NEWLA Tournament Seedings Announced

Can Taylor Clancy lead Bridgewater State to a fifth consecutive NEWLA title? (Photo Credit: Bridgewater State Athletics)

By Matt Noonan 

On Sunday, Apr. 29, the NEWLA, (New England Women’s Lacrosse Alliance) announced the seedings for their upcoming conference tournament, which is scheduled to commence on Wednesday, May 2.

Four teams qualified for the tournament, and Bridgwater State earned the top seed with an 8-0 conference record, and 10-7 overall record.

Westfield State is slated as the second seed, while Framingham State is the third and Fitchburg State is the fourth.

First Round Schedule: 

* Fitchburg State at Bridgewater State at 6pm on May 2

* Framingham State at Westfield State at 6pm on May 2 

The highest remaining seed will host the conference championship on Saturday, May 5. The time for the game has yet to be announced.

Bridgewater State has won four consecutive conference championships since 2008, while Western New England College rallied off four consecutive titles from 2003-2007.

Daily Noontime – April 30, 2012

Don't expect Rajon Rondo to return to the lineup on Tuesday! (Photo Credit: Zimbio.com)

By NoontimeSports.com 

It’s hard to believe, but April is officially coming to a close!

Good Monday to everyone, and welcome into another grand edition of the Daily Noontime! Let’s kickstart the day with some news and headlines from Boston.

* The Boston Celtics dropped their first playoff game on Sunday, as the Atlanta Hawks defeated the Green and White, 83-74. Josh Smith posted 22 points and 18 rebounds for Atlanta, while Kevin Garnett and Rajon Rondo each paced Boston with 20 points.

* Atlanta and Boston will return to the hardwood for Game No. 2 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals on Tuesday at 7:30pm.

* Sources confirmed after Game No. 1 that Rondo will most likely miss one game for being ejected on Sunday, and possibly two for colliding with referee. If Boston does lose their all-star point guard, they’ll most likely have to rely on Avery Bradley to carry the load.

* The Boston Red Sox had their six-game winning streak snapped on Sunday, as the Chicago White Sox defeated the local nine, 4-1. Cody Ross recorded his 18th RBI, while David Ortiz cranked his ninth double of the season.

* The Red Sox, who’re now 10-11, will attempt to snap their one-game skid against the Oakland Athletics — Clay Buchholz opposes Tommy Milone.

* Kevin Youkilis expressed that despite being a late scratch on Sunday, he believed could have been a pinch hitter. Youkilis is currently dealing with a sore lower back, but hopes to be back in the lineup on Monday.

Sideline Observations: Atlanta Hawks 83, Boston Celtics 74

Josh Smith tallied 22 points and 18 rebounds, as Atlanta defeated Boston, 83-74 on Sunday. (Photo Credit: Bleacher Report)

By Matt Noonan 

The Atlanta Hawks earned a 13-point lead after the first quarter, and never relinquished their advantage, as they went onto defeat the Boston Celtics in Game No. 1 of the Eastern Conference semi-finals, 83-74.

The Hawks now lead the Celtics, 1-0 in this particular best-of-seven series, and will attempt to earn a two-game lead on Tuesday when both teams return to the hardwood for Game No. 2.

Player of the Game: Hands down, I am going to select Josh Smith for this award.

He not only paced Atlanta with 22 points, but also led both squads with 18 rebounds, too. Smith recorded 43 minutes of playing time, and finished the contest 8-of-20 from the field.

Slow Start for Boston: Prior to their first playoff contest, Celtics head coach Doc Rivers elected to sit a majority of his starters.

On Sunday, it appeared that the head coach’s decision may have been the wrong thing to do, as Paul Pierce and Kevin Garnett appeared out of sync.

Garnett and Rajon Rondo each concluded the contest with 20 points, while Pierce tallied 12 points. Although, while it’s only one game, it’s fait to state that all three of these players didn’t exhibit the chemistry from the second half of the regular season.

Boston wins the battle of the paint: Despite the loss, the Celtics still managed to tally 36 points in the paint, while the Hawks netted 28. However, Atlanta won the battle of the glass, 50-41.

Other Notes

* Rondo may receive a one-game suspension for bumping a referee at the end of the game. If that’s the case, we’ll most likely not see him until Game No. 3 on Friday, May 4. 

* Boston tallied seven offensive rebounds/ Atlanta recorded 11

* Boston registered 11 fast break points/ Atlanta tallied 10

* Boston went 10-of-13 from the stripe/ Atlanta finished 14-of-21

* Boston’s bench finished with four points combined/ Atlanta’s bench recorded 17 points 

Red Sox Weekly

By Andy Lindberg

The Red Sox still have the ability to shock the most cynical of fans.

This week Boston hit the road to win six out of seven games, losing a 4-1 decision to the White Sox on Sunday for their only blemish.  Sure, the Sox played the Twins and White Sox, neither team a world-beater; but those are the teams that must be beaten to win a World Series.  Felix Doubront (1-0) further proved he was starting pitcher material with a win in game one of the Chicago series, allowing three runs in six innings to finally earn his first win of the year.

The bullpen didn’t collapse (although they certainly tried in the Twins series at times).

Jon Lester (1-2) out-dueled Jake Peavy in a stellar 1-0 win on Saturday as well.  Winning that contest was crucial for Boston because it showcased their ability to out-pitch an opponent rather than out-slug, something they have yet been unable to do in the first month of this season.

Ryan Sweeney and David Ortiz continue to rip the cover off the baseball, sitting atop batting average leaderboards in the American League.

Last week I wrote more about Boston’s near certain demise.  The Red Sox are not yet out of the woods.  There is still a lot of work to be done for this team to contend in a very tough division.  The additions of Rich Hill and the possibility of a Daisuke Matsuzaka return before May is out, along with using Aaron Cook out of the bullpen would signal the pitching depth and help Boston still most desperately needs.

Although the Red Sox finish this April with one less win than April of 2011, they still hold a better record.  At 10-11 this season, the Red Sox improved on their 11-15 record to end the April of 2011.  We will see if they can improve on their impressive 19-10 May 2011 record in order to creep out of the basement in the American League East.

Colburn Matches Wheaton College Single-Season Lax Record

By Matt Noonan 

Despite losing to Springfield College in the NEWMAC women’s lacrosse semi-finals on Saturday, Wheaton College’s senior Hailey Colburn still managed to tally her 76th goal of the season.

Colburn, who may have played her final game in a Lyons uniform, matched Therese Ross (1983-86) for a single-season record of 112 points.

Wheaton concluded its season with a 12-6 record, and will wait and see if they’ll be selected to participate in the 2012 Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) tournament.