Volleyball: Sheffield believes grittiness earned through losses led to upset at Nebraska

first_imgDespite the success the Wisconsin women’s volleyball team has seen this season, head coach Kelly Sheffield believes they could be doing better.The team is currently 14-6 overall, 6-4 Big Ten, ranked No. 11 in the nation and No. 3 in the Big Ten, which Sheffield explained during his weekly news conference isn’t where they’d like to be.But Sheffield believes the Badgers can benefit from a lack of disparity among the top teams in the Big Ten. Conference rankings can change any night, and that kind of change is something that he has seen happen before in the Big Ten.In fact, competition is so close right now that all the Badgers would need is another team to acquire two five-set loses in order to be ranked first.The Badgers’ continued improvement throughout 2015 has the veteran coach impressed and convinced his team can take advantage of this position. While Wisconsin might not have a perfect record, Sheffield is firm in his belief that they’ve come a long way since their opening defeat to Western Kentucky.Volleyball: Western Kentucky upsets No. 5 Wisconsin in season openerGrowing pains don’t come without disappointment and the No. 5 ranked Wisconsin volleyball team was no exception to that sentiment Read…Even with strides forward earlier in the season, losses acquired against Arkansas, Penn State and Ohio State hid the underlying improvement.“When you’re getting better and you’re losing, it leaves a bitter taste in your mouth,” Sheffield said.Sheffield credited his team’s spirits during these weeks for helping them to come back from losses and become stronger overall. The team’s refusal to give up on themselves was one of the most important aspects for them to keep going this season.Two players that Sheffield accredited for their determination and grit were sophomore outside hitters Lauryn Gillis and Kelli Bates. Sheffield acknowledged that while both women have struggled during the season, they have always worked on their problems and pushed themselves to be better.“They’ve continued to believe in the fight and I think that’s when you really show your character,” Sheffield said.Looking toward the Badgers’ next match at 7 p.m. Friday at the UW Field House against No. 22 Purdue (17-4, 8-2 Big Ten), they will face a team that is second in the Big Ten in hitting percentage (.279) and assists per set (13.22) and third in the Big Ten in kills per set (14.21). In spite of a high-powered Purdue offense, Sheffield desires to keep the team’s current momentum going to finish their Big Ten homestead on a high note. He believes his team’s newfound grittiness is sure to help.“[Wisconsin is] feisty and that grittiness is coming more to the surface,” Sheffield said. “They’re not giving up — they haven’t given up on themselves or each other. I think they’ve embraced the learning process.”last_img read more

Channing Frye: Lakers are ‘appealing place’ for free agents like LeBron James, Paul George

first_imgCaldwell-Pope emerged as the team’s best bowler, although that wasn’t much of a surprise. He said he tries to go every weekend with his 5-year-old son, Kenzo.“I’m thinking about getting my own shoes and my own ball,” the starting shooting guard said.Of course, where there is competition there is ribbing.“My team won,” Walton said. He said Caldwell-Pope was the most impressive on the lanes but “faded in the finals” and that among the rookies, “Kuz was better than Zo.”FULL HOUSEFor a few hours Tuesday, the highest concentration of NBA players anywhere in the world was in a luxury hotel on Canal Street.The Lakers, Dallas Mavericks and Indiana Pacers were all staying in New Orleans, adjacent to the French Quarter, for games against the Pelicans.“We checked in and Dennis Smith Jr. was downstairs getting ready to go to the arena,” Walton said, “and throughout the day you see the coaches.”The Pelicans were originally scheduled to face the Mavericks on Tuesday and the Lakers on Thursday with an off-day in between. However, a leaky roof in Smoothie King Center on Feb. 7 led to a scheduled make-up game with the Pacers wedged in between.ALSOIngram did not practice and was ruled out for Thursday. … Josh Hart continues to rehab his broken hand, and is meeting daily with a physical therapist specializing in hands. And yes, if his former teammate James is the target, Frye will happily make a phone call.“I’ll make a call to Jesus if I have to,” Frye said, “if that’s going to help get a win.”For now, Frye will be focused on helping the team win on the court. He is eager to get back on the floor.“I’m happy to just be back,” he said, “actually not working out with myself anymore. It’s one of those things, today I feel good, tomorrow I’ll be really sore. … But conditioning’s a factor and just kind of getting a rhythm and figuring out plays and where I fit in.”How Frye feels on Thursday morning will determine his availability against the Pelicans.“We’ll see how he reacts to practicing,” Coach Luke Walton said. “As long as he continues to feel good, I’ll have a talk with him in the morning. We’ll see how he feels.”PINS AND NEEDLINGThe Lakers did not practice Tuesday when they arrived in New Orleans, instead loading onto buses and going bowling.It was the kind of activity that has become common on the road for the Lakers, whether going to an “escape room” in Milwaukee or attending “Hamilton” on Broadway.“It’s just great team bonding,” Kentavious Caldwell-Pope said. “Everybody’s having fun … laughing, joking and a little competition which is good. It’s good for the chemistry off the court, and maybe on the court.”Related Articles AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersIn two months since being traded from Cleveland, Frye has found all of those qualities in the Lakers, with a popular coach and an exciting young core of Lonzo Ball, Kyle Kuzma and Brandon Ingram.“I think you’re going to see a lot of guys this summer who want to play with Lonzo and Kuz and Brandon and guys that they have here and just build from that,” Frye said. “This is a pretty appealing place. It doesn’t hurt that it’s the Lakers and that these young guys are some of the best young guys in the NBA.”Frye has not played since Feb. 14, less than a week after being traded. An appendectomy over the All-Star break has sidelined him since, although he returned to practice Wednesday and could be available against the Pelicans on Thursday.With just 12 games remaining in the regular season, Frye said he wants to see where he “could fit in for the future.” If it’s with the Lakers, he also can envision himself serving as a bit of a matchmaker.“I think a lot of vets are going to ask me how it is,” Frye said. “They’re going to ask I.T. (Isaiah Thomas) how it is.” Lakers want Lonzo Ball to be more aggressive on offense center_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error NEW ORLEANS — It has been three years since Channing Frye’s season ended without a trip to the playoffs. With the Lakers well out of the postseason chase, the 34-year-old veteran forward has started thinking about how he will utilize his extra time come April.“This has been the first time that I’ve had a while to really work on some things,” he said. A pending free agent, Frye said he plans to attack the offseason “like I’m 22 again,” getting in great shape but also taking some time to consider what’s next.Where will be next?Unlike top free-agent targets LeBron James and Paul George, Frye is not expecting to be flooded with maximum contract offers July 1. He is, however, looking for many of the same things in free agency that elite stars like James and George want – stability, culture, a chance to win.last_img read more

First female Speaker of the Iowa House, Linda Upmeyer of Clear Lake, reflects on her tenure

first_imgDES MOINES — Linda Upmeyer of Clear Lake closed out her tenure as Speaker of the Iowa House Monday morning. Last fall, Upmeyer announced she would not seek re-election to the House in November of 2020 and would immediately step down as the leader of House Republicans for the 2020 legislative session. In October, House Republicans selected Pat Grassley as Upmeyer’s successor and he was installed after a vote in the full House Monday morning. Upmeyer, though, was able to give one last speech from the speaker’s chair.  “As the first woman to serve as speaker of the Iowa House, I hope that my time has inspired girls and young women,” Upmeyer said. “When you dream big and work hard, nothing is unattainable.” Upmeyer’s late father, Del Stromer of Garner, was speaker of the Iowa House in the early 1980s. “Someday, God willing, I’ll have an opportunity to have a discussion with my dad. I’m sure he will be very proud of what we’ve accomplished on behalf of Iowans,” Upmeyer says. “I’m also sure that there will be a couple of things where he’ll say: ‘Girl, what were you thinking?’” Upmeyer, who is still a voting member of the House in 2020, told reporters she hasn’t lost any sleep about her decision to resign as House speaker. “From time to time I’ll think of a bill, perhaps, that I was interested in and say: ‘Oh, we didn’t get that passed,’” Upmeyer said, snapping her fingers. “But, you know, I still have this year.” Upmeyer says it feels nice to have a reduced workload now that she’s not in charge of raising money and recruiting candidates for House races.  “I traded cars because I wouldn’t have to put 25,000 miles on my car every year,” Upmeyer told reporters Monday. Upmeyer is completing her tenth term in the Iowa House.last_img read more

Matano off to a flier as Tusker beat Wazito

first_imgMatano taking charge of his first match in his second coming at Tusker made changes to the squad with Brian Osumba and left-back David Mwangi all starting the match as he sought to steady the ship.Tusker started bright in attack. In the fourth minute, referee Agnetta Itubo denied them what looked like a brilliant opportunity at goal when Achema picked the ball up and sprinted at goal after a foul on Peter Nzuki in the middle of the pack.However, the referee pulled back play to the Nzuki foul with Achema clearly breaking off towards goal denying them advantage play.On the other end, Tusker’s veteran keeper Duncan Ochieng pulled a brilliant save to deny Piston Mutamba who had done well to outmuscle Mwangi off the ball before unleashing a ferocious volley at goal that Ochieng tipped over.Having survived the near goal on their end, Tusker got themselves into the lead in the 12th minute courtesy of a gift from Wazito defender Emmanuel Tienan.The Ivorian’s poor control as he tried to defend a ball from Mathew Odongo fell on Achema’s path and with only the keeper to beat the forward slotted the ball into the far left of keeper Peter Odhiambo’s goal.Wazito’s Kennedy Ayako attempts to dribble past Tusker’s Hashim Ssempala during a Kenyan Premier League clash at the Camp Toyoyo Ground on April 25, 2018. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluBut Wazito kept on asking the questions, planting the long balls behind the Tusker defense as they sought to use Mutamba’s height.In the 14th minute, the tact nearly paid off when Mutamba turned away from Asike on the right but his shot deflected off the Tusker defender’s back, but the ref gave a goal-kick.Tusker were trying to play the ball on the ground passing around with ease as they seemed to have gained immense confidence from the goal.In the 20th minute, Odongo came close but he couldn’t direct a header on target at the edge of the six yard box off an Achema cross.As the half wore on, Wazito grew into the game and they had two chances though both went straight to keeper Ochieng’s arms.First it was David Oswe who pulled a shot from distance and second, Tienan tried to make amends when he wriggled his way past a forest of legs on the right but his eventual shot was straight at the keeper.-Second half-In the second half, both coaches made changes, Timothy Otieno and Eric Ambunya coming on for Mike Khamati and Mwangi respectively while Wazito brought on Samson Ndegwa for Oswe.After a balanced start, it was the Brewers who came close on the hour mark when a good team move on the left saw Osumba pick out Odongo on the far right, but the forward took too many touches in the ball and his eventual shot was weak and straight to Ochieng.Wazito made more attacking changes, Ibrahim Mao coming on for Kennedy Ayako and the youngster almost had an immediate impact when his freekick from range evaded the target by a whisker with Ochieng well beaten.Tusker’s Eugene Asike and Wazito’s Piston Mutamba chase for the ball during a Kenyan Premier League clash at the Camp Toyoyo Ground on April 25, 2018. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluOn the other end, keeper Odhiambo almost made an unforgettable error when he missed a backpass from his skipper Dan Owino but luckily for him he was away from goal and the ball rolled out for a corner.Wazito pounded Tusker with immense pressure as they sought to get back on level terms and Mao continued to provide danger. His freekick in the 71st minute almost caused jitters in the Tusker box but Luis Tumba missed a connecting header.There was drama in the final minutes of the game after Wazito keeper Odhiambo seemed to have pushed Tusker’s Boniface Muchiri in the face, but the referee cautioned no one from the ensuing drama.0Shares0000(Visited 1 times, 1 visits today) 0Shares0000Tusker’s Mathew Taro Odongo vies for the ball with Wazito’s Joe Waithira during a Kenyan Premier League clash at the Camp Toyoyo Ground on April 25, 2018. PHOTO/Timothy OlobuluNairobi, Kenya, Apr 25- The imposing figure of Robert Matano made a triumphant return to the Kenyan Premier League touchline as he guided Tusker FC to their third win of the season with a hard fought 1-0 victory over Wazito FC at the Camp Toyoyo Ground on Wednesday.Ugandan forward Robert Achema scored the all important goal in the 12th minute of the game as Matano started his tenure with a win, the Brewers desperately hanging on to the slender lead till the final minute of the game.last_img read more