Written by Phil Cerroni
By M. Timothy Maher
A crowd of over 18,000 came out to FC Dallas stadium on a chilly Saturday night in Frisco to see the club's season opener (and a rematch of the 2010 MLS Cup Final) against the Colorado Rapids. Both teams came into the match hoping to start the new season off with strong showings and get back to their typical roles as playoff contenders after lackluster 2012 seasons. From the opening kickoff, there was a feeling of urgency in the two clubs' play as they fought to keep control of the ball on a very slick field. The fast and furious pace of play was a pleasant change from the normal war of attrition that is a soccer game. However, when the pace is that high, the margin for error becomes much lower. So it went in the 11th minute when Colorado goal keeper Steward Ceus misjudged the distance on a long ball played played by Dallas' David Ferreira to teammate Jackson. The keeper came running out and jumped up to grab the ball only to realize he had left the goal box and using his hands would result in an automatic red card thus leaving the Rapids a man down for the remainder of the game. He let the ball go, giving Jackson an clear path to an open net. Jackson did not squander the opportunity to give Dallas their first point of the season as well as the only score of the game. Denver had several chances to respond, including a two on one with Dallas goal keeper Raul Fernandez inside the box, but could not manage to capitalize on any. Dallas also had their fair share of looks. Arguably the prettiest shot of the game came in the 18th minute when Jackson teed up from about 30 yards out and sent a rocket skipping at ground level that bent just wide of the mark.
As the match progressed, Dallas dug in on defense, slowing the pace a bit while maintaining the same, aggressive physicality. On one play, Denver sent a looping cross into the center of the pitch. Fernandez rushed off his line to punch the ball safely away but in the process blind sided teammate Jair Benitez who had to be carried off on a stretcher. An FC Dallas representative later confirmed that Benitez had bruised his ribs on the play. The second half proved just as physical as the first with Denver holding possession for most of the period. Despite the chippy nature of the game, the only booking came in the 80th minute when Dallas midfielder Je-Vaughn Watson made a strong tackle from behind earning him a yellow card.
After the game Dallas coach Schellas Hyndman seemed less than impressed with his squad's performance saying, “We've had better training sessions than what we showed [tonight]” and then later reiterated the point, “we show[ed] better in practice.” Hyndman was especially disappointed with the team's inability to control the center of the pitch in the first half but thought they did a better job in the second once they switched to a 4-5-1 formation. When asked about the injury to Benitez, the coach was optimistic, “we think [Benitez] will be alright for the next game.” All in all Hyndman was happy to get the win and with his players' composure throughout the game saying, “I don't know if this team last year could've survived that pressure.”
Dallas will travel to Los Angeles next to play Chivas USA on March 10. Chivas USA dropped their opener to the Columbus Crew 3-0. Dallas' next home game will be March 27 when they take on their in state rival, the Houston Dynamo (1-0).
Last Updated on Thursday, 07 March 2013 11:08
Written by Phil Cerroni
By Phil Cerroni
SMU 67 – 55 Rice
The SMU Mustangs played their second to last game of the season and last game in Moody Coliseum, before the $47 million renovations are completed, against the Rice Owls on Feb. 27.
Being a meaningful event for former and current players alike, there were a number of ceremonies before and after the game. Before the game began, SMU honored senior London Giles as 13th all time leading scorer and for starting in over half of the more than 50 games he has played as a Mustang. But with 36 fouls and spills and dives a common sight, the game was more of a slug fest than a celebration.
In the early moments of the game, Giles did not disappoint. 11 sec in, he scored the first basket and put the Mustangs up by 3 pt. But Giles’ energy came with a price, however. He committed the first foul less than a minute later.
With 11:23 left in the half, Rice’s Max Guercy came back into the game, after being benched for a personal foul, and was able to speed up Rice’s offense enough for Tamir Jackson to score 2 pts within 30 sec of Guercy’s return to the court, bringing the score to 16-13 Mustangs. It was the first time the Owls scored since Guercy was subbed out a few minutes earlier.
Jackson’s basket was followed closely by a personal foul, the fourth foul for Rice. It was already gearing up to be a foul heavy game, and with only three men on the bench, it was not something Rice could easily afford. With 9:40 left in the first half, SMU’s Nick Russell ran over Jackson. Guercy returned the favor by steamrolling an SMU player. It was becoming as ugly and indiscriminate as a Shakespearean vendetta.
The remainder of the half was less than exciting. Although the game play was at times smart and at others downright brutal, overall it was rather clumsy.
The first half ended with a score of 35-20 Mustangs.
Guercy, with 3 fouls, was back on the court at the start of the second half but decided to slow it down and move the ball instead of constantly cutting towards the basket and risking a foul. This allowed Jackson to score a 3 point shot after only 37 sec, making the score 35-23 Mustangs.
In one of the more exciting, if disorganized, moments of the game materialized with 2:40 left on the clock. A half court pass by the Mustangs bounced off an Owl to stay inbound where Ryan Manuel picked it up for an easy layup for the Mustangs.
The second half was a disappointment that lacked the half-crazed energy of the first without making up for it with any real finesse. Final score: 67-55 Mustangs.
With both teams making less than 75% of their shots, it is interesting to note that if foul shots were not counted, Rice would have won by 1 pt: 47-46.
One historically bright note, though, is that this win means that the Mustangs won their first game played in Moody in 1956 and the last game before renovations.
In his comments after the game, Mustang coach, Larry Brown, said,” I’m happy for the school because we started out with a win, we ended with a win.
“We got a win,” he continued. “These kids needed that, but I can see it in their faces that they think something bad is going to happen, and it’s pretty obvious that’s got to change.”
Last Updated on Thursday, 28 February 2013 14:21
Written by Phil Cerroni
By Will Jukes
The Las Colinas Convention Center was packed the Feb. 15 and 16 for Ticketstock 2013, an annual convention hosted by The Ticket SportsRadio to showcase Dallas area sports and sports culture. The free two day event featured a carnival atmosphere and encounters with local and national sports icons. The Ticket, which broadcasts daily on 1310 AM and 104.1 FM, has hosted the event for the past twelve years.
Dennis Rodman headlined the event. He took the stage on Saturday while fans lined up for autographs or crowded the stage to see his freewheeling and often risqué roundtable with Ticket DJ's George Dunham and Craig Miller, among others. Rodman answered questions about his relationship with Madonna, legal battles over child support payments, growing up in Oak Cliff, and meeting his biological father for the first time.
Later the floor was opened to questions from the audience. Replying to an audience member's question about his record as “the best rebounder in the history of the NBA,” Rodman said “How many guys is 6' 6”, 215, can lead the rebound 7 years in a row? Who does that? Seriously, that's called commitment, right?” He also commented on his time playing with Michael Jordan, saying “Yes, he [Jordan] is the best guy. He won the scoring title ten years in a row. Do you know how hard that is to do?”
Besides Rodman, the main stage hosted Dallas Cowboy Brandon Carr, Dallas Maverick Jae Crowder, Dallas Star Marty Turco, Playboy Playmate Tyran Richard, and other local sports icons, as well as special events and games like “The Ticket Family Feud.” Despite these high profile appearances, several attendees reported being interested in the event's other offerings.
Two Ft. Worth residents, Robert and Jordan, commented that “We came here last year; Dennis Rodman is one of the reasons that we came, but it also falls right around my birthday, so it's a nice little thing to get out and do on the weekend.”
Most of the event space was dedicated to booths promoting local teams, vendors, and sports affiliates. Adults and children were invited to compete at one of two archery ranges, shooting at either stationary or moving targets. Several concessions areas served up beer, burgers and big pretzels. Almost every vendor offered some sort of prize or game, ranging from Hooters giving away shirts for points scored on a grid in a game similar to skeeball to wheel-of-fortune style drawings. The Dallas Cowboys' mobile Hall of Fame was brought into the event space and contributed the event's largest multimedia display. The Hall of Fame featured videos, famous jerseys, a memorial to Tom Landry, a replica locker room and other attractions.
Last Updated on Monday, 25 February 2013 09:37
Written by Phil Cerroni
The R. L. Turner Navy Junior Reserve Officer Training Corps (NJROTC) participated in the Wylie High School JROTC competition on Feb. 9. Twenty-one Air Force, Army and Navy JROTC units from Kansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Arkansas and Texas participated. RLT’s NJROTC cadets took the first place trophy in the competition. The unit was commanded by John Michael Campbell from Newman Smith High School.
Source: CFB ISD
Last Updated on Monday, 25 February 2013 09:36
Written by Phil Cerroni
The MacArthur Boys Basketball team qualified for the state playoffs after being named District 6 AAAAA Co-Champions. The Cardinals open the playoffs against Coppell High School on Tuesday, February 19th at 7:30 PM at R.L. Turner High School.
Source: Irving ISD
Last Updated on Thursday, 21 February 2013 10:41