LifeSiteNews 24 February 2015Britain’s House of Commons rejected a bill aiming to ban sex-selective abortion on Monday in a vote of 292-201.The lower chamber passed the bill at first reading on November 4, but yesterday lawmakers instead approved a measure calling for an inquiry into the prevalence of gender-based abortion in Wales, England, and Northern Ireland.Tory MP Fiona Bruce’s landmark Abortion (Sex-Selection) Bill sought to clarify “that nothing in section one of the Abortion Act 1967 allows a pregnancy to be terminated on the grounds of the sex of the unborn child.”Bruce’s bill was strongly opposed by labor unions and some Labor Party politicians on the grounds that bill would “divide communities.”A letter circulated to Labor MPs by the Trade Union Congress (TUC) said that banning sex selective abortions might leave women “vulnerable to domestic abuse,” and that “the amendment does not attempt to address the root causes of deeply entrenched gender discrimination but rather has divided communities.”https://www.lifesitenews.com/news/uk-parliament-rejects-ban-on-gendercide-abortions
After two years of narrowly missing the NCAA tournament, the Women of Troy have one goal in their third year under USC coach Michael Cooper.Experience · Senior guard Ashley Corral, an All-Pac-10 First team selection last year, is one of five core returners for the Women of Troy. – DailyTrojan file photo“We need to get to the tournament,” senior guard Ashley Corral said. “We need to show who we are, that we’re as good as those [other] top 25 teams.”The Women of Troy’s quest for an NCAA tournament bid begins tonight against Fresno State at 5 p.m.The high expectations, however, aren’t just coming from the team. USC was voted No. 23 in the preseason Associated Press poll, the first time it has been ranked since 2006.“If you can stay inside the [top] 25, it’s almost an automatic berth into the tournament,” Cooper said. “That’s where we want to eventually end up, so a ranking is definitely good, but now we have to live up to that and win consistently.”Despite missing out on the NCAA tournament last year, the Women of Troy received an invitation to the 64-team Women’s National Invitational Tournament, where they won five games in a row to reach the championship game before falling to Toledo.“I had never played in the postseason, and I know none of my teammates had either,” Corral said. “It helped our bodies get used to playing that long of a season.”USC is ranked second in the preseason Pac-12 media poll, behind Stanford, who reached the Final Four last season and is ranked No. 5 in the Associated Press poll.The Women of Troy haven’t beat the Cardinal since the 2007-2008 season, but they have high hopes to dethrone the defending conference champions.“I think we’re going to give a challenge to everyone we play,” Cooper said. “The Pac-12 is not a cakewalk this year. Stanford is the team to knock off the top, and we’re going to give them all that they can handle.”By the time USC squares off against Stanford, they will have plenty of experience against top-notch competition.Before they even start conference play, the Women of Troy will have faced six teams that made the NCAA tournament last year.Those games include a road trip to defending national champion Texas A&M on Dec. 18, and a trip to the Bahamas for a tournament where they will play national runner-up Notre Dame, and either Duke or Gardner-Webb, both of which participated in the tournament last year.“We have to go win those big games on the road for us to get credit,” Corral said. “It’s a good showing for the committee, and we know what we have to do.”Though USC faces some tough competition in the early going, it does bring back its core group of players from a year ago. Corral is one of four returning All-Pac-10 honorees for USC. Senior guard Briana Gilbreath earned an Associated Press All-American honorable mention while leading USC in scoring, rebounds, steals and blocks last season.Fifth-year senior Jacki Gemelos returns at the point, where she earned All-Pac-10 honorable mention and was USC’s third-leading scorer in her first full season after recovering from numerous knee surgeries that plagued her first three years in Los Angeles.Sophomore forward Cassie Harberts was the only player to start every game last season and was selected to the Pac-10 freshman team after being one of four USC players to average double-digit scoring.“Look for Cassie to be a little bit more solid in [the post],” Cooper said. “She did a good job last year, but she really worked on the weights [in the offseason] so she should have a little more strength.”Freshman forward Alexyz Vaioletama is the only new face in the starting lineup, taking the spot of graduate Kari LaPlante. The freshman, listed at 6-foot-1, isn’t as tall as LaPlante, but has been praised by her coaches for her tenacity and athleticism.“[Vaioletama] is an athletic big that we haven’t seen around here in a long time,” Cooper said. “Fans are going to be very impressed and surprised with the way she’ll play, especially as a freshman.”Freshmen forward Deanna Calhoun and guards Ariya Crook and Kiki Alofaituli make up the rest of USC’s No. 8 ranked recruiting class.Junior forward Christina Marinacci could move into the starting lineup at some point, after finishing second on the team in rebounding and fifth in scoring last year.“This group here is special,” Cooper said. “All of our players definitely took a step forward this year. They finally get what we want to do, what we want to accomplish.”That attitude is even rubbing off on the newcomers.“We just need to suck it up, and work hard on and off the court to get to the [tournament],” Vaioletama said. “That’s what our main goal is. My expectations are very high for this team.”
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The second giveaway to Zuerlein’s status will be L.A.’s transaction report. McVay also told reporters the Rams are bringing in kickers Thursday to work out. That would suggest that by sometime on Friday, Los Angeles will potentially sign a kicker. If a signing is made, that bodes poorly for Zuerlein’s status.WEEK 16 PPR RANKINGS: Running back | Wide receiver | Tight endEven against a strong 49ers defense, Zuerlein is a solid kicker start if he’s active. He’s made all his extra points and knocked in four-of-five kicks from beyond 50 yards this year. He’ll also get to kick in some relatively warm California weather compared to what many kickers will deal with in late December elsewhere. WEEK 16 NON-PPR RANKINGS:Quarterback | Running back | Wide receiver | Tight end | D/ST | KickerIs Greg Zuerlein playing Saturday in Week 16?UPDATE 2: Zuerlein is officially ACTIVE.UPDATE 1: It’s believed Zuerlein will be “good to go” and as of Friday night, the Rams had not signed another kicker. There will be two things that can give away Zuerlein’s status one way or the other before we get to Saturday night. The first is if Zuerlein starts kicking at practice. Sean McVay told reporters Wednesday that he’ll wait as long as he can for Zuerlein’s quad to heal before he starts kicking again. SATURDAY DFS: DraftKings main slate lineup | Showdown lineups Greg Zuerlein has the rare kicker injury that could affect fantasy football championships. The man they call ‘Greg the Leg’ and ‘Legatron’ is dealing with a quad injury that’s so far prevented him from actually kicking a football at practice this week. The Rams take on the 49ers on Saturday night in Week 16, and Zuerlein is an every-week starting fantasy kicker when healthy, so this injury could actually affect start ’em, sit ’em decisions and waiver pickups. We’ll have updates below until the official active/inactive report drops about 6:45 p.m. ET Saturday.For injury updates on Will Fuller anad Carlos Hyde, go here; for news on Jameis Winston’s injury, go here; for the latest on Julian Edelman’s availability, click here. For more news and fantasy advice, follow us on Twitter @SN_Fantasy.