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Tommy Keeler Jr.

tommy-keeler.jpg Tommy Keeler Jr. is assistant sports editor for the Northern Virginia Daily.
E-mail:tkeeler@nvdaily.com | Phone: 540-465-5317, ext. 155

Recent stories by Tommy Keeler Jr.

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Falcons lose another heartbreaker to 'Blazers

PENN LAIRD -- For the second straight year the Central and Spotswood football game came down to the wire. comments

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Game against Wildcats offers 'barometer' for Dukes

HARRISONBURG -- Today's game against Villanova will help James Madison University know more about how good they really are. comments

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Rams face key matchup against Colonels

It may be early in the season, but Strasburg's game with James Wood tonight is still a big one for both teams. comments

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Baker, Gaudette help pace Warriors

WINCHESTER -- Sherando volleyball coach James Minney knew the combination of senior Michelle Baker and sophomore Melissa Gaudette could be a powerful one, and on Thursday night Minney got exactly what he was hoping for from the pair of middle hitters. comments

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Keeler: Future bright for Dukes

Patience will be key for all James Madison University football fans this season. comments

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R-MA relies on service game

FRONT ROYAL -- Randolph-Macon Academy showed on Wednesday afternoon that you don't have to dominate at the net to trounce an opponent. comments

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Judges dominate in sweep of Hawks

FRONT ROYAL -- After losing six players to graduation, Handley looked be in a rebuilding year but the Judges showed Tuesday night their program is as solid as it has been. comments

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Lee continues to improve

HARRISONBURG -- Vad Lee is coming into his own for James Madison University's football team. comments

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Freshman Dellinger showing promise

STRASBURG -- Strasburg cross country coach Jeff Rudy had heard of Grace Dellinger when she was in middle school the last few years and that she would help out his girls team. Rudy and the Rams are glad that Dellinger has been every bit as good as advertised. comments

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Lee, Dukes top Red Flash

HARRISONBURG --Vad Lee stepped up. comments

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James Wood tames Wildcats

WINCHESTER -- Warren County and James Wood were each searching for its first win of the season on Friday night. comments

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Dukes excited for home opener against Saint Francis

HARRISONBURG -- James Madison University head football coach Everett Withers wants the JMU crowd to have plenty of energy and make lots of noise for the Dukes' home opener today. comments

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Madison Co. too much for Wildcats

FRONT ROYAL -- Warren County played really well defensively against a fast-paced, aggressive Madison County squad on Thursday night. The Wildcats needed their defense and then some against the unbeaten Mountaineers. comments

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Keeler: New year, same Redskins

As a Dallas Cowboys fan, I don't enjoy writing this. OK, maybe just a little. I know it's only been one game, but do the Washington Redskins under new head coach Jay Gruden look a little like the Redskins of last year? comments

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R-MA tennis squad keeps sunny outlook

FRONT ROYAL -- Randolph-Macon Academy's girls tennis team only has seven players this season, but that doesn't mean they won't be successful. comments

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Annual bike ride changes dates

Dave Adsit is hoping a new month will bring some nicer weather. comments

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Warriors fall short against Spotswood

STEPHENS CITY -- Sherando's young volleyball team may be going through some early-season growing pains, but the Warriors had plenty to feel positive about on Tuesday night. comments

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Frosh talent leading way for Dukes

HARRISONBURG -- James Madison University's football team picked up a big come-from-behind win on Saturday against Lehigh, and two true freshmen played huge roles. comments

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Morrow shining at top spot for Warren County

FRONT ROYAL -- Two years ago Warren County's Claire Morrow was the new girl on the cross country team looking up to the upperclassmen, and following their lead. This year as a junior it's Morrow's turn to take the leading role, and it's one she's relishing. comments

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Eagles down Rams

ELKTON -- Strasburg couldn't catch any breaks against East Rockingham on Friday night. comments

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James Madison seeks first win against Lehigh

James Madison University certainly did not have the kind of opening game it was looking for last week, but the team remained upbeat this week as the Dukes get ready to play at Lehigh today at 12:30 p.m. comments

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John Champe beats Central

WOODSTOCK - With a young and inexperienced team, Central's season didn't get off to the start it wanted on Friday night. comments

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Withers' era starts with tough opener

James Madison University's football team underwent significant changes in the offseason. A new coaching staff, including a new head coach, changes to the offensive and defensive systems and lots of transfers. The new-look Dukes don't have to wait for their first big test as they on Maryland today at 3:30 p.m. at Byrd Stadium in College Park, Maryland. comments

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Goal-line stand: Generals muster numbers

QUICKSBURG -- Derrick Smith went into Stonewall Jackson's weight room just two weeks before the start of the season and was surprised by what he found -- a virtually empty room. comments

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Optimistic Falcons loaded with new starters

WOODSTOCK -- Central may have lost 21 seniors to graduation, but there's still good reason for optimism at the school this year. comments

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Barbour's time has come to lead Central's offense

WOODSTOCK -- Sam Barbour has waited patiently for his time, and this season he will lead a young Central squad onto the field. comments

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Speedy Judges out to regain top spot in Northwestern

WINCHESTER -- Handley has had some explosive teams over the years. That's why it says a lot about this year's team when head coach Tony Rayburn says this squad will be on par with some of the speedy teams from the past. comments

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Healthy Washington hoping to make impact for Handley

WINCHESTER -- Last season was a heart-breaking one for Justin Washington. comments

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James Wood hopes to show growth under McHale

WINCHESTER -- Mark McHale knew it wouldn't be easy turning things around at James wood when he took over the head coaching job last year. With a year under his belt, he and the entire team are in a better position as a new season gets started. comments

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Colonels' Hepner lands prized role as quarterback

WINCHESTER -- Brady Hepner is finally where he's always wanted to be. comments

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Short-handed Generals' primary goal to stay healthy

QUICKSBURG -- It will certainly be a different kind of season for Stonewall Jackson this year. This year won't be about wins and losses so much as simply staying healthy and finishing the season. comments

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Withers brings changes to JMU football program

HARRISONBURG -- James Madison University's football team had many changes in the offseason, but all the changes may lead to plenty of success this season. comments

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Dukes' Steele not satisfied despite sterling season

HARRISONBURG -- Gage Steele had a sterling season for James Madison University's football team last year. However, don't expect the Warren County graduate and current JMU redshirt sophomore to get caught basking in the glory of his success. comments

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New leader: Ga. Tech transfer Lee ready to guide Dukes

HARRISONBURG -- It was an easy decision. comments

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Keeler: Citi Open has long ways to go

I've always had high hopes that someday the Citi Open in Washington D.C. could be elevated to a bigger professional tennis tournament. The idea of seeing players such as Roger Federer, Novak Djokovic, Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams and Maria Sharapova dancing around in my head. However, after actually attending and seeing most of those players last week in Cincinnati I realize that D.C. has a long ways to go to become a big-time tennis tournament. comments

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Aiming high: Falcons going through preseason growing pains

WOODSTOCK -- With a young and inexperienced team, Central head football coach Mike Yew has seen his squad go through plenty of growing pains. However, Yew has still been encouraged by what he's seen from the group. comments

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Keeler: JMU players increase bonds

You hear it all the time from players and coaches, "We have a lot of team chemistry," but after being around JMU's football team earlier this week I truly believe they have some real chemistry going. comments

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Keeler: Plenty of talent in Citi Open

It's a bit of a dead period in sports right now. Soon football will take center stage and baseball will get to what really matters - the playoffs. However, if you need your fix of some great professional athletes playing in the D.C. area, next week's Citi Open combined men's and women's professional tennis tournament could be the place for you. comments

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Keeler: Ravens could have big year

This is the time of year that I dislike the most in sports. With basketball season over, only baseball is going on, of the big three sports. I do love baseball, but the season is just way too long to keep my attention for the whole season. However, football is just around the corner. comments

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Keeler: Kastles remain WTT power

The Washington Kastles have a new home this season, but not much else has changed for the powerhouse World Team Tennis franchise. comments

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Relaxed Entsminger delights in stellar year

STEPHENS CITY -- When it comes to handling pressure it seems like Reid Entsminger has ice water running through his veins, but maybe it's actually just the water and sand from a beach. comments

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Ansbro stays calm under any pressure

WOODSTOCK -- Nothing fazes Bekah Ansbro. comments

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Rhodes leads Falcons to very positive season

WOODSTOCK -- Lisa Rhodes noticed a real change in her players even early on in the softball season. The Central softball coach saw her players being much more positive and that positivity led to a special season for the Falcons. comments

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Ferst was first for Wildcats

FRONT ROYAL -- Madison Ferst's goal this season was to be first -- play at the No. 1 spot -- this season, and the Warren County senior accomplished that and then some. comments

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Tallent leads Wildcats to banner year

FRONT ROYAL -- Jeannie Tallent has to be a jack of all trades as a tennis coach. Sometimes she's like a psychiatrist. Other times she has to be a friend, a motivator, a mother. Throughout the season she did all of it well in leading Warren County's girls tennis team to its best season in school history. comments

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Barbour a natural at tennis

WOODSTOCK --Two years ago, Sam Barbour decided to give tennis a shot, at the urging of his best friend, Bobby Loveland. In just a short period of time, Barbour's game grown by leaps and bounds and the sport has come naturally to him. comments

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Robinson helping Falcons soar again

WOODSTOCK -- Luke Robinson had his eye on coaching tennis for a number of years. The Central graduate had thought about coaching at his alma mater, and this past offseason everything finally fell into place for him. comments

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Keeler: Area HS teams had much to be proud of

This high school season is officially over, but there's no question that it was a very successful one for all of the area schools. comments

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Keeler: New classes working out well

I'm just going to admit it. comments

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Keeler: Injuries have slowed Nationals

I have to admit, I haven't been paying much attention to the Major League Baseball lately. This is one of the periods where my love for baseball takes a backseat to the NBA and NHL playoffs, and of course, the French Open. However, when I looked at the MLB standings a few days ago I realized the Washington Nationals were ...exactly where I thought they'd be considering they look more like a MASH unit than a team this season. comments

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Keeler: Changes could help VBL

The Valley Baseball League season begins tonight and there are some definite changes. However, that's not necessarily a bad thing. comments

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Keeler: Strong spring for Cavs

With the exception of football, U.Va. was already having a pretty decent season but this spring the Cavaliers have the potential to reach incredible heights. comments

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Keeler: Cavaliers set for deep run

Could this be the year? comments

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Keeler: High school playoffs are near

Both the NBA and NHL are in full swing, but the best playoffs are just around the corner -- high school spring playoffs. comments

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Keeler: Silver made the right call

Like many die-hard sports fans I generally don't pay much attention to owners in sports. I watch the games for the players. They're the ones that are out there giving their all game after game. comments

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Keeler: Wizards primed for big run in playoffs

The Washington Wizards host their first playoff game tonight, and it certainly won't be their last. comments

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Keeler: Another strong field for Boyd Tinsley Classic

The Boyd Tinsley Clay Court Classic returns to Charlottesville next week with yet another strong women's tennis field. comments

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Keeler: Capitals face some difficult choices

This should be a very interesting offseason for the Washington Capitals. If I were a Capitals' fan, which I am not, I would be very upset at a franchise that seems to do nothing but underachieve. comments

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Keeler: Future bright for Cavs

The Final Four should be a good one this weekend (I'm hoping to see Florida come out on top), but it won't have the Virginia Cavaliers in it -- this year. comments

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Keeler: JMU women show promise

James Madison University women's basketball coach Kenny Brooks patted Kirby Burkholder on the head as the tears rolled down the senior's face on Tuesday night. The Dukes' season was about to come to an end, and Brooks was trying to keep his players upbeat as the final seconds ticked away. comments

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Keeler: Can Nats put talent to good use?

It was just a year ago that I was writing about how good the Nationals were going to be. Of course, things didn't go quite the way Nationals' fans were hoping. However, I think this year Nats fans may get their wish. comments

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Keeler: Cavs in position for run in NCAAs

Virginia's men's basketball team did something this past weekend that it hadn't done in 33 years -- win the ACC regular season title outright. comments

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Keeler: Falcons playing to full potential

I can remember watching Central's girls basketball team two years ago and thinking this team has a chance to do special things in the next few years. comments

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Keeler: Nothing shocking about the Shockers

Now that football season is gone, I've found myself paying a lot more attention to college basketball. comments

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Keeler: Jeter will be greatly missed

I have many mixed emotions as I start to write this column. There's sadness, joy, thankfulness and maybe most importantly gratitude. comments

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Keeler: Postseason excitement draws near

It's that time of the season. comments

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Keeler: Super Bowl has plenty for viewers

I'm not going to lie, my excitement for this weekend's Super Bowl is close to an all-time low. I'm not a fan of either team, but I also don't dislike either team. However, I still think there are plenty of reasons that this matchup is an interesting one, and one worth watching. comments

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Keeler: Wizards becoming respectable

Over the last few years, I've heard people talk about the Washington Wizards being a team with promise. They've said the Wizards were ready to turn things around, and become winners. Whenever I've heard those comments I've always laughed. comments

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Keeler: Patience should pay off for Dukes fans

James Madison University men's basketball fans need to be patient. comments

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Keeler: Dukes get their man

James Madison University may have found themselves a keeper. comments

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Keeler: Time for Shanahan to step down

As a Dallas Cowboys fan I guess I should be happy about the mess that is the Washington Redskins, but I have to admit I almost feel sorry for the Redskins' fans out there. comments

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Keeler: Defeat does not diminish season

LYNCHBURG -- The scoreboard read 56-14, Dinwiddie. The tears on the Sherando players' faces on the field after the game said how much it hurt to lose in Saturday's Class 4A state final, but there's no question the loss doesn't take away from a great year for the football team. comments

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Keeler: NBA's East is least

In the NFL this season the NFC East was more like the NFC Least, and now it appears the NBA has the Leastern Conference. comments

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Keeler: Duke football on the rise

I'm sure that most people who know me are aware that I'm a die-hard Duke fan. I've never been shy about my love for Duke men's and women's basketball. However, when anyone would mention Duke's football team I would usually just laugh. This year, that's no longer the case. comments

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Keeler: Parity balances out NFL

It's the week before Thanksgiving, and as usual the NFL's parity makes it very tough to figure out which teams are playoff teams, let alone trying to figure out who is the best team overall. comments

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Keeler: NCAA rule changes are frustrating

If you're a college basketball fan like I am, these are frustrating times. I love the game, and I love watching it played at a high level and a quick pace. comments

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Keeler: JMU hoops programs in good shape

James Madison University kicks off its men's and women's basketball seasons tonight, and both programs have reason to feel good about where they are at. comments

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SVCA wins NACA soccer title

Shenandoah Valley Christian Academy's boys soccer team came up a little short in its quest for the state title last weekend, but the Patriots made up for it on Friday. comments

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Keeler: Playoff picture sharpens

Next week is the last week of the football regular season. Yet another season has flown by. With only two games left, now is a good time to look at where the local teams stand in the playoff picture. comments

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Keeler: High hopes for U.Va. basketball

While last weekend resulted in another disappointing loss for the University of Virginia's football team there is something to look forward to for U.Va. fans - men's basketball season is just around the corner. comments

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Keeler: Brady still among NFL's best

The debate has raged on for years. After Sunday, there should be no question - Tom Brady is the best quarterback in the National Football League. comments

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Keeler: Cavaliers hitting new lows

I didn't expect much from the University of Virginia's football team this season. After the way things have went the past couple years, could anybody really? However, last weekend things may have hit a new low for the Cavaliers. comments

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Keeler: NFC East falls on hard times

Remember when the NFC East was considered the best division in the NFL? comments

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Keeler: Rivera, Pettitte will be missed

All great things must come to an end. comments

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Dukes overcome weather, 49ers

HARRISONBURG -- With the conditions a little sloppy, JMU's offense played like it at times. comments

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Sherando catcher attends Florida camp

Chase Smallwood capped off a busy summer with a well-earned trip to Florida -- a trip that not many get to make. comments

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Keeler: Going through football withdrawal

There's plenty going on in the world of sports right now. With the NBA Finals coming down to Game 7, Major League Baseball is just catching it's stride as summer officially begins, the College World Series is still going, and there's even an NHL Finals going on (not that I or many other people are watching). Despite all of that, my mind keeps drifting to the same place, the same sport, even though it's still more than a month away -- football season. comments

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Rebels welcome new manager: Rhodes works with Hedrick, who led New Market to their 2002 championship

It was only natural that C.J. Rhodes would become the next manager of the New Market Rebels. comments










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