Alexis Peterson, Brittney Sykes combine for 53 points in Syracuse women’s basketball’s 81-48 upset over No. 14 Miami

first_img Published on January 22, 2017 at 6:55 pm Contact Tomer: [email protected] | @tomer_langer Miami’s Laura Cornelius thought she had an easy transition layup after an Alexis Peterson turnover. But she couldn’t see Brittney Sykes running down right behind her.As Cornelius went up for a layup, Sykes leapt and swatted the ball down toward her before it trickled out of bounds. She turned and stared at Cornelius.“I kinda give a little look, but I don’t want to get a (technical foul), so I just walk back and set up for our 2-3 out of bounds,” a laughing Sykes said after Syracuse’s 81-48 upset over No. 14 Miami on Sunday afternoon. “The little look,” Sykes added, “is almost like I have to double check, like, did you really try that … it’s like a quick glance and like, alright, you buggin.”Later in the first quarter, Peterson got called for a foul she and her coach Quentin Hillsman didn’t agree with. Hillsman turned around in frustration as Peterson looked unsatisfied by the explanation the referee was giving her.On the next possession, Peterson lined up for a 3-pointer, missed, but got the ball from Briana Day after an offensive rebound. Peterson pulled up and drained the next one. She jumped up and yelled, looking in the same direction of where the referee who had just called the foul on her was standing.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe Orange (14-7, 5-3 Atlantic Coast) was frustrated after back-to-back road losses to Georgia Tech and No. 7 Florida State. Its senior backcourt of Sykes and Peterson — dubbed by Hillsman as the best backcourt in the country and branded as such by the team’s social media accounts — channeled that frustration into a masterful performance.SU’s two best players combined to score 53 — five more than Miami did as a team — ensuring its two-game slide would end. It also marks 16 straight home wins, extending back to last season. The third regular-season victory over a ranked opponent ties a program-best mark in the dominating 81-48 win over No. 14 Miami (14-5, 3-4) on Sunday afternoon.Sykes scored in a multitude of ways for the Orange. Her first basket was a layup following an offense rebound by Day. On the next possession she drilled a transition 3-pointer. Her first bucket of the second half was a turnaround jumper from the free-throw line. She also had three and-1s in the game. At times, she was the primary ball-handler.“She’s just special. She’s really, really special,” Miami head coach Katie Meier said. “We let her play to her scout in the first half. In the second half, she went against our scout and torched us, too.”Meier said she didn’t want to give up her full scouting report on Sykes, but she thought Sykes would get hesitant if she was forced to certain areas on the court. That never happened.On defense, Sykes wreaked havoc. On one possession, Sykes started off playing up top with Peterson and Cooper, pressuring the ball on a possession that started at midcourt. Miami broke the pressure and passed a ball deep into the corner, but Sykes had already recovered and managed to deflect the ball away. She finished with 29 points, 11 rebounds, four assists, three blocks and three steals.When the Hurricanes scored, they threw full-court pressure at Peterson as she brought the ball up court. First it was one defender, but Peterson normally broke that easily. Then it was two Miami players trying to trap her, but she split them, too.Jeff Anderson | Staff PhotographerMiami was often left to foul. On one play, Peterson split two defenders in the backcourt and got fouled by a third near midcourt. Hillsman yelled “all day” at Peterson. The next possession, the press was called off. In the second quarter alone, the Orange shot 11-of-14 from the free-throw line.“They did everything they could but Lex is just, she’s a good ball handler,” Hillsman said. “If you give her space, she’s going to make you pay.”In the second half, SU was even more dominant. Miami couldn’t shake any of the momentum that SU had. After back-to-back baskets for the Hurricanes —something that rarely happened in the second half — Sykes converted an and-1.On the next possession, Peterson spun out of pressuring defense, dribbled toward the free-throw line and passed a ball toward an open spot the baseline. Sykes swooped in on a backdoor cut and went up for the layup.Peterson, who finished the game with 24 points and seven assists, turned around and celebrated before Sykes even finished the play.The two got subbed out at separate points late in the fourth quarter. Each one of them got a standing ovation from the crowd. Together, they led SU to its best win of the season.“This was a must win and we said it was that,” Hillsman said. “We didn’t shy away from saying that this win could possible define our season. And hopefully it has defined it in a positive way.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

What is VAR? The video assistant referee system’s Champions League & Premier League future

first_imgYes, VAR will be used in the 2018-19 Champions League from the knockout stage onward following a decision by the UEFA Executive Committee in late 2018.That means its first official use in the competition will be on February 12 when the initial last-16 first-leg ties are played.”We are convinced that it will be beneficial for our competitions as it will provide valuable help to match officials and will allow us to reduce incorrect decisions,” said UEFA’s chief refereeing officer, Roberto Rosetti.The decision to roll out the technology in Europe’s premier continental competition comes after a period of successful testing and means it follows other top-level tournaments in doing so.As well as the 2018-19 Champions League knockout stage, VAR will also be used in other UEFA competitions including the 2019 Europa League final, the Nations League finals and the 2019 Under-21 European Championship.It will be used for a longer period in the 2019-20 Champions League – from the play-off stage onwards – and UEFA has indicated that it plans to introduce it at Euro 2020 and the 2020-21 Europa League.When will the Premier League get VAR? Getty Images The basicsVAR stands for video assistant referee. It is actually a team of three people who work together to review certain decisions made by the main referee by watching video replays of the relevant incidents.That team is comprised of the video assistant referee himself (who will be a current or former referee), his assistant and a replay operator. They are situated in a video operation room which is essentially a bank of monitors offering different camera angles.Four types of decisions can be reviewed using VAR: goals (and violations in the build-up to them), penalties, red cards and mistaken identity in awarding a card. For a decision made on the pitch to be overturned, it must be a “clear error”.The process for reviewing a decision can work in two ways; either the referee can request a review after making a decision or the VAR team can recommend one. In the latter situation, if the VAR judges that there is the potential for a clear error to have been made, he or she can notify the referee.The referee then has three options: they can immediately overturn the call based on the VAR’s advice, review the incident themselves on a monitor on the touchline or stick with their initial decision.Current use of VARVAR is not currently written into the Laws of the Game, but is being tested in a number of leagues and tournaments around the world by the International Football Association Board (IFAB), which is responsible for those Laws.It was first trialled in the United Soccer League in the United States during a match between two reserve teams of MLS clubs – New York Red Bulls II and Orlando City B – in August of 2016. It has since been brought in by the A-League in Australia and MLS itself.In addition, FIFA has got a closer look at the system at a number of its international tournaments, such as last year’s Under-20 World Cup and Confederations Cup. Germany, Italy and Portugal introduced it for the 2017-18 seasons in their top-flight competitions, while the Copa Libertadores had VAR from the semi-final stage onwards in 2017.Its use in Major League Soccer thus far has greatly impressed former Champions League and World Cup final referee Howard Webb:”We’ve been satisfied with the way it’s gone,” Webb told ESPN . “We always knew that it was a big undertaking for any competition that decides to implement VAR.”It’s a big thing to implement, and a lot of work goes into both training our people and preparing our stadiums. Me personally, I’ve been really impressed by the way that’s been put together by MLS.”Will VAR be used in the Champions League? After years of calls for video technology to be implemented into football in order to help referees, it has been rolled out in competitions around the world, including the Bundesliga, Serie A and the World Cup.It was first used in England in November 2017 when the Three Lions faced Germany in a friendly, and then made its competitive debut in January 2018 as Brighton & Hove Albion took on Crystal Palace in the FA Cup. How well VAR works depends on who you ask.FIFA and Infantino, as mentioned, have insisted the system – while imperfect – has been successful on the whole. They say that during the group stages of the 2017 Confederations Cup, six “game-changing” decisions were made with the help of VAR in addition to another 29 “major incidents”.Their position, as Infantino stated, is that the Confederations Cup would have been a different, and less fair, tournament without the reviews.Certain players and coaches, however, have been less impressed. A common complaint has been the time taken to review decisions and the way that causes confusion and brings a halt to the play.Another issue was that not every contentious decision would be selected for review. During Mexico’s third-place play-off against Portugal in the 2017 tournament, for example, Pepe appeared to push Hector Moreno over in the box but despite the appeals of Mexico’s players and the replay being played on the stadium’s big screen, the game continued.”Some plays, yes [they refer], and others no,” El Tri goalkeeper Guillermo Ochoa said. “They will have to find a fairer way.”Then there is the simple fact that while VAR should help referees to make correct decisions, it does not guarantee them; calls are still made according to the officials’ judgement.In the Bundesliga, fans have criticised the length of time it takes for some decisions to be made using VAR, with 47 per cent of people calling for it to be abolished in a poll run by Kicker . “I was full of positive curiosity about it at the start of the season,” Bayer Leverkusen sporting director Rudi Voller told Sky when it was first introduced. “Now, after half a season, my verdict on it is not good. And I doubt it is going to get any better.” Far from eliminating debate around refereeing decisions, however, the new system resulted in more discussion and controversy over officiating than would be expected as normal.Overall, there have been good and bad moments for VAR – as it has come to be known – and it is sure to continue to be a talking point while the kinks are ironed out.But what exactly is VAR, what is it designed to achieve and which leagues are adopting it? Here is all you need to know about a major change to the way football is officiated.What is VAR? Getty There will be no VAR in the Premier League for another year at least after two thirds of the division’s clubs voted against its implementation from the 2018-19 season onward. However, testing behind the scenes is set to continue.In a statement, the Premier League said that, “The decision came after comprehensive discussions regarding the progress made in VAR trials in English football and key learnings from the many competitions elsewhere using it.”VAR was first used in a competitive English game on January 8, 2018 as Brighton took on Crystal Palace in the FA Cup, and it was used again two days later as Chelsea hosted Arsenal in the Carabao Cup semi-final first-leg.Chelsea also saw VAR implemented for their FA Cup third round replay with Norwich City, where a decision not to use it following a penalty appeal from Willian caused controversy. The Chelsea forward was booked for diving, but then-Blues boss Antonio Conte was angry at the fact officials decided not to use the video referee.“I think that we need to improve if we want to use this new system,” Conte said. “Today, in this game, there is a situation very clear with Willian at the start of the first period of extra-time. I think the situation was very clear. I watched it and this is a penalty. Very clear. We have been using it in Italy for six months, and you can reduce a lot the referee’s mistakes.”How well does VAR work? Getty Images Getty Images Similarly, former Juventus goalkeeper Gianluigi Buffon criticised the use of VAR in the early days of its implementation in Serie A: “They are overusing it and making mistakes. I don’t like it this way, it’s not good,” Buffon said. “It’s something which, if used sparingly, could give us excellent results and be a good thing for football.”However, since then, both German and Italian top tiers have come accustomed to using video referees, with the Bundesliga adding another assistant to help analyse decisions and speed up the length of VAR decision-making.It is hoped that these teething issues will be ironed out the more it is used and the trend is certainly towards widespread use across the globe.last_img read more

Getting nowhere fast — Raiders issues with speed on defense

first_imgThe Raiders … For complete Oakland Raiders coverage follow us on Flipboard.ALAMEDA — Paul Guenther wasn’t going to run away from the question.The Raiders defensive coordinator understands his last line of defense isn’t going to be running a four by 100-meter relay any time soon. Hence the response Thursday when Guenther was asked if his deep secondary was fast enough to get the job done.“We got what we got,” Guenther said, “so we have to do the best with what we got right now.”last_img

Fog returns as golfers prepare for first round of US Open at Pebble Beach

first_imgPEBBLE BEACH — After two days of record high temperatures on the Monterey Peninsula to start U.S. Open week, the fog rolled in with a vengeance Wednesday morning.Temperatures dropped from the 90s down into the high 60s and low 70s as the fog bank pushed in from Carmel Bay.“With the conditions being a little cooler and windy, you can see it get firm, and it’s going to start to get tricky,” Rory McIlroy said about the course setup at a news conference Wednesday.The forecast calls for more of …last_img

Behind enemy lines, 49ers vs. Saints: 5 questions for opposing beat reporter

first_imgNEW ORLEANS — Here is how long-time Saints reporter Mike Triplett of ESPN sees the 49ers’ visit Sunday to the New Orleans Saints:1. How well has Drew Brees looked and has that thumb surgery hindered him?Triplett: The thumb doesn’t seem to have had any impact on him, to be honest. The Saints’ offense overall hasn’t really been lighting it up like years past, and they’ve been struggling to create big plays. But a lot of that has to do with their lack of wide receiver depth. Brees at age 40 is …last_img

Featured Program: Building Healthy Military Communities, Oklahoma

first_img3. Who has the most to gain from the BHMC program in your state?Service members and families have the most to gain from the BHMC program. The goal of our program is to improve readiness of our service members to complete the mission; they are the focus of our efforts. However, as we all know, military families also impact readiness. It’s difficult for service members to concentrate on the mission if they are worried about family members back home. Families are also critical to the BHMC mission. The BHMC target area of improvement is service members and their families. 1. Can you briefly talk about what Building Healthy Military Communities program is working on in Oklahoma? What can we expect to see in the next year?The Building Healthy Military Communities (BHMC) a multi-year pilot that aims to better understand unique challenges faced by geographically dispersed Service members and their families that may impact their readiness, resiliency, and well-being. BHMC hopes to better understand resource challenges and develop a comprehensive strategy to support the Chairman’s objective of Total Force Fitness (TFF), which is DoD’s framework for improving health, readiness, and resiliency of its population through eight domains of fitness (physical, environmental, medical/dental, nutritional, spiritual, psychological, behavioral, and social). The program kicked off at the end of 2016 and has been working hard to positively impact Service members and families lives.Oklahoma’s BHMC program has gotten off to a good start over the past year. Since initiation, the Oklahoma State Coordinator has attended and led 77 meetings with local community service organizations and military leaders, building relationships and partnerships. BHMC has also partnered with the Tulsa Mayors Veterans Advisory Council, Warrior Partnerships of Eastern Oklahoma, Oklahoma Veterans Connections, and the Oklahoma Veterans Family Wellness Alliance to bolster outreach efforts. In partnership with these organizations, the Oklahoma BHMC State Coordinator has attended speed sharing events across Oklahoma, publicizing the BHMC program and making connections with service providers and identifying resources for Service members and families.Utilizing the connections and partnerships made across Oklahoma, BHMC has built a robust database of Service Providers who can meet the needs of Service members and families. These resources were vetted and posted on the Joint Service Support website via the Service Provider Network. The Service Provider Network is a database of resources that Service members and families can search based on location anytime, with any device that has Internet connectivity.  Oklahoma’s Service Provider Network provides links and contact information for over 400 organizations who provide services for Service members and families in need. Oklahoma is proud of the efforts of many organizations that have helped build this network from the ground up during the past few months.During the next year, Oklahoma BHMC aims to work with organizations across the state to educate Service members and families on available resources utilizing a strategic communication plan to collaborate with the many different offices who provide support for our Service Members. Our goal is to work in concert with the many family service resources that already exist in Oklahoma to help build readiness and resilience resources for our Service members and families. Oklahoma’s Community Capacity Inventory identified that service members and families lacked awareness of community resources and family services. Working with military leaders and family service agencies, BHMC aims to better educate Service members and families on available resources in Oklahoma for service members.Later this year, the BHMC pilot will also conduct a  a Rapid Needs Assessment in Oklahoma, where a team, composed of representatives from the Office of the Secretary of Defense, the National Guard Bureau, the Uniformed Services  University of the Health Sciences, and the Reserve Component Services, will evaluate programs that impact Service members and families across the state, while identifying any gaps that exist.  The team is currently waiting for approvals from the Office of Information Management to conduct these assessments. Today we had the opportunity to talk to Lonnie Bacon, Oklahoma State Coordinator for Building Healthy Military Communities. We asked Lonnie some questions about the success and challenges of the pilot program to date.Lonnie Bacon served on active duty in the United States Air Force for 27 years in the Civil Engineer functional area culminating in the promotion to the highest Air Force enlisted rank, Chief Master Sergeant. He is highly decorated for his service to his country during multiple combat campaigns. He deployed 10 times supporting operations Southern Watch, Inherent Resolve, Iraqi Freedom, Enduring Freedom and New Dawn. While serving his country, Lonnie also obtained a MBA in Human Resource Management from Columbia Southern University. After leaving the Air Force, Lonnie continues to support military personnel by serving as the Oklahoma BHMC Coordinator. 4. What type of collaboration is taking place between the Cooperative Extension System and Building Healthy Military Communities in Oklahoma? How do you see this partnership developing in the future?Oklahoma State University Cooperative Extension Service has child and youth, financial and nutritional resources. Since Oklahoma identified “fitness” and “financial” as areas of concern in the initial draft of the Oklahoma BHMC state action plan, Cooperative Extension can be an excellent resource for SMs in Oklahoma. Cooperative Extension works well with BHMC’s motivation to reach geographically dispersed service members. The service has offices located in each of the 77 Oklahoma counties that provide financial counseling, financial referrals, and nutritional counseling. Oklahoma BHMC has partnered with OSU extension service and has all of their offices listed as a resource on the Service Provider Network. In the future, Oklahoma can increase awareness of extension services during its strategic communications and outreach to Service members and families. 5. How can military family service professionals, non-profits, or other local organizations get involved with BHMC?There are numerous ways for family service professionals, non-profits, or other local organizations to get involved with BHMC. BHMC is a conduit of information on resources for SMVFs in Oklahoma. The first step for an organization to get involved is contacting your State Coordinator and becoming a resource on the Service Provider Network. The network is excellent website that can give organizations access to service members with particular needs. The Service Provider Network is also a resource used by military family service professionals to provide service members and families with referrals to non-profits, or other local organizations that can provide helpful resources. 2. Can you talk about some of the challenges facing BHMC in Oklahoma?Oklahoma has some challenges based on the resources available in many of the areas where service members live. 68 of the 77 counties in Oklahoma are considered rural counties. In Oklahoma, in the active component, 10% of Service members live in counties not supported by installations and in the reserve component, 56% of Service members live in counties not supported by installations. Oklahoma BHMC aims to identify resources available in these local communities and connect them with geographically dispersed SMVFs in order to improve readiness and resilience across the community. Rural areas away from installations can be a challenge due to limited resources and more difficult outreach efforts. 6. Is there anything else you’d like our audience to know?Service members and their families need your support. Sometimes we might think that all of the Service member’s needs are taken care of by the government or military installations. However, this is not always the case. Not all service members are covered by Tricare, not all service members are meeting their financial responsibilities due to problems with member or spouse employment, and the list can go on and on. We need community resources to help our service members and families reach optimal readiness and resilience. Partnering with BHMC can help our military improve overall total force fitness and the readiness and resilience of our forces.last_img read more