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Jack McCaffery is the lead sports columnist for the Daily Times and delcotimes.com. He has spent several decades covering everything from the Phillies, Eagles, Flyers and Sixers, to college hoops, to high school sports in Delco.

Thursday, October 20, 2016

HAKSTOL: At age 50, Flyers have 'responsibility' to build upon tradition

Before the Flyers would entertain the Anaheim Ducks Thursday in the Wells Fargo Center, in the home opener of the 50th season, Dave Hakstol met with the press.

This was the conversation:

On 50th year, particularly Ed Snider:

“I think he's a central figure to everything our team does and I think his presence is always here and always felt. I'm not sure exactly what's in store for the pregame ceremonies, but I am looking forward to it. I think there's going to be a lot of emotion that comes with it and is attached to it, and those are emotions that are positive for our team.”


No championship for a long time, but much success, Hall of Famers, good teams, more. Can that tradition provide a benefit on the ice?

“You always build on your history and your tradition. You have a responsibility to those who have come before you, to those who have built this organization that have come before us. We have a responsibility to them to not just respect that but to also build on it.”

How would you characterize that first road trip?

“I haven't looked for a way to characterize it. We played a (heck) of a game in L.A. We found a way to get a point on a tough back-to-back the next night. And it was a disappointing finish to the road trip in Chicago. But there were a lot of real good spurts of hockey. There was not a full, complete 60-minute hockey game really in any of the three. So it's early in the year. But those are things that you have to work on and build on.”

Was the comeback something that can be built upon?

“That's a positive. I'm not looking for positives. I know what the positives are. We didn't like getting into a hole. Quite honestly, we played a pretty good first period in Chicago. We played a pretty darn good first period, and all of a sudden, we were down, three-nothing. We got through the second, didn't get a whole lot done. I am impressed with our players, to go out and tie the game up. And like I said, from there, we are disappointed to not come away, once we were back, to not get some road points.


Monday, October 17, 2016

Stats from O'Hara and Conwell-Egan football game

Cardinal O’Hara 16, Conwell-Egan 13
Card. O’Hara 7 7 0 2 16
Conwell-Egan 0 0 7 6 13
First Quarter
COH: Santilla 16 pass from O’Hara (Calamita kick), 1:38
Second Quarter
COH: Kutufaris 48 run (Calamita kick), 7:58
Third Quarter
CEC: Garwo 2 run (Bareras kick), 7:40
Fourth Quarter
CEC: Garwo 34 run (kick blocked), 2:38
COH: Safety. Gould tackles Jones in end zone.
TEAM STATISTICS
COH CEC
First downs  13 13
Rushes-Yards  31-158  44-153
Passing yards  168 136
Total yards 326 289
Passing  9-21-0    7-10-0
Punts-Average  3-31.3     4-36.5
Fumbles-Lost 1 4
Penalties-Yards  5-30    6-60
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
Rushing: Card. O’Hara — Kutufaris 2-91, O’Hara 17-37, Santilla 2-16, Henderson 7-8, Johnson 3-6. Conwell-Egan — Garwo 14-82, Bronson 10-26, Jones 17-22, Bentley 2-18, Majors 1-5.
Passing: Card. O’Hara — O’Hara 9-22-0, 168. Conwell-Egan — Jones 7-10-0, 136.
Receiving: Card. O’Hara — Santilla 3-66, Johnson 3-48, Redd 1-44, Jones 1-5, Kutufaris 1-5. Conwell-Egan — Bronson 3-84, Cohen 3-50, Goldsby 1-2.
Interceptions: None.



Monday, October 3, 2016

Klentak shows patience with most of coaching staff

By Jack McCaffery
PHILADELPHIA >> The first formal indication of Matt Klentak's offseason disposition was revealed Monday: He will be patient … to a point.
Confirming what sources revealed Sunday, the Phillies have officially released Steve Henderson, who had been their hitting coach since 2013. However, despite finishing 20 games below .500, the rest of the staff will be retained, including Larry Bowa (bench), Rick Kranitz (bullpen), Bob McClure (pitching), John McLaren (catching), Mickey Morandini (first base) and Juan Samuel (third base).
Manager Pete Mackanin is under contract through the 2017 season. The Phillies hold a club option to extend that agreement through 2018.
Henderson, 65, played for the Mets, Cubs, Mariners, A's and Astros and was a .280 major-league hitter in 16 major-league seasons. But the Phillies hit .240 this season, the second-worst average in baseball. Their 1,376 strikeouts were the third most in the National League.
Mackanin supported Henderson throughout the struggle, often mentioning how he was teaching the proper things around the batting cage. The message was not getting through, however, and the manager also routinely lamented a poor team-wide approach at the plate, particularly with two strikes.
“I think our group as a whole has done a really nice job this year,” Klentak said in a recent interview. “We talked a lot in spring training about the energy level, staying positive, particularly with a young group. And we’ve had one of the youngest rosters all year long. The effort level of this team and this staff has been very good. I won’t say we’re going to commit to anything at this stage for next year, but at the end of the year Pete and I will sit down and talk about it.
“Generally speaking, I’m pleased.”
When asked if he alone would make those decisions, the general manager replied, “Pete and I will talk about it together.”
The decision to part ways with Henderson was made Sunday and confirmed by sources. Though coaching-staff changes immediately after Game No. 162 are common in baseball, it's likely the Phillies chose to wait a day rather than to allow any announcement to clutter their tasteful tribute to Ryan Howard, who has played his last Phillies game.
Though Klentak appreciated Henderson's effort, the results were too drastic to ignore.
“That’s a challenge in any organization, separating process from results,” the general manager said. “The effort level has been there, not only from Steve, but from the whole staff. They can only play the players that are on the roster. Some players are going to naturally be better at certain things than others. It’s just the reality of business and the way things work. I agree with what Pete has said. It’s certainly not for a lack of effort.”
Klentak remains supportive of Mackanin.
“Our relationship has really grown as the year has gone on, not surprisingly,” he said. “Our communication has been very open. I think he’s done a pretty good job. It’s not easy to keep a team that’s likely out of contention playing hard until the very end, but this team continues to fight every day. That’s a very good sign as an organization.”


Saturday, October 1, 2016

Nominations sought for writing, broadcasting awards

This is a press release from the Philadelphia Sports Writers Association:



CONTACT: PSWA President Sam Carchidi
215-313-3315
RELEASE DATE: IMMEDIATELY

NOMINEES NEEDED FOR BILL CAMPBELL, STAN HOCHMAN AWARDS;  PSWA BANQUET TICKETS AVAILABLE

Two of the most iconic figures in the history of Philadelphia sports media _ broadcaster Bill Campbell and columnist Stan Hochman _ will again be honored with awards named in their memory at the Philadelphia Sports Writers Association's Feb. 3 banquet at the Crowne Plaza in Cherry Hill.
 “If something important happened in Philadelphia sports during most of our lifetimes, there’s a good chance Bill and Stan were there to cover the event,” said Sam Carchidi, PSWA president. “For a Philadelphia sports journalist, I can’t think of a more prestigious local honor.”
The PSWA is accepting nominees for the second annual awards.  Writing entries should be submitted to Rob Parent at parentr1@hotmail.com, and broadcast entries can be sent to Carchidi atscarchidi@phillynews.com.
This is the second year the awards have been presented. Eagles announcer Merrrill Reese won the Bill Campbell Broadcast Award last year, while The Inquirer's Mike Sielski won the Stan Hochman Writing Award.
The Hochman award is given to the best-written sports story in the calendar year, whether in a newspaper, magazine, book, or online.
The Campbell award is presented for excellence in broadcasting; local sportscasters, talk-show hosts, and radio/TV reporters or commentators are eligible.
Campbell, whose remarkable career touched parts of nine decades, was a broadcaster for the Eagles, Philles, and  Warriors/76ers and also a sports talk-show host. A member of the Basketball Hall of Fame, he died in 2014 at 91.
Hochman, known for his distinctive writing style and his incomparable interview ability, was an award-winning sports columnist for the Daily News for 55 years before his death in 2015.
Numerous Flyers captains from their history will be at the PSWA banquet, celebrating the franchise's 50th anniversary. Several other local pro athletes and teams will be honored, and it will be a night to salute Villanova's national men's basketball championship.
Tickets are available at phillysportswriters.com.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Howard says he's healthy, but is not in the lineup against a right-hander tonight


Ryan Howard says he is ready to resume playing after recovering from a small knee situation.

The Phillies, though, are saying not-so-fast.

With that, the informally scheduled Howard farewell tour at Citizens Bank Park will not likely resume until the Phils return from a road trip for a three-game series with the Mets starting Sept. 30.

Pete Mackanin, who typically arrives at the ballpark around 1 p.m., was counseled by trainers to provide Howard with additional rest Tuesday, even with the visiting Chicago White Sox starting right-handed pitcher James Shields.

Since the White Sox are scheduled to start left-handed Chris Sale, Howard would not start Wednesday, either. That will have given him a five-day, four-game rest after he'd reported a slight fluid buildup on his left knee Saturday.

“When I originally talked to (trainer) Scott Sheridan he said he thought it would be best to give him another day,” Mackanin said. “It's not in his best interest even to tweak it a little bit, this late in the year.”

The Phillies had planned to start Howard as often as possible, particularly against right-handers, during their late-season home games. They are expected to exercise their option to buy out the final year of Howard's contract at season's end, and they were trying to give their fans as many chances as possible to see the top left-handed home-run hitter in franchise history.

But Howard sat out Saturday and Sunday, and the Phillies were off Monday. By Tuesday, he was ready.

“Why wouldn't I be?” he said. “I said I had a small problem. That's all it was. I had some rest. We isolated the problem and controlled the problem.”

Howard was available to pinch-hit Tuesday and Wednesday. After that, they will take a seven-game, eight-day road trip to visit the Braves and Mets.

“I think the worst thing that could happen is that if it did blow up again,” Mackanin said. “It's not going to help him for next year. He'll play quite a bit on this next road trip and certainly the last three games here.”

Friday, September 16, 2016

JP Crawford has surgery, should be ready for spring training

The No. 1 prospect in the Phillies' minor-league system underwent arthroscopic knee surgery Wednesday.

According to the club, shortstop J.P. Crawford had the procedure performed on his left knee by team Dr. Michael Ciccotti.

Through the Phillies, Ciccotti said, the surgery was "successful." Loose bodies were removed from Crawford's knee.

Crawford will need four weeks of rest and, after that, will have a "normal" offseason, according to the report from Ciccotti, who added that Crawford will be "ready for spring training."

In his recently completed season, his fourth as a professional, Crawford hit a combined .250 with seven home runs at Reading and Allentown.

"We challenged him," said Matt Klentak the other day, of Crawford's season. "Even having a 21-year-old at Double-A, but certainly at Triple-A, is aggressive. I think he’s proven at both levels that he still has the ability to control the strike zone as well as anybody in our organization and probably the best in minor-league baseball.

"I think his defense has taken a step forward. He’s still 21 years old. He still needs to get stronger. He still has some things he needs to work on. As I said all along, players are not always going to excel at every turn. There are going to have bumps in the  road and they’re going to have to overcome them. I’m confident JP will."

Monday, September 12, 2016

Haverford School, West Catholic football stats

Haverford School 37, West Catholic 34
Haverford School 8  0 8  21 - 37
West Catholic 2 18 6 8 — 34
First quarter
HS — Hudson 77 pass from Toal (Richards pass from Toal), 11:06
WC — Safety. Twyman tackled in end zone, 3:43
Second quarter
WC — Powell 8 pass from Kidd-Jackson (pass failed), 10:04
WC — Powell 15 pass from Kidd-Jackson (pass intercepted), 4:27
WC — Kidd Jackson 3 run (run failed), 0:18
Third quarter
WC — Kent  21 pass from Kidd-Jackson (kick blocked), 9:19
HS — Twyman 13 run (Twyman run), 3:52
Fourth quartrer
HS — Toal 13 run (McCollum kick), 11:03
HS — Lindner 32 pass from Toal (McCollum kick) 7:40
HS — Twyman 4 run (McCollum kick), 2:04
WC — Kidd-Jackson 14 run (Dasilva pass from Kidd-Jackson), 1:00
TEAM STATISTICS
HS WC
First downs  18  18
Rushes-Yards  43-213  27-128
Passing yards  210  269
Total yards 423 397
Passing  6-18-0 17-36-2
Punts-Average  1-31.0 2-32.0
Fumbles-Lost 0-0 1-1
Penalties-Yards  1-15 8-42
INDIVIDUAL STATISTICS
Rushing: Haverford School — Twyman 25-171, Toal 12=19, Stallworth 5-27, Whitaker 1-(minus 4). West Catholic — Kidd-Jackson 8-73, Savoy 7-32, Wortham 7-15, Kemp 4-13, Barry 1-(minus-5).
Passing: Haverford School — Toal 9-18-0, 210. West Catholic — Kidd-Jackson 17-35-2, 269; Barry 0-1-0, 0.
Receiving: Ridley — Haverford School Lindner 3-102, Hudson 2-86, Morrison 2-19, Hampton 1-3, King 1-0. West Catholic — Barry 7-132, Powell 4-46, Kent 3-49, Kemp 2-18, Averett 1-24.
Interceptions: Haverford School — Towle, Mosebrook.