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Cole Harbour: Avs overcome Crosby’s natural hat trick, beat Penguins 6-3



Battle of Cole Harbour: Avs overcome Crosby’s natural hat trick, beat Penguins 6-3

Sidney Crosby and Nathan MacKinnon put on a show that made Cole Harbour proud, and it was MacKinnon who walked away with bragging rights for the Nova Scotia town.

MacKinnon had a goal and three assists, including one on Gabe Landeskog’s tiebreaking score midway through the third period, and the surging Colorado Avalanche overcame Crosby’s natural hat trick to beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 6-3 on Wednesday night.

MacKinnon’s team won the matchup of hometown stars, but Crosby nearly stole it with his 11th career hat trick.

“It’s not easy when Sid gets going,” MacKinnon said. “He starts kind of galloping out there.”

Colorado won its sixth straight game and is 8-0-1 in its last nine.

Winnipeg Jets drop seesaw showdown to Pittsburgh Penguins

MacKinnon, 23, and Crosby, 31, are both former No. 1 overall draft picks. They have become offseason training partners and have made TV commercials together. Those things are put aside when they face each other twice a season, but Wednesday’s game might get a second viewing when they get together.

“I’m sure this is a game we will talk about for a while,” MacKinnon said. “We don’t play each other much, so for a regular-season game this is one of the fun ones I’ve been a part of. By Sid getting a hat trick and obviously us getting a big one.”

MacKinnon had an empty-net goal with 29 seconds left, his 18th goal of the season. Samuel Girard, Erik Johnson, Colin Wilson and Carl Soderberg also scored for Colorado, and Mikko Rantanen had two assists.

The Avalanche’s top line of MacKinnon, Landeskog and Mikko Rantanen, who leads the NHL in scoring with 42 points, had eight points and continues to dominate. Pittsburgh coach Mike Sullivan didn’t hesitate when asked if the trio is the best he’s seen this season.

“Yes,” he said. “They’re not easy to contain. They’re three elite players that are all on the same line.”

Sullivan has a two-time Hart Trophy winner in Crosby, and he put on an MVP-worthy performance for the Penguins by erasing a 3-0 deficit by himself.

He struck twice in the final minute of the second period. His first goal came off his own rebound on a breakaway with 52 seconds to go, and he scored again with 10 seconds left with Colorado defenseman Patrik Nemeth off for holding. Crosby tied it at 4:43 of the third to complete his first hat trick of the season. He has 13 goals.

“Sid tried to will us a win with his effort,” Sullivan said. “I thought he was terrific. He was terrific all night long.”

Landeskog broke the tie with his 15th goal at 10:05. The Penguins pulled Tristan Jarry for an extra skater, but MacKinnon and Soderberg scored to seal it.

“We didn’t give up, so that’s a good thing,” Crosby said. “Still, when you put yourself in that position to get back in the game after coming back from three you want to at least get a point out of it.”

Girard gave Colorado a 1-0 lead with his second goal at 11:19 of the first period. Johnson scored at 5:13 of the second and Wilson made it 3-0 at 7:52.

The Penguins challenged Johnson’s goal for goaltender interference but it was upheld upon review.


Colorado D Tyson Barrie missed his second straight game with a lower-body injury. … Pittsburgh D Kris Letang, who set a franchise record for games played in Winnipeg on Tuesday, had his four-game point streak snapped. … Colorado is 1-1-1 in the second game of back-to-back sets this season. It is 3-1-0 in the first game. … The first penalty wasn’t called until Crosby drew a holding-the-stick minor 49 seconds into the second period. Colorado’s Alexander Kerfoot got a high-sticking minor 19 seconds later.

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Massachusetts COVID-19 Daily Report: 16 new deaths, 1,999 new cases



Massachusetts COVID-19 Daily Report: 16 new deaths, 1,999 new cases

JEFFERSON COUNTY, N.Y. (WWTI) – A disease deadly to deer is spreading throughout New York State.

On Thursday, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation confirmed that Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease has spread to Columbia, Dutchess, Greene, Nassau, Oswego, Suffolk, and Ulster counties. The DEC is also tracking suspected cases in Albany, Jefferson, Oneida, Orange, Putnam, Rensselaer, Rockland, Sullivan, and Westchester counties.

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Chris Sale returns to lead Red Sox to 7-1 win over Orioles



Chris Sale returns to lead Red Sox to 7-1 win over Orioles

Red Sox ace Chris Sale went from quarantine to a quality outing.

The Red Sox opened an eight game homestand on Friday night with an 7-1 victory over the Baltimore Orioles at Fenway. The Red Sox improved to 84-65 and moved into second place in the AL East, a half game ahead of the Yankees.

Sale was placed on the COVID-19 related injured list on Sept. 10 and spent six days under pandemic house arrest. Sale’s last start was on Labor Day, a no decision in an 11-10 loss in 10 innings against the Rays.

Sale, who was making his sixth start, worked five innings and gave up one earned run on two hits with one strikeout and zero walks. He threw an efficient 79 pitches, 54 for strikes, before handing a three-run lead to reliever Garrett Whitlock in the top of the sixth.

“He pitched well and his slider was a lot better than his first few outings,” said Red Sox manager Alex Cora. “The velocity wasn’t there but it’s hard to get it going and those 10 days trying to do it by yourself.

“Throwing into a net is not the same.”

Baltimore right fielder Austin Hays got around on an inside fastball and swatted a leadoff home run over the left field wall in the top of the second to take a 1-0 lead. Sale retired the next three batters to keep the damage to a minimum.

After stranding a pair of runners in scoring position in the first, the Red Sox went up 2-1 in the bottom of the second. Christian Vazquez hit a one out double down the left field line and went to third on an infield single by Alex Verdugo. Jose Iglesias hit a ground rule double into the right field grandstands scoring Vazquez and putting Verdugo on third. Verdugo scored on a sacrifice fly to center by Enrique Hernandez.

Sale retired 12 of the next 13 batters following Hays’ homer. Bobby Dalbec gave Sale a 3-1 cushion in the fourth with a leadoff home run over the left field wall, his fifth-round tripper in the last eight games.

“He had to pitch today and it was good to see his slider play the way it did,” said Cora. “There was a lot of weak contact and we played great defensively behind him and he gave us enough.

“Five innings and the bullpen did an outstanding job and offensively we did enough.”

The Red Sox chased Orioles starter Keegan Aiken after he gave up a leadoff walk to Hunter Renfroe in the fifth. Renfroe went to third on a wild pitch and a ground out before scoring on a double to right by J.D. Martinez to make it 4-1. The Red Sox took a 7-1 lead in the sixth when Renfroe lined a three-run double through the gap in left center.

“He (Renfroe) missed some sliders earlier in the game and for him to give us breathing room was huge,” said Cora. “That was a big hit for us and that’s what you have to do, you have to put teams away and the wins have been close.”

Rotation set 

With Sale back at the top of the rotation, Red Sox manager Alex Cora laid out his likely four-man unit going forward. Cora will send righties Nick Pivetta and Nathan Eovaldi against the Orioles in matinee appearances on Saturday and Sunday. Eduardo Rodriguez will take the mound in the opener of a two-game interleague series with the New York Mets on Tuesday at Fenway.

On the last road trip, Eovaldi, Pivetta and Rodriguez combined to allow three earned runs over 16 innings of work with a 1.65 ERA. Each gave up an earned run in five plus innings.

In his last seven starts, Eovaldi has a 1.90 ERA with nine earned runs over 42.2 innings pitched along with 56 strikeouts, seven walks and a 0.96 WHIP. The Red Sox have won his last five starts.

“We will make adjustments throughout because of the off days,” said Cora.

Roster moves

Sale’s move back to the starting rotation was one of four major roster moves involving pitchers orchestrated by the Red Sox on Friday. The Sox returned righty closer Matt Barnes from his injury rehab assignment with Double-A Portland and reinstated him from the COVID-19 related injury list. Barnes came on in relief against the Orioles and pitched a scoreless eighth.

Right hander Ryan Brasier was optioned to Triple-A Worcester and designated righty Michael Feliz for assignment.

Extra bases

Eovaldi was honored as the Red Sox nominee for the annual Roberto Clemente Award in a pregame ceremony. Cora presented Eovaldi with the award, which goes to an MLB player who best represents the sport of baseball with contributions on and off the field. Baltimore DH Trey Mancini is the Orioles’ Clemente nominee.

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Hochul vows to fight lawsuit over vaccine mandate



Hochul vows to fight lawsuit over vaccine mandate

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — New York Gov. Kathy Hochul vowed this week to fight a lawsuit launched by a group of Christian health care practitioners who argue that New York’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for many health care workers is unconstitutional because it lacks a religious exemption.

On Tuesday, a federal judge temporarily blocked the state from enforcing any part of its mandate that prohibits religious exemptions for health care workers. The court will hold arguments in the coming weeks. The judge’s order means health care workers must still get vaccinated before September 27—but for now, they can ask for religious exemptions.

Hochul said Wednesday she’s not aware of any major religious group that has prohibited adherents from receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. “Everyone from the Pope on down is encouraging people to get vaccinated,” she said, referring to Pope Francis, the head of the Roman Catholic Church.

The nurses, doctors, and other New York health care workers in the lawsuit say they don’t want to be forced to take any vaccine that employs aborted fetus cell lines in their testing, development, or production. Fetal cell lines were used during the research and development of the Pfizer and Moderna mRNA vaccines and during the production of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

New York is now averaging around 5,200 new cases of COVID-19 per day, up from a low of around 300 per day in late June.

Thomas More Society senior counsel Stephen Crampton, who’s representing the anonymous group of nurses, doctors, and other health care workers, said he’s confident the courts will find that people have a right to refuse the vaccine on religious grounds, even if they are part of a religious group that is endorsing the shots.

“My sincere religious convictions may not be 100% the same as the leader of my church or my denomination,” Crampton said. “And the law respects that and it should.”

New York has a long history of requiring health care workers to be immunized against diseases that pose a major public health threat, including measles, mumps, and rubella. Schoolchildren are required to be vaccinated against many diseases, too.

The state doesn’t offer religious exemptions for vaccination requirements for schoolchildren or health care workers and has argued it isn’t obligated to do so for the COVID-19 vaccine, either. Courts have agreed states don’t have to offer a religious exemption for childhood immunization.

Students at colleges and universities, however, can be exempt from New York’s vaccine mandates if they hold “genuine and sincere religious beliefs which are contrary to the practices herein required.” New York also has a religious exemption for a requirement to vaccinate infants born to a mother with Hepatitis B.

The use of human cell lines is commonplace in the manufacture of vaccines including rubella, chickenpox, shingles, and Hepatitis A. For decades, researchers have multiplied cells from a handful of legally aborted fetuses from the 1960s to produce human cell lines that provide cell cultures used to grow vaccines. Those cell lines are also used to make drugs treating rheumatoid arthritis and cystic fibrosis.

Religious leaders have disagreed over the issue: the Vatican issued guidance saying it’s morally acceptable to receive COVID-19 vaccines developed or tested using cell lines originating from aborted fetuses when alternative vaccines aren’t available.

On Sunday, a federal judge in New York City rejected a similar lawsuit lodged by Long Island nurses who argued the lack of a religious exemption violated their constitutional rights.

When asked whether the health care practitioners have received other vaccines, Crampton said the group isn’t “anti-vax” in general. Hochul, a Democrat, said getting vaccinated is the “most beautiful way” for individuals in healing professions to demonstrate their passion and concern for others.

Seven other states besides New York don’t offer a religious exemption for school and childcare immunization requirements, according to the Immunization Action Coalition. Some have removed exemptions in recent years over concern about outbreaks of once-contained diseases; Maine’s sweeping law removed both religious and personal belief exemptions.

The Thomas More Society is a national not-for-profit law firm that describes its mission as “restoring respect in law for life, family and religious liberty.” Last year, the law firm represented two Catholic priests and three Orthodox Jews who successfully overturned then-Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s attendance limits for houses of worship during the pandemic.

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Eastern Massachusetts completed football scorelist from Friday



Bermudez leads East Boston past Brighton


Minuteman 16, Keefe Tech 8

Whittier 28, Malden 7


Abington 35, Apponequet 0

Amesbury 22, Wayland 14

Andover 23, Acton-Boxboro 16

Ashland 28, Concord-Carlisle 7

Billerica 22, Westford Academy 14

Bishop Feehan 34, Attleboro 0

Blue Hills 30, Essex Tech 18

Boston Latin 34, O’Bryant 12

Bristol-Plymouth at Martha’s Vineyard, ppd.

Case 7, Carver 0

Cathedral/Matignon 42, Atlantis Charter/Bishop Connolly 6

Catholic Memorial 42, LaSalle (RI) 26

Chelmsford 35, Lexington 21

Dartmouth 35, GNB Voke 0

Danvers 28, Haverhill 0

Dedham 23, Medfield 3

Diman 30, Bourne 0

Dover-Sherborn 28, Nipmuc 7

Duxbury 27, Scituate 26

East Boston 40, Brighton 16

Everett 38, Somerville 6

Fairhaven 33, West Bridgewater 27

Foxboro 38, Whitman-Hanson 0

Franklin 37, Brockton 7

Georgetown 44, Roxbury Prep 8

Hanover 34, East Bridgewater 0

Hingham 21, Arlington 14

Holbrook/Avon 28, Wareham 22 (2 ot)

Holliston 35, Medway 34

Hopkinton 19, Nauset 8

Hull 28, Cardinal Spellman 18

King Philip 30, Needham 6

Latin Academy 51, Weston 6

Lincoln-Sudbury 39, Melrose 0

Lowell Catholic 27, Ipswich 21

Malden Catholic 31, Gloucester 0

Manchester-Essex 49, Nashoba Tech 0

Mansfield 31, North Attleboro 29 (2 ot)

Marblehead 54, Lynn Classical 20

Marshfield 34, Methuen 33

Masconomet 35, Peabody 24

Mashpee 28, Nantucket 6

Medford 28, Cambridge 22

Natick 13, Walpole 7 (ot)

Newburyport 42, Bedford 27

North Andover 34, Beverly 0

Northeast 28, Saugus 0

North Reading 46, Greater Lawrence 9

Norton 19, Canton 10

Norwell 34, Archbishop Williams 24

Old Rochester 32, Bishop Stang 10

Pembroke 13, Cohasset 8

Pentucket 21, Dracut 12

Plymouth North 12, Dennis-Yarmouth 10

Plymouth South 30, Dighton-Rehoboth 14

Quincy 21, Oliver Ames 13

Randolph 36, Millis 20

Reading 18, Barnstable 14

Revere 34, Chelsea 0

Rockland 14, Silver Lake 6

St. John’s (S) 35, Shrewsbury 0

St. Mary’s 62, Bellingham 14

Seekonk 28, Sharon 0

Springfield Central 50, BC High 20

Stoneham 55, St. Bernard’s 14

Stoughton 27, Braintree 26

Swampscott 41, Lynn English 14

Taunton 26, Durfee 20

Tewksbury 28, Lowell 14

Triton at Shawsheen, ppd.

Wakefield 41, Belmont 7

Waltham 21, Winchester 13

West Bridgewater 33, Fairhaven 27 (ot)

Weymouth 34, Newton North 0

Wilmington 29, Greater Lowell 7

Winthrop 23, Austin Prep 21

Woburn 50, Burlington 14

Upper Cape at Southeastern, ppd.

Xaverian 35, Bridgewater-Raynham 14

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More funding coming to Albany County to prevent gun violence



More funding coming to Albany County to prevent gun violence

JEFFERSON COUNTY, N.Y. (WWTI) – A disease deadly to deer is spreading throughout New York State.

On Thursday, the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation confirmed that Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease has spread to Columbia, Dutchess, Greene, Nassau, Oswego, Suffolk, and Ulster counties. The DEC is also tracking suspected cases in Albany, Jefferson, Oneida, Orange, Putnam, Rensselaer, Rockland, Sullivan, and Westchester counties.

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Bermudez leads East Boston past Brighton



Bermudez leads East Boston past Brighton

In recent years, it seems like East Boston and Brighton have consistently found themselves in a classic battle, at least when it comes to the gridiron.

But on Friday night, the Jets made a statement to the rest of the Boston City League, and ironically, they did so using the ground game. Senior running back Randy Bermudez finished with 15 carries, racking up 137 yards to go with a touchdown, as East Boston took home a convincing 40-16 victory over its rival from the west side of town.

Early on, however, it appeared as though the game was truly going to be a nail-biter. East Boston (1-0) opened things by staging a long drive, one which lasted 5:48. Joshua DeLacruz got the scoring started for the Jets, as he took a handoff on a counter play, then shed multiple tackles on his way to a 28-yard touchdown scamper. Taelor Thompson proceeded to convert a two-point rush, and East Boston took an 8-0 lead.

Brighton would respond on its ensuing possession, as Sahmir Morales connected with Jathan Greene for a 4-yard touchdown pass. Greene would also go on to convert the two-point try, as the Bengals evened the score at 8-all with 2:25 left in the stanza.

With 30 seconds remaining in the first half, Jaye Kincade fought his way into the end zone for a 13-yard touchdown rush, before Thompson hit Alex Valencia for a two-point conversion to provide East Boston a 16-8 lead at the break.

Once the third quarter got started, the Jets lined up for a kickoff. Senior Alvaro Pineda then bounced a squib kick upfield. However, the ball took a wild hop past a couple of Brighton returners, then rolled harmlessly toward the sideline, where it was scooped up by a pile of East Boston special teamers at the Bengals’ 26. Just like that, the momentum completely swung in the Jets’ favor.

“We do that all the time,” East Boston coach John Parziale said. “We’ve been squib kicking for a hundred years. We don’t kick it deep, ever. So, we got lucky tonight and got one of them.”

East Boston took advantage of the freak play, as Thompson led his team deep into the red zone, then closed the drive with a 3-yard quarterback keeper for a touchdown. He would add a two-point rush, giving the Jets a 24-8 lead.

As Brighton searched for a response, the Bengals mishandled a snap, only to watch the ball be swallowed by a swarm of Jets defenders. The turnover proved costly, as Bermudez broke off his longest rush of the night — a 50-yard sprint, which set the Jets up at the Brighton 1.

“I was really excited,” Bermudez said. “I saw a big gap. Knew I had to break it down, and keep on going. Just do my best to try to score a touchdown.”

Bermudez would go on to punch in a 1-yard touchdown run on his next carry with 7:45 left in the third. Kincade would notch a two-point rush to make it a 32-8 contest, and the Jets would coast to the finish from there.

In total, the Jets combined for 306 yards rushing, with Kincade (79 yards) and DeLacruz (55 yards, touchdown) adding to Bermudez’s heroics. Daniel Pedronio registered a 3-yard touchdown as well for East Boston.

Senior Damian Blacknall added a 9-yard touchdown in the effort for Brighton.

“I think the offensive line did well with opening holes for the backs,” Parziale said. “We had a couple of turnovers that went our way, so we had the ball a couple of times, which was really good for us. Brighton’s a good team, they’re well-coached, and they can score at any moment. They’re fast, but we got the breaks tonight early on, and sort of kept piling on.”

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Ailing St. Paul photojournalist tells his story from behind the camera



Ailing St. Paul photojournalist tells his story from behind the camera

As usual, Bill Alkofer was behind his camera to capture the moment.

It was in this moment, though, that the photojournalist became the subject.

“I know the exact second when my disease manifested itself,” Alkofer says. “It was at 6:53 p.m. and 41 seconds on October 19th, 2018. I know the time because I was taking a picture at a high school football game.

“I tried to lift the camera over my head — and I couldn’t do it. I couldn’t lift up the camera.”

This moment eventually led to a diagnosis: A variation of ALS — amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease).

There is currently no cure for the progressive condition that steals a person’s ability to move, talk, swallow and — eventually — to breathe. It typically comes with a life expectancy of two to five years.

“As soon as the neurologist said, ‘ALS is on the table,’ it hit me like a ton of bricks,” Alkofer said. “I sat in the parking lot for an hour. … That night, I dreamed of my dad.”

His dad passed away of a similar condition. Could there be a connection?

After the diagnosis, Alkofer reacted like many us do when the news is bad and we need support: He came home.


Alkofer, who most recently worked for the Orange County Register in California, says that he “hails from the hinterlands of North Dakota,” but he also called St. Paul home for many years, some of them as a photographer for the St. Paul Pioneer Press. And it is here — St. Paul — where he has come home.

“This is where my support system is,” he says.

Friends and fellow photojournalists Richard Marshall, left, and Scott Cohen, both of St. Paul, help set up Bill Alkofer’s new bed as he moves into his apartment at an assisted-living facility in St. Paul in June 2021. (Craig Lassig / Special to the Pioneer Press)

The 59-year-old has moved into an assisted-living facility in Highland Park. But, in addition to the caregivers and his family and friends, his support system of almost 20 people also includes people carrying cameras: his fellow photojournalists. They go back — way back. Back when pictures were processed not on computers, but in darkrooms.

“My friends here are still very loyal, with huge hearts,” he says. “It’s a Minnesota thing.”

Maybe it’s a “Bill thing,” too: Alkofer’s community of friends, family and colleagues both past and present — from California to Minnesota — came together for him after his diagnosis, raising more than $25,000 to help get him back to Minnesota, and to pay for a hotel while he waited for a spot to open up in assisted living.

And now his friends are preparing another GoFundMe — to raise money for the living wake Alkofer wants to host, as well as for his funeral.


At the Pioneer Press, Alkofer captured life in Minnesota — and sometimes in North Dakota, too — for almost a decade.

Perhaps his most iconic image is from the Grand Forks flood of 1997.

After the Red River burst through the dikes and flooded the border towns of Grand Forks, N.D., and East Grand Forks, Minn., on April 19, 1997, a fire began burning in downtown Grand Forks.

Later that morning, Alkofer waded into the floodwaters to photograph two firefighters as they stood hip deep in the water, trying to hook up a hose to a fire hydrant — an unsuccessful effort to extinguish the blaze that eventually consumed 11 buildings.

“I wish I could go back,” he says, “and whisper to 1997 Bill, ‘This is the most important photo of your life.’ ”


In between seeing patients on a recent morning, Dr. Namita Goyal remembers one of her former patients: Bill Alkofer.

“He is very tenacious,” she recalls. “He is very charming.”

He was a good advocate for himself, she recalls, wanting all other possibilities to be ruled out before they reached what was the ultimate diagnosis of ALS.

Goyal is used to seeing the cruelties of this progressive neurodegenerative disease that was first identified in 1869; she is a neurologist at the ALS & Neuromuscular Center at the University of California, Irvine Medical Center in Orange County.

“Every one of my patients have stories that are just as heartbreaking as Bill’s,” she says.

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Pro-life group questions Hochul’s push for reproductive rights



Pro-life group questions Hochul’s push for reproductive rights

NEW YORK (WETM) — An anti-abortion educator with the statewide organization New York State Right to Life (NYSRTL) takes issue with New York’s official stance on abortions.

Gov. Kathy Hochul and several women elected leaders and advocates held a press conference on Monday. There, they announced an official response to the abortion ban passed through the Texas Legislature last month. “I’m going forward,” Hochul said. “I’m not going back.”

“Contemplate which side of history you’re going to be on. Where do you want to put your marker down? Where do you want to draw your line in the sand?” said Lori Kehoe with the NYSRTL. “Are you going to be one of the people who say, ‘No, we can do better for women?’ Or are you going to be one of those people who someday look back and was like, ‘Yeah, I was one of those champions to kill kids because I thought women couldn’t handle it!'” she continued.

Check out a digital extra with NYSRTL’s Lori Kehoe below:

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Ask Amy: Caregiving spouse is overwhelmed



Ask Amy: Woman should leave abusive relationship

Dear Amy: My wife was recently hospitalized, and, as I have done previously, I sent messages to family and her friends to let them know her status.

After each message, I received many in return, some asking questions that required a personal response.

When my wife was about to be discharged, I received multiple offers to help with shopping and other chores.

I had to write a tactful response to each, explaining that her diet has to be carefully controlled, so I have to do the shopping.

I have such mixed feelings about the incoming messages.

It is wonderful that family and friends care, but the volume of traffic requiring a response has been a burden on me at a difficult time.

What do you think is the proper protocol when receiving an update on CaringBridge, or through a mass email like mine?

Should people think good thoughts but maybe not respond directly?

Respond with a banal thanks/best wishes message?

Or demonstrate interest and caring by asking for more information, thus creating a stressor for the caregiver?

Thanks so much for the insights in your column, which I read in the LA Times.

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No. 1 Catholic Memorial holds off challenge from La Salle



Big second half leads Springfield Central to road win at BC High

If you thought John DiBiaso would be full of the warm and fuzzies after his team earned a 42-26 win over La Salle Academy of Rhode Island, then you might not know the Catholic Memorial coach as well as you think.

After Friday night’s win, DiBiaso told his team in no uncertain terms that he was not pleased at all with the performance.

“The Super Bowl losses (by the Knights in 2018 and 2019) were better than that,” DiBiaso said.

Well, if the win over La Salle was so bad, you have to wonder what the Knights will do when they play up to their coach’s liking.

Junior quarterback JC Petrongolo completed 15 of 25 passes for 235 yards and three touchdowns, two of which went to classmate Jaedn Skeete for scoring tosses of 49 and 6 yards. Through two games against out-of-state competition, the Knights are averaging 43 points per game, and it remains a mystery whether someone they play can run with their fleet of speedsters.

But none of that satisfied DiBiaso, who was fixated on his team’s shortcomings.

“What didn’t I like?” DiBiaso said. “The penalties. The turnovers. Guys cramping up. Not playing until the whistle. Playing through the whistle and getting personal fouls. I didn’t like any of it.”

The message got through to Skeete, who caught four passes for 68 yards.

“We’ve just got to do better,” Skeete said. “Our performance wasn’t that good. Luckily, we came out with a win today, but we need to be more disciplined. There were too many flags on the field. We’ve just got to work harder. We’ve got to do better. It starts in practice.”

The Knights took the opening kick and scored in less than a minute on a 3-yard touchdown run by Datrell Jones. La Salle answered with a 17-yard touchdown pass from Dean Varrichione to Justin Benson to cut the CM lead to 7-6. In the second quarter, CM answered on a 49-yard Petrongolo pass over the middle to Skeete, who outraced the La Salle secondary to the end zone.

La Salle then cut the deficit to 14-12 on a 3-yard scoring run by Jameszell Lassister, and it looked like it would stay that way until halftime. But another one of the terrific CM junior receivers, Kole Osinubi, took a 25-yard pass from Petrongolo to give the Knights a 21-12 lead at halftime.

“We try to distribute it like a basketball team,” DiBiaso said of his skill players. “This guy gets it. That guy gets it. But, again, we didn’t do as good a job as we should.”

CM finally began to pull away in the third quarter. Jones added a 13-yard touchdown run, then Skeete lost his man for a 6-yard score as CM pushed its advantage to 35-12. La Salle scored two touchdowns in the fourth sandwiched around a Carson Harwood 3-yard scoring jaunt.

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