Comments Facebook Twitter Google+ NEW YORK — Take away the new outfit and Hakim Warrick looked about the same last weekend as he did 15 years ago. He plays for Boeheim’s Army these days, not the 2003 Syracuse team that won the national championship. But with his length inside (6-foot-9) on the defensive end and his highlight-reel dunk on Saturday, Warrick channeled his former self.Early on Saturday night, in BA’s first win of The Basketball Tournament, Warrick took flight in a familiar way. He needed only one dribble to drive from the corner all of the way to the rim. The result was a one-handed slam. It was a display of hops, the kind that former NBA players like Warrick can offer. It was also a display of air time offering a reminder of Warrick’s block just over 15 years ago.The Block, as it’s become known to SU fans. The one that secured Syracuse’s 81-78 national title victory over Kansas, giving SU its lone national championship. The one that left Kansas shocked and heartbroken. Its fans were still bitter 15 years later at an Omaha, Nebraska, hotel in March. The one that gave Warrick an unforgettable name in Syracuse lore.Kansas had a chance to tie after Warrick missed a pair of free throws, and the Jayhawks needed a 3-pointer to force overtime.But Warrick blocked Michael Lee’s shot with 0.7 seconds remaining on the game clock, and Syracuse avenged a second-round loss to Kansas two years earlier.AdvertisementThis is placeholder text With time, Warrick grew to be a National Player of the Year candidate as a senior after deciding to forgo the 2004 NBA Draft. He was the Big East Player of the Year as a senior in 2005. He spent eight years in the NBA with six teams, including his most recent NBA stint, with the Charlotte Bobcats in 2013.Warrick is now playing pro ball in Israel and said he plans to retire in a few years. He wants a job, probably in the Washington, D.C., area, as long as it’s not an office job.He doesn’t stay in touch with many members of the 2003 team, with Anthony being an exception. He hasn’t spoken with Boeheim in a year or so, but his legacy in central New York — cemented in that singular block — lives on.“I haven’t seen G-Mac in a while,” Warrick said. “But when we talk about old stories like the 2003 title, we don’t skip a beat.” Published on July 26, 2018 at 8:47 pm Contact Matthew: firstname.lastname@example.org | @MatthewGut21 After a one-year hiatus, Warrick, 36, is back for Boeheim’s Army as the oldest player on the roster. Although he helped start the team in 2015, he has occupied a diminished role. He doesn’t start and played only sparingly this weekend. He does not have the same responsibility he once held: As a sophomore power forward for the Orange, he averaged 14.8 points per game on the 2002-03 title team, second only to Carmelo Anthony.For Warrick, The Block pops up in his head every month or so. He has no choice. When he’s playing overseas, coaches recognize his name and link him to the 2003 title game, Warrick said. They think of the tall, thin sophomore for the Orange who helped SU win its only national title. They ask him about Anthony, Syracuse, Boeheim, and of course The Block itself.Every March, when the NCAA Tournament is on TV, Warrick said he replays the block in his mind. Over and over, he visualizes the dying seconds of the 2003 title game.“It seems like it was yesterday,” Warrick said last weekend. “It’s something you always want to be a part of. Whenever I see a Kansas fan, they hate me … I was playing center, didn’t think I was going to get out there, so I just wanted to contest and try not to get the foul.”He arrived to SU as the lowest-rated out of the five incoming freshmen. He was shy and quiet. His mom often begged him to speak more and explain how he was liking SU. He rarely elaborated, but he became known for his ear-to-ear smile on the court. He hid behind his close friend, Anthony, the superstar freshman on the title team.“Warrick weighed 160 pounds when he came in here as a freshman and he was pretty good,” Boeheim said last fall, comparing then-freshman Marek Dolezaj’s frame to that of Warrick. “He never weighed more than 180.”
Photo: Stephen Gleeson Clonoulty Rossmore’s U21 A hurlers have a busy weekend – as they were crowned West Champions this afternoon.They overcame Cashel King Cormacs 2-16 to 2-7.They now go on to play the North winners – Kiladangan – in the County semi final tomorrow afternoon. West Board Chairman John O’ Shea says a 24 hours turnaround is not ideal…Meanwhile, on the other side of the draw, mid champions Holycross Ballycahill went up against south champions Carrick Swans in Golden in the other County U21 A semi final.At half time Holycross led well 14 points to 3, and it finished Swans 1-8 Holycross Ballycahill 1-25.
Dodgers shortstop Jimmy Rollins played a tremendous all-around game. Howie Kendrick backed him up in the lineup with two RBIs.But ah, the bullpen.The Pirates loaded the bases twice in the late innings with no outs — in the eighth against Avilan and again in the 10th against Johnson (2-4). Left-hander J.P. Howell took over for Johnson to face Alvarez, a left-handed hitter. Alvarez stroked a line drive over a five-man infield — no fielder was within 100 feet of where the ball landed in right field — to drive in Jung-Ho Kang with the winning run.“I wanted to pick my boy up. It’s brutal,” Howell said. “(Bad) way to end the game. We battled the whole way.” Newsroom GuidelinesNews TipsContact UsReport an Error For his part, Johnson pointed to the unpredictable nature of the sport.“If I execute one pitch a little better we don’t have this conversation,” he said after the game. “It’s just the way this game is, the fractions of inches we deal with.”After walking Kang to lead off the 10th, Johnson allowed a single by Francisco Cervelli through the shortstop hole and a bunt single by Sean Rodriguez.“As far as execution, that (single by Cervelli) was a poorly executed pitch,” Johnson said. “The leadoff walk didn’t help either.”It might be easy to dismiss one inch Friday as an unhappy accident if the Dodgers’ bullpen didn’t have an ERA over 4.00 for the season, ranking among the 10 worst units in the major leagues. They have used 20 different pitchers in relief, so it’s tough to blame just one or two men.Using a small sample size to evaluate the new guys is dangerous. Johnson has faced 12 batters as a Dodger and allowed five hits; two were home runs. Yet before Friday, he hadn’t walked a batter in more than a month or allowed a home run since the second week of the season.In his two appearances since the the trade, Avilan has faced five batters each time. Each time he’s allowed a single, a walk, and recorded three outs. Yet before Tuesday he hadn’t allowed runs in back-to-back appearances all season.Managing a bullpen isn’t an exact science, either. Avilan had been up and down, throwing then resting then throwing again, before he finally entered the game in the eighth inning with a runner on first and nobody out in a 4-4 game. The Pirates loaded the bases on a single and a walk. Then Avilan induced three weak groundouts to escape the jam without allowing a run.Johnson had only recorded more than three outs in a game twice this season. But when manager Don Mattingly asked him how he felt after a scoreless, 12-pitch ninth inning, Johnson said he felt fine. So he went back to the mound, only to load the bases without recording an out.Howell only started throwing in the 10th inning and was warm by the time he was summoned to face Alvarez.“That’s ideal,” Howell said. “It’s like, no problem.”Five pitches later, on a 2-2 changeup, he allowed a solid line drive to end the game.There was no rhyme or reason Friday. Just a familiar sense of dread getting the ball to closer Kenley Jansen, who never got his chance.“I think the guys we have back there are doing a good job,” Kershaw said. “Obviously Avi and J.J. have a proven track record of getting guys out late in games. You saw that tonight. Avi got out a of a big jam, bases loaded and nobody out. That was huge. J.J. had that really good (ninth) inning before the last one. It happens sometimes.”The Dodgers’ bullpen has been charged with 19 losses this season, more than all but seven teams. Last year, the Dodgers’ bullpen was charged with 24 losses. Indeed, it happens sometimes. Friday, it happened again. PITTSBURGH >> The Dodgers acquired two relief pitchers ahead of this year’s trade deadline from the Atlanta Braves, left-hander Luis Avilan and right-hander Jim Johnson. Since the front office hasn’t been given a specific limit to its player payroll — now reportedly at $297 million for luxury-tax purposes, a record — it was fair to expect the Dodgers would shoot for the moon to upgrade what had been an increasingly shaky unit.In losing 5-4 to the Pittsburgh Pirates in 10 innings on Friday, the bullpen looked shakier than it did before the deadline. The two new guys didn’t always look great.The dramatic ending, a walk-off single by Pedro Alvarez over a drawn-in infield, obscured many things on the Dodgers’ part — some good and some bad.Clayton Kershaw suffered through his worst start since May, allowing four runs in six innings and halting his scoreless-innings streak at 37. Pirates ace Gerrit Cole wasn’t much better, allowing three runs in six innings.