Success breeds interest – Samaras

Posted On Sep 21 2020 by

first_img For his part, Samaras insists he has no intention of leaving Glasgow any time soon. The 28-year-old arrived at Parkhead on loan from Manchester City in January 2008, before signing a permanent deal the following summer and is now the longest-serving player at the club aside from skipper Scott Brown. While speculation surrounds the future of some Hoops players such as Gary Hooper, Victor Wanyama and Fraser Forster, Samaras – voted player of the year by the club’s supporters recently – is “fully committed” to the Clydesdale Bank Premier League champions. He will sit down and discuss an extension to his current deal which finishes next year, at a time to suit both parties. He said: “I have one more year of my contract and hopefully I will be here next season. Six years is a lot but it has gone so fast and when you feel good at the club, people are looking after you and you feel you are part of a big family, I cannot see a reason to leave. “But it is too soon to speak about a contract. When they are ready and I am ready then we will have a chat. But we have plenty of time, don’t worry.” Georgios Samaras is not surprised that Celtic boss Neil Lennon has been linked with a move to Everton. The race for the managerial hot-seat at Goodison Park is under way after it was confirmed that David Moyes will take over from soon-to-be-retired Sir Alex Ferguson at Manchester United on July 1. “I haven’t heard anything but all I can say is that when you are playing at a high level like the Champions League and doing well then for sure people will come and watch the players or the manager or whoever is part of the team,” said the Greece international. “That is normal. When you are doing well, people will come and watch you. But I don’t know what he is thinking or what he wants to do.” center_img Press Associationlast_img read more


Osvaldo ready for boss reunion

Posted On Sep 21 2020 by

first_img Press Association Osvaldo has signed a four-year deal at St Mary’s, adding to a fine week for the Saints who kicked off their new Barclays Premier League campaign with a 1-0 win at West Brom on Saturday. The Argentinian 27-year-old played under Pochettino for just over a season at Espanyol and believes it was a period which produced the best spell of his career so far. Osvaldo said: “I’ve worked with Mauricio before and I know him quite well. The season I shared with him at Espanyol was my best season as a football in a personal and collective sense. “It’s fantastic to work with Mauricio. He’s a great motivator and for me it’s very important to work with people who appreciate and respect how I work. “For some years I’ve been working with people who don’t appreciate how I work as a player, so it’s great for me to to be working with people who do appreciate it.” Osvaldo, who has won nine caps for Italy, scored 16 goals in Serie A last year but admitted to a long-held desire to play in the Barclays Premier League, with Tottenham among a number of clubs linked in the summer. He added: “I’ve been dreaming about playing in the Premier League and I want to do something important in this league, so I’ve made this dream come true. “I’ve always been a massive fan of the Premier League. The technical level of the league is amazing and it is very dynamic. Overall I’m thrilled to be here.” Osvaldo’s arrival takes Southampton’s summer spending spree over the £30million mark following earlier deals for Victor Wanyama and Dejan Lovren. center_img Southampton’s record signing Pablo Daniel Osvaldo is relishing the prospect of reuniting with former boss Mauricio Pochettino after completing his move from Roma for a fee in the region of £15million.last_img read more


The Latest: AP source: Redskins to sign guard Wes Schweitzer

Posted On Sep 19 2020 by

first_img___4:25 p.m.The San Francisco 49ers have traded star defensive tackle DeForest Buckner to the Indianapolis Colts for the No. 13 pick in this year’s draft.A person familiar with the deal said Buckner will receive a new contract worth $21 million a year from the Colts. The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the deal and contract can’t be finalized until the start of the league year Wednesday.The trade of Buckner came almost immediately after the 49ers announced a deal to keep defensive lineman Arik Armstead with a five-year contract worth up to $85 million before he hit the open market. 8:45 p.m.The Panthers have agreed to terms with two free agents — Vikings defensive end Stephen Weatherly and Browns cornerback Juston Burris.Weatherly agreed to a two-year, $12.5 million deal, his agent Blake Baratz announced on Twitter. Weatherly has played in 32 games and started seven in the past two seasons with the Vikings, with 59 tackles and six sacks. He could be a potential replacement for Mario Addison, who is an unrestricted free agent.Burris announced on Instagram that he is coming home to play for the Panthers. No immediate terms were available on his contract.—Steve Reed reporting from Charlotte, N.C. — Michael Marot reporting from Indianapolis.__1:15 p.m.The Browns are working toward a deal with two-time Pro Bowl free agent tight end Austin Hooper, a person familiar with the negotiations told The Associated Press.Hooper was one of the main free agency targets for Cleveland, said the person who spoke on condition of anonymity because teams can’t officially announce deals until Wednesday. Share This StoryFacebookTwitteremailPrintLinkedinRedditThe Latest on NFL’s free agency. Teams were required to use franchise tags on players by noon EDT Monday. Teams can negotiate with representatives of free agents for the next two days but cannot finalize any agreements. (all times EDT):___9:30 p.m. The person spoke to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the contract had not yet been finalized. Colquitt will get $5 million in guaranteed money, the person said.Colquitt was eighth in the NFL last season with a net average per punt of 42.6 yards. He was the only punter in the league with 12 or more attempts, according to SportRadar, who did not have any touchbacks. The 11th-year veteran joined the Vikings in 2019, after three seasons with Cleveland and six seasons with Denver.— Dave Campbell reporting from Minneapolis___5:10 p.m. New coach Ron Rivera and his regime liked Bostic enough to bring the veteran back. The soon-to-be 29-year-old will play in a different system under new defensive coordinator Jack Del Rio.Bostic is entering his seventh pro season after previously spending time with the Chicago Bears, New England Patriots, Indianapolis Colts and Pittsburgh Steelers. He has 419 tackles and 6 1/2 sacks in 86 regular-season games.Washington is expected to be a major player in free agency after releasing tight end Jordan Reed, cornerback Josh Norman and wide receiver Paul Richardson to clear salary-cap space. The team already put the nonexclusive franchise tag on starting right guard Brandon Scherff for $14.781 million.The Redskins are stocked along the defensive line with 2017 and 2018 first-round picks Jonathan Allen and Daron Payne and could select Ohio State pass rusher Chase Young with the second overall pick. They also have Ryan Kerrigan and Ryan Anderson as outside linebackers and impressive 2019 pick Cole Holcomb inside to pair with Bostic.— Stephen Whyno reporting from Washington 7 p.m.The New Orleans Saints and long snapper Zach Wood have agreed to terms of a four-year contract worth nearly $4.8 millionWood’s agent, Mike Abadir, confirmed the agreement on Monday.The 27-year-old Wood has played for New Orleans since 2017, when the Saints’ current run of three straight playoff seasons began.The 6-foot-3, 255-pound Wood is a Texas native who played in college for SMU before spending training camp of his rookie season with the Dallas Cowboys. March 16, 2020 ___6:55 p.m.A person with knowledge of the negotiations tells The Associated Press that the Denver Broncos have agreed to a four-year, $44 million free agent contract with offensive guard Graham Glasgow.The deal includes $26 million in guarantees.Although the versatile Glasgow can also play center and incumbent Connor McGovern is set to hit free agency, Glasgow will get his first look at guard following the Broncos’ decision to cut ties with oft-injured right guard Ronald Leary. The Latest: AP source: Redskins to sign guard Wes Schweitzer A person with knowledge of the move says the Washington Redskins are signing guard Wes Schweitzer. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anoymity because the contract cannot be signed until Wednesday.Schweitzer figures to compete for the starting left guard job as Washington replaces Ereck Flowers. The Redskins already placed the franchise tag on starting right guard Brandon Scherff.Schweitzer is going into his fourth NFL season after spending the first three with the Atlanta Falcons.___9:05 p.m. The person spoke to The Associated Press on the condition of anonymity because the team has not announced the designation. NFL Network first reported the designation.Hollister is coming off the best season of his young career, and will earn $3.259 million for the upcoming season if he stays with Seattle. Hollister can still negotiate with other teams, but the Seahawks would receive a second-round pick if they choose not to match.Hollister entered last season with eight career receptions, but due to injuries took on a big role in Seattle’s offense. Hollister had 41 catches for 349 yards and three touchdowns in 11 games. He’s expected to continue having a role as a pass catcher for Seattle even with the signing of Greg Olson and the expected return of Will Dissly from injury.— Tim Booth reporting from Seattle.___ Kelly has started 16 of his 58 games since the Titans acquired him in a trade in 2016 that sent Philadelphia wide receiver Dorial Green-Beckham. Kelly has been versatile, starting at right tackle, left tackle, left guard and tight end in his career.The 6-foot-8, 321-pound Kelly caught two touchdown passes last season, including one in Tennessee’s loss to Kansas City in the AFC championship game.Originally drafted in the fifth round in 2012 out of Purdue by Philadelphia, Kelly has started 31 of his 88 games.— Teresa M. Walker reporting from Nashville, Tennessee___ ___3:35 p.m.Longtime Pittsburgh Steelers offensive lineman Ramon Foster is retiring.The 11-year veteran made the announcement on Instagram, saying “when the time comes, you just know and now is a time for me to take a bow.”Foster made the Steelers as an undrafted rookie free agent out of Tennessee in 2009. He became a steadying force on a unit that evolved into one of the league’s best, helping pave the way for a high-powered offense that led Pittsburgh to four straight playoff appearances from 2014-17. Armstead was a first-round pick for San Francisco in 2015 but didn’t make a big impact in his first four seasons in the league as he dealt with injuries that limited his playing time in 2016-17 and finding the right fit for his skills.___4:15 p.m.Ben Watson is hanging up his cleats for the second time. The 39-year-old tight end announced his retirement in a message on Twitter on Monday, marking the end of a 15-year NFL career that included two stints in New England, as well as stops in Cleveland, New Orleans and Baltimore. — Tom Withers reporting from Cleveland.___1 p.m.The Bengals used their franchise tag on A.J. Green, giving them time to try to work out a long-term deal with the star who is one of the most accomplished receivers in franchise history and would be a vital part of breaking in a new quarterback.Green, 31, wants to finish his career in Cincinnati, where he has put down roots. Although he’s open to a multi-year extension that would pay him as an elite receiver, he has objected to staying for only one more season on a franchise designation. He appeared in 10 games for the Patriots in 2019, catching 17 passes for 173 yards.___3:55 p.m.The Dallas Cowboys are moving forward with their plan to replace record-setting tight end Jason Witten.The Cowboys have re-signed Blake Jarwin, giving their fourth-year player a $24 million, three-year contract with $9 million guaranteed. The move came a few weeks after Witten said he wanted to keep playing, even if it wasn’t in Dallas. ___8:15 p.m.A person familiar with the negotiations says Byron Jones has agreed to a five-year contract worth more than $76.5 million with the Miami Dolphins, which will make him the NFL’s highest-paid cornerback.The person confirmed the deal on condition of anonymity because the NFL free agent signing period hasn’t begun.Last May, the Dolphins made Xavien Howard the league’s highest-paid cornerback. It’s uncertain whether Jones will replace or be paired with Howard, who has had at least one operation on each knee, most recently in December. Watson retires with 547 catches for 6,058 yards and 44 touchdowns. He was drafted by the Patriots in 2004, winning a Super Bowl ring as a rookie. He spent his first six seasons in New England. “I entered this league with a duffel bag and a dream,” Watson wrote in his Twitter post. “I exit holding the loving hand of my best friend, my wife of 14 years, and the (seven) tender gifts God has graciously given us to lead and love.”His best season was in 2015 with New Orleans when he caught 74 passes for 825 yards and six touchdowns — all career highs.He initially planned to retire following the 2018 season but was courted by several teams. The Patriots eventually signed him to a one-year, $3 million deal as they looked to fill the hole created by the retirement of Rob Gronkowski.He began his last NFL season by serving a four-game suspension for testing positive for a banned substance following his final season in New Orleans in 2018. Hooper has spent the past four seasons with the Atlanta Falcons. He’s had more than 70 catches the past two seasons.NFL Network reported the sides have agreed to terms on a package that will make Hooper the NFL’s highest-paid tight end.By adding the 25-year-old Hooper, the Browns will have another offensive playmaker for quarterback Baker Mayfield, who struggled in his second NFL season. Hooper will be a dependable option to go along with star wide receivers Odell Beckham Jr. and Jarvis Landry and running backs Nick Chubb and Kareem Hunt.New Browns coach Kevin Stefanski preferred to run two-tight end formations during his one season as Minnesota’s offensive coordinator. Hooper could be paired with 2017 first-round pick David Njoku, who missed most of last season with a broken wrist suffered in Week 2.Hooper had 75 catches for 787 yards and six touchdowns last season. ___4:55 p.m.A person with knowledge of the move said the Redskins on Monday agreed to re-sign inside linebacker Jon Bostic to a $6.6 million, two-year deal.The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the contract cannot be official until the start of the new league year Wednesday. The NFL negotiating period began Monday.Bostic is staying with Washington after just one season there. He was tied for second on the team with 105 tackles in 2019. — AP Pro Football Writer Arnie Stapleton reporting from Englewood, Colorado.___6:40 p.m.The Tennessee Titans are keeping veteran Dennis Kelly around with a new multi-year contract after losing right tackle Jack Conklin to the Cleveland Browns.The Titans announced they had agreed to terms. center_img Atlanta had two second-round picks in this year’s draft, No. 47 and No. 55 overall. The Ravens acquired the No. 55 pick.Hurst played in 16 games with Baltimore in 2019, including four starts. Early on, it became evident that another tight end, Mark Andrews, would be quarterback Lamar Jackson’s favorite option.Hurst finished with 30 catches — third among Ravens tight ends — for 349 yards and two touchdowns. Andrews had a team-high 64 receptions for 852 yards and 10 TDs, and 270-pound tight end Nick Boyle had 31 catches for 321 yards.Hurst, the No. 25 overall pick in the 2018 draft from South Carolina, started only four games for Baltimore over two seasons. He missed the first four games of the 2018 season with a foot injury.— Charles Odum in Atlanta and David Ginsburg in Owings Mills, Md. ___4:35 p.m.The Panthers have released longtime special teams player Colin Jones.The 32-year-old Jones played eight seasons with the Panthers, also serving as a reserve safety. He led the team in special teams tackles with nine in 2019 and finished his career in Carolina with 61 special teams tackles, second-most in franchise history.— Steve Reed reporting from Charlotte, N.C. Witten set a club record by spending 16 seasons with the Cowboys, the most recent last season after retiring and spending one year in broadcasting. The 37-year-old is also the Dallas leader in catches and yards receiving. Witten is one receiving touchdown behind Dez Bryant’s career franchise record of 73.Jarwin had 365 yards receiving and three touchdowns last season. The fourth-year pro tied the Dallas club record for touchdowns receiving in a game for a tight end in 2018 with three in the regular-season finale at the New York Giants. Those were the first three TDs of his career.The 25-year-old Jarwin joined the Cowboys as an undrafted free agent in 2017 and spent most of that season on the practice squad.— Schuyler Dixon in Dallas___ Green has said he’ll skip voluntary offseason workouts if he’s tagged. The Bengals are expected to take Heisman Trophy winner Joe Burrow or another quarterback with the first overall pick in the draft, and having Green in offseason workouts would accelerate a rookie’s development.The Bengals are free to negotiate with Green on a long-term deal through July 15.___More AP NFL: https://apnews.com/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP_NFL,Tampa Bay Lightning advance to face Dallas Stars in Stanley Cup finals, beating New York Islanders 2-1 in OT in Game 6 1:45 p.m.The Indianapolis Colts have released defensive tackle Margus Hunt and will re-sign receiver Daurice Fountain.Releasing Hunt will save the Colts roughly $4 million against the cap.He signed a two-year deal worth $9.1 million last year after having his best season in the NFL. But he lost the starting job in 2019 and wound up with 17 tackles, no sacks and no tackles for loss.Fountain spent all of last season on injured reserve after suffering a dislocated and fractured left ankle in training camp. The Colts offered the exclusive free agent a one-year tender, which his agent, Andy Simms, says he will sign. Fountain was Indy’s fifth-round pick in 2018. A person familiar with the negotiations says linebacker Kyle Van Noy has agreed to a $51 million, four-year contract with the Miami Dolphins.The person confirmed the deal on the condition of anonymity because the NFL signing period hasn’t begun. Van Noy tweeted “MiamiDolphins” with emojis wearing sunglasses.Van Noy started the past three seasons for New England and totaled 15½ sacks, including a career-high 6½ last year. He’ll upgrade a Miami pass rush that finished last in the NFL in 2019 with 23 sacks.— Steven Wine reporting from Miami.___ The 26-year-old Kwiatkoski was a fourth-round pick by Chicago in 2016. He had his most extensive playing time last year when he had career bests with 76 tackles, three sacks, one interception and four passes defensed.— Josh Dubow reporting from Alameda, California___1:55 p.m.Offensive lineman Ereck Flowers has agreed to terms on a $30 million, three-year contract with the Miami Dolphins. His presence along the interior has helped the Saints rank among the NFL’s leaders in run defense, holding opponents to just less than 86 yards rushing per game during the past two seasons combined.— Brett Martel reporting from New Orleans___7:20 p.m.The Seattle Seahawks have given a second-round tender to restricted free agent tight end Jacob Hollister, according to a person with knowledge of the deal. Foster turned 34 in January and the Steelers have several placements ready. Though he had a year left on the two-year, $8.25 million extension he signed in 2019, Foster figured to become a salary cap casualty if he didn’t decide to step away from the game. The Steelers are in the process of clearing cap space after placing a franchise tag on outside linebacker Bud Dupree earlier Monday. —- Will Graves reporting from Pittsburgh___2:40 p.m.A person with direct knowledge of the deal says the Dallas Cowboys and tight end Blake Jarwin have agreed on a $24 million, three-year contract. The Atlanta Falcons have acquired tight end Hayden Hurst from the Baltimore Ravens, a person familiar with the deal told The Associated Press.The person spoke to the AP on condition of anonymity Monday because the trade won’t be officially announced before the NFL’s business year begins Wednesday.The Falcons also acquired a 2020 fourth-round pick from the Ravens. Baltimore acquired second and fifth-round picks in this year’s draft from the Falcons.The Falcons needed help at tight end after losing two-time Pro Bowler Austin Hooper to free agency. The Falcons cut backup tight end Luke Stocker on Monday, one of several moves to clear cap space. The Falcons also cut offensive tackle Ty Sambrailo and are releasing running back Devonta Freeman and cornerback Desmond Trufant. 3:45 p.m.A person familiar with the negotiations says defensive end Shaq Lawson has agreed to a $30 million, three-year contract with the Miami Dolphins.The person spoke on condition of anonymity because the NFL free-agent signing period hasn’t started. The contract could be worth up to $36 million, and $21 million will be guaranteed.Lawson spent his first four NFL seasons with the Buffalo Bills and last year had a career-high 6 1/2 sacks, which would have led the Dolphins. He was a first-round draft pick by the Bills in 2016.__ Steven Wine in Miami, with John Wawrow in Buffalo contributing. Jones has only two career interceptions and none since 2017, but he has missed just one game in his five NFL seasons, all with Dallas. He was a first-round pick by the Cowboys in 2015 and made the Pro Bowl in 2018.— Steven Wine reporting from Miami___7:45 p.m.A person familiar with the situation says Saints starting defensive tackle David Onyemata will re-sign with New Orleans instead of entering free agency. ___2:30 p.m.A person familiar with the deal says free agent linebacker Nick Kwiatkoski has agreed to a contract with the Las Vegas Raiders.The person spoke on condition of anonymity because Kwiatkoski can’t officially sign the deal until the new league year starts on Wednesday.The Raiders are in dire need of upgrades at linebacker after a revolving door at the position the past few years. The only linebacker who started a game last season that is still under contract with the Raiders is Marquel Lee. Conklin will give added protection for quarterback Baker Mayfield, who didn’t trust his line enough last season and bailed on plays. He can also open holes for running back Nick Chubb.__ Tom Withers reporting from Cleveland.___5:30 p.m.The Minnesota Vikings have reached an agreement with punter Britton Colquitt on a three-year, $9 million contract, according to a person with knowledge of the deal. The agreement essentially means the Cowboys believe Jarwin can replace Jason Witten as the starter.Witten has said he wants to return for a 17th season, but the Cowboys haven’t indicated it will be with them. Witten set the club record by spending 16 seasons with Dallas, the most recent after taking a year off to try broadcasting.The person said the deal includes $9 million guaranteed. The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because deals can’t become official until the league year begins. That’s supposed to be Wednesday.Jarwin had 365 yards receiving and three touchdowns last season. The fourth-year pro tied the Dallas club record for touchdowns receiving in a game for a tight end in 2018, when he had three in the regular-season finale at the New York Giants. Those were the first three TDs of his career.— Schuyler Dixon in Dallas The person spoke to The Associated Press on condition of anonymity because the agreement has not been announced. The agreement was first reported by NFL Network.The 6-foot-4, 300-pound Onyemata started all 15 regular-season games in which he played and the Saints’ lone playoff game last season, his first as a full-time starter.He had three sacks, giving him 7½ during the past two seasons.The 27-year-old Onyemata is a Nigeria native who never played American-style football until he went to college in Canada.The Saints selected him in the fourth round of the 2016 draft and by 2017 he was a regular reserve, who also started six games that season and had two sacks. — Josh Dubow in Santa Clara, California___4:20 p.m.The San Francisco 49ers have signed defensive lineman Arik Armstead to a five-year contract worth up to $85 million before he hit the market as a free agent.The defending NFC champion Niners locked up one of the key pieces of their defense with a long-term deal instead of using the franchise tag. 5:40 p.m.Free agent tackle Jack Conklin has agreed to a three-year, $42 million contract with the Browns, his agent Drew Rosenhaus told The Associated PressConklin, perhaps the best tackle available on this year’s market, will get $30 million guaranteed and earn $20 million in his first year, Rosenhaus said. Conklin will only be 28 when the deal expires.The No. 8 overall pick in 2016, Conklin spent the past four seasons with the Tennessee Titans. He started all 16 games last season and helped block for NFL rushing leader Derrick Henry.The Browns were looking for an upgrade at both tackle spots, and will slot Conklin in on the right side while perhaps drafting one next month. There are some top prospects available in this year’s class. The deal was confirmed by Flowers’ agent, Drew Rosenhaus, who said $19.95 million is guaranteed.Flowers played for the Miami Hurricanes, was a first-round draft pick by the New York Giants in 2015 and started 46 games at tackle for them in his first three NFL seasons.He started all 16 games last year for Washington, splitting his time between guard and tackle.The Dolphins are in the market for four starting offensive linemen in free agency and the draft.___ Associated Press last_img read more


Badgers unable to close out Illini

Posted On Sep 17 2020 by

first_imgWith a heartbreaking loss to No. 11 Illinois, the men’s tennis team opened its Big Ten season just barely missing out on a 1-0 record.In a 4-3 decision, the Badgers had their fair share of ups and downs. Wisconsin had a strong showing in the doubles, ultimately winning the doubles point. Head coach Greg Van Emburgh switched up the doubles teams again for the last couple of matches, pairing up senior Moritz Baumann and junior Marek Michalicka, reincarnating the No. 11 doubles team.“I think we’ve been looking at the right time to be able to put them back together and today seemed like the right time,” Van Emburgh said. “I think they’re ready to commit to playing with each other again. It wasn’t like they got in an argument or anything, but just felt like they lost a little bit of their mojo and now they seem to have gotten it back.”Although they gave up the first game point to the Fighting Illini’s No. 68 doubles team of senior Marek Czerwinski and freshmen Stephen Hoh, Baumann and Michalicka sealed their first game point with an ace leading to the eventual win.Michalicka noted his excitement at being paired up again with Baumann.“I’m happy that we’re back together and especially that we won the match. It’s always up to coach, who he wants to play, and it’s just like back to our old teams as when we started the season. It worked, so hopefully we’ll play next time together.”With momentum on their side, the Badgers hoped for the best in the singles games, but were just unable to finish strong.As four of the singles matches went into the third set, only sophomore Patrick Pohlmann was able to walk away with a win.In three of those three-set matches the Badgers won the first set, still possessing momentum and forcing the Illini to fight from behind.For Pohlmann, the other losses came down to confidence.“We lost three out of our four three-set matches and in tennis it’s all about confidence. You’ve got to close out the matches by showing more confidence to our opponents, maybe overplay it and don’t show that we can get weak at different situations. It’s more about acting on the court and trying to show the opponent that you’re the better player,” he said.Van Emburgh simply seemed at a loss for words as to why they were unable to close out the matches.“Not only did we have all the momentum out of doubles, we won the first at one, the first at two, the first at three and the first at six, so I don’t know what else you could want to try and win a tennis match.”Despite the struggles, Michalicka boasted a perfect day, with a win in doubles and a win in singles pushing him to a perfect 11-0 singles record.For Michalicka the record is not what is important; rather the confidence that comes from having such a strong record allows him to take more risks.“When you go into a match you just try and focus and try to think about the match; what’s going to happen, how he’s going to play, what you have to do to win the match,” Michalicka said. “I mean when you are 11-0 of course you’re more confident on the court. Sometimes you go for some shots you would not go for usually. When you just feel good about it, you just take the risk. If you are winning, usually you just take it and it’s the right shot.”While confidence is certainly a driving factor for the players, it doesn’t go unnoticed.Van Emburgh noted that it was Michalicka’s determination and his confidence that helped him to earn the No. 25 ranking nationally.“He’s just such a competitor. When he puts it out there on the court, you know. Dennis Nevolo hasn’t lost a lot of tennis matches — he’s a top player who’s No.1 junior in the country coming out of juniors — and [Michalicka] goes out there and basically just takes it to him from the start; takes care of business, plays with a lot of intensity, is very vocal and he just worked him. He got up 5-2 in the second, Nevolo came back, put his best tennis on the line and [Michalicka] didn’t blink an eye, went back to work, was confident in what he could accomplish and took care of the match.”last_img read more


Hilley vs Carlini: Comparing two of the greatest Wisconsin setters

Posted On Sep 16 2020 by

first_imgLauren Carlini and Sindey Hilley have both been bringing a lot of attention to the University of Wisconsin volleyball program with their impressive performances and skills, but which one truly reigns supreme here at UW?Wisconsin volleyball is back in the national spotlight, but for many years that was not the case. After success in the late 90s and early 2000s, the Wisconsin volleyball team failed to make the NCAA tournament for five years.Molly Haggerty: From Big Ten Freshman of the Year to injured reserveMolly Haggerty put in years of hard work and had an impressive resume even before setting foot on the University Read…Enter a new head coach and the top recruit in the country. Both Head Coach Kelli Sheffield and Lauren Carlini came to Madison in 2013, during a time when Wisconsin really needed them. By the time Carlini landed in Madison, she had already been the women’s Gatorade player of the year in 2012, her senior year of high school, an Under Amour All-American and had played on the US Junior National Team. Essentially, when Carlini made her collegiate debut, the volleyball community was excited. Despite the badger’s recent struggles and a coaching change, she decided to go to Wisconsin.With Carlini running the offense as the team’s setter, the badgers began to see success. As the season progressed, the team got better and better, and for the first time in five years the badgers, ranked 12th, made the NCAA tournament. The badgers were a Cinderella story that season. They knocked off top ranked Texas in the semi-finals before falling to Penn State in the National Championship. Despite the loss, the 2013 season was almost everything a badger fan could want. They were winning games, and had a talented young setter that was named a second team All-American. Expectations remained high for Carlini after she led her team to the finals. For her four years playing at UW, she was regarded as one of the best in the business. Announcers, coaches, teammates and foes alike sang her praises.Volleyball: Sheffield brings wealth of talent to team in only four years timeWhen you think about all of the things that can be accomplished in just four years, revamping a volleyball team Read… In just four years, she put the badgers back on the map, and helped change the culture of the program. During her time as a Wisconsin college volleyball player, the team had a culture of winning. Each time they stepped on the court, they wanted to come away with a W. Each year the goal was to win a Big Ten and National Championship. In her sophomore season, they accomplished their goal of winning a Big Ten championship before falling to again to Penn State, but this time in the Elite Eight. During this match, Carlini suffered a severe ankle sprain. Carlini was named a first team All-American.Before her time ran out, she was named first team All-American two more times and led her team to the Sweet Sixteen in 2015, and the Elite Eight in 2016, where she saw her outstanding college career come to an end in five sets against the eventual National Champions, Stanford. The silver lining? She ended her time in Cardinal and White in front of a supportive Field House crowd, where her and the other seniors received standing ovations. The fans realized how much of an impact she had made on the program and were grateful. Since then, she’s received the AAU Sullivan Award, which is awarded to the country’s best amateur athlete. She joined the ranks of Payton Manning and Michael Phelps. She also spent the summer playing for the US Women’s National Team and is currently playing professionally in Italy.Enter Sydney Hilley. Another highly touted recruit, she was ranked the top setter in her class and No. 3 over all. She was the 2016 Minnesota Gatorade volleyball player of the year and had similarly played with the US Junior National Team.Carlini brings home UW’s first Sullivan AwardIt’s official: University of Wisconsin volleyball’s graduating senior Lauren Carlini won the AAU James E. Sullivan Award Tuesday night in Read…Hilley enrolled early last January to train with Carlini. When asked why she chose Wisconsin, she told UW Athletics that her favorite thing about Wisconsin Volleyball is the culture.  The same culture that Carlini had helped create. Hilley is just halfway through her freshman season, but she has already made an impact. The badgers are hitting at a clip .308, much to her credit. She is able to put her hitters in positions to score points.  She is doing her part to make sure that the program keeps their expectations high, and maintain a winning culture. Undoubtedly, Hilley is a phenomenal player, but it is too early to determine if she will be as good or better than Carlini. Carlini led her team deep into the post season while earning All-American accolades for herself four times. She’s the only Wisconsin volleyball player to be a four time All-American. Even if Sydney Hilley surpasses her predecessor in accomplishments and skill, there can only be one Lauren Carlini. Hilley will make her own significant mark on the Wisconsin volleyball program, but she will never receive the credit for creating the culture of the program. Lauren Carlini had such a large impact on this program, and was the best setter in the country, which are some big shoes to fill. It will be difficult for Hilley to surpass Carlini, but it is still early in her career, and only time will tell.last_img read more


Toomevara claim Junior Hurling League title

Posted On Sep 16 2020 by

first_imgToomevara have claimed the County Junior Hurling League title. The Mid Tipp club beat Boherlahan-Dualla in the decider while was played yesterday evening…the final score was Boherlahan Dualla 2-14  Toomevara 3-21Meanwhile, Cashel King Cormacs and Sean Treacys are a step closer to winning this year’s West Tipperary Intermediate Hurling Championship following yesterday’s quarter-final double-header in Dundrum. The latter booked their place in the last four of the competition by beating Arravale Rovers 0-19 to 1-10.Cormacs advanced to the semis on the back of a 3-21 to 1-12 victory over Rockwell Rovers.Sean Treacys and Cashel King Cormacs will meet each in the semi-finals.last_img


Tipp school hoping for Munster glory

Posted On Sep 9 2020 by

first_imgThe Premier County face Laois.Throw-in at the Laois Training Centre is at 2 o’clock. The Tipperary school are taking on Scoil Phobal Rathmore in the final of the Munster B football competition.The match, which starts at 12.30pm, is being played in Ballygiblin near Mallow in County Cork.Meanwhile, Tipperary are in action in the 2nd Round of the Peter McNulty U21 football tournment this afternoon.last_img


Seven games down for decision in EPL

Posted On Sep 9 2020 by

first_imgThe pick of the ties is the evening game where an in-form Tottenham side travel to the Etihad to face struggling Manchester City.City were hammered 4-0 by Everton last time out, while Spurs won their seventh straight game with a comfortable win over West Brom.Kick off is at 5.30pm.Five more games get underway at 3pm.Manchester United bring their 17-game unbeaten run to the Bet365 Stadium as they face Stoke City.Everton travel to London to meet Crystal Palace.Bournemouth take on Watford.Middlesbrough play host to West Ham United.And bottom side Sunderland make the trip to West Brom. They host bottom team Swansea.Paul Clement’s still looking for his first win in charge of the visitors – after losses to Hull and Arsenal.Anfield boss Jurgen Klopp says he can see a big difference since Clement took over.last_img read more


EDITORIAL: Favorable response to Jamaican budget, but concern prevail over crime

Posted On Aug 31 2020 by

first_imgThe Jamaican Diaspora is reacting positively to the economic situation in Jamaica, with most joining Jamaicans at home in hailing the 2019/2020 budget recently tabled by the country’s minister of finance. But, at meanwhile, the Diaspora continue to be disturbed by the reports of a persistent wave of violent crime.“Santa Clark”The budget tabled by Minister of Finance Nigel Clarke has earned him the swift nick-name of “Santa Clarke” because of the ‘gifts’ included. In the budget the minister has cut several taxes, and interest rates amounting to some J$14 billion dollars. Budgetary benefitsThe benefits apply to reduction on interest on student loans, property transfer tax, stamp duty on property purchase and sold, and taxes paid by businesses.The Finance Minister said the tax reductions are part of the government’s move to give back to the nation after almost 20 years of tax increases. He added that this move by government would incentivize micro and small business activity.The government has also made significant increases in the budgetary allocation for the Program of Advancement Through Health and Education (PATH). With this increase grants made to an estimated 284,000 beneficiaries including children and the elderly will increase by 7 percent.In addition, increases will be allocated tol major social protection programs from $16 billion in 2018/19 to $20 billion in 2019/20. Still, with the positivity associated with the budget and the kudos the government has been receiving in its wake,  there’s criticism that the budget, and the surpluses gained by the government, hasn’t been designed to benefit the poorer classes of Jamaicans generally. The major share of the budget pie is allocated to the Ministry of National Security to “improve the security of the citizens of Jamaica.” That ministry has been allocated $20.2 billion an increase of $7.5 billion over the 2018/19 budget. Economic improvementsDubbing the budget “Growth with Equity”, Clarke justified this title by explaining Jamaica’s Debt to Gross Domestic Product (GDP) ratio is set to fall to 96 per cent, the lowest ratio in nearly 20-years; the first time the ratio has fallen below 100 per cent over that period. He attested the debt reduction is a “shining example to the world of what can be achieved when there is unity of purpose.”center_img Financing tax benefits A prevailing question being raised among the Diaspora is how will the government cope with a significant reduction in tax revenues? The finance minister explained that the measures are possible through improvements in collection of income and business taxes. In addition, the country has made significant strides in reducing the national debt. Critics claim no benefit to the poor Some people in the Diaspora agree with the People National Party’s Opposition spokesman on Finance, Mark Golding, that poor people who are struggling to find food and shelter for their children and themselves will not benefit from more favorable transfer taxes or stamp duty. They too believe more of the $14 billion could be directly channeled to the poor and needy.Although the feedback has been more favorable, than critical, there’s strong concern among the Diaspora about initiatives to reduce violent crime in Jamaica. While people are pleased a huge chunk of the budget is allocated to national security, they need information on the finer details of the planned crime fighting measures.Diaspora crime concerns Reference is being made to the recent resurgence of violence in western Jamaica following the ending of a state of emergency in the parish of St. James. The Diaspora is divided about the ending of this sate of emergency, and those in other troubled regions of the country. The majority would rather the government and the opposition collaborate in strategizing on a pragmatic crime reduction plan. “Crime isn’t a divisive political issue, it’s a national issue,” some have stated.There’s also increasing concern over potential damage to Jamaica’s vibrant tourism industry from reports of violent crime. Last week, the US Department of State issued a level-2 travel advisory to Americans traveling to Jamaica cautioning against violent crime.This advisory may be unjustified, but it’s nonetheless  damaging. The government of Jamaica has a responsibility to ensuring that every effort is made, and no budgetary funds spared, to effectively counter crime in generalThe positive news of economic growth, reduced debt and lower taxes is refreshing, but this positivity should not be negated by persistent news of ravages on the society from violent crime.  The ministry of finance have provided the necessary funds, now Jamaicans home and abroad want to know how these funds will be applied to reduce crime. Jamaicans, home and overseas, would also like to see more of the funds being realized from improved tax collection, and the reduced national debt, directly applied to alleviate the plight of poor urban and rural Jamaicans.last_img read more


Fast and furious Teranga Lions bully Poland into costly mistakes

Posted On Aug 27 2020 by

first_imgA Black coach, Aliou Cisse, made the case for the African campaign at the FIFA World Cup with a defiant performance as Senegal’s Teranga Lions outfought Poland to record the continent’s first victory in Russia.The win rewrites a tale of four defeats for African teams as Senegal becomes Africa’s bandwagon of hope.Senegal played traditional African soccer -fast and furious, bulky and serious – and kept things as simple as 4-4-2.True, the first goal needed a deflection and the second needed some poor Poland communication to find Niang breathing down the neck of a nervous defender to steal the ball into a wide empty net. But Senegal deserved their luck.The Senegalese relied on physique to paper over faulty technique and used a cocky confidence to paper over the psychological burden of knowing the African trend in Russia has been losses. Niang was put through on goal in the 18 minute after Sabaly darted inside from the left to leave a futile Poland chase. But the Torino man wide shot exposed poor technique.A 33minute cross saw two Polish defenders go up to deal poorly with the header as a lurking Senegalese attacker saw the ball roll out.A defender, Sane, knocked down his free header from a fine corner as he could not quite ready his head enough to give the keeper any headache.Poland got their half-chances too but bodies blocked lone striker Lewandowski so that his 23 minutes shot if it were accurate would have been tamed by the bodies. But his shot went wide.Niang who wasted his 11minute chance now acted as a provider. Once again his reliable strength won him a challenge on the left. He fed a pass to Sadio Mane who played as a deep-lying forward, collecting the ball from deep positions to work his way into dangerous channels. He decelerated and found an accelerating Gueye storming into the box where Liverpool great Steven Gerrard is usually favoured to rocket in a shot.Gueye’s speculative low shot was well read by Juventus goalkeeper Szczensy but it deflected off Cionek who placed his hands over his head as the ball rolled into the net.Poland returned to gain a 49minute freekick at the edge of the box after Sane obstructed Lewandowski run into the 18 yard area.With every African side losing via set pieces, Lewandowski’s freekick was palpitating enough for every Senegalese concerned.Good technique to lift the ball over the wall but perhaps not enough power to stun the goal keeper Khadim N’Diaye who would be glad to make the catch. Poland’s attack was quenched frequently as crosses were headed out and an intimidating presence made sure the assault on the ground was grounded.Unlike Tunisia, Senegal did simple things. A polish attack breakdown before a Senegalese defender deep in their half, he kicked it out, another player headed it further to the center half where Krychowiak backpassed it long.But Niang had been standing out on the touchline after receiving treatment and when he was beckoned by the referee to join the game, he zoomed in on a defender who had not made up his mind on how to deal with the backpass. Sczcesny rushed out to close down Niang but the Senegalese  brawn, raw power weathered the challenge as he sped off with the ball for the simplest of finish into an empty net in the 59minute. Poland attacked Zielinski low shot went wide and Kownacki header did not work the Senegalese keeper hard enough.Milik found himself inside the box but his shot into the near post spinned off narrowly.A freekick far wide and flying across bodies was well directed into the net by Krychowiak for a 87minute goal to give the Polish three minutes and four of injury time to claw back into the game. Two goals for Senegal and a response from Poland was a cue to shut down the game and when Mane had his chance to run inside the box, he danced on the ball to run down the clock until time confirmed the Africans the first to win in Russia.Polish attacker Arkadiusz Milik would remark after the game, Senegal built a wall and we were not able to jummp over it”. He was right.last_img read more