About the Islanders - 10-18-14

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

A preview of the Islanders.

When and where: 7 p.m., EDT, Consol Energy Center.

TV: Root Sports, MSG Plus.

Record: 4-0-0, 8 points. The Islanders are in 1st place in the Neapolitan Ice Cream Metropolitan Division.

Leading Scorer: John Tavares, 7 points (2 goals, 5 assists).

Last Game: 4-3 home shootout win against the Sharks, Thursday. Nick Leddy and Kyle Okposo (right) each had a regulation goal and an assist for the Islanders.

Last Game against the Penguins: 6-4 home loss, Jan. 23. Michael Grabner had a goal and an assist for the Islanders.

Islanders Player We Would Bet Money On Scoring: Okposo. In four games against the Penguins last season, he had six points (three goals, three assists).

Ex-Penguins on the Islanders: Eric Cairns, director of player development; Matt Carkner, D (Carkner played for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins but not the NHL team); Chad Johnson, G (Johnson is a former Penguins prospect but never played for the organization); Colin McDonald, RW; Brian Strait, D; Garth Snow, G.

Ex-Islanders on the Penguins: Blake Comeau, LW; Tom Fitzgerald, assistant general manager; Bill Guerin, assistant general manager.

Useless Islanders Trivia Vaguely Related to the Penguins: Strait (third round) and Johnson (fifth round) were each drafted by the Penguins in 2006.

The last time the Penguins played the Islanders, this happened: 

Probable goaltenders: Marc-Andre Fleury (2-1-0, 3.00 GAA, .890 SV%) for the Penguins. Jaroslav Halak (3-0-0, 2.92 GAA, .900 SV%) for the Islanders.

Injuries: For the Penguins, right winger Pascal Dupuis (neck) is probable. Defenseman Roberto Bortuzzo ("lower body") is out. Right winger Beau Bennett ("lower body") is on injured reserve. For the Islanders, center Mikhail Grabovksi ("upper body") is out. Defensemen Matt Carkner (back ), Calvin de Haan ("upper body"), Lubomir Visnovsky (back) and right winger Michael Grabner ("lower body") are on injured reserve.

Potential lines and defensive pairings: The Penguins' primary lines and defensive pairings at today's morning skate were:

14 Chris Kunitz - 87 Sidney Crosby - 72 Patric Hornqvist
9 Pascal Dupuis - 16 Brandon Sutter - 71 Evgeni Malkin
17 Blake Comeau - 13 Nick Spaling - 23 Steve Downie
  38 Zach Sill - 57 Marcel Goc - 27 Craig Adams

58 Kris Letang3 Olli Maatta
7 Paul Martin - 10 Christian Ehrhoff
47 Simon Despres - 4 Rob Scuderi

-The Islanders lines and defensive pairings at today's morning skate were:

89 Cory Conacher - 91 John Tavares - 21 Kyle Okposo
86 Nikolay Kulemin - 29 Brock Nelson - 18 Ryan Strome
12 Josh Bailey - 51 Frans Nielsen - 15 Cal Clutterbuck
17 Matt Martin - 53 Casey Cizikas - 13 Colin McDonald

2 Nick Leddy 55 Johnny Boychuk
14 Thomas Hickey
3 Travis Hamonic
44 Calvin de Haan 37 Brian Strait


-Dupuis will be a game-time decision.

-Adams has 99 career assists.

-Crosby has 498 career assists.

-Dupuis has 398 career points.

-Malkin has 396 career assists.

-Crosby is the first Penguins player to score goals in the team's first three games of a season since Mario Lemieux in 1996-97.

-McDondald is expected to make his season debut.

-Kulemin has 197 career points.

-A win would give the Islanders a 5-0-0 start for the first time in franchise history.

-The referees are Dan O'Halloran (No. 13) and Brian Poechmara (No. 16). The linesmen are Derek Amell (No. 75) and Brad Kovachik (No. 71).

-Our live blog begins at approximately 6 p.m. Please tune in.

(Photo: Harry How/Getty Images)


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HALFTIME: West Virginia 24, No. 4 Baylor 20

Written by Stephen J. Nesbitt on .


MORGANTOWN, W.Va. — It’s halftime, and West Virginia is down to Icky Banks and Ricky Rumph as their starting cornerbacks. Daryl Worley injured himself on a diving, muffed punt. Terrell Chestnut was eliminated on a vicious block from Baylor receiver Corey Coleman.

Tailback Rushel Shell is out for now. Center Tyler Orlosky left for a bit, too, but returned.

But somehow, some way, the shorthanded Mountaineers lead No. 4 Baylor, 24-20, at halftime at Milan Puskar Stadium in a game with more yellow flags on the field than in the crowd.

West Virginia won the opening coin toss and elected to receive, hoping to give its offense an early head start. But the drive began on the Mountaineers 9-yard line and only moved backward as quarterback Clint Trickett was sacked and stripped on third down.

Baylor took over at the West Virginia 7 and scored on its first play, a quick out from Bryce Petty to Coleman. It took the Bears just 59 seconds to go up, 7-0, and that’s when they didn’t start with the ball.

The Mountaineers answered back with a seven-play, 81-yard touchdown drive helped by a pass interference call in Baylor territory. On the next play, Trickett floated a perfect deep ball 36 yards to receiver Kevin White, who hauled it in at the goal line for his sixth score of the season.

The Bears pulled back ahead with Chris Callahan field goals on consecutive drives, the second aided by a Trickett interception.

After another defensive stop late in the quarter, the Mountaineers defense started to crumble. Worley, the team’s top cornerback, made the poor decision to attempt a diving catch on a punt and muffed it, turning the ball over to the Bears — the Mountaineers’ third turnover in their own territory.

Worley was injured on the play and left the game.

The defense held again, forcing a Petty incomplete pass on fourth down, and West Virginia stole the lead with a six-play, 74-yard drive aided by two pass-interference calls. Andrew Buie dove in from 1 yard out to put West Virginia up, 14-13, with 10:56 left in the half.

Petty completed just six of his first 15 pass attempts for 53 yards finally broke loose with a 63-yard touchdown pass to Antwan Goodley.

Chestnut, trailing Goodley on the play, was blasted and injured by a vicious block from Coleman. Officials flagged Coleman for targeting, ejecting him from the game and bringing the ball out of the end zone, but overturned the ruling after video replay.

The teams traded punts, and then West Virginia turned to Dreamius Smith. The running back who had slid to fourth on the depth chart was thrust into the starter’s role with Shell out.

Smith singlehandedly carried the Mountaineers back into the lead by carrying the ball on five consecutive plays for gains of 11, 7, 6, 8 yards before shrugging off a few arm tackles and bursting into the end zone on a 9-yard carry.

Kicker Josh Lambert trotted out with five seconds left in the half and drilled a 54-yard field goal. He is now 4-for-4 from 50-plus yards and leads the nation with 15 made field goals.

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Dupuis' status a game-time decision - 10-18-14

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .


Two days after he left Consol Energy Center on a stretcher, Penguins' right winger Pascal Dupuis fully participated in a morning skate today prior to this team's game against the Islanders. Dupuis (above, shooting on goaltender Thomas Greiss), appeared to have no limitations during the skate.

Dupuis was injured during the second period of Thursday's 3-2 loss to the Stars when after being shoved to the ice by Stars defenseman Alex Goligoski, he was stuck in the neck by a shot from Penguins defenseman Kris Letang.

Head coach Mike Johnston described Dupuis' availibility for tonight's game as a "game-time" decision. After the morning skate, Dupuis held court with the media.

On how he felt this morning and his status for tonight:

"I feel much better than I did coming out of the game. It’s still a decision that we have to make with the coach and the trainers and see if I’ll be ready to go tonight."

On the play he was injured on:

Just kind of got pushed from behind there. Went down. I knew the puck was coming. I tried to cover myself. Left the back of my neck area kind of open. The puck kind of dipped and hit me right there in the neck. I tried to get up and I couldn’t feel my arms and my extremities. Start shaking my gloves and wanted to see if they were really shaking or no. They were kind of moving. Dropped my gloves. Gino [Penguins center Evgeni Malkin] came around and was like, ‘Just lay there! Just lay there!’ I was like, ‘Okay Gino.’"

Did he think the hit by Stars defenseman Alex Goligoski was illegal:

I don’t know. It’s not me to judge that. It’s a hockey play obviously. He wants to get position there in front of the net and ended up pushing me a little bit. Maybe I should have got up. The puck was coming and tried to cover my face. Got it in the neck.

On how he felt during the moments after being struck by the puck:

Feeling came back but I had to argue with the [doctors] a little bit. It took a little while. The feeling started to slowly come back. I don’t know. It was a weird feeling. Obviously, it never happened to me and never got numb like this. Kind of scary actually.

Did the doctors offer a diagnosis of his injury:

Definitely. Obviously, you have all sorts of muscles, nerves in the neck where the puck hit. Everything went numb. Came back slowly but [the feeling] did come back and it’s fully back already.

Why he came back to the arena that night after going to the hospital:

"All my stuff was still here so I had to come back here. I went in there in my equipment. My suit and everything was still back here. Did all the testing at the hospital and made my way back here to see the guys and mainly to talk to [athletic trainer Chris Stewart]."

(Photo: Seth Rorabaugh/Pittsburgh Post-Gazette)

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Get your 'rogi' fashions at Pittsburgh Pierogi Fest

Written by Sara Bauknecht on .


Grab your sunglasses and silverware and head to Stage AE today for the second annual Pittsburgh Pierogi Fest.

In addition to food from several vendors, spice up your style with pierogi fashions from the vendor marketplace. There are earrings, T-shirts, baby clothes, pillows, aprons -- all inspired by Pittsburgh's favorite food!

See more of what to expect in this week's "Setting the SEEN" episode. Watch it here or in the video box below!

Have a nice weekend, City of Dumplings!

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Unique and wonderful garden combines antiques and plants

Written by Doug Oster on .


blog picking20141013dohomesgarden3Bob McDonough, who owns McDonough Antiques in Lawrenceville picks 'San Marzano' tomatoes from the garden behind his shop. Photos by Doug Oster

By Doug Oster / Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

blogtomatoes20141013dohomesgarden2One of the first thing you see when entering the antique store are these beautiful tomatoes.The first thing most customers notice when walking into Bob McDonough’s antique shop in Lawrenceville are tomatoes. Yes, tomatoes.
They fill two baskets on the front counter. The shiny San Marzano tomatoes look so perfect that they’re are often mistaken for decorations, just another item for sale here.
“It’s a conversation starter,” Mr. McDonough says. “I love talking. I love talking gardening.”
Don McDonough's antique shop in Lawrenceville is filled with treasures and so is the garden he grows in the adjecent lot. (Video by Doug Oster; 10/18/2014)
But don’t ask if you can have one.
“I say no, and they’re shocked. I’m feeding my family with these. It’s funny. People get mad. I kind of like that,” he says.
Mr. McDonough, 55, watched as a young woman grabbed one out of the basket when she thought he wasn’t looking. But then she put it back where it belonged, confessing, “I couldn’t steal one from you.”
He puts up about 24 quarts of tomatoes each season from the nine plants he grows along a brick wall in the garden next to the store. As he began canning this year’s crop, there was still one quart left from last season. He remembered how hard it was to make them last through the long winter.
blog babyb 320141013dohomesgarden6Dolls and morning glories.“We were rationing tomato sauce, which is a terrible thing to do,” he says with a laugh.
Walking out the back door of the antique shop and into his garden is a treat. Beds of self-seeded collard plants grow in consort with huge, cut stones salvaged from demolition in the neighborhood. There are pots of herbs and other interesting plants sprinkled among a wide array of old, interesting items. Morning glories climb a trellis, twining around an old baby doll, which has sat there for nearly 20 years. Old farm equipment comes and goes as customers find just the right piece for their own gardens.
Mr. McDonough also grows peppers, squash, corn and melons, all organically with the help of the compost he makes in the shadow of a 20-foot-tall stand of bamboo. He mostly grows heirloom varieties and gets the bulk of his seeds from Heirloom Seeds, which is based in West Finley.
A narrow path runs through the garden to the front gate, flanked by huge cannas and ornamental grasses whose plumes dance in the breeze. Two old pink flamingos lying near the entrance welcome guests.
It’s hard to pinpoint why, but this garden is charming.
blogbbirds320141013dohomesgarden7Pink flamingos greet visitors when they come to the garden.“It’s whimsical,” Mr. McDonough says, using air quotes and flashing a grin.
The fact that he’s self-taught and the garden is built around the remnants of four demolished homes gives it a somewhat haphazard appearance.
“I’m disorganized enough that it gets messy all by itself. I don’t have to plan it. That for me is part of the fun. I wouldn’t want to have a formal English knot garden.”
Along the brick wall he shares with a neighbor are tomato plants still filled with fruit.
“I should pay rent for this wall,” he says, laughing.
He starts very early with seed he saves each year that originally came from Naples, Italy. He starts one batch in January, another in February and the last one in March. They are planted out in early May, if he loses the first crop to frost, another is planted in its place. When cold weather threatens, Mr. McDonough gently drapes the plants with plastic, which gives him an extra month on each side of the season to enjoy the tomatoes. “
”At night you can feel the heat coming off the wall,” he says.
Mr. McDonough enjoys learning something new each year in the garden. Next season he hopes to include a variety of beans for drying.
“When I have dirt under my fingernails, I’m happy,” he says.
There is one thing he’s thrilled to let you taste if you stop by: dried ghost chili peppers, among the hottest in the world.
“You have to eat it in front of me,” he says with an almost maniacal grin. “It’s such an experience, and most people don’t get that experience in a lifetime.”
As he walks away from the tomatoes and toward the back door of the antique store, Mr. McDonough reflects on nearly 20 years of gardening here.
“I have my two favorite hobbies, antiques and gardening, right beside each other,
”I’m very lucky. It worked out well.”

blog main20141013dohomesgarden1Bob McDonough and his cherished 'San Marzano' tomatoes.


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