Towson U. basketball
Tiger Arena to debut with 2 games vs. Navy
The Towson men's and women's basketball teams will open Tiger Arena with a doubleheader against Navy on Nov. 8, 2013, the school announced Thursday. Times for both games are still to be determined, along with the rest of the men's and women's basketball schedules. "We're excited to welcome the Naval Academy for the first basketball games to be played inside Tiger Arena," Towson men's basketball coach Pat Skerry said. "The atmosphere should be electric as our fans will have their first chance to step in to the nicest arena in the Mid-Atlantic." The venue will feature premium mezzanine-level private suites, about 340 premium loge club seats around the top of the lower bowl, and 120 courtside seats.
Juvenile Championship, Dave's Friend Stakes on tap
Laurel Park's Saturday program includes both the $100,000 Maryland Juvenile Championship and the $125,000 Dave's Friend Stakes. The Dave's Friend Stakes has seven runners named to start, including the 8-5 program favorite, This Ones for Phil. Maryland native Rick Dutrow Jr. sent the 6-year-old to Laurel in February for the Grade II General George Stakes, in which he finished second. The Untuttable gelding has earned better than $750,000 with nine wins in 26 starts. He comes into Saturday's six-furlong event off a second-place finish in Aqueduct's Grade III Fall Highweight Handicap. Erick Rodriguez has the mount. Il Villano (7-2) and Immortal Eyes (4-1) finished second and third in October's Frank J. De Francis Memorial Dash, then switched positions in the Fabulous Strike Handicap at Penn National, finishing second and fourth, respectively. Il Villano won the Chick Lang Stakes on the Preakness undercard and has finished off the board just twice this year. Kendrick Carmouche will ride the Susan Crowell trainee. Immortal Eyes has three stakes victories at Charles Town this year for trainer Damon Dilodovico. The 7-year-old has been first or second in 22-of-37 lifetime starts. Sheldon Russell will be aboard the son of Greatness. "He has been really consistent for us but we are concerned about how the race will unfold with an inside post (Immortal Eyes will break from post 2)," Dilodovico said. "He has not won at Laurel (0-for-3), but I think he has run some of his best races here." Ten colts and geldings are entered in the 71/2-furlong Juvenile Championship. Dale Capuano trains morning-line favorite Lunar Rock (3-1), who comes into the race off back-to-back allowance scores. The son of Cherokee's Boy, who has never finished out of the money in eight starts, was third in both the Maryland Million Nursery and the Laurel Futurity. "He always runs his race and is there every time," Capuano said. "He'll do anything: turf, dirt, long, short and whatever you need him to do from a pace standpoint though he is a little better coming off the pace. The race seems to be evenly matched but I think he is going to run well."
Players' Jackpot winner: Christmas came two days late for one lucky winner, who took the top prize of $106,864.60 when Elpidio won the final leg of the Players' Jackpot Pick 5. Sixty percent of the Pick 5 pool is paid out daily if there are multiple or best-of-five winners, with the remaining 40 percent of the pool carried over to build toward a jackpot payout to a single winning ticket. The single winning ticket contained the numbers 4-3-10-1-8 with race winners paying, in order: Mo's Bro ($31.60-race 5), Shordawatyadrink ($37.40-race 6), Twelve Stone ($8-race 7), Big Kick ($6.20-race 8) and Elpidio ($4.20-race 9). The Players' Jackpot Pick 5 is a 50-cent minimum wager with an 18 percent takeout.
Local stars help hold youth clinic in Newtown, Conn.
Several lacrosse stars held a youth clinic Thursday in Newtown, Conn., in the wake of a shooting that killed 20 children and six adults Dec. 14 at Sandy Hook Elementary School. Players who took part in the clinic included former Chesapeake Bayhawk and Lacrosse Hall of Famer Mark Millon, Eric Lusby (Loyola University), Kyle Hartzell (Salisbury, CCBC-Essex), Matt Bocklet (Johns Hopkins), Steven Brooks (Bayhawks) and Jeremy Sieverts (Maryland, McDonogh). According to Laxworm.com, about 150 kids participated.
Club: Virginia Tech attackman Matthew Giannelli (John Carroll) was named to the Player of the Year watch list for the Men's Collegiate Lacrosse Association by Inside Lacrosse. Giannelli was chosen as an MCLA second-team All-American last season as the Hokies won the Southeastern Lacrosse Conference championship.
International: Turkey Lacrosse announced the addition of former Georgetown star Kyle Sweeney to its Board of Advisers. A defenseman for the Boston Cannons of Major League Lacrosse, Sweeney is the chief operations officer of equipment maker Maverik Lacrosse as well as the co-founder of Gotham Lacrosse, a league dedicated to organized post-college lacrosse. "Lacrosse has been so influential in my life and opened countless doors," Sweeney said. "It is truly a driving factor in all facets of my life. If a fraction of the doors that opened for me can open for a Turkish player, I will be happy." Turkey Lacrosse will hold national team tryouts in late June, immediately followed by a friendly match with the Israeli team in July. In September, the organization will host Turkey Lacrosse Open 2013 in Alanya with plans to have 16 men's teams and 10 women's teams competing.
—From Sun staff and news services