Syracuse defense suffocates Army in 73-56 NCAA tournament win

first_img Published on March 18, 2016 at 7:24 pm Contact Jon: [email protected] | @jmettus Army head coach Dave Magarity paced the sideline with his hands on the back of his head, then took a knee at the end of the bench to catch his breath.The game was only in its opening minutes, Syracuse led just 3-2, but the Orange press had already prevented the Black Knights from getting over halfcourt twice.Army made just one field goal in the first quarter and its leading scorer was held scoreless through the first half. SU led by as many as 30 before the midway point with 19 points off turnovers in the first 20 minutes. In a 73-56 blowout win over the No. 13 seed Black Knights (29-3, 17-1 Patriot) in the Carrier Dome on Friday, defense was the driving force behind No. 4 seed Syracuse’s (26-7, 13-3 Atlantic Coast) win.SU advanced to the Round of 32 for the third year in a row and will face 12th-seeded Albany on Sunday after the Great Danes beat fifth-seeded Florida, 61-58.“All our worst fears were realized,” Army head coach Dave Magarity said. “When I saw that pop up on the screen last Monday night this is what I was thinking. I knew how good they were and I knew how good they could be if they got into you and you allowed them to get you playing like that.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textOn Army’s first possession, Orange defenders stopped Brianna Johnson just before she got to half court. All of Johnson’s teammates had run down court so she had no one to pass it to. Ten-second backcourt violation.The Black Knights broke the press on their next attempt for their only basket of the opening quarter, but on the next attempt Johnson again couldn’t get it across half court.“We were overthinking it a little bit,” Magarity said, adding that his players seemed shell shocked. “I don’t think we could have been any more prepared. But being prepared and telling them what to expect, it’s hard to simulate that.”Syracuse’s plan was get the ball out of the hands of Army’s primary ball handler Kelsey Minato. It left other players open in the press, then trapped them before they could get over the halfcourt line.In the half court, a player was always in Minato’s face, even off the ball, adding a wrinkle into the usual 2-3 zone. Late in the shock clock, the Orange would switch to man-to-man, further confusing the Army players.“I didn’t get a ton of open shots. The shots I did get I probably wasn’t balanced. I washing rushing it because of their pressure,” said Minato, who would have been held to single digits for the first time in 112 games if not for two made free throws with 10 seconds left. “I’ve seen face guarding, but it wasn’t like that. They were a lot quicker, a lot more physical and it kind of got me playing out of my comfort zone.”Army is a team like Syracuse that thrives on creating pressure. The more it scores the easier it is to get into the full court sets.But as Syracuse prevented Army from scoring it effectively prevented the Black Knights from being able to get into their press and the game spiraled out of control from there.At time outs, Magarity caught his players looking up at the scoreboard. “You can’t worry about what the score is,” Magarity said. “We need to get the ball over half court.“Halftime couldn’t have come soon enough.”The halftime deficit for Army was 25 points. Only after the Orange started holding the ball and succumbing to turnovers in the second half did Army crawl within 12 points, but it was all a consolation.“We face that defense probably never,” Magarity said. “And I mean that. It’s overwhelming at times. It’s relentless and it’s really very very difficult to ever get comfortable.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+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