Bulls Halt Heats Historic Winning Streak at 27

Leave it to LeBron James to put into proper perspective the Miami Heat’s 27-game winning streak–the second-longest in NBA history–that ended Wednesday night in Chicago.“We haven’t had a chance to really have a moment to know what we just did,” James said. “We had a moment, just very fortunate, very humbling and blessed to be part of this team and be part of a streak like that.”The Bulls, playing without Joakim Noah (and, of course, point guard Derrick Rose), performed with a purpose usually reserved for playoff games in their 101-97 victory. More than once they corralled James on one of his patented power drives, sending him to the foul line instead of allowing a dunk.James admitted to being frustrated at the physicality. Kirk Hindrich virtually tackled him in the first quarter and Taj Gibson’s forceful defense seemed to make contact around James’ neck in the fourth period. It was that play that set off James, who, in a rare display of aggravation, was assessed a flagrant foul for ramming into Carlos Boozer as he set a screen.“Those are not basketball plays and it’s been happening all year,” James said. “I’ve been able to keep my cool and try to tell (coach Erik Spoelstra), ‘Let’s not worry about it too much,’ but it is getting to me a little bit.”Coming up a little bit short of 1971-72 Los Angeles Lakers’ league-record of 33 straight victories was disappointing for the Heat. But the magnitude of the run was not lost on them.The had not lost a game since February 1.“It’s one of the best that this league has ever seen,” James said. “We recognized that and rightfully so.”Chicago had to play spectacular basketball to end Miami’s run. Luol Deng ha 28 points and Boozer added 21 and 17 rebounds to offset James’ 32 points and the specter of another late Miami comeback. The Heat overcame seven double-digit deficits during the streak, including a 27-point hole against James’ old team, the Cleveland Cavaliers.“We understand, probably more so later on in our careers, the significance of that. And then that was it,” Heat coach Erik Spoelstra said. “We took that moment to acknowledge it, to acknowledge each other, that experience, but it was never about the streak. We have a bigger goal, but also right now, it’s about ‘Are we getting better?’ “ read more

Read More »

Lee Westwood Inherits Sergios Title Best Golfer Without A Major

A chronology of the “Best Player To Never Win A Major” PLAYERSTARTENDLENGTH (MAJORS)WON A MAJOR? Westwood, at age 44, is perhaps the most decorated English golfer in recent history — he’s racked up 23 European Tour victories and seven Ryder Cup victories and even snapped Tiger Woods’s 281-week stranglehold on the No. 1 ranking in 2010. But the majors have been painful. He’s finished in the top 10 on 18 different occasions and been runner-up three times. This has earned him close to $9 million in prize money in the majors alone, but an empty trophy case.Now on the unfamiliar grounds of Erin Hills (a Wisconsin course that’s never hosted a major before), Westwood can only hope his reign as BPTNWAM is short. He’s off to a good start, finishing Thursday 3 strokes under par — but the first three rounds are generally not the problem for the Englishman. Going into this week, Westwood’s average score in rounds 1 through 3 at the majors has been 72.0, but on Sunday, that number rises to 72.6, according to the statistical site Golfstats.The bookmakers don’t like his chances this weekend, either. Before the tournament, his odds of winning were 65-to-1, according to VegasInsider.com. Maybe they’ve been scoping out the success rate for past BPTNWAMs: Even including Garcia’s victory in April, the title-holder won just four times in 149 tries (2.7 percent) going back to the 1980 Masters. That’s a big reason why the average BPTNWAM hung onto the designation for 11.5 tournaments (nearly three years’ worth of majors) over the same time period.Westwood is also nearly outside the career phase where any golfers have ever won a major. So most likely, his BPTNWAM reign will end when he stops playing majors regularly, rather than with a championship victory. But golf has also given us a few stellar moments by players older than Westwood, including Jack Nicklaus’s Masters win at age 46 and, more recently, Tom Watson forcing a playoff in the British Open at age 59. Perhaps it won’t happen this week, but Westwood might just have enough left in the tank to shed his newfound, inglorious title in a grand way. Rickie Fowler169220.42 Greg Norman1985 Masters1986 British7✓ Andy Bean1986 PGA1988 British8 Gil Morgan1991 PGA1994 Masters10 Colin Montgomerie2005 British2006 British5 CURRENT RANKINGCAREER AT MAJORS Lee Westwood5254580.86 Nick Price1988 PGA1990 Masters6✓ Marc Leishman2735130.20 Steve Stricker1385540.47 Crenshaw would plug away for the next 18 major tournaments before finally shedding the label with a win at the 1984 Masters. (A player can leave the BPTNWAM list three ways: Winning a major; falling behind another player’s major shares; or not playing enough to qualify for the list anymore.) Among all the title-holders since 1979, Crenshaw’s streak was the third-longest — though it paled in comparison with the streak that Garcia just ended.Garcia was the modern king of the BPTNWAMs. Before his win at the Masters, he had gone 35 consecutive majors (back to the 2008 British Open) as the BPTNWAM, and before that, he’d traded the title back and forth with Chris DiMarco a few times. His 37 total tournaments as BPTNWAM are the most of any player since 1979 (eight more than No. 2 Colin Montgomerie).Now the honor falls to Westwood, whose 0.86 career major shares leads all major-less players in the U.S. Open field: Phil Mickelson2002 Masters2004 Masters9✓ Sergio Garcia2005 Masters2005 Masters1✓ Matt Kuchar2815290.20 The 12-foot birdie putt Sergio Garcia sank to win the Masters in April had bigger consequences than ensuring him a garish new jacket. It also meant somebody else would have to take on the title of “Best Player To Never Win A Major,” a crown that Garcia had worn for nearly a decade. And according to our calculations, that player should be England’s Lee Westwood, who shot 69 in the first round of the U.S. Open on Thursday.No pressure, Westy.The golf world usually hands out the dreaded “BPTNWAM” designation by reputation and consensus, but we wanted to take a crack at it using a formula. In the past, we’ve judged the quality of a player’s performance in majors — win or lose — using “major shares,” which estimate how many majors a player would be expected to win given his scoring relative to the field average in past majors. (Fractional “shares” of wins accumulate over time for good players; also-rans garner scores at or near zero.) So for our purposes here, I’m considering the BPTNWAM to be the player who, at the time of each major, had the most career major shares without an actual major victory.1I also added the qualification that a player must have made the cut in at least half of the previous two years’ worth of majors, to make sure that he was still playing at a high level at the time of the tournament in question.According to those rules, here’s a chronology of the BPTNWAM since the great Ben Crenshaw took over the title in August of 1979: Sergio Garcia2008 British2017 Masters35✓ Chris DiMarco2006 PGA2006 PGA1 Andy Bean1990 U.S. Open1990 U.S. Open1 * Official World Golf RankingSources: ESPN, Yahoo Sports, Golfweek John Cook1994 U.S. Open1995 PGA7 Based on how many career “major shares” a player had going into each major tournament since 1979. To be in the running, a player had to make the cut in at least half of the previous eight majors.Sources: ESPN, Yahoo Sports Branden Grace4429140.26 Lee Westwood2017 U.S. Open—— Andres Romero609798120.13 PLAYERGOLFWEEKOWGR*CUTS MADEMAJOR SHARES Chris DiMarco2005 U.S. Open2005 U.S. Open1 Who’s the new “Best Player To Never Win A Major”? Nick Price1991 Masters1991 British3✓ Sergio Garcia2007 Masters2007 Masters1✓ Loren Roberts2004 U.S. Open2004 PGA3 Peter Oosterhuis1984 U.S. Open1984 PGA3 Paul Azinger1990 British1990 PGA2✓ Colin Montgomerie1996 Masters2001 PGA24 Brandt Snedeker3138260.13 Scott Piercy1286280.09 J.B. Holmes9152150.10 Ben Crenshaw1979 PGA1984 Masters18✓ Chris DiMarco2007 U.S. Open2008 U.S. Open5 read more

Read More »

Here Are College Footballs Most Important Week 8 Games

Swing in playoff odds is weighted by the chance of each outcome — win or lose — actually happening.*Total swing includes every game in the country — not just those listed here. How Oklahoma-TCU swings the playoff picturePotential changes in College Football Playoff probability for selected teams based on the outcome of the Oct. 20 Oklahoma-TCU game Ohio State51.7-0.4+0.80.5 Swing in playoff odds is weighted by the chance of each outcome — win or lose — actually happening.*Total swing includes every game in the country — not just those listed here. Notre Dame50.1-1.1+2.81.6 Michigan15.5-0.7+3.01.1 Michigan15.5-0.4+1.10.6 Notre Dame50.1-0.8+4.11.3 Georgia22.0-0.5+1.30.7 28.5 Oklahoma23.3-0.2+1.10.3 TeamCurrent Playoff%WinLossWgtd Swing NC State7.5-5.7+29.99.5 How Michigan-Michigan State swings the playoff picturePotential changes in College Football Playoff probability for selected teams based on the outcome of the Oct. 20 Michigan-Michigan State game How Clemson-NC State swings the playoff picturePotential changes in College Football Playoff probability for selected teams based on the outcome of the Oct. 20 Clemson-NC State game Swing in playoff odds is weighted by the chance of each outcome — win or lose — actually happening.*Total swing includes every game in the country — not just those listed here. Change in odds w/ Clemson… Michigan15.5%+5.1-10.1±6.8 Oklahoma23.3%+6.1-15.8±8.8 No. 6 Michigan (6-1) at No. 24 Michigan State (4-2)Favorite: Michigan (66.3 percent)Total potential CFP swing: 16.0 pointsThe stakes: Michigan’s season-opening loss to Notre Dame hurt its playoff chances, but research shows that, if you’re going to lose, it’s better to get it out of the way early and win out the rest of the season. Cross-state rival Michigan State is the Wolverines’ latest impediment to that plan, and the Spartans’ own meager playoff bid (which does exist!) received a shot in the arm when they beat Penn State in Happy Valley last week. There’s about a 1-in-3 chance that Sparty does the same to Michigan in East Lansing on Saturday, which would drop the Wolverines’ playoff probability to 5 percent (and elevate MSU’s to 7 percent). Georgia, Ohio State and Oklahoma would also get about a 1-point boost to their playoff probabilities if Michigan State wins. The Fighting Irish, however, are in an unfamiliar place here. Because of their head-to-head win over Michigan, Notre Dame fans should be rooting for Michigan to win, which would add about a half-point to the Irish’s chances of making the playoff. Check out our latest college football predictions. Change in odds w/ Oklahoma… LSU13.6-0.4+1.10.6 15.9 Total* No. 5 LSU (6-1) vs. No. 22 Mississippi State (4-2)Favorite: LSU (64.7 percent)Total potential CFP swing: 15.9 pointsThe stakes: LSU, the other team whose odds we broke down a week ago, always needed to keep winning games in order to maintain its position as a playoff contender. It passed its first test with flying colors by upsetting Georgia last week, raising its playoff probability to 14 percent. That number would leap to 19 percent with a win over Mississippi State but plummet to 4 percent with a loss, effectively ending any realistic playoff chance for the Tigers. Those stakes are compounded by the slight gains for fellow SEC contenders Alabama and Georgia if Mississippi State can go into Baton Rouge and pull off the upset, to say nothing of the small playoff chance the Bulldogs would see (3 percent) if they win. Ohio State51.7-0.5+1.10.7 Clemson65.5-0.8+3.41.3 TeamCurrent Playoff%WinLossWgtd Swing Oklahoma23.3-0.4+0.80.5 TeamCurrent Playoff%WinLossWgtd Swing Total* How LSU-Mississippi State swings the playoff picturePotential changes in College Football Playoff probability for selected teams based on the outcome of the Oct. 20 LSU-Mississippi State game Georgia22.0-0.6+1.20.8 How Ohio State-Purdue swings the playoff picturePotential changes in College Football Playoff probability for selected teams based on the outcome of the Oct. 20 Ohio State-Purdue game Notre Dame50.1+0.4-0.80.5 LSU13.6-0.4+1.80.7 LSU13.6%+5.4-9.8±6.9 Total* Alabama64.5-1.0+1.91.3 17.7 Change in odds w/ Ohio State… Change in odds w/ LSU… Change in odds w/ Michigan… Texas15.0-0.3+1.40.5 Mississippi State1.1-1.1+2.01.4 No. 9 Oklahoma (5-1) at TCU (3-3)Favorite: Oklahoma (72.1 percent)Total potential CFP swing: 17.7 pointsThe stakes: Last week, we talked about how Oklahoma could still make the College Football Playoff after losing to Texas earlier this month. The Sooners’ path hinged on taking care of business over their reasonably winnable remaining schedule and hoping for a peer like Notre Dame to slip up along the way. They almost got their wish for the latter with an Irish near-loss to Pitt, but OU’s own journey back starts with Saturday’s clash against the Horned Frogs. A loss would all but dash Oklahoma’s playoff hopes, and TCU is a tough opponent in spite of its 3-3 record, so the stakes for this one are already high from the Sooners’ perspective. But the game also picks up extra leverage from the fact that another loss would seriously damage OU’s chances of making the Big 12 championship (which helps conference leader Texas) and also remove it as a viable playoff rival for Notre Dame plus fellow one-loss squads LSU, Michigan and — now — Georgia, which fell to the Bayou Bengals last week. Ohio State51.7-0.5+2.90.9 Notre Dame50.1-0.7+1.20.9 TeamCurrent Playoff%WinLossWgtd Swing 15.9 Michigan State2.5-2.5+4.93.3 TeamCurrent Playoff%WinLossWgtd Swing Ohio State51.7%+4.9-21.0±7.9 Alabama64.5-0.3+1.50.5 Total* Clemson65.5%+8.1-42.7±13.6 16.0 Georgia22.0-0.8+1.51.0 No. 2 Ohio State (7-0) at Purdue (3-3)Favorite: Ohio State (81.2 percent)Total potential CFP swing: 15.9 pointsThe stakes: The Buckeyes are in great shape right now, sitting undefeated with a 52 percent chance of making the playoff. And on paper, the Boilermakers don’t pose too great a threat to Ohio State’s winning streak, ranking 41st in ESPN’s Football Power Index ratings. But the great thing about college football’s regular season is that no team is safe, and any loss can throw a season into disarray. A slip-up against Purdue would drop OSU’s playoff chances by a whopping 21 percentage points, and the biggest beneficiaries would be Clemson, Michigan and Notre Dame — each of whom would receive multiple points of playoff probability with the Buckeyes dropping down. Ohio State should win this one as 12-point favorites, making all of these possible shakeups moot, but the potential for anarchy is lurking. Total* No. 3 Clemson (6-0) vs. No. 16 NC State (5-0)Favorite: Clemson (84.1 percent)Total potential CFP swing: 28.5 pointsThe stakes: Right now, we list Clemson as tied with Alabama for the best odds of making the playoff at 65 percent, a number that would rise to 74 percent with a Tiger win this week … or fall to 23 percent with a loss. Though it’s not overly likely — particularly since the game is in Death Valley — the Wolfpack do have the potential to pull off a huge surprise win. Despite a 5-0 record, NC State is still probably the nation’s best-kept secret (granted, its most impressive win so far is merely a 28-23 victory over Boston College), but it could really begin to gain national traction by knocking off Clemson. The Wolfpack’s playoff chances would rise to 37 percent with a win on Saturday, making them the rare unheralded team to make noise in today’s stratified college football world. Notre Dame and Ohio State should be rooting for the Wolfpack, too: The Irish would pick up 4 percentage points of playoff probability if Clemson loses, while the Buckeyes’ chances would improve by 3 percentage points. Clemson is an 18-point favorite, so don’t hold your breath, but this is still the game with the most potential playoff ramifications of any in Week 8. Swing in playoff odds is weighted by the chance of each outcome — win or lose — actually happening.*Total swing includes every game in the country — not just those listed here. Swing in playoff odds is weighted by the chance of each outcome — win or lose — actually happening.*Total swing includes every game in the country — not just those listed here. Thanks to our College Football Playoff model — which simulates every game of the season to figure out each team’s chance of reaching the final four stage — we can see how much influence any given game has on the overall playoff picture. Most games have little to no effect, but some can potentially swing the playoff probabilities not just for the two schools involved but also for numerous teams around the country. To help you prepare for Week 8 of the college football season, here are the games that matter most this weekend in terms of their potential cumulative effect on the entire nation’s playoff chances. Notre Dame50.1-0.5+2.10.8 Texas15.0-0.6+1.50.8 read more

Read More »

Hot Takedown The Final Four The Cubs Sit Kris Bryant Fixing The

Links to what we discuss in this week’s show:FiveThirtyEight’s continually updated March Madness predictions and ongoing March Madness reporting.Ken Pomeroy’s piece in Slate about whether Notre Dame should have fouled Kentucky at the end of their game.The legend of Tom Izzo, by the numbers.Kate’s article about Indiana’s religious freedom law.Fangraphs on Kris Bryant’s insane spring training, and the Cubs decision to not call him up.Peter King on the NFL point after changes. Extra point kicks may be moved back to the 15 yard line.Benjamin Morris’s opus on how kickers have gotten better and better over the decades.Our significant digit of the week: 227, the average number of hits to the head in a season for male and female hockey players. A recent study found many hockey helmets to be unsafe. Embed Code More: Apple Podcasts | ESPN App | RSS | Embed Welcome to this week’s episode of Hot Takedown, our podcast where the hot sports takes of the week meet the numbers that prove them right or tear them down. On this week’s show (for March 31, 2015), we discuss the Final Four field in the men’s tournament; what role the NCAA has in taking a stand in cases like Indiana’s religious freedom law; a preview of the baseball season and why the Cubs are benching their best prospect, Kris Bryant; and the math behind the proposed extra point changes in the NFL.Stream the episode by clicking play above, or subscribe using one of the podcast clients below. If you’re a fan of our podcasts, be sure to subscribe on Apple Podcasts and leave a rating/review. That helps spread the word to other listeners. And get in touch by email, on Twitter or in the comments. Tell us what you think, send us hot takes to discuss and tell us why we’re wrong. By Chadwick Matlin, Kate Fagan, Neil Paine and Allison McCann read more

Read More »

Womens volleyball aims to get back on track against Michigan

After losing to No. 9 Illinois, No. 17 Ohio State looks to get back on the winning side in women’s volleyball when the team plays Michigan on Saturday.But coach Geoff Carlston may consider his program already on a winning streak as the program added two scholarship athletes for the 2015-2016 season.The Buckeyes (18-9, 9-6) received National Letters of Intent from Taylor Hughes, a six-foot-one-inch setter from Carroll, Ohio, and Megan Wickey, a six-foot-two-inch outside hitter from Omaha, Neb.Wickey joins sophomore setter Maggie Heim as the other women’s volleyball player to come from Omaha.Carlston was unavailable for comment during Friday’s practice. The Wolverines (11-14, 6-9) have lost six of their last seven matches, including five-set matches losses to the then No. 10 Fighting Illini and No. 4 Wisconsin.But losing six of their last seven games doesn’t seem to bother all the Buckeye players, like senior setter Taylor Sherwin.“I just think we need to bring our ‘A’ game,” Sherwin said. “Like everyone says, (the) Big Ten conference, you never know what you’re gonna get each weekend.”Sherwin is one of four senior Buckeyes to be playing in their final Ohio State vs. Michigan game, and she plans on treating it like any other game.“I think it’s a bittersweet feeling with every gym I go into, knowing I’m not going back in there,” she said.Junior outside hitter Elizabeth Campbell said that the team is motivated for this game because it’s a rivalry game and because of how the Wolverines have performed at Cliff Keen Arena this season.“Any rivalry is game is slightly different, just because of what exists between the two teams,” Campbell said. “They’re going to be a good team — talking about (how) they’ve taken (the Fighting Illini and Badgers) to five sets, we do need to take things seriously.She added that being aggressive on offense and defense is something that must carry over into Ann Arbor, Mich., like they did against the Fighting Illini on Wednesday.The Wolverines will be led by Big Ten Setter of the Week, senior Lexi Dannemiller, a native of West Chester, Ohio. She leads the Big Ten in assists averaging 11.5 per set.Following their game against the Wolverines, the Buckeyes will come back to Columbus for their final three home games of the regular season. Their scheduled to play Iowa (13-13, 5-10) Wednesday and the No. 4 Badgers (23-2, 14-1) Friday. Both matches are scheduled to start at 7 p.m. read more

Read More »

Womens Hockey Lone overtime goal ends Ohio States title hopes in 10

Ohio State redshirt junior goalie Kassidy Sauve (32) prepares for a shot in the first period of the game against Minnesota on Jan. 19. Ohio State won 3-2. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Photo EditorThe Ohio State women’s hockey team’s improbable season came to a close Friday night when it fell 1-0 to the defending NCAA champions, top-seeded Clarkson, in sudden death overtime in the semifinals of the Frozen Four. The Buckeyes and the Knights entered the tournament as the top teams from their respective conferences. It was the first time in program history the Buckeyes appeared in the Frozen Four and the third consecutive appearance for the Knights. Ohio State and Clarkson headed into overtime after three scoreless periods despite 63 combined shots.Clarkson broke the scoreless tie and advanced to the national championship game when  freshman forward Loren Gabel scored the game’s only goal 16:12 into overtime. Clarkson freshman forward Elizabeth Giguere and sophomore forward Michaela Pejzlova were credited with assists. Although the game was scoreless until overtime, excitement struck in the second period when a Buckeye puck shot by redshirt sophomore defender Jincy Dunne passed Clarkson senior goaltender Shea Tiley. But the Ohio State goal was negated due to a penalty. The Buckeyes outshot Clarkson with 41 shots on net, but Tiley saved every shot. Ohio State redshirt junior goaltender Kassidy Sauve saved 33 of the 34 shots that came her way. The winner of the second semifinal game between Colgate and Wisconsin will take on Clarkson for the NCAA championship on Sunday. read more

Read More »

Mens Soccer Ohio State falls to Furman in season opener

Ohio State redshirt sophomore goalie Parker Siegfried (1) prepares to send the ball back downfield in the game against BGSU on Sep. 22. Ohio State won 1- 0. Credit: Jack Westerheide | Managing Editor for DesignThe Ohio State men’s soccer team squared off against Furman on Friday night at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium, marking both the season opener and the first game for first-year head coach Brian Maisonneuve. The Paladines ultimately prevailed 2-0 over the Buckeyes, who open the season 0-1-0.When asked about his team’s performance Friday, redshirt senior midfielder Brady Blackwell felt optimistic after the loss.“Overall, we made a few mistakes that cost us in the back and we gave up goals. But I don’t think we ever gave up and that’s a positive,” Blackwell said.The opening minutes of the match saw the two teams come out in a fast-paced style of play, with quality scoring chances coming for both clubs.Redshirt-sophomore forward Jake Scheper gave the Buckeyes arguably their most realistic chance in the third minute, but his shot was saved by Furman redshirt sophomore goaltender Ben Hale.Furman struck first off a goal from junior midfielder Rocky Guerra in the seventh minute, which beat Buckeye redshirt junior goalie Parker Siegfried to the bottom left corner.The Paladins almost tallied a second midway through the opening half when junior forward Emery May saw his shot hit the crossbar and go out of play.Ohio State played the first half of the match in a 4-5-1 formation, opting for a more defensive look.Siegfried had a busy first half, making five saves.Ohio State nearly leveled the match at the outset of the second half when the ball bounced around in front of the net for several seconds, but the Buckeyes could not capitalize on the opportunity, and the ball was subsequently cleared.Minutes later, the Buckeyes saw a free kick glance off the outside of the right post.Furman added to their lead in the 54th minute as senior midfielder Danny Kierath came free and buried his unassisted shot in the back of the net to make it 2-0.Another golden opportunity for the Buckeyes came up empty as Hale made the save off of a close range shot from senior forward Michael Prosuk.Ohio State continued playing out of a 4-5-1 formation throughout the second half, perhaps an indicator of what look Maisonneuve will most frequently employ in his first season.“We didn’t really know what to expect, we’re still a young group, new coaching staff and everything, so overall it’s not the result we wanted but there’s some positives to take into Sunday so I think that’s what we’ll look to do,” Blackwell said.In the aftermath of his first game as the head coach of the Buckeyes, Maisonneuve called this offseason and this game as part of the process.“It’s a process. It’s going to be a process, again it doesn’t happen overnight,” Maisonneuve said.  “When you play good teams like Furman, they’re going to kind of show you where we’re at, and I thought they did tonight,”For Sunday’s match against Hofstra, Maisonneuve noticed areas of improvement and things to build off of for his squad.“It’s such a quick turnaround, it’s tough to get too much done, but right away from a tactical standpoint our spacing’s got to get better, we were a little bit off in just our overall spacing,” Maisonneuve said. “I thought we started the first half just tentative.”The Buckeyes will be back in action Sunday at 2:30 pm, at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium, as they wrap up the 2018 Wolstein Classic against Hofstra. read more

Read More »

Mens Hockey No 6 Ohio State begins home stand against Wisconsin

Ohio State men’s hockey players celebrate after a goal in the second period of the game against UMass on Oct. 19. Ohio State fell 6-3. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorThe No. 6 Ohio State men’s hockey team will return to Columbus to take on the Wisconsin Badgers in the team’s second Big Ten series of the season.After a 3-1-1 road game stretch by Ohio State (6-3-1, 1-1-0-0 Big Ten), the Buckeyes will come back to the Schottenstein Center to begin the first of two straight home series. Wisconsin (5-5, 1-1-0-0 Big Ten) has been an up-and-down team, sweeping then-No. 12 Boston College to open its season, but only having won three of its past eight games. The Badgers have not done anything special, scoring 34 goals and allowing 30, with nine power play goals for and 13 against. Wisconsin has risen to the occasion against tough opponents as well as played down to the competition, but one thing that has been consistent is how frequently they score. Offensively, the Badgers are No. 12 in shots on goal and are No. 11 in goals scored. Wisconsin sophomore defenseman Wyatt Kalynuk, a Philadelphia Flyers draft pick along with Ohio State junior forward Tanner Laczynski, leads the team with 11 points and has five goals, tied for second in the nation among defensemen.Head coach Steve Rohlik is familiar with this team and knows what the Buckeyes need to do to match up with the Badgers.“They play hard, No. 1. That pucks drops, they’re going to bring it for 60 minutes,” Rohlik said. “We’ve got to match that energy and obviously try to bring it to a higher level ourselves, so that’s the first thing that comes to hand for me, and again, like I say, they’re well coached, they’re not going to give you much, they’re going to play good defensively and then it comes down to special teams.”With a team that takes so many shots, the Ohio State goaltending duo of redshirt senior Sean Romeo and sophomore Tommy Nappier hope to build upon their performances against Notre Dame and Colgate. The Buckeyes didn’t allow a single goal against Colgate and only gave up two in their series against Notre Dame, improving after previously questionable goaltending to start the year.The goaltending situation for Wisconsin is similar to what Ohio State has done in the net. The Badgers have two goaltenders, freshman Daniel Lebedeff and junior Jeff Berry, who each have five starts in 10 games. Berry, however, hasn’t seen game action since he allowed four goals at North Dakota. Lebedeff holds a .927 save percentage, and has been taken the starts in Berry’s place.The special teams for Ohio State are still far from where it was last season for the Buckeyes, with its power play percentage being the eighth-lowest in the country. The Badgers, however, should allow Ohio State opportunities with the man advantage. Wisconsin has the seventh-worst penalty killing unit at a .723 success rate. Last season, Ohio State split its series in Madison, Wisconsin, and scored 10 goals in a sweep against the Badgers at home, and with 16 players returning for Wisconsin, senior forward Mason Jobst has an idea of what to expect from this squad. “We’re pretty familiar with these guys, obviously we play them four times a year for the last however many years now,” Jobst said. “They’ve got some good players, like every team in the Big Ten, they’ve lost some good players as well. We’re going to watch some video on them, we’re not sure exactly what they’ve changed this year, but we expect them to be pretty good. “Both games between Ohio State and Wisconsin will be at the Schottenstein Center. Game one begins at 7 p.m. on Friday and the puck drops for game two at 5 p.m on Saturday. read more

Read More »

Track and Field Karrington Winters to leave prominent Ohio State legacy

Senior Karrington Winters runs a relay as a part of the Ohio State track and field team. Credit: Courtesy of Ohio State AthleticsWhen Karrington Winters crossed the finish line, she was almost in disbelief. As a sophomore, she had just broken the school’s indoor 600-meter run record. Winters, now a senior on the women’s track and field team, has broken two records at Ohio State, one in the 600-meter run in the Big Ten championships with a time of 1:27.60 and the other as a member of the 4×400-meter relay in the NCAA championships with a time of 3:31.23. Born and raised in Cincinnati, Winters didn’t think she was going to run track.“I always had aspirations of playing soccer, but it turned out that I started enjoying chasing after the ball a little bit more,” Winters said. During a family picnic in 2009, Winters raced the boys in her family for the last piece of cake. She beat all of them, and her parents then enrolled her in a track program.That was the same year that 12-year-old Winters placed third in the 400-meter run at nationals. The following year, Winters broke the national 800-meter run record, placed first in the 400-meter run and third in the 200-meter dash.Now, Winters is no stranger to performing on big stages. In 2016, she was part of the USA 4×400-meter relay team made up of Winters, Lynna Irby, Anna Cockrell and Samantha Watson that ran in Bydgoszcz, Poland, at the IAAF U20 World championships, ultimately taking home gold.“It’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to go to another country, especially one like Poland and be able to compete for the USA,” Winters said. During her freshman year, she was part of the 4×400-meter relay team that broke the school record with a 3:32.88 mark at the indoor Big Ten championship and a second-place finish. She also took home gold in the 600-meter run at the Ohio State Opener with a time of 1:33.68. Winters’ success continued through her sophomore year, when she broke the school’s 600-meter run record at the indoor Big Ten championship and won her first career individual conference title. Winters claimed gold at the Buckeye Tune Up that year in the 400-meter run with a mark of 55.53. Her sophomore year she ran with Beatrice Hannan, Aliyah Barnes and Maggie Barrie on the 4×400-meter relay team, setting the school record with a time of 3:31.23 at the NCAA Championships. This relay team became the first women’s 4×400-meter relay in Ohio State history to earn First Team All-American honors.Throughout Winters’ junior outdoor season, she put up a 400-meter run time of 53.15 and advanced to the NCAA championships.That season she also marked a career-best 400-meter run time of 52.49 and claimed silver on the 4×400-meter relay team with a mark of 3:33.69 at the Big Ten championships.Competing in meets is just one part of being a student-athlete. Winters compared being a student-athlete to a job, saying you have to be able to balance your academic, athletic and personal life. While being a student-athlete, Winters still finds time to be involved in her community with the role of president as she serves on the Student Athlete Advisory Committee, which is the voice of student athletes on campus. “I think [Winters’] leadership is something that she doesn’t ebb for,” Karen Dennis, director of track and field, said. “It’s not the kind of leadership that she tries to impose, it’s the kind of leadership that comes natural.”As the indoor season comes to an end and outdoor season nears, Winters said she wants to go all out in hopes of making it to nationals and being on the podium in the open 400-meter and 4×400-meter relay during outdoor season. “I can put numbers on this and say I want to win this accolade, but my biggest thing is that I want to leave a lasting legacy,” Winters said. “It’s easy to just be a number and to just come and go, but for me I actually want to be someone who is remembered by leaving my mark here at this institution.” read more

Read More »