`I will miss ‘Nationals’, but it’s time to move on’ – Daniel Williams

first_imgDANIEL Williams, the 17-year-old track and field prodigy from Linden, was the brightest star at the just-concluded National Schools Cycling, Swimming and Track and Field Championships, but now, the Mackenzie High School sixth-form student believes it’s time to shift his focus on pursuing a career in Mechanical Engineering and landing a medal for Guyana at the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo, Japan.Williams is no stranger to the championships, and throughout his years competing at the event, he was the stand-out athlete in all his disciplines.He holds the 100, 200 and 400 metres records in the U-14, U-16 and U-18 categories, but the 2017 edition of the games would be the last time ‘Nationals’ would see Williams.This year was the first time in the history of the games that the event was held at the Leonora Track and Field Facility, and some of Guyana’s top athletes didn’t disappoint.Williams, competing in the U-18 category, broke the 100, 200 and 400 metres records, and finished third in the high jump, after his coach Johnny Gravesande pulled him from the event when he was in contention for a top-of-the-podium finish. He was adjudged ‘Champion Boy’ in the U-18 and helped District 10 to claim their 17th overall title.“Unfortunately, this is my last year at ‘Nationals’ and I have to now focus on bigger things,” Williams told Chronicle Sport after his dominating showing at the games.The 2017 IAAF World U-18 Championships 400M silver medallist is not known as a ‘talker’, but he expressed his gratitude to those who supported him during his years competing at the schools championship.“I will miss these games,” Williams said, adding “this is where everything started for me; everything I know about competing, winning and losing, I learn from Nationals, but now it’s time to start a new chapter in my life.”Since his showing in Nairobi, Kenya this year, where he ran a personal best of 46.72 seconds to finish behind Jamaica’s Antonio Watson (46.59) to win Guyana’s lone medal at the games, several colleges in the USA came calling, but Williams said his decision on which school to attend will be based on where will be best to study, and still allow him to compete at the highest level internationally and on the NCAA circuit.“Right now, to be honest, I’m just happy to accomplish everything I have so far, but none of it would’ve been possible without the support of my coach. He’s the one who ensures that I do all the right things; he’s like a father-figure to me and I’m grateful for all he has done so far and will continue to do. Thanks to everyone who was there to help me along the way at ‘Nationals’ and I will miss these games,” said Williams.The athlete is also popular for his always humble approach and is known for not being boastful.Along with several other top junior athletes, both locally and overseas, Williams is among the shortlist of athletes by the Athletics Association of Guyana (AAG) for next year’s Commonwealth Games in Australia.Some believe that the AAG should explore the idea of exposing the already world-rated junior athlete to the highest level of senior competition internationally, and set a platform for their ‘Road to Tokyo’.Meanwhile, Williams will return to MHS, where he will continue his studies to come out on top at the Caribbean Advanced Proficiency Examination (CAPE) (Unit Two).last_img read more

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5-foot-8 Raven Fox is the first forward off the bench for Syracuse

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ During an early season practice, Syracuse’s coaching staff situated players around the court in the Carmelo K. Anthony Basketball Center. The team, stocked with new faces, was learning the playbook and Raven Fox didn’t expect what happened next.Fox is listed as a guard on the Orange roster. She considers herself a guard, and it’s the position she’s played for most of her life. Yet coaches positioned the junior as a forward, giving her a look into what her first season at SU would bring.“I kind of knew,” Fox said. “If I have to learn these plays then this is most likely the position that I’m going to be playing during the season.”Players and coaches alike have admitted that the Orange’s frontcourt is its thinnest position group. Aside from freshman starters Amaya Finklea-Guity and Digna Strautmane, there are no true bigs on the team.Enter Fox, a 5-foot-8 junior-college transfer. Averaging 2.9 points and 2.8 rebounds per game, respectively, Fox’s impact transcends the stat sheet. She’s SU’s backup power forward and center, thrust into the paint and in the middle of the Orange’s 2-3 zone by necessity.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textFox will continue to work alongside Finklea-Guity and Strautmane as Syracuse (22-7, 10-6 Atlantic Coast) enters the ACC tournament as the eight seed and squares off against No. 9 seed Virginia Tech, the only unranked team to beat the Orange in the Carrier Dome this season.“I guess I fit that spot because of my body size,” Fox said. “I can bump against those bigger players. At first, it was hard for me to get adjusted to it.”The last time Fox was the tallest player on her team, she was 8 years old and in AAU ball. Harold Fox, her father and then-coach, remembers his daughter trying out every position, learning every possible job on the court. He didn’t know that Fox would end up replacing two 6-foot-plus players as the anchor in the Orange’s rotation.Anna Henderson | Digital Design EditorFox spent her first two collegiate seasons at Gulf Coast State after battling eligibility restrictions. At GC, she was a three guard. Now, she’s had to fill in for Maeva Djaldi-Tabdi and Marie-Paule Foppossi, two freshman forwards that are redshirting the 2017-18 campaign.“(Fox) wanted to come in and wanted to help us in any facet that we needed to,” SU head coach Quentin Hillsman said. “She’s taking on roles that she probably wouldn’t normally have and she’s doing a good job.”Fox has tried to use her natural “guard quickness” to her advantage. She’s acknowledged that most, if not all, of her opponents have a few inches on her, and her speed can be an equalizer. On the offensive end, Fox tries to “wear out” her defender by flying around the baseline and setting screens. Defensively, Fox attempts to rush in front of her assignment so she can win position under the rim and corral a board.She cited SU’s game against then-No. 17 Duke on Feb. 15, when she realized that her quickness was making a drastic impact. Finklea-Guity spent most of the fourth quarter on the bench, making Fox the Orange’s anchor in crunch time. Fox finished with eight points and three boards, including a late, game-tying shot in the eventual upset win.“She works really hard to do that even if they are two, three times bigger than her,” Finklea-Guity said. “She just works hard regardless. Whenever she gets the layup or the and-1, everybody goes nuts for her because we all see that she’s working.”The Bladensburg, Maryland, native attacks practice knowing that the competition she faces in the Melo Center will mimic her in-game tasks. Working with assistant coach Adeniyi Amadou, Fox is the smallest in the position group of Finklea-Guity (6-foot-4), Strautmane (6-foot-2), Djaldi-Tabdi (6-foot-2) and Foppossi (6-foot-1).Fox singled out one drill, a 2-on-2 rebounding exercise, that she’s used as her measuring stick. Starting on the baseline, a player runs and has to box out their assignment swiftly. For Fox, going against players like Finklea-Guity can be frustrating because of the height disparity and the latter’s quick feet. With each drill, practice and game, Fox is playing catch-up.“It’s great,” point guard Tiana Mangakahia said of Fox’s production. “Sometimes she doesn’t play that much. But when she’s in, every little thing matters to her.”Against the Blue Devils late in the fourth quarter, Fox stood in the paint and made eye contact with Hillsman. He swung his arm forward and motioned Fox to set a screen for Mangakahia. Fox set the pick, and watched as the designed play resulted in an open 3 for Mangakahia, who nailed the game-winner. The same sequence is normally kicked off with a Finklea-Guity screen, but Fox filled in, just as she had all year.“I think it’s just mainly having heart,” Fox said. “Knowing that I am undersized, I just try to play as hard as I can … I think it’s that part, understanding your role … Taking pride in what you do.”— Assistant Sports Editor Billy Heyen contributed reporting for this article. Comments Published on February 28, 2018 at 9:58 pm Contact Nick: nialvare@syr.edu | @nick_a_alvarezlast_img read more

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BH Basketball Players unified: We will not surrender, we go to France for a Result

first_imgThe national basketball team of B&H gathered two days ago in Ilidža, ahead of the start of preparations for the Eurobasket which is to be held this year from September 5th to 20th in Zagreb, Berlin, Riga, Montpellier and Lille.The BH national team members yesterday successfully passed the medical examinations and they are all ready for the training process.“It feels nice to be back among the representatives again. I hope health will serve us and that we will do everything that is planned in the best possible way. Tough preparations are ahead of us, a lot of friendly matches, and we have enough time to prepare. Everyone in our group has the ambition to go further, and so do we. We have an obligation to give our best and hopefully it will be enough to make it to the second round“, said Elmedin Kikanović, new center of the German Alba.As he said, he is happy and satisfied with the conditions in the eightfold champion of Germany.“I am happy I will be wearing the jersey of Alba the next two seasons”, added Kikanović.The captain Mirza Teletović will not be among the best BH basketball players this year.“Unfortunately, he will not be with us. But it is what it is. We, who are here, will have to give more than our maximum and fight with all the strength to go further”, Kikanović added.Among the BH basketball players this year as well is the brilliant Andrija Stipanović, another center of the national team who delivers excellent games in the Turkish Trabzonspor.“I was looking forward to this gathering, as well as everyone who is here. I hope we will prepare as good as possible, and show ourselves in the best possible light. The atmosphere in the team was never questioned. All the guys are great, we are getting along very well“, said Stipanović.(Source: klix.ba)last_img read more

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