Jayson Werth Says Philly Fans Will Come Around in 10 Years (Maybe)

Jayson Werth Says Philly Fans Will Come Around in 10 Years (Maybe)

Any time the Phils are playing the Nationals, somebody somewhere has to stir up the old debate about whether or not the mob at Citizen Bank Park should boo Jayson Werth – this is going on for three years by the way.  They do, and why shouldn’t they? Werth left Philadelphia to play for a division rival. Enough said.

I like to think the booing in this case is good-natured in spirit anyway, a theory Werth’s own feelings and experiences seem to substantiate. Phillies beat writer for MLB.com Todd Zolecki sat down with 34-year-old right fielder this week and asked him about the fans’ reaction.

"I feel like the right-field fans still appreciate me," Werth said. "They'll come around. Maybe [in] 10 years they'll be good to me. It's all good. I always enjoy coming here, for better or worse. Any time I grab lunch or dinner, people go out of their way to say, 'Thanks for 2008.' It's all good."

You mean to tell me the fans can be appreciative of what Werth accomplished during his four years with the Philies, and shower him with a chorus of boos as long as he’s suiting up for Washington? Booing is like this city’s second language – it’s all about the inflection.

Werth also gave some insight into what it’s like when he returns to CBP in his conversation with Zo.

"When I went out to shag flies in right yesterday, it was like going home to your parents' house after you had gone away to school," Werth said. "I went and played baseball, but it's like coming back after that first year and going back to your old bedroom, you know? I remember this room."

Werth and his “new” teammates were on the wrong end of the scoreboard on Tuesday, thanks in large part to eight strong innings from close friend Cliff Lee. Lee basically made two bad pitches all night, resulting in two solo shots in the 4-2 Phillies win, his ninth of the season.

One of those home runs belonged to Werth, giving the Nats an early 1-0 lead. Philly sang its song as he rounded the bases, and Werth probably enjoyed it. He walked away from the Phillies, forming an alliance with the enemy, and the people here still care enough to get emotional about it.

Check out the rest of Zolecki's entire piece on Werth. Good read.

>> Werth: Time with Phillies highlight of career [MLB]

College hoops wrap: Penn State steamrolled by No. 21 Purdue

College hoops wrap: Penn State steamrolled by No. 21 Purdue

Villanova headlined Philly college basketball action today with a 78-68 win over Providence, led by Josh Hart and Kris Jenkins (see full recap). The win is dampened with the news that Phil Booth is increasingly unlikely to return this season as he still deals with knee discomfort (see story).

Here's a snapshot from the rest of area hoops today.

Penn State steamrolled by No. 21 Purdue
WEST LAFAYETTE, Ind. -- The way it played this week, No. 21 Purdue is acting like a team that is determined to be in the race for the Big Ten championship all the way to the end of the regular season.

Caleb Swanigan had 19 points and 12 rebounds, Purdue built an 18-point halftime lead and coasted to a 77-52 victory over Penn State on Saturday, four days after shooting 60.4 percent in a 91-68 victory against Illinois.

Against Penn State, the Boilermakers (16-4, 5-2) got 13 points from freshman guard Carsen Edwards and 10 each from Dakota Mathias and Vince Edwards.

"I would just say we were coming out ready to play," said Vince Edwards, who added seven rebounds and three assists. "Our goal is to win the Big Ten. Our focus is to take care of business."

Josh Reaves led Penn State (11-9, 3-4) with 12 points. The Nittany Lions made only 20 of 64 field goal attempts (31.3 percent) and were outrebounded 39-30. Purdue shot 56.6 percent (30 of 53) (see full recap).

Drexel drops road game at CAA-leading UNC Wilmington
WILMINGTON, N.C. -- Devontae Cacok scored 12 points and set a Colonial Athletic Association record with 24 rebounds, helping UNC Wilmington stay perfect in conference with an 87-74 win over Drexel on Saturday.

Cacok, whose previous career-high rebounding was 16, broke the school record (21) and conference record (22) late in the second half as the Seahawks cruised to their ninth straight home win, tying the best mark in program history.

UNC Wilmington (19-2, 8-0) led 53-51 with 15:01 left before four players combined to rattle off 12 straight points. Cacok capped the run with one of his 11 offensive rebounds and a dunk to give the Seahawks a 65-51 lead with 11:23 remaining.

UNC Wilmington is off to its best start ever and has won 24 of its last 26 conference games, including 12 straight. Chris Flemmings led the Seahawks with 17 points.

Sammy Mojica had 15 points and Rodney Williams added 14 for Drexel (7-13, 1-6), which has lost seven of eight (see full recap).

Delaware swept in season series with Towson
NEWARK, Del. -- Mike Morsell and Arnaud William Adala Moto pulled down a dozen boards as Towson won its fourth straight and a season sweep of Delaware with a 75-58 win on Saturday afternoon.

The Tigers are fresh off a win over Hofstra that saw them erase a 16-point first-half deficit, and momentum carried over when they built a 17-point lead at halftime.

Alex Thomas and John Davis added 13 and 12 points, respectively, but Towson saw its streak of three-straight games shooting better than 50 percent end. The Tigers hit 26 of 55 shots from the floor (47.3 percent), including 6 of 15 from deep.

Delaware snapped a six-game losing streak Thursday with a win over Northeastern. Ryan Daly scored 21 points for Delaware and became the first freshman in school history to post six 20-plus efforts in a season. He reached double-digits for the 12th time in 13 games (see full recap).