September 29, 2012
Union (8-14-6, 30 points) at Columbus Crew (13-11-6, 45 points). When: Saturday, 7:30 p.m. Where: Columbus Crew Stadium. TV: The Comcast Network. Coaches: Union, John Hackworth (6-7-4); Crew, Robert Warzycha (60-45-34). Union on the road: 2-7-4; Crew at home: 9-3-2. Goals for: Union, 29; Columbus, 36 Goals against: Union, 33; Columbus, 37. Previous meetings: The teams split two games this year at PPL Park with Columbus winning, 2-1, on Aug. 29 and the Union winning, 1-0, on April 14. Most recent MLS games: The Union beat visiting Houston, 3-1, on Sunday; The Crew lost, 2-1 at Chicago last Saturday.
September 24, 2012 |
UNION MANAGER John Hackworth hasn't had many opportunities over the last month to joke around. Mired in an eight-game winless streak, the Union entered Sunday's match against Houston at PPL Park on the brink of elimination from the playoffs. Granted, with six games to play that's almost inevitable, but there are still things this roster can accomplish and build on heading into an important offseason for the 3-year-old franchise. Not to mention that a win against a perennial power like Houston is not something that should be overlooked.
September 20, 2012 |
HOUSTON - Waving American flags and space shuttle toys, hundreds of people lined the streets and crowded the airport Wednesday as they watched the space shuttle Endeavour touch down in Houston on its way to be permanently displayed in California. For many, the experience was bittersweet, tinged with an aftertaste of having been cheated of something they believe should have been theirs. Houston has long tied its fortune to a mix of oil and NASA. Astronauts train in the humid, mosquito-ridden city.
September 18, 2012 |
HOUSTON - The buses carrying a defeated team left Minute Maid Park late Sunday afternoon, and there was little to be said. The Phillies will never play another National League game in this city, the place where they once celebrated a championship 32 years ago. There is nothing but horror in recent seasons, and Sunday represented the last chapter. A 99-loss Houston Astros team won three of four games against these desperate Phillies, who cling to the slimmest of wild-card hopes following a 7-6 defeat.
September 17, 2012 |
HOUSTON - In the fifth inning of Sunday's eventual, deflating defeat in Houston, the Astros chose to walk Chase Utley intentionally and take their chances with Ryan Howard with two on and two outs. It was the second straight time the Astros walked Utley to face Howard. Houston wanted to face Howard, the former National League MVP who had six straight seasons of at least 30 home runs and 100 RBI entering 2012. Howard may have been surprised, but Charlie Manuel was not. "Eh, not really," the Phillies manager said after a 7-6 loss.
September 17, 2012 |
HOUSTON - As Charlie Manuel admitted after the first loss of a forgettable extended weekend in Houston, baseball's law of averages meant that reeling off four straight wins at Minute Maid Park would be a tough task. The Phils roared into town having won a season-high seven straight, including back-to-back sweeps of last-place teams. The first loss to the Astros, another last-place team, wasn't altogether surprising; it was almost expected. But losing two of four games at the hands of the worst team in baseball would be considered a defeat.
September 16, 2012 |
HOUSTON - The e-mails arrived Saturday, invoicing Phillies season-ticket holders for postseason games, and even the most pessimistic had to smile. This dream required something beyond pristine baseball for a month. These Phillies, nonetheless, embraced their quiet rise as those they trailed stumbled. It was always a long shot, made abundantly longer once the Phillies came to Texas and were outclassed by the worst team in baseball. After 3 hours and 10 minutes of baseball Saturday night, a 5-0 Phillies loss to the Astros, there was but one prevailing thought: Is this really a postseason team?
September 15, 2012 |
HOUSTON - There was no sense in losing sleep Thursday night, Charlie Manuel said, because he could not reasonably expect his Phillies to win all 19 of their remaining games. He arrived Friday to Minute Maid Park with more reasonable expectations. "Maybe we can get 18 wins in," the manager joked. One loss to baseball's worst team bred a desperate team. Jimmy Rollins smashed the fifth pitch of the game into the right-field stands, and the Phillies kept hitting, cruising to a 12-6 win against Houston, exactly the way it should have happened Thursday.
September 6, 2012
Three programs made the move to FBS this season. Masschusetts, now in the MAC, opened with a 37-0 loss at Connecticut. South Alabama (Sun Belt), which has been playing only since 2009, fell at home by two on a late field goal to Texas-San Antonio. UTSA, coached by the same Larry Coker who took Miami to a national title a decade ago, didn't play its first game until a year ago. And then there was Texas State, which has been around for more than a century and won the Southland title in 2008.