Facebook23Tweet0Pin0Submitted by Association of Washington BusinessWhat is the Holiday Kids’ Tree Project? The Holiday Kids’ Tree Project is a charitable project of the Association of Washington Business (AWB) that benefits children and families in rural communities statewide. AWB members, including large and small employers from across the state and individuals support the program with donations.A long line of eager children visited with Santa and posed for pictures with him and his North Pole entourage in front of the 2017 Holiday Kids’ Tree on Friday, Dec. 1, in the state Capitol rotunda. (Photo: Brian Mittge/AWB)AWB also hosts the annual tree-lighting ceremony at the state Capitol Rotunda where money and gifts are presented by AWB and the governor to the rural fire departments. While the tree-lighting ceremony is the most visible symbol of this effort, the real joy is in the hundreds of needy families supported through donations from AWB member businesses and individuals.When did this program begin? Started in 1989, this year’s ceremony marks the 30th anniversary of the Holiday Kids’ Tree. The first year of the event, AWB raised just enough money to set up the tree.Who contributed to the effort this year and how will the donations be distributed? To date, 67 AWB member businesses and individuals from around the state have donated to the project. Each of the 18 fire districts will receive $1,000 and a large bag of gifts to distribute to families in need this holiday season.Northwest native animals decorate the 2017 Holiday Kids’ Tree in the Capitol rotunda. At the end of the month when the tree is taken down, the stuffed animals will be donated to children’s hospital patients. (Photo: Brian Mittge/AWB)How much money has the project raised since it first began? Since 1989, AWB has raised more than $420,000 for families who benefit from this project.What does AWB do with the money for this project? The money is distributed to 18 rural fire districts in nine counties, which use the funds to buy food and gifts for families in their communities. The counties that will receive funds are Grant, Grays Harbor, Lewis, Mason, Spokane, Thurston, Okanogan, Chelan and Walla Walla.Who provides the decorations? What is this year’s theme? AWB purchased the decorations. The tree will be decorated with 7,000 LED lights and festive traditional decorations, along with stuffed characters representing this year’s theme of “Military Bears” and will represent all branches of the U.S. military. The stuffed ornaments will be donated to an area children’s hospital when the tree comes down at the end of December. The stuffed characters will be individually wrapped and then handed out to children at the hospital.Who provides the tree? The Washington State Department of Enterprise Services provides the tree. Like last year, Weyerhaeuser’s Vail Tree Farm donated the tree.How tall is the tree? What kind of tree is it? This year’s tree is a 25-foot Noble fir, donated by Weyerhaeuser’s Vail Tree Farm in Rainier, Wash. The elevation of the tree farm is roughly 2,100 feet.Gov. Jay Inslee joins Washington Department of Enterprise Services employees to help put the 2017 Holiday Kids’ Tree into place in the Capitol rotunda on Tuesday, Nov. 28, 2017. The 30-foot noble fir was donated by Weyerhaeuser and grown on its Vail Tree Farm. (Photo: Brian Mittge/AWB)Who decorates the tree? The State Visitor Services helps coordinate this event each year. Staff from the Department of Enterprise Services put the tree in place and decorate the tree alongside AWB. The tree was donated by Weyerhaeuser.Who will light this year’s tree? Gov. Jay Inslee and First Lady Trudi Inslee will light the tree with help from Officer Jon Hazan, Olympia Police Department, and former Sergeant in the Army Reserves with the 448th Civil Affairs Battalion, along with his wife Christy and their 6-year-old son Matthew and 5-year-old daughter Allison.Moment of Silence: This year’s Holiday Kids’ Tree lighting ceremony falls on December 7, which marks the 77th anniversary of the Pearl Harbor attack. Kris Johnson will lead attendees in a moment of silence in remembrance prior to the tree lighting.Whom do I contact for more information? AWB’s Bonnie Millikan at 360.943.1600 or [email protected]
Chapter 1It was the beginning of a new adventure and I thought it could not come to this. For many years the war created conditions that I thought could end as quickly as it had begun. It just started as a rumor and then it proceeded to develop and became huge.The last we checked, what we thought would just come and sweep over us had come to stay. And since the day in December 1989, the dogs of war turned our lives upside down. And from there war, the real one, became the daily dose for thousands of us.The war created several monsters: they were called ‘freedom fighters’ and with their weapons of power, life itself lost its value. Young men and women were trained and given weapons that because of them they could command authority and respect from their elders. Families were torn asunder as the young men and women in their new roles as defenders of our freedom dictated how we should live.The soldiers, yes, those who had been trained for many years to defend the nation and protect the people could not do it. The majority of them were interested in staying alive. But they were wrong. Their enemies did not forgive those who, for their personal reasons, decided to throw down their weapons. They were, many of them, marched on to their doom.As the war progressed and the butchers from all the various factions learned the effective means of killing other Liberians, the game took a different turn. From the national army to the rebels, civilians were their primary targets. And the price for the war was devastating in its nature!Even the house of God was no longer safe. The local communities where thousands sought refuge were places waiting to be invaded and in many instances displaced Liberians were slaughtered in their beds. From the Lutheran Church to the United Nations Compound on to the Duport Road community – all in Monrovia – the dogs of war went in their furor, mowing their fellow human beings down.They were tragedies of serious proportions, and many of the survivors often asked, but to no one in particular: ‘What kind of war is this?’Chapter 2War is one of the greatest enemies of mankind; someone is reported to have said in frustration. It was apparent that whoever said it might have seen the horror of war and he could no longer remain unconcerned with its destructive nature. But again, one may ask: Is mankind’s history devoid of war? From the beginning of time, the Bible reports the continuous battles the Israelites engaged in and the destruction that those wars meted on mankind.So it can be said that the wars of our time, while different in the means and methods of their execution, are not really different in their end results. The results are death and the destruction of material properties that have been sought after many painful years.But whoever thought that a nation born out of the frustrations of the world’s greatest inhuman trade, the slave trade, could end up destroying what was cherished to build in the days when man’s desire for emancipation was at its highest demand, might have been considered insane. But the reality after close to one hundred and fifty years of statehood made it an obvious fact that what can be described as deliberate failure played a major role in the actions of the leaders and eventually sent Liberia to face its tragic history.I am not sure, but it seemed probable that the fragile foundation of Liberia and the shortsightedness that accompanied its development, sadly, set the stage for the eventual conflagration and division of the nation-state. And when the dust finally settled, the nation was bleeding and panting for breath.Poor thing!So it came to pass that when the war was announced over BBC, many people thought with the manner the leader of the insurgents (call them rebels if you wish) was confidently declaring the movement’s objectives, that it would have been in a few days’ time.The unpopularity of the Samuel Doe regime had sunk deeper into the abyss of the people’s discontent. He had become a nuisance and the man whose triumphant entry into the Liberian political landscape had engendered so much goodwill was becoming a nonentity among the people. “Monkey come down,” was refrain, as thousands demonstrated throughout the major streets of Monrovia to express their dissatisfaction and by that way telling him that it was time to leave the chair. And everybody agreed, though with some exception, that Samuel Doe had outlived his usefulness. In doing this damage to his ego, the leader of the insurgents, Charles Taylor, declared with an element of confidence that the “only good Doe was a dead one.”The successes of the insurgents to kick the butt of the national soldiers created some optimism and hope among many of the people. There was a sizable number of people who had otherwise remained cautious of the simmering declarations of the man in the bush. But as it is with the affairs of men, when the end comes for the one who has ruled with an iron fist, many are those who consider him a historical person. The war had become the Achilles’ heel of the Doe regime, and as the insurgents continued to announce their successes, the spirit of the soldiers began to deflate.In anger, the soldiers turned on the civilian population, and it is with shame that I write this and I hope, it is with shame, you may read it: Gios and Manos residing in the capital and other political opponents became sacrificial lambs for the vanquished national army. The hope that might have been seen at the end of the tunnel was losing steam. For, it was not very long before the insurgents began to kill off all Liberians. They were not discriminating among those who had wished for the old regime to be replaced. It was, by all accounts, the self-destruction of a nation that could not remember its heroes.Those who understood the meaning of hope could not agree that the insurgents had anything better for the battered nation.Chapter 3The young man looked on with disdain. It had been too long since the war should have ended but it would not. Standing several feet away from the soldier, his heart beat increased and it was clear that he was afraid of what might happen next.The war had been panting for the lives of its enemies and the young man was sure that barring a miracle, would he survive? The other night, soldiers, several of them from the Armed Forces of Liberia, had visited his family. Just eighteen and little experience in the difficulties of the political crisis in the country, the city of Monrovia where he had lived with his mother and four siblings had been relatively safe. No, it was safe until the political troubles began and it eventually progressed to the direct confrontation against the Gios and Manos and other political figures in the country.As the man had said to him, when they came, “All you Gio and Mano people are marked for destruction.” The soldier had meant business, for he had demonstrated that statement by whipping his mother with the butt of his gun.“You are killing me,” his mother had wailed, pleading for help that James Zonn could not give. In fact when the soldiers saw him staring at them, they thought he was taking mental pictures of their action, and he was warned to look away.“If you want to live,” the other soldier had warned him, “you must never look at us like that, rebel.”From here, he turned his face to the other side of the house but that did not satisfy the soldiers. He was not looking when he felt the slap of heavy metal against the back of his head.“Ma they are killing me,” was all he was able to say, and then he blacked out.He did not know how long it took, but by the next morning, he awoke to find his mother missing, and his two brothers and two sisters sprawled on their mats. He thought they were dead but he was glad that when he began to shake them, they all awoke, with tears in their eyes.Two of his sisters, one was sixteen and the other was fifteen, he saw, had their underwear torn in several places. And there was blood also.In tears, he grabbed the hands of the girls and pulled them along to the bathroom.“They took Mamie away,” the seventeen-year-old girl said, as the rest of the children began to shriek.And their father?He had been missing. He had gone in search for food for the family in Saye Town when news came that he had been arrested. From the pieces of information he could put together, he learned his father had been arrested at a checkpoint by some soldiers. And he also learned that his father was a “rebel.”He was now becoming use to the description of being a “rebel” and from then on since any Gio and Mano was considered a “rebel” he realized that it was no longer safe for him to accept the description of being a “Gio or a Mano.” But can he change it? He knew being a Gio or a Mano simply meant the tribe he originated from, which had its distinctive cultural practices among other cultural identities. But he also knew that it was a designation about the language or dialect he communicated with at home with the family. But was a language a crime that others must pay with their lives?Since his mother was taken away and the father had also been long arrested, he saw how unfair life had become. He thought about one of his uncles in the national army. Was he still alive? Had he been arrested and perhaps killed, since he was also a Gio?There were sounds of shooting outside and he could hear people running helter-skelter.“The soldiers are coming,” he told his siblings. Hunger pangs were biting them deeper, and he did not know what to make of the situation.Yes, the day had dawned on him and the future looked bleaker than he had anticipated. He wished he understood the reasons for the suffering of the Gios and Manos, and likewise the entire Liberian people. He wished he knew.He also knew that by 1700GMT, the BBC would broadcast the latest news from the warfront, and at the time he would be able to hear what the National Patriotic Front of Liberia’s leader, Charles Taylor, say about the war. It was now 1500GMT and there were two more hours to go.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)
Punk rock, despite its northern hemisphere origins, has a lot in common with the African creative philosophy: its do-it-yourself, community-based collaborative culture, outspoken social consciousness and youthful exuberance. Even at its most elemental level, the music itself, it can be argued, has a very African aesthetic: raw and rhythmic, yet deceptively complex.Soweto-based punk band TCIYF is one of the rising stars in the South African punk rock scene. With aggressive riffs and lots of typical punk attitude, the band have played to diverse audiences around Gauteng, and are looking to make an impact internationally. (Image: TCIYF Facebook page)CD AndersonIt’s no surprise then, that there has been a growing trend of punk music coming out of the continent, challenging the status quo of traditional genres such as jazz and indigenous music.While most of this young emerging talent remains untapped in garages and practice rooms from Cape Town to Cairo, there have been a few breakout bands that are making waves with good old fashioned punk rock, thanks in part to internet platforms such as music website Bandcamp and video channel YouTube.TCIYF#TCIYF pic.twitter.com/wJa15cgPR5— CD Anderson (@bizarrojerri) July 13, 2016This Soweto band embodies everything that is real punk: short, brutal songs with in-your-face lyrics, all performed with an urgency and aggression that harks back to the genesis of the New York punk explosion in the 1970s. The OkayAfrica pop culture website says the band is “true to their spirit. They don’t surrender, they don’t compromise and that’s their beauty.”They also sing about giving their grandmothers Tupperware. TCIYF have yet to release a full album, but their YouTube channel is a popular starting off point for fans of the Ramones, New York Dolls and Sex Pistols.Watch:MonaMozambique’s Mona sing socially conscious but uplifting pop punk in English and Portuguese. They have a huge youth following despite the relatively small rock music scene in Mozambique’s urban areas. The band even run their own music label, giving other up and-coming bands from the region exposure through online social media and video channels.Watch:Chikwata 263Formed in 2013 in Harare, Zimbabwe, Chikwata mix bubbly ska-punk rhythms with traditional folk, jazz and even hip-hop elements, calling it “mbira punk”. Their irreverent sound mixes languages and genres to create idiosyncratic but energetic live performances, both in Zimbabwe and South Africa. Their debut album, Chauya, is available to buy on their website.Watch:Crystal AxisWith a more alternative, post-punk feel, Crystal Axis have been around since 2009 and have become an underground cult hit among young Kenyans. The band are currently on hiatus, but their debut EP is still available on their Bandcamp site, offering dark and spirited choruses and proficient musicianship.The band embodies a true punk DIY spirit, making and selling their own merchandise, music videos and communicating directly with their fans.Watch:The Brother Moves OnWhile considered more of a performance art-funk-maskandi-pop band, the philosophy of The Brother Moves On is very much punk rock, with lyrics full of politically charged vitriol and honest social commentary.Their musically sophisticated and enthusiastic live performances are iconic in South Africa’s underground live music scene, and they have performed to critical acclaim at festivals such as Oppikoppi and the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown. The band hope to tour Europe in 2016-17.Watch:Source: OkayAfrica, BandcampWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.
Scrumptious is a CouchDB based Delicious-clone by Jan-Piet Mens. It supports importing Delicious bookmarks. It doesn’t have the sort of radical decentralization of Twebz (Update: that’s actually an inherent feature of CouchDB’s replication) – , but it’s a start. You can grab the code from GitHub.Bonus: Ma.gnolia?Update: Here’s the gnolia / magnolia code on Github. Thanks Adam!Ill-fated Delicious competitor Ma.gnolia released its code back in 2008. The company closed its doors this year and now its open source home ma.gnolia.org seems to be down. Is the code still floating around anywhere? Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Yesterday we all thought Delicious was about to go the way of Ma.gnolia. For those that don’t remember, Ma.gnolia was a Delicious competitor that suffered a massive data loss and eventually shut down entirely. It now looks like Delicious will live on, but it remains uncertain where or in what form.The uncertainty about Delicious’s future has lead to many looking for alternatives, and several blogs have posted lists of various hosted alternatives like Diigo and Pinboard. But there’s another alternative: host your own Web-based bookmarking service. Here are three open source projects that you can install on your own server or cloud provider. Keep local backups, and you don’t have ever have to worry about a service being shutdown again. Please feel free to list other self-hosted alternatives in the comments.Scuttle Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Selficious is a new Python-based personal web bookmarking application very similar to Delicious. It’s designed for just one person to stash their bookmarks on a web server.Scrumptious Tags:#cloud#saas Related Posts A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Scuttle is an open source PHP and MySQL based Delicious-clone that’s been in development since 2005. It supports multiple users, so you could host a copy of it and let all your friends or co-workers use it.Selficious klint finley 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market
Stronger peso trims PH debt value to P7.9 trillion CPP denies ‘Ka Diego’ arrest caused ‘mass panic’ among S. Tagalog NPA Kyle Lowry had 15 points and a career-high 13 rebounds as the Raptors snapped a two-game skid. Seven players finished in double figures for the Raptors.Dennis Schroder scored 14 points and Taurean Prince and Marco Belinelli each had 10 for the Hawks. Atlanta was coming off Friday’s rally to beat New York, but it had nothing left after leading by one point late in the first quarter.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 shutoutToronto scored 39 points in the second and faced no danger of another third-quarter meltdown that proved costly this week at New York and Indiana. The lead surged to 36 by the 9-minute mark of the third on Serge Ibaka’s short jumper, and the Raptors went up a game-high 45 in the fourth.Toronto’s bench outscored the Hawks’ reserves 43-14 by halftime as Powell, Jakob Poeltl and Pascal Siakam each scored in double figures (Powell 13 and Siakam 13, Poeltl 12.) Kammuri turning to super typhoon less likely but possible — Pagasa There were plenty of second-quarter highlights for Toronto but one of the best came in the final minute, when Lowry ripped the ball from John Collins and passed upcourt to DeRozan at the 3-point line. DeRozan immediately did a tip-pass for an alley-oop that Siakam slammed down for a 67-39 lead.The victory set the Raptors up for what could be an easy next three weeks as they play just one opponent that’s currently over .500.TIP-INSRaptors: DeRozan’s streak of 113 consecutive games in double digits, one shy of Lowry’s franchise-best mark, was snapped. … In Friday’s loss at Indiana, Lowry became the first Toronto player to have consecutive games in leading the team in points, rebounds and assists. … F C.J. Miles missed his second straight game to stay home for his daughter’s birth.Hawks: C Miles Plumlee, acquired in the offseason trade that shipped Dwight Howard to Charlotte, finally made his Atlanta debut late in the fourth and went scoreless with no rebounds in nine minutes. The Hawks would like to get something more from Plumlee, who’s in the second season of a four-year, $52 million contract, but has been sidelined recently with a strained quadriceps.ADVERTISEMENT Huge Toronto crowd celebrates Raptors’ historic win PLAY LIST 01:08Huge Toronto crowd celebrates Raptors’ historic win03:12Kevin Durant out with Achilles injury; to undergo MRI on Tuesday01:43Who are Filipinos rooting for in the NBA Finals?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 Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City Japan ex-PM Nakasone who boosted ties with US dies at 101 UP NEXTRaptors: Host Charlotte on Wednesday.Hawks: Host Cleveland on Thursday. Kris Aquino ‘pretty chill about becoming irrelevant’ Atlanta Hawks forward DeAndre’ Bembry (95) and Toronto Raptors guard DeMar DeRozan (10) vie for the ball during the first half of a NBA basketball game, Saturday, Nov. 25, 2017, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/John Amis)ATLANTA — Norman Powell scored 17 points, Jonas Valanciunas added 16 and the Toronto Raptors blew out the Atlanta Hawks 112-78 on Saturday night.Toronto dominated the game so completely that it needed just 28 minutes from DeMar DeRozan, one of the NBA’s most prolific scorers. DeRozan handed out a game-high eight assists and finished with just two points on 1-for-5 shooting before sitting out the fourth quarter.ADVERTISEMENT McCollum fuels Blazers rally past Wizards Brace for potentially devastating typhoon approaching PH – NDRRMC View comments MOST READ Typhoon Kammuri accelerates, gains strength en route to PH LATEST STORIES Read Next Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. QC cops nab robbery gang leader, cohort
The OSU men’s swimming team practices leading up to meets against Michigan State and the University of Pittsburgh on Jan. 20 and 21. Credit: Sydney McNulty | Lantern reporterThe Ohio State men’s swimming team is set to compete in back-to-back dual meets this weekend, starting on Friday at Michigan State and continuing in Columbus on Saturday, hosting the University of Pittsburgh.The Buckeyes head to East Lansing, Michigan, after a dominant performance against Cincinnati, setting three pool records at Keating Aquatic Center.Carrying that momentum is vital heading into a double header, graduate senior Josh Fleagle said.“It’s definitely not easy,” he said. “We just take it one practice at a time, one meet at a time and we look forward to new challenges, competition and we love racing.”It will be a quick turnaround, but Fleagle believes the team’s experience will give the Buckeyes an upper hand.“When we go to Big Tens and NCAAs, it’s four or five days of just swimming,” he said. “So two days isn’t that bad, granted we will get back a little bit later on Friday from Michigan State. But we are pretty used to it.”The Buckeyes will swim against the Spartans for the first time this season. Senior Matt McHugh said the results of the meet will give some insight into the team’s level of conditioning.“It’ll be good to see how we go up against Michigan State in a dual meet,” he said. “It’s a good indication to see where we need to improve, and what events we need to put certain people in.”In facing both a conference and a out of conference opponent this weekend, the Buckeyes are keeping the same mindset: competition is competition, said Fleagle.“I think right now the positivity is really up and obviously, the goal is to get best times in everything we do,” he said.Competition is scheduled to start at 5 p.m. on Friday and at noon on Saturday.
D’Angelo Russell declared for the NBA Draft on Wednesday, becoming the first OSU one-and-done player since Byron Mullens.Credit: Mark Batke / Lantern photographerD’Angelo Russell officially announced his intentions to leave the Ohio State men’s basketball program for the NBA, leaving after a year in which he earned a first-team All-American honor, the inaugural Jerry West Award for the nation’s top shooting guard and the eternal admiration of OSU coach Thad Matta.“I got to the point where I just kinda enjoyed the game,” Matta said about watching Russell play. “There were times in the game where I could say to him, ‘take over,’ and he’d look, wink and he’d do it. I think that’s what I’m going to miss the most.”In OSU’s regular-season opener, a 92-55 win at home against the University of Massachusetts-Lowell, the freshman scored 16 points to go along with four rebounds, six assists and three steals. This performance inspired UMass-Lowell coach Pat Duquette to call Russell “as good a freshman as I’ve seen” following the game.It didn’t even take until the regular season for Matta to see that same spark.“It was probably our preseason scrimmage at West Virginia when he scored 33 and he hit the game-winner,” Matta said. “I kinda scratched my head and said ‘Uh oh, this kid.’ He was doing things that we hadn’t even talked about yet in terms of drill work.“‘If he plays half this well (as the scrimmage), he’s one of the best guards in the country.’ And he only got better from there.”Not everything was smooth sailing for Russell and the Buckeyes throughout the season, however. In losses to Louisville, in which Russell shot 6-of-20, and Indiana, in which he shot 3-of-15, the guard was criticized by some for trying to do everything himself.Russell, who declared for the draft on Thursday, said he never had NBA goals in mind, but rather that he was returning the trust in his coach when Matta trusted him to try to take over the game.“I didn’t think about ‘I’m trying to be a top-five pick, I’m trying to be a first-team All-American, I’m trying to be this, that,’” Russell said. “I just came in like, ‘Coach, I’ll do whatever you need me to do.’”According to ESPN, Russell had offers in high school from powerhouse programs such as North Carolina, Virginia and Louisville, which is his hometown.But it wasn’t the number of Final Four appearances that ultimately was the deciding factor. Nor was it the opportunity to put up flashy numbers or the quality of the rest of the starting lineup.“The reason we picked this school is he built a great relationship with the head coach … Once we made that bond and that connection, there was no other school,” Antonio Russell, D’Angelo’s father, said.Matta said he knew from just about the first time he saw D’Angelo Russell in practice that there was a high probability he would leave after his freshman season — despite the guard being brought in on a two-year plan. It was at that point when Matta realized he might need to find D’Angelo Russell’s replacement for next season.It was also at that point when D’Angelo Russell became a recruiter in addition to a leader on the court, as he was instrumental in landing his likely replacement — guard JaQuan Lyle.“Getting JaQuan, he and D’Angelo were very close during the process, and D’Angelo helped us get him, which, once again, speaks volumes to how committed he is to our program,” Matta said.Lyle, originally in D’Angelo Russell’s high school class, committed to Oregon before last season. The Huntington, W.Va., product was denied admission in Eugene, however, after he was found to have not completed enough credit hours.Lyle ended up playing a post-graduate season at IMG Academy in Florida before he committed to OSU in January.Although there was nothing he would have liked more than seeing D’Angelo Russell return for another season, Matta said the bond formed between the two over the last year made it impossible to not advise him to do what he felt was best for him and enter the draft.“This is a goal achieved for me, in terms of being a head coach, because I think one thing I’ve always tried to be in situations like these is selfless,” Matta said.OSU has not had a player leave for the NBA after one year since Byron Mullens in 2009, who at the time was the fifth player in three years to be one-and-done.While Matta has since put a stronger emphasis on building a program with players who stay for longer, he said he knows D’Angelo Russell is not a typical talent, but rather one who will excel at the next level.“He’s one step ahead of the game,” Matta said. “And that’s very, very rare, from the time he was 18 years old, to be thinking that way.”
Redshirt junior middle blocker Blake Leeson (11) prepares to spike the ball against Quincy University at St. John Arena on Feb. 18, 2018. Ohio State defeated Quincy in three matches. Credit: Ris Twigg | Assistant Photo EditorDespite winning the first set of the MIVA semifinals 25-8, the No. 7 Ohio State men’s volleyball team found itself tied with Lewis at two sets apiece.However, Ohio State dominated the fifth set 15-8 to defeat its challengers 3-2 and secure a spot in the conference tournament finals. The Buckeyes kept Lewis attackers at bay with 16 team blocks. Redshirt freshman opposite hitter Jake Hanes and redshirt junior middle blocker Blake Leeson led the team with seven and 11 blocks, respectively. Ohio State stormed out of the gates in the first two sets, winning by a combined score of 50-26, but lost narrowly in both the third and fourth sets. Ohio State head coach Pete Hanson said his team played well in all facets of the match in the first two sets, but that quickly changed.“Their kids responded well because they’re competitors and it was a little bit frustrating as a coaching staff to see our guys become tense and become unsettled about that sort of thing,” Hanson said.Lewis redshirt sophomore outside hitter Ryan Coenen has been one of his team’s most productive players, but struggled in the first set, racking up three attacking errors before Lewis’ first timeout at 11-6. The Flyers scored only two kills in the 25-8 loss. The Buckeyes had five blocks in the first set, shutting down Lewis’ offense. By the second set, Lewis’ offense picked up and the team’s hitting percentage breached zero, climbing from -.300 in the first set to .029 in the second. Coenen met Ohio State’s offense with five kills in the set. The Buckeyes maintained their net presence with seven blocks and 12 kills in the second set to beat the Flyers 25-17. The Buckeyes began to lose steam in the third set. Their hitting percentage dropped from .417 to .118 they picked up just 2 1/2 team blocks. Lewis picked up the tempo, surpassing Ohio State with a hitting percentage of .316 and adding 3 1/2 blocks. Lewis took the 13-12 lead and managed to stay ahead of the Buckeyes for the remainder of the set to win 25-22. The two teams kept the fourth set close, but Ohio State was slow on its feet, seemingly still recovering from the energy exerted in three straight sets without intermission. Lewis put on a more energized performance, ultimately collecting the 25-20 win. Despite his team finding itself tied at two with Lewis, junior setter Sanil Thomas said he was not worried about the outcome of the match.“We came out pretty strong, we knew what was at hand,” Thomas said. “I think since the first two kind of went a little easier than we expected, we took a little step back and they also adjusted very well and we couldn’t really cope with that because we were a little lackadaisical.”The Buckeyes took an 8-4 lead in the fifth set prior to switching sides, then pulled away with the win. With six kills, four service aces and a block, Ohio State took the set, winning 15-8.
Ohio State guard Carmen Grande (1) dribbles the ball up the court in the second half of the game against Indiana on Jan. 10. Ohio State won 55-50. Credit: Casey Cascaldo | Photo EditorOhio State had not found success from 3. Through three quarters, the Buckeyes had made only one of 11 attempts from deep — a buzzer-beater 3 by freshman forward Dorka Juhasz to end the first quarter. At the beginning of the fourth quarter, Ohio State instead shifted its focus on what head coach Kevin McGuff had previously said makes his team perform well: a stingy defense and taking care of the basketball. After recording three consecutive possessions with a steal, each ending with three fastbreak layups, Ohio State (5-8, 1-4 Big Ten) set the tone for a fourth quarter, ultimately defeating No. 25 Indiana (14-2, 3-1 Big Ten) 55-50 for its first conference win of the season and the Buckeyes’ first win against a ranked opponent.Ohio State has been in this position before against a ranked team: going into the fourth quarter against No. 4 Maryland Friday with a 58-57 lead. This time, redshirt senior guard Carmen Grande wanted to use momentum created to come through with a win. “I think we just looked at each other and we were like ‘Guys, we can win this,”’ Grande said. “We want to win a game. We are always right there and we never knock it down, so we were like ‘Come on, let’s do it.’” Taking a 38-36 lead with 8:19 left in the game after scoring eight unanswered points, the Buckeyes and the Hoosiers traded leads for much of the final quarter. But freshman guard Janai Crooms scored five points in a 7-0 run for the Buckeyes, giving the Buckeyes 51-46 lead with 1:26 left in the game. Crooms finished the game with 12 points, making 55.6 percent of her shot attempts, but only 2-of-6 attempts from the free throw line. This was something that plagued Ohio State all game, as the team combined to make 56.3 percent of attempts from the charity stripe. Despite allowing a 5-0 run for the Hoosiers, bringing the game to within one with 20 seconds left, Grande hit four free throws to secure the five-point victory. In the second half, the Buckeyes missed only two of 10 attempts from the line. Ohio State recorded 11 steals against Indiana, five of which were in the fourth quarter, scoring 24 points off turnovers with 11 fastbreak points. “Everything starts with the defense, so if you are able to steal the ball or get good stops, you are always going to get easier baskets,” Grande said. “We just saw that three stops could get us the win, so let’s keep it rolling.” McGuff said the success of the team hinges on the success of its defense and rebounding, bringing them in a lot of close games. In this case, the head coach said it was vital to not only record those steals, but to have those turnovers lead to scores. “We were also struggling a little bit to score,” McGuff said. “Not only were we getting stops, we were turning those turnovers into points and just a really critical point in the game that I’m really proud of the kids for stepping up and making those plays.” The Buckeyes began the game with a 14-2 deficit to overcome, making only one of its first 11 shots, turning the ball over five times. “We weren’t getting enough good shots and weren’t making the ones we got,” McGuff said. “We settled for tough quick shots in the first half, and that’s not going to do it for us.” Then Ohio State began to heat up, shooting 46.7 percent in the second half as Grande led the team with seven points, making 3-of-5 shots from the field. Ohio State, outscoring the Hoosiers 15-10 in the quarter, cut its deficit to 24-20 at halftime. Grande had a rough start, missing each of her first four shots from the field, including one 3-point attempt in the first quarter. However, as Ohio State started to heat up offensively, so did she, shooting 54.5 percent from the field for the remainder of the game. She led the team with 19 points.In the post, Indiana redshirt junior forward Brenna Wise, despite being four inches shorter than Juhasz, recorded 12 rebounds, with the Hoosiers recording 10 more rebounds than Ohio State on the game. Ohio State has its first win in conference play, its first win since Dec. 16. Crooms wants this win to bring momentum to a team that she feels is improving. “We know we can play together and we are good when we are all clicking together,” Crooms said. “I feel like in the next game we will all just come with that momentum because people are doubting us.” Ohio State will try and continue to build off its first Big Ten win of the season at home against Michigan State Monday at 7 p.m.