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The season of comebacks was on the precipice of another. With two minutes and 20 seconds left, a security guard warned fans in courtside seats to be aware of a possible court storming, Syracuse s third of the season. With eight seconds left, Tyler Lydon passed the ball to Tyus Battle. Battle then lobbed it to John Gillon, who caught it with 4.4 seconds left. Gillon hadn t realized how little time was left. He looked up at the clock and knew he had to sprint down the court.
I was like, Alright, I gotta go make a play, Gillon said. He stopped at the 3-point line in the tied game. There was only time for one shot. The Orange had been in this position before. He beat the buzzer to force overtime against North Carolina State. Battle beat the buzzer against Clemson.
Lydon rushed to get the offensive rebound. Gillon didn t know if it d go in when it left his hand. Assistant coach Gerry McNamara screamed, Bank! Bank! Bank! from the sideline because he saw it was going long. The shot hit off the backboard and fell through the basket. Syracuse beat Duke. 78-75.
I m going to try and be a stone-cold killer every game, Gillon said.
Jessica Sheldon | Staff Photographer
The win over No. 10 Duke (22-6, 10-5 Atlantic Coast) provides a massive boost to Syracuse s (17-12, 9-7) NCAA Tournament resume. Wednesday night marked SU s third Top 10 win of the season. Each previous time, students stormed the court. They did it again after 11 ties and 16 lead changes, none more dramatic than the final one. Gillon didn t sub out once and finished with 26 points on 9-of-14 shooting and six assists. His ability to drive and score, which he showed more and more as the game went on, is the reason he took over midseason as Syracuse s starting point guard. After committing five turnovers in each of the past two games, both losses, Gillon committed zero on Wednesday.
We go as John Gillon goes, Syracuse head coach Jim Boeheim said. After joining the ACC in 2013-14, Syracuse and Duke played two of the most memorable games in recent SU history. In the first matchup that year, the Orange beat the Blue Devils in overtime. Gillon s high school teammate Rasheed Sulaimon hit a buzzer-beater that tied the game at the end of regulation. The two talked last night. Gillon told Sulaimon he d kill Duke for him.
Gillon wowed the buzzing Dome crowd with under five minutes left in the first half by crossing over multiple times leading to Jayson Tatum tumbling to the floor. Gillon backpedaled and nailed a 3. As he walked back on defense, his facial expression didn t change. It was the kind of play he was used to making at Arkansas-Little Rock and Colorado State against weaker competition. But this was Duke, the 10th-ranked team in the country with the seventh most efficient offense nationwide, per Kenpom.com. On the Blue Devils next possession, Tatum, the future first-round NBA draft pick, hit a mid-range jumper. Syracuse trailed by eight and eventually as much as 10. The two teams traded body blow after body blow all game. The team with the ball last would be in the best position to win.
For the seventh straight game, Syracuse faced a double-digit deficit. It was used to being in that position and the combination of Battle and Gillon exploded in the second half and combined for 44 points.
This team keeps fighting, Boeheim said.
Jessica Sheldon | Staff Photographer
Gillon, in particular, has seemingly bounced back every time. After zero points in back-to-back games against North Florida and Connecticut, he scored 23 against Boston University. He followed up a zero-point performance against Notre Dame by leading SU down the stretch against Wake Forest in its first ACC single-digit win. On Sunday, Gillon had his worst game of the season. He went 2-for-10 from the field with three assists and five costly turnovers. Each time he touched the ball, Georgia Tech fans berated him with air ball chants. Now, Gillon s resilience has sparked Syracuse s in a season that nearly slipped away.
How do you come back from a horrible game and then do that? It s special and underrated, Gillon s mother, Phyllis, said via text message. (Boeheim) didn t get down on John after the Georgia Tech game. Do fans really think players want to play poorly? They are trying to miss shots? That belief bore fruit. The outcome you saw tonight. Gillon s first-ever buzzer-beater came in a fourth grade AAU tournament. About 50 people witnessed the shot. His friends jumped on him. Wednesday s buzzer-beater came in front of nearly 30,281 more people. In the locker room after the game, an equipment manager held Gillon s jersey. He showed it to a security guard before putting it in the laundry.
The transition from a motion-type offense to a pick-and-roll-type offense took time. Four new players in a starting lineup did too. And Gillon didn t get off to a hot start Wednesday, either. In the final 13 minutes, he scored 12 of his 26 points. He reached the second level of Duke s defense consistently and finished.
Once I get a little taste of blood and I score, I just get addicted to it.
The instant classic s final shot cued another court storming. Another Top 10 win. Another gasp of breath for Syracuse s once-lost season.
Dutch police have detained a security official in the group responsible for protecting anti-Islam lawmaker Geert Wilders on suspicion of leaking classified information, a spokesman said Wednesday. The extent of the security breach and whether it has had any effect on the tight security cordon that constantly surrounds the far-right Wilders was not immediately clear, but the leader of the populist Party for Freedom reacted angrily on Twitter.
“If I can’t blindly trust the service (DBB) that has to protect me, I can no longer function. This is unacceptable,” Wilders said in a tweet directed at Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte. Wilders has lived for more than a decade under around-the-clock protection and in anonymous safe houses following death threats.
Dutch media reported, citing unnamed sources, that the suspect is a police officer with a Moroccan background who had passed on information to a Dutch-Moroccan criminal organization. The story first appeared on the website www.NRC.nl . Wilders was convicted last year for anti-Moroccan comments and, while campaigning last weekend, referred to “Moroccan scum” who commit crimes in the Netherlands. The revelations came three weeks before the Netherlands holds a parliamentary election. Wilders’ party is riding high in the polls, although mainstream parties have said they will not form a coalition with him if he wins the popular vote because of his hard-line anti-Islam stance. His manifesto includes closing Dutch borders to all migrants from Muslim nations, banning the Quran and shutting all mosques in the Netherlands.
In an indication the government is taking the alleged leaks seriously, the Dutch prime minister and the minister for security and justice on Wednesday visited the heavily-guarded wing of Parliament that houses Wilders’ party offices. Rutte declined to say if he had met Wilders or to discuss the nature of his visit.
Wilders later tweeted that the security breach “is a serious case that fortunately is also being taken seriously by the Cabinet.”
Police spokesman Dennis Janus revealed few details of the case, saying it was still under investigation. He said an officer from the DBB security team was detained Monday on suspicion of “sharing classified police information in the private sphere.”
The DBB is responsible for security around politicians, the Dutch royal family and diplomats based in the Netherlands.
Clear biometric-scanning terminals set up at major U.S. airports let registered users go through security with a fingerprint or iris scan. the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport will get five such terminals by April. (Clear)
Fliers can sign up for Clear biometric scanning in a jiffy using registration terminals (separate from security check-in terminals) at major U.S. airports. (Clear)
Clear says it’s a snap to sign up for biometric scanning, but company staffers will typically be on hand to assist at major U.S. airports. (Clear)
Clear users not only get identify themselves in a jiffy with a biometric scan but also get dedicated lanes that speed them through airport security. (Clear)
Going through airport security can be wildly inconsistent. You never know if you ll be line for just a few minutes, or for an hour or more. Technology now available at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport could make this annoying process a lot more predictable and expeditious while adding a touch of sci-fi pizzazz. New York City-based Clear has installed terminals that use biometrics as in fingerprint and eyeball-iris scanning to identify travelers in a jiffy. Five of these terminals are set up in the airport s Lindbergh terminal, three at the southern checkpoint and two at the northern one.
Such a fingerprint- or eyeball-scanning procedure looks to speed up check-ins for registered Clear users because they get dedicated lanes that no one else can use. The Twin Cities airport now has two such express lanes.
In practice, Clear users could find themselves whipping through security time after time while others cool their heels in long, pokier-moving queues. Clear users would still have to go through metal detectors and bag scanners but would hypothetically get to those much more quickly.
Our customers love the predictability, said David Cohen, Clear s chief administrative officer. The Twin Cities airport is the 21st such facility to get Clear terminals; Los Angeles International Airport is due to get the technology soon. Clear recently deployed at airports in Atlanta, New York City, Washington, D.C. and Washington State. It equipped its first such facility, Orlando International Airport, in 2010.
The company, while authorized to operate by the TSA and the Department of Homeland Security, does not work directly with the federal government. Instead, it makes deals with airport authorities that include the Metropolitan Airports Commission, which owns and operates the Twin Cities airport.
We are pleased to partner with Clear to provide one more option travelers can use to reduce their security checkpoint wait time, said Brian Ryks, executive director and CEO of the Metropolitan Airports Commission, in a statement. Clear s presence at a growing number of airports means many travelers will be able to use the service at both ends of their trip.
The Twin Cities airport also has a handful of registration terminals for travelers who want to get set up with the system. This is a three-step process. First, they answer detailed questions based on their personal histories, like where they lived and what kinds of cars they owned. Second, they have their IDs such as their drivers licenses, passports or military cards scanned and verified. Third, they have their 10 fingerprints and two irises scanned and registered. Clear claims the automated registration takes all of five minutes, and registrants can begin using the service right away. Getting through security at that point requires only a boarding pass along with a fingerprint or iris scan. A fingerprint scanner is at waist level on the front of the scanning unit, with the iris scanner at eye level.
Soon, even the boarding pass may become superfluous. Clear said it recently conducted a trial at the Mineta San Jos International Airport that required only a biometric scan, which automatically dredges up the travelers boarding information for processing.
Clear is entirely separate from TSA PreCheck, a sped-up check-in service that lets travelers keep their shoes and belts on and their laptops in their bags. But, if the programs are used together, travelers can potentially get through security in only about five minutes, the company claims.
When used in combination with the TSA s PreCheck, it s like the Golden Certificate in Willy Wonka s Chocolate Factory, said Andy Abramson, CEO of the California-based Comunicano public-relations agency.
It is incredibly easy to sign up and go through the necessary steps to participate including having my fingerprints and irises scanned, thus allowing me to have my identification authenticated via biometrics, said Steve Loucks, chief communications officer at Plymouth-based Travel Leaders Group.
It was especially easy for me since I already have TSA PreCheck, Loucks said. The entire process took me less than five minutes at the San Francisco Airport, and once I went through the process, I was immediately escorted to the front of the TSA PreCheck line. All told, it was a very pleasant and surprisingly fast experience. Professional comedian and frequent traveler Dan Nainan said, Have you ever tried to fly out of Las Vegas? Even the TSA PreCheck line can be astronomical. I love how Clear clears you (there is never a line) and then they escort you to the front of the line and you actually get to cut in front of everyone and they put your bags on the belt and people are like, Who is this guy? It s fantastic. Clear is a paid commercial service, but registrants get the first month for free. After that, it officially costs $179 a year, though it is often running specials.
Delta Airlines fliers qualify for discounts that include $99 annual memberships for SkyMiles users, $79 annual memberships for Platinum, Gold and Silver Medallion members, and free annual memberships for Diamond Medallion users. The airline has a 5 percent stake in Clear. Adult users can register a spouse for $50, and children under 17 get to use the service for free. Clear recently logged 700,000 registered users and said it s now well on its way to the million mark. With the Twin Cities and Los Angeles airports on board, it claims it will have a presence at facilities used by a majority of U.S. air travelers.
Clear is also offering its technology to sports stadiums. It is using biometric check-ins at Yankee Stadium, the New York Mets Citi Field, the Miami Marlins Marlins Park, the San Francisco Giants AT&T Park, and the Colorado Rockies Coors Field.