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Gabriela Knutson clinches upset for No. 34 Syracuse, 4-3, over No. 3 Georgia Tech

first_imgNo. 9 Gabriela Knutson stared at the ball knowing everyone was watching her. She scanned the scene before her final serve. Knutson was in charge of clinching the match for Syracuse — a position she had never been in during her tennis career at SU, she said. But this wasn’t any other match. It was against No. 3 Georgia Tech. Knutson raised her arm and threw the ball into the air. Up 40-0, she smashed the serve straight down the middle of the court past the outstretched arms of No. 22 Paige Hourigan. Players from Syracuse jolted onto the court, jumping with their arms in the air. The crowd at Drumlins Country Club erupted. Dina Hegab was the first to embrace Knutson as the team followed and linked arms with elation. As the coaches walked over to the crowd of players celebrating, Knutson threw her hands into the air and started to tear up. At that moment, Knutson had not known what she had done for SU’s tennis program, she said, but she knew it was something special. “It makes everything I do worthwhile,” Knutson said, “Not sleeping, traveling, just waking up at 6 a.m. to go to practice. It makes everything worthwhile when you have that kind of support from your teammates to win the match.”AdvertisementThis is placeholder textNo. 34 Syracuse (14-3, 6-3 Atlantic Coast), who failed to close two matches earlier this season against Virginia and then-No. 16 Wake Forest in the final moments, did the almost unthinkable on Sunday and beat No. 3 Georgia Tech (14-4, 6-2), 4-3. The Yellow Jackets are the highest-ranked opponent SU has ever beaten. While some players, like Hegab, knew GT was a top-five opponent, Knutson made it a point of emphasis to not know the rankings before Sunday’s match. On Sunday morning, assistant athletics director William Hicks shot Knutson a text. It said, “This is why you work so hard, kick ass.”Despite the tall task, the Orange started the match with strong doubles play in the first and third slot. No. 37 Knutson and Miranda Ramirez dominated No. 1 Hourigan and Kenya Jones from the jump, taking a 5-0 lead at one point, en route to a 6-2 victory. With GT winning second doubles, Hegab and Masha Tritou faced off late crowd pressure to clinch the doubles point, 7-5, for SU. After Sofya Golubovskaya dropped her singles match, Syracuse led 3-2 with Anna Shkudun on the way to a loss. Knutson, who was on the opposite side of the courts, looked over to Golubovskaya’s match in between points. “I kept looking at the scoreboard,” Knutson said, “so when I saw that (Golubovskaya) lost I was like ‘Oh no, please no.’ I knew it was up to me.”Knutson opened her match by taking two of the first three games with three aces but fell behind after that. After a 2-1 lead, Knutson dropped seven consecutive games en route to losing the first set, 2-6, but blamed the early struggles on her mindset.After falling behind 0-2 in the second set, something clicked for Knutson. She stopped taking soft shots and began to hit aggressive forehands, she said.Knutson opened the third game of the set with two aces and never looked back, she said. Up a break, Knutson hit a forehand slice to the endline and past the arms of Hourigan. Hourigan fell to the ground, visibly shaken up, and began to yell at herself. Behind six-straight games won, Knutson forced the match to a third set. Knutson could not capitalize early in the third; she fell behind 0-3, down a break. Going into the fourth game in the third set, Golubovskaya’s match ended and everyone’s attention focused on the first singles match. “Sometimes it’s too much,” Knutson said. “Everyone rushed on (my) court and everyone was cheering. I’m like ‘I can’t think or breath.’”Down 1-3, associate head coach Shelley George began to shout in the direction of Knutson. “You got this, right here, right now,” George yelled. At 40-40, Hourigan’s backhand floated long and Knutson let out a holler and a fist pump. She ran to the bench and met with George.At 2-3, Knutson caught Hourigan off her feet to go up 40-15. After Hourigan shook off the slide, Knutson drilled an ace down the middle to level the set at 3-3. Hegab and the rest of SU’s players moved from their individual spots to cheer on Knutson.“Watching someone makes you even more nervous than actually playing,” Hegab said, “That’s how I felt today.”At 4-4 in the third, Knutson saw three-consecutive forehand winners go up the line as Hourigan went up 40-0. Knutson looked in the direction of George, who motioned her hands up and down to calm her down. After the exchange, Knutson flashed a smile and forced three-straight errors to tie it at 40-40. With the match’s most-important point pending, Knutson looked at George for assurance. Knutson fought off a strong serve from Hourigan and forced a fourth-straight error to take the game. She fist pumped as the crowd cheered her on. After the winner, Knutson had a feeling that she was going to win the match. “I knew this was my court,” Knutson said, “This is where I train every day, I was not about the lose the match (at 5-4 in the third set). It was mine.”Knutson then drilled four-straight winners to defeat Hourigan and clinch the match for SU. Head coach Younes Limam, who stood in his place after Knutson’s game-winning ace, said the end of the match commotion was more “relief” than joy for him. When the celebration ended, Knutson made it a point of emphasis to approach Hicks. He grabbed Knutson by the arm with a big smile on his face. “I knew you could do it,” Hicks said to Knutson a couple of minutes after the match, “I told you that you could do it earlier.”After the match, Knutson put the win into perspective: “It gives us the confidence to continue this season. I don’t think we’re underdogs anymore.” Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on April 1, 2018 at 5:27 pm Contact KJ: kjedelma@syr.edu | @KJEdelmanlast_img read more

Patriots’ Tom Brady, Julian Edelman react to Rob Gronkowski denting the Lombardi Trophy

first_imgBrady took to Twitter shortly after the team released a video of the incident.pic.twitter.com/0WqH1HhpSe— Tom Brady (@TomBrady) April 17, 2019Edelman also reacted to the news on his Twitter account. Related News NFL Draft 2019: Patriots have growing interest in early-round QB, report says NFL schedule 2019: 5 potholes on the Patriots’ road to repeat “No comment,” Edelman wrote.No comment https://t.co/lw80WBsWtz— Julian Edelman (@Edelman11) April 17, 2019Several of Gronkowski’s teammates, including safety Duron Harmon, discussed the event in an interview with Patriots.com.“You can’t hide a baseball dent in there,” Harmon said. “Everybody literally went to the trophy and saw it. I think Rob thought it was more funny than anything.“The funniest thing about it all was it actually was a really good bunt. Like it was perfect technique. I don’t even understand how he controlled the Lombardi. If the Red Sox had bunting practice, that would be teaching tape for them. He does everything perfect.”Meanwhile, Gronkowski announced his retirement on Instagram in late March. He spent all nine of his NFL seasons in New England.center_img Tom Brady has weighed in on Rob Gronkowski’s latest stunt.The Patriots revealed Wednesday that Gronkowski dented the most recent Lombardi Trophy when the team threw out the first pitch at a Red Sox game April 9. The 29-year-old used the trophy as a bat and damaged it while attempting to bunt a warmup toss thrown by Julian Edelman. “It’s time to move forward and move forward with a big smile on my face knowing that the New England Patriots organization, Pats nation and all my fans will truly be a big part of my heart for the rest of my life,” Gronkowski wrote. “It was truly an incredible honor to play for such a great, established organization.”Gronkowski finished his career with 521 regular-season catches for 7,861 yards and 79 touchdowns. He’s the Patriots’ career leader in touchdowns and is tied for the second-most receiving scores in playoff history.last_img read more

Mouse Guard movie makes tracks at SDCC

first_imgEarlier this week, just ahead of San Diego Comic Con, Eisner award-winning graphic novel series Mouse Guard announced a movie adaptation that will bring the fan favorite to the CG realm.20th Century Fox acquired the rights to the series, and on board is the screenplay writing talent of Gary Whitta, who also wrote Rogue One: A Star Wars Story and The Book of Eli.Matt Reeves, director of War for the Planet of the Apes is producing Mouse Guard through his 6th and Idaho production company along with Ross Richie and Stephen Christy, both of BOOM! Studios, which publishes the series.The wildly popular series features a community of mice in medieval times, that fight to serve and protect one another, told in tales of bravery, wit, love, and war. First published in 2006 by BOOM!’s Archaia Studios Press, Mouse Guard has sold nearly a million copies, with a new story arc, Mouse Guard: The Weasel War expected to launch next year.Mouse Guard has been translated into 10 languages, with three volumes of the main series, three volumes of a spin off series, as well as a Mouse Guard role-playing game. A recent photo book was unveiled by BOOM!, portraying Mouse Guard scenes with Lego blocks, Mouse Guard: Art of Bricks.Author David Peterson has long craved a film adaptation of his life’s work, and sat down to talk with us at SDCC about why this marriage of talent and studio was finally a perfect fit for his world of mice.He mentions, “Ten years ago, I started talking to movie folks. I’m very protective of Mouse Guard and I wanted [the studio] to be the right fit….. I don’t know how it could feel any more right than it does right now….. This is perfect. This is the right team.”The movie will be shot using motion capture CG, with similar technology we’ve seen before in movies like Jungle Book and Planet of the Apes. Petersen mentions that he has a great respect for adaptations of comics done in 2D animation and stop motion, but that he feels it is important that the landscape of the movie be a character unto itself, and has always envisioned the medieval scenery as a live action creature that moves and breathes along with the rest of the characters in the film.Of the storyline, Petersen reveals that the first arc of the comics, Fall 1152, will be the backbone of the plot, with some moments from other books, such as Legends of the Guards, mixed in. When asked if there’s any hope that the Mouse Guard movie may turn into more than one film, he says, “We hope that there’s enough stuff to keep going. I think we can make a fantastic first movie and not leave anyone wanting, but still have more left to come back to.”In the Mouse Guard comics, mice Saxon, Kenzie, and Lieam are soldiers sworn to protect the Mouse community. Kenzie is the leader, joined by Saxon the hot-headed fencer, and Lieam, the impressionable rookie soldier.The connecting theme in all of their adventures is that the Guard maintains their duty to protect others because they know they are the only ones brave enough to do so, and are willing. Petersen says, “It’s about honor. That kind of message is both very adult and complex while also being something that’s very child-focused and wholesome.”The Mouse Guard series has long been a respected work that appeals to both children and adults. Petersen intends for the movie to match that quality. He mentions that, likewise, when instructing the writers who did short stories in the Mouse Guard spin off series, Legends of the Guards, that they keep in mind the stories must appeal to both young and old and, “it has to be a wide path and a balancing beam. You have to include everyone.”Screenplay writer Gary Whitta also mentioned in the Mouse Guard panel early Saturday afternoon that he wanted to leave behind a story that his young daughter can enjoy nowat her current age, as well as have the story resonate with her later on in life.Although still in the writing stages, Peterson does admit he has at least one actor in mind for one of his characters: actor Jim Carter, as he portrayed the character of the gruff but kind-hearted Mr. Carson on the BBC show Downton Abbey.He recalls, “I was drawing in the living room while my wife was watching Downton Abbey… so I had no visual. Then, this Jim Carter voice came on, and he said something very Celanawe-ish: very grumpy, but still with a hint of optimism. I thought, that’s Celanawe! That’s the voice of him for sure!” Calenawe is a gruff, older mouse, who was a former member of the Mouse Guard before becoming a hermit under mysterious circumstances. Although actual casting is a far ways from being considered, Petersen says of his Jim Carter hopes, “I’ll do anything I can to champion the Celanawe voice.”Although the film is still in the writing stages of the screenplay, if the line of fans waiting to talk to Petersen at SDCC as well as his full-to- the-brim panel is any indication, it will be worth the wait.last_img read more