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Acrobatics & Tumbling

Acrobatics & Tumbling

Moreno Named GSC Acrobatics & Tumbling Coach

The Free Press WV

The Glenville State College Athletic Department is pleased to announce the hiring of Sarah Moreno as the new Head Coach of the Lady Pioneers Acrobatics and Tumbling team.

Moreno has an extensive background in acrobatics and tumbling. During her time at West Albany High School she was a Three-Time State Champion in Oregon (2009 through 2011) while also severing as team captain during her senior campaign.

She was an All-Star cheerleader from 1998 until 2011 and won over 12 state and national titles, a Five-Time Team World Championship competitor, and a Three-Time Team World Championship Finalist.

After high school, Moreno attended the University of Oregon and competed in Acrobatics and Tumbling for the Ducks between 2011 and 2015. She graduated from Oregon in 2016 with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Educational Foundations.

She has served as the University of Oregon Acrobatics & Tumbling Head Overnight and Commuter Elite Tumbling Camp instructor and has worked with the Willamette Valley Twisters Gymnastics Academy and most recently was the head cheerleading coach at Crescent Valley High School.

“I would like to thank both Dr. Tracy Pellet and Rusty Vineyard for selecting me to be the new Acrobatics & Tumbling Head Coach at Glenville State College and for entrusting me with their program. I feel very confident that my philosophy and vision align with what the GSC Acrobatics & Tumbling program is looking to become,” stated Moreno. She continued with “I am excited to have the opportunity to continue to build on the foundation of the program while developing strong young women who achieve unprecedented success on the mat, in the classroom and in the community.”

Moreno will graduate from the University Of Oregon this August with a Master’s Degree in Education.

She is originally from Albany, Oregon.

In Sports….

The Free Press WV

►  WWE Mourns George ‘The Animal’ Steele

WWE Hall of Fame member George “The Animal” Steele, whose given name was Jim Myers, has died at age 79. WWE announced Friday the death of Steele, who was living in Florida. The Detroit native had tweeted and blogged in recent months about his declining health, the AP reports. He dealt with the digestive disorder Crohn’s disease for several years. Sporting a bald head, hairy back, and green tongue, Steele was famous for his signature move of sinking his teeth into the turnbuckle pads around the ring and filling his mouth with the stuffing. At a Boston Red Sox game in 2012, he pretended to take a bite from the baseball before throwing out a ceremonial first pitch.

Steele, who started appearing in the WWF in 1967, had a master’s degree in science from Central Michigan and was a high school teacher and coach before and during his wrestling career, sometimes turning up for Monday football practice at a Detroit-area high school after a weekend appearance at Madison Square Garden, reports the New York Times. “George Steele was only an animal in the ring,“ tweeted WWE chairman Vince McMahon. “He was one of the truly nice men in the world.“ McMahon’s daughter Stephanie tweeted: “My first time backstage, he scared me so badly I ran into my father’s arms - a true character & a wonderful man.“


►  Guy Practicing Parkour Tumbles 40 Feet Down Chimney

A 26-year-old man says he was making a parkour video with friends when he fell 40 feet down the chimney of a downtown Denver apartment building, reports the AP. Dustin Hinkle tells KCNC-TV that he and a couple of friends were making a parkour video on the roof of the Denver City Lofts on Thursday when he fell through a chimney cover. “I didn’t even believe in God before this,“ Hinkle said. “That’s a real mind-opener right there. I fell forty feet, and I’m alive.“ Hinkle plummeted down the old incineration chimney until a cable caught his fall. “I felt like I was going to die honestly,“ he adds. He was stuck for nearly two hours until firefighters broke through a brick wall to get him out.

Hinkle, who along with his friends is facing a trespassing charge, says he won’t be bounding around from building to building anymore. The Denver Post reports that jail records show Hinkle is 6 feet 5 inches tall and weighs 170 pounds. Denver Fire Department spokeswoman Melissa Taylor told the Post: “It appeared to me to be a pretty small chimney.“ Parkour involves moving from point to point using obstacles along the way.


►  Woman Scores Half-Court Shot, $500, Fiancé

When Erin Tobin shoots, sometimes she really scores: The 30-year-old New Yorker and college basketball fan was watching her alma mater Siena take on Manhattan on Thursday night in Albany when she got the opportunity to take a half-court shot with a $500 gift card on the line. Not only did she sink the shot and score the cash, reports People, but she turned around to see the Dunkin’ Donuts mascot ditching his costume—revealing Tobin’s boyfriend, Steve Duckett, who sank to one knee, ring in hand.

“I was jumping up and down after hitting the shot since my brother said he’d give me $50 if I even hit the rim,“ says Tobin. “Then I turned around expecting a gift card from Dunkin’ Donuts and there he was on his knees and I didn’t have any words.“ Spoiler alert: She said yes. Says Duckett: “I said to myself, ‘Of course she would hit the shot.‘“ The AP notes that that wasn’t the end of Tobin’s streak that night: Siena beat Manhattan 94-71.

In Sports….

The Free Press WV

►  Mountaineer football defensive coordinator Tony Gibson brings some holiday cheer to his old stomping grounds

A native son of Boone County, Tony Gibson went home for Christmas this week bearing $38,000 in gifts and endowments.

Few people are more tuned to the plight of those who have lost jobs in the coal industry than West Virginia’s defensive coordinator Tony Gibson, who grew up in the community and was raised on hard work.

“It’s a special place,” Gibson told the Coal Valley News. “My work ethic and growing up around these people made me the man I am today and I wouldn’t trade it for the world.”

Gibson was at his alma mater Van High School on Thursday night to present gift cards to 50 families. Each family received a packet containing a turkey, a gift card for $225 to Wal-Mart and a $150 Shoppers Value gift certificate for food.

“It’s been a deal that we had guys from out of state — like Houston, Texas — who had ties to West Virginia that understand how it got down here when these coal mines shut down,” said Gibson. “Just for so many people not to hesitate and want to help out. It wasn’t like I was asking them for $100. They were contributing $5,000 and not hesitating.”

Gibson said the donations from friends and college football colleagues and all with ties to West Virginia amassed $38,000. The balance of the money is being placed into an endowment fund to make the Christmas donations an annual event for the area’s needy.

“I want to build on this and keep giving back,” Gibson said. “Whether it is Mingo, Logan or wherever the need may be. I just want to help people, especially here in West Virginia.”

“Everything Tony did was with his heart,” said Van High School Principal Shane Griffith. “I’ve always respected that about him and much of his success has come because of that.”

In July, Gibson donated $25,000 to help with the cost of the newly constructed Boone Memorial Hospital.


►  Football Team Ends Protest of Suspensions for Sexual Assault

The University of Minnesota football team has ended its boycott of all football activities—meaning the team will compete in the Holiday Bowl on December 27. NBC News reports the team announced the boycott Thursday after 10 players were suspended for an alleged sexual assault. Players were upset they weren’t notified of the suspensions ahead of time and felt the Office of Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action investigation that led to them lacked “due process,“ according to NPR. The team met with school administrators Friday. They said they decided to end the boycott after “it became clear” the suspended students would not be reinstated. In return, they say the university agreed to give the suspended players a “fair hearing” with a “diverse review panel.“

The 10 players are facing a range of punishments from expulsion to a one-year suspension for the alleged gang rape of a female student in September, the Minneapolis Star Tribune reports. The woman had been drinking when she went to a football player’s apartment. According to police reports and her testimony, at least a dozen men got in line to have sex with her against her will. She says she “felt scared, trapped, isolated.“ She says the men ignored her cries for help, laughed at her, and cheered each other on. The accused players say the sex was consensual, and no criminal charges were filed. In a statement following the end of their boycott, the football team said, “There is no misperception: Sexual harassment and violence against women have no place on this campus, on our team.“


►  Report Reveals Massive Scope of Sexual Abuse of Gymnasts

“I will never like being touched or physically embraced by others,” a former child gymnast says. “Something that should be a joy, enjoyed and cherished in life, will always be a struggle for me.” A massive investigation by the Indianapolis Star, encompassing nine months and hundreds of police and court documents, has resulted in a clearer picture of the scope of sexual abuse of young gymnasts around the country: 368 gymnasts alleged sexual abuse at the hands of coaches, gym owners, and others over the past 20 years. That’s an incident every 20 days. And the actual number is likely higher. “I’m sad for all the parents and athletes who didn’t have the kind of warning that that number gives you,“ the CEO of advocacy group CHILD USA says.

The Star’s investigation revealed that coaches took nude photos, molested, and in some cases had near daily sex with girls as young as 6. USA Gymnastics was found to have ignored many sexual abuse allegations from its athletes. Coaches fired by multiple gyms—often quietly to protect the gyms themselves—were allowed to move on to coach elsewhere, keeping their membership in USA Gymnastics. One coach was booted from six gyms in four states, yet prospective employees still thought he had a clean record. USA Gymnastics’ coach of the year in 2009 was allowed to coach an international competition while being investigated for sexual abuse. Yet USA Gymnastics says it is “proud of the work it has done to address and guard against child sexual abuse.“ Read more from the investigation HERE .

Glenville State Acrobatics & Tumbling Schedule Released

The Free Press WV

The 2017 Glenville State Lady Pioneers Acrobatics & Tumbling schedule has been released. This year’s schedule will see the Lady Pioneers travel three times and host four home meets for a total of seven competitions.

The second year program will kick-off the 2017 season on Saturday, February 4th as the team travels to Gannon University for a Tri-Match with the Golden Knights of Gannon and the Bulldogs of Adrian College at 6:00 p.m.

They will have their first home meet on Saturday, February 11th at 1:00 p.m. as they host the Fighting Falcons of Fairmont State. Last season, GSC scored a season high 263.275 points against FSU.

Glenville State will then hit the road on Friday, February 17th as they take on Georgetown College at 7:00 p.m. This will be the first matchup between the Lady Pioneers and Tigers.

On Tuesday, March 7th Glenville State will host the Bears of Baylor University at 7:00 p.m. A season ago Baylor was the NCATA National Champion and will prove a tough test for the Lady Pioneers.

GSC will then return home on Saturday, March 18th at 2:00 p.m. as they host Georgetown College. This will be the second matchup of the 2017 season between the two schools.

Then, on Saturday, March 25th, GSC will travel to Quinnipiac University for a 4:00 p.m. meet. Last season Quinnipiac defeated the Lady Pioneers 269.270 to 252.305.

The last match of the regular season will take place on Thursday, March 30th as the Lady Pioneers host Alderson Broaddus at 7:00 p.m. GSC opened their inaugural season last year against the Battlers falling in the meet, 268.15 to 232.22.

The Glenville State Acrobatics & Tumbling team is a part of the National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling Association (NCATA).

In Sports….

The Free Press WV

►  Russian Hackers Hit Anti-Doping Database, Release Info on U.S. Stars

In what one analyst calls a “digital temper tantrum,“ hackers linked to the Russian government have hacked into the World Anti-Doping Agency’s Olympic database and released information on star American athletes including Serena and Venus Williams. WADA has confirmed the security breach, and the hacking group “Fancy Bears”—which was apparently motivated by revenge for WADA’s exposure of state-sponsored Russian doping—says there are more leaks to come, the Washington Post reports. A round-up of developments:

  • Fancy Bear also posted information on gymnast Simone Biles and basketball player Elena Delle Donne relating to “Therapeutic Use Exemptions” that allow athletes to use banned substances for valid medical reasons, the Independent reports. The hackers claimed the exemptions were “licenses for doping.“
  • WADA says it believes the attacks were carried out with a “spear-phishing” attack that gathered passwords with emails to authorized users that convinced them to click on infected links.
  • According to the leaked documents, Simone Biles uses medication to treat ADHD. “Having ADHD, and taking medicine for it is nothing to be ashamed of” and “nothing that I’m afraid to let people know,“ she tweeted in response to the leak.
  • Venus Williams, who was diagnosed with the autoimmune disease Sjogren’s syndrome in 2011, issued a statement saying she followed all the rules and was disappointed “that my private, medical data has been compromised by hackers and published without my permission.“
  • The Fancy Bears group is believed to be linked to the Russian military intelligence agency suspected of hacking the DNC, reports the New York Times, which notes that the Kremlin “ has gone to to great lengths to maintain plausible deniability in matters of espionage”—and denies involvement in the WADA hack.
  • The hackers are “trying to sow doubt over the integrity of the individual athletes and the various Olympic bodies and watchdog groups,“ Rich Barger of cybersecurity firm ThreatConnect tells the Post. “It’s just ultimately sour grapes. What we’re seeing here is a digital temper tantrum.“
  • US Anti-Doping Agency chief Travis Tygart called the hack “cowardly and despicable,“ saying that the athletes involved had “done everything right in adhering to the global rules for obtaining permission to use a needed medication,“ the BBC reports.
  • Fancy Bears, which claims to be allied with Anonymous, says it will release information on other countries’ athletes this week, reports the AP, which found that a French phone number provided by the group was bogus and the mailing address it gave was that of a florist east of Paris.


►  UNC Student: Tar Heels Football Player Raped Me

A magistrate issued an arrest warrant Tuesday for a North Carolina football player accused of sexual battery and assault on a female student in February, the AP reports. The warrant charges Allen Artis, a 21-year-old junior linebacker from Marietta, Georgia, with two misdemeanors and says he had sex with the woman against her will when he “should have reasonably known that the other person was mentally incapacitated and physically helpless.“ The woman, Delaney Robinson, said she had become intoxicated after being out with friends and was unable to consent. The AP typically doesn’t identify alleged victims of sexual assault, but Robinson held a news conference Tuesday, saying she filed for the misdemeanor charges after police and prosecutors indicated there wasn’t enough evidence to pursue felony charges.

Artis could not be reached for comment. He did not practice Tuesday and was indefinitely suspended under a university policy that applies to athletes charged with misdemeanors, team spokesman Kevin Best said. Artis’ attorney did not return a message. Robinson’s lawyer said campus police botched the handling of a rape kit and the questioning of Artis. Robinson, 19, said a video of that questioning angered her. “Rather than accusing him of anything, the investigators talked to him in a tone of camaraderie. They provided reassurances to him when he became upset, even laughed with him when he told about how many girls’ phone numbers he was able to get on the same night,“ the sophomore said as her father was seated next to her. “I was treated like a suspect.“ Orange County District Attorney Jim Woodall said no final decisions have been made on whether to prosecute.


►  4 Paralympics Runners Best Olympic Gold Time

Four visually impaired runners in the 1500 meters at the Rio Paralympics Games just earned some bragging rights: All put up times better than the US runner who took gold in the same Olympics competition, reports the Independent. Their times ranged from 3:48.29 (by gold medal winner Abdellatif Baka of Algeria) to 3:49.84 by fourth-place finisher Fouad Baka, also of Algeria. All were better than the time of 3:50 put up by American Matthew Centrowitz at the Summer Olympics. And, no, the Paralympians did not use any artificial aids. But as Chris Chase at Fox Sports explains, some other variables help explain what’s going on.

Long-distance races such as the 1500 meters aren’t just brute tests of speed from start to finish and instead often come down to tactics, he writes. In the Centrowitz race, for example, no runner leaped ahead to push the pace. In such races, “the group can be content to stay together until kicking it into gear in the final 500m,“ he writes, and that’s exactly what happened. In fact, Centrowitz ran 11 seconds faster in an earlier round. No matter the rationale, however, these four Paralympians can still boast about being faster than their Olympics counterparts in their final heat.


►  North Carolina Takes New Hit Over Bathroom Law

The Atlantic Coast Conference has followed the NCAA’s lead and is removing all its athletic championships from North Carolina over a state law that some say can lead to discrimination against LGBT people, the AP reports. The ACC Council of Presidents voted Wednesday to relocate the league’s championships until North Carolina repeals the law. The decision includes 10 neutral site championships this academic school year, which means relocating the ACC football title game that was scheduled to be played in Charlotte in December. No announcement was made on where the championship events will be held. The ACC was scheduled to hold 14 of its 21 championship events in North Carolina this academic year.

“The decision to move the neutral site championships out of North Carolina while HB2 remains the law was not an easy one,“ said Clemson President James P. Clements, chairman of the league’s council. “But it is consistent with the shared values of inclusion and non-discrimination at all our institutions.“ The state’s law requires transgender people to use restrooms at schools and government buildings corresponding to the sex on their birth certificates. It also excludes gender identity and sexual orientation from local and statewide anti-discrimination protections. This action by the ACC is the latest in a steady stream of public and business backlash against the law.


►  Ethiopian Marathoner: I Planned Protest for Months

Feyisa Lilesa, the Ethiopian marathoner who crossed his wrists above his head as he crossed the finish line in the Rio Olympics to win the silver medal in a show of solidarity with Ethiopian protesters, initially said through his agent that the gesture was unplanned. But the 26-year-old, who went from Brazil to the US on a temporary visa rather than returning home, tells the New York Times now that he had been planning it for months to defy his homeland’s oppressive government.

“I decided three months before Rio if I win, and get a good result, I knew the media would be watching, the world would finally see and hear the cry of my people,“ he said. “People who are being displaced from their land, people who are being killed for asking for their basic rights.“ Click for his FULL INTERVIEW.


►  Gymnasts Say Former Team USA Doc Abused Them

There was an ugly secret at the heart of Team USA Gymnastics for many years, according to two women who accuse a longtime team doctor of abusing them as teens. In separate legal complaints, the women say Larry Nassar groped and fondled them during multiple treatments in the 1990s and early 2000s. One woman, a medal-winning Olympian, identified only as “Jane Doe,“ has filed a lawsuit in California accusing Nassar of molesting her between the ages of 12 and 18, reports the Indianapolis Star. She accuses USA Gymnastics of ignoring suspicions about Nassar and says it took her years to realize that the man she trusted had been abusing her. “USA Gymnastics failed this woman,“ her attorney says.

The other woman, Rachael Denhollander, tells the Star that she was a club-level gymnast in 2000 when Nassar abused her at Michigan State, where he’s a faculty member. The university suspended the 53-year-old from clinical and patient duties after Denhollander filed a police complaint last month. Nassar—whose lawyers say he denies any wrongdoing—was also suspended after a complaint of misconduct in 2014 that didn’t result in charges, the AP reports. Nassar was on USA Gymnastics’ medical staff for 29 years, the Guardian reports. In a statement released Monday, USA Gymnastics says it cut its ties with him and notified law enforcement after “learning of athlete concerns” last summer.


►  Rio Revenge? Russian Hackers Hit Medical Info of U.S. Athletes

In what one analyst calls a “digital temper tantrum,“ hackers linked to the Russian government have hacked into the World Anti-Doping Agency’s Olympic database and released information on star American athletes, including Serena and Venus Williams. WADA has confirmed the security breach, and the hacking group “Fancy Bears”—which was apparently motivated by revenge for WADA’s exposure of state-sponsored Russian doping—says there are more leaks to come, the Washington Post reports. A roundup of developments:

  • Fancy Bears also posted information on gymnast Simone Biles and basketball player Elena Delle Donne relating to “Therapeutic Use Exemptions” that allow athletes to use banned substances for valid medical reasons, the Independent reports. The hackers claimed the exemptions were “licenses for doping.“
  • WADA says it believes the attacks were carried out with a “spear-phishing” attack that gathered passwords with emails to authorized users that convinced them to click on infected links.
  • According to the leaked documents, Biles uses medication to treat ADHD. “Having ADHD, and taking medicine for it is nothing to be ashamed of” and “nothing that I’m afraid to let people know,“ she tweeted in response.
  • Venus Williams, who was diagnosed with the autoimmune disease Sjogren’s syndrome in 2011, issued a statement saying she followed all the rules and was disappointed “that my private, medical data has been compromised by hackers and published without my permission.“
  • The Fancy Bears group is believed to be linked to the Russian military intelligence agency suspected of hacking the DNC, reports the New York Times, which notes that the Kremlin “has gone to to great lengths to maintain plausible deniability in matters of espionage”—and denies involvement in the WADA hack.
  • The hackers are “trying to sow doubt over the integrity of the individual athletes and the various Olympic bodies and watchdog groups,“ Rich Barger of cybersecurity firm ThreatConnect tells the Post. “It’s just ultimately sour grapes. What we’re seeing here is a digital temper tantrum.“
  • US Anti-Doping Agency chief Travis Tygart called the hack “cowardly and despicable,“ saying that the athletes involved had “done everything right in adhering to the global rules for obtaining permission to use a needed medication,“ the BBC reports.
  • Fancy Bears, which claims to be allied with Anonymous, says it will release information on other countries’ athletes this week, reports the AP, which found that a French phone number provided by the group was bogus and the mailing address it gave was that of a florist east of Paris.


►  Auto racing capsules for Thursday, September 15, 2016

SPRINT CUP

TEENAGE MUTANT NINJA TURTLES 400

Site: Joliet, Illinois

Schedule: Friday, practice (10 a.m.), qualifying (3:45 p.m., NBCSN); Saturday, practice, (7:30 a.m., CNBC), practice, (10:30 a.m., NBCSN); Sunday, race, 11:30 a.m., NBCSN.

Track: Chicagoland Speedway (oval, 1.5 miles)

Race distance: (400.5 miles, 267 laps)

Last year: Denny Hamlin won in his 10th start at Chicagoland. Hamlin has four top-10s at the track.

Last race: Hamlin took first in Darlington, his third victory in 2016.

Fast facts: The Chase begins this weekend just outside Chicago. Drivers get three bonus points for winning in the opening round, which consists of three races. The winner of the opening round of the playoffs has gone on to win the Cup title, most recently Brad Keselowski in 2012. ... Tony Stewart, in his final Chase, has more wins at Chicagoland (three) than any other driver. Stewart is also one victory shy of becoming the 13th driver with 50 victories in the series.

Next race: New England 300, Sept. 25, New Hampshire Motor Speedway, Loudon, New Hampshire.

Online: http://www.nascar.com

XFINITY

DRIVE FOR SAEFTY 300

Site: Joliet, Illinois

Schedule: Friday, practice (9:30 a.m., NBCSN), practice (noon); Saturday, qualifying (8:45 a.m., NBCSN), race, noon, NBC

Track: Chicagoland Speedway (oval, 1.5 miles).

Race distance: 300 miles, 200 laps

Last year: Kyle Busch led 102 of 200 laps to win from the pole.

Last race: Kyle Busch, starting seventh, won for the first time since July at Darlington.

Fast facts: The regular season wraps up in Chicagoland with two Chase spots up for grabs. Blake Koch, Ryan Sieg, Dakoda Armstrong and Jeremy Clements can clinch spots with a win or on points, with five other drivers in line for a playoff spot with a win. ... Erik Jones will be the top seed in the Chase, though Elliott Sadler could tie him with nine initial playoff points with a win this weekend. ... Clint Bowyer will return to the series for the first time since 2012 in place of Dale Earnhardt Jr. in the No. 88 car.

Next race: VisitMyrtleBeach.com 300, Sept. 24, Kentucky Speedway.

Online: http://www.nascar.com

CAMPING WORLD TRUCK

AMERICAN ETHANOL E15 225

Site: Joliet, Illinois

Schedule: Thursday, practice (1 p.m.), practice (3:30 p.m.); Friday, qualifying (1:45 p.m., FS1), race, 5:30 p.m., FS1

Track: Chicagoland Speedway (oval, 1.5 miles).

Race distance: 225 miles, 150 laps

Last year: John Hunter Nemechek won for the first time, posting a 12-second victory — the largest in series history.

Last race: Nemechek won a contentious race up in Canada, his third career victory, during Labor Day weekend.

Fast facts: The series also wraps up its regular season, though its playoff situation seems pretty clear. Six drivers are in, and Daniel Hemric and Timothy Peters will also be locked into the Chase unless someone outside the top eight wins this weekend. ... Hemric leads the series with 12 top-10s and has finished third in each of the last two events.

Next race: Unoh 225, Sept. 24, New Hampshire Motor Speedway.

Online: http://www.nascar.com

VERIZON INDYCAR

GOPRO GRAND PRIX OF SONOMA

Site: Sonoma Raceway

Schedule: Friday, practice (11 a.m., 2:45 p.m.); Saturday, practice (11 a.m.), qualifying (3 p.m., NBCSN); Sunday, race, 3:30 p.m., NBCSN

Track: Road course, 2.385 miles, 12 turns.

Race distance: 202.7 miles, 85 laps.

Last year: Scott Dixon took the final race of the season from the ninth position to win the IndyCar championship.

Last race: Dixon won at Watkins Glen, his first victory since Phoenix in April.

Fast facts: For the 11th season in a row, the final race of the season will determine the champion. Simon Pagenaud and Will Power are the only two drivers eligible for the title, with Pagenaud holding a 43-point advantage over the 2014 series winner. ... Power holds the qualifying speed record of 112.589 mph, which he set in round 3 last year. ... Pagenaud has won four times on road/street courses in 2016, and Power has three victories on such tracks. But Power has also won three times in six Sonoma starts.

Online: http://www.indycar.com

FORMULA ONE

SINGAPORE GRAND PRIX

Site: Kuala Lumpur

Schedule: Friday, practice (7 p.m.), practice (11 a.m.); Saturday, practice (11 a.m., 11:30 a.m.), qualifying (2 a.m.), race, midnight, NBCSN

Track: Sepang International Circuit (circuit, 3.44 miles).

Race distance: 192.8 miles, 56 laps.

Last race: Nico Rosberg won his second straight race, retaking the series lead from teammate Lewis Hamilton.

Fast facts: Rosberg and Hamilton have won 13 of this year’s first 14 races. ... Sepang debuted in F1 and is considered one of the most technical circuits in the series. ... Daniel Ricciardo is third in the standings, but he’s 89 points behind Rosberg and 87 behind Hamilton.

Next race: Malaysia Grand Prix, Oct. 2, Kuala Lumpur.

Online: http://www.formula1.com

NHRA MELLO YELLO DRAG RACING

CAROLINA NATIONALS

Site: Concord, North Carolina

Schedule: Friday, qualifying (1 p.m.), qualifying (3 p.m.); Saturday, qualifying (10:30 a.m.), qualifying (12:45 p.m.), Sunday, finals, 2 p.m., FS1.

Track: zMax Dragway

Last year: Antron Brown won in Carolina on his way to the Top Fuel Title.

Last race: Tony Schumacher won for the 82nd time in his career at Indianapolis, setting the track record with his 10th victory in Indiana.

Fast facts: Every driver in a series run by the NHRA won their respective world titles after claiming the first of the six Countdown to the Championship events. The playoffs start this weekend outside of Charlotte ... Leah Prichett is in the Countdown for the first time. She’ll start the playoffs in 10th place.

Next race: Midwest Nationals, Sept. 23-25, Gateway Motorsports Park, Madison, Illinois.

Online: http://www.nhra.com

OTHER RACES

WORLD OF OUTLAWS: Friday, Arnold Motor Sport Supply Shootout, Clay County Fairgrounds, Spencer, Iowa; Saturday, FVP Missouri High-Banked Nationals, US36 National, Osborn, Missouri.

Online: http://www.woosprint.com/

In Sports….

The Free Press WV

►  WVU football player faces DUI charges in Morgantown wreck

A West Virginia University Mountaineer offensive lineman is free on bond following a crash that resulted in charges.

Adam Panky, 22 of Hamilton, OH, was charged with driving under the influence after emergency officials and Morgantown police were called to a wreck near the 300 block of Stewart Street.

Just after midnight Sunday, they discovered a 2008 Chrysler Sebring overturned with Panky still inside.

He received minor injuries, cuts and lacerations to the face but was not transported to the hospital.

Morgantown Police Department charged Panky with DUI .147.  He was released on a $250.00 bond.

It is illegal to drive in West Virginia with a blood alcohol content of .08 or higher.

Panky “started all 12 games at left guard in which he played in 2015” according to WVU athletics.

He was a redshirted freshman in 2012.  He has been a starter as a sophomore and junior.


►  Rio still struggles with litany of problems through 1st week

Rows of empty seats, green water, controlled explosions, stray bullets, the killing of a young policeman in a favela, muggings of team officials, an attack on a media bus, spotty weather, snarled traffic, long travel distances and lack of a Carnival atmosphere.

Halfway through the Olympics, Rio de Janeiro is still struggling with a litany of problems that have underlined the challenges of taking the games away from their traditional territories, and made clear they may not go to untested regions again in the near future.

The athletes and sports competitions have risen to the occasion, the Brazilians have been welcoming and friendly, and TV pictures beamed around the world have featured Rio’s beautiful scenery and backdrops at their best.

Overall, though, Olympic officials and veterans say Rio has been beset by so many organizational issues that South America’s first games have been more of a disappointment than a delight.

“It has been along the lines of what experienced Olympic observers and organizers would have expected,“ said Dick Pound, the IOC’s longest-serving member, in an interview with The Associated Press. “Then you add the political and corruption issues, and they didn’t have a chance to get everything done the way they would have liked to.“

IOC vice president John Coates told the BBC: “This has been the most difficult games we have ever encountered.“

Seven years ago, the International Olympic Committee selected Rio over Madrid, Tokyo and Chicago as the 2016 host city. Rio won because IOC members were convinced the time had come to go to South America. Back then, Brazil was a rising economic and political star on the world stage.

Today, Brazil is mired in a crippling recession, its suspended president is facing impeachment, and many politicians and business leaders are locked up in a massive corruption scandal. Budget cuts and cash flow problems forced Olympic organizers to scale back.

“There were two or three other candidates in that (2016) race that would have done a much better job,“ Pound said. “There is a reason the games haven’t been held here before. Every day is a challenge.“

In many parts of Rio, it’s hard to tell the city is hosting the Olympics. Dressing up the venues with the “look of the games” branding — logos, banners and other designs — has fallen short after a Ukrainian supplier failed to deliver.

“The good part is that the Brazilian fans are great and the Brazilian people are as helpful as can be,“ Olympic historian David Wallechinsky told the AP. “The negative part is they are simply not prepared. They had seven years. They should have been able to get it together. They just didn’t.“

Wallechinsky, who is attending his 17th Olympics, added: “The negative part combines the last-minute preparedness of Athens 2004 with the incompetence of the organizers of Atlanta 1996 — the worst of the two.“

Rio organizers remain publicly upbeat.

“We need to finish what we have started,“ Rio organizing committee spokesman Mario Andrada said Saturday. “I’ll be glad to come to you after the games and give you a full detailed report on everything we did well and everything that we did wrong. But we have a lot of celebrate.“

IOC spokesman Mark Adams said: “I think we’ll look back on these games as being a really good thing for the Olympic movement.“

The games have gone forward without any major disruption. Security is tight throughout the city, and more than a dozen Brazilians have been arrested after declaring loyalty to Islamic State.

Among the problems that have surfaced so far:

• An Olympic security officer was fatally shot after taking a wrong turn into a dangerous slum.

• Two Australian rowing coaches were attacked and robbed by two assailants, one with a knife, in Ipanema, and Portugal’s education minister was held up at knifepoint on a busy street nearby.

• Stray bullets have twice landed in the equestrian venue at the Olympic complex in Deodoro.

• Two windows were shattered on a bus carrying journalists; Rio organizers blamed rocks, some claimed it was gunfire.

• A German Olympic canoe coach, Stefan Henze, suffered life-threatening head injuries when a taxi he was riding in crashed into a concrete barrier near the Olympic Park.

• Bomb squads set off several controlled explosions after finding unattended bags at venues and across the city.

• The water at the diving and water polo pool turned green. Organizers blamed a contractor for mistakenly dumping hydrogen peroxide into the pool. “The embarrassment won’t last forever,“ Andrada said.

• Some venues, including the track and field stadium for Friday’s opening day of athletics competition, have been plagued by empty seats and small crowds. High ticket prices and lack of interest among Brazilians in some sports have been blamed.

• Because of a shortage of concession stands at some venues, organizers have had to open the gates to let fans out to find food and water.

Sergio Praca, a Brazilian political scientist, said his friends tell him: “‘We’ve always known it was going to be a disaster in organization, but now that the games are started, let’s just make the best of it.‘ I think we as Brazilians never overestimated our capacity or organize anything.‘“

The situation looks more stable for the coming Olympics, with the next three in Asia — the 2018 Winter Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea; the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, and the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing.

Four cities are bidding for the 2024 Olympics — Los Angeles, Paris, Rome and Budapest, Hungary.

Several cities and countries are already mulling bids for the 2026 Winter Games, including Switzerland; Italy; Calgary; Stockholm; Oslo; and Almaty, Kazakhstan.

Africa is the last of the five continents represented by the Olympic rings that has yet to host the games. South Africa could potentially make a bid for the 2028 or 2032 Games.

Adams, the IOC spokesman, said spreading the games around the world remains the goal.

“It’s important,“ he said, “that the Olympics isn’t just a kind of little European or American club.“


►  One for the Ages: Phelps Nabs 23rd—and Final?—Gold

Standing atop the medal podium for the 23rd time, Michael Phelps teared up, bit his lip, and gave a little nod. This was how he really wanted to go out. On top of his game in the water. Totally content away from the pool. “It turned out pretty cool,“ Phelps said, another gold medal around his neck. “It’s just a perfect way to finish.“ Phelps put the United States ahead to stay on the butterfly leg of the 4x100-meter medley relay, reports the AP, giving the most decorated athlete in Olympic history his 23rd career gold medal Saturday night. If that was the end, and Phelps insists it is, the numbers are simply astonishing. No other Olympian has more than nine gold medals. With 28 medals in all, he’s 10 clear of anyone else. “It’s not even once in a generation,“ said his coach, Bob Bowman. “It might be once in 10 generations that someone like Michael Phelps comes along.“

One night after his only setback of the games, an upset loss to Joseph Schooling in the 100 fly, Phelps was back on top. At age 31, he leaves Rio with five golds and a silver. “I wouldn’t change anything,“ he said. “This is the best place I’ve ever been in my life.“ In the stands, his fiancee, Nicole Johnson, bounced along to the music with their son, 3-month-old Boomer, cradled in her arms. Phelps is eager to spend a lot more time with them. He plans to marry Johnson after the Olympics and said he wants to watch his son grow, maybe even dole out a swimming lesson or two. And what if Boomer wants to take all those medals to show-and-tell someday? “I might let him take one,“ Phelps said with a grin. “Maybe a bronze,“ Bowman chimed in.


►  Ryan Lochte Robbed at Gunpoint in Rio

American swimmer Ryan Lochte had a brief brush with becoming the late American swimmer Ryan Lochte early Sunday, he tells NBC News, when he and three other swimmers were held up at gunpoint while returning from a party in Rio. Men posing as cops pulled over their taxi, he says. “They pulled out their guns, they told the other swimmers to get down on the ground—they got down on the ground. I refused, I was like we didn’t do anything wrong, so—I’m not getting down on the ground.“

That turned out to not be the wisest course of action: “And then the guy pulled out his gun, he cocked it, put it to my forehead and he said, “Get down,“ and I put my hands up, I was like ‘whatever.‘ He took our money, he took my wallet—he left my cell phone, he left my credentials.“ Per the US Olympic Committee, the other swimmers were Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger, and Jimmy Feigen. “All four athletes are safe and cooperating with authorities.“ Lochte’s statement ends some confusion after his mother told USA Today that he was robbed, and the IOC denied the incident happened.


►  Simone Biles’ 3rd Gold Is a First for the U.S.

Simone Biles’ golden run in Rio is picking up steam. So, surprisingly, is Great Britain’s. Biles added a third gold medal to her rapidly rising haul on Sunday, easily capturing the women’s vault final. The 19-year-old, who helped the “Final Five” to team gold and also dominated the all-around competition last week, averaged 15.966 on her two vaults on Sunday to become the first American woman to win the event at the Olympics. Minutes later, British star Max Whitlock earned his second gold of the day—and the second ever for his country in gymnastics—when he won the pommel horse to back up his victory earlier in the afternoon on floor exercise, reports the AP.

While the day may belong to Whitlock, the games belong to Biles. Her score was more than .7 better than silver medalist Maria Paseka and bronze medalist Giulia Steingruber of Switzerland, showcasing the gap between Biles and the rest of the world. Going last among the eight female finalists, Biles drilled her Amanar—a round off onto the block followed by 2 ½ twists—and put up a 15.9 to take the lead. Needing only to land her second vault to win, Biles was near perfect. Her score of 16.033 for her “Cheng” was the best of the night. Biles’ three golds in Rio are also the most by a female gymnast from the US in one Olympics. She will get a chance to stand atop the podium again when she competes in the balance beam finals on Monday and the floor exercise final on Tuesday.

In Sports….

The Free Press WV

►  NFL Nixes Dallas Cowboys’ Decal Honoring Slain Cops

Last month, the Dallas Cowboys unveiled a helmet decal meant to show solidarity with the Dallas Police Department after five officers were murdered. But on Wednesday, the NFL rejected the team’s request to wear the decals during the preseason, the Fort Worth Star-Telegram reports. The Cowboys had already been banned from wearing the “Arm in Arm” decals during the regular season, a decision the team’s VP attributes to the league’s strict uniform rules.


►  Worth Every Penny? What A-Rod Cost NY

If a World Series title is worth $317 million, then the New York Yankees probably deserve a pat on the back. If not, well, the team might be regretting its payments to Alex Rodriguez. By the time A-Rod collects his last payment as a player from the Yankees next year, he will have received more than $317 million from team, the AP reports. Luxury tax caused by his deal totaled an additional $132 million through this year, although the Yankees could have spent more money on other players had A-Rod not been on the roster. Was it worth it, given that the Yankees won one World Series title during his years in pinstripes? “One individual is not responsible for winning only one world championship, because that’s part of the team effort,“ general manager Brian Cashman says. “He had a big piece of that success and in most cases more so than most.“

New York acquired Rodriguez from Texas in February 2004. In all, he’ll earn about $448 million as a player, including $119 million from Texas and about $12 million from Seattle. Heading into his last game Friday, the 41-year-old has hit .284 with 351 homers and 1,094 RBIs for the Yankees, helping them win their 27th Series title in 2009 but often failing in other postseasons. He won AL MVP awards in 2005 and 2007, raising his total to three. On December 13, 2007—the same day the Mitchell Report on drugs in baseball was released—Rodriguez finalized a $275 million, 10-year contract to remain with the Yankees. He was suspended by Major League Baseball for the entire 2014 season for violations of the sport’s drug agreement and labor contract, and an arbitrator cut his $25 million salary for that season to $2,868,852, taking away 162/183rds of the total.


►  Let’s Ease Up on Demonizing This Swimmer

Americans ought to think twice before joining in the gleeful hazing of Russian swimmer Yulia Efimova, writes Sally Jenkins at the Washington Post. In a Cold War-style salvo, US swimmer Lilly King drew cheers at the Rio Olympics when she finger-wagged her Russian rival and called her a drug cheat. Efimova has been banned twice for using banned drugs but, unlike scores of other Russian athletes, was allowed to compete in Rio. After losing the gold medal to King on Monday in the 100-meter breaststroke, the 24-year-old Efimova was in tears at her news conference. But does the Chechnya native deserve the abuse heaped on her? Jenkins cautions that this is “not a moment of perfect American moral clarity.”

For one thing, the Russian has lived in Los Angeles for the past five years. Of the two drug offenses on Efimova’s record, one was for a nutritional supplement she bought at a GNC in LA that contained the banned hormone DHEA. Her English is not up to snuff, and her offense was ruled unintentional; the usual two-year suspension was cut to 16 months. Her second offense was for the heart drug meldonium; it was recently banned, though it’s not clear how long it takes for the drug to clear the system. Her case harkens back to that of American swimmer Jessica Hardy, banned in 2008 over a supplement. She came back to win two medals at the London 2012 Games—and “no one splashed water in Hardy’s face or refused to shake her hand.“ Read the full column HERE .


►  Phelps Takes Another Gold, Busts an Ancient Record

Michael Phelps continued his habit of winning Olympic gold Thursday night by cruising to an easy victory in the 200-meter individual-medley. It’s his fourth gold at the Rio Games and his 22nd gold overall, reports AP. It’s also his 13th gold in an individual event, which breaks a 2,168-year-old Olympic record held by an ancient sprinter named Leonidas of Rhodes. In one disappointment for Team USA, Ryan Lochte failed to medal with his fifth-place finish. Kosuke Hagino of Japan took the silver and Wang Shun of China the bronze. Earlier, American Ryan Murphy completed a sweep of the men’s backstroke events, taking gold in the 200 meters.

Murphy also won the 100 back, becoming the third American man in the last three Olympics to take both races. Aaron Peirsol pulled off the sweep at Athens in 2004 and Lenny Krayzelburg claimed both golds at the 2000 Sydney Games. The 21-year-old Murphy touched in 1 minute, 53.62 seconds. Australia’s Mitch Larkin grabbed the silver in 1:53.96, just ahead of Russia’s Evgeny Rylov with the bronze in 1:53.97. The United States has not lost a men’s backstroke final at the Olympics since 1992.


►  Simone Biles Is Untouchable in Gymnastics Final

Forget the pressure. Forget the hype. Simone Biles is immune to all of it. Dynamic on vault. Effortless on beam. Jaw-dropping on floor. Brilliant all over. And now, finally, an Olympic champion. The AP reports the 19-year-old American soared to the all-around title on Wednesday afternoon, putting the gap between herself and the rest of the world on full display under the Olympic spotlight. Her total of 62.198 was well clear of silver medalist and “Final Five” teammate Aly Raisman and Russian bronze medalist Aliya Mustafina.

Biles became the fourth straight American woman to win the all-around title and fifth overall while cementing her reputation as the greatest gymnast of her generation and perhaps ever. Her victory was never in doubt and she burst into tears when her long journey to this moment ended when her final total was posted.


►  Handshake Refusal Brings Mideast Tensions to Rio

Tensions in the Middle East appear to have spilled over into the Rio Olympics, as an Egyptian athlete refused to shake hands with an Israeli athlete following a judo match Friday, Reuters reports. After winning the match, Israel’s Or Sasson bowed to Egypt’s Islam El Shehaby and went to shake his hand. Instead of shaking hands, El Shehaby quickly backed away from Sasson as the crowd booed. (Video here.) According to Deadspin, El Shehaby is known to have anti-Israel views and had considered not even fighting. Muslim athletes have refused to compete with Israeli athletes in the past. Neither El Shehaby nor Sasson commented on the incident after the match.


►  Sweden Pulls Huge Upset, Defeats U.S. Women’s Soccer

The US women’s soccer team was eliminated by Sweden in the quarterfinal at the Rio Olympic Games on Friday, the AP reports. The match was a stunning loss for the US team, which has played in the final every year since women’s soccer became an Olympic sport in 1996, winning gold four times. The match went to penalty kicks after a 1-1 draw following extra time. It was the first Olympic women’s match to go to penalties.

After a scoreless first half, Stina Blackstenius scored in the 61st minute to give Sweden a 1-0 lead that for a time threatened to send the Americans home early from Brazil. Alex Morgan scored the equalizer in the 78th minute and the match went to overtime. Carli Lloyd was called offside on a header in the 115th minute and a minute later Lotta Schelin was offside on her attempt against Solo—although replay appeared to show otherwise.


►  Like Phelps, This Ad Is One of the Greatest Ever

Under Armour’s ad featuring Michael Phelps has been viewed 7.7 million times on YouTube and is now the fifth most shared Olympic ad of all time. Why? It’s not simply because Phelps is insanely impressive, as is his training routine. As data from Unruly reported by Adweek demonstrates, millennials aged 18 to 34—and male millennials in particular—usually resonate with an ad if they find it inspiring. Some 47% of viewers and 68% of millennial men said they felt inspired watching Phelps’ ad from agency Droga5. Phelps probably did, too, since he teared up when he saw it for the first time.

The ad itself is fairly dark in color, which is parlayed into the proclamation at the end that “It’s what you do in the dark that puts you in the light.“ (Cue the goosebumps.) “I think people connect with this film because it paints hard work and sacrifice with beautiful strokes, but does so in a way that is raw and real about what it takes to win,“ says a Droga5 rep. It depicts some intense-looking exercises, a lot of sweat, and “extraordinarily painful-looking sessions of cupping therapy,“ notes Adweek, backed by an emotive track from The Kills. Michelle McGahan at Bustle agrees: It “[reminds] us all that training for the Olympics is no joke.“

In Sports….

The Free Press WV

►  Auto racing glance for Thursday, August 11, 2016

SPRINT CUP

Last week: Denny Hamlin survived a wreck-filled race at newly paved Watkins Glen for his first career win at a road course.

Next race: Bass Pro Shops NRA Night Race, Aug. 20, Bristol Motor Speedway, Bristol, Tennessee.

Online: http://www.nascar.com.

XFINITY

MID-OHIO CHALLENGE

Site: Lexington, Ohio.

Schedule: Friday, practice (6 a.m.), practice (8:35 a.m.), qualifying (3:15 p.m., USA network); Saturday, race, 12:30 p.m., USA.

Track: Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course (road, 2.08 miles)

Race distance: (169.35 miles, 75 laps)

Last year: Regan Smith held off Alex Tagliani for his fifth career win.

Last race: Joey Logano led 67 of 82 laps at Watkins Glen for his 26th win in the series.

Fast facts: The series visits the second of three road courses Saturday at Mid-Ohio, which features 13 multi-dimensional turns. ... The three previous events in Lexington have featured three different pole and race winners — but none of the drivers who’ve previously taken the checkered flag are entered this weekend. ... Sam Hornish, who will run for just the third time in 2016, won the pole at Mid-Ohio two years ago but was knocked out because of a blown engine.

Next race: Food City 300, Aug. 19, Bristol Motor Speedway.

Online: http://www.nascar.com.

CAMPING WORLD TRUCK

Last race: William Byron made it four wins out of six at Pocono, taking first from the pole.

Next race: Unoh 200, Aug. 17, Bristol Motor Speedway, Bristol, Tennessee.

Online: http://www.nascar.com.

VERIZON INDYCAR

Last race: Simon Pagenaud picked up his first win since May at Mid-Ohio, solidifying his grip atop the standings.

Next race: ABC Supply 500, Aug. 21, Pocono Raceway, Long Pond, Pennsylvania.

Online: http://www.indycar.com.

FORMULA ONE

Last race: Lewis Hamilton took over first in the championship from teammate Nico Rosberg after winning the German Grand Prix.

Next race: Belgian Grand Prix, Aug. 28, Spa-Francorchamps Circuit, Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium.

Online: http://www.formula1.com.

NHRA MELLO YELLO DRAG RACING

Last week: Five Top Fuel drivers (Tony Schumacher, Antron Brown, Steve Torrence, J.R. Todd and Richie Crampton) recorded 3.6-second runs in Seattle.

Next race: Lucas Oil Nationals, Aug. 18-21, Brainerd International Raceway, Brainerd, Minnesota.

Online: http://www.nhra.com.

OTHER RACES

WORLD OF OUTLAWS: Wednesday through Saturday, Knoxville Nationals, Knoxville, Iowa.

Online: http://www.woosprint.com/


►  Team USA Gives Gold Medal Worthy Advice


►  Dutch Gymnast Booted From Rio After Night Out

Dutch gymnast Yuri van Gelder was probably celebrating making the final of the men’s rings event when he went partying in Rio on Saturday. Unfortunately for the former world champion, drinking—and even leaving the Olympic Village at night, apparently—is against team rules. “It’s terrible for Yuri, but this kind of behavior is unacceptable,“ the Dutch team’s ambassador says in a statement announcing van Gelder’s expulsion from the Games. His spot in the final will now go to France’s Danny Pinheiro Rodrigues, reports NBC. The Guardian notes the 33-year-old van Gelder has been banned from previous events for alleged cocaine use.


►  No Choice Left, Athletes Turn to ‘Ugly’ Self-Policing

Team USA’s Lilly King may have drawn more attention with her public dissing of Russian swimmer Yulia Efimova than with the gold medal she won. It was “equally triumphant and ugly, an appropriately uncomfortable ending to an awkward saga that will be repeated throughout these Games,“ writes Bill Plaschke in the Los Angeles Times. With her history of doping, Efimova didn’t deserve to be swimming in Rio, and yet there she was, because Olympics officials refuse to crack down appropriately, he writes. As a result, clean athletes have no recourse but to take matters into their own hands—some of the loudest boos cascading on Efimova came from the athletes’ section in the stands, after all. And the King-Efimova feud isn’t the only one unfolding.

Australian swimmer Mark Horton called China’s Sun Yang a “drug cheat,“ and French cyclist Pauline Ferrand-Prevot called out Britain’s Lizzie Armitstead for skipping multiple drug tests. (Armitstead was still allowed to race.) Athletes have long been generally reluctant to come forward against their competitors, but that sentiment seems to be changing at the Rio Games, writes Paul Hayward at the Telegraph. It would have been unnecessary had the IOC and other governing bodies actually done their job. Instead, “athlete self-policing—or naming and shaming—is an understandable response to a colossal failure of governance.“ Click for Hayward’s full column, and for Plaschke’s FULL COLUMN.


►  Phelps Makes It an Incredible 21 Golds

Michael Phelps scored his 20th and 21st gold medal Tuesday night with yet another performance for the ages. First, he won the 200-meter butterfly, a victory that sent him climbing into the stands to kiss his 3-month-old son Boomer, the AP reports. An hour later, he returned to anchor the 4x200 freestyle relay, the crowd’s deafening roar growing louder with every stroke. Phelps now has 25 medals in all, and three more races in Rio to add to his almost unimaginable total. No other Olympian has more than nine golds. “That’s a lot of medals,“ Phelps said, shaking his head. “It’s just insane.“ In other Rio 2016 news:

  • Phelps’ American teammate Katie Ledecky picked up her second gold of the Rio Olympics on the way to what could be a historic run of her own in the pool. She held off Sweden’s Sarah Sjostrom to win the 200 freestyle. She won the 400 on Sunday and if she can take the 800—where she is the overwhelming favorite—she will become only the second female swimmer to capture the three longest freestyle events at a single Olympics.
  • Two windows were shattered when rocks, or possibly gunfire, hit a bus carrying journalists. Rio organizing committee spokesman Mario Andrada says “we don’t know yet if the bus was shot, or it was a stone.“ He says three of the 12 journalists on the bus on Tuesday suffered minor injuries.
  • Catalina Usme scored on a free kick at a tight angle in the 90th minute to pull Colombia into a 2-all draw with the United States on Tuesday night. Mallory Pugh, 18, become the youngest player to score for the US in an Olympics, and the top-ranked US still finished atop Group F for a good position in the women’s soccer quarterfinals at the Rio Games. Their next opponent will be Sweden.
  • The Olympic tennis men’s doubles semifinals are set, and among those closing in on a medal are Rafael Nadal and Marc Lopez of Spain, and Steve Johnson and Jack Sock of the United States. Johnson and Sock advanced Tuesday by beating the eighth-seeded duo of Roberto Bautista Agut and David Ferrer of Spain 6-4, 6-2. Next up for the Americans is a match against No. 5 Florin Mengea and Horia Tecau of Romania.
  • The Belgian Olympic committee says judo competitor Dirk Van Tichelt was hit in the face on Copacabana beach. during celebrations of his bronze medal performance. It said that his phone was stolen late Monday on the popular strip and that he was hit as he was chasing the thief.
  • A French tennis player has been kicked off the country’s Olympic team for violating team rules. Benoit Paire, who was seeded 16th at the Rio Games, was asked to pack his bags, French tennis federation official Arnaud Di Pasquale told TV broadcaster France 2, according to the L’Equipe newspaper. Di Pasquale did not explain exactly what Paire did, but did say the player had been warned repeatedly.


►  U.S. Women’s Gymnastics Dominates for Gold Medal

The US women’s gymnastics team won gold and gave retiring national team coordinator Martha Karolyi a fitting sendoff in the Olympic finals Tuesday, putting on a two-hour display of precision and class, the AP reports. Their score of 184.897 was more than eight points points clear of silver medalist Russia, a blowout that Michael Jordan’s “Dream Team” should envy. The Americans’ second straight Olympic team triumph—and third overall—was never in doubt. From the second Laurie Hernandez drilled her opening vault to Simone Biles’ boundary-pushing floor exercise to end it, the US put on an exhibition that showed how far the divide between themselves and everyone else has become.

It’s a gap that Karolyi created from scratch since taking over for husband Bela in 2001. She’s molded the US program into a ponytailed juggernaut. The 73-year-old is stepping down after the games. Watching from the front row of the Rio Olympic Arena in a red jumpsuit, Karolyi watched perhaps her greatest team seem totally immune to the pressure. But while the gold was never in doubt, you wouldn’t have known about it by watching Karolyi. She clutched the white railing in front of her during Biles’ floor routine, nodding with approval with each gravity-escaping tumbling pass. Russia, which wasn’t sure it would even be included in the games until just days before the opening ceremonies, won silver. China took bronze.

In Sports….

The Free Press WV

►  Nominations open for 2016 AARP Scholar Athlete of the Week

AARP West Virginia and the MetroNews Radio Network are again partnering to recognize some of the state’s best and brightest student athletes through the AARP West Virginia Scholar Athlete of the Week program.

This statewide honor, presented each week during the fall sports season on the popular West Virginia MetroNews High School GameNight program, recognizes West Virginia high school student athletes for outstanding achievement in athletics, the classroom and in communities across the Mountain State.

Student athletes in Grades 11 and 12 with a minimum 3.0 grade point average are eligible for the award. Nominees should excel in one or more athletic program, and be active within their community through service and community involvement. Nominations may be submitted online here: www.wvmetronews.com/scholar-athlete-of-the-week.

Since the program’s inception in 2013, a total of 40 student athletes from the following West Virginia high schools have received the statewide honor: Berkeley Springs, Buffalo, Cabell Midland, Capital, Clarksburg Notre Dame, Clay Battelle, Doddridge County, Elkins, George Washington, Gilmer County, Greenbrier East, Greenbrier West, Hampshire, Lewis County, Lincoln, Logan, Magnolia, Martinsburg, Parkersburg, Parkersburg South, Petersburg, Point Pleasant, Ravenswood, Ripley, Riverside, Robert C. Byrd, Tucker County, University, Wayne, Wheeling Central, Wheeling Park, Winfield, and Woodrow Wilson High School.

“In recognizing deserving student athletes who invest countless hours in the classroom and the athletic arena while making important contributions to their communities, we shine a spotlight on West Virginia’s greatest resource: its youth,” said Gaylene Miller, AARP West Virginia State Director.

“The AARP Scholar Athlete of the Week has become one of the most popular segments each Friday night on MetroNews High School GameNight, showcasing our state’s finest young men and women and the impact they have beyond the athletic arena,” said Fred Persinger, affiliate relations director for the MetroNews Radio Network. “MetroNews is proud to continue this partnership with AARP, and we look forward to honoring more deserving student athletes this fall.”

MetroNews High School GameNight, hosted by Fred Persinger and Dave Jecklin, is heard live on nearly 40 MetroNews Network radio affiliates across West Virginia, 9:30 p.m. – Midnight each Friday night during the High School football season. The show premieres for the 2016 season on August 26.


►  Lilly King Settles Russian Feud, Wins Gold

This one will surely be seen as a victory for clean athletes over the dopers. No doubt that was Lilly King’s take, reports the AP. The feisty American swimmer stared down Yulia Efimova, a rival at the center of Russia’s doping scandal, and then beat her in the pool Monday night. King could hardly contain her satisfaction at capturing gold in the 100-meter breaststroke—especially given who was in the next lane. “It just proves you can compete clean and still come out on top with all the hard work you put in behind the scenes, behind the meet, at practice and weight sessions,“ said the 19-year-old Indiana University student. “There is a way to become the best and do it the right way.“

Efimova arrived in Rio as one of the symbols of the massive Russian doping operation, an athlete who had already served a 16-month suspension and tested positive again this year for the now-banned substance meldonium. “I made mistakes and I was banned,“ she said afterward, per NPR. “The second time was not my mistake.“ King set an Olympic record of 1:04.93 with her victory, the first American gold in the event in 16 years. Efimova finished second and USA’s Katie Meili took the bronze. King’s victory came just after Ryan Murphy won gold for Team USA in the men’s backstroke.


►  North, South Korean Gymnasts Unite for Selfie

“This is why we do the Olympics,“ tweeted political scientist Ian Bremmer after an iconic moment in Rio. Gymnasts Lee Eun-ju of South Korea and Hong Un-Jong of North Korea posed for a selfie during training, where they were seen chatting happily despite the tension between their nations, the BBC reports. The moment was hailed as a triumph of Olympic spirit, though a few skeptics wondered whether Hong would be punished. CNN reports that this is the first Olympics for the 17-year-old Lee, while Hong, 27, first competed at the 2008 Games in Beijing, where her gold medal in vault was her country’s first-ever Olympic gymnastics medal.


►  Tim Tebow Wants to Play ... Baseball

Tim Tebow is trying to pull a Michael Jordan and jump from one professional sport to another. ESPN—where the former NFL quarterback works as an analyst—reports that Tebow is “actively pursuing” a career in baseball and will invite all 30 MLB teams to watch him work out during an event later this month. His agents say the 28-year-old has been training as a batter and outfielder in Arizona and Los Angeles since last year, when he was cut from the Philadelphia Eagles, per USA Today.

As a junior in 2005, Tebow helped his Florida high school baseball team reach the final four in state playoffs, hitting .494. In 2013, a scout told WEEI that the Los Angeles Angels had wanted to draft him “but he never sent back his information card.“ Another scout described him as having “a strong arm.“ “Tim’s athletic ability, his work ethic, his leadership and his competitiveness were evident in football and will show in baseball,“ says agent Jimmy Sexton. “Knowing Tim’s passion and desire, we won’t be surprised by anything he accomplishes.“

Amanda McGill Named New Head Acrobatics & Tumbling Coach

The Free Press WV

Glenville, WV - Glenville State Athletic Director Marcal Lazenby would like to announce the hiring of Amanda McGill as the new Head Coach of the Lady Pioneers Acrobatics & Tumbling program.


McGill takes over the second year program and has an extensive career in gymnastics and cheerleading and will bring enthusiasm to the Lady Pioneer program.


She started her career at Williamstown High School as a member of the cheerleading squad from 1993-97. In 1995 she performed in Dublin, Ireland for the St. Patrick’s Day Parade and Lord Mayors Ball and in 1996 she performed in Hawaii for the Aloha Bowl.


After high school she attended Fairmont State University where she was a member of the cheering squad from 1997 until 2001 and was also a team captain. She was a WVIAC All-Conference member in 1999 and 2001. Also in 2001, she and her team won the Universal Cheerleading Association National Championship.


After college she owned and operated her own gym, Cheermania LLC, located in Parkersburg, West Virginia which, in 2009, was rated the “Best Cheer and Tumbling Gym” by the Parkersburg News and Sentinel newspaper. She also has served as a judge for the National Collegiate Acrobatics and Tumbling Association and Acrobatic & Tumbling meets.


This will also be her second stint at GSC. Between 2010 and 2013 she served as the cheerleading coach for the Lady Pioneers.


“We are excited and thrilled for Amanda to join our GSC coaching staff. I believe she will bring great leadership and passion to not only the Acrobatics & Tumbling team but also to Glenville State College and the community,” stated Lazenby.


McGill has two children, Zane and Cooper White and is engaged to Steve Stull.

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