DRAWN in ‘Group D’ of the 2019 CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship, Guyana will open their quest to qualify for this year’s FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup, against El Salvador today in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. The Abdulla Hamid-coached team will be led by Deshawn Joseph (captain), Jermaine Grandison, Michael Wilson, Kennard Simon, Keon Sears, Cordel Johnson, Jeffon Figueira, Shane Luckie, Jamal Haynes, Ethan Sparman Trevon Archibald and Jashaun Moore.Dwallon Farrell is the team’s manager, while the physiotherapist is Quincy Paddy.Following today’s game against El Salvador, Guyana will next play Guadeloupe tomorrow, and will close their Group D round of matches against Belize on May 16.The 2019 edition of the biennial CONCACAF tournament, which will be held with the support of the Municipal Government of Puerto Vallarta, will see Guyana among the best 16 national beach soccer teams in the region – Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Belize, Bonaire, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guadeloupe, Guatemala, Jamaica, Mexico, Panama, Trinidad and Tobago, the Turks and Caicos Islands, the United States and the US Virgin Islands.The best-ranked two teams in the competition will ensure qualification for the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Paraguay 2019.In Group A, Mexico, the home side, will face Costa Rica, Jamaica and Guatemala. Panama, Trinidad & Tobago, Turks and Caicos Islands and the US Virgin Islands are in Group B, while in Group C, United States will face opposition from Bahamas, Antigua and Barbuda and Bonaire.After round-robin play, the first- and second-place finishers of each group will advance to the quarter-finals, whose winners will advance to the semi-finals. Semi-final winners will automatically qualify for the tournament’s final, as well as the FIFA Beach Soccer World Cup Paraguay 2019.In the last edition of the CONCACAF Beach Soccer Championship in The Bahamas, Panama overcame Mexico in the final, to win their first Beach Soccer title.In 2017, Guyana’s Haynes walked away with the Scotiabank Young Player Award, as the 21-year-old Haynes impressed fans, players and officials with a dazzling array of skills and goals.Guyana defeated Belize 4-1 in the group stage and Antigua & Barbuda 6-4 in the placement stage to end 12th out of 16 teams.Playing up front for most of the tournament, Haynes scored a hat-trick in the win against Antigua & Barbuda, including one of the goals of the tournament – a spectacular overhead kick that soared into the top corner.
GREG DIXON/Herald photoAs the common saying goes, “You can’t script the playoffs.”For some, it’s something they’ve heard since Little League. For others, thephrase was pounded into their brains by means of Dane Cook and his delightfulTBS World Series commercials. For the UW men’s soccer team, it’s been on thewhite board for months.”If we get a strong push here (in the Big Ten tournament)and get the results that we need, we’re going to find ourselves in the NCAAtournament,” sophomore midfielder Scott Lorenz said Wednesday.Indeed, the team could certainly use all the wins it can getat this point. Since being ranked in the top 20 nationally for the first timein a decade two months ago, the Badgers have endured multiple injuries and morethan their share of bad bounces, all of which seemed to point to an early exitin this year’s Big Ten tournament starting today in East Lansing, Michigan. That changed last week when the team got its first win ineight games. In beating University of Illinois-Chicago 2-1, the Badgers seemedto suddenly play like a completely different team, and that attitude showedjust days later as the Badgers tied Indiana, the No. 1 seed in the Big Ten tournament,0-0 in the last home contest of the year.”I’ve felt that our level of play was much better in thelast couple of games against [UIC] and Indiana. It will be important to bringsome of what we did in those games out when we play Northwestern on Thursday,”Wisconsin head coach Jeff Rohrman said. “We certainly have a lot to play for.”Northwestern, fresh off a 2-0 conference win over MichiganState, comes into the tournament as one of the more dominant teams in a hecticconference, finishing the regular season with a 3-2-1 record. One of those winscame at the hands of the Badgers, who suffered the 3-0 setback a little morethan a month ago in Evanston. The Wildcats’ win over the Spartans is particularlyimpressive when you look at what Michigan State did to Wisconsin at home: a 4-0throttling that marked a low point in Wisconsin’s season.So how does a team lose two games like that and still havelife in the conference picture? Wisconsin needed to start with a win to stopthe bleeding. UIC, check. Next up? The conference leading Hoosiers. A tie, check. With momentum on their side, the Badgers seem poised tofinally live up the early season hype that surrounded them after defeatingCalifornia and Stanford in back-to-back games. Victor Diaz, junior midfielder and team leader in points,feels like the Badgers have finally figured themselves out.”This team can win the tournament,” Diaz said. “We tied oneof the best teams in the country the other day. If we put in the same kind ofeffort we put in Sunday, I have no doubt we will get a good result.”Lorenz shares Diaz’s enthusiasm, feeling that the motivationto keep the collegiate careers of their seniors alive is “definitely somethingthat we have been able to rally around to bring the team together.”The Badgers will need the desire to extend the careers ofseniors B.J. Goodman, Sho Fujita, Erik Ortega, Dirk Pearson and Nick Caronna togenerate an extra push to get past the Wildcats, who, despite an injury tostarting goalie Misha Rosenthal, are still very dangerous. Northwestern is led in points by three players, all of whichhave 15 on the season. Two, Matt Eliason and Piero Bellizzi, are freshmanstandouts. The last one, senior David Roth, is the only one of the three-headedattacking machine who scored against Wisconsin in their last contest.By moving Goodman back to the defensive line after a shortspell at midfield, as well as shifting Diaz out to right midfield oppositeLorenz, Rohrman hopes his team will be able to weather the storm while creatingone themselves.”I think [the end of the season] finally coming to an endhas really opened the eyes to our players,” Rorhman said. “I think the seniorshave really made the rest of the players realize the finality of the season.[The seniors] have certainly inspired them and taught them to make the most ofevery moment and every game.”
Despite a surprising first-round exit from the ACC tournament with a 4-3 overtime loss to Wake Forest, Syracuse earned the No. 3 seed in the NCAA tournament. Third-seeded Syracuse hosts 16th-seeded Harvard this Saturday at 11:30 a.m. at J.S Coyne stadium.All-Time series: This is the first ever meeting between the two programs.Common opponents this season: Both Syracuse and Harvard played four common opponents during the regular season, including Boston University, Cornell, Pennsylvania, and Boston College. The Orange went undefeated against the four teams, outscoring its opponents 14-2. Meanwhile, the Crimson managed a 3-1 record against common opponents, outscoring them, 10-6.The Harvard report: Harvard won the Ivy league boasting an undefeated 7-0 record in conference play. The Crimson ranked 15th in the nation entering the tournament.Harvard relies on its defense to keep opponents at bay. The Crimson rank 12th in the NCAA with a 1.44 goals against average.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe Harvard attack comes from the midfield, where all three of its top point-scorers play. Senior Marissa Balleza leads the way for the Crimson with 13 goals and three assists on the season. She is followed by Freshman Bente Van Vlijmen, who has 8 goals in her first year with Harvard, and Ellie Cookson, who hasn’t scored a goal but has assisted on 10 this season.The Harvard offense, however, has struggled this season as it ranks 44th in the NCAA in goals per game averaging just over two per game.How Syracuse beats Harvard: The Orange is the more balanced team heading into the first round of the tournament. If Syracuse reaches its average number of goals, more than three per game, it will likely outscore a struggling Harvard offense. As the heavy favorites, it will take a standard performance from the Orange to outlast the Crimson this Saturday.Stat to Know: 6-0 — Syracuse is undefeated at J.S Coyne stadium this season. Harvard has lost three games on the road.Player to Watch: Bente Van Vlijmen, No. 10, Midfielder.The Ivy league rookie of the year has tallied four goals in Harvard’s last two games. If Harvard hopes to keep up with Syracuse’s potent offense, the Crimson will need an outstanding performance from the freshman midfielder. Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ Published on November 11, 2016 at 12:42 am Contact Josh: firstname.lastname@example.org | @Schafer_44