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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HandsOn Fes Fantasy Forest Lets You Speak to the Trees

first_imgStay on target Trade In Your Nintendo Switch For a Better Battery (With a Catch)Get Used to ‘Fortnite’s’ Powerful Mech Suits Remember when the whole online Nintendo community was working itself into a frenzy waiting for a hypothetical Nintendo Direct presentation? And then that presentation actually happened without warning? Wild times. But one interesting tidbit is that the whole reason we all thought a January Direct was imminent, aside from historical precedent, was because of leaked documents for Fe, an upcoming indie game published under EA’s artsy Originals umbrella. And sure enough the game was part of the Direct.Now that we’ve gotten a chance to play Fe (not Fire Emblem) ahead of its release later this February, we can say Nintendo fans and gaming fans in general should pay attention to this one for more than just news leaks. This fanciful trip through the forest blends several illustrious gaming influences into something pretty fresh so far.Fe comes from Swedish developer Zoink, creators of Zombie Vikings and Stick it to the Man! But whereas those games use a comedic macabre 2D paper cut-out kind of art style, with Fe Zoink has spent years realizing a gorgeous 3D crystalline forest world inspired by Swedish folklore. Gradients of one luminous color, loads of contrast, and abstract designs turn the sylvan world you explore into a work of art. This is true both on PlayStation 4 as well as Nintendo Switch, although we did notice more framerate issues on the handheld we hope get ironed out at or post-launch.AdChoices广告The mysterious abstract beauty applies to the story as well, which the developers cited David Lynch of all people as an inspiration for. As you guide your fairy avatar through the natural ecosystem, you’ll occasionally come across abandoned helmets, usually next to a wall of hieroglyphs with its own lore. Putting a helmet on transports you to a brief first-person interlude where you walk around trying to absorb whatever story you can gleam about the menacing silent cycloptic foes and the overall state of the world.But whereas Fe’s art and general mood may remind some of Journey or Flower or another ThatGameCompany game, the actual gameplay side aims to be a little bit more robust. In an indie game scene dominated by 2D Metroidvanias, Fe excites us by daring to make an interconnected nonlinear world to explore in all three dimensions, albeit a jumpy woodland world closer to Super Mario 64 than Metroid Prime.As lovely as Fe’s fantastical forest initially is, the focus on a single color scheme can make it difficult to find your way further if you’re just jumping and poking around. However, once you start making use of your Metroid/Zelda-esque abilities the actual breadth of the landscape opens up in some very satisfying ways. One of your skills is the ability to sing with other children of Mother Nature. Using either analog triggers or motion controls, adjust your pitch until you sync up with your partner. Depending on the plant or animal, you’ll then get help like blooming flower pedal platforms or a flying friend who shows you the path forward.That’s just one of several powers we saw, though. By freeing adult animals you can learn their language and take advantage of their helpful children. Sing in bird language to harvest bomb plants. Burrow and leap with a family of ferrets. Climb and glide through trees to reach the top of a massive, Shadow of the Colossus-type deer. That impressive set piece is only from the first quarter or so of the game, leaving us wondering what we didn’t see.Frustratingly, I didn’t quite get a feel for all these tools in my demo, inaccurately predicting how far and high and long a glide might go for example. This resulted in some deaths very familiar to players of old unpolished 3D platformers. But hopefully the final game eases players into their arsenal, unlike in this demo where we were just skipping around at will.A good 3D open interconnected platforming adventure game is a lot to take on for an indie team. And that’s before you add “exquisite art style” to the to-do list. We’ll see if Fe can pull it all off when it launches on February 16 for Nintendo Switch, PlayStation 4, Xbox One, and PC.Let us know what you like about Geek by taking our survey.last_img read more

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