Projected Nets starters: D’Angelo Russell, Joe Harris, Jared Dudley, Jarrett Allen, Joe Harris, Caris LavertHow the Nets are doing: While Brooklyn … The Warriors (10-2) will look to wipe away the sting of their humbling loss to Milwaukee when the Brooklyn Nets (6-6) pay a visit Saturday evening.If you missed any of those gory details, we’ve got all of them for you right here.Here’s everything you need to know about the Nets matchup…When/Where: Oracle Arena, 5:30 p.m. (NBCSBA)
22 July 2014South African motor racing prodigy Kelvin van der Linde was awarded the Driver of the Year award for the 2014 International Automobile Federation’s (FIA) Young Driver Excellence Academy at a graduation ceremony at the Paul Ricard circuit in France on Friday.The 18-year-old was presented with a trophy and certificate at the culmination of a seven-month programme that included five different workshops attended by 10 young racing drivers from eight countries. Van der Linde was the official representative of the African continent.The Young Driver Excellence Academy is an initiative of the FIA Institute for Motor Sport Safety and Sustainability.Intensive selection processVan der Linde earned his place at the 2014 Academy after an intensive selection process that involved events around the world at the end of 2013. Each FIA National Sporting Authority (NSA), including Motorsport South Africa, nominated a driver to attend the selection process. Five qualifiers were chosen and were joined by five wild card participants.The Academy offers a fully-funded training programme to help develop the participants’ motor sport careers, while increasing safety skills and promoting fairness and responsibility on and off the track.‘Expert tutelage’Drivers benefitted from the expert tutelage of former Formula One driver Alex Wurz of Austria and former World Rally Championship co-driver Robert Reid of England.As part of Van der Linde’s prize, Wurz and Reid will assist him in his career progression, ensuring he has the chance to meet key people and develop opportunities in the sport.‘A well-deserved winner’Wurz commented: “Selecting a winner is never easy. However Kelvin’s performance across the entire range of the Academy was outstanding and makes him a well- deserved winner.“It’s always at the end of the Academy during this last workshop that you realise you work with such promising talent and appreciate the friendships you have built with such extraordinary young people like this year’s Academy graduates.”Reid said: “Kelvin is a well-deserved winner of the Academy. He has performed well throughout, but also learnt a lot and improved on all levels.”ImpressedAccording to the Academy, Van der Linde, the 2012 South African VW Cup champion and 2013 European VW Scirocco R-Cup champion – he is the youngest to have won either of these titles – impressed not only with his speed on the circuit, but with his willingness and enthusiasm to engage with the Academy programme, which is aimed at developing and improving motor sport safety and sustainability and promotes excellence and achievement in all areas of motor sport.He also demonstrated a strong appreciation and understanding of key safety aspects of the Academy throughout the year.Van der Linde, who currently leads the ADAC GT Masters Championship for GT3 sports cars in Europe at the halfway stage in a Prosperia C. Abt Audi R8 with German co-driver Rene Rast, was thrilled to be named Academy Driver of the Year and said he is excited to continue implementing the lessons he has learnt.‘This is amazing’“I’m really speechless right now. To come to the Academy as the African representative where, despite being a large continent, racing is still growing and to win this is amazing,” he said.“I came here with an open mind, ready to learn, and gave it my best. It’s great to win and receive this trophy, but the real work starts now.”That work includes a return to the “real world” and catching up on his matric preliminary examinations at school. He missed the first three exams because of last week’s final Academy workshop in France and will be working hard to catch up this week.“While a motor sport career is what I have chosen for myself, I realise the value of completing my school education and intend to achieve as good a matric result as I can,” Van der Linde said.SAinfo reporter
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avery johnson alabamaFormer NBA point guard and head coach Avery Johnson was recently hired to take over the reins of the Alabama basketball program, which has reached just one NCAA Tournament in the past nine seasons. Johnson has a tall task ahead of him, but he has lofty goals for his new squad, saying during his introductory press conference his program will try and live up to the standard set by Duke, the 2014-15 national champions. “Duke University, that’s the standard for us here at the University of Alabama and our basketball program,” Johnson said. “The way they play defense and offense. The way they move the ball, that’s the standard. Nobody else is the standard. That’s the standard. Duke University. That’s why I’m here.”If imitation is the most sincere form of flattery, it also makes for good publicity in this case. Judging by its Instagram post this morning, the Duke program is using Johnson’s quote to its marketing advantage.An obvious, but savvy move by Duke. We’re sure Johnson isn’t the only coach looking to get his program on the level of the Blue Devils but it’s easier said than done.
Ohio State’s libero Valeria Leon passes a ball in the regional quarterfinal versus Washington on December 11, 2015. Credit: Ohio State AthleticsThe No. 19 Ohio State women’s volleyball team couldn’t have asked for a better ending to its nonconference season. Just like dominos, three teams fell to the Buckeyes. Not to mention, all of the matches were three-set sweeps. OSU dominated the competition to clinch the Ball State Active Ankle Challenge title on Saturday in Muncie, Indiana. Valparaiso was the first of the Buckeyes’ victims on Friday, followed by the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. The Ball State Cardinals gave OSU the biggest run for its money on Saturday, but it was the Buckeye “tribe” who came out on top. Senior libero Valeria León, senior middle blocker Taylor Sandbothe and sophomore outside hitter Audra Appold earned all-tournament honors. León earned the tournament MVP title with 3.78 digs per set. Sandbothe and León have been named to all-tournament squads in three of the past four weekend tournaments.ValparaisoValparaiso hung with the Buckeyes in the first set until OSU started to pull away at 19-13, with credit to the power of middle blockers Sandbothe and freshman Madison Smeathers. An assisted block from Sandbothe and senior middle blocker Kylie Randall sealed the win in the first set, 25-17. OSU jumped out to an early lead in the second set and eventually put away the Crusaders, 25-13. Junior outside hitter Luisa Schirmer contributed five kills to the Buckeye offense. A block by Smeathers and Schirmer for the final point in the third set would wrangle in the victory for OSU, 25-18. Sandbothe led the offense for the Buckeyes with a .458 hitting percentage, followed by a strong performance from Appold who hit .364. OSU more than doubled the Crusaders in kills, 50 to 19. UNCGErrors on OSU’s side of the net and an aggressive UNCG team kept the first set of the match close, with nine times during the opening frame. A final Spartan timeout wasn’t enough to hold back Sandbothe. She closed out the set with three kills, making the score 25-20 going into the second set. The Buckeyes would shut down the UNCG offense in the next set. OSU went on a seven-point run to win 25-12. The third and final set showcased OSU’s “tribe” motto with six players slamming down kills for the 25-14 set and match win.Randall, Schirmer and Appold all had an errorless hitting performances. Appold also tied León for a team-high 10 digs, and Sandbothe walked away from the match with a monstrous .615 attacking percentage. Ball StateOSU’s final match carried some weight with it – the last nonconference match for the team and a tournament title on the line. The momentum from the Buckeyes’ previous two matches carried into the first set against the Cardinals. Despite a couple of four-point leads by Ball State, OSU battled back to eventually take the advantage, 17-16 on a service ace by Sandbothe.Another service ace by sophomore setter Taylor Hughes coming out of a Cardinal timeout was enough to push the Buckeyes to secure a first-win set, 25-21. In the second, Smeathers went to work on defense, assisting on three blocks and stuffing the Cardinals’ Sydnee Vanbeek for a solo block. OSU took the second set, 25-17. Two early three-point runs put the Buckeyes up 9-2 in the final set. Ball State would have its own five-point run later in the game to tighten the set, two OSU kills and an attacking error for the Cardinals would give the Buckeyes the set win, the match win and complete the perfect trifecta of tournament play. Hughes racked up 36 assists during the match, and five out of six OSU hitters hit above .300. Sandbothe and Appold combined for 27 kills against the Cardinals. The women’s volleyball team improved to 10-2 on the season and will challenge its first Big Ten opponent when they travel to Wisconsin on Sept. 23.
The Columbus Clippers secured their fifth come-from-behind win of the young season with a 5-4 victory against the Indianapolis Indians on Thursday, in the last game of an eight-game homestand to start the year. The Clippers (6-2) gained plenty of experience in tight contests during the homestand as close games and come-from-behind victories were present throughout. All eight games were decided by three runs or less and five of the eight were one-run games. Columbus manager Mike Sarbaugh said he is proud of the way his team has hung tough in tight situations early in the year. “We have confidence as a club in our ability to score runs,” he said. “We’ve showed early in the season we can come back, score some runs and win games.” Clippers shortstop Gregorio Petit said his team is made up of resilient competitors. “We just battle the whole game and never give up,” Petit said after the Clippers 4-3 walk-off win against Indianapolis Monday. “Fighters fight, and that’s how we are.” In the win Thursday, Columbus found itself trailing 4-2 entering the bottom of the fifth inning, taking a significant punch from Indianapolis in the top half of the inning. The Indians scored three runs on a 3-run home run by shortstop Jordy Mercer to take the lead. Using three consecutive hits to start the inning, the Clippers tied the game at four with an RBI single by center fielder Ezequiel Carrera. Third baseman Russ Canzler gave Columbus the lead with an RBI single of his own, the team’s sixth hit of the inning. “I thought that was the key in the game for us,” Sarbaugh said. “Coming out that next inning and scoring three was big.” Scoring the tying run in the fifth inning was Clippers right fielder Chad Huffman. Huffman went 2-for-3 in the game with two runs and a RBI on a home run hit into the deepest part of the ballpark in left-center field. “I got a change-up up in the zone and I was lucky I got the barrel on it,” Huffman said. Clippers starting pitcher Corey Kluber struck out eight in five innings allowing four runs on three hits. Kluber has a combined 18 strikeouts in his first two starts. Columbus begins an 11-game road trip Friday against Louisville, and the team’s confidence is riding high after the successful homestand. “There’s lots of confidence in this locker room,” Huffman said. “Our expectations are to go in there and win all 11 of them.”