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State and Regional News

    14-18-21-29-31 (fourteen, eighteen, twenty-one, twenty-nine, thirty-one) Estimated jackpot: $151 million 6-8-0 (six, eight, zero) 3C-4D-7D-7H-3S (3C, 4D, 7D, 7H, 3S) Estimated jackpot: $40 million
  • 3C-4D-7D-7H-3S (3C, 4D, 7D, 7H, 3S)
  • 6-8-0 (six, eight, zero)
  • 14-18-21-29-31 (fourteen, eighteen, twenty-one, twenty-nine, thirty-one)
  • A woman has pleaded guilty in connection with the deaths of two Oklahoma men who were found in a burning pickup in northern Colorado. The Greeley Tribune reports (https://goo.gl/PtUwMM ) 27-year-old Samantha Simmons pleaded guilty Wednesday to being an accessory to a crime. As part of a plea deal, she agreed to cooperate with prosecutors and testify in the case's upcoming trials. Simmons was one of five people arrested after Zach Moore, of Prague, Oklahoma, and Joshua Foster, of Muskogee, Oklahoma, were found dead at the Pawnee National Grassland in October 2015. Police and prosecutors believe all seven made up a marijuana smuggling ring that trafficked the drug between Colorado and Oklahoma. Investigators say Foster and Moore tried to make their own drug runs, cutting the others out of the deal. ___ Information from: The Tribune of Greeley, Co, http://greeleytribune.com
  • The National Basketball Association announced Thursday that it's created an award in honor of Pete Winemiller, the late Oklahoma City Thunder senior vice president of guest relations. The league said the Pete Winemiller Guest Experience Innovation Award will honor an NBA team executive who innovates to create a world class service experience for fans. It's inspired by Winemiller, who recently died of lymphoma. Winemiller worked for the franchise for more than 20 years, dating to its days as the Seattle SuperSonics. The league said he pioneered a comprehensive approach to guest relations that set standards for the NBA. Under Winemiller's leadership, the Thunder earned several awards for guest relations. The first recipient will be announced at the NBA League Meetings in Las Vegas in July.
  • Mississippi State coach Vic Schaefer sees something familiar when he watches Washington guard Kelsey Plum. The Houston native and Rockets fan said Plum affects the game the same way NBA superstar James Harden does. 'They run a lot of stuff that the Rockets run,' Schaefer said. 'They spread the floor. They play off of her. She's smart enough to find who is open, and those kids can make shots.' Washington's dynamic senior has averaged at least 20 points in each of her four seasons, and she has broken Jackie Stiles' NCAA career and single-season scoring records this season. Schaefer is the next coach who will try to devise a plan to slow Plum when his Bulldogs face the Huskies on Friday in the Sweet 16. If it's any consolation, those who play with Plum most often — her teammates — don't have answers for her unorthodox game, either. She has a lightning-quick left-handed release on deep shots, but she can dribble and finish easily with either hand. Though she's just 5-foot-8, she has an array of different ways to score in the paint. 'It's definitely not easy,' Washington guard Aarion McDonald said of practice. 'Kelsey is a crafty player, so she always keeps us on our toes. One minute, we might stop her, but next time down, she gets us back. So we're like, 'How do we guard her?'' Plum is averaging 31.8 points per game this season with a high game of 57 points. Washington guard Natalie Romeo said practicing against Plum makes her a better defender. 'I think guarding all her different moves helps us because there's no one else who can imitate her,' Romeo said. 'If we take away one thing, that's kind of saying what one player can do, but then Kelsey will come back with a counter, and then a counter counter. Guarding her will help us guard other really good players.' There's more to Plum than just big scoring numbers. She shoots 53 percent from the field overall and 43 percent from 3-point range, and leads the team with 4.8 assists per game. Schaefer has faced a player of this caliber before — he went 1-2 against Southwest Missouri State's Stiles when he was an assistant coach at Arkansas. He hopes for better luck against Plum. 'Obviously Jackie Stiles, Kelsey Plum — those are two of the best to ever play the game, and from an offensive standpoint, they are just so multi-dimensional,' Schaefer said. 'Their coaches use them in such a good way, smart, and so it's a tall task. There's no question about it.' UNDERACHIEVERS? Baylor has been near the top of women's college basketball for years, but the Lady Bears have at times fallen short of expectations in NCAA Tournament play. If history repeats itself, top-seeded Baylor could fall short again. The Lady Bears were a No. 1 seed in 2013 when they lost to Louisville in Oklahoma City. Now, they again take a No. 1 seed into a Sweet 16 matchup Friday with Louisville, in the same building as the previous loss. The Lady Bears were a No. 1 seed in 2011 and lost in the Elite Eight. The Lady Bears were a No. 1 seed again last year when they lost to Oregon State in the Elite Eight. Baylor coach Kim Mulkey said she doesn't make too much of the similar circumstances or the past upsets. 'You win some you shouldn't and you lose some that you probably shouldn't, but you can't let them just kill your spirit,' she said. 'You can't let them run you out of the business. You just motivate yourself, pick yourself back up and keep coaching.' SHE'S BACK Baylor guard Alexis Jones, who missed a month with a knee injury, is back for the NCAA Tournament. She played 12 minutes in her first game back against Texas Southern and scored five points. In her second game, she played 22 minutes and had eight points, six rebounds and five assists in a win over California. 'She looked good to me,' Mulkey said. 'She missed some shots. I don't know if that had anything to do with her being off for a month, but she just gives us a sense of security.' SO CLOSE Mississippi State has yet to reach the Elite Eight. The Bulldogs have reached the Sweet 16 three times, including last year, but last season ended with a 98-38 loss to Connecticut. 'Certainly last year at this time, wasn't the best,' Schaefer said. 'But at the same time, I think our kids not only learned from that experience for this game, but I think they learned from it the entire season. I think it's obviously prepared us.' MULKEY'S MISS Mulkey was asked what stands out most about Louisville's Asia Durr, a sophomore guard who averages 19.4 points and has made 114 3-pointers this season. 'That I recruited her and didn't get her,' Mulkey said with a laugh. She then elaborated. She's a phenomenal player,' Mulkey said. 'She can score from the perimeter. She can take you off the dribble. She was not healthy last year. Now she's healthy, and you're seeing the real Asia Durr, and she's just a handful to guard. They do a lot of things with her and through her. She is the catalyst that makes them go.' ___ Follow Cliff Brunt on Twitter: www.twitter.com/CliffBruntAP
  • Officials say two of three inmates who escaped the Lincoln County Jail have been apprehended. Sheriff Charles Dougherty told reporters Thursday that 23-year-old Brian Allen Moody and 23-year-old Mark Dwayne Robbins are back in custody while 41-year-old Sonny Baker remains at large and is possibly armed. Details of the arrests were not immediately released. Authorities say three escaped the jail in Chandler about 11:30 p.m. Thursday by going through the jail's ventilation system and climbing over a wire fence. Authorities say each inmate had been in custody for property crimes. They are suspected of fleeing in a pair of pickup trucks stolen in Chandler, including one with a gun inside. Investigators say they then drove to Midwest City, where police say they used debit cards left in a truck.
  • Firefighters who put out a blaze in an eastern Missouri wooded area found a man's body in what's being considered an accidental death. Authorities say the body of 65-year-old Bill Barrett of Sparks, Oklahoma, was discovered early Thursday on property belonging to his sister near St. Clair in Franklin County. The St. Louis Post-Dispatch (http://bit.ly/2mVR6D0 ) reports that Barrett had been living with his sister in recent months while undergoing St. Louis medical treatment. Franklin County Sheriff Steve Pelton theorizes that Barrett perhaps went outside to smoke a cigarette while on medication that made him confused, and an ensuing blaze got out of control in the dry woods and windy conditions. ___ Information from: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, http://www.stltoday.com
  • Oklahoma's Department of Human Services would be forced to close 11 county offices and slash funding to a dozen programs that support poor, disabled and elderly Oklahomans under a 14 percent budget reduction being discussed by the Legislature. DHS Director Ed Lake sent a letter to agency employees on Wednesday warning of cuts he described as ranging from 'the terrible to the unthinkable.' Amid a state budget shortfall of about $878 million, legislative leaders have agencies outlining how they would handle cuts of up to 14 percent. Lake says such a cut would amount to a $147.5 million reduction from its current operating budget. Lake says the agency also would no longer be able to protect its child welfare services division from budget reductions.
  • Tulsa police Thursday released video of an incident in which an officer used his patrol car to end a gunfight. Madison Dickson was the suspect in a string of violent crimes that spanned nearly a week when she was spotted in a vehicle near 91st and Harvard last Saturday. She tried to run, and gunfire is heard on the video, which officers say was directed toward them. The officer swerves left as she points the gun at him, then veers right and runs her over as she attempts to flee. Additional videos released to media by TPD indicate an officer also used a Taser on Dickson after she was down, because she still had the gun and wasn’t responding to commands. “She might not be able to, hang on,” one officer says as others are yelling at her to show her hands. EMSA arrived on the scene a few minutes later, but Dickson died from her injuries.
  • After hours of negotiations that featured personal intervention by President Donald Trump, Republican leaders in the Congress were forced to back off a planned vote on a GOP health care bill, unable to find enough votes approve it and send it on to the Senate for further work. While House leaders said votes were possible on Friday, there was no final agreement to vote on, as more conservative members of the House Freedom Caucus refused to get on board with a deal offered by the White House. “We have not gotten enough of our members to get to yes,” said Rep. Mark Meadows (R-NC), the chair of the Freedom Caucus. “I am still a no at this time,” Meadows told a crush of reporters. “I am desperately trying to get to yes.” Rep. Mark Meadows: “I am still a no at this time. I am desperately trying to get to yes” https://t.co/cQi0OGdJGY — CNN Politics (@CNNPolitics) March 23, 2017 Other Freedom Caucus members said very little as they exited a Congressional hearing room after a two hour meeting on the health bill, leaving Meadows to get out the message. “No comment,” said Rep. Ron DeSantis (R-FL). “Mark’s got everything,” referring to Meadows. “You know I’m not going express the substance of anything that we talked about in there,” said Rep. Trent Franks (R-AZ) said as reporters trailed him down the hall. Earlier at the White House, there had been optimism after a meeting between Freedom Caucus members and the President. Lengthy standing ovation from the Freedom Caucus when @POTUS walked into the Cabinet Room just now. Big momentum toward #RepealAndReplace. pic.twitter.com/N1FLGAVFMN — Cliff Sims (@CSims45) March 23, 2017 But, there was no deal.
  • Conservative Republicans opposed to the health care reform bill offered by their leadership have forced a delay in a vote on the measure, which was expected to happen Thursday. House GOP leadership announced they will push the vote back about 2:30 Central Time after a flurry of meetings between Republican members of the Freedom Caucus, moderates pushing the plan, and the White House. The delay is seen as a rebuke of the Trump administration, which has brought pressure to bear in an attempt to bring those more conservative members on board. Those Republicans opposed to the bill in its current form generally want deeper cuts in spending on the program. Some have called it “Obamacare Light,” and say it doesn’t offer enough substantial changes to current law. Those in favor of the bill argue it eliminates the mandate, and puts choice back in the hands of consumers. There’s no official announcement on when House Speaker Paul Ryan might try to reschedule a vote.
  • The CEO of a Connecticut-based marketing firm says job applicants must pass what he has dubbed the “snowflake test” before he will hire them.  In an interview with Stuart Varney on the Fox Business Network, Silent Partner Marketing CEO Kyle Reyes defined a snowflake as “somebody who is going to whine and complain and come to the table with nothing but an entitled attitude and an inability to back their perspective.” Some of the questions on the test include a job candidate’s position and beliefs on America, guns, and police. Reyes said he’s not worried about discrimination lawsuits because he believes the test is really just the same kind of personality assessment that companies do routinely in job interviews. He says roughly 60-percent of applicants have not passed his test. Click here to see the whole “Snowflake Test”.
  • A Tulsa parent is speaking out after she says her daughter had a birth control implant embedded into her arm during a trip from school. >> Read more trending news  Miracle Foster says her parental rights were violated. It all started when her 16-year-old daughter attended a Youth Services of Tulsa lecture about sex education at Langston Hughes Academy. After one of the sessions, the teen and other girls reportedly said they wanted to learn more, and the school arranged for Youth Services of Tulsa to pick them up and take them to a clinic. Rodney L. Clark, the school's principal, says he called Foster to get permission to allow her daughter to go on the trip before they left. Foster says that her daughter then received a three-year Norplant implant at the clinic without her parental consent. Representatives from Youth Services of Tulsa say they do not have to tell a parent about any contraceptives given to minors. Title X federal guidelines allows for teens as young as 12 to receive various forms of contraceptives without a parent's consent. They also said they merely inform and transport teens to the clinics of their choice. They are not involved in the conversations between the teens and the physicians at theses clinics. Foster told FOX23 that she feels that she and her daughter should have had the opportunity to discuss what's best for her.  Clark released a statement Wednesday:  'This was not a field trip. Youth Services of Tulsa does an annual in-service on Sex Education. They offer students an opportunity to contact them on their own for more information. The parent gave her child permission to leave the school. Under Title X once young people are at the clinic and are of reproductive age, they can make decisions on their own without parental consent. As you can understand this situation involves a minor and we do not release information about students. Nevertheless, the student was well within their rights of Title X which is a federal guideline that provides reduced cost family planning services to persons of all reproductive age.