Women’s NCAA teams best men in grad rates

ORLANDO, Fla. – Women's teams competing in the NCAA tournament are graduating their players at a higher rate than their male counterparts.

A study released Tuesday by the University of Central Florida's Institute for Diversity and Ethics in Sport shows the women graduating at a rate of 87 percent, compared to 72 percent for the men.

The women's field has 21 teams graduating at 100 percent.

Northwestern State University was the lone women's NCAA tourney team to fall below the NCAA-mandated Academic Progress Rate score of 930, or 50 percent graduation rate equivalent. Eight men's teams were below that standard.

The women also saw 1 percentage point decrease in the disparity between the graduation rates of white and African-Americans. That gap is five percentage points. It is a 24-point gap for men's teams.

Study author Richard Lapchick said the women's success in consistently closing the gap between white and African-American players is proof that the men's gap can also be reduced.

"Clearly the thing that troubles me in these reports the most is the gap between white and African-American athletes, though for women it's very different, and it includes a number of situations where the rates for African-Americans are higher than whites," Lapchick said.

Lapchick said he would like to see disparity gaps be factored into APR calculations to motivate both men and women's teams to improve their numbers.

"If (the gap) is narrowing, it should be a positive impact, but if there is a 30 percentage point or more gap and not narrowing, they should be facing penalties," he said.

Currently, teams scoring below a 925 APR can lose up to 10 percent of their scholarships. Teams can also be subject to penalties for poor academic performance over time.

Beginning with 2012-13 championships, teams must earn a minimum 900 four-year APR or a 930 average over the most recent two years to be eligible for NCAA championships.

The APR was developed by the NCAA in 2004 as a way to improve graduation rates. It is a four-year rolling average of academic performance that takes into account academic eligibility and retention.

The NCAA recently voted to institute stricter policies with regards to APR performance and postseason participation. The new legislation will require teams to have a four-year APR above 930 to qualify for postseason participation the following year.

For 2014-15, teams must earn a 930 four-year average APR or a 940 average over the most recent two years to participate in championships. In 2015-16 and beyond, teams must earn a four-year APR of 930.

To that end, the women in this year's tournament are well on their way to surpassing those benchmarks.

All of the teams in the women's field graduated more than 60 percent of their players except Florida Gulf Coast (40 percent). Eighty-eight percent of the teams in the men's tournament currently graduate at least 60 percent of their players.

"Some people say `What's your real aim with these studies, not anything less than a 100 percent (graduation rate)?' I'm always going to be somebody who wants to see people get the best possible mark they can get," Lapchick said. "There still can be improvement and the area is the gap between white and African-American athletes. If the women can do that, obviously the men can do that."

Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press

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Wed. in Sochi: USA women’s hockey vs. Canada

Hilary Knight and the U. S. will attempt to improve their points against north america. (USATSI)Trying to watch the particular Olympics? Even with NBCOlympics. possuindo now streaming every occasion live online, the crazy array of events can make the particular viewing experience a bit staggering.

yet we’re here to help. here is our chronological list of the particular events U. S. Olympic fans should consider watching, plus where. All times far eastern and all events are reside action unless otherwise mentioned.Hilary Knight and the U.S. will attempt to improve their points against Canada. (Getty Images)Wednesday is a fairly thin day, generally speaking, with a couple of very large events. If you’re able to get up earlier, there’s a big hockey sport to catch. After that, a big speed skating race, and some women’s halfpipe final.


Sochi 2014Complete Winter Olympics protectionThe United States presently has seven total medals, placing it in 4th. The Red, White plus Blue will have some modifications to climb up the honor ladder Wednesday, but russian federation and Germany are also expected to add to their inventory. – means a medal eventMidnight ainsi que – Men’s curling certification, USA vs. Denmark, NBCOlympics. com: The United States isn’t known for its curling, outside of the nearby gym, so hopes not necessarily particularly high. The Danish have a solid broom number, or so we’re told, and this one could get slippery for the States. Norway vs. philippines will also be played at the night time hour, and that’s the big matchup for the night for us/day in Sochi. This will also be broadcast on delay in 3 a. m. upon NBC Sports Network.


two a. m. ET — Women’s downhill final, NBCOlympics. com: This is the event Lindsey Vonn would’ve been expected to win, had she not really been forced to miss these types of games with another leg injury. But American Julia Mancuso – whose currently medaled in Sochi — will give it a go. most difficult challengers? Switzerland’s Lara stomach and Germany’s Maria Hoefl-Riesch. five a. m. ET — Women’s curling qualification, united states vs. China, NBCOlympics. possuindo. The U. S. ladies had a very bad mon, and they’ll need to bounce back in a big way to overtake the far east. To have any chance at a medal, the American ladies have to win here.


seven: 30 a. m. ainsi que – Women’s ice handbags, USA vs. Canada, NBC Sports Network: Oh, it can so on. The United States is expecting to win gold. To do that, obviously gotta make a statement towards Canada. Outside of Shani Davis’ race, this is the biggest occasion for American Olympics followers on Wednesday.7: 30 the. m. ET – mens nordic combined: normal hill/cross-country final, NBCSN: You’ve have to be able to launch yourself off the jump – and be good at pushing the planks on the ground. Fun combo event. One of my favorites, just because I love when the Olympics combines disciplines within stuff. A guy by the title of Eric Frenzel, out of Germany, is the favorite.


expenses Demong – the usa States’ best – along with Todd Lodwick, Taylor Fletcher and Bryan Fletcher will certainly compete for the U. h. 9 a. m. ainsi que – Men’s 1, 000-meter long track speed roller skating final, NBCOlympics. com: — This is the biggest event of the day. American Shani Davis will be attempting to win his 3rd straight gold, which would become an Olympic record. he is the favorite. Kazakhstan’s Denis Kuzin is a strong challenger, nevertheless. And a young fella through Canada named Vincent sobre Haitre is a dark equine to medal.

9: fifteen a. m. ET — Men’s luge doubles last, NBCSN: This will be Germany’s occasion to lose. Austria and Latvia also typically perform very well. This is, quite simply, not an occasion the United States expects to actually come close to winning. 10: forty five a. m. ET — Pairs free skating last, NBCSN: The top three after the short program: Russia, philippines, Russia. At 84. seventeen, Tatiana Volosozhar and saying Trankov, are way out in front for Russia. The usa States’ pair of Nathan Bartholomay and Felciai Zhang rests in ninth with a rating of 67. 44.

12: thirty p. m. ET — Women’s halfpipe final, NBCOlympics. com: This is preceded by the qualifying at 5 the. m. and the semifinals in 10 a. m. upon NBCOlympics. com. The men and women in Sochi don’t like the particular halfpipe. They think it can built too dangerously plus isn’t in style of the plumbing they normally carve upward. Shaun White – the greatest halfpipe artist in the history of the sport – didn’t actually medal Tuesday. For the ladies, American Kelly Clark, the four-time Olympian, should honor and could very well win. Arielle Gold and Hannah Teter are also Americans with a good opportunity at the podium.


US and Canadian women’s hockey get into a fight


GRAND FORKS, N. D. – The United States and Canadian women’s hockey teams brawled again late in the Americans’ 4-1 pre-Olympic exhibition game Friday night.

The two teams also fought in October late in a game in Burlington, Vt., with all 10 skaters squaring off late in the third period. They had another big scrap in 2010.

This time, Americans Hilary Knight, Gigi Marvin, Monique Lamoureux, Jocelyne Lamoureux and Kacey Bellamy brawled with Canada’s Melodie Daoust, Jocelyne Larocque, Meaghan Mikkelson, Vicki Bendus and Brianne Jenner with nine seconds left. They all received fighting majors in a string of penalties.

“I’m not a proponent of fighting in hockey, but I am a proponent of standing up for yourself, ” U. S. coach Katey Stone said. “We will not be pushed around. ”

Jocelyne Lamoureux body-checked Jenner and was at the center of the melee.

“We thought (Jenner) took a little run (at Josephine Pucci), ” said Lamoureux, a former University of North Dakota star playing in her home rink. “I think we came in and defended our teammates, did what we had to do. It’s always going to be heated (against Canada). The intensity is always going to be there. ”

Jocelyn and Monique Lamoureux, Knight and Brianna Decker scored for the Americans.

Emotions began boiling over midway through the third period after a pair of roughing penalties against Decker and Canada’s Meghan Acosta-Marciano.

“We’re prepared to play whatever game we have to play, ” Stone said. “We’ll go hard, we’ll play clean, but if the game gets out of hand we’ll manage that as well. ”

Young girls in the crowd cheered wildly as Jocelyne Lamoureux was led to the penalty box. The Grand Forks native recalled watching as youngster when the U. S. women’s team played a game at the arena before the 2002 Olympics.

“I remember thinking, this is where I want to be and this is what I want to do, ” Lamoureux said. “So if I can do that for someone else and our team can be an inspiration for some of these little girls that came out here tonight, then that’s pretty cool. ”

Haley Irwin scored for Canada.

Kevin Dineen, fired last month as coach of the NHL’s Florida Panthers, directed the Canadian team for the first time after taking over for Dan Church.

“It was up and down, ” Dineen said. “We had some good spurts and we fell off. Moving forward, we’ll look for a little more consistency out of this group. Certainly there’s some skill out there. ”

Church resigned Dec. 12, hours before the two teams met in Calgary, Alberta, saying he felt others lacked confidence in his ability to lead the country to a fourth consecutive gold medal.

The teams will meet again Dec. 28 in Paul, Minn.

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Dineen to coach Canada’s women’s Olympic team


Kevin Dineen will take over Canada's women's Olympic hockey team. (USATSI)
Kevin Dineen will take over Canada’s girls’s Olympic hockey group. (USATSI)


Extra NHL: Scores | Standings | League Leaders | Odds | Injuries | Energy Rankings

A month after being fired by the Florida Panthers, Kevin Dineen has a brand new job. No, it isn’t in the NHL. It’s with the Canadian Olympic Girls’s Hockey Workforce, Hockey Canada introduced right this moment.

The ladies’s team misplaced head coach Dan Church last week after he abruptly resigned from his place, citing a lack of religion in him proven by Hockey Canada. Canada’s women have received the last three gold medals at the Olympic Winter Games.

Dineen, who was behind the Panthers’ bench for elements of three seasons was let go after sixteen games this 12 months. He additionally was the pinnacle coach of the American Hockey League’s Portland Pirates for six seasons. Dineen played greater than 1,100 NHL video games with 760 points over that span.

From Hockey Canada:

“We’re very excited that Kevin will be a part of the teaching staff of Canada’s National Ladies’s Crew and bring his distinctive perspective to the dressing room,” mentioned Scott Smith, Hockey Canada’s chief operating officer. “Kevin has had success in both the AHL and NHL, and we’re trying ahead to him being a part of the workers for the ultimate push in the direction of Sochi.”

“This is a critical time for Canada’s Nationwide Girls’s Group with the start of the Olympics less than two months away, and we really feel Kevin is a terrific match with our employees as we prepare for Sochi,” said Melody Davidson, common supervisor of feminine nationwide groups with Hockey Canada. “His experience, each on the ice and behind the bench, will be invaluable over the coming weeks.”

This is an fascinating alternative for Dineen, who was one of many hottest coaching prospect before the Panthers hired him three years ago. If nothing else, it is distinctive.

For Canada, this is a unusual course to take having misplaced the pinnacle coach who appeared to be effectively favored by his group this close to the Olympics. Now they will have an unfamiliar boss who may not be as familiar with the women’s recreation as Canada looks to defend gold as soon as again. Nevertheless, Dineen has had success as a coach and should relish an opportunity to be back on a bench and beneath the Olympic microscope.

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Park wins US Women’s Open for 3rd straight major

SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. (AP) — Inbee Park understood the meaning of winning the U.S. Women’s Open much better the second time around.

She appreciated, too, the magnitude of this particular accomplishment.

On Sunday, Park became the first player in the modern era to win the first three majors of the year.

Babe Zaharias did it in 1950 when there were only three to enter. Now there are five.

”I didn’t expect myself being in this kind of position, breaking some kind of record that hasn’t been broken for 50 years,” Park said. ”I never dreamed of myself doing that.”

The world’s top-ranked player finished at 8 under to win by four strokes. Her 2-over 74 in the final round was more than enough, with Sebonack’s trying conditions keeping any rivals from making a run. Only three players were under par for the tournament.

Fellow South Korean I.K. Kim also shot 74 for her second runner-up finish at a major.

Ahead by four strokes at the start of the round, Park birdied the ninth and 10th holes to extend her lead. She has won six times already this year, including three straight tournaments. Park added to another historic U.S. Women’s Open victory in 2008, when she became the event’s youngest champion at age 19.

”I didn’t know what was going on at that time,” Park said. ”I played very good golf then, but I didn’t know what I was playing for, and that was just my first win. It was a great championship then, but now I think I really appreciate more and I really know what this means.”

So Yeon Ryu shot 72 to finish third at 1 under. South Korean players took the top three spots and have won the last five majors.

Ryu and Na Yeon Choi, the last two U.S. Women’s Open champs, sprayed Park with champagne after she made her final putt on the 18th green.

With lashing wind and devilish greens, Sebonack was a classically troublesome U.S. Women’s Open course. And once Park built a lead, nobody could mount a charge.

She certainly wasn’t going to make enough mistakes to come back to the field. Park had just 10 bogeys and no double bogeys in four rounds.

She predicted Saturday that shooting even par in the final round would be enough, and she sure was right.

All of four players were under par Sunday – though that was still more than the third round, when only Park achieved it.

Kim birdied No. 2 to pull within three strokes; she couldn’t claw closer. And when she bogeyed the fourth hole, the deficit was back to four shots.

Park bogeyed the sixth and seventh, but so did Kim.

Kim had what would have qualified as a sensational week if not for Park, finishing at least three strokes better than everyone but the player currently dominating the sport.

”You can obviously feel for someone like I.K. Kim who would be winning any other U.S. Open on this golf course if it weren’t for Inbee,” said seven-time major champion Karrie Webb.

This was Kim’s fourth top-four finish at a U.S. Women’s Open, but she’s still seeking her first major title. She was a foot away last year at the Kraft Nabisco, then missed a short putt on No. 18 that would have clinched the championship and went on to lose in a playoff.

Asked if she feels she’s on the verge of a major breakthrough, Kim paused for a moment then said: ”Yeah, to be honest, yeah, it’s time to win it.

”But I think things have to come naturally,” she added, ”and it’s great to play with Inbee, and she’s doing so well. Seeing her doing it, it just makes me want it more.”

Americans Paula Creamer (72) and Angela Stanford (74) and England’s Jodi Ewart Shadoff (76) tied for fourth at 1 over. Shadoff was alone in third at 3 under after the third round but opened Sunday with three straight bogeys.

Soon-to-be Oklahoma State player Casie Cathrea shot 70 on Sunday to match Shanshan Feng for the best round of the day and finish as the low amateur at 9 over. Lydia Ko, the 16-year-old New Zealander who won the Canadian Open last August to become the youngest LPGA Tour winner, was next at 11 over.

Park also became the second player to win the U.S. Women’s Open after victories in her previous two tournaments. Mickey Wright did it in 1964.

The 24-year-old Park won the Kraft Nabisco and LPGA Championship for her first two major titles of the year. Up next is the Women’s British Open at St. Andrews on Aug. 1-4.

The Evian Championship is Sept. 12-15. Park won the French event last year before it became a major championship.

Park contemplated the current definition of a Grand Slam.

”So I think the British Open is one I have to win,” she said. ”So it would be great if I could win five, but I still think four means a Grand Slam.”

Laughing, she added: ”I think four out of five is very big.”


Kim leads Park by 1 stroke at US Women’s Open

SOUTHAMPTON, N.Y. (AP) — No surprise that a South Korean leads the U.S. Women’s Open after the first round, considering the country has produced the last four major champions.

Ha-Neul Kim was an unlikely candidate to be the one to shoot the low score Thursday at Sebonack. Her bogey-free, 6-under 66 put her a stroke ahead of top-ranked Inbee Park.

Park is trying to make history by winning the first three majors of the year. For a day at least, she was upstaged by her much less-heralded friend.

”I was very nervous coming in, and I thought in the practice round that the course was very difficult,” Kim said through a translator. ”Before playing today I thought that even par would be a very good score for me.”

Currently a member of the KLPGA Tour, Kim is a seven-time winner in South Korea. She kept giving herself short birdie putts Thursday and making them.

”I’m enjoying myself,” Kim said. ”I’m just happy to be here and to be playing in this big event. I’m not really thinking about winning or results but enjoying the moment.”

Kim birdied her second-to-last hole with daylight waning to claim the lead after Park held it for most of the day with her 67 in the morning session.

No player has won the first three majors in a season with at least four majors. The 2008 U.S. Women’s Open champion, Park has already won five times this year, including her last two tournaments.

American Lizette Salas, Swedes Caroline Hedwall and Anna Nordqvist and South Korea’s I.K. Kim shot 68.

Concerned about bad weather, tournament officials moved up the tees, and with the rain holding off, Park was able to play aggressively.

”I never had practiced from those tees, so I was a little bit shocked when I went to the tees,” Park said.

Not that she was complaining.

She repeatedly set up short putts, and the way she has excelled in her short game lately, Park was headed to a low score.

”So instead of hitting like 5-irons, we were hitting 9-irons, and that was making the course much easier,” she said. ”I was actually able to go for some pins and give myself a lot of opportunities today. I made a lot of putts and didn’t leave much out there.”

Starting on No. 10, Park birdied her first hole then started racking up pars. She made the turn at 2 under before birdies on three of her next four holes.

At 5 under, Park briefly struggled with her tee shots, needing to save par on Nos. 5 and 7. On No. 6, her 15th hole of the day, she had to lay up out of the tall grass and settled for her lone bogey.

Park got back to 5 under on the par-5 eighth with a chip shot to about 5 feet that set up a birdie putt.

Hedwall and I.K. Kim were each at 5 under with a hole left, but closed with bogeys. Nordqvist birdied her last two holes to pull into the tie for third.

The two Swedes grew up playing together.

”Certainly seeing her shooting 4 under in the morning session gave me a little bit of inspiration for the afternoon,” Nordqvist said.

Salas, a 23-year-old former Southern California star, played with Park in the last group of the final round of this year’s Kraft Nabisco Championship. Three strokes back starting the day, she opened with a double bogey and tumbled to 25th after shooting a 79.

She bounced back to reach a playoff at the LPGA Lotte Championship in April, losing to Suzann Pettersen for her best finish on tour.

”I’m just getting a lot more used to being in contention and really studying the leaderboard and really managing my patience,” Salas said. ”I think that’s been key for me this week. Yes, I still get nervous on the first tee and my hands keep shaking, but I just know that if I just trust myself and trust my instincts, I can perform out here.”

Chile’s Paz Echeverria, a 28-year-old LPGA Tour rookie also making her U.S. Women’s Open debut, and Canada’s Maude-Aimee Leblanc shot 69.

Among eight players at 70 was Natalie Gulbis, who withdrew from a tournament and missed two others earlier this year because of malaria. Infected by a mosquito during the LPGA Thailand in late February, she returned for the Kraft Nabisco in early April. Gulbis hasn’t finished better than 13th since, missing the cut at the LPGA Championship.

Defending champion Na Yeon Choi, second-ranked Stacy Lewis and amateurs Kyung Kim and Brooke Henderson were among 11 players at 71.

Lydia Ko, the 16-year-old New Zealand amateur who won the Canadian Open last August to become the youngest LPGA Tour winner, had a 72. Juli Inkster, playing in a record-breaking 34th U.S. Women’s Open at age 53, holed a 103-yard wedge shot for eagle on the 18th to also finish at 72.

Michelle Wie opened her round with a quadruple-bogey 8 on No. 10. She was at 11 over through 14 holes before birdies on three of the last four to finish with an 80.