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Poor Big East schedule hinders Syracuse’s RPI

first_img Published on April 27, 2010 at 12:00 pm And because the Big East conference won’t be awarded an automatic qualifier to the NCAA tournament until next year, head coach John Desko acknowledged he would prefer to go up against those other opponents this season. It may have to get used to that frustration. But for this year, the conference does not seem up to par with the Orange. Through the Big East games SU has played, it is beating teams by an average of eight goals per game. And that includes the conference’s second- and third-place teams — No. 13 Villanova (9-4, 3-1) and No. 15 Georgetown (7-5, 3-1). But for now, all players like longstick midfielder Joel White can do is wait and hope that these Big East teams show visible improvement over the conference’s inaugural years. ‘The only thing we can hope for is better competition,’ Thompson said. ‘As the years go on, the different schools are going to get different people, better (athletes), so you can only hope for that, for the league to get better.’ SU players have been emphatic about the polls’ lack of significance during the regular season, as many NCAA athletes are. But this could foretell things to come once the tournament field is set. The Orange might be stuck with that No. 2 or No. 3 seed, giving it a slightly more difficult path to the championship because of its weaker schedule. And Thompson said all the Orange can do right now is hope those conference foes improve over the next couple years. SU has played four of its six Big East conference opponents thus far this season. The level of competition in those games has not matched that of the Orange’s (11-1, 4-0 Big East) nonconference schedule. And with the likes of Providence, Rutgers and St. John’s in the conference, all of whom are in the bottom half of the RPI rankings, playing in the Big East could ultimately hurt No. 2 Syracuse’s seeding come NCAA tournament time. Max Bartig was irritated on Saturday. Despite an easy 14-5 victory over Providence, ‘frustration’ was the word tossed around by Bartig and junior goalie John Galloway following the contest. The Friars used a standstill, milk-the-clock strategy despite trailing the entire game, a style of play Galloway said was ‘not lacrosse.’ ‘Probably this year … because of how it might affect our RPI at the end of the year,’ he said. The current poll might already be showing some of that Big East influence on the Orange. Despite easily disposing of the Friars Saturday, Syracuse dropped down to No. 2. Virginia took over the top spot after winning an ACC conference game over No. 3 Maryland. ‘I think people understood what we were getting into when we joined the Big East,’ Galloway said. ‘I think people also understand that it’s a young conference and it’s going to keep growing, and we still have a very tough strength of schedule.’ The Orange’s nonconference opponents have fared much better. Syracuse’s seven wins outside the Big East have come by only 4.6 goals per game. Unranked Hobart, one of SU’s longtime rivals, took the Orange to overtime before losing on a Stephen Keogh score. Cornell lost on a buzzer-beater by senior Chris Daniello. Many Orange teammates echoed Bartig and Galloway’s feelings in interviews Tuesday. But with the conception of the Big East lacrosse conference this season, SU will have to play Providence as a conference opponent every year. Comments zjbrown@syr.edu The Hoyas did only trail by a goal at one point in the fourth quarter before SU pulled away to a 15-12 win. But they were the only ones to stay close to the Orange. Syracuse’s biggest victory this year was its 20-6 win over the Wildcats, and both Rutgers (5-7, 1-3) and Providence (0-12, 0-4) only mustered five goals against SU’s defense. But that strength of schedule could be better if it included the likes of No. 6 Loyola or No. 10 Massachusetts, teams SU has consistently played in recent years. Taking their places instead are St. John’s, Villanova and Providence, who Syracuse had played a combined five times prior to this season. ‘The first couple years, I think it’s going to be down and I think it may hurt our strength of schedule,’ White said. ‘But at the same time, I think (having a Big East conference) is good for the game.’ Facebook Twitter Google+last_img read more

Methodist church welcomes new unity-focused pastor

first_imgBefore coming here he had a ponytail, which he cut off, he said, in deference to letting his new parishioners get acquainted with him before shocking them too much with his modernity. He still wears an earring in his left ear as a holdout for his unfettered lifestyle. He has two sons. Jon, a Marine graduate of the U.S. Naval Academy, has been on active duty in Iraq and is due home momentarily from Kuwait; his home is in Oceanside. Michael still lives in Indiana. A nomad at heart, the reverend loves the freedom of tooling down the highways or back roads on his motorcycle, but since he’s a newlywed now most of his trips are in his car. Last Christmas Eve he and the former Beulah Centgraf-Harris were married in their Wilshire church in a small ceremony before family members and a few friends. Centgraf-Harris, a native of Oklahoma who has lived in Kansas, Texas and Los Angeles, loves to travel as much as he does, he said. “We practically live in our car,” he said. “We like to go, we like to explore the continental United States. We love all the beauties the Lord has put out there for us to see. I think if had to name a hobby it would be nature. I can sit for hours, half a day even, watching seals. `Wow!’ is my favorite word and I say it often.” He said driving is second nature to him and he’s been known to drive all the way to Julian just for a piece of pie. Some of his very early years in Agana, Guam, were spent in a Japanese concentration camp where he was interned, with his family, during World War II. Sablan came to the United States in 1962 and attended the then-Oakland City College and Indiana State University in Terre Haute, and studied for the ministry at the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky. For eight years he taught choral music and voice at the University of Guam. He served various Indiana churches for a total of 25 years before coming back to California. “When I took over the ministry of the Broadway United Methodist Church, which was the last church I was assigned to before going to the Wilshire congregation, there were only 60 members. When I left it had grown to 400. I’m proud of that,” he said. He’s youth- and children-oriented and looks forward to major growth in those areas of the local congregation. His office in the Lancaster church at 918 W. Ave. J is already taking on his personal ambience. He collects teddy bears and he has several of his favorites on display there. Even some of his neckties reflect his fondness for the toys. “I love my bears,” he said. “I can say anything I like to them and they never talk back.” Menus for the week at the senior life nutrition site in Palmdale include bread, margarine and coffee, tea or milk, for the suggested donation of $2. Monday: Fish sandwich of cheeseburger, macaroni salad, pork and beans, lettuce and tomato. Tuesday: Pork chop, sweet potatoes, broccoli, coleslaw, applesauce. Wednesday: Salisbury steak, mashed potatoes, squash, coleslaw, cake. Thursday: Roast beef, mashed potatoes, carrots, creamy coleslaw, cookies. Friday: Chicken w/mushroom sauce, wild rice, Normandy vegetables, Caesar salad, orange. This column disseminates news of interest to seniors. Bettie Rencoret may be contacted at (661) 943-2998, or messages may be left at the Daily News Antelope Valley office, (661) 267-5740. 160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! LANCASTER – The Lancaster United Methodist Church welcomed the Rev. Franklin Delano Sablan last week as its new senior pastor. Sablan had served the Wilshire United Methodist Church in Los Angeles for four years when Bishop Mary Ann Swensen appointed him to fill the void left in the local church by the death of beloved pastor James Ledgerwood. Sablan – or Rev. Frank, as he prefers to be called – is a native of the island of Guam and is delighted at the multicultural makeup of the congregation. “I accept my new leadership role with excitement and anticipate the challenges it will present,” he said. “I already feel welcome and know that the diverse caliber of personalities in this church will work together with me for the glory of Christ. I’m confident we’ll be a successful team.” He admits that his ministry may entail some changes, but he is certain they will, for the most part, bring a spiritual unity that will strengthen all areas of worship and community outreach. Asked about his vision for the church, he said he prefers to listen first before he formulates a viable concept for the future. “I want to hear about the individual, and collective, hopes and dreams of my congregation, what they want, and then form a vision that will carry us together into a positive, productive and progressive future,” he said. Essentially a liturgical traditionalist, he said he is also flexible and open to suggestions. He is a study in contrasts. He melds well with the casual feeling of the 9 a.m. contemporary worship service, then brings formality to the church at 10:45 Sunday mornings. last_img