Women’s hockey: Badgers look to carry winning mentality into second semester

first_imgWith only six series and 12 total games remaining in the regular season, the Wisconsin women’s hockey team finds themselves as the No. 2 team in the entire country in the USCHO.com poll, and as the No. 1 team in the WCHA.Following back-to-back victories over Minnesota-Duluth last weekend, the Badgers hit the 20-wins mark this season, bringing them to an impressive total record (20-1-1 overall, 14-1-1 WCHA).This season has been a star-studded, record-breaking and exhilarating journey for UW thus far. One can only expect this semester to bring even more excitement and intensity to the ice. But it hasn’t been without its lessons.There have been a few undeniably pivotal games, performances and finishes that can be reflected upon when defining this season so far. Johnson has stressed the importance of learning and building from each game, especially from losses.Two series in particular have served as those learning experiences through which the Badgers will need to extract key gains from as this semester’s campaign rolls forward.The first came as a crucial series sweep of the No. 3 Minnesota Gophers, a team that Wisconsin lost its previous 18 matchups against.For as good as the Badgers have been the past few years, losses to Minnesota always showed that they were not the team to beat.Winless against their neighbor since 2011 and hungry to eradicate that enormous losing streak, along with the team’s No. 1 ranking needing legitimacy, Wisconsin struck in overtime to break Minnesota’s hearts.Women’s hockey: No. 1 Wisconsin validates top ranking with sweep of No. 3 Minnesota in weekend Border BattleThis singing of “Varsity” had a unique feel to it at LaBahn Arena Saturday night. This time, the Wisconsin women’s Read…Wisconsin would win the following day as well, completing the series sweep.The win legitimized Wisconsin, it showed they were capable of sticking out a long, hard-fought game and coming out victorious. Among other things, the wins also showed how good this team can be — what they need to work toward every week, no matter the opponnent.Sitting at 18-0-0, Wisconsin held women’s college hockey in its hands. But as the saying goes, all good things must come to an end.One week after their triumph over archrival Minnesota, a tough series against North Dakota dealt the Badgers their first loss and tie of the season.It was a necessary loss to halt the numbness that constant winning can bring about. The Badgers needed to be humbled and reminded of what losing felt like in order to make sure they continued to dominate in this coming semester, with a chip on their shoulder.The small blemishes on Wisconsin’s record have seemed to only motivate the team, as shown in their 5-1, 3-1 sweep of Minnesota Duluth during the opening week of this semester.As UW head coach Mark Johnson put it, there’s a renewed energy surrounding the team.“It’s like the beginning of the season, there is that little bit of step in their skating, the smiles on their faces, they’re excited to come back and certainly excited to start our second half,” Johnson said.Johnson also highlighted how his players will have to knock the rust off in respect to bringing last semester’s play and intensity back to the ice for 2016.“It’s like riding a bike,” Johnson said. “It doesn’t take long to get back to where you need to get back to, now with our ability to do it against an opponent.”The first challenge of this semester comes at home for the Badgers in a rematch against North Dakota set in the La Bahn Arena Jan. 23 and Jan. 24 — where that renewed energy will be tested against a bigger, more physical team.And while North Dakota may be the sole team the Badgers have fallen to, Minnesota certainly gave UW the biggest stumble during the team’s hot start.Earlier this season in the first battle with the Gophers, an abrupt score by Sarah Nurse ended both a gritty overtime struggle on the ice and a six-year winless drought for Wisconsin against their border rivals.But in this semester’s upcoming clash Feb. 19 and Feb. 20 in Minneapolis, the Badgers are going to have to hit the road to battle Minnesota on their home ice.Given that this series will serve as the final two regular season games for both teams, it would be hard to imagine the Gophers dropping even just one of those two games without putting up a real fight.For the Badgers, two players to keep on high alert as the team skates into the New Year are sophomore forward and leading goal scorer Annie Pankowski, as well as standout junior goaltender Ann-Renée Desbiens.Whenever these two play to their full capacity at the same time with Pankowski attacking on offense and Desbiens protecting the net, Wisconsin becomes one of the toughest teams to beat in the country.last_img read more

Capleton, Spice for International Festival Of Life

first_imgReggae icon Capleton and dancehall star turned reality TV actress Spice from VH1’s Love & Hip-Hop Atlanta, are set to headline this year’s International Festival of Life in Chicago.The event, in its 26th year, is set for Union Park, 1501 West Randolph Street, Chicago, on Independence Day weekend, Friday- Sunday, July 6th -8th, 2018.Also slated to perform are Yellowman; Elephant Man; Romain Virgo and  Boukman Eksperyans of Haiti.This year’s celebration is dedicated to fifty years of reggae.  IFOL showcases a very diverse culture and music from many nations, primarily from the Caribbean, Africa, Latin America and the United States.last_img

Sellas names 18 for Qatari friendly

first_imgSellas Tetteh has named his squad ahead of Ghana’s international friendly against Qatar next month. The 18-man Black Satellites squad, who are in camp in Accra will travel on October 3 for the game against the hosts U20s on October 7.Ghana, who have qualified for the 2015 Africa Youth Championship in Senegal and will use the game in Qatar as part of their build-up for the continental championship.Ghana squad1. Mutawakilu Seidu – Kotoko 2. Sai Micheal – Berekum Chelsea 3. Owusu Bempah – Hearts of Oak4. Christopher Bonney – Kotoko 5. Asmah Patrick – B. A. Utd.6. Latif Abubarkar – Liberty7. Joseph Adjei – Wa All Stars 8. Stephen Anokye – B. A. Utd.9. Kofi Yeboah – Wa All Stars 10. Emmanuel Asante – Kotoko 11. Ben Tetteh – Bechem12. Attobrah Asiedu – Edubiase 13. Kumi Eric – Hearts of Oak14. Prosper Kassim – Inter Allies 15. Noah Martey – Bechem 16. Sulley Mohammed – King Faisal 17. Samuel Afful – Hasacass 18. Samuel Tetteh – Feyenoordlast_img read more

August establishment of perennial forages

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Our wet weather conditions throughout much of 2017 prevented spring establishment of perennial forages for many producers.  Additionally, the wet weather has caused stand loss in alfalfa fields due to compaction and crown damage from harvest on wet soils, and from root rot in poorly drained field areas.  As a result, replacement of some of those acres is necessary.  August provides growers with another window of opportunity to establish a perennial forage stand. Typically, the main risk with a late summer August planting is having sufficient moisture for seed germination and plant growth but this year that risk may be low.There are some advantages to late summer forage planting as compared to a spring planting. Late summer planting means forage seedlings are not competing with the flush of annual spring and summer weed emergence/growth. The soil borne root rot and damping off disease organisms that thrive in cool, wet soils are not an issue.  However, growers need to be aware of planting dates and the potential for late summer diseases in some situations.According to the newly revised, 15th edition of the Ohio Agronomy guide, planting of alfalfa and other legumes should be completed by mid-August in Northern Ohio and by the end of August in Southern Ohio.  These timelines take into consideration average frost dates and the time needed for forage plants to develop a root system capable of overwintering.  For example, at about 8 to 10 weeks after emergence alfalfa plants pull the growing point below the soil surface, a process termed ‘contractile growth’.  Once contractile growth occurs the alfalfa plant is considered a true perennial.  The alfalfa plant needs to reach this growth stage to overwinter. Clover plants also need to have a crown formed, and grasses should be at least in the tillering stage of development before the onset of winter.If the fall is warm and extended, similar to what we have experienced the past few years, it might be possible for successful establishment with later planting dates.  Some alfalfa growers believe that the late summer planting deadline dates can be moved back by several weeks.  It is a question of risk management.  How lucky do you feel? Late summer and early fall planting dates of forages were tested in Pennsylvania in the mid-1990’s at two locations that historically are a little milder than most of Ohio’s winters. The year after seeding legumes, forage yield declined as planting dates were delayed after early August in the previous year. For each day planting was delayed after August 1, total forage dry matter yields the next year were reduced by an average of 158, 105, and 76 lbs./acre for alfalfa, red clover, and birdsfoot trefoil.  Later planting dates usually affected grasses to a lesser degree.  For example, orchardgrass yields only decreased significantly when planting was delayed past late-August and perennial ryegrass yields were actually greater in late-August than in early August plantings.  However, for each day planting was delayed after August 30, yields declined 100 lb. /acre for orchardgrass and 153 lb. /acre for perennial ryegrass. Reed canarygrass, a slow establisher, was more sensitive to planting dates. Reed canarygrass yields the year after seeding declined 120 lbs. /acre for each day planting was delayed after August 1.   The best policy is usually to plant most perennial forages as soon in August as possible, when soils conditions allow and when soil moisture is present.Sclerotinia crown and stem rot is a concern with no-till seedings of alfalfa in late summer and especially where clover has been present in the past. This pathogen causes white mold on alfalfa seedlings. They become infected during cooler rainy spells in late October and November, the disease develops during the winter, and seedlings literally “melt away” in winter and early spring. It can be devastating where the pathogen is present. No-till is especially risky where clover has been present because the sclerotia germinate from a shallow depth. Early August plantings dramatically improve the alfalfa’s ability to resist the infection. Late August seedings are very susceptible, with mid-August plantings being intermediate.In a no-till situation, minimize competition from existing weeds by applying a burndown application of glyphosate before planting. Using no-till when herbicide-resistant weeds are present creates a very difficult situation with no effective control options, so tillage is probably a better choice in those situations. Post-emergence herbicide options exist for alfalfa. After the alfalfa is up and growing, control late summer and fall emerging winter annual broadleaf weeds. A mid- to late fall application of Butyrac, Buctril Pursuit or Raptor are the primary herbicide options. Fall application is much more effective than a spring application for control of these weeds especially if wild radish/wild turnip are in the weed mix.  Pursuit and Raptor can control winter annual grasses in the fall in pure legume stands but not with a mixed alfalfa/grass planting.  Consult the 2017 Ohio and Indiana Weed Control Guide and always read the specific product label for guidelines on timing and rates before applying any product.For conventional tillage seeding prepare a firm seedbed to ensure good seed-to-soil contact. Be aware that too much tillage depletes soil moisture and increases the risk of soil crusting. Follow the “footprint guide” that soil should be firm enough for a footprint to sink no deeper than one-half inch.  Tilled seedbeds do not need a pre-plant herbicide.  Finally, keep in mind the following factors to increase establishment success.Soil fertility and pH: The recommended soil pH for alfalfa is 6.8. Forage grasses and clovers should have a pH of 6.0 or above. The minimum or critical soil phosphorus level for forage legumes is 25 ppm and the critical soil potassium level is somewhere between 100 and 125 ppm for many of our soils.Seed selection: Be sure to use high quality seed of adapted, tested varieties and use fresh inoculum of the proper Rhizobium bacteria. “Common” seed (variety not stated) is usually lower yielding and not as persistent, and from our trials the savings in seed cost is lost within the first year or two by lower forage yields.Planter calibration: If coated seed is used, be aware that coatings can account for up to one-third of the weight of the seed. This affects the number of seeds planted in planters set to plant seed on a weight basis. Seed coatings can also dramatically alter how the seed flows through the drill, so calibrate the drill or planter with the seed going into the field.Seed placement: The recommended seeding depth for forages is one-quarter to one-half inch deep. It is better to err on the side of planting shallow rather than too deep.Do not harvest a new perennial forage stand this fall. The ONLY exception to this rule is perennial and Italian ryegrass plantings.  Mow or harvest these grasses to a two and a half to three-inch stubble in late November to improve winter survival.  Do not cut any other species, especially legumes.last_img read more

An Open Discussion on Closed Crawlspaces

first_imgThis post is just an observation that I hope will stimulate some conversation about the subject of closed crawlspaces. This evolved out of conversations with two builders—one a high-end custom outfit and the other an affordable builder. Both of them had been certifying their homes to EarthCraft House standards and were building with closed crawlspaces. On the same day last week I heard from both builders that they were having moisture problems in their closed crawlspaces, were reluctant to continue building them, and were considering returning to vented designs. Now, I haven’t yet visited any of their job sites, so I am working on some conjecture here, but these problems raise some interesting questions.The affordable builder told me that all their sealed crawlspaces had HVAC systems, which were expected to maintain appropriate humidity levels. However, the builder discovered that the homeowners were often turning off the air-conditioning for much of the year as a cost-saving measure. They were willing to be uncomfortable to save money—not necessarily a bad policy—but it led to mold and mildew problems in humid months. The custom builder had problems in closed crawlspaces that did not have HVAC systems in them, and ended up having to install stand-alone dehumidification systems for moisture management.Behavior vs. processIt appears to me that we are dealing with two separate issues: behavior and process. Assuming that the closed crawlspaces were constructed properly to keep bulk water and vapor out, the ones with HVAC systems should have functioned just fine, provided the systems were running in humid weather. The fact that the homeowners chose to turn their systems off is a behavior issue. They were not behaving as expected (does anyone?), which caused problems in the structure.The builder could have put in a backup dehumidification system, but that would have presented a higher first cost as well as ongoing electrical costs to operate when needed. This reminds me of the quote “You can’t idiotproof things because the idiots are too smart.” This is not to demean any homeowners; in fact, I applaud them for not using their AC indiscriminately in order to save money and for being willing to live with a little less comfort. In this case, the “idiots” may, in fact, be the people who thought up closed crawlspaces in the first place, assuming that everyone would operate their homes appropriately day in and day out. No offense intended toward the smart building science folks who developed these things, but we have apparently come up against the law of unintended consequences. A well-thought-out design was taken down by someone who chose to operate the house differently than expected.I reviewed “A Quick Reference on Closed Crawl Spaces” by Advanced Energy and noticed that among their recommendations they include “a mechanical drying system to reduce humidity” in the crawlspace. In the case of the affordable builder, they apparently met those requirements, but were foiled by the owner’s behavior; while in the case of the custom builder, it was a process issue: They did not include a method to mechanically dry the crawlspace in their projects.So what’s the answer?I don’t pretend to suggest that we stop sealing crawlspaces (I already had my head handed to me recently by implying that we stop insulating!), but I do think we need to take into account owner behavior and builder process when we make decisions on how to build homes.As energy prices increase and the economy continues to stagnate, we may likely see many formerly middle-class homeowners looking for ways to save money, who are willing to live with less comfort and may use their air-conditioning less to do so. If any of them live in homes with closed crawlspaces, we will likely see more humidity-related problems in these homes. As to the other problem, it seems to me that this was a case where a very well-intentioned builder missed a key part of the puzzle in creating a closed crawlspace and paid for it by bearing the cost of installing a dehumidifier.Can we outsmart the idiots?In both cases, these builders are leaning away from closed crawls in future projects — a decision that I don’t believe is necessarily in their best interest, but helps them to avoid liability by reverting back to older, less-efficient building techniques. Builders should carefully consider their construction techniques and get the right advice all the way through the process to make sure they don’t miss any critical pieces of the puzzle. They must also consider homeowner behavior, how it affects building performance, and how it might change over the course of home ownership.This last one might be too challenging for anyone to adequately manage, so do we look for alternative techniques that are, in fact, truly “idiotproof”?last_img read more

Somdev wins first tennis gold for India

first_imgSomdev Devvarman ensured that tennis contributes in India’s swelling gold medal tally as he grabbed the much-awaited yellow metal, pipping Australia’s Greg Jones 6-4, 6-2 in the men’s singles final of the Commonwealth Games on Sunday.Somdev, CWG top seed and world number 97th, was carrying millions of hopes on his shoulders after established stars Leander Paes, Mahesh Bhupathi and Sania Mirza failed to strike gold.He has been the face of India on the singles circuit and yet again gave India a memorable moment to cherish.”People underestimate how tough it is to get a gold medal. I worked really hard this week. I am really happy,” Somdev said after the match.”It has been one of the best things in my career for sure to win a gold medal in front of this kind of crowd,” he added.India’s Somdev Devvarman reacts during the men’s singles tennis final against Australia’s Greg Jones dring the Commonwealth Games at R K Khanna Tennis Stadium in New Delhi on Sunday. Photo: PTIIn all, India’s medal tally from the tennis event stood at a disappointing four after starting as favourites in at least three of the five events in the debut year of the sport in the Games.Jones, ranked 234, put up a gallant fight in the first set and never looked like one who is yet to win his first match on the ATP tour but was never the same in the second set, in the start of which he encountered a knee problem.advertisementAt 15-15 in the opening game of the second set, Jones ran to reach out for a ball and hurt his left knee in the attempt.Although he came back after a short treatment but was not the same force as spate of errors marred his game and chances as well.Somdev was up 5-0 in no time but then let Jones get on board while serving for match. He though sealed the gold medal when Jones hit another long forehand.Somdev fell on his back in joy and got up amid thunderous applause. The summit clash lasted one hour 27 minutes.Defeats of the pairs of Paes and Bhupathi and Paes-Sania in team events badly hit India’s chances of dominating the tournament, from where several top players had pulled out.Sania contributed two medals in four by winning a silver in women’s singles and a bronze with Rushmi Chakravarthi in women’s doubles.–with PTI inputslast_img read more

Rep Cole lauds budget focus on fixing roads and bridges

first_img Categories: Cole News,News State Rep. Triston Cole today applauded his House colleagues in joining him to vote for a balanced budget that allocates a record amount for fixing and maintaining roads and bridges throughout the state.Cole, of Mancelona, said the fiscal year 2017-18 budget approved by the House includes strategic state government downsizing to put more funds into asphalt and concrete and less state taxpayer money for administration purposes. Additional money for local government to complete road projects and provide vital services such as fire, police and emergency medical care is included as well.“We made our transportation system – from the visible roads and bridges to the unseen infrastructure of underground water and sewer systems – a priority in this budget, and kept up pressure to make sure we had the funding necessary to have an impact,” Cold said. “The transportation system and infrastructure was all but ignored during the Lost Decade, and we have emphasized the need to dedicate more state money to fix the problems.”Cole said the budget also includes record funding for K-12 education, including additional money for students in Northern Michigan to close the per-pupil funding gap that has existed for decades between wealthy downstate districts and smaller schools in Northern Michigan.Other key factors of the budget include:The 2017-18 budget spends less on the state budget next year than was spent during the current year.Overall growth in spending does not exceed the rate of inflation. Just like families across Michigan, the Legislature is tightening the state’s belt by cutting inefficient programs and eliminating waste in state government.The budget helps make life better in communities across Michigan by adding money for road repairs, public safety departments, parks and other programs to improve our daily lives.The plan pays down millions of dollars in debt, helping relieve state liability and opening the door for a more secure financial future. 20Jun Rep. Cole lauds budget focus on fixing roads and bridgeslast_img read more