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Archive for July, 2014

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. (AP) – The University of Arkansas softball program says that Randi Davis will become the team’s new assistant coach.

Head coach Mike Larabee announced the addition Wednesday. In her new role, Davis will serve as the Razorbacks’ pitching coach.

Davis brings 12 years of previous softball experience, including coaching at the NCAA Division I and III levels and Gold level, private instruction and consulting with various universities.

Davis has provided biomechanical evaluation with a focus on increasing efficiency and velocity for pitchers that have played on the U.S. National Team and played professional softball in the U.S. and internationally.

Her private instruction role also includes working with recruits who will be playing or are now playing for programs within the SEC, Big 12, Big Ten and Missouri Valley Conference.

CONWAY, Ark. (AP) – The University of Central Arkansas is picked fourth in both the preseason Southland Conference polls released Wednesday by the conference.

The Bears, under new head coach Steve Campbell, had 72 votes in the Sports Information Directors’ poll and 70 in the head coaches’ poll.

UCA, which finished in a fourth-place tie last season, has two SLC championships since joining the conference in 2007.

Defending champion Southeastern Louisiana is first in both polls, followed by McNeese State, Sam Houston State, UCA and Northwestern State.

The two polls are identical except for the sixth spot, which has Stephen F. Austin and Lamar tied in the coaches’ poll, while SFA is ahead of Lamar in the SID’s poll.

Abilene Christian is eighth in both polls, followed by Nicholls, Incarnate Word and Houston Baptist.

CHICAGO (AP) — Kansas City Royals first baseman Eric Hosmer was removed from Wednesday’s game with the Chicago White Sox because of decreased grip strength in his right hand.

The Royals made the announcement after Hosmer was lifted for a pinch hitter in the eighth inning.

Hosmer had missed the previous two games after being hit in the hand with a pitch on Sunday. Billy Butler, who played first base during Hosmer’s absence, took over for Hosmer.

Hosmer was 0 for 2, ending a 16-game hitting streak. It was the longest active streak in the majors.

ST. LOUIS (AP) — The St. Louis Cardinals have activated lefty reliever Kevin Siegrist from the 15-day disabled list and optioned rookie lefty Nick Greenwood to Triple-A Memphis.

Siegrist had been on the DL for two months with a left forearm strain. In five rehab appearances with Double-A Springfield, he allowed no runs in 4 2-3 innings. In his most recent outing Monday, he worked 1 1-3 scoreless innings.

As a rookie last year, Siegrist set a franchise record for a reliever with a 0.45 ERA.

This season, he was 1-1 with a 3.60 ERA in 23 games with 27 strikeouts in 20 innings.

Greenwood was 1-1 with a 4.74 ERA in nine games and worked two perfect innings Tuesday.

LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) – Bri Garcia has been hired as an assistant coach for the University of Arkansas at Little Rock soccer team.

Coach Adrian Blewitt announced the addition to the team Wednesday.

Garcia spent the past year as an assistant coach at Nebraska, and she spent five years as a player at Penn State.

Garcia also has assistant coaching experience with the U.S. Olympic Development Program and at summer camps at Penn State.

A defensive specialist as a coach, Garcia will focus on organizing the Trojans’ back line and protecting the UALR goal.

She broke down game film and assisted with on-field coaching with Nebraska last year as the Huskers won the 2013 conference regular-season championship and tournament championship.

Tampa Bay Rays' Yunel Escobar drives in two runs with a ground-rule double in fifth inning againast the St. Louis Cardinals in a baseball game Tuesday, July 22, 2014, in St. Louis. The Rays won 7-2. (AP Photo/St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Chris Lee)

Tampa Bay Rays’ Yunel Escobar drives in two runs with a ground-rule double in fifth inning againast the St. Louis Cardinals in a baseball game Tuesday, July 22, 2014, in St. Louis. The Rays won 7-2. (AP Photo/St. Louis Post-Dispatch, Chris Lee)

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Adam Wainwright felt he owed the St. Louis fans an apology after Tuesday night’s 7-2 loss to Tampa Bay.

The Cardinals’ right-hander, fresh off a start for the National League in the All-Star game, completely fell apart in the fifth inning, allowing five runs on two hits as the Rays broke a 1-1 tie.

“Tonight was unacceptable,” he said. “I’ll be better next time.”

Wainwright walked three, including opposing pitcher Jake Odorizzi, hit a batter and made his first error in 577 innings. Tampa Bay needed just two hits as 10 batters went to the plate.

“I was completely off-kilter and you saw the results,” he said. “My delivery fell completely out of whack. I lost my power position. Nothing was coming out like it should.”

Wainwright (12-5) was attempting to become the NL’s first 13-game winner. He gave up one run and four hits through the first four innings, but never got out of the disastrous fifth.

“We saw some uncharacteristic things, things that aren’t typically going to happen to him,” St. Louis manager Mike Matheny said. “He normally gets himself out of those things. He’s human, they’re going to happen. That inning, he just couldn’t get through it.”

Wainwright entered the game on a roll. He was 4-1 with a 0.81 ERA over his previous six starts.

But he lasted just 4 2-3 innings, giving up six runs, four earned. He walked four and struck out four in his second-shortest stint of the season.

He believes he has spotted the problem and hopes to work out the difficulties before his next start.

“I’ll get back to doing what I do best,” he said.

Odorizzi, pitching 33 miles from his hometown of Highland, Illinois, allowed two runs over 5 2-3 innings and Yunel Escobar’s double highlighted the fifth inning to lead the Rays to their season-high sixth straight win. They have outscored the opposition 36-11 during the run.

Odorizzi, pitching in St. Louis for the first time in his career, had as many as 500 supporters in the crowd of 43,623. The group made plenty of noise for its hometown hero as he left the game.

“It was pretty loud when I came out,” he said. “There were a lot of people standing up. I figured I had to tip my hat to them. I wanted to say thanks to everyone who came out from my town.”

Evan Longoria added a solo homer in the ninth for Tampa Bay.

Matt Carpenter and Matt Holliday hit solo home runs for the Cardinals.

But the night belonged to Odorizzi, who gave up five hits, struck out eight and walked three in improving to 4-1 over his last seven starts. He has allowed three earned runs or less in 15 of 20 starts this season. He gave up a leadoff homer to Carpenter on his fifth pitch of the night and then settled down with four successive scoreless innings.

“I was nervous in the first,” he said. “But things got better.”

The Rays won their seventh straight road game, one shy of tying the franchise record.

Odorizzi outduelled Wainwright in a rematch of a June 10 game that the Cardinals won 1-0.

Maddon was ejected in the third inning by home plate umpire Mark Ripperger. Maddon was arguing a called third strike on Ben Zobrist from the dugout. It was Maddon’s fourth ejection of the season and 36th with the Rays.

“It was a misunderstanding,” Maddon said. “Their pitcher started yelling at (our) dugout and I’m yelling back at him and the umpire thinks I’m yelling at the umpire and he kicks me out.”

Wainwright admitted to barking toward the Rays bench. But he said he was ready to continue pitching and was upset that Maddon continued to command Ripperger’s attention.

“It was the first time I ever did that,” Wainwright said. “I was ready to pitch and I thought it was time for us to move on and I said so.”

Kansas City Royals' Mike Moustakas celebrates his two-run home run off Chicago White Sox relief pitcher Eric Surkamp, also scoring Alex Gordon, during the eighth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, July 22, 2014, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

Kansas City Royals’ Mike Moustakas celebrates his two-run home run off Chicago White Sox relief pitcher Eric Surkamp, also scoring Alex Gordon, during the eighth inning of a baseball game Tuesday, July 22, 2014, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)

CHICAGO (AP) — When the Chicago White Sox scheduled Greek Heritage Night for Tuesday, they probably didn’t consider that Mike Moustakas would be in the visiting dugout.

Moustakas put a capper on the festivities by homering twice to help the Kansas City Royals snap a four-game losing streak with a 7-1 rout.

Afterward, Moustakas was asked if he was aware of the promotion.

“Oh, I knew,” he said. “I was telling everybody that today was my day. It just ended up working out that way.”

Moustakas, who has 12 homers this season, went 3 for 5 with three RBIs. He raised his batting average to .198

The Royals entered the game with a major league-worst 55 homers and had managed a total of six runs during the losing streak.

“He’s starting to swing the bat pretty good,” manager Ned Yost said of Moustakas. “We’ve seen him in spurts, it doesn’t matter who’s pitching. When he’s right, he’s putting good swings on the ball.

“Tonight he was really seeing the ball good, he was in a good position to hit and he was really driving the ball.”

Bruce Chen (2-2) allowed one run and five hits in five innings to get the win.

Chen has 82 career victories to tie former New York Yankees great Mariano Rivera for the most wins by a Panamanian.

“For me, he’s one of the best pitchers to ever pitch in the big leagues and to tie him for most wins by a Panamanian really means a lot to me, and my family is very happy,” Chen said.

Adam Dunn went 2 for 4 with a solo homer for the White Sox, who had won three of four.

Chicago starter Scott Carroll (4-6) allowed five runs and 11 hits in five-plus innings.

“I thought I was just rusty; that’s kind of the way I felt,” Carroll said. “Overall, I just didn’t think I had my best stuff. But I have to be better, the sixth inning is what really got me. Up until that point I just felt rusty.”

The Royals had a players-only meeting before the game and needed a good start. Moustakas provided it when he led off the second with a long homer to right field to make it 1-0. The White Sox tied it when Dunn led off the fourth with a homer to left.

The Royals broke the game open with a four-run sixth inning thanks to some timely hits – another missing element during the losing streak – and White Sox miscues.

Billy Butler led off with a double and the next batter, Raul Ibanez, drove him in with a double to make it 2-1. Alcides Escobar followed with an infield hit to put runners on first and third, and Ibanez scored on a passed ball as Nori Aoki walked for a 3-1 lead.

That was all for Carroll as Javy Guerra entered.

Guerra, though, immediately dug a deeper hole with his defense. With runners on first and second, Jarrod Dyson bunted back to the vicinity of the mound. Guerra fielded the ball cleanly, but his throw to first base was wild and sailed by second baseman Gordon Beckham and down the right field line, allowing Escobar to score on the throwing error.

The Royals capped the scoring in the inning with a sacrifice fly by Omar Infante to make it 5-1.

“The tack-on runs were huge for us right there,” Yost said.

Moustakas added a two-run homer in the eighth.

ARKADELPHIA, Ark. (AP) – The Henderson State University men’s basketball team will host the second-annual Nexan’s Reddie Golf Classic next month.

The school announced Tuesday that the event would take place Aug. 29 at the El Dorado Golf and Country Club in El Dorado.

The four-person scramble event will begin at 1 p.m., with lunch and check-in beginning at 11:30 a.m.

Entry fee for the event is $400 per team or $100 per individual and includes green fee with cart, lunch, door prizes and awards to the winners of each flight.

Numerous games and contests will also be conducted throughout the course as well as a silent auction during the event.

(West Plains) – The West Plains Country Club’s 54th Annual Four Ball Tournament was held this past weekend, with great golfing weather in the West Plains area.

Organizers would like to thank all of those who attended, and particularly Gary Brown and his staff for getting the course in such great shape, and Melissa Hardin and the restaurant staff for their hard work in preparing food.

The Championship Flight was tightly packed after the first round but the defending champions won it again with some excellent play. Bryan Johnson of Cape Girardeau and Justin Nelson of Thayer shot a two day total of 129 to win the event by four shots.

Championship Flight

1st Justin Nelson – Bryan Johnson 65-64 = 129

2nd Daniel Taylor – Aaron Circle 66-67 = 133

3rd Tod Rose – Jordan Land 64-70 = 134

4th Phil Wade – Matt Garnett 64-71 = 135

Flight A

1st Stacy Buchanan – Jim Cooper 69-68 = 137

2nd Gary Brown – Jack Montgomery 70-69 = 139

3rd Dustin Hunter – Charlie Blackwell 70-70 = 140

4th Jarrod Land – Justin Rutledge 69-72 = 141

Flight B

1st Justin Mitchell – Brandon Maxwell 71-70 = 141

2nd Kevin Pruett – Jerry Thomas 72-69 = 141

3rd Kenny Shamblin – Josh Wideman 71-71 = 142

4th Mike Renfrow – Jeff Lowery 72-72 = 144

Flight C

1st Robert Cooper – Dustin Burns 74-66 = 140

2nd Bill Temple – David Cox 73-68 = 141

3rd Mike Finley – Andy Hawkins 73-69 = 142

4th Brad Heinsohn – Isaac Gaston 73-69 = 142

Flight D

1st Jordan Slayton – Aaron Hawkins 75-70 = 145

2nd Seth Johnson – Brian Johnson 75-70 = 145

3rd Ray Pangle – Mike Magee 76-73 = 149

4th Ron Murray – Gary Clinton 75-74 = 149

Flight E

1st Larry Barton – Carl Hicks 78-70 = 148

2nd Dana Friedland – Craig Thoren 78-74 = 152

3rd Jerry Womack – Jacob Womack 77-77 = 154

4th Tom Marhefka – Matt Morrison 79-75 = 154

Flight F

1st Joe Dockins – Rodney Rowe 80-75 = 155

2nd Jerry Walker – Jay Garnett 80-75 = 155

3rd Danny Lafferty – Mike Rowe 80-77 = 157

4th Gary Holloway – Gary Trail 80-80 = 160

Flight G

1st Grant Frederick – Koddy Frederick 83-78 = 161

2nd Asa Grennan – Del Parsons 84-82 = 166

3rd Mike Woods – Jim Dorris 83-83 = 166

4th Chris Kimes – Cody Russell 83-83 = 166

(Willow Springs) – The annual free Willow Springs athletic physicals will be given on Monday, August 4, at 8 AM at Mumford Gymnasium.

Organizers say the physicals, which will be conducted by the staff of the Willow Springs Medical Clinic and Willow Springs Schools, are for any Willow Springs student participating in athletics or cheerleading, who are in grades 7th-12th. The Missouri State High School Activities Association requires a yearly physical before a student is allowed to practice for an activity.

All necessary forms will be available on the physical date. Athletes will not be allowed to practice or participate without the proper forms being signed and turned in.