With the first contests unfolding next year in South Carolina, Iowa and New Hampshire, small-town voters will play a critical role in choosing the next Democratic nominee.,Vermont Sen. Bernie Sanders lamented rural decline during an Iowa swing this weekend.,Several candidates plan to attend a March 30 rural issues forum at Buena Vista University in Storm Lake, Iowa — population 10,600.,AP VoteCast, a national survey of more than 115,000 voters, found rural and small-town residents cast 35 percent of midterm ballots; 56 percent of those voted for Republican House candidates, compared to 41 percent for Democrats.,Sanders noted that many Vermonters, as in the rest of rural America, view guns differently than most big-city residents, but Clinton successfully used the issue against Sanders, particularly with black women.

With the shutdown of the newspaper in September 2018, this area in central Missouri's Ozark hills joined more than 1,400 other cities across the United States to lose a newspaper over the past 15 years, according to an Associated Press analysis of data compiled by the University North Carolina.,With the shutdown of the newspaper in September 2018, this area in central Missouri's Ozark hills joined more than ... more

Photo: Orlin Wagner, AP read more

James and his closest friends idolized Michael Jordan while they grew up together on Akron’s competitive playgrounds and tough streets.,As James grew into a tantalizing basketball prospect capable of jumping from high school to the NBA as the No. 1 draft pick, he studied, imitated and drew profound inspiration from Jordan’s tongue-wagging dunks, that fadeaway jumper, his competitive fire — even the little details of the way Jordan wore his sneakers and shorts.,Jordan has also admired James’ game for years.,When James surpassed Jordan’s career points total Wednesday night, he did it in a pair of Nikes with “Thank You M.J.” written neatly on the side.,James moved past Jordan into fourth place on the NBA’s career scoring list with a driving three-point play in the second quarter of the Los Angeles Lakers’ 115-99 loss to the Denver Nuggets.

There are numerous factors in play ranging from the role of Connecticut’s agreements with a pair of federally recognized tribes, the role of sports leagues, and how the issue crosses paths with other efforts to expand casino gambling.,The state’s two tribes that operate Mohegan Sun and Foxwoods, respectively, argue that their compacts with the state reign supreme over all discussions of sports betting.,The tribes provide payments to the state based on slot machine revenues, and a similar arrangement could be designed when it comes to sports betting.,“Across the country, sports wagering is considered a casino game, which means it falls under the exclusivity portion of our agreements with the state.”,It is still believed in the State Capitol that a similar arrangement would be passed by lawmakers, allowing for tribes, off-track betting operators, and possibly the Connecticut Lottery to be part of a sports wagering program.

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Actor Luke Perry, who starred on the long-running hit show “Beverly Hills, 90210,” suffered a stroke Wednesday.,(Getty Images)

Perry, 52, was taken by ambulance to a Los Angeles-area hospital after paramedics responded to his home in Sherman Oaks.,A representative for Perry told ET he remained under observation at the hospital.,It’s unclear if Perry will be part of the show.,Perry currently stars in the CW show “Riverdale.” read more

UPDATE (Friday, 1:48 p.m.): ESPN’s Adam Schefter reports Patriots owner Robert Kraft is “not the biggest name involved" in the Jupiter, Fla. sex sting.,New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft is being charged with “soliciting prostitution” as part of “sex sting operation” in Florida.,According to Treasure Coast Newspapers (via USA Today), Kraft is facing two counts for “paying for sexual services at Orchids of Asia Day Spa” in Jupiter, Fla.,Kraft also has been a regular visitor to Trump National Golf Club Mar-a-Lago, which is about 30 minutes from the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Jupiter, Fla.,The 77-year-old Kraft is less than one month removed from celebrating his sixth Super Bowl title.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — The Latest on NBA All-Star Weekend (all times local): 10:55 p.m. Kyle Kuzma of the Los Angeles Lakers scored 35 points, Jayson Tatum of the Boston Celtics added 30 and the U.S. beat the World team 161-144 in the Rising Stars game for first- and second-year players at All-Star Weekend.,___ 9:05 p.m. Famous Los scored 22 points to win MVP honors, and the Home team held on to beat the Away team 82-80 in the All-Star Celebrity Game on Friday night.,At a Hall of Fame event Friday at All-Star weekend in Charlotte, North Carolina, Abdul-Jabbar said Kaepernick "had a statement that he had to make through his demonstrations, but he's a quarterback and I think he should be working.",The mother of Stephen and Seth Curry sank a one-handed, half-court shot — that she took underhanded — to help her three-person team beat teams led by her NBA sons and one by her daughter to win a family shootout at a newly refurbished at a community center in Charlotte, North Carolina.,Jones was a four-time NBA All-Star, a huge part of Philadelphia's 1983 NBA-title-winning team and the league's sixth man award winner that season.

Ottawa-Glandorf and Ottoville will enter the postseason as ranked teams after earning state recognition in the final Associated Press girls basketball poll of the season released on Tuesday.,Of other area interest, Sylvania Southview finished the year No. 9 in Division I while Toledo Rogers garnered four first-place votes in Division II en route to a No. 4 spot in the final poll.,How a state panel of sports writers and broadcasters rates Ohio high school girls basketball teams in the Associated Press polls, by OHSAA divisions, with won-lost record and total points (first-place votes in parentheses):

1, Pickerington Cent.,Mt. Notre Dame 19-2 115 read more

Despite falling to No. 2 Minster over the weekend, Ottoville rose three spots in the Division IV state poll as a part of the newest Associated Press girls state basketball poll released on Tuesday.,The Lady Green are ranked seventh in the state in Division IV, five points behind sixth-place Fairfield Christian.,Of area interest, Sylvania Southview stayed pat at No. 9 in Division I, garnering a first-place vote.,Pickerington Central (Division I), Columbus Africentric (D-III) and Fort Loramie (D-IV) held onto their No. 1 positions in their respective divisions while Dayton Carroll took over the No. 1 spot from last week’s No. 1, New Philadelphia.,How a state panel of sports writers and broadcasters rates Ohio high school girls basketball teams in the Associated Press polls, by OHSAA divisions, with won-lost record and total points (first-place votes in parentheses):

1, Pickerington Cent. read more

Sports bars across Macomb County were filled Sunday with fans munching on hot chicken wings, drinking cold beer and enjoying the spectacle known as Super Bowl LIII.,+2 

Debbie Graham was multi-tasking during the Super Bowl, shooting some pool while keep track of the game.,She said the club received word Saturday that a few more people were coming up to Kapone's for the Super Bowl, so she and her staff stayed after closing Saturday to prepare.,DAVE ANGELL -- FOR THE MACOMB DAILY  read more