Ismael Tajouri-Shradi brace lifts New York City FC past Orlando City

Rookie Ismael Tajouri-Shradi scored two goals as NYCFC remained unbeaten at home with a 3-0 victory over Orlando City FC on Saturday night at Yankee Stadium.

Tajouri-Shradi made it 1-0 by converting New York’s first scoring chance in the 35th minute. Trailing the play, he went into the box, took the pass from Anton Tinnerholm and released a nifty left-footed shot after defender Donny Toia fell to the ground that sailed into the far side of the net.nfl nike jerseys cheap china

Tajorui-Shradi’s big night helped NYCFC improve to 6-0-0 at home and beat Orlando for the second time this season.

He added his seventh goal of the season by converting a rebound off a free kick by Maximiliano Moralez in the 78th minute.

It was the second career two-goal game for the 24-year-old, who was born in Switzerland to Libyan parents. He also tallied twice on March 24 in a 2-2 tie at the New England Revolution.

Moralez made it 3-0 in the 87th minute after Orlando was unable to clear the box twice, just moments after David Villa hit the crossbar with a left-footed shot.

NYCFC is outscoring opponents 18-2 in six home games this season.48

NYCFC improved to 8-3-3 on a night when Villa was not in the starting lineup. No reason was given for Villa’s absence at the start, but he warmed up briefly on two occasions around the 22nd minute and the 52nd minute before entering the game in the 65th minute.

Orlando played without leading scorer Dom Dwyer for the third straight game with a lower-body injury. Dwyer, who was seen at training this week, missed his sixth game this season, and Orlando dropped to 0-5-1 when he sits out.cheap official nike nfl jerseys

Orlando, which lost its fourth straight game, was unable to convert five corner kicks and missed a golden opportunity to tie the game on a penalty kick in the 48th minute when Sacha Kljestan hit the right post with his right-footed shot.

New York’s Sean Johnson made two saves and notched his 48th career shutout. It was his fifth shutout this season.

Alan Gordon, Aleksandar Katai lead Chicago Fire past San Jose Earthquakes

Alan Gordon and Aleksandar Katai scored as the Chicago Fire defeated the hapless San Jose Earthquakes 2-1 on Saturday at Toyota Park, winning at home for the just the second time in five matches.

Gordon put the Fire on top in the 29th minute as he ran to the far post and jumped over San Jose defender Jimmy Ockford to head Luis Solignac’s cross from the right sideline past Earthquakes goalkeeper Andrew Tarbell. Johan Kappelhof also received credit for an assist on the goal.nike cheap nfl jerseys

Katai added to Chicago’s lead four minutes into the second half, taking a nifty pass from Brandt Bronico on the head run to beat Earthquakes forward Florian Jungwirth into the box before lobbing a shot over the head of the hard-charging Tarbell and into the far side of the net.47

Gordon and Solignac had great chances to add to the lead in the 57th minute, but each player had shots cleared off the line by San Jose defenders after they got past Tarbell.

San Jose cut the Fire’s advantage in half in the 74th minute when Danny Hoesen rushed into the zone to receive a pass from Chris Wondolowski and boot it into the goal, as Chicago keeper Richard Sanchez had no chance to respond.

Katai had a chance to ice the match in the 85th minute, but his hard shot from inside the 18-yard line was parried wide by Tarbell.

San Jose has won just once away from home in eight matches in 2018 and has just one victory in its past 12 outings. The Earthquakes dropped their third straight game and extended their winless streak to four matches.nfl nike jerseys cheap china

The Earthquakes outshot Chicago 14-13 and each team had four shots on target. San Jose also earned advantages in blocked shots (6-3), crosses (25-10), total passes (481-433), possession (53 percent to 47 percent) and duels won (51-47), but had little to show for its good work.

San Jose returns home to host LAFC next Saturday while the Fire stay in the Windy City to host New England, also on Saturday.

Max Scherzer’s surprise single, mad dash beat Braves

The Atlanta Braves have been living a charmed existence during the first couple months of the 2018 season. A 34-23 start, a long stay in first place, a rebuilding plan that has come together ahead of schedule, frightening injuries to foundation players — Freddie Freeman and Ronald Acuna Jr. — that turned out to be much less serious than initially feared.

Then, with the National League East favorite Washington Nationals visiting SunTrust Park for a big, four-game series this weekend, there was this: The Braves missed Max Scherzer’s turn through the rotation.new nike nfl jerseys for sale cheap

As it turns out, though Atlanta won’t have to face Scherzer’s filthy repertoire on the mound this weekend, they were beaten by him anyway. Scherzer’s pinch-hit single in the 14th inning sparked a two-run rally as the Nationals outlasted the Braves 5-3 on Saturday and moved within a half-game of Atlanta in the NL East.36

Scherzer’s hit off Braves reliever Miguel Socolovich with one out in the 14th was far from a screamer. Statcast gave Scherzer’s knock an exit velocity of 83.8 mph. But it got the job done.

“I’ve hit in big situations, so it’s the same thing,” Scherzer said. “You go up there, you have to get in the box and have pre-pitch thoughts and, for me, try to hit it up the middle. I’m not going to be hitting the ball out of the ballpark. I know that. I’ve got a high school swing. I know it. But, hey, it’s good enough just to get a ball in play, and sure enough, something happens.”

It was Scherzer’s first career pinch hit in his third appearance in the role. Overall, the three-time Cy Young winner is a .194 career hitter with one home run. This season, he stole his first career base, something Washington manager Dave Martinez thought might have been on his ace’s mind as he led off first base.

Instead, after a Michael Taylor fly out, Wilmer Difo hammered a drive to right-center that reached the fence. Off on contact, Scherzer raced around the bases to score standing up, while Difo slid into third with a go-ahead triple. Difo then scored when Cobb County, Georgia, native Spencer Kieboom singled him home.

“It looked like [Scherzer] was going to try to steal as well, and I was like, ‘Oh, boy,'” Martinez said. “Then all of a sudden, he goes first to home, and I’m holding my breath. But he was flying. I said, ‘You can run.’ He said, ‘I can do it all.’ Kudos to him. He picked us up.”

As a starting pitcher, Scherzer bats on a semi-regular basis. Still, it had been a while since he’d gone first to home.

“A couple of years ago,” Scherzer said. “I got it. I know how to run the bases.”cheap nfl jerseys nike china

According to Statcast, Scherzer’s mad dash around the bases took 10.89 seconds, giving him a sprint speed of 26.9 seconds. The league average is 27 seconds, and if Scherzer had enough instances to qualify, 26.9 seconds would rank 10th on the Nationals, just ahead of outfielders Adam Eaton and Bryce Harper.

Cubs strike out season-high 24 times vs. Mets, still win in extras

The irony for the Chicago Cubs is that even though they’ve been reducing their high strikeout games at the plate, every so often they get into one that makes the history books. It happened again Saturday, in their 7-1, 14-inning victory against the New York Mets.

According to ESPN Stats & Information research, the Cubs’ MLB-season-high 24 strikeouts were the second-most in a win by any team since the mounds were moved to their current distance in 1893. According to Elias, the Cubs are the third team since that same year to have multiple 20-strikeout games in the same season, as they also struck out 20 times on March 30 against the Miami Marlins.nike cheap nfl jerseys

Mets starter Jacob deGrom accumulated most of the whiffs on Saturday, with 13 in his seven innings of work.

“He was unbelievable,” Albert Almora Jr. said after the 4-hour, 53-minute game. “It’s been a while since I faced a pitcher like that. Everything was moving away from my barrel. His fastball had some late life, his slider was sharp, and he threw me one of the nastiest changeups I’ve ever seen.”35

Almora struck out three times but was the hero, as he hit a two-run double to right-center in the 14th inning to break a 1-1 tie. The Cubs scored six runs total in the 14th, tied for the fourth-most in that inning in the past 30 seasons. It was all part of a crazy night in which the teams combined for a 2018 major-league-high 39 strikeouts, yet the Cubs also had 17 hits.

For the Cubs, Mike Montgomery pitched six innings of two-hit ball, and reliever Luke Farrell pitched five innings in relief as the game went into extras.

“I’m a lot chippier and happier right now because we won,” manager Joe Maddon said. “Had we not won that game with all those opportunities, it would have been difficult … We just have to move the ball. We started chasing again tonight.”

Maddon asked reporters if anyone had struck out so much in a win, forgetting that the New York Yankees beat the Cubs last season when both teams struck out more than 20 times. Part of the reason the Cubs were stuck on one run for so long is that they struck out five times with the bases loaded alone.

“When you get guys like this [deGrom], the secret for me is when you get a chance to score with an out, move the baseball,” Maddon said before the game.new nike nfl jerseys for sale cheap

The plan failed miserably against deGrom, but the Cubs hung in there, taking the first three games of the series while accumulating 45 hits. Even with all those swing-and-misses, it worked out.

Warriors withstand James’ 51 points to win NBA Finals Game 1

Stephen Curry scored 29 points and the Warriors capitalized on Smith’s mistake that sent the game into overtime, overcoming a 51-point performance by James to beat Cleveland 124-114 in Game 1 on Thursday night.

The game nearly over, James jawed with both Curry and Klay Thompson, then Tristan Thompson and Draymond Green tangled moments later and made contact. After replay review, Tristan Thompson received a Flagrant 2 foul and ejection with 2.6 seconds left.authentic cheap nfl jerseys

James was in utter disbelief as regulation ended stunningly: George Hill made the first of two free throws with 4.7 seconds left after being fouled by Klay Thompson, but when Smith secured the rebound of the second, he dribbled back toward halfcourt instead of shooting, apparently thinking the Cavs had a lead.

”He thought it was over. He thought we were up one,” coach Tyronn Lue said.24

Yet Smith insisted he knew the score. Green figured Smith was simply looking for James, saying, ”I would have looked for LeBron, too.”

”I just thought we were going to call a timeout. Because I got the rebound, I’m pretty sure I couldn’t shoot it over KD,” Smith said of Kevin Durant. ”If I thought we were ahead, I would have just held on to the ball so they could foul me. Clearly that wasn’t the case.”

Instead, OT.nike nfl jerseys for sale

And why not? Both these teams were pushed to their limits in seven-game conference finals they each had to win on the road.

”I can’t talk about a situation that way because I do some dumb stuff on the court,” Durant said of how the fourth quarter finished. ”I don’t know what was going through J.R.’s head. He made a great rebound and gave them an opportunity to win the basketball game.”

Game 2 is Sunday night back at Oracle Arena, where the Warriors have won 18 of their last 19 postseason games. In 2015, when the Golden State beat the Cavs to capture the franchise’s first title in 40 years, the first two games of the series went to OT – Golden State winning the opener and Cleveland Game 2.

James shot 19 for 32 to go with eight assists and eight rebounds in the opener of his eighth straight NBA Finals and ninth overall, as well as Cavs-Warriors Take IV. James notched his eighth 40-point game during this playoff run to tie Hall of Famer Jerry West’s feat in 1965 for most in a single postseason.

”We’ve got to move on,” James said. ”This game is over and done with. We had opportunities.”

James drove past Curry for a three-point play with 50 seconds remaining in the fourth. But James was given a foul following a review with 36.4 seconds left and Durant converted a pair of free throws to tie it at 104.

The call had initially been a charge on 2017 finals MVP Durant and James protested the change – while KD said afterward he thought it was the right decision because ”I knew he was late on the drive and I knew I had my man beat and he came over a little late.”

Report: No suspension for Cavs’ Love for leaving bench in Game 1

Cleveland Cavaliers forward Kevin Love won’t be suspended for leaving the bench during an overtime skirmish in Game 1 of the NBA Finals, ESPN reported Friday, citing a league source.

Love had wandered on to the court late in the Golden State Warriors’ 124-114 overtime win on Thursday night, as Cavs forward Tristan Thompson and the Warriors’ Draymond Green were getting into a heated altercation on the floor.official nike nfl jerseys

He was quickly ushered back to the bench as Thompson was ejected and then shoved the ball into Green’s face.23

The refs restored order as Thompson made his way back to the locker room after receiving a flagrant-2 call. Thompson could still be facing a suspension for his part in the skirmish.

Thompson had taken exception to Warriors guard Shaun Livingston putting up a shot with five seconds left in overtime and the game in hand. He was called for a foul while contesting the shot and then began jawing with Green afterward.authentic cheap nfl jerseys

“I contested a shot that shouldn’t have been taken,” Thompson said afterward, per ESPN. “I mean, it’s like the unspoken rule in the NBA: If you’re up 10 or 11 with about 20 seconds left, you don’t take that shot. I make the contest, and next thing I know, I was being kicked out for a good contest that we learn in training camp. I don’t know why I got thrown out.”

Denzel Ward hopes to follow buddy Marshon Lattimore’s blueprint

No paternity tests needed, mind you. Lattimore is 22, Ward is 21. The two simply have a bond that goes back to The Ohio State University, where Ward, Lattimore and Gareon Conley formed a cornerback hydra that resulted in all being taken in the first round of the NFL draft — Lattimore by New Orleans and Conley by the Raiders a year ago, Ward fourth overall by the Browns in April.

That the Buckeyes had three first-round picks in the same backfield speaks to each player’s ability but also to the system the Buckeyes use defensively. Ohio State is one of the few programs in the country that ask their corners to play press-man coverage, a skill that is required in the NFL.cheap nfl jerseys from china nike

“Coach Coombs told me when he recruited me, he wanted to coach first-round draft picks and win championships,” Ward said of secondary coach Kerry Coombs. “That sold me right there.”

“We were with each other every day,” Lattimore said. “Same position. Like me, Gareon, Denzel and Damon Arnette. And we were in battle together. So when you’re battling with somebody, you’re gonna get close to them no matter what. So just me being with him, and me looking at him like my little brother, it just became natural.”

The Browns made Ward a semi-surprising fourth overall pick in the hopes he can do for Cleveland what his friend and mentor did for the Saints. Lattimore’s impact on New Orleans after being taken 11th overall was significant.12

With Lattimore starting as a rookie, New Orleans improved in every pass-defense category, from 4,380 passing yards given up in 2016 to 3,597 in 2017, from 27 touchdown passes to 22, from nine interceptions to 20.

According to ProFootballFocus.com, Lattimore was the fourth-ranked corner in the league and the 29th-best player. He allowed opposing quarterbacks a 45.3 passer rating when throwing his way, best among all rookies.

Lattimore wound up in the Pro Bowl and the winner of the NFL Defensive Rookie of the Year Award. Last week, he talked about becoming “a legend.”

It may be oversimplifying to say one player made that much of a difference, but when it comes to a cover corner, the impact can be significant. Think Richard Sherman at his best with Seattle. Think the impact of Jalen Ramsey, who ranked third in the NFL at his postion and was a key reason Jacksonville made the AFC Championship Game. The cover corner not only takes away the opposing team’s best player, he frees defensive coordinators to provide extra help elsewhere.cheap new nike nfl jerseys

In a seven-game stretch early in the season with Lattimore playing and learning, the Saints gave up 149.2 yards passing per game. Lattimore missed the next two games, and the Saints gave up more than 300 yards passing in both games.

Eli Apple starting to show Giants signs of being a top-10 pick

There was a play during Monday’s OTAs when New York Giants cornerback Eli Apple ran stride for stride into the end zone with wide receiver Sterling Shepard. Apple turned his head around in time, located the ball and knocked it to the ground.cheap nike jerseys nfl

After a brief celebration, Apple returned to his position for the next snap. There were more splash plays to come. Apple later knocked down a pass intended for wide receiver Cody Latimer at the goal line. It capped off another strong practice in what has, so far, been a spring of redemption after a disappointing second season.11

“He’s just out here making plays,” safety Landon Collins said. “That’s not the only play. He’s doing his thing. I’m happy for him. He’s growing up, doing his thing and playing great ball.”

It’s quite the turnaround after a disastrous 2017. Apple struggled badly as he dealt with on- and off-field struggles. It led to multiple benchings, a suspension to end the season and an uncertain future.

But the Giants stuck with Apple — in part because of his talent and the cost of their investment — in an offseason in which they reshaped their roster. They’re banking on him to play a significant role.cheap nfl jerseys from china nike

Apple has worked with the first-team defense this offseason, and he’s expected to start at cornerback opposite Janoris Jenkins. The Giants don’t have a lot of proven depth behind them.

The pass breakup on Shepard was the latest validation that the Giants might be OK with Apple playing a prominent role.

“Yeah, that was a good play,” coach Pat Shurmur said. “Then we saw [Jenkins] make a nice interception in the back of the end zone. The ball was thrown well, everyone was in a good position and he made a nice play on it. That’s a good thing.”

Liverpool need a dose of Houllier pragmatism and a Karius replacement after UCL woe

Liverpool’s hugely disappointing 3-1 loss to Real Madrid in the Champions League final shouldn’t affect the long-term view of the team’s progress under Jurgen Klopp.

It’s the nature of all sport for competitors to keep improving, however, to test their limits and see how far they can go. That will apply to the Reds next season too.nike nfl jerseys cheap china

There would be a lot of fans who’d look upon fourth in the Premier League, 135 goals scored and reaching a cup final as a perfectly good return for Liverpool next time out.

The final was a bleak way of ending the season, not for the defeat so much as the manner of it. Losing Mohamed Salah so early was a massive blow and the errors of Loris Karius combined with an awe-inspiring strike from Gareth Bale meant they were doomed to fail on a night they needed most things to go their way.

They did benefit from a curious, toothless performance from Cristiano Ronaldo, but that was about the only break Liverpool caught all game.

The search for solutions to yet another cup setback began almost before the final whistle. A new goalkeeper was high on everybody’s wish list. While there was sympathy for Karius’ obvious distress, it didn’t stop fans from urging Klopp to make this his main priority in the summer.348

Finding an improvement shouldn’t be tricky, but what will stay the same is an all-round urge to get forward even when a little pragmatism is called for. A keeper told to release the ball quickly at every opportunity was bound to come unstuck. It happened in the quarterfinal second leg at Manchester City too, in the opening minute no less.

Karius put Virgil van Dijk under enormous pressure and an early goal resulted, when any sane team with a 3-0 first-leg lead would be moving at a snail’s pace and trying to silence the home crowd.

That’s the problem, though. This isn’t a sane team and has suffered various stumbles as a consequence. Liverpool conceded two goals or more in 17 of their matches, almost a third of them. They conceded three goals in one half seven times. That’s not acceptable, but their high-octane approach to football also resulted in Liverpool’s second-greatest season for scoring goals. Tampering with the formula may lead to a serious malfunction.

There’s a marked contrast to almost everything this team does with the one that began the century with three cups in one year under Gerard Houllier. They could often be boring but still managed 127 goals themselves, albeit in a lot more games played. There’s no question about which of the sides fans would prefer to watch, but winning trophies is what ultimately matters.

Most probably wouldn’t want a return to the days of the French pragmatist in every single aspect, but this team and manager could learn from them.customized nfl jerseys cheap

For one thing, the goalkeeper and defence were protected far more. Nobody would call Sander Westerveld one of the club’s best keepers, but he didn’t need to be.

Kyle Walker hopes to be England’s driving force at World Cup

Kyle Walker had to follow his parents on the motorway at the start of his senior football journey, but this summer he is aiming to be a driving force for England at the World Cup.

No outfield player accumulated as many minutes in qualifying as Walker did and just four of the 23 players Gareth Southgate is taking to Russia have won more caps than the defender’s 34.

An international veteran in this Three Lions squad, cheap nfl jerseys china nike Walker can still recall how green he was when he had his initial taste of first-team football a decade ago as an 18-year-old loaned to Northampton from Sheffield United.

“It was a massive opportunity for me,” he recalls of the nine-game spell. “I can remember driving down with my mum and dad. They were in the front car and I had to follow them down because I’d never driven on a motorway before! So it was strange.347

“They came in and watched me train. [Adebayo] Akinfenwa was there. Leon Constantine. And I was thinking, ‘These guys are going to think I’m a kid with my mum and dad!'”

There were other experiences early in Walker’s career, away from Britain’s motorways, which would stand him in good stead for what was to come.

It was early in the defender’s Blades career when he was first deployed as a centre-back — though it is unlikely his performance in a 2009 FA Cup loss to Hull persuaded Southgate to move him inside for England’s most recent friendlies.

“I did play central defence for Sheffield United — in my second game there against Hull,” Walker explained. “I had Chris Morgan to the side of me which was helping me a lot and if I did anything wrong I’d be sure to find out about it!

“Caleb Folan was the centre forward. He was a classic target man. I was like, ‘Morgs, you please go and head! And I’ll sweep up behind you.'”nike nfl jerseys cheap china

A season with Pep Guardiola’s Premier League champions Manchester City has also been particularly educational.

Walker feels he has a greater appreciation of tactics, both for his personal role and the collective, and will look to use Guardiola’s lessons with an international team aiming to buck the trend when it comes to major tournament disappointment.