The fact that Pittsburgh did it in such possession-heavy style — the Penguins outshot the Sharks 353 to 267 in the final — was just an added bit of vindication for the numbers. Hockey’s advanced analytics movement still has a long way to go in its evolution, but even in a down year for the metrics, the cup winner ended up being a team with proven statistical bona fides. 2015Blackhawks1 2011Bruins6 2009Penguins13 When the Pittsburgh Penguins won the Stanley Cup on Sunday night, it lifted Sidney Crosby’s standing among the game’s all-time greats and completed the redemption-story arc for once-maligned winger Phil Kessel. But it also provided some measure of atonement for hockey’s advanced statistics, which had been suffering through one of their worst seasons since hitting the scene in the mid- to late 2000s.For instance, “Corsi” — the proportion of total shot attempts (including misses and blocks) that a team amasses in its games — is a stathead favorite because it tracks well with possession time, making it a good long-term predictor of a team’s success. But Corsi also did a relatively poor job of telling us where a team would finish in the standings this season: 2014Kings1 2016Penguins2 2007Ducks8 2008Red Wings1 2010Blackhawks1 Corsi is event-, score- and venue-adjusted.Source: Puckon.net, Hockey-Reference.com SEASONCUP WINNERCORSI RANK 2013Blackhawks1 2012Kings6 2006Hurricanes15 Stanley Cup winners have great Corsi ranks And despite Corsi’s track record in the playoffs, the numbers were dealt a few early blows when the Los Angeles Kings (who ranked No. 1 in regular-season Corsi by some distance), the Anaheim Ducks (No. 5) and the Chicago Blackhawks (No. 9 this year but No. 1 last season) all bowed out in the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs.But things got a little better for the stats as the postseason grinded along. The Eastern Conference finals pitted the Penguins (No. 2) and the Lightning (No. 3) in an elite Corsi-off, while the sixth-ranked Blues made it to within two wins of the cup final in the West. At No. 11, the Western Conference champion San Jose Sharks weren’t anyone’s idea of a possession powerhouse — they would have been the lowest-ranked champ since the Penguins, of all teams, won in 2009 — but Pittsburgh’s victory ultimately contributed to a stat that still stands out as surprising (and impressive) for a sport that, at times, seems so random: 55 percent of Cup winners since the lockout have finished either first or second in Corsi.
Michael Crabtree, the San Francisco 49ers receiver who was targeted on the team’s last three plays of Super Bowl XLVII, said Thursday that he lost vision after being hit hard in the face near the goal line on third down.Speaking to NFL Network in an interview Thursday, Crabtree said he took such a shot from Baltimore Ravens cornerback Jimmy Smith that he temporarily couldn’t see.“When the guy hit me, he hit me all in the face,” Crabtree told NFL Network. “I’m not tripping. I’m not one to whine about nothing, but he hit me all in the face and I couldn’t really see after he hit me.”Asked to again recount what happened to him, Crabtree said, “They hit me, I really couldn’t see. … Then [my vision] just came back. It’s not concussion-like. When you get hit in football, it’s going to feel like you can’t see. It’s going to feel intense. But it snapped back. It happens all the time in football.”Crabtree told the network that his sight returned before the next snap and that he had no complaints about the non-call on fourth down.Starting with second-and-goal from the 5-yard line, three pass plays to Crabtree all went as incompletions. The Ravens got the ball back on downs with less than two minutes left, San Francisco did not get the ball back, and Baltimore went on to win 34-31.
Antetokounmpo still needs to polish some of the finer aspects of playing guard, such as running a pick-and-roll and spotting up for jumpers. But! He’s also still days shy of his 22nd birthday. If he’s this good — and this versatile — now, watching Antetokounmpo reach his potential will be one of the NBA’s most entertaining storylines over the decade to come.Check out our latest NBA predictions. Across the nine major component categories of advanced metrics tracked at Basketball-Reference.com,1i.e., categories that attempt to isolate skill in a particular area of the game, rather than more holistic measures such as PER or Win Shares. Antetokounmpo ranks among the top half of qualified2For the purposes of this story, I considered a player to have qualified for the league leaderboard for these nine stats if he has played at least 12.2 minutes per scheduled game (taking the average number of games across all NBA teams), which works out to about 1,000 minutes in a normal 82-game season. NBA players in eight of them — turnovers are the only area where he was worse than the average player through Wednesday’s games.But the Greek Freak is at his most transformative when he plays point guard. When 6-foot-5-inch James Harden — 6 inches shorter than Antetokounmpo — is already towering over opposing point guards after his move to the position this season, the idea of a 6-foot-11-inch terror in the open court, dunking on opponents in transition and making plays for teammates, is unprecedented. Since the NBA-ABA merger in 1976, Toni Kukoc (in 1998-99) was the only player 6-foot-10-inch or taller to have a higher assist rate than Antetokounmpo has right now — and Kukoc wasn’t also rebounding or recording steals and blocks at anywhere near the same rates as Antetokounmpo is.In fact, the mere sight of a guy his size, doing what he does, is startling. Against Cleveland, the side-by-side comparison between Antetokounmpo and LeBron James — heretofore the greatest combination of size, speed and athleticism in basketball — was eye opening:To visualize what an outlier Antetokounmpo is among guards, here’s a plot of Box Plus/Minus against height for players listed by Basketball-Reference as point guards or shooting guards this season: One of the best point guards in the NBA right now stands 6 feet 11 inches tall.Let that sit for moment.OK, so Giannis Antetokounmpo also plays positions other than the point for the Milwaukee Bucks, and Matthew Dellavedova has been eating some of Antetokounmpo’s minutes at the 1. And frankly, it doesn’t really matter where Giannis plays, given that he can rattle off stat lines like the 34 points, 12 rebounds, five assists, five steals and two blocks he produced Tuesday night against the Cleveland Cavaliers. The guy is good at damn near everything there is to do on a basketball court:
TEN46.519.0WSH11.010.859.71495 NO69NO72NO 12, CAR 9-0.6– 2018Kirk Cousins7-6-1124100103109105111105 DET51BUF50BUF 14, DET 13-0.9– Minnesota7.313L.A. Rams3.741 HOU64HOU72HOU 29, NYJ 22+3.2– SEA71SEA75SF 26, SEA 23-8.2– Atlanta5.329Minnesota6.704 * Excluding games against the team in question.Source: ESPN.com JAX60JAX63WSH 16, JAX 13-5.3– Cousins has held the Vikings’ passing stats steadyAdvanced passing index numbers for Minnesota Vikings starting QBs from 2017 (Case Keenum) and 2018 (Kirk Cousins) OUR PREDICTION (ELO)READERS’ PREDICTION PIT51NE56PIT 17, NE 10-9.7– DAL95.27.2TB0.00.014.91493 IND34.06.4NYG0.00.013.61477 2018Case Keenum6-8-09592851001049092 MIN72MIN66MIN 41, MIA 17-6.2– And that’s to say nothing of Keenum’s own nosedive in performance after leaving Minnesota for Denver, where he has strongly reverted back to the form he’d shown in four seasons leading up to 2017 as a mediocre spot-starter. Keenum’s passer rating this season (82.1) has a lot more in common with his 78.4 career mark before 2017 than the out-of-nowhere 98.3 rating he posted last season. Had the Vikings brought Keenum back, their offense would likely be in even worse straits than it has actually been this season.Instead, Minnesota paid the going rate to Cousins, easily the best available option on the QB market,2Especially considering that Drew Brees returned to New Orleans and the 49ers backed up the Brinks truck for Jimmy Garoppolo. in order to keep the passing game afloat — and in the big picture, that plan basically worked. But Cousins and the Vikings haven’t been able to convert those raw numbers into points as readily as they did last season. Minnesota already has six more turnovers this year than last; it’s also fallen from the league’s third-best third-down conversion rate to 19th, and from the ninth-best red-zone scoring percentage to 21st. (Cousins’s own penchant for taking ill-timed red zone sacks — he’s tied for the third-most in the NFL — hasn’t helped there.)The offense boasts plenty of talent between Cousins, running backs Dalvin Cook and Latavius Murray — a pair collectively averaging more yards per carry this year (4.4) than last (4.1) — and wide receivers Adam Thielen and Stefon Diggs, who are on pace to become the 68th teammates in NFL history to each average at least 70 receiving yards per game in a season.3Minimum 13 games played in a season by each player. Yet the moments of excellence have been few and far between. In Weeks 11 through 14, Minnesota averaged just 15.3 points per game, culminating in a 7-point disaster against the Seahawks that ultimately cost DeFilippo his job.It wouldn’t be a Vikings season without a hint of hope, however — this time in the form of that 41-point outburst against Miami under new play-caller Kevin Stefanski. Tasked with running the ball more, Stefanski had Cousins hand off 40 times and throw just 21 passes, a reversal of the team’s tendency toward the pass on nearly 70 percent of plays under DeFilippo. Some of the newfound run-heavy game plan owes to the quick 21-0 lead Minnesota jumped out to over the Dolphins, but it also represents a change in offensive philosophy for a team generally built to pass the ball.Said tight end David Morgan after the Miami game: “In days leading up, [Stefanski] was talking about kind of the identify we wanted to be and be physical and kind of run the ball really well and kind of just set it how we used to run it.”We’ll find out over the next two weeks how much the Vikings’ new identity sticks — and, perhaps more importantly, how well it works. Their next game, against Detroit, carries plenty of playoff implications not just for fans in Minnesota but also those in Philadelphia and Washington. That’s a big part of why, according to our combination of matchup quality (i.e., the harmonic mean of the teams’ Elo ratings in each game) and game importance (how likely it is to swing every team’s odds of making the playoffs),4Which adds up a game’s potential swing in playoff odds for every team in the league — including those not participating in the game itself. Vikings-Lions is the fourth-best game of Week 16: The best matchups of Week 16Week 16 games by the highest average Elo rating (using the harmonic mean) plus the total potential swing for all NFL teams’ playoff chances based on the result, according to FiveThirtyEight’s NFL predictions Game quality is the harmonic mean of the Elo ratings for the two teams in a given matchup. Total Change adds up the potential swing in playoff odds for every team in the league (not just the two teams listed).*Average change is weighted by the likelihood of a win or loss. (Ties are excluded.)Source: ESPN.com GB0.00.0NYJ0.00.01.81402 CHI100.00.0SF0.00.03.01492 YearPlayerRecordCmp%Y/ATD%Int%Sack%QB RtgANY/A BAL76BAL74BAL 20, TB 12-2.6– MIN57.525.9DET0.00.052.91510 2017Case Keenum11-3-0115104102115114111111 PHI38.918.6HOU22.214.171.124569 Seattle8.331Seattle6.679 Washington7.329L.A. Chargers3.718 * Advanced passing indices are scaled where 100 is league average, and 15 points in either direction represents 1 standard deviation.Source: Pro-Football-Reference.com Adv. Passing Index* NE99.50.9BUF0.00.02.61505 DEN69%DEN57%CLE 17, DEN 16+12.4– TeamWinsOpp. WPctTeamLossesOpp. WPct CIN0.00.0CLE0.00.04.41415 That will set up what might be an even more crucial matchup in Week 17 against the Bears, where the fate of this baffling Vikings squad could be decided once and for all. In a way, the Vikings were always primed to regress in 2018 — it was just a question of how much. Their defense was unusually great last year, and it has fallen from first in points allowed last season to 12th this year.5Even as it continues to rank as the game’s stingiest on third down, where it figured to lose a lot of its performance this season due to regression. The offense was going to need to sustain its efficiency despite breaking in a new QB and coordinator. The expectations might have been unrealistically high; either way, they haven’t been consistently met. But despite everything, the Vikings have still given themselves a chance to play their way into the postseason. Although their destiny could be redemption or it could be doom — at least they control it.FiveThirtyEight vs. the readersFor up-to-date playoff probabilities and Super Bowl odds, Check out FiveThirtyEight’s Elo ratings in our NFL prediction interactive. It simulates the rest of the season 100,000 times and tracks every team’s chances of winning it all. You can also pick against the Elo algorithm in our prediction game, so give it a shot and try to climb up our giant leaderboard.Based on data from the prediction contest, here are the matchups in which Elo made its best — and worst — picks against the field of readers last week: Home teams are in bold.The scoring system is nonlinear, so readers’ average points don’t necessarily match the number of points that would be given to the average reader prediction. PIT74.711.6NO100.00.024.11664 BAL40.7%+/-29.2LAC100.0%+/-0.058.61614 Team ACurrentAvg. Chg*Team BCurrentAvg. Chg*Total ChangeGame Quality CIN66CIN59CIN 30, OAK 16-7.4– Elo’s dumbest (and smartest) picks of Week 15Average difference between points won by readers and by Elo in Week 15 matchups in FiveThirtyEight’s NFL prediction game SEA96.43.3KC100.00.07.61624 CAR1.00.8ATL0.00.02.51492 KC66KC62LAC 29, KC 28+2.8– DEN0.00.0OAK0.00.01.61398 Arizona3.269Kansas City3.795 A vaguely above-average team that can only beat inferior opponents is not what the Vikings were envisioning when they signed Cousins to that massive contract — which, of course, the 2018 Vikings’ entire season will ultimately be viewed as a referendum on. Though it was later surpassed by a number of other deals, Cousins’ three-year, $84 million contract was the largest in NFL history when he put pen to paper in March. With it came the weight of the franchise and the responsibility to improve on last year’s offense, which was seen as the team’s weakness relative to its top-ranked defense. And by that standard, Cousins has failed. This season, Minnesota is down from 10th in points per game to 17th; from tied for 11th in yards per play to a tie for 14th; from eighth in expected points added to 23rd.Cousins’ individual passing numbers aren’t so different from Keenum’s a year ago, though. In fact, Cousins beats his predecessor’s 2017 stats in terms of completion percentage (70.5 percent to 67.6), touchdown percentage (4.8 percent to 4.6) and passer rating (99.0 to 98.3), while sticking relatively close on interception percentage (1.8 percent vs. 1.5). The only area in which Cousins hasn’t really matched Keenum is sack rate — Minnesota’s 2018 starter has hit the deck on 5.9 percent of his dropbacks (compared with 4.4 percent for Keenum in 2017). Even granting that passing standards have gotten higher since last year, Cousins has done a good job of roughly approximating Keenum’s 2017 output according to Pro-Football-Reference’s advanced passing indices, which scale everything relative to a league average of 100 (where 15 points in either direction equals one standard deviation of performance): LAR70LAR76PHI 30, LAR 23-10.2– MIA5.03.9JAX0.00.09.01421 ATL73ATL71ATL 40, ARI 14-2.7– Minnesota beats the bad teams, loses to the good onesAverage opponent winning percentage* for 2018 NFL teams, by team’s outcome in game CHI74CHI69CHI 24, GB 17-5.4– PICKWIN PROB.PICKWIN PROB.ResultREADERS’ NET PTS ARI0.00.0LAR100.00.01.71464 TEN51TEN51TEN 17, NYG 0-2.5– If it feels like we still don’t know how good the Minnesota Vikings are after 15 weeks of football, it’s probably because … we still don’t. With their playoff hopes on the line Sunday, the Vikings cruised past the Miami Dolphins — a team whose own playoff future was in flux — in a 41-17 rout. According to the FiveThirtyEight Elo prediction model, Minnesota now has a 58 percent chance of making the postseason, giving the Vikings an edge in playoff odds over Philadelphia (39 percent), Washington (11 percent) and Carolina (less than 1 percent) in the battle for the NFC’s second and final wild card spot.1Despite losing Sunday, the 8-6 Seattle Seahawks have all but clinched the playoffs, with a strong probability of owning the No. 5 seed in the NFC.And yet, the Vikings have been one of the tougher teams to figure out this season. (As if they would have it any other way.) Surprise Super Bowl contenders last year, they pre-emptively moved on from journeyman quarterback Case Keenum to the highly paid Kirk Cousins — a move that seems to get second-guessed on a weekly basis. But every time this team is written off, Minnesota has responded with a performance like Sunday’s win. So why have these Vikings been so mystifying? Did the recent firing of offensive coordinator John DeFilippo do anything to fix the team’s malaise? And is Minnesota still in a position to realistically contend for that elusive first Super Bowl ring in franchise history?One reason the Vikings have seemed so disappointing is that expectations were very high after last season’s miraculous run to the NFC title game. This time last year, Minnesota’s Elo rating was 1639, tied for fourth-best in the NFL. And before the 2018 season began, its Elo was 1602 — the highest it had been before any season since 1999. (That year, the Vikings went 10-6 and lost in the divisional round, which was also disappointing relative to expectations.) Compared with either lofty standard, the Vikings’ current rating of 1560 — 11th-best in football — hasn’t really hit the mark. Among teams that are still above a 1500 (i.e., average) Elo right now, only Philadelphia has fallen short of its preseason rating by a wider margin than the Vikings have.Minnesota hasn’t been able to gain much ground in Elo in part because it only ever beats the opponents it’s supposed to. (Except when it loses to them as 16½-point favorites.) The Vikings’ wins have come against a group that has a combined .313 winning percentage in games against other opponents, which is second only to the Cardinals (.269) for lowest in the league in terms of opponents a team has beaten. Meanwhile, the teams who have beaten the Vikings have a combined winning percentage of .704, fourth-highest in the league. (Their tie was against a Packers team with a .385 winning percentage in other games.) Playoff %Playoff % DAL53DAL52IND 23, DAL 0-1.1– Just when readers pulled closer to the Elo model in Week 14, our algorithm struck back in Week 15, winning by an average of 44.4 points over the typical reader. The field picked up points for believing in the Browns against the Broncos — or at least considering Cleveland less of an underdog. (Cleveland won, continuing its incredible turnaround season.) But that was one of the week’s few bright spots for readers, as Elo had the better pick on average in 13 of 16 matchups, including Pittsburgh’s upset win over New England and the Eagles’ victory at the L.A. Rams.Despite the carnage, congrats are in order to James Hare, who won Week 15 with a tally of +123.9 points. And let’s give yet another round of applause to Greg Chili Van Hollebeke, who stayed at No. 1 for the season with +960.2 points. Thanks to everyone who has been playing — and if you haven’t, get in on the action before it’s too late! You can make picks now and still try your luck against Elo, even if you haven’t played yet.Check out our latest NFL predictions.
OSU sophomore attacker Colin Chell (22) prepares to shoot during a scrimmage against The Hill Academy on Jan. 30. Credit: Kylie Bryant | | For The LanternThe Ohio State men’s lacrosse team almost has an embarrassment of riches on the offensive side of the ball. Seemingly each week, anyone can step up in a pivotal role and provide a spark on the attack. Such was the case again Friday in Ohio Stadium.Sophomore attacker Colin Chell scored the Buckeyes’ first three goals and added an assist, while junior attacker Austin Shanks scored two goals and assisted on two more to lead the Scarlet and Gray to a 12-7 win over the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.OSU coach Nick Myers had high words of praise for his sophomore attacker.“(Chell) is a special player,” Myers said. “He had a great week of practice … and did a great job at the attack position tonight.”Although the Buckeyes, who were coming off their first loss of the season to Massachusetts last week, were in control for most of the game, it took them some time to get there.The first quarter was relatively even between the two teams. UMBC opened up the scoring at the 13:40 mark when freshman midfielder Billy Nolan threw a strike to give the Retrievers a 1-0 lead. A pair of goals by Chell and one more by UMBC leveled the game at 2-2 to end the quarter.Chell kept it rolling to open the second quarter with his third goal of the game, giving him six on the year. After the win, he tipped his hat to defense for allowing him to make an offensive impact early in the game.“You got to credit (redshirt junior goalie) Tom Carey in cage and the defense for making some quality stops down there and being able to get us the ball on offense,” Chell said.OSU’s defense clamped down on the UMBC offense for the next two quarters after allowing the pair of goals in the first quarter. The Retrievers were only able to attempt four shots in the second and third quarters combined. For the game, they had just 16, whereas OSU attempted 41. Myers said the key to this was being able to work together.“I think the biggest thing we stressed defensively in practice this week was just playing with seven (and) getting more guys on the same page,” Myers said. “Anytime you hold a team scoreless for 25-to-30 minutes in a row is a positive.” This staunch defensive effort allowed the Scarlet and Gray to hold a 9-3 lead as the fourth quarter began. It was a lead that proved to be insurmountable, as the game finished by a score of 12-7.Junior midfielder John Kelly said this game was a step in the right direction, especially with the Buckeyes coming off a loss in their previous game.“We feel great, a complete turnaround from last week,” Kelly said. “Overall, we had a fantastic performance and feel really good about the way that we played.”Junior faceoff specialist Jake Withers continued his stellar play at the position. Withers won nine of 11 faceoffs in the first half and 14 of 22 total, continuing his streak of advantage in faceoffs through the first four games of the year.“(Withers is) an amazing faceoff guy,” Kelly said. “He fights for ground balls, and I love the way he plays. He’s very important to our time of possession and allowing us to keep the ball on the offensive end of the field.”The win means the Buckeyes are off to a 1-0 start in games played at the ‘Shoe. Chell said it gives the Buckeyes an extra edge to play home games in the historic stadium.“Everybody was amped up to play in the ‘Shoe tonight,” Chell said. “It’s a great atmosphere — a night game — and we brought the juice.”While noting it is still early in the season, Myers said he likes how the team is looking.“It’s still February. We’ve got a long way to go,” Myers said. “But being at home in the ‘Shoe, it’s important that we came out and played with the urgency that we needed to, and I thought that the men did that tonight.”The Buckeyes will stay at home next weekend, as they are set to host the Midwest Lacrosse Classic. They are scheduled to play Marquette on Friday at 6 p.m. and Bellarmine on March 6 at 3 p.m.
OSU junior forward Nate Kohl (27) heads the ball in the second half Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium on Sept. 28. Credit: Michelle McDonnell | Lantern PhotographerIn a season derailed by injuries, stagnant offense and mistakes in the defensive zone, the Ohio State men’s soccer team has found itself in an unfavorable position.Coming into Tuesday night with a 3-9 record, the Buckeyes desperately needed a win to get some confidence back and build momentum leading into the final few games on the schedule. Like a team with new life, Ohio State took down Oakland University 3-0 with an aggressive offense and all-around confident play.“We were in a little slump coming into this game,” junior forward Nate Kohl said. “We knew we had to get some goals and we were able to shut them out.”The Buckeyes never allowed the Golden Grizzlies to settle in, getting on the board in the early goings of the opening period.In just the 11th minute, junior defender Niall Logue crossed a pass from the far post to find sophomore midfielder Abdi Mohamed, who was able to give OSU an early 1-0 lead.With momentum on their side, the Buckeyes had no intentions of allowing Oakland to catch its breath.A few moments later, in the 14th minute, senior midfielder Ben Fitzpatrick worked a ball down the sideline in the offensive zone and got past his defender, allowing him to cross a ball right in front of the net that Kohl sent past the keeper to give the Buckeyes an early 2-0 lead.For Kohl, it was his fourth goal of the season.OSU did not take its foot off the gas even after taking a two score lead. They outshot Oakland 11-3 through the first 45 minutes, and applied relentless defensive pressure making it difficult for the Golden Grizzlies to cross midfield.As a result, the Buckeyes were able to extend their lead just before halftime.In the 40th minute, Mohamed struck a free kick from 20 yards out that sliced into the back left corner of the goal to extend the lead to 3-0, his second score of the game and fourth of the season.“We punished them with the early goals,” OSU coach John Bluem said. “Today we felt like we had the confidence against an Oakland team that we have seen a couple times here before. We aren’t just going to drop deep and defend for 90 minutes. We are going to play. We are better when we play more aggressively.”The second half was much less action packed, with OSU playing more on the defensive, trying to maintain the three-score lead. The Buckeyes would finish the game with a 14-9 shot advantage.“If they get an early goal in the second half, now it becomes more complicated,” Bluem said. “You want to make sure the guys understand that they have to continue to play hard. The game isn’t over.”The Buckeyes will play the second leg of this two game homestand as they resume Big Ten play against No. 9 Indiana on Saturday.“We proved we can win a game and we can do it again next game, too,” Mohamed said. “We just have to have confidence and play our game. Indiana is a pretty good team. We just have to step up to the plate and compete with them and we will be fine.”
OSU competes in a match against Florida Gulf Coast on Sept. 5 at St. John Arena. OSU won, 3-1. Credit: Emily Yarcusko / For the LanternThe Ohio State women’s volleyball team had it’s toughest game of the season against No. 17 Minnesota, and was unable to hang on in five sets.The Buckeyes won the first set before losing the next two and the final frame (25-21, 23-25, 20-25, 29-27, 12-15).In the first set, the Golden Gophers got off to a 5-2 lead, but a 11-4 run by the Buckeyes helped OSU to take the first set.In the second set, the Gophers had all the momentum from the beginning, as they took a 7-3 lead, but the Buckeyes would rally back multiple times in the beginning of the match, before the Gophers took control after a 12-12 tie.After intermission, the Buckeyes came out and fell victim to a Gopher 6-0 run, however the Buckeyes would come back. While they had chances to tie, they could never overcome the one-point deficit and the Gophers eventually took a 2-1 lead.The Buckeyes found a way to win the crucial fourth set, as they survived four match points to avoid defeat and tie the match up at two apiece.The final kill of the fourth set came from sophomore outside hitter Kylie Randall, where she was able to give the Buckeyes the only two-point lead of the set that mattered.After coming off a set in which neither team led by more than two, the Gophers and Buckeyes continued to fight out for the final game. The Gophers would gain their largest lead of the game with their final point, winning their third and clinching set 15-12.Three Buckeye seniors led both teams in multiple categories. Senior setter Taylor Sherwin led all players in assists with 58 and was tied for the lead in service aces with two. She also added six digs. Senior outside hitter Erin Sekinger led all players with 21 kills and added nine digs. Senior defensive specialist Alyssa Winner led all players in digs with 14.Junior middle blocker Tyler Richardson led the team in blocks with nine. Richardson added seven kills and a block, while Randall added 10 kills and three digs.The Buckeyes are scheduled to face No. 5 Wisconsin on Sunday. The match is set for 2 p.m.
A solicitor appointed to represent an elderly stroke victim has been thrown off the case by a judge furious that he failed to take steps to let the woman see her beloved pet dog.Solicitor Alan Cryne was removed from the case after his firm showed a “brutal and insensitive” attitude to his elderly client’s wish to be reunited with her dog Bobby.District judge Ranj Matharu also raised serious questions over Mr Cryne’s handling of the woman’s finances, after it emerged that £7,000 had been withdrawn from her back account, leaving her with a zero balance, and that her credit card was now in the red.Mr Cryne, an experienced family law solicitor, was appointed by the court in September last year to represent the financial interests of the Rochdale pensioner, known only as Mrs P, after she was placed in a care home by her local authority following a second stroke.The solicitor had argued that he was “well placed” to manage her property, because she had been “a long standing client” and his firm, Manchester-based Temperley Taylor, held her will.Mr Cryne’s appointment as Mrs P’s deputy by the court gave him the power to investigate her income, limit withdrawals on her accounts and even freeze them altogether.At the same time staff at Rochdale Borough Council and the NHS North, Central and South Manchester Clinical Commissioning Groups drew up a care plan for Mrs P, who was described as someone who, before her recent ill health, had enjoyed a good quality of life, liked to feel glamorous and loved her dog.The care plan specified that she was suffering from weight loss and needed a gluten-free diet and new, better fitting clothes, which could be paid for out of her own funds. The court heard that the care plan also emphasised that she should have some form of contact with her dog, who was “the only living being with whom she shares any love or devotion”. The court also heard that Mrs P’s face “lights up” when she sees other dogs.Indeed Mrs P’s social worker, Joanne Webster, told the court: “I would recommend that of single most importance in her life is her dog and having some form of contact with her dog in the future if possible.”But when Mrs P’s carers wrote to Mr Cryne on June 6, asking him to provide £500 along with other funds to buy food and clothing for her, and bring Bobby to her, he failed to respond.It took four weeks for Mr Cryne’s firm to eventually answer a request for information from the Official Solicitor about Mrs P’s finances.It was at this point that it emerged that these were now in a dire state.Elspeth Winny, a barrister who visited Mrs P, reported back to the court in July that the pensioner “has no money, the bank account is empty, the credit card is in the red, the only asset is her house, and unable to trace pension”.It also emerged that Bobby had by now been re-homed with a new owner.Responding to the request by Rochdale council and the CCG that he should be taken to visit Mrs P, Temperley Taylor wrote:“In such a case we would say that possession of Bobby has passed to his new owner. . . in the absence of any factual information about Bobby, his owner or the home’s policy on animals, it would seem irresponsible in the extreme to suggest that a dog visit a care home for elderly and frail people.”Judge Matharu said he found those comments “brutal and insensitive”.He stated: “The court is particularly troubled about how Mrs P and the things she needs are to be provided for. What is known is that her wishes and her feelings before her second stroke were very clear.“She enjoyed a good quality of life, she loved her dog, likes to feel glamorous. Now she is wearing ill-fitting clothes and financially unable to pay to have her feminine needs attended to, such as having her hair and nails done.”Judge Matharu also expressed grave concern over what had happened to Mrs P’s finances.“In around October 2015 the money in her NatWest account was around £7,000. Now there is a nil balance. That is all the court is told. ‘Troubling’ is the term that I would use and this is an understatement,” he wrote in his judgment, published last week.The judge concluded that the only way Mrs P’s could be properly looked after was with the appointment of a new Deputy to replace Mr Cryne.“The care plan makes it clear what additional mattes need to be dealt with and these can only be dealt with by the appointment of a new deputy,” he stated.Mr Cryne’s removal from the case could result in a review of his action by the Solicitors Regulation Authority should any of the parties involved in the case issue a formal complaint about his behaviour.In a statement Temperley Taylor said: “We are a highly regarded firm of solicitors and have extensive experience of acting in this area of law. “We are unable to comment further as an appeal against this judgment is being actively considered and we are unable to prejudice this process.” The court is particularly troubled about how Mrs P and the things she needs are to be provided for.District judge Ranj Matharu Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? 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Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Jurors were shown a YouTube video that Mair watched on June 7 of an American man shooting a .22 sawn-off weapon in a field, filmed from a head-cam.This was the same day he searched for Mrs Cox on Wikipedia and Google Images.On June 16, the Labour MP for Batley and Spen was set upon outside her constituency surgery in Birstall, near Leeds, in front of her staff and shocked passers-by. Thomas Mair, right, is accused of murdering Labour MP Jo CoxCredit:PA/ The alleged white supremacist accused of murdering MP Jo Cox had a Third Reich Eagle ornament on a bookshelf at his home, a court has heard.Thomas Mair, 53, is on trial for allegedly shooting and stabbing the 41-year-old Remain campaigner a week before the EU referendum vote.Jurors were shown a series of pictures taken of Mair’s belongings at his housing association home in Birstall.They included the gold Nazi item with a swastika emblazoned on it which was placed on top of a bookshelf in his bedroom. Officers found rune stones in a bag, one of which appeared to have a symbol of the BBB movement on it.There were also various Nazi badges and a “Deutschland” cap, prosecutor Richard Whittam QC told jurors. Within minutes, Ms Green said she heard about a gun incident and decided to abandon her shopping trip.She said: “I was going to the market place for fruit and veg. I saw the commotion and I heard somebody say there is somebody with a gun so I got my little girl straight into a taxi and came straight home.”Mair denies Mrs Cox’s murder, possession of a firearm with intent to commit an indictable offence and possession of an offensive weapon – a dagger. He also pleads not guilty to causing grievous bodily harm. The Nazi eagle found on Thomas Mair’s bookcase containing books about the Third ReichCredit:West Yorkshire Police Caps found in the home of Thomas MairCredit:West Yorkshire Police Police seized computers from libraries in Birstall and Batley, which Mair had used to look at more far-right material and search for information on Mrs Cox and .22 rifles, the court heard.On April 6, he looked at the American neo-Nazi news site Daily Stormer before searching for Dylann Roof, who was suspected of killing nine black Americans in Charleston in 2015, the court heard.He also allegedly searched for the Ku Klux Klan, former BNP leaders, and matricide, the court heard. A police search uncovered a double-page press cutting on Norwegian mass killer Anders Breivik and a dossier on Mrs Cox and her political history.A printout of a Wikipedia entry on the White Patriot Party was found in his drawers along with information on the BBB – White Liberation Movement – a notorious South African neo-Nazi organisation. Giving evidence via video-link from Leeds Crown Court, Ms Green described a brief encounter with Mair when she travelled to Birstall market place by bus on the day of the killing.When she got off the bus, she saw the defendant looking as if he was queuing to board, the court heard.She said: “He was at the front of the queue looking like he was just waiting to get on to the bus.”He had a pair of dark trousers and a dark green khaki jacket and dark cream baseball cap. He always carried bags. He had three or four bags. I saw him walk off.” Right wing documents and books in the home of Thomas MairCredit:West Yorkshire Police Show more Mair allegedly shouted “Britain First” as he repeatedly shot and stabbed the mother of two.Mair’s neighbour of 13 years, Katie Green, described him as “very quiet, very shy but did not see any visitors”.She told jurors that he always kept his garden very tidy and spent a lot of time in it. Show more
At the end of the survey, it was found that athletes who have higher satisfaction with their team tended to report higher life-satisfaction. This in turn led to further increases in positive feelings towards their team.The authors suggest that the social aspect of competing and training as part of a team, and the personal relationships that develop through the group interactions, all boost happiness.Additionally, the psychological benefits of team membership, such as feelings of belonging and social identity, were also likely to be factors, they said.For example, team membership could help people overcome adversity and deal with failure, as the support network available in the team meant athletes were better equipped to face the mental and physical challenges they encountered. People who are still choosing which sport to take up this January should pick something that involves a team, a new study suggests. Researchers from the London School of Economics found that by playing sport in a team participants not only gain the health benefits of exercise, but can boost long-term happiness. In the study of 459 athletes those in teams reported being more satisfied with their lives overall.Britain is one of the least active countries in Europe, with a new study by Sport England showing that around one third of people do not get at least 30 minutes of exercise a week. The recommended level is 150 minutes of moderate exercise.The new research suggests that joining a team can improve both physical and mental health. Running as an individual may not be as a beneficial, a new study suggests One of the papers authors, Dr Chia-Huei Wu, Assistant Professor of Management at LSE, said: “When competing and succeeding in sport, this study shows that the social environment of the team is important in terms of overall life-satisfaction.”We found that this can be explained by the social interaction and feelings of identity that comes from being a team member, which are not as present when an athlete pursues their own individual goals.“There are important lessons in this study for those participating in sport at any level, as playing in a team environment will bring a range of benefits beyond the health benefits of exercise.”Joining a team may bring feelings of belonging with your teammates, and being satisfied with your team may help you be satisfied with your life.”The authors analysed data people between the ages 12 to 20 years who were recruited from a diverse range of sports, such as swimming, athletics, basketball, and cycling, and asked about their life satisfaction levels at three intervals over a six month period. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings.