Boss Mark Hughes said at his press conference on Tuesday: “We are hopeful. It’s fair to say it progressed significantly this morning. We hope at some point we will be able to announce a big signing for us.” Despite seemingly missing out on Berahino, Newcastle continued to reinforce their squad with the loan signing of Seydou Doumbia from Roma until the end of the season. The Magpies had already spent nearly £29million on Andros Townsend, Jonjo Shelvey and Henri Saivet before deadline day arrived. Meanwhile, Ayoze Perez has committed his future to Newcastle by signing a new five-and-a-half-year contract which ties him to St James’ Park until the summer of 2021. Also in the north-east, Middlesbrough bolstered their Championship promotion push by signing Scotland striker Jordan Rhodes from Blackburn on a four and a half year deal, as well as bringing in defender Ritchie de Laet on loan from Leicester. Boro’s promotion rivals Hull also strengthened their squad as they landed Manchester United midfielder Nick Powell on loan from Old Trafford, and Dusan Kuciak from Legia Warsaw for an undisclosed fee. Arsene Wenger released Mathieu Debuchy and Yaya Sanogo on loan to Bordeaux and Charlton respectively, while across north London Tottenham have sent Alex Pritchard on loan to West Brom. Spurs defender Federico Fazio has joined his old club Sevilla on loan while Serbia Under-21 midfielder Milos Veljkovic has moved to Werder Bremen on a permanent deal. Watford have paid in the region of £8million to lure 23-year-old midfielder Abdoulaye Doucoure from French club Rennes – and immediately sent him to La Liga Granada on loan. The Hornets have also signed Venezuelan forward Adalberto Penaranda, who will also stay on loan at Granada until the end of the season. Swansea have brought in Leroy Fer on loan from QPR and loaned Eder to Lille for the rest of the season, while Bournemouth have re-signed Welsh left-back Rhoys Wiggins from Sheffield Wednesday. Despite rumours of a move for Charles N’Zogbia, Sunderland’s only activity on deadline day appeared to be the loaning of midfielder Jordi Gomez to Blackburn and striker Steven Fletcher to Marseille for the rest of the season. Oumar Niasse sealed a £13.5million move to Everton but Saido Berahino appeared resigned to staying at West Brom as a largely underwhelming transfer deadline day limped towards its conclusion. Toffees boss Roberto Martinez swooped to capture the 25-year-old Lokomotiv Moscow striker on a four-and-a-half-year deal after completing formalities at the club’s Finch Farm training complex earlier in the day. The Senegal international told evertontv: “It’s a great day for me, a big dream to play in the Premier League and a big dream to play for Everton. “Everton is one of the best teams in the Premier League and the Premier League is one of the best leagues in the world.” Niasse becomes the club’s third most expensive signing after Romelu Lukaku (£28million) and Marouane Fellaini (£15million) and could make his debut in this weekend’s Barclays Premier League match at Stoke. The Toffees have loaned Aiden McGeady to Championship play-off hopefuls Sheffield Wednesday. Meanwhile Berahino took to Twitter to apparently rule out the possibility of a deadline day move away from The Hawthorns. Referencing his social media outburst in January when he was denied a late move to Tottenham, Berahino wrote: ” Everyone waiting once again for the silly little spoilt boy to make same mistake so here you go. Goodnight all and thanks for the support.” Earlier, the Baggies had rejected a £21million bid from Newcastle and stressed there was no chance of Berahino being allowed to move before the end of the transfer window. In one of the biggest potential deals still brewing, Stoke were closing in on £18million-rated Porto striker Giannelli Imbula. The Potters are believed to have agreed a deal for the 23-year-old which will comfortably outstrip the £12million they spent to lure Xherdan Shaqiri from Inter Milan. Press Association
MATTHEW KUTZ/Herald photoCHAMPAIGN, Ill. — Despite entering Saturday as heavy underdogs, Illinois’s offense seemed to have Wisconsin’s number. But Badger running back Brian Calhoun always had the answer, leading the UW to a 41-24 win at Memorial Stadium.Calhoun rushed for 197 yards and five touchdowns on 35 carries Saturday, tying the school single-game scoring record for the second time this season. The junior is now tied with former Wisconsin great Ron Dayne in the school record books for most touchdowns in a single season with 21 on the year, and is just two shy of matching Dayne’s mark for most rushing scores (also 21).Three of Calhoun’s touchdowns came directly after the Illini had cut the Wisconsin lead to 10 points or less. And, for an offense that wanted to re-establish its rushing attack, the win served as the perfect venue.”We came in wanting to establish the run,” Alvarez said. “That was one of our plans. We really squeezed down our game plan coming into this game. We limited just to a handful of runs, showed a lot of window dressing, but just wanted to condense the runs and execute them well. We thought maybe we were trying to do too much and not executing.”After taking the ball to start the game, Wisconsin did not attempt a single pass on its opening drive, an 80-yard march. Calhoun alone rushed for 53 of those yards, capping the score with a six-yard touchdown to give Wisconsin a 6-0 lead (via a missed extra point) and set the tone for the game.”Obviously we’ve gotten away from it the last couple of weeks, and we felt we could establish the run against Illinois,” Calhoun said. “Even if we had a couple losses or one-yard plays, we kept pounding it and pounding it, and eventually we had some long runs in the end.”In fact, the first 15 plays of the game were all runs — a bit of a reversal from the past several weeks when the UW coaching staff went to the air early on.When the Badgers did throw the ball, they did it effectively. Quarterback John Stocco’s first pass of the game went for a touchdown, a 62-yard strike to a seemingly uncovered Brandon Williams.”That was the exact same look that we had all week against the scouts,” Williams said of the play. “They did bring a blitz from the nickel back, but other than that it was exactly how we expected them to play it and it worked to perfection.”Stocco finished the day completing 14 of 22 attempts for 225 yards and the one touchdown.His counterpart, Illinois signal caller Tim Brasic, also enjoyed a career day, breaking the school record for quarterbacks with 116 rushing yards on the day to go along with 277 yards through the air. His ability to tuck the ball and scramble in passing situations repeatedly hurt the Wisconsin defense.Brasic led the Illini — who actually out-gained the Badgers in total yardage — on a pair of scoring drives to cut the Badger lead to 13-10 with 7:42 remaining in the first half, but as was the norm, Calhoun led the Wisconsin response. On the ensuing possession, he accounted for 45 of the 51 yards that the drive spanned, including his second touchdown of the game, a two-yard plunge to push the UW advantage back to 10 points.”Over the course of the game, there’s going to be a lot of momentum changes,” Stocco said. “It’s like a pendulum, it’s going to go back and forth, and any time we lose it we want to get it back and get it back fast. And I think we did a good job of that today.”Two possessions after Calhoun scored his third touchdown following UW freshman Jonathan Casillas’ second blocked punt of the season, Illini running back Pierre Thomas cut the lead to 10 points once again with 4:28 left in the third quarter. Yet again, though, Calhoun had an answer on the ensuing drive.Carrying the ball on the final five plays of a 73-yard scoring march, the junior slashed off right tackle for another six-yard touchdown.However, Calhoun saved his best run of the day for last.Just 13 seconds after Brasic connected with Kyle Hudson to pull within 10 for the second time in the half, Calhoun took a carry off left tackle, bounced outside and used a big block from fullback Chris Pressley to spring himself down the sidelines for a 46-yard touchdown, his longest run of the season.”Great patience, great vision, great burst,” co-offensive coordinator Brian White said of the run. “Chris Pressley just threw a phenomenal block, and he did an unbelievable job of tight-roping that sideline. I didn’t think it was humanly possible, that someone could stay in bounds as tight as he was to the sidelines, but that’s what makes Brian a special back.”Still, heading into next Saturday’s battle for first place in the Big Ten with Penn State, Calhoun knows both sides of the ball will have to be ready to answer the challenge.”It’s tough when you see the other offense put up points, but we can’t worry about that,” Calhoun said. “All we do is, we’ve got to go out there and score points, and today 41 was enough. So hopefully we can tighten things up on offense and defense next week and be ready to play.”
Player of the game: Luke SwanWhile there is no denying the game Tyler Donovan had was exceptional, throwing for 284 yards and three touchdowns and scoring another on the ground, the Fennimore Flash, Luke Swan, gets the nod. The fifth-year senior keyed numerous drives with first-down receptions on the third down, and really exhibited his playmaking abilities with catches of 43, 30 and 38 yards. For the game, Swan not only set personal bests in touchdowns (2), receptions (8) and yards (170), he cemented his name in the UW record books. He now ranks tied 11th all-time in single-game receiving yards with Pat Richter.Overall: BThe offense put up 42 points and 486 yards against an untested secondary. Although that doesn’t negate what was accomplished, the Badgers weren’t challenged on offense like they will be in future weeks. Still, Donovan’s ability to read the defense and make checks at the line is a positive sign heading into the rest of the season. The defense didn’t play like a top-5 defense and has some chinks to sort out. A portion of special teams, especially Ken DeBauche, had a bad day. All in all, however, it wasn’t bad for the season opener.Offense: A-In his first game as the primary signal caller, Tyler Donovan could do just about no wrong (minus a few misfires). He completed 19-of-29 passes for just fewer than 300 yards and found pay dirt four times, as well as made some outstanding checks at the line to keep the WSU defense guessing. Luke Swan had a career day, as did replacement tight end Garrett Graham, who stepped in for the injured Andy Crooks and recorded his first career catch and touchdown on the same play. P.J. Hill, while not his usual dominant self, proved effective, collecting 84 yards and two touchdowns. Lance Smith chipped in with 60 yards.Defense: C+After looking a bit unsettled in the first quarter, some of it due to a terrific catch by WSU receiver Brandon Gibson and a blocked punt that was recovered for a first down, the defense composed itself and put together a strong showing. Against an offense that ranked No. 1 in the Pac-10 last season in passing yards per game and at the top in points and total yards per game, Wisconsin’s defense held its own. After allowing 160 yards and two touchdowns in the first quarter, the Badger defense gave up just 168 total yards and 7 points the rest of the way.Special Teams: CSpecial teams were an enigma Saturday. At times they were brilliant, blocking a punt, disrupting a long field goal try, picking off a pass and recording four touchbacks despite kickoffs being moved back five yards. At other times, they left Bret Bielema scratching his head. Both Luke Swan and David Gilreath fumbled as punt returners, reminding fans and coaches of last year’s problems in that department. Additionally, punter Ken DeBauche booted a pooch kick an incredible 1 yard and committed a 15-yard penalty on the same play.Up next: UNLVUNLV came away with a 23-16 victory in its season opener against Utah State. Tailback Frank Summers capped a late-game drive with an 11-yard scamper to give the Rebels the come-from-behind victory and their first road win in 15 tries. Quarterback Travis Dixon ran for 108 yards and a touchdown last week and could pose a problem on the ground for the Badgers defense, which struggled to stop the Cougars’ running attack.
It’s been just days since the teams of the Big Ten put up428 points – an average of almost 39 points per squad – on the Austin Peays andEastern Michigans of the college football world.But come Saturday, there are higher stakes and tougheropponents to be had, as conference play begins. Will someone play thecome-out-of-nowhere dark horse like Illinois did in 2007? Or will a team fallflat on its face, like Wisconsin did in 2008?Herald Sports divided the teams of the Big Ten into threecategories: contenders, dark horses and the teams at the bottom of the barrel.We also collaborated with the football writers of the Big Ten’s student papersto get their predictions on how each team will fare in conference play.ContendersOhio State (4-0)In college football, where BCS formulas, strengths of schedules and computer rankings determine end-of-season opportunities, one loss can tarnish a season.By mid-September last year, an 18-15 loss at home to USC had spoiled Ohio State’s national title hopes. An October loss to Purdue was icing on the cake.But every offseason, each school is granted a clean slate, and OSU captured the No. 2 ranking in many preseason ballots.The Buckeyes escaped a meeting with Miami (Fla.) in Week 2. Now if they can breeze through the Big Ten and notch their sixth consecutive conference crown, they could be headed to Tempe, Ariz., for another shot at the BCS championship.But as Purdue showed OSU last year, a clean Big Ten slate is hard to come by.Road trips to Wisconsin and Iowa will be the biggest hurdles for the Buckeyes to clear. Coach Jim Tressel is just 3-2 in his career against the Badgers, his worst mark against any conference foe.-Zack Meisel, The Lantern Indiana (3-0)Indiana enters the Big Ten season undefeated for the second consecutive season.Last year, the Hoosiers won only one of their eight games and finished at the bottom of the conference standings. Many of their losses were close, notably Michigan (33-36), Northwestern (28-29) and Wisconsin (28-31).This season, IU is focused on finishing games. Doing so will be easier if the Hoosiers finish games with the football in their possession. The IU offense, powered by fifth-year senior quarterback Ben Chappell and a deep, talented receiving core, is clearly the strong point of the team.Chappell, who earned Big Ten offensive player of the week honors last week, has completed 72 percent of his passes for 890 yards and nine touchdowns through three games this season. He is one of four quarterbacks in the NCAA’s top 100 in pass efficiency who still has not thrown an interception.Finishing games could be incredibly difficult for the Hoosiers, however, if their opponent gets the last say. The IU defense is coming off a game in which they allowed Akron – a team with one of the least productive offenses in the FBS – to rush for 160 yards and score 20 points.-Justin Albers, The Indiana Daily StudentPurdue (2-2)The story of the season for the Purdue Boilermakers has been injuries.After losing leading rusher Ralph Bolden to an ACL tear in the spring, All-Big Ten wide receiver Keith Smith tore both his ACL and MCL in the game against Western Illinois, and quarterback Robert Marve suffered a potentially-disastrous knee injury Saturday against Toledo.Aside from the loss of the offense’s No. 1s, the Boilermakers have at times been without their next three options at running back due to various injuries, forcing a deep receiving corps to step up in the backfield.Adding insult to injuries, a healthy defense has proven to be inconsistent in limiting big plays and putting games out of reach for opponents.Coming out of the non-conference portion of the schedule, the Boilers sit at 2-2, which coach Danny Hope will say is an improvement from this time last season. However, with an unhealthy offense, once-clear hopes of reaching a bowl game have become blurred. Shoo-in wins aren’t so certain anymore.Unless a major turnaround happens, Purdue is looking at a two-win conference run.-Joanne Norell, The Purdue ExponentMinnesota (1-3)Heading into the Big Ten season, the Minnesota football team is far more deflated mentally than it’s been in recent memory.The Gophers followed a road win over Middle Tennessee State with a loss to an FCS opponent, South Dakota. They then played well in a loss to USC only to be crushed by Northern Illinois.The Gophers have enough firepower on offense with a strong running game led by junior Duane Bennett. They can also attack downfield with senior quarterback Adam Weber having a mismatch in 6-foot-4, 230-pound quarterback-turned-receiver MarQueis Gray.However, the defense is far too inexperienced to hold top Big Ten opponents to a surmountable margin. The Gophers could play spoiler as they host Penn State, Ohio State and Iowa at TCF Bank Stadium, but with most of the coaching speculation coming from the home fans during games, it could be a rough year for Minnesota.-Josh Katzenstein, The Minnesota Daily Wisconsin (4-0)The Badgers didn’t get many style points during their non-conference slate, eking out a victory over Arizona State, and looking less-than-convincing against San Jose State. But this might be Wisconsin’s best team in the Bret Bielema era, and with an experienced quarterback in Scott Tolzien and a veteran offensive line, the Badgers have their sights set high this season.Tolzien has his pick of weapons, including Heisman candidate John Clay, electric freshman James White and one of the nation’s best all-around tight ends, Lance Kendricks. On defense, the Badgers hope J.J. Watt and Mike Taylor can pick up the slack after linebacker Chris Borland was shelved for the season. The season’s success might hinge on Jay Valai, Aaron Henry and the unproven UW secondary, though.The offense should roll along just fine, and so long as the Badgers can continue to pass rush and limit big plays in the defensive backfield, this could be a special season in Madison.It might look like the season comes down to a visit from Ohio State and a trip to Iowa, but experienced UW fans know the Badgers need to finish strong on the back end of the schedule if they want a trip to a BCS bowl. Winning this Saturday wouldn’t hurt, either.-Adam Holt, The Badger HeraldIowa (3-1)Iowa was supposed to have three running backs. But somehow the team sits on the eve of the Big Ten season with only one proven tailback healthy.Jewel Hampton is out for the season (knee) and Brandon Wegher continues to be away from the team (personal reasons), leaving sophomore Adam Robinson as the Hawkeyes’ only viable option at tailback.This lack of depth is disconcerting as conference play approaches, but it’s not any reason to write Iowa off.For one, the defense features the nation’s best defensive line and the Big Ten’s best-kept secret, defensive tackle Mike Daniels. Allowing 227.5 yards per game, Iowa ranks No. 1 in total defense through four games – and that’s without preseason All-American Adrian Clayborn making much nose.With a stout defense and third-year starting quarterback Ricky Stanzi, the Hawkeyes will surely challenge Wisconsin for the Big Ten’s No. 2 slot – as long as the running game figures itself out.-Scott Miller, The Daily IowanDark HorsesPenn State (3-1)It’s already a historic season in Happy Valley. For the first time in the Joe Paterno era, a true freshman started the season at quarterback, and so far Rob Bolden hasn’t disappointed. He looked poised throughout the non-conference schedule, and led a 96-yard game-clinching touchdown drive against Temple last weekend, completing passes on 3rd-and-long like a veteran.Two more milestones will be reached soon, too. Joe Paterno is three wins from 400 and Evan Royster is 184 yards from the school’s all-time rushing mark. The significant accomplishments will likely overshadow what could be a Big Ten season with some struggles for the Nittany Lions, who are reshuffling their offensive line and have had problems tackling.Their schedule doesn’t make it any easier, with both Iowa and Ohio State on the road. Bolden will likely develop as the season goes on, but road games in tough environments could serve more as a learning experience for him than anything else, and a 5-3, fourth place finish could be in the cards for the Lions.-AJ Cassavell, The Daily CollegianMichigan (4-0)Before the season started, and before the country knew who Denard Robinson was, everyone thought Michigan would be an afterthought once again in the Big Ten. The Wolverines had, after all, won three conference games in head coach Rich Rodriguez’s first two seasons in Ann Arbor. But if Robinson can stay healthy, the offense will be hard to slow down, let alone, stop.On defense, it seems like preseason perception was just about right. The unit allowed 37 points to Massachusetts. In Big Ten play, Michigan could slide past Indiana, Illinois and Purdue based solely on Robinson and the Wolverines’ explosive offense. Home games against Iowa and Wisconsin seem more winnable now. And road games against Michigan State, Penn State and Ohio State can’t be considered as absolute losses anymore either. Michigan could easily lose a winnable game, but the Wolverines could steal one, too. But one thing is for sure, they’ll top their three total Big Ten wins in RichRod’s tenure for sure.Expect Michigan to win four to five conference games. The defense isn’t good enough to win more than that. The Wolverines will finish at 9-3 (5-3 Big Ten) at best.-Ryan Kartje, The Michigan DailyMichigan State (4-0)Entering Big Ten play with head coach Mark Dantonio’s best team in his four years at Michigan State, the No. 24 MSU football team feels cautiously optimistic before Saturday’s conference opener.The Spartans have ridden their rushing attack to a 4-0 start and have shown improvements in their secondary and offensive line, both of which were considered question marks coming into the season.The Spartans’ case for a conference title is good, as conference favorite Ohio State, as well as Indiana, are noticeably missing on the Spartans’ schedule and sets up favorably for MSU.Nevertheless, MSU hasn’t won the Big Ten title since 1990 and is trying to forget last season’s 6-7 finish, in which it lost five games by eight points or fewer.The Spartans’ road gets off to a difficult start, with Saturday’s matchup against Wisconsin and an Oct. 9 game at Michigan.The Spartans have dealt with the range of emotions this season – faking a field goal in overtime to defeat Notre Dame 34-31, on Sept. 18, then finding out the following morning that Dantonio suffered a minor heart attack – but have thus far stayed level-headed as they prepare for Big Ten play.Dantonio is recovering, but it is unknown when he’ll be able to return to the sidelines. Whatever the case might be, expect the Spartans to be among the favorites this season.-Jeff Kanan, The State NewsNorthwestern (4-0)After a 4-0 start to the season, buzz is building around Northwestern. Head coach Pat Fitzgerald was even asked in a press conference of the possibility of a Big Ten championship.While the Wildcats taking their first conference title since 2000 remains unlikely, NU seems poised to make school history with a third consecutive bowl game appearance. Anything less that an 8-4 season would mean a disappointing loss against either Minnesota, Purdue, Indiana or Illinois.Perhaps the defining point of the season will be the Cats’ Oct. 23 matchup with Michigan State for NU’s homecoming. A win would likely mean a 5-3 Big Ten record, which would greatly boost NU in the Big Ten standings. And while trips to Penn State and Wisconsin and a home game against Iowa may be menacing, the Cats went 2-1 against those foes last season and led the Nittany Lions at halftime.-Colin Becht, The Daily NorthwesternForget about itIllinois (2-1)Before finishing 5-7, Illinois’ 2008 squad was supposed to be an improvement over the 2007-08 Rose Bowl team. Last year, the Illini had what appeared to be realistic hopes of making a bowl game.But beginning with a blowout loss to Missouri and ending with a bizarre last-second 53-52 loss against Fresno State, Illinois’ 3-9 campaign in 2009 was a complete disappointment that led to the complete reorganization of head coach Ron Zook’s staff.With the fresh start provided by Vic Koenning’s hard-hitting defense and Paul Patrino’s pro-style offense, Illinois has done something in 2010 that it failed to do several times last season: win games as the favorite.Illinois should continue to win the “winnable” games throughout Big Ten season, which should be enough for a bowl game.But the unexpectedly poor results of last season place a big question mark over the number of games, if any, the Illini can steal from the upper echelon of the Big Ten.Kevin Kaplan, The Daily Illini
After defeating the defending champions, No. 3 Pepperdine University (6-2), in a 3-2 victory on Tuesday, the No. 1 ranked Women of Troy are set to face off against St. Mary’s and Cal State Bakersfield in Merle Norman Stadium.The Women of Troy have a 7-0 record and are off to their best start in program history. This week, however, is extremely hectic for the Women of Troy as they have six duals on the schedule. After Thursday, the Women of Troy head to Arizona to play against New Mexico, Grand Canyon and Arizona State.While this schedule may be tough, sophomore Sara Hughes has found a way to handle the rigors of the season.“Since our season is so short it is brutal,” said Hughes. “It’s hectic and not easy but we have to go to the training room. We have to take ice baths and be in with our trainer. It’s all about up keeping our bodies and maintaining our health.”While Hughes and her partner Kelly Claes have had an excellent start to the season winning the pairs tournament in Hawaii, they suffered their first loss of the season against Pepperdine.Even though these upcoming opponents may not be highly ranked, head coach Anna Collier knows that they will be challenging.“Both teams are going to be smaller and will rely more ball control,” said Collier. “We are used to teams who are big up front. They will drop a lot of different kind of strategies that we don’t see.”Cal State Bakersfield has a 6-2 record, but their two losses came against Pepperdine and Loyola Marymount. Thus far the No. 1 pairing of redshirt senior Mariah Alvidrez and senior Molly O’Hagan has been very consistent, winning six games. While the Bakersfield Roadrunners only have one player over the height of six feet in sophomore Sydney Hayes, they make up for lack of height in their style of play. They are extremely reliable defensively, and they find ways to score points.St. Mary’s has had a slow start to the season, with a 3-4 record. They began the year ranked No. 8 in the country but after two losing streaks, they have fallen out of the rankings. The Gaels utilize the strategy of having several players who play both indoor and sand volleyball. Unlike the Roadrunners, the Gaels have a number of players that are over six feet tall. Their top pairing senior Samantha Tinsley and junior Dalas Dodd are living up to the bill by winning six of their seven matches for Gaels this season.One of the most crucial pairings for the Women of Troy is their No. 3 pair with graduate student Meg Norton and senior Eve Ettinger. Norton transferred from UCLA and continues to gel with her new teammate.“I think we are still improving on team chemistry cause we are really good friends but we haven’t played together for very long, since I am new this year,” said Norton. “When we are connected in a match that is when we play our best.”The first dual match on Thursday starts 3 p.m. against the CSU Bakersfield followed by another dual match at 4:30 p.m. against St. Mary’s.
Katie Chin | Daily TrojanMoving on · Freshman guard De’Anthony Melton comes around a block and drives toward the paint. The Trojans stayed neck-and-neck with Washington on Wednesday night, but pulled out the win to advance to play UCLA.It was not the ideal start they expected, but USC managed to use a second half rally to come away with a tightly contested 78-73 victory over Washington in the first round of the Pac-12 Tournament Wednesday night at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.After trailing the Huskies by a basket at the half, USC opened the second half on a scoring run that gave it the only lead change of the game. A 3-point field goal from Washington sophomore guard Matisse Thybulle put the Huskies ahead of the Trojans 37-27 with 3:33 remaining in the first half. USC responded by finishing the first half on a 10-2 run that was capped off with a dunk from USC sophomore Chimezie Metu. The Trojans trailed Washington at the half, 39-37. USC’s 14-5 run to open the second half gave the Trojans a 52-44 lead over Washington with just under 15 minutes remaining in regulation. USC took its first lead of the game on a dunk from Metu that put it ahead of the Huskies, 43-42, with 17:25 left in the second half. This dunk from Metu gave USC a lead it would not relinquish for the remainder of the game. The Trojans used a 9-0 scoring run midway through the second half to solidify its lead over Washington. A 3-point field goal from junior guard Elijah Stewart gave the Trojans their largest lead of the game at 67-53 with 9:10 left in play. “We were just being smart and trying to take care of the basketball tonight,” junior guard Jordan McLaughlin said to the Pac-12 Network. “I was just trying to make the smart play and tried not to force things out there.”Washington was able to pull within 3 points of USC with just over 20 seconds remaining in play. However, USC redshirt junior Shaqquan Aaron was able to hit a pair of free throws after being intentionally fouled to put the Trojans ahead by the final score of 78-73. Metu was the offensive catalyst for the Trojans Wednesday, as he recorded game-highs in points scored (24) and rebounds (9) against the Huskies. Defensively, USC put together a stout performance against Washington in its first Pac-12 Tournament game. The Trojans, who finished the regular season as the top-stealing team in the Pac-12, were able to swipe away a total of 14 steals Wednesday. USC’s steals were able to contribute toward its transition attack, as the Trojans finished with 18 points off of Washington’s 17 turnovers in the game. Washington had a strong shooting start in the first half against USC. The Huskies finished the first half by hitting 16-of-28 (57.1 percent) shot attempts. Washington opened the contest by hitting five of its first nine shots (72.7 percent) from 3-point range.USC was able to advance to the second round of conference tournament play despite a difficult night shooting from long distance. The Trojans finished Wednesday night shooting only 4-for-16 (25 percent) from deep. With the victory, USC (the No. 6 seed in the tournament) will now take on No. 3 seed UCLA in the second round of the Pac-12 Tournament Thursday night at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. This will be the third consecutive season in which the Trojans and Bruins do battle in the Pac-12 Tournament. USC and No. 3 UCLA split their regular season series in 2017, each team taking the matchup on its respective home floor. “We’ve just got to bring the energy and come ready to play,” McLaughlin said. “The last time we played them we came out with energy, but we kind of quit on ourselves in the second half. We’ve just got to bring out energy.”
Photo: © Munsterrugby.ie There was no fairytale ending to Donnacha Ryan’s Munster career.The province were resoundingly beateN 46-22 by Scarlets in the Pro12 final at the Aviva Stadium in Dublin last night.Four tries in the first half hour for the Welsh side left Munster a mountain they never came close to climbing. Nenagh second row Ryan will have to win something with Racing 92 if he wants to add to his Heineken Cup medal and two Celtic and Magners League titles.Teammate Simon Zebo says it was a poor way to send off Ryan and Francis Saili who’s also leaving this summer.
Björn Nilsson: How Triggy is delivering digestible data through pre-set triggers August 28, 2020 CT Gaming bolsters Italian profile with The Betting Coach August 27, 2020 Share Submit Related Articles StumbleUpon Share Gustaf HagmanStockholm Nasdaq-listed Leo Vegas Group (LeoVegas) has today announced that it has completed its first corporate acquisition by agreeing terms to purchase licensed Italian online casino operator Winga.it.Updating investors, LeoVegas governance has detailed that it has agreed a €6.1 million cash consideration to buy Winga.it and its related assets outright.In its acquisition note, LeoVegas detailed that Winga.it had generated circa €8 million in revenue for its full-year 2016 performance. LeoVegas governance states that the purchase of Winga.it will the operator expand quickly within the Italian betting market.Acquired Winga.it at present has an organisation of 33 employees offering a full-service online casino. The Italian operator has further market presence with an interactive casino broadcast on Sky Italia.Having closed its first year full year on the Nordic Nasdaq, LeoVegas governance detailed this month that the company was prepared to engage in M&A activity in order to facilitate its European market expansion.“This is yet another milestone in LeoVegas’ development,” comments Gustaf Hagman, LeoVegas’ Group CEO.“The acquisition of Winga.it will enable rapid expansion in Italy, as we are acquiring a company with local knowledge and an established position. LeoVegas’ expansion strategy is to grow in markets that are either regulated or in the process of being regulated. Our focus on mobile gaming and our proprietary, flexible technology platform create the conditions to take a leading position in Italy’s mobile gaming market through this exciting acquisition.” Kambi takes full control of LeoVegas sportsbook portfolio August 26, 2020
Pujols then put the game away with his 20th homer of the season. Pujols became the fifth player to reach 20 homers in 17 seasons, joining Hank Aaron, Barry Bonds, Frank Robinson and Willie Mays.Earlier in the game, Mike Trout had made some history by stealing his 200th base, becoming the youngest player ever to combine 200 steals and 200 homers. Trout, 28, has 283 homers.Although Trout said the milestone was important to him, he added that he’s getting a kick out of watching a rejuvenated Pujols.Over the last 13 games, Pujols has hit. 346, which has raised his season average to .252 with a .756 OPS. Over the previous two years, he hit a combined .243 with a .684 OPS.“All season he’s been great but the last month has been unbelievable,” Trout said. “He’s playing every day, and it’s a good mixture with him with the days off, just keeping him healthy. It’s fun to be a part of and fun to watch.” PreviousLos Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols watches his three-run home run against the Boston Red Sox during the eighth inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)Boston Red Sox’s J.D. Martinez celebrates in the dugout after scoring on a single by Andrew Benintendi during the second inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)Los Angeles Angels’ Luis Rengifo, left, scores past Boston Boston Red Sox catcher Sandy Leon on a single by Mike Trout during the second inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson) SoundThe gallery will resume insecondsBoston Red Sox third baseman Rafael Devers throws Los Angeles Angels’ Kevan Smith out at first during the first inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)Los Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols, right, celebrates his three-run home run as Brian Goodwin, left, and Mike Trout watch, during the eighth inning against the Boston Red Sox in a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)Boston Red Sox relief pitcher Marcus Walden throws against the Los Angeles Angels during the second inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)Boston Red Sox pitcher Brian Johnson throws against the Los Angeles Angels during the third inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)Los Angeles Angels’ Luis Rengifo watches his RBI-double against the Boston Red Sox during the third inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)Boston Red Sox’s Christian Vazquez tosses his hemet after striking out against the Los Angeles Angels during the second inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)Los Angeles Angels’ Albert Pujols watches his three-run home run against the Boston Red Sox during the eighth inning of a baseball game in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)Boston Red Sox’s J.D. Martinez celebrates in the dugout after scoring on a single by Andrew Benintendi during the second inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)NextShow Caption1 of 9Boston Red Sox’s J.D. Martinez celebrates in the dugout after scoring on a single by Andrew Benintendi during the second inning of a baseball game against the Los Angeles Angels in Anaheim, Calif., Saturday, Aug. 31, 2019. (AP Photo/Chris Carlson)ExpandANAHEIM — A night after Albert Pujols played all 15 innings, Brad Ausmus checked with his 39-year-old twice to see if he was OK to play first again on Saturday.“I know he’s going to tell me he feels great, regardless,” Ausmus said. “Usually I talk to guys face to face, and I can tell by the body language. He was adamant that he felt good. I guess he was right.”Pujols had a double and a homer, a three-run shot that capped the Angels’ seven-run eighth inning in their come-from-behind 10-4 victory over the Boston Red Sox.Dillon Peters gave them a quality start, allowing three earned runs in 6-1/3 innings, but he left trailing 4-3. The Angels erased that with an eighth-inning explosion, including a game-tying RBI single by Andrelton Simmons, then an RBI double by David Fletcher and a two-run single by Brian Goodwin. On Friday night Pujols had his first four-hit game since 2017, playing all of a marathon game that ended just after 12:30 a.m.Still, he was ready to go again on Saturday.“I feel real good,” Pujols said. “I try to work my butt off during the offseason and my routine in the weight room four days a week. We have a pretty good routine and know when and when not to push it.”Pujols guessed that the last time he felt this good going into September was 2011, his last year with the Cardinals.“It hasn’t been good since I left St. Louis, but I work hard and don’t take anything for granted,” Pujols said.Last year his season ended early because of surgery, which seemed to be the result of playing 70 games at first base, to leave the DH spot open for Shohei Ohtani.This year, Pujols has already started 85 games at first. Overall, he’s played about 75 percent of the Angels games.“The durability has been phenomenal,” Ausmus said. “I didn’t expect him to be this healthy. I do think he’s done an excellent job of taking caring himself in the weight room. He’ll probably fight me on this but I think giving him days off helps him as well with rest.”Pujols showed how fresh his legs are in the third inning Saturday, when he dropped a soft hit into right field and hustled all the way to second to get a double out of it. He then tagged up on a fly ball to get to third.Although Pujols obviously is still far from the level of his heyday in St. Louis, he has given the Angels a boost by being as productive as he has. The Angels have Pujols under contract for two more years.It would certainly help if Pujols could keep himself healthy and in shape enough to at least remain at the level he’s found this season.“Injuries happen,” he said. “I got in shape and do the things I had to do. Work my way in spring training. Try to execute during the season. I don’t want to go crazy. I know what I can do when I’m healthy.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error
LOS ANGELES — Paul George, come on down.The Clippers who launched a thousand magazine covers last month turn their weary eyes to you, maybe as early as Wednesday night in Houston. The second biggest reason anyone thought the Clippers would be That Team is ready to launch.They held the fort without George on Monday night, as his shoulder nears full rehabilitation. They seized a 98-88 win over the leg-weary Toronto Raptors, who could manage only 10 fourth-quarter points as Fred Van Vleet had to play 45½ minutes, Pascal Siakam 43½ and Norman Powell 37.They did even though they missed more than three-quarters of their 3-point shots and Kawhi Leonard struggled through 12 points, 11 rebounds, nine assists and nine turnovers. “Almost a triple-double,” said Doc Rivers, his coach. What the Clippers are saying the day after Luka Doncic’s game-winner tied series, 2-2 Kristaps Porzingis ruled out as Clippers, Mavericks set for Game 5; Follow for game updates Four Clippers had 10 or more rebounds, including JaMychal Green’s 12 in 24 minutes and 12 in 23 minutes from 6-foot-1 guard Patrick Beverley. It was one of those substance-not-style wins that the Clippers like to put on their billboards, although the pre-eminent substance was iron.“There are going to be a lot of those nights,” Lou Williams said. “You can’t get really caught up in whether he plays well or not. There will be some nights when he just doesn’t have it, and the other guys are going to have to pick up the slack.”The Raptors, of course, rode Leonard to last year’s NBA championship, but everybody who played for Toronto on Monday had practiced with Leonard at least 100 times.“We’ll have to come up with something,” Coach Nick Nurse said beforehand. “The main thing is not to give him the easy stuff, make him work for everything.”The double-teams came early, often and with different cast members. Leonard didn’t have a field goal until the halfway point of the third quarter, when he took a rebound and motored coast-to-coast for a left-handed finish. “We didn’t anticipate they would double team like that but you have to adjust,” Williams said. “We did a lot better job of that in the second half.”Meanwhile, the lactic acid got inside the Raptors’ shooting legs. Van Vleet was 6 for 20 and Siakam 6 for 17. If not for another remarkable contribution from backup big man Chris Boucher (14 points, six rebounds, two blocked shots, 22 minutes), Toronto would have absorbed the blowout that a lineup without Kyle Lowry and Serge Ibaka might deserve. Then you add an injury to OG Anunoby that removed him after two minutes.“We ran out of gas a little bit,” Van Vleet said. “We kind of ran ourselves into the mud. It’s one hell of a team to play back-to-back and shorthanded.”The Raptors jolted the Lakers here Sunday night.“They were trying to get me into some pick-and-rolls and I thought we responded to that,” Williams said. “We were sniffing it out and we sent other guys to deal with it. We did a better job boxing, stopping some second-chance opportunities.”Toronto had only five offensive rebounds and took a 66-38 beating on the boards, 24-8 in a fourth quarter in which the world champs missed 20 of 24 shots.Still, Nurse was defiant: “We totally outplayed the Clippers tonight. We were playing harder and executing better. Then we took the ball to the basket about eight straight possessions and came away with nothing.”Related Articles But that head-down approach, by then, was fine with the Clippers. The hosts played a bigger lineup in the fourth quarter, particularly after Landry Shamet sprained his ankle. Shamet left Staples Center on crutches but appeared to be putting weight on his foot.With Leonard, Green, Williams, Harrell and Maurice Harkless, the Clippers shrank Toronto’s court and fought through their own 19 turnovers.“I don’t know if we’ve played that lineup before,” Rivers said.When George returns, the possibilities blossom. Rivers savored the thought of another team trying to double-team Leonard again. The Clippers are already fourth in the league in defensive field goal percentage and third in the league against 3-point shooting without George’s NBA All-Defense services. Now that Rivers knows that Harkless, new to the Clippers, enjoys dealing with point guards, he might go through several spiral notebooks with defensive plans.And the Clippers have played Utah twice in the first 10 games, along with the Lakers, Portland, Milwaukee and now Toronto.“I don’t really know what we have,” Rivers said. “We’ve got a lot to figure out, still. But while we’re doing it, we’re still winning games.”What he’s saying is that the Clippers are 7-3, and the reason it’s OK is that Paul George is 0-0.The Clippers improved to 7-3 without Paul George, pictured, on Monday night, but the All-Star wing is close to making his Clippers debut, at which point, they will become even more potent on offense and defense. (Photo by Harry How/Getty Images) Clippers hope they can play to their capabilities, quell Mavericks’ momentum For Lakers’ LeBron James, Jacob Blake’s shooting is bigger issue than a big Game 4 victory Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error Clippers vs. Mavericks Game 5 playoff updates from NBA beat reporters