Syracuse football down to its last strike after 35-20 loss to North Carolina State

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first_imgAs North Carolina State lined up for a third-and-11 fourth-quarter snap, an SU assistant coach had his hands resting on his head in anticipation.Quarterback Ryan Finley dropped back and threw the ball to Bra’Lon Cherry near the SU sideline. Cherry ran forward for 23 yards, picking up a back-breaking first down. The coach’s hands never moved, staying in disappointment. The play effectively ended the game for Syracuse.Three plays later, running back Matthew Dayes ran it in for a score to open up a 15-point lead. As most fans started streaming out, SU’s chances of making a bowl game became slimmer.After a blowout loss to Clemson last week, Syracuse (4-6, 2-4 Atlantic Coast) had chances to win two games to vault itself to a bowl game. Two of those games were at home, and this was the only one against a team with a losing record. During Monday’s press conference, Syracuse head coach Dino Babers talked about how he felt his team was in a good spot to get to those six wins.“We couldn’t ask for a better schedule to try to get to a bowl game that we haven’t been to in a very long time,” Babers said.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textNow, the Orange has put itself in a much tougher spot. It’ll have to win two tougher games — against No. 20 Florida State and on the road against Pittsburgh — to get to that bowl game, after it dropped a 35-20 crusher to North Carolina State (5-5, 2-4) on Saturday in the Carrier Dome.SU did have a tougher challenge than originally thought once it was announced an hour before the game that starting quarterback Eric Dungey would sit out. Starting wide receiver Steve Ishmael also sat out. He had practiced on Tuesday but as the week progressed he couldn’t keep going, Babers said.Even with the missing pieces, things started off well. In just under eight minutes and on its first possession, the Orange moved the ball up field and scored on a Dontae Strickland run. With backup quarterback Zack Mahoney running the show, it seemed like the high-octane offense would be just fine.But as the game got deeper it became clear that this wasn’t the same unit. Syracuse averages 463.4 yards of offense per game, which breaks down to 231.7 per half. At the end of the first half on Saturday, SU’s offense had 100 total yards. It ended the game with just 218.“Offensively, we didn’t put up the numbers that we usually do,” Strickland said. “It’s different with a different team captain on the field.”The Wolfpack had lost its last four games and blown wins in three of them. There were miscues that the Orange could have taken advantage of.On third and goal from the SU 4-yard line near the end of the half, backup quarterback Jalan McClendon made a bad throw into the back corner of the end zone that resulted in an interception. Babers had called timeouts, seemingly to stop the clock, but the first one came after about 20 seconds ran off. SU got the ball back and promptly went three-and-out.In the third quarter, after each team traded touchdowns, SU’s Sean Riley blocked a punt. The Orange recovered the kick at the N.C. State 17-yard line. On three plays, SU got pushed back four yards and had to settle for a field goal.Syracuse’s inability to sustain drives on offense forced the defense to be on the field longer than normal. Opponents normally run 72 plays per game against the Orange. By the end of the third, the Wolfpack had run 66 plays and dominated time of possession.“If we’re on the field more, it gives us an opportunity to make more plays,” SU safety Rodney Williams said.Late in the third quarter, Syracuse couldn’t make a play on third down to get off the field, leading to a seven-minute touchdown drive and an eight-point deficit. Still, it was a one-possession game.With the ball at midfield, Mahoney threw a deep pass down the right sideline into the end zone for an Alvin Cornelius touchdown. As the wide receivers started celebrating in the end zone, the offensive linemen put their heads down near the line of scrimmage. A chop block penalty had been called on Donnie Foster and Strickland, negating the play. SU punted three plays later.The Wolfpack left with its fifth win, one the Orange desperately needed. SU is down to its last strike.“Now we can’t miss a pitch,” Babers said postgame. “It’s a full count and if it’s close, we’re going to have to swing at it.” Comments Published on November 12, 2016 at 4:15 pm Contact Tomer: | @tomer_langer Facebook Twitter Google+last_img

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B’ville girls volleyball sweeps past Liverpool, F-M

first_img Tags: Baldwinsvillevolleyball Hungry again after a semifinal defeat to Burnt Hills-Ballston Lake in the top Gold division of its own Fall Swing Tournament, the Baldwinsville girls volleyball team set out to dominate SCAC Metro division foes.A long-time rival, Liverpool, was in the way last Tuesday night, but the Bees went to Liverpool Middle School, where the Warriors are hosting matches this fall while its high school gym is getting rebuilt, and quickly prevailed.Repeating what it did back on Sept. 4, B’ville took the first set 25-17 and kept improving from there, wiping out Liverpool 25-12 in the second set and 25-9 in the third.All the while, Rileigh Kimball was impossible to contain, putting away 17 kills and getting help from Summer McClintic and Alexandra Molini, each of whom had eight kills and eight assists, McClintic adding three aces.Madelyn Shuler and Sophia Kordas both earned five kills, all part of an effort anchored by Jenna Garvey, who recorded 30 assists to go with three kills and two digs.A tougher match appeared to loom Thursday against Fayetteville-Manlius, since the Hornets had pushed B’ville to four sets when they first met on Sept. 9.Their second encounter was not as close, though, as the Bees dominated from the outset in all phases of the game with one of its most complete efforts of the season, eventually putting away F-M 25-12, 25-16, 25-9.Garvey had 17 assists, three kills and three digs, with McClintic earning 12 assists, plus five kills and three blocks, while Clute produced 14 digs and three aces to cement the back line.Kimball put together 12 kills, six digs and three blocks, while Kyrah Wilbur gained six kills. Sophia Kordas finished with four kills and a team-best four aces.The Baldwinsville boys volleyball team was back on the court last Wednesday night, facing Syracuse, who kept things close in the first two sets, though the Bees won them 25-22 and 25-23.Syracuse did win the third set 25-15 and almost pushed it to a fifth set before the Bees held on to win the fourth 25-23, having seen Curtiss Hey get 11 kills and Aidan Priest six kills. Dylan Bramble earned 17 assists and Carter Healey had eight assists.Following road matches against West Genesee and Henninger, B’ville travels to Lakeland next weekend for the Walter Panas Tournament as the boys Bees host Oswego Monday and then challenge Cicero-North Syracuse Wednesday night.Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story last_img

Orel Hershiser zeroed in on MLB record 25 years ago

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error “It’s a rhetorical question. Just like people who meet me think I’m in the Hall of Fame. I never correct them. Why disappoint them?”Don’t be disappointed to learn that, for the record, the streak is 59 and doing fine.Also to make clear: Hershiser hasn’t made the Hall of Fame. At least as far as he can recall.“Days are long, years are short, I can’t believe I’m actually retired,” said Hershiser, who just turned 55 — his old uniform number.Working the past nine years as a game analyst for ESPN, a candidate to someday join the Dodgers’ broadcasting crew on a regular basis, Hershiser will forever be the boyish symbol of the 1988 Dodgers title team and linked with the grizzled Hall of Famer Drysdale, able to surpass his mark as if everyone stayed on a pre-written Hollywood script. For starters, Hershiser had to throw five complete-game shutouts between Sept. 5 in Atlanta and Sept. 23 in San Francisco just to get in the neighborhood.Close calls? Nothing like the one against the Giants that appeared to end the whole thing at 42, only to have umpire Paul Runge decide San Francisco’s Brett Butler went too far out of the baseline to break up a double play at second, erasing a run and ending the inning.That fed directly to the night in San Diego — Sept. 28, 1988, his last start of the season before the playoffs — in a contest that only some 22,000 actually saw at the park because it wasn’t televised.Hershiser had to throw nine scoreless innings to tie it, 10 to break it, or else face the possibility of having to make a relief appearance in the final four games to do it.That meant his teammates couldn’t score a run and Padres pitcher Andy Hawkins had to match him with zeros.And that’s how it somehow happened.“You know about the baseball superstition when no one talks to a pitcher throwing a no-hitter?” said Tim Leary, Hershiser’s teammate on that ’88 team who had 17 victories himself and actually struck out more batters during the regular season. “No one would talk to Orel about it.“And during that game in San Diego, we were trying to score. If we could have won that game 10-0, we would have and it would have been fine. But as things happened, it was just magical that it did go extra innings, and that was a record that was apparently made to be broken.”When Dodgers right fielder Jose Gonzalez caught a fly ball hit by Padres pinch-hitter Keith Moreland with the winning run on third base in the bottom of the 10th, Hershiser got down on one knee and gave thanks.That pushed him past Drysdale’s record of 58, which had been referred to as going 58 2/3 until statistical adjustments were made to throw out the fractions.Hershiser, as if it was in a Hallmark Channel movie, was then embraced in the dugout by Drysdale, the Dodgers’ broadcaster working that game, with Vin Scully in the booth calling the play-by-play, who was freed up to go downstairs.And even though the contest wasn’t over — Hershiser’s night was, but the game ended up going 16 innings before the Padres won, 2-1 — the two were escorted to a media room to hold a news conference.Too many surreal things to recall during a month of Dodger miracles, and even more to come.In 1968, Drysdale threw six consecutive shutouts between May 14 and June 4. He had four more scoreless innings June 8 against Philadelphia before the streak ended on a sacrifice fly.That broke a record held for 52 years by Walter Johnson — the Hall of Famer threw 55 2/3 innings. Assume those last 2/3 have also been erased.How Hershiser, whom manager Tommy Lasorda had already dubbed “Bulldog,” was able not to just seize a moment, but the entire month of September, is astounding to this day.“Some people are so mentally strong they can just will things to happen, like a Muhammad Ali,” said Leary, a Santa Monica native who remembers attending the June 4, 1968 game in which Drysdale shut out Pittsburgh 5-0 — the same night presidential candidate Robert F. Kennedy was assassinated not very far away.“Orel just never made a mistake. Everything he threw was at the knees or below. He was more than just in a zone. Real precision. Every hit he gave up was just a jam-shot flare, or a grounder that got through the infield somehow.”The cerebral Hershiser agrees that “I was always just a ‘good’ pitcher, not a ‘great’ one. I think about it now. I didn’t have a 97 mph fastball or an unbelievable curveball. I had the sinker, and I figured out a way to win. I thought through it all.”With Mike Scioscia as his primary receiver and orchestrator — although Rick Dempsey did catch one game during the streak — Hershiser was truly the master of the house, an entrance song Dodger Stadium organist Nancy Bea Hefley played for him from the Broadway play, “Les Miserables.”Hershiser laughs when asked if he can play that game over in his mind.“I’m not that kind of a player who sits down and has a beer and talks old times,” he said. “I’ve got enough things to remember in my head these days, running seven businesses, trying to keep up with all the ESPN things.”Most of Hershiser’s remembrances of that streak are chronicled in “Out of the Blue,” a book he wrote with Jerry Jenkins soon after that season. He recalled Drysdale interviewing him on KABC radio.“Even though I had retired 19 Padres on groundballs and was probably as sharp as I had been all year, I would not get a decision in the game,” Hershiser wrote. “It would not count as a shutout or a complete game, even though it was really more impressive than either (of the previous five). …“The streak had been a dream, but I was glad it was over for 1988. All those innings wouldn’t mean a thing when Mookie Wilson came to the plate for the Mets in the first game of the National League Championship Series.”Hershiser actually continued the scoreless streak into the playoffs, although it wasn’t added to the record number. He posted eight more zeros against the Mets in Game 1 of the NLCS at Dodger Stadium on Oct. 4 until Darryl Strawberry’s double scored a run in the top of the ninth. Jay Howell came in on relief, and couldn’t hold a 2-1 lead.On the second day of the 1989 season in Cincinnati, Hershiser gave up an unearned run in the first inning (thanks to his own error) in an eventual 4-3 loss, starting the season 0-1.He had half as many shutouts in ‘89 — four, instead of eight — and had only two more in the 11 seasons after that.He never really came close to matching that scoreless innings mark in a career that was derailed for a time by shoulder surgery. He left to play in Cleveland (World Series appearances in ’95 and ’97), San Francisco and with the New York Mets before circling back to finish his career as a 41-year-old Dodger starter in 2000. In his final six starts in L.A., he allowed 36 earned runs in 24-plus innings for a 13.14 ERA and 1-5 mark.With 204 career wins and a 3.48 ERA in more than 3,000 innings, Hershiser’s place in the Dodgers all-time record books includes 10th overall in wins (135), 16th in ERA (3.12), sixth in strikeouts (1,456) and ninth in shutouts (24, one more than Bob Welch).As much as Hershiser is a collector of sports memorabilia — he says he has his jersey and spikes from the record-setting game — he only recently gave up possession of the ball that Gonzalez caught for the last out. ESPN’s Keith Olbermann, a sports anchor at KCBS-Channel 2 at the time, bought it six months ago.
Hershiser has also given up trying to predict if that mark of 59 will ever be eclipsed. Very few starters, or relief pitchers, have even reached as many as 30 scoreless innings in the time since then.“Sometimes, I think it’s gotten harder, sometimes it seems easier,” he said.“When they tightened the strike zones, built new smaller ballparks, when hitters were, shall we say, more juiced, then it was a record that was much harder to break,” he said. “Now that there’s drug testing, it makes it a little easier I suppose.“I do think it’s possible to break, though. If I could do it, I’d think someone else could. In fact, I actually hope someone breaks it so they can enjoy what baseball is at that level. It would be so cool, if that guy would call me and ask me to be there at the game when he breaks it.”Maybe by that point, Hershiser will actually be a bona fide Hall of Famer.center_img Sure, 25 years later, people still come up to Orel Hershiser and ask him about his record consecutive scoreless innings streak.Sometimes it starts with: How many innings was it again?“I’m at a point where I’m not sure anymore, after they (the Major League Baseball official stat keepers) changed Don Drysdale’s number right in the middle of everything,” said the Dodgers’ 1988 Cy Young Award winner.“It feels like I’ve been told the wrong number so many times. People say, ‘You still have that world record, right?’last_img

T-Pain sings the National Anthem at a Dodgers game, reminds everyone he has pipes

first_img Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error T-Pain, famous for his use of Auto-Tune, sang the “Star Spangled Banner” at Monday night’s Dodgers game and blew everyone away with his actual vocals.Reading this on a mobile device? Use this link.last_img

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