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No. 21 Missouri 'too cool' in OT loss to Georgia

Wednesday, 08 January 2014 23:19 Published in Sports
COLUMBIA, Mo. (AP) — Frank Haith thinks his Missouri team was "too cool," and it cost the 21st-ranked Tigers the nation's longest home-court winning streak.
 
"I hate cool," the Tigers coach said Wednesday after losing 70-64 in overtime to Georgia. "We were really too cool and I don't like cool. Cool gets you beat and we got beat tonight."
 
Jabari Brown had 19 points and Earnest Ross added 15, but Ross missed a desperation 3-point attempt in the final seconds trailing 68-64. Missouri (12-2, 0-1 Southeastern Conference) had won 26 consecutive games at home dating back to Feb. 21, 2012, when it lost to Kansas State. In his third season, Haith lost for only the second time in 42 home games.
 
Jordan Clarkson, who missed from the top of the key at the end of regulation, had 12 points.
 
Missouri led 63-58 with 2:51 remaining in overtime after a three-point play by Ross. But Georgia's Nemanja Djurisic hit the tying 3-pointer with 1:39 to go, and Kenny Gaines and Brandon Morris hit a pair of free throws apiece in the final half-minute.
 
"It's definitely going to sting, especially losing at home, but we have to have a short memory and we have to bounce back," Clarkson said. "We can't let one loss turn into two. We have to go get a road win and I know we'll come prepared to do that."
 
Missouri will face Auburn on Saturday.
 
Georgia's Charlie Mann scored 18 points, including the go-ahead basket with 35.8 seconds to go in overtime, and Djurisic finished with 16 points after tying a career high with four 3-pointers.
 
Mann pulled up in the lane before hitting the go-ahead basket less than a half-minute after Brown missed a 3.
 
The Bulldogs (7-6, 1-0) had lost consecutive road games by double digits at George Washington and Colorado and was a double-digit underdog against Missouri.
 
"We didn't have the right look about us," Haith said. "Hopefully we can learn from it. The toughness thing is something that's hard for a coach to accept. You have to compete and that's hard for me.
 
"We didn't compete."
 
Even with Morris' free throws at the end, Georgia was 13 for 26 at the line with Marcus Thornton just 1 for 6. Djurisic was 4 for 5 from 3-point range, matching his career best, after being held to four points his last game.
 
Georgia entered hitting just 65 percent from 3-point range, 12th in the conference.
 
Mann missed a 3-pointer for the lead with 24 seconds left in regulation and Clarkson held the ball before missing a bid to end it with about a second to go. Georgia ended a four-game losing streak against Missouri.
 
Missouri also was vulnerable in its previous game, trailing most of the first half before pulling away to beat Long Beach State by 10 on Saturday. The Tigers had been 4-1 trailing at the half, rallying to beat UCLA and North Carolina State, with the other loss to Illinois.
 
Missouri opened the second half on a 12-4 run and took the lead at 35-34 on another 3-pointer by Ross. Georgia went 7:10 between baskets in the second half.
 
Missouri spotted the Bulldogs eight points to start the game before settling in, and the Tigers got their first lead on a 3-pointer by Ross that made it 20-19 with about 6 minutes remaining. That lasted a half-minute before Djurisic answered with two straight 3s to key an 11-0 run that gave Georgia it's largest lead at 30-20 before Missouri finished the half with five points in a row.

ARCTIC AIR EASES ITS GRIP ON MUCH OF THE US

Wednesday, 08 January 2014 11:31 Published in National News

ATLANTA (AP) — An arctic blast eased its grip on much of the U.S. on Wednesday, with winds calming and the weather warming slightly a day after temperature records — some more than a century-old — shattered up and down the Eastern Seaboard.

In Atlanta, where a record low of 6 degrees hit early Tuesday, fountains froze over, a 200-foot Ferris wheel shut down and Southerners had to dig out winter coats, hats and gloves they almost never have to use. It shouldn't take too long to thaw out, though. The forecast Wednesday was sunny and 42 degrees.

In the Midwest and East, where brutal polar air has lingered over the past few days, temperatures climbed but were still expected to be below freezing.

In Indianapolis, Timolyn Johnson-Fitzgerald returned to her home after spending the night in a shelter with her three children because they lost power to their apartment. The water lines were working, but much of the food she bought in preparation for the storm was ruined from a combination of thawing and then freezing during the outage.

"All my eggs were cracked, the cheese and milk was frozen. And the ice cream had melted and then refroze. It's crazy, but we're just glad to be back home," she said.

On Tuesday, the mercury plunged into the single digits and teens from Boston and New York to Atlanta, Birmingham, Nashville and Little Rock — places where many people don't know the first thing about extreme cold.

"I didn't think the South got this cold," said Marty Williams, a homeless man, originally from Chicago, who took shelter at a church in Atlanta. "That was the main reason for me to come down from up North, from the cold, to get away from all that stuff."

The cold turned deadly for some: Authorities reported at least 21 cold-related deaths across the country since Sunday, including seven in Illinois and six in Indiana. At least five people died after collapsing while shoveling snow, while several victims were identified as homeless people who either refused shelter or didn't make it to a warm haven soon enough.

In Missouri on Monday, a 1-year-old boy was killed when the car he was riding in struck a snow plow, and a 20-year-old woman was killed in a separate crash after her car slid on ice and into the path of a tractor-trailer.

In a phenomenon that forecasters said is actually not all that unusual, all 50 states saw freezing temperatures at some point Tuesday. That included Hawaii, where it was 18 degrees atop Mauna Kea, a dormant volcano.

It was 1 degree in Reading, Pa., and 2 in Trenton, N.J. New York City plummeted to 4 degrees; the old record for the date was 6, set in 1896.

"It's brutal out here," said Spunkiy Jon, who took a break from her sanitation job in New York to smoke a cigarette in the cab of a garbage truck. "Your fingers freeze off after three minutes, your cheeks feel as if you're going to get windburn, and you work as quick as you can."

Farther south, Birmingham, Ala., dipped to a low of 7, four degrees colder than the old mark, set in 1970. Huntsville, Ala., dropped to 5, Nashville, Tenn., got down to 2, and Little Rock, Ark., fell to 9. Charlotte, N.C., reached 6 degrees, breaking the 12-degree record that had stood since 1884.

The big chill started in the Midwest over the weekend, caused by a kink in the "polar vortex," the strong winds that circulate around the North Pole. The icy air covered about half the country by Tuesday, but it was moving north, returning more normal and warmer weather to most of the country. This weekend, it was expected to be in the 50s in New York and even higher in places farther south along the Eastern Seaboard.

The deep freeze dragged on in the Midwest. More than 500 Amtrak passengers were stranded overnight on three Chicago-bound trains that were stopped by blowing and drifting snow in Illinois. Food ran low, but the heat stayed on.

On Tuesday, many schools and day care centers across the eastern half of the U.S. were closed and officials opened shelters for the homeless and anyone else who needed a warm place.

With the bitter cold slowing baggage handling and aircraft refueling, airlines canceled more than 2,000 flights in the U.S., bringing the four-day total to more than 11,000.

The Lower 48 states, when averaged out, reached a low of 13.8 degrees overnight Monday, according to calculations by Ryan Maue of Weather Bell Analytics. An estimated 190 million people in the U.S. were subjected to the polar vortex's icy blast.

Still, farmers worried about their crops.

Diane Cordeau of Kai-Kai Farm in Indiantown, Fla., about 90 miles north of Miami, had to pick her squash and tomatoes Monday to beat the freeze but said her leafy vegetables, such as kale, will be sweeter and tastier because of the cold.

"I'm the queen of lettuce around here, so the colder the better," said Cordeau, whose farm serves high-end restaurants that request specific produce or organic vegetables.

PJM Interconnection, which operates the power grid that serves more than 61 million people in the Mid-Atlantic, Midwest and South, asked users to conserve electricity because of the cold, especially in the morning and late afternoon.

Across the South, the Tennessee Valley Authority said power demand in the morning reached the second-highest winter peak in the history of the Depression-era utility. Temperatures averaged 4 degrees across the utility's seven-state region.

In South Carolina, a large utility used 15-minute rolling blackouts to handle demand, but there were no reports of widespread outages in the South.

Natural gas demand in the U.S. set a record Tuesday, eclipsing the mark set a day earlier, according to Jack Weixel, director of energy analysis at Bentek Energy.

___

Associated Press writers Steve Karnowski and Amy Forliti in Minneapolis; David Dishneau in Hagerstown, Md.; Brett Zongker in Washington, D.C.; Brett Barrouquere in Louisville, Ky.; Melissa Nelson-Gabriel in Pensacola, Fla.; Suzette Laboy in Indiantown, Fla.; Verena Dobnik in New York; and Kelly P. Kissel in Little Rock, Ark., contributed to this report.

Washington University boasts Smithsonian collaboration

Wednesday, 08 January 2014 11:15 Published in Local News
A small patch of forest in St. Louis County could be a big part of understanding global climate change.  In November, the 60-acre plot at Washington University's Tyson Research Center near Eureka was named a Smithsonian Institution Global Earth Observatory.
The land between Lone Elk and West Tyson County Parks is now part of a network of 52 forest plots in 23 countries around the world being used to study climate change and bio-diversity.  
Together, the forests contain about 85-hundred species and 4.5 million individual trees, comprising the largest, systematically studied network of forest-ecology plots in the world.
In part, the Smithsonian project is examining both how climate change affects forests and how forests affect climate change.
The Tyson plot is expected to provide a lot of information because scientists have been monitoring it since the 1980s and have collected data covering two of Missouri's worst droughts in 1988 and 2012.
 
 
 
 

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