Sondre Norheim uses maturity and age to aid Syracuse defense

first_img Published on October 2, 2017 at 9:28 pm Contact Nick: nialvare@syr.edu | @nick_a_alvarez In the first half of then-No. 11 Syracuse’s loss to Cornell on Sept. 19, defender Sondre Norheim tried to thread a pass through a pack of Big Red forwards on the right of SU’s formation. If completed, the pass could’ve given the Orange a breakaway in a scoreless game. But it was intercepted, and Cornell created its own scoring opportunity.Cornell crossed the ball to the right wing of its formation and George Pedlow found himself one-on-one with SU goalie Hendrik Hilpert. Pedlow whipped a shot about four feet off the ground, seemingly out of Hilpert’s reach. But before the ball found nylon, Norheim darted to the penalty box, jutted out his right leg and deflected the shot up and over the crossbar, preserving a clean sheet. That recovery displayed how Norheim’s instincts are more advanced than a typical freshman.“He has a lot of gifts that athletes would wish to have,” Hilpert said of Norheim. “He’s fast, he’s tall, he’s athletic. He has everything a defender needs.”At 20 years old, Norheim is the second oldest freshman defender in the Atlantic Coast Conference, behind 22-year-old Jon Ingason of Virginia Tech. Both are international student-athletes who left their home country in pursuit of better competition.Born and raised in Bryne, Norway, Norheim started playing soccer at age 5. After standing out in high school — which is five years long in Norway — he dedicated more time to soccer by playing with a local club team during his gap year. Now, with No. 21 SU (5-4-2, 0-3-1 ACC), Norheim has started all but one of the team’s 11 games. Along with junior Kamal Miller and a rotating group of wingbacks, Norheim looks to shore up a defense that allows 1.36 goals per game.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text“I think I have a little advantage with age,” Norheim said. “I got the physical part down. I’ve got speed and stuff like that.”Last year, playing with his club team, Norheim pondered the future. Julian Veen Uldal, a friend who played at South Carolina for two years, encouraged Norheim to check out America. So, Norheim contacted College Scholarship USA, a company that puts interested foreign students in touch with U.S. schools. Within two days of hearing about Norheim, SU associate head coach Jukka Masalin was on a flight to watch Norheim play against another future player, forward Petter Stangeland.Norheim remembered his gap year in Norway as a crucial time in his career. He frequently played against men two to four years older than him and was forced to adapt and improve to keep up.“In that year, I felt like I developed like more of an adult player,” Norheim said.There, Norheim developed his greatest strength: heading the ball. The 6-foot-4-inch defender was always taller than other kids and won headers easily. However, when he entered the men’s league, he needed to hone his technique.Working with his father, Norheim said, taught him to time his jump correctly. In order to win a header, usually a player leaps and hits the ball at the highest point possible while battling with another player.“As a central defender,” Norheim said. “You have to be good at headers. That’s something I’ve worked on over the last year. When I go up, I win it.”Typically, SU deploys Miller, its best defender, against the opposition’s best forward. That often leaves Norheim alone in the middle as a center back, the backline’s lynchpin. In Norway, Norheim played in a similar role in his club’s 3-5-2 formation and the familiarity has helped him adjust.Norheim has fit in “perfectly,” SU head coach Ian McIntyre and teammates said. Miller referenced Norheim as a prototypical SU defender. Hilpert said Norheim is off to a better start than Miles Robinson, a former Orange defender and the No. 2 overall pick in last year’s MLS SuperDraft. During a team meeting two weeks ago, McIntyre praised and embarrassed the freshman by pegging him as a future anchor of a program known for its defense.“I think he’s one of the best new defenders in the ACC this year,” McIntyre said. “It’s been a baptism by fire. He’s got a very bright future ahead of him.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

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O’Sullivan not dwelling on Cork’s loss to Tipp last year

first_imgO’ Sullivan says Cork aren’t dwelling on last season’s loss. Cork senior hurling Selector Diarmuid O’ Sullivan says that if they look back at last year’s game against Tipperary, they’ll never move forward.The rebels got a measure of revenge in the National Hurling League this year, but the Premier will be looking to make up for that defeat.The two sides face off again in the Munster Senior Hurling Quarter Final on Sunday week in Semple Stadium. Photo © Tipperary GAAlast_img

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Purple & Bold: Kostas Antetokounmpo prepares for a Milwaukee reunion with his MVP brother

first_imgOne of his favorite high school haunts was a nearby location of Blaze Pizza – whose most famous investor is LeBron James. Kostas now calls it a “crazy” coincidence.“It was right by my high school,” he said. “So I know LeBron now, so I might ask him for a gift card or something – no, no, just kidding.”Kostas is in a strange position between the two teams who have paced their respective conferences so far. If the playoffs started today, the Lakers and Bucks might be favored to meet in the NBA Finals. He also has competing interests in the MVP race: Between the two teams, there are three likely candidates.Being up close to James and Davis is different from being around his brother. As abnormal as Giannis’ workout routine might seem, it’s normal to Kostas, who works out with all of his brothers in the offseason. Watching James and Davis work has given him an appreciation for what it takes for others to reach a higher level.It might seem tempting for teammates to hit Kostas up for Giannis intel, but he said that so far, it hasn’t been the case.“Not yet at least,” he said. “At least not really. I wouldn’t really know. I know the way (Giannis) works, but I wouldn’t even know what he does with the team.”That’s not to say they don’t talk: Kostas estimated that he talks with his brothers usually about once a day. The Antetokounmpos are famously tight-knit. Giannis sat his brothers alongside him for the post-game press conference of the All-Star Game last February, and both attended the NBA Awards in Santa Monica this summer when Giannis received his first MVP award.It might seem daunting for a younger brother of such an accomplished star to try to make his own way. But Danny Green, who has a younger brother playing at Indiana, said the league is largely indifferent to those kinds of challenges.“Everybody has brothers,” he said. “There’s four Holidays out there. There’s a lot of Plumlees, a couple Zellers. Nobody feels bad for any of the brothers that’s not as good as the other. They all made great careers for themselves.”While the odds run against the Antetokounmpo family producing a second MVP-winning brother, there are indications that Kostas could make it in the league. He’s averaging 13.1 points and 7.1 rebounds for the South Bay Lakers. His field goal percentage has improved from 52.5 percent last year to 62.1 percent this year. While his dimensions help him play defense, he said his goal is to become a stronger offensive player.Even Green, who has no ingrained sympathy for a brother trying to rise out of a towering shadow, sees the positive signs.“Kostas, I think, is still on his way,” he said. “He’s still young and learning. He has a lot of potential. I think he’s going to be big for us at some point and big for this league at some point.”Kostas hopes that’s sooner rather than later, of course, even though Giannis took some time to emerge as an All-Star-caliber threat. In every Lakers game, he hopes the score starts to slant so he can get an opportunity for NBA minutes. In Indiana, even with Anthony Davis out, the Lakers sat their two-way players – Coach Frank Vogel called them “insurance.”Maybe in time, that will change, Kostas thinks. Maybe he’ll end up earning a little more time with the Lakers. And while Western Conference and Eastern Conference teams only play each other twice per season, maybe there will be more opportunities down the road if the Lakers and Bucks make it far enough along in the postseason.For now, the Brothers Antetokounmpo aren’t making any summer plans.“That’s our plan: both being busy in June, playing against each other hopefully,” he said. “We don’t need to talk about offseason plans yet.”— Kyle GoonEditor’s note: Thanks for reading the Purple & Bold newsletter. To receive the newsletter in your inbox, sign up here.Don’t move, don’t even linkThe end of the streak – The Lakers finally lost away from Staples Center, in a way that reinforced how impressive their streak was.The ankle everyone’s wondering about – The genesis of Anthony Davis’ up-in-the-air status for Thursday’s super-match.Trusting the patient – This look at how the Lakers let Davis play through soreness seems salient.Old friends in Indy – Frank Vogel was in his element, at least before the game started, as Nate McMillan noted how strange it was to see a friend team up with an old enemy.While others rest – LeBron keeps chasing wins, and it’s working, Mirjam wrote. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MOREUCLA alum Kenny Clark signs four-year contract extension with PackersThis is life for two-way contract players trying to make it from the fringes of the NBA: You toil in the G League for most of the season until you get a long-awaited call that is likely to mean a redeye cross-country flight to meet the NBA team. When you get there, not even a locker is assured.But Antetokounmpo was more than happy to make the trip for one reason in particular: At the end of this five-game road swing is Milwaukee, where his family lives and where his name carries the ring of local royalty. Kostas can’t wait to be on the same floor as his brother, Giannis, who you have probably heard of – and who definitely has two cubbies.When the Lakers take on the Bucks on Thursday night, he’ll have a lot of reasons to be racked with excitement.“Two best teams in the NBA right now going head-to-head,” Kostas said Sunday. “So like, as a fan I want to watch that game. As a player, I want to be playing in that game. It would be amazing to be on that trip.”Greece was the first home he truly loved, but Milwaukee was the second. Kostas spent three years at Dominican High School, north of the city in Whitefish Bay, as his brother was developing into a mold-breaking forward for the Bucks. The younger Antetokounmpo can claim something that Giannis can’t: He won high school state championships with the Knights in 2015 and 2016.center_img Editor’s note: This is the Wednesday, Dec. 18 edition of the Purple & Bold newsletter. To receive the newsletter in your inbox, sign up here.In an NBA locker room, the ultimate sign of respect is an extra cubby. Even when teams travel, their best players get more room in cramped visiting quarters.LeBron has two cubbies. A.D. has two cubbies.It should tell you a little bit about the status of 22-year-old Kostas Antetokounmpo to know that, on Sunday evening in Atlanta, he didn’t have a locker at all. The 6-foot-10 forward sat on a folding chair in a narrow corridor between the lockers and the showers, eating chicken and broccoli while watching game film on an iPad. A few feet above his head, his nametag was pasted on the wall to mark his tiny patch of unremarkable territory.last_img read more

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Somerset’s Compton leads at Captains’ final

first_img Somerset’s Denis Compton holds a narrow one-point lead at the halfway stage of the England Golf Captains’ Final on the Red course at Frilford Heath in Oxfordshire.Compton, (Image © Leaderboard Photography) from Minehead & West Somerset, scored 39 points – including a blob – to edge one ahead of David Hawkins (Leighton Buzzard), Hugh Purvis (Long Ashton), Bryan Claringbold (Frilford Heath) and Alan Brack (Crook).The final is being played as part of England Golf’s first Golf Week which celebrates team and handicap golf, with events taking place every day until Friday.Today’s score by Compton marked a turnaround in fortunes from his practice round when he lost five balls and scored 18 points! “My course is links and to come here with trees and things is a bit alien,” he explained with a laugh.“Today my putter went hot for the last four holes and I had a birdie, birdie finish – but I still had a blob on the ninth. I haven’t found that green yet.”Compton, who was captain in 2007 in his club’s 125th anniversary year, is playing in the tournament series for the first time, having qualified at Enmore Park in Somerset. “I had a nice 36 points there and these are probably the only two rounds I’ve done well in this year.”The reason – which is apt, given his name – is that Compton still enjoys playing cricket. “I’m no relation,” he says in answer to the obvious question about connections with the late English cricketer. “But I played for the Somerset second XI and Somerset Colts and I still play for the local club, Timberscombe, on Exmoor. My partner is doing the teas on Saturday.”Cricket and golf have gone hand in hand in his life, for he joined Minehead & West Somerset Golf Club as a junior, following his grandfather and father. His caddy this week is the 2014 captain Phil Arbourne.Click here for the full scores. 11 Aug 2015 Somerset’s Compton leads at Captains’ final last_img read more

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