Panthers through to NCS semis, first time since 2011

first_imgPitcher Cameron Saso carried a shutout for six innings and Lance Lally finished it off as the top-seeded Panthers prevailed in the the quarterfinal round of the North Coast Section Division-IV playoffs, silencing the No. 8 Redwood Christian — San Lorenzo Eagles 3-0 Wednesday night at McKinleyville High.Saso struck out nine while allowing a third as many hits and walks in the win. Lally, the go-to closer for the Panthers throughout the season, ended the night with a quick no-hit seventh inning. …last_img read more

Why you can’t second guess the A’s starting Sean Manaea over Mike Fiers

first_imgClick here if you’re unable to view the photo gallery on your mobile device.It didn’t take long for A’s fans to start writing revisionist history on Wednesday.That’s what happens when your team’s starting pitcher in a winner-take-all playoff game goes two innings and allows four runs, effectively torpedoing any chance of victory and ending the team’s season.After something like that it’s easy to second-guess manager Bob Melvin — or more accurately, the A’s front-office, as one has to think …last_img read more

Ford secures Africa export contract

first_img8 May 2008Pretoria-based Ford Motor Company of Southern Africa (FMCSA) has secured an export contract to supply right- and left-hand-drive models of the popular Ford Ranger pickup truck to African markets.In a statement this week FMCSA said that it began exporting the right-hand-drive variants from April and will follow with exports of left-hand-drive vehicles from July onwards.The company expects to manufacture approximately 10 000 Rangers for export at its plant in Silverton, outside Pretoria, during the remainder of the year.This number will increase to 24 000 Rangers for export in 2009, and to approximately 40 000 Rangers by 2010, raising the company’s total export volume to 60 000 vehicles per year.“This is another important contract for Ford of Southern Africa, and clearly shows the confidence Ford Motor Company has in our world-class workforce and their ability to produce vehicles of international standards and quality,” said FMCSA chief executive Hal Feder.“It also further highlights our ongoing commitment to expanding our operations and export component in South Africa.”The contract would assist the company in preparing for the export programme of Ford’s next generation global compact pickup in 2011, by enhancing the plant’s manufacturing capabilities.FMCSA recently announced it would invest more than R 1.5-billion to expand operations for the production of the next-generation pickup truck and Puma diesel engine.Apart from the Silverton plant that assembles Ford, Mazda, Volvo and Land Rover vehicles, from passenger vehicles to commercial truck ranges, Ford also has an engine plant in Port Elizabeth, which is the company’s global producer of the 1.3-litre RoCam engine which it exports together with the 1.6-litre RoCam engine to Ford plants in India and Europe.The company also uses its Port Elizabeth plant to manufacture catalytic converters for export, with Ford pointing out that South Africa had become a centre of excellence in the field, with the city acting as a hub for the catalytic coverter industry.“This announcement further highlights South Africa’s capabilities in an increasingly competitive global market,” said Feder. “The automotive sector plays an important role in the South African economy and we will continue to develop our significance both locally and as a strategic export base for vehicles, engines and components for Ford Motor Company.”SAinfo reporter Would you like to use this article in your publicationor on your website?See: Using SAinfo materiallast_img read more

Saving South Africa’s wildlife

first_imgIn 1973 Clive Walker, James Clarke and Neville Anderson established the Endangered Wildlife Trust (EWT), dedicated to conserving endangered species and restoring the delicate balance in southern Africa’s ecosystems.The organisation has, since then, played a major role in conserving many of Africa’s unique species.Droughts, floods, poachers and predators make survival for Africa’s wild animals a difficult affair and a growing human population encroaching on their habitats is driving many species to near extinction“We as human beings rely heavily on biodiversity and healthy ecosystems and without them we jeopardise our own wellbeing,” says Nomonde Mxhalisa, communications manager for the Endangered Wildlife Trust.“People around the world can no longer ignore the fact that the environment in which we live underpins every single human need.”The EWT has worked to bring issues of conservation to the fore in terms of issues in the way of social and economic development.THE THREATDroughts, floods, poachers and predators make survival for Africa’s wild animals a difficult affair and a growing human population encroaching on their habitats is driving many species to near extinction.The quagga, which used to be a subspecies of the plains zebra or common zebra, once roamed the African landscape in large numbers. But the animal was hunted to extinction in the 1880s, when the last quagga died at the Amsterdam Zoo.Other indigenous African species such as the African wild dog and the black and white rhinoceros face the same fate. To preserve these animals, the EWT has created a number of programmes targeting threats such as poaching, deforestation, disease, traditional migration route interference, and mitigating the impact that human involvement is having on their habitats.The Riverine Rabbit or Vleihaas is South Africa’s second most endangered animal after the De Winton’s Golden Mole. Pictured above is a juvenile Riverine Rabbit. (image: Endangered Wildlife Trust)PROJECTSMost animals are suited to very limited environments; humans however can adapt environments to suit their needs, and with a growing human population needing food and other resources, natural areas are getting smaller and smaller. Animals that lose their habitats often can’t survive this encroachment and can eventually go extinct. Recognising that humans and animals need to share environments the EWT works on programmes to teach communities, like farmers, how to run their farms without driving the animals out.The Wildlife Conflict Mitigation Programme, involving the Livestock Guarding Dog Project aims to reduce this kind of human/animal conflict.“We often deal with a great deal of human/wildlife conflict particularly when it comes to our work with carnivores,” Mxhalisa explains.“We have solved these issues however by introducing mitigation measures such as the livestock guarding dogs that we encourage farmers to use to ward against their livestock being eaten by various carnivores.”The Livestock Guarding Dog Project encourages farmers to use guard dogs to drive predators away, instead of shooting the animals or poisoning them (images: Endangered Wildlife Trust)Livestock farmers need to protect their domestic animals; but these animals are easy prey for carnivores such as lions, leopards, hyenas, wildcats and the now endangered African wild dog and cheetah. The programme encourages farmers to use guard dogs to drive predators away, instead of shooting the animals or poisoning them.The Livestock Guarding Dog Project has, since it was taken over by the EWT in 2008, helped farmers reduce their annual losses from an average of R3.4-million, to about R150 000.“. . . The work we do is literally bringing amazing creatures back from the brink of extinction and that means we’ve bought more time for all people to enjoy these species and to continue to reap the benefits of living in ecosystems that are healthy and thriving,” says Mxhalisa.“Many of the EWT’s staff live and breathe care for the environment.“Many of us are idealists who want to make a difference, to leave a real and positive mark on the world. We believe the work is important and the results and successes we have keep us pushing forward.”Another project, the African Crane Conservation Programme, in partnership with the International Crane Foundation, helps to ensure the sustainability of wetland, grassland and Karoo ecosystems that crane species such as the Blue Crane, South Africa’s national bird, depend on.PLAY YOUR PART“You can make a difference to the environment simply by not littering, not wasting water or electricity, disposing of rubbish and oil correctly and spreading the word that you are forever linked to your environment and without it we will suffer,” says Mxhalisa.The EWT also regularly holds talks “about biodiversity and conservation at the Country Club Johannesburg and events that commemorate the various wildlife and biodiversity days that take place during the year”.Along with individual action, the EWT needs funds to manage and run its programmes; it accepts corporate sponsorships and private donations. Corporate sponsors can contact Debbie Thiart on debbiet@ewt.org.za or call her on +27 (0) 11 372 3600.For more information on the organisation’s programmes and lectures, or how to donate, visit its website or call +27 (0) 11 372 3600/1/2/3.last_img read more

The 2018 Ohio Crop Tour – I-71 Leg – Day 2

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Clinton CountyCorn: This April 27th corn was all around good. Color was nice, ear fill was solid and very little disease and insect pressure to speak of. The ears were a good size but only 14 around. Even with that into consideration, our yield check is at 175.Soybeans: These non-GMO beans were planted on May 18th. They were very clean with only minor insect feeding here. Canopy height was 28 inches and distance between nodes was 2 inches. We rate this field as Poor to Fair.Overall County Observations – Just as consistent as we have seen the last 3 stops. Stress is hard to come by here and they got a good bit of rain today that will help been finish off.Click on the pictures for a closer lookClinton CountyClinton CountyClinton CountyClinton CountyClinton CountyClinton CountyHighland CountyCorn: This farmer told us that a big July storm knocked some of this corn down and we noticed that as we headed in for a sample. Bird damage has been an issue here for a few years now. Development still has a way to go here but the crop looks strong. Our yield guess is 190.Soybeans: When we first took a broad look at this field we knew something wasn’t right. Some yellowing was taking place in numerous parts of these beans. The farmer told us he has been doing some sampling and the plant is having trouble taking up potash. Something he will work on next year. Canopy height was 36 inches and there were 2 inches between nodes. Noticed green stink bugs and Japanese Beetles. We rate this field as Good.Overall County Observations – More good looking crops here. Even beans all over. Some fields, even though we are in Southern Ohio, we planted a little later than some of our previous fields north of here.Click on the photos for a better viewHighland CountyHighland CountyHighland CountyHighland CountyHighland CountyHighland CountyHighland CountyHighland CountyFayette CountyCorn: These ears looked bigger than any we have seen, but many of them were only 14 around, hurting our final yield count. These have fired up to the ear leaf. Some Grey and Northern, but not above the ear. We passed a few wet spots are we walked to our scout spot. Pretty healthy looking otherwise and this area is getting some rain that the soil looks like it needed. Our yield estimate is 155.Soybeans: Some SDS taking hold in this field and we also came across some Cercospora Leaf Blight here. Canopy height was 36 inches and distance between nodes was 2 inches. Low pressure from disease and insects and we rate this field as Good.Overall County Observations – They are getting a lot of rain here today and by the looks of things, there was water here early too. Fairly uniform through this area for both corn and beans.Click on the pictures for a closer lookFayette CountyFayette CountyFayette CountyFayette CountyFayette CountyFayette CountyFayette CountyFayette CountyRoss CountyCorn: This field was planted on May 12th and this is a low laying area. Because of that, some of this plot that was planted never came up. The majority of this field is a full dent and starting to mature. This population was higher and moisture was still just fine. Ear fill was great and the ears were heavy. Low insect and disease pressure here. Our yield guess is 201.Soybeans: These beans are a high-oleic and was planted on May 3rd. Canopy height was 48 inches with 2.5 inches between nodes. It was tough getting through the field due to some lodging issues. Once we found our spot, we saw heavy Frogeye and some SDS showing up. These beans were well podded but the insect and disease pressures may present some challenges to this crop. There was even some pod feeding here which we haven’t seen until now. We rate this field as Fair.Overall County Observation – Things continue to look good here overall. Moisture has been adequate here compared to the early part of Day 2. That moisture, along with humidity, has disease hitting the soybeans more than we’ve noticed in other counties.For a better view, click on the picturesRoss CountyRoss CountyRoss CountyRoss CountyRoss CountyRoss CountyRoss CountyRoss CountyFairfield CountyCorn: This was the most disease pressure we have seen in corn so far this week, at least above the ear (which all of the leaves pictures were). GLS, Northern and Holcus Leaf Spot. This was one of the highest populations we have seen at 34,000 in one of the spots we were in and kernels were deep. Even with the issues listed about, this is the highest yielding field, by our estimate, so far on tour at 222.Soybeans: Found some issues with this field, including Downey Mildew, Frogeye and insects. Got one shot of Japanese Beetles and a Stinkbug in the pictures. The canopy for 40 inches and distance between nodes was 2 inches. Pod set was average, roots were strong and overall a nice field of beans. We rate it as Good.Overall County Observations – Summer has been very easy on this part of the state. Crops look healthy and firing is at a minimum. Farmers in this county should be excited about what’s to come.Click on the photos for a closer lookFairfield CountyFairfield CountyFairfield CountyFairfield CountyFairfield CountyFairfield CountyFairfield CountyFairfield CountyPickaway CountyCorn: The corn was planted on May 1st and is finishing dent stage. Stand was above average and ears were just about as perfect as we have seen this week. Our yield calc here is 192.Soybeans: This May 16th planted field looked like carpet. These 3.2 beans had a canopy height of 36 inches and there were 2 to 3 inches between nodes. Saw a little Frogeye and minimal insect feeding. We rate this field as Good.Overall County Observations – This county also got a lot of rain early on, but Mother Nature shaped up for a good part of the growing season. Corn looks healthy and even and is a great shade of green.Click on the pictures for a closer lookPickaway CountyPickaway CountyPickaway CountyPickaway CountyPickaway CountyPickaway CountyPickaway CountyPickaway CountyMadison CountyCorn: This was a Farm Science Review 99-day corn already drying down and it was a nice stand. They have had a dry spell here over the growing season and the rains they are getting now are coming a little too late. We noticed some tip-back with some starting to abort kernels. Some GLS but mostly below the ear. Our yield guess here is 171.Soybeans: A low population here, but an excellent stand. We are getting a good amount of rain here now and that will be a great way to finish these beans off. Canopy height was 35 inches and distance between nodes was 2 inches. Very low disease and insect pressure and this field is rated Good to Excellent by our crew.Overall County Observations – Things here look much more uniform that what we have seen so far today. Many fields here were planted earlier in the season.Madison CountyMadison CountyMadison CountyMadison CountyMadison CountyMadison CountyMadison CountyMadison CountyClark CountyCorn: As you can see by the picture, most of the disease pressure here was below the ear. This was a pretty good field of corn with light insect pressure and excellent ear fill. There was some weeds that got away from this farmer by it won’t too bad at this point. Our yield calc is 175.Soybeans: This was our first spotting of white mold in soybeans along with some SDS setting in, but they have podded nicely and they were tall. Canopy height was 46 inches and nodes were 2 1/2 inches apart. We rate this field as Good to Excellent.Overall County Observations – This area surely had a lot of early potential and that potential hung on with some nicer weather than just east of here to help this crop along.For a better view, click the photosClark CountyClark CountyClark CountyClark CountyClark CountyClark CountyClark CountyClark CountyChampaign CountyCorn: We found twin-row corn here and found out it was planted on April 30th. They got more rain here then they wanted and it hurt early on. Firing was happening about and below the ear in one of the spots we sampled. Our yield guess here is 155.Soybeans: These beans thin out quite a bit in some areas and we found grasshoppers, stink bugs and Japanese Beetles. Canopy height was 32 inches high and nodes were 2.5 inches apart. 15 inch rows here and we rate this field as Poor to Fair.Overall County Observations – Things have changed dramatically here compared to what we saw yesterday. Some of the best dirt has some of the worst looking crops and heavy rains and then no moisture at all are to blame. We are seeing many different shades of green this morning.For a closer look, click the picturesChampaign CountyChampaign CountyChampaign CountyChampaign CountyChampaign CountyChampaign CountyChampaign CountyChampaign CountyUnion CountyCorn: This field is very fall along in full dent. Planted on May 7th, this was a good stand, but some firing has begun here. Shouldn’t make a difference this time of year for this field. Population at one of our check points was a little low due to some gaps. Ear fill was excellent. Our yield number here is 187.Soybeans: This was the field variable bean field we have seen on tour so far. Also the heaviest Frogeye we have come across. Canopy height was 36 inches with 2 inches in between nodes. Planting date was May 14th. Our rating for this field is Good.Overall County Observations – This area received some much needed rain this morning, but it is easy to see they had plenty of moisture early with some water spots. Variability was noticeable throughout the county.Click on the pictures for a better lookUnion CountyUnion CountyUnion CountyUnion CountyUnion CountyUnion CountyUnion CountyUnion Countylast_img read more

Colorado’s Low-Income Solar Model

first_imgMissing the solar revolutionThe NREL report, authored by Jeffrey Cook and Monisha Shah, points out that low-income households spend proportionately more of their money on energy than others. One study of 48 U.S. cities showed the median energy burden for low-income households was 7.2%, more than double the burden for the median household across all cities. In some cases it was much higher.One way of reducing energy costs is by installing on-site PV systems, but the NREL report says this boom has largely been reserved for middle- and upper-income families. In California, for example, only about 5% of all residential PV installations were on homes with annual incomes of less than $40,000.“If this trend holds true in many other states, PV may disproportionately benefit higher-income families nationally,” the authors said.Colorado addressed the problem with a 2010 law called the Community Solar Garden Act, which required developers of community solar projects to make sure that at least 5% of their subscribers were low-income households. Since then, the Colorado Energy Office has expanded efforts by supporting community solar projects that were completely earmarked for low-income households and by incorporating PV into state weatherization programs.Until 2005, photovoltaics were not eligible for funding under the federal Weatherization Assistance Program. Through the Energy Policy Act approved that year, weatherization funds could be used for up to $3,000 worth of solar on an individual residence, providing the state could show the Department of Energy that adding solar to its program would be cost-effective. (The limit has since been raised.) The state has also tapped into federal money distributed under the federal Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program to pay for weatherization programs.Xcel Energy, the state’s largest investor-owned utility, helps subsidize the cost of PV installations using money it collects under a renewable energy portfolio fee, the NREL report says. From 2017 to 2019, the number of households getting PV is limited to 300, with the capacity of each system capped at 3.5 kW.Roughly 11% of Colorado residents are what the NREL report calls “energy impoverished,” meaning they spend more than 10% of their annual household income on energy. Energy-efficiency improvements typically include the replacement of refrigerators and light bulbs, and adding insulation in the attic, around ducts, and in walls. In addition to savings from those improvements, households that also got PV installations could see annual energy savings of $400 or more, the NREL report said.Joseph Pereira, director of low-income services for the Colorado Energy Office, told Inside Climate News that making solar available to more low-income people also helps address a basic fairness question. Low-income electricity customers pay the same renewable energy fee to their utility as any other customer, he said, but they get a disproportionately smaller share of direct benefits.“From an equity standpoint, it was really time to get some of that money moving in the low-income direction,” he said. In all, eight community solar projects have been developed that help some 400 low-income subscribers reduce their electricity bills by between 15% and 50%.Colorado is one of a dozen states and the District of Columbia that have PV programs for low-income households. Colorado’s program is not the largest, but it is viewed as a model because officials developed a step-by-step process that could be adapted successfully by other states.“Ultimately, the Colorado Energy Office strategy is only one example of how states can develop a comprehensive approach to support PV deployment among low-income residents,” a recent report from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) said. “Nevertheless, [Colorado’s] efforts offer a clear roadmap for other states …” Solving Energy PovertyEfficiency Advocates to Study Energy AuditsEnergy Efficiency Costs Less Than New Generation Weatherization Assistance Program: Getting the Facts StraightIs Weatherization Cost-Effective?Low-Income Housing: Problems and Solutions Colorado is expanding its energy assistance efforts to make solar electricity available to more low-income households. The state is using a systematic approach that experts say could be a “clear roadmap” for other states.A report posted at Inside Climate News says that photovoltaic (PV) arrays rated at 20 megawatts, all earmarked for low-income residents, should be installed by the end of next year. That includes rooftop solar systems at some homes as well as a number of community solar facilities that collectively serve hundreds of households.Rooftop PV arrays have been installed by county and regional weatherization offices that already were adding insulation and making other energy-efficiency improvements for low-income residents. One county weatherization official called the expansion into solar “the next logical step” in helping low-income people lower their energy bills.In addition to installing rooftop solar on individual homes, Colorado’s Energy Office also is backing a number of community solar projects. They include the 2-megawatt Coyote Ridge Solar Farm in Fort Collins, which is thought to be the largest low-income community solar facility in the U.S. It was installed by the nonprofit Grid Alternatives in conjunction with the local utility, Poudre Valley Rural Electric Association.center_img RELATED ARTICLES Getting the cost of PV downIn a telephone call, Pereira said that PV installations help solve an inherent weakness in conventional weatherization programs. Data gathered by his office show that low-income residents spend about 50% of their energy budgets on home heating and the other 50% on electricity unrelated to heating.“We have a long-standing weatherization program that does a great job and saves customers a lot of money, but it really doesn’t save on the electric side of that ledger,” he said. “We didn’t embark on solar for solar’s sake. The data really led us to the idea that we could use solar, be it rooftop or community solar, to achieve our goals, which was to put low-income customers’ expenditures in parity with the rest of the state.”The goal is not to “give away free electricity,” he added, but to make sure these customers have about the same energy burden as customers who have more money. That means a reduction in power bills of 30% to 50%.When the program began, the state was paying installers about $3.60 per watt for the installations. But since then, they’ve knocked about $1 off the cost, due largely to steep reductions in the soft costs that installers typically would have to cover. Pereira said the program’s internal target is $2 a watt.In deciding which homes get solar and which don’t, program officials are bound by federal guidelines that require at least a 1-to-1 payback. That is, for every $1 spent on solar the benefit to the customer must be at least $1.“We’re not putting solar on any homes where it’s not cost effective to do so,” he said. “That is, the customer receives benefits greater than the investment we make. We’re seeing positive numbers. We’re seeing a 1.8 to 2.4 return on investment.”The expansion of conventional weatherization improvements to include solar is just an acknowledgement that the utility landscape is more dynamic now than it has been in the past, Pereira said. “This isn’t any magic thing,” he said. “It’s just more responsive to the world we’re in now.”last_img read more

More field goals needed, says hockey player Rani Rampal

first_imgRani Rampal is one of the few known faces in the Indian women’s hockey team, and she will be key to the side’s prospects when it takes to the turf at the upcoming Incheon Asian Games.After a fifth-place finish at the Glasgow Commonwealth Games this year, the team is much more aware of its strengths and weaknesses, and Rani, being one of the most experienced players in the squad, knows what is required to get the job done at the continental showdown.”At the Commonwealth Games, we missed a lot of field goals and the defence conceded several soft goals. At our subsequent camps, we focused on these areas and also worked on fitness and set plays,” Rani told MAIL TODAY on Thursday. “On the other hand, penalty corner conversion is our big strength.As the most prominent attacking threat for opponents, and with the likes of China, Japan and hosts Korea in fray, Rani is under no illusions about what is at stake and what is expected of her.”The gold medallists will book a spot at the 2016 Olympics, and it is our primary objective. We have improved a lot during the course of the year. Our performance at the Champions Challenge was pretty poor, but we have played a lot better since,” the 19-year-old forward from the hockey hotbed of Shahbad in Haryana said.”As a senior player, it is my responsibility to lead by example and guide the younger players and cover for their mistakes.” With China, Thailand and Malaysia in India’s pool, the task confronting India is anything but easy. “Our first goal is to top our pool, which will give us a semifinal against the runners-up of the other group. Our Australian coach Neil Hawgood has also changed the way we play. Now all 10 players go on the attack and all of them fall back when it is time to defend,” Rani informed. It will be the first time that India will play under the four-quarter format. “Modern hockey is very fast. The new format gives players a break after 15 minutes and the opportunity to refresh themselves.advertisementOur coach also likes to use the rotation system and no player is on the field for more than six or seven minutes at a stretch,” she added.last_img read more

DeMarcus Cousinss Kings Loved To Blow Leads — And Mount Huge Comebacks

There’s been no shortage of attention on the Sacramento Kings in the wake of their mind-boggling choice to deal DeMarcus Cousins to New Orleans for pennies on the dollar. But one thing that’s garnered almost no scrutiny is the inconsistency of the team’s play.The Kings this season have lost a league-worst five games in which they once held a lead of 15 points or more, according to NBA Miner, a site that tracks advanced and unusual statistics. But they’ve also tied for an NBA-best four wins in contests that they once trailed in by 15 points or more. How are those two things even possible?Well, it helps when you’re as inconsistent as the Kings are. Sacramento is the NBA’s worst team in first halves by far yet owns the league’s 10th-best net rating1A net rating measures how many points a team outscores an opponent by — or is outscored by — for every 100 possessions. in second halves (even better than the defending-champion Cavs). Those numbers fit the pattern of what’s happened in the team’s craziest outcomes: Three of Sacramento’s four major comebacks this season began during the third quarter, while four of the Kings’ five collapses began unraveling in the second quarter.In the comebacks, the Kings often had trouble containing opposing forwards — Andrew Wiggins, Gordon Hayward, Tobias Harris and Paul Millsap, among others — in the early going. But Sacramento wisely dumped the ball into Cousins, who repeatedly drew fouls and visits to the line during second halves, which allowed his team to play catch-up with the clock stopped. This especially worked in a 94-93 win over Utah, in which Cousins shot 10 free throws in the fourth quarter without taking a single field-goal attempt.During the back-breaking losses, the slow-paced Kings have often been outrun by their opponents. In a game on Nov. 10, the Lakers outscored Sacramento 13-4 in second-half fast-break points, according to NBA.com. The Warriors outscored the Kings 21-3 in fast-break scenarios during the second half of their Jan. 8 comeback. And the Pacers finished with a 22-0 second-half advantage in fast-break scoring over the Kings en route to a come-from-behind victory on Jan. 18. (Sacramento’s 3-point defense, one of the worst in the NBA, was also less than stellar in those second-half efforts.)Cousins obviously had a ton to do with the Kings’ outcomes in these games — particularly in a 3-point loss to the Sixers in which he had 46 points but fouled out in the final minute. But the loss of Rudy Gay, out for the season, arguably had a bigger impact in some cases.Gay tore one of his Achilles tendons in the midst of one of the collapses, with the Kings up by 10 against Indiana in a Jan. 18 contest that Sacramento once led by 22. Gay’s injury took a psychological toll on the club that night, Cousins told reporters after the game. Cousins shot 0-for-9 with six turnovers after halftime.And there was a tangible difference in the team’s play. Without Gay’s ability to ease some of the scoring burden (his 26 percent usage rate was the team’s second-highest before the team remade itself at the trade deadline), Cousins was overworked in some fourth periods. His fourth-quarter usage rate jumped to 57.5 percent during the last week and a half of January, after Gay’s injury, up from 37 percent earlier in the same month. That’d be asking too much of anyone — let alone the NBA’s most double-teamed post player.Video Playerhttps://fivethirtyeight.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/02/cousinsnorudygay.mp400:0000:0000:16Use Up/Down Arrow keys to increase or decrease volume.Things will change considerably now that Cousins is in New Orleans. The Kings can only hope that the move allows for increased stability, and perhaps fewer blown leads, going forward.Check out our latest NBA predictions. read more

Ohio State womens ice hockey crushed twice in Wisconsin

Then-sophomore forward Katie Matheny (23) skates down the ice during a game against New Hampshire on Oct. 4, 2014 at the Ohio State Ice Rink. OSU won, 4-3. Credit: Lantern file photoAgainst the high-scoring Wisconsin Badgers, the Ohio State women’s hockey team failed to sustain momentum after its opening-weekend victories against Lindenwood, getting dismantled twice.The Buckeyes allowed 15 goals on 102 shots in the two games, including a combined five first-period goals. Conversely, the Scarlet and Gray only took a combined 29 shots of its own in the two games.The third-ranked Badgers’ goal scoring opened early on Saturday when sophomore forward Emily Clark tallied a point 30 seconds into the game. The Badgers would proceed to score three goals on the power play in the third period of the first game, en route to topping the Buckeyes 7-0.Special teams play had been an emerging strength for OSU early in the season, but the series against Wisconsin demonstrated that there is still plenty of work to be done. In addition to the three goals the Buckeyes allowed with a player in the box, the Badgers scored a goal while on the penalty kill on Saturday. The Buckeyes went 0-of-4 in power-play opportunities on Sunday, which ended as another lopsided loss by the final score of 8-0.The squad’s strongest period of play from the weekend was the second period on Sunday, when OSU recorded nine shots on goal and successfully killed two penalties, and despite the penalties was able to control the pace of play for much of the period. The Buckeyes will look to get back on track when they return to Columbus for their first home series of the season against Minnesota beginning on Friday. The puck is set to drop in the first game at 6:07 p.m. and 2:07 p.m. the following day. read more

Football Gareon Conley will not attend NFL draft

Former Ohio State cornerback Gareon Conley speaks with the media on March 5 at the NFL Combine in Indianapolis. Credit: Ashley Nelson | Sports DirectorAfter his name surfaced Tuesday afternoon connecting him to a rape allegation, former Ohio State cornerback and potential NFL first-round pick Gareon Conley will not attend the NFL draft in Philadelphia that starts Thursday, according to NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport.Source: #OhioSt CB Gareon Conley has decided not to be in Philadelphia for the 2017 NFL Draft.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) April 25, 2017Conley, considered a top 15 pick by several NFL draft analysts, was planning on being one of the 22 athletes in the green room at the NFL draft on Thursday, but will now watch from home as he waits for his name to be called by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.Conley has not been charged in connection to the rape allegation. read more