Bulldogs Sweep Lions In Softball

first_imgThe Batesville Lady Bulldog Softball team defeated Rushville last night by a score of 3-2 in 8 innings.The Bulldogs got on base early in the 1st inning when Laker singled to center with a base hit, but was thrown out on the next pitch as she attempted to steal 2nd. A strike out by Burkhart ended the 1st inning for the Bulldogs. A walk by Muir #14 to start the game for Rushville and a single to left field put runners in scoring position early. A 6-5 play on a ground ball forced Muir out at 3rd. A pop up behind home plate and catch by Cornn outed Kuhn, and a ground out by Muir #10 ended the inning with no runs scored.The Bulldogs were held scoreless in the 2nd and 3rd innings while Rushville scored 2. The first came after Muir #14 singled to left field and then reached 2nd on an error by the Bulldogs attempting to throw her out stealing. A single to center field by Hamilton scored Muir on another error by the Bulldogs attempting to throw her out at home and allowed Hamilton to reach 3rd base. A sacrifice fly by Marquez scored Hamilton. Two ground outs later ended the inning.The Bulldogs scored one run in the 4th inning after Obermeyer walked and Wilson tripled to CF to score courtesy runner Nunlist. The Bulldogs score their second run in the 6th inning after Waechter reached on an error and advanced to 2nd. Wilson singled to center advancing Waechter home.A pitchers duel ensued through the 7th and into the 8th inning. After a strike out by Cornn to start the 8th, Westerfeld walked and courtesy runner Nunlist advanced to 2nd after a wild pitch. Garcia sacrifice bunted successfully to advance Nunlist to 3rd. Laker singled to left field scoring Nunlist.  A Rushville strike out and two fly outs ended the game.Westerfeld led the team in pitching with 4 strikeouts and no earned runs coming in to relieve Obermeyer in the 4th inning. Wilson led the team at the plate with 2 hits (single and triple) and 2 RBIs. Laker finished with 3 hits and an RBI. Garcia had 3 hits, Obermeyer 2 hits and 2 walks, and Burkhard ended with a hit.  Wilson ended the game with 9 putouts while Burkhart finished with 6 assists.Rushville looked a whole lot better defensively than they did last week and they made it very difficult to score runs. Westerfeld did a great job of shutting their hitters down when she came in to start the fourth inning.‘This was a great win for us as we move to our last week of regular season softball with 4 games next week.’ Bulldogs Coach Randy Obermeyer.Next up – Connersville on Monday at home with a 5:30 PM start.The JV Lady Bulldogs traveled to Rushville Thursday evening and defeated the Lady Lions by a score of 13-2.  The Lady Bulldogs capitalized on solid hitting and terrific pitching to earn the victory.Batesville was first on the board in the top half of the third when they scored six runs off of eight hits in the frame.  They would go on to add five more in the fourth and another two in the fifth.  Rushville would get on the board but not until late in the bottom half of the fifth where they scored two runs. The Lady Bulldogs ended the game by getting an uncharacteristic 4-3-2-6 double play. Solid defense was key on the night as the Lady Bulldogs only committed a single error.The Lady Bulldogs pounded out 16 total hits on the evening with Gwen Martin leading the way slugging out three singles, two runs scored, and an RBI.  Abby Westerfeld, Chloe Saler, Hannah Nunlist, Anna Gerth, and McKenzie Laker all had two hits a piece while Kylie Laker, Ainsley Phipps, and Zoe Peters each had one.  Westerfeld led the team with three runs scored while Nunlist and Phipps contributed with three RBI’s a piece.Kylie Laker was excellent in her first start of the season going all five innings for the Lady Bulldogs punching out seven Lady Lions hitters.The win improves the JV Lady Bulldog record to 6-7 on the season. Batesville JV softball will next be in action Tuesday evening at home against the visiting Milan Lady Indians.  First pitch will be immediately following the varsity game.Courtesy of Bulldogs Coach Stacey Kessens.last_img read more

Magical Season Continues…Harrison homers, Pirates slip by Marlins 4-3

first_imgPittsburgh Pirates’ Josh Harrison, second from right, is greeted by teammates as he crosses home plate after hitting a walk-off solo home run off Miami Marlins relief pitcher Mike Dunn during the ninth inning of a baseball game in Pittsburgh Tuesday, Aug. 6, 2013. The Pirates won 4-3. (AP Photo/Gene J. Puskar) PITTSBURGH (AP) – The last time Josh Harrison hit a walk-off homer, he was a high school senior in Cincinnati. The game was played in front of a few dozen people on a spring afternoon. Still the only homer of his prep career remains ingrained in Harrison’s memory.Now it’s got company.The Pittsburgh Pirates utility infielder sent a fastball from Miami reliever Mike Dunn into the first row of seats in right-center leading off the ninth, the improbable homer lifting the Pirates to a 4-3 victory on Tuesday night.“I knew it had a chance,” Harrison said after his second home run of the season. “I knew it wasn’t caught off the bat. I was running watching (Giancarlo) Stanton’s reaction. I knew he wasn’t going to catch it. I saw him pull up and it didn’t kick back, I knew it was gone.”Pittsburgh manager Clint Hurdle sent Harrison out to leadoff the inning modestly hoping Harrison could find a way to get on base. Instead, Harrison provided another signature moment in a season that is starting to stockpile them for the first-place Pirates.A marvelous diving grab by centerfielder Andrew McCutchen with two on in the seventh saved two runs and reliever Vin Mazzaro narrowly escaped a bases-loaded jam moments when a liner from Jeff Mathis landed inches foul. Mathis eventually flied to left on a night Miami left 11 runners on base.Minutes later Harrison was getting the creampie to the face treatment.“Those are little things that happen that make you go ‘Yeah, something’s going on,’” Hurdle said. “There’s no doubt the more feel good you get, the more you feel good.”The NL Central-leading Pirates have won three straight to move a season-high 24 games over .500 (68-44).Dunn (2-3) bailed Chad Qualls after Qualls loaded the bases with no outs in the eighth. He struck out Pedro Alvarez and got Russell Martin to hit into a double play but couldn’t get the best of Harrison, a bench player who has spent most of the season shuttling between Pittsburgh and Triple-A Indianapolis.“Initially, I didn’t think it was high enough to go out but it carried and it was a home run,” Dunn said. “It was a good job on his part.”Bryan Morris (5-4) pitched a perfect top of the ninth for the victory. Neil Walker had three hits for the Pirates. McCutchen had two hits, including a two-run double, for Pittsburgh.Donovan Solano went 3 for 5 for the Marlins but baseball’s lowest scoring team left runners on base in six of the first seven innings.“We couldn’t get that hit to give us a little breathing room,” Miami manager Mike Redmond said.Pittsburgh’s Jeff Locke has been one of baseball’s biggest surprises, the 25-year-old soaring from fringe starter to All-Star. He’s had trouble working deep into games since returning from his trip to New York for the midsummer classic, and for a while it appeared he was headed for another early exit after lasting just four innings against St. Louis in his last start.Miami turned three singles – none of them sharply hit – into a run in the second then added two more in the third behind four straight singles to start the inning. The Marlins, however, couldn’t pile on and Locke eventually settled down. The left-hander allowed three runs on nine hits in 5 2-3 innings, walking three and striking out four as his ERA ticked up to 2.47.“There are lessons to be learned for him,” Hurdle said of Locke. “He’s always got to be the predator and the aggressor. We’re into August. We’re into September. Everybody that gets that ball, you’ve got to be throwing aggressive punches off the mound with intent and conviction.”Locke left two runners on in the sixth. He also left with a no decision as Mazzaro retired Ed Lucas with two runners on to end the inning.Henderson Alvarez handcuffed the Pirates in their previous meeting, limiting Pittsburgh to just two hits in six innings of a victory two weeks ago. The Pirates, however, briefly figured him out in the third. McCutchen doubled off the wall to drive in two runs and Pedro Alvarez followed with his first triple of the year to tie it.The Pirates never threatened against the Miami starter again, and Alvarez left after seven innings, giving up three runs on six hits, striking out six while not issuing a walk.That left it up to the bullpens and Pittsburgh’s “Shark Tank” continued its dominance. Mazzaro survived the seventh and the Marlins went meekly in the eighth or ninth before Harrison stepped to the plate.“I’ve never been around a group of guys that fights this hard the entire game,” Locke said. “We load the bases in the eighth and Pedro comes up and we don’t score and you see who comes up with nobody on and walks off. It’s funny how the game works like that.”NOTES: Hurdle said LHP Francisco Liriano deserves to be in the NL Cy Young conversation. Liriano is 12-4 with a 2.02 ERA in 16 starts and was named the NL Player of the Week after picking up two victories between July 29-Aug. 4 … The series continues on Wednesday when Pittsburgh’s Charlie Morton (3-3, 4.07 ERA) faces Tom Koehler (3-6, 4.34). Morton gave up five runs in six innings of a loss to St. Louis in his previous start. Koehler pitched six shutout innings against the Mets in a win last Thursday.last_img read more

Redknapp: Liverpool watched Yun

first_imgQPR manager Harry Redknapp says Liverpool were among the clubs interested in Yun Suk-young.Rangers have confirmed the arrival of the South Korea left-back on a three-and-a-half-year contract.The club’s owners were keen for Redknapp to sign the 22-year-old from Korean outfit Chunnam Dragons.Rangers chief scout Ian Broomfield watched Yun in action during last summer’s Olympics in London.Redknapp said: “Ian watched him three times and there a lot of clubs that have looked at him. Liverpool did and others too. There’s been plenty of interest.Yun was granted a work permit following a hearing on Tuesday morning.Click here for today’s QPR quizSee also:QPR to attend work permit hearing for South Korean defenderQPR confirm signing of Korean 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 Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img read more

QPR v Northampton: Changes for Rangers and youngster is among subs

first_imgEmbed from Getty ImagesMatt Smith and Idrissa Sylla start for QPR at Loftus Road, where Steven Caulker plays a first-team match for the first time since last October.Keeper Matt Ingram and midfielders Ariel Borysiuk and Ryan Manning are among those also brought into the side for the League Cup first round tie.Rangers’ substitutes include Belgian youngster Ilias Chair, a midfielder the club signed earlier this year.QPR: Ingram, Furlong, Onuoha, Caulker, Robinson, Freeman, Manning, Borysiuk, Ngbakoto, Sylla, Smith.Subs: Lumley, Baptiste, Petrasso, Luongo, Chair, Wszolek, Washington. Follow West London Sport on TwitterFind us on Facebooklast_img

Freeze drying technology gets a boost via rocket science

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest Purdue University has created a new lyophilization consortium, LyoHUB, to improve freeze-drying technology to make food, pharmaceuticals and biotech products safer and more affordable.The center is funded by the National Institute of Standards and Technology through a $453,623 planning grant from its Advanced Manufacturing Technology Consortia, or AMTech, program.Lyophilization, the process by which water is gently removed from materials to make them more stable and lengthen their shelf life, is a high-priority technology challenge, said Elizabeth Topp, head of Purdue’s Department of Industrial and Physical Pharmacy who co-leads the center with Alina Alexeenko, an associate professor of aeronautics and astronautics.“You don’t think of it when enjoying the dried strawberries in your morning cereal, but lyophilization is a $30 billion piece of the U.S. food and pharmaceutical manufacturing industry,” said Topp, who also is the Dane O. Kildsig Chair in Industrial and Physical Pharmacy. “Without this freeze-drying process, important drugs would not be available to those who need them. Many protein-based drugs, certain vaccines, probiotics and the dried fruit used in many products would not be available without it. However, the current lyophilization process hasn’t changed in 50 years, and it is very expensive.About 25% of new injectable drugs, vaccines and biological products are formulated in a lyophilized form, and for many proteins, peptides and vaccines, it is the only way to produce stable, biologically active products with a long shelf-life, Topp said.Stagnation in lyophilization technology could have a negative economic impact, as companies look to offshore manufacturing to reduce costs, Topp said.“If we can reduce the manufacturing costs through technological innovation, we could bring the manufacturing back, which would mean more jobs and benefit to the U.S. economy,” she said. “It is similar to the semiconductor industry a few years ago. Consortia formed to improve the technology that kept U.S. manufacturing competitive and revolutionary advances occurred that led to the ubiquitous smart devices of today. We want to revolutionize the lyophilization process in the same way.”The lyophilization process requires big pieces of equipment that create a low temperature and pressure environment to push water into the vapor phase, so that it leaves the material and collects on condenser coils. Since the equipment is sealed, and it is impossible to check on a process while it is occurring, except through information from one or two sensors. Processing one batch of material can take a few days, which means time is lost if something goes wrong, she said.The conditions required for lyophilization are similar to those in outer space, and the Purdue team plans to apply aerospace engineering principles to the project, Alexeenko said.“Inside the lyophilizer the conditions are a rough vacuum, similar to that at 50 to 100 kilometers altitude in the Earth’s atmosphere, and the fluid dynamics, heat transfer and certain molecular effects are different from what we see under normal conditions,” she said. “Lyophilization is rocket science. We need to approach the equipment design the same way we approach a new spacecraft design, by first understanding in detail all of the forces and mechanics involved and using some of the special physical effects of the rarefied environment to our advantage.”The development of new sensors that are less bulky and better distributed within the system is one approach to help control the processing. Advancing process analytical technologies and sensors for process development, monitoring and control are one of the initial focuses of the consortium, as well as developing standards for lyophilization equipment performance, testing and validation, she said.The consortium brings together industry and academia, representatives from the Food and Drug Administration and other government agencies, equipment manufacturers, and end product users to address the most important problems facing the industry, Topp said.“Consortium members from industry will frame the problems they face, and members from the academic and research side will help work on solutions, while regulators are kept in the loop to ensure  the safety and standards so that changes can be quickly approved,” she said. “We want to entirely rethink and redesign how the processing is done, which will have the ripple effect of improving pharmaceutical manufacturing in general. We can apply what we learn to make other manufacturing processes better, faster and more efficient. This will mean safer and more affordable products.”The leadership team, which in addition to Topp and Alexeenko includes Michael Pikal of the University of Connecticut and Steve Nail of Baxter International Inc., has already created LyoHUB, a website where consortium members can share best practices, new information and projects. LyoHUB also includes computational and process modeling tools to support research.The consortium is currently working to develop a technology roadmap for lyophilization to prioritize research and development projects and goals, and is recruiting members.last_img read more

#KicksStalker: Jordan’s second shoe gets new life

first_imgRead Next Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games PLAY LIST 01:27Filipino athletes get grand send-off ahead of SEA Games00:50Trending Articles00:59Sports venues to be ready in time for SEA Games01:37Protesters burn down Iran consulate in Najaf01:47Panelo casts doubts on Robredo’s drug war ‘discoveries’01:29Police teams find crossbows, bows in HK university01:35Panelo suggests discounted SEA Games tickets for students02:49Robredo: True leaders perform well despite having ‘uninspiring’ boss02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games LATEST STORIES Nara upsets 2004 champion Kuznetsova at US Open Photo from Jordan Brand’s official FacebookMichael Jordan’s second signature shoe is set for a resurrection, and this isn’t a new colorway of the same exact design that released in 1986.The new Air Jordan XXXII took inspiration from the Air Jordan II, the shoe that started the legend of his Airness, with its Italian roots and subtle design.ADVERTISEMENT As per Nike.com, the Air Jordan XXXII will have a Flyknit upper with “high-tenacity yarn.”The sole will feature Zoom Air bags, a Flight Plate, and a herring bone construction underneath.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSWATCH: Drones light up sky in final leg of SEA Games torch runSPORTSSEA Games: Philippines picks up 1st win in men’s water poloSPORTSMalditas save PH from shutoutReigning NBA MVP Russell Westbrook will be the poster boy of the new design as the Oklahoma City point guard featured in the promo shots wearing the “Bred” colorway.The “Bred,” however won’t be the first colorway to be released as the distinction belongs to the “Rosso Corso,” which will be available on Sept. 23. MOST READ Catriona Gray spends Thanksgiving by preparing meals for people with illnesses View comments SEA Games in Calabarzon safe, secure – Solcom chiefcenter_img LOOK: Venues for 2019 SEA Games Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH The Bred, meanwhile, will come out on Oct. 18 together with the low-top version.No word yet on the Philippine price, but SoleCollector.com reports the regular mid-top versions will cost $185 while the low-tops will be at $160. WATCH: Streetboys show off slick dance moves in Vhong Navarro’s wedding UPLB exempted from SEA Games class suspension Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. last_img read more

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley Leader of Rajya Sabha, Azad Leader of Opposition

first_imgArun Jaitley was named as the Leader of the House in Rajya Sabha on Monday, while Congress veteran Ghulam Nabi Azad was declared the Leader of the Opposition.Rajya Sabha Chairman Hamid Ansari made the announcement.Ansari said Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu had written to him on June 2 informing that Jaitley will the Leader of the House in Rajya Sabha.He said the letter regarding Azad being made the Leader of Congress came to him on Sunday.Jaitley (61), a senior BJP member was earlier Leader of Opposition in the Rajya Sabha during UPA government, while Azad (65) was Union Health Minister.Both Jaitley and Azad lost elections from Amritsar in Punjab and Udhampur in Jammu and Kashmir respectively in this Lok Sabha polls but the tenure of their Rajya Sabha membership still remains.Jaitley had lost to Amarinder Singh of Congress while Azad lost the Lok Sabha polls to BJP’s Jitendra Singh, who is now Minister of State in PMO.While Jaitley is a member of Rajya Sabha from Gujarat, Congress leader Azad is a member from Jammu and Kashmir.-With inputs from PTIlast_img read more

Cheerleaders challenge India’s strictly cricket tradition

first_imgTraditionally, when a batsman hits a six into the crowd, he lifts his bat to acknowledge the applause.But when Delhi Capitals star batsman Rishabh Pant bashes a ball into the stand, he unleashes an explosion of music, smoke and flying pom-poms.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesSPORTSSingapore latest to raise issue on SEA Games food, logisticsThe dancers who come from Britain, Brazil, Canada, Russia, South Africa and other countries keep grinning and kicking even when temperatures hit 40 degrees Celsius (104 Fahrenheit).When the IPL dancers started in 2008, some politicians wanted them banned because their skimpy outfits were considered un-Indian and Royal Challengers Bangalore now have more soberly dressed, mixed male-female cheerleaders. Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Panelo: Duterte ‘angry’ with SEA Games hosting hassles SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte Ethel Booba twits Mocha over 2 toilets in one cubicle at SEA Games venue PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss Image: AFP/Dibyangshu SarkarThey smile and jump in short skirts and tight tops in front of frenzied crowds — but this is cricket. Not a Bollywood set or a Mumbai nightclub.They may not know the rules of Twenty20 cricket, but the cheerleaders who follow the eight Indian Premier League teams have become a key part of the success of the world’s wealthiest cricket tournament that will stage a new final on Sunday.ADVERTISEMENT Steph or Seth? Coin flip to decide who mom, dad represent Philippine Arena Interchange inaugurated Hontiveros presses for security audit of national power grid LATEST STORIEScenter_img “As far as Indian men go, personally it doesn’t bother me. That’s just my mentality, some people I am sure have a different way of thinking. We are here to do a job professionally.”The IPL put up a firewall around players after an illegal gambling scandal in 2013 that saw three players arrested and two teams banned from the league.Even a hint of scandal worries the cricket establishment now.From a distance, the women have to make do with giving nicknames like “Muscle Russell” for West Indies star batsman Andre Russell. And they adore “our number four” Delhi captain Shreyas Iyer.Knowing when to fire up the crowd has been a tough lesson for some, however.“Someone in my podium who was here for the IPL last year knew what to do. Literally, we had no idea about the game until our very first match here,” said Bobi Dorrington from England.“We’d sit there waiting for her to say if it’s a four or a six. We learned as we watched, now we understand the game.” HM/JBRELATED STORIES:Finally, cheerleading is a sportSri Lanka’s Galle cricket stadium faces axe over Dutch fort DA eyes importing ‘galunggong’ anew MOST READ While a metal fence separates the women from fans in stadiums, they still get trolled online. And the sexist jibes from the crowd can be daunting.Charlie Chaeppela said someone created a fake social media account to taunt her.“They used a picture of me while I was cheerleading, they threatened me and asked me why I was in India,” she said.India was thrust into the global spotlight when a 23-year-old woman student was brutally gang-raped and killed in 2012, prompting nationwide protests within the nation.Politicians brought in tougher penalties against sexual offenders and accelerated trials, but campaigners claimed the legislation failed to stem the tide of violence against women.More than 100 rapes a day are reported in India, according to the most recent official government statistics in 2016.But Chaeppela said she still took the job because it was an “incredible opportunity.”“My mom got me a book on India and on the Delhi page, it said it was the worst for women,” Chaeppela said.“But on second thoughts if you look at it, it could happen anywhere in the world.”“I have only done cheerleading in India. The culture, the people, the craziness, it’s so cool,” said Canadian Linda Lopatynski. But there are few complaints now.The troupes follow the teams on a grueling crisscross schedule across India for eight weeks each year. The players get luxury flights and hotels, while the women take the budget version.“There are a lot of rules. Don’t look at them, don’t smile at them,” English cheerleader Kelly Smith said of the dancers’ relations with the players.“We help them win the games in a way, we should be able to meet and interact with them,” added the 24-year-old, one of a dozen women in the Delhi Capitals cheerleaders team.Five days of thisADVERTISEMENT Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Cayetano: Senate, Drilon to be blamed for SEA Games mess Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next View commentslast_img read more

Report: Barcelona 2 Sporting 0

first_imgBarcelona 2 Sporting CP 0: Catalans labour in Messi’s absence Stephen Creek Last updated 1 year ago 05:48 12/6/17 pacoalcacer-cropped Getty Images Lionel Messi was among the substitutes as Barcelona won their last Champions League group game 2-0 against Sporting CP. Jeremy Mathieu scored an own-goal on his return to Camp Nou as Barcelona laboured to a 2-0 win over Sporting CP with Lionel Messi a second-half substitute.Coach Ernesto Valverde opted to rest his side’s star player and watched as the likes of Luis Suarez and Aleix Vidal misfired for almost an hour against Jorge Jesus’ well-drilled Sporting team.Paco Alcacer scored the opener moments before Messi’s 61st-minute introduction, which prompted a marked improvement in Barcelona’s play as what was only a second win in five outings for Valverde’s men ended with the home side in control. Article continues below Editors’ Picks Lyon treble & England heartbreak: The full story behind Lucy Bronze’s dramatic 2019 Liverpool v Man City is now the league’s biggest rivalry and the bitterness is growing Megan Rapinoe: Born & brilliant in the U.S.A. A Liverpool legend in the making: Behind Virgil van Dijk’s remarkable rise to world’s best player Sporting went into the game needing a famous victory and Olympiacos to deny Juventus maximum points, but neither materialised despite a respectable performance in which the Portuguese side matched LaLiga’s leaders for long periods.After an acrimonious Barcelona exit at the end of last season, Mathieu’s late own goal ensured the result flattered his former club, who failed time and time again to make their final pass count until Messi came on.Valverde will hope his side can continue to build momentum ahead of a Clasico with Real Madrid on December 23, while Sporting drop into the Europa League knockout stages.Final whistle at Camp Nou!#BarçaSporting (2-0)#ForçaBarça pic.twitter.com/U5cBYhxd2u— FC Barcelona (@FCBarcelona) December 5, 2017Sporting kept Barcelona quiet for the opening 12 minutes of the game, and even then the home side mustered nothing more than a speculative Denis Suarez shot that flew over from 20 yards.Aleix Vidal ballooned high of the target from the edge of the box five minutes later, but Andre Gomes went closer with a low drive from similar range that flew narrowly wide.The unusually quiet Luis Suarez burst into the penalty area and rounded Sebastian Coates after 23 minutes, only to be denied by a good save from Rui Patricio at his feet.Bruno Fernandes gave Jasper Cillessen a rare touch of the ball when the Barcelona goalkeeper saved his tame shot, before Denis Suarez danced through a line of defenders on the edge of the Sporting box but misjudged his pass to Vidal and the first half ended goalless.Jesus sent on Gelson Martins and Bas Dost for the second half as Sporting rolled the dice to try to force a result and the former dragged a shot wide of Cillessen’s goal in the 52nd minute.With Messi stripping off on the touchline, Barcelona took the lead just before the hour mark when Denis Suarez’s corner found Alcacer at the near post and he flicked the ball into the far corner with a well-placed header.Before Messi could contribute on the pitch, Dost found himself with a wonderful chance to equalise five yards from goal and with only Cillessen to beat, but the goalkeeper made a brilliant reaction save to keep Barcelona ahead.With nine minutes left, Denis Suarez fed Messi who curled a sweetly struck left-footed shot towards goal, but Patricio saved one-handed at full stretch.There was a cruel twist in the tale for Sporting and Mathieu, who turned Denis Suarez’s cross into his own net to prevent the ball reaching Alcacer at the far post, and his intervention gave Barcelona a margin of victory they barely deserved. Key Opta facts:- Barcelona have finished top their group for the 11th consecutive season, the longest run in the history of the Champions League.- Barca’s top-scorers in this season’s Champions League are Lionel Messi (three) and own goals from their opponents (three).- Barcelona have conceded one goal in the Champions League this season, their best defensive record in the group stages.- Lionel Messi has played consecutive Champions League games as a substitute for the first time ever.- Luis Suarez has gone eight games in a row without scoring in Champions League, his longest drought in the competition.  read morelast_img read more

10 months agoFiorentina coach Pioli pleased to see off Empoli

first_imgAbout the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your say Fiorentina coach Pioli pleased to see off Empoliby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveFiorentina coach Stefano Pioli was pleased with their 3-1 win over Empoli.Both Kevin Mirallas and Giovanni Simeone were on the scoresheet for the Viola.”This was a very challenging game, but we were driven and we gave it everything we had,” said Pioli after the match.”After Juventus, Empoli are the team that picked up the most points over the last four games. Considering the context, we did really well.”What I liked the most was our never-say-die spirit. We did not give in after the opponents took advantage of our mistake and scored a goal. We wanted a victory, and we earned it.” last_img