18 June 2013A 2-1 loss in Ethiopia in Sunday left Bafana Bafana five points behind the Walia Antelopes in qualifying for the 2014 Fifa World Cup with one match to play, but their hopes of reaching Brazil might not be over.Football’s world governing body, Fifa, is investigating whether or not Ethiopia used an ineligible player in its 2-1 win over Botswana in Botswana. The standard punishment is a 3-0 victory to the opposition.Should that punishment be meted out to the Ethiopians, they would be on 10 points, with a goal difference of plus-one. South Africa would remain on eight points and a goal difference of plus-four. Botswana would improve to seven points and a goal difference of minus-one, while the Central African Republic would remain on three points and a goal difference of minus-six.Last round of group qualifyingThat would turn the final round of games in September – South Africa at home to Botswana and Ethiopia away to the Central African Republic – into possible group deciders. What it wouldn’t do is put Bafana Bafana’s fate in the team’s hands. That would remain in Ethiopia’s hands.Sunday’s match in Addis Ababa was decided by a freak own goal, turning Bafana goal scorer Bernard Parker from hero to villian.Parker had put South Africa in front in the 33rd minute after getting onto the end of a clearance by goalkeeper Itumeleng Khune and sending a half-volley beyond the reach of Ethiopian goalie Jemal Tassew. His effort silenced the crowd, which had been loud throughout the contest.Just 10 minutes later, though, Ethiopia equalised through Getaneh Kabede after some sloppy defending from South Africa.Own goalThen, in the 70th minute, the home team was awarded a free kick on the right, deep in South African territory. The ball was delivered into the the centre and was met by Parker who, with a powerful header, found the corner of Khune’s goal from some distance. It would have been a spectacular goal had it been at the other end of the field, but it was, instead, a shocking own goal.Bafana pushed hard for an equaliser, but came up short as Ethiopia claimed a 2-1 victory.At the time, the news about the investigation into Ethiopia’s win in Botswana was unknown, so South Africa’s coach Gordon Igesund believed Bafana’s Fifa World Cup challenge was over when he commented: “The dream is over for us as far as 2014 Brazil is concerned. Now we have to regroup and see what lies ahead of us.”Igesund took charge of the team in 2012 after Bafana, under Pitso Mosimane, began their qualifying campaign with an away draw with Botswana and a home draw against Ethiopia. He said: “My mandate was to qualify the team for the World Cup and I didn’t do that, so I will have to wait and see what will happen as it is no longer in my hands. It was a difficult assignment from the beginning, having lost some crucial points in the early stages of the qualifiers, but I agreed to the challenge because I believed we could make it, sadly it was not to be.”Support for IgesundDennis Mumble, the CEO of the South African Football Association, has, however, already spoken out in Igesund’s defence, agreeing that the coach was handed a difficult hand when he took the team.Igesund admitted he was disappointed to lose in Addis Ababa. “You can see from the attitude and commitment of the players that we really wanted to win this match. We threw everything at them. We managed to score, but our own errors cost us the game. It is one of those things that happen in football.“We worked so hard in the last year to get to where we are,” he continued. “We have made huge strides. It is just unfortunate that we found ourselves in a position where we had to win this game.‘A fantastic performance“I am pleased with the effort of every single player. They gave their all. We did everything that we could possibly do. I told the players to walk with their heads high because it was a fantastic performance away from home.”Captain Itumeleng Khune echoed Igesund’s sentiments when he said: “We are very disappointed with the result, but I believe we gave a very good account of ourselves. We are proud of the display we put out in this match. We did everything we could, but unfortunately things didn’t go our way.”Should Ethiopia be punished by Fifa, something will have gone South Africa’s way, however, and the 2014 World Cup dream will be alive.Would you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SAinfo material
Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Related Posts There was an interesting article recently in The Wall Street Journal by Isacc Arnsdorf that discussed how art gallery and museum patrons are studied as they move through art exhibits. The objective is simple: measure how people navigate through and engage with the art. When I read the article, I immediately thought of some of the things that we’re doing at MindTouch, but really there’s a broader lesson to be learned here. As co-founder and CEO of MindTouch, Aaron has grown a small open source project into one of the world’s most widely used and successful collaboration platforms. Prior to co-founding MindTouch, Aaron was a member of Microsoft’s Advanced Strategies and Policies division and worked on distributed systems research.A well-curated art show is not just a bunch of paintings in a room. Items are grouped together to evoke certain ideas. The placards next to artworks that give context details about the author, the era, the method of composition educate the viewer and in doing so make the exhibit more enjoyable. The online documentation offered by a company to its users works the same way in relation to the company’s products or services. This curation results in a more interactive, useful, and engaging documentation resource. This process goes beyond simply counting page views.If a museum is lucky enough to have a Picasso on display, the name alone probably makes it a destination piece. Users of all art-appreciation levels will want to pay it a visit. Picasso in that sense is a great common denominator across audiences. And like a Picasso, there is probably a set of documentation that product users flock to first, such as tutorials, FAQs, and feature pages. As the WSJ article shows, to get the full value of having a Picasso on exhibit, you must learn the best ways for your audience to find and view your content. Just as curators want to help audiences appreciate and understand artwork other than their Picasso, documentation creators want their audiences to understand where and how to find information beyond those first, most popular pages.Are You Learning From Your Users?Observing your patrons is only half the exercise. Both museum and content curators must take the information their given and turn that into action. An excerpt from the article explains this well: Based on what they see, the museums may rearrange art or rewrite the exhibit notes. Their efforts reflect the broader change in the mission of museums: it’s no longer enough to hang artfully curated works. Museum exhibits are expected to be interactive and engaging.This is exactly what good documentation is about learning from your users, taking their feedback and making decisions on what areas of documentation need to be updated, improved or perhaps removed altogether. This curation results in a more interactive, useful, and engaging documentation resource. This process goes beyond simply counting page views.Do you know what your users are searching for? And when they search, do you know what they find, or more importantly, don’t find? If your patrons are continually asking for a Monet and not finding one, they’re going to go to another museum. The same is true for what users are searching for online. Repeatedly seeing Monet in the list of performed searches – with no resulting content – is an indicator of an unmet customer need. A Virtual Suggestion Box at Each Painting Back to those exhibit notes. Data from the museum observation showed an interesting trend even for works by famous painters: only 1/4 of the exhibit notes were read. What did they learn from that? A big problem that the Detroit museum hopes it has solved: getting visitors to read the written descriptions and analysis next to the art. In its pre-renovation studies, it found that the most-read text, between a Matisse and a Picasso, was read by just 26% of visitors. Four panels were read by just 2% of visitors.So the museum cut the write-up’s lengths to 150 words maximum from 250 to make them appear less intimidating. Curators also broke up blocks of text with bullet points, subheadings, color and graphics.This is a great example of learning from your users. In this instance it was gleaned from visually tracking visitors. This is not unlike community scoring that you see online for product reviews, or ranking articles on a blog or news site. This capability effectively provides a mini suggestion box at each page users can rate it thumbs up or thumbs down, along with giving suggestions for improvement. It’s interesting to me that this approach has been replicated offline, in a seemingly unlikely place. Whether you’re curating a museum or designing a new technology, your customers will never do exactly what you predict which is why monitoring their behavior can teach you so much about your product. In this case the offline world is in many ways learning a lesson from the techniques of the online world. But it’s worth noting that this is a business issue that applies to startups and businesses of all types. Listening to your customers, and doing so in smart, sophisticated ways gives you a competitive advantage, and there’s no way around that whether you’re the newest Twitter client or a local bed and breakfast.Photo by srboisvert guest author 1 Tags:#Trends#web#Web Culture A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market
SEA Games: PH dancesport looking to sweep golds “I’m ready whenever he’s ready,” Wilder said. “I’m ready whenever he’s ready to do it. I’m ready to give the fans what they want to see and end this talk once and for all.”Afterward, the British challenger said the two would “100 percent” meet again in the ring. Wilder said he doesn’t want to fight anybody else before a rematch.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSSEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completionSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine football chief“Everyone is talking about this fight. It’s only right for us to go back in and do it again,” Wilder said. “I don’t want any other fights to happen between him and I (meeting again).”Wilder (40-0-1) knocked Fury (27-0-1) down twice late in the fight, including once in the final round. He was outboxed much of the way at Staples Center but was still surprised when Fury rose from that 12th-round knockdown — and that the referee didn’t end the fight. “I saw his eyes roll slowly in the back of his head,” Wilder said. “Many people felt that should have been waved off. Nine out of 10 refs would have waved that off.”He indicated the rematch might happen as early as March or April.Showtime Sports President Stephen Espinoza said May or June might be more likely, giving the fighters more time to recover.In the first meeting, Wilder said he let the pressure of being in his first pay-per-view fight affect him.“I wanted to end it on a great note,” he said. “I wanted to end it on a devastating knockout and I pressed that. I pressed that too much.”ADVERTISEMENT Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss PLAY LIST 02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games Read Next Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. MOST READ View comments Judiciary Committee set to take over Trump impeachment probe Another case filed vs Cardema Hotel says PH coach apologized for ‘kikiam for breakfast’ claim Fossil launches its newest generation smartwatch: The Gen 5 SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion Jordan delivers on promise: 2 Cobra choppers now in PH LATEST STORIES Hotel management clarifies SEA Games footballers’ kikiam breakfast controversy Tyson Fury, of England, lies on the canvas after being knocked down by Deontay Wilder during the 12th round of a WBC heavyweight championship boxing match Saturday, Dec. 1, 2018, in Los Angeles. (AP Photo/Mark J. Terrill)MONTGOMERY, Ala. — WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder says he wants a rematch with Tyson Fury “ASAP.”Wilder said in a conference call Tuesday that he’s “ready and willing to give Tyson Fury the opportunity ASAP.” The two heavyweights fought to a split-decision draw Saturday night in Los Angeles in one of the bigger heavyweight bouts in America in years.ADVERTISEMENT Wilder had lobbied for a fight with Anthony Joshua, who holds the other three championship belts. He said Joshua and his team are “getting what they deserve” by being sidelined from his two most high-profile potential opponents.“We had to show the world what it looks like for the best to fight the best, and look at the outcome,” Wilder said. “No one has talked about Joshua in I don’t know how long and we plan on keeping it that way.”Wilder said he broke his right arm and had surgery about 12 weeks before training camp and threw few right hands during training, which he feels might have affected his accuracy. Co-trainer Jay Deas said limiting the right in camp was a precautionary measure. Will Eagles soar anew?
Andros Townsend in line for new Crystal Palace dealby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveAndros Townsend is in line for a new deal at Crystal Palace.The Sun says Townsend will be handed a contract extension to reward his stunning form.The 27-year-old has started every Premier League game this season and scored a goal-of-the-season contender with a screamer in the win at Manchester City.Townsend has two full-seasons on his current deal but Roy Hodgson, who handed him his England debut in 2013, views him as a key player for the future.The Palace winger wants his future secured as he is pushing for an England recall after missing out on the World Cup last summer. TagsTransfersAbout the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your say
Justin Bieber, over the weekend, became the first recording artist in Make-A-Wish history to grant 200 wishes to children with life-threatening medical conditions.He joins only 4 other celebrities to have reached that milestone since Make-A-Wish was founded in 1980.Bieber’s 200th wish occurred during his last stop on the Believe Tour this past Saturday at Atlanta’s Philips Arena when he met 8-year-old Annalysha. Bieber spent time backstage with Annalysha where she received VIP treatment during the concert as part of her wish to meet him.Bieber’s involvement with Make-A-Wish started in 2009 in Los Angeles when he granted his first wish. Since then, he has granted a wish at nearly every tour stop where he visits with wish kids and their families, takes photographs and signs autographs before they attend his concert. The tickets, which provide the wish kids and their families prime seating, are generously purchased by Bieber.In addition to Bieber’s wish granting efforts, he has made significant contributions to the organization. In 2012, he earmarked Make-A-Wish as a charity of choice for his Believe Campaign and donated a portion of proceeds from sales of his Christmas album as well as perfume sales during the holiday season.“Despite his relentless schedule, Justin has been genuinely committed to granting wishes since the very beginning and a strong supporter of Make-A-Wish,” said David Williams, president and CEO of Make-A-Wish America. “Justin understands the impact on a child of a wish-come-true and how it can create positive changes in their outlook, help them feel better, and even influence their health.”In 2011, Make-A-Wish presented Bieber with the Chris Greicius Celebrity Award, one of the most prestigious awards the organization gives out each year. As his popularity continues, Bieber and his team will continue to create smiles and life-changing memories in the months and years to come as there are many more wish kids scheduled to meet him in the future.
The Canadian PressThere are too many polar bears in parts of Nunavut and climate change hasn’t yet affected any of them, says a draft management plan from the territorial government that contradicts much of conventional scientific thinking.The proposed plan, which is to go to public hearings in Iqaluit on Tuesday, says that growing bear numbers are increasingly jeopardizing public safety and it’s time Inuit knowledge drove management policy.“Inuit believe there are now so many bears that public safety has become a major concern,” says the document, the result of four years of study and public consultation.“Public safety concerns, combined with the effects of polar bears on other species, suggest that in many Nunavut communities, the polar bear may have exceeded the co-existence threshold.”Polar bears killed two Inuit last summer.The plan leans heavily on Inuit knowledge, which yields population estimates higher than those suggested by western science for almost all of the 13 included bear populations.Scientists say only one population of bears is growing; Inuit say there are nine. Environment Canada says four populations are shrinking; Inuit say none are.The proposed plan downplays one of the scientific community’s main concerns.“Although there is growing scientific evidence linking the impacts of climate change to reduced body condition of bears and projections of population declines, no declines have currently been attributed to climate change,” it says.“(Inuit knowledge) acknowledges that polar bears are exposed to the effects of climate change, but suggests that they are adaptable.”Environment Canada’s response says that’s “not in alignment with scientific evidence.” It cites two studies suggesting the opposite.Andrew Derocher, a University of Alberta polar bear expert, is blunter.“That’s just plain wrong,” he said. “That’s been documented in many places now – not just linked to body condition but reproductive rates and survival.”The government of Nunavut declined an interview request.Its position is strongly supported by the 11 Inuit groups and hunters’ organizations that made submissions.“(Inuit knowledge) has not always been sufficiently incorporated by decision-makers,” says a document submitted by Nunavut Tunngavik Inc., the Inuit land-claim organization.“The disconnect between the sentiment in certain scientific communities and (Inuit knowledge) has been pronounced.”Pond Inlet wants to be able to kill any bear within a kilometre of the community without the animal being considered part of the town’s quota. Rankin Inlet simply wants to lower bear populations.In its submission, the Kitikmeot Regional Wildlife Board expresses frustration with how polar bears are used as an icon in the fight against climate change.“This is very frustrating for Inuit to watch … We do not have resources to touch bases with movie actors, singers and songwriters who often narrate and provide these messages,” it says.“We know what we are doing and western science and modelling has become too dominant.”The management plan doesn’t propose to increase hunting quotas immediately. It contains provisions for increased education and programs on bear safety for hunters and communities.It does say hunting bans would no longer be automatically applied to shrinking populations and that “management objectives … could include managing polar bears for a decrease.”Derocher doesn’t dispute potentially dangerous bear-human encounters are becoming more frequent. But he, and other southern scientists, insist that’s happening as climate change reduces sea ice and drives bears inland.“They will move into communities seeking food. There’s lots of attractants around northern communities.”Places where attacks have occurred are not areas with the highest bear densities, he said.The plan reflects Nunavut’s desire to control its own wildlife resources, Derocher suggested.“They don’t ask for input from southern scientists. The less input from the south is where it seems to be moving.”Derocher said the Inuit’s ability to export polar bear hides – or the ability of their hunter clients to take such items home with them – depends on whether the rest of the world trusts the animals are being well-managed.“If the stated goal is to have fewer polar bears, that may be the tripping point whereby polar bear management in Canada comes under renewed scrutiny.”Canada has fought off two international attempts to ban the trade of polar bear products.The territory’s wildlife management board will take what it hears at the public hearings and include it in a final document, which will go before the Nunavut cabinet for approval.
Heading into college football’s conference championship week, we knew three schools (Alabama, Clemson and Washington) could basically punch tickets to the College Football Playoff with victories in their respective conference title games. The only real questions involved what would happen in the event of an upset or two — and, just as important, what the selection committee would do with Ohio State. The Buckeyes ranked second in the committee’s rankings going into the week, but they also weren’t playing in the Big Ten championship game. How the committee handled that dilemma would in effect be a referendum on the value of a conference championship in the CFP era.The upsets never really came. Although Virginia Tech gave Clemson a fight, the Hokies ultimately succumbed to the Tigers in the ACC championship by a touchdown. Washington, meanwhile, routed Colorado 41-10 in Friday night’s Pac-12 title game, and Alabama secured the greatest peak Elo rating by a college football team in the last 80 years when they crushed Florida 54-16 to win the SEC. The only real drama came from an upset victory in the Big Ten championship for Penn State, which could build a case around beating Ohio State earlier in the season.For what it was worth, our CFP projection model thought there was very little chance the committee would jettison the one-loss Buckeyes in favor of the two-loss Nittany Lions, even after we made a tweak that placed extra emphasis on head-to-head results. Yes, the committee once dropped a team that won its final game by 52 points (TCU) from third to sixth when they reshuffled the field for their final rankings. But the model still said there was only a 13 percent probability that Penn State would bump Ohio State this year.1Our model output from Dec. 3 showed Ohio State with an 87 percent chance of being selected, so the rest of Penn State’s probability must have come from the (extremely remote) possibility that they’d bump one of the other three teams in the top four.And, sure enough, the CFP committee went with the Buckeyes. On Sunday, it produced a final four of Alabama, Clemson, Ohio State and Washington, the semifinals of which will be sorted out on New Year’s Eve.Although Penn State was understandably frustrated by the decision, it would have been difficult to justify taking the Lions over the Buckeyes. Ohio State was a consensus No. 2 in both the Associated Press and Coaches’ polls, as well as most statistical rankings, including ESPN’s Football Power Index and Strength of Record metric. Undefeated Alabama is clearly the nation’s best team — quite possibly the best in college football history, in fact — but Ohio State is an obvious No. 2 by most measures. We can always debate the eternal question of whether the CFP should reward the best team or the “most deserving” one, but in the end the committee took the team that had the more dominating season against the tougher schedule, just as it usually does.So, now that we have a final four, who will win? From here on out, our model no longer has to forecast the committee’s decision making, so it’s all about what ESPN’s Football Power Index predicts. The FPI sees Alabama as 64 percent favorites to beat Washington in the Peach Bowl (which, we should also note, is held in Atlanta — far closer to Tuscaloosa, Alabama, than to Seattle), and it gives Ohio State a 55 percent chance of knocking off Clemson in the Fiesta Bowl.Overall, that works out to a 39 percent chance of yet another Alabama national title — it would be the school’s fifth in the last eight seasons under coach Nick Saban — though the rest of the field is still more likely to upset ’Bama than not. If the Crimson Tide beat the Huskies, Alabama’s title odds would rise to 62 percent; if Washington pulls the upset, the CFP championship would basically be a coin flip no matter who wins in Clemson-OSU.But that’s all about a month away. There’s still plenty of college football to consume between now and then, including Army-Navy next week, the Heisman Trophy ceremony on Dec. 10, and about a trillion bowl games (which I mostly enjoy, even if they often lose money and feature increasingly poor teams). For college fans, the most wonderful time of the year is just beginning.CORRECTION (Dec. 6, 7:30 a.m.): A previous version of this article misstated TCU’s final 2014 College Football Playoff ranking. TCU dropped to sixth place in the final week, not to fifth.
Redshirt-junior tight end Nick Vannett carries the ball into the end zone during a game against Maryland on Oct. 4 in College Park, Md. OSU won, 52-24.Credit: Mark Batke / Photo editorWith all the success the Ohio State offense has had in recent weeks, there is one spot where the Buckeyes aren’t up to par: the red zone.Coach Urban Meyer said his team’s play inside the opponent’s 20-yard line simply isn’t on track with the expectations at OSU.“It’s not very good at all,” Meyer said Monday. “For what we expect, it’s not good.”Overall this season, the Buckeyes have put points on the scoreboard 23 times in 28 trips to the red zone, coming out to a conversion rate of just 82 percent. Of those 23 scores, just 19 have been touchdowns. Those numbers compare to a 92 percent success rate for opponents, who have scored 10 touchdowns and added one field goal in 12 red zone tries against OSU this season.In 2013, the Buckeyes scored 60 times in 63 attempts — a 95 percent success rate — including 53 touchdowns in the red zone. That means the 2014 Buckeyes are putting points on the board in the red zone less often than last year’s counterparts were able to come away with touchdowns alone. Their opponents, meanwhile, were held to a 79 percent rate of success inside the 20 last season.OSU’s success rate was just over 71 percent in its most recent game — a 52-24 win against Maryland on Oct. 4 — as it went just five for seven in the red zone.Meyer said the success — or lack thereof — near the goal line comes down to coaching and not the ability of the players on the field.“It’s not the players’ fault, it’s our fault,” Meyer said. “It’s coaching errors, whether it be tempo, we just have to do a better job.”OSU co-offensive coordinator and quarterbacks coach Tom Herman said he agreed the team’s red zone offense isn’t rolling at the necessary level, but noted the expectations are high when it comes to putting the ball in the end zone in Columbus, especially considering the success the Buckeyes have had since he and Meyer arrived in 2012.“I think our red zone, goal line or scoring touchdowns in the red zone is certainly not where we want it to be,” Herman said Monday. “Now we’ve set the bar pretty high finishing first in the country, I think second in our first year, first last year in touchdown percentage in the red zone.”The Buckeyes’ struggles in the red zone have them ranked all the way down at No. 72 in the country for red zone scoring percentage and No. 42 in the nation in red zone touchdown percentage. OSU was ranked in the top five for both scoring and touchdown percentage last year and 16th and second, respectively, in 2012.Senior wide receiver Evan Spencer said he has noticed the Buckeyes’ less-than-expected success in the red zone so far this season.“On offense, we’ve got to try to make sure that we’re capitalizing in the red zone,” Spencer said Monday. “We had a few times — last week I’m not sure, but I know the week before — we had a few times we got stalled in the end zone. Granted we’re putting up a lot of points at the same time, but there’s little small things that we can do personally and as a team.”Herman said one of the problems OSU has had near the goal line this season is making sure it takes advantage of soft spots in the opposing defense.“We don’t care what those weaknesses are,” Herman said. “We just need (to do) a better job of exploiting those weaknesses and not trying to beat our head against the wall into their strengths.”As players and the coaching staff have taken notice of the need to convert more often inside the 20, there has been more of an emphasis on it in practice — especially during OSU’s recent bye week.Senior tight end Jeff Heuerman said the coaching staff focused on red zone offense more often than normal last week after the less-than-stellar showing against the Terrapins.“We obviously had three days of practice, I think we did red zone two of the three,” Heuerman said Monday. “We usually only do red zone once a week.”He said the Buckeyes also practiced “some live short yardage situations” that they wouldn’t normally.Herman said improvement on that part of OSU’s game will be key going forward, and added he believes it can happen if the Buckeyes continue to work toward executing every play throughout the game.“I think we’re capable now and moving in the direction of, ‘Hey, you need to play with great technique for 80 plays in a row,’” Herman said. “And I think that’s a fair expectation given the point in the season that we’re at.”The Buckeyes are scheduled to return to the field Saturday against Rutgers at Ohio Stadium. Kickoff is set for 3:30 p.m.
Freshman guard D’Angelo Russell (0) holds the ball during a game against Wright State on Dec. 27 at the Schottenstein Center. OSU won, 100-55. Credit: Mark Batke / Photo editorIn its last game before opening conference play, the No. 21 Ohio State men’s basketball team flexed its muscle in a 100-55 rout of intrastate foe Wright State.The Buckeyes built on a 47-18 halftime lead, outscoring the Raiders by 16 in the second half, as freshman guard D’Angelo Russell scored 11 points in a less than nine-minute stretch to help propel OSU in the blowout win.The Buckeyes (11-2) scored 22 of their 47 first half points in the paint as the Raiders (8-6) could not stop OSU senior center Amir Williams who posted 11 of his career-high 21 points in the opening frame.Williams said after the game that because of Wright State’s lack of size, he, along with his teammates, were able to take advantage of the size discrepancy.“The guy guarding me wasn’t as tall as I was,” Williams said. “So D’Angelo saw the mismatch right away and gave me a couple of early post feeds and we just played off of that.”OSU coach Thad Matta added that getting Williams involved in the offense early was planned as the Buckeyes head into Big Ten play.“Amir has practiced the last couple days just like he played there (tonight),” Matta said. “It was good to see him get the success and finish around the basket. He did a tremendous job for us.”Williams scored the first five Buckeye points as OSU started the game on a 10-0 run, capitalized by a three-point make from Russell.OSU’s defense stood tall alongside its inside offensive game, as the Buckeyes held the Raiders to just 20.6 percent shooting in the first half and allowed just six points in the paint.The Buckeyes also tallied nine blocks in the contest, four from Williams.Despite his big game, Williams said that whether or not he has the size advantage in a game doesn’t matter to him once the game starts.“I just like playing whether it is a mismatch or not,” Williams said. “Doing what I do in the post or on the defensive end…I think we just do a good job of staying within the offense and finding ways to score.”While it was inside in the first half, OSU used its outside game to its advantage in the second half as the Buckeyes hit seven of their 11 three-point makes in the second frame, three of which came from Russell.Every Buckeye that took the floor scored at least two points, aside from walk-on Jake Lorbach who checked in with less than three minutes to play.Redshirt-senior forward Anthony Lee did not play for the Buckeyes as he injured his ankle during OSU’s 93-55 win over the Miami (Ohio) RedHawks on Dec. 22.Matta said after the game against the Raiders that he is not sure how long Lee will be out.Russell led all scorers with 24, tallying 12 in each half. Russell finished six of eight shooting from the floor and made all of his six three-point attempts.Wright State coach Billy Donlon said after the game that it was Russell’s demeanor that impressed him at first.“What I am incredibly impressed with is, for a freshman, the amount of poise he plays with,” Donlon said. “He has a scoring mentality, but understands how to distribute.”Donlon added that ultimately it was Russell’s shooting that hurt the Raiders and even gave the freshman guard his own title.“His ability to make shots. He made three straight three’s on us in the second half,” Donlon said. “He is an absolute assassin out there.”The Raiders were led by freshman guard Grant Benzinger who scored 12 points to go along with six rebounds.With the first conference game of the season looming, Russell admitted he is not sure of what is coming down the road.“I don’t know what to expect. I am just trying to prepare the best way I can for it,” Russell said. “I am definitely looking forward to it. I just don’t know what to expect.”Matta said he has pulled Russell aside to let him know that Big Ten play has arrived.“One of the biggest things for freshmen is they have to learn how to take care of their bodies throughout,” Matta said. “It (Big Ten play) just keeps hitting you. He is going to work on his game.”The Buckeyes are scheduled to open Big Ten conference play Tuesday at home against the Iowa Hawkeyes. Tip is set for 1 p.m. at the Schottenstein Center.
Ohio State celebrates after junior forward Dakota Joshua’s goal in the second period of the Buckeyes’ 1-1 draw against Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute Oct. 13. Credit: Ohio State AthleticsOhio State (1-1-2) and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (0-0-2) fought to another 1-1 tie — the second in as many days — with the Buckeyes once again winning in the shootout after the tie had been decided.RPI jumped on the Buckeyes early with a goal less than a minute into the game, but Ohio State tied the game up at one early in the second period. The battle between the pipes of the two goalies raged on the rest of the night as both teams failed to send a puck behind either netminder until the shootout. The Buckeyes were forced to play comeback hockey early on, but Ohio State junior forward John Wiitala said the team stayed true to their normal game.“I don’t think it changes anything,” Wiitala said. “I think we always try to stick to our game plan, whether that’s up by five goals or down by five, it’s the same game plan throughout.”The scoring started early for the Engineers with a goal by junior forward Evan Tironese just 56 seconds into the first period. Freshman forward Troy York fed a pass to the back post for an easy tip-in by Tironese that redshirt junior goalie Sean Romeo had no chance at stopping, giving RPI an early 1-0 lead.The Buckeyes couldn’t find the back of the net in the first, then quickly knotted the score at one in the second period on a goal by senior forward Christian Lampasso. Wiitala tipped the puck away from the RPI defender, and senior forward Luke Stork found Lampasso wide open in the slot, giving Lampasso an opportunity to bury the shot past junior goalie Chase Perry.“[Wiitala] just made a great play,” Stork said. “He back checked the puck really well and it just happened to come back on my stick, and I looked up and saw [Lampasso] wide open in the middle, and he put it away.”Much like the previous night’s game, Romeo and Perry faced off in a goalie battle for much of this contest. The first big save came on the Ohio State end, as Romeo stuffed sophomore forward Jacob Hayhurst on a wide open shot in the slot.Not to be outdone, Perry held strong on a tough Wiitala shot with an incredible save with six minutes to go in the third period. Perry would end the game with 27 saves, Romeo had 22.“[Romeo] got the game puck again tonight, head coach Steve Rohlik said. “At the end of the day you’re always as good as your goaltending, and certainly he was a backbone again tonight.”The game headed into overtime deadlocked at one, with neither team able to create much momentum in the third period. Ohio State led in shots 27-20 going into the extra frame.Stork created a strong chance early in the overtime, but Perry tracked the shot down with a kick save on his right pad. Junior forward Dakota Joshua had an opportunity off a pass from junior forward Brendon Kearney, but the shot went wide.RPI’s greatest chance came on a breakaway by sophomore forward Patrick Polino, but his shot went wide with under a minute to go in the overtime.The game went to a shootout where the Buckeyes won on a goal by sophomore forward Tanner Laczynski. Romeo made all three saves to secure another shootout victory. Shootouts are not counted in the standings for non-conference opponents in collegiate hockey, so the game went down as a 1-1 tie for both teams.Ohio State continued to struggle on the power play, as their 0-for-3 tally in the game moves them to 0-for-20 on the season with a man advantage.“It’s a work in progress right now,” Rohlik said. “We’re going to have to keep tweaking it before we find the right combinations.”The Buckeyes travel to play a pair of road games against University of Massachusetts Amherst. The games are scheduled for 7 p.m. Friday and at 8 p.m Saturday.