CLEMSON, SC – OCTOBER 25: A general view of Memorial Stadium prior to the game between the Clemson Tigers and Syracuse Orange on October 25, 2014 in Clemson, South Carolina. (Photo by Tyler Smith/Getty Images)The ACC has released its preseason media poll ahead of the upcoming 2019 college football season.A preseason poll of 173 ACC media members was revealed, and the Clemson Tigers are once again the overwhelming favorite to win the Atlantic Division. They claimed 171 of 173 first-place votes to claim the division, and 170 members picked them to win the ACC Championship Game.Clemson has reigned dominant in the ACC for the last four years, winning four straight conference titles, four straight trips to the College Football Playoff and winning two national titles.The only other team in the ACC Atlantic Division to even get any first place votes was Syracuse with two. The reigning national champion @ClemsonFB is the preseason favorite to claim its fifth consecutive #ACCFootball title.@UVAFootball is favored in the Coastal Division.📰 https://t.co/Z0cFFqvyDB pic.twitter.com/EE6eAMiqOx— The ACC (@theACC) July 22, 2019As for the Coastal Division, the media believes that Bronco Mendenhall’s Virginia Cavaliers will narrowly edge Manny Diaz’s Miami Hurricanes to claim a spot in the ACC Championship Game.Mendenhall has rapidly turned the program around since taking over in 2016. After going 2-10 in his first year, he has led the team to 6-7 and 8-5 records in the last two years.But with Dabo Swinney and Trevor Lawrence set to dominate for yet another season, the Tigers will be favored over just about anyone.
“The negotiating teams have been engaged in several rounds of talks and we encourage both sides to accelerate and intensify their discussions,” UN Special Coordinator for the Middle East Peace Process Robert Serry said in his briefing to the 15-member body. He noted that the international community has long supported the vision of a two-State solution and now has a responsibility to give these efforts a chance. “But the onus to sustain an enabling environment lies with the parties. Both should refrain from actions that risk undermining the prospects on negotiations. “And we urge them to act responsibly and with restraint,” Mr. Serry added. “Concurrently, any substantial political initiative must yield early dividends in the immediate period ahead with tangible improvements to security and socio-economic conditions for Israelis and Palestinians alike.”In this regard, he welcomed a recent Israeli Government decision to increase the number of work permits for West Bank Palestinians by 5,000, and said he looked forward to further steps of economic cooperation and easing restrictions on access and movement of Palestinians. At the same time, he noted that settlement activity continued in the West Bank and in East Jerusalem and reiterated that such actions are “counterproductive.” Clashes between Palestinians and settlers also continued and reports of settler attacks against Palestinian farmers are “particularly worrisome,” he said. “We do not underestimate the challenges ahead and the momentous efforts required to sustain and successfully conclude negotiations within the prescribed timeframe,” said Mr. Serry, who noted that two decades have now passed since the signing of the Oslo Accords. “And yet, 20 years of peace efforts have also demonstrated that fair, reasonable and legitimate solutions can be found for the key issues dividing the parties. It is for the negotiators to identify and narrow these gaps, and for their leaders to take decisions in the best interest of their peoples. And the international community, including key regional stakeholders, must now show unity and resolve in assisting the parties in moving forward.”Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon, Mr. Serry noted, looks forward to productive meetings later this month of the diplomatic Quartet, which comprises the European Union, Russia, UN and United States, and of the Ad Hoc Liaison Committee, which deals with development assistance to the Palestinian people, as well as to constructive debate during this year’s General Assembly. “Words are critical in preparing the ground for peace,” stressed Mr. Serry. “Both leaders are soon to address the General Assembly and we sincerely hope they take the opportunity to reach out to each other’s people in making the case for peace.”
TORONTO — Auston Matthews had two goals and an assist in his return to the lineup following a month on the sidelines with a shoulder injury as the Toronto Maple Leafs defeated the San Jose Sharks 5-3 for their third straight victory Wednesday.John Tavares, with two, Patrick Marleau also scored for Toronto (18-8-0), while Mitch Marner added three assists. Frederik Andersen made 37 saves to improve to 8-2-0 over his last 10 starts. Andreas Johnsson had two assists.Tomas Hertl, Joe Pavelski and Melker Karlsson replied for San Jose (12-9-5), which dropped to 1-2-2 over its last five. Logan Couture chipped in with two assists and Aaron Dell made 24 stops as No. 1 goalie Martin Jones got the night off following the Sharks’ 3-2 overtime loss to the Buffalo Sabres on Tuesday.Matthews sat out 14 games with a sore left shoulder after taking a clean hit from Winnipeg defenceman Jacob Trouba early in the second period of the Leafs’ 3-2 victory over the Jets on Oct. 27.The 21-year-old star centre stormed out of the gate with 10 goals and six assists through seven games this season, but was held off the scoresheet in three consecutive outings before getting hurt. The Calder Trophy winner was rookie of the year in 2016-17, Matthews was sidelined a total of 20 games last season thanks to three separate injuries, including the same problem with his right shoulder.Matthews made an almost immediate impact Wednesday, taking a pass from Marner and finding Tavares at the edge of the crease on a power play for his 16th goal of the season at 3:38.San Jose got that one back at 10:40 when Hertl banged the puck past Andersen after Leafs defenceman Travis Dermott could only partially block Kevin Labanc’s pass in front on a Sharks’ man advantage.But the Leafs restored their lead just 39 seconds later on another power play when Matthews ripped his 11th upstairs shortside on a helpless Dell.Matthews — who said Tuesday he’s been “bored to death” the last month as he recuperated — has now scored in all four career games where he’s returned from an injury.Erik Karlsson nearly tied it on a point shot for San Jose that hit the shaft of Andersen’s stick later in the period, and the Toronto netminder had to be sharp on another man advantage with stops on Pavelski and Evander Kane.Nazem Kadri hit the post on a breakaway for Toronto right after his penalty expired, but Tavares made it 3-1 with 16.3 seconds left in the first when he finished off another brilliant pass from Marner, this time on an odd-man rush for his 17th.Toronto’s power play connected a third time in three successive chances, this time with the No. 2 unit, at 1:53 of the second when Marleau took a clever pass from Johnsson and fired upstairs on Dell for his sixth and Toronto’s third goal with the man advantage against the league’s top penalty killing unit.The 39-year-old Marleau, who played 19 seasons with the Sharks, had never previously scored against his former team in three previous games as a member of the Leafs, but now has at least one goal against all 31 NHL franchises.Pavelski got San Jose back within two when he scored his eighth on yet another power play, rifling a shot from the bottom of the left faceoff circle that Andersen could only get a piece of with the inside of his pad at 4:18.The Sharks found their legs as the period went on, leading 26-17 on the shot clock through 40 minutes, but still trailed 4-2 heading to the third.Marner nearly made it 5-2 on a breakaway three minutes into the final period, but Dell did just enough to thwart his effort through the five-hole.Dermott then recovered to deny Kane’s breakaway chance at the other.Matthews put the game out of reach for good with his 12th at 11:59 when tipped Johnsson’s shot past Dell’s glove at 10:59 off a feed from Kasperi Kapanen.Melker Karlsson got one back for San Jose, his second, with 1:58 left in regulation, but the Sharks wouldn’t get any closer with Dell on the bench for an extra attacker.Notes: Toronto was 9-5-0 without Matthews and is 10-3-0 overall in its last 13 games. … Erik Karlsson, who was traded from Ottawa to San Jose in a eight-player blockbuster deal in September, will play his first game back in the nation’s capital on Saturday afternoon. The Sharks then visit Montreal on Sunday. … The Leafs are on the road for their next two, beginning Saturday in Minnesota before visiting Buffalo on Tuesday.___Follow @JClipperton_CP on TwitterJoshua Clipperton, The Canadian Press