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Thursday, September 17, 2009

UNC-ECU preview: Pirates plan to pillage Heels' ranking

Posted By on Thu, Sep 17, 2009 at 6:30 PM

No. 24 UNC (2-0) vs. ECU (1-1) [12 p.m., Sept. 19, Kenan Memorial Stadium] ESPN2 North Carolina vs. East Carolina.  The coastal lifestyle vs. storied tradition.  The battle between the true state mascot -- the Tar Heels or the Pirates. UNC's offense took the heat this week after struggling to put up 10 points against an inferior Big East team.  ECU, meanwhile, let West Virginia running back Noel Devine tally four rushing touchdowns in a 35-20 loss.  West Virginia piled up over 500 offensive yards against the ECU defense. Key stats: Just 16 -- that's how many total points...

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Helmets, not hoops; Duke gets a big road challenge at Kansas

Posted By on Thu, Sep 17, 2009 at 4:10 PM

Duke has had a couple of weeks to work its early-season kinks out, and for the first time this season the Blue Devils will get a shot at a big-time Division I FBS team when they visit Kansas on Saturday. The storied basketball programs from the two schools have met in some awfully big games, but it's the first meeting in football and in fact Duke's first time squaring off with an opponent from the Big 12 in 20 years. Blue Devil coach David Cutcliffe has said he thinks this, his second Duke team, has enough talent to play in...

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Durham Bulls throttle Scranton/ Wilkes-Barre Yankees, take 2-0 lead in Governor's Cup series

Posted By on Thu, Sep 17, 2009 at 4:00 AM

DBAP/ DURHAM---Fans who came out to see the last home game of the Durham Bulls' 2009 season---2,480 of you, officially---got a bit of a bonus. Last night's 4-1 Durham win was basically two separate games: first, a three-inning tune-up for a pair of recuperating starting pitchers, followed by the real deal, when the two teams' tenured players faced off for six taut innings of playoff baseball. With the win, the Bulls put themselves on the brink of a championship they haven't won since 2003. The entire game was played in a steady mizzle, and it seemed appropriate that the last...

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Wednesday, September 16, 2009

UNC Wednesday notes: Updates on injuries, scheduling

Posted By on Wed, Sep 16, 2009 at 6:01 PM

It's becoming comical how thin the 2009 Tar Heels' offensive line has become.  Starting center Lowell Dyer will miss three to four weeks after straining a muscle in his right shoulder, UNC spokesman Kevin Best said in an e-mail Wednesday. A senior on the Rimington Trophy watch list, Dyer (pictured) missed the second game of the season against UConn and joins the vast list of offensive linemen who will miss significant time this season.  The Heels lost tackle Carl Gaskins to an ACL injury that occured during preseason practice. Backup guard Kevin Bryant left the team, and Aaron Stahl, a former...

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Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Hellickson, Bulls hold down Yankees for Game 1 win

Posted By on Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 11:06 PM

DBAP/DURHAM Well good evening sports fans from beautiful Downtown Durham, where I am in what has become my regular spot covering the Governors' Cup Finals ever since the Bulls joined the International League in 1998. The Bulls are taking on the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees in the opener of the best-of-5 series for the title for the second straight year, after losing the series in four games in 2008. It is only the fourth rematch in Governors' Cup Finals history and the first since 1997. Durham is in the Governors' Cup Finals for the third straight season and the seventh time in...

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Smoak, Tiffee homers lead USA Baseball past Japanese

Posted By on Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 10:45 PM

Justin Smoak (pictured) and Terry Tiffee blasted back-to-back homers in the third inning, leading defending champion Team USA to a 4-2 win over Japan at the IBAF World Cup in Macerata, Italy. Brad Lincoln pitched 7 1/3 innings in the victory before a sellout crowd at Stadio Comunale, while Nate Field collected the save. The USA is 3-0 in the second round, while Japan is 1-1. Trevor Plouffe's seventh-inning double added an insurance run for the Red, White and Blue in the seventh. Smoak's homer was his sixth of the competition, tying the USA Baseball record for a single...

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Eagles hoping some home cooking will help end slide

Posted By on Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 5:42 PM

PEARSON CAFETERIA/DURHAM N.C. Central has been a vastly improved football team through its first two games this season - except down the stretch in the fourth quarter. The Eagles had a chance for a mild upset in their season opener on the road at Hampton before allowing the Pirates to score the winning points late in a 31-24 loss. And on Saturday they were in position for a huge upset before allowing Liberty -then the No. 24 team in the FCS coaches' poll - to score 21 fourth-quarter points in a 35-10 loss. So even though the Eagles appear to...

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Duke savors knockout of Cadets, prepares for Big 12 challenge Saturday

Posted By on Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 5:16 PM

WALLACE WADE STADIUM/DURHAM There's not much wrong with a football team that the kind of win Duke had Saturday at Army can't help solve. The game was close throughout until the Blue Devils thoroughly dominated the conclusion, as Leon Wright (pictured) returned interceptions for touchdowns on two straight Army plays in the final two minutes to change the score from 21-13 to 35-13 en route to a 35-19 romp. "I don't know if that has ever happened in the history of college football," Blue Devil coach David Cutcliffe, whose 1-1 team will face a much bigger challenge on Saturday at...

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UNC's Tuesday Tour: ECU Pirates edition

Posted By on Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 2:42 PM

Around the Internet(s) we go again, maties.  Grab your favorite drink (non-alcoholic of course) and your fake parrot  and get ready for the in-state brawl between the Heels and Pirates. Will this game settle once and for all which mascot is the true state icon?  It's Blackbeard vs. soldiers getting irritated because they trekked tar into their houses ... right? After facing the dynamic duo of running backs from UConn, the Tar Heels might catch a break against ECU's running game Saturday.  Dominique Lindsay injured his right shoulder against West Virginia and Pirates coach Skip Holtz doesn't think he'll play...

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Carolina Rollergirls bounce back to claim 5th place in Eastern regionals

Posted By on Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 12:31 PM

DORTON ARENA/ RALEIGH—Your (our) Carolina Rollergirls put on a great show this weekend, playing host to the Women's Flat Track Derby Association's Eastern Regional tournament at Dorton Arena in Raleigh. The home team, unfortunately, was upset in the opening round Friday night by Boston, which cost them any chance to advance to the nationals in November. They bounced back Saturday to drub the team from Virginia, and on Sunday grabbed 5th place (out of 10 teams) with a convincing win over the Providence, Rhode Island club. "What happened Friday was a big surprise to us," said Pink Slip, the skater...

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Durham Bulls vs. Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees: International League Governor's Cup Championship series preview: UPDATED WITH PITCHING MATCHUPS

Posted By on Tue, Sep 15, 2009 at 1:00 AM

This one is a tad easier than previewing the Bulls' first-round series against the Louisville Bats. Before that series, Durham and Louisville hadn't played each other in nearly two months, which is about two years in Triple-A time. The Yankees, on the other hand, visited the DBAP August 14-17, and although both teams have seen plenty of changes since then, anyone who attended some or all of those games will recognize the visitors when they return on Tuesday night. And the visitors will recognize the Bulls' starting pitcher. Right-hander Jeremy Hellickson has already faced Scranton/Wilkes-Barre twice this season, and he's...

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Monday, September 14, 2009

NCCU announces women's basketball schedule with 10 home games

Posted By on Mon, Sep 14, 2009 at 9:38 PM

N.C. Central announced its women's basketball schedule today, with the five previously announced road games against ACC opposition - including trips to Duke and UNC - as well as 10 home games at McLendon-McDougald Gym. Under veteran coach Joli Robinson (pictured), the Eagles will open their season with an exhibition game at home against Johnson C. Smith on Nov. 8, with the regular-season opener at Maryland six days later. NCCU's home opener is against Campbell on Nov. 18. Other teams visiting the Eagles' house include future MEAC rivals North Carolina A&T, South Carolina State, Maryland-Eastern Shore; former CIAA rivals Shaw...

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Smoak, Weber lead the way as USA blasts Netherlands Antilles 11-1

Posted By on Mon, Sep 14, 2009 at 9:11 PM

Justin Smoak smacked a pair of homers, and Team USA had its best game so far in the IBAF World Cup in an 11-1 rout of the Netherlands Antilles in Verona, Italy. Lucas May homered in the third inning while former Durham Bull Jon Weber (pictured) and Smoak each homered in the fourth to give the defending champion USA a 5-0 lead. Smoak added a three-run homer in the seventh, sparking the Red, White and Blue to the 11-1 lead. The game was stopped at the end of the seventh inning because of the IBAF's 10-run rule. Starter Kasey Kiker...

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Pickoff returns earn Duke's Wright ACC defensive honor

Posted By on Mon, Sep 14, 2009 at 8:46 PM

Leon Wright won a very unsurprising honor today. The Duke senior cornerback, who returned two interceptions for touchdowns in the final two minutes of the Blue Devils' 35-19 win over Army on Saturday, is the ACC's defensive back of the week. Wright, who returned back-to-back passes for 51 and 33 yards and a 35-13 lead, Wright became the first player in Duke history to return two pickoffs for touchdowns in one game. He also had four tackles, one fumble recovery and one pass breakup in the win. Wright also was named the National Defensive Performer of the Week by the...

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Durham Bulls down Louisville Bats, advance to Governor's Cup rematch with Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees

Posted By on Mon, Sep 14, 2009 at 4:00 AM

After the Bulls lost on Saturday at Louisville to set up a two-men-enter-one-man-leave Game Five in their International League division playoff series, manager Charlie Montoyo was philosophical. "I don't feel pressure because the worst thing that can happen is that I will see my family the next day," Montoyo said. "I preached that to my players. We had the best division this year in the league and it took 83 wins to win the division. So just to get to this point and to be playing a fifth game against a good team like Louisville is just awesome. It's awesome...

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Sunday, September 13, 2009

Luebke, Weber help lead Team USA to blanking of Canucks

Posted By on Sun, Sep 13, 2009 at 9:34 PM

Cory Luebke pitched a gem for Team USA, which ripped Canada 8-0 in its first game of Round 2 in baseball's World Cup in Reggio Emilia, Italy. Luebke allowed just one hit in 7 2/3 innings to lead his team to a fifth straight win over the Canadians. Former Durham Bull Jon Weber (pictured) had two RBI doubles and an RBI single, while Terry Tiffee also had three hits and two RBI. Pedro Alvarez added a home run for the Americans. Chris Robinson had the only hit for Canada. Team USA's next game is on Monday at 2 p.m. (EDT)...

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Kabwe and Richardson dazzle Islanders as RailHawks take 2nd; words from Clarke, Nuñez

Posted By on Sun, Sep 13, 2009 at 3:05 PM

WAKEMED SOCCER PARK—It was the most exciting league game of the year. Fast, furious and creative, the RailHawks brought their A-game against the rugged, battle-hardened and extremely adept Puerto Rico Islanders. It was also a road-weary Islanders lineup that put most of its regulars out on the field despite a looming, critical CONCACAF Champions League match against Mexican powerhouse Cruz Azul. The 2-1 result put the RailHawks back in second place ahead of the Islanders, which they can clinch with a win against Montreal Friday (although Charleston can tie them with two final victories). The first 12 minutes were...

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Heels fall to No. 24 in latest AP Poll

Posted By on Sun, Sep 13, 2009 at 2:12 PM

Although not terribly surprising, North Carolina fell five spots in the latest AP Poll Sunday, winding up at the No. 24 spot. The Heels scrapped together a 12-10 win over unranked UConn Saturday and deserved to fall a few places in the rankings -- but not that far. The offense, which struggled to score until the fourth quarter, was without three starters -- Bobby Rome, who tested positive for the H1N1 virus, and offensive linemen Lowell Dyer and Jonathan Cooper, who both missed the game due to injuries. There's no question the defense deserves a top-25 ranking, but did...

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Durham Bulls lose to Louisville Bats, International League playoff series goes to rubber game

Posted By on Sun, Sep 13, 2009 at 5:00 AM

We got the slugfest we were due for, and the Bulls' first homer of the series as well (by Michel Hernandez, of all people---his first as a Bull this year and his second overall); but the Bats lived up to their name and outhit Durham, 10-7, on Saturday night. The win forced a fifth and final game of the divisional series. Both starters fared poorly---Durham's Rayner Oliveros and Louisville's Tom Cochran were gone by the third inning, having allowed 11 runs between them in just 3 1/3 innings combined. The difference in the game was probably the two guys who...

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Saturday, September 12, 2009

Eagles strike early, but Liberty dominates second half to win big

Posted By on Sat, Sep 12, 2009 at 11:58 PM

N.C. Central did turn out to be a bit overmatched in its trip to Liberty, but it took the heavily favored Flames an awfully long time to prove it. The Eagles scored the game's first 10 points before second-half miscues sealed their fate in a 35-10 loss at Williams Stadium. Liberty is ranked No. 24 in the Division I FCS coaches' poll. NCCU fell to 0-2 after a pair of road games while the Flames - who fell 33-20 at West Virginia in their opener - evened their record at 1-1. The Eagles took advantage of a short field...

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Renfree passes, Wright picks lead Duke to big win at Army

Posted By on Sat, Sep 12, 2009 at 10:38 PM

Freshman quarterback Sean Renfree came off the bench to put Duke ahead, and then Leon Wright came up with two huge defensive plays in the final 1:48 as the Blue Devils beat homestanding Army 35-19 and ended their six-game losing streak. Renfree connected with Brett Huffman from 17 yards out on his second collegiate play after he took over for Thaddeus Lewis to give Duke a 13-10 lead early in the third quarter, and the Blue Devils didn't trail again in improving to 1-1. Duke now leads the series with the Black Knights 11-9-1. Renfree (pictured) finished with two touchdown...

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N.C. State Rebounds From Loss, Blows Away Murray State

Posted By on Sat, Sep 12, 2009 at 10:14 PM

CARTER-FINLEY STADIUM/RALEIGH - George Costanza would've been proud of the N.C. State Wolfpack on Saturday night as they crushed Murray State 65-7. For the balding down-on-his luck Jew it was no more tuna on toast, and a new day with chicken salad on white bread, untoasted. For the Wolfpack, Instead of fumbling on the first offensive play as they did against South Carolina, they recovered a fumble on Murray State's first play. Instead of an anemic offense that put up 3 points and 133 total yards, they scored on every possession. Instead of a sellout and a national television...

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USA Baseball blanks Chinese, faces Canada on Sunday

Posted By on Sat, Sep 12, 2009 at 9:01 PM

Trevor Reckling struck out 11 batters - the most ever by a single American in the tournament - as Team USA demolished China 8-0 in its final Pool E game of baseball's World Cup in Regensburg, Germany. Terry Tiffee and Josh Kroeger each homered for the USA (2-1), which advanced to its first second-round game against Canada in Italy today at 1 p.m. (EDT). Team USA beat Canada in all four games of their exhibition series last week in Cary. The Chinese went 0-3 in the tournament. Tiffee had a two-run homer in the first inning while Kroeger added a...

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UNC 12, UConn 10: Heels escape pesky Huskies on safety

Posted By on Sat, Sep 12, 2009 at 4:15 PM

TV/ESPNU -- No. 19-ranked North Carolina beat unranked UConn, a team picked to finish in the bottom tier of the Big East, on a holding penalty. Let that sink in for a moment.  UNC's defense bailed out its predictable offense that briefly turned it on in the fourth quarter, rallying from a 10-point deficit to tie the game. UConn offensive lineman Dan Ryan committed the penalty in UConn's own endzone after the Heels pushed the Huskies back to a third-and-23 situation.  The penalty combined with the Huskies' inability to move the ball after starting quarterback, Zach Frazer, went down with...

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UConn 3, UNC 0: Heels, Huskies stuck in offensive limbo

Posted By on Sat, Sep 12, 2009 at 1:22 PM

TV/ESPNU -- Not sure what UNC had in mind after a 40-point outburst against The Citadel but 65 total offensive yards in the first half against UConn leaves the Heels searching for big plays. Each team's quarterback struggled against the pass rush and threw an interception, but Zach Frazer led the Huskies on a scoring drive and set up the game's only score as the half expired. Key Play of the half: Sadly, Dave Teggart's 47-yard field goal is the highlight of the game so far and could be enough to win this game if the Heels don't start effectively...

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This was a great read until we got to the World Cup part (who knows or cares, this is America) …

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what i gonna to do is to be my hero and be awesome, just like them, cannot change history and …

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