It had looked like another shock could be on the cards, only for an own goal from captain Barry Molloy to put Derry on the back foot before half-time. Giray Kacar put Trabzonspor further ahead early in the second half but City continued to threaten, with Ryan McBride firing just wide in injury time as the match finished 4-2 to the hosts. There was also defeat for Hibernian, who face an uphill battle in next week’s second leg tie with Malmo. The Swedish league leaders secured a comfortable 2-0 win this evening thanks to first-half goals from skipper Jiloan Hamad and Magnus Eriksson. Prestatyn Town’s task next week looks nigh on impossible after suffering a 5-0 hammering in Croatia. Rijeka came into the match as overwhelming favourites and did not disappoint, with former international Leon Benko netting a hat-trick before Vedran Jugovic and Damir Zlomislic added gloss to the scoreline. Blues manager David Jeffrey had admitted concerns over the heat’s impact on his players in the build-up to the second qualifying round first leg. However, the Northern Irish side faced similar energy-sapping conditions against AEL Limassol in last season’s Champions League and had clearly learned from that experience. Burns grabbed the winner in just the 25th minute, firing past Christian Gimenez after good work down the left. Xanthi enjoyed the lion’s share of possession after the goal, but Linfield held on to take a 1-0 lead into next week’s second leg at Windsor Park. There was another shock result in Scandinavia, where Frazer Wright secured St Johnstone a 1-0 victory against 22-time Norwegian champions Rosenborg. The centre-half made the most of a brief period of Saints pressure in the opening stages to net from close range and secure his side a precious away goal. It was quite a start to manager Tommy Wright’s reign, but there were worrying moments following the 19th-minute strike and they were forced to defend stoutly to protect their lead. Derry were another side to impress in Europe as they gave Trabzonspor a scare. Adrian Mierzejewski and Paulo Henrique efforts gave the Turkish side a two-goal lead within 16 minutes, only for City to come storming back. David McDaid pulled one back at the Huseyin Avni Aker Stadium, before Patrick Kavanagh drew parity in the 32nd minute. Press Association Aaron Burns’ strike secured Linfield a famous Europa League win against Xanthi on Thursday evening in Greece.
BLACKSBURG, Va. — The Virginia Tech fanbase, clad in Hokies maroon and burnt orange, packed into the bleachers of a sold-out Cassell Coliseum, where they’re now 11-0 this season. They rallied around the Hokies with every basket. Every forced turnover. Every forced shot clock violation. They looked for any reason to cheer, growing louder as the game wore on, and the Hokies lead extended further and further out of Syracuse’s reach.A collective gasp followed every near-takeaway. The Hokies’ high-pressure man-to-man defense forced four shot-clock violations. Guard Justin Robinson freed himself up to go 9-for-13 from deep — shattering a program record for single-game made 3-pointers. They carved into the 2-3 zone with a mix of lights-out 3-point shooting, inside-out ball movement and a bevy of cuts to the rim.The Orange entered Saturday night winners of three-straight, but they played maybe their worst basketball against one of the conference’s best teams. The 10th-ranked Hokies (16-3, 5-2 Atlantic Coast) handled Syracuse (14-6, 5-2), 78-56, by moving the ball with ease and creating chaos on the SU perimeter. It’s the Orange’s worst defeat since they lost to St. John’s at the Carrier Dome in 2016.“Their defense was really, really good,” Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim said. “We did a very poor job of finding Robinson. Our offensive struggles bled over into our defense, and we don’t do a very good job of locating him. They passed it out more than most teams, and we didn’t react to it.”The loss slows a surging SU team that came to Blacksburg in pursuit of a second top-10 road win in a 12-day span. Syracuse had altered the trajectory of its season. The Orange hobbled to four nonconference losses, then lost by 14 at home to one of the ACC’s weakest teams in Georgia Tech. Road games at Duke and Virginia Tech loomed. Yet SU put up 95 points in an overtime victory over the then-No. 1 Blue Devils on national TV, and all of a sudden every game on the schedule became winnable.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThen came Virginia Tech. On numerous possessions, the Hokies left Syracuse with no room. They doubled pick-and-rolls. They were all over SU junior shooting guard Tyus Battle when he touched the ball, largely cutting off any room for him to run. He finished with just 10 points on 10 shot attempts. With the perimeter in gridlock, Syracuse didn’t find much offensive rhythm.Ideally, when a team doubles the ball handler in high-screen situations, the big bumps toward the basket. A dump-off pass is the desired outcome, Boeheim said, but that puts the onus on senior center Paschal Chukwu, who finished with two points and didn’t alter shots defensively.“Some nights, he has nothing,” Boeheim said. “Tonight, he had nothing.”The 43-24 halftime deficit seemed to jolt the Orange. For as much as Virginia Tech pressured the ball on the perimeter, gaps opened inside. The backdoor was there. The high post, mainly sophomore forward Oshae Brissett’s territory, had points written all over it. He finished with a team-high 16 points. The Orange exploded out of the half to an 11-0 run. The arena went quiet, and Virginia Tech head coach Buzz Williams called a timeout.The Hokies shot back with a 14-1 run: In time, a Virginia Tech 3-pointer pushed the SU deficit to 15. Assistant coach Allen Griffin leaned back in his chair. After Brissett missed a layup near the left block, the Hokies marched back and connected on an alley-oop to push the lead to 18. Rapid ball movement inside and out left an open Ty Outlaw on the perimeter. His shot swished. SU senior point guard Frank Howard stood still. The arena got loud, and the Hokies never looked back, pushing the lead to as much as 25.When Robinson drilled 3 after 3, the Orange could not respond. When the Hokies stripped the ball loose and pushed the ball up court for a transition score, they could not respond then either.“We knew that we had to get the ball to the high post and let the high-post guy operate,” said Robinson, who also broke the program’s career assists record. “We made great decisions in the high post, and everything just opened up. In a zone like that, they converge in the middle. So, who are you going to guard on the outside?”The options VT had on the perimeter — always at least three shooters on the floor at once — haunted SU. Boeheim said he didn’t elect to counter their 3-point approach by inserting freshman sharpshooter Buddy Boeheim because VT’s defense was perimeter oriented. Boeheim also said it didn’t help that the Orange had only one day to prepare for the Hokies, while the Hokies had four days. Their preparation time allowed them to develop a plan against the SU 2-3 zone, he said. Generally, Boeheim wants at least two days to prepare for an opponent.Over the past week, the Orange handled Pittsburgh and Miami with ease. With a second top-10 road win, Syracuse had a chance to propel itself near the top of arguably college basketball’s top conference. But the Orange ran into a wall of a Hokies defense that combined with a relentless offensive attack to keep SU at bay.“They made it tough,” said Battle, who added two rebounds and a pair of assists. “They were swarming the pick-and-rolls, clogging passing and driving lanes.”At the under-eight timeout, Syracuse trailed by 15. At the under-four timeout, the VT lead had swelled to 25. “Let’s go Hokies” boomed through the arena as dozens of Syracuse fans filed for the exits. When the final buzzer sounded Saturday night, the Orange filed into the locker room, their minds trying to make sense of the program’s worst loss in two-plus years. Facebook Twitter Google+ Comments Published on January 26, 2019 at 10:23 pm Contact Matthew: email@example.com | @MatthewGut21
Miles, of course, referred to KU running back Pooka Williams — a preseason first-team media selection on the 2019 All-Big 12 team and a 1,125-yard rusher last season. He was reinstated last week after a seven-month suspension following a domestic violence charge.MORE: Major storylines for all Power 5 media daysMiles anticipated the question and addressed it in his opening comments.“I did not make this decision,” Miles said. “But I stand by it and see is as a right one.”Williams returned to the program last week. He will serve a one-game suspension this season and will sit out the Jayhawks’ opener against Indiana State.“Action was taken immediately,” Miles said. “We felt like a strong point was made, not only with Pooka but with the team, the idea that for 7 1/2 months, Pooka was going through a process and he didn’t have the opportunity to spend time with his team, go to the weight room, just be a part (of the team).“Pooka went through a legal investigation with the legal community. Pooka also went through proceedings with the conduct board with the university. Basically, understood very much that if he did not meet the criteria that the board asked, that this would not last long, and he really met every criteria that he could.”Also on Monday, Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby clarified the Big 12’s policy on dealing with athletes who are accused of or commit domestic violence.“It’s not a domestic violence policy,” Bowlsby said. “It’s a ‘serious misconduct’ policy so it covers domestic violence but also a wide variety of other things.“The Kansas process followed what our misconduct policy describes, and that is that the decision is made outside of the athletics department and within university higher administration. That’s the level at which that decision was made.”MORE: Big 12 Media Days team schedules, players attendingWilliams was arrested on assault charges after an incident with his girlfriend in December. She told police Williams punched her in the stomach and grabbed her throat. The Kansas City Star has reported the woman showed police text messages from Williams admitting to punching her in the arms.A police officer found bruises on the woman, according to an affidavit. Williams claimed the bruises came from trying to lead her out of an apartment and into the hallway to talk, and then when he tried to move her out of his way as he left.“He’s taken responsibility,” Miles said. “He’s been remorseful. He’s learned from this experience, as has our team. We’re thankful to have him back. And again, no violence against a woman is OK.” ARLINGTON, Texas — New Kansas coach Les Miles got in front of the question before anyone could ask it.“There is no proper way to put it,” Miles said Monday during his time on the podium at Big 12 Media Days. “There is no violence — violence will not be accepted with women. Period.” Williams later released a statement through the university.“My behavior was unacceptable, and I’m very sorry to those who were impacted by my poor choices,” he said. “I am disappointed in myself, not just as a man, but as a student-athlete looked up to by younger kids. My suspension from football has been hard, but I have learned from it. “I’m thankful I can continue with my education at KU. Looking ahead, the most important thing to me is to regain the trust and respect of my classmates, teammates, and fans. I am humbled to return to football and to prepare for the season.”