first_imgThe USC women’s lacrosse team hopes to build off a strong start to the month of April and build some momentum before the MPSF championships in Eugene, Ore., as it takes on California on Friday at McAlister Field at 3 p.m.The Women of Troy (6-8, 3-2 MPSF), after finishing March with a 3-6 record, opened April with a 12-10 win over Oregon (6-7, 1-3 MPSF) in Eugene, overcoming inclement weather, numerous Oregon rallies and a five-goal performance from Hayley Milner. Freshman attacker Caroline Cordrey scored four goals for the second consecutive game, while freshman attacker Caroline de Lyra added three goals and recorded three assists.“At the end of the day, it was a conference game, and that’s what we were focused on the most,” said USC head coach Lindsey Munday, “We had out-of-conference games in March, and we weren’t as successful as we would have liked to be but we learned from them. That was our biggest push to the girls. Out-of-conference schedule prepares you for conference, and I think our out-of-conference schedule did that for us. That’s why against Oregon we were confident.De Lyra leads USC players with in goals (44), assists (33) and points (77). Freshman midfielder Amanda Johansen has 33 goals and 10 assists on the season, freshman midfielder Paige Bonomi has 31 goals and Cordrey’s four goals against the Ducks give her 30 for the season. Freshman defender Courtney Tarleton leads the team with 26 caused turnovers and 34 ground balls, while Johansen leads the MPSF and is seventh in the country with 5.57 draw controls per game.“We had to end our losing streak, so that was really important to us,” Tarleton said. “Also, because Oregon is in our conference, it was a huge win for us. Our next goal is to beat Cal.”The Golden Bears (7-4, 4-0 MPSF) are currently riding a two-game winning streak, outscoring their opponents 33-12 during the stretch, including a 14-10 win over the Ducks. They are led by attackers Megan Takacs, who has 33 goals, and Melissa Humphrey, with 14 goals and a team-high 18 assists.“For us to come out and play a full game is the most important thing, not to dig ourselves a hole like we had been in the past,” Munday said, “I think it was a team effort against Oregon, and we had some players step up, which was huge, and I think that’s really important moving throughout the course of the season.”USC will conclude its inaugural season with a pair of conference matchups. Its final home game is against Fresno State (2-10, 0-5 MPSF) on Saturday, April 20 at 3 p.m., followed by its final regular season game against San Diego State (8-4, 3-1 MPSF) on Saturday, April 27 at 7 p.m.last_img read more

first_imgPLAYA VISTA >> Not to be overly sensational, but if this works out, they might want to consider using Jerry West’s silhouette as the logo for life itself.The most famous outline in NBA history and one of the league’s predominant championship architects, West has agreed to join a construction project still maddeningly incomplete after nearly five decades.“Fear of failure is the worst possible fear you can have,” West said Monday after being introduced as the Clippers’ most celebrated consultant ever. “I’m not afraid of anything.”Clearly not, a man who has won everything willingly becoming part of a franchise that has won nothing. He detailed the agony involved in saying goodbye to Golden State in part because “no one’s going to beat (the Warriors) for a couple years, if they stay healthy.”West also talked about his desire “to work for the worst team in basketball in a small market,” which led to him helping turn once-vagabond Memphis into a playoff-caliber operation.“That’s the ultimate test of a person,” he said, “to see if you do have anything.”Really? Because I’m thinking the Clippers are the ultimate test by just about every definition, this being a franchise that might actually be, you know, cursed.Now, I have serious doubts that it was the presence of West that convinced Kevin Durant to sign with the Warriors last summer, not when the team also boasted the presence of Steph Curry, Klay Thompson and Draymond Green.There is, however, no questioning the validity and expertise West immediately provides the Clippers, a team hardly famous for compiling an abundance of credibility over the years.The challenges before the Clippers include the reality of everything they do being viewed within the context of the Lakers, few things more so than the hiring of West.A Lakers icon, West hasn’t been with the team for 17 years. Yet, his connection remains so current that just seeing him sitting in front of the Clippers’ logo Monday was disorienting.The truth is before long everyone will set aside this announcement and refocus on the Lakers’ upcoming No. 2 draft pick. And, by before long, I mean you’ve already gone back to thinking about Lonzo Ball, haven’t you?Well, stop it. This column still has 12 paragraphs to go, and I’m determined to keep the Clippers as the main topic.West first officially met with team officials three weeks ago, the Clippers quickly putting together a remarkable coup, especially for a franchise that has been at this 47 seasons and still hasn’t come close to figuring it out.“I left somewhere that was really safe, too,” Coach Doc Rivers said, referring to his previous job in Boston and how he sold the Clippers to West. “You know, let’s keep taking chances. I think we can build something great here.”Rivers has been criticized for many of his personnel decisions, the executive in him unable to provide the coach in him the necessary roster to push the Clippers over the hump.Wait, hump? Who are we kidding? The obstacle the Clippers have been trying to clear has grown into a mountain, the sort that can’t be summited without auxiliary oxygen.This team has advanced to the playoffs in each of the past six seasons, at which point the Clippers have encountered adversity ranging from the comical to the calamitous.The addition of West no question makes the Clippers smarter, Rivers today, as a basketball operations boss, better than he was yesterday, better than he ever has been, in fact.But no one in the front office was going to prevent Chris Paul from imploding in the closing minute at Oklahoma City in 2014 or the Clippers from blowing a 3-1 series lead to Houston in 2015 or any of the various fractures, breaks and strains that have helped trash this team’s recent springs.The Clippers, like few franchises in sports now that the Chicago Cubs are champions again, need all the help they can get, this organization still somehow having never won as many as two playoff series in one season.The current Clippers also face uncertainty as it relates to the possible free-agent futures of Paul and Blake Griffin and, like every team in the league, the genuine possibility that Golden State is committed to consuming this sport whole.West helped construct those Warriors, a near-perfect collection of talent and unselfishness he now must attempt to beat.“If you don’t have a reason for getting up in the morning, you better go back and stick your head in the house,” West said. “I’m not going to do that. Period. That’s not me.”No, that’s not Jerry West, a self-described crazy man whose brilliant NBA career just took its least likely and most unconventional turn yet. Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Errorcenter_img Just the same, right here at the top, I’d like to note that it was West who, during his introductory news conference, called himself “crazy.”He is simply the most valuable 79-year-old in the history of the NBA, a man hired just to share his opinion being trumpeted for his ability to now make a tangible difference.“I’ve never been conventional,” West said as to why someone would leave the two-time NBA champion Warriors for the all-time NBA also-ran Clippers.He noted that he retired as a Laker in 1974 when he felt it was time even though he “would have been the highest-paid player in the league.”He explained that he departed from the Lakers as an executive in 2000 after winning another NBA title – his seventh overall – despite knowing “they were going to win more.”last_img read more

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