Defensive Player of the Week: Kristen Ricks, Central Arkansas – Sr. – Keller, Texas Honorable Mention: April Trowbridge, Northwestern State; Katelyn Termini, Stephen F. Austin; Jessica Nevils, Houston Baptist; Jamie Raines, Southeastern Louisiana. Honorable Mention: Carli Arthurs, Stephen F. Austin; Baylii Bieke, Houston Baptist; Sofia Olsson, Southeastern Louisiana. FRISCO, Texas – Central Arkansas’ Connie Awuku-Darkoh and Kristen Ricks and Houston Baptist’s Alanis Guevara are the Southland Conference Soccer Players of the Week, the league announced Tuesday. Southland weekly awards are presented by MidSouth Bank. Awuku-Darkoh continued her recent hot streak, scoring a pair of goals in Central Arkansas’ Southland opener against Sam Houston State. The junior from Surrey, British Columbia, fielded a pass from Kristen Ricks and buried it inside the right post to start the scoring for the Bears in the 19th minute. She connected again in the 48th minute from a ball from Ricks again, winning a foot race to inside the box to tap one home from close range. In her last four games, including wins against teams from the SWAC, Sun Belt, Summit and the Southland conferences, Awuku-Darkoh has four goals and three assists. Guevara was a wall on Saturday, being called upon 10 times to make saves en route to the double-overtime shutout win over Abilene Christian. The clean sheet was the senior’s second of the season. The Cedar Park, Texas, native leads the league in total saves (52) and saves per game (6.50). The Bears’ duo of Awuku-Darkoh and Ricks linked up twice in Friday’s 5-0 win over Sam Houston State (1-6-1, 0-1 Southland) to commence the Southland season. UCA (6-2-1, 1-0) returns to the pitch Friday to face defending conference champion Lamar (4-3, 0-0) in Beaumont at 7 p.m. CT before staying on the road Sunday for a contest with McNeese (6-4, 0-1) at 1 p.m. Goalkeeper of the Week: Alanis Guevara, Houston Baptist – Sr. – Cedar Park, Texas Offensive Player of the Week: Connie Awuku-Darkoh, Central Arkansas – Jr. – Surrey, British Columbia Guevara opened the league slate with a 1-0 shutout victory between the pipes in 107 minutes of work against Abilene Christian (5-3, 0-1). The Huskies (3-5, 1-0) host Stephen F. Austin (3-3, 1-0) and Sam Houston this weekend, taking on the Ladyjacks on Friday and the Bearkats on Sunday. Both games are scheduled for 7 p.m. Ricks proved her value to the Central Arkansas lineup on both sides of the ball in the team’s conference opener versus Sam Houston State. Posting the most minutes for the Bears’ backline, Ricks led a UCA defense that recorded its league-leading fifth shutout of the season. The senior from Keller, Texas, helped limit the Bearkats to just three shots on goal. She also made an impact on the UCA attack, pushing forward from her left back position to ignite Bears’ offense, twice playing balls to Connie Awuku-Darkoh for goals. Southland weekly award winners are nominated and voted upon by each school’s sports information director. Voting for one’s own athlete is not permitted. To earn honorable mention, a student-athlete must appear on 25 percent of ballots. Honorable Mention: Maddie Talbot, Stephen F. Austin; Lauren Mercuri, Central Arkansas; Nadine Maher, Southeastern Louisiana.
A 40-33 victory for Umaga’s Blues over the NSW Waratahs in Sydney and the Chiefs’ 46-17 thrashing of the Queensland Reds in New Plymouth extended New Zealand’s collective winning streak over Australian teams in the competition to 23 matches – and 17 this season.Only a massive upset in any of the eight remaining trans-Tasman home-and-away fixtures can deny the New Zealand dominators a 25-0 clean sweep of their Australian counterparts in 2017.Umaga suspects the ongoing uncertainty around which Australian team will be cut from the competition in 2018 is taking its toll.”We all know that there’s been some tough things going on over here and not just on the field, obviously off the field, so that’s unsettling,” he said after his Blues consigned the Waratahs to a fourth straight loss at Allianz Stadium for the first time since 1999.”It’s pretty tough to keep everyone on an even keel when you’re always looking over your shoulder wondering what if and what could happen, and so that’s tough.”There’s some quality players and staff involved in these groups and they’ll get it back on track, but I suppose what everyone’s looking for is a decision to be made so everyone can know what’s happening.”That’s just how it is and we’re taking advantage of that, obviously.”Asked how the under-performing – but safe – Waratahs and Reds could blame the SANZAAR situation for their on-field woes, Umaga said: “I’m sure they wouldn’t see that as an excuse. It’s just the lay of the land. It’s reality”.”If you talk about players and staff, and the uncertainty of it, it’s like anything; if you’re in employment and you don’t know what’s going to happen from year to year, you can’t say that it’s not unsettling.”Australia’s struggles aren’t restricted to New Zealand rivals.The Melbourne Rebels’ 47-10 home loss to the Lions and the Sharks’ 37-12 defeat of the Western Force in Durban leaves Australian franchises with just three wins from 31 matches against all overseas opposition this campaign.The New Zealanders also continue to rule South Africa, with the unbeaten Crusaders’ 62-24 rout of the Bulls in Pretoria completing another weekend sweep for the powerful New Zealand conference.The Hurricanes came from behind late to see off the Stormers 41-22 in Wellington, but the titleholders’ comeback paled into comparison to the Highlanders’ against the Cheetahs in Bloemfontein.The 2015 champions trailed by 17 points before piling on three tries in the last five minutes to snatch a 45-41 victory.In the final match of round 11, the Jaguares edged the Sunwolves 46-39 in a high-scoring thriller in Buenos Aires. Photo: Photosport Tana Umaga
While some of the smaller high schools are budgeting approximately $2 million to compete at the 2017 Inter-secondary Schools Sports Association (ISSA)-GraceKennedy Boys and Girls’ Championships, it could cost up to $10 million to be crowned champions at this year’s meet.Preparations for the season began as early as last August for some schools, and before the real competition starts, thousands of dollars have been spent on nutrition, medical expenses, transportation, accommodation, gear, miscellaneous fees and participating in in various development meets across the island.The cost per meet depends on team sizes. It can be as low as $17,000 to as much as $70,000.Some of the top schools have very active past students’ associations which help to bankroll their programmes, however.Many are also spared what could be significant cost of track-and-field gear because of contracts with top sports apparel companies Puma, Nike or Adidas.Calabar High School’s head of sports, Sean Newell, describes the reigning Boys’ Championships budget as a ‘tidy sum of money’, while noting he was not in a position to disclose the exact figure.They fund transportation, medical bills, food and other miscellaneous fees for the over 100 boys who make up the team. Calabar has a contract with Puma, which outfits the team.Former champions Jamaica College, considered by some to be a well-funded school because of a vibrant old boys association, have their struggles, too.Head of Sports Ortis Wynter calls funding Boys’ Champs “a very expensive venture”.MULTIPLE FUNDING AVENUESWynter pointed out that funding comes from different quarters, including old boys, local sponsors and gear providers Puma.Naceive Brown, head of the sports department at Girls’ Champions Edwin Allen High, calls his schools funding of the track and field programme “a massive economic undertaking”.Last year, the school had to fork out in excess of $3.6 million for food, transport, accommodation and other costs for a team of 150 and officials.They expect a 15-20 per cent increase in the cost to compete at Champs and the various meets leading up to it this year. Edwin Allen’s co-ed team could, therefore, cost in excess of $10 million.They have a contract with sports apparel maker Nike.Brown underlined that his school chooses the meets they participate in to gain incentives to put back into the programme, while noting they will be going for their fourth consecutive title.The 2017 Boys and Girls’ Championships will be held from March 28 to April 1 at the National Stadium.
Wray and Nephew’s popular Contender series, will start on Wednesday, with the first of three road shows, which the promoters have stated will be an exciting build-up to the start of the regular series which kicks off on Wednesday April 5 at the Chinese Benevolent Association auditorium on Old Hope Road in Kingston.The first of the road shows will see veteran boxer Anthony Osbourne, who has appeared in the Contender series on a couple of occasions, going up against Patrick Miller, who himself is a Contender “graduate”, at Colonel’S Cove in Morant Bay. The second show will take place at Island Village in Ocho Rios, St Ann, on Friday, March 10, featuring Kevin ‘Bus Boy’ Hylton and Glenroy ‘Bumpy’ Beckford, and the third show on Friday March 17, at Breds Sport Park in Treasure Beach, St. Elizabeth, will have a showdown between hometown boxer Jermaine Vassell and popular Miguel ‘Iron Dog’ Raye.HIGH ENERGYCommenting on the road shows to The Gleaner, Wray and Nephew’s Marketing Manager Pietro Gramegna said that he was “enthusiastic and excited about the new series which we are calling ‘the Best of the Best’, as several former champions will be back this year. We are starting with this high-energy series of road shows because we want our loyal and enthusiastic rural supporters to see some live action, and I am sure that they will enjoy themselves”.Boxing Board President Stephen “Bomber” Jones has praised the idea of taking the show on the road, and said that it showed that sponsors Wray and Nephew fully supported the Board’s idea of having live boxing shows outside of Kingston. “Taking the experience of the live boxing matches outside of Kingston is something that we suggested to the sponsors and we are very happy that they have made a start this year. We are sure that our fans outside of Kingston will support the move wholeheartedly.”Mark Kenny, who promotes the series, told The Gleaner that he wanted this year’s competition to be the best ever and was optimistic that the road shows would be a popular innovation. He said that former champions such as Devon Moncrieffe and Sakima Mullings are expected to participate and that the Jamaicans will this year be going up against boxers from Canada. “The competition this year should be very exciting”, he added.There will be delayed broadcasts of the three road shows on Television Jamaica and the weekly shows will be broadcast live each Wednesday night.
Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next 787 earthquakes recorded in 24 hours due to restive Taal Volcano Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. LIVE: Sinulog 2020 Grand Parade View comments Croatia’s Marin Cilic celebrates after beating Sam Querrey of the United States at the end of their Men’s Singles semifinal match on day eleven at the Wimbledon Tennis Championships in London, Friday, July 14, 2017. (AP Photo/Kirsty Wigglesworth)LONDON — The key, for both players, was to deal with the big serve. Marin Cilic did it better.The seventh-seeded Croat advanced to his second major final by beating Sam Querrey 6-7 (6), 6-4, 7-6 (3), 7-5 Friday on Centre Court. He next faces Roger Federer or Tomas Berdych in Sunday’s final at the All England Club.ADVERTISEMENT Cilic is the second Croat to reach the Wimbledon final, following Goran Ivanisevic’s victory in 2001.Federer is going for an eighth Wimbledon title and was playing Berdych next on Centre Court. Federer is 18-6 against Berdych, but the 11th-seeded Czech beat Federer in the quarterfinals during his run to the Wimbledon final in 2010. Despite the attention, Kobe Paras remains cool in first Gilas stint Missile-capable frigate BRP Jose Rizal inches closer to entering PH Navy’s fleet End of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legend Cilic and Querrey, both 6-foot-6, used their powerful serves to dominate most of the match. Neither even had a break point in the first set.“Sam came out serving huge, hitting big,” Cilic said.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSEnd of his agony? SC rules in favor of Espinosa, orders promoter heirs to pay boxing legendSPORTSRedemption is sweet for Ginebra, Scottie ThompsonSPORTSMayweather beats Pacquiao, Canelo for ‘Fighter of the Decade’Querrey took lead after a brief delay late in the opening tiebreaker. With the score 6-6, stewards entered the stands to attend to a woman who needed assistance. The break only lasted a couple of minutes, but Querrey won both points when play resumed, with Cilic missing a pair of backhands.Cilic finally managed the first break of serve in the second set, and then went up another break in the third. But Querrey broke back to force another tiebreaker. In the fourth set, it was Querrey who got an early break. But Cilic bounced back and then broke for the fourth time in the final game.“After that (first tiebreaker), I was just a little bit better on the return games,” Cilic said. “I was making him (play more) on his service games.”He finished with 25 aces and won 88 percent of the points on his first serve. Cilic also had 70 winners and only 21 unforced errors. Querrey had 46 winners and 26 unforced errors to go with 13 aces.“I kind of felt like he pushed me around a little bit today,” Querrey said. “I had that break in the fourth. When he broke me back, he just played a great game. You know, kind of deflated me a little bit.”Cilic is now 5-0 against Querrey and 3-0 against the American at Wimbledon. Their last match at the All England Club, in 2012, went five sets and Cilic won 17-15 in the fifth.ADVERTISEMENT Marcosian mode: Duterte threatens to arrest water execs ‘one night’ MOST READ OSG plea to revoke ABS-CBN franchise ‘a duplicitous move’ – Lacson Malacañang open to creating Taal Commission Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks PLAY LIST 01:40Filipinos turn Taal Volcano ash, plastic trash into bricks01:32Taal Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite IT happens: Facebook sorry for Xi Jinping’s name mistranslation Duterte’s ‘soft heart’ could save ABS-CBN, says election lawyer LATEST STORIES
Jury of 7 men, 5 women selected for Weinstein rape trial Growling Tigers to spend Holy week in Ayo’s hometown Sorsogon View comments Jiro Manio arrested for stabbing man in Marikina Winfrey details her decision to withdraw from Simmons film On the brink of defeat, Ateneo came back from seven points down, 22-15, in the fourth set and frustrated Adamson, which is in a crucial run for a Final Four berth, to force the decider.“Every time coach Tai [Bundit] calls a timeout, he just tells us to be happy and we need to play happy because if we don’t we’re going to lose for sure,” said captain Maddie Madayag in Filipino. “If we’re not enjoying the game, it’s like we’re playing for nothing and I guess we got our composure back after all the errors and all the miscommunication.”FEATURED STORIESSPORTSGinebra beats Meralco again to capture PBA Governors’ Cup titleSPORTSAfter winning title, time for LA Tenorio to give back to Batangas folkSPORTSTim Cone, Ginebra set their sights on elusive All-Filipino crownThe Lady Eagles continued cranking up the ante in the fifth set stopping the Lady Falcons late in the period.Ateneo saw its 11-6 lead dissipate and turn into an 11-11 tie, but the Lady Eagles were quick to get back on track with Jhoana Maraguinot scoring on a crosscourt kill for the 14-12 lead. Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Kat Tolentino then met Mylene Paat up top for an emphatic block to clinch at least a playoff for the last spot in the Final Four.Maraguinot finished with a game-high 23 points to lead the Lady Eagles while Tolentino finished with 17 points.Jules Samonte and Bea De Leon also finished in double digits with 12 and 11 points, respectively.Jema Galanza had 23 points to lead the Lady Falcons while Paat added 17 points.RELATED VIDEOADVERTISEMENT China population now over 1.4 billion as birthrate falls LATEST STORIES Alyssa Valdez stays positive despite PH loss in volleyball opener PLAY LIST 01:14Alyssa Valdez stays positive despite PH loss in volleyball opener00:50Trending Articles00:50Trending Articles02:14Carpio hits red carpet treatment for China Coast Guard02:56NCRPO pledges to donate P3.5 million to victims of Taal eruption00:56Heavy rain brings some relief in Australia02:37Calm moments allow Taal folks some respite03:23Negosyo sa Tagaytay City, bagsak sa pag-aalboroto ng Bulkang Taal01:13Christian Standhardinger wins PBA Best Player award MOST READ FILE – Ateneo Lady Eagles. Photo by Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.netAs the race for the Final Four gets tougher, Ateneo held on to the second spot after surviving Adamson University in a thriller, 24-26, 25-19, 21-25, 26-24, 15-12 in the UAAP Season 80 women’s volleyball tournament Sunday at Smart Araneta Coliseum.The Lady Eagles streaked to their fourth straight win for an 8-3 record and foilied the Lady Falcons’ bid to force a tie with National U, which lost in the opening game, at the fourth spot. Adamson slid to 5-6, still a game behind.ADVERTISEMENT Volcano watch: Island fissures steaming, lake water receding Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Lights inside SMX hall flicker as Duterte rants vs Ayala, Pangilinan anew Lacson: Calamity fund cut; where did P4 billion go? Dave Chappelle donates P1 million to Taal relief operations Steam emission over Taal’s main crater ‘steady’ for past 24 hours
Human rights activist, and former Minister of Public Works and Labor, Attorney Samuel Kofi Woods, has challenged soldiers of the Armed Forces of Liberia (AFL) to become civilian-friendly by attending to the needs of citizens, undertaking development projects and playing roles that add meaning to the lives of people across the country.Some of the projects Atty. Woods perceived for the AFL to undertake include the construction of roads, schools, homes and other infrastructure and assisting our people when they are victims of any form of disaster such as the EVD epidemic.He said the deadly EVD outbreak necessitated the debate about the new role our military should play, adding, “We should ready our men and women in arms not only to carry the gun, but to have the brain power to assist our people when they are victims of natural disasters, a health epidemic or other forms of mishaps.” Atty. Woods believes that humanitarian and development oriented involvement and interaction with communities will be one way that the new AFL can demonstrate that it is serious about reforms, redemption and reconciliation among the population.Woods’ challenge came against the backdrop of the Commander-In-Chief (C-I-C), President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf’s 2006 Armed Forces Day Message urging for more support to improve the welfare of the gallant men and women in arms to form part of the reconstruction processes.Woods said that the AFL needs to increase its local community interaction, “because they are part of our communities, especially the local PHP Community, but we do not feel your presence here.” The BTC military barracks is flanked by Buzzi Quarters and PHP, two slum communities from which many soldiers originate. “Please develop a community action program for the PHP Community and communicate it well if one is not developed yet,” Woods charged the AFL.West Point Redemption: Development No Substitute for JusticeHe called on the soldiers to seek redemption and reconciliation with the citizens, especially those who reside in West Point, where the soldiers reportedly shot and killed 16-year-old Shaki Kamara as they (AFL) tried to quarantine members of that slum community, during the outbreak of the Ebola epidemic last year.For the soldiers to undertake tasks normally assigned to civilian authorities, the AFL, according to Atty. Woods, will be inspiring hope and accrue some trust through a renewed relationship with the community. “The AFL must return to West Point, this time armed with shovels, diggers, pens, paper and engage in community waste management and sanitation programs, clean up exercises, adult literacy, sporting activities and other initiatives aimed at restoring the broken relationship,” Woods counseled.The West Point-AFL ‘cordial’ relationship broke down last year August following the shooting incident in which one person lost his life and another wounded in the process of quarantining members of that community against the Ebola virus spread.According to Atty. Woods, for the AFL to return to the shattered Community of West Point with development initiatives, must not be the substitute for punitive measures and justice, but an attempt to reconcile and restore confidence and mutual trust with their civilian counterparts.He observed that civilian control of the military requires that the national leadership develop the political will and vision to transform the military and provide the necessary support for its engagement in civil works and other community-based projects that will enhance national development and consolidate the gains of democracy.Woods speech centered on the theme of the program, “Enhancing the Capabilities of the Armed Forces of Liberia to Conduct Humanitarian Assistance and Disaster Relief Operations.”He believes that civilian authorities with questionable integrity will undermine the development of the military. Moreover, if the government promotes impunity, “We will subvert the understanding of justice of the military; if we delay or at least ignore our national reconciliation agenda, our unity in diversity of our military will be undercut.” “A people-centered approach to the transformation of our security must seek to link the national security sector and the society at large, and by focusing on threats to individual’s socio-economic condition and personal security.”Meanwhile, Atty. Woods said that a comprehensive reform must take into account professionalism and ethics training, encouraging civil-military partnership, supporting democratic governance and dealing with responses to everyday security threats to Liberians.“We are desperately in need of new knowledge, new discourse, new research as to the nature and character of the state we must build for ourselves. We are in dire need for scholarship and along with it the character necessary to turn our politics of greed and mediocrity into politics of hard work and nobility; our drowning despair into hope, the brokenness into fortresses of prosperity, and our ignorance into outburst of knowledge and creativity,” he said. According to Mr. Woods, the best vehicle to national revival and renewal is our army, because it is a well-established traditional institution, which embodies those values of our national recovery. The structure of the army, he said, can help redefine the country’s sense of authority and power since it is the one institution that has accelerated the much-needed reforms and has the potential for growth.Civilian-Military Relationships He added that civil-military relations should be guided and characterized by winning hearts and minds not brute force and intimidation, because the civilians are the military and the military is likewise since they are recruited from poor communities. “The weapons they own are purchased from our sweat.They must be used to protect us and enhance our national well being not to humiliate, harass and extort. In civil-military relations, new weapons are deployed. They are the diggers, shovels, heavy earth-moving machines, etc. Our system of government will help the military to improve if we address poverty and national discontent.”Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
The Executive Committee of the Liberia Business Association (LIBA) has reiterated its call for greater Liberian participation in the economy.LIBA President Dee Maxwell Kemayah, addressing a meeting of the Executive Committee last Wednesday, said the organization advocates “for indigenous (or Liberian-owned) businesses to take over the country’s economy,” but lamented the targeting of Liberian businesses in times of crisis. This tends to undermine the efforts toward achieving LIBA’s goal, he warned.The meeting was apparently called after the destruction of houses and businesses belonging to one of LIBA’s key members, Prince Howard of Ganta. Mr. Howard is the proprietor of the Alvino Hotel in that city which was attacked by hooligans in the recent violent demonstration there. The demonstrators accused him of being involved in the death of a motorcyclist in Ganta on September 30. Putting the country’s economy in the hands of Liberians remains LIBA’s primary objective, declared Mr. Kemayah.The question is, what strategies has LIBA put in place for achieving this objective?The reason we raise this question is that we still see Liberians missing in the grocery and general trading businesses, especially near the main market centers in Monrovia. These include the markets at Sinkor Old Road, Jorkpen Town, Rally Time,Waterside, Douala and Red Light markets, where market people get their supplies for retail selling.The Lebanese and other stores supplying marketers, especially market women, get their goods from the same wholesalers found across the bridge on Bushrod Island. Granted, the Lebanese and Indian wholesalers may have special prices from some of these outlets that are patronized by the market women. But this is where LIBA can come in and negotiate with the wholesalers to ensure that Liberian stores receive the same prices offered the foreign traders. The stores from which the marketers get their goods also supply middle class Monrovia families on a monthly basis. Liberian business people could do the same thing and develop a clientele not only from the marketers but also from those customers who buy their goods on a bi-weekly or monthly basis. What is LIBA doing to introduce Liberian business people to this market, which encourages Liberians to open stores near the market centers and enjoy the steady stream of market women coming in to buy goods for retail sale in the market places? Also, when was the last time Mr. Kemayah or any of his officials visited Camp Johnson Road? President Ellen Johnson herself noticed a few years ago that Camp Johnson Road is now dominated by Liberian-owned businesses and she stopped by to patronize several of them. But a close look at Camp Johnson Road today shows that many of these stores are closed—why? Has LIBA taken note recently? Has it investigated this? If so, what have been its findings and what is the Association doing about them?Several months ago we advised LIBA in an editorial that it should give great encouragement to Liberian businesses in the counties. Yes, they are encouraging Prince Howard in Ganta. But what of business people in Kakata, Margibi County, Gbarnga, Bong County, Kpain and Tapita, Nimba County, Zwedru, Tchien and Putu, Grand Gedeh County, Karweaken and Fish Town, River Gee County, Barclayville, Grand Kru County and Gedetarbo, Pleebo and Harper, Maryland County?There are the major cities and towns in the other counties in western Liberia—Clay and Tubmanburg in Bomi, Bo Waterside and Robertsport in Grand Cape Mount, Vahun, Foya District, Kolahun, Bolahun, Vezala, Voinjama, Zorzor and Salayea in Lofa County.What of Buchanan in Grand Bassa, Cesstos City in River Cess, Greenville, Juazon and Butaw in Sinoe?In all of these cities and towns, local entrepreneurs are in charge. But one can see that they are struggling. Has LIBA any plans to visit these areas and check out its members and other business people there to find out how they are faring and what are their challenges?It seems to us that LIBA needs to come forward with some clear strategies to improve and enhance Liberian participation in the business sector in Monrovia, the capital and around the country. We have seen that the government cannot do it alone, nor does this seem to be one of government’s top priorities. At a recent LIBA meeting some Liberian businesspeople lamented that it is people in the very government of Liberia that are doing everything to frustrate and undermine Liberian businesspeople.LIBA cannot sit supinely and see this happen. The Association needs to find some means of combating this problem and giving Liberians a competitive edge in business both in the public and private sectors. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – The Daytona 500 was supposed to be a celebration of all that’s right with NASCAR – the debut of Toyota and much-heralded rookie Juan Pablo Montoya, and a new format that emphasizes winning. Instead, this version of the Great American Race has been all about a cheating scandal that forced NASCAR to throw six people out of the garage long before today’s race. The crew chiefs for 2003 series champion Matt Kenseth, Kasey Kahne, Scott Riggs and Elliott Sadler all were kicked out Tuesday, and NASCAR took the unprecedented step of docking the drivers points before the season even started. The next day, the sanctioning body turned its attention to two-time Daytona 500 winner Michael Waltrip, whose Toyota team violated the code of the Nextel Cup garage by tampering with its fuel. It led to indefinite suspensions for two of Waltrip’s top employees and a $100,000 fine – the largest in NASCAR history. It was so embarrassing Waltrip almost packed up his car and left. Instead, Waltrip will make his 21st start in the race. There’s been mixed reaction to his situation, with many rivals believing he got off too easy and should have been suspended. Waltrip still has supporters, though, including two-time series champion Tony Stewart. “Nobody wants him to go away by any means,” Stewart said. “He’ll rebound from all this. I mean, it’s a huge bump in the road … but he’s got a lot of friends in this garage area and I’m sure when it’s all said and done, everything will be fine.” Whoever wins will get an extra five points, just one of the changes this season. The win also will be good for bonuses when the Chase begins. For every victory scored during the “regular-season,” a driver will get a 10-point cushion to be used in seeding the playoff field. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! It’s a drama that generated the mainstream attention NASCAR desperately covets – but for all the wrong reasons. “I think it gave the sport a black eye, (and) we’ve got to recover from that,” driver Joe Nemechek said. “I know this is the most stressful Daytona 500 I’ve ever been in.” That seemed true for almost everyone in the Nextel Cup garage. It was a chaotic Speedweeks, with twists and turns, allegations, bombshell announcements, emotion and apologies. “This week has been mindboggling,” three-time winner Jeff Gordon said. “I’ve been glued to the TV as much as anybody else waiting to see what’s going to happen. Between that and Anna Nicole Smith, I just can’t seem to get myself away from the TV.” The words were barely out of his mouth when Gordon learned the spotlight had shifted to him: The car he drove to victory in a Thursday qualifying race had failed inspection, making him the sixth driver to fall on the wrong side of NASCAR law. But before the label “cheater” could be stitched to Gordon’s name, NASCAR said the problem with his Chevrolet was unintentional and simply stripped him of his starting position – sending him back to the 42nd spot for today’s season-opening race. It was a relative slap on the wrist for the four-time series champion, especially in light of NASCAR’s weeklong crackdown on rule-breakers.
Help is on the way for UCLA’s defensive line after prized freshman Brian Price was ruled eligible by the NCAA clearinghouse Monday morning. Price, a defensive tackle from Crenshaw High, was on his way to campus to meet with UCLA defensive coordinator DeWayne Walker. “It feels great,” Price said. “I’m going to start practicing and work hard and try to help the team out.” Price said he wants to play immediately, but he may not be available until Sept. 29 at Oregon State. Before playing in a game, a player must go through an NCAA-mandated five days of practice. Price practiced once before the NCAA brought up eligibility issues with his transcripts, and he was pulled from practice. A spokesperson with the NCAA said last week a Friday walk-through did not count as a practice. Since UCLA does not practice on Mondays, the Bruins only have three practices this week. That would leave Price one practice short of the NCAA requirements, meaning he would not be eligible to play this Saturday at Washington. “Most likely, that’s how it will be,” Price said. “I still have to practice and learn the defense. I should be ready by (Oregon State).” UCLA needs help at defensive tackle after Brigham Harwell suffered a partial tear of his medial collateral ligament in his knee. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set!