Latest News

Columbus Lions sign former Pacelli standout

Mike O'Neal (3-6) picked up the win in relief as Chattahoochee Valley Community College beat Southern Union 5-4 on Thursday at Howard Lake Field.

O'Neal pitched 3 2-3 innings and allowed one run on three hits with two strikeouts.

Josh Sanders went 2-for-4 with an RBI.

The Pirates (27-19, 13-10) play at Wallace State-Selma at 1 p.m. Saturday.


Petrino detailed affairto boss before firing

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. -- Former Arkansas coach Bobby Petrino told his boss that his affair with a woman he later hired as an assistant began with a kiss last fall and ended sometime in February when the two decided to simply be friends, according to documents released Thursday.

The details are in 25 pages of handwritten notes kept by Arkansas athletic director Jeff Long during meetings with Petrino on April 10 and also with Jessica Dorrell, the football department employee the coach hired without disclosing their relationship. The notes were released as part of a Freedom of Information Act request made by The Associated Press.

At one point last October, Petrino and Dorrell were sitting in a car, eating lunch and talking and "she said are you going to kiss me," according to Long's notes of his April 10 conversation with Petrino. He then wrote: "Kissed on lunch outing."

t's unclear when the relationship turned sexual, but Long's notes seem to indicate the two decided they should be only friends sometime in early February after exchanging more than 4,300 text messages and nearly 300 phone calls, according to his business cellphone records. Dorrell was hired in late March, just a few days before she and Petrino were in a motorcycle accident that exposed their relationship and led to his ouster.

The notes suggest Long was skeptical that the affair was truly over, as Petrino has claimed.

"Why would she say she expected the relationship to continue if the motorcrash didn't occur," Long wrote down as one of his questions for the coach. No answer was listed in the notes.

Petrino was fired for failing to disclose his relationship with Dorrell, the former Arkansas volleyball player whom he hired last month without disclosing his conflict of interest or the fact he had once paid her $20,000 that she used to buy a car. The payment, Long wrote, could make the school "vulnerable to sexual harassment" lawsuit.


Granger leads Pacerspast Bucks, 118-109

INDIANAPOLIS -- Danny Granger scored 29 points to help the Indiana Pacers beat the Milwaukee Bucks 118-109 on Thursday night and clinch homecourt advantage in the first round of the playoffs.

George Hill had 22 points and eight assists and David West added 21 points, 14 rebounds and seven assists for the Pacers, who won their seventh straight and 11th of 12. The Pacers have scored at least 100 points in 12 of their last 13 games.

Brandon Jennings scored 27 points and former Pacer Mike Dunleavy added 23 for the Bucks. Monta Ellis, one of Milwaukee's top scorers, finished with 12 points on 5-for-14 shooting.

Milwaukee lost its third straight and is running out of time to catch Philadelphia for the No. 8 spot in the Eastern Conference standings.


Grief-stricken Djokovic into Monte Carlo quarters

MONACO -- Novak Djokovic played just hours after learning about the death of his grandfather and defeated Alexandr Dolgopolov 2-6, 6-1, 6-4 Thursday to reach the Monte Carlo Masters quarterfinals.

Seven-time defending champion Rafael Nadal followed Djokovic on court, routing Mikhail Kukushkin 6-1, 6-1. The Spaniard conceded only six points on his serve and broke the Kazakh qualifier five times.

After clinching victory on his first match point, the top-ranked Djokovic crouched over with his hands on his knees as Dolgopolov applauded him at the net.

Djokovic then appeared to wipe away tears with his forearm before pointing with both hands to the sky as he stood on center court for a few moments.

Djokovic did not attend the usual post-match news conference, with the ATP saying he was too distressed.

"He lost his grandfather today just before the match, and it was very hard for him to play," the ATP said in a statement. "After he won, he just felt totally exhausted physically, mentally and emotionally."

The top-ranked Djokovic seemed preoccupied as he walked onto center court with his head down, and his mind was clearly elsewhere in a brief first set where he missed easy volleys, sent drop shots wide and twice lost his serve to the 16th-seeded Dolgopolov.

Djokovic stared at the ground as he sat waiting for the start of the second set.

But he broke Dolgopolov early in the second and wayward shot-making gave the Serb time to get his rhythm back.

The players left the court early into the third set as the rain came down, one of several downpours during the day.

After they returned, Djokovic broke Dolgopolov in the ninth game and clinched the victory when Dologopolov sent a return wide. He'll next play Dutchman Robin Haase, who beat Brazilian Thomaz Bellucci 6-2, 6-3.

Fourth-seeded Jo-Wilfried Tsonga of France advanced to the last eight by beating No. 13 Fernando Verdasco of Spain 7-6 (7), 6-2, after twice coming off for rain delays.

He'll play ninth-seeded Gilles Simon in an all-French quarterfinal after Simon beat No. 7 Janko Tipsarevic of Serbia 6-0, 4-6, 6-1.

Nadal will face Stanislas Wawrinka, who defeated No. 8 Nicolas Almagro 6-3, 6-3.

Third-seeded Andy Murray advanced after Julien Benneteau injured his ankle and retired near the end of a hard-fought first set with the score 6-5. He said later he had a fractured right elbow and sprained right ankle.

Benneteau, a former French Open quarterfinalist, caused Murray problems throughout a set in which both players were aggressive. But Benneteau, scampering to retrieve a shot from the baseline, slipped and rolled his ankle. He also hurt his wrist as he tried to break his fall.

"When he went down, he was making quite a lot of noise," Murray said.

After lengthy treatment, Benneteau briefly continued before retiring. Murray next plays sixth-seeded Tomas Berdych of the Czech Republic, who recovered from a shaky first set to beat No. 12 Kei Nishikori of Japan 2-6, 6-2, 6-4.

Nishikori only lost two points on his serve in the first set and broke Berdych twice.

Berdych has a 3-2 record against Murray, including a straight-sets win in the fourth round of the French Open two years ago.