Hillman continues to spark OSU offense

A “say hey” to Ohio State’s outfielder Dee Dee Hillman might mean more than just a greeting.Hillman compares her softball prowess to Major League legend Willie Mays.“We have the same mentality that wherever the ball is hit, I’m going to get it,” Hillman said. “That is my outfield mentality. I love to make the plays that seem to be impossible. I love the challenge.”Not only can Hillman play defense like Mays, making only one error this year, but she hits like him as well.In a two-week span from April 21 to May 2, Hillman had a .524 batting average from the leadoff position.The team went 7-1 during this stretch, including a split series over the No. 2 team in the country, Michigan.Batting first in Ohio State’s lineup is an important role, which she considers an honor.“It’s my responsibility to get everybody off to a good start and set a good tone,” Hillman said. “I think it’s my job to break the ice.”Coach Linda Kalafatis has simple expectations for her leadoff hitter when she approaches the plate.“Get on base and challenge the defense,” Kalafatis said. Hillman’s role as the leadoff hitter is enhanced because of her ability to put the ball in play.She has only struck out 12 times all season.“It comes down to being relentless and knowing that (the pitcher) is not going to get me out,” Hillman said.Though Kalafatis has simple expectations, Hillman has had to work hard to fulfill her coach’s wishes.“I know I have been putting a lot of extra work in and all the extra swings in the (batting) cages is really starting to pay off,” Hillman said.Hillman’s work ethic spotlights her versatility. She is the only player listed on the roster as a switch hitter. “I switched over from a righty hitter to a lefty when I was about 14 and it has its advantages,” Hillman said. “The fact that you are two steps closer to first base is really huge. Another advantage is that you can mis-hit and still beat it out.”As the junior’s confidence has been increasing with every game, she has made big strides compared to last year.In 2009, Hillman hit .297, whereas this season she is second on the team with a .361 batting average. Her big strides are evident in the batter’s box, but much shorter on the base paths. Hillman led the team last year with 17 stolen bases. This season, she only has five.One reason Hillman has not been able to “run like Mays” is because of a lingering hamstring injury, but her coach believes there is a bit more strategy to worry about.“We don’t want to open up first base and invite teams to walk Sam Marder,” Kalafatis said. “We don’t want to open the base up.”As the regional tournament approaches, Hillman is already looking to change up her game for next year.“As I am getting older, other teams start to know you a little bit better and start to scout you more.” Hillman said. “So, if it comes to bunting or just working more on power-slapping to hit it more in the gaps, I’ll do whatever.”In the end, Kalafatis is aware of Hillman’s big goal.“She wants to be an All-American,” Kalafatis said. read more

Deshaun Thomas broad shoulders to bear Buckeyes scoring burden

Ohio State basketball coach Thad Matta knew what he was getting in Deshaun Thomas. The junior forward is a scorer, but ever since Matta could remember he’s also had a bit of a loose trigger. When Thomas played in the 2009 Class 2A state championship game in his home state of Indiana, OSU’s coach was there to watch. The game’s opening tip went to Thomas who immediately threw up a deep 3-pointer. Air ball. “You haven’t seen anything yet,” Matta said to the person sitting next to him at the game. Thirty-four points and 15 boards later, Thomas’ Bishop Luers High School was hoisting the state championship trophy. Now, the same guy who hurriedly threw up an ill-advised air ball in his high school’s state championship game and admitted that he used to “chuck threes, just play to get that shot up” during his freshman year at OSU is the man who will lead the Buckeyes’ offense this season. Is Matta comfortable with that notion? “Yeah,” Matta said. “I think so.” He might not have any choice. With former forward Jared Sullinger now with the Boston Celtics and guard William Buford playing professionally in Spain, much of the night-to-night scoring load will be thrust onto Thomas’ broad shoulders. After the Buckeyes’ 2011 tournament run to the Final Four, it appeared Thomas might join his two teammates in the professional ranks. “It was close,” Thomas said of his decision. “I was thinking about it … because I had a great season so I was very close. But then I sat off in my room by myself and I made that decision myself, and I think I made a perfect decision by coming back.” His return is a big reason the Buckeyes – which are playing in what is expected to be the most difficult basketball conference in the country – are ranked No. 4 in both major preseason polls. For the Buckeyes to live up to those expectations, Thomas – who was named a first-team All-American by the Associated Press – will have to play a major role. The OSU forward showed he had the capabilities to be a major player last season, averaging 15.9 points and 5.4 rebounds for the season, and 19.2 points in the NCAA Tournament. Most of his production though, came with the defense focused on Sullinger, giving Thomas a little more freedom. As the only returning Buckeye to average more than nine points per game, the ire of opposing defenses will be fixed upon Thomas. “I’m pretty sure in the Big Ten it will be different,” Thomas said. “I seen how they played Jared last year and I think this year I’ll probably get some of that.” To prepare him, Thomas’ teammates tried to simulate the added defensive pressure he’ll face during summer workouts. His teammates employed double teams, triple teams and traps in scrimmages, and tried to make things as difficult as possible for him on the offensive end. “That’s going to help us big during the season when he realizes that guys are keying in on him,” said junior guard Lenzelle Smith Jr. “It’s not going to phase him because he’s going to be so used to it from our open gyms that he’s not going to think twice.” How did Thomas deal with the added pressure? “Believe it or not, there’s two people guarding him, pulling on his jersey and he still scores the ball,” Smith said. “I mean, I don’t doubt him.” His coach doesn’t either. Matta said Thomas has reined in his free-shooting ways and has turned into a more complete basketball player. “When he came in here as a freshman, if you weren’t sitting on the rim he couldn’t see you when he caught the ball,” Matta said. “He’s added a lot of different things to his game and his basketball IQ just continues to expand. “He’s making himself a complete player.” Thomas and OSU are set to tip off their season Friday against Marquette as part of the Carrier Classic on board the USS Yorktown in Charleston, S.C. Tip is set for 7 p.m. read more

Sergio Aguero is a major doubt for Liverpools clash

first_imgManchester City striker Sergio Aguero is facing a race in time to recover for Manchester City’s top of the table’s clash against Liverpool.The Argentina international grabbed his seventh goal of the season in Saturday’s 2-0 win over Brighton before leaving for Gabriel Jesus.However, Guardiola disclosed Aguero has been nursing the injury he initially suffered against Newcastle at the start of the month.“Sergio is struggling a bit with some problems in his foot,” says Guardiola to Evening Standard. Premier LeaguePremier League Betting: Match-day 5 Stuart Heath – September 14, 2019 Going into the Premier League’s match-day five with a gap already beginning to form at the top of the league. We will take a…“He is not 100 percent. He has not recovered from what happened against Newcastle, and we spoke about playing 60 minutes, and we were lucky he scored at the right moment.”The Spanish manager further explained that Aguero is a major doubt for City’s upcoming fixtures including next Sunday’s Premier League showdown with Liverpool.“It is a problem, but he needs time. Now we have two games left before the international break, and hopefully, he can do those two and then make a final recovery.“But he is not in his best condition right now physically because of the problem in his foot.”last_img read more

Eusebio on Torino and Monchis transfer dealings

first_imgEusebio Di Francesco has reiterated his faith in the transfer dealings of sporting director Ramon Monchi.Ahead of the club’s game with Torino, Eusebio went on to give an insight into the fitness of his players for the game.“Both Dzeko and Schick are in excellent condition,” the Coach said at a Press conference via Football Italia.“I’ll make a decision tomorrow, keeping Edin’s recovery in mind. I’m happy to have two important options in front of me, especially Patrik’s recent growth.“Who will recover in time for tomorrow? Manolas almost certainly because he’s trained with us for the last three days, so if he doesn’t have any problems [before Saturday] then he’ll be available.“Florenzi isn’t at his best because of a bad cold, so I have to evaluate whether to call him up or not.Chris Smalling open to a permanent AS Roma deal Andrew Smyth – September 6, 2019 Chris Smalling can “definitely see a longer-term future” for himself at AS Roma should things work out on his loan spell from Manchester United.“Karsdorp will play for his place with Santon [at right-back], then there are Mirante, Perotti, De Rossi and Juan Jesus who aren’t available.“Pastore? He’s acquiring good physical condition. Now he must find consistency in what he does, but Zaniolo will start as our No 10.“I can say we’ve improved our last three games, but we’ve often come back from bad runs and we hope we don’t have to again.“Tomorrow we have the obligation and need to win, and we’ll show intent right away because against certain teams with certain mechanisms, everything becomes more difficult.“I have faith in Monchi, who is looking for opportunities [to bring in players]. I told him that if we have to do something for the sake of it, it’s better to do nothing at all.“If there’s an opportunity to improve our squad, then yes, otherwise we’ll stay as we are. Belotti? I won’t talk about players who don’t belong here.”last_img read more

Masters strokes

first_imgCelebrations, an exhibition of limited edition prints and serigraphs by MF Husain, etchings by Laxma Goud and art works by Thota Vaikuntam, Somnath Maity and Murali Nagapuzha have been organised in the Capital at Beanstalk.India’s best known ‘art maestro’ the late Maqbool Fida Husain popular know as MF Hussain is one of India’s most charismatic artists who redefined art to a great extent. He is also called as ‘Picasso of India’ by a leading magazine and celebrated for his wide repertoire of works of art. M F Hussain, the artist, who earned fame and controversy over his work which are a blend of cubism and classical Indian styles, that fetch millions of dollars on international art markets. On display will be his limited edition prints. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Thota Vaikuntam hails from Andhra Pradesh, in South India, and finds his inspiration in the rural areas of the state. Men and women of his village are often the central characters of his work. Telangana women, in particular, are frequent subjects for his works. The obsession can be traced back to his childhood, when he used to be fascinated by the male artists who used to impersonate female characters in the travelling theatre groups that performed in his village. He admits finding the women of his village very sensuous and that he only attempts to capture their vibrancy. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixRecognised today as one of Bengal’s important new emerging painters, Maity has already exhibited his works at many major Indian and European galleries. He has won awards and scholarships from most of the major Indian fine art institutions, including the All India Fine Arts and Crafts Society, the Birla Academy and the IAAI. With several one-man exhibitions in India and abroad to his credit, including shows in Germany Sweden and the United Kingdom, his paintings also enjoy pride of place in prestigious permanent collections like those of the National Gallery of Modern Art and the Lalit Kala Academy in New Delhi, the Fukuoka Museum in Japan and also in several corporate and private collections all over the world.The artistic motifs of Murali Nagapuzha are drawn from a landscape that is now part of every tourist brochure that celebrates God’s own country. And yet, without being banal or kitschy, Nagapuzha’s artistic terrain marvels at the Kerala contours and colours and makes it his own.Where: Beanstalk, Gurgaon When: January 25  – February 28last_img read more

EW Metro work Residents move from homes to hotels

first_imgKolkata: The Kolkata Metro Railway Corporation Ltd (KMRCL) has started evacuating residents of SN Banerjee Road from Tuesday to facilitate construction for twin tunnels under East-West Metro project. Eighty-six buildings fall between the 800-metre stretch between the Esplanade crossing and Subodh Mullick Square (Wellington Square) and residents of all these buildings will be relocated temporarily in phases for undertaking tunnel boring work.KMRCL has put up notices on the buildings to inform the residents to temporarily evacuate their homes. A number of shops and business establishments may also have to be closed for a few days with the west bound tunnel being dug. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataA majority of these buildings are old and dilapidated. So, steps are being taken to strengthen these houses to prevent any untoward incident as there will be heavy vibration during the tunnel digging process. Steel props, tilt meters, settlement markers and other monitoring equipment are being used in the exercise. The props are meant to support the structures from the inside as well as the outside. “The strengthening work will continue side by side as tunnel boring machine (TBM) Chandi will be digging the tunnel,” a senior KMRCL official said. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in stateArrangements have been made for lodging the evacuated residents at nearby private hotels. The residents can return to their respective houses once the tunnel-boring machines have passed under their residences. The Anadi Cabin, known for its lip smacking Moglai Paratha, will be closed for four days sometime by the end of this week. Regal Cinema and the Shalimar Hotel will also be closed for a few days when tunnel-boring machines will cut underneath the buildings. “The last lap of the tunneling from Esplanade to Sealdah will require around 14 months to complete,” the official said. A similar exercise of evacuating residents and strengthening buildings had taken place when the tunnels were built along Brabourne Road as part of the project.last_img read more

Rep Filler House budget plan repairs roads improves schools without massive tax

first_img13Jun Rep. Filler: House budget plan repairs roads, improves schools without massive tax hike State Rep. Graham Filler this week voted to support a House budget plan that includes record funding for road repairs and schools without a tax hike.“We dug through the budget to find savings and efficiencies so we could deliver better value to seniors, families and workers all throughout Michigan,” said Filler, of DeWitt. “Instead of asking taxpayers for more money, we’re using the tax dollars they already provide more effectively to increase our investments in priorities like roads and schools.”The House approved several budget measures this week, advancing the plan to the Senate for further consideration.Key elements of the budget plan:Roads. The plan ensures money spent on taxes at the gas pump goes to improve our roads – including the 6 percent sales tax motorists already pay. Once fully phased in over two years, this change could add more than $800 million more per year to road repairs – without raising taxes. This change would be accomplished without sacrificing money for schools, local government revenue sharing or other essential public services.Schools. The plan raises the state’s minimum per-pupil foundation allowance by $180 per student, which covers the majority of Michigan’s school districts. All districts would get at least $90 more per student under the House plan. This comes on top of the largest annual per-student increase of the past 15 years – which schools are receiving in the current budget year – while continuing to close the gap between the state’s lowest- and highest-funded districts. Early literacy and career training are special focuses as the overall school aid fund would surpass $15 billion.Criminal justice reform. Our efforts to reduce crime are working. Data continues to show that problem-solving courts produce substantial savings for taxpayers by significantly decreasing the number of people who reoffend. We will continue this trend by fully funding drug treatment courts, mental health courts and veterans’ treatment courts.Agriculture. This spending plan prioritizes our farmers and farming communities by maximizing existing state resources. We continue to support local programs that get food from farm to table across the state and supplements county fairs that help our farmers get their products to market. We worked hard to ensure that every dollar put toward agriculture in Michigan is well spent and critical services are funded without raising fees or increasing general fund dollars.Filler said the House budget plan costs Michigan taxpayers about $1.3 billion less than the plan recommended by the governor.### Categories: Filler Newslast_img read more