Osun State Governor, Mr Gboyega Oyetola, has said that the proposed Osun Heritage International Half Marathon, scheduled to hold on November 23, was aimed at sensitising the public on the importance of physical exercise and fitness for the health of the people.He maintained that the marathon, which is being organised in conjunction with Zenith Business Suite, Lagos would also create opportunity for local athletes to showcase their potentials. Oyetola made this disclosure while addressing a press conference in Osogbo as part of the activities to herald the marathon exercise. Adegboyega Oyetola Represented by the Supervisor for the Ministry of Social Protection, Sports and Special Needs, Comrade Biyi Odunlade, the governor stated “sport is an integral part of living”, adding that it is part of the programmes being packaged to commemorate the first year anniversary of the current administration. Oyetola stated that “the half marathon is to sensitise the public on physical exercise to enhance fitness. Sports boost circulatory system for a sound mind in a sound body.”While assuring that his administration would continue to create enabling environment for sports development, he restated his commitment to ensure overall infrastructural growth of state. In his remark, the race director of the marathon and official of Zenith Business Suite Aderemi Akinwale explained that “the starting point for the marathon is the roundabout in front of the state secretariat, Abere. We are expecting between 10,000 and 20,000 to participate in the race.”We would put in place effective security arrangement. Seven ambulances would be on ground for emergencies. The prizes category would be three phases.Category 1 is international with prize money of $8,000. Category 2 National prize is N1 million while category 3 is only for Osun State indigenes to win a cash of N750,000. Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
Enyimba Football Club of Aba announced yesterday that Coach Usman Abd’allah has been relieved of his duties as Technical Adviser with immediate effect.“After a string of disappointing results the club believes it must set a new course now and regain its competitive edge, domestically and on the continent.“In the interim, Coach Fatai Osho will take over the head coach duties. All other announcements on this subject will be made later, a statement from the team announced yesterday morning. Chairman of the club, Felix Anyansi Agwu, said: “This is not a decision we have taken lightly, nor in haste.“Results and performances since the start of this season have been very unimpressive and the club must take action to forestall further setbacks.“We are speaking to the players too and they must do better otherwise there will be consequences. As Enyimba we are committed to earning positive results always and we can’t accept nothing less,” stressed the chairman of the club in a veiled threat to weed out more if there is no meaningful change to the fortunes of the former African champions.“The Club wishes Coach Usman Abd’allah the best for the future and thank him for his service,” concludes the statement signed by Enyimba’s Media Officer, Zazi Bariza Samuel.Abdalla led Enyimba to win their record eighth Nigeria championship last season and they also reached the semifinals of the CAF Confederation Cup last year.Sunday’s 4-0 thrashing of the People’s Elephant at Plateau United has seen the eight-time Nigeria champions drop to 13th position on the NPFL table with 15 points from 10 matches.Enyimba feature in the group stage of the CAF Confederation Cup remain uncertain.They are third in Group D with three points from three matches and host Paradou from Algeria this weekend in continuation of the competition.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
Asked how he felt when he was invited to the senior national team as a teenager in 1980 in preparations towards the Africa Cup of Nations. “I felt so delighted, great and honoured to be invited to play alongside the likes of Christian Chukwu, Segun Odegbami, Adokie Amesieamaka, late Muda Lawal and the rest them. A young boy just coming out of school and making it to the senior national was great feat then and I thank my senior colleagues in the team for accepting me as one of them. I respected them and they reciprocated, which really helped me a lot in settling down and matured into the team proper.”On if he was ever scared of being dropped during the screening sessions considering the caliber of players in camp then.The former captain of the defunct ACB of Lagos said: “I never thought of that. In fact it never crossed my mind because my mission and objective was to play for the national team and I concentrated and tried to improve on my game and played to the delight and expectations of the coaches. As a matter of fact, the number 10 jersey was bestowed on me immediately after my first training with the national team. So, the thought of being decamped was not just there, rather, how to establish myself as a first team player was the priority.”The former New Nigeria Bank midfielder would not want to attribute his invitation to the Green Eagles to the then Brazilian technical adviser, late professor Otto Gloria as he also played under some local coaches after the reign of the Brazilian as the national team coach.“I played under some Nigerian coaches after Gloria and most of them liked my game and personality, so I wouldn’t have known if I would have been given a call up to the national if an indigenous coach were to be at the helms of affairs of the national team then or not. But then I wouldn’t want to attribute my invitation to a foreign coach as the national team coach.”The Member of the Niger (MON), who despite his exploits internationally with the national team never took his game to Europe, something which he attributed to the strength of the Naira and the cold weather in Europe, which he claimed was not favourable to his body system.“As at that time playing in Europe was not very popular, because the Naira was very strong when compared to the dollar. Then it was about 43 kobo to a dollar, so why would I want to play in Europe to earn dollars when the Naira is stronger. Comparatively, the difference was not much so the attractiveness was not there.”“But the main reason why I didn’t really play in Europe was because I could not stand cold weather in Europe, so I felt playing in Europe would not be good for my health. On so many occasions I was invited by some agents to play in England and Spain but I turned down the offers because my health could not stand the cold of Europe and under such a situation I would not be able to play at my best,” he said.Nwosu indeed stated that he dumped one of the invitation letters he received from a Spanish club into the trash bin because he couldn’t read it as it was written in Spanish and another letter of invitation from a team in England did not get to him as it was confiscated by the then Nigeria Football Association Chairman, Colonel Mike Okochime (retd).Nwosu however hailed coaches like Mike Malagu, who he said helped him to develop his game as a secondary school boy and Kashimawo Laloko, whom he claimed helped in developing his psyche as some of the coaches that influenced his game, but said it was Otto Gloria that shaped his game the most.“Then, Laloko never saw anything good in my game, he would always criticise me, but behind me he praised me. I didn’t know he was working on my psyche but it made me to strive harder. Malagu helped brush my game from the secondary school and I really thanked them a lot. But in terms of the technicality of the game kudos must go to Otto Gloria. Even, it was through his influence that I am into coaching today,” he said.Brazilian legend, Edson Arates des Nascimento, aka Pele would however remain the mentor of the Union Bank FC of Lagos coach. “My role model will forever be King Pele,” he said with a smile.Recounting the Nations Cup victory of 1980 on home soil, the former international described the moment thus: “I was like a new born baby whom everybody wanted to carry. I was a young boy, who just came out of secondary school and was already making waves and being supported and liked by everybody. Decorated with a national honour, a car, a house and several other gifts so everybody wanted to associate with me. I felt great and on top of the world.”Asked which team is greater between the victorious Eagles on home soil and the one that won the trophy 14 years later. “If you compare the two teams individually and players’ commitment, the 1980 team was greater than that of 1994. The only thing that was in favour of the latter was their exposure because most of them played in Europe,” he opined.Ironically, Nwosu denied his first son of choosing football for a career, rather he made education a priority for him, and today MON, as he is fondly called by friends and admirers is happy that his first son is a Masters Degree holder. “If the younger ones want to play football they could go ahead, but as for my first son I charged him to concentrate on his education. The other younger ones I taught them the rudiments of the game without them losing focus on their education,” he said.Continuing, Nwosu opined that one of the greatest challenges facing our football today is that players no longer go through the rudiments of the game and therefore lacked good ball control. They do not know when to pass the ball and when to dribble and they also lacked positioning.Nwosu, who is involved in grassroots development, would however want to be remembered as someone that discovered a lot of young talents for Nigeria for the future of the game.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram Winning the 1980 Africa Cup of Nations was Nigeria’s first major breakthrough in sports and 40 years down the line, one of the gladiators of that historic feat, Henry Nwosu, still recalls the moment with ecstasy, he spoke with Kunle AdewaleIt was something that was unthinkable at that time that a secondary school boy would be invited to play for the senior national team. Undaunted, Nwosu broke this odd to play for the Green Eagles (as the Nigeria senior national team was then known) in 1980 and went on to win the Africa Cup of Nations for the first time for Nigeria.Though now with grey hair and some little wrinkles on his face, Henry Nwosu still have that trait of the young innocent boy that starred for the Super Eagles 40 years ago. Even on the field of play the touches are still very conspicuous, except that there is not much stamina to match it.“Football runs in the family, my eldest brother played football and he was very good. He was good that people said I didn’t measure to half his competence, though he did not get to the height of his career as a result of reoccurring injuries. My immediate senior brother also played football substantially, so the game runs naturally within the family. I started football at a very tender age at Obele Odan boys and girls club in Surulere, when we use to play inter streets football games,” he said.
Ani Sydorowych, in 20:21.1, beat out Amelia Amack (20:21.4) for eighth place as Lejla Borcillo was 11th in 20:36.2.ESM was 10th thanks to Rachael Ladd’s 15th-place finish in 20:45.1, plus top-50 efforts from Mary Roach (21:52.9) and Taylor Hoffman, who posted 23:22.5.Taking eighth place on the team side, Jamesville-DeWitt had Madeline Foss finish 26th in 21:40.8, while Megan O’Malley went 22:05.9 for 36th place in the team race. Kathryn Sizing, in 23:13 flat, was 45th, just ahead of Cora Gilbert-Siecherma (23:37.5) and Miriam Zoghby, who finished in 23:46 flat. Bishop Grimes’ Edy Livingston took 44th place in the team race in 23:12.5. The feature of the boys race was having ESM star Nick Berg beat everyone except a trio of F-M runners, Berg finishing fourth in 16:36.6.Otherwise, F-M had a top-five sweep, Peyton Geehrer and Sam Otis both hitting the line in 15:57.7, with Geehrer declared the winner. Geoff Howles was third in 16:14.3, with James Peden fifth (17:02.) and Jack Altimonda sixth in 17:11.3.Berg, along with a 33rd-place showing from Casey Engineri (18:45.1), helped ESM to a 10th-place finish in a 28-team field. J-D was 12th, led by 19:33.7 from Gabriel Cuello. Manlius-Pebble Hill’s Will Markwood finished 52nd in 19:25.2.Before this, ESM and J-D both had their SCAC Empire division opening meets, with the Red Rams more successful as it swept three-team meets against Oswego and Auburn.J-D’s girls edged Oswego 26-31 and topped Auburn 18-43. The Buccaneers claimed the top two spots before Foss finished third in 22:35, with O’Malley fourth in 23:48 and Sizing fifth in 23:51. Zoghby (23:55) and Gilbert-Siechema (24:49) also had top-10 finishes.On the boys side, J-D won 20-41 over Oswego and 25-35 over Auburn, with the Red Rams’ Ahviere Reese second in 18:45 behind the Maroons’ Jimmy Vasile, who won in 18:14. Luke Hobika was fourth in 19:05, with Collin Rivercomb sixth in 19:20 as Brian Hulbert was eighth (19:26) and Ashton Corona ninth (19:35).ESM’s girls swept Syracuse West 15-45 as l Ladd won the race in 22:10, more than a minute ahead of the 23:11 posted by Roach. Elena Vespi was third in 25 minutes flat as Hoffman got fourth place in 25:23 and Allyanna O’Brien (27:15) completed a top-five Spartans sweep.But the ESM boys lost 24-31 to Syracuse West despite Berg’s 17:27, which beat Syracuse West’s Connor Shanahan (19:16) by nearly two full minutes.Engineri was fourth in 19:34, but that was the Spartans’ only other top-five finish. Spencer Carnival got seventh place in 21 minutes flat as Brandon Walters (21:07) beat out John Courcy (21:11) for ninth place.Fresh off its Sept. 7 Vernon-Verona-Invitational sweep, F-M earned twin 15-50 wins over Henninger last Wednesday as some of the lesser-known Hornets’ runners got a chance to race for individual glory.On the girls side, Sydorowych won in 19:00.7, edging Borcillo (19:01.6) at the finish line. Fiona Mejico finished third in 19:11.2, while Debbie Lucchetti, in 20:11.9, easily took fourth place. Alexa Bolton (20:54.2) held off Julia Sun (21:11.7) for fifth place as Katie Berge’ was seventh in 21:23.7 and Julia Gorman (21:26.0) was ninth.Moving to the boys race, F-M’s Daniel Patrick beat the field in 16:48.9, with Owen Snyder second in 16:57.2.Trevor Krukin was third in 17:07.2, just ahead of Ben Perry (17:12.2), with Keaton Vest fifth in 17:18.4. William Seamans (17:19.4), Joe Fraguso (17:42.1) and James Grace (18:27.9) completed a top-eight sweep.Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story As they do each September, East Syracuse Minoa hosted its cross country invitational meet Saturday on its home course at Pine Grove Elementary School.And the Spartans could take out of this event the fact that it drew Fayetteville-Manlius into both the boys and girls field, knowing they would likely dominate – which they did.Claire Walters, winning the girls race in 18 minutes, 7.1 seconds, led a 1-2-3 sweep ahead of Hannah Kaercher (18:13.2) and Phoebe White (18:29.3), with Grace Kaercher fifth in 18:57.5. Tags: cross countryESMF-MJ-D
Tags: Bishop Luddenboys soccerWest GeneseeWesthill WG featured a well-balanced attack where four different players – Tom Shields, Jacob Sachar, Josh Rimauldo and David Puma – found the net. Nolan Merritt and Jesper Behr earned assists, with Alex Toumbarcis and Josh Farrell combining for 11 saves.Bishop Ludden, having moved to no. 11 in the state Class C rankings, reinforced that high status in last Tuesday’s 6-1 romp over the LaFayette Lancers, where Michael Gaughan again stood out.Already up 2-0, at halftime, the Gaelic Knights got away with Gaughan pouring in four goals and adding an assist. Mark Collins and Luke Infanti also found the net as Liam Mahar got two assists and Charlie Colella added an assist.At Tully two days later, Ludden again jumped out in front with a pair of first-half goals, only here that was the only thing needed to gain a 2-0 shutout of the Black Knights.Gaughan and Mahar earned the goals, with Colella adding an assist. Tully had plenty of its own chances throughout the game, but goalie Jim McGarvey turned back all 10 of the Black Knights’ shots.Solvay lost, 5-0 to Chittenango last Monday, and then struggled again two days later in a 7-2 defeat to Cazenovia, though Ty Martineau did score a goal and assist on Alex Wilsch’s tally. Jonathan Gonzalez Perez had 15 saves. Humbled on Sept. 16 by Marcellus when it was undefeated and held the top spot in the state Class B rankings, the Westhill boys soccer team fell to no. 13 in the state poll, but quickly resumed its winning form.The Warriors hosted Mexico exactly one week after the defeat to the Mustangs, getting away in the second half to blank The Tigers 4-0.A well-balanced attack included one goal and one assist from Bo BenYehuda, with Andrew Centore, Brian Kenny and Jackson Powers also getting goals. Will Delano added an assist. Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story When West Genesee hosted state Class AA no. 12-ranked Fayetteville-Manlius last Tuesday, it expected to make the Hornets worry, just as it did to Baldwinsville a week earlier.But the Hornets had none of it, topping WG 3-0 as Cheech Pagano netted two of F-M’s three goals. Ziad Abdul-Malik had the other goal as none of the Wildcats’ nine shots got past Chris Szidat or Will Summers.This loss didn’t shake up the Wildcats too much, though, for on Thursday night it hosted Cicero-North Syracuse and unleashed its attack on the Northstars, not letting up until it had earned a 4-2 victory.
A minute remained in the half and the Northstars surprised the Bees with an onside kick, recovering it at midfield. Just 11 seconds before intermission, J.J. Razmovski found a streaking Adron Pafford down the right sideline for a 37-yard scoring play.In a span of less than four minutes, a close contest was now a 28-7 game, and B’ville could not afford to fall further behind. Instead, it began to climb back, sparked by a defense that held C-NS without a first down in the third quarter.Mixing in runs and passes from Braden McCard (including a 20-yard tipped pass to Pat May on fourth down, the Bees drove to the one, where Strong scored his second TD of the night.Then, on the first play of the fourth quarter, McCard, from his own 40, threw down the left sideline to Pat May, who caught it, cut back and found the end zone, and the Bees were within a score, 28-21, with plenty of time to catch up.Pinned at its own 13-yard line after the ensuing kickoff, C-NS regrouped, and Razmovski made his three best throws of the night.One was a third-down pass to Mason Ellis that covered 23 yards. Then, on fourth-and-four at the Bees’ 47, Razmovski hit Pafford, who broke tackles on a 37-yard run to set up first-and-goal. Three plays later, Pafford lost his defender on a cut to the middle and Razmovski found him again, the TD covering 12 yards with 4:55 to play.That turned out to be the game-winner because B’ville again responded, McCard throwing a 12-yard TD pass to May with 1:13 left, but an onside kick was smothered by the Northstars, who were able to run out the clock.McCard completed eight of 10 passes for 177 yards and also ran for a career-best 103 yards on 10 carries, while Strong finished with 142 yards on 24 carries. May and Robert Hamm led the defense with seven tackles apiece as Dan Ewald added five tackles and three assists.B’ville (2-2 league, 3-3 overall) visits Fayetteville-Manlius (1-3 league, 2-4 overall) in next Friday’s regular-season finale. Only a win guarantees a post-season berth since a loss creates a three-way tie for third between the Bees, Hornets and the winner of the West Genesee-Rome Free Academy game, and of those three, two will qualify for the playoffs.Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story In the past, if the Baldwinsville football team ever had to face a three-touchdown-deficit in the second half, its style of play would almost preclude any idea for a glorious comeback.Yet on Friday night at Pelcher-Arcaro Stadium, the Bees found itself battling back against visiting Cicero-North Syracuse, knowing that if it could complete its rally from a 28-7 hole, it would likely host a first-round Section III Class AA playoff game.B’ville did find the end zone three times – but it wasn’t quite enough as the Northstars parlayed a fourth-quarter scoring drive into a tense 35-28 victory and a chance to grab the Class AA-2 division regular-season title if it beats Utica Proctor next weekend. Both teams arrived at this game with 2-1 league marks, and they would trade scoring drives in the early going, C-NS taking a 7-0 lead, B’ville countering with a strong ground attack anchored by Willie Strong as he scored on a one-yard plunge early in the second quarter.It was still 7-7 when C-NS erupted late in the half. The catalyst was a scoring drive familiar to B’ville fans where the Northstars ran the ball on all 12 plays, with Mike Washington getting 11 of those carries and going the final yard for the TD.By contrast, the next time C-NS had the ball after a fourth-down stop by the defense at the B’ville 38, Washington needed only one play to sprint 62 yards to the end zone, making it 21-7. Tags: Baldwinsvillefootball
Rarely in its recent annals had the Cazenovia football team ever needed to worry about whether it would make the Section III playoffs in the last week of the regular season.Yet the Lakers dealt with this stress quite well, venturing to Mexico Friday night and earning a comfortable 27-6 victory over the Tigers to win for the fourth time in five weeks.That result, combined with Central Valley Academy’s 20-7 win over Vernon-Verona-Sherrill, allowed Cazenovia to finish alone in fourth place in the B East division behind the Thunder, plus Oneida and New Hartford. Romagnoli helped wrap things up with a 37-yard scoring run in the third quarter as the Lakers’ defense nearly got a third shutout in four weeks, keeping Mexico off the board until the fourth quarter, when the game was long in hand.Cazenovia held the Tigers to 144 total yards as John Frega had four tackles and three assists, with Vito Borio and Keegan Bailey each getting three tackles. A.J. Rothfeld assisted on six tackles and made two of his own.The Lakers had 394 total yards, 253 of them on the ground as Romagnoli gained 116 yards on 11 carries and Freyer had 89 yards on seven carries. Between them, Romagnoli and Freyer completed six of 14 passes for 134 yards.Meanwhile, Chittenango, who will miss the sectional playoffs, saw its five-game skid end at Camden, where it started fast, but ultimately needed a fourth-quarter safety to beat the Blue Devils 16-14.The Bears’ defense ended up keying the outcome, first by scoring on a Elias Clement fumble return as Nate Addison added a four-yard TD run to make it 14-0 through one period.Camden fought back, tying it 14-14 by halftime on short scoring runs by Eric Mitchell (one yard) and Mason Gerber (two yards). And it stayed even until the final period, when the Chittenango defense returned to trap the Blue Devils in its own end zone for the winning two points. Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story Tags: CazenoviaChittenangofootball And it sets up a highly-anticipated sectional Class B opening-round game next Friday as the Lakers venture to Al Merola Field to face undefeated, state no. 9-ranked Solvay, a once-great program who fell on hard times before roaring back to life this fall and making the playoffs for the first time in more than a decade.With nothing guaranteed following its Oct. 11 home defeat to CVA, Cazenovia quickly gained control against a Mexico side that had lost six in a row. Ty Freyer got the Lakers on the board, scoring on a 20-yard run in the first quarter.Two more scoring drives followed in the second period, Ryan Romagnoli dashing 21 yards to the end zone and, minutes later, Cazenovia striking through the air as Romagnoli’s pass to Evan Murray turned into a 60-yard touchdown.
Despite fears that the economic downturn would affect this semester’s Greek recruitment numbers, representatives from the Interfraternity Council and the Panhellenic Council said membership growth for the fall semester remained steady.“This summer we were looking at the numbers at other universities and [when] we saw drops anywhere we were terrified, but our numbers were fairly strong,” said Blessing Waung, Panhellenic president.IFC said it had 1,020 men participate in fall rush and offered a total of 468 bids, representing a slight jump from the 438 of the previous year.This fall also marked the first time IFC was able to keep track of all men who rushed a fraternity by using a newly created online database system.“This is the first time we’ve had substantive data. In the past it wasn’t tracked with this kind of precision,” IFC President Nick Hamada said.Additionally, instead of closing the rush process Sunday after bid night, as in previous years, IFC ruled that interested fraternities could use this week as a secondary bid period, during which they can extend bids to men who may not have received one during the original bid process. Hamada said he hoped this would give chapters the chance to retain potential pledges.Panhellenic rushed 842 women, demonstrating a registration rate consistent with the numbers from last year, but only accepted a class of 539 bids, a 7 percent decrease compared with 579 from last fall.Waung said she attributed the decrease in recruitment to the various financial troubles students are experiencing.“We at Panhellenic have to adapt to the economy in the same ways as other organizations,” Waung said.Although sorority recruitment numbers were down, Panhellenic Vice President of Recruitment Hilary Veit said this decrease was marginal compared to other universities, where chapters are losing hundreds of potential new members.As part of their efforts to deal with the economic downturn, Waung said Panhellenic focused on being more upfront about sorority dues and stressing long-term financial benefits, such as living in their chapter’s house.Christina Pushaw, a sophomore majoring in history who dropped out of rush, said finances were a consideration in her decision, as she would have to pay her own dues.“I really would have to feel totally sure about joining a house before I spent my own money on it,” she said. “Whereas if my parents were paying for it, it might be a different story.”Kelly Williams, a sophomore majoring in print journalism who also dropped out of rush, said she thought most prospective pledges would have known about the finances beforehand.“I don’t feel like any girl is going to join a sorority and not know that there are dues. Everyone is well aware going in to it that there is a financial commitment as well as a time commitment,” she said.Still, some girls think joining a sorority is worth it, despite the cost.Hailey Andrews, a transfer student and sophomore majoring in broadcast journalism, said when she discussed college with her parents she first decided to save money to pay for sorority recruitment and dues.“My parents always told me they’d help pay for college, but I had to pay for dues if I wanted to join a sorority,” Andrews said. “I think knowing I did it on my own makes it even more fulfilling.”Panhellenic is planning to work with individual chapters to provide scholarships if students interested in joining a sorority are seriously concerned about paying for the dues.“We’re trying to save money in our budget wherever possible to have some sort of surplus to allocate for scholarships,” Veit said.Waung noted one of her goals for the semester is to establish a yearly Panhellenic scholarship in memory of Adrianna Bachan, the freshman from the Pi Beta Phi sorority who was killed in a hit-and-run last spring.
It was becoming an ugly trend. Before Syracuse hosted Loyola in the Carrier Dome Friday night, Syracuse had lost three games to ranked opponents by just a goal apiece. With SU trailing the Greyhounds in the second half, it appeared as if the Orange was in for another disappointing finish.But on this night there was a different feel down the stretch.The No. 10 Orange (9-4, 4-1 Big East) was able to stand its ground on Friday, defeating No. 13 Loyola, 13-11, in front of 412 fans at the Carrier Dome. Though SU dismantled Villanova (7-6, 0-5) Sunday, 18-3, the real challenge of the weekend came on Friday night. Coming off a heartbreaking one-goal loss to No. 11 Notre Dame last Sunday, Syracuse needed to prove to itself that it could defeat a fellow Big East power, especially in a tight contest.‘I think we came in today knowing that we had to come away with a win,’ senior attack Halley Quillinan said. ‘We knew that we were going to face a strong Big East team looking to come in here and upset us in the Dome. At the end, we kept our composure,’ The Orange came out of the gate with a vengeance, scoring three quick goals in the first eight minutes to take an early lead. Loyola responded with three goals of its own before senior midfielder Christina Dove gave the Orange a lead with her first goal of the game. The Greyhounds scored three of the last four goals in the half to take a 6-5 lead into the break.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSU had been here before. Deadlocked in tight games against quality opponents, the Orange has found itself on the short side of the stick more often than not this season. On Feb. 27 SU fell to No. 4 Virginia, 14-13. Then on March 21 the Orange was narrowly denied what would have been a monumental upset, losing to No. 1 Northwestern, 13-12. And then there’s the Notre Dame game, which proved especially damaging considering that it came at the hands of a Big East opponent.Syracuse knew that it couldn’t let another close one slip away.The second half didn’t begin as the Orange would have liked, as Loyola scored a little more than two minutes in for a two-goal lead, the Greyhounds’ largest of the evening. But about seven minutes into the half, the momentum began to turn.The Orange was outshot 18-8 in the first half as its offense rarely had the ball in its own territory. But suddenly Syracuse began to play a quicker game, moving the ball effectively and giving itself ample opportunities to score. After numerous missed shots, freshman attack Tegan Brown broke the ice with a free-position goal at the 20:29 mark.‘I think we just got our composure and our confidence back,’ Brown said. ‘We brought it together. We started talking and communicating again and decided to go at full pace.’Following Brown’s goal, the Orange began to wake up. SU scored three of the next five goals before freshman attack Michelle Tumolo scored what would be the eventual game-winner on a picture-perfect pass off a fast break.The Carrier Dome crowd erupted louder than it had all season, and the Orange never looked back en route to a victory.‘I think we were in a bit of a funk coming off the Notre Dame game,’ head coach Gary Gait said. ‘And I think they had a little bit of self-doubt. We just had to play the game, and instead of stopping to make passes and cutting at three-quarters speed, they decided to go at full speed.’Though Syracuse has not had a wealth of success in close games thus far, Quillinan admits that she enjoys when the games are tight. She believes that it brings out the best of her ability and gives her team a chip on its shoulder.Luckily for the Orange, that chip finally resulted in a win.‘I like close games,’ Quillinan said. ‘I like a battle. I like being competitive. I like walking in knowing that the other team is ready for a fight. To see the fire in some of my teammates’ eyes — like Michelle (Tumolo) and (freshman midfielder) Bridget Daley — that just makes me better and pushes me harder.’[email protected] Published on April 18, 2010 at 12:00 pm Comments Facebook Twitter Google+
Nine weeks ago, Tulane University football players had many things to be excited about. They were picked to finish third in the Conference USA preseason poll and were returning a talented crew of upperclassmen. Players were even discussing a possible return to a bowl game.”There are no specific goals, it’s just to be a champion,” Tulane quarterback Lester Ricard said in a preseason press release. “Whether that’s conference champion or some type of bowl. My expectations are high. I feel like we can go 13-0, max it out.”In the beginning, expectations were high and players were pumped. However no one was expecting Hurricane Katrina.When the hurricane hit eight weeks ago, it forced Tulane athletes and students to relocate for the semester. Green Wave athletes suddenly had different goals in mind. “We’re not going to use being a homeless football team as a reason to not try to succeed on the field,” Tulane head coach Chris Scelfo said in a press release. “We’re playing for a lot of people and the pressure is high, but our coaches and players are all up for the challenge. We are representing our university and our city and that gives us inspiration.”Though heads may have initially hung low, Tulane football players and other athletes have been grateful with their new homes. The football team has relocated to Ruston, La., and enrolled at Louisiana Tech University. Six other teams — men’s basketball, women’s swimming and diving, women’s volleyball, women’s soccer and men and women’s tennis have moved to Texas A&M University. Texas Tech has welcomed baseball and women’s basketball squads, while Southern Methodist University has admitted men and women’s golf. Both cross country teams will not compete this year.It’s been a rough two months for these athletes. They no longer need a win to be satisfied. Most players have been thrilled through simply competing.”Our team opened with an exhibition meet this weekend and that was the best four hours of therapy this group of student-athlete and coaches could have gotten,” Tulane head swim coach Daniella Irle said Monday in an e-mail. “Eight weeks ago we were not sure we were going to have an athletic department let alone a season. In these past eight weeks I can honestly say that this staff has been truly challenged both professionally and personally, as have our student-athletes. It has been very difficult at times but we also have had some very gratifying and humbling moments as well. I have always felt that the swimming and diving community possessed unusual generosity and camaraderie and I really know that to be true.”It may have taken a new home for these athletes to finally find the true meaning of sports — the thrill of competition — but they have been in a struggle to find ways to win. Though once tabbed the nation’s No. 1 defense after allowing an average of 176 yards per game, the football team has been in a rut, winning only two games this season. Tulane volleyball has only managed to post a 2-8 record midway through the season. Last year, the team won seven of its first 10 games.The Green Wave women’s soccer team has only posted one victory in 11 games, although it did not have an impressive record last season (7-10-2).All sports teams have found their schedules shortened. They have also been forced to play all games on the road.It’s a grim situation, but their seasons would not have taken place without the help of Texas A&M, SMU, Texas Tech and Louisiana Tech.”Our thanks go out to so many people who have made this season happen for us,” Irle said. “So many people have come together to help us provide our ladies with a season that is similar to what they had beforehand. [Everyone who has donated is] the reason we got off to a great start this year and the reason we are even in business right now. Our budgets are really non-existent at this time, so these gifts have been our only source of securing items and a sense of normalcy for our young women.”Though winning may not be a priority for Tulane, as it is for other schools, Green Wave athletes are satisfied by just competing, and that is what athletics should be about.
In a winter with what has felt like spring weather, sophomore guard Michael Flowers is blossoming into one of the top options coming off the bench for head coach Bo Ryan’s squad.”Right now he might be in the top-10 defensive players in the league,” Ryan said. “And offensively, his decision-making, his shot selection, and he’s feeling more confident now with his shot, that’s definitely improved too.”The goal-oriented Flowers says that while he may be a good defender now, he can always improve until he’s the best.”That is definitely a personal goal of mine,” Flowers said. “And it’s not a bad personal goal to have because if I do good that means that the team is doing good, but you know I just want to go out there and every time I step out on the court I want to produce for the team and I just want to make the team as successful as I possibly can.”Growing up dribbling a basketball around his house in Madison, the generally unselfish Flowers said playing in front of hometown fans weighed heavily on his decision to attend the University of Wisconsin — Madison and the chance to play for Ryan.”It’s the greatest thing in the world,” Flowers said. “I’m from around here and support and a lot of friendly faces and all, I mean if you’re comfortable, you’re going to have the potential to succeed.”Succeed he has, compiling 5.7 points per game, 3.3 rebounds and 2.4 assists all while playing 24 minutes per contest. The Madison La Follette High graduate has appeared in all 20 games, and he is likely to play in tonight’s matchup against Illinois despite suffering a knee injury late in Saturday’s game against Michigan. “[Flowers] brings an intense competitive nature,” said Ryan. “Everyday at practice, diving for balls, taking charges, he just plays hard on every possession. And he does the same in the games — his intensity is always at a high level, he’s the student of the game, he’s gotten better in his decision making, in his reads, so it’s fun coaching guys who continually show that they have a passion for the game and that they want to get better and that’s Mike.”Even with all the positive impressions Flowers has made on his coaches with the intensity and mental toughness he brings to the court every night, he is hungry for more.”You know I’m never satisfied with my play,” Flowers said. “So you know, to crack the starting lineup is an individual goal that I’m working towards and it’s the best compliment that I can receive from the coaches and so I’m just trying to get the confidence up and have them trust me to be one of the five starters.”With more playing time have come higher expectations. Like the up-and-down game of basketball, the grind and pressure on Flowers can sometimes be too much to bear, so like many before him, Coach Ryan has helped him iron out the rough spots.”Bo Ryan has taught me to never have a bad day,” Flowers said. “As simple as that sounds, but it’s really hard to never have a bad day, I mean you face a lot of adversity out there on and off the court, you just have to handle it, and just the way you handle yourself and carry yourself about is really important. Plus, basketball is a big part of my life — I’m never going to get away from that.”When he’s not on the court, Flowers likes to, always with a basketball in hand, spend time with his family, listen to music, hang out and watch movies all at the same time. His favorite genre of movies is comedy.”If it’s funny, it’s funny no matter when it was made,” Flowers said. “I like, you know, ‘Old School.’ I like ‘Wedding Crashers,’ ‘Dodgeball,’ Ben Stiller movies, Vince Vaughn movies, Martin Lawrence, Will Smith, all those great comedians, I like them all.”Being a man of a thousand facial expressions himself, Flowers said there’s only one comedian that can portray what he represents to his friends and family.”I’d have to go with Martin Lawrence,” Flowers said. “He’s the more physical funny comedians, makes faces, just his gestures is really hilarious.”Despite all the pressure of being a Division-I basketball player, the fun-loving Flowers loves the game and is always readying himself to ignite his team to victory.
IOWA CITY, Iowa — It may have been Senior Day at Kinnick Stadium, but the afternoon belonged to a junior. Making his first career start, in place of the injured John Stocco, junior quarterback Tyler Donovan was thrust into about as unsavory a situation as could be imagined. The shifty scrambler was charged with leading Wisconsin into one of the Big Ten’s most hostile environments to take on a team no current Badger had ever beaten: the Iowa Hawkeyes, who were looking to right a season that has gone awry with another timely win over UW. “It doesn’t get much more high pressure than that,” sophomore cornerback Jack Ikegwuonu said. Surrounded by noise and bloodthirsty defenders, Donovan, playing with a chip on his shoulder that could be seen from the nosebleed section, calmly quarterbacked Wisconsin to a hard-fought 24-21 victory.”I wanted to prove something to myself, but more so, I wanted to prove something to the team,” a reserved and still very collected Donovan said after the game. “I don’t think you can say enough about a guy starting his first game in the Big Ten finale in a hostile environment,” Bielema said. “The plays he was able to come up with today were amazing and gratifying to watch as a coach.”Often standing in the middle of a maelstrom of chaos, with blitzing Hawkeyes coming at him from every direction, Donovan calmly led the Badgers down the field on several key scoring drives. After getting out to a fast start, where Donovan completed his first seven passes en route to a 10-0 Wisconsin lead, the Badgers watched Iowa’s Drew Tate briefly catch fire, as the Hawkeyes scored twice and took the lead. With the pendulum of momentum — a favorite expression of Barry Alvarez — swinging in the direction of Iowa, the junior signal-caller almost immediately led UW on a six-play 73-yard scoring drive punctuated by a spectacular 42-yard touchdown by receiver Luke Swan. On the drive, Donovan accounted for every yard, either via passing or scrambling. “He took some shots, too,” senior safety Joe Stellmacher said. “I don’t know how he got up from all of them, but he did.”Donovan came up big again late. As the Badgers clung to a perilous 17-14 lead, Iowa downed a punt at the UW 3-yard line that left Donovan standing in the Hawkeyes’ end zone — with the howling student section at his back, no more than 20 feet away. After a short P.J. Hill run, Donovan took the snap and dropped back 2 yards deep into the Iowa scoring box and with two Iowa defenders closing in, he completed a strike to tight end Travis Beckum for 13 yards and some much needed breathing room. The play set up a simply sparkling 15-play, 97-yard scoring drive that proved to be the decisive point in the contest. The march down the field might’ve been led by a quarterback making his first start, but during it Donovan was nothing less than a field general, poised beyond his experience. “For the first start of his career he was so poised,” Stellmacher said. “He was really playing to win, I mean you could see that. He was holding nothing back, he was playing to win and played his heart out.”My hat’s off to him.”Donovan has had to sit behind Stocco for three years and hear questions about his decision-making and arm strength. He then had to watch the new coaching staff bring in an experienced transfer in former Kansas State starter Allen Evridge, who will be eligible to play next season. The game may prove to be something of an audition for Donovan as the Badgers’ 2007 starting quarterback position. “I’m sure after this season is completed, everybody is going to want to know who the starting quarterback is at the University of Wisconsin, and I think [Donovan] took a huge step forward in that area right now,” Bielema said. “Today he went out there, was able to execute and get a win.”
After a season that didn’t include a single Big Ten victory, UW women’s tennis coach Patti Henderson decided to call it quits Monday.After 13 seasons with Wisconsin, Henderson is resigning from her position to pursue interests outside of collegiate athletics. Her last day of employment will be May 31, but a national search for her replacement is already underway.”It is with deep gratitude and appreciation to the University of Wisconsin Athletic Department and Director of Athletics Barry Alvarez that I step away from my position as the women’s tennis coach and follow my heart to pursue my new dream,” Henderson said in a statement.”I offer many thanks to the athletic program for providing me a training ground as rich and vibrant as all great relationships,” she added. “This was a relationship in which I was able to learn and to grow and has now completed its natural cycle. To this unfolding, I am forever grateful to Barry.”And Alvarez said he was grateful for everything Henderson has done for the university over the years.”I’m very appreciative of Patti’s years of service to the University of Wisconsin,” Alvarez said. “Patti was committed to providing a great experience for her student-athletes and that commitment was reflected in their successes on the court and in the classroom. We wish her well as she begins a new chapter in her life.”Despite her struggles in the past season, Henderson’s teams were some of the best in school history.In only her second season (1995-96), Henderson led the Badgers to the school’s only Big Ten title, a No. 7 national ranking and a NCAA regional win. Over her UW career, Henderson coached four players to seven All-American awards, while 10 of her players have won 20 Big Ten awards.In 1996 and 2002, she was honored by her conference peers as the Big Ten Coach of the Year.A possible replacement for Henderson’s position could come within the program as assistant coach Doanh Wang remains with the team. Although this past season was Wang’s first with UW, he has coached in the Madison area for several years. In three seasons coaching at Edgewood College, Wang was twice named Coach of the Year.In her statement, Henderson thanked Wang for his contributions in what was a difficult season for the entire team.”I am especially indebted to Doanh Wang, my assistant coach,” she said. “Rare is the individual who will walk away from a sure thing to take a chance at the unknown. Doanh not only took this leap of faith, he backed it up with a hunger, passion and commitment only an open heart and soul can allow.”Henderson also gave Wisconsin her best wishes.”I leave UW, with love in my heart for Wisconsin athletics and a knowing of the commitment to excellence this athletic department strives for,” Henderson said.”I wish all the best to the University of Wisconsin and the athletic department.”
With a pair of convincing wins over St. Cloud State this weekend, head coach Mark Johnson and his top-ranked Wisconsin women’s hockey team finished the first half of their season virtually unblemished. The 18-0-2 Badgers can now take a few weeks off, relax and prepare for a daunting second half of the season that includes tough away series at top-five rivals Minnesota and Minnesota-Duluth.St. Cloud came to the Kohl Center ranked third in the WCHA with plenty of momentum courtesy of a five-game winning streak. The Badgers, however, were sporting an 18-game unbeaten streak that included eight wins over top 10 opponents.Wisconsin’s 7-0 and 6-2 wins over the Huskies finalized a near-perfect first half of the season, and gave Wisconsin some breathing room atop the rankings of a very competitive WCHA.Statistically, the Badgers are leading the nation in nearly every offensive and defensive category. Wisconsin is allowing a slight 0.94 goals a contest while scoring 5.26 goals a game, leading the nation in both categories.Individually, Wisconsin has plenty of representation in the national leaderboard. Six Badgers rank in the top 20 nationally in scoring. Sophomore Hilary Knight leads the nation in points, with 22 goals and 17 assists. Senior captain Erika Lawler is second nationally in points, with 32, and first in assists with 23. Also in the top 20 nationally for points are freshman Brooke Ammerman (30), junior Meghan Duggan (28), junior Jasmine Giles (24) and senior Angie Keseley (23).Senior goaltender Jessie Vetter leads the nation with an impressive 0.952 save percentage. Vetter also leads all net-minders with 17 wins and a slim 0.827 goals against average.Johnson noted how valuable Vetter has been to the team’s success, adding that strong defensive play has also helped limit opposing offenses.“She has been a stonewall back there,” Johnson said following Wisconsin’s 6-2 win on Saturday. “The people in front of her are playing well, they are playing very responsible within our own end. If we have breakdowns or the other team creates opportunities, [Vetter] has been very comfortable and she can make the saves. If we have kids that are committed to playing hard in their own end, it makes it very difficult for the other team to score goals.”The Badgers have been powered by a well-blended mix of productive freshman and veterans who dedicated themselves following last spring’s crushing loss to Minnesota-Duluth in the national championship. Johnson likes where his team is at this juncture of the season, but notes that there still is plenty of work to be done.“We are in good position, but we have 20 games still when we come back,” Lawler said. “I would not have predicted us being in this position in September. You have to complement the players, and I did after the game. They committed themselves last spring, they trained hard over the summer, put themselves in a position to get a good start and they have kept the momentum building, and building.”Also touching on the fruits of the team’s efforts was Lawler.“It is a tremendous thing that we have the best record in program history,” Lawler said. “I think we are all very proud of ourselves, because we worked for it, and it definitely did not come easy. ”Lawler, the Badgers’ pint-sized senior captain and emotional leader, sees her team as one that enjoys playing together and has great cohesion on all fronts.“A huge contribution to how successful we have been is how well we get along on and off the ice,” Lawler said. “Everyone seems to have a really good work ethic. We have found good chemistry on all four lines. I could go down the line with all my teammates and talk about how each is contributing to our success, whether they play a lot or not. Everyone is contributing in some way or another. ”
ST. LOUIS (AP) — Milwaukee Brewers second baseman Rickie Weeks will miss the rest of the season because of a tear in his left wrist, a severe setback for the NL Central leaders.Weeks hurt himself while striking out Sunday in St. Louis. He had an MRI exam Monday in Arizona, and it revealed the injury.The oft-injured Weeks was hitting .272 with nine home runs and 24 RBIs. The Brewers reached the playoffs last year as the wild-card team.The Brewers said Weeks had a torn sheath in his left wrist and will likely have surgery this week. Recovery time is four to six months.“Rickie was making progress. He was showing he could be the kind of player we all thought he could be,” Brewers general manager Doug Melvin said before Monday night’s game at St. Louis.“You feel bad for the team, but you feel bad for Rickie, too,” he said. “He put so much work into it.”Melvin said Craig Counsell will fill in at second base for Weeks for the time being.Melvin noted Weeks was on a pace to score 100 runs and have 100 RBIs this year. Weeks was the overall No. 2 pick in the 2003 draft.Weeks was hurt on his final swing in the first inning. “I just felt a little pressure, a little tug on it,” he said after the 8-2 win over the Cardinals.Weeks missed the last two months of the 2006 season after undergoing surgery for a tendon injury to his right wrist. He was examined by Dr. Don Sheridan, who performed that operation as well as one on his left thumb in 2005.
The old size-versus-speed debate is one of the most overused and illogical ways to analyze or preview a college football game.Unfortunately, Badger fans heard all about it leading up to the Champs Sports Bowl against “speedy” Miami.Many believed “The U” would be too fast for the Badgers. Experts feared those watching would inevitably be blinded by the overwhelming quickness of the ‘Canes. The powerful UW rushing attack was supposed to pale in comparison to the Hurricanes’ athletic front seven.So how did the Badgers manage to upend Miami down in Orlando? How did they hold that explosive Miami attack to just 249 yards of total offense?To sit here and say that it was UW’s size that defeated Miami’s speed is quite honestly false. Those two teams represent a lot more than those two words.Sure, Wisconsin’s powerful rushing attack and enormous offensive line had something to do with the signature victory, but UW outplayed the Hurricanes in every aspect of the game. They were not just the more physically imposing team, they were simply the better team. The Badgers are more than just powerful — they are incredibly balanced and, yeah, they too have some fast players on the roster.True to form, UW ran it down Miami’s throats and it was an impressive display, but that’s not all it did. The Badgers won that game with a relentless pass rush, sure tackling and the ability to consistently convert on third down through the air.You know what’s funny about all those things? The vast majority of teams in college football, whether labeled speedy or not, are well aware they lead to wins.And that’s what makes this whole speed and size debate so aggravating: it just doesn’t exist. Everyone needs speed and everyone needs physicality — this is football we’re talking about after all.Twenty years ago there may have been a gap in speed and athleticism across college football. I wouldn’t disagree that the southern teams had more speed, but in today’s game, every program gets its hands on quick players. Recruiting now goes coast-to-coast as midwestern programs continue to bring in players from Florida and California.As far as speed is concerned, the playing field is now pretty much even.And while everyone was busy talking about the difference in styles between the two programs, no one acknowledged that Miami had almost the exact same offensive game plan as the Badgers. Most overlook this, but the Hurricanes’ offense is only successful when they get their running game going. They had three backs combine to total over two thousand yards on the year — that’s physical football. They have a big offensive line and physical runners, but they are labeled as the speedy finesse team. The Miami players shivering in 50-degree weather didn’t promote a very rugged image, but they at least wanted to be physical up front.There are very few teams in football that can run their offenses effectively without moving the ball on the ground or winning the battles on line of scrimmage. UW won those battles and got pressure on Jacory Harris, while Scott Tolzien was comfortable in the pocket. That’s why we saw the Badgers dominate in the passing game, because I don’t care how fast your receivers are, without time to throw, no one looks open.And as the Hurricanes’ offense struggled, Tolzien became the first Wisconsin quarterback to reach 200 completions in a season, but you won’t hear anyone acknowledge the strides UW has made in the passing game.Yet, the 2009 Champs Sports Bowl isn’t the only example of a game that illuminates the idiocy of the speed and size debate, especially in the Big Ten.Ohio State and Terrelle Pryor ran wild in the Rose Bowl. The Buckeyes dominated the line of scrimmage and wore down an Oregon offense that was said to be the most explosive in the country. And thanks to Iowa and Penn State, the Big Ten proved it has some capable athletes to go along with oversized linemen (four Big Ten teams finished in the top 16).Here’s the thing — in college football today we have so many types of offenses, so many formations that we lose sight of the basics. Some teams spread it out, some opt to play between the tackles and others pull out some crazy triple option attack. But in the end each team’s core objective remains the same: you must control the line of scrimmage.Down in those trenches you need size, you need to be physical. Big Ten teams, SEC teams, ACC teams, all of them. And as unbelievable as it sounds, the good teams have both size and speed.Just check out Miami head coach Randy Shannon’s comments to ESPN.com prior to the bowl game.“It’s not going to be a situation where we’re going to be faster than those guys or they’re going to be faster than us,” he said. “We have a big offensive line; they have a big offensive line. They have big guys on defense; we have big guys on defense. It’s going to work itself out.“It’s just a myth that if you’re down south you run faster.”Coach Shannon was proved right as UW dispelled the ridiculous myth once again. I guess if the south wants to regain the speed advantage they just need to get faster, because the rest of the country has certainly caught up.Max is a junior majoring in journalism. Think the size versus speed debate should continue? Let him know at [email protected]
Blake Succa and the Badgers will be hard pressed to get a win against a Creighton team that has won four consecutive games against Wisconsin.[/media-credit]After only two games at home, the Wisconsin men’s soccer team gets back on the road this weekend to take on No. 16 Creighton.Sporting a 1-4-1 record, the Badgers are still looking for another win, as their only victory came in the first game of the season. Hitting the road to face the Bluejays Friday, though, will be a tough challenge.Creighton is 5-1-0 on the season, returning six starters from last season. The Bluejays also have a new head coach this year in Jamie Clark, who previously coached at Harvard where he brought the team to the NCAA tournament two years in a row.“For a team like that – I played some guys this summer – they’re fast, they’re strong,” sophomore defenseman Kyle McCrudden said. “It’s hard to prepare for a team like that – high intensity practices. Hopefully we’ll come out this weekend and just play well.”The last time Wisconsin and Creighton matched up was in 2006, when the Badgers fell 1-0 at home. Overall, Wisconsin is 2-6-1 against Creighton. In their last four meetings, the Bluejays have bested the Badgers, something UW hopes to change this year.“We started off on the road for the first four games, we’ve been traveling a lot and then we had a home stretch here this last week,” freshman defender Blake Succa said. “We’ve had a few days off. We know they’re going to be a big challenge for us so we rested up for two days and [Wednesday] we got back in it. We had a pretty hard practice knowing that we’ll have [another] day of rest.”With a solid defense already in place, Wisconsin is now looking to get their offense rolling. In the spots they missed last weekend at home – connecting on passes and controlling the ball in front of the opponent’s goal – the Badgers are hoping corrections will bring more success.“We’re doing a lot of focusing on our top of game play, which is positioning,” junior defenseman Arnel Zahorivic said. “Keeping the ball in small areas and then distributing it out wide. Just keep working on that and keep building so we can use that against Creighton. I think we’ll be very effective with that.”Despite all the work put in during practice, UW knows Creighton will still be one of its biggest challenges this year. For the young team, playing a top-20 team is certainly a helpful experience.“We’ll give it our best shot,” Succa said. “It’ll be a challenge, but I think it’ll be good for us.”Heading back on the road again will serve as a test for the Badgers. So far this season, the squad has been learning a lot with every game. While the Badgers feel they are continually improving, going on the road against a tough team will show how far the team has come.“We’re developing as well,” Zahirovic said. “If we just keep working hard, keep improving, I don’t see why we couldn’t put up a challenge against them. After all they’re just another team just like us.”
To see the effect Danroy ‘D.J.’ Henry had on a profound number of people, look no further than the 800 that crowded the Pace University gymnasium in his memory last Sunday. One by one, Henry’s friends and other Pace students told stories and anecdotes about how they remembered him best. ‘Danroy was very popular and had a lot of friends,’ said Joe O’Donnell, Pace’s athletic director. ‘I think the students that got up and said something were able to get some of the feelings they had out.’ Henry was shot and killed by two police officers Oct. 17 outside a bar in Thornwood, N.Y. His death occurred hours after Pace lost its Homecoming game to Stonehill College, a college coincidentally located in Henry’s hometown of Easton, Mass. Henry’s death has become a national story. There are highly conflicting accounts of the shooting from police and witnesses, and there are questions about whether proper medical attention was given to him after he was shot. Pace will take the field for its first game after Henry’s death this Saturday in a league matchup against University of New Haven. This is one of the first steps toward normalcy in what has been a hectic series of events for the Pace football team. Or as close to normal as it can get.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text O’Donnell said the team has taken steps to bring things back to the way they were. Last week’s game against Bentley College — which was supposed to be Homecoming in Waltham, Mass. — was cancelled. The players took Sunday and Monday off from practice after the death of their teammate and resumed practices Tuesday. O’Donnell said this was an effort to bring back the normalcy to which the team is accustomed. The last time Pace had to cancel a game was in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks. But O’Donnell doesn’t expect that normalcy to return soon. ‘There’s nothing in the makeup of college kids to handle something like this,’ he said. ‘Most people don’t experience the loss of a parent, brother or sister until later in life. To lose something like this, this is very dramatic.’ That Sunday night, a candlelight vigil was held on the football field. Immediately following the vigil, those students returned to the Pace gym to tell their stories. Stories of how Henry is remembered as a genuinely good-natured person. Pat Casey, a senior finance, accounting and entrepreneurship and emerging enterprises major at Syracuse, went to Oliver Ames High School in Easton, Mass., with Henry and played football with him for three years. When he first met Henry during their freshman year of high school, Henry was a much smaller person. After putting in time in the weight room year after year, Casey said he became fit and much more of an athlete. He said Henry always planned to play sports in college. A three-sport athlete at Oliver Ames, he constantly put in effort to succeed. After graduating from Oliver Ames in 2007, Henry did a post-graduate year to improve as a player and was recruited to play at Iona College. When Iona dropped its football program in 2008, Henry searched for a new team and found a home at Division II Pace, located in Westchester County. ‘He wasn’t insecure at all, he was comfortable in his own skin,’ Casey said. ‘He knew what he was capable of. He wanted to grow from that.’ Casey called him an inspiring figure. ‘He was one of those kids who really was working his a** off and really going hard, going out of his way to be nice to people,’ Casey said. ‘He showed appreciation for where he was in life.’ So Pace will show that same respect to its routine. For them, getting on the field each Saturday is normal. So at 1 p.m., when the game kicks off, some of that normal might return. That return to the field helped Connecticut after a similar tragedy occurred in Storrs last season. Almost a year to the day before Henry was killed, UConn cornerback Jasper Howard was stabbed and killed at an on-campus event following the Huskies’ win over Louisville. UConn took to the field to escape the pressures surrounding the situation. ‘The games and practices were really healthy because it let you think just about football and nothing else,’ said Connecticut Associate Director of Athletics/Communications Mike Enright. ‘It’s a place to escape, if you will.’ UConn scheduled practices and press conferences in the days following Howard’s death at the same time they had always been scheduled. It wasn’t normal, but it was consistent. It helped to keep the team together. The team also emphasized the attitude of playing the remaining games the way Howard ‘would have wanted them to play football,’ Enright said. That is a sentiment that also holds true for the Setters. ‘The attitude is there. It’s a good attitude,’ O’Donnell said. ‘They want to play this for D.J., which will be normal. … We try not to get too emotional.’ After discussing with his captains, head coach Chris Dapolito thought this was the best move for the team. ‘We’ve talked to everyone, we’ve talked to the faculty,’ O’Donnell said. ‘The faculty has been absolutely wonderful in the ways they’ve tried to help the student-athletes get back to normalcy. If there is a normalcy after this.’ [email protected] Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on October 27, 2010 at 12:00 pm Comments
Donovan McNabb gave the Syracuse faithful one final salute. He hiked up the first level of stairs in the Carrier Dome and stood on the flat handicapped concourse, appreciating the 49,521 fans that packed the stadium on Nov. 28, 1998.The gesture was a courtesy, not necessary after the display he put on in his final home game. With a Big East championship and Orange Bowl berth on the line, he ran for three touchdowns and threw for two more in a 66-13 thrashing of Miami (Fla.).‘When they announced the seniors, and just tears came from your eyes because you knew that all the effort that the guys put forth throughout the summers and during the springs of just trying to establish a name and establish an identity for themselves at Syracuse University,’ McNabb said.Syracuse won the conference outright, finishing at 6-1, a game ahead of Miami, Virginia Tech and West Virginia — two of which SU beat in 1998. The Miami game was the stamp on the McNabb era, a four-year span when Syracuse went 23-5 in the Big East at a time when the Big East was a conference held in high regards. Syracuse competed with the likes of the Hurricanes and Hokies and had a Northeast rivalry with Boston College throughout the 1990s as well.And when Syracuse announced its move from the Big East to the Atlantic Coast Conference on Sept. 18, it meant those rivalries would be rekindled.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text‘I think it’s great. If you look at the history of Syracuse football, Maryland and BostonCollege were staples,’ SU Athletic Director Daryl Gross said. ‘And then, like you said, Virginia Tech and Miami, those are going to be fun, too.’From the first year of full league play in the Big East in 1993 to the defections of perennial college football powers Miami and Virginia Tech in 2003, four teams won a conference title. Five for Miami. Three for Virginia Tech. One for West Virginia.And two for Syracuse, which, before its down years of the past decade, was a team that could compete with any school in the nation.***Syracuse went toe-to-toe with the future national champion. The Orangemen fought off the ropes, scoring 20 points in the fourth quarter to go up by two against Tennessee.Volunteers kicker Jeff Hall nailed a 27-yard field goal as time expired to give Tennessee, the 1998 national champ, a 34-33 win in the season opener in the Carrier Dome, but the win didn’t deter SU’s season.Syracuse went to Michigan Stadium the next week and jumped out to a 31-point lead in a 38-28 win over the then-No. 13 Wolverines, kick-starting a season that culminated in the Orange Bowl.‘They may beg to differ on the basketball side, but it was a football school,’ McNabb said. ‘When football season came around, our student section was filled every week, people on campus throwing Frisbees, they’re out there partying on Fridays, Saturday mornings they had their tailgate.‘It was an atmosphere that you look out on TV now, where we didn’t need (College) GameDay or ESPN there. We already had our GameDay, our fans are fired up and ready to go.’From 1996-99, the smallest home crowd at the Carrier Dome was 42,246 — for a game against Tulane. The lowest attendance of those four years is higher than the best attendance SU has received in its four home games in 2011.Syracuse’s days as a ‘football school’ are long gone, with the basketball team’s consistent performances and the rock-bottom seasons for the football program under Greg Robinson. But the move to the ACC, combined with the resurrection of the SU tradition under third-year head coach Doug Marrone, has some former SU players believing the glory days for Syracuse football could return.Mark Baniewicz, an Orange offensive lineman from 1996-99, felt jubilation when he heard the news that Syracuse escaped a conference on its deathbed.‘They tried to make a big deal about where the Big East conference was heading, but let’s be honest — it’s dying,’ Baniewicz said.He said the ACC was the right move, in part because it rekindles old rivalries that should put fans in the seats.‘Virginia Tech, BC and Miami were always the three red-letter games,’ Baniewicz said.The Carrier Dome used to get so loud that Baniewicz said he couldn’t have a conversation with the person standing next to him. When Syracuse played Virginia Tech in 1998, the fans stormed the field following McNabb’s last-second touchdown pass to Stephen Brominski to give the Orangemen a 28-26 win.Chris Rippon remembers that game fondly as well. Rippon held multiple defensive coaching positions with SU from 1993-2004, including working as Syracuse’s defensive coordinator from 1999-2003. On the Hokies’ drive prior to SU’s game-winning touchdown, he couldn’t communicate with the coaches in the booth because it was so loud.But Rippon, currently the defensive coordinator at Marshall, is slightly more skeptical than Baniewicz. Those were the 1990s. Syracuse football whiffed in the 2000s, and the rivalries may be too far removed to bring the days of almost 50,000 people back to the Dome.‘Syracuse has got phenomenal tradition, and Doug (Marrone) is trying to resurrect that,’ Rippon said. ‘I just don’t know what the mark is in the Northeast anymore, if that culture has moved on and gotten older.’***Nervous doesn’t describe McNabb’s feelings about his alma mater going up against schools like Virginia Tech, Clemson and Florida State. But he’s a little wary.‘I’m kind of, I wouldn’t say too much worried, but you’re kind of on your toes now,’ he said. ‘It’s kind of like really, do we have the recruits, do we have the athletes that can compete week in and week out in the ACC?’Recent history would say no. Syracuse snapped a seven-game losing streak to ACC teams with its season-opening victory over Wake Forest this year. And since McNabb graduated, Syracuse has lost at least five games in 11 of the last 12 seasons.But McNabb is also confident in what the Orange can become down the line.‘If Boston College and West Virginia and Miami can do it, I believe that we can,’ McNabb said. ‘It may take a couple years.’Syracuse lost 17-10 to Miami in the last Big East meeting between the two schools on Nov. 15, 2003. In SU’s second-to-last meeting with Virginia Tech, SU beat the Hokies in three overtimes. At the time of the last big conference shake-up, Syracuse wasn’t that far off from those schools.‘I think when you respect a program, it kind of brings out the best in you,’ Virginia Tech head coach Frank Beamer said in the ACC coaches’ teleconference Oct. 5. ‘And we have always respected Miami. We have always respected Syracuse.’***Syracuse was beating Miami as soon as the Hurricanes’ airplane touched down.Andre King said most of the Hurricanes players had never seen snow before. King, a sophomore wide receiver on that 1998 Hurricanes squad, was on his first trip to the Carrier Dome.King led Miami in receiving on that day, catching three balls for 34 yards — a measly total when Syracuse was scoring 66 points. The Hurricanes’ top two receivers for the season, future NFL stars Reggie Wayne and Santana Moss, both went without a catch.‘Good competition, man. The Dome was always loud,’ King said. ‘I mean, the Dome seemed like the fans were right in your back pocket because it was so small and loud, but those games were good.’Syracuse completely dismantled a Miami team full of NFL stars. Wayne, Moss, Edgerrin James, Bubba Franks, Ed Reed, Dan Morgan and Damione Lewis were all starters in that game who went on to become first-round NFL draft picks.King said then-Miami receivers coach Curtis Johnson made King, Wayne, Moss and the other receivers stay on the field during Syracuse’s celebration following the game. The Orangemen set an example for Miami to watch.They were a model for a Hurricanes team that won the national championship in 2001.‘They were rolling oranges on the ground and saying they were getting ready to go to the Orange Bowl (which is played) on our field, that was painful to watch,’ King said. ‘… He made us go back out there and watch them celebrate, just so we can see how that felt and how we wanted to be there in the future.’That rivalry will return when Syracuse joins the ACC, a conference that will now have five former Big East schools among its 14 members. King said he’s excited for Miami and Syracuse to play again, although it’s hard to expect the hype to be there.There will be ways to bring it back, though. King expects Syracuse-Miami reruns on ESPN Classic to develop hype for the matchup and to remind people that, yes, it was a heated rivalry.Whether or not Syracuse will be at a level to compete with Miami and Virginia Tech the way it used to remains to be seen. But it will add a new, old element to Syracuse football once the Hurricanes and Hokies come back to the Carrier Dome.‘When you knew you were getting up for Miami week, everyone knew,’ McNabb said. ‘It was big on campus. You talk about tailgating and you talk about pep rallies, and it was one for us throughout my career, it was almost like the Big East championship.’[email protected]—Sports Editor Michael Cohen and Asst. News Editor Jon Harris contributed reporting to this article. Published on October 10, 2011 at 12:00 pm Contact Mark: [email protected] | @mark_cooperjr Comments Facebook Twitter Google+
The 1983 Syracuse men’s lacrosse team had two uniforms: blue and white.Leading up to the ‘83 NCAA Division I Men’s Lacrosse Championship, the Orangemen were slated to wear their away blue uniforms against Johns Hopkins. But the team had other plans. Sophomore midfielder Brad Kotz, who was later named the tournament’s MVP, remembers the players urging coach Roy Simmons Jr. to implement a new color style.“We had never worn orange before that game,” Kotz said. “But we were the Orangemen, and it seemed only right to put on orange, like a tradition or something.”Simmons called to Syracuse to see if orange uniforms could be delivered to Rutgers. The team’s wish was granted and it was presented with new, orange jerseys prior to the game. The players thought they were upholding a tradition with the new shirts. In retrospect — 30 years and 11 national titles later — they were starting a far bigger one.Winning.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe Orangemen would go on to defeat Johns Hopkins 17-16 in the title game to capture the first national championship in school history. That 1983 squad is remembered for breaking ground. Members of the team recall their championship fondly, and know their role in catapulting SU into the national spotlight.“We had never experienced anything like that, not only as a team but as individuals,” then-sophomore defender Fred Cambria said. “It made us really start to appreciate the meaning of the word ‘team,’ because that is what that championship was all about.”It was like something out of a movie.Syracuse fell behind 12-5 in the middle of the third quarter and looked all but defeated. But then something clicked, something that none of the players will ever be able to explain.It started with Darren Lawlor’s goal late in the third quarter. Then Kotz and fellow sophomore Tim Nelson, both All-Americans, put the Orangemen onto their backs. Nelson poetically quarterbacked SU’s offense while Kotz started winning every faceoff and scoring at will. The result was eight straight goals that ended with an exclamation point.“When Randy Lundblad scored the goal that iced it I remember getting onto my knees and sliding at half field,” Nelson said. “I didn’t know what else to do, we shocked ourselves.”It wasn’t that the Orangemen weren’t used to winning. They were 13-1 on the season before beating Johns Hopkins, and the program was known for churning out competitive teams. But the team was also used to playing second fiddle to the national prominence of programs like Johns Hopkins and North Carolina.Heading into the 1983 championship game, Johns Hopkins had 39 championships, four in the NCAA. The Blue Jays were also celebrating the program’s 100th anniversary that season. Beating Johns Hopkins wasn’t just unlikely, it was unheard of.Still, the Orangemen’s determined upperclassmen weren’t going to let the past dictate the future.“We didn’t get the memo that we were supposed to lose that day,” then-senior defensive captain Jeff McCormick said. “Being a senior on a team with so much young talent wasn’t necessarily challenging. I just had to always let guys know that we could play with anyone, and I think we proved that.”Three decades later, Syracuse has become a perennial NCAA contender like the Johns Hopkins team that was supposed to derail its title hopes. The program now has 11 NCAA championships and 27 final four appearances, having become a destination for the nation’s top talent.“It’s not that we were angry being behind the Hopkins’ and UNC’s of the world, it’s just how it was,” said Derek Maltz Sr., a sophomore midfielder in 1983. “But what we did was huge. It allowed everyone to see what those inside the program knew all along. That Syracuse was one of the best lacrosse schools in the country, and is to this day.”The elder Maltz walked onto the team in 1982 and his son, Derek Maltz Jr., now starts for an SU team that will vie for the program’s 12th title Monday afternoon against Duke. Thirty years ago, Maltz and his teammates carved out a path. Now they watch as another generation attempts to walk down it.“To know that my son now has the opportunity to achieve the same thing I did is really special for me,” Maltz said. “Everyone deserves the feeling of winning a national championship. Everybody.”All of the members of the team have gone down different roads since a rare collection of ambition and talent brought them together on the biggest stage in college lacrosse.Cambria went into the entertainment business and won a National Sports Emmy for his work on the HBO sports documentary, “Assault in The Ring.” Kotz won two championships with the Philadelphia Wings of the National Lacrosse League after graduating from SU. He’s since settled down with his family outside of Washington D.C., owns a small business, and runs a lacrosse program that his two daughters play in. Maltz coordinates various defense agencies in the Washington D.C. area.Maltz, his former roommate Cambria, and Kotz met up in Philadelphia to watch SU’s 8-7 final four win over Denver on Friday. They’ll do so again for the title game on Monday.McCormick founded Saturn Partners in 1994 and was recently named the executive producer of the movie Crooked Arrows. He will be celebrating his wife’s birthday during SU’s championship quest, and will obtain updates any way he can.And then there’s Nelson, the team’s steady facilitator that refused to accept defeat. Nelson is currently the assistant vice president of advancement at Utica College, after serving as the men’s head lacrosse coach from 1999-05. He has been, and will continue to watch this year’s SU team from his couch.Regardless of where life has taken them since winning it all together, they all see this year’s team the same way.As the 2013 Orange head into a championship game of its own, they are predecessors to the success achieved 30 years ago, another symbolization of just how monumental that inaugural championship team was.“I won’t say we’re the best team in SU history, but we’ll always be the first,” Nelson said. “The fact that I’ll always be able to say that, well, that’s nice.” Comments Published on May 26, 2013 at 1:46 pm Contact Jesse: [email protected] | @dougherty_jesse Facebook Twitter Google+
Published on February 7, 2014 at 12:25 am Facebook Twitter Google+ In a less than arousing college basketball weekend there’s still, as always, a fair share of story lines presented by Saturday’s slate.Wichita State will probably continue its undefeated season. Steve Fisher will continue to coach in a time machine. And someone on Kansas is going to baptize someone on West Virginia.After that, treat yourself to some average basketball and bank on next week being a little more exciting.No. 15 Texas at Kansas State, 1:30 p.m., ESPN3It’s an underwhelming weekend of college basketball when a Big 12 matchup featuring an unranked team sneaks its way into the top games. The Longhorns (18-4, 7-2 Big 12) are white hot in conference play, winning their last seven games including four against ranked opponents. Texas recently met Kansas State (15-7, 5-4) on Jan. 21 and beat the then-No. 22 Wildcats 67-64. Don’t expect this one to be as close as that, as the Longhorns are hitting their stride with a formidable combination of staunch rebounding and up-tempo offense.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textNo. 10 Michigan at No. 17 Iowa, 2 p.m., ESPNMichigan (17-5, 9-1 Big Ten) was brought back down to earth by Indiana last Sunday, after starting 8-0 in the Big Ten. Then the Wolverines got back on track with a blowout win over Nebraska this week and will look to feast on a stumbling Hawkeyes (17-6, 6-4) squad. Iowa has lost three of its last five games — one of which was against Michigan two weeks ago. The Hawkeyes will have a chance if they slow down play in the half court, but if the Wolverines outshoot them, Nik Stauskas, Glen Robinson III and Caris LeVert will catapult the visiting team to a win.West Virginia at No. 8 Kansas, 4 p.m., ESPNKansas (17-5, 8-1 Big 12) dropped its first conference game to Texas last weekend but hung on to its Top 10 spot. West Virginia (14-9, 6-4) has been shaky since the start of conference play — relying heavily on the scoring duo of Juwan Staten and Eron Harris — and will have to have a lot of things go its way to stick in this one. With Kansas, it really comes down to which Andrew Wiggins, Joel Embiid and Wayne Selden Jr. show up. They’re all going to get their shots, and if they’re hitting, the Jayhawks effortlessly put teams away.Baylor at No. 21 Oklahoma, 7 p.m., ESPN2After starting conference play with some signature wins, Oklahoma (17-6, 6-4 Big 12) has sputtered out with two straight losses. The buck doesn’t stop on Saturday against Baylor (14-8, 2-7), a team itching to prove its worth after a miserable start to its league slate. The Bears currently sit ninth in the conference and need to start getting more production out of sophomore Isaiah Austin. The Sooners are a good team for Austin to get back on track against, as they struggle against big men who can stretch the floor.No. 23 Gonzaga at No. 24 Memphis, 9 p.m., ESPNI hate reverting to the mid-major spiel, but Gonzaga is making it easy this year. Sure, the Bulldogs (21-3, 11-1 West Coast) are nearly untouched in conference play, but have played too many close games against far inferior opponents and therefore haven’t earned the pedigree of a Top 25 team. Memphis (17-5, 7-3 American Athletic) is in a prime position to boost its strength of schedule in a game that is so randomly placed in both teams’ conference schedules.Rest of the scheduleAlabama at No. 3 Florida, noon, ESPNNo. 20 Virginia at Georgia Tech, noon, ESPN3Virginia Tech at No. 25 Pittsburgh, noon, ESPN3No. 18 Kentucky at Mississippi State, 1:30 p.m., ESPN3Texas Christian at No. 16 Iowa State, 4 p.m., ESPN3No. 13 Saint Louis at La Salle, 5 p.m., ESPN2No. 11 Duke at Boston College, 6 p.m., ESPNNo. 7 Cincinnati at Southern Methodist, 7:30 p.m., ESPNUNo. 4 Wichita State at Northern Iowa, 9 p.m., ESPN2No. 19 Oklahoma State at Texas Tech, 9:30 p.m., ESPNUNevada at No. 5 San Diego State, 10 pm., ESPN3– compiled by Jesse Dougherty, asst. sports editor, [email protected], dougherty_jesse Comments
Facebook Twitter Google+ Rodman Noel played basketball in his driveway, touch football with his friends at nearby Everett (Massachusetts) High School and little bit of baseball, too. In some ways, he was a typical kid. But he and his brothers, Jim and Nerlens, all became Division I athletes. They grew up the sons of Haitian immigrants and blue-collar workers. When they arrived home most nights, the house was empty. Their community helped raise them. Those experiences growing up in Everett fostered his competitive spirit and taught him to be a leader. Together, Rodman, Jim and Nerlens built each other’s competitiveness on the basketball court and on the football field, which Rodman will apply as a senior linebacker for N.C. State’s when it faces Syracuse for a 3 p.m. game in the Carrier Dome on Saturday. Nerlens is starting his first NBA season with the Philadelphia 76ers after starring during his one season at Kentucky in 2012–13. Jim is a graduate assistant at Temple football after being cut by the Seattle Seahawks during the 2013 preseason and Rodman leads the Wolfpack defense with 48 total tackles and an interception through eight games. “Their family’s important,” said John DiBiaso, the head football coach at Everett High School, “they’re brothers and they’ve got to look out for each other.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textBasketball games in the Noel’s driveway ratcheted up the brothers’ competitiveness. But before the driveway, the boys had to go to the park because they had no hoop. The three Noel brothers stayed at the park until late hours. Dorcina Noel, their mother, would demand they come home and when they refused, she brought home a basketball hoop. She put up the hoop so if they stayed out late, at least they were in their own driveway. On the first night they played until 2 a.m.“When it would start to get real competitive, we would start shoving each other. If somebody had the game-winning basket, it would start getting a little physical,” Rodman said. “And the other one would get mad because he called a foul, the other person would think it wasn’t a foul and we would start getting into it.” When Rodman was 10, they’d play basketball at Everett and get rides home from DiBiaso. They played with his son and DiBiaso bought them all chicken nuggets on the way home. “I’d be bringing them home and the lights would all be out, their mother and father would still be working,” said DiBiaso who usually dropped the Noels off between 10 and 11 p.m.Dorcina Noel worked in a hospital and Yonel Noel drove cabs to support the family. The Noel brothers relied on each other. Jim played a “big-brother-slash-father” role to Nerlens and to a Rodman in a lesser degree, DiBiaso said. When all three played on the football team during Nerlens’ freshman year, they’d get to practice at different times. DiBiaso said Jim arrived five minutes early, Rodman on time and Nerlens always 20 minutes late. It prompted DiBiaso to teach them to stick together. What Rodman learned growing up translated at Milford (New York) Academy — a cutthroat prep school for football players who want to improve on and off the field. Milford head coach Bill Chaplick said that making it through Milford speaks to Noel’s competitiveness and toughness. “You’re here with players that this is the last shot in their life and if they don’t make it, they’re not going anywhere,” Chaplick said. “You throw that all in with 55 guys, you’ve got to fight everyday for what you get here and you only get what you earn.”At North Carolina State, head coach Dave Doeren praises Rodman for working off the field to get results on it and calls him a “great preparation guy.”Now Rodman hopes that the late-night basketball games, extra year at Milford and four years at North Carolina State make him the third Noel brother to play a professional sport. It wouldn’t be a coincidence. “It would mean the world to me. I just know that I am blessed — I came from a great family, a great competitive family and I just thank god,” said Noel. “I’m just gonna have to keep working every day.” Comments Published on October 31, 2014 at 12:02 am Contact Chris: [email protected] | @ChrisLibonati
Facebook Twitter Google+ Former Syracuse guard Louie McCroskey, who played for the Orange from 2003-06 before transferring, offered his reaction to the penalties levied on his former school.McCroskey also discussed the team’s drug policy — which he was unaware of, the public’s perception of head coach Jim Boeheim and how he thinks athletes are framed in NCAA cases.He also explained his relationship with two people who are repeatedly mentioned in the NCAA’s 94-page report — Stan Kissel, often referred to in the report as the director of basketball operations, and Jeff Cornish, who The Post-Standard has identified as “the representative” named in the report.Perception of Jim BoeheimMcCroskey left SU after the 2005-06 season because he said he thought Boeheim and the coaching staff only saw him as a utility on the court, and not as a person off it. He said he thought he’d get support for wanting to better his basketball career somewhere else, but instead received “backlash” from the coaches.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textMcCroskey went on to say that while he has tried to detach himself from Boeheim on a personal level, the head coach deserves the respect he gets for building the Syracuse program to what it has become.Still, he admitted his former head coach isn’t perceived well in the public eye.“You’ve got to look at it from two different perspectives, like is he well-liked and stuff like that,” McCroskey said. “I don’t think he necessarily cares.“He says what he wants and he does things his own way. People don’t necessarily like him. He either likes you or he don’t. If he doesn’t like you, he gives you a hard time.”Relationship with Stan Kissel and Jeff CornishA frequent mention in the NCAA report, Kissel is near the heart of the violations. Still, McCroskey defended the man he said was always “cool” with him.“If you ever needed the help and you ever needed a tutor, he was the first guy to always be like, ‘All right, I’m going to try and hook you up with this tutor,’” McCroskey said. “Stan was always a great guy. “Cornish, the former sports director at the Oneida YMCA criticized for illegally paying athletes, also had a good rapport with McCroskey, he said.“When people are saying this stuff, it kind of makes me laugh because I’m like, ‘Well I never received any money,” McCroskey said. “If you didn’t have a father, he was a guy who was always around, there to talk to people if you need him, stuff like that.“I’ve never really looked at him as a booster or that type of guy.”The drug policyAccording to the NCAA’s report, Syracuse violated its own drug policy on more than one occasion.McCroskey said he wasn’t aware of a specific drug policy, just that he wasn’t supposed to do drugs and that he’d receive random drug tests.“(The coaches) never told us about drugs because I guess they assumed most guys didn’t use drugs,” he said.McCroskey mentioned how he received a random drug test “a few times” in between the end of the regular season and beginning of the Big East tournament. But it was never Boeheim or any of the coaches who educated the players on drug tests.“I just heard it from trainers and stuff when they would be like, ‘You guys are going to get a random drug test, so you shouldn’t be doing drugs at all,” McCroskey said. “That was more of the conversation.”Framing of athletesWhen an athlete’s name goes in the media for an academic violation, McCroskey said he frowns upon the circus that ensues.“I don’t like how grown adults, mostly with family and children, like to single out kids,” McCroskey said. “You’re going to have Fab Melo’s name in the paper, right? And Syracuse fans will go crazy and say, ‘Oh, that’s a dummy’ and this and that.“People don’t understand that has to follow them for the rest of their lives, you know what I mean, so it better be true.”He said too many people think of student-athletes as “dumb squares,” but in fact they’re very aware of what’s going on. Sometimes, he added, athletes are just afraid to speak up and defend themselves.Reaction to the sanctionsMcCroskey didn’t expect the NCAA to come down as hard as it did, and expressed his sympathy for the current SU players who won’t get to play in the postseason.“It’s really unfortunate for the players because at the end of the day, Rakeem Christmas, (Trevor) Cooney, all these guys,” he said. “They work hard for years and now they’re the ones getting penalized for something that didn’t even have anything to do with them.”He said he feels for the fans and all those involved since there are a lot of people, both fans and players, in it for the right reason.Said McCroskey: “I’m sure if (the NCAA’s) done all this research and they found stuff, then obviously it is what it is.” Comments Published on March 8, 2015 at 6:59 pm Contact Matt: [email protected] | @matt_schneidman
“Daily Trojan Double Take” is a partnership between Daily Trojan and KXSC Radio to bring more depth to the campus and local stories catching your attention! Every Wednesday from 2-3 p.m. on 1560 AM host and columnist Jordyn Holman speaks with students, faculty and guest making an impact on campus.Stay tuned each week to the “Daily Trojan Double Take” and call and tweet to join the conversation! Host Jordyn Holman speaks with students Tara Campbell and Nick Kosturos about their trip to Sacramento on the Unruh Institute of Politics’ Cerrell Seminar and the importance of understanding state politics and student power.
Few counselors. Hour-long wait times. General feelings of neglect. Before this year, USC was a campus without a strong culture of mental health awareness. But things might be changing now.In the past couple of months, the Undergraduate Student Government has led a campaign to break down the stigma of mental health across multiple fronts, from an initiative to create a fall semester break to plans for exposing freshmen to mental health awareness programs during orientation. USG President Rini Sampath, one of the biggest supporters of this issue, stated that she had been motivated by the many stories of students on the “brink of some very unfortunate things.”“College is a very difficult place,” Sampath said. “Everyone has [difficulties with] mental health, but there are people who will have mental illness. There is a wide variety and range of what people go through and I think it’s about figuring out how we can help each other out.”Sampath pointed out how, in an effort to counter these statistics, she and USG Director of Wellness Affairs Christine Hasrouni successfully lobbied for the addition of six new counselors at the Engemann Student Health Center a few months ago.“We brought [the issue] to President Nikias, we brought it to Student Affairs, and we said that students are unable to go see counselors because there is a seven-week wait,” Sampath said. “We should be acting proactively instead of reactively to these problems.”Sampath mentioned that one of USG’s current actions is implementing a survey to identify students’ main health concerns.Despite these initiatives, Sampath argued that USG’s main tool in terms of advocacy is passing resolutions, but that ultimately the administration has to implement these policies.“It’s us laying the foundation, but it’s up to the administration if they want to construct the building,” Sampath said. “We’ve had some successes, like our drop deadline [and] Leavey Library renovations, but overall we are looking for support in other topics that might be harder to talk about, like mental health.”Javanne Golob, a staff social worker at the counseling center, said that despite the short amount of time since USG began its initiative, some positive results are already visible.“[USG mental health promotion] is just beginning now,” Golob said. “But I’ve had clients of mine mention that they’ve seen the events or it’s made mental health more a conversation topic on campus, so hopefully it’s starting the conversation and reducing the stigma.”Golob said USG and other student assemblies are succeeding in popularizing the topic of mental health, making it more “campuswide” and not just something “sequestered in the corner” at the Engemann Center. Golob argued that student organizations have the advantage of going beyond the services available at the Engemann Center, and exploring mental health solutions apart from counseling. She also pointed out how USG is promoting self care habits, such as exercise, eating well, connecting socially, sleeping and seeking peer-to-peer support, which can help prevent individual crises.“[The Engemann Center’s Interim Assistant Director of Outreach Services Dr. Kelly Greco and I] work with USG and a lot of the great student groups to formulate events for the next coming months so that people can notice the signs of a mental health issue coming up before it turns into a crisis,” Golob said. “So we’re trying. We are a little engine.”On the programming side, this October and November USG’s Academic Culture Assembly has come to the forefront with its 2015 Mental Health Awareness Month, also known as “Behind the Mask.” Running from Oct. 12 to Nov. 20, Behind the Mask consists of 20 events, many of which are in collaboration with other student assemblies, such as the Black Student Assembly and the Women’s Student Assembly. The events are varied, taking the form of film screenings, student panels, exhibits, karaoke, yoga and even a puppy petting session.Gisella Tan, executive director of the International Student Assembly and one of the month’s organizers, explained that de-stressing workshops are valuable in removing the “stigma” in some cultures that might have different approaches to mental health. She explained that the defunding of certain centers does not help their cause.“I don’t think I can speak for all international students, but our resource center, the Office of International Services, has been severely defunded,” Tan said. “So if you need counseling services, you may have to wait a couple of days. And the counseling services that they offer have been greatly minimized.”But Tan also stated that events such as the de-stressing workshop are not truly effective in generating immediate results.“[These types of events] are more on the symbolic side,” Tan said. “I don’t think that an hour-long event or even a 20 minute yoga would actually help students successfully to de-stress.”She added that these events are more of an opportunity to raise awareness by letting students know about the health services available and fostering self-care.Krystal Chavez, who works in cultural affairs for the Latina/o Student Assembly, also holds awareness to be one of the main goals of Behind the Mask.“What most people don’t realize is that programming events are essentially advocating for things. Without a goal in mind, the event won’t happen,” Chavez said. “We were advocating to the idea that the administration wasn’t doing what they needed to do in helping students.”This advocacy has had positive results on some students. After one discussion, Eesen Sivapalan, a junior majoring in business administration and accounting who attended the event, praised USG’s efforts.“Not just for the Latino community, but for any minority community on campus, events like these really open up discussion for topics which we wouldn’t normally discuss at home and even amongst our group of friends,” Sivapalan said. “I feel that when it comes to minority groups, things like mental health are topics that are considered taboo in the family, and so because of that, it’s not uncommon for there to be more minority members suffering from mental health issues.”Sivapalan held that progress was definitely being made in raising awareness, and that later generations would have even easier access to the mental health conversation due to a “shrinking” cultural gap.And due to the lack of promotion for health services, Sivapalan said that he is “happy” that USG is helping the student body in ways the administration does not.“The University can do a better job in helping promote the mental health of students,” Sivapalan said. “We have a wait time of seven weeks for us to get an appointment with the counselor, and I feel that that just isn’t fair when we’re paying so much money for tuition.”In fact, Sivapalan mentioned that without USG’s wellness promotion, his opinion on mental health services would have been different.“One student pointed out that you can only get to know what’s going on in your mind when you have a facilitator guide you through your own thought process,” Sivapalan said. “The reason why I want to have an appointment with the counselors is only because of this event and the comments in the discussion here. I think events such as these are an essential part of our student experience.”Now, USG’s biggest concern is what members characterize as an unspoken administrative indifference. Students active in combatting this issue know that their efforts pale against those the University could take.Sampath, for example, explained that USC and USG have made huge strides in terms of mental health awareness in comparison to other campuses. However, she also said that USG at best can raise awareness, create dialogue and start conversations, but it cannot dictate policy.“What we can do as Undergraduate Student Government is be the voice for the students and say, ‘This needs to be taken care of,’” Sampath said. “Because, otherwise, what’s going to happen? This is just going to get brushed under the rug.”
Helen Williams, a junior majoring in international relations and environmental studies, said she hopes the inauguration educates the community on zero waste practices. Rosen said the biggest challenge of the initiative has been working with the city to ensure that waste from the event is diverted away from landfills. The factsheet outlines seven steps necessary to achieve a zero waste inauguration, including eliminating single-use plastics; reducing paper waste such as programs; using compostable serviceware; encourage caterers to minimize excess food; educate guests on waste diversion; donate leftover food to food banks; and work with waste haulers to track the destination of the ceremony’s waste. The zero-waste inauguration fact sheet found on the office’s website identifies and breaks down the material that each item used at the inauguration is made of — everything from certifiably compostable napkins to disposable wooden forks and spoons. Dux said that while the operation may seem like a challenge, efforts to increase sustainability on campus are a joint effort between FMS, USC Hospitality, the administration and the public. Rosen hopes that the inauguration shows students who are concerned with sustainability on campus that the University is taking important steps toward change. This is not the first large-scale event at USC that will be zero waste. In April, the Los Angeles County recognized the USC Office of Sustainability for making the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum a zero waste facility. For two years in a row, USC’s stadium also won the Pac-12 Conference Zero Waste Competition. However, Dux believes that achieving zero waste for the inauguration will be more challenging than the Coliseum. According to the office, the inauguration aims to divert 90% of trash away from local landfills. To achieve this goal, the ceremony will utilize compostable and recyclable materials and encourage all attendees to properly divert waste into color-coded bins. President Carol Folt’s inauguration is one for the books. While the former University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill chancellor is the first female president to be inaugurated in USC’s history, the ceremony is unique for another reason: its plan to achieve zero waste. “With inauguration, I wanted to make sure we set the tone early, even as we plan for more concrete initiatives that I look forward to working with our community to implement soon,” Folt wrote. “It’s lovely to see something like this coming to ’SC,” Rosen said. “An area where I have seen students complain about the lack of sustainability and the lack of initiatives around that.” “As an ecologist, I have always been concerned with making sure we all do everything we can to sustain our planet,” Folt wrote in a statement to the Daily Trojan. “When I arrived at USC, I was so heartened by the sincere desire of our students, faculty, staff and [the] entire campus community, to do more to curb our environmental impact.” “When we first started this process, we didn’t think we would be able to compost properly,” Rosen said. “So working within the city’s confines and what the University is required to use was probably the hardest piece — this is where we lean on our partners.” According to the USC Office of Sustainability, the ceremony makes “meaningful strides” in implementing and expanding the University’s sustainability efforts. Ellen Dux, associate director of the Office of Sustainability, said the ceremony’s ambition was a collaborative effort from various offices on campus, including Facilities Management Services, USC Auxiliary Services and the Office of the President, among others. Adam Rosen, vice president of the USC Office of Cultural Relations and University Events, said his department oversaw planning for the event and that he met with Folt to discuss her plans for the day. “[Folt] is using this public opportunity to signal to the broader community that this is a priority, and it speaks more broadly to aggressively advancing sustainability on our campus,” Dux said. “It’s one thing to do zero waste at the Coliseum, which is a huge venue but … the Coliseum is a closed loop — we control everything that goes in or out,” Dux said. “When I initially met with Dr. Folt, she said, ‘The one thing that I want is for this to be the greenest inauguration that has ever happened,’” Rosen said. “We sat down as a team to brainstorm from the event side … and brought in all of our campus partners.” Williams believes that many students are often too busy with their day-to-day tasks to realize the need to be conscious and considerate of their habits. She hopes that Folt’s prioritization of sustainability will increase these conversations on campus. “A lot of people, especially on campus, don’t know how to sort their waste and don’t know the proper ways to recycle, so having such a campus-wide event [where] everyone is invited and everyone is aware of the diversion of waste increases awareness about the movement and promotes sustainability,” Williams said. “This is a very public moment for [Folt] and for USC, and she said ‘I want to put this first foot forward and signal to everyone who is watching that USC is committed … and serious about advancing sustainability,” Dux said. “But it’s not a closed loop, anyone can wander anywhere with a burrito from home or a huge jug of something in plastic.” Ellen Dux, director of USC’s Office of Sustainability, said she believes that a president committed to reducing the University’s carbon footprint will help to educate the community on sustainability issues. (Andrea Diaz | Daily Trojan) “Having someone in the highest office on campus constantly remind us that [sustainability] is important and that environmental crises are happening will impact all of us,” Williams said.
While Kim attended Harvard, his father’s ties to USC as an alumnus facilitated a connection to the University studying under the late Thornton School of Music professor and famed cellist Eleanore Schoenfeld during high school. Kim also taught at USC in 2007, designing and co-instructing a weekly seminar at the Gould School of Law. “Beong’s diverse and high-level legal expertise, mission-driven approach to taking on challenges and commitment to public service made him our clear first choice,” Folt told USC News. “He will be an important addition to the USC leadership team and an asset to our entire university community.” As chief of the major frauds section in the criminal division at the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Los Angeles for nearly 10 years, Kim directed investigations into health care fraud, securities and investor fraud, government fraud, theft of intellectual property and embezzlement, leading the nation’s largest federal white-collar prosecution section. “It is a privilege to join this remarkable institution, which touches the lives of so many people throughout Southern California and the world,” Kim said to USC News. “USC’s mission has never been more vital and relevant, and I am tremendously excited about working with President Folt and other stakeholders to move that mission forward.” Kim’s search committee comprised Gould School of Law dean Andrew Guzman, Board of Trustee member Oscar Munoz, Ostrow School of Dentistry dean Avishai Sadan, president of faculty of Academic Senate Rebecca Lonergan, Senior Vice President for Human Resources Felicia Washington and Vice President for Student Affairs Winston Crisp. Kim also served as a litigation associate at Munger, Tolles & Olson before moving on to the U.S. Attorney’s Office in L.A. and later serving as partner at Jones Day in L.A. Before his appointment as general counsel of USC, he worked as vice president and assistant general counsel at Kaiser Permanente. Former University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill general counsel and vice chancellor Mark Merritt served on the search committee and will continue in his role as an adviser to the University, according to Folt. Vice President and Managing General Counsel Stacy Bratcher, who managed the search committee, will now report to Kim. Corporate lawyer Beong-Soo Kim will serve as senior vice president and general counsel of USC starting July 1, President Carol Folt announced Tuesday. After earning his master’s degree from the London School of Economics, Kim worked for the New York City mayor’s office and later on graduated from Harvard Law School in 1999. Following a clerkship at the U.S. Court of Appeals in New York, Kim returned to Harvard as a teaching fellow. The USC Office of the General Counsel addresses legal issues related to the University, Keck Medicine of USC and other USC-owned entities.
This is it.For USC’s senior class, Saturday will be its last hurrah at the Coliseum. Although the season may not have gone as planned for the 19 players suiting up for the final time at home, establishing bowl bids and the Pac-10 pecking order will still be at stake when No. 20 USC (8-3, 5-3) takes on Arizona (7-4, 5-3) Saturday at 12:30 p.m.Saying goodbye · Sixth-year defensive back Josh Pinkard will be among the 19 seniors that will suit up at the Coliseum for the final time on Saturday against Arizona. – Mike Lee | Daily TrojanA bid to the Holiday Bowl could be on the line for both the Wildcats and the Trojans, pending the result of Thursday night’s game between Oregon and Oregon State. Both USC and Arizona could finish the season either tied for second in the Pac-10 or tumble down to sixth place.“We’re kind of feeling good about getting back on track after the two weeks prior,” USC coach Pete Carroll said. “We are looking forward to this last go round.”Safety Taylor Mays is among the seniors who will be playing for the final time in the Coliseum. Cornerback Josh Pinkard and offensive guard Jeff Byers will also be making their final starts after six years with USC.“It’s a great group of kids and we hate seeing them go,” Carroll said. “We’d love to send them off on a great note.”Despite securing two late touchdown drives against UCLA, including a controversial decision to throw a touchdown to redshirt junior wide receiver Damian Williams in the final minute, Carroll is still looking for more out of his offense. He said he was especially concerned with the team’s performance on third downs, where penalties and plays for negative yards kept the Trojans behind the chains.USC converted four of 12 third-down attempts last week and ranks 100th out of 120 Football Bowl Subdivision teams in third-down efficiency.“It continues to be an issue,” Carroll said. “Because of the long yardage situations, we gave up on some of them just to kick the football back. We have to improve there.”With junior running back Joe McKnight sitting out practice Wednesday, redshirt junior running back Allen Bradford could see an increased workload following a two-touchdown performance against UCLA. Bradford carried the ball 14 times against the Bruins and helped USC control the ball and keep the clock running late in the game.“We love him being part of the offense,” Carroll said. “So it wouldn’t be any problem for me at all to run him 25 times if that was the case in the game.”The Wildcats have experienced a rocky season in which six of their games have been decided by eight points or less. Last week, Arizona needed a last-second field goal to defeat rival Arizona State.But for all the progress that Arizona has made this season, USC remains one of the few great tests. The Wildcats have not beaten the Trojans in the last seven years, despite holding the contest close in each of the last two years.Arizona coach Mike Stoops said Saturday’s game would be a good measuring stick for how far the program has come.“Competing against USC, I think tells you a lot about where you’re at,” Stoops said. “I think you learn more and more about your team as you go through it. Certainly we’ll see how we match up with USC Saturday.”The Wildcats are still sorting our a series of injuries to several key players on their explosive offense. Junior running back Nic Grigsby is not expected to play Saturday because of a shoulder injury. Sophomore quarterback Nick Foles has a broken non-throwing hand but will still try to play against the Trojans. Backup sophomore quarterback Matt Scott is expected to see time on a handful of plays as a change-of-pace player.But even with the injuries, Carroll noted that the Wildcats’ attack was dangerous because of its versatility.“We have a big preparation in store here to get ready for this thing,” Carroll said. “They’ve scored a lot of points this year and done a lot of good stuff with their offense.”
The USC track and field team hurdled over the competition at Saturday’s Trojan Invitational at Loker Stadium, the team’s only true home meet of the 2010 season.The Trojans won all four hurdle races, giving them the top team marks both nationally and collegiately, in a performance that USC coach Ron Allice hopes is just the start of a season filled with record-setting efforts.“The times we ran are certainly times we thought we were capable of,” Allice said. “We hope that it’s just the beginning and that we can keep improving into May and June.”When asked if his hurdlers can do better, Allice without hesitation said, “Absolutely.”They have tough marks to top. Junior Oscar Spurlock highlighted USC’s dominating showing with a victory in the men’s 110-meter high hurdles, posting a time of 13.83 that currently stands as the fastest in the world.Not to be outdone, freshman standout Reggie Wyatt posted the best U.S. time and the seventh best in the world in the 400-meter intermediate hurdles with a 50.91, nearly a second and a half faster than the second place finisher.The USC men weren’t the only group who posted nationally ranked times on Saturday. Senior hurdler Shalina Clarke won the women’s 100-meter hurdles with a time of 13.69 seconds, slightly slower her nation-leading time of 13.41 set last week. Additionally, sophomore Dalilah Muhammad added her name to the world rankings with a 58.50 in the women’s 400-meter intermediate hurdles, besting marquee Texas hurdler Angele Cooper.The hurdlers were joined on Saturday by several other strong performers from USC’s other events. Senior sprinter Ahmad Rashad, the second place finisher in the men’s 100-meter dash at last year’s NCAA championships, won Saturday’s 100-meter with a time of 10.61, a mark all the more impressive considering the 1.5 meters per second headwind.“That’s a pedestrian time for Ahmad, absolutely,” Allice said. “I was more impressed with the fact that he did everything technically correct. A win is a win, though.”Rashad was also part of the men’s 4×100-meter relay team, which made its season debut Saturday without any signs of rust, winning with a time of 41.01 seconds.The USC distance squad also made its presence known with a handful of fine races. Junior Zsofia Erdelyi won the women’s 3000-meter race with a personal best time of 9:27.96 in her first race of the 2010 season.Also making his mark was sophomore Blake Shaw, who ran USC’s first ever sub four-minute mile during the indoor season. On Saturday Shaw ran a personal best 3:47.49 in the men’s 1500-meter, placing second in the race but moving him to seventh all time in Trojans history for the event.Despite all the gaudy numbers, however, Allice says his team’s focus remains on the weeks ahead, specifically this weekend’s Stanford Invitational.“Overall, I was pleased; I thought our people competed,” Allice said. “But I think people get too wrapped up in marks and times. At this stage in the game, we’re still focused on next week and also a month, two months from now.”
The bye week couldn’t have come at a better time for the Trojans.Like father, like son · USC coach Lane Kiffin and his father, defensive coordinator Monte Kiffin, have used the bye week to prepare for Oregon. – Mannat Saini | Daily Trojan Without the pressure of an impending game and the necessity to work out all the kinks by Saturday, the coaching staff can let players rest and recover from nagging injuries.The entire starting offensive line, beside redshirt sophomore Matt Kalil, sat out or was limited during practice. Senior center Kristofer O’Dowd rested what he called a “strained shoulder.”He was seen at the beginning of practice wearing a wrap around his shoulder, which was removed by the end of the practice session. He expressed no doubt he’d be ready for the game against Oregon on Oct. 30 and said he was expecting a Tuesday return. He called sitting out a preventative measure to ensure full health.Junior tackle Tyron Smith sat out with an ankle injury, and senior guard Butch Lewis sat out with an undisclosed injury. Redshirt sophomore guard Khaled Holmes was limited and sat on a training table during the second half of practice.“As we’ve said all along, hopefully we get these guys back by Monday, and be ready to go with a full week of practice,” said USC coach Lane Kiffin.—With all the injuries and the lack of depth on the team, the bye week functions as a training ground for the younger players to earn playing time and demonstrate to the coaching staff whether their talents can translate to the collegiate level.The Trojans spent significant time in a four wide receiver set from the shotgun to simulate the style of play of the highly touted, high-scoring Oregon offense.Sophomore quarterback Matt Barkley was hurrying the team to the line and coaches were emphasizing quickness and speed on both sides of the ball.During a receivers and defensive backs drill, Kiffin told his players to ask themselves, “How am I going to tackle the fastest team in the country?”It was a common line from the coaching staff during the moments when the team was working on full-speed drills, especially during the scrimmage at the end of practice.—Freshman running back D.J. Morgan got a number of carries during Thursday’s practice, even with the first-team offense.He broke one of his carries for a touchdown and was picking up a number of yards on each attempt.Kiffin praised Morgan on his ability and said that it was promising that the freshman was able to show off his skill set in practice.“This is the first week that we’ve been able to see a lot with him,” Kiffin said. “He looks very explosive, even though he’s not 100 percent yet.”
The No. 19 USC women’s tennis team will compete this weekend at two competitions to kick off its season: the Freeman Memorial Women’s Tennis Championships hosted by the University of Nevada, in Las Vegas and the National Colliegate Tennis Classic in La Quinta, Calif.The Women of Troy will be competing against some of the best teams in the country at the Freeman Memorial tournament: No. 1 Stanford, No. 2 Florida, No. 5 UCLA and No. 6 North Carolina will all be participating.Despite many higher ranked opponents participating, senior Maria Sanchez tops the singles lineup at this weekend’s competition in Las Vegas, ranking third in the nation in singles. Freshmen Kaitlyn Christian and Hayley Miller and senior Cristala Andrews will also be participating at the Freeman Memorial competition.At the NCTC, the first major invitational college tournament of the season, both men’s and women’s programs from across the country will participate in what is known as “the Wimbledon of College Tennis.” The competition features the top six men’s and women’s teams, along with top-ranked individual players from the leading universities across the country.Sophomore Danielle Lao, the ITA Southwest Regional champion in the fall and ranked No. 10 nationally, along with sophomore Valeria Pulido, junior Alison Ramos and senior Lyndsay Kinstler will represent USC at the NCTC.The team is hopeful that these tournaments, their last individual ones this season, will be successful.“Our belief in one another has never been stronger and with that alone we’ve put ourselves in a great position to compete the best we can, whether it’s in this individual tournament coming up or a dual match,” Lao said.After the Freeman Memorial and NCTC, the Women of Troy will begin dual season, which they are anticipating will go well based on their performances so far this season. In 2010, the team reached the NCAA tournament once again, finishing the year 14-10 overall.“[The NCTC] is our last individual tournament for a while. This will serve as tune-up before the dual matches begin,” Ramos said. “I can’t wait to get going with the tournament so that we can go into dual season fine-tuned and prepared.”After this weekend’s competitions, the team will look towards Jan. 18, its next opportunity to compete, where it will face Cal State Northridge in a dual meet at USC’s own Mark’s Stadium.“We’re excited for the spring to start and couldn’t be hungrier to do well,” Lao said.
USC secured an outright Pac-10 championship Saturday following a 4-3 win over crosstown rival UCLA — its first road win against the Bruins since 2004.“They are our biggest rivals,” said freshman Emilio Gomez. “It’s like you have to win. You have to be ready. Winning this here is amazing. I’m so proud of our team.”After winning the doubles point with victories at the No. 1 and No. 3 spots, things became increasingly difficult for the Trojans (21-2, 6-0).On the front courts, only junior Steve Johnson was able to walk away with the win, beating Daniel Kosakowski 6-4, 6-1, while junior Daniel Nguyen and senior Jaak Poldma lost, 4-6, 7-6.After losing his first set, Poldma lost the match for the first time this season in a grueling back-and-forth second set, which he ultimately lost to Amit Inbar.Playing at No. 6 for the Trojans was senior Peter Lucassen, who won his first set but lost his second and third sets 6-4 and 6-1, eventually falling to UCLA’s Maxime Tabatruong. Freshmen Ray Sarmiento and Gomez were at No. 4 and No. 5, and both lost their first sets.Sarmiento would make a decisive comeback in his second set, beating Adrien Puget 6-4. Gomez, too, was able to extend the match to three sets against Holden Seguso. “We were down and with Ray we came back,” Gomez said.Sarmiento ended his match first, winning 2-6, 6-4, 6-2. With two matches remaining, USC led 3-2.All eyes were on Gomez, who was up 4-3 in the third, but lost a game to the Bruins’ Seguso to even things up 4-4. The crowd went wild, swapping rivalry chants as Gomez secured a 5-4 edge after several grueling deuce points were played. He eventually prevailed 2-6, 6-3, 6-4.“At the beginning, I was uncomfortable on the court,” Gomez said. “I kept fighting though. At first I was more defensive, and then I attacked.”
Rivalries make college football special.Coaches, players and fans alike circle one or two games on their calendar each year as “must-win” games — not because of rankings or standings, but out of a longstanding and passionate dislike for another school. For some, it would be OK if their team lost every other game if only they beat that school.The names really say it all. Every year, Pittsburgh and West Virginia throw down in the Backyard Brawl. Utah and BYU wage an annual Holy War. Georgia and Georgia Tech engage in Clean, Old-Fashioned Hate.Whether between teams in the same conference, the same state or even the same city, almost all of college football’s rivalries share a common bond: They make geographic sense.USC’s rivalry with Notre Dame stands out because of how seemingly random it is: 2,103 miles separate Notre Dame Stadium from the Los Angeles Memorial Coliseum. The teams have never played in the same conference — Notre Dame football has seen no need for conference affiliation at all. What then does a Catholic school of fewer than 12,000 students in northern Indiana have in common with a secular institution of 36,000 grads and undergrads in the heart of the nation’s second-largest media market?The origin of the rivalry is equally odd. Gwynn Wilson, USC’s equivalent to an athletic director in 1925, went with his wife to Lincoln, Neb., in November of that year to spend Thanksgiving watching Notre Dame play the Nebraska Cornhuskers.The Trojans themselves were in the midst of an 11-2 season in which they played all but one game at the Coliseum and were searching for a more nationally prominent rival. The Fighting Irish were a prime candidate, having gone undefeated the previous season, which was capped off by a 27-10 victory over Stanford in the 1925 Rose Bowl.At this point, the line between truth and fiction begins to blur. Legendary Notre Dame coach Knute Rockne — whose life inspired the movie Knute Rockne, All American, starring, among others, Ronald Reagan — is said to have been reluctant to agree to an annual series with the Trojans because of the long-distance travel required.That’s when the women stepped in. Wilson’s wife got to chatting with Rockne’s wife and convinced her that a biannual trip to the sunny West Coast was an improvement upon the usual pilgrimage to freezing Nebraska.Naturally, Rockne was convinced by his wife, and the teams squared off for the first time ever in Los Angeles the following December. This Saturday the Trojans and Irish will play for the 83rd time in their history.It’s not just the distance between the schools, however, that makes the series unique. Notre Dame fills its schedule each year with games against teams from coast to coast because it doesn’t belong to a conference.In the 1980s, for example, the Trojans’ were far from the Irish’s most fearsome opponents. USC didn’t win a single game against Notre Dame from 1983 through 1995. Meanwhile, the Irish went to nine major bowl games during that span and won the 1988 national title.The games Notre Dame fans most looked forward to then were the team’s showdowns with the Miami Hurricanes, which reached their dramatic peak in the 1988 game dubbed “Catholics vs. Convicts,” featuring a pre-game brawl between the teams. The series was called off two years later, however, and was only renewed again last year in the Sun Bowl.The longevity of the USC-Notre Dame series, along with its prominence on the national stage, is what sets it apart.The two programs have won a combined 22 national championships (11 each) and 14 Heisman trophies (seven each). They’ve had more players drafted into the NFL (USC is first with 472, Notre Dame second with 469) than any other school. Both are in the top eight in all-time winning percentage.The series has produced some of the best moments in the history of college football.Notre Dame fans fondly recall the 1988 game in which the No. 1 Irish beat the No. 2 Trojans 27-10 in Los Angeles on their way to the program’s last national championship.The 1977 “Green Jersey Game” is also a happy memory for the Golden Domers. That year Notre Dame wore its traditional blue uniforms during warmups before switching clothes and charging out of the tunnel in special green jerseys followed by a giant Trojan horse. Led by quarterback Joe Montana, the Irish won 49-19.USC supporters can claim “The Comeback” from 1974, in which the Trojans trailed 24-0 with 10 seconds remaining in the first half and rallied to win 55-24. Running back Anthony Davis scored four of his 11 career touchdowns against Notre Dame in that game.More recently, Matt Leinart converted a 4th-and-9 pass to Dwayne Jarrett at Notre Dame Stadium in 2005 on the Trojans’ dramatic late drive. Leinart won the game with a one-yard quarterback sneak on the famous “Bush Push” play, giving the Trojans a 34-31 victory.It’s moments like those that make USC and Notre Dame’s rivalry stand out as truly special. “Sellin’ the Sizzle” runs Wednesdays. To comment on this article, visit dailytrojan.com or email Jonathan at [email protected]
USC coach Lane Kiffin announced on Sunday’s weekly conference call that freshman linebacker Scott Starr and junior offensive lineman David Garness have suffered season-ending injuries.After mostly playing on special teams to begin the season, Starr will apply for a medical redshirt because of recurring neck pains.The NCAA only grants a medical redshirt if the player in question does not play in more than 30 percent of the team’s games. This shouldn’t be an issue for Starr, since he will have only competed in three of USC’s 12 scheduled games.The freshman from Norco, Calif. was listed as sophomore Lamar Dawson’s backup at middle linebacker on the depth chart, but when Dawson missed the season opener against Hawai’i, sophomore Hayes Pullard assumed Dawson’s vacated spot and redshirt freshman Anthony Sarao moved into the starting lineup.Garness, a junior college transfer in USC’s 2011 recruiting class, has yet to appear in a game at USC after redshirting last season. The Alaska native will undergo back surgery.With these additional injuries, USC will, in all likelihood, play minus five scholarship players for the rest of the season. In addition to Starr and Garness, senior defensive end Devon Kennard (torn pectoral muscle), sophomore running back Tre Madden (torn ACL) and freshman defensive end DeVante Wilson (torn ACL) are all expected to miss 2012, although Kennard is holding out hope he can return late in the season.In other injury news, Kiffin indicated that sophomore wide receiver George Farmer was not medically cleared to compete in last Saturday’s game against Cal, but declined to disclose the injury or its severity.—Though the 2012 season is barely a quarter of the way complete, USC is already busy finalizing future seasons’ schedules.On Tuesday, USC Athletic Director Pat Haden announced that USC will play Fresno State on Aug. 29, 2014, in the Coliseum.“We are excited to add Fresno State to our 2014 schedule,” Kiffin said in a statement. “It’s a quality in-state opponent with a traditionally strong program. The games between the teams in the past have been very competitive and have attracted lots of fans from both sides.”Both matchups between USC and Fresno State have been notable. In 2005, No. 1 USC barely edged out upstart No. 16 Fresno State, 50-42.Thirteen years prior to that classic showdown, an unranked Fresno State squad upset No. 23 USC, 24-7, in the 1992 Freedom Bowl in Anaheim, Calif.Kiffin is intimately familiar with the Bulldogs’ program, as he was a backup quarterback for the university from 1994-96. In his senior season, he elected not to play and instead accepted a position as a student assistant coach for the team under coach Jeff Tedford, who is now at Cal.The addition of Fresno State to the 2014 schedule now cements the Trojans’ out-of-conference slate. In addition to the annual rivalry game against Notre Dame, they will also play Boston College in a rematch of the 2009 Emerald Bowl, in which USC prevailed 24-13.
To everyone — the pundit, the avid fan, the man who sells you bacon-wrapped hot dogs on Exposition Boulevard — Lane Kiffin represents a number of things.To some, he’s a perpetual brat.To others, he’s a Trojan prince, leading USC back from NCAA sanctions.Growing up · Though the fourth-youngest head coach in the Football Bowl Subdivision, Kiffin has experienced his share of controversy. – Razan Al Marzouqi | Daily TrojanTruth, in turn, becomes muddied, and it’s understandably challenging to decipher fact from fiction. Just who exactly is the Trojans’ third-year coach? Do the stereotypes stick? Is he actually that arrogant? Is he actually the boy wonder?But answering just yes or no to such sweeping generalities would be dishonest and unfair. I can’t pretend to respond to either, exactly. Many of us cover Lane Kiffin, but how many of us truly know Lane Kiffin on any sort of personal level?I have interacted with him enough to express a few opinions confidently. For starters, I’ve found him to be thoughtful and calculated — he doesn’t do or say things for the sake of simply doing or saying them. And two, he carries a better sense of humor than he’s given credit for. I like that.But as many will inevitably point out, that doesn’t mean his record is spotless.More or less, he comes across as incredibly stubborn.This is one flaw that has been accentuated in recent weeks, as USC stumbled at Stanford, 21-14, and four days later, he infamously stormed out of a press conference after 29 seconds following a question about the return of an injured player.“Kiffin is a talented, aggressive recruiter and a decent football strategist whose spoiled-brat arrogance constantly undermines his efforts to become a great coach,” wrote Grantland’s Shane Ryan last month. “He stretches rules, misreads interpersonal situations, and issues the wrong kind of challenges to his enemies. People excuse these as the follies of youth, but that’s a cop-out; they’re the follies of character, and maturity isn’t always related to age.”Yup, there are flaws. Ryan chooses the term “spoiled-brat arrogance,” which leans toward hyperbole but is unmistakably rooted in reality. Football coaches tend to be stubborn-minded, petty people. They’re often micromanagers. And Kiffin is a football coach, after all.But the funny thing is, No. 13 USC reversing course this season and meeting its Coliseum-sized preseason expectations largely hinges on whether Kiffin, 37, can still grow as a coach and become less stubborn, and more mature.Friday indicated this might be possible.Toward the end of his team’s bye-week practice at Howard Jones Field, Kiffin, fielding questions from a smaller contingent of reporters, at last admitted a rather obvious but important point. As the team’s offensive play caller, he called a subpar game in USC’s mid-September road loss to Stanford — in case anyone wasn’t aware.“You’d love to have it back but you can’t,” he said. “In coaching, you’re just like players. Every game is not the same. You’re going to have some games where you make some better calls and get in a rhythm. I didn’t feel like I did really well in that game with our players.”He took blame, and it was refreshing.What makes this noteworthy is that it was a public admission. For a while now, Kiffin has received a substantial amount of criticism for a failure to take ownership — at least publicly — for events that have transpired during his tenure, including the Stanford game. Usually, he has deferred, highlighting a particular play or circumstance.But Friday’s admission suggests a lot.It suggests the “arrogant” coach might be open to honest, self-evaluation. It suggests the coach is receptive to criticism. It suggests the coach can still reflect and look to better himself.That said, none of the aforementioned possibilities might be true. But I want to be fair and at least give him that chance. Cynicism shouldn’t be our guiding principle. As much time as we’ve invested in thinking about Kiffin, he still hasn’t reached the age of 40 and has only been a head coach for a total of 62 games.That’s relatively young, which begs the question whether he has room to grow.The Trojans’ success over the remaining two-thirds of the season will be tied to his ability — or inability — to do so. “The 19th Hole” runs Tuesdays. If you would like to comment on this story, visit DailyTrojan.com or email Joey at [email protected]
The Women of Troy hope to continue their undefeated start to 2013 up by the Bay Area against two of the top-10 teams in the nation, as they get ready to face No. 7 California on Thursday, Jan. 17 and No. 6 Stanford on Sunday, Jan. 20.USC (7-8, 4-0 Pac-12) is off to its best conference start since the 2004-05 season and is currently tied with No. 14 UCLA (13-2, 4-0 Pac-12) for first in the Pac-12.Moving forward · The Women of Troy look to continue their winning ways on the road. In their previous trip to Berkeley, the team defeated the Golden Bears 76-75 in a thrilling overtime contest. – Chris Pham | Daily Trojan “That’s a really good way to come into this upcoming road trip at Stanford and Cal,” Harberts said when asked about the standings.The Trojans have won their last four games after a six-game losing streak to end 2012. They’ve been led by Cassie Harberts, who is averaging 21.3 points and 9.3 rebounds per game in conference play, and Ariya Crook, who is averaging 13.3 points, 4.0 assists and 3.8 rebounds per game in conference play.The Women of Troy are coming off a pair of home wins over the weekend, beating Washington (12-5, 4-2 Pac-12) 81-72 on Friday, Jan. 11 and edging out Washington State (5-11, 1-4 Pac-12) 61-59 on Sunday, Jan. 13. Harberts (24 points, 11 rebounds) and Kate Oliver (12 points, 13 rebounds) both recorded double-doubles against the Huskies, while Crook added 23 points and five assists. Jazmine Davis led the Huskies with 37 points on 12-of-28 shooting.Crook took a hard foul with under a second remaining and hit two free throws to give USC a 61-59 win over the Cougars. She also finished with 14 points and set career highs with nine rebounds and six assists. Harberts added 18 points and 10 rebounds, and Oliver finished with 10 points and six rebounds.“Our chemistry is finally building on and off the court,” Crook said.“I think we just got sick of losing, too,” Harberts noted. “I got sick of losing.”Stanford (14-2, 3-1 Pac-12) and Cal (13-2, 3-1 Pac-12) played their last two games against each other, splitting the two contests. Stanford won the first one on Tuesday, Jan. 8 at Berkeley, 62-53. Chiney Ogwumike contributed 26 points and six rebounds, while Amber Orrange added 15 points for the Cardinal. Layshia Clarendon finished with 17 points and six rebounds for the Golden Bears on 6-of-20 shooting.Cal was able to bounce back in the following game, beating the Cardinal 67-55 at Stanford on Sunday, Jan. 13. Brittany Boyd scored 19 points for the Bears, while Gennifer Brandon added 14 points and 12 rebounds. Ogwumike scored 18 points and grabbed nine rebounds for the Cardinal, who had their 81-game conference winning streak snapped.The Cardinal are led by Ogwumike, who is averaging 21.4 points and 11.6 rebounds on the season, and Joslyn Tinkle, who is averaging 12.0 points and 5.5 rebounds. Boyd and Clarendon are both averaging over 13 points and 4.1 rebounds per game for the Golden Bears.USC beat Cal last year 76-75 in overtime, but lost to Stanford 69-52. Both games will be televised on the Pac-12 Network, with the games starting at 6 p.m. and 4 p.m., respectively.
Their record now stands at 4-1 overall and 3-1 in conference play.The Trojans started the first set with five errors, giving Long Beach State a 4-0 lead. The Trojans rallied with blocks by junior outside hitters Cristian Rivera and Chris Lischke, followed by kills from Lischke, Rivera and sophomore outside hitter Alex Slaught to bring the game within two points.The 49ers, however, met USC’s rally with blocks and kills of their own, widening the team’s lead to 14-8. The Trojans rallied again, with four kills by freshman outside hitter Lucas Yoder thanks to three sets from junior setter Micah Christenson and one from senior libero Henry Cassiday.A kill from Rivera tied the game at 15 apiece and a block by Lischke gave the Trojans a 16-15 lead. Kills from Rivera and Slaught elevated the Trojans’ lead to 21-18. Two more blocks and a kill by Rivera set up Slaught for the game-winning kill, ending the first set in USC’s favor with a 25-19 win.Head coach Bill Ferguson acknowledged his team’s struggles in the opening set.“We weren’t executing our game plan as well as we could’ve,” Ferguson said. “We cleaned things up and we got it together and things went well for us.”The second set began evenly matched, the 49ers matching each point the Trojans scored. Kills by Yoder and Christenson kept Long Beach at bay with the game tied 10-10. Each side committed attacking and setting errors, keeping the score close.Kills from Yoder and Rivera gave the Trojans a three point lead, making the score 17-14. Kills by freshman middle blocker Andy Benesh, Yoder, Lischke and Slaught, as well as an ace from Benesh widened the Trojans’ lead, bringing the score to 23-19. After a kill by Yoder set up game point for the Trojans. USC won 25-22 after a service error by Long Beach State ended the game.Ferguson was proud of his team’s play in the second set.“We continued to stay in our game plan,” the eighth-year coach said. “Our diggers and blockers did a great job of that. We were able to be agressive from the service line and limit their offense to two hitters.”In a must-win set for the 49ers, Long Beach quickly gained a 2-0 lead, though the Trojans were quick to close the gap and eventually gain a 5-4 lead thanks to two kills by Rivera with sets from Christenson.Errors by the Trojans kept the 49ers in the game, but kills by Rivera, Slaught and Benesh prevented Long Beach from ever gaining back its lead, keeping the score tied at eight.Due to errors committed by USC as well as key blocks by the 49ers, Long Beach was able to surge to a 14-13 lead. Despite two kills from Benesh and one from Slaught, Long Beach was able to hold off the Trojans, maintaining a 16-14 lead.Two kills by Yoder were undermined by his teammates’ mistakes, allowing Long Beach to keep its lead. Kills by Yoder and Rivera tied the game at 19, however, and an attack error by Long Beach gave USC a 20-19 lead.A service error by USC allowed Long Beach to tie the critical game at 22, followed by a kill to lift the 49ers over the Trojans, 23-22. Slaught matched a kill from Long Beach, tying the game at 24, which Yoder followed with a kill of his own, giving the Trojans a 25-24 advantage.Long Beach held off a Trojan win with kills of its own, and later tied the game at 31 apiece. Two consecutive kills by Yoder ended the third set, earning the Trojans a 33-31 victory over the 49ers.Ferguson was excited by his team’s strong play with the third set on the line.“We had great confidence and we remained aggressive,” he said. “Once we settled down on serving we were better. Our errors came from being aggressive.”Yoder led the team with 19 kills, followed closely by Rivera with 17. Christenson led the Trojans in assists and digs with 46 and 17, respectively.The pair’s play made an impact on their head coach.“Rivera was great,” Ferguson said. “He was really effective on the right side. Once he attacked well, that allowed Lucas to hit well.”The ability to bounce back from such a tough loss was the most significant part of the win for Ferguson.“We rely on our volleyball IQ and our overall ability,” the coach said. “Instead of creating opportunities to score and not executing, we had digs and converted them to kills to finish the deal.”The Trojans face Cal State Northridge on Friday at 7 p.m. in their second consecutive conference match on the road. Ferguson will make sure his team is prepared for a potential trap-game against the unranked Matadors.“Their style is different than Long Beach,” he said. “We will enjoy victory on the bus home, but back at USC we will focus. It is a great challenge and a great opportunity for us to play two different types of game plans.” Following Thursday’s home loss to Pepperdine, USC’s first loss of the season, the Trojans recovered with a three game sweep of Long Beach State on the road, winning 24-19, 25-22 and 33-31, respectively.Helping hand · Junior setter Micah Christenson had 46 assists and 17 digs in the Trojans’ straight set win over conference rival Long Beach State. – Joseph Chen | Daily Trojan
PHILADELPHIA — Donte Greene waved both hands in the air. He pounded his feet and let out a roar. His and-one in double overtime finally provided a group of Syracuse fans reason to let out a collective sigh of relief, then rise to their feet in unison to celebrate a 106-100 double-overtime victory on Sunday afternoon.A few minutes earlier, when GaelNation’s D’Angelo Harrison tied the score with a long 3, capping off a 20-point second-half comeback, he waved to the very same section of orange. From around midcourt, Harrison, a two-time First Team All-Big East selection at St. John’s, stared at the contingent of fans he had just stunned. They sat, clad in orange, and hushed.This time, with Boeheim’s Army again leading after Green’s and-one, the fans could rejoice. The Syracuse Alumni, up by 15 at the break and 20 early in the second half, let GaelNation, a group of Iona alumni, erupt for a furious second-half comeback to pull within one. Then Steven Burtt scored a transition layup to give GaelNation its largest lead of the game, three, with two minutes to play.“We got a little stagnant offensively,” head coach and former SU big man Ryan Blackwell said. “We were a little bit tired. We weren’t communicating when they made a run. But we kept our composure and executed … we made individual plays.”With each basket, the celebration grew fiercer, the towel waves stronger and the jolt off of the GaelNation bench a little bit more passionate. Fans in maroon banged their feet to the bleachers as GaelNation inched closer to an upset over a team with significant Final Four experience on the floor.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textNo. 3 seed Boeheim’s Army staved off a 20-point comeback from No. 11 seed GaelNation in double overtime on Sunday at the campus of Philadelphia University. Greene finished with a team-high 28 points in his first game this year and, for the third consecutive year, Boeheim’s Army will advance to the Super 16 of The Basketball Tournament, a 64-team, single-elimination tournament that awards a $2 million grand prize. (In November, the Orange hosts Iona for the first time since 2010.)The Syracuse alumni, now boasting a 7-2 record over three summers in the tournament, will play July 20 in Brooklyn. Should No. 2 seed Supernova move on in its matchup later on Sunday, Boeheim’s Army will face former members of the Villanova Wildcats.Both Blackwell and Cooney pointed to the difference a few days may make. Last year, only four players practiced for a couple of days in Syracuse. This year, all eight players played pickup ball in the Carmelo K. Anthony Basketball Center the week leading up to this weekend’s tournament. Both said that the extra repetitions proved critical in edging out the victory Sunday, and that they will dictate how far Boeheim’s Army can go this summer.Saturday night on the same floor in Philadelphia, Boeheim’s Army scored 14 points before the No. 14 seed DuBois Dream made a basket, in a 99-66 victory in the opening round of the tournament. Brandon Triche tallied a triple-double (11 points, 11 rebounds, 12 assists) and John Gillon scored a game-high 26 points, hitting four 3-pointers and handing out five assists.Matthew Gutierrez | Asst. Sports EditorIn round two, Greene kicked off the scoring brigade with a baseline jumper. Forty-nine first-half points followed, including a handful of Greene 3-pointers, a two-handed jam by 7-footer DaShonte Riley and a nifty drive by Eric Devendorf, who scored 23. The 2009 Syracuse graduate, who ranks 14th on the program’s all-time scoring list, was trapped in the corner with nowhere to run. He nearly lost the handle, then hesitated, spun baseline and pounded two dribbles before laying in a basket.What followed in the second half hardly mirrored that of the night prior, when Syracuse trounced a team without a single former Division I player. C.J. Fair, a former First Team All-ACC selection and forward on Syracuse’s 2013 Final Four team, grooved his way to a transition dunk to create a 20-point advantage. Trevor Cooney, who two years ago started at guard on Syracuse’s Final Four team, drilled a pair of 3s.“Our zone bothered them a bit” Cooney said. “And we found a rhythm.”But then GaelNation found its stride, using its length inside to gain loose rebounds and hitting several 3-pointers against Boeheim’s Army’s 2-3 zone. Burtt, a left-handed guard, used a mix of elusiveness, craftiness and shooting prowess to score a game-high 34 points and lead the charge. Missed box outs, sometimes sloppy defense and more than 13 offensive rebounds let GaelNation sneak back in.That is until Greene allowed Boeheim’s Army to regain its footing in double overtime.“We want the $2 million,” Greene said. Comments Published on July 9, 2017 at 5:21 pm Contact Matthew: [email protected] | @MatthewGut21 Facebook Twitter Google+
Courtesy of SU AthleticsChris Fox turned Syracuse from afterthought to champion as the head of the cross country program, and even Jim Boeheim knows how good of a coach he is. “Boeheim would always say to me,” former director of athletics Daryl Gross said. “‘Chris Fox is the best coach in the department.’”When athletes look to transfer, schools have all the powerIllustration by Lucy Naland | Presentation DirectorWhen college athletes want to transfer to another school, their own college can hold them back, “blocking” their transfer to specific schools. This happened to SU softball player Baylee Douglas when she tried to transfer from her previous college, Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville.John Bonamego had his dream job, not even cancer could slow him down Facebook Twitter Google+ Part of The Daily Orange’s coverage of Syracuse Athletics — and more — this fall is the numerous features written by our staff. As the fall semester comes to a close, we compiled a list of our 10 best-written stories from the past five months. In this list are stories about the photo of a cheerleader that become the symbol of the Pan Am 103 bombing, the tale of former football head coach Scott Shafer’s return to the Carrier Dome and how Gerry McNamara is still beloved in his hometown of Scranton, Pennsylvania.Read the whole list below.THE WHOLE PICTURE: How a cheerleader became the face of Syracuse University on the night of the Pan Am Flight 103 attack.Courtesy of Lawrence MasonIn the hours after Pan Am Flight 103 exploded over Lockerbie, Scotland, on Dec. 21, 1988, Syracuse played a home basketball game. At the game, cheerleader Catherine Crossland, now Catherine Hauschild, turned and embraced fellow cheerleader Amy Jo Eveleigh as then-SU professor Lawrence Mason snapped the above photo which would soon become a vivid memory of the tragedy.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textRUNNING IN PLACE: Eric Dungey has always said he will run less. Then he runs anyway.Jessica Sheldon | Staff PhotographerIn high school, Eric Dungey said he’d run less. Early in his college career, Eric Dungey said he’d run less. Before his junior campaign, Dungey said he’d run less. He didn’t.BEHIND THE NUMBER: The death Gabrielle Cooper’s father fueled her passion for basketball, which led her to become a star at Syracuse.Josh Shub-Seltzer | Staff PhotographerGabrielle Cooper’s father died in 2011, spurring her passion for basketball and setting her mind on wearing No. 11 to honor her late father. As the only returning starter for a Syracuse team two-years removed from a national championship run, Cooper will play a leading role for the Orange.Chris Fox molded Syracuse cross country from one of the worst college programs into a national powerhouse Courtesy of Paulette BonamegoJohn Bonamego had always wanted to be Central Michigan’s head football coach, but when he finally got the job he got life changing news: He had cancer. Never missing a practice or meeting, Bonamego beat cancer and was on the sideline as scheduled for the Chippewas and has been there ever since.Isis Young embraces her name’s roots over negative associationsJosh Shub-Seltzer | Staff PhotographerIsis Young is named after an Egyptian goddess, but recently, her first name has become associated with terrorism. Still, Young refuses to let the negative connotations of her name drag her down, instead choosing to embrace the roots of her name.Syracuse pulls off monumental upset of No. 2 Clemson, 27-24Todd Michalek | Staff PhotographerOn Oct. 13, a Friday night, then-No. 2 Clemson came to the Carrier Dome for a matchup with Syracuse. What ensued was one of the biggest wins in Syracuse’s history. The game stayed tight, but a few key plays — a late Cole Murphy field goal, a botched fake punt by the Tigers, a critical chain-moving run by Eric Dungey — swayed the game in SU’s favor.15 years after arriving at Syracuse, Gerry McNamara still beloved in hometownTodd Michalek | Staff PhotographerThere is little in Gerry McNamara’s childhood home to indicate he is one of Scranton, Pennsylvania’s, biggest stars. Elsewhere around town, like at Stirna’s Restaurant, McNamara is still idolized as a hometown hero.Former Syracuse head coach Scott Shafer to return to Carrier Dome as MTSU’s defensive coordinatorDaily Orange File PhotoSyracuse fired Scott Shafer as head football coach in late 2015 after SU knocked off Boston College in Shafer’s final game at SU. Two years later, Shafer returned to the Carrier Dome as Middle Tennessee State’s defensive coordinator helping guide MTSU to an upset of the Orange. Comments Published on December 13, 2017 at 10:36 pm
Badger men’s cross-country will once again reach NCAA podium in 2013 campaignEvery August, Badger Nation prepares to devote all eyes, ears and hearts to the 2013 football season. But fans should not forget one of Wisconsin’s most winning programs is back this fall too.The men’s cross-country team is primed for another successful year, with experience and history on its side.Finishing second in the NCAA tournament last season, UW is no stranger to success. With a record 41-straight NCAA championship appearances and 22 top-three finishes, including the past three seasons, this Badger squad is the definition of Wisconsin athletic achievements. And this season, the team is not looking to miss a step.The Badgers return four of their top seven runners from last year’s championship race. Senior Rob Finnerty and junior Alex Hatz are atop the pack who are back this fall and the duo have the experience to lead this team to the NCAA champions podium once again. Both were a source of consistency for UW last season and Finnerty showed he could come through for the team when it counted the most by recording his career-best time in the NCAA race to place fourth for UW. Hatz was right behind him as the fifth scorer for UW.While Finnerty, Hatz and the rest of the UW squad have large shoes to fill after losing three All Americans in Mohammed Ahmed, Maverick Darling and Reed Connor, new talent has arrived. Redshirt freshman Malachy Schrobilgen brings more experience having spent the past year competing in the 2013 IIAF World Junior Cross country championships.And if raw talent is enough to propel this team forward, they have a man who knows the recipe for success behind them. Head Coach Mick Byrne has earned coach of the year awards for 22-straight seasons including the past five years at Wisconsin and has brought the UW squad to the NCAA championship podium four times.Bottom line: If you are looking for a new team to get behind this fall and like to watch a winning squad, these Badger men are your best bet.Wisconsin women’s soccer eyeing redemption in NCAA tournament after early exit Sure the cross-country team is good. Some might say great even. But if you’re looking for the best non-football program to pay attention to this fall, the women’s soccer team is more than worth your time.Despite finishing a mediocre sixth out of twelve last season in the Big Ten, Wisconsin earned an at-large bid to the NCAA tournament last fall after its first 12-win season since 2005. Armed with a bevy of talent – including returning leading goalscorer junior Cara Walls – and a healthy chip on their shoulder following a first-round exit in the first round of the NCAA tournament last year, the Badgers return this fall with something they didn’t have last season: experience.In a squad that contained 11 freshmen last fall, many young players were called on to play big roles for Wisconsin. Now with one year in the competitive Big Ten under their belts, this season promises to be better than the last.Don’t believe me?Take a look at their statistics already this fall.As of Aug. 29, Wisconsin has played one exhibition game and two nonconference regular season games – all of them resulting in wins for UW.In that relatively small sample size the Badgers have terrorized their opponents. Against Marquette (currently ranked No. 20 in the country), they scored five goals. Then against Connecticut they poured in three more, before most recently torching Illinois State for four goals. If that is any indication of what is to come this year, fans lucky enough to pay attention could be in for a treat. Where else do you see a soccer team scoring an average of four goals a game? I’ll give you a hint, you don’t. So yeah, you could go watch the ever-talented men’s cross country team compete for yet another National Championship, but where is the fun in that?Follow the women’s soccer team and you join it on an underdog quest as team members seek to stun their opponents on the way to an unlikely NCAA tournament run.
Friday night’s loss seemed to be the final straw for Wisconsin men’s hockey head coach Mike Eaves.After another Big Ten defeat against Ohio State, the Badgers were still searching for their first conference win of the season Saturday.In game one of Wisconsin’s two-game road series against Ohio State, the Badgers got off to a hot start when forward Corbin McGuire scored on a rebound less than five minutes into the game to give Wisconsin an early one goal lead.While Wisconsin remained ahead by a goal one period, the second period completely belonged to the Buckeyes. A goal by Ohio State’s Tyler Lundley returned the momentum to the Buckeyes, and they never gave it back.With two minutes to play in the period, OSU forward Nick Shilkey put the Buckeyes up for good with a wrist shot that found the top left corner of the net.The Buckeyes entered the third leading 2-1, and that was how the game ended following a scoreless third period. The Badgers were outshot 42-20, and after the game, it appeared Eaves had run out of patience with his young team.“They have to start to get it going,” Eaves said. “That’s what is a little bit frustrating as a coach, and I think it’s on them as players. After Christmas, there are no true freshmen anymore. We should be better, so we have to figure that out.”Eaves was also critical of senior goaltender Joel Rumpel, who made forty saves in Friday night’s 2-1 defeat.“He kept us in it, he kept it 2-1, but I’ll be the first to say he’ll want both goals back,” Eaves said. “He played like the rest of the team. He was inconsistent.”But on Saturday in game two of the series, the Badgers seemed to take their coach’s words to heart, responding with an impressive bounce-back performance in Saturday night’s rematch that gave them their first Big Ten win of the season.After Ohio State scored just over a minute into Saturday night’s game, Wisconsin’s Grant Besse erased the Buckeyes’ lead in the 12th minute of the period with his 10th goal of the year.The teams remained deadlocked at one at the first intermission, but Ohio State’s Christian Lampasso opened up the scoring in the second period eight minutes to put the Buckeyes up by a goal once again.Down 2-1 in the second period, Wisconsin was in the same situation they were in the night before. However, this time, it would be a much happier ending for the Badgers.Four minutes after Ohio State took the lead, Wisconsin senior Joseph LaBate scored off a pass from Adam Rockwood to bring the Badgers and the Buckeyes even at two goals apiece.The game remained tied at two until just over four minutes were left in the final period when Rockwood and LaBate combined for a goal again. This time LaBate fed Rockwood for the late go-ahead goal.Led by goaltender Joel Rumpel, who made 28 saves, the Badgers held Ohio State without a goal in the final four minutes to escape Columbus with their first conference win.Next weekend, the Badgers will return to the Kohl Center to host Michigan State, hoping to put together their first winning streak of the season.
INDIANAPOLIS – The best season in Wisconsin men’s basketball history will end on the most disappointing of notes.Wisconsin, playing in the national championship game for just the second time in school history, was looking for its second national championship in program history Monday night against Duke at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.But fate was not on the Badgers’ side Monday, as the Blue Devils ran away from the Badgers in the closing minutes of the game to win the title over Wisconsin, 68-63.“It’s a tough one. We had this game,” Wisconsin junior forward Sam Dekker said. “Congrats to Duke. I’m proud of our guys. I’m blessed to be on this team.“This one hurts. It hurts.”Wisconsin (36-4) had already set the program record for wins and was up by nine with 13 minutes and 25 seconds separating it from a magical finish to a historic season.But Duke (35-4), who knocked off Wisconsin at the Kohl Center earlier this season, had other plans and stormed back to tie the game at 54 a little over five minutes later.From there, Duke found its rhythm from the floor and after freshman guard Tyus Jones drained a 3-pointer with 4:08 to put the Blue Devils on top 59-58, Duke never trailed the rest of the way.Freshman and ACC Player of the Year Jahlil Okafor scored four straight points for Duke after Jones’ three and the Blue Devils held a five-point advantage with 2:10 remaining in the game.Jason Chan/The Badger HeraldJones, who finished with a game-high 21 points and was named the Final Four’s Most Outstanding Player, followed a Wisconsin missed shot with another 3-pointer that put the Blue Devils up 66-58 and sent a dagger to the hopes of Wisconsin winning its second national championship and first in 74 years.A quick 5-0 run from Wisconsin – a Frank Kaminsky three and Nigel Hayes dunk – kept the Badgers’ hopes alive down three, 66-63, with 49 seconds left, but Jones hit two free throws that sealed the game for Duke and gave the Blue Devils their fifth national championship under head coach Mike Krzyzewski.“What a fantastic job these guys did all year,” Wisconsin head coach Bo Ryan said. “They just came together to do all the things that they accomplished.“It’s just unfortunate that this one had to be played out that way.”Jason Chan/The Badger HeraldAfter Wisconsin had gone up by nine earlier in the half, it went only 6-for-20 the rest of the game and 4-for-13 once Duke came back to tie the game at 54 with 7:04 remaining.Duke gained an advantage at the free-throw line in the second half, getting into the bonus with 11:43 remaining in the game. Duke began to attack the paint which forced Wisconsin into foul trouble and sent the Blue Devils to the free-throw line.Duke made 12 of its 16 free throw shots in the second half on some foul calls that had the Wisconsin players and Ryan visibly upset.“We still felt like we were doing what we were supposed to be doing, what coach preaches to us, sliding our feet, chest up, hands up and staying on the ground, but the calls weren’t going our way,” Hayes said. “We don’t want to blame any of that. We just didn’t play a good enough 40 minutes to win.”Dekker, who had been playing his basketball of the season during the tournament, struggled in the second half of Monday’s game, going only 2-of-6 from the floor, scoring four points. He finished the game with 12 points and eight rebounds.Jason Chan/The Badger Herald“He was just was off with his outside shot,” Ryan said of Dekker. “We all would have like to have seen one or two of those go down, but they didn’t. And that happens in games. He hasn’t had very many of those, but it happens.”Duke freshman guard Grayson Allen played a large role in bringing the Blue Devils back into the game in the second half. During Duke’s 15-6 run after Wisconsin took a nine-point lead, Allen scored eight straight points for the Blue Devils, including a 3-pointer and an and-one. He finished with 16 points on 5-of-8 shooting.Along with freshman forward Justice Winslow, the freshmen group of Allen, Okafor and Jones combined to score 60 of Duke’s 68 points Monday night.Jason Chan/The Badger HeraldKaminsky led the Badgers with 21 points and 12 rebounds while both Hayes (13) and sophomore guard Bronson Koenig (10) finished in double figures for Wisconsin.Kaminsky and Dekker were named to the all-Final Four team for their efforts against both Duke and Kentucky.But the accolades for Dekker and the win over Kentucky on Saturday, won’t alleviate the pain from Monday’s heartbreaking loss anytime soon.“This one’s worse, man, because I knew what we had,” Dekker said, comparing Monday’s loss to last season’s Final Four loss to Kentucky. “I knew what we had coming back, that our group was going to make it to this point and this is what we wanted. We wanted to be in this game and win this game. Just came up short. That was a great ride we had.”Jason Chan/The Badger HeraldFor seniors Josh Gasser, Traevon Jackson, Duje Dukan and Kaminsky, Monday’s game will be the last in their careers at Wisconsin. While ending on a disappointing note, this team – and the senior class – will always be able to recall the first consecutive trips to the Final Four in program history, the most wins in program history and playing in the national championship game for the first time in 74 years.“We had a heck of a season,” Gasser said. “The stuff we accomplished. Sometimes, life’s not fair. This is not the outcome we envisioned. We knew we were going to win; just didn’t happen. Duke is a great team, but just didn’t do it.”
For players, coaches and fans alike, the crosstown showdown between USC and UCLA is a long-awaited treat at the end of the season. With just two weeks left before bowl season, the No. 13 Trojans (7-3) will travel to the Rose Bowl in Pasadena to face the Bruins (4-6).Brian Chin | Daily TrojanBeat the Bruins · Junior wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster and the football team are traveling across town to take on UCLA. The Trojans have defeated the Bruins in 13 of their last 17 meetings, including last year’s 40-21 win.The teams have undergone quite different storylines as this season has progressed. Having won six straight, USC vaulted up in the College Football Rankings this week after defeating playoff contender then No. 4 Washington, but head coach Clay Helton has been working to keep his players focused on the task at hand this week.“We have a job to do,” Helton said. “That’s been the overriding emphasis each and every week: do our job, on this day, in this moment. And that’s what I’m going to keep selling.”The Bruins have struggled without their starting quarterback Josh Rosen, who was replaced by redshirt senior Mike Fafaul. The Bruins have relied heavily on their passing game as they are averaging just 87.2 rushing yards per game. Sophomore defensive end Porter Gustin emphasized the need to maintain that standard in this game.“We’ve talked all week about establishing that they’re not going to run the ball on us early,” Gustin said. “Making them one dimensional and getting after the quarterback, that’s a key for sure.”The Trojans will most likely be without junior defensive tackle Josh Fatu who is suffering from an ankle injury. The team expects to be at full strength on the offensive side of the field. The team is preparing for a Bruin defense that is extremely effective on third down.“Not only one of the best secondaries that we’ve faced, but also one of the defenses with the best third down efficiency,” Helton said. “They come in right at 32 percent, which is one of the top three in the league.”Combatting a staunch defense will be a Trojan offense that ranks second in the Pac-12 at third down efficiency, coming in at 46.2 percent, showing that the effort USC has put into third downs each week at practice has paid off.“That’s a key battle of keeping drives alive on the field,” Helton said.Redshirt freshman quarterback Sam Darnold has impressed the nation during his tenure as the starting quarterback.“Everyone is seeing touches and everyone is making plays,” junior wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster said.Darnold leads the nation in touchdown passes, completion percentage, yards per attempt and passing efficiency this season among freshman. He has thrown 22 scoring passes this year. Darnold is ranked fifth in the nation in ESPN’s Total QB Rating and is the highest rated freshman.Darnold has been able to spread the wealth among his receivers, not just targeting Smith-Schuster but also making names for wide receivers senior Darreus Rogers, sophomore Deontay Burnett and redshirt freshman tight end Daniel Imatorbhebhe.“Smooth is the right word to describe Tay (Deontay Burnett),” Darnold said. “Tay is just one of those players who knows how to get open and knows how to do his thing once the ball comes to him.”Helton hasn’t downplayed the rivalry aspect of this week, but has said several times that he is trying to keep his team as calm as they can be. Smith-Schuster said on Tuesday that the coaching staff talked to the team in order to help them refocus after the Washington win and to not get caught up in the hype of the rivalry.Last year, the Trojans won 40-21 at the Coliseum, but the year before suffered a defeat at the Rose Bowl, 38-20. The 2014 win is just the fourth win the Bruins have had in the last 17 meetings.“The more and more the day comes closer, you get more excited,” Smith-Schuster said. “It’s a big rivalry game and everyone is excited, but you just have to keep calm.”The Trojans need to win on Saturday to keep their hopes of a Pac-12 South title alive in addition to needing Utah and Colorado to each lose one of their remaining two games.“The one thing I’ve been proud of this team for the past six weeks is we haven’t been about the hype,” Helton said. “We say execution fuels emotion.”
Trevor Sochoki | Daily TrojanSummer in Southern California normally means one thing: USC football is right around the corner. Fresh off a Rose Bowl victory, Heisman-hopeful quarterback Sam Darnold stayed healthy while his sophomore coach, Clay Helton, welcomed a highly ranked recruiting class.Normally, that is enough to satiate Trojan fans’ title-thirsty anticipation. Yet for one sunshiny week at the end of June, another program shared the limelight.From June 26 through July 2, the men’s basketball team received three commitments from four-star recruits: forward J’Raan Brooks, guard Kevin Porter and forward Taeshon Cherry (who some scouts list as five-star). At the time, the trio gave the Trojans the top 2018 recruiting class per 247sports.com. Only last week did conference rival Arizona edge USC out, when five-star point guard Jahvon Quinerly committed to the Wildcats. With their rapid growth, the Trojans have a legitimate chance to reach the Final Four as early as this season — a sentence that may still sound far-fetched to many USC fans. But it’s true: Head coach Andy Enfield’s squad figures to be a preseason top-15 team, and last year’s entire rotation will return.The Trojans also welcome a top-30 recruiting class led by two four-star shooting guards: Jordan Usher from Marietta, Ga., and Las Vegas native Charles O’Bannon, Jr., whose father started at power forward on UCLA’s 1995 NCAA Championship team. Seven-foot center Victor Uyaelunmo, from Fort Lauderdale, Fla., rounds out the class of freshmen.But the newcomer most likely to contribute immediately is Duke transfer Derryck Thornton, now eligible after sitting out last season. Thornton was the top-ranked transfer in 2016 after starting 22 games at point guard for a Final Four Blue Devils team loaded with talented stars such as guard Grayson Allen and forward Brandon Ingram. USC could form a superteam of its own this season pending a final recruiting twist. The top prospect in the class of 2018, power forward Marvin Bagley III, has petitioned the NCAA to reclassify for this year. Although Bagley would forgo his senior year in high school and the extra year of development that comes with it, scouts still consider him a potential No. 1 draft pick next year. He has listed USC and Duke as his top two colleges ahead of powerhouses Arizona, Kansas, UCLA and Kentucky. If all goes smoothly, he could dawn a Trojan uniform as early as this fall. If not, Enfield will hope at minimum Bagley does not choose a Pac-12 rival.But the Trojans want him badly. According to Sports Illustrated, Enfield has not only offered a scholarship to Bagley, but also to his sophomore brother, Marcus, plus their 7-year-old brother, Marlay. USC has already filled all 13 scholarships for the 2017-18 school year, but someone could be on the move whether or not Bagley arrives. With Usher, O’Bannon and Thornton in the fold, the roster is flush with guards. The list goes on: returning senior captain Jordan McLaughlin, senior Elijah Stewart, sophomores De’Anthony Melton and Jonah Mathews and redshirt sophomore Shaqquan Aaron.Enfield could choose any number of rotations from this group, but the depth at his disposal could be a blessing and a curse. Only three of these players can start as long as junior forwards (and NBA Draft prospects) Chimezie Metu and Bennie Boatwright stay healthy. The rest will be strapped for minutes. At least one player — likely more — is bound to be unhappy. Someone could transfer before the season begins. If not, maintaining chemistry may be challenging even if the team is winning at a program-record pace. Enfield faced the opposite problem last season. During some rough stretches, it appeared they could barely field a starting five. McLaughlin and Metu, the Pac-12 Most Improved Player, were the only consistent contributors. Stewart and Aaron showed flashes of brilliance but then disappeared for weeks. Aaron, the Louisville transfer, even won Pac-12 Player of the Week in late January when his 23-point performance led the Trojans to a stunning upset over No. 8 UCLA at the Galen Center. Throughout the rest of the season, however, he scored in double digits just twice; and in three NCAA Tournament games, he did not score in 23 minutes of play.While USC is rich at guard, it enjoys less depth at forward. Behind Boatwright and Metu stands a giant question mark as sophomores Nick Rakocevic and Harrison Henderson andthree-star recruit Victor Uyaelunmo complete the roster. Should either starter get hurt, Enfield must either play small or trust one of these three to shoulder the remaining weight.Last year when Boatwright missed 17 games, Rakocevic received plenty of playing time. While he impressed at times, he also floundered when matched-up against first-round NBA draft picks such as Ivan Rabb and Lauri Markkanen. Meanwhile, Henderson played just 50 minutes the entire season, and Uyaelunmo awaits his collegiate debut.Despite USC’s depth dichotomy, the program’s recent recruiting prowess has given Enfield a significant boost. Just last summer, the verdict was still out after his best players and earliest recruits, Julian Jacobs and Nikola Jovanovic, forwent their senior year for the draft only to fail to make NBA rosters. Consequently, most experts tempered expectations for the Trojans and essentially adopted the mantra “What Could Have Been?” After being mere minutes away from the Sweet Sixteen last season, the sky is the limit for the Enfield era. For the first time in his five-year tenure, Enfield has established senior leaders in McLaughlin and Stewart, and he will not have to rely on a host of freshmen starters. If likely draft picks Boatwright and Metu stay healthy, the Trojans could conceivably win their first conference title since 2009 — andmaybe play basketball into April. But even in the case of Murphy’s Law — if injuries strike, Boatwright and Metu forgo their senior seasons and Bagley chooses UCLA — USC still looks set to compete for the foreseeable future. It is only a matter of time before Trojan fans start dividing their summers evenly between football and basketball recruiting.
We’re finally here. Let’s pat ourselves on the back and trade a few clichés about “surviving the offseason” or getting Christmas in September. Fans always cherish opening week, especially in a sport like football that makes us wait eight months between campaigns. Everyone loves a fresh start, and as the tired phrase goes, all teams believe it’s their year on Week One.The excitement that engulfed this campus after the Trojans’ Rose Bowl victory hasn’t subsided — if anything, the summer months built the hype up to a fever pitch. But as I re-watched USC’s 2016 season on repeat all year (the Pac-12 Network has been running all the games nonstop since January), I realized this fall doesn’t feel like a fresh start, per se. It feels more like an encore.That’s not a mentality Trojan fans are used to as of late. Most season openers in recent memory have presented the opportunity to turn over a new leaf at USC after a disappointing previous campaign. When was the last time an opening-day crowd filed into the Coliseum still riding the high of the year before — and expecting even more?This optimism stems largely from the return of redshirt sophomore quarterback Sam Darnold, the preseason Heisman favorite. He saved the Trojans’ 2016 season, and we are running out of superlatives to praise him. Having said that, this USC squad as a whole is chock-full of talent, with multiple national award contenders on both sides of the ball. Without significant contributions from players like junior cornerback Iman Marshall and junior linebacker Cameron Smith, the Trojans won’t go anywhere, no matter what Darnold does.Fortunately, Darnold and the rest of the team know this — despite the media’s single-minded obsession with the potential No. 1 overall pick in next year’s NFL Draft. During Pac-12 Media Days in July, a throng of reporters gathered around Darnold, peppering him with questions about his game and about adjusting to the limelight. Someone asked if he had a secret weapon on offense.“You guys know about RoJo [junior running back Ronald Jones II], right?” Darnold laughed. “We’re looking to have a balanced attack this year … If we can run the ball, we’re going to have success throwing it.”Darnold’s mentality reflects USC’s greatest strength this year — because head coach Clay Helton loves to establish the ground game and Darnold relishes spreading the ball around, it’s difficult for opponents to key in on a specific Trojan threat. Jones was a 1,000-yard rusher last fall; redshirt sophomore tight end Daniel Imatorbhebhe has emerged as a deadly threat in the red zone; junior wide receiver Deontay Burnett reeled in 56 receptions for 622 yards and caught seven touchdowns as a sophomore — including three scores against Penn State last January. To add another cliché, it has become about the team, not the players. It’s a far cry from just two years ago, when Cody Kessler force-fed JuJu Smith-Schuster 1,454 yards, with no other receiver on the team even reaching 500 receiving yards for the season (Adoree’ Jackson — a natural cornerback — had the second most on the team with 414).Of course, USC will undoubtedly miss NFL draftees Jackson and Smith-Schuster this season: The duo turned in three stalwart campaigns during a turbulent era of Trojan football program that saw leadership changes in both positions of head coach and athletic director. Despite the odds, they delivered an iconic Rose Bowl win to cap their college careers. But it’s time for the next generation to spur the program to even greater heights — the heights Jackson, Smith-Schuster and every other recruit dreams of when he signs with the Trojans.That climb begins this weekend, as Western Michigan visits the Coliseum to open the season. The Broncos enjoyed the best season in program history in 2016, but they have lost the services of former head coach P.J. Fleck, who jumped at the chance to coach in a Power Five conference and took the reins at Minnesota. Quarterback Zach Terrell, the school’s all-time leading passer, graduated, and wideout Corey Davis was drafted in the first round of the last NFL Draft. Unlike the Trojans, WMU has been forced into pushing the reset button.It’s a fortunate break for Helton’s squad. If the defending MAC champions still had their superstar trio, they would have almost certainly begun the year in the top 25, and USC would have had three consecutive games against ranked opposition to open the season. Not to say that the Broncos will be a cakewalk, but their weakened roster will be a relief to Trojan fans, considering most other Pac-12 teams square off against the likes of Rutgers and New Mexico State this week.However, unless the Trojans take a shocking loss, no questions will be answered on Saturday. If USC suffers an upset, the team’s lofty preseason dreams could very well go out the window on day one. And if Darnold and company trample the Broncos, it will just mean the first win of many needed over the course of the fall. As much optimism and excitement surrounds this program, there is an equal amount of paranoia. But that’s how you know your team is good — and that’s how you know football season is finally here.Ollie Jung is a senior studying print and digital journalism. He is also the sports editor of the Daily Trojan. His column, Jung Money, runs on Fridays.
Brian Chin | Daily TrojanAs confetti rained down on the Trojans after January’s Rose Bowl Game, no one thought placekicking would be an issue for USC in 2017. After all, Matt Boermeester had just written himself into Trojan lore, splitting the uprights from 46 yards out as time expired to win the Granddaddy of Them All, and he looked to repeat the feat next year — this time in the national championship game. Then Boermeester was expelled from the University due to a student conduct issue, and the Trojans suddenly found themselves on the hunt for a national title without a reliable kicker. Head coach Clay Helton gave redshirt freshman Michael Brown the first shot at the job during fall camp, but the scholarship kicker couldn’t beat out a freshman walk-on from Mater Dei High School. Just before USC’s season opener against Western Michigan, Helton announced Chase McGrath had won the gig. Two weeks later, McGrath ran onto the field against Texas and knocked through his first two career field goals: one to tie the score as time expired and one to win the game in double-overtime as the Trojans beat the Longhorns 27-24.“[McGrath] doesn’t play like a freshman,” Helton said following the victory. “What an unbelievable job.” It was already an incredibly unlikely sequence of events, but Saturday’s ending was even more remarkable given the start of the day, when McGrath attempted his first career college field goal in the second quarter of a scoreless game. He left it short and wide left. It was a 46-yarder — a tough assignment for a debut attempt — but McGrath brushed off the weight of the moment.“[The first kick] was a really good learning experience,” he said. “I kind of rushed it a little bit, but once I slowed down and really found my rhythm, it was good.”The freshman’s unflappability took many by surprise, but it proved to be a valuable asset down the line as McGrath was called on to save the Trojans not long after his disappointing first kick. The Longhorns led by 3 points with two seconds left on the clock, and McGrath was tasked with knocking through a 31-yard attempt. With everything on the line and an earlier miss on his mind, the walk-on still managed to keep a cool head. “[Nerves] didn’t kick in that much,” McGrath said. “I treat every kick the same.”It’s hard to believe, but the results backed up the attitude. Somehow, McGrath was able to step up yet again with a chance to win the game in overtime and nail a 43-yard kick. Texas head coach Tom Herman even called timeout before the attempt to let McGrath’s nervousness build on the sideline. It didn’t matter. “I kind of think it’s funny because it gives me more time to lock in,” McGrath said.Indeed, he came out of the timeout and improved vastly on his first boot of the game — this one had plenty of distance and snuck inside the right upright — and the Trojans mobbed their kicker as confetti shot into the sky and covered the grass. The Los Angeles haze seemed like the ghosts of the Rose Bowl, swirling around the Coliseum floodlights.It remains to be seen if McGrath will carry over his impressive performance through the rest of the season. As the year goes on, he may have to kick in windier and much colder conditions, and he has yet to kick outside the friendly confines of his home stadium, and with the high expectations facing USC, the freshman will undoubtedly see more opportunities to be the hero — or the goat.But after all the uncertainty that surrounded USC’s kicking game leading into this fall, it appears the Trojans have found their man. Following the game, Helton was asked if he had a scholarship available to offer McGrath. The head coach chuckled.“I need to find one,” he said.
Sophomore safety Bubba Bolden will not start on Saturday, Helton said. (Emily Smith | Daily Trojan)No. 15 USC’s final practice before the start of the regular season brought with it a number of personnel updates for Saturday’s season opener against UNLV.Head coach Clay Helton walked into the post-practice press conference with a crumpled slip of paper in hand. On it lay the names of sophomore outside tackle Austin Jackson, senior linebacker Porter Gustin and redshirt senior tackle Toa Lobendahn, among others.Jackson will probably play, Helton said. Gustin might. Lobendahn is questionable. But the biggest name who will miss Saturday’s game will be starting safety Bubba Bolden, who is out of the lineup due to an undisclosed reason.“From a personnel standpoint, Bolden is not going to be available for the UNLV game Saturday,” Helton said at the press conference. “There’s no timetable for his return, and I can’t comment further at this time.”Until Helton made the announcement, it was believed that Bolden would make the first start of his career at safety against the Rebels.When pressed, Helton did not speak further.“Like I said, I have no comment further at this time right now,” he said.Redshirt freshman Isaiah Pola-Mao will start in Bolden’s place, Helton said, and redshirt sophomore C.J. Pollard and freshman Talanoa Hufanga will back him up.Pola-Mao redshirted his freshman year, and will get his first career start come Saturday.Hufanga, a true freshman from Crescent Valley High School in Oregon, might see action in his first-ever game as a Trojan as a result of Bolden’s absence. He finished his 2017 season with 44 tackles — seven of which were for a loss — a fumble recovery, and 35 receptions for a total of 696 yards. More injuriesHelton did provide details on other key injuries the Trojans have heading into the season, beginning with Jackson.“I know that from an injury standpoint we were talking about Jackson yesterday,” Helton said. “He looked very good today. Anticipate him playing in the game.”The 6-foot-6 sophomore only saw action in four games during his freshman campaign, but is slated to play against the Rebels after injuring his ankle during the offseason. Gustin’s name was also on the list, but Helton wasn’t quite as dead-set on the outside linebacker, who is still recuperating from a torn meniscus suffered on the third day of summer training camp. “Gustin looked very good again,” Helton said. “We will evaluate later.” He left out whether Gustin will see playing time on Saturday, which will likely be determined Friday according to Helton.Lobendahn, on the other hand, is still being evaluated with a pectoral strain.“Lobendahn did not practice today, still questionable for the game,” Helton said. “[He is] not looking as good as [Gustin or Jackson].”Kickoff is slated for 1 p.m. at the Coliseum on Saturday.
My parents met at a bar owned by former Kansas State quarterback Lynn Dickey, and my dad popped the question in the nosebleed seats at Arrowhead Stadium. As soon as I was born, I was stuffed into a white-and-red onesie and toted to Chiefs training camp. That’s why, last Saturday afternoon, I didn’t believe that the Chiefs would win. I grew up through year after year of the same old disappointment — a stellar start to the season followed by a dramatic crumble into postseason failure. The possibility that the Chiefs could step up and dominate another I was stunned, rewinding the moments with my mom in a series of clipped, all-caps texts. Most of my existence is owed to football — the Kansas City Chiefs in particular. And it meant that I had to face a very real, overwhelming possibility — that, with one more win, the Chiefs will play in the Super Bowl. As a pessimistic fan, part of me will expect the loss from the first snap. But the rest of me simply won’t care. The team taking the field in Arrowhead this season is one of the best we’ve seen in Kansas City in awhile and, for once, we feel that we might have the upper hand for awhile — the best tight end in the league and a baby quarterback who’s changing the way the position’s played. Regardless, I’ve lived through two-loss and two-win seasons, and I’ve loved this team long enough to know that things will be okay. The thing I’ve learned since moving to Los Angeles is that not everyone completely understands what it means to be a fan. It makes sense, really, that in a city privileged with the wealth of stars like Kobe Bryant, with a torrid history of NFL teams that came and went only to return a few years later, fandom would be a casual thing. Los Angeles is a tourist city and its fans’ perspectives follow suit, coming and going like fads, following the ebbs and flows of winning and losing seasons. I couldn’t help it. That team had always been inextricably, permanently part of me. Even my first crush was connected — a boy with shaggy blonde hair named Robbie, who I deemed to be the cutest sixth-grader alive. He also happened to be Kevin Harlan’s son. But to me, being a Chiefs fan runs deeper. It means a quiet Sunday afternoon in Kansas City with a bowl of chili balanced on my lap, my dad holding his iPad up inches from his nose to read off stats. It means nonsensical texts from my mom — “Did you see that?” and “PAT!!!” were two of the most recent — that I automatically understand. I’ve never watched the Super Bowl as an actual fan, instead enjoying the annual excuse to eat a ton of pigs-in-a-blanket and, if need be, shout insults at the Patriots. I’m not even sure how I’ll react if that happens. (Cry? Laugh? Name my first son Patrick, after the Chiefs’ quarterback?) Each fall, as the air became less muggy and dense, my mom hoarded McCormick spice packets to prepare for long Sundays of chili cooking in the Crock-Pot and football blaring in the living room. We always muted the ESPN announcers, preferring the talent on our local radio station — the warm astonishment of Kevin Harlan’s, “Oh baby, whatta play!” and the roaring excitement of Mitch Holthus’ cry, “Touchdown, Kan-sas Cit-y!” The Chiefs weren’t especially good when I was little, but they were good enough to make me fall in love — hard. Maybe too hard. Even as a kid, I was an overly loyal fan. When the Bengals beat us one year, I attempted to boycott a dance competition I was supposed to attend in Cincinnati the following month. (I lost that argument very quickly, but remained bitter through all three days of the trip.) Even after the 2006 season, when we lost Trent Green and Tony Gonzalez and only won two games, the Chiefs were my guys. A lot can be said about what it means to be a fan. Yes, fandom makes people do crazy things — paint their chests, stand knee-deep in snow on a Sunday, travel thousands of miles and name their children after strangers. But folks from the Midwest know it’s different. Don’t get me wrong, our teams normally aren’t all that good. We suffer through losing streaks, losing seasons, losing decades. The sports gods giveth and taketh away heartily in the heart of America — just ask anyone from Cleveland if you don’t believe me — and most of us know that all good things with our teams will come to an end. I didn’t get much time to consider that prospect before one of my friends asked the pessimistic counter — what would I do if they lost? — but my answer was immediate. I won’t care. I mean yes, I’ll be crushed, but it won’t be the type of loss that destroys me as a fan. Most importantly, it means that no matter what, each season, my family and I can count on the same game, the same field and jerseys and colors that feel like home no matter the record or year. Win or lose this Sunday, and every Sunday after that, the Chiefs are still that something I can count on. Julia Poe is a senior writing about her personal connection to sports. Her column, “Poe’s Perspective,” runs weekly on Thursdays.
Syracuse men’s basketball added a matchup with Buffalo to its nonconference slate, SU Athletics announced in a release Thursday afternoon. The matchup will take place on Dec. 18, 2018.This will be the second straight year the Orange — which owns a 28-5 all-time series lead — plays the Bulls, with the last matchup coming on Dec. 19 of last year, an 81-74 SU victory.Buffalo had a much improved season in 2017-18, going 27-9. That included a Mid-American Conference championship and first-round upset in the NCAA Tournament of No. 4-seeded Arizona, 89-68.The matchup is the fifth game added to SU’s nonconference schedule. Here are the games that have been confirmed so far, per the SU release.Thursday, Nov. 15 — 2K Classic vs. Connecticut, Iowa or OregonFriday, Nov. 16 — 2K Classic vs. Connecticut, Iowa or OregonSaturday, Dec. 1 — vs. CornellSaturday, Dec. 15 — vs. Old DominionSaturday, Dec. 18 — vs. BuffaloAdvertisementThis is placeholder text Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on May 24, 2018 at 2:45 pm Contact Michael: [email protected] | @MikeJMcCleary
Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on October 9, 2018 at 5:44 pm Contact David: [email protected] Goalkeeper Lysianne Proulx is out for the season with a left hip injury, Syracuse head coach Phil Wheddon announced Tuesday.Immediately after the halftime whistle was blown during Syracuse’s 6-3 loss to No. 23 North Carolina State on Thursday, Proulx went to the ground and received medical attention. Less than five minutes later, she walked off the field under her own power. She was seen standing on the sidelines without assistance during the second half.Proulx was seen using crutches at SU Soccer Stadium on Sunday after the Orange’s 7-1 loss to No. 3 North Carolina, and again on Tuesday during practice.Proulx, a sophomore, made four starts and five appearances off the bench in 2018. The Montreal, Quebec native has averaged 2.98 goals allowed per game, while Jordan Harris, her competition, has conceded an average of 2.39 goals per game.Since playing all 90 minutes in SU’s first three games, Harris has split time with Proulx. Harris and freshman Ally Wakeman will compete for the starting goalkeeper position over the final four games of the season, Wheddon said.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text Comments
Syracuse freshman quarterback Chance Amie is transferring, he tweeted Saturday. Published on January 12, 2019 at 6:58 pm Contact Andrew: [email protected] | @A_E_Graham Amie, who redshirted his freshman season, departs a thin Syracuse quarterbacks room. The Orange currently have rising redshirt senior Clayton Welch and rising redshirt sophomore Tommy DeVito. Rex Culpepper, the quarterback turned tight end, could move back to the position.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textSyracuse doesn’t currently have a quarterback committed or signed in the Class of 2019, though Dino Babers and the coaching staff still have some scholarships on the table ahead of national signing day in February. Comments I would like to thank Syracuse for everything they have done for me. I appreciate all of the coaches, staff, and players but I will be transferring from the University this next semester. No interviews. — C (@chanceamie2018) January 12, 2019 Facebook Twitter Google+
Comments AdvertisementThis is placeholder text Published on March 18, 2019 at 2:25 pm Contact Michael: [email protected] | @MikeJMcCleary Facebook Twitter Google+ Syracuse (4-2, 0-1 Atlantic Coast) rose to No. 12 in this week’s Inside Lacrosse men’s media poll.The Orange are coming off their second-straight comeback win with an 18-14 victory over then-No. 16 Rutgers on Saturday. SU outscored the Scarlet Knights 8-3 in the final quarter and have outscored opponents 14-4 in fourth quarters over its past two games.SU returns to action this weekend for the final game of its seven-game homestand to start the season on Sunday against Duke.
Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on September 28, 2019 at 3:26 pm Contact Josh: [email protected] | @Schafer_44 Syracuse handled Holy Cross 41-3 on Saturday afternoon in the Carrier Dome. After exploding for 52 points against Western Michigan last week, the Orange offense throttled their FCS opponent. The Orange extended their turnover streak to 19 with a Holy Cross fumbled punt in the first quarter which led to a score. Quarterback Tommy DeVito completed 19-of-31 passes for 269 yards and four touchdowns, including freshman Luke Benson’s 70-yard touchdown reception. Below are takeaways from the Orange’s (3-2, 0-1 Atlantic Coast) rout of the Crusaders (1-3).The return of Taj HarrisA year ago Taj Harris caught 40 passes for 565 yards and three touchdowns as a freshman. But through four games this year he’d caught just 11 balls for 163 yards. Saturday, Harris tallied 107 yards receiving and a touchdown for his first 100-yard game in 2019.Harris’ first big play came on over the middle. About 10 yards down the field, Harris spun off two defenders and barreled toward the sideline for a first down. In the second half he caught a pass in a similar location, only this time as he tracked back one step, blockers set up around him. Almost like a punt return, Harris dashed horizontally across the field to the sideline as Syracuse blockers formed a wall. Harris ran down the sidelines and converted on the touchdown.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe game from Harris came at a much needed time for Syracuse. The Orange receiving unit hadn’t had consistent yard gainers outside of Trishton Jackson, who entered Saturday’s game with more than 150 receiving yards than the next receiver.Defense holds up After entering the game favored by as many as 38.5 points, the defense held up its end of the bargain in regards to blowout expectations. It held Holy Cross to 138 yards, including just 18 yards on the ground.The Crusaders’ few attempts to run the ball up the middle failed and as the score opened up, they opted to throw more often. In pass defense, Syracuse’s defensive line finished with five sacks and constantly pressured Holy Cross quarterback Connor Degenhardt.One of the pressure’s on Degenhardt came from defensive linemen Tyrell Richards. As Degenhardt escaped one defender and paroused his options down field, Richards came barreling straight at the quarterback and lowered his head into Degenhardt’s shoulder. The hit elicited an “ooo” from the crowd and after review, Richard was flagged for targeting and ejected from the game.Syracuse’s suffocating defensive line took over in the third quarter. On one series, with Holy Cross still trailing 21, the Orange defensive line pinned the Crusaders against their own end zone. On the first play Alton Robinson and Kenneth Ruff wrapped up Holy Cross running back Domenic Cozier four yards behind the line of scrimmage. The next play, Holy Cross attempted a quick screen to an outside receiver but the ball never made it past Robinson’s hands as he batted and nearly intercepted the pass. Josh Black negated a running back almost immediately after the catch on the following play and one of Holy Cross’ last attempts to stay in the game fell short again.He can kick field goals too! Late in the first quarter Syracuse lined up for a 52-yard field goal but last year’s Lou Groza Award-winning kicker wasn’t attempting the field goal. Instead, punter Sterling Hofrichter trotted out and drilled a 52-yard field goal.Hofrichter, who Dino Babers has praised for hang time on his punts in the past, also kicks off for the Orange. His displays of leg strength in the past correlated with him having a bit of room on the long kick. Andre Szmyt, the Orange’s usual place kicker, kicked all other field goals including attempts after Hofrichter’s long kick. Comments
There are another three FA Cup third round replays taking place later tonight, but they’re unlikely to match last night’s drama at Upton Park.West Ham came out on-top of an epic penalty shoot-out against 10-man Everton to secure their progress to the fourth-round.Both sides held the lead during the game, which finished dead-locked 2-all after extra-time and there were 20 penalties taken during the shoot-out before Hammers goalkeeper, Adrían scored the decisive goal to help his side to a 9-8 win. West Hams win sets up a fourth-round trip to Bristol City, who beat Doncaster 2-0.Fulham also needed spot-kicks to win their tie, as they got past Wolves, and will now play Sunderland.Chesterfield’s 2-0 win over Scunthorpe earned them a game with Derby.Tonights’ replay action will see Mick McCarthy’s Ipswich host Southampton while Tottenham face Burnley in an all Premier League clash.The other game features Bradford against Millwall.
Meanwhile, Johne Murphy is out for “a number of weeks” after breaking a bone in his hand during training last week. Munster will continue to monitor the fitness of CJ Stander, Simon Zebo and Conor Murray ahead of the visit of Sale in their final Champions Cup pool match.Both Zebo and Stander picked up ankle injuries in Saturday’s defeat to Saracens, with the latter set to undergo a scan.Murray will have the neck injury sustained against Zebre reviewed as the week progresses.
O’Brien says despite some big name retirements, including Mullinahone’s Eoin Kelly, there is a host of younger players in the Tipperary squad for Eamon O’Shea and his management team to choose from.Tipp FM will have full live coverage of Sunday’s match against Dublin – throw in is at 2 o’clock. Former Tipperary hurler John O’Brien says the Premier County has plenty of young talent trying to break into the senior set up.The Toomevara clubman, who has 2 All Ireland and 5 Munster medals, retired from the Inter-County scene at the end of last season.Tipperary open their League campaign this Sunday against Dublin in Parnell Park.
It was initially fixed for July 1st but it’s likely the game will be brought forward a week due to the county’s minor footballers playing in the Munster final against Kerry on July 5th.There are a number of dual players on both panels and Munster council representative John Costigan says they want to accommodate everyone.
Speaking to Tipp FM Sport Kildangan manager Dan Hackett said his team have underachieved in Semple Stadium over the last few years. The North champion’s manager believes its time to take the opportunity that presents itself. Two hurling double headers take place in Semple Stadium On Saturday the tie of the round sees North champions Kildangan meet Drom Inch at 2pm while at 3.30 Three in a row West winners Eire Óg Annacarthy meet Kilruane McDonaghsOn Sunday Portroe and Nenagh meet at 2pm while Thurles Sarsfields meet Clonoulty Rossmore at 3.30.
While Rafa Nadal’s conqueror, Lucas Pouille takes on his fellow Frenchman, Gael Monfils.Last night, second seed Andy Murray eased into the last-8 with a straight sets victory over Bulgaria’s Grigor Dimitrov. First up, women’s second seed Angelique Kerber faces seventh seed Roberta Vinci of Italy. While Caroline Wozniacki goes up against Anastasija Sevastova of Latvia. Men’s top seed Novak Djokovic continues the defence of his title against Jo-Wilfried Tsonga
Last Updated: 25th September, 2019 16:21 IST Deepak Punia: ‘Zero Expectations’ & ‘No Pressure’ Helped Me Win Silver Deepak Punia in an interview with Republic TV said that non-recognition kept him away from the spotlight; helped him win silver in World Wrestling Championship. Written By FOLLOW US Suman Ray SUBSCRIBE TO US WATCH US LIVE 11 months ago Deepak Punia reaches World Championship final; books Olympics berth LIVE TV COMMENT ‘Non-recognition’ is a ‘virtue’, is not understood by many. But for Deepak Punia, it worked as a ‘miracle’, as he ‘quietly prepared’ for the challenge at the top flight without any ‘spotlight’ or ‘pressure’. “No one recognised me. No one talked to me. At times, I was confused as an official or a coach. No one paid any attention to me. I was away from the spotlight. Everyone talked about Bajrang bhai, Vinesh ji and my Guruji (Sushil Kumar). That actually helped. It gave me strength from within to do something like them,” Deepak told Republic TV after his return from World Championship.Read: Deepak Punia Clinches Silver, Rahul Takes Bronze At World C’shipSushil Kumar Always Believes in Me: Deepak Punia”I used to hear what people say about them and felt proud of my “Guruji” (Sushil Kumar).. he is recognised, loved and praised by everyone wherever he goes. And he always believes in me and my ability. It was an hour to travel along with him in a competition that he was participating in. Before leaving he had told me, & I remember; “Mujhe mile na mile, tera medal to pakka hi hai”.. I took it as a ‘joke’ but never thought it would actually come true,” Deepak said. Sushil had lost in the first or qualifying round while his ward Deepak went on to win a silver, which no one else in the contingent could. “Now I dedicate this medal to Guruji Mahabali Satpal ji and Sushil Pehewalnji. I completely owe them this medal,” he added.Read: Lure Of Job Brought Deepak Punia To Wrestling, Here’s His Story’Deepak Is the Next Big Thing in Wrestling’Sushil heaped high praises on his ward Deepak; “Didn’t I tell you all… Deepak is the next big thing in wrestling. It’s just a beginning for him. He will win many medals and laurels for the country.” Talking of his ward, Mahabali Satpal said: “I had spotted his talent at the age of 12 and it’s a proud feeling my institute Chhatrashal Stadium has now produced a Gold (Sushil) and two silver (Amit Dahiya in 2013 & Deepak in 2019) medallists. Now our focus turns to the 2020 Olympics.”Read: Deepak Punia Reaches World Championship Final; Books Olympics BerthRead: Deepak Punia Qualifies For Tokyo Olympics, Beats Colombia’s Mendez WE RECOMMEND First Published: 25th September, 2019 16:21 IST
He’s come under increasing pressure since Wednesday’s 5-1 Champions League defeat at Bayern Munich.Domestically, Arsenal haven’t won the top flight for 13 years.Wenger’s been at the club since 1996 – he says he’ll do what he thinks is right.
Monaco have a mountain to climb next week if they’re to make the Champions League final.They trail Juventus by 2-goals to nil after their first leg in Monte Carlo last night.Monaco’s task in Turin will be made all the more difficult by the fact last night’s game saw Juventus surpass 600-minutes since they last conceded in the competition. Photo © Pixabay Manchester United manager Jose Mourinho says Chris Smalling, Phil Jones and Paul Pogba will all be available for tonight’s Europa League semi final first leg with Celta Vigo.All three missed recent games through injury.Kick off this evening is at 8.05.Ajax most likely await the winners of that tie in the Europa League final.The Amsterdam giants beat Lyon by 4-goals to 1 in their first leg last evening.
The oil giant is also to pay the players and coaching crew as well as provide Aiteo branded jersey (two sets for both home and away) and other accessories to the club.Since Aiteo made in-road to football sponsorship, the company has taken over the CAF Awards, the sponsorship of the Nigeriaâ€™s oldest football competition, the Aiteo Federation Cup, payment of the Super Eagles coaches as well as becoming the lead sponsor of the NFF.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram As part of its Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), oil exploration company and the lead sponsor of the Nigeria Football Federation (NFF), Aiteo, has undertake to sponsor Nembe City FC playing in the Nigeria Nationwide 1 league.It was learnt that part of the special concession the company reached with the Nembe community in Bayelsa State include renaming of the team as Aiteo-Nembe City FC.Other agreement reached with the community include; purchase of a Coaster bus for the team, depositing a lump sum in the teamâ€™s bank account to register it for the Nationwide League.
“All I can tell the media for now is that we have signed D’banj and Teni to entertain runners and marathon fans at the finish. I can also assure them that we are talking to many other artistes, but I cannot speak on artistes that we are yet to sign because it is unethical,” he noted.Lagos State is getting ready in style for another epic show as history is expected to be made again with the 4th edition of Access Bank Lagos City Marathon.Thomas also said over 5,000 marathoners from about 45 countries have registered for the 2019 race.“Our target of about 150,000 runners participating in the 2019 race will be met. Before the Christmas and New Year break, we already have close to 100,000 runners that registered. Since work started, potential runners throng our office daily to request for forms. We are also happy that thousands of foreign runners from different parts of the world have shown interest in this edition.“Their coming will help the local business especially in the areas of hospitality, transportation and others.”Thomas appealed to Lagosians to be nice and polite to foreign tourists as their pleasant experience will make them want to visit Lagos again.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram One of Nigeria’s biggest music stars, Oladapo Daniel Oyebanjo, popularly known as D’banj, has been signed to entertain runners and fans at Eko Atlantic City, the finish point of the 2019 Access Bank Lagos City Marathon on February 2.In a statement signed by Olukayode Thomas, Head of Communication and Media, D’banj will perform alongside rave of the moment, Teni and a host of other big stars.Thomas however will not confirm or deny insinuations that other top artistes like Olamide, Burna Boy, Davido and Tiwa Savage are being contacted to also perform.
Duro IkhazuagbeSuper Eagles new boy, Paul Onuachu scored world’s second fastest goal in football history yesterday as Nigeria defeated Pharaohs of Egypt 1-0 in an international friendly in Asaba . The victory is first for Nigeria against Egypt at international level since 1990.The full capacity fans at the Stephen Keshi Stadium were just settling into their seats when the Midtjyland of Denmark front man neatly controlled the pass from John Ogu, weaved past three Egyptian players to riffle home a fierce volley just eight seconds into the Grade A friendly.Only formerGerman international, Lukas Podoski’s sixth second strike againstEcuador in an international friendly in 2013 can rival Onuachu’s early goal in just his second game for Nigeria. The gangly lad made his debut for Eagles in last Friday’s last AFCON 2019 qualifier with Seychelles here in Asaba.Eagles were. clearly the better of the two teams despite the fact the seven-time African champions came to Asaba with a weakened team that was without their talismanic Mohamed Salah.Gernot Rohr wards took their performance beyond the insipid outing recorded against Seychelles four days ago.With what looked like a synergy happening between Onuachu, Alex Iwobi, Moses Simon and Henry Onyekuru upfront, the Pharaohs looked ordinary as the Nigerian forward ceaselessly took their defence apart.Eagles central defence manned by the ‘Oyinbo Wall’ of William Troost Ekong and Leon Balogun also combined well with the full backs of Shehu Abdullahi and another new boy Jamilu Collins. With this Daniel Akpeyi had no problems beyond a few incursion that were not really threats .Even when the Pharaohs had possession, they struggled to carve out openings as an experimental side failed to prove their worth, producing another lackluster performance following a 1-1 draw at Niger in a dead-rubber Nations Cup qualifier last Saturday which ended the team’s perfect run under new coach Javier Aguirre.The Mexican, who tasted his first defeat in charge of Egypt, gave debuts to Zamalek keeper Mahmoud Gennesh and central defender Mahmoud Alaa as well as Smouha left-back Ahmed Aboul-Fotouh and Dakhleya winger Islam Gaber.There were few familiar faces, including winger Mahmoud Trezeguet and Zamalek’s no-nonsense defensive midfielder Tarek Hamed.The visitors’ forwards were unable to make their presence felt until late in the game when Greek-based winger Amr Warda and striker Ahmed Kouka were introduced.The first meaningful effort fell to Kouka on 82 minutes when he was released by a through pass but he dithered on the ball to allow his challenger to make a sliding tackle and thwart his attempted shot.Gaber then created Egypt’s best chance, with his long-range thunderbolt drawing a fine save from Eagles substitute goalkeeper Ikechukwu Ezenwa. He also saved the follow up effort.Share this:FacebookRedditTwitterPrintPinterestEmailWhatsAppSkypeLinkedInTumblrPocketTelegram
FOLLOW US Last Updated: 20th August, 2020 11:26 IST Nola Drives In 4, Mariners Snap Dodgers Streak With 6-4 Win When he was younger and probably a little more stubborn, Seattle’s Taijuan Walker would have struggled to make a major in-game adjustment that called for abandoning the original game plan SUBSCRIBE TO US When he was younger and probably a little more stubborn, Seattle’s Taijuan Walker would have struggled to make a major in-game adjustment that called for abandoning the original game plan.With the Los Angeles Dodgers sitting on Walker’s fastball on Wednesday night and clubbing it for three early home runs, there had to be a change.“I faced the Dodgers a lot when I was at Arizona and my attack plan was mostly fastball, changeup to them,” Walker said. “But this year I have a curveball now and a pretty good slider, and the confidence I have with them let me be able to go out there and make that adjustment and really trust my pitches.”Walker overcame the early long-ball issues to throw seven strong innings, Austin Nola hit a three-run homer run and had four RBIs, and the Mariners beat Los Angeles 6-4, snapping the Dodgers’ seven-game win streak.Nola had an RBI single in the first inning and added his third home run of the season in the third as the Mariners snapped a seven-game skid. Dylan Moore added a solo home run in the sixth inning.Walker (2-2) was outstanding once he stopped giving up home runs. Max Muncy, Joc Pederson and Cody Bellinger hit solo homers and Walker seemed destined for an early exit.But after Bellinger’s home run in the third inning gave the Dodgers a 3-1 lead, Walker settled down. He found success with his curveball and retired 13 of the final 14 batters he faced. The only batter to reach came on an error.Walker allowed just four hits and struck out eight.“The last time that Taijuan was a Mariner here a few years ago, he couldn’t have made that adjustment mid-game,” Seattle manager Scott Servais said. “He’s learned. He went to some changeups, a lot of curveballs, got the cutter going, and it really slowed things down, slowed them down in the batter’s box.”Justin Turner had an RBI single in the eighth off reliever Anthony Misiewicz. Taylor Williams loaded the bases with two outs in the ninth after walking Mookie Betts, but struck out Corey Seager for his fourth save.Dodgers starter Julio Urías didn’t make it out of the second inning. Urías labored to record five outs and was pulled by manager Dave Roberts with two outs in the second. Seattle tagged reliever Dennis Santana (1-1) for four runs in the third inning, including Nola’s long ball. Seattle sent nine batters to the plate.“He’ll pitch his next turn. Just got to continue to be better,” Roberts said of Urías. “The last three starts, it’s been that first inning he hasn’t really looked sharp. I don’t know if it’s the pregame prep, whether it’s too much early, not enough early to get ready for that first inning. We’ll talk about it, but we’ve got to be ready from pitch one.”EARLY EXITRoberts, Muncy and hitting coach Robert Van Scoyoc were ejected in the sixth inning by home plate umpire Mark Ripperger. Van Scoyoc and Roberts had been barking from the dugout about balls and strikes for much of the game. Van Scoyoc was ejected first, followed by Roberts during Muncy’s at-bat. Muncy had some words for Ripperger and was tossed after striking out.“Robert didn’t agree with a couple of the calls and got run, and for me, I came out to question why would he throw out our guy and then I got tossed,” Roberts said.TRAINER’S ROOMRookie Seattle 1B Evan White was removed from the game in the third inning after fouling a pitch off his left knee. White was down for a few minutes before walking off on his own. X-rays were negative and the team said he was day-to-day.ROSTER MOVESThe Dodgers recalled LHP Victor González ahead of the series against Seattle and optioned RHP Tony Gonsolin. It’s the second stint this season for González, who appeared in one game last month.The Mariners made a flurry of moves, highlighted by designating for assignment struggling DH Daniel Vogelbach, who was hitting just .094. Vogelbach was an All-Star selection a year ago. The Mariners also optioned right-hander Art Warren and outrighted right-hander Bryan Shaw to its alternate training site.REMEMBERING GORTONThe Mariners held a moment of silence before the game for former U.S. Sen. Slade Gorton, who died on Wednesday at 92. Gorton was a huge advocate for baseball in Seattle and had a major hand in the Mariners arrival in 1977 as an expansion franchise after the Pilots left for Milwaukee following the 1969 season. He later helped facilitate the sale of the team to local ownership that kept the team in Seattle in the 1990s.“Probably no single person was as important to the history of Major League Baseball in Seattle and the Mariners as Slade,” Mariners chairman John Stanton said.UP NEXTDodgers: LHP Clayton Kershaw (2-1, 2.65) threw seven innings and allowed one run in his last start against the Angels. Kershaw is 3-0 all-time against Seattle.Mariners: LHP Yusei Kikuchi (0-1, 5.28) is scheduled to return to the rotation after being scratched from his last start due to neck spasms. Kikuchi’s last start came on Aug. 7 when he gave up four runs in 5 2/3 innings against Colorado.Image credits: AP First Published: 20th August, 2020 11:26 IST Associated Press Television News Written By COMMENT LIVE TV WATCH US LIVE
Written By First Published: 29th August, 2020 11:04 IST Associated Press Television News LIVE TV Zac Gallen earned his first win of the season, Starling Marte had two hits and two RBIs and the Arizona Diamondbacks snapped an eight-game losing streak by beating the San Francisco Giants 7-4 on Friday night.Gallen (1-0) came into the game with a 2.25 ERA, but had taken a no-decision in his first six starts. The right-hander threw seven impressive innings, giving up five hits and issuing one walk.The Giants scored their only run off Gallen when Evan Longoria homered in the sixth.Arizona is still in last place in the NL West but improved to 14-19. Ketel Marte had two hits, including a double, and scored two runs. Christian Walker had two RBIs.Tyler Anderson (1-2) had a rough outing less than a week after throwing a three-hitter against the Diamondbacks in San Francisco. The left-hander was charged with seven runs and nine hits in 4 2/3 innings.The Giants trailed 7-1 going into the ninth. Wilmer Flores doubled home Brandon Belt and Brandon Crawford hit a two-run homer off Taylor Widener before the rookie right-hander closed it out.San Francisco has lost three straight games to fall to 15-19 overall.GALLEN THE GREATGallen set a big league record by allowing three or fewer runs in the first 22 starts of his career. The 25-year-old was traded to the Diamondbacks from the Miami Marlins last season for fellow prospect Jazz Chisholm.The previous record was 21 straight starts by Boston’s Aaron Sele, who accomplished the feat over parts of 1993 and 1994.SCHEDULINGArizona announced it will play a doubleheader against Colorado on Sep. 25 at Chase Field. The teams elected to postpone Thursday’s game to protest racial injustice.TRAINER’S ROOMGiants: LHP Drew Smyly (finger sprain) will throw another bullpen this weekend. … RHP Jeff Samardzija (right shoulder inflammation) will throw his second bullpen this weekend.Diamondbacks: Manager Torey Lovullo said he’d wait at last one more turn through the rotation before putting LHP Madison Bumgarner (strained back) into the mix. Lovullo said Bumgarner feels good but he wants the veteran at full strength when he returns.UP NEXTGiants: RHP Trevor Cahill (0-0, 1.64 ERA) starts on Saturday.Diamondbacks: RHP Luke Weaver (1-4, 7.77 ERA) pitches when the series resumes.Image credits: AP COMMENT SUBSCRIBE TO US Last Updated: 29th August, 2020 11:04 IST Diamondbacks Stop 8-game Skid, Beat Giants 7-4 Zac Gallen earned his first win of the season, Starling Marte had two hits and two RBIs and the Arizona Diamondbacks snapped an eight-game losing streak by beating the San Francisco Giants 7-4 on Friday night WATCH US LIVE FOLLOW US
LIVE TV Last Updated: 29th August, 2020 11:29 IST Grandal Hits Game-winning HR, White Sox Beat Royals 6-5 Yasmani Grandal hit his third career game-ending home run in the ninth after a defensive miscue as the Chicago White Sox beat the Kansas City Royals 6-5 on Friday night SUBSCRIBE TO US Written By First Published: 29th August, 2020 11:29 IST COMMENT Yasmani Grandal hit his third career game-ending home run in the ninth after a defensive miscue as the Chicago White Sox beat the Kansas City Royals 6-5 on Friday night.Yoan Moncada had an RBI single in the seventh, Eloy Jimenez added a two-run homer and Luis Robert also homered for the White Sox who have won 10 of their last 11 games and eight straight at home.Trailing 5-4 in the ninth, Ryan O’Hearn drew a one-out walk off White Sox closer Alex Colome. Maikel Franco followed with a liner to left-center. The White Sox caught Franco in between first and second. First baseman Jose Abreu tried to run him down but Franco got to second base before Abreu’s diving attempt of a tag. While Abreu was sitting on the ground near second base, Abreu threw to the plate. Grandal wasn’t looking for the throw and the ball got by Grandal, allowing pinch-runner Bubba Starling to score to tie the score.“A very bizarre play. As I am thinking, it’s a dead ball as soon as Abreu falls on the ground. I am looking at the runner at third and he is standing at third, he’s not going anywhere,” Grandal said. “Right after that, I have to figure out if the dugout wants to challenge or not and let the umpire know we’re trying to challenge the play. As that happens, I turn around and see the ball going through my legs. Like I said before, it’s something to learn from, make sure I am aware as to when the play is over and when the umpire is actually calling timeout.”Grandal made up for everything when he broke a 5-5 tie with a leadoff homer off Ian Kennedy (0-2) in the bottom of the inning.“I’ve caught Kennedy before and I had plenty of AB’s against him. I kind of had a pretty good idea of what I wanted off of him in order to take a good swing at it,” said Grandal.Colome (1-0) finished the game by getting the final four outs after blowing his first save attempt.The White Sox moved into a tie with the Twins for first place in the AL Central.Jorge Soler hit a two-run home run and Whit Merrifield added a solo shot for the Royals, who have lost all four of their games to the White Sox this season.“We fought so hard to get back, every time in that game, multiple times. … That’s one of the worst feelings as a reliever, getting walked off,” said Kennedy.Royals manager Mike Matheny wants to see his team take advantage of situations when opponents give them a break.“For our team to take that next step, we have to be relentless in those situations,” Matheny said. “We can’t let teams off the hook as often as we have. We’re facing major league-caliber pitching. I get it. It’s just that it’s going to continue to be the conversation. They’re going to get sick and tired of hearing about it, but it’s too big of a piece of the puzzle for us, to not make a mark early, to not figure out how to get it done late.”Royals reliever Tyler Zuber, activated from the bereavement list before the game, walked Jimenez to start the seventh on four straight pitches. He gave up a single to Grandal, One out later, he was relieved by Scott Barlow, who walked Edwin Encarnacion to load the bases. After Franco was unable to make a running overhead catch in foul territory, Moncada ripped a single to right to put the White Sox ahead 5-4. Barlow escaped further damage by getting Robert to line out and Danny Mendick swinging.Trailing 2-1 in the fifth inning with two outs, Tim Anderson hit a liner off the right thigh of Royals starter Danny Duffy. Duffy didn’t appear hurt despite getting a visit from the team trainer. Two pitches later, Jimenez teed off on a fastball, driving it deep into the ivy in center-field to give the White Sox a 3-2 lead. It was Jimenez’s 11th of the season and it measured at 452-feet.Moncada chased Duffy with a two-out single in the sixth inning. Robert reached on a single off Royals reliever Jesse Hahn and Mendick struck out but reached on a passed ball by catcher Cam Gallagher to load the bases. Pinch-hitter Nomar Mazara added another run by drawing a bases-loaded walk to extend the lead.The White Sox lead was short-lived. Reliever Matt Foster allowed a one-out walk in the seventh, then Soler followed with a two-run shot on an 0-2 pitch to tie the game at four it was his eighth of the season.With two outs in the second, Robert hit an opposite-field home run into the Royals’ right-field bullpen. It was the rookie’s 8th of the season.Merrifield tied the game in the third with a leadoff shot on a high 2-1 fastball. It was his sixth of the season. White Sox starter Reynaldo Lopez then surrendered three consecutive hits. Ryan O’Hearn hit an RBI single to put the Royals ahead 2-1.Lopez was pitching in and out of trouble all night. Lopez allowed two runs on six hits in four innings. He struck out four and walked two.Before the game, the White Sox acquired speedy outfielder Jarrod Dyson in a trade with Pittsburgh to boast their depth as they make a run for the postseason. Dyson came in as a defensive replacement in the ninth for Jimenez in left.Duffy allowed four runs, three earned on seven hits. He struck out six and walked one in the no-decision.JACKIE ROBINSON DAYGrandal and his teammates weren’t looking to make a statement by not playing on Friday. Grandal pointed to the significance of Jackie Robinson Day. If you don’t play today than what is the point? We thought today was the day to play. If it wouldn’t have been Jackie Robinson Day today we could’ve possibly taken a different route, but we thought today was definitely the one day we needed to play.”TRAINER’S ROOMINF Nick Madrigal, one of Chicago’s top prospects, returned to the White Sox. He separated his left shoulder in his fifth game with the team. The 23-year-old second baseman was selected by the White Sox with the fourth overall pick in the 2018 draft. Catcher Zack Collins was optioned to Schaumburg to create a spot for Madrigal. Madrigal did not play on Friday night.UP NEXTBrady Singer (1-3) is scheduled to start for the Royals against the White Sox on Saturday. The right-hander is 0-1 in three road starts this season with a 4.02 ERA.RHP Dylan Cease (4-2) is scheduled to start for the White Sox on Saturday. He is 4-1 with a 2.15 ERA in his last five starts. He is 1-1 with a 4.50 ERA against the Royals in his career.Image credits: AP Associated Press Television News WATCH US LIVE FOLLOW US
Last Updated: 31st August, 2020 19:48 IST Anand Wants Olympiad Win To Bring In ‘long’ Due National Honours For Chess Players It’s been seven years since a chess player got the Arjuna award and the iconic Viswanathan Anand is hoping that India’s triumphant campaign at the online Chess Olympiad will change this when the national sporting honours are announced in 2020. SUBSCRIBE TO US Asked if the tweaked format helped India, he said: “I think in future it will be nice for India if you can double the number of boards, for instance to showcase our depth. Since we have so many good juniors, so many girls playing. Whether it particularly favoured us, I don’t know…nice thing is that if you are putting pressure on all six boards then you could feel someone or other could click for us. Even when we had one setback, someone could rescue us, added Anand.On whether it was a conscious decision by him to sit out the first game of the final, Anand said he had expressed the desire to play only one game.Yes, it was. I had discussed with N Srinath (vice-captain) that I wanted to play only one game on the final day. Because I strongly felt that we had a good team. I thought we had to use that strength,added Anand. He said in the last few years, there has been “a drop off in the attitude of the Sports Ministry towards chess players” regarding government awards. FOLLOW US “I also commend their decision to improvise with the format. Instead of the same format, they got juniors and women, made the event much more fun to watch. It went really nicely.” Lauding his teammates, Anand said each one of them clicked at some point. “Sometimes you need to show that we are still there and I hope this results in positive impetus for many things,” Anand said. “But in this particular case, it was quickly verified that the problem was not at our end. So FIDE had to consider that in our appeal,” he said. “I didn’t anticipate this. I mean clearly the strongest argument in our favour was that this disconnection was not our fault. The rules are clear that if a team loses by disconnection, they forfeit the game. LIVE TV “You saw without me the team beat China and that result helped us a lot. So I was happy to repeat that again,” he quipped. It’s been seven years since a chess player got the Arjuna award and the iconic Viswanathan Anand is hoping that India’s triumphant campaign at the online Chess Olympiad will change this when the national sporting honours are announced next year.In an interview to PTI after India won the top honours jointly with Russia on Sunday, Anand, a recipient of both the Arjuna and the Khel Ratna, said award recognition is due for the sport’s practitioners in India. COMMENT The last time a chess player received the Arjuna was in 2013 when Abhijeet Gupta was bestowed the honour, while a chess coach has been given the Dronacharya just twice — Raghunandan Vasant Gokhale (1986) and Koneru Ashok (2006). Written By First Published: 31st August, 2020 19:48 IST Press Trust Of India Everyone clicked at least in one game. That really worked to the strength of India that we have such depth not only in men, but also women, girls, juniors,added Anand. “During the whole tournament whenever I watched the other boards..some team member somewhere had done something…,” he said. “It is peculiar to this year that the whole chess world has kind of moved online. It is a positive feeling especially for this generation of youngsters who are part of this winning team.” “I don’t mean at a personal level obviously. Just that institutionally, we no longer get awards for international competitions,” Anand said later in an online media interaction. (Image Credits:PTI) The 50-year-old said he was waiting to be told of a rematch instead.I expected something along the lines of replaying the second match…The Russians may not have been happy with this and there would have been discussions. I was expecting a replay,added Anand.I think then the FIDE opted for the other route, declared both as winners. Look these are teething problems. We are starting online chess, this will not be the last disconnection in online chess. I think this was a fair decision,added Anand. The senior Indian men’s team comprised, apart from Anand, Vidit Gujarati (captain), P. Harikrishna and Arvindh Chithambaram (reserves).The senior women’s side featured Koneru Humpy, Dronavalli Harika, Bhakti Kulkarni and R. Vaishali.It is nice to write their co-tales as well, added Anand. Anand also said that his performance in the event was not great.I was able to rely on the team,explained Anand. It was a good idea to have an online Olympiad this year instead of postponing it amid the COVID-19 pandemic,added Anand. The India-Russia final was said to be widely followed online with over 60,000 viewing it and there were a lot of congratulatory messages flowing in afterwards, which Anand said was a pleasant surprise. “It might be due to various issues pertaining to code of conduct etc. Our federation has had some difficulties. It would be nice to reset this. And the best way to reset this is not by writing long letters to editors but by having good results like this,”added Anand. “The event was a pleasant surprise…The original decision was to move it to next year and then this good idea, I think, to have an online Olympiad. Any sport still has to function, you can’t postpone it by a year,”added Anand. Anand also touched upon the wrangling within the national federation. The five-time world champion was expectedly ecstatic about the triumph even though he didn’t expect it after server malfunction led to two Indian losses, prompting an appeal from the team. Nihal Sarin and Divya Deshmukh lost in the second round of the finale due to disconnection and server malfunction. WATCH US LIVE “I hope this will lead to all sorts of positive things including the reconsideration in the Sports Ministry of the Arjuna award and the Dronacharya awards for chess. It has been a long time,” said the country’s first Khel Ratna awardee, India’s highest sporting honour.
Associated Press Television News Last Updated: 4th September, 2020 09:51 IST Panthers’ Rhule Dealing With Eye Issue As Season Approaches Panthers first-year head coach Matt Rhule said there is a reason why he’s been looking like “Darth Vader” recently at practice LIVE TV First Published: 4th September, 2020 09:51 IST WATCH US LIVE COMMENT FOLLOW US Written By Panthers first-year head coach Matt Rhule said there is a reason why he’s been looking like “Darth Vader” recently at practice.Rhule revealed Thursday that he’s been dealing with a painful cornea issue for weeks, which has left his eye sensitive to light. That has prompted him to wear a black bucket hat and dark sunglasses to go along with his black mask due to the coronavirus pandemic.“I’ll be fine,” Rhule said. “But it’s just really, really painful and really hard to see. It’s light sensitive at times. I was raised under coach (Tom) Coughlin with no sunglasses. You can’t even find a hat on my head in the last 20 years of coaching. Now, I look like a Storm Trooper or Darth Vader, or whatever.”Rhule has had plenty of issues to deal with this year, including making the transition from Baylor to the NFL and trying to get a young, rebuilding team ready for the season in the midst of a coronavirus pandemic. The Panthers are the only team in the league with a new coach, two new coordinators and a new quarterback.Rhule said he can still see, and expects the cornea will be almost completely healed in time for Carolina’s Sept. 13 regular-season opener against the Raiders.“We all have to deal with things, so it is has been good for me just to remind myself to practice what I preach,” Rhule said.Image credits: AP SUBSCRIBE TO US
Trinidad carnival Vanessa JamesBefore Christians begin 40 days of self-denial and sacrifice during the Lenten season beginning on Ash Wednesday, March 1, several Caribbean Islands will celebrate one of the Caribbean’s more spirited entertainment event – Carnival. Nowhere in the Caribbean is Carnival more exhilarating, more colorful, more fun, than in Trinidad and Tobago.It is believed the first celebration of modern Carnival in the Caribbean originated in Trinidad and Tobago in the late 18th century when French immigrants brought the Masquerade tradition with them to the islands. According to legend, slaves who were emancipated in 1838, used carnival rituals to commemorate their sufferings on the plantations and at the same time lampooned the lifestyle of their former masters through costumed characters. From TNT Carnival spread to other Caribbean islands like Haiti.Carnival is always a time of fun in Trinidad and TobagoFor decades. the annual Trinidad and Tobago Carnival, begins with plans and events from early January, peaking on the Monday and Tuesday before Ash Wednesday.Visitors from all over the world descend on Trinidad and Tobago every year to celebrate Carnival, primarily for the last two days, which are described as a celebration of life, color and the artistry of the people of Trinidad. It is usual for those who visit Carnival, even for multiple times, to praise the festivities especially the colorful costumes worn by various bands, and the pulsating rhythm of calypso, steel drums, and soca, as an experience they cannot forget.Visitors to Carnival are advised to be well rested before going down to Trinidad for the fun as they say “never stop, and you can ‘grine and wine’ till you drop.” This is no idle advice, as during the build up to the climax, men and women of all ages, races, and colors wine through the streets, drinking rum under the sun and under the stars.Before the highlight of Carnival next Monday and Tuesday, those who arrive in Trinidad over the weekend and bring the children with them, can take in the Kiddies Carnival which starts at 11:00 am on Saturday at the Queens Park Savannah in Port-au-Spain, the central location for Carnival events. Later that evening, visitors will be in for a unique thrill at the Panorama National Finals also at the Savannah, where large and medium steel orchestras will be thrilling the crowd with phenomenal steel pan music as they vie for the title.On Sunday, there is a wide variety of events across the land, but for those who are unconcerned of the realities of not getting sufficient rest before the grand two-day celebrations, they can take in the Dimanche Gras, which is the King and Queen Competition finals, also at Queens Park Oval.Thousands line the streets in Port-au-Spain and other major cities like San Fernando and Point Fortin from all walks of life to experience Carnival Monday and Tuesday; the grand finale where months of preparation and artistry are displayed for the world to see.The big event which officially kicks off Carnival on Monday morning is J’Ouvert (or “day break“) which starts at 3am at Queen’s Park Savannah, ending after sunrise. This is a mass party like no other, referred to as “dutty mas” where revelers parade with painted bodies covered in mud, oil coca or many other forms of body paint, as they jam to calypso and soca music.While people jam till the wee hours of the morning, street vendors serve the ever popular “doubles”, bake and shark and corn soup and steel pan and rhythm percussion sections continuously play the latest soca tunes of the season.Those going to carnival to participate in Tuesday’s grand parade, Masquerade or “Mas” as it is commonly called, can join one of the all-inclusive bands like Tribe, Bliss, Fantasy, Yuma or Ronnie and Caro. With hundreds of bands to choose from, carnival revelers have their pick based on the vibe, costumes, or social setting they prefer.Young and old alike have made Trini carnival a staple travel destination for good reason. Whether you go for the popular (fetes) or all-inclusive parties, the delicious cuisine, the Mas or just the overall Carnival experience, be sure to give yourself at least a week to take in the unlimited vibes and soak in the sweet TNT culture. There’s truly nothing like it on earth.
Windies women beat Sri Lanka in T50 game in TrinidadThe West Indies women cricketers defeated Sri Lanka’s women by 6 wickets on Wednesday at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Trinidad to take a one game lead in their 3-match 50 over series.The three-match ODI series is part of the ICC Women’s Championships, used as qualification for the 2021 World Cup.Sri Lanka won the toss and elected to bat first. They were dismissed for 136 with Hayley Matthews, Windies skipper Stafanie Taylor and Afy Fletcher all taking three wickets each. Matthews took 3-18 while Taylor had 3-24 and Fletcher took 3-42Chasing a score of 137 for victory, the West Indies easily motored to 138-4 off 39 overs. Merissa Aguilera top-scoring with an unbeaten 34 runs and Kyshona Knight scored an unbeaten 21 against 2-27 from Ranaweera.Hayley Matthews who shared in a valuable 37 run partnership with Chedean Nation, but ws forced to retire with an injury, was named Player of the Match.The win gives the West Indies women 2 points as the series forms part of the ICC Women’s Championship.The next match is a Day/Night game on Friday 13 from 2:30pm which will also be played at the Brian Lara Cricket Academy in Trinidad.
SALUTE Junior Murvin by Howard CampbellJamaica was not for the faint of heart in 1976. The political turmoil there influenced many a song, one of which was ‘Police and Thieves’ by singer Junior Murvin.In 1977, (40 years ago), the album of the same name was released in the United Kingdom by Island Records. ‘Police and Thieves’, the song, entered the UK national chart the previous year.Lee ‘Scratch’ PerryProduced by Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, Police and Thieves was not only a hit with the UK’s growing West Indian population, but also the punk movement that dominated that country.The song was a massive breakthrough for Murvin who hailed from Portland, a scenic, rural parish in eastern Jamaica. He had been singing since the 1960s for various producers without success. At one stage during the early 1970s, he gave up music due to frustration. But then he hooked up with the eccentric Perry, who was enjoying a golden run with cutting-edge songs like ‘Duppy Conqueror’ and ‘Small Axe’ by The Wailers, ‘War Inna Babylon’ (Max Romeo) and Junior Byles’ ‘Curly Locks’.Wasn’t a political statementAlthough the political scene in Jamaica was bloody because of conflict between criminal gangs supporting the ruling People’s National Party and Opposition Jamaica Labor Party, Murvin consistently insisted ‘Police and Thieves’ was not a political statement.The song, which caused a riot at the 1977 Notting Hill Carnival in the UK, has endured. It was covered by punk group The Clash for their self-titled debut album that year. Culture Club’s Boy George’s version entered the UK charts in 1998.‘Police and Thieves’ has been used in several movies including Rockers, Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels and Third World Cop.Junior Murvin died in December 2013.For a previous SALUTE, visit the link: SALUTE Hasley Crawford – T&T track and field
MIAMI, Florida – Christmas is perhaps the most celebratory event in the Christian calendar. Christmas Day is bundled with several holidays celebrated between the end of November and the end of December, which include Thanksgiving, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and New Year’s Eve. Since these holidays include other religious commemorations, to be inclusive, this period from Thanksgiving to the New Year is simply called the holidays, but to Christians, it’s the Christmas season.It seems Christians, representing a large percentage of the South Florida population, are more adamant this year to emphasize that the season commemorates Jesus’ Birth. On several occasions, people offering “Happy Holidays” greetings have been rebuffed by the pronounced response, “Merry Christmas,” and this year more retailers have hung “Merry Christmas” banners instead of those depicting “Happy Holidays” as occurred in recent years. Greeting card stores are also selling more Christmas cards, rather than “holiday” cards.An interesting comment was made by a local Pentecostal pastor that the challenge of recent times is driving more people to seek hope in Christ, hence the reemphasis on Christmas. “People need hope more than ever these days,” said the pastor. “They are hoping for jobs, saving their homes from foreclosure, to get better salaries, have stronger families, find love; and they see this hope exemplified in the Christmas message with the commemoration of the birth of Christ, the Messiah born to bring hope and salvation to a sinful world.”People of different religious beliefs may disagree with his view, but it seems that Christmas, and the season that surrounds it, generate a degree of hope and optimism among a large percentage of the population wherever Christmas is celebrated.During Christmas, many people are more generous. Individuals who complained of being strapped for cash during the year find funds to spend on friends, relatives and themselves. People who were otherwise strangers during the year become more friendly, offering pleasant greetings for joy, blessings and happiness to each other. Generally, people become more charitable, reaching out to feed the hungry, and offer gifts to the poor, especially children, who would otherwise receive no gifts.However, people also tend to lose their sense of reasoning during the season, spending relentlessly, not heeding caution that this heavy spending will leave them in debt during the new year. While such spending augurs well for the economy, it depletes the personal savings of individuals and families who cannot afford this loss. However, many people get caught up in this environment of generosity, and harbor hopes that the new year will bring the blessings they prayed for during the passing year to compensate for their excesses during the Christmas season.But Christmas is not permanent. The festivity ends abruptly, especially in America, where at midnight on December 25, Christmas disappears like Cinderella’s coach, replaced by the pumpkin of reality.After all the glitter is cleared, and the visiting relatives return home, everyone has to find the most realistic means of coping with the challenges of their respective lives. Nonetheless, Christmas serves as an important reminder, and, like the pastor said, offers hope to a burdened people.The season proves that kindness, a spirit of sacrifice and goodwill, and a real attempt to reach out to the less fortunate is realistic. While most people won’t be able to spend without limit, they can share the true spirit of Christmas, regardless of their religious beliefs. They can continue to love and respect each other as they want to be loved and respected.This should be the legacy of the Christmas season and Christmas Day.May this message resonate long after the season ends.
Just last year October, Robinson’s younger brother Peter Fakhourie, a former JLP candidate, died after battling an undisclosed illness. Robinson, who was also the member of parliament for North-East St. Ann, died at her home in St. Ann today. Jamaica’s Minister of Labour and Social Security, Shahine Robinson has died at 66 years old. Robinson was previously a naturalised citizen of the United States before obtaining a Certificate of Loss of Nationality in December 2010. She is a graduate of the Miami Dade College, with an associate degree in Marketing and a diploma in Public Relations. Reports are that she had been “fighting” after falling gravely ill days ago amid a long battle with cancer. She was diagnosed with the disease in 2018.
He featured for clubs like Everton, Portsmouth, Middlesbrough, Blackburn Rovers, Reading, Maccabi Haifa and many more.The Yak made his debut for the Super Eagles of Nigeria in 2000 and went on to score 21 goals in 57 appearances thus becoming the 3rd highest goalscorer in the history of the team.Yakubu Aiyegbeni played for Nigeria at four African Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournaments in addition to him representing the country as part of the Eagles team to the 2010 FIFA World Cup in South Africa. RelatedGreatest Nigerian Player: “No Where In The World” Mikel Better Than Oliseh – Aiyegbeni (AUDIO)August 10, 2020In “Featured”Yakubu Aiyegbeni Picks His All Time Super Eagles XIAugust 7, 2020In “Featured”Diafra SakhoJune 30, 2017Similar post Former Super Eagles striker Yakubu ‘The Yak’ Aiyegbeni has retired from football at the age of 35.Yakubu, who is the second highest African goalscorer in the Premier League with 96 goals, played for many clubs during his impressive career.
bettingexpert and a rotation of guests will be providing expert tips for a specific Wednesday race meet.We will keep record of points won each week and the number of race wins for each.The guests will compete individually, with their points going up against the average total for bettingexpert.The new tips will be published on Wednesday ahead of the race meet, and the results will be available on Thursday.For the competition, we will assume that all selections are backed with 1 point.Lost tips will count as 0 and won bets will be added to the leaderboard at SP value.Each tipster will get a ‘Nap of the Day’ each week which scores double points.For example, if bettingexpert’s Stephen Harris backs a winning horse at 8/1, he will get 8 points; if he has put this horse forward as his ‘Nap of the Day’, the reward is 16 points. Submit RankTipsterRace WinsPoints Share StumbleUpon SBC Awards: The key to an effective submission August 28, 2020 Share Related Articles 1Sarah Shannon – OneBet210.38 2Stephen Harris – bettingexpert29.72 3Tim Reynolds – Sun Bets25.00 4Steven Mullington – 888sport24.57 5Ben Cleminson – Square in the Air24.50 6Charlie McCann – BetVictor12.25 7Alex Donohue – ODDSbible12.00 8Rupert Adams – William Hill10.50 Sportech highlights new client wins under lockdown June 26, 2020 Square in the Air director Ben Cleminson and bettingexpert’s Stephen Harris made a flying start in the Tipster Challenge at Ascot by sharing success across the first four races.However, neither managed to find the long odds winners in the final two races of the day, which left Harris in second place despite increasing his weekly average with a 12.00-point haul.Meanwhile, Cleminson had to be content with taking fifth place in the competition, sponsored by Betting Gods, after wins for Le Brivido in the opener and 5/2F Qemah in the 3.40.Race Winners at Ascot:Le Brivido – 2/1Heartache – 5/1Qemah – 5/2Highland Reel – 9/4Zhui Feng – 25/1Con Te Partiro – 20/1Tipster Challenge 2017 Leaderboard ‘Better for Bettors’: Better Collective’s formalised approach to sustainable development June 15, 2020
Danske Spil calls for esports makeover with Pinnacle Solution August 25, 2020 Share StumbleUpon ESI Digital – No Drama Please… Esports growth should be treated as business as usual August 20, 2020 Submit Former Pinnacle Marketing Director Aly Lalani is one of the key drivers behind the launch of BetRegal.com, a new sportsbetting and gaming brand created to provide its customers with the “highest possible value” in prices. After defining the go to market strategy, Lalani is back to share his experiences about the challenges of bringing a new brand to the market.From the start, we wanted to identify the differentiators that will help us stand out in the sector. In terms of sustainability, there has to be something beyond just having a bigger bonus, right? Customers are smarter now, and the onus is on operators to ensure we are providing a differentiated product and a top-notch customer experience.We needed a peg to hang our hat on and declare THIS is who we are going to be. As you may remember from the first two diaries in this series, we decided to push hard on the customer support motto of “killing them with kindness”, while utilising the EveryMatrix platform to aggressively manage our pricing to a very granular level.As we establish ourselves as a brand, this is how we intend to stand out in the convoluted and sometimes complicated European market – customer support and pricing – but first, we will trial such an approach in certain markets in South and Central America, where we hope to leverage some acquisition in a ‘fresh’ territory not as ripe with competition.Okay, so we’re all caught up. We’ve worked out what we want the BetRegal brand to mean to the customer, where we might find this type of customer, and how we can get to market quickly. Now, we need to have a serious discussion around the acquisition of players.Firstly, we need to be clear on our target customer, which is between the ages of 25 and 49 and living in Europe, or at least with the ability to wager from Europe. Obviously ‘Europe’ is a pretty big place so we’ll have to narrow down our focus to a few key markets, but from a product perspective we realize that all the major European sports will need to be included in our offering.It is important for us to attract players with an understanding of how odds work. I don’t expect BetRegal to be a user’s first sportsbook account, rather I anticipate more of a category user. As important as their betting experience, our customers motivation to bet will be derived from a passion for sport, rather than a purely a desire to generate revenues. We anticipate odds comparison sites to be a strong source of acquisition initially, partly because I have some good personal relationships in that area from my Pinnacle days, but more importantly because that’s where we can best highlight our intended pricing differentiator. However, as you can imagine I’m pretty stretched with plans for the product itself, so a short term priority is to take on a European based affiliate manager to lead this strategy. If we can be fairly aggressive in pricing in one or two markets in a specific leagues/games of significant popularity, we can at least get some presence on these odds comparison sites to not only jump start acquisition, but also to build the brand to those price aware customers we’ve defined as important to us. We realise that the customers that frequent these sites aren’t always influenced by the marketing of the big blue-chip brands. They don’t necessarily care about jersey sponsorship as much as they do about having a quality product and good service. We should be a good fit and can hopefully generate reasonable acquisition from that segment of affiliates.We plan on following through with a fairly aggressive content strategy. It’s obviously still very early days so we need to define it much more clearly, but in general, producing high quality, engaging content provides the backbone for so many other marketing channels. There is the obvious SEO value that comes along with strong content. It provides extra touch points and communication paths for affiliates to get your brand in front of their customer base. It also provides an initial footprint in the social media space giving us a reason to interact with customers (and potential customers) through various social media channels. If we can get to the point of consistently generating quality content (articles, tools, widgets, calendars,calculators), I think it will set us up well to begin exploring and leveraging those other marketing channels relatively quickly.We want to make our customers a little bit smarter. Not too smart, but a little bit smarter by giving them access to as much information as possible. Particularly on the sports side, you normally bet when you have the perception that you have an edge, or that you have a little more information than someone else has. We really want to harness that and make people feel that they get value just from visiting the site.That’s the plan. Start with the affiliates in our target markets, and move on to a more aggressive content strategy to support affiliate acquisition, start building our SEO visibility and engage in some carefully devised social media campaigns. I’m going to need some help.Let’s go! 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Share SBC’s Barcelona Summit to become digital-only event May 29, 2020 SBC strengthens sales team with Ross Main appointment April 17, 2020 Related Articles StumbleUpon Share DOWNLOAD: Superbet CEO stars in first SBC Magazine for 2020 January 28, 2020 Submit Tickets are now on sale for next year’s Betting on Football conference, which has been scheduled for 20-23 March to address key industry issues ahead of the FIFA World Cup in Russia.Delegates who purchase tickets before 1 December will be eligible for the Super Early Bird offer with a 50% discount on ticket price. Get your tickets HERE.Following on from the success of Betting on Football 2017 at Stamford Bridge, after which 97.4% of delegates said they would recommend it to a colleague, the fifth edition of the largest international football and betting conference will return to the home of Chelsea FC.More than 1,500 senior executives are expected to attend #bofcon2018, which will feature more than 180 world class industry speakers across multiple targeted conference tracks, including a full day dedicated to Russia 2018, and specific tracks around sponsorship and market profiles across the globe. Once again, it also provides an opportunity to make high level connections with three evenings of networking parties at some of the best venues in London.The ‘World Cup and beyond’ track will focus on trading algorithms for the tournament, the increased importance of CRM, the balance between acquisition and retention, the use of big data, the battle for social media supremacy and ‘Life beyond the bonus’.Meanwhile, Betting on Football will emphasise its international appeal with updates around seven of the biggest sports betting jurisdictions, including the fast-growing markets in Spain and Italy, increased legislation and mobile betting advancements across Africa, and the move towards legalised sports betting in more of the US states.Former CCO of AC Milan Jaap Kalma will be heading up the event’s exclusive Betting on Sponsorship track. He commented: “Betting on Sports and Betting on Football have in my view quickly become must-attend events for those in the betting world and those in related industries, such as key suppliers, but also given the ever greater importance of partnerships both for operators and rights holders, for sports teams.“The format allows you, in very little time, to update yourself on the state-of-the-art of the industry and to establish connections with all the key players. Highly recommended.”Super Early Bird tickets for the biggest ever Betting on Football conference, headline sponsored by OPTIMA and VSoftCo, are available for just £349 (+VAT) until 1 December. After this date, ticket prices will revert to the standard rate of £699 (+VAT).SBC Managing Director Andrew McCarron said: “We are excited to launch this Super Early Bird offer for next year’s Betting on Football. We believe it provides the best value of any conference ticket on the market. In 2018, no other conference will have such a high concentration of leaders, decision makers and speakers from across the sector.”
Related Articles Share TVBET passes GLI test for five live games in Malta and Italy August 25, 2020 CT Gaming bolsters Italian profile with The Betting Coach August 27, 2020 Submit StumbleUpon Italian bookmakers face cruel summer as ADM sanctions shop closures July 27, 2020 Share Whatever form the next Italian government takes following this March’s ground-breaking general election results, Italy’s new political taskmasters’ will have to revamp the country’s existing gambling framework.A coalition government, led by the legislative novices of the 5-Star Movement has a daunting task in creating a more cohesive industry framework, in-line with business provisions set out by Italy’s new ‘Stability Law of 2017’.In 2018, Italian betting stakeholders point to three critical industry concerns which must be addressed by the new government.First up, the government will have to adjudicate new proposals to add a further 10,000 new betting points within Italy’s autonomous regions.Set to be delivered this September, the betting industry has met resistance from multiple state regulators, who have implemented laws restricting the operating of betting points near ‘sensitive places’ such as churches, schools and hospitals.Further concerns are raised about whether a new government will move to approve new betting industry provisions, currently being revised by Italy’s Ministry of the Economy.Betting stakeholders seek a strengthening of the national betting code in relation to Asian Handicap offers, operator Cash-Out functionalities and setting fixed policy and clear practices on ‘market disputes’ relating to bookmakers and their customers.From a long-term industry standpoint, the new government will be tested on whether it can finally align Italy’s complex governing framework between the state and autonomous regions, which has affected previous governments presiding the betting sector.Revamping Italy’s gambling agenda, set in a previous agreement the industry had settled on reducing its overall slot machines portfolio by 35% from 400,000 to about 265,000, with licensed operators significantly reducing machine inventory in bars and tobacconists.Nevertheless, set against the constant battle of federal laws versus regional rights, Italy’s new political actors face numerous obstacles in delivering business/commercial alignment… Italian gambling stakeholders will have to wait and see whether 2018 will truly be a year of change!
Share Winamax maintains Granada CF sponsorship despite bleak Spanish outlook August 19, 2020 StumbleUpon Related Articles Submit Share Andrea Vota – Jdigital’s challenge of Spanish restrictions is led by logic and rationale August 13, 2020 Martin Lycka – Regulatory high temperatures cancel industry’s ‘silly season’ August 11, 2020 Spain’s Parliament has pushed forward with its 2018 fiscal budget, which will implement a significant 5% tax reduction on a number of online gambling/betting services.Spain cuts taxes on gross gambling revenues from 25% to 20% on a range of industry online verticals including sports and exchange betting, online casino games and horseracing.Despite the recent upheaval in Spanish politics, which last June saw Mariano Rajoy discharged as Prime Minister following bribery scandals attached to the governing Partido Popular (PP – Conservative Centre Right).The Spanish parliament has decided not to delay its budget, which was initially agreed on in May, with the new fiscal policies being implemented by the new PSOE (socialist) government led by Pedro Sanchez.The tax breaks come at a crucial point for the burgeoning Spanish online gambling market, which is set to expand its licensing programme in 2018, welcoming a number of new operators to its marketplace.From a governance perspective, Spain will maintain its federal and regional divide between online and land-based gambling services.The Federal government will continue to regulate the Spanish online gambling marketplace through the Dirección General de Ordenación del Juego (DGOJ), whilst Span’s autonomous communities will be able to grant individual gambling concessions to enterprises adhering to DGOJ standards.
New look ARC revamps executive leadership team February 18, 2020 StumbleUpon Related Articles ARC continues financial support for greyhound trainers during COVID-19 shutdown April 15, 2020 Share Share ITV secures three-year British racing broadcast deal August 5, 2020 Submit The Arena Racing Company (ARC) has revealed a multi-million pound development scheme for Newcastle Racecourse and High Gosforth Park, following on from the success in similar previous work undertaken.Planning to submit its plans for the next stages of its development to Newcastle City Council in Autumn this year, it is hoped the proposals will boost the international prestige of the racecourse, in addition to creating a plethora of new jobs and driving a significant uplift of visitor numbers through the city. Improvement detailed for the racecourse estate includes an approximate 3,500m2 events centre, alongside significant refurbishment of the public and hospitality areas, as well as the racing staff accommodation. In its media statement ARC also outlined its plans for High Gosforth Park, which includes the development of “high quality” residential accommodation, and refurbishment to the listed Brandling House and its associated public space.David Williamson, Executive Director of Newcastle Racecourse, said “Our plans will complete the transformation of Newcastle Racecourse into a world class sporting venue. The development of the racecourse, and the wider High Gosforth Park Estate, will provide a significant boost to Newcastle’s local economy and help create a number of jobs.“These plans will completely transform the customer experience here at Newcastle, with brand new facilities for racegoers including bars, restaurants and hospitality suites, alongside significant upgrades for owners and trainers as well as the accommodation for racing staff. “We very much look forward to hearing people’s views on the plans, and welcome feedback at the exhibition on 31 August. We look forward to introducing the public to our plans and hearing their views.” A public consultation has been launched on the plans, with local residents invited to submit their views. Newcastle Racecourse will host a public exhibition and drop-in session before racing on 31 August between 12:00 and 16:00.
Raketech boosts global network with Lead Republik acquisition March 11, 2020 Related Articles Submit Share StumbleUpon Share Raketech names Karlsten as new COO May 27, 2020 Veikkaus calls for early introduction of Finnish age verification measures August 28, 2020 Michael Holmberg – RaketechStockholm-listed industry affiliate marketing network Raketech Group Plc has moved to expand its presence within Finland, acquiring legacy sports listings portal – Tvmatsit.com.Updating investors, Raketech confirms that it has secured an x5.2 EBITDA transaction, valuing TVmatsit.com at a purchase price amount of €1.6 million.In addition, Raketech will enhance its acquisition offer, with a further €300,000 in incentives to be rewarded over a 24-month period, pending agreed-upon performance targets.Confirming the acquisition, Michael Holmberg Chief Executive of Raketech noted clear organic synergies between Tvmatsit.com and the firm’s active European sports portfolio which currently operates – TVmatchen.nu (Swe), TVsportguide.com (UK), TVsporten.dk (Den), TVsportguide.de (Ger), TVkampen.com (Nor) and Esportsguide.com (Global).Considered one of Finland’s most trusted sports news publishers, TVmatsit generates its traffic organically by delivering a complete guide to sports broadcasting in Finland and through a successful media buying strategy.Raketech informs that the founders of TVmatsit.com will continue to run the product post-acquisition, and also integrate successful aspects of the platform and media strategy across Raketech’s key markets.Michael Holmberg, CEO of Raketech, said: “We are pleased to acquire TVmatsit.com, a product which complements our existing range of online sports listing platforms. The acquisition is in line with our strategy to offer all product categories in Raketech’s key markets, and until now we have lacked a guide product in Finland. We look forward to working with the TVmatsit team to further optimise the product with our content and SEO expertise, and also replicate their successful media buying strategy in other markets.”
Riot Games has announced its plan to consolidate its two current Latin American League of Legends competitions into a singular league – the name of which is yet to be announced.Eight teams will face off in this new league starting in 2019, playing in Santiago de Chile, Riot Games believes the location contains means that are “essential for the future of the scene”. Riot Games originally made a decision in 2016 to segment Latin America into North and South to increase “the relevance, audience and internal of each of the leagues.” As the announcement admits, it didn’t quite work out as expected.As it stands, Riot Games currently operates both the America South Cup (also known as Copa Latinoamérica Sur or CLS) and the Latin America North League (also known as Liga Latinoamérica Norte or LLN). Each league sees eight teams in contention to win, though when the leagues are brought together, there will only be room for eight teams. Riot Games are expected to reveal how these teams will be decided upon in the upcoming days – alongside the competition format and key dates for the league.The announcement explains the decision: “Latin America has a diverse and extremely rich culture, but we believe that esports fans share many similarities across the continent. The way in which an Argentine player passionately enjoys a final is not different from the excitement of a Mexican fan to see his favourite team devote champion, and that is reflected in each and every one of the countries that make up the region. Today we believe that dividing efforts, resources and fans into two scenes that share so much is not the best way.”Esports Insider says: Bringing the competitions together with the best teams from both North and South Latin America regions sounds ideal for providing the most competitive experience. Riot Games tried doing it another way and realised it perhaps wasn’t the best way, so we’re looking forward to seeing what they pull out of the bag for this unnamed league.
Asante Kotoko goalie and captain, Felix Annan, has called on the team’s fans to be tempered in their expectations of the players as they try to make their way through the CAF Champions League and other assignments in the coming months.Kotoko made it first round of the Champions League after they beat Kano Pillars 2-0 in Kumasi on Sunday to progress 4-3 on aggregate.They will face Champions League big timers, Etoile du Sahel of Tunisia, in the next round and they will hope to make it to the group stage but Annan wants the fans to keep their cool and not to place huge pressure on the team to get the needed results in the competition.“As players, we are very ready to give 200 hundred percent but we want to tell the fans that they should limit their expectations of us. This is a new team and players are trying to gel.Their efforts are not bad at the moment. There will be improvements as we go along. We will give our best but they need to take things easy for us and keep supporting us and we will do our best for them.”Annan shared his thoughts on the victory the team got over Kano Pillars and said that it was good to see that they executed well on the day and they gave the fans a very good result.“We got the result that we wanted. We used the experience of playing in last season’s CAF Confed Cup and it was something special. We are happy to have made it through to the next round.It would have been a big blow if we had failed because of the expectations of the fans. If we did not win, we would feel as though we had not done our job. We are happy and we will try to get through to the next stage.”
Beşiktaş forward, Kevin Prince-Boateng, has revealed that choosing Ghana over Germany was the best decision in his career.The former AC Milan attacker revealed this in a Puma interview with Arsenal legend, Thierry Henry.Boateng confirmed his nationality switch before the 2010 World Cup in South Africa and was part of the Black Stars team for that tournament and the 2014 World Cup in Brazil.Overall, he played 15 times for Ghana.When asked by the former Gunner why he chose Ghana over Germany, the 33-year-old highlighted the fact that he was of a mixed race and was discovering himself as he grew up.“That’s a tricky one. But it is simple. If you were like me, like yourself, we are all mixed race. Two sides.When you are young, you do not really know who you are. So you always have a lot of questions, trying to figure out yourself.So I did not feel German 100%, neither did I feel Ghanaian 100%. Of course, I am both Ghanaian and German but a lot of mixed-race people born in Germany feel 100% German.Others also felt they were more Nigerian, Cameroonian, Ghanaian or whatever but I was always in the middle not knowing 100% what I was”.Boateng admitted he was willing to represent Germany at the national level but thought he did not have the right character to be able to make the jump to the first team of the national team.“So when football came in and offered me the chance to play for Germany, I was proud to play for them, to hear the national anthem and what have you.But as I grew older, and kept my brains where I was, I said what I think, I always wanted to prove my point, whatever. It was not so welcomed, let’s put it like that. I always said it’s like this and the coaches will be like ‘no, it is like that’. Obviously the coaches are right but I always wanted to prove my point.So there came a point when I thought that maybe I would not play for the first team of Germany. Because maybe it will not be about qualities. My character did not fit so I chose to play for Ghana and honestly, it is the best decision I have made in my career.Because to go home to see your roots, to see your people, different culture and I had the chance to play two World cups. It gave me a lot”.Boateng (first from bottom left) in a Black Stars team picture during the 2010 World Cup in South Africa
AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThisBrew On The Bay is coming up next month and this year the proceeds are going towards an exciting project in Alpena. Each year the Rotary Club partners with Alpena Beverage to help raise money for local projects. This year there will be over 30 vendors, over 200 auction items available for people to bid on, 20 live auction items and a variety of silent auction items. Through events like Brew On the Bay, the Alpena Rotary Club has been able to help raise money for multiple projects around Alpena and this year the proceeds will be going towards the splash park.Brew On the Bay will be held at the Aplex on March 1st from 6–10pm if you’re interested you can purchase tickets from Neiman’s family market, Alpena Area Chamber of Commerce, Perch’s IGA or from the Rotary Club AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to MoreAddThis Tags: Brew On The BayContinue ReadingPrevious WBKB News Team Takes A Plunge For a Great Cause!Next West Branch Regional Medical Center to become MidMichigan Affiliate
Black Maidens will enter the Bayil Stadium in Baku on Wednesday aware that only a win can keep their hopes of a second round berth at the FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup Azerbaijan 2012.Ghana’s U-17 women’s team face newcomers, Uruguay in Group D after either side lost their opening game.For the Black Maidens, who are making their third-time appearance at the competition, they cannot afford to lose, having overcome the heartache of their a 2-1 defeat to Germany on Sunday.Mas-ud Didi Dramani’s side can change their destiny at the competition, a belief held by Ellen Coleman, one of the competition’s veterans and who is making her third appearance following her debut in 2008.“It [defeat to Germany] was our first game and we promise that we’re going to win our next game and get out of the group,” she said.“We have a lot of belief in our team and in our ability. Though we couldn’t get the win in our first game, we need to keep our chins up and believe we can beat Uruguay and China. If we can get out of the group, I think we can make the semis or even the final here.”
Paris Saint-Germain will take on Barcelona in the standout tie of the Champions League quarter-finals after the draw at Uefa house in Nyon, Switzerland on Friday.Barcelona, who won the competition in 2011 and overturned a 2-0 deficit to dump out AC Milan this season, will face Ligue 1 outfit Paris Saint-Germain with the first leg taking place in the French capital.Last season’s finalists Bayern Munich face a tough clash with Serie A leaders Juventus in another huge fixture.Primera Division champions Real Madrid are rewarded for their victory over Manchester United with a tie against Turkish giants Galatasaray, while Malaga, who knocked out Porto, take on German champions Borussia Dortmund.The four first legs will take place on March, with the second legs scheduled for April 9 and 10.The draw for the semi-finals will be held on April 12, and the tournament concludes at Wembley Stadium on May 25.
FIFA says the referee who awarded Italy a goal after first whistling for a penalty in Saturday’s match against Brazil acknowledges making the wrong call.Referee Ravshan Irmatov blew his whistle to award Italy a penalty. Moments later, as play continued, Giorgio Chiellini scored. Irmatov was seen pointing at the penalty spot and then giving a goal.FIFA spokesman Pekka Odriozola said: “He has admitted he made a mistake.”Irmatov is a widely respected referee from Uzbekistan who had been expected to have a chance to referee the Confederations Cup final. Now he is expected to be sent home with his assistants, who also made two key errors in Saturday’s game.Brazil won the match 4-2.
Arsenal strolled to a 7-1 victory on Wednesday over Vietnam’s national team in a match which saw the first English premier league club play in the Communist country.Olivier Giroud drove home the first goal just five minutes into the game to rapturous applause from the packed stadium. He secured a hat-trick just moments before the end of the first half.Action gathered pace in the second half, despite hot and humid temperatures, with Arsenal scoring another four goals. As the humidity turned to rain, Vietnam fought back with a goal close to full-time, but the two minutes of extra time wasn’t enough to save them.Arsene Wenger’s team will wrap up their pre-season tour in Japan with two more friendlies. They beat an Indonesian team 7-0 late Sunday.Premiership clubs are very popular in Vietnam – much to the detriment of local teams. Around 25 000 fans turned out to cheer Wenger and his players at My Dinh National Stadium during the training session Tuesday night.Devoted fans have been following the North London team since they arrived in the capital on Monday. But one fan made such a big impression that he was invited to lead Arsenal onto the pitch for the game on Wednesday, according to media reports.The fan, dubbed “Running Man” by the club, was filmed from the window as he ran alongside the team’s bus for several kilometres. He was eventually allowed onto the bus to get his shirt signed. Despite the team’s popularity, the Gunners’ historic trip doesn’t come without controversy. The team’s sponsor in Vietnam, business group Hoang Anh Gia Lai (HAGL), was the subject of a report in May by Global Witness, a campaign group which highlights abuses related to the exploitation of natural resources.The group accused HAGL of acquiring vast amounts of land and contributing to environmental and human rights abuses at its rubber plantations in Laos and Cambodia. HAGL, which is run by one of Vietnam’s richest men, Doan Nguyen Duc, denied the accusations.“As a large listed company, we always abide by the laws and regulations of countries where we do business, and we meet all the environmental criteria of Laos and Cambodia,” he was quoted as saying in state-run newspaper Viet Nam News in May.
Ex Black Stars goalkeeper Sammy Adjei has revealed to Asempa Sports that he never planned to retire from the senior national team as reported in 2008.The 32-year old goalkeeper of Accra Hearts Of Oak made these Revelations on Asempa sports heroes program over the weekend and described it as an ordeal.Ex Black Stars goalkeeper Sammy Adjei has revealed to Asempa Sports that he had never planned to retire from the senior national team as reported in 2008.Adjei who had stints in the Israeli league with FC Ashdod before the 2008 Africa cup of nations in Ghana said that he had never wanted to retire from the national team but was forced to retire by his club because he decided to leave the club to come and play for Ghana in the 2008 Nations cup.In addition he reiterated his resignation letter to quit the Black Stars was written by FC Ashdod and not him because they had warned him to stay and play for them but he refused and came to Ghana for the tournament.He explained that he was given conditions to stay and play for the club or else he would lose his starting place in the team after the Nations cup tournament. The club authorities lured him made to sign a letter to show that he was going for the Nations cup but he later realized it was a resignation letter.The veteran goalkeeper expressed his disappointment in the Ghana Football Association(GFA) saying that most of the officials there including the then GFA vice president Fred Pappoe knew about the issue but never tried to defend him when the news broke.On the flip side goalkeeper Sammy Adjei said he was hoping to get back to his best since he still has a lot to offer.He played for Club Africain of Tunisia in 2004 and was part of the Accra Hearts of Oak team that conquered Africa in 2000 and the Black stars team that went to the 1st ever World cup in Germany in 2006.Sammy Adjei also promised he may not join any team if Hearts of Oak rejects him as its been speculated.
Black Stars defender Awal Mohammed returns from injury to face Super Sport on Wednesday Evening.The 25-year-old sustained a light injury whilst on duty for his club Maritzburg United in the Nedbank Cup win over Platinum Stars last week Saturday in the South African League.The experience defender had to be pulled off in the 45th minutes and replaced by Mario Booysen after suffering the injury midway through the game.The ex Asante Kotoko center half has however been given the all clear to play against Super sports by his team after a doctor review session on Monday.News of Mohammed’s recovery serves as a massive boost for Ghana’s coach Kwesi Appiah who is looking to have all of his players fit and ready to play when the 2014 World Cup kick start in June.Maritzburg United lie 13th on the PSL table with 24 points out of 23 games played
The Chief Executive Officer CEO) of Primeval Media, organizers of the Stephen Testimonial Match,Chief Larry Otoo, has called on the entire nation especially corporate bodies to join hands with his outfit to honour Stephen Tornado Appiah on June 27.The testimonial match which is expected to feature past and present Black Stars players and football stars around the globe will all grace the befitting sending off for the former Ghana captain.Appiah remains a cult figure in Ghana not only for his dedication to the Black Stars but also for his philanthropic deeds in several communities – especially in Chorkor and its environs.But Chief Larry, believes the time is right for the nation to show appreciation for Appiah’s immense contribution to the nation by offering massive support during his testimonial match especially corporate businesses.“Stephen Appiah’s contribution to football in Ghana can never be underestimated. He was an inspiration to many especially the youth in Ghana.“His contribution was not only limited to football, we all know the various philanthropic activities he undertook in Ghana and therefore worth celebrating”, he added. Participants in the testimonial game will be hosted to an A-listed dinner at the State Banquet Hall in Accra on the eve of the testimonial match.–
The Confederation of African Football will not support the FIFA presidential bid by Musa Bility of Liberia.CAF says its executive committee heard Bility at his request at a meeting on Thursday and decided against supporting his proposed candidacy.The executive panel “wished him good luck” with his bid, CAF said in a statement.The statement made no mention of possible contenders from Africa or elsewhere it might support.CAF president Issa Hayatou, FIFA’s senior vice president, and South African businessman Tokyo Sexwale, a member of FIFA’s discrimination task force, have been speculated as candidates to succeed Sepp Blatter on Feb. 26.CAF says its executive committee wants time to study all options. The panel will next meet Oct. 27, the day after FIFA’s deadline for applications.–Follow Joy Sports on Twitter: @Joy997FM. Our hashtag is #JoySports
Will let you into the MzVee – Asamoah Gyan connection on the E-chat segment of this week’s edition of Touchline.But First, the clash between the normal one (Jurgen Klopp) and the special one (Jose Mourinho)will more than dominate the headlines in the Epl. Mourinho will be seeking to alleviate some pressure of him while Klopp attempts his second win for Liverpool. Elsewhere Arsenal, and Manchester United will seek to return to winning ways after capital one cup losses against Swansea City and Crystal Palace.Could Chelsea make it into the Top four this season? Your complete football weekend preview Show -Touchline -had all answers covered on the Big Game preview .Just Click link below to satisfy your curiosity on the What MzVee had to say about Asamoah Gyan. Fast Paced Video Podcast is Anchored by Joy Sports George Addo Jnr.
Asempa FM, a subsidiary of the Multimedia Group of Companies will host millions of Ghanaians as they mark the 7th edition of their annual fitness and fun festival at the El-Wak Sports Stadium on November 26.The event dubbed “Fitness for Peace”, seeks to drive home the importance of fostering and upholding the peace the country enjoys before, during and after the December 7 polls.With elections fast approaching, a lot has been said about the need for a peaceful election and as part of honoring corporate social responsibilities, Multimedia Group will use the event to propagate peace while bringing a lot of people to have fun and keep fit at the same time.Various keep fit clubs and individuals will proceed from Afrikiko at 5:30am to the El Wak stadium with a health walk and at the stadium.Activities to be competed in includes football, treasure hunt, unisex relay, arm wrestling, ladies egg and spoon race, 100m race and tug of peace as well as peace songs from renowned artistes. The 2016 Asempa FM fitness and fun festival is put together in partnership with the Christian Council, Office of the National Chief Imam with support from UNDP and DANIDA.
Perhaps the biggest heavyweight title fight in the United States since Lennox Lewis vs. Mike Tyson in 2002 will take place on Dec. 1 when WBC champion Deontay Wilder battles lineal champ Tyson Fury at the Staples Center in Los Angeles.Negotiations started in earnest after talks between Wilder and unified titleholder Anthony Joshua stalled out. When Fury dispatched Francesco Pianeta by unanimous decision in August, Wilder entered the ring, and the fight was made official. – The Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury clash plays a bigger role in the heavyweight division than most think. MORE: Join DAZN and watch more than 80 fight nights a yearWilder (40-0, 39 KOs) last fought in March, when he mounted a comeback and knocked out Luis Ortiz to score the biggest win of his career. The Alabama native has been looking for a career-defining outing, and he believes a win over Fury is just what he needs.Fury (27-0, 19 KOs) defeated Wladimir Klitschko in 2015 to win the IBF, WBA (super) and WBO belts. He vacated the belts in 2016 after it was revealed that he had failed a drug test. The Englishman returned in June after a two-year layoff to sort out personal issues and beat Sefer Seferi, who refused to come out for the fifth round. Can Wilder rise to the occasion and deliver in what will be his biggest test? Or will the “The Gypsy King” take down “The Bronze Bomber”?(All times Eastern.)Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury date, start timeDeontay Wilder and Tyson Fury will meet on Saturday, Dec. 1. The fight card will begin at 9 p.m.How to watch Wilder vs. Fury liveYou can watch Wilder vs. Fury on Showtime PPV.Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury recordsDeontay Wilder: 40-0 with 39 knockoutsTyson Fury: 27-0 with 19 knockoutsWilder vs. Fury fight cardDeontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury for Wilder’s WBC heavyweight titleJarrett Hurd vs. Jason Welborn for Hurd’s IBF/WBA Junior Middleweight titleLuis Ortiz vs. Travis Kauffman; HeavyweightsJoe Joyce vs. Joe Hanks; HeavyweightsAlfredo Angulo vs. TBA; Super MiddleweightsJulian Williams vs. Javier Francisco Castro; Junior MiddleweightsMark Barriga vs. Carlos Licona for vacant IBF Strawweight titleChris Arreola vs. Maurenzo Smith; HeavyweightsRobert Guerrero vs. Adam Mate; WelterweightsMarsellos Wilder vs. David Damore; CruiserweightsIsaac Lowe vs. Luis Rafael Baez; FeatherweightsJesse Rodriguez vs. Alex Aragon; Junior FlyweightsAnthony Yarde vs. TBA; Light HeavyweightsWilder vs. Fury latest news – Why hasn’t Deontay Wilder become the biggest boxing attraction in the United States? Sporting News’ combat sports editor Andreas Hale gives the biggest reason.- Tyson Fury has a chance to regain the heavyweight title. Here are six of the greatest heavyweights to win back the gold.- Fury has risen to the top of the mountain and been to the depths of despair. We chronicle the uneven journey to this point.- Who wins: Deontay Wilder or Tyson Fury? Our team Sporting News Boxing team give their picks.- SN talks with the top names in the sport on who they feel walks out of LA the WBC heavyweight champion.- Saturday night is the moment Wilder has been waiting for.- Even though they are battling for heavyweight supremacy, Wilder and Fury are more alike than people think.- SN takes a delve into why Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury is a must-see fight.
Evolution of the Patriot Way:2014: We’re On To Cincinnati2015: Do Your Job2016: No Days Off2017: Next Man Up2018: No One Died https://t.co/fMitJGptIK— Tanya Ray Fox (@TanyaRayFox) December 10, 2018In case you missed it, here is the play that has been dubbed the “Miami Miracle” (Patriots fans, look away). Related News Bill Belichick can always be counted on to convey succinct, pithy messages, whether to his team or the media.So when asked Monday what he told his players Sunday after the Dolphins’ stunning, last-second lateral play beat the Patriots 34-33, Belichick provided this nugget: “It’s the National Football League. No one died,” Belichick told Boston’s WEEI. KENYAN DRAKE. FOR THE WIN. pic.twitter.com/mWcSQQ9GPP— CBS Sports (@CBSSports) December 9, 2018The Patriots still lead the AFC East with a 9-4 mark, and face the Steelers in Pittsburgh next Sunday. WATCH: Dolphins defeat Patriots on miraculous final play Tom Brady remains optimistic after Patriots’ loss to Dolphins: ‘We still have a lot of football to play’ Talk about putting things in perspective.
Ghana began on a strong foot at the 2nd edition of the Africa Cricket Association NorthWest Africa women’s tournament on Friday.Ghana is hosting three other West African countries; Nigeria, Sierra Leone and the Gambia at the Achimota Cricket Oval for the three-day tournament. The host nation opened up the tournament against the Gambia and did not hesitate to sound a strong note of caution. The Gambia batted first and scored 110 runs, a third of which came from wide and no balls, losing 5 wickets in 20 overs.Ghana, therefore, required a run rate of 5.5 per over but incredibly pushed the notch higher to do 9.25 runs per over, scoring an incredible 111 runs in a little over twelve overs, losing only three wickets. Ghana thus won the game by seven wickets. In the day’s other game which was played simultaneously at the second oval in Achimota, Nigeria and Sierra Leone both tried to out-play each other defensively. They prevented each other from scoring many runs.The Nigerians bated first and scored 65 runs, losing 5 wickets in 20 overs. Sierra Leone needed only 14.1 overs to win by scoring 68 runs for 7 wickets.
The Sports Directorate of the country’s premier University, University of Ghana, Legon held the flag of Ghana aloft at this year’s Federation of African University Sports (FASU) Games which took place in Ethiopia, Mekelle University.Team Legon succeeded in clinching five gold medals in the men’s badminton (Singles), badminton team event, tennis men’s singles, tennis mixed doubles and basketball men after close to a week hotly-contested sports festival.They grabbed a silver in the badminton doubles event and a bronze in the women’s tennis singles.With a contingent of 14 athletes, Team Legon finished fifth behind countries Ndejje University (Uganda), University of Johannesburg, Addis Ababa University who participated with larger contingent (30). In all, Ghana placed fifth, but per universities, Team Legon placed third.Director of the University of Ghana Sports Directorate, Dr Bella Bello Bitugu attributed the team’s successes to a collective effort from policies, management, administration as well as restocking of students. He said on arrival at the Kotoka International Airport yesterday that “I feel so so elated taking into account there seven gold at stake and we won five, that is a great and remarkable achievement.”Regina Afari Boateng commended the athletes and the technical highly for the feat and also attributed the student-athlete policy as one of the reasons for the feat. We bring sportsmen and women on concessional basisTo badminton coach, Henry Nii Sackey hard work and determination did the trick.The 47 Universities from the 16 countries games (ninth edition) received massive support from Dr Daniel McKorley (McDan), patron of the University of Ghana Sports Directorate.
ANAHEIM — Kole Calhoun is on the disabled list thanks to a strained right oblique. Might the time off help the Angels outfielder break out of his season-long hitting slump?“Maybe,” Manager Mike Scioscia said Saturday. “That’s not the way you want to get your break, though.”The Angels placed Calhoun on the 10-day disabled list, retroactive to Friday, taking the outfielder off their lineup card in the midst of the worst hitting performance of his career. Through 173 plate appearances this year, Calhoun has a slash line of .145/.195/.179 — numbers far below his career average of .254/.321/.410.Sign up for Home Turf and get 3 exclusive stories every SoCal sports fan must read, sent daily. Subscribe here.The 30-year-old is only three years removed from winning the Gold Glove Award, a season that also saw him post career highs with 83 RBIs and 26 home runs. He has 11 RBIs this year, going yard just once. Scioscia said Calhoun felt tightness in his right oblique when the Angels were getting to ready to leave Detroit earlier this week.“He was in the cage working a lot,” Scioscia said. “I think some things just stiffened up. It’s just something we need to address right now. … There’s no timetable yet, but hopefully it’s not too severe.”The Angels also optioned right-hander Jaime Barría (5-1, 2.48), who pitched six shutout innings against the Rangers on Friday night. He could be recalled again for a June 12 game in Seattle, when the team will again need a sixth starting pitcher.The club recalled Kaleb Cowart and Michael Hermosillo from Triple-A Salt Lake, starting the latter in right field against the Rangers on Saturday and batting him ninth.SURGERY GIVES SHOEMAKER CLARITY Shoemaker also had surgery last August to relieve radial nerve compression in his forearm. The right-hander pitched 5-2/3 innings on March 31 before lingering discomfort forced him onto the disabled list.ALSOScioscia tried to downplay any lingering tensions from Friday night, when a slide by the Rangers’ Rougned Odor resulted in a left leg gash for Angels shortstop Andrelton Simmons. “It’s kind of an unfortunate incident,” Scioscia said. “But it’s past us, I think. There was a little bit of veer on the slide.” …Infielder Zack Cozart, who had an MRI on his left forearm Friday, is “progressing quickly” according to Scioscia, and could be nearing a return to the lineup. He has not played since May 29. …The Angels held a pre-game ceremony for Albert Pujols, emblazoning the number “3000” in the outfield to commemorate the slugger’s recent career hits milestone. Pujols was also presented with a picture of himself made of 9,858 screws, representing the number of at-bats he needed to reach 3,000 hits. Angels offense breaks out to split doubleheader with Astros Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Angels’ Shohei Ohtani spending downtime working in outfield Jose Suarez’s rocky start sinks Angels in loss to Astros UP NEXTAngels (Tyler Skaggs, 3-4, 3.60) vs. Rangers (Doug Fister, 1-5, 4.09), Sunday, 1:07 p.m., Fox Sports West, KLAA (830 AM) Angels’ poor pitching spoils an Albert Pujols milestone Matt Shoemaker is still six weeks away from being able to throw, but the Angels pitcher is grateful to have an answer on what has been ailing his right forearm.After exams showed no sign of nerve damage, the 31-year-old opted to undergo exploratory surgery. That procedure, performed on Tuesday, revealed a tear in the middle of his pronator teres tendon — an injury that none of his doctors had ever seen before.Dr. Steven Shin repaired the tendon, and Shoemaker appeared to be in good spirits on Saturday afternoon despite not knowing when he might finally make it back to the mound.“MRIs, bone scans, nerve studies — everything showed to be pretty clean,” Shoemaker said. “I’m really thankful we went in and did the exploratory procedure, because we would have never found this if we didn’t. That’s nice to have that answer.”Related Articles Angels’ Mike Trout working on his defense, thanks to Twitter
Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Nov. 5 – Miami, 12:30 p.m.Nov. 7 – at San Antonio, 5:30 p.m.Nov. 10 – at Oklahoma City, 6 p.m.Nov. 11 – at New Orleans, 4 p.m.Nov. 13 – Philadelphia, 7:30 p.m.Nov. 17 – at Cleveland, 4:30 p.m.Nov. 18 – at Charlotte, 4 p.m.Nov. 20 – at New York, 4:30 p.m.Nov. 22 – at Atlanta, 4:30 p.m.Nov. 25 – at Sacramento, 7 p.m.Nov. 27 – Lakers, 7:30 p.m.Nov. 30 – Utah, 7:30 p.m.Dec. 2 – at Dallas, 11 a.m.Dec. 3 – at Minnesota, 4 p.m.Dec. 6 – Minnesota, 7:30 p.m.Dec. 9 – Washington, 12:30 p.m.Dec. 11 – Toronto, 7:30 p.m.Dec. 13 – at Orlando, 4 p.m.Dec. 15 – at Washington, 4 p.m.Dec. 16 – at Miami, 5 p.m.Dec. 18 – at San Antonio, 5:30 p.m.Dec. 20 – Phoenix, 7:30 p.m.Dec. 22 – at Houston, 5 p.m.Dec. 23 – at Memphis, 5 p.m.Dec. 26 – Sacramento, 7:30 p.m.Dec. 29 – at Lakers, 7:30 p.m.Dec. 31 – Charlotte, 4 p.m.Jan. 2 – Memphis, 7:30 p.m.Jan. 4 – Oklahoma City, 7:30 p.m.Jan. 6 – Golden State, 12:30 p.m.Jan. 8 – Atlanta, 7:30 p.m.Jan. 10 – at Golden State, 7:30 p.m.Jan. 11 – at Sacramento, 7 p.m.Jan. 13 – Sacramento, 12:30 p.m.Jan. 15 – Houston, 7:30 p.m.Jan. 17 – Denver, 7:30 p.m.Jan. 20 – at Utah, 6 p.m.Jan. 22 – Minnesota, 7:30 p.m.Jan. 24 – Boston, 7:30 p.m.Jan. 26 – at Memphis, 5 p.m.Jan. 28 – at New Orleans, 1 p.m.Jan. 30 – Portland, 7:30 p.m.Feb. 3 – Chicago, 12:30 p.m.Feb. 5 – Dallas, 7:30 p.m.Feb. 9 – at Detroit, 4 p.m.Feb. 10 – at Philadelphia, 4 p.m.Feb. 12 – at Brooklyn, 4:30 p.m.Feb. 14 – at Boston, 5 p.m.Feb. 18 – NBA All-Star Game (Staples Center)Feb. 22 – at Golden State, 7:30 p.m.Feb. 23 – at Phoenix, 6 p.m.Feb. 27 – at Denver, 7:30 p.m.Feb. 28 – Houston, 7:30 p.m.March 2 – New York, 7:30 p.m.March 4 – Brooklyn, 6 p.m.March 6 – New Orleans, 7:30 p.m.March 9 – Cleveland, 7:30 p.m.March 10 – Orlando, 7:30 p.m.March 13 – at Chicago, 5 p.m.March 15 – at Houston, 5 p.m.March 16 – at Oklahoma City, 5 p.m.March 18 – Portland, 7:30 p.m.March 20 – at Minnesota, 5 p.m.March 21 – at Milwaukee, 5 p.m.March 23 – at Indiana, 4 p.m.March 25 – at Toronto, 3 p.m.March 27 – Milwaukee, 7:30 p.m.March 28 – at Phoenix, 7 p.m.March 30 at Portland, 7:30 p.m.April 1 – Indiana, 12:30 p.m.April 3 – San Antonio, 7:30 p.m.April 5 – at Utah, 6 p.m.April 7 – Denver, 12:30 p.m.April 9 – New Orleans, 7:30 p.m.April 11 – Lakers, 7:30 p.m. All Times PacificOct. 19 – at Lakers, 7:30 p.m.Oct. 21 – Phoenix, 7:30 p.m.Oct. 24 – Utah, 7:30 p.m. Oct. 26 – at Portland, 7 p.m.Oct. 28 – Detroit, 7:30 p.m.Oct. 30 – Golden State, 7:30 p.m.Nov. 1 – Dallas, 7:30 p.m.Nov. 4 – Memphis, 12:30 p.m.
LOS ANGELES — Danilo Gallinari hit the floor with a thud after he was fouled midway through the second quarter of the Clippers’ loss Sunday to the Indiana Pacers at Staples Center. He skidded to a stop in front of the bench and his teammates rushed to his aid, picking him up and cheering him.Gallinari then sank two free throws, which gave the Clippers a 44-29 lead with 6:58 left in the half, an advantage that would grow to 47-31 before the Pacers rallied to win 111-104 with a fourth-quarter surge. The Clippers’ playoff hopes took another dramatic hit.So did Gallinari’s plans for a effective return from a fractured right hand that sidelined him for 18 games before he rejoined the Clippers’ lineup for a loss Friday to the Trail Blazers in Portland. He would later say his hand was in “constant pain” for the rest of Sunday’s game.Gallinari scored seven points on 1-for-9 shooting, grabbed six rebounds and added an assist in almost 32 minutes in the Clippers’ loss to the Pacers. He was 0 of 3 from behind the 3-point arc, but made all five of his free throws. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error EVANS MEDICAL UPDATEJawun Evans said he and the Clippers’ athletic training staff would take his lower abdominal injury day-by-day for the rest of the season. He wasn’t in uniform for Sunday’s game against the Pacers and he wasn’t sure if he could play again in 2017-18. Offseason surgery is a possibility.“It comes and goes, so we’ll see how it is,” said Evans, a rookie point guard who has averaged 4.8 points, 1.8 rebounds and 2.1 assists in 16.2 minutes in 48 games. “I’m not sure (about playing again this season). It all depends on how I feel.”FRANCHISE RECORD WATCHLou Williams made 1 of 4 shots from 3-point range, giving him 182 in his first season with the Clippers after they acquired him in the trade that sent Chris Paul to the Houston Rockets in the offseason. Williams needs 20 more 3s to break J.J. Redick’s franchise record of 201, set in 2016-17. “Every game I try,” he said of playing through the pain. “(Sunday), it didn’t work. Next game I’ll try a little better. It’s not easy, but we’re all fighting for the same goal. (The injured hand) is so-so. I didn’t feel good, but we’re all fighting for the same goal and the same thing.”Gallinari played for only the 21st time this season, having been sidelined for extended periods because of hand and gluteus maximus injuries. He has been effective when healthy, averaging 15.7 points, 4.8 rebounds and 2 assists in 2017-18.The Clippers have been decimated by injuries, however. At one point earlier in the season, four of their opening-night starters were sidelined by injuries. Patrick Beverley and Avery Bradley are out after undergoing season-ending knee and abdominal surgeries, respectively.“The fight is still here,” Gallinari said of the Clippers’ ability to stay in playoff contention despite being shorthanded for so much of the season. “It’s the best part of this team. What this team was able to do this year is just amazing, to be honest.“I’ve never seen a team go through this many injuries and, for myself, I’ve never been through all this. Despite all the stuff we’ve been through we’re still in a fight for the playoffs. That’s pretty amazing, and we’re still here.”
Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error This was an encounter that flashed back to an epic five-minute, 11-pitch at-bat between the same two in Game 6 of last October’s NL Championship Series, which also ended with a Carpenter double and started a four-run rally in the third inning that marked the beginning of the end for Kershaw and the Dodgers’ playoff run.Maybe this rematch set the tone for the rest of the series — the Cardinals, and Carpenter, never feel backed into a corner.“You know, there was a moment during that at-bat when I was kind of feeling the same kind of emotions I was having last year,” said Carpenter. “It was a very similar thing. Very similar at-bat. “With (Kershaw), he’s got a fastball that’s anywhere between 94 and 96 (mph), so you’ve got to be on time with that. When I face him, I just try to be aggressive and try to be on time. There’s not a lot of success in (trying to hit) his slider and curveball, especially from a left-hander, so you got to do a good job of trying to lay off that one.“I can’t tell you why I’ve been able to have some success against him, because it’s not that easy. I don’t enjoy facing him. It’s the postseason, crazy things happen.” It’s not as if Carpenter was trying to limit the damage this time around.Down 0 and 2 in the count — fouling off the first pitch, then swinging and missing on the next — Carpenter fouled another pitch off. He laid off two sliders for balls. He fouled off two more. Then on a pitch down and in, he sent Matt Kemp to the right-field wall, allowing Yadier Molina, Matt Adams and Jon Jay to score to push the Cardinals ahead 7-6 and send Kershaw out.St. Louis’ eight-run seventh inning was capped off two batters later by Matt Holiday’s home run for a 10-6 advantage.And that was the second time in Friday’s game that Carpenter proved Kershaw wasn’t all invincible. Carpenter’s solo homer against him in the sixth inning ended a string of 16 consecutive batters that Kershaw had set down between Randal Grichuk’s first-inning homer and one out in the sixth.“I just enjoy competing in those moments,” said Carpenter. “He’s a competitive guy, I would like to feel that I’m a competitive guy and when I get in those at-bats versus him, I just try to fight.”Dodgers manager Don Mattingly acknowledged that Kershaw struck out the leadoff man Carpenter to start the game, but credited the career .293 hitter, who was 20 points below that average this season, as being “a tough out … we give him credit. He fights. But we’re not going to give in to that matchup.”Cardinals manager Mike Matheny said Carpenter “sets the tone for the offense” with his grit.“He leaves it all out there,” said Matheny, “and takes pride in every at-bat. He doesn’t just turn it on and off. Certain guys in certain situations just step up in the process.“He puts his nose in there and fights to the end.”Comparing the eight-pitch encounter to the 11-pitch battle a year ago, Matheny added: “I imagine this one may be talked about awhile, too.” If the judges’ cards show that St. Louis got the 10-9 decision over the Dodgers in round one of the National League Division Series, credit Matt Carpenter with delivering the punch that knocked all the hot wind out of Dodger Stadium.But it’s not as if Clayton Kershaw, or the Dodgers, were blindsided or anything by it.Carpenter’s eight-pitch faceoff in the seventh inning Friday against the likely repeat Cy Young Award winner ended with a crushing bases-loaded double off the base of the right-field wall, scoring three runs and bringing the Cardinals all the way back from what was already deemed an insurmountable five-run deficit at one point, based on Kershaw’s history.The blow may not have sent Kershaw directly to the showers, but he was reeling again, in the Dodgers’ dugout, trying to find his equilibrium.
LOS ANGELES >> Baseball’s deep dive into statistical analysis has created a new language of exit velocities, launch angles, FIPs, WHIPs and BABIPs.But this is another new concept courtesy of the analytics crowd – a 37-year-old “bounceback candidate.”Chase Utley posted career-lows across the board offensively last season. A .212 batting average, .286 on-base percentage, .629 OPS and only eight home runs in over 400 plate appearances. Combined with the fact that he would turn 37 in December, the numbers seemed to scream of a player in decline. His 140 plate appearances with the Dodgers over the final two months of the season didn’t paint any prettier a picture (he hit .202 with a .654 OPS). Utley did bounce back. The oldest leadoff hitter in baseball this year, Utley has started 69 of the Dodgers’ first 94 games there – and eased a massive problem. Last year, Dodgers’ leadoff hitters (primarily Rollins and Joc Pederson) combined for the lowest batting average in the majors (.233), one of the lowest OBPs (.319, 20th) and fewest runs scored (93, 24th). Those numbers this season are a healthier middle of the pack in the National League.If not for a June swoon that lopped more than 20 points off his batting average, Utley’s individual statistics would be in line with most of his career norms.“I still feel like I can contribute. That’s the bottom line,” said Utley of his own belief in his bounciness.“Early in the (2015) season, first week or so, I felt like I was swinging the bat really well,” he said of his sub-par 2015, a season that started with him trying to play through an ankle injury suffered during an off-season workout. “For a couple weeks after that, even though I did swing the bat well I didn’t have a whole lot to show for it. At that point, I think it’s only natural to try to figure out a way to help your team. For me, I got out of what I’m most comfortable doing. Instead of trying to hit the ball hard I was trying to find places to hit the ball. And that didn’t work so well.“I took some time off (a six-week stint on the DL at mid-season) and got my body in more of a position to be successful. After that, I felt like I swung the bat okay, better than my baseball card would show. Obviously I appreciate that they were able to see beyond that.”For all their adherence to the measurables produced by an analytics department of unknown size but unquestioned influence, Dodgers president of baseball operations Andrew Friedman and Zaidi also saw beyond Utley’s value in the batter’s box. When they re-signed Utley, they readily admit they were paying for intangibles as well.“The leadership, the attention to detail he has for the game — it was a huge boost for us down the stretch and into the playoffs (in 2015) and was an important thing for us to get back,” Zaidi said. “He just has such a strong reputation that even if you didn’t get quite that (offensive) production there was a lot of value to having him on your team.”The Dodgers expect to benefit from that value well beyond Utley’s one-year contract. Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said he “absolutely” sees Utley’s old-school influence impacting the Dodgers’ new wave of talent, young players like Corey Seager, Trayce Thompson and Joc Pederson.“Unbelievable. I can’t even, don’t even know where to start,” Seager said when asked if Utley has had a positive influence on him. “He’s helped me on the field, off the field, in the clubhouse. Anything you can think or imagine I’ve asked him and he’s talked to me about.“Just little things I’m picking up that people do, tipping pitches and little stuff that I personally never looked at that he’s shown me, tried to involve me. Obviously I’m a work in progress. I’m not awesome at it even when I know what he’s doing, the tipping or whatever.”Seager said he followed Utley’s career while growing up in North Carolina. Now he finds his locker next to Utley’s in the Dodgers’ home clubhouse and becomes effusive when talking about the benefits that flow from that relationship, saying he believes “100 percent” that being Utley’s teammate will benefit his career.“Just watching his at-bats, watching him grind through at-bats – I’m lost for words how impressive it is,” Seager said. “Watching him as a fan while I was growing up, you just think he’s this great player. He’s just that much better than everybody. But you watch him work – he grinds everything out, his attention to detail is off the charts.”Utley acknowledges the responsibility he has to provide a positive role model for a future star like Seager as well as others, whether through words or action.“For me, I don’t want to always be that guy, the teammate telling someone what to do. That’s not the way to go about it,” Utley said. “I think you play the game the way you think you should and hopefully some guys see how that can be beneficial and try to implement that into their game.” Utley’s long-time double-play partner, Jimmy Rollins, had similar numbers in those categories over a full season with the Dodgers last season and found himself unsigned until late February this spring when he accepted a minor-league contract offer from the Chicago White Sox. He made the White Sox’s roster and took a deep paycut (from $11 million to $2 million) only to be released in mid-June.But Utley barely had to wait until December to re-sign with the Dodgers for $7 million with other suitors lined up, willing to sign a 37-year-old middle infielder coming off the worst season of his career.“It was a couple things,” Dodgers GM Farhan Zaidi said, explaining the thinking behind last winter’s most surprising decision by a front office that has advertised a desire to build a younger roster. “One, purely on the performance side, even when he was with us last year – he really had bad luck in that 150 at-bat sample. We looked at his hard-hit percentage, line drive percentage – that kind of stuff. It was actually very much in line with the numbers he’s putting up now. You would have thought he was a .280 to .300 hitter with .420 or .450 slug.“I think he was viewed as a strong bounceback candidate, that it (his poor offensive production) was going to be just one year.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error
Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error “There was no pressure,” Grandal said. “I got traded. I was happy to get traded. You have to know that they wanted you for a reason.”One reason is most teams love trading with San Diego.Trea Turner, Washington’s rookie leadoff man who might be a monstrous problem for the Dodgers in the Divisional Playoff, was a first-round pick of the Padres. He was involved in a convoluted deal that brought Wil Myers to San Diego.Anthony Rizzo, who will be high on NL MVP ballots, went from the Padres to the Cubs in exchange for scattershot right-hander Andrew Cashner, who is now in Miami.Baltimore’s Brad Brach has become one of the top setup men in baseball, since San Diego dealt him for minor leaguer Devin Jones. There are others.Luck is always nearby. One of Grandal’s uncles had escaped Cuba by boat and began setting up the papers for the family to apply for the Special Cuban Migration Program. That was set up to boost Cuban immigration to 20,000. It was a simple lottery, and the Grandals were among the fortunate. It no longer exists.“Without it, I don’t know what would have happened,” he said. “My parents would have tried to come by boat. It wouldn’t have been the first time.”In Miami, Grandal was a housebound kid for a while, fascinated by all the different TV channels, gaining weight. But when a friend found a baseball team for him, Grandal took off. In one of his first youth games, he slid into second and jammed his cleats hard into the shortstop’s knee. That’s the only way he knew.“It was almost shocking to people,” he said. “They almost had to slow me down. In Cuba they teach you how to do every little thing. I remember going a full day just catching fly balls. Then another full day just bunting. You don’t see 8-year-olds bunting over here. Then another day just baserunning.“For homework, you’d throw the ball against the wall if you were an infielder, learn to backhand balls, learn to use two hands. It’s the way they taught you. You had to be good to make the Cuban national team. If you did, then you had a chance to get out.”Baseball people always wondered how Cubans might jolt the major leagues. Now you see the outline: Aroldis Chapman, Yoenis Cespedes, Aledmys Diaz, Jose Abreu, Yasmany Tomas, Yasiel Puig.And Yasmani Grandal.Not that they had a choice.Three facts:1. The Dodgers have a .213 average against left-handed pitching, worst in baseball, as is their .627 OPS against lefties.2. The Dodgers went into Saturday’s game 2 1/2 games behind Washington in the battle to get home-field advantage in the Division Series.3. Yasmani Grandal’s .554 slugging percentage is second to Justin Turner among full-time Dodgers after the All-Star break, and he leads the club with 15 homers in that span. LOS ANGELES — On the fields of Yasmani Grandal’s youth, nobody brought juice boxes. Nobody got participation trophies. “Play ball” was merely an expression.“They taught us how to play hard all the time,” Grandal said. “You had to slide hard. If you didn’t, you get screamed at. When I came over here, I felt I was ahead of the game, pretty much.”“Over here” was Miami. Back there was Cuba. They didn’t play for fun, although fun was not prohibited. They played for their lives.Grandal came to the U.S. when he was 10, went to the U. of Miami and was Player of the Year in the ACC. Cincinnati drafted him 12th overall, traded him and Yonder Alonso to San Diego for Mat Latos, and the Padres sent Grandal to the Dodgers for Matt Kemp at the winter meetings of 2014. It was one of Andrew Friedman’s first trades and far from the most popular. Kemp was a prime-time slugger. Grandal was mainly known for his 50-game suspension for PED use in San Diego. Kemp moved on to Atlanta this summer. He has exceeded 100 RBIs for the fourth time. But the Dodgers have fortified their outfield defense without him, and Grandal hit his 26th and 27th home runs of the year Thursday night against Colorado, the second one a grand slam.That’s six more homers than any other National League catcher has hit, and Grandal’s OPS of .825 is second only to Washington’s Wilson Ramos. These particular bombs dissipated any worries over an elbow problem, which brought flashbacks of a 2015 shoulder problem that bit Grandal deeply on every swing.“He’s usually very good about knowing the strike zone, but recently he’d been swinging at pitches outside it,” manager Dave Roberts said. “He had worked some counts tonight until he got a chance to click one.”Grandal has also muted concerns about trading A.J . Ellis, Clayton Kershaw’s sidekick and a clubhouse stabilizer. Kershaw, now healthy, is putting up zeroes for Grandal as he did for Ellis. The tradeoff is a longer lineup card for the Dodgers, maybe the 1-through-8 offensive presence they’ve lacked.
The Dodgers’ offense did its familiar disappearing act against a left-handed pitcher. Matt Moore didn’t give up a hit until the fourth inning when singles by Justin Turner, Adrian Gonzalez and Yasmani Grandal produced the Dodgers’ only run.“There should be no carryover,” Dodgers rookie shortstop Corey Seager said of the poor finish. “It’s just one of those weird times where you go from being so high after clinching. You can’t read anything into it. Just reset, regroup.”The game ended Vin Scully’s 67-year Hall of Fame broadcasting career. The iconic broadcaster traveled to San Francisco to call the final three games of the regular season. Sunday’s finale came 80 years to the day after a lopsided World Series defeat (18-4) of the New York Giants had made Scully a baseball — and Giants — fan.It’s a familiar story that Scully recounted once more as part of multiple tributes to the retiring legend during his final broadcast Sunday which was punctuated with several standing ovations, a visit from Willie Mays in the booth and a plaque placed there by the Giants honoring Scully.“It has been a party,” Scully said during the broadcast of his last game.“Don’t be sad that it’s over. Smile because it happened.” SAN FRANCISCO >> The Dodgers couldn’t knock the St. Louis Cardinals out of the postseason in 2013 or 2014. But they did Sunday.The San Francisco Giants scored five times in the first two innings against Kenta Maeda and collected 16 hits in all on their way to handing the Dodgers a 7-1 defeat Sunday afternoon, completing a three-game sweep on the final weekend of the regular season at AT&T Park.That means the Giants have qualified for the postseason as the National League’s second wild-card team — the same door they used on the way to winning the 2014 World Series — and will play the New York Mets on Wednesday. The Cardinals were eliminated with the Giants’ victory.The Dodgers, meanwhile, lost five of their six games after clinching their fourth consecutive NL West title a week ago. They will open the playoffs at Washington on Friday. “In talking to a couple coaches, that’s what we’re going to have to do — we’re going to have to hit the ‘reset’ button,” Dodgers manager Dave Roberts said. “It was a crazy week. Some highs and obviously some lows. To come in here and play a team that had their backs against the wall — they played like it. They won three games here, three games that they needed to win.“When you’re trying to play the middle — get guys rested, set your rotation, things like that — it’s really kind of against what we’ve done all year. No excuse. We’ll be ready go go on Friday.”Matters were settled early Sunday.Maeda earned a $1.5 million bonus by making his 32nd start of the season Sunday. It was not the best money the Dodgers ever spent. He gave up hits to seven of the first 12 Giants batters, walked another and didn’t make it out of the third inning.“My command was off. I didn’t have any sharpness to any of my pitches,” Maeda said through his interpreter. “It’s too bad that my season ended on a bad note. But I’m going to go through my usual adjustments and get ready for my next start.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error