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Nelly Cummings, Pitt Staying Centered As Nationwide Consideration Rolls In

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PITTSBURGH — Pitt hasn’t made the NCAA event since 2016, and this yr, the Panthers appear like they’ve bought their greatest shot at significant March basketball since then.

Pitt (12-6, 5-2 ACC) has been included in a number of March Insanity bracket predictions by nationwide analysts, together with Jerry Palm of CBS. On Monday, Palmer included the Panthers as a No. 9 seed in his newest bracket replace. He predicted that they are going to tackle No. 8 seed Iowa in Des Moines, Iowa, within the Midwest area.

In ESPN bracketologist Joe Lunardi’s newest bracket prediction, the Panthers are the “Final Workforce In.” Lunardi, a.ok.a. “Joey Brackets,” has Pitt as an 11 seed taking part in in a play-in recreation towards UCF, as soon as once more in Des Moines, Iowa.

Regardless of the latest nationwide consideration, the Panthers, led by Pittsburgh native Nelly Cummings, are staying centered as their season rolls alongside.

“No, we actually don’t,” Cummings stated when requested if his teammates discuss concerning the potential of Pitt making the event. “We actually attempt to keep centered on our subsequent alternative. We will’t take something with no consideration. We don’t need to look too far forward, too far behind, we’re going to simply keep within the current second.”

4 of Pitt’s gamers have reached the event earlier than of their respective careers. As a freshman at Ole Miss, Blake Hinson made the massive dance, scoring 11 factors and grabbing six rebounds in a first-round loss to Brady Manek and Oklahoma. Jamarius Burton made the dance in 2021 with Texas Tech, successful his first-round recreation over Utah State however falling within the second spherical to Arkansas. Cummings himself made the event in each 2021 and 2022 with Colgate, shedding to Arkansas in 2021 (14 factors) after which Wisconsin in 2022 (20 factors). Greg Elliott made it as soon as whereas at Marquette, falling to North Carolina in 2022.

“I feel that’s positively going to assist us, for certain,” Cummings stated about Pitt’s particular person event expertise. “We’re all centered on each single recreation and each alternative. I’ve come from a convention the place I needed to win it. So we’re not going to take any alternative flippantly. We’re going to verify we deliver our A-game each single time we step on the courtroom.”

Pitt seems to be to stack one other convention win with its subsequent recreation on Wednesday, Jan. 18 towards Louisville (2-16, 0-7 ACC). That recreation will tip off at 7 p.m. on ACC Community from the KFC Yum! Middle. After that contest, the group will come again house for a Saturday afternoon matchup towards Florida State on the Petersen Occasions Middle on Jan. 21.



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3 WPIAL Stars Make Tremendous Bowl LVII

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The Tremendous Bowl have been recognized to incorporate stars from WPIAL way back to Beaver Falls’ Joe Namath calling the New York Jets victory in Tremendous Bowl III to as current as Penn Hills’ Aaron Donald sacking quarterback Joe Burrow to win final 12 months’s iteration of the basic championship recreation.

It’s practically a practice within the area to see WPIAL gamers within the recreation, a lot in order that they’ve contributed considerably to the Huge 33’s streak – a highschool all-star recreation that includes gamers from Pennsylvania and Maryland – of getting a consultant in each Tremendous Bowl in historical past.

This 12 months the WPIAL will probably be represented by three gamers in Kansas Metropolis Chiefs broad receivers Skyy Moore (Shadyside Academy) and Justin Watson (South Fayette) going towards Philadelphia Eagles working again Miles Sanders (Woodland Hills).

Moore appeared in 16 video games this previous 12 months as a rookie second spherical pick of Western Michigan, though he solely began three of these 16 video games. He completed the season with 22 catches for 250 yards.

He caught three passes for 13 yards within the Chiefs win over the Cincinnati Bengals within the AFC Championship Recreation. He’s nonetheless in the hunt for his first profession landing, which might be fairly one other WPIAL second if he have been to get that within the Tremendous Bowl.

He was key within the return recreation this season for Kansas Metropolis together with within the AFC Championship when a 29-yard punt return set-up the Chiefs’ game-winning drive at their very own 47-yard line with 30 seconds left.

His teammate Watson isn’t new to the Tremendous Bowl after having received it alongside WPIAL alumni Rob Gronkowski (Woodland Hills) and Jordan Whitehead (Central Valley) with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Tremendous Bowl LV.

After 4 years with the Buccaneers, Watson signed with the Chiefs this previous offseason and tied career-highs in catches (15) and touchdowns (two). He’s been used on a couple of punt returns this 12 months in addition to setting a career-high in receiving yards (315).

Sanders in the meantime has been beginning for the Eagles since being drafted within the second spherical out of Penn State in 2019. He had a profession 12 months this previous season with career-highs in dashing touchdowns (11) and dashing yards (1,269) en path to his first Professional Bowl nod, though he clearly received’t seem within the occasion this 12 months.

He’s been a constant presence at working again since being drafted with getting a minimum of 1,000 all-purpose yards in three of his 4 seasons and averaging precisely 5 yards-per-carry in his profession.

Within the NFC Championship recreation he excelled, scoring his workforce’s first two touchdowns to take 7-0 and later 14-7 leads. That 14-7 lead proved to be the distinction maker because the 49ers failed to attain one other level.



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The Frank Walker Legislation/PSN Every day Pocket book- January 31

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Replace (8:17 AM)- **On Monday, two gamers from the WPIAL acquired presents from Jap Michigan: Norwin 2024 athlete Jackson Pons and West Mifflin 2024 offensive lineman Rico Steele. Pons has earlier presents from Bowling Inexperienced, Kent State, Mississippi State, Miami (Ohio) and Toledo. Steele holds presents from Bowling Inexperienced, Kent State and Toledo.   SPORTS […]

The publish The Frank Walker Legislation/PSN Every day Pocket book- January 31 appeared first on Pittsburgh Sports activities Now.

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Duquesne WBB Celebrates 50 Years Of Historical past

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Duquesne Girls’s Basketball Coach Dan Burt admitted that anytime you could have a historic reunion, there’s a little bit of an unknown, particularly from an attendance perspective, in order the RSVPs got here within the smiles solely grew.

With Director of Advertising and marketing & Fan Engagement Leah Adams and Girls’s Basketball Director of Operations Melissa Franko main the cost in planning, round 160 people whether or not it was former gamers, season ticket holders, follow gamers and different pals of this system all attended the Saturday night occasion.

Duquesne basketball on Pittsburgh Sports activities Now could be sponsored by The Summit Academy: setting younger males on the trail to a greater future.

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“We had alumni from each era and each decade,” Duquesne coach Dan Burt said. “It was good to fulfill plenty of the individuals I had not met; it was good to have good fellowship and construct bonds with a number of the folks that haven’t been again. It was an excellent evening.”

Some members from the unique 1970’s groups had been amongst these showing, and every was amazed with how far this system has come. The emotion was very clear throughout excursions of the UPMC Cooper Fieldhouse as a bunch image was taken on the courtroom.

All of these in attendance had been additionally joined by this 12 months’s staff, teaching employees, College President Ken Gormley and Vice President of Athletics Dave Harper.

There have been loads of conversations available as all generations of Duquesne Girls’s Basketball had the chance to bond and work together by way of the assorted actions deliberate all through the occasion.

The occasion featured hors d’oeuvres, drinks, a silent public sale and was centered round a number of audio system.

Gormley was the primary to talk, welcoming everybody to the occasion whereas expressing gratitude for individuals who had been a part of this system.

His remarks then expressed immense proudness on this 12 months’s staff and the way it has really been a staff effort through the years.

“This unimaginable turnout is indicative of the deep pleasure and pleasure that continues to energise this girls’s basketball program,” he said. “We’re actually proud that this staff continues to draw a number of the greatest and brightest scholar athletes in our nation… We’re right here tonight by way of our followers dedication, enthusiasm, exhausting work and because of the extraordinary group of ladies’s basketball alums.”

Amy Alger Irvin (1986-89) recalled a 1986 contest towards West Virginia when the Mountaineers had been Atlantic 10 members and had Georgeann Wells, the primary lady to slam dunk within the girls’s faculty sport.

At the moment, Duquesne was enjoying its house video games on the Civic Area and thru a smile defined how the Dukes emerged victorious that day.

“They got here to the Civic Area and lo and behold we beat them 54-50 and I thank the Civic Area as a result of it should’ve been further chilly that evening,” mentioned Irvin. “I don’t suppose they ever performed at that temperature and I believe that was a giant think about serving to us out.”

Irvin, a 1,000-point scorer and 2017 Atlantic 10 Legends Class recipient additionally mirrored on this being the fiftieth anniversary of Title IX.

Midway by way of her season, Irvin heard rumblings that one thing was amiss, this changed into a possible Title IX violation as a result of there weren’t as many ladies’s groups as males’s groups.

Till the violation was mounted, males’s groups can be ineligible for postseason play, so the athletic division known as members of the ladies’s basketball staff as much as type the nucleus of a observe staff.

Whereas the division regarded throughout campus for people with highschool observe expertise, the staff needed to signal papers and waivers for logistical causes.

“The athletic division we had been in compliance and the lads’s groups by no means missed a beat because of the ladies’s basketball staff,” mentioned Irvin. “To today nobody’s going to persuade me that the ladies’s basketball staff didn’t a job in what we’ve at present with the proliferation of ladies’s sports activities. We have now 10 varsity sports activities with three extra on the way in which, I’m going to present our staff a bit of credit score for that.”

Irvin ended her speech particularly chatting with this 12 months’s staff stating that many in attendance and celebrating 50 years are doing so from a perspective of wanting again on fond previous reminiscences.

“We will’t return… that’s achieved for us however it’s proper and correct to recollect, particularly on an event like tonight,” Irvin remarked. “I’m happy and proud for you and the alternatives that you’ve got forward. We’ve had the reward of time and perspective to understand that all the things we realized, skilled and labored for at Duquesne greater than ready us for achievement and accomplishment nicely past this campus and that’s my want for you too.”

Junior guard/ahead Amaya Hamilton represented the present staff and said that everybody on the occasion represented that the bonds made at Duquesne have clearly by no means been damaged and he or she seems to be ahead to creating these bonds as nicely.

“Basketball is what brings us all collectively, however this program represents a lot greater than only a sport,” said Hamilton. “The vast majority of us gamers have been enjoying the sport for so long as we will bear in mind. It’s loopy to suppose that we’ve put so a few years of follow into getting good at placing a ball by way of a hoop. That has introduced me extra alternatives than I ever might have imagined.”

A day later, Hamilton mirrored on her speech, throughout which she was loudly supported by her teammates. Although she admits to not get pleasure from public talking and her fingers shook behind the rostrum, there was a transparent sense of pleasure for expressing her ideas.

“It was actually particular,” Hamilton exclaimed. “I believe that our alumni imply a lot to us and all of us look as much as the entire former gamers a lot. we hope that they are going to all the time come again, and we’ll come again in the future and simply proceed to help the Duquesne Girls’s Basketball legacy.”

After Hamilton’s remarks, Burt recited a prolonged listing of thanks yous earlier than mentioning two scholar managers and launched his present staff.

His remarks had been then concluded by a quick video put collectively by Assistant Director, Artistic Media & Productions Maggie Fitzpatrick, which was nicely obtained.

Sunday’s occasion featured 24 alumni being acknowledged at halfcourt throughout halftime of the staff’s sport towards Massachusetts.

Although Burt was extraordinarily dissatisfied by the staff’s 83-61 loss wherein it was blitzed early by Massachusetts, his tone did change when requested to replicate on 50 years and being a part of that.

In his time at Duquesne, Burt has taken the Dukes to its first-ever NCAA Match look and 4 WNITs.

This program has had its share of accidents however at 14-8 believes, the usual of 20-win seasons and postseason play is again and all of this 12 months’s staff is projected to return subsequent 12 months as nicely.

“That’s the primary 50 years,” Burt mirrored. “Now this group we’ve right here, that didn’t play their greatest at present is the following 50 years. I hope to be right here for 15-20 of that, perhaps longer, however I hope to be right here for a protracted a part of that. A program that began 50 years in the past the place the ladies from that point talked in regards to the lack of help that they’d and the place we’re at now could be unimaginable. There’s an upward curve and plenty of development that we’ve had, and we hope that continues to occur, and I imagine that it’s going to.”



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