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Hartford Courant
Hartford Courant

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Hartford, CT 06115   Directions

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Ex-UConn men’s coach Kevin Ollie returning to coaching in Ovetime Elite, a new developmental pro basketball league
04/12/2021 8:47am

Kevin Ollie is returning to basketball coaching with Overtime Elite, a league designed for 16-18-year-olds who aspire to play professionally but do not want to go the traditional route from high school to the NBA.

Capitals trounce Bruins; Islanders top Rangers in OT
04/11/2021 9:02pm

T.J. Oshie scored one of his two goals in Washingtons three-goal first-period, and former Bruins defenseman Zdeno Chara played his first game in front of Bostons fans in the Capitals 8-1 victory Sunday night in Boston.

Hideki Matsuyama wins the Masters to become the 1st men’s major champion from Japan
04/11/2021 7:54pm

Hideki Matsuyama is the first Japanese mens major champion, winning the Masters on Sunday by one stroke over Will Zalatoris despite bogeys on three of his last four holes.

Matsuyama holds on to become first from Japan to win Masters
04/11/2021 7:42pm

Hideki Matsuyama delivered golf-mad Japan the grandest and greenest prize of all. Ten years after Matsuyama made a sterling debut as the best amateur at Augusta National, he claimed the ultimate trophy Sunday with a victory in the Masters to become the first Japanese winner of the green jacket.

Martinez comes off COVID list, hits 3 HRs as Red Sox top Orioles
04/11/2021 5:40pm

J.D. Martinez came off the COVID-19 list and hit three home runs, powering the Boston Red Sox past the Baltimore Orioles 14-9 Sunday for their sixth straight win.

WVIT
WVIT

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West Hartford, CT 06110   Directions

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Matsuyama Becomes First Japanese Man in Masters Green Jacket
04/11/2021 10:36pm

Ten years after Matsuyama made a sterling debut as the best amateur at Augusta National, he claimed the ultimate trophy Sunday with a victory in the Masters to become the first Japanese winner of the green jacket.Matsuyama closed with a 1-over 73 and a one-shot victory that was only close at the end, and never seriously in doubt after Xander Schauffeles late charge ended with a triple bogey on the par-3 16th.Moments before Dustin Johnson helped him into the green jacket, Matsuyama needed no interpreter in Butler Cabin when he said in English, Im really happy.So masterful was this performance that Matsuyama stretched his lead to six shots on the back nine until a few moments of drama. With a four-shot lead, he went for the green in two on the par-5 15th and it bounded hard off the back slope and into the pond on the 16th hole.Matsuyama did well to walk away with bogey, and with Schauffele making a fourth straight birdie, the lead was down to two shots with three to play.The next swing all but ended it. Schauffeles tee shot on the par-3 16th bounced off the hill left of the green and dribbled into the pond. His third shot from the drop area went into the gallery. It added to a triple bogey, and his third close call in a major.Never mind that Matsuyama bogeyed three of his last four holes, the first Masters champion with a final round over par since Trevor Immelman shot 75 in 2008.All that mattered was that uphill walk to the 18th green, needing only to blast out of the bunker and take two putts for the victory.And thats what he did, soaking in the moment with a few thousand spectators on their feat to celebrate a career-changing moment for the 29-year-old Matsuyama, and he hopes for an entire country.Hopefully, Ill be a pioneer and many other Japanese will follow, Matsuyama said.Will Zalatoris, the 24-year-ld Masters rookie, holed an 18-foot par putt on the last hole for a 70 and was runner-up. It was the best performance by a first-timer to the Masters since another Dallas kid, Jordan Spieth, was runner-up in 2014 to Bubba Watson.Spieth had a few fleeting thoughts of coming from six shots behind except for too many missed putts early and missed opportunities late. He bogeyed his last hole for a 70 and tied for third with Schauffele, who shot a 72 with a triple bogey and a double bogey on his card.Matsuyama finished at 10-under 278 for his 15th victory worldwide, and his sixth on the PGA Tour.He becomes the second man from an Asian country to win a major. Y.E. Yang of South Korea won the 2009 PGA Championship at Hazeltine over Tiger Woods.Returning to the 18th green for the trophy presentation, he again put on the green jacket and raised both arms in triumph. Augusta National allowed limited spectators, believed to be about 8,000 a day, and most might have remembered him from a decade ago.He won the Asia-Pacific Amateur to earn an invitation to the Masters, and he was low amateur tied with defending champion Phil Mickelson that year to earn a trip into famed Butler Cabin. He won in Japan as an amateur, and four times after he graduated college and turned pro. His first PGA Tour victory was at the Memorial in 2014, prompting tournament host Jack Nicklaus to say, I think youve just seen the start of whats going to be truly one of your worlds great players over the next 10 to 15 years.That moment came Sunday.Matsuyama is not big on emotion, and he speaks even less even when cornered after every round by the large contingent of Japanese media.Most of the media was absent this year due to COVID-19 travel restrictions, and Matsuyama had said on the eve of the final round that it has been a lot less stress.There was plenty on the golf course, right from the start.Matsuyama sent his opening tee shot into the trees right of the first fairway. He punched it under the trees from the pine straw, hit a soft pitch that rolled down the slope away from the pin and was happy to leave with bogey. Two groups ahead of him, Zalatoris opened with two straight birdies.Just like that, the lead was down to one.No one got any closer until the final hour. Matsuyama made birdie from the front bunker on the par-5 second hole. He didnt make another birdie until the par-5 eighth, and it didnt matter because no one could put any pressure on him.Zalatoris misjudged the speed on No. 3 and three-putted for bogey from just off the back of the green. Schauffele was within three of the lead going to the third hole, only to go bogey-bogey-double bogey on the toughest three-hole stretch on the course.Matsuyama delivered what appeared to be a knockout punch with a nifty up-and-down from right of the green on the eighth for a tap-in birdie, and a lob wedge to the dangerous left pin on the ninth that rolled out to 3 feet. That sent him to the back nine with a five-shot lead.For the longest time, it looked as though Matsuyama couldnt wait to get to Butler Cabin and see how he looked in green.Schauffele, however, rammed in a 20-foot birdie putt from behind the 12th green. He two-putted from 10 feet for birdie on No. 13. He nearly holed out from the fairway for a tap-in birdie on the 14th. And with he nearly holed his greenside bunker shot on the par-5 15th for a fourth straight birdie.And then all that that worked ended when his ball disappeared below the surface of the pond.Matsuyama could afford a few bogeys, and all that affected was the final margin. He is the Masters champion, a major that defines his elite status in the game and gives Japan the biggest week it has ever had in April. The week started a week ago Saturday when Tsubasa Kajitani won the second Augusta National Womens Amateur.Matsuyama wasnt around to see it, but he was well aware of it. All he wanted was to follow her path and made Japan proud. His play spoke volumes.

Report: Hotel Will House Olympic Athletes With COVID-19
04/11/2021 9:38am

Athletes at the Tokyo Olympics who come down with minor symptoms of COVID-19 could be isolated in a hotel lined up by local organizers of the games. The Japanese news agency Kyodo on Sunday said organizers are working to secure 300 rooms in a hotel near the Athletes Village. The agency cited unnamed officials with knowledge of the plan.The rooms would be for athletes and staff who do not need to be hospitalized. The measures underline the risk of trying to hold the Olympics and Paralympics during a pandemic.The Olympics are to open on July 23 and face strong opposition from up to 80 of Japanese polled. The Olympics and Paralympics will involve about 15,000 athletes from more than 200 nations and territories, and tens of thousands of other officials, judges, administrators, media and broadcasters.Organizers and the International Olympic Committee have banned fans from abroad from attending. They have yet to announce the maximum capacity for venues, which is now complicated by rising cases in Osaka, Tokyo and elsewhere.Tokyo will begin Monday to employ tougher measures to curb the rapid spread of the virus. It will allow Tokyos governor to impose shorter opening hours for bars and restaurants, mandate punishment and award compensation to those who comply.Fewer than 1 of Japanese have been vaccinated, and because of Japans slow rollout that number will remain low when the Olympics open. Japan has attributed fewer than 9,500 deaths to COVID-19, good by world standards but poor compared to many countries in Asia.AP Olympics: https://apnews.com/hub/olympic-games and https://twitter.com/APSports

UMass Wins Its First NCAA Hockey Championship in Dominant Frozen Four Final
04/11/2021 1:41am

The University of Massachusetts won the mens national college hockey championship Saturday, beating St. Cloud State 5-0.Its the Minutemens first Division 1 hockey NCAA title, won despite playing part of the tournament short-handed because of coronavirus protocols. The team jumped out to an early lead in Saturdays game in Pittsburgh when Aaron Bohlinger scored his first career goal off a 2-on-0 breakaway made possible by two St. Cloud players colliding as they tracked back to play defense.That would prove to be the game-winner, but UMass scored four more goals from Reed Lebster, Philip Lagunov, Matthew Kessel and Bobby Trivigno.The Minutemen 20-5-4 had played their Frozen Four semifinal Thursday without four players who were out due to COVID-19 contact-tracing protocols, including leading goal scorer Carson Gicewicz and starting goaltender Filip Lindberg. Going into the game, head coach Greg Carvel called the situation hard to comprehend but something the team had to accept. But Massachusetts beat two-time defending champion Minnesota Duluth 3-2 in overtime, the Minutemen snapping their opponents nine-game winning streak in overtime games. It was a rematch of the 2019 title game, which Minnesota Duluth won 3-0. The 2020 Frozen Four was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic.More College Hockey NewsumassApr 9UMass Headed to NCAA Men&039s Hockey Championship Game SaturdayUMaineApr 10Maine Hockey Coach Red Gendron Dies Unexpectedly at 63Gicewicz and Lindberg returned for the final on Saturday, and Lindberg had 25 saves to earn his record fourth career shutout in the NCAA Tournament. The junior from Finland went into the game leading the nation in goals against average 1.33 and save percentage .946.Massachusetts was the only team in the Frozen Four not from Minnesota. UPDATE ON THE BISHOP HOCKEY PLAYER SERIOUSLY HURT AFTER HE SLAMMED HEAD FIRST INTO THE BOARDS DURING A GAME IN A POST ON SOCIAL MEDIA. A.J. QUETTAu2019S FATHER SAYS HEu2019S PROGRESSING WELL AND HEu2019S GETTING CLOSER TO BEING OFF A VENTILATOR FOR GOOD. HE WILL RECEIVE EXPERIMENTAL,videoid:1879971395848715,videolength:24658,videoprovider:mpx,alleypackscheduleunpublish:,feedremoteid:mpx1879971395848,feedthumbnailurl: data-livestreamfalse data-titleAJ Quetta Takes Huge Step&039 in Recovery From Hockey Injury, Father Says data-vidcid1:5:2343388 data-vidurlhttps://www.nbcboston.com/on-air/as-seen-on/a-j-quetta-takes-huge-step-in-recovery-from-hockey-injury-father-says/2343388/ data-isleadfalse data-catnames1813:On Air,1814:As Seen On data-tagnames318699:AJ Quetta,260429:Bishop Feehan data-customdataContentPartner:None,Source:WEBFM,SyndicationAllowed:true,mSNVideoCategories:MSN Video v4 Connector-most watched news,mSNVideoContentSupplierID:NBCLocal,mSNVideoCountry:us,subtitle:nosubtitle,uploadedByTeam:1,youtubeChannel:None data-autoplayfalse data-cplaytrueSt. Cloud State, making the programs first title game appearance, had beaten Boston University, then Boston College, earlier in the tournament. Massachusetts finished the regular season third in the Hockey East conference, behind both Boston schools. But UMass won the Hockey East tournament 1-0 over UMass Lowell. Gov. Charlie Baker had been rooting the team on from back home, as were the NHLs Boston Bruins, and Baker called Carvel after the win, according to UMass Athletics Director Ryan Bamford.The Associated Press contributed to this report.This story uses functionality that may not work in our app. Click here to open the story in your web browser.

Foran High School Dedicates Field to Former Softball Star Who Died From Brain Cancer
04/10/2021 10:50pm

High school spring sports hit the field for the first time in nearly two years on Saturday. Among the excitement, a bittersweet celebration at Foran High School in Milford.One year delayed, the school was finally able to dedicate their new softball field in the name of Danielle Kemp. Kemp was a standout catcher for the Lions who went on to play at Stony Brook. During her sophomore year of college, she learned she had an inoperable brain tumor which eventually took her life.On Saturday, the team honored her as an athlete and teammate. Foran retired her no. 8 jersey and both teams made donations to the scholarship in her name. Her family and former coaches hope that now, every player who steps on the field in Milford will know what it means to Play Like Danni.I want them to play like Danni, said Jeff Bevino, who coached Kemp at Foran. Thats what I want them to do. She was the ultimate teammate, the ultimate warrior and the ultimate player.To see that logo over these that says Danni Strong and Play Like Danni, thats amazing, she loved this game, said Dannis mom, Melinda Kemp.

Fantasy No More: Blackmore 1st Woman to Win Grand National
04/10/2021 8:37pm

A Hollywood fantasy turned into reality on Saturday when Rachael Blackmore became the first female jockey to win Britains grueling Grand National horse race, breaking down one of the biggest gender barriers in sports.Blackmore, a 31-year-old Irishwoman, rode Minella Times to a landmark victory at odds of 11-1 in the 173rd edition of the famous steeplechase at Aintree in Liverpool, northwest EnglandI dont feel male or female right now. I dont even feel human, Blackmore said. This is just unbelievable.Blackmore is the 20th female jockey to compete in a race that has been a mud-splattered British sporting institution since 1839. Women have only been allowed to enter the National as jockeys since 1975, making it a male-dominated event until now.I never even imagined Id get a ride in this race, never mind get my hands on the trophy, Blackmore said.After all, the 1944 Hollywood movie National Velvet was the story of a 12-year-old girl, Velvet Brown played by a young Elizabeth Taylor who won the Grand National on The Pie, a gelding she won in a raffle and one she decided to train for the worlds biggest horse race. In the story, Brown was later disqualified on a technicality, having dismounted before reaching the enclosure.Even though Aintree was without race-goers because of the pandemic, cheers rang out as Blackmore made her way off the course still aboard Minella Times and into the winners enclosure. She looked as if she couldnt believe what she had done.For all the girls who watched National Velvet tweeted Hayley Turner, a former female jockey. Thank you Rachael Blackmore, were so lucky to have you.Blackmore, the daughter of a dairy farmer and school teacher, grew up on a farm and rode ponies. She didnt have a classic racing upbringing, though, making her ascent in the sport all the more inspirational.A professional jockey since 2015, she rode the second most winners in Irish jump racing in 2018-19, the same season she won her first races at the prestigious Cheltenham Festival. She was already the face of British and Irish horse racing before arriving at Aintree, having become the first woman to finish as the leading jockey at Cheltenham three weeks ago.Now shes won the biggest race of them all, one that even non-horse racing enthusiasts turn on to watch and one that first captured Blackmores imagination. Indeed, her first memory of horse racing is going over to a friends house and taking part in a sweepstake for the National.A beaming Blackmore had special words for her parents, who took me around the country riding ponies when I was younger.I cant believe I am Rachael Blackmore. I still feel like that little kid I just cant believe I am me, she said.I hope it does help anyone who wants to be a jockey. I never thought this would be possible for me. I didnt dream of making a career as a jockey because I never thought it could happen.The previous best performance by a female jockey in the National was Katie Walshs third-place finish on Seabass in 2012. That always looked under threat by Minella Times, who went out as the fourth favorite of the 40 horses in a race run over 4 1/4 miles 6.4 kilometers and features 30 big and often brutal fences.Minella Times was always near the front of the field and Blackmore timed the horses run for glory to perfection, easing past long-time leader Jett with around three fences to jump.The famous, draining run to the line about 500 meters from the last fence was a procession as Minella Times won by 6 1/2 lengths.He was just incredible and jumped beautifully, Blackmore said. I tried to wait as long as I could. When I jumped the last and asked him for a bit, he was there.One of the other two female jockeys in the race, Bryony Frost, was taken to the hospital after being unseated from her horse, Yala Enki.The Long Mile was destroyed after suffering an injury while running between two of the fences. It was the second equine fatality since safety changes to the race were introduced in 2013.More AP sports: https://apnews.com/hub/apf-sports and https://twitter.com/APSportsSteve Douglas is at https://twitter.com/sdouglas80

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