Lady Vols eye title

PHILADELPHIA — Shyra Ely scrawled her goal on the back of her sneakers: Homeward Bound. With the way Tennessee is playing, Ely might get her wish.

Ely scored 23 points and led the top-seeded Lady Vols into their 20th regional final with a 75-59 win against Texas Tech on Sunday. The Lady Vols (29-4) will play Rutgers in the Philadelphia Regional on Tuesday night for a trip to the Final Four in Ely’s hometown of Indianapolis.

Businessman emphasizes diversity, fairness, trust

Arch Brooks’ experience in the Columbia Public School District spurred his determination to try to change the system — from the inside.

“When I was in elementary school, my family moved to the white neighborhood,” he said. “We were not allowed to go to Grant School because we were African-American. The only school we could go to was Douglass. You have a tendency to remember that.”

Decline in job sectors affecting business, farmers

Lindsey Scherder, a sophomore in MU’s parks, recreation and tourism department, has witnessed the decline of a job sector.

Scherder grew up on her family’s farm in Bowling Green. She has seen suburban sprawl moving into the area and farmers losing their land.

Thrill of the hunt

On a recent Saturday, Frank Noel and his 14-year-old son, Josh, wove through nature’s cage of thicket and fallen trees in search of a hulking animal with razor-sharp tusks — the Russian boar. Noel followed a few paces behind Josh as the unusually warm afternoon faded into a late-day chill. The falling temperature would bring the boars out of their beds of uprooted trees.

“Do you see him?” whispered Noel as he halted and pointed down the ravine to a brown, hairy beast.

MU advertising students survey residents for reactor reactions

A class in the advertising department at the MU School of Journalism has created a survey for the Research Reactor Center as part of a semester-long project. The survey raises questions about the community’s perception of the reactor’s safety and necessity.

“To help MU fulfill its teaching mission, (the reactor staff) periodically works with professors in capstone projects such as this one,” said Ken Brooks, associate director at the reactor. “Our most recent capstone experience was with a group of engineering students who designed a piece of equipment to automate part of the shipping process for packages containing active ingredients used in cancer treatments.”

UNC, MSU final two regional survivors

AUSTIN, Texas — A 3-point prayer, answered. One overtime, then another. And when the dust settled on the breathtaking finish to an astonishing weekend, Michigan State was holding the last ticket to the Final Four.

Patrick Sparks’ desperation 3-pointer at the end of regulation danced oh-so softly on the rim, bouncing four times before falling through for Kentucky. But wait. Was his right toe on the line?


Rarely is traditional Christian writing compared with romance novels, but this is where MU professor Patricia Beckman’s studies have led. During her year-long research leave from religious studies courses, Beckman is finishing “Medieval Mysticism,” which analyzes writings by women during a surge of women’s piety and writing in the Middle Ages.

“It’s like these love stories of this woman and her god, but it’s written in like the romance style of the day,” Beckman said. “Instead of having a king as the absent love or some woman in a tower somewhere, it’s this woman’s longing for her God. It’s very different from what people today think of as traditional, but it was tradition, and it was very popular.”

Study: Piercing can harm gums

Decorative studs, rings and other lip piercings can seriously damage gums and increase the risk of infections, tooth sensitivity and tooth loss, a new study suggests.

Ohio State University researchers recruited 29 young adults with lower-lip piercings and 29 without and looked for evidence of gingival recession — retraction of the gums that can expose the tooth roots — around the bottom front teeth. Each group had 15 female and 14 male members with an average age of 22.

McCants trades personal glory for team success

SYRACUSE, N.Y. — No one sacrificed more than Rashad McCants to make sure North Carolina got back to the Final Four. So it was only fitting that he made the plays when the Tar Heels needed him most.

The star guard, no longer the team’s leading scorer this year while accepting a more team-oriented role, swished a clutch 3-pointer and had two huge defensive stops down the stretch, leading top-seed North Carolina past Wisconsin 88-82 on Sunday in the final of the Syracuse Regional.

Mini Mizzou, major morale

The Tigers are losing. The crowd’s interest is waning. Mini Mizzou blasts out the fight song anyway.

Win or lose, members of Mini Mizzou love to play. A half-hour before the start of each men’s basketball game, the band begins to entertain the crowd.

Tigers sweep KSU

The Missouri baseball team won 3-1 against Kansas State on Sunday, sweeping the three-game series in Manhattan.

Junior Doug Mathis gave up one run on three hits and struck out five in seven innings to earn the win and improve to 2-2.

Spring break review gives Blunt mixed marks

JEFFERSON CITY— It’s legislative spring break, which means it’s time for midterm evaluations. Today’s subject: Gov. Matt Blunt.

In office just 11 weeks, the new Republican governor already has accomplished at least three political goals with the help of a friendly Republican-led legislature. Lawmakers have sent Blunt bills renaming Southwest Missouri State University and overhauling the workers’ compensation system and how Missouri’s courts handle injury complaints.

Unchained memories

Traci Wilson-Kleekamp often lies awake until 2 a.m. reading cemetery records. Her husband calls it sick and teases her about her fascination with dead people.

She calls it one of her life’s passions, and it goes far beyond reading about burials.

Park’s dog fence plans unleashed

Gone are the days of chasing joggers and begging for food from children at family reunions, at least for dogs at Twin Lakes Recreation Area.

The Columbia Parks and Recreation Department is taking steps to alleviate conflicts among users of the park by building fences to enclose a leash-free area for dogs, creating Columbia’s first dog park.

Driver charged in fatal crash

A 33-year-old Columbia man was arrested last week on charges of first-degree involuntary manslaughter after the death of a passenger in his car.

Lance B. Morris was arrested on March 22, five days after a one-car crash on Creasy Springs Road.

Memorializing a musician, writer

A vase of blooming red roses, with one pure white rose, sat on the altar. His stand-up bass with its trademark snake head stood nearby. Half the crowd sat in neat rows; the other half stood wherever they could find room.

And, of course, there was music.

Educators: School year comes up short

In America, most students will attend more than 2,300 days of school from kindergarten through 12th grade. In Japan, most students will have attended the same number of school days by eighth grade.

To ensure an equal opportunity for academic achievement, the number of days in a school year could increase in Columbia schools.

Making Himself Heard

Where was he?

He should have been here by now.

It’s the second inning of a Friday night Missouri baseball game against North Dakota State and there is no sign of super fan Larry Wyatt II.

Usually wearing a Missouri hat and dressed in a black-and-gold sweat top and black khaki pants, he is known to most as just “Larry.”

He is an unmistakable presence at Taylor Stadium.

Tigers edge Kansas St. in baseball

Missouri extended its winning streak to 11 games and secured a victory in its first Big 12 series of the season, defeating Kansas State 6-5 on Saturday. Derek Chambers went 2-for-5 with two RBIs to stretch his hitting streak to eight games and sparked an eighth inning rally to help Missouri overcome the Wildcats and four unearned runs scored off starter Nathan Culp, who got a no decision. Andrew Johnston (2-0) pitched two scoreless innings for the win.

On Friday, Max Scherzer (5-1) pitched seven innings of three-hit ball to win his fifth straight start. Hunter Mense had the Tigers' lone RBI and scored a run as Missouri (19-4) scored a season-low three runs on three hits, but managed to win its Big 12 opener.

Extra Points: MU Softball

Missouri (27-3) split a doubleheader Friday with Oklahoma State to open conference play. In Game One, the Tigers fell 6-5 in 10 innings. In a seesaw game, the Tigers took the lead in tops of the ninth and 10th innings, only to see Oklahoma State answer immediately in the bottom half. Sophomore catcher Kathy Masterson went 2-for-4 with two RBIs and two strikeouts in the loss.