadcast System
FOX - Fox Entertainment Group
NBC - National Broadcasting Company
JIP - Joined in Progress
DSS - DIRECTV
TSN - Sports Network (Canada)
SNET/SN - Rogers SportsNet (Canada)
RDS - Reseau des sports
MSG - Madison Square Garden Network
TNT - Turner Network Television
TBS - Turner Broadcasting System
SNY - SportsNet New York
CBSSN - CBS - College Sports Network
CSN - Comcast SportsNet
TCN - The Comcast Network
NBCSN - NBC Sports Network
NESN - New England Sports Network
MASN - Mid-Atlantic Sports Network
ROOT - Root Sports (Pittsburgh, Northwest, Rocky Mountain)
CST - Cox Sports Television
FCS - FOX College Sports
FS - FOX Sports Regional
RSN - Regional Sports Networks
CPTV - Connecticut Public Broadcasting
TVG - Horse Racing Channel
FS1 - FOX Sports 1
TWC - Time Warner Cable Sports Channel
* - If Necessary


SATURDAY, JANUARY 24, 2015
National Basketball Association
New York at Charlotte, 7:00 PM - MSG, SportSouth, NBA TV, DSS
Detroit at Milwaukee, 7:30 PM - FS-Detroit, Wisconsin, DSS
Philadelphia at Memphis, 8:00 PM - CSN-Philadelphia, SportSouth, DSS
Brooklyn at Utah, 9:00 PM - YES, ROOT-Northwest, DSS
Washington at Portland, 10:00 PM - CSN-DC, Northwest, NBA TV, DSS
National Hockey League
All-Star Skills Competition, 7:00 PM - NBCSN
College Basketball
Tulsa at East Carolina, 12:00 PM - ESPNews
Rutgers at Penn State, 12:00 PM - ESPN U
Coll of Charleston at Drexel, 12:00 PM - NBCSN
Iowa at Purdue, 12:00 PM - Big Ten Network
Wake Forest at Clemson, 12:00 PM - ACC Network, ESPN3.com
DePaul at Xavier, 12:00 PM - FS1
Oklahoma State at Kansas State, 12:00 PM - ESPN 2
Kentucky at South Carolina, 12:00 PM - ESPN
Jacksonville at Northern Ky, 1:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Bucknell at Boston Univ, 1:00 PM - Patriot League Network
Texas A&M at Tennessee, 1:00 PM - FS-Florida, SportSouth, ESPN3.com
South Dakota at IUPUI, 1:00 PM - HTSN, ESPN3.com
Loyola-Chicago at Indiana State, 1:05 PM - WTWO-TV
Arkansas at Missouri, 2:00 PM - ESPN 2
Northeastern at William & Mary, 2:00 PM - NBCSN
Louisiana at Georgia State, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Kansas at Texas, 2:00 PM - CBS
Loyola-Maryland at Colgate, 2:00 PM - Patriot League Network
Lehigh at Lafayette, 2:00 PM - Patriot League Network
TCU at West Virginia, 2:00 PM - ESPN U
Dartmouth at Harvard, 2:00 PM - Ivy League Digital Network
Boise State at Air Force, 2:00 PM - ROOT-Rocky Mountain, Northwest
Florida State at North Carolina, 2:00 PM - ESPN
Fla Gulf Coast at Kennesaw St, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Stetson at USC Upstate, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Illinois at Minnesota, 2:15 PM - Big Ten Network
Georgetown at Marquette, 2:30 PM - FS1
TX-San Antonio at Western Ky, 3:00 PM - FCS, WKU PBS, WBNA
Texas-El Paso at Marshall, 3:00 PM - ASN, Altitude, MASN, CSN-Chicago
Georgia at Miss State, 3:00 PM - FSN, SportsTime Ohio, ESPN3.com
Miami-Florida at Syracuse, 4:00 PM - ESPN 2
BYU at San Diego, 4:00 PM - Time Warner, CSN-California, ROOT-Northwest
Robert Morris at St Francis-NY, 4:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Miami-Ohio at Northern Ill, 4:00 PM - ESPN3.com
UCLA at Oregon, 4:00 PM - CBS
Iowa State at Texas Tech, 4:00 PM - ESPN U
Southern Ill at Evansville, 4:00 PM - FS-Midwest, CSN-Chicago, ESPN3.com
Michigan State at Nebraska, 4:00 PM - ESPN
New Mexico at Wyoming, 4:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Liberty at Radford, 4:30 PM - ESPN3.com
Eastern Mich at Central Mich, 4:30 PM - ESPN3.com
North Florida at Lipscomb, 5:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Old Dominion at UAB, 5:30 PM - ASN, MASN, Altitude, CSN-Chicago+
Oklahoma at Baylor, 6:00 PM - ESPN 2
USC at Oregon State, 6:00 PM - Pac-12 Network
Houston at SMU, 6:00 PM - CBSSN
UNC Greensboro at Chattanooga, 6:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Florida at Ole Miss, 6:00 PM - SEC Network
LSU at Vanderbilt, 6:00 PM - ESPN U
North Dakota St at IUPU-Ft Wayne, 7:00 PM - PBS39
Wisconsin at Michigan, 7:00 PM - ESPN
Wagner at Central Conn St, 7:00 PM - MSG+, FCS
Richmond at Dayton, 7:00 PM - Atlantic 10 Network, SNY, CSN-Baltimore
Western Carolina at Samford, 7:00 PM - SoCon Digital Network
Ill-Chicago at Youngstown St, 7:00 PM - ESPn3.com
Nevada at Fresno State, 7:00 PM - Mountain West Network
South Dakota St at Oral Roberts, 8:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Washington St at Colorado, 8:00 PM - Pac-12 Network
Pacific at Gonzaga, 8:00 PM - ROOT-Northwest, ESPN3.com
Utah State at UNLV, 8:00 PM - CBSSN
Murray State at SIU Edwardsville, 8:00 PM - FS-Midwest
Memphis at Tulane, 8:00 PM - ESPN U
Towson at UNC-Wilmington, 8:00 PM - American Sports Network, CSN-Chicago+
Missouri State at Bradley, 8:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Auburn at Alabama, 8:30 PM - SEC Network
Utah Valley U at New Mexico St, 9:00 PM - ASN, MASN, CSN-Chicago
Long Beach State at CS-Northridge, 10:00 PM - ESPN3.com
San Diego St at Colorado State, 10:00 PM - ESPN U
Arizona at California, 10:30 PM - Pac-12 Network
Pepperdine at Santa Clara, 11:00 PM - CSN-California, ROOT-Rocky Mountain
UC Irvine at Hawaii, 11:59 PM - OCSports
Arizona State at Stanford, 11:59 PM - ESPN U
Women’s College Basketball
Middle Tennessee at Charlotte, 12:00 PM - MSG+, ROOT-Northwest, Pittsburgh
Kansas State at Baylor, 12:00 PM - FS-Midwest, Southwest
Louisiana at Georgia State, 12:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Robert Morris at St. Francis (NY), 1:00 PM - ESPN3.com
USC Upstate at Stetson, 1:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Akron at Central Michigan, 1:00 PM - ESPN3.com
West Virginia at Kansas, 2:00 PM - MSG+, ROOT-Pittsburgh, FS-South
Northern Kentucky at Jacksonville, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Cleveland State at Wright State, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Lipscomb at North Florida, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Campbell at Liberty, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Eastern Michigan at Toledo, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Green Bay at Detroit, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
High Point at Radford, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Northern Illinois at Buffalo, 2:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Tulsa at East Carolina, 2:30 PM - ESPN3.com
Illinois-Chicago at Milwaukee, 3:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Furman at Chattanooga, 3:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Boston College at Pittsburgh, 4:00 PM - YES, ROOT-Pitt, FS-South, CSN-Balt
Texas Tech at Oklahoma, 4:00 PM - FS-Wisconsin
Youngstown State at Oakland, 4:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Kennesaw State at Florida Gulf Coast, 7:00 PM - ESPN3.com
Montana State at Northern Arizona, 8:30 PM - FS-Arizona
College Football
Senior Bowl, 4:00 PM - NFL Network
College Hockey
Northern Michigan at Penn State, 4:30 PM - Big Ten Network
Ohio State at Michigan State, 7:00 PM - Big Ten Network
Maine at New Hampshire, 7:00 PM - FCS
Denver at Miami-Ohio, 7:00 PM - FCS
North Star College Cup, 8:00 PM - FS-North
NBA Developmental League
Texas at Westchester, 7:00 PM - MSG+
Minor League Hockey
San Antonio at Lake Erie, 7:00 PM - FS-Southwest
National Lacrosse League
Edmonton at Calgary, 9:00 PM - ESPN3.com, TSN.CA
Vancouver at Colorado, 9:00 PM - Altitude, ESPN3.com, TSN 2
International Soccer
Cordoba CF vs. Real Madrid CF, 9:55 AM - beIN Sport
Manchester City vs. Middlesbrough, 10:00 AM - FS1
Elche CF vs. FC Barcelona, 11:55 AM - beIN Sport
SS Lazio vs. AC Milan, 2:40 PM - beIN Sport
Golf
EUROPEAN - Qatar Masters, 4:30 AM - Golf Channel
PGA - Humana Challenge, 3:00 PM - Golf Channel
CHAMPIONS - Mitsubishi Electric Championship, 7:30 PM - Golf Channel
Tennis
Australian Open, 3:00 AM - ESPN 2
Australian Open, 9:00 PM - ESPN 2

HOUSE FOR RENT: 3 Bedroon, 1 Bath

The Gilmer Free Press

House, across from DHHR in Glenville for rent

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If interested, see Deana or Greg at Appalachian Piping Products for a rental application

Should you have questions call Deana or Greg at 304.462.5751

The Dire State of Our Nation (What You Won’t Hear from the Politicians)

The Gilmer Free Press

“As nightfall does not come at once, neither does oppression. In both instances, there is a twilight when everything remains seemingly unchanged. And it is in such twilight that we all must be most aware of change in the air – however slight – lest we become unwitting victims of the darkness.” ― Supreme Court Justice William O. Douglas

No matter what the politicians say about how great America is and how we, as a people, will always triumph, the fact is that the nation seems to be imploding.

Despite the dire state of our nation, however, you can rest assured that none of the problems that continue to plague our lives and undermine our freedoms will be addressed by our so-called elected representatives in any credible, helpful way, and certainly not during a State of the Union address.

Consider the following facts:

Our government is massively in debt. Currently, the national debt is somewhere in the vicinity of $18 trillion. More than a third of our debt is owned by foreign countries, namely China and Japan.

Our education system is abysmal. Despite the fact that we spend more than most of the world on education ($115,000 per student), we rank 36th in the world when it comes to math, reading and science, far below most of our Asian counterparts. Even so, we continue to insist on standardized programs such as Common Core, which teach students to be test-takers rather than thinkers.

Our homes provide little protection against government intrusions. Police agencies, already empowered to crash through your door if they suspect you’re up to no good, now have radars that allow them to “see” through the walls of your home.

Our prisons, housing the largest number of inmates in the world and still growing, have become money-making enterprises for private corporations that rely on the inmates for cheap labor.

We are no longer a representative republic. The U.S. has become a corporate oligarchy. As a recent survey indicates, our elected officials, especially those in the nation’s capital, represent the interests of the rich and powerful rather than the average citizen.

We’ve got the most expensive, least effective health care system in the world compared to other western, industrialized nations.

The air pollution levels are dangerously high for almost half of the U.S. population, putting Americans at greater risk of premature death, aggravated asthma, difficulty breathing and future cardiovascular problems.

Despite outlandish amounts of money being spent on the nation’s “infrastructure,” there are more than 63,000 bridges—one out of every 10 bridges in the country—in urgent need of repair. Some of these bridges are used 250 million times a day by trucks, school buses, passenger cars and other vehicles.

Americans know little to nothing about their rights or how the government is supposed to operate. This includes educators and politicians. For example, 27 percent of elected officials cannot name even one right or freedom guaranteed by the First Amendment, while 54 percent do not know the Constitution gives Congress the power to declare war.

Nearly one out of every three American children live in poverty, ranking us among the worst in the developed world.

Patrolled by police, our schools have become little more than quasi-prisons in which kids as young as age 4 are being handcuffed for “acting up,” subjected to body searches and lockdowns, and suspended for childish behavior.

We’re no longer innocent until proven guilty. In our present surveillance state, that burden of proof has now been shifted so that we are all suspects to be spied on, searched, scanned, frisked, monitored, tracked and treated as if we’re potentially guilty of some wrongdoing or other.

Parents, no longer viewed as having an inherent right to raise their children as they see fit, are increasingly being arrested for letting their kids walk to the playground alone, or play outside alone. Similarly, parents who challenge a doctor’s finding or request a second opinion regarding their children’s health care needs are being charged with medical child abuse and, in a growing number of cases, losing custody of their children to the government.

Private property means little at a time when SWAT teams and other government agents can invade your home, break down your doors, kill your dog, wound or kill you, damage your furnishings and terrorize your family. Likewise, if government officials can fine and arrest you for growing vegetables in your front yard, praying with friends in your living room, installing solar panels on your roof, and raising chickens in your backyard, you’re no longer the owner of your property.

Court rulings undermining the Fourth Amendment and justifying invasive strip searches have left us powerless against police empowered to forcefully draw our blood, forcibly take our DNA, strip search us, and probe us intimately. Accounts are on the rise of individuals—men and women alike—being subjected to what is essentially government-sanctioned rape by police in the course of “routine” traffic stops.

Americans can no longer rely on the courts to mete out justice. The courts were established to intervene and protect the people against the government and its agents when they overstep their bounds. Yet the courts increasingly march in lockstep with the police state, while concerned themselves primarily with advancing the government’s agenda, no matter how unjust or illegal.

Americans have no protection against police abuse. It is no longer unusual to hear about incidents in which police shoot unarmed individuals first and ask questions later. What is increasingly common, however, is the news that the officers involved in these incidents get off with little more than a slap on the hands.

If there is any absolute maxim by which the federal government seems to operate, it is that the American taxpayer always gets ripped off. This is true, whether you’re talking about taxpayers being forced to fund high-priced weaponry that will be used against us, endless wars that do little for our safety or our freedoms, or bloated government agencies such as the National Security Agency with its secret budgets, covert agendas and clandestine activities. Rubbing salt in the wound, even monetary awards in lawsuits against government officials who are found guilty of wrongdoing are paid by the taxpayer.

Americans are powerless in the face of militarized police. In early America, government agents were not permitted to enter one’s home without permission or in a deceitful manner. And citizens could resist arrest when a police officer tried to restrain them without proper justification or a warrant. Daring to dispute a warrant with a police official today who is armed with high-tech military weapons would be nothing short of suicidal. Moreover, as police forces across the country continue to be transformed into extensions of the military, Americans are finding their once-peaceful communities transformed into military outposts, complete with tanks, weaponry, and other equipment designed for the battlefield.

Now these are not problems that you can just throw money at, as most politicians are inclined to do. As I point out in my book A Government of Wolves: The Emerging American Police State, these are problems that will continue to plague our nation unless and until Americans wake up to the fact that we’re the only ones who can change things.

For starters, we’ll need to actually pay attention to what’s going on around us, and I don’t mean by turning on the TV news, which is little more than government propaganda. Pay attention to what your local city councils are enacting. Pay attention to what your school officials are teaching and not teaching. Pay attention to whom your elected officials are allowing to wine and dine them.

Most of all, stop acting like it really matters whether you vote for a Republican or Democrat, because it doesn’t, and start acting like citizens who expect the government to work for them, rather than the other way around.

While that bloated beast called the federal government may not listen to you, you can have a great impact on your local governing bodies. This will mean gathering together with your friends and neighbors and, for example, forcing your local city council to start opposing state and federal programs that are ripping you off. And if need be, your local city council can refuse to abide by the dictates that continue to flow from Washington, DC.

All of the signs point to something nasty up ahead. The time to act is now.

~~  John W. Whitehead ~~

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