London 2012: Olympic soccer quarterfinals observations

After nine goals in four women’s Olympic quarterfinal matches, two of the world’s top five teams have fallen, along with host nation Great Britain.  As the remaining four teams shift focus towards Monday’s semifinals, let’s take a look back at how a marathon day of soccer shook down.

France continues to surprise

The most consistent part of France’s squad this tournament has been its inconsistency, and that didn’t change Friday morning.  After getting bombarded and conceding early [Read more…]

London 2012 Olympics: Women’s soccer quarterfinals preview

With the group stages behind us, the quarterfinals of women’s Olympic soccer kick off tomorrow featuring several intriguing matchups.  Among the eight remaining teams are six of the world’s top seven squads, as well as host-nation Great Britain, composed primarily of players from the world’s No. 9 England.  The Olympic knockout stage will also feature six of the eight 2011 World Cup quarterfinalists (counting Great Britain as England), and all four semifinalists, making the field as stacked as any in recent memory.  Here’s what to watch for as kickoff approaches. [Read more…]

Fighting Illini Hoops Crush West Virginia in Scrimmage at Italian Air Base

illinois

It is impressive that the Michigan State Spartans and North Carolina Tar Heels will take on each other in college basketball aboard the deck of an aircraft carrier. But don’t sell the Illinois Fighting Illini and West Virginia Mountaineers short. The two basketball teams visited Aviano Air Base yesterday during their summer Italian tours.

And it resulted in Illinois destroying West Virginia 47-26 in an exhibition scrimmage held in front of approximately 500 military personnel and their families. The 20-minute contest was part of a special opportunity that also saw the Illini and Mountaineers hold a youth clinic for children of the Airmen and had each team participate in a 10-minute scrimmage against the Aviano varsity unit. In those games, Illinois defeated Aviano 26-12, while West Virginia topped Aviano 25-7. The three squads also held a dunk contest for the crowd with Illini junior Joseph Bertrand claiming the victory.

[Read more…]