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Thoughts, news and notes from the sports staff of The Saratogian newspaper, located in historic Saratoga Springs, New York. The gang in the corner office on Lake Avenue give you the post-game wrap-ups, news and notes from the games we cover and opinions about the sports we read about every day.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Think you're good at FIFA15? Prove it vs. the American Outlaws

AP Photo - U.S. men's national team players Michael Bradley (left) and Aaron Johannsson at training in Denmark.
Last summer, Wolff's Biergarten was the place to watch the U.S. men's national team take on the world in the 2014 World Cup. This Sunday, gamers will have a chance do that themselves in a FIFA '15 tournament.
The ages 21-and-over tournament is being hosted by U.S. soccer supporters group the American Outlaws. Proceeds from the $5 entry fee will go to benefit the Mohawk Hudson Humane Society.
AO member Jeffery Dockum said in a press release:

“Last year we held a similar event and it was a huge success. There was a lot of attention with the World Cup just a few months away. Instead of an entry fee, we collected food donations, and were able to fill several large boxes for the Regional Food Bank of Northeast New York.

“This year, we are partnering with the Mohawk Hudson Humane Society. They’ll have volunteers at the event to provide more information about adoption, volunteer opportunities and other programs. There will be an entry fee this time, but 100% will go to the charity. It’s only $5 to play but if you pay more there are some perks.”

“It’s always slow at the end of a World Cup cycle; it’s like one big collective exhale. But everything is quickly picking up with the Women’s World Cup this summer, the men’s team in the Gold Cup - we have members going to both."

This is the second year that the American Outlaws have hosted a sponsored EA Sports FIFA tournament. With even more excitement surrounding this edition of the game, a large crowd is expected to attend. EA Sports has provided copies of the game, and a chance to win prizes like an AO Beer Stein, a signed Clint Dempsey or DeAndre Yedlin U.S. Soccer jersey and signed goalkeeping gloves from Nick Rimando.

Wolff’s Biergarten is located at 895 Broadway, in Albany. During the tournament, there will be leaders available for all in attendance to get help signing up for membership, although it is not required to attend and participate, as with most of their events. All supporters of the U.S. are encouraged to come cheer their team to victory. More information is available:
The American Outlaws are the largest, most dedicated group of supporters united behind the United States National Soccer Team. Starting as a local supporters group in Lincoln, Neb., the American Outlaws have expanded to every U.S. state with more than 150 local chapters. Every time the U.S. National Soccer team takes the pitch, American Outlaws can be found in the stands as well as hosting watch parties in every state of the union. For more information, visit
  Good luck to all who enter!

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Updated Kentucky Derby Entry point standings

Dortmund, right, holds off Firing Line to win the Robert B. Lewis.
After the latest round of prep races, and the final nominations for the Run for the Roses, here are the updated Kentucky Derby point standings for nominated horses. According to the official standings here, Dubai Sky was nominated late,
after winning the Cincinnati Spiral Stakes this weekend. Tiz Shea D and Divining Rod were also late nominees.

1. El Kabeir (John Terranova II) 75
2. International Star (Mike Maker) 71
3. Dortmund (Bob Baffert) 70
4. Carpe Diem (Todd Pletcher) 64
5. American Pharoah (Bob Baffert) 60
6. Firing Line (Simon Callaghan) 58
7. Dubai Sky (Bill Mott) 50
8. Itsaknockout (Todd Pletcher) 50
9. Upstart (Rick Violette Jr.) 36
10. Conquest Typhoon (Mark Casse) 26
11. War Story (Tom Amoss) 24
12. Far Right (Ron Moquett) 22
13. Madefromlucky (Todd Pletcher) 20
14. Ami's Flatter (Josie Carroll) 20
15. Prospect Park (Cliff Sise Jr.) 20
16. Tiz Shea D (Bill Mott) 20
17. Bold conquest (Steve Asmussen) 17
18. Mr. Z (D. Wayne Lukas) 14
19. Frosted (Kiaran McLaughlin) 13
20. Classy Class (Kiaran McLaughlin) 13
21. Keen Ice (Dale Romans) 12
22. The Truth or Else (Kenny McPeek) 11
23. Ocho Ocho Ocho (Jim Cassidy) 10
24. Daredevil (Todd Pletcher) 10
25. Far From Over (Todd Pletcher) 10
26. Pain and Misery (Henry Dominguez) 10
27. Metaboss (Jeff Bonde) 10
28. Bolo (Carla Gaines) 10
29. Divining Rod (Arnaud Delacour) 10
30. Firespike (Mike Maker) 10
31. Frammento (Nick Zito) 10
36. Toasting Master (Dale Romans) 5

Remaining Championship Series races (with points up for grabs)
March 28: UAE Derby at Maydan Racecourse (100 1st, 40 2nd, 20 3rd, 10 4th)
March 28: Florida Derby at Gulfstream Park (100-40-20-10)
March 28: Louisiana Derby at Fair Grounds (100-40-20-10)
Apirl 4: Wood Memorial at Aqueduct (100-40-20-10)
April 4: Blue Grass at Keenland (100-40-20-10)
April 4: Santa Anita Derby at Santa Anita (100-40-20-10)
April 11: Arkansas Derby at Oaklawn Park (100-40-20-10)
April 11: Lexington at Keenland (10-4-2-1)