As Nolan Arenado took a curtain call outside the Rockies’ dugout late Sunday afternoon, an avalanche of cheers engulfed him. Arenado waved his arms, wanting more.
“Things are getting loud here,” Arenado said after he hit a walk-off, three-run, cycle-completing homer to beat the San Francisco Giants 7-5. “This was the loudest I’ve ever heard this place. I think the fans and the people of Denver are starting to get the hint that we are for real.
“I was just fired up, and I was fired up for them. I just wanted to give them some love.”
The Father’s Day crowd of 48,321 was the second sellout in a row at Coors Field for a team that improved to 20 games above .500 and holds onto first place in the National League West.
Related ArticlesJune 18, 2017
Nolan Arenado’s walk-off homer completes cycle in Rockies’ historic win over Giants
June 17, 2017
Kyle Freeland is living by the groundball. The Rockies, at homer-heavy Coors Field, will take it.
June 17, 2017
Kiszla: Why Nolan Arenado believes Rockies can be “most dangerous team in the major leagues”
June 17, 2017
Saunders: Rockies and all MLB teams must do better a job protecting fans from foul balls, flying bats
June 17, 2017
Rockies’ parade of singles buries the Giants again at sold-out Coors Field. “Winning is fun,” Trevor Story says
“Yes, no doubt about it,” manager Bud Black said when asked if his team can be energized by the crowd. “The crowd stayed today, and our guys heard it as they came off the field (before the last at-bat).
“These last few games, with the growing attendance, it’s been great. The players are talking about it. It’s wonderful.”
Chatwood’s start. The Rockies received a sturdy, though flawed, start from Tyler Chatwood, who pitched six innings, allowing two runs on five hits.
“Six inning and two runs and we won the game. That’s what it’s about,” Chatwood said. “I think if you look at our offense, you know that eventually they are going to break through, and that’s what I was able to do.”
However, the right-hander’s lack of command caught up with him in the fifth inning. He walked Denard Span for the third time in the game and, two batters later, Crawford sliced a flyball, two-run homer that just cleared the wall down the left-field line.
But credit Chatwood (6-7, 4.08 ERA) for his ability to manage traffic and give his a team length, even if he needed 114 pitches to get through six. Giants leadoff hitters reached base in each of the first four innings, but the Chatwood found escape routes. The Rockies turned double plays in the first and second innings, and Chatwood got Crawford to pop out to center fielder Charlie Blackmon with two on in the third.
Lyles delivers. Right-handed reliever Jordan Lyles has struggled mightily this season, giving up eight homers in 30 ⅓ innings while carrying a 6.82 ERA. But he pitched a perfect eighth inning Sunday, striking out slugger Buster Posey to open the frame.
“We had some guys who were down today in the bullpen,” manager Black said. “(Lyles) gave us a one-two-three inning, and that was critical. He’s capable of that, and there is a lot of season left for him to help us.”
Estevez called up. Hard-throwing right-handed reliever Carlos Estevez was recalled from Triple-A Albuquerque, and veteran righty Chad Qualls was placed on the 10-disabled list because of lower-back spams.
Estevez, 24, is 1-2 with a 2.92 ERA (12.1 IP, 4 ER), seven walks and 13 strikeouts in 13 relief appearances in Triple-A.
Qualls, 38, began the season on the DL with right forearm tightness and had a 4.60 ERA in 15 ⅔ innings. Black said Qualls’ back issue cropped up Friday, so the Rockies decided to call up Estevez to help a bullpen that has been taxed in recent games.
Looking ahead …
Tuesday: Diamondbacks RHP Zack Greinke (8-3, 3.00 ERA) at Rockies RHP German Marquez (5-3, 4.19), 6:40 p.m., ROOT
Wednesday: Diamondbacks RHP Taijuan Walker (5-3, 3.32) at Rockies RHP Jeff Hoffman (4-0, 2.25), 6:40 p.m., ROOT
Thursday: Diamondbacks LHP Patrick Corbin (6-6, 5.19) at Rockies RHP Antonio Senzatela (9-2, 4.10), 1:10 p.m., ROOT [...]
To Susan Odenbaugh, retirement is a relative term.
The longtime Lewis-Palmer volleyball head honcho who led the Rangers to four Class 4A state titles in 15 seasons — including a dominant undefeated campaign en route to the championship last fall as the team finished fourth in the MaxPreps national rankings — stepped down from teaching and coaching this May to conclude a 34-year career.
“I’m officially retired, but I couldn’t just walk away completely,” Odenbaugh said. “I just love being around my students, so now I’m teaching part-time.”
Such is the academically-oriented sentiment that’s come to define Odenbaugh, the 2017 winner of the Dave Sanders Colorado Coach Award, presented annually by The Denver Post to a teacher-coach who has demonstrated longevity and success in teaching and coaching female athletics.
After all, it could be argued that the 58-year-old has plenty of volleyball seasons left in her — and more championships to go with. Lewis-Palmer, now under the direction of longtime varsity assistant Wade Baxter, is an early favorite to repeat in 2017 and the competitive Odenbaugh knows this — but she’s content with her decision to redirect her efforts.
“A lot of my students would come in and they’d seek extra help, and I was never available because of my commitment to coaching after school,” Odenbaugh explained. “When you look at the reality of things, most students aren’t going to make their careers playing volleyball, and I think now I’ll have a larger impact on helping students with their academic careers.”
And beyond the classroom, the “retired” Odenbaugh is also stepping into a new role with the Rangers athletic department where she’ll leverage her coaching background to oversee the school’s participation in the Positive Coaching Alliance and the Shift Why initiative.
“It’s important, with the way youth sports are progressing right now, that people don’t stray away from the true meaning of sports,” said Odenbaugh, who also won two state titles as a Rangers assistant coach. “Sports are a medium to teach character and character development, and we shouldn’t put our emphasis on winning at all costs. Winning should be a byproduct of the commitment to that development.”
It’s a mindset Sanders, a renowned softball coach, basketball coach and teacher who gave his life to save students in the 1999 Columbine shooting, certainly shared.
“Dave would be proud of anyone who was a teacher first and then took all those attributes that great teachers have and applied them to whatever sport they coached,” said Rick Bath, Sanders’ best friend and the 2002 award winner. “It’s about producing the same excellence in the classroom as you do on the court, and Odenbaugh does that.”
Odenbaugh’s players recognized and respected her didactic tactics, which proved consistently successful as the Ranges won 347 matches to just 89 losses during her tenure.
“She would always bring a quote to practice the day after a game, and that quote would apply to how we had played or something that had happened in the game,” said Elizabeth Reich, a captain on the 2016 title team who now plays at the University of Portland. “We would break down the game that way, and that not only made us better, it made us closer. It’s those personal touches that you don’t get from other coaches.”
Those touches translated to lessons on writing essays and dissections of literature, as Odenbaugh — who has served as the English Department Chair for 18 years and will continue to do so — brings her competitive mindset to her students, determined to make them more than college-ready.
“She wants every kid to succeed in their own way, so she pushed me a lot,” said Alexa Smith, a captain on the undefeated 2014 title team that finished ranked first in the nation. “She lets people know what she expects, and she holds people to that very high standard. Her players and her students have always respected that, and that’s why she excels in what she does.”
It’s been a long road for the Gilcrest native and 1977 Valley graduate, who, as a junior, was a member of the Vikings’ Class 2A state championship volleyball team in the first year the sport was sanctioned in Colorado — and who, as an adult, transformed prep volleyball, a feat that’s not lost on even her foremost Pikes Peak League rival.
“Every time we played each other, the gyms were packed, it was loud, it was crazy — it was everything you want high school volleyball to be,” Cheyenne Mountain coach David Barker said. “There’s no one else I’d rather face, though, because her teams come prepared and they’re always very competi [...]
Philadelphia and Boston have agreed in principle on a trade where the 76ers would acquire the chance to take Markelle Fultz with the No. 1 pick in Thursday’s NBA Draft, a person with knowledge of the deal told The Associated Press.
The Celtics will get the No. 3 pick, plus an additional first-rounder in either 2018 or 2019, according to the person who spoke on condition of anonymity Saturday night because the trade has not been formally approved by the league. The agreement between the Celtics and 76ers was struck not long after Fultz worked out for Philadelphia on Saturday evening.
Once the trade goes through, Philadelphia will own the NBA’s No. 1 selection for the second straight season.
Fultz — donning a Philadelphia cap as he arrived at the team’s practice facility — visited the 76ers in a hastily arranged get-to-know-you session, with the workout and meeting with team officials on his itinerary. That visit was essentially the final hurdle to clear before Boston and Philadelphia could decide to actually consummate the trade.
“I don’t really pay attention to everything that’s going on,” Fultz said. “I’m truly blessed to be in this position. Whatever happens, I’m looking forward to taking my talents to wherever I go.”
Barring any other changes before Thursday, the first four spots in this year’s draft order would mirror the first-four from last year: Philadelphia at No. 1, the Los Angeles Lakers at No. 2, Boston at No. 3 and Phoenix at No. 4.
Fultz’s rise to stardom has been rapid. In 2014, he was playing junior varsity basketball in high school. Barely three years later, he’s almost certainly going to become the No. 1 pick in the NBA draft — and if he gets to start his pro career by calling Philadelphia his new home, he’ll be living roughly a 2 1/2-hour drive from his hometown of Upper Marlboro, Maryland.
“It would be pretty cool. Just being with a young team,” Fultz said. “The upside of it would be crazy. I’m close to home, so a lot of my family can come out and just show love. This city has great fans.”
The 6-foot-4 guard averaged 23.2 points, 5.7 rebounds and 5.9 assists in 25 games during his lone college season at Washington, excelling on a team that finished 9-22 and lost its final 13 games. Fultz led the Pac-12 in scoring and finished No. 6 among all Division I players, and was the top freshman scorer in the country.
Over the past 10 seasons, only two other freshmen had a better scoring average in college: Kevin Durant for Texas in 2006-07, and Michael Beasley for Kansas State in 2007-08.
Durant and Beasley were both No. 2 draft picks.
Fultz is apparently going to get taken one spot better.
“I’ll do whatever it takes to help any team I go to win,” Fultz said.
Philadelphia had the No. 1 draft spot three previous times, taking Doug Collins in 1973, Allen Iverson in 1996 and Ben Simmons a year ago.
The 76ers have a top-three pick for the fourth straight year: No. 3 Joel Embiid in 2014, No. 3 Jahlil Okafor in 2015 and Simmons in 2016. But with Fultz, Philadelphia — which has asked its fans to endure some very dismal stretches and “Trust The Process” for the past few years — would likely expect to turn a real corner toward respectability again.
Philadelphia went 28-54 this past season, after winning 19, 18 and 10 games respectively in the previous three seasons.
Last season’s improved win total came with Okafor (50), Embiid (31) and Simmons (0) combining for 81 appearances, as Philadelphia’s trend of being snakebitten by injuries continued. Embiid and Dario Saric will finish in the top three when rookie of the year results get announced on June 26, and Simmons is expected to be ready for next season after recovering from foot surgery.
Embiid posted a photo on Saturday of he and Saric standing in front of a locker — already bearing Fultz’s name.
“Embiid, he and I have been talking before when I was in college,” Fultz said. “He’s a cool guy. He’s giving me tips and pointers and he’s pretty funny, so when I saw that it was pretty cool and pretty funny. I’m pretty happy that the players here want me to come here.” [...]
LOS ANGELES — Diana Taurasi scored 19 points to break the WNBA career scoring record in the Phoenix Mercury’s 90-59 loss to the Los Angeles Sparks on Sunday.
Taurasi finished with 7,494 points, passing Tina Thompson’s mark of 7,488. Taurasi broke the record in the closing seconds of the first half, coming around a screen by Emma Cannon near the top of the key and knifing into the lane, past Nneka Ogwumike, for a layup.
The game was stopped and the crowd, which included former Lakers star Kobe Bryant, gave Taurasi a warm ovation. It only took the Mercury star 13 seasons to become the league’s top scorer. Thompson needed 17 seasons to achieve her total. Earlier in the season, Taurasi set the career 3-pointer record, passing Katie Smith.
Ogwumike led the Sparks (8-3) with 18 points and had seven rebounds, and Candace Parker added 17 points, eight rebounds and six assists.
The Sparks raced to a 15-0 lead, were up 22-2 and led 38-17 at the end of the first quarter. It was their highest-scoring quarter of the season and two points shy of the WNBA record for most points in a quarter.
Riquna Williams hit back-to-back 3-pointers to push the lead to 30 points early in the fourth and Odyssey Sims hit two free throws to make it 90-57, the biggest lead of the season for Los Angeles. Williams finished with a season-high 15 points.
The Mercury (6-5) had a season-high 19 turnovers, were held nearly 25 points below their season scoring average (83.7) and shot a season-low 32.8 percent from the field. [...]
Paul George reportedly has told the Indiana Pacers that he plans to become a free agent during the summer of 2018 and hopes to head west, to the Los Angeles Lakers.
George, who is from Southern California, hasn’t requested a trade, but wanted to be upfront with Indiana, according to The Vertical’s Adrian Wojnarowski, who reported the news. George’s decision not to re-sign with the Pacers after the upcoming season will have implications for this summer’s moves as well as those of next summer and will give the Pacers the chance to try to work out a trade involving George to get players or draft picks, rather than losing him as a free agent. However, he’s likely to be seen as just a one-year rental, diminishing whatever the Pacers might be able to get in return for him. His motivation could be to land with the Lakers sooner rather than later.
For the Lakers, who are presumed to be taking Lonzo Ball in the draft Thursday, landing George would be a significant step toward luring other stars as Magic Johnson and Rob Pelinka rebuild the team. George, who suffered a gruesome broken leg while playing for Team USA in August 2014, has had the best seasons of his career the last two years.
Last week, he struck a different tone with Indianapolis media. “I’m here. I’m a Pacer,” George said (via IndyStar.com). “Again, what I’ve been dealing with is stories. You guys talking or teams talking. I’m a Pacer. There’s no way around that. This is my team, my group and this is where I’m at.”
Maybe he meant, just for the 2017-18 season. [...]
NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee Titans and wide receiver Eric Decker have agreed to terms on a one-year deal.
The Titans announced the deal Sunday night.
The 6-foot-3, 214-pound Decker visited the Titans on Wednesday, met with coach Mike Mularkey and took a physical. He was released this month by the New York Jets after three seasons with the team.
Decker, who spent his first four seasons with Denver, has three 1,000-yard seasons with 12 100-yard games in his seven-year NFL career. He has 33 touchdowns in the red zone since 2012, second in the NFL only to Brandon Marshall (35) in that span. He also ranks 18th in the NFL with 43 touchdown receptions and 4,535 yards receiving since 2012.
Hip and shoulder injuries limited Decker to three games last year. [...]
In advance of Wednesday’s NHL expansion draft in Las Vegas, the league announced each team’s protected list Sunday morning. The Avalanche protected 11 players, including goalie Semyon Varlamov, and left the likes of goalie Calvin Pickard, forward Mikhail Grigorenko and defenseman Mark Barbario available to the Vegas Golden Knights.
Each team will lose one player to the Knights.
In alphabetical order according to position, the Avs protected forwards Sven Andrighetto, Blake Comeau, Matt Duchene, Rocco Grimaldi, Gabe Landeskog, Nathan MacKinnon and Matt Nieto; defensemen Tyson Barrie, Erik Johnson and Nikita Zadorov; and Varlamov in net.
Varlamov, who was traded from Washington to Colorado in 2011 by Vegas general manager George McPhee, the former Capitals’ GM, is coming off two surgeries to his groin/hip area and his save percentage has declined the past three seasons, going from .921 to .914 to .898. He is under contract for the next two seasons, at a $5.9 million cap hit.
Related ArticlesJune 15, 2017
NHL announces draft order; Avalanche has seven selections
June 15, 2017
Paul Stastny, Kelly Cup to appear at Dawg Bowl VII hockey fundraising event
June 15, 2017
Avalanche removes Francois Beauchemin from roster with buyout
June 14, 2017
Colorado Eagles in discussions to become the Avalanche’s AHL affiliate
June 13, 2017
Avalanche not identifying players protected from NHL expansion draft
Protecting Varlamov, 29, over Pickard, 25, could be simply a show of support for the veteran goalie, because it is believed McPhee has no interest in working with the Russian for another time in a different city. Pickard isn’t considered a bona fide NHL starting goalie, but a highly serviceable backup and outstanding teammate.
The Golden Knights also are expected to select goalie Marc-Andre Fleury from the Pittsburgh Penguins. Fleury is under contract at $5.75 million over the next two seasons, and that’s another reason why Vegas won’t consider Varlamov. It is highly doubtful the Knights would choose two goalies with a combined cap hit of nearly $12 million through 2018-19.
First- and second-year players and unsigned prospects are exempt from the expansion draft. So up-and-coming Avs players Mikko Rantanen, Tyson Jost and Andrei Mironov, among others, are not in Wednesday’s picture.
Here’s a complete list of Colorado’s unprotected players: forwards Troy Bourke, Gabriel Bourque, Rene Bourque, Joe Colborne, Turner Elson, Felix Girard, Grigorenko, Samuel Henley, John Mitchell, Jim O’Brien, Brendan Ranford, Mike Sislo, Carl Soderberg; defensemen Barberio, Mat Clark, Eric Gelinas, Cody Goloubef, Duncan Siemens, Fedor Tyutin, Patrick Wiercioch, Joe Cannata; goalies Pickard, Jeremy Smith. [...]
NEW YORK — The NHL salary cap has been set at $75 million for this season in a slight increase over last year.
The league and NHL Players’ Association announced the cap and the salary floor of $55.4 million in a joint statement Sunday. The figures are set by the league’s hockey-related revenue.
It’s an increase of $2 million from the $73 million cap last season, as players elected to use their escalator clause to raise it.
Even a slight increase can help several teams that are up against the cap, like the Chicago Blackhawks and Presidents’ Trophy winning Washington Capitals. For budget teams, the floor increased just $1.4 million from $54 million.
The expansion Vegas Golden Knights must spend at least to the salary floor in their first season. [...]
... d into the back of the net. Play opened up for a bit after the goal with the Rapids continuing to create chances. Doyle almost fired a header past Gleeson in th ... [...]
... ke Gleeson. Sebastian Blanco gave Portland (7-6-3) the lead in the 18th. The Rapids (5-8-1) have won three straight MLS matches. 0 Shares Gordon strikes late ag ... [...]
In anticipation of the 2017 NBA Draft in which Denver currently holds the 13th, 49th and 51st picks, the Nuggets will host a viewing part [...]
Get to know the draft prospects through some fun questions and answers. [...]
Sports Authority Field at Mile High guest relations assistant manager Ethan Honaman won a 30 under 30 award from the International Association of Venue Managers. He spoke to us about how the guest relations department has become one of the best. [...]