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Revere's RBI single lifts Phillies over Braves 1-0

PHILADELPHIA (AP) — Ben Revere's RBI single with two outs in the eighth inning lifted the Philadelphia Phillies to a 1-0 victory over the Atlanta Braves on Thursday afternoon.

  • icon Posted: April 17

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Monday 04/14/2014
Olympic great Michael Phelps ending retirement
Posted: April 14, 2014

Michael Phelps is coming out of retirement, the first step toward possibly swimming at the 2016 Rio Olympics.

The 22-time Olympic medalist will compete for the first time since the 2012 London Games at a meet in Mesa, Ariz., on April 24-26.

Bob Bowman, the swimmer's longtime coach, told The Associated Press on Monday that Phelps is entered in three events — the 50- and 100-meter freestyles and the 100 butterfly.

"I think he's just going to test the waters a little bit and see how it goes," Bowman said by phone from Baltimore. "I wouldn't say it's a full-fledged comeback."

Phelps returned to training last fall and re-entered the U.S. drug-testing program. He has completed his six-month waiting period by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency to be eligible for competition.

Bowman said Phelps is "pretty far" from being back in top form. He's been training Monday through Friday with Bowman's team at the North Baltimore Aquatic Club.

"He's gotten back into good shape since September," the coach said. "He can give a good effort and certainly not be embarrassed. He's in enough shape to swim competitively."

Besides Phelps, USA Swimming said Olympians Ryan Lochte and Katie Ledecky are among those expected to swim in the Arena Grand Prix at Skyline Aquatic Center.

Phelps turns 29 in June and is the winningest and most decorated athlete in Olympic history. He captured 18 gold medals and 22 medals overall at the last three Summer Games. He broke Mark Spitz's record for a single Olympics by winning eight gold medals at Beijing in 2008.

Phelps had vowed that he wouldn't swim into his 30s. His camp is being low key about the comeback.

"I think he's just really enjoying it," Bowman said. "He enjoys the training and being physically fit. He just kind of wants to see where he's at. It's more really for fun. It's been nice for me to see him swim just for the joy of it really."

In Mesa, Phelps will swim 100 free and 100 fly preliminaries on the first day. Then, if he qualifies, he'll decide which race to swim for the evening finals, Bowman said. He'll swim the 50 free on the second day and might swim the 50 fly "just for fun," the coach added.

Phelps will stick to the shorter races and some relays rather than the grueling individual medleys he swam during the height of his career.

"He's really doing this because he wants to — there's no outside pressure at all," Bowman said.

Phelps has already entered the remaining Grand Prix meets in Charlotte, N.C., in May and Santa Clara, Calif., in June, although Bowman said no decision has been made on whether he will compete.

Depending on his early results, Phelps could compete in the U.S. National Championships in August in Irvine, Calif., where teams will be selected for the 2015 world championships.

"I wouldn't say it's 100 percent on the radar," Bowman said. "After Mesa, we're going to sit down and talk about it."

Hawks add Turner exec Koonin to ownership group
Posted: April 14, 2014

ATLANTA (AP) — Turner Entertainment Networks president Steve Koonin is joining the Atlanta Hawks ownership group, which hopes he can raise the profile of an NBA team that has struggled to draw fans or lure big-name free agents.

The Hawks announced late Sunday that Koonin would take an ownership stake, serve as chief executive officer, oversee all business operations and represent the ownership at league functions.

Koonin comes to the Hawks after 14 years with Turner Entertainment Networks, where in his most recent role he led the division that included TNT, TBS, TruTV and Turner Classic Movies. He previously spent more than a decade as a marketing executive at Coca-Cola.

"Steve Koonin's reputation as a game changer in both marketing and media makes him the ideal leader to usher the Atlanta Hawks into a new era," said Bruce Levenson, the team's majority owner. "He has created a legacy as an expert in sports marketing, television, branding and digital media."

The Hawks clinched their seventh straight playoff appearance this past weekend but perennially rank among the worst teams in attendance.

The team is hoping Koonin can change that after his stint at Turner, where he was involved in programming and media rights acquisition with both the NBA and the NCAA. At Coca-Cola, he served as vice president of sports and entertainment marketing.

Koonin is a lifelong resident of Atlanta, headquarters of Turner and Coca-Cola.

"My family has been a part of this city for nearly a century," Koonin said in a statement. "We have a lot of work to do, but I believe my professional experience, my passion for this team and the NBA, as well as the Hawks' great existing executive talent ... make this organization's future very bright."

Under general manager Danny Ferry and first-year coach Mike Budenholzer, the Hawks are in the midst of a major rebuilding effort. Only two players, center Al Horford and point guard Jeff Teague, have been with the team longer than two years — and Horford missed most of this season with an injury.

Koonin's focus will be off the court. Heading into its final home game Monday night, the Hawks were averaging crowds of 14,400 a game — 28th out of 30 NBA teams. The actual turnouts are generally much lower, with thousands of empty seats a trademark of games at Philips Arena, where capacity was actually reduced by curtaining a section of seats at the top of the upper deck. Over the past decade, the team has never ranked higher than 18th in attendance and is largely overlooked in a market that also has the NFL, Major League Baseball and a passion for college football.

"I have known Steve for more than two decades and based both on firsthand experience and his stellar record of accomplishments," NBA Commissioner Adam Silver said. "He is one of the very best executives and creative minds in the entertainment industry."

Saturday 04/12/2014
THE MASTERS: Kuchar, Born right behind Watson
Updated: April 12, 2014 - 5:26 pm

Bubba Watson has managed to get back to six-under par and now holds a one-stroke lead over Matt Kuchar and Thomas Bjorn. Five other golfer remain within three strokes of the lead and the ageless Fred Couples is at two-under par.

Friday 04/11/2014
NGAC Track: Rossville boys second at LFO meet
Updated: April 11, 2014 - 1:54 pm

The Rossville Middle School boys' track team finished in second place during a four-team meet at Lakeview-Fort Oglethorpe High School on Thursday.

NGAC Golf: Smith leads LaFayette to victory
Updated: April 11, 2014 - 1:34 pm

Gage Smith fired a 39 to take boys' medalist honors and the LaFayette Ramblers claimed another golf win on Thursday, defeating Lakeview and Heritage in a match at the LaFayette Golf Course.

NGAC Soccer: LaFayette corrals Saddle Ridge
Updated: April 11, 2014 - 1:36 pm

The LaFayette Middle School soccer teams traveled down the road to LaFayette High School on Thursday and claimed a pair of "road" victories over first-year program Saddle Ridge.

NGAC Soccer: CVMS doubles up against Rossville
Updated: April 11, 2014 - 1:35 pm

Chattanooga Valley Middle School's soccer teams took one more step toward capturing North Georgia Athletic Conference West Division titles with a pair of shutouts against Rossville Thursday afternoon in Flintstone.

Georgia's share of NFL stadium costs could grow
Updated: April 11, 2014 - 10:12 am

ATLANTA (AP) — Georgia officials are preparing to spend more than $30 million to buy land and build parking for the new stadium that would be home to the Atlanta Falcons.

Gov. Nathan Deal is expected to approve a budget this month that includes a $17 million parking deck, a project made public days before the legislative session ended.

Records obtained by The Atlanta Journal-Constitution show that state officials also could spend $16.3 million on land for the site.

Critics say the stadium project has many hidden costs, and they object to the way public funds are being used to build the stadium.

Public officials and team executives say the project will enhance the state-owned Georgia World Congress Center nearby, and the parking deck will be used for other events as well.


Information from: The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, http://www.ajc.com

There will never be another Dave
Posted: April 11, 2014

I had originally planned to write about a sports-related topic in this space this week, but sometimes you just have write what you're led to write.

Wednesday 04/09/2014
The Masters: Thursday, Friday tee times
Posted: April 09, 2014


The Masters: The 5 biggest heartaches at the Masters
Posted: April 09, 2014

AUGUSTA, Ga. — With rare exception, no other major championship inflicts as much emotional pain as Augusta National. The perks of winning include a lifetime exemption to the Masters and a spot in the most exclusive locker room in golf.

The Masters: Kids are definitely all right heading into Masters
Posted: April 09, 2014

AUGUSTA — Jordan Spieth speaks with reverence when hanging out with the greats of the game at Augusta National.

NGAC Golf: LaFayette sweeps Chattanooga Valley
Posted: April 09, 2014

A 37 from low medalist Gage Smith and a 38 from Carter Grant were more than enough to send the LaFayette Middle School Ramblers to a comfortable win over Chattanooga Valley at the LaFayette Golf Course on Tuesday afternoon.

Tuesday 04/08/2014
NGAC Soccer: CVMS earns split at LaFayette
Updated: April 08, 2014 - 10:17 pm

The Chattanooga Valley Middle School Eagles took another step toward wrapping up the North Georgia Athletic Conference West Division soccer crown with a 3-0 victory in LaFayette on Monday.

The Masters: The 5 best Masters debut
Posted: April 08, 2014

AUGUSTA — Billy Horschel won the Zurich Classic two weeks after the Masters last year, and thus became first on the list of players who earned their first trip to Augusta National. He just had no idea how long the list would grow.

The Masters: Father and son gearing up for historic Masters
Posted: April 08, 2014

AUGUSTA  — Kevin Stadler might be playing in the Masters for the first time, but he's already showing his old man a thing or two.

Co-defendant of former UGA football coach pleads guilty in Ponzi scheme
Posted: April 08, 2014

ATHENS, Ga. -- An Ohio man charged with operating a Ponzi scheme with former University of Georgia football coach Jim Donnan has pleaded guilty to a federal fraud charge.

The Masters: Test your Masters' knowledge
Updated: April 08, 2014 - 2:30 pm

AUGUSTA — How well do you know the Masters? Try this quiz:

Major League Soccer moving toward deal on Atlanta expansion team
Posted: April 08, 2014

ATLANTA (AP) — Major League Soccer is closing in on a deal with Falcons owner Arthur Blank to bring an expansion franchise to Atlanta's new downtown stadium.

A top official from Blank's parent company, Kim Schreckengost, said Tuesday negotiations continue and "we hope to complete an agreement soon." The Atlanta Journal-Constitution has reported a new team will be announced April 16.

The MLS has long coveted the Atlanta market, the largest in the U.S. without a franchise, as it moves toward its goal of 24 teams.

The 19-team league already has announced new franchises in New York and Orlando that are scheduled to begin play next season. There also is a provisional franchise in Miami owned by a group led by David Beckham.

Mocs' spring game, ring ceremony on tap for Friday
Posted: April 08, 2014

The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga will host the annual Blue and Gold Spring Football Game this Friday at Finley Stadium. Gates open at 5 p.m. and kickoff is set for 7 p.m.

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