All posts by Brennah Dallaire

Blue Devils Miss Playoff Deadline

by Humera Gul

Central Connecticut State University’s men’s basketball team played their hearts out, but fell to Robert Morris 74-64. The team was able to cut a 19 point deficit down to just five point, however, it was too little too late.

The team struggled with shooting and finishing plays. Central shot 22 of 60 from the field, 7 of 18 for three pointers, and 13 of 25 at the foul line. The Blue Devils had the crowd roaring during the comeback moments.

“It comes down to guys that haven’t been in this situation before, meaning, the game of this magnitude, and I think we came out nervous,” said Coach Donyell Marshall.

It did take the blue devils some time to settle into the game. Khalen Cumberlander did all he could to win the game for his senior year. Cumberlander made 9 of 17 field goals, including three three pointers. He also scored three out of his six foul shots. He finished with 24 points for the game. He also had five rebounds and one assist. He not only led the team in points scored, but also scored more than any other player in the game.

Coach Marshall had nothing but good things to say about Khalen.
“Khalen has been playing well, he’s been playing a lot harder. I think he was feeling his senior year is on the line and he only had a couple of games left. In the huddles, he was very talkative and became a leader for this team. It’s sad because as a new coach, I only got one year with a guy like that.”

Another Blue Devil that catches the eye is Austin Nehls. Nehls was 3 for 10 in his field goals, included two three pointers. He finished 6 of 9 foul shots. He also was part of an alley-oop, where he passed it to Cumberlander and Cumberlander dunked it. Nehls also had two rebounds and three assists.

Blue Devil’s rookie Tyson Batiste had three rebounds, five assists and two steals.

“Unfortunately, by the time we got clicking and we got going, it was too little too late. We expanded so much energy doing it, but you got to keep working and building on it. We were officially eliminated, but we got two games left and we will try to win those games,” Coach Marshall said.

Isaiah Still of Robert Morris made significant contributions to the game. Still was 6 of 15 in his field goals including a three pointer. He scored a high 9 of 11 on his foul ball, and finished with 22 points for the game. Still also had eight rebounds, two assists and a steal.

Still’s teammate Aaron Tate finished 3 out of 4 from the field and 4 out of 4 on foul shots. He also recorded eight rebounds.

The loss drops CCSU to 5-22 overall and 3-13 in the NEC. This loss eliminates the Blue Devils from playoff contention. CCSU will hosts St. Francis Brooklyn in its final home game of the season and its seniors night. Watch out for Khalen Cumberlander.

A Streak Unlike Any Other

by Tyler Roaix

The University of Connecticut Women’s Basketball team made history reaching a 100 game winning streak, after their defeat against sixth ranked South Carolina. The streak has built up over the past three seasons, and has brought UConn two national championships.

If there is anything this streak has proven, it’s that UConn has had its sport under it’s control since Geno Auriemma took over as head coach. Much like Alabama has controlled college football or how the Yankees controlled baseball. But somehow, this seems almost more impressive.

It isn’t just the fact that the Huskies won 100 games in a row. It’s the fact that they have crushed pretty much everyone in their way. Of the 100 games, a whopping 71 of them were victories by at least 30 points. Just two wins were by less than 10 points. All in all, their average margin of victory during the streak has been 38.4 points. Just to add insult to injury, nine of the wins came against teams ranked third or better, with the smallest margin of victory in those games being just six points.

This isn’t the first time the Huskies have went on a long winning streak. In fact, they now hold four of the top five longest win streaks in women’s college basketball history, all of which have happened since the 2001-2002 season. This streak began in 2014 after a two-point loss to Stanford.

The craziest part about this UConn team is not only how good they are, but also the fact that they are only going to get better. They have just three seniors on their roster. Saniya Chong is the only senior actually in the starting lineup. Of course, Auriemma has the best of the best at the high school level coming in next season, including Megan Walker, who’s is widely known as the best high school player in the country.

Critics will argue that the lack of competition in women’s college basketball takes away from the impressiveness of the streak. But let’s be honest, over a streak of 100 games, it’s really easy to have a bad game and slip up. Maybe you just get outplayed one night or someone makes a crazy shot to win the game. But nothing like that has happened. The bottom line is that UConn has played near perfect basketball over the past three years. That has nothing to do with the competition, that’s just how good the Huskies are.

Who knows when the streak will end, if at all this year. It’s more than likely UConn will be taking their usual place, cutting down the nets, at the end of the tournament in April. Say what you will about women’s college basketball, but this 100 game win streak is the latest step in a long line of dominance by the Huskies.

Premier League Match-ups

by Evan Sobol

The biggest matchup of the weekend was Tottenham Hotspur visiting Liverpool at Anfield. The Reds scored early goals and used great defense to win 2-0, following their defeat last week at Hull.

Liverpool’s Sadio Mane had an excellent first half, scoring both of the Reds’ goals. The first came in the minute 16. Midfielder Georginio Wijnaldum provided an excellent through pass for Mane from midfield. The Senegal international then ran past the Spurs’ defense and shot into the left side of the net. He scored again just two minutes later, off a deflection by Tottenham’s goalkeeper. Hugo Lloris made two excellent saves, but was unlucky after his second bounced into the possession of Mane who fired it into the net from short range. It was Mane’s 11th Premier League goal of the season. The forward had two more opportunities just a few minutes later, that were both saved by Lloris.

The Spurs’ recorded just two shots on goal, while also recorded just three corners compared to Liverpool’s ten. In minute 26, midfielder Son Heung-Min met a pass by Ben Davies in the box, but the attempt was saved by Simon Mignolet. Christian Eriksen missed a free kick in the second half that went right over Liverpool’s goal.

With the victory, Liverpool sits just one point behind Arsenal and Tottenham with 49. It was their first since Dec. 31. They have stayed in the title race, thanks to draws against Manchester United and Chelsea.

Mane is currently the leading scorer for the club, and has played well with Firmino and Coutinho at striker position. The three have scored a combined 24 goals this season. Manager Jurgen Klopp should continue using this formation if they hope to push for the top of the table. With 54 goals, Liverpool is tied with Arsenal for the most in the league. The Reds’ next match is at defending champions Leicester City on February 27. The Foxes have lost five straight.

The Spurs still sit at second with 50 points following the loss. They have been tested in each of their last four matches; they escaped with a win at home last week with a penalty kick by Harry Kane. Kane is still one of the best forwards in the league, racking up a total of 14 goals. The player to look out for down the stretch is Son. He got off to a great start with the club, scoring four goals in September. He has scored just three since. If he can get back on track, Kane and Dele Alli will get more goal opportunities. Tottenham’s next fixture is Feb. 26 against ninth-place Stoke City.

Manchester United continued their impressive unbeaten streak with a 2-0 win against Watford.

The Red Devils got on the board in minute 32, with a short-range goal by midfielder Juan Mata. Anthony Martial set up the score with a low cross into the box. It was Mata’s sixth goal of the season. Martial added to the goal tally with a short-range goal at the hour mark. The France international shot into the left side of the net. Watford goalkeeper Heurelho Gomes, had his vision blocked by midfielder Craig Cathcart. This left the goal open for Martial. It was the forward’s third league goal of the season.

Watford recorded just nine shots total. Midfielder Jose Holebas missed an attempt from the left side of the box in the minute 18. The shot went far-right of the goal. The visitor’s closest opportunity came in at minute 53 on a free kick from just outside the box. Mauro Zarate fired a shot into the upper left corner of the net. United goalkeeper De Gea blocked attempt.

United stayed at sixth in the table with the victory. They currently have 48 points and sit just two points behind second-place Tottenham. They have not lost a match since October 23. They can still push Chelsea for the top spot and look to get secure a spot in the Champions League next season with a top-four finish. It would be their first appearance in the competition since 2015. If De Gea continues his great goalkeeping and the midfield has good chemistry with the forwards, they will be a team to watch out for. Zlatan Ibrahimović sits at tied for third in the league with 15 goals. United’s next match will be against Manchester City.

Watford fell to 13th in the league table with the loss. They have 30 points along with Burnley and Southampton. The Hornets need to give their Forwards more opportunities if they hope to gain spots. The forwards have accounted for just 11 goals this season in 25 matches. Captain Troy Deeney currently has seven and three assists. They host tenth-place West Ham February 25.

Blue Devils Lose in Crushing Fashion

by Humera Gul

The Central Connecticut State University Mens Basketball team fell to the Sacred Heart Pioneers in a 77-62 loss on Saturday. CCSU struggled to keep a five point lead early on in the game.

There were moments of promise, especially when Mustafa Jones put up six of the eight points CCSU scored. Mustafa Jones shot seven out of 12 from the field. He also had six rebounds, two steals and six blocks. Mustafa Jones is a junior, and has shown much poise and promise in many games this season.

Sacred Heart built a double digit lead in the first half, ass CCSU struggled to score from then on. CCSU’s offense did alright, but had difficulty shooting from the arc. Perhaps we need to work on our three pointers and improve our defense a little. Either shoot better from the arc, or take more shots from the field.

The Blue Devils didn’t get blown out, but they were never able to take the lead again. Hey, The Patriots never had the lead during 60 minutes of the Super Bowl but they won.

Sophomore Austin Nehls was 4-10 from the field. However, he did get two three point shots and was 2 of 2 for foul shots. He had five rebounds, three assists and two steals. On the other side, Sean Hoehn had a tremendous game. He was 5 of 8 from the field and 5 of 6 from the arc. He was unstoppable on his three point shots. He also had four rebounds, two assists and two steals.  He led in points scored, topping out at 27. Another Pioneer that played well was Quincy McKnight. McKnight was 4 of 7 from the field, 2 of 3 from the arc and 1 of 2 for foul shots. He also recorded one rebound, three assists and two steals.

The game was over when the Pioneers led the game by double digits, as high as 74-57 with only one minute 40 seconds to play. Jones tried hard to make a comeback, as he hit a layup with only 23 seconds to play. He led CCSU with 14 points total. CCSU has a long way to go before we can become competitive in basketball. We will improve in due time as our team is still young.

CCSU shot 22 of 51 from the field, only three out of 12 for three pointers and 15 out of 18 at the foul line. The Blue Devils were 30 out of 32 on rebounds. Sacred Heart shot 24 of 51 from the field, 13 of 23 for three pointers and 16 out of 19 at the foul line.

With another loss, CCSU is 5-20 overall and 3-11 in the Northeast Conference. Sacred Heart has won 4 games in a row and improves to 12-15 overall and 7-7 in the NEC.

CCSU plays again on February 16th against Saint Francis University at home. The game is at 7 p.m. Let’s Go Blue Devils!

Lady Blue Devils Search For Answers

by Humera Gul

The Central Connecticut State University Women’s Basketball team had a tough go against Sacred Heart, digging a deeper hole in the Northeast Conference standing. The lady Blue Devils lost 82-61 to the Pioneers Saturday.

CCSU now moves to 9-15 overall, and 8-5 in the Northeast Conference.

The Blue Devils scored 25 points off of 22 turnovers committed by the Pioneers. Points were made by nine different players, showing CCSU’s versatility and chemistry on the court.

Kiana Patterson was 5 for 13 from the field, 3 for 9 from the arc and 3 out of 3 on foul shots. Patterson led the league in points, scoring at 22. She also had a rebound, an assist and a steal. Ashley Chin also had a decent game, shooting 4 for 6 from the field and 1 of 3 from the arc. She also had 1 assist and 2 steals. In total, Chin had 11 points total and was the second highest scorer for the Blue Devils.

Hannah Kimmel led the pioneers on Saturday. She was 7 of 14 from the field, 4 of 7 from the arc and 1 out of 2 on foul shots. She also had an astounding 6 rebounds, 4 assists, 1 steal and a block. Kimmel finished the game with 22 points. Katherine Haines also played well, tailing Kimmel slightly. Haines was 9 of 14 from the field, 1 of 2 from the arc and 3 out of 4 for foul shots. She finished with 19 points.

One of the major issues for the Blue Devils in the second half was fouls. Multiple starters got fouls in the second half. On top of that, Sacred Heart was great on foul shots and capitalized on the opportunities.

Sacred Heart finished the day with 27 of 54 from the field, 13 of 23 from the arc and 15 out of 20 in foul shots. All averages were 50 percent or better. CCSU finished the day with 21-64 from the field, 6 of 26 from the arc and 13 of 24 in foul shots, a major disappointment considering the team was shooting under 33 percent from the field and the arc. Field goals percentage was 32.8 and 23.1 percent from the arc. CCSU will look to improve as the season dwindles down.

Sacred Heart moves to 13-11 overall and 10-3 in the Northeast Conference. CCSU will close out the road game series on Monday, February 13, at Fairleigh Dickinson at 7 p.m. The next home game will be this coming weekend, hosting Robert Morris at 1 p.m. at the Breast Cancer Awareness game.