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Tom Rackers

Stories by Tom

Press Box: Tick, tick tick, tick ...

Local sports about to start

SPORTS COMMENTARY: The first day of practice for fall sports in Missouri is Monday, Aug. 4. In just eight days, it’s time for football, boys soccer, volleyball, girls tennis and golf and cross country to officially begin their preparations for their respective seasons.

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Mudd signs to wrestle at Missouri

2014 graduate of Blair Oaks

WARDSVILLE — It didn’t take long for Logan Mudd to find his sport.

Press Box: Does success mean U.S. ready to embrace soccer?

It seems the United States has a big case of World Cup fever. And why not? The boys in red, white and blue defied many of the experts by advancing out of the “Group of Death” last week in Brazil.

Team camp next step in Lady Falcons’ rebuilding effort

There’s no time like the present to get started working on the future.

Soccer success becoming the norm

For teams in the Capital City

All of a sudden, the Capital City soccer scene has entered a golden age.

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Defense name of the game for Lady Jays

In today's soccer semifinal

The Jefferson City Lady Jays enter today’s Class 3 soccer semifinal with one number in mind — 20. Because getting to 20 would mean something very good has happened.

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Crusaders successful at state track but disappointed

Finish 10th at MSHSAA Class 3 Track and Field Championships

The Helias Crusaders earned medals in all four of their final events Saturday.

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Shea picks perfect moment for a PR

The timing was just right.

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Helias wants to continue strong run in relays

In Class 3 track championships

A slight misstep can prove costly in relay events.

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Timely score helps Lady Jays soccer

LePage's goal key in sectional win against Hickman

Entering Tuesday night, Tayler LePage had scored one goal through Jefferson City’s first 25 games. Make it two in 26.

Hentges glad recruiting process is over

Happy with choice of Alabama

Hale Hentges is sure about two things. One, the Helias High School standout wants to play football at Alabama. Two, he’s glad his recruiting process has come to an end.

Recruiting process has changed over the years

College start recruiting younger players

Thirty years ago, Chris Hentges was about to enter his senior football season at Helias High School. He accepted a scholarship to play at Iowa State. Fifteen years ago, Phil Pitts was heading into his senior season at Helias. He later received a scholarship at Missouri.

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Jefferson City plans nothing new for Hickman

There’s no secret to success for the Jefferson City Lady Jays tonight.

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Helias' Hentges commits to Alabama

Crusaders football standout to play for Crimson Tide

Hale Hentges, who will be a senior this fall at Helias High School and is one of the top college football recruits heading into the 2014 season, has orally committed to the University of Alabama.

Press Box: Doing his job for the Rams

Losing TV series was best for Sam, the football player

The feel-good story was taking a turn late last week. And then, thankfully, it didn’t.

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Crusaders baseball has positive finish

Helias beats Smith-Cotton to end regular season

The Helias Crusaders start Class 5 District 9 Tournament play today in Columbia. They’re going into it with a positive feeling.

MSHSAA members vote to add another class in soccer

In a recent vote, the member schools of the Missouri State High School Activities Association decided to add a fourth class to boys and girls soccer starting with the 2014-15 season.

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Numbers favor Helias but Borgia garners only score that matters

At 179 Soccer Park on Saturday

Helias outshot St. Francis Borgia 28-4, including a 15-4 advantage in those on goal. Helias finished with a 13-2 edge in corner kicks.

Lady Jays take step toward No. 1 seed, but put forth uneven effort

The Jefferson City Lady Jays almost certainly wrapped up the No. 1 seed in the Class 3 District Soccer Tournament with their win Friday night against the Waynesville Lady Tigers.

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Helias downs Lady Jays 2-0 in soccer

The Helias Lady Crusaders were hungry for a result against a quality opponent. Beating the No. 4 team in Class 3 should help ease that feeling a little bit.

Lady Crusaders host Lady Jays in soccer

Two of the state's best set to clash

It’s a postseason-type game featuring two teams with realistic chances of making deep postseason runs. And then there’s the whole rivalry thing when the Helias Lady Crusaders (12-7-1, No. 5 in Class 2) and Jefferson City Lady Jays (16-3-1, No. 4 in Class 3) will square off tonight in a battle of top-five teams at the 179 Soccer Park.

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Lady Jays win despite struggles

On a night where Jefferson City didn’t have “it,” they still had enough of it.

Seniors shine as Helias rolls past Owensville

With every senior either starting or seeing extended playing time, Helias pounded out 14 hits in a 15-0 blanking of the Owensville Dutchmen in five innings.

Lady Jays starting to enjoy their new style of play

In soccer

The Jefferson City Lady Jays changed their playing style this season.

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Falcons continue to strand runners in loss to Indians

It’s a streak the Blair Oaks Falcons would be more than happy to break.

Press Box: Interest, intrigue, idiocy surround Missouri’s coaching search

It's been a wacky week

SPORTS COMMENTARY: In a week full of the three I’s — interest, intrigue and idiocy — this one took the cake. The only pieces of real news during the week came from short statements from coaches who weren’t going to take the job.

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Lady Crusaders put together complete-game effort in soccer win

The Lady Crusaders scored two goals in each half Saturday in a 4-0 victory against the Rock Bridge Bruins in the Capital City Invitational at the 179 Soccer Park.

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Helias ends first day on high note

At Capital City Invitational

The Helias Lady Crusaders ended the opening day of the Capital City Invitational on an up note.

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Differing feelings for Lady Jays

After 2-0 start in Invitational

The results were the same. The feelings afterward were completely different.

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Faddoul makes his presence felt

Powers Helias to win against Marshall

It was tough for Alex Faddoul to watch. Faddoul, a sophomore, missed a month of the Helias baseball season with lingering effects of an ankle injury suffered late in the football season.

Helias to face Rockhurst on football field

The Helias Crusaders will have back-to-back shots at breaking off a piece of the Rock.

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Crusaders give ‘uninspired effort’ in loss to Bruins

Seven walks plus six errors plus three hit-batters equals nothing good.

Press Box: Haith’s departure as mysterious as his arrival

News Tribune sports commentary

SPORTS COMMENTARY: When Frank Haith came to Columbia three years ago from Miami as the new head men’s basketball coach, it was met with a resounding “Who?” The moment he stepped on that plane Thursday afternoon at Columbia Regional Airport headed for Tulsa, it was met with a resounding “What?”

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Vance leads Lady Jays to soccer win

It was the kind of game that might spark a player.

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Helias overcomes tired legs

In girls soccer win against Hannibal

The spirit was willing. The legs, understandably, were a little weak.

Lady Crusaders keep scoreboard operator occupied in win

The Helias Lady Crusaders tallied a goal in the first minute, then tallied another in the final minute.

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Fatima scores in double digits in pair of wins

Will Robertson’s three-run home run lifted the Fatima Comets to an 11-0 win in five innings against the Lutheran: St. Charles Cougars in the fifth-place game of the Capital City Invitational at Vivion Field.

Fatima drops pair in Invitational

In their first game, the Fatima Comets could muster little offense. In their second, they put some runs on the board.

Fatima falls to Hickman

In Capital City Invitational opener

The Fatima Comets had their opportunities against the Hickman Kewpies in their Capital City Invitational opener Friday afternoon. But they just couldn’t pick up the big hit when they needed it.

Lady Jays slip past Blue Devils, 1-0

In a game that featured more fouls than total shots, it was almost fitting the final decision came down to a penalty kick.

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Lee sends Helias past Hickman in seventh

Hayden Lee stepped to the plate determined to come through. The Helias senior designated hitter entered the batters box with Wednesday’s game against Hickman tied at 6 with one out and the bases loaded in the bottom of the seventh inning.

Postseason football changes for Helias

The district field looks just about the same for the Helias Crusaders. The road to the Dome, that’s another story.

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Lady Jays hold 35-1 edge in shots in 6-1 victory against Moberly

The learning process continues for the Jefferson City Lady Jays. But it looks like they are starting to put some things together.

Strong 1-2 punch for Blair Oaks

As Falcons start golf season

The Blair Oaks Falcons enter the golf season with as potent a 1-2 punch as you’ll find in the area. Any potential team success this season will be finding players behind the duo of Kory Franks and Tanner Elder.

Jays open golf season today

The golf season starts today for the Jefferson City Jays. Who will be where in the lineup once postseason play starts is a question that won’t be answered until later.

Helias kicks off golf season

Working on short game

The short game is always the last thing to come around in golf. The Helias Crusaders saw that in the preseason and they saw it again as they opened the season Wednesday.

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Helias changes its track schedule

Last year, the Helias Crusaders and Lady Crusaders went to every track and field meet they could put on the schedule.

Light to step down as A.D. at Helias

Sometimes, a change is welcomed. “I was just ready to do something different,” Doug Light said Monday afternoon after it was announced by the school he was stepping away from his duties as athletic director at Helias at the end of the school year.

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Lady Jays fall to Ursuline Academy

KO’d in PKs

Jefferson City dropped a 1-0 decision in penalty kicks to Ursuline Academy at the 179 Soccer Park.

Crusaders short-handed to begin baseball season

The Helias Crusaders enter the baseball season with more than few questions to be answered.