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Archive for March 20th, 2017

Saturday’s recap of NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville, Florida

SCHUMACHER, J. FORCE, LINE AND SAVOIE EARN NO. 1 QUALIFYING POSITIONS SATURDAY AT AMALIE MOTOR OIL NHRA GATORNATIONALS

 

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Tony Schumacher secured the Top Fuel No. 1 qualifier Saturday at the 48th annual Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway.

 

Schumacher piloted his U.S. Army Top Fuel dragster to a track elapsed time record pass of 3.682 seconds at 328.22 mph in the second qualifying session to earn his 81st career No. 1 qualifier, first of the season.

 

“The Gatornationals to me, even as a kid, was always one of the greatest moments for my father,” Schumacher said. “It’s a great chance, great opportunity. When you’re given a great opportunity, you surround yourself with people capable of that moment, which we have done. You hope for great weather and the perfect situation tomorrow; great storm, great race. What you want is for the fans to walk away going, ‘We paid good money for this race and we feel like we owe more.’”

 

In the first round of eliminations Schumacher, who will be in pursuit of becoming the first five-time Top Fuel winner at the Gatornationals, will face Smax Smith. Doug Kalitta is qualified second with a 3.698 at 328.78 in his Mac Tools dragster and will race Ike Maier and defending world champion Antron Brown and his Matco Tools dragster are in third and will line up against Chris Karamesines.

 

John Force (Funny Car), Jason Line (Pro Stock) and Jerry Savoie (Pro Stock Motorcycle) were also No. 1 qualifiers in their respective categories at the third event of 24 on the 2017 NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series schedule.

 

Force raced his PEAK Chevy Camaro to the 155th No. 1 qualifier of his career with a track elapsed time record of 3.832 at 333.25. He will face Bob Tasca in the first round.

 

“It’s exciting to come here to Gainesville,” Force said. “I haven’t run this good in years.  We kept low ET, that’s an honor, I love it. It’s a good weekend of us. The team gelled. We’ll just go from there. I want to come out here tomorrow and I want to try to win. Don’t know who I race, don’t matter, I race my lane. I go A to B. But I’m really excited just to be in the hunt.”

 

Force’s teammate, Robert Hight, is qualified second with a 3.844 pass at 331.61 in the Auto Club Chevy Camaro and will race Del Worsham and Matt Hagan is third.

 

Line’s 6.476 pass at 213.87 in his Summit Racing Equipment Chevy Camaro from Friday held up to secure his third consecutive Pro Stock No. 1 qualifier of the season, 52nd of his career.

 

“We just try to go as fast as we can,” Line said. “The strategy is the same, early season, late season, mid-season, it doesn’t matter, it’s to put the Summit cars in the Winner’s Circle. Qualifying No. 1, obviously to me, is the best way to start. Our Summit Camaro is running really, really well so I’m super excited about tomorrow.”

 

Teammate Bo Butner is second with a 6.477 at 213.60 in his Jim Buner’s Auto Chevy Camaro and will line up against John Gaydosh in the first round of eliminations. Two-time world champion Erica Enders and her Elite Motorsports Chevy Camaro are qualified third and race Alan Prusiensky in round one.

 

Defending Pro Stock Motorcycle world champion Savoie earned the ninth No. 1 qualifier of his career with a 6.753 pass at 198.99 on his White Alligator Racing Suzuki in the third qualifying session. He will race Shawn Gann in the first round of eliminations.

 

“I’ve been coming to the Gators six years now,” Savoie said. “My first year out we qualified No. 6. I had really thought, when I bought all of Mr. (Don) Schumacher’s stuff and everything, that it was going to be easy, I thought we were going to qualify No. 1 and win the race. Six years later finally, finally we get to qualify No.1 in Gainesville. For me it’s a special privilege.”

 

Savoie bumped Screamin’ Eagle Vance & Hines Harley-Davidson rider Eddie Krawiec who is second with his 6.791 pass at 198.17 from Friday. Joey Gladstone, in his second season, qualified third with a pass of 6.810 at 197.51 on his San Marino Excavation Suzuki.

 

Eliminations for the 48th annual Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals begin at 11 a.m. on Sunday. Catch all the action on FOX Sports 1 beginning at 1 p.m. ET.

 

***

 

GAINESVILLE, Fla. — Sunday’s first-round pairings for eliminations for the 48th annual Amalie Motor Oil NHRA Gatornationals at Gainesville Raceway, the third of 24 events in the NHRA Mello Yello Drag Racing Series.  Pairings based on results in qualifying, which ended Saturday. DNQs listed below pairings.

 

Top Fuel — 1. Tony Schumacher, 3.682 seconds, 328.22 mph  vs. 16. Smax Smith, 15.934, 23.58; 2. Doug Kalitta, 3.698, 328.78  vs. 15. Ike Maier, 4.084, 273.11; 3. Antron Brown, 3.716, 326.24  vs. 14. Chris Karamesines, 4.043, 290.26; 4. Brittany Force, 3.719, 326.79  vs. 13. Larry Dixon, 3.988, 239.31; 5. Steve Torrence, 3.726, 327.51  vs. 12. Shawn Reed, 3.879, 315.49; 6. Troy Coughlin Jr., 3.738, 328.86  vs. 11. Pat Dakin, 3.862, 289.63; 7. Leah Pritchett, 3.750, 327.66  vs. 10. Scott Palmer, 3.826, 321.73; 8. Clay Millican, 3.762, 327.11  vs. 9. Terry McMillen, 3.780, 324.51.

 

Funny Car — 1. John Force, Chevy Camaro, 3.832, 333.25  vs. 16. Del Worsham, Toyota Camry, 4.544, 191.57; 2. Robert Hight, Camaro, 3.844, 331.77  vs. 15. Bob Tasca III, Ford Mustang, 4.215, 235.80; 3. Matt Hagan, Dodge Charger, 3.854, 328.70  vs. 14. Dave Richards, Mustang, 4.152, 255.10; 4. Courtney Force, Camaro, 3.860, 333.49  vs. 13. Jim Campbell, Charger, 4.152, 295.72; 5. Tommy Johnson Jr., Charger, 3.865, 329.83  vs. 12. Cruz Pedregon, Camry, 3.947, 323.12; 6. Ron Capps, Charger, 3.865, 329.58  vs. 11. Alexis DeJoria, Camry, 3.928, 327.98; 7. J.R. Todd, Camry, 3.871, 332.51  vs. 10. Jonnie Lindberg, Camry, 3.927, 325.37; 8. Jack Beckman, Charger, 3.883, 330.23  vs. 9. Tim Wilkerson, Mustang, 3.920, 309.06.

 

Pro Stock — 1. Jason Line, Chevy Camaro, 6.476, 213.87  vs. Bye; 2. Bo Butner, Camaro, 6.477, 214.28  vs. 15. John Gaydosh Jr, Chevrolet Camaro, 6.708, 205.94; 3. Erica Enders, Camaro, 6.490, 214.01  vs. 14. Alan Prusiensky, Dodge Dart, 6.582, 211.69; 4. Jeg Coughlin, Camaro, 6.491, 214.31  vs. 13. Kenny Delco, Camaro, 6.561, 212.33; 5. Greg Anderson, Camaro, 6.491, 214.59  vs. 12. Matt Hartford, Camaro, 6.553, 211.83; 6. Shane Gray, Camaro, 6.493, 214.11  vs. 11. Allen Johnson, Dart, 6.549, 211.56; 7. Chris McGaha, Camaro, 6.517, 212.96  vs. 10. Vincent Nobile, Camaro, 6.539, 214.08; 8. Drew Skillman, Camaro, 6.526, 213.20  vs. 9. Tanner Gray, Camaro, 6.531, 213.37.

 

Pro Stock Motorcycle — 1. Jerry Savoie, Suzuki, 6.753, 198.99  vs. 16. Karen Stoffer, Suzuki, 6.922, 194.07; 2. Eddie Krawiec, Harley-Davidson, 6.791, 199.88  vs. 15. Mike Berry, Buell, 6.918, 195.00; 3. Joey Gladstone, Suzuki, 6.793, 198.35  vs. 14. Melissa Surber, Buell, 6.910, 193.99; 4. Andrew Hines, Harley-Davidson, 6.793, 198.15  vs. 13. Angelle Sampey, Victory, 6.898, 194.02; 5. Hector Arana, Buell, 6.813, 198.26  vs. 12. Scotty Pollacheck, Suzuki, 6.890, 189.71; 6. LE Tonglet, Suzuki, 6.819, 196.79  vs. 11. Cory Reed, Victory, 6.888, 192.71; 7. Hector Arana Jr, Buell, 6.828, 198.03  vs. 10. Matt Smith, Victory, 6.857, 195.17; 8. Steve Johnson, Suzuki, 6.831, 197.94  vs. 9. Angie Smith, Buell, 6.848, 197.77.

Did Not Qualify: 17. Shawn Gann, 6.941, 191.21; 18. John Hall, 6.952, 192.22; 19. Chip Ellis, 6.955, 192.49; 20. Scott Bottorff, 6.969, 191.62; 21. David Hope, 6.970, 191.24; 22. James Surber, 7.307, 182.70; 23. Andie Rawlings, 8.273, 135.65; 24. Brian Pretzel, 10.993, 72.09.

 

RACING RECAP WRITTEN BY & A COURTESY OF NHRA COMMUNICATIONS

 

BAR1′s Yucaman takes the Pole in Prototype Challenge at 12 Hours of Sebring

BAR1's Gustavo Yucaman (photo by John Thawley courtesy Creative Communication Group)

BAR1 Gustavo Yucaman Take the Pole in Prototype Challenge for the Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida

BAR1 will start first and third on the Prototype Challenge class grid in tomorrow’s  65th running of the Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring Fueled by Fresh From Florida. Gustavo Yucaman has been quick all week and today was no exception. He put the No. 26 Southwest Realty Advisors / Merchant Services car on the pole with a 1:53.056. Gustavo will share the car with Marc Drumwright, Chapman Ducote and Colin Thompson.

The No. 20 Gas Monkey Energy / Southwest Funding car will start third on the grid in the hands of Buddy Rice, Don Yount, Daniel Burkett and Mark Kvamme.

‘“Gustavo was definitely hitting his marks,” said team owner, Brian Alder. “He’s been fast all week. I think we’ve got a good line up for tomorrow’s race. All the drivers are on the pace and the cars are fast. The crew guys have done a great job getting us here.”

BAR1 Motorsports competed in The 65th Annual Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring Fueled by “Fresh from Florida” this past weekend.

Gas Monkey Energy
Gas Monkey Energy is a high-octane energy drink for true adrenaline junkies. It’s fuel for those of you whose passions get you scraped, bruised, burnt or worse, yet it’s what you love to do. Soon to be on shelves nationwide, Gas Monkey Energy is available in regular or light and can be purchased by the case online www.gasmonkeyenergy.com

TOP 1 Oil
For nearly 40 years, the TOP 1 brand has been built on a foundation of core values and beliefs that define who we are and provide the framework for how we operate.  Formed by a unique partnership between two men from distinctly different backgrounds, cultures, and generations. On their own, they had little in common, but together they shared a bond based on trust, a passion for superior quality, and an indomitable “can do” spirit.  We chose from day one to only source the highest quality raw materials.  This is the only way we know – this is our passion. We chose from day one to only source the highest quality raw materials.  This is the only way we know – this is our passion. In the spirit of our founders TOP 1 is a family that crosses barriers and joins people from around the world to hold in their hands a brand they call their own. We are grateful for the opportunities that our brand have brought us yet everyday we see opportunities to make our world better.  We know we can’t change the world but we must make a difference no matter how big or small.  By giving back to those who are less fortunate we open a door to hope and inspiration.

ONE Capital Management
ONE Capital Management has assembled a core of financial professionals with expertise in retirement solutions, wealth management, investment management and family office services. ONE provides cross border wealth management solutions through a strategic partnership with ONE Advanced Planning and caters to the unique needs of professional athletes and entertainers through their partnership with ONE Sports+Entertainment Group.
BAR1 Motorsports
BAR1 Motorsports competes in the WeatherTech Championship and Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Series.  The team is located in Plain City, Ohio.  Team owner, Brian Alder, has been an active and winning crew chief in the American Le Mans Series, now WeatherTech Championship, since its inception.  You can find out more about BAR1 at www.bar1motorsports.com, follow the team on Facebook at www.facebook.com/Bar1Motorsports or Twitter @bar1motorsports.

IMSA
The International Motor Sports Association, LLC (IMSA) is the sanctioning body of the WeatherTech Championship, the road-racing series resulting from the merger of the American Le Mans Series and the GRAND-AM Sports Car Series. IMSA also sanctions the Continental Tire Sports Car Challenge and the Cooper Tires Prototype Lites Powered by Mazda, as well as four single-make series: Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge USA by Yokohama, Ultra 94 Porsche GT3 Cup Challenge Canada by Michelin, Ferrari Challenge North America and Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America. IMSA is the exclusive strategic partner in North America with the Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO), which operates the 24 Hours of Le Mans as a part of the FIA World Endurance Championship. The partnership enables selected WeatherTech SportsCar Championship competitors to earn automatic entries into the prestigious 24 Hours of Le Mans.
RACE RECAP WRITTEN BY John Thawley; COURTESY CREATIVE COMMUNICATION GROUP

Higuain, Kamara star in Crew SC’s win at DC United, 2-0

 

Federico Higuain

Ola Kamara

 

Federico Higuain scores his 40th career goal for the Black & Gold;
Zack Steffen records first career MLS win and first career MLS shutout

For Release: March 18, 2017

 

 

Columbus Crew SC 2 – D.C. United 0

RFK Stadium (Washington, D.C.)

Saturday, March 18, 2017

 

NEXT MATCH FOR CREW SC (1-1-1, 4 points)

 

Columbus Crew SC vs. Portland Timbers (MAPFRE Stadium – Columbus, OH)

Saturday, March 25 (7:30 p.m. ET / The CW Columbus, Spectrum Sports, BCSN2, CD102.5 FM, La Mega 103.1 FM, English radio stream on ColumbusCrewSC.com).

 

MEDIA RESOURCES AVAILABLE

 

FULL BOX SCORE: http://bit.ly/2mWlTRL

TEAM STATISTICS: http://bit.ly/2mEHM6k

 

MATCH HIGHLIGHTS: http://bit.ly/2mg3dj5

HEAR FROM SPORTING DIRECTOR AND HEAD COACH GREGG BERHALTER IN POST-MATCH PRESS CONFERENCE: http://bit.ly/2mHPZI5

AUDIO FROM DEFENDER ALEX CROGNALE: http://bit.ly/2mHPZI5


AUDIO FROM
MIDFIELDER JUSTIN MERAM: http://bit.ly/2mHPZI5

TODAY’S MATCH INFO:

 

Venue: RFK Stadium (Washington, D.C.)

Referee: Ted Unkel
Assistants: Adam Wienckowski, Andrew Bigelow
Fourth Official: Jorge Gonzalez

Attendance: 14,031

Weather: 50 degrees and clear

 

GOALS/ASSISTS

CLB – Federico Higuain (Penalty kick) 38’

CLB – Ola Kamara (Penalty kick) 66’

 

DISCIPLINARY SUMMARY
DC – Ian Harkes (Caution) 17’

DC – Lloyd Sam (Caution) 41’

CLB – Harrison Afful (Caution) 45+1’
DC – Marcelo Sarvas (Caution) 70’
CLB – Josh Williams (Caution) 72’

 

 

LINEUPS

 

Columbus Crew SC: Zack Steffen; Josh Williams, Alex Crognale, Nico Naess; Harrison Afful, Artur (Mohammed Abu 70’), Wil Trapp ©, Jukka Raitala; Federico Higuain, Justin Meram (Ethan Finlay 63’); Ola Kamara (Adam Jahn 80’)

 

Substitutes not used: Brad Stuver, Lalas Abubakar, Hector Jimenez, Niko Hansen

D.C. United: Bill Hamid; N. De Leon, Seve Birnbaum ©, Sean Franklin, Taylor Kemp; Ian Harkes, Marcelo Sarvas, Luciano Acosta (Lamar Neagle 75’); Lloyd Sam (Sebastien Le Toux 60’), Patrick Mullins (Jose Guillermo Ortiz 28’), Patrick Nyarko

Substitutes not used: Travis Worra, Jared Jeffrey, Bobby Boswell, Julian Buescher

TEAM NOTES
Midfielder Federico Higuain scored his 40th goal for Crew SC by converting a penalty kick in tonight’s match. The goal increased his margin as Crew SC’s leader in Penalty Kick Goals, bringing his total to 15 while playing for the Black & Gold. Higuain has started in all three of the Black & Gold’s regular-season matches this season.

Homegrown Player Alex Crognale made his MLS debut for the Black & Gold as a starter in tonight’s match. Defender Josh Williams made his season debut and his first MLS appearance for Crew SC since returning to the club.

 

Goalkeeper Zack Steffen recorded first career win and first career shutout with tonight’s 2-0 win over D.C. United, making three saves on the night. Steffen has started in all three of the Black & Gold’s regular-season matches this season.

Forward Ola Kamara scored his second goal of the season and his 18th goal for Crew SC. He has made three appearances (all starts) this season. Kamara’s goal was his second of the season and the forward has now scored in back-to-back matches for Crew SC after tallying last weekend in Houston (March 11).

 

Kamara is now 3-for-4 in penalty kicks for Crew SC since joining the club ahead of the 2016 campaign while Higuain is now 15-for-21 from the spot for the Black & Gold dating back to 2012

 

Crew SC’s last victory on the road came at Camping World Stadium against Orlando City SC on September 17, 2016.  Tonight’s 2-0 win was also the club’s first shut-out of the season. Prior to tonight, Crew SC shut-out the Chicago Fire on October 1, 2016 at MAPFRE Stadium.

 

Tonight’s victory at RFK Stadium brought Crew SC’s all-time record against D.C. United to 27-27-11,

 

NHL Morning Skate Report for Sunday, March 19, 2017; Capitals punch Playoff ticket

SATURDAY’S RESULTS
Home Team in Caps
DETROIT 5, Colorado 1
Columbus 3, NY ISLANDERS 2 (OT)
NY Rangers 3, MINNESOTA 2
Chicago 2, TORONTO 1 (OT)
Montreal 4, OTTAWA 3 (SO)
Washington 5, TAMPA BAY 3
CAROLINA 4, Nashville 2
St. Louis 3, ARIZONA 0
EDMONTON 2, Vancouver 0
Anaheim 2, SAN JOSE 1

OSHIE’S HAT TRICK HELPS CAPITALS PUNCH TICKET TO THE POSTSEASON
T.J. Oshie (3-1—4) scored the third regular-season hat trick of his NHL career to help the Capitals become the first team to clinch a berth in the 2017 Stanley Cup Playoffs, their 27th postseason appearance in franchise history and ninth in the past 10 seasons.

* At 46-17-8 (100 points), the League-leading Capitals reached the 100-point mark for the 10th time in franchise history and third consecutive season.

* Oshie, who equaled a career high for points in a game, has collected 29-20—49 in 2016-17 (58 GP) to establish a personal best for goals in a season.

Nicklas Backstrom (0-4—4) matched a career high with four helpers to reach 54 assists and move within one of tying Connor McDavid for the League lead.

PURSUIT OF DIVISION TITLES HEATS UP
The race for first place in both the Atlantic and Pacific Divisions intensified Saturday as the top two teams in each division met in Ottawa and San Jose, respectively:

Paul Byron scored the decisive marker in the shootout – after both teams tallied a tying goal in the third period – to power the Canadiens (40-23-8, 88 points) past the Senators (39-23-8, 86 points) in the first half of a back-to-back home-and-home set. Montreal and Ottawa will play tonight on Rogers Hometown Hockey before closing their season series on Saturday at Bell Centre (OTT: 2-0-1; MTL: 1-1-1).

* Ryan Getzlaf (0-1—1) reached the 800-point milestone (235-565—800) to help the Ducks (38-23-11, 87 points) improve to 5-1-1 in their last seven games and move within four points of the Sharks (42-22-7, 91 points) for first place in the Pacific Division. Jonathan Bernier (33 saves) improved to 5-0-1 in his last six appearances, while Jakob Silfverberg (GWG) reached 20 goals for the second time (also 2015-16).

Meanwhile, Chicago opened a five-point lead atop the Central Division and Western Conference with a victory in Toronto:

* Ryan Hartman scored in the final 20 seconds of overtime to power the Blackhawks (46-20-5, 97 points) to their fourth consecutive win. John Hayden tallied the first goal of his NHL career (2 GP) to become the second Illinois-born player to score for the Blackhawks this season, joining Vinnie Hinostroza (6).

OTHER PLAYOFF HOPEFULS SECURE KEY VICTORIES
Several clubs secured victories to improve their chances of clinching a playoff berth:

* Cam Talbot (33 saves) picked up his sixth shutout of the season and Connor McDavid netted the game-winner as the Oilers (38-24-9, 85 points) reclaimed third place in the Pacific Division. McDavid regained sole possession of the League lead with 25-55—80 and became the first Oilers player to reach the 80-point mark in a season since 2013-14 (Taylor Hall: 27-53—80).

Jake Allen (31 saves) registered his fourth shutout of the season to help the Blues (38-28-5, 81 points) improve to 7-1-0 in their last eight contests and overtake the Predators (35-25-11, 81 points) – who lost in regulation – for third place in the Central Division. Allen established a career high with his 27th win of the season. St. Louis and Nashville will wrap up their season series on April 2 at Scottrade Center (NSH: 3-1-0; STL: 1-3-0).

Zach Werenski (0-2—2) notched an assist on Cam Atkinson’s overtime goal to lift the Blue Jackets (46-18-6, 98 points) to a 6-1-0 mark in their last seven games. Werenski has collected 11-35—46 this season (70 GP) – including 2-5—7 during an active five-game point streak – and now sits five points shy of tying the single-season franchise record for most by a defenseman, a mark set by James Wisniewski in 2013-14 (7-44—51 in 75 GP).

Jimmy Vesey scored his fifth game-winning goal of the season to guide the Rangers (45-24-3, 93 points) – who occupy the first Wild Card spot in the Eastern Conference – to their League-leading 26th road win of the season, two shy of matching the franchise record set in 2014-15. Elias notes that Vesey became the first Rangers rookie to score five or more game-winning goals in a season since 1985-86 (Mike Ridley: 6).

LOOSE PUCKS
The Hurricanes (30-27-12, 72 points) extended their point streak to six contests (4-0-2) . . . Lightning forward Nikita Kucherov scored the 100th and 101st goals of his NHL career . . . William Nylander (1-6—7 in 7 GP), Elias Lindholm (2-4—6 in 6 GP), Rickard Rakell (4-2—6 in 5 GP) and Artemi Panarin (3-3—6 in 5 GP) extended their points streaks . . . Ducks forward Andrew Cogliano skated in his 776th consecutive game and tied Craig Ramsay for the fourth-longest such run in NHL history . . . Sharks forward Logan Couture (1-0—1) skated in the 500th game of his NHL career . . . The Maple Leafs donned Toronto St. Pats uniforms, honoring one of their earliest eras in franchise history.

 

PRESS RELEASE WRITTEN BY NHL PUBLIC RELATIONS; COURTESY NHL MORNING SKATE PUBLICATION

South Carolina Gamecocks Spring Football underway; Coach Muschamp assesses progress

Will Muschamp

COACH MUSCHAMP SPEAKS AFTER SATURDAY SCRIMMAGE Spring Practice Number 8 Held at Williams-Brice Stadium COLUMBIA, S.C.

(March 18, 2017) – University of South Carolina head football coach Will Muschamp addressed the media following Saturday’s scrimmage at Williams-Brice Stadium. Overall: “We got practice eight in the books today. It was kind of a half-practice, half-scrimmage. We got a lot of good things accomplished today. We got the coaches off the field and let the players play. We had about 75 live scrimmage snaps, which we need. We had counted on about 40. I was pleased with the tempo and some things we were doing, so we kept on going. We’ve got a long way to go, but we are certainly much improved from where we were.” On the offense: “We’re better on the offensive skill, although we do have some guys out. Randrecous Davis had sports hernia surgery, so he’ll miss the rest of spring. I’m disappointed for him. He’s going to be a really good football player for us. Bryan Edwards and Or’Tre Smith have been limited, but have been partaking in most of practices. I’ve been pleased with both of those guys. A.J. Turner has been out with a hamstring injury. He has not practiced this spring, but we’re hoping to get him back next week. We’ve got to get all of our offensive skill all together on the field at once. That’s what’s been frustrating offensively.” On the defense: “Chris Lammons sprained his foot, but he’ll be fine. He’ll be back next week. Skai (Moore) had an ankle today, but will be back next week. We need to continue to come up front and improve. I’ve been pleased with the play of Skai (Moore), Bryson (Allen-Williams) and T.J. (Brunson) for the most part. We’ve got more competition in the secondary than we’ve had, which will certainly help us.” On the special teams: “In the kicking game there have been some positive things that I’ve seen. We’re just far too inconsistent snapping it, kicking it and punting it. We’ve got to get much, much more consistent.” Comparing this team now to the same time last year: “It’s night and day. More than anything, we’ve got some depth on the offensive line. We’ve got some depth in the front seven – not at linebacker, but in our front four. We’ve got more depth at defensive back. We have more options as far as skill guys are concerned.” On the right tackle position: “I think that Zack (Bailey) is a guy that feels comfortable at right tackle. Obviously, it’s a learning curve when you’re going from a confined area as a guard to now when you’re on the edge. I’ve been pleased with his progress. Blake Camper is doing extremely well. Blake’s playing his best football since we’ve been here.” On the left side of the offensive line: “Donell (Stanley) and D.J. (Park) both need to be more consistent day-in, day-out. Malik (Young) and Sadarius (Hutcherson) are battling it out at left tackle. Competition is our best friend as coaches because you’ve got some guys who know they have to perform every single day.” On the wide receivers: “Or’Tre (Smith) and Bryan (Edwards) have taken part in the individual stuff and a lot of the skeleton stuff, just not the full 11-on-11, although Or’Tre did today and he’s progressing extremely well. Korey Banks has done some nice things, Chavis Dawkins has done some nice things, Terry Googer has. We need to be more consistent in those positions. I think Deebo Samuel is having an outstanding spring. I’ve been extremely pleased with him and how he’s come out and worked.” On the backup quarterbacks: “Michael (Scarnecchia) can throw the ball extremely well. He missed an entire year with the labrum. He missed an entire year of taking snaps, reading the coverages and doing all the things you do, so this is really his first year in the scheme and system, but he can really throw it. Jay (Urich) was here today and certainly will be here in the fall to compete. Bailey (Hart) and Danny (Gordon) have done some nice things. We’re going to have to have some other alternative looks to what we need to do. We’ll continue to work through that.” On the pass rush: “We need to improve. We need to get better. We need more fast-twitch up front. We’ve got to get more edge guys. I’ve been very pleased with Dennis Wonnum. He’s had a good spring for us. Dante (Sawyer) has done nice things for us. Daniel Fennell has had two back-to-back good practices for us. We’ve got to have him come along for us. Taylor (Stallworth) has done some nice things inside. We’ve got to get more guys we can count on front. We’re very thin from a standpoint of experience and guys we feel we can win the SEC East with.”

www.GamecocksOnline.com

 

PRESS RELEASE WRITTEN BY & A COURTESY OF University of South Carolina Athletics Media Relations

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