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UNI official calls for UNI-Dome improvements


July 31st, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – The University of Northern Iowa’s athletic director says the school needs to make improvements to the UNI-Dome in Cedar Falls. Troy Dannen told The Des Moines Register Wednesday that renovations to the stadium will be part of a broader campaign that is “a couple of years” away. Although it’s too early to talk about costs, Dannen says renovations to the dome, opened in 1976, would be a “low eight-figure project.”

Dannen says the stadium needs wider concourse areas, premium seating and larger restrooms. He noted there have been few changes to the dome since it opened, though $1.2 million is being spent on a scoreboard upgrade in the stadium and in the neighboring McCloud Center.

The dome’s current seating capacity of 16,300 likely wouldn’t change much.

Iowa cancels free tuition offer football promotion

News, Sports

July 31st, 2014 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) – Legal concerns have forced the University of Iowa to suspend a promotion offering free tuition to five randomly selected students who purchased football season tickets. Athletic director Gary Barta says he has decided to temporarily shutter the offer after questions were raised about whether it complies with state raffle laws.

Iowa says the free tuition package is worth roughly $8,000. The award also can be used to cover fees, books and related supplies for the upcoming fall and spring semesters. The Hawkeyes also were planning prizes such as $500 in school supplies and $1,000 gift cards to a local grocery store chain in an effort to boost lagging student ticket sales.

Iowa has seen those numbers drop from 10,000 to roughly 7,000 in less than two years.

State Baseball Tournament Scores (7/30) & Schedule (7/31)


July 31st, 2014 by Ric Hanson


Wednesday Quarterfinals
Johnston 8, Waukee 3
Iowa City West 4, Dowling Catholic 2
Dubuque Hempstead 4, West Des Moines Valley 2
Southeast Polk 1, Cedar Rapids Kennedy 0


Thursday Semifinals
Noon — Newman Catholic (35-3) vs. Don Bosco (31-3)
2 p.m. — Twin Cedars (34-0) vs. Gehlen Catholic (30-3)


Thursday Semifinals
6 p.m. — North Polk (30-5) vs. Roland-Story (27-12)
8 p.m. — Beckman Catholic (28-13) vs. Van Meter (32-2)

AP source: Indians trade Justin Masterson to Cards


July 31st, 2014 by Ric Hanson

CLEVELAND (AP) — A person familiar with the deal says the Cleveland Indians have traded starter Justin Masterson to the St. Louis Cardinals. Masterson, who is in the final year of his contract, was dealt for outfielder James Ramsey, said the person who spoke Wednesday to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the teams have not commented.

Ramsey was the Cardinals’ first-round pick (No. 23 overall) in 2012. He’s been at Double-A Springfield, where he batted .300 with 13 homer and 36 RBIs. Masterson has been a disappointment for the Indians this season. He began the year as Cleveland’s No. 1 starter but has underperformed after turning down a contract extension from the club in spring training.

On Tuesday, Masterson, who is on the disabled list, said he knew his name was in trade rumors.

Gyorko, Venable back Hahn in Padres’ 12-1 laugher


July 31st, 2014 by Ric Hanson

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Rookie Jesse Hahn held St. Louis to one run and four hits in seven innings and Jedd Gyorko and Will Venable each homered and drove in four runs to lead the San Diego Padres to a 12-1 victory Wednesday night. Yangervis Solarte, obtained from the New York Yankees in the trade for Chase Headley, had four hits and the Padres tied their season high with 16. The Padres fell one run shy of their season high.

Will Venable hit a three-run homer to right to cap the eight-run seventh. The Padres had five hits, three walks and a hit batter off three relievers in the inning. Hahn (7-2) struck out three and walked two in winning his third straight start. The lanky righty retired the first seven batters.

Iowa offering free tuition to boost ticket sales

News, Sports

July 30th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — The University of Iowa is offering a year’s worth of free tuition to five randomly selected students who’ve purchased season tickets for the 2014 football season. The move is designed to boost a sharp decline in student sales since 2012. The Hawkeyes have seen those numbers drop from 10,000 to roughly 7,000 in less than two years, and any unsold season tickets allotted to students will be made to the general public as well on Friday.

Iowa says the free tuition package is worth roughly $8,000. The award can also be used to cover fees, books and related supplies for the upcoming fall and spring semesters. The Hawkeyes, who rank among the favorites to win the new Big Ten West, open on Aug. 30 against Northern Iowa.

Chiefs QB Smith focusing on football, not contract


July 30th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) – Chiefs quarterback Alex Smith says that the time is approaching where he will shelve all talk about a contract extension and focus solely on football for the remainder of the season. The Chiefs have been discussing a new deal with Smiths’ representatives for months, though the sides remain far apart. Smith said after practice Wednesday that he’s yet to set a date to break off negotiations, but he acknowledged that “at some point mentally it’ll come to me.”

Smith is due $7.5 million this season, the final year of his contract, and many expect him to get an extension similar to what Colin Kaepernick received from the San Francisco 49ers. Kaepernick signed a six-year, $126 million deal that includes $61 million guaranteed.

Chiefs’ Murray says bro, ‘Bachelorette’ very happy


July 30th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) – Chiefs rookie Aaron Murray was tied up in meetings Monday night, at the same time millions of people were tuning into ABC to see whether his brother would be popping the question.
No worries. Murray knew months ago that his brother, Josh Murray, would be chosen by “The Bachelorette” Andi Dorfman on this season of the reality dating show. In fact, the finale was taped the same week of the NFL draft, making it a memorable weekend in his household.

Josh Murray played professional baseball for a while before returning to college. He ultimately joined the football team at Georgia, playing safety while his brother starred at quarterback. Asked whether his brother is still engaged, the younger Murray laughed: “Yes, still engaged,” he said Wednesday. “It’s going well so far.”

Chiefs S Commings leaves field with ankle injury


July 30th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

ST. JOSEPH, Mo. (AP) – Oft-injured Chiefs safety Sanders Commings was carted off the practice field Wednesday after getting juked to the ground by running back Jamaal Charles and hurting his right ankle. Commings broke his collarbone in his first practice as a rookie and was finally getting up to speed. He was trying to tackle Charles in the open field when he whiffed, turning his ankle in such a way that he was unable to put any weight on it.

Commings was in a heated competition for a backup job, and the Chiefs hoped he would push veteran Husain Abdullah for the free safety spot that opened when Kendrick Lewis departed. Meanwhile, right tackle Donald Stephenson returned to practice after missing Monday’s workout with a left ankle injury. The Chiefs had Tuesday off.

2014 Hawkeye 10 Baseball All-Conference Teams


July 30th, 2014 by Jim Field

1st Team:
P – Cob Baker, Glenwood, 12
P – Brett Croghan, Harlan, 10
P – Josh Jones, Lewis Central, 12
C – Austin Simmons, Lewis Central, 11 (Unanimous)
C – Brady Wheeler, Glenwood, 12
IF – Corey Bertini, Glenwood, 12 (Unanimous)
IF – Sean Houston, Denison-Schleswig, 11 (Unanimous)
IF – Shae Patterson, St. Albert, 12
IF – Caleb Shudak, Lewis Central, 10
OF – Jon Meyering, St. Albert, 11 (Unanimous)
OF – Nate Gettys, Harlan, 12
OF – Trevor Luther, Creston, 12
UTL – Josh Hecker, St. Albert, 12
UTL – Logan Steffens, Atlantic, 12
UTL – Cale Stork, Harlan, 12
UTL – Luke Sutherland, Lewis Central, 11

2nd Team:
P – Jake Petry, St. Albert, 11
P – Wyatt Schulz, Glenwood, 11
P – Brayden Schurke, Denison-Schleswig, 12
C – Zac Reynolds, Denison-Schleswig, 11
C – Adam Schleisman, Kuemper Catholic, 11
IF – Jackson Baker, Shenandoah, 12
IF – Adam Juhl, Harlan, 12
IF – Derek Leinen, Harlan, 12
IF – Joey Walker, Atlantic, 11
OF – Eric Johnson, St. Albert, 12
OF – Nolan Robinson, Glenwood, 12
OF – Rease Snyder, Kuemper Catholic, 9
UTL – Carlos Guerra, Red Oak, 10
UTL – Jett Kettwick, Clarinda, 11
UTL – Jose Rendon, Shenandoah, 12
UTL – Nick Tarney, Harlan, 9

Honorable Mention:
UTL – Ryan Hawkins, Atlantic, 10
C – Brendan Holmes, Atlantic, 10
P – Jacob Cabbage, Clarinda, 11
UTL – Cole Crawford, Creston, 12
INF – Conner Pals, Creston, 11
UTL – Brandon Phipps, Creston, 12
P – Brandon Brotherton, Denison-Schleswig, 10
UTL – Nathan Promes, Denison-Schleswig, 11
OF – Mitch Kramer, Harlan, 11
INF – Blake Elam, Lewis Central, 9
UTL – Payton Mehsling, Lewis Central, 11
OF – Kyler Nixon, Lewis Central, 11
INF – Trevor Feilmeier, Kuemper Catholic, 10
IF – Jesse Taylor, Red Oak, 10
OF – Devon Perkins, Shenandoah, 9