Lovely Rain Soaked Sunday

Lovely Rain Soaked Sunday


  Phillies v. Marlins - Sunday, September 24 
  Originally uploaded by emc303.

The Phillies remain 1/2 game up on LA for the wild card.

Things aren't as they used to be at the ball park in South Philly.  In recent weeks, when the Phillies take the field, I expect them to win.

In Sunday's series finale with the Marlins, Jamie Moyer got into a whole lot of trouble in the first inning allowing the Fish to take a quick 4-0 lead.  My fellow fans (Birdman I'm looking at you) quickly wrote this game off as a loss.  I felt like the Phillies were extremely capable of coming back from a four run defecit.

Then the 3rd inning went down.

In a matter of minutes, Jimmy Rollins, Chase Utley, and Chris Coste all hit home runs.  Peppered in between the long balls were key plays by other guys: a nice sac bunt by Moyer, Shane's speed causing Hanley Ramirez to make an error, singles by Conine and Burrell, and even Abe Nunez took one for the team and got hit by a pitch.  The tides turned when the Phils put up 7 runs in the fourth and the Fish were sent back to Florida with any remote hopes of a post season they had shattered.

The Phillies have been getting big contributions from almost everyone on the roster from the steady and expected J-Roll, Chase, Howard to the unheralded Coste, Ruiz, and Conine.  Even Burrell made contact on Sunday, twice!

It was a great weekend for the Phillies, perhaps the only thing that didn't go their way was the success of LA and SD out on the west coast.  The Phillies hold their destiny in their hands.  The Dodgers are idle on Monday, so if the Phillies can beat Houston they can put a full game between themselves and LA leaving them both with 6 to play.

-Saturday's Game Post

The rain really came down during the delay:

Steve Mason rediscovers himself in New York just before Flyers return

Steve Mason rediscovers himself in New York just before Flyers return

It had been a while since Steve Mason saw himself.

Walking into the Barclays Center on Sunday, the Flyers’ goalie was 0-6-2 with a 4.03 goals-against average and .844 save percentage over his last 10 appearances (see more recent Flyers numbers and stats).

A far cry from how Mason truly sees himself in net.

But heading into Wednesday’s rivalry clash with the Rangers, Mason will have something to build on, something he couldn’t say since Dec. 21 — the last time he had earned a victory. He’s fresh off his first win in over a month, a gigantic one for Mason considering all the key moments on Sunday the Flyers hope invigorate his confidence.

Without numerous clutch stops from their goalie, the Flyers don’t come back from two goals down to beat the Islanders, 3-2, in overtime. Mason made four saves  — three on four-time All-Star John Tavares — in just over a minute of a third-period power play. The Flyers ended up having to kill two New York man advantages in the final 10 minutes of regulation in order to force overtime.

The extra session is when Mason was just as good, if not better, stoning Tavares on a breakaway attempt that had game-winner written all over it. Mason made four saves in overtime after 13 in the third period.

“I was happy with the way that, personally, this game went for myself,” Mason said Sunday. “It’s been a tough stretch and this is more the type of game that I expect of myself. In recent games, the team was lacking the big saves and tonight it shows what kind of difference it can make.”

It was a massive performance heading into a massive three-game stretch against the Rangers, Maple Leafs and Hurricanes.

“Mase made some huge saves for us,” Simmonds said. “It allowed us to get back in that game.

“It’s not just Mase [with the] ups and downs. Everyone in here has been kind of fighting it and squeezing sticks pretty tight. That one felt good and I think Mase led the charge for sure.”

Mason understands just one game doesn’t turn around a season.

“It’s nice to feel good after a game,” Mason said. “At the same time, whether you’re winning or losing, you have to have a short mindset and get ready for the next one.”

That brings the Flyers to Madison Square Garden Wednesday to face the Rangers, who they’ve lost five straight games to dating back to last season. Mason hasn’t had much luck against New York this season, allowing seven goals in two losses with an .860 save percentage. However, in 2015-16, Mason put up a 1.74 goals-against average and .941 save percentage in five games against the Rangers.

“That’s going to be a tough game going into MSG,” Mason said Tuesday (see story).

The good thing: Mason was in New York two days ago, remembering what he can be.

Manute Bol's 7-foot, 17-year-old son dominates in HS season debut

ap-bol-bol.jpg
AP Images

Manute Bol's 7-foot, 17-year-old son dominates in HS season debut

Bol Bol, the 17-year-old son of the late Manute Bol, is a top high school basketball prospect with offers from schools like Arizona, Kansas and Creighton. This highlight tape should give you an idea why.
 
Bol, whose father played in the NBA for parts of 12 seasons, including 215 games for the Sixers, now attends the famed Mater Dei High School in California and played in his first game of the season this past weekend. Listed as the No. 16 overall prospect in the 2018 recruiting class by Scout, Bol started his season off with a big 21-point, 10-rebound effort.
 
Take a look at the highlight tape from the 6-foot-11 Bol and expect to see him carry on his father’s legacy on the court at a major NCAA college basketball program soon.