The Daily Astorian | http://www.dailyastorian.com The Daily Astorian Sun, 22 Jan 2017 18:17:32 -0500 en http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/staticimage/images/rss-logo.jpg The Daily Astorian | http://www.dailyastorian.com The Latest: A loud roar and 'let's go guys' as storm strikes http://www.dailyastorian.com/the-latest-a-loud-roar-and-lets-go-guys-as-storm-strikes-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world37a093ac606945d38449ebe44d92b199 http://www.dailyastorian.com/the-latest-a-loud-roar-and-lets-go-guys-as-storm-strikes-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world37a093ac606945d38449ebe44d92b199#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 18:10:41 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229815 ATLANTA (AP) — The Latest on severe weather gusting through the southeastern U.S. (all times local):

8:45 p.m.

Residents of Albany, the largest city in southwest Georgia, are reporting trees down, roadside flooding and other damage after being struck by the severe storm system blamed for at least 18 weekend deaths in the South.

Bridgit Simmons was with her parents, her daughter and her grandson in their brick home in that community when the sky grew dark Sunday afternoon.

"I was in the den and I heard that loud roar and I grabbed the baby and I said, 'Let's go guys. This is it.' We laid down and that was it." She said the wind was so loud "you could hear it beating back and forth."

But within a few minutes the storm had passed and their home was mostly unscathed, save for a carport that collapsed atop two cars. And when she opened a door to see what had happened, there was a bright burst of light because "all the trees were gone" that normally shade the yard.

Authorities reported three deaths in the county where Albany is located.

Police cars and fire trucks were seen racing all over with their sirens on and utility trucks deployed with yellow lights flashing.

___

7:15 p.m.

Emergency officials are reporting three additional deaths in southern Georgia from violent storms, bringing the overall toll to at least 18 people killed over the weekend by a severe weather system sweeping the Southeast.

Catherine Howden, a spokeswoman for the Georgia Emergency Management Agency, said Sunday evening that three additional deaths have been confirmed in Georgia's Dougherty County. Local officials say search and rescue operations are underway after a reported tornado caused widespread destruction in the county Sunday evening.

Before the three latest deaths were confirmed, Georgia officials had reported 12 deaths statewide. Howden said one of those was reported in error.

Four died Saturday in Mississippi.

___

4:55 p.m.

An emergency official says more people have been killed as violent storms tear across southern Georgia.

Sebon Burns, chief deputy emergency management director for Georgia's Dougherty County, said "fatalities and a lot of injuries" have been reported since an apparent tornado cut a path through the county Sunday afternoon.

Burns said he could not give even an estimate for how many people died.

Earlier Sunday the Georgia Emergency Management Agency reported 12 total deaths had been confirmed in three other Georgia counties after storms hit before dawn Sunday.

A wide area of Georgia and parts of South Carolina and Florida remained under tornado watches Sunday evening.

___

4:10 p.m.

Emergency officials say the death toll in Georgia has risen to 12 people killed as violent storms tear across the region.

The Georgia Emergency Management and Homeland Security Agency gave the updated figure in a news release Sunday afternoon. The agency had reported total 11 deaths earlier in the day.

Eight deaths were confirmed in Cook County in rural southern Georgia. County Coroner Tim Purvis said Sunday morning that seven people were found dead at a mobile home park struck by an apparent tornado. It was not known if the additional death was discovered there as well. Purvis did not immediately return a phone call.

There were also two deaths apiece in neighboring Brooks and Berrien counties.

___

2:30 p.m.

A woman says she and her parents were fortunate to escape with their lives as a storm destroyed their home in rural south Georgia.

Jenny Bullard had her arm in a sling Sunday afternoon as she searched for salvageable belongings amid the rubble that was her family's Cook County home. An apparent tornado smashed through the center of the brick house before dawn.

The 19-year-old Bullard says a wall and a door fell on her, but she managed to reach her father and help free him from a pile of debris. They escaped with her mother through a hole in the wall of what had been a home office.

Out of 11 confirmed storm deaths in Georgia, the coroner said seven people were killed in Cook County. Bullard says it's "a horrible tragedy."

___

12 p.m.

The governor of Georgia has declared a state of emergency in seven counties that have suffered deaths, injuries and severe damage from weekend storms.

Gov. Nathan Deal's office said Sunday the emergency declaration includes Brooks, Cook and Berrien counties — where 11 people have been confirmed dead in south central Georgia near the Florida state line.

Also included were Atkinson, Colquitt, Lowndes and Thomas counties.

Deal said in a statement that state agencies are "making all resources available" to affected counties and "our thoughts and prayers are with Georgians suffering from the storm's impact."

___

10:40 a.m.

Tornado activity is remaining a threat across south Georgia, where 11 people were killed early Sunday.

The National Weather Service said Sunday that southern Georgia, northern Florida and the corner of southeastern Alabama could face "intense and long track" tornadoes, scattered damaging winds and large hail.

The weather service said that a "severe thunderstorm and tornado outbreak is expected today across north Florida and south Georgia, with the significant severe threat also expected to extend southward into central Florida and northeastward into South Carolina this evening."

Four people were killed in a tornado in Mississippi on Saturday.

___

10 a.m.

A coroner says seven people have been confirmed dead at a mobile home park in south Georgia after a powerful storm tore through the area overnight.

Cook County Coroner Tim Purvis said an apparent tornado "leveled" numerous mobile homes before dawn Sunday in the park near Adel. He said emergency responders were still searching for survivors hours later.

Purvis estimated the park has about 40 mobile homes total and roughly half of them were destroyed.

Catherine Howden of the Georgia Emergency Management Agency put the death toll from severe weather in the state to 11, with 23 injured. She said the deaths occurred in Cook, Brooks and Berrien counties near the Georgia-Florida line.

___

9:45 a.m.

A coroner says at least five people have been confirmed dead at a mobile home park in south Georgia that was devastated by a powerful storm overnight.

Brooks County Coroner Michael Miller said Sunday he was called to assist in neighboring Cook County, where an apparent tornado that struck before dawn left "mobile homes thrown everywhere." Miller said emergency responders were still searching the debris for survivors hours later.

Miller said two people died in Brooks County when an apparent tornado tossed a mobile home roughly 100 yards into the middle of a highway.

Catherine Howden of the Georgia Emergency Management Agency put the death toll from severe weather in the state to 11, with 23 injured. She said the deaths occurred in Cook, Brooks and Berrien counties near the Georgia-Florida line.

__

8:52 a.m.

State emergency management officials say 11 people are dead and 23 are injured after severe weather struck central Georgia.

Catherine Howden of the Georgia Emergency Management Agency said Sunday morning that the deaths occurred in Cook, Brooks and Berrien counties.

She said the deaths were related to severe weather but could not specify whether tornadoes were the cause. Tornado warnings had been issued for parts of Georgia overnight.

Local officials are still assessing the area. No other information was immediately available.

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Super Falcons: Atlanta routs Packers 44-21 for NFC title http://www.dailyastorian.com/super-falcons-atlanta-routs-packers-44-21-for-nfc-title-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-worldeef725c697af430f8e41b5ebab98d507 http://www.dailyastorian.com/super-falcons-atlanta-routs-packers-44-21-for-nfc-title-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-worldeef725c697af430f8e41b5ebab98d507#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 18:01:38 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229669 ATLANTA (AP) — Matt Ryan tumbled into the end zone, slammed the ball to the turf with a thunderous spike, and let out a scream that showed just how much he wanted this game.

He wants the next one even more.

With another MVP-worthy performance and plenty of help from Julio Jones, Matty Ice guided the Atlanta Falcons to a 44-21 rout of the Green Bay Packers for the NFC championship Sunday, a showing that erased any doubts about whether Ryan can win the big games.

In his ninth season, he's finally headed to his first Super Bowl .

Call him Super Matty.

"We'll enjoy it because it's hard to get to this point. I know that from experience," Ryan said. "But our ultimate goal is still in front of us."

The Falcons (13-5) will face either New England or Pittsburgh on Feb. 5 in Houston, just the second Super Bowl appearance in Atlanta's 51-year history. Eighteen years ago, they lost to Denver in John Elway's final game.

Ryan threw for 392 yards and four touchdowns, but it was his 14-yard scoring run — his first TD on the ground since 2012 — that really set the tone .

Jones was right in the middle of things, too. After barely practicing during the week because of a lingering toe injury, he finished off the Packers with a 73-yard catch-and-run on Atlanta's second snap of the second half, pushing the lead to 31-0 and essentially turning the rest of the Georgia Dome finale into one long celebration.

"He's a beast," Ryan said. "I've been lucky to play with him as long as I have. He was impressive today. I know he wasn't feeling his best, but he's a warrior."

Jones finished with nine catches for 180 yards and two scores, which included a toe-dragging catch for a 5-yard touchdown with 3 seconds left in the first half, sending the Falcons to the locker room up 24-0.

After the break: the play that showed every one of Jones' remarkable skills . He blazed down the middle of the field, shook off LaDarius Gunter's attempt to grab him on a cut toward the sideline, hauled in the pass from Ryan, broke Gunter's diving attempt at tackle, and defiantly knocked away Damarious Randall's with a brutal stiff-arm.

"I didn't practice that much throughout the week," Jones said, "but today I came out and gave it all I had."

Ryan sparked more delirious chants of "MVP! MVP! MVP!" as he carved up an injury-plagued Packers secondary that had no way of stopping a team that averaged nearly 34 points a game during the regular season and romped to a 36-20 victory against Seattle's Legion of Boom last week.

The Packers, riding an eight-game winning streak and coming off a thrilling upset of the top-seeded Dallas Cowboys , got a taste of what they'd be in for on Atlanta's very first possession. Driving 80 yards in 13 plays, the Falcons converted three third downs, the last when Ryan scrambled away from pressure and flipped a shovel pass to Mohamed Sanu for a 2-yard score.

Aaron Rodgers pushed the Packers quickly into Atlanta territory with a 27-yard pass to Jordy Nelson, who missed the previous game with a rib injury. But Mason Crosby, who hit two field goals longer that 50 yards in the closing minutes against the Cowboys, pushed a 41-yard attempt right of the upright to snap a playoff-record streak of 23 straight field goals.

The Falcons drove the other way, settling for Matt Bryant's 28-yard field goal and a 10-0 lead. Then, with Green Bay poised to make a game of it, Atlanta's much-maligned defense — one of the lowest ranked in the NFL — came through a momentum-swinging play. Fullback Aaron Ripkowski was breaking tackles and rumbling toward the end zone when Jalen Collins stripped the ball from behind and fell on it just across the goal line for a touchback.

"Their offense is hot right now," Rodgers said. "Playing a team like that, you've got to start faster. We had no points in the first half. You're not going to win many games like that."

After the fumble, Ryan hooked up with Jones three times for 56 yards and finished it off from the 14 with some surprisingly nimble running skills, faking out one defender with a pump fake before sprawling into the end zone.

"I just saw a lane open up," said Ryan, who had a 1-4 record in the playoffs over his first eight seasons. "That's the longest run I've had in a while. It came at a good time."

DON'T FORGET THE DEFENSE

Atlanta's defense, an afterthought compared to the other side of the line, kept the Packers out of the end zone until the game was essentially locked up.

Rodgers finished 27 of 45 for 287 yards and three TDs, but he also threw an interception, was sacked twice and faced a relentless Falcons rush.

The Falcons finished with a 493-367 edge in total yards.

DOME FINALE

What a send-off for the Georgia Dome, the Falcons' home since 1992, which will be torn down and replaced next season by $1.5 billion Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

With the home team comfortably ahead, the raucous crowd of more than 71,000 partied through the second half, bouncing along to rap music that turned the stadium with the big top-like roof into the world's largest dance club.

The intensity of the celebration was understandable, given the Falcons' largely forgettable history and the heartache doled out by all of Atlanta's pro sports teams. The Braves, way back in 1995, are still the city's only team to capture a big league championship.

Now, the Falcons are one win away from adding another title to that barren trophy case.

___

Follow Paul Newberry on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pnewberry1963 . His work can be found at http://bigstory.ap.org/content/paul-newberry .

___

For more NFL coverage: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP_NFL

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18 dead amid reported tornadoes, other storms in the South http://www.dailyastorian.com/18-dead-amid-reported-tornadoes-other-storms-in-the-south-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world109b19555ef446759bed73b30774c98a http://www.dailyastorian.com/18-dead-amid-reported-tornadoes-other-storms-in-the-south-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world109b19555ef446759bed73b30774c98a#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 18:00:53 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229824 ADEL, Ga. (AP) — A severe storm system that spun off apparent tornadoes and left scattered destruction around the Southeast has claimed at least 18 lives on a two-day sweep across the region, authorities said.

The enormous system put millions of people in the South on edge during a weekend of violent weather that left crumpled trailer homes, downed trees and other damage in the hardest-hit communities from Mississippi to Georgia. The severe weather threat was still continuing Sunday night in some parts, extending into the Carolinas and north Florida.

At least 14 people were killed Sunday in Georgia as the fast-moving storms tore across the state throughout the day, with at least one deadly tornado reported before dawn and violent storms still rumbling after nightfall. Four people were killed Saturday in Mississippi when the system began its deadly assault.

"There are houses just demolished," said Norma Ford, who rushed out with other relatives Sunday evening after hearing a reported twister had overturned her nephew's mobile home in the southwestern Georgia city of Albany, the region's largest city with some 76,000 residents.

She said downed trees and powerlines made roads impassable, forcing them to walk the 2 miles to the mobile home park to check on her relatives. She said her nephew was fine, but several of his neighbors' homes were destroyed.

Georgia's latest three deaths were confirmed Sunday evening in Dougherty County where Albany is located, said Catherine Howden, spokeswoman for the Georgia Emergency Management Agency.

Sebon Burns, the county's deputy chief for emergency management, said search and rescue efforts were continuing Sunday night following reports of injuries and extensive damage.

Yet the day's deadliest toll came before daybreak Sunday when an apparent tornado blew through a mobile home park in south Georgia — about 60 miles southeast of Albany — shearing away siding, upending homes and killing seven people.

Coroner Tim Purvis of south Georgia's Cook County confirmed that seven people died at the mobile home park, where about roughly half of the 40 homes were "leveled." Georgia state emergency officials initially reported an eighth death in that county, but Howden later said that was incorrect.

The other deaths in Georgia were reported elsewhere.

Not far from the mobile home park, 19-year-old Jenny Bullard wore a sling on her injured arm as she combed through the rubble of her family's brick house. All that remained standing Sunday afternoon was the master bedroom and parts of the kitchen.

"It's a horrible tragedy," Bullard said. "But all this stuff can be replaced. We can't replace each other. We're extremely lucky."

Bullard said she awoke before dawn Sunday to the sound of hail pounding the roof. When she went outside her bedroom door, she was knocked down by a collapsing wall in the hallway. She managed to get up and found her father calling for her, trapped under debris.

She pulled him free, and they found her mother in the master bedroom. They escaped by climbing over piles of furniture and debris where the wall to their home office once stood.

President Donald Trump said Sunday he had spoken with Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal and "expressed our sincere condolences for the lives taken."

"Tornadoes were vicious and powerful and strong, and they suffered greatly," Trump said during a White House ceremony where he was swearing in aides. "So we'll be helping out the state of Georgia."

Several homes appeared to be destroyed along on a road within about 2 miles of the mobile home park, with cinderblocks scattered on the ground, and pine trees uprooted and snapped in half. The tops of broken utility poles lay alongside the road.

The South Georgia Motorsports Park in Cecil also was heavy damaged; a grandstand was ripped apart. Barrels, signs, insulation and garbage were strewn over the speedway and parking lot.

Georgia's governor declared a state of emergency in seven southern Georgia counties, freeing up state resources to assist with recovery efforts.

Two of Sunday's deaths occurred when a mobile home was struck by an apparent tornado in Brooks County, which moved the home roughly 100 yards before dawn Sunday. "A tornado hit a mobile home, picked it up and put it in the middle of Highway 122," Brooks County Coroner Michael Miller said. "I don't know if it rolled or was lifted, but it blocked the entire highway."

Georgia emergency officials in a news release said two people were also killed in nearby Berrien County.

While the central part of the U.S. has a fairly defined tornado season — the spring — the risk of tornadoes "never really goes to zero" for most of the year in the southeast, said Patrick Marsh of the Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Oklahoma.

January tornado outbreaks are rare but not unprecedented, particularly in the South. Data from the Storm Prediction Center shows that, over the past decade, the nation has seen an average 38 tornadoes in January, ranging from a high of 84 in 2008 to just four in 2014.

The last time the prediction center issued a high-risk weather outlook — where forecasters are very confident of a tornado outbreak — was in 2014. Sunday marked only the third time since 2000 that any part of Florida had been at a high-risk for severe weather, Marsh said.

"This is a pretty rare event in this location," Marsh said.

___

Reeves reported from Albany, Georgia. Associated Press reporters contributing were Russ Bynum in Savannah, Georgia; Justin Juozapavicius in Tulsa, Oklahoma; and Pamela Sampson in Atlanta.

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The Latest: Patriots extend lead to 20-9 http://www.dailyastorian.com/the-latest-patriots-extend-lead-to-20-9-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports3ff3f62826304619a40bb7f03fd312c1 http://www.dailyastorian.com/the-latest-patriots-extend-lead-to-20-9-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports3ff3f62826304619a40bb7f03fd312c1#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 17:43:23 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229733 The Latest on the NFL conference championship games (all times Eastern):

8:35 p.m.

The New England Patriots have extended their lead over the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Stephen Gostkowski's 47-yard field goal gave the Patriots a 20-9 lead with a little less than 10 minutes to go in the third quarter.

Pittsburgh thought it has produced a turnover when New England quarterback Tom Brady appeared to fumble during a quarterback sneak. The officials ruled no fumble and Steelers coach Mike Tomlin challenged the call. Officials said the call on the field stood, meaning there wasn't enough evidence to overturn it.

New England took advantage immediate. Brady hit Chris Hogan for a 24-yard gain to set up Gostkowski's second field goal of the game. Hogan has 141 yards receiving for the Patriots.

___

8 p.m.

The Pittsburgh Steelers are missing chances to stick close to the New England Patriots.

The Patriots have a 17-9 lead over the Steelers at the half after Pittsburgh was forced to settle for a 23-yard field goal after having first and goal at the New England 1.

The Steelers offense has moved the ball well even with running back Le'Veon Bell on the sideline nursing a left groin injury. DeAngelo Williams has been effective but was stuffed twice inside the New England 5 on Pittsburgh's final drive of the half.

Tom Brady is carving up the Steeler defense. Brady is 19 of 24 for 222 yards and two touchdowns in the first half. New England is also 6 of 8 on third down.

Roethlisberger is 16 of 22 for 136 yards. Antonio Brown has just three catches for 26 yards in the half.

___

7:40 p.m.

Tom Brady is up to his usual tricks against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Brady hit Chris Hogan with a 34-yard touchdown pass to give the Patriots a 17-6 lead over the Steelers in the second quarter. It was Brady's second touchdown toss to Hogan in the game and the 60th playoff touchdown of his career.

Hogan, a lacrosse player at Penn State who moved to Monmouth to play one year of football, already has seven receptions for 117 yards and two scores. It is the first time in his career he's caught two TDs in a game.

New England opened up the playbook to get Hogan open. Brady handed off to Dion Lewis, who flipped to back to Brady on a flea flicker. Hogan slipped by Pittsburgh safety Mike Mitchell and strolled into the end zone.

___

7:30 p.m.

The Pittsburgh Steelers have received a jolt from an unlikely place: running back DeAngelo Williams.

The veteran pulled the Steelers within 10-6 of the Patriots with a 5-yard touchdown run early in the second quarter.

Williams was in the game because star Le'Veon Bell is dealing with a groin injury suffered late in the first quarter. Pittsburgh said he is questionable to return.

Williams led the NFL in rushing through the season's first two weeks while Bell sat out a drug suspension. He gracefully stepped aside when Bell returned. Williams also missed more than a month while recovering from knee surgery.

Williams' running style could be an issue for the Patriots. Where Bell is patient and waits for the hole to open, Williams just goes.

___

7:15 p.m.

Tom Brady and the New England Patriots are off to a fast start against the Steelers.

The Patriots have taken a 10-0 lead following a 16-yard touchdown pass from Brady to Chris Hogan.

Hogan caught four passes in all on the drive and was wide open in the back of the end zone when New England's offensive line picked up the Pittsburgh blitz.

Brady has thrown 16 touchdowns at home against the Steelers in his career, with no interceptions.

Brady has now thrown 20 straight touchdowns against Pittsburgh without being picked off. Pittsburgh's last interception against Brady came in 2005 when Chris Hope did it. Hope has been retired since 2012.

___

6:50 p.m.

The New England Patriots have wasted little time jumping ahead of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Tom Brady took the Patriots 62 yards in six plays, leading to a 31-yard field goal by Stephen Gostkowski.

The Steelers have never beaten Brady in New England, coming in 0-4 against him. The Patriots are averaging 31 points a game at home this season with Brady under center while Pittsburgh's offense has averaged just 21 points a game away from Heinz Field.

___

6:40 p.m.

The Atlanta Falcons are headed to their second Super Bowl appearance in franchise history after routing the Green Bay Packers 44-21 in the NFC championship game.

Matt Ryan threw for four touchdowns, including a 73-yard catch-and-run for a highlight-reel score by star receiver Julio Jones. The defense played just as crucial a role in containing quarterback Aaron Rodgers and the Packers' offense.

Rodgers had 287 yards with three touchdown passes and an interception. But the Falcons got to Rodgers with pressure and forced two Green Bay turnovers. Rodgers was outplayed by Ryan, who even ran for a 14-yard touchdown.

Atlanta will play either New England or Pittsburgh in the Super Bowl on Feb. 5 in Houston.

The only other time that Atlanta made the Super Bowl was in the 1998 season. The Falcons lost 34-19 to the Denver Broncos.

The Packers fell in the NFC title game for the second time in three seasons.

___

5:37 p.m.

The Falcons are an offensive machine that appears to be pushing the franchise to its second trip to the Super Bowl in franchise history.

Matt Ryan's fourth TD pass covered 4 yards to running back Devonta Freeman, putting Atlanta up 37-7 over Green Bay in the NFC championship game.

Ryan has completed 25 of 35 passes for 371 yards and no picks, further fueling his candidacy for NFL MVP.

The fans are loving every minute of it with the Georgia Dome erupting all afternoon with "MVP! MVP! MVP!"

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta.

___

5:02 p.m.

Julio Jones is having one of the best games of his distinguished career.

The sixth-year receiver, in his second straight All-Pro season, has seven catches for 144 yards, and it's still early in the third quarter.

Jones showed why he's arguably the NFL's most elite wideout on a 73-yard touchdown catch down the right sideline, giving the Falcons a 31-0 lead over Green Bay.

Jones was held by cornerback LaDarius Gunter before the catch, pulled the ball down, and broke off the tackle attempt. Cornerback Damarious Randall tried to bring down the 6-foot-3, 220-pound Jones a few yards later, only to get stiff-armed.

Jones danced briefly to stay in bounds before crossing the goal line.

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta

___

4:45 p.m.

Even in the nose-bleed seats, most of the capacity crowd of 72,220 at the Georgia Dome stood throughout the first half as the Falcons took a 24-0 lead over Green Bay.

The 25-year-old building, slated for demolition later this year, was louder than it's ever been for a Falcons game, an appropriate ending with the team trying to earn just its second Super Bowl trip in 51 years.

Fans waved white towels and made hearing conditions tough for Packers QB Aaron Rodgers, who threw a long interception late in the second quarter that led to Julio Jones' 5-yard TD with 3 seconds left before halftime.

Atlanta has hosted seven playoff games at the Dome, but the higher the stakes, the harder it's been on the Falcons. The 2010 season ended with a blowout loss to the Packers, and four years ago they suffered a last-minute defeat to San Francisco.

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta.

___

4:15 p.m.

Matt Ryan had gone 82 games without a rushing touchdown before scrambling for a 14-yard score that put the Falcons up 17-0 midway through the second quarter.

The All-Pro QB loves to be self-deprecating about his lack of elite athleticism when running, and he looked a bit awkward as he dove across the goal line. But he faked out linebacker Joe Thomas to get the space he needed to reach the end zone.

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta.

___

3:40 p.m.

Mason Crosby missed a 41-yard field-goal attempt on Green Bay's opening drive, ending his NFL-record streak of 23 consecutive field goals in the postseason.

Crosby was wide-right on the kick.

Crosby has made 26 of 29 attempts in his postseason career.

— Charles Odum reporting from Atlanta

___

3:33 p.m.

Jordy Nelson may have broken ribs, but the Packers' leading receiver looks like his old self, catching passes for 27 and 15 yards from Aaron Rodgers on Green Bay's opening drive.

Nelson missed last week's win at Dallas and did not practice this week.

The drive fizzled on Mason Crosby's missed 41-yard field goal wide right and Atlanta leading 7-0.

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta

___

3:24 p.m.

Matt Ryan's 3-yard shovel pass to Mohamed Sanu has put the Falcons up 7-0 on Green Bay in the NFC championship game, giving Atlanta an opening-drive TD in eight straight games.

With other receivers covered, Ryan rolled out of the pocket to his left and pitched the ball to Sanu, who was wide open just inside the goal line. It was the third third down of the drive with catches by Julio Jones and Sanu. Fullback Patrick DiMarco had the biggest gain, catching a pass in the right flats for a 31-yard gain.https://twitter.com/NFL/status/823262750688149504

Ryan has thrown 15 TDs and no interceptions in the Falcons' last six games.

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta

___

The NFC championship game is expected to close out the Georgia Dome with a shootout, with oddsmakers expecting 60 points combined from the Atlanta Falcons and Green Bay Packers.

That game opens conference championship Sunday at 3:05 p.m. on Fox, with the winner headed to Super Bowl 51 in Houston to take on the winner of the late game between the Patriots and Steelers.

Pittsburgh is a 4 1/2-point underdog in New England, where the weather shouldn't be a huge factor. It's cloudy, but the temperature should not drop below 35 degrees. That game starts around 6:40 p.m. on CBS.

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For more NFL coverage: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP_NFL

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The Latest: Patriots extend lead to 20-9 http://www.dailyastorian.com/the-latest-patriots-extend-lead-to-20-9-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world3ff3f62826304619a40bb7f03fd312c1 http://www.dailyastorian.com/the-latest-patriots-extend-lead-to-20-9-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world3ff3f62826304619a40bb7f03fd312c1#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 17:43:08 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229736 The Latest on the NFL conference championship games (all times Eastern):

8:35 p.m.

The New England Patriots have extended their lead over the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Stephen Gostkowski's 47-yard field goal gave the Patriots a 20-9 lead with a little less than 10 minutes to go in the third quarter.

Pittsburgh thought it has produced a turnover when New England quarterback Tom Brady appeared to fumble during a quarterback sneak. The officials ruled no fumble and Steelers coach Mike Tomlin challenged the call. Officials said the call on the field stood, meaning there wasn't enough evidence to overturn it.

New England took advantage immediate. Brady hit Chris Hogan for a 24-yard gain to set up Gostkowski's second field goal of the game. Hogan has 141 yards receiving for the Patriots.

___

8 p.m.

The Pittsburgh Steelers are missing chances to stick close to the New England Patriots.

The Patriots have a 17-9 lead over the Steelers at the half after Pittsburgh was forced to settle for a 23-yard field goal after having first and goal at the New England 1.

The Steelers offense has moved the ball well even with running back Le'Veon Bell on the sideline nursing a left groin injury. DeAngelo Williams has been effective but was stuffed twice inside the New England 5 on Pittsburgh's final drive of the half.

Tom Brady is carving up the Steeler defense. Brady is 19 of 24 for 222 yards and two touchdowns in the first half. New England is also 6 of 8 on third down.

Roethlisberger is 16 of 22 for 136 yards. Antonio Brown has just three catches for 26 yards in the half.

___

7:40 p.m.

Tom Brady is up to his usual tricks against the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Brady hit Chris Hogan with a 34-yard touchdown pass to give the Patriots a 17-6 lead over the Steelers in the second quarter. It was Brady's second touchdown toss to Hogan in the game and the 60th playoff touchdown of his career.

Hogan, a lacrosse player at Penn State who moved to Monmouth to play one year of football, already has seven receptions for 117 yards and two scores. It is the first time in his career he's caught two TDs in a game.

New England opened up the playbook to get Hogan open. Brady handed off to Dion Lewis, who flipped to back to Brady on a flea flicker. Hogan slipped by Pittsburgh safety Mike Mitchell and strolled into the end zone.

___

7:30 p.m.

The Pittsburgh Steelers have received a jolt from an unlikely place: running back DeAngelo Williams.

The veteran pulled the Steelers within 10-6 of the Patriots with a 5-yard touchdown run early in the second quarter.

Williams was in the game because star Le'Veon Bell is dealing with a groin injury suffered late in the first quarter. Pittsburgh said he is questionable to return.

Williams led the NFL in rushing through the season's first two weeks while Bell sat out a drug suspension. He gracefully stepped aside when Bell returned. Williams also missed more than a month while recovering from knee surgery.

Williams' running style could be an issue for the Patriots. Where Bell is patient and waits for the hole to open, Williams just goes.

___

7:15 p.m.

Tom Brady and the New England Patriots are off to a fast start against the Steelers.

The Patriots have taken a 10-0 lead following a 16-yard touchdown pass from Brady to Chris Hogan.

Hogan caught four passes in all on the drive and was wide open in the back of the end zone when New England's offensive line picked up the Pittsburgh blitz.

Brady has thrown 16 touchdowns at home against the Steelers in his career, with no interceptions.

Brady has now thrown 20 straight touchdowns against Pittsburgh without being picked off. Pittsburgh's last interception against Brady came in 2005 when Chris Hope did it. Hope has been retired since 2012.

___

6:50 p.m.

The New England Patriots have wasted little time jumping ahead of the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Tom Brady took the Patriots 62 yards in six plays, leading to a 31-yard field goal by Stephen Gostkowski.

The Steelers have never beaten Brady in New England, coming in 0-4 against him. The Patriots are averaging 31 points a game at home this season with Brady under center while Pittsburgh's offense has averaged just 21 points a game away from Heinz Field.

___

6:40 p.m.

The Atlanta Falcons are headed to their second Super Bowl appearance in franchise history after routing the Green Bay Packers 44-21 in the NFC championship game.

Matt Ryan threw for four touchdowns, including a 73-yard catch-and-run for a highlight-reel score by star receiver Julio Jones. The defense played just as crucial a role in containing quarterback Aaron Rodgers and the Packers' offense.

Rodgers had 287 yards with three touchdown passes and an interception. But the Falcons got to Rodgers with pressure and forced two Green Bay turnovers. Rodgers was outplayed by Ryan, who even ran for a 14-yard touchdown.

Atlanta will play either New England or Pittsburgh in the Super Bowl on Feb. 5 in Houston.

The only other time that Atlanta made the Super Bowl was in the 1998 season. The Falcons lost 34-19 to the Denver Broncos.

The Packers fell in the NFC title game for the second time in three seasons.

___

5:37 p.m.

The Falcons are an offensive machine that appears to be pushing the franchise to its second trip to the Super Bowl in franchise history.

Matt Ryan's fourth TD pass covered 4 yards to running back Devonta Freeman, putting Atlanta up 37-7 over Green Bay in the NFC championship game.

Ryan has completed 25 of 35 passes for 371 yards and no picks, further fueling his candidacy for NFL MVP.

The fans are loving every minute of it with the Georgia Dome erupting all afternoon with "MVP! MVP! MVP!"

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta.

___

5:02 p.m.

Julio Jones is having one of the best games of his distinguished career.

The sixth-year receiver, in his second straight All-Pro season, has seven catches for 144 yards, and it's still early in the third quarter.

Jones showed why he's arguably the NFL's most elite wideout on a 73-yard touchdown catch down the right sideline, giving the Falcons a 31-0 lead over Green Bay.

Jones was held by cornerback LaDarius Gunter before the catch, pulled the ball down, and broke off the tackle attempt. Cornerback Damarious Randall tried to bring down the 6-foot-3, 220-pound Jones a few yards later, only to get stiff-armed.

Jones danced briefly to stay in bounds before crossing the goal line.

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta

___

4:45 p.m.

Even in the nose-bleed seats, most of the capacity crowd of 72,220 at the Georgia Dome stood throughout the first half as the Falcons took a 24-0 lead over Green Bay.

The 25-year-old building, slated for demolition later this year, was louder than it's ever been for a Falcons game, an appropriate ending with the team trying to earn just its second Super Bowl trip in 51 years.

Fans waved white towels and made hearing conditions tough for Packers QB Aaron Rodgers, who threw a long interception late in the second quarter that led to Julio Jones' 5-yard TD with 3 seconds left before halftime.

Atlanta has hosted seven playoff games at the Dome, but the higher the stakes, the harder it's been on the Falcons. The 2010 season ended with a blowout loss to the Packers, and four years ago they suffered a last-minute defeat to San Francisco.

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta.

___

4:15 p.m.

Matt Ryan had gone 82 games without a rushing touchdown before scrambling for a 14-yard score that put the Falcons up 17-0 midway through the second quarter.

The All-Pro QB loves to be self-deprecating about his lack of elite athleticism when running, and he looked a bit awkward as he dove across the goal line. But he faked out linebacker Joe Thomas to get the space he needed to reach the end zone.

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta.

___

3:40 p.m.

Mason Crosby missed a 41-yard field-goal attempt on Green Bay's opening drive, ending his NFL-record streak of 23 consecutive field goals in the postseason.

Crosby was wide-right on the kick.

Crosby has made 26 of 29 attempts in his postseason career.

— Charles Odum reporting from Atlanta

___

3:33 p.m.

Jordy Nelson may have broken ribs, but the Packers' leading receiver looks like his old self, catching passes for 27 and 15 yards from Aaron Rodgers on Green Bay's opening drive.

Nelson missed last week's win at Dallas and did not practice this week.

The drive fizzled on Mason Crosby's missed 41-yard field goal wide right and Atlanta leading 7-0.

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta

___

3:24 p.m.

Matt Ryan's 3-yard shovel pass to Mohamed Sanu has put the Falcons up 7-0 on Green Bay in the NFC championship game, giving Atlanta an opening-drive TD in eight straight games.

With other receivers covered, Ryan rolled out of the pocket to his left and pitched the ball to Sanu, who was wide open just inside the goal line. It was the third third down of the drive with catches by Julio Jones and Sanu. Fullback Patrick DiMarco had the biggest gain, catching a pass in the right flats for a 31-yard gain.https://twitter.com/NFL/status/823262750688149504

Ryan has thrown 15 TDs and no interceptions in the Falcons' last six games.

— George Henry reporting from Atlanta

___

The NFC championship game is expected to close out the Georgia Dome with a shootout, with oddsmakers expecting 60 points combined from the Atlanta Falcons and Green Bay Packers.

That game opens conference championship Sunday at 3:05 p.m. on Fox, with the winner headed to Super Bowl 51 in Houston to take on the winner of the late game between the Patriots and Steelers.

Pittsburgh is a 4 1/2-point underdog in New England, where the weather shouldn't be a huge factor. It's cloudy, but the temperature should not drop below 35 degrees. That game starts around 6:40 p.m. on CBS.

___

For more NFL coverage: http://www.pro32.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP_NFL

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Hudson Swafford wins CareerBuilder for 1st PGA Tour title http://www.dailyastorian.com/hudson-swafford-wins-careerbuilder-for-1st-pga-tour-title-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sportsee561160a5d94bab8075deba6cfba01a http://www.dailyastorian.com/hudson-swafford-wins-careerbuilder-for-1st-pga-tour-title-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sportsee561160a5d94bab8075deba6cfba01a#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 17:31:31 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229676 LA QUINTA, Calif. (AP) — A day after making a mess of the 16th and 17th holes on PGA West's Stadium Course, Hudson Swafford birdied them Sunday to take control in the fittingly named CareerBuilder Challenge.

A few minutes later, with rain approaching the desert over the snow-capped mountains, the 29-year-old former Georgia player celebrated his breakthrough first PGA Tour title and first Masters spot.

"They don't give them away out here. It's not easy," Swafford said. "I've been close. I've been in the heat lately. Just keep putting myself in position, and this just feels unbelievable."

He tapped in for par on 18 for a 5-under 67 and a one-stroke victory over Adam Hadwin, the Canadian who had trouble scoring after a third-round 59 at La Quinta Country Club.

"I can't help but be slightly disappointed," Hadwin said after a 70. "I really wanted to come out here and kind of prove that yesterday was just kind of a continuation of some good play and kind of get it done today, but I got beat. I felt like I did all the right things. Just a couple shots here and there and who knows what could have happened. But an incredible week, my best finish ever."

Swafford tied Bud Cauley for the lead with a 12-foot birdie putt on the par-4 15th, and pulled ahead with the birdies on 16 and 17 — a day after dropping three strokes on the daunting duo.

"Stepped up there and hit some really good shots on those two holes, knowing what happened yesterday," Swafford said. "I was just really confident on those two holes today. I knew the bad stuff on those holes were gone. I had already seen it, it had already happened, and just visualizing really good shots."

On the par-5 16th, he hit a 4-iron 230 yards to 12 feet — staying out of the 18-foot deep bunker he hit into Saturday en route to a double bogey — and two-putted to take the outright lead.

"Just trying to maybe chase it up on the front edge, and it was probably my best swing of the day," Swafford said. "It was just right out of the middle, flew on the green. I thought it was actually even going to get closer than it did. But after what happened yesterday, I was really satisfied with that."

He hit to 1 1/2 feet on the par-3 17th, a day after barely clearing the giant rocks that ring the island green called Alcatraz. "It was just choke up and swing an 8-iron and it ended up being perfect," he said.

Hadwin also birdied 16 and 17, making a 25-footer on 17 after Swafford tapped in.

Swafford found the fairway with a 3-wood on the par-4 18th with water along the left side, then avoided the water again with an approach to the right side of the green. He lagged his 20-footer to 2 inches.

Hadwin's final drive settled in the dormant Bermuda an inch from the green rye rough and his approach stayed right and settled into a bad lie in the thick dormant rough. He saved par to finish second alone.

"I would have loved to have put a little bit more pressure on Hud coming up the 18th," Hadwin said, "but just to be able to get up-and-down from the lie that I had from over there was pretty impressive."

Swafford finished the pro-am event at 20-under 268 and earned $1,044,000. He opened with a 65 at La Quinta, shot another 65 on PGA West's Jack Nicklaus Tournament Course to take the second-round lead, and fell two strokes behind Hadwin with a 71 on Saturday at the Stadium layout.

Swafford got off to a rough start in the final round in the chilly morning, three-putting for bogey on the par-4 first, and was five strokes behind leader Chad Campbell after five holes.

The winner rallied with birdies on Nos. 7-9 to join Campbell and Hadwin atop the leaderboard. On the par-5 eighth, Swafford cut a 5-wood into the middle of the green and lipped out for eagle.

"The game just felt comfortable from there on," Swafford said. "I just felt like I could hit any shot where I wanted to and just felt in total control."

Cauley and Brian Harman each shot 69 to tie for third at 18 under.

Campbell holed out from 108 yards for eagle on the par-5 fifth, then made a triple bogey on the par-3 sixth — hitting into the water and three-putting. He finished with a 71 to tie for sixth at 16 under.

Phil Mickelson shot a 70 to tie for a 21st at 11 under in the 46-year-old Hall of Famer's return from two sports hernia surgeries.

"I think this was a good start for me for the year," Mickelson said. "The only way to find out where your game is at is to play in competition. ... I'm much further along than I thought I would be."

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Sierra Nevada brewery issues 36-state recall of select beers http://www.dailyastorian.com/sierra-nevada-brewery-issues-36-state-recall-of-select-beers-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world8a8bd1c4b4704d20b90062090805fce2 http://www.dailyastorian.com/sierra-nevada-brewery-issues-36-state-recall-of-select-beers-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world8a8bd1c4b4704d20b90062090805fce2#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 17:13:06 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229678 SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. announced a recall Sunday of certain 12-ounce bottles of its pale ales, IPA's and other beers after detecting a packaging flaw that could cause a piece of glass to break off into the bottle.

In a statement Sunday, it said the recall applies to eight different types of its craft beers, including its popular Sierra Nevada Pale Ale, purchased in 36 states across the Midwest, the South and East Coast of the United States.

The California-based company issued the voluntary recall after quality inspections at its Mills River, North Carolina, brewery detected a limited number of bottles made with a flaw "that may cause a small piece of glass to break off and possibly fall into the bottle, creating a risk of injury," the statement said.

The affected beer has a package date that falls between Dec. 5, 2016, and Jan. 13, 2017 and a brewery code of "M'' — which stands of Mills River — printed directly on bottles and the packaging of cardboard cases.

"We have decided to take this precaution to ensure the safety of our customers," Mike Bennett, chief supply chain officer, was quoted as saying. He said Sierra Nevada had not received any consumer reports of injuries, and it believed the concern could impact about 1 in every 10,000 — or .01 percent — of its bottles packaged during the five-week time period.

Aside from its Pale Ale, the Sierra Nevada recall includes 12-ounce bottles of its Beer Camp Golden IPA, Sidecar Orange Pale Ale, Torpedo Extra IPA, Tropical Torpedo, Nooner, Hop Hunter and Otra Vez.

The company has stopped distributing all affected beer and is working to have it removed from retails shelves, the statement said. Consumers were urged to check the company's website for details on the recall and not to drink any of the recalled beer, which would be fully refunded.

The recall applies to the following states: Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, District of Columbia, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Massachussets, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Mississippi, North Carolina, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, Vermont, Wisconsin and West Virginia.

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For more information, go to http://sierranevada.com/qualitymatters

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Chen lands 5 quads to win US figure skating title with ease http://www.dailyastorian.com/chen-lands-5-quads-to-win-us-figure-skating-title-with-ease-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports558cefe06d4147d2b89b5ad996e24704 http://www.dailyastorian.com/chen-lands-5-quads-to-win-us-figure-skating-title-with-ease-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports558cefe06d4147d2b89b5ad996e24704#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 17:01:56 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229677 KANSAS CITY, Mo. (AP) — Nathan Chen stood on the top step of the podium and stifled a smile as U.S. Figure Skating president Samuel Auxier, preparing to drape a gold medal around his neck, bowed down before him.

Indeed, all hail the new king of American skating.

Chen followed a record-setting short program with a near-flawless free skate featuring five quadruple jumps Sunday to become the youngest men's U.S. figure skating champion in more than five decades.

The 17-year-old Chen, performing to "The Polovtsian Dances," became the first skater in the world to land five clean quads in competition. The result was a free skate score of 212.08 — more than the composite of several rivals — and finished with a 318.47 total that put him well clear of the competition.

"That was an amazing performance. I'm really happy with what I did," Chen said. "Component-wise, I kind of faltered a little bit. That stuff happens when you're pushing these secondary elements to the max. It's definitely something that I'm looking forward to working on improve for worlds."

Hard to imagine things getting a whole lot better.

Chen's aerial showcase began with a quad lutz-triple toe combination and never slowed down, his only bobble coming on a triple flip-triple toe as his sprightly program was coming to an end.

By that point, his coach Rafael Arutunian was already shaking his fists in celebration.

Sixteen-year-old Vincent Zhou missed on his first quad but was clean the rest of the way, even if the youngster lacked some of the polish of his peers. His total of 263.03 earned him the silver medal.

Jason Brown skated a smooth, stylish routine to move into the bronze medal position.

One of the threats to Chen's new throne was unable to compete in Kansas City.

Reigning champion Adam Rippon was warming up for practice two weeks ago when he landed on his left foot and heard a crunch. X-rays and an MRI exam revealed a sprain and a broken bone, which will keep him off the ice for up to three months and effectively end his season.

That also means Rippon will be forced to play cheerleader during the world championships, hoping his fellow Americans do well enough to secure the U.S. three spots at the Pyeongchang Olympics.

Former champ Max Aaron, the silver medalist a year ago, took himself out of the running at nationals with a poor short program. He also struggled in the free skate and wound up ninth.

The crowd favorite, Brown showed how far he's come since a stress fracture in his right fibula with a performance to "The Scent of Love" that showcased his trademark elegance. He also proved that his injury is no longer an issue, landing a series of triples that brought stuffed animals raining to the ice.

He skated off with a teddy bear just smaller than a Volvo.

"What's so different is, every single practice that I've done here, I've gained more strength. I've continued to learn and grow," Brown said. "We knew I wasn't going to be 100 percent."

Chen followed a few minutes later with a performance that not only stamped him as one of the favorites heading into the world championships in March, but perhaps next year's Winter Olympics.

Sidelined five months by a hip injury, Chen landed four quads during a clean short program to score a U.S. record 106.39 points. But that merely served as an appetizer to his free skate, where he added another quad to the four he was planning to attempt. And he landed them with such ease that he was hardly breathing heavily by the time he skated to the center of the ice to soak in a standing ovation.

While the performance was stunning, his spot on the podium was hardly surprising.

Chen has been considered the future of American skating for years, and his performance at the Grand Prix Final in France last month appeared to validate it. He topped Olympic and world champion Yuzuru Hanyu of Japan in the free skate and finished the competition second overall.

He topped his own performance by literal leaps and bounds on Sunday.

"The U.S. is back on the map, on the world stage," Chen said, looking at Zhou and Brown alongside him on a dais. "With us three, we'll push the U.S. back to where they should be."

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Nowitzki starts Mavericks toward 122-73 rout of Lakers http://www.dailyastorian.com/nowitzki-starts-mavericks-toward-122-73-rout-of-lakers-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sportsaa2ab03108a843cd9886cf621cd3691b http://www.dailyastorian.com/nowitzki-starts-mavericks-toward-122-73-rout-of-lakers-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sportsaa2ab03108a843cd9886cf621cd3691b#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:51:43 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229687 DALLAS (AP) — Dirk Nowitzki and the Dallas Mavericks had something to prove on Sunday following two straight tough losses.

Coming off a three-point effort in an overtime loss on Friday, Nowitzki scored all 13 of his points in the first half and Dallas gave the Los Angeles Lakers the worst loss in their history, 122-73.

"We didn't show up to play," Lakers coach Luke Walton said. "It's embarrassing for us as a team and for us as an organization. The effort just wasn't there tonight, which I don't understand."

The 49-point defeat just edged Los Angeles' two previous worst losses at 48 points, most recently 123-75 at Utah on March 28, 2016.

The Mavericks' winning margin was the third-largest in their history.

It was Dallas' 13th straight win over the Lakers, who have lost six of their last seven games overall.

After a season-best three-game winning streak, the Mavericks had blown a nine-point halftime lead at Miami on Thursday and lost to Utah on Friday.

Nowitzki was 1 for 13 against the Jazz, including a missed 3-pointer that would have tied the game in overtime.

"I looked sluggish the other night on that back-to-back," Nowitzki said, "but took a day off yesterday, didn't do anything. Felt a lot better today."

The game was close for 10 minutes, with Dallas leading 23-22 before the Mavericks scored the next 15 points to blow it open. Nowitzki had seven points during the run. He played just 20 minutes.

Justin Anderson led seven Mavericks in double figures with a game-high 19 points in 16 minutes, his most playing time since Dec. 27.

The Mavericks led 67-33 at the half and never looked back. They both scored their most points and allowed the fewest in a half and a game this season. The 34-point halftime lead was the third-largest in franchise history.

The Lakers scored their fewest points in a quarter, a first half and a game.

"What's deflating is that we didn't guard anybody tonight," Lakers forward Julius Randle said.

Lou Williams led the Lakers with 15 points.

Dallas' Seth Curry scored 14 points, including seven straight in the first quarter.

Wesley Matthews and Deron Williams also had 13 points. Devin Harris and Pierre Jackson scored 10 each. Rookies Jackson and Nicolas Brussino (eight points) each reached career highs.

TIP-INS

Lakers: They played without D'Angelo Russell, second on the team at 14.3 points per game. An MRI taken Saturday showed a mildly sprained right MCL and strained right calf. That left the Lakers with rookie Brandon Ingram starting at point guard, and they had a season-low 10 assists. ... Larry Nance Jr. (bone bruise, left knee) returned after missing 16 games and scored four points.

Mavericks: Dallas' record winning margin was 123-70 win at home over the 76ers on Nov. 13, 2014. They beat the Knicks 128-78 in New York on Jan. 24, 2010. ... J.J. Barea missed his 26th game this season because of a strained left calf aggravated on Friday. Coach Rick Carlisle said he didn't expect Barea back until after the All-Star break (Feb. 24 at the earliest). Andrew Bogut (strained right hamstring) could return this week, according to Carlisle.

LENDING A HAND

Mavericks G Deron Williams moved into 20th place in NBA history with 6,715 assists, passing Kevin Johnson. Williams has had at least seven assists in seven straight games; on Sunday, he had eight, seven by halftime.

LONG-RANGE

Nowitzki tied J.R. Smith for 15th place in 3-point field goals by making one for a total of 1,729.

UP NEXT

Lakers: Travel to Portland for the second game of a three-game trip on Wednesday night.

Mavericks: Complete a three-game homestand on Wednesday night against New York.

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Osahor breaks rebound record in win over Washington St http://www.dailyastorian.com/osahor-breaks-rebound-record-in-win-over-washington-st-da-ap-webfeeds-news-northwest5fe94e5a861940c59251b26bd2d8adf6 http://www.dailyastorian.com/osahor-breaks-rebound-record-in-win-over-washington-st-da-ap-webfeeds-news-northwest5fe94e5a861940c59251b26bd2d8adf6#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:23:20 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229667 PULLMAN, Wash. (AP) — Chantel Osahor is vocal about her desire to be the nation's best rebounder, according to Washington coach Mike Neighbors.

"It's what she works for, it's how she wants to be identified," Neighbors said. "She wants the 3-point shot to not be what people want to talk about and imitate."

Osahor, who leads the NCAA in rebounds per game, sent that message by grabbing a Pac-12-record 30 rebounds and supplemented it with 20 points to lead No. 8 Washington past Washington State 87-44 on Sunday.

Only 11 players in NCAA history have grabbed as many boards in a game.

"I feel like I kind of just do that every game," Osahor said. "A lot of them came to me today. I don't know how well (they) shot from the floor, but there was a lot of rebounds to get."

The national leading scorer Kelsey Plum scored 29 points for Washington (19-2, 7-1 Pac-12). She passed former Minnesota standout and current member of the WNBA's Connecticut Suns Rachel Banham for sixth place on the NCAA Division-I all-time scoring list.

Washington State (8-11, 3-5) was held to 25.4 percent shooting from the field, 19 percent from 3.

The Huskies went up 11-3 in the first quarter, and did not let Washington State back into the game.

"It's a testament to (Osahor), I think everybody struggles against her," Washington State coach June Daughterty said. "We took 71 shots tonight, and the majority of our boards were defensive. . She's got some of the stronger hands of anyone in the game. We gave her a lot of rebounds, too, because of not being able to score."

Osahor corralled a board over three Cougars, and converted a second-chance bucket late in the third. The rebound was her 25th of the night, and tied the school record for rebounds in a game. She had five more, and was subbed out early in the fourth quarter.

WSU's Krystle McKenzie beat the first quarter buzzer with a long 3-pointer, but not much else fell for the Cougars, who trailed by 32 at half and shot 25.4 percent from the field.

BIG PICTURE

Washington State: Facing a top-10 team with the nation's leading scorer does not bode well when trying to adjust to losing its top three scorers. After losing Borislava Hristova and Louise Brown, freshman standout Chanelle Molina suffered a season-ending ACL tear on Jan. 13 against Arizona State.

Washington: The Huskies took care of the Cougars Saturday and looked the part of a team returning its star players from a Final Four run last season. They lead a conference that includes five teams ranked 18th or higher.

MOVING UP

Plum passed former Minnesota standout and current member of the WNBA's Connecticut Suns Rachel Banham for sixth place on the NCAA Division-I all-time scoring list. Last week she jumped four spots in the win over Arizona State and is 37 points away from 5th, held by Florida International's Jerica Coley.

Plum, who has 3,070 career points, passed Banham after making the first of a pair of free throws with 3:18 left in the third quarter. But she claims to not give the records much thought.

"I'm not aware of it," Plum said. "I'm only aware of it because (the media) brings it up every time."

UP NEXT

Washington State: The Cougars host No. 10 Stanford on Friday and California on Sunday.

Washington: The Huskies play California Friday and have a top-10 matchup against No. 10 Stanford on Sunday, both at home.

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Sheary, Crosby lead Penguins past Bruins 5-1 http://www.dailyastorian.com/sheary-crosby-lead-penguins-past-bruins-5-1-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports172bff6a4025451fa7ffbc53232c27c8 http://www.dailyastorian.com/sheary-crosby-lead-penguins-past-bruins-5-1-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports172bff6a4025451fa7ffbc53232c27c8#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:21:55 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229680 PITTSBURGH (AP) — Conor Sheary is in the midst of a career-best stretch — and he enjoyed another big game against his hometown team.

The Pittsburgh forward scored two goals, Sidney Crosby added his league-leading 28th and the Penguins won their fourth straight game, 5-1 over the Boston Bruins 5-1 on Sunday.

"It's fun to play against your hometown team," said Sheary, a native of Winchester, Massachusetts. "There's a lot of people watching and you kind of get up easy for these games. It's fun to be a part of."

Sheary scored his 17th and has nine goals in nine games. The 5-foot-8 forward, who signed with Pittsburgh as an undrafted free agent in July 2015, equaled a career-best four-game point streak against his hometown Bruins on Sunday.

"I felt strongly that Conor could be a good player in this league," Penguins coach Mike Sullivan said. "I'm not going to suggest that I thought he'd have 17 goals halfway through the season, but I knew he could be a solid player at the NHL level."

Pittsburgh led 2-1 through two periods before breaking out in the third with three goals in the span of 2 minutes, 57 seconds.

Bryan Rust added his 12th and Patric Hornqvist his 11th for the Penguins, who won a season-high seventh straight at home. Pittsburgh the NHL's best home team, is 13-0-1 in its last 14 home games.

Evgeni Malkin had two assists for a season-best seven-game point streak. Crosby added two assists for a three-point game. Matt Murray made 44 saves to win his fourth straight game. Murray stopped 90 of 93 shots in his past three starts.

David Krejci scored his 11th for the Bruins, who have lost four straight and five of their last six. The Bruins were unbeaten in their previous nine at Pittsburgh with wins in their last seven before Sunday's loss.

Tuukka Rask stopped 20 of 22 shots for Boston before he left the game because he said he had a migraine that started in the second period. Rask was replaced by Zane McIntyre with 8:12 to play in the second period. McIntyre stopped 11 shots.

"We got away from being on our toes for a few shifts and you can't do that against them because they're going to make you pay," Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron said. "We had the start we wanted, but not the result."

Hornqvist gave Pittsburgh a 3-1 lead 1:40 into the third period. Sheary scored 1:19 later from the side of the net and Crosby made it a 5-1 game with a power-play goal from the top of the crease soon after.

Pittsburgh has outscored the opposition 24-10 in the last four games, an average of six goals per game. The line of Crosby, Sheary and Rust has 20 goals and 48 points in 15 games played, including nine against the Bruins.

"I think we bring a lot of speed to the table," Sheary said. "When we get pucks behind the defense and come at them with speed, I think it's tough for them to defend."

The game was scoreless - and Pittsburgh had an 11-3 advantage in shots - when an issue with the ice forced the teams to halt play with 6:26 remaining in the first period.

Maintenance crews initially came out during a stoppage for repairs on the ice along the boards near the Penguins' bench. The crew completed work and left the ice, only to return to do additional repairs. Players then left the ice and returned to their respective dressing rooms as the first intermission started early.

The teams finished the final 6:26 followed by a 60-second intermission before resuming the second period.

Boston carried the play after the break, outshooting Pittsburgh by a 9-1 margin. But the Penguins scored the game's first goal 18 seconds into the second period when Crosby set up Rust with a one-timer during a two-on-one.

Sheary added to Pittsburgh's lead later in the period, but Krejci made it a 2-1 game with a slap shot off the rush that beat Murray to the blocker side.

Murray stopped David Backes on a breakaway about a minute later. He denied several quality chances during a Bruins power play late in the second period, allowing the Penguins to break it open early in the third period.

"We came out pretty hot right at the start of the third and got those quick goals and that kind of put things away," Murray said.

NOTES: Before the game, Sullivan said D Brian Dumoulin may play before the All-Star break. He has missed 10 games with a broken jaw. ... Crosby is eight points from 1,000 in his career. ... Crosby surpassed Jaromir Jagr and Kevin Stevens for third on the team's all-time power play goals list with 111. ... Murray is 13-0-2 in his past 15 home starts. ... Boston scratched F Jimmy Hayes and D Kevan Miller, while Pittsburgh sat F Tom Kuhnhackl and D Steve Oleksy.

UP NEXT

Bruins: Open a two-game homestand against Detroit on Tuesday.

Penguins: Welcome St. Louis on Tuesday

     ]]>
Super Falcons: Atlanta routs Packers 44-21 for NFC title http://www.dailyastorian.com/super-falcons-atlanta-routs-packers-44-21-for-nfc-title-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sportseef725c697af430f8e41b5ebab98d507 http://www.dailyastorian.com/super-falcons-atlanta-routs-packers-44-21-for-nfc-title-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sportseef725c697af430f8e41b5ebab98d507#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:24:10 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229668 ATLANTA (AP) — Matt Ryan and Julio Jones teamed up for a dominant playoff performance, and the Atlanta Falcons ignored all those ghosts from the last half-century.

Next up: Super Bowl 51.

Ryan threw for 392 yards and four touchdowns in another MVP-worthy showing, while Jones shook off a toe injury to haul in nine catches for 180 yards and two scores, leading the Falcons to a 44-21 blowout of the storied Green Bay Packers in the NFC championship Sunday.

Atlanta (13-5) will face either New England or Pittsburgh in the Feb. 5 title game in Houston. It will be only the second Super Bowl appearance in the Falcons' 51-year history, the first coming 18 years ago with a team known as the "Dirty Birds."

They have never won an NFL championship.

If Ryan and the league's highest-scoring offense keep playing like this, the AFC winner will sure have its hands full in the Lone Star State. The Falcons led 24-0 at halftime against the Packers (12-6), perhaps the league's hottest team, and essentially put the game away on their second offensive snap of the second half, a play that showed every one of Jones' remarkable skills .

He blazed down the middle of the field, shook off LaDarius Gunter's attempt to grab him on a cut toward the sideline, hauled in the pass from Ryan, broke Gunter's diving attempt at tackle, and defiantly knocked away Damarious Randall's with a brutal stiff-arm on the way to a 73-yard touchdown.

Not bad, considering he took it easy much of the week because of his sore left foot.

"I didn't practice that much throughout the week," Jones said, "but today I came out and gave it all I had."

In the final game at the Georgia Dome, Ryan sparked more delirious chants of "MVP! MVP! MVP!" as he carved up an injury-plagued Packers secondary that had no way of stopping a team that averaged nearly 34 points a game during the regular season and romped to a 36-20 victory against Seattle's Legion of Boom last week.

For good measure, Ryan also ran for a touchdown.

"We played great," he said. "We did exactly what we've been doing all year and it feels really good."

The Packers, riding an eight-game winning streak and coming off a thrilling upset of the top-seeded Dallas Cowboys , got a taste of what they'd be in for on Atlanta's very first possession.

Driving 80 yards in 13 plays, the Falcons converted three third downs, the last when Ryan scrambled away from pressure and flipped a shovel pass to Mohamed Sanu for a 2-yard score.

Aaron Rodgers and the Packers came right back, moving quickly down the field in what was expected to be a back-and-forth shootout. Top receiver Jordy Nelson hauled in a 27-yard pass after missing the victory at Dallas with a rib injury.

But, on third-and-4 at the Atlanta 23, the Falcons hurried Rodgers into an incompletion. Mason Crosby, who hit two field goals longer that 50 yards in the closing minutes against the Cowboys, pushed a 41-yard attempt right of the upright to snap a playoff-record streak of 23 straight field goals.

The Falcons drove the other way, settling for Matt Bryant's 28-yard field goal and a 10-0 lead. Then, with Green Bay poised to make a game of it, Atlanta's much-maligned defense — one of the lowest ranked in the NFL — came through a momentum-swinging play. Fullback Aaron Ripkowski was breaking tackles and rumbling toward the end zone when Jalen Collins stripped the ball from behind and fell on it just across the goal line for a touchback.

On the ensuing possession, Ryan hooked up with Jones three times for 56 yards. Ryan finished it off with some surprisingly nimble running skills, faking out one defender with a pump fake before diving into the end zone for a 14-yard touchdown. It was Matty Ice's first rushing touchdown since Week 1 of the 2012 season and sparked an uncharacteristic outburst from the normally even-tempered quarterback.

Ryan gave the ball a thunderous spike and let out a scream that made it clear he wanted this game more than anything in his career. The guy who had a 1-4 record in the playoffs over his first eight seasons has finally earned his spot on the biggest stage of them all.

"We'll be ready to go for sure," Ryan said. "I'm just proud of the way that we competed and just really excited for two weeks from now."

DON'T FORGET THE DEFENSE

Atlanta's defense, an afterthought compared to the other side of the line, kept the Packers out of the end zone until the game was essentially locked up.

Rodgers finished 27 of 45 for 287 yards and three TDs, but he also threw an interception, was sacked twice and faced a relentless Falcons rush.

The Falcons finished with a 493-367 edge in total yards.

DOME FINALE

What a send-off for the Georgia Dome, the Falcons' home since 1992, which will be torn down and replaced next season by $1.5 billion Mercedes-Benz Stadium.

With the home team comfortably ahead, the raucous crowd of more than 71,000 basically partied through the whole second half, bouncing along to rap music that turned the stadium with the big top-like roof into the world's largest dance club.

The intensity of the celebration was understandable, given the Falcons' largely forgettable history and the heartache doled out by all of Atlanta's pro sports teams. The Braves, way back in 1995, are still the city's only team to capture a big league championship.

Now, the Falcons are one win away from adding another title to that barren trophy case.

___

Follow Paul Newberry on Twitter at www.twitter.com/pnewberry1963 . His work can be found at http://bigstory.ap.org/content/paul-newberry .

___

For more NFL coverage: www.pro32.ap.org and www.twitter.com/AP_NFL

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Trump, amid combative start, pledges to rise to moment http://www.dailyastorian.com/trump-amid-combative-start-pledges-to-rise-to-moment-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world6325b14ad5df46ff9c275fd8888ec972 http://www.dailyastorian.com/trump-amid-combative-start-pledges-to-rise-to-moment-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world6325b14ad5df46ff9c275fd8888ec972#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:10:45 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229859 WASHINGTON (AP) — After a combative start to his presidency, Donald Trump delivered a more unifying message Sunday and sought to reassure Americans he was ready to begin governing a divided nation.

Trump began rolling out his plans for diplomatic outreach, speaking with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and announcing plans for early meetings with Netanyahu and other world leaders. He thanked top law enforcement officers for their service and support. And he swore-in a group of aides, telling them he believed they were ready to rise to a daunting task.

"But with the faith in each other and the faith in God, we will get the job done," Trump said in a ceremony in the White House East Room. "We will prove worthy of this moment in history. And I think it may very well be a great moment in history."

Trump's reassurance came after a day marked by global protests against his presidency and his own complaints about media coverage of his inauguration, a combination of events that made for a contentious first full day in office on Saturday.

But even as the White House tried to forge forward, the president's aides continued to defend the president and his press secretary, both of whom tore into journalists for accurately reporting that his swearing-in ceremony drew a smaller crowd than President Barack Obama did eight years ago. On Sunday, a top adviser said the Trump administration was supplying "alternative facts."

"There's no way to really quantify crowds. We all know that. You can laugh at me all you want," Kellyanne Conway told NBC's "Meet The Press." She added: "I think it's actually symbolic of the way we're treated by the press."

Trump on Saturday declared he believed "it looked like a million and a half people."

But ridership on the Washington's Metro system didn't match that of recent inaugurations. As of 11 a.m. Friday, there were 193,000 trips taken, according to the transportation service's Twitter account. At the same hour eight years ago, there had been 513,000 trips. Four years later, there were 317,000 for Obama's second inauguration.

Conway also declared that Trump will not release his tax returns now that he's taken office, breaking a promise he made during the campaign.

As a candidate, he said he would release his returns after an IRS audit was completed. Every president since 1976 has released the information, but Conway said she does not believe Americans care whether Trump follows suit.

"He's not going to release his tax returns. We litigated this all through the election. People didn't care," Conway said on ABC's "This Week."

Trump's advisers have set Monday up as the president's first major day of action on his sweeping campaign promises, but as of Sunday night, it appeared as though his team was still making decisions on what moves to make. Some congressional Republicans had expected Trump to sign orders over the weekend, but those never materialized.

Trump campaigned on a very specific 18-point plan for this first day in office. If he follows it, he could sign executive orders on immigration, trade and national security. Trump has pledged to scuttle trade deals such as a pending Asia-Pacific agreement and overturn Obama's executive order deferring deportations for 700,000 people who were brought into the country illegally as children.

He's due to begin formally discussing his agenda Monday at a meeting with a bipartisan group of congressional leaders.

Trump's early call to Netanyahu was aimed at signaling his support for Israel and a new start in a relationship that became increasingly fraught during the Obama administration. Trump described that conversation as "very nice." White House officials said Trump "affirmed his unprecedented commitment to Israel's security." The leaders agree to meet at the White House in early February.

Trump announced that he's set up meetings with the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, and Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto.

"We're going to start some negotiations having to do with NAFTA," he said of his meeting with Mexico, along with immigration and security at the border. Trump has promised to build a wall along the length of the southern border and insisted that Mexico will pay for it.

The new president showed he was clinging to some of his pre-presidential habits. He responded to Saturday's protests on Twitter, offering a scattershot response. In one tweet, he sarcastically denigrating the public opposition and then defended demonstrators' rights a short time later.

"Watched protests yesterday but was under the impression that we just had an election! Why didn't these people vote? Celebs hurt cause badly," Trump tweeted early Sunday morning. Ninety-five minutes later, he struck a more conciliatory tone.

"Peaceful protests are a hallmark of our democracy. Even if I don't always agree, I recognize the rights of people to express their views," the president tweeted, still using his personal account.

The dueling tweets marked his administration's first response to the more than 1 million people who rallied at women's marches in Washington and cities across the world. Hundreds of protesters lined the street as Trump's motorcade drove past on Saturday afternoon, with many screaming and chanting.

The Washington rally appeared to attract more people than attended Trump's inauguration on Friday, but there were no completely comparable numbers. Regional transportation officials tweeted on Sunday that 1,001,616 trips were taken on the rail system on Saturday. Metro spokesman Dan Stessel had said that on Friday, the day of Donald Trump's inauguration, just over 570,000 trips were taken on the rail system.

Trump, whose 12th wedding anniversary was Sunday, also attended a reception for law enforcement officers and first responders who helped with his inauguration. He singled out the work of FBI Director James Comey, whom he offered a handshake and hug.

___

Associated Press writers Jill Colvin and Julie Pace contributed reporting.

___

Reach Lemire at http://twitter.com/@JonLemire and Lerer at http://twitter.com/@llerer

]]>
BC-BKW--Scores,Writethru,5Takes http://www.dailyastorian.com/bc-bkw--scoreswritethru5takes-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sportsc3999fb26f15f90f2fd8b4c406d07fce http://www.dailyastorian.com/bc-bkw--scoreswritethru5takes-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sportsc3999fb26f15f90f2fd8b4c406d07fce#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 18:03:34 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229681 By The Associated PressEAST

Binghamton 48, Stony Brook 40<

Canisius 63, Fairfield 49<

Carnegie-Mellon 93, Emory 73<

Cobleskill 61, Gallaudet 57<

Creighton 70, Seton Hall 60<

Delaware 71, Coll. of Charleston 66<

Drexel 65, Hofstra 43<

Duke 67, Boston College 44<

Holy Cross 61, American U. 60<

Iona 60, Monmouth (NJ) 54<

Keuka 72, Penn St.-Abington 63<

Loyola (Md.) 87, Colgate 77<

Maine 84, Albany (NY) 71<

Manhattan 69, St. Peter's 65<

Middlebury 85, Williams 57<

NYU-Poly 97, Wilson 59<

New Hampshire 58, Hartford 50<

Northeastern 55, UNC Wilmington 47<

Penn St.-Berks 101, Cazenovia 92<

Pittsburgh 62, Virginia 54<

St. John's 60, Providence 50<

Syracuse 81, Miami 48<

UConn 100, Tulane 56<

UMBC 79, Mass.-Lowell 72<

Valley Forge Christian 79, Medgar Evers 54<

MORE]]>
AP Top News at 8:52 p.m. EST http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-news-at-852-pm-est-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world6828ce8dfb4922af70ea9089e077cad9 http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-news-at-852-pm-est-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-world6828ce8dfb4922af70ea9089e077cad9#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 18:00:43 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229886 Israeli leader accepts invitation from Trump to visit USAvalanche survivors: sipping tea, then world crashed downGambia's ex-leader made off with millions, luxury carsIntensive negotiations ahead of Russia-led Syria talksPartial results: Valls, Hamon advance in French primaryRussia set to move closer to decriminalize domestic violence1 dead, multiple injured San Antonio shopping mall shootingSuper Falcons: Atlanta routs Packers 44-21 for NFC title]]> AP Top U.S. News at 8:34 p.m. EST http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-us-news-at-834-pm-est-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-worlde03a47db830c22b76c4f1311b180b48c http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-us-news-at-834-pm-est-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-worlde03a47db830c22b76c4f1311b180b48c#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 17:40:41 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229876 After mass turnout, can protests turn into political impact?1 dead, multiple injured San Antonio shopping mall shootingIn debt and afraid: dealing with debt collectorsSome question push for tougher penalties for attacking cops]]> AP Top Sports News at 7:59 p.m. EST http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-sports-news-at-759-pm-est-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports5bcc4da670e4b156760e574734eea8ab http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-sports-news-at-759-pm-est-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports5bcc4da670e4b156760e574734eea8ab#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 17:01:23 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229857 Royals' Ventura killed in car crash in Dominican RepublicCurrent, former major leaguers die in Dominican crashesChen lands 5 quads to win US figure skating title with easeAustralian Open: Williams has added incentive for 7th titleFeeling the pressure, Kerber loses to composed VandewegheAP TOP 25 REWIND: No. 7 Creighton has rough week of lossesHudson Swafford wins CareerBuilder for 1st PGA Tour title]]> OR Lottery http://www.dailyastorian.com/or-lottery-da-ap-webfeeds-news-northwest99f76d8f8c254425ae8e7c9183b76e21 http://www.dailyastorian.com/or-lottery-da-ap-webfeeds-news-northwest99f76d8f8c254425ae8e7c9183b76e21#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:40:32 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229721 PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) _ These Oregon lotteries were drawn Sunday:


Mega Millions

Estimated jackpot: $177 million


Pick 4 1PM

4-6-9-2

(four, six, nine, two)


Pick 4 4PM

4-7-8-8

(four, seven, eight, eight)


Powerball

Estimated jackpot: $170 million

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AP Top Entertainment News at 7:15 p.m. EST http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-entertainment-news-at-715-pm-est-da-ap-webfeeds-news-entertainment359a103512a2684e77bdb40c4ec2299e http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-entertainment-news-at-715-pm-est-da-ap-webfeeds-news-entertainment359a103512a2684e77bdb40c4ec2299e#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:21:59 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229874 Dee Rees' American odyssey 'Mudbound' captivates SundanceWhitehead, Desmond receive medals from library associationAlec Baldwin's Trump wasn't on 'SNL,' but mock-Putin wasVillains and vixens dominate cartoon roles for womenShyamalan's 'Split' rules inauguration weekend with $40.2MNeon piece of rock 'n' roll history going up for auction]]> Israeli leader accepts invitation from Trump to visit US http://www.dailyastorian.com/israeli-leader-accepts-invitation-from-trump-to-visit-us-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-worldf4deeb64d99046a1bad9dfb7f30a368d http://www.dailyastorian.com/israeli-leader-accepts-invitation-from-trump-to-visit-us-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-worldf4deeb64d99046a1bad9dfb7f30a368d#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:11:04 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229838 JERUSALEM (AP) — Israel's prime minister on Sunday accepted an invitation to visit the White House next month in hopes of forging a "common vision" for the region with President Donald Trump that could include expanded settlement construction on occupied territories and a tougher policy toward Iran.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu announced his plans to head to Washington in early February hours after delaying a vote on an explosive proposal to annex one of the West Bank's largest settlements, apparently to coordinate his policy toward the Palestinians with the new administration.

The move put on hold legislation that threatens to unleash fresh violence and damage already faded hopes for Palestinian independence. It also may have marked Trump's first presidential foray into Middle East diplomacy.

After eight years of frosty relations with President Barack Obama, Netanyahu has welcomed Trump's election as an opportunity to strengthen ties between the two allies. Israeli media reported that Netanyahu was gearing up plans to expand settlement construction in the occupied West Bank and east Jerusalem — a policy that had been condemned by Obama.

Late Sunday, the two men held what Netanyahu's office described as a "very warm conversation" by phone. It said they discussed the international nuclear deal with Iran, which both men have harshly criticized, and the Palestinian issue.

"The prime minister expressed his desire to work closely with President Trump to forge a common vision to advance peace and security in the region, with no daylight between the United States and Israel," the statement said. It said a date for Netanyahu's visit would be finalized in the coming days.

The White House said Trump told Netanyahu that peace with the Palestinians "can only be negotiated directly between the two parties" and that the U.S. will work closely with Israel on that goal.

Trump also affirmed his "unprecedented commitment to Israel's security" and his administration's focus on countering terrorism, the White House added.

With Trump signaling a more tolerant approach toward the much-maligned settlement movement, Israel's nationalist right now believes it has an ally in the White House, and Israeli hard-line leaders make no secret they will push for aggressive action in the occupied West Bank.

Education Minister Naftali Bennett, leader of the pro-settlement Jewish Home Party, has been pushing Netanyahu to abandon the internationally backed idea of a Palestinian state and to annex the Maaleh Adumim settlement near Jerusalem.

But after convening his Security Cabinet on Sunday, Netanyahu said his Cabinet ministers, including Bennett, had decided "unanimously" to delay action on the annexation plan until he goes to Washington to meet with Trump.

In order to placate Bennett, Israeli media reports said Netanyahu had promised the ministers to clear the way for expanded settlement construction in east Jerusalem and in major West Bank settlement "blocs" that Israel hopes to keep under a future peace deal. He was quoted as saying his "vision" is to place all settlements under Israeli sovereignty.

In Washington, Trump described their phone call as "very nice."

Netanyahu, a longtime supporter of the settlements, has nonetheless been cautious about expanding them in the face of strong opposition from the international community. In a final showdown with Israel last month, the Obama administration allowed the U.N. Security Council to pass a resolution condemning settlements as illegal.

But Bennett and other hard-liners believe there is no longer any reason for restraint.

"For the first time in 50 years, the prime minister can decide: either sovereignty or Palestine," Bennett wrote on Twitter.

Annexing Maaleh Adumim, a sprawling settlement of nearly 40,000 people east of Jerusalem, could cause a major clash with the Palestinians and the rest of the international community.

The Palestinians seek all of the West Bank and east Jerusalem — areas captured by Israel in the 1967 Mideast war — for a future state. The Palestinians and the international community consider all settlements illegal, and unilaterally making Maaleh Adumim part of Israel would deal a powerful blow to hopes for a two-state solution.

To the Palestinians, it would be seen as undermining negotiations. Maaleh Adumim is also strategically located in the middle of the West Bank, potentially hindering the establishment of their state.

"If they are serious about making it part of Israel and closing it down, then it is actually cutting the West Bank into two," said Hagit Ofran of the anti-settlement group Peace Now.

While Trump has not expressed an opinion on the annexation, he has signaled a softer approach toward the settlement movement than any of his predecessors.

His designated ambassador to Israel has close ties to Jewish West Bank settlements, and a delegation of settler leaders attended Friday's inauguration as guests of administration officials.

Trump also has already said he supports one of Israel's key demands — moving the U.S. Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The president ignored a question Sunday from reporters about the issue.

The U.S., like other countries, maintains its embassy in Tel Aviv, saying the conflicting claims to Jerusalem must be worked out in negotiations.

Trump, however, faces heavy pressure from the Palestinians and Arab countries against moving the embassy. The fate of east Jerusalem, home to the city's most sensitive religious sites, is deeply emotional, and disagreements have boiled over into violence in the past.

The White House dispelled rumors that Trump had imminent plans to announce the move. It said it was only at the "very beginning" of discussing plans to move the embassy.

Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas has sent a series of messages to Trump urging him not to move the embassy and warning that he would revoke recognition of Israel if the move takes place.

Abbas met Sunday with Jordan's King Abdullah II in Amman. Jordan, which serves as the custodian of Muslim holy sites in Jerusalem, has warned that moving the embassy would cross a "red line." Jordan is a key Israeli and Western ally in the battle against Islamic militants.

"We discussed the possibility of moving the embassy, and we say that if this thing happens, then we have measures that we agreed to implement together with Jordan," Abbas said. "And we hope that the American administration will not do that."

Also Sunday, Jerusalem city officials granted building permits for 566 new homes in east Jerusalem. The permits had been put on hold for the final months of the Obama administration.

"We've been through eight tough years with Obama pressuring to freeze construction," said Jerusalem Mayor Nir Barkat. "I hope that era is over."

Unlike other West Bank settlements, Israel annexed east Jerusalem and considers its neighborhoods inseparable parts of its capital. But the annexation is not internationally recognized.

Palestinian official Nabil Abu Rdeneh and condemned the building plans and called on the U.N. to act. "It is time to stop dealing with Israel as a state above the law," he said.

___

Associated Press writer Julie Pace in Washington contributed.

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BC-BKW--Scores,1st Add http://www.dailyastorian.com/bc-bkw--scores1st-add-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports315b165054a1d08bad205edcebfff34d http://www.dailyastorian.com/bc-bkw--scores1st-add-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports315b165054a1d08bad205edcebfff34d#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:02:13 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229682 MORE]]> BC-BKW--Scores,3rd Add http://www.dailyastorian.com/bc-bkw--scores3rd-add-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports3af807a582ed995f47f61ff4b807db35 http://www.dailyastorian.com/bc-bkw--scores3rd-add-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sports3af807a582ed995f47f61ff4b807db35#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 16:02:12 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229684 MORE]]> AP TOP 25 REWIND: No. 7 Creighton has rough week of losses http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-25-rewind-no-7-creighton-has-rough-week-of-losses-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sportsc33029c69fd9444bb7abfbca945165eb http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-25-rewind-no-7-creighton-has-rough-week-of-losses-da-ap-webfeeds-news-pro-sportsc33029c69fd9444bb7abfbca945165eb#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 15:41:26 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229689 CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — In a week when three top-10 teams in the AP Top 25 lost, No. 7 Creighton might have taken the biggest hit.

The Bluejays lost Saturday to Marquette in their first game without point guard Maurice Watson Jr., who suffered a season-ending knee injury . Creighton (18-2) is now in transition, figuring out how to play without the nation's assist leader (8.5 per game).

It's going to take some time for Creighton to adjust, as evidenced by the 102-94 home loss to Marquette.

"When they made a little bit of a run we didn't react very well," Creighton coach Greg McDermott said afterward. "That's probably where we missed Maurice the most. We just didn't have a voice there, nobody to turn to on the floor that we were accustomed to. Offensively, we were fine."

Creighton still has games against No. 13 Butler (Jan. 31), No. 22 Xavier (Feb. 4) and No. 1 Villanova (Feb. 25) on its Big East schedule.

TOP-10 LOSSES: Third-ranked UCLA and West Virginia, which was tied with Creighton at No. 7, were this week's other top-10 losers.

The Bruins (19-2) lost at home Saturday to No. 14 Arizona 96-85 , the latest high-scoring show for an attack that came into the weekend ranked No. 1 in KenPom's offensive efficiency. But coach Steve Alford wasn't happy with his team's defense against the dribble.

"It's definitely better for something like this to happen now than later in the season," guard Bryce Alford said.

It was a worse week for the Mountaineers (15-4), who first blew a 15-point lead in the final 9 minutes of regulation before losing 89-87 at home to Oklahoma in overtime. They followed that with a 79-75 loss at Kansas State on Saturday.

FSU THRIVES: No. 10 Florida State finally wrapped up its six-game stretch against ranked opponents with Saturday's 73-68 win against No. 12 Louisville. That followed Wednesday's 83-80 home win against No. 15 Notre Dame, which marked the Fighting Irish's first loss in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

FSU (18-2) finished 5-1 in its six-game stretch, the only loss coming at North Carolina last weekend.

"This team communicates with each other very well, they hold each other accountable, they like each other, there is really no drama with them," Seminoles coach Leonard Hamilton said, "and we believe in each other."

For the record, the ninth-ranked Tar Heels (18-3) followed the win against FSU with a home win against Syracuse to give coach Roy Williams his 800th career win and a win at Boston College . Notre Dame (17-3) won at home against Syracuse on Saturday to create a three-way tie atop the ACC at 6-1.

STILL ROLLING: Villanova, No. 2 Kansas and No. 4 Gonzaga are rolling right along.

The Wildcats (19-1) have won five straight by double-digit margins since losing at Butler, including a 76-46 win against Seton Hall to start the week followed by a 78-68 win against Providence.

The Jayhawks (18-1) haven't lost since the season opener against Indiana, beating Iowa State 76-72 on the road and then beating Texas 79-67 at home.

Then there's Gonzaga (19-0), the nation's last unbeaten in Division I after wins against Santa Clara and Portland by double-digit margins this week.

SEC DEVELOPMENTS: No. 24 South Carolina split two games against ranked Southeastern Conference opponents, beating No. 19 Florida 57-53 before losing 85-69 to No. 5 Kentucky.

That left the Wildcats (17-2) alone atop the SEC (7-0) in a week that started with all three teams still unbeaten in league play.

Florida also lost at home Saturday to Vanderbilt for a second straight loss.

HIGHLIGHT REEL: Let's stay with Kentucky for a moment to take a look at Derek Willis' throwdown dunk against South Carolina.

KEENE'S 50: Lastly, it's worth giving a nod to national scoring leader Marcus Keene of Central Michigan.

The 5-foot-9 guard already was one of the AP's top performers in college basketball as the season crossed its midway point, then he scored 50 points — 50! — with 10 3-pointers in Saturday's win against Miami (Ohio).

That surpassed Malik Monk's 47 points against North Carolina in December as the highest-scoring game in Division I this year. It also pushed Keene's season average to 29.8 points, more than five points better than No. 2 scorer Alec Peters of Valparaiso (24.2).

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Follow Aaron Beard on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/aaronbeardap

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More AP college basketball: http://collegebasketball.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP_Top25

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AP TOP 25 REWIND: No. 7 Creighton has rough week of losses http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-25-rewind-no-7-creighton-has-rough-week-of-losses-da-ap-webfeeds-news-college-sportsc33029c69fd9444bb7abfbca945165eb http://www.dailyastorian.com/ap-top-25-rewind-no-7-creighton-has-rough-week-of-losses-da-ap-webfeeds-news-college-sportsc33029c69fd9444bb7abfbca945165eb#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 15:41:32 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229719 CHAPEL HILL, N.C. (AP) — In a week when three top-10 teams in the AP Top 25 lost, No. 7 Creighton might have taken the biggest hit.

The Bluejays lost Saturday to Marquette in their first game without point guard Maurice Watson Jr., who suffered a season-ending knee injury . Creighton (18-2) is now in transition, figuring out how to play without the nation's assist leader (8.5 per game).

It's going to take some time for Creighton to adjust, as evidenced by the 102-94 home loss to Marquette.

"When they made a little bit of a run we didn't react very well," Creighton coach Greg McDermott said afterward. "That's probably where we missed Maurice the most. We just didn't have a voice there, nobody to turn to on the floor that we were accustomed to. Offensively, we were fine."

Creighton still has games against No. 13 Butler (Jan. 31), No. 22 Xavier (Feb. 4) and No. 1 Villanova (Feb. 25) on its Big East schedule.

TOP-10 LOSSES: Third-ranked UCLA and West Virginia, which was tied with Creighton at No. 7, were this week's other top-10 losers.

The Bruins (19-2) lost at home Saturday to No. 14 Arizona 96-85 , the latest high-scoring show for an attack that came into the weekend ranked No. 1 in KenPom's offensive efficiency. But coach Steve Alford wasn't happy with his team's defense against the dribble.

"It's definitely better for something like this to happen now than later in the season," guard Bryce Alford said.

It was a worse week for the Mountaineers (15-4), who first blew a 15-point lead in the final 9 minutes of regulation before losing 89-87 at home to Oklahoma in overtime. They followed that with a 79-75 loss at Kansas State on Saturday.

FSU THRIVES: No. 10 Florida State finally wrapped up its six-game stretch against ranked opponents with Saturday's 73-68 win against No. 12 Louisville. That followed Wednesday's 83-80 home win against No. 15 Notre Dame, which marked the Fighting Irish's first loss in the Atlantic Coast Conference.

FSU (18-2) finished 5-1 in its six-game stretch, the only loss coming at North Carolina last weekend.

"This team communicates with each other very well, they hold each other accountable, they like each other, there is really no drama with them," Seminoles coach Leonard Hamilton said, "and we believe in each other."

For the record, the ninth-ranked Tar Heels (18-3) followed the win against FSU with a home win against Syracuse to give coach Roy Williams his 800th career win and a win at Boston College . Notre Dame (17-3) won at home against Syracuse on Saturday to create a three-way tie atop the ACC at 6-1.

STILL ROLLING: Villanova, No. 2 Kansas and No. 4 Gonzaga are rolling right along.

The Wildcats (19-1) have won five straight by double-digit margins since losing at Butler, including a 76-46 win against Seton Hall to start the week followed by a 78-68 win against Providence.

The Jayhawks (18-1) haven't lost since the season opener against Indiana, beating Iowa State 76-72 on the road and then beating Texas 79-67 at home.

Then there's Gonzaga (19-0), the nation's last unbeaten in Division I after wins against Santa Clara and Portland by double-digit margins this week.

SEC DEVELOPMENTS: No. 24 South Carolina split two games against ranked Southeastern Conference opponents, beating No. 19 Florida 57-53 before losing 85-69 to No. 5 Kentucky.

That left the Wildcats (17-2) alone atop the SEC (7-0) in a week that started with all three teams still unbeaten in league play.

Florida also lost at home Saturday to Vanderbilt for a second straight loss.

HIGHLIGHT REEL: Let's stay with Kentucky for a moment to take a look at Derek Willis' throwdown dunk against South Carolina.

KEENE'S 50: Lastly, it's worth giving a nod to national scoring leader Marcus Keene of Central Michigan.

The 5-foot-9 guard already was one of the AP's top performers in college basketball as the season crossed its midway point, then he scored 50 points — 50! — with 10 3-pointers in Saturday's win against Miami (Ohio).

That surpassed Malik Monk's 47 points against North Carolina in December as the highest-scoring game in Division I this year. It also pushed Keene's season average to 29.8 points, more than five points better than No. 2 scorer Alec Peters of Valparaiso (24.2).

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Follow Aaron Beard on Twitter at http://www.twitter.com/aaronbeardap

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More AP college basketball: http://collegebasketball.ap.org and http://www.twitter.com/AP_Top25

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Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons dominate Green Bay Packers 44-21 to earn the franchise's second Super Bowl appearance http://www.dailyastorian.com/matt-ryan-and-the-atlanta-falcons-dominate-green-bay-packers-44-21-to-earn-the-franchises-second-super-bowl-appearance-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-worldc0806a526b9044bfb985302e6e47299d http://www.dailyastorian.com/matt-ryan-and-the-atlanta-falcons-dominate-green-bay-packers-44-21-to-earn-the-franchises-second-super-bowl-appearance-da-ap-webfeeds-news-nation-worldc0806a526b9044bfb985302e6e47299d#Comments Sun, 22 Jan 2017 15:40:37 -0500 http://www.dailyastorian.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2017301229670 ATLANTA (AP) — Matt Ryan and the Atlanta Falcons dominate Green Bay Packers 44-21 to earn the franchise's second Super Bowl appearance.

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