3 MOE Fraudsters Appear in Court

first_imgThree persons who have been allegedly withdrawing money from the account of the Ministry of Education (MOE) at Global Bank using a fake employee name, Samuel Brown, yesterday appeared at the Monrovia City Court.Defendants Harris V. Koken, a security supervisor at the MOE together with Alphonso Dash Wilson, an employee at the Ministry of Finance (MOF), and another man identified as Jerome Weah have been charged with multiple crimes, which include; economic sabotage, forgery and impersonating.The three men allegedly withdrew an amount of LD73,560 from the bank before police apprehended them based on a complaint by former Education Minister Etmonia D. Tarpeh.The scheme was discovered from October 2014 to April 2015, according to police.Defendant Koken was released yesterday, after his legal team posted bail. He is to appear whenever his case is ready.As for defendants Wilson and Weah they were forwarded to the Monrovia Central Prison.The facts, according to police, are that defendant Jerome Weah, posed as a staff of the ministry, with the name Samuel Brown, assigned as an instructor at the Oluremi Tinubo Public School.Samuel Brown also bears payroll number 21-02-211-0162, with a monthly salary of LD12,381.It was the name that Weah used and managed to open the account at Global Bank, where they withdrew the LD73,560.Samuel Brown was one of several names recommended by the security department of the ministry for replacement arising from a communication to that effect dated February 9, 2015, police claimed.Police said, Weah claimed that his older brother, defendant Wilson, who is an employee of the Ministry of Finance, asked him to use the name Samuel Brown to open the account.The two defendants with the help of third defendant, Koken duplicated the ministry’s identity card, which he gave to Wilson, who filled it with the name Samuel Brown, then gave the fake identity card to Weah.Defendant Weah claimed that it was the MOE security supervisor who took him to the bank in 2014 with a check valued at LD12,250 for encashment, police allege. The record further quoted defendant Weah as saying, “the check was written in Samuel Brown’s name before Harris showed me how to write the signature S.B, which I used to withdraw the money for the first time.”Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Lurgybrack Open Farm reopening for a season of family fun!

first_imgLocal families will be delighted to hear that Lurgybrack Open Farm will be reopening this Easter Break.The hugely popular farm is opening its gates on 13th April 2019, just in time for the school holidays. Lurgybrack Open Farm is a hidden treasure on the outskirts of Letterkenny on the Cullion Road. It has become a destination for families all over Donegal and beyond to visit and learn about animals while having fun in the fresh outdoors. Plus, there are some fun new additions to discover this year.With lots to do and fantastic value for money, the farm is a brilliant day out for all ages. The centuries-old farm building is home to a range of friendly farm animals that children can come face to face with.It’s the perfect place for a school trip, party or families to learn and play. There is a large play area for kids and visitors can take a run on a tractor, enjoy the bouncy castles, zip wire, sand pit, waterslide, jumping pillow, indoor bouncy castles or take a leisurely stroll around the dusty trail walk.There is ample space to play safely, wander by the riverside, or just sit back and unwind with a tasty snack from our tearoom or have your own family picnic.To plan your visit, contact: Lurgybrack Open Farm, Cullion Road, Lurgybrack, Letterkenny, Co.DonegalPhone: 074-9122683Mobile: 086-8212012Email: [email protected] Lurgybrack Open Farm reopening for a season of family fun! was last modified: April 11th, 2019 by Staff WriterShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)Tags:eventsfamiliesfamily funLurgybrack Open Farmlast_img read more

The South African government is on Ello

first_imgDeputy minister of communication, Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams and Aslam Levy conducting a Twitter chat.• Social media means more than just business in Africa • Durban developer’s mobile app scores in Nokia competition • #BringBackOurGirls shows the power of social media in Africa • World-class tech hub planned for Joburg • South African women on Forbes Africa tech list Sulaiman PhilipEllo is the coolest party on the internet. Hailed by fans as the anti-Facebook, the creators describe it as a “simple, beautiful, and ad-free social network created by a small group of artists and designers”.If Facebook is the all-access, rowdy, boisterous cheap seats, Ello is the velvet-roped VIP section where the cool kids make themselves heard over the rattle of pearls of artistic wisdom. It is a safe, commercial free space, designed by hipsters for hipsters. It is invite only: you have to be asked to join, or you can send in a request and stand in line (at one point they were getting 50 000 requests an hour). The South African government has an Ello pageAslam Levy, the director of online platforms for the Department of Communications, contends it is hardly unusual, and should not be surprising. “We track usage trends on social media. There has been a surge in the 45 – 55 demographic on Facebook; that’s a group we want to reach. The flipside of course, is teens drop off Facebook. Youth and youth unemployment are issues we are trying to deal with so we need to know where they go. So we have a presence on Ello, on Twitter, on Instagram, and on MXit.”Social media platforms are always organising data about their users; and access to this data makes it easier for governments to do what they need to do. The South African government has embraced digital media because it wants to change the way it talks to its citizens and residents. Once upon a time there was the message, and the government’s need to get that message out. It chose a medium and spread the word. It was a straight line without an opportunity to ask questions or seek clarity.That this approach is changing grew out of a constant complaint from the country’s electorate – elected officials and ministers appear just before the elections, only to disappear again straight afterwards. Levy gives an explanation for this that is simple enough: “Ministers can’t visit every town in the country, but social media allows them to have a conversation with any citizen who wants to take part.”Recently the deputy minister of communication, Stella Ndabeni-Abrahams, conducted a Twitter chat. There were 93 active users but the minister’s responses were seen by half a million people on Twitter. The problemsA driver of this change has been the use of social media by younger members of the cabinet. They regard social media as a link to the public and their profile helps the message filter through the ranks. They understand social media as a platform to bypass traditional media, but its newness does throw up its own problems. Minister Fikile Mbalula is one of the most active Twitter users in the cabinet. He is also well known among Twiteratti for expressing his opinion.“Sports Minister Mbalula is a good example of that. There are conversations that should be private, but even so, it does remind people that ministers are human, with strong opinions. His interactions, actually, reinforce the fact that an interaction on social media is with a real person, and not just another attempt to pass on a message.”Another factor that has eased the acceptance of social media in government circles was the successful adoption of social media by political parties in the run up to the last general election. In the months prior to the elections, the ANC grew its Twitter audience threefold to 103 000 and its Facebook attracted 12 000 new followers and stood at 52 000 on the eve of voting. Larger opposition parties fared just as well on the most popular social media platforms – by January, the DA’s numbers were on Facebook: 51 411 and Twitter: 54 825; and the EFF’s were on Facebook: 63 226 and Twitter: 33 302. The Presidency has 98 000 fans on Facebook, President Zuma almost 5 000, but his page is not as active. The benefitsA huge benefit for the government is the cost-effectiveness of using social media to get out its message in the grand scheme of things. But there are non-financial considerations and benefits as well. These include building relationships with citizens and allowing for real time response to concerns. Being on social media platforms also allows the government to track and deal with frustrations.“What social media does is make for flatter government and removing the hierarchical structure that citizens have been forced to deal with. Social media removes the layers between a citizen and a minister, creating real engagement,” Levy says.Yet there is a downside to using social platforms of which the government is wary, he counsels. “When you are dependent on free social media platforms you don’t own your presence. You don’t own the content you create.”And the government creates a mountain of content. Some it appears in the government issued Vuk’unzenzele newspaper. Printed in all 11 official languages and distributed to 1.7 milllion mostly rural readers, it is a repository of original material. To retain ownership of material like this in the digital media, the government is creating a Vuk’unzenzele app that will launch in the next few weeks.This heralds a new era in the government’s engagement with its citizens. From this comfort with social media has grown its desire to develop apps and other mobile sites to help get its message out. “The biggest concern we have is creating a uniform presence on platforms. How do we allow differentiation without diluting the message? People looking for government information want to know the information we are putting out is credible and authoritative. This is an issue we struggle with every day.”What makes the job easier for Levy and the government is that social media is already integrated into the fabric of South Africa’s noisy democracy. “We may be loud, and angry and proud, but at the end of the day we embrace the joy of living in this democracy,” he points out.last_img read more

Children Encouraged to Speak out Against Abuse

first_imgStory Highlights State Minister for Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green, is encouraging children to speak out against abuse.Mr. Green said that while there has been an increase in the number of reported cases of child abuse by adults, there is still an issue of under-reporting, with only one out of 10 adults making reports.He was speaking at the Reaching Individuals through Skills and Education (RISE) Life Management Services ‘Finding My Voice’ programme closing expo and concert, held on May 31 at Emancipation Park in Kingston,“That is why we must have programmes that empower our children to speak up. That is why this ‘Finding My Voice’ programme is so important. It tells children about their rights and encourages them to speak if they are being abused, because we understand that we can’t depend on the adults only,” the State Minister said.Mr. Green also encouraged children to make use of the resources available to them to report abuse.“Children, we want you to know that if you are in a difficult situation, if you are being abused, you must say something. Go to your guidance counsellor, go to the Office of the Children’s Registry (OCR) or the Child Development Agency (CDA), and tell them what is happening to you,” the State Minister added.Meanwhile, Head of Delegation of the European Union (EU) to Jamaica, Malgorzata Wasilewska, said the EU remains committed to working with the Government and its partners to defend the rights of all persons.“Children are particularly vulnerable, and so we must each make a commitment to do better in terms of protecting them. Children, everywhere, who are experiencing, or who feel threatened, must feel comfortable to tell someone and get the support they deserve. This means that all Jamaicans must become part of the solution. This entails doing all we can to develop positive relationships with the children in our care and helping them to feel safe enough to enjoy their childhood,” she said.Executive Director of RISE, Sonita Abrahams, told JIS News the initiative has accomplished its goal of training persons in abuse prevention and promoting human rights.“We have trained over 28,000 young people. We have gone around the island and have done sessions in the classroom with primary-school children. We have also done training with parents and guidance counsellors in the prevention of sexual abuse against children. The whole idea is to teach young people and parents how to be safe and to recognise if there is an abuse situation going on, and encourage children to speak up,” she explained.Mrs. Abrahams added that while RISE will continue to promote the initiative on its social media platform, Facebook and the ‘Finding My Voice’ music project, more public- and private-sector involvement is necessary to end child abuse.The EU-funded ‘Finding My Voice’ National Programme on the Prevention of Child Abuse is an 18-month intervention aimed at the promotion and protection of the rights of children.It has directly impacted an estimated 1.4 million persons islandwide through its multimedia public-education campaign on the prevention of sexual violence against children. State Minister for Education, Youth and Information, Hon. Floyd Green, is encouraging children to speak out against abuse. Mr. Green said that while there has been an increase in the number of reported cases of child abuse by adults, there is still an issue of under-reporting, with only one out of 10 adults making reports. Meanwhile, Head of Delegation of the European Union (EU) to Jamaica, Malgorzata Wasilewska, said the EU remains committed to working with the Government and its partners to defend the rights of all persons.last_img read more

Grange Pledges Support to Jamaica Federation of Musicians and Affiliates Union

first_imgThe Honourable Olivia Grange, Minister of Culture, Gender, Entertainment and Sport, says she is “happy the Jamaica Federation of Musicians and Affiliates Union has been resuscitated.”“I’m happy the union is back on track. Government can now assist the Union to ensure that the industry is properly organised,” Minister Grange said.The Minister’s comments were made during a recent meeting with Karen Smith, President of the Jamaica Federation of Musicians and Affiliates Union and other members of the executive.The Union resumed operations in June 2017 after being dormant for many years. Its aims and objectives are the promotion of live music, the improvement of musical talent, working conditions, establishing and maintaining uniform and fair prices for musicians and artistes’ services as well as protecting the interests of all its affiliatesMinister Grange also pointed out that the Ministry will partner with the union to build capacity and assist in getting training for its members. The entertainment registry and an insurance plan for the industry were also among the matters discussed.“I think the future looks well since there is now a structured approach to developing the industry, to protecting the creative industries, particularly in the area of music, and to ensuring that we are able to harness whatever revenue we can to assist the economic growth of the country,” the Minister said.Miss Smith said she was pleased to have met with the Minister and looks forward to working with the Ministry.last_img read more

Jordin Sparks and SCDAA Launch Generation S An Inspiring New Sickle Cell

first_imgNovartis is teaming up with Grammy-nominated singer, film and Broadway star Jordin Sparks and the Sickle Cell Disease Association of America, Inc. (SCDAA) to launch Generation S, a national sickle cell disease (SCD) storytelling project that will help rewrite the SCD story for generations to come.Generation S encourages anyone touched by SCD to help inspire the sickle cell community and educate the nation by sharing their story.“Although I didn’t have the honor of knowing her throughout her journey, my stepsister Bryanna battled sickle cell disease her entire life,” said Jordin. “Even though we were stepsisters for a short period of time, it was the closest I’ve ever come to the disease and its struggles. I hope that Generation S will help to change how we think about sickle cell and I am proud to lend my voice to our collective stories.”People can go to JoinGenS.com to share their experiences with sickle cell disease starting today through the end of November – as written stories, photos, or audio or video recordings. Submissions will start to be shared later in the fall, and the collection of stories from around the country will come to life in Feb. 2019. A few participants will also have the opportunity to meet Jordin in person and to work with a professional storyteller on a video to capture their personal experience with sickle cell disease.“Through Generation S, we hope to help people understand more about sickle cell disease, including their family genetic risk factors for passing the disease on to their children,” said Beverley Francis-Gibson, President and Chief Executive Officer of SCDAA. “We are thankful for the opportunity to work with Novartis to share powerful stories about sickle cell disease that too often have gone unheard.”While SCD is considered a rare disease, it is one of the most common genetic disorders in the US, and nearly 100,000 Americans are living with the condition. SCD is a lifelong condition that causes ongoing damage to blood vessels and organs. While people of all ethnicities can have the disease, people of African descent are disproportionately affected. People with SCD often experience recurrent episodes of acute, severe pain, which can eventually become chronic. Importantly, pain is more than a physical symptom – it can impact emotional and social wellbeing.“Working with the sickle cell community, we hope to educate people about the disease and raise awareness of the significant impact it has on the lives of patients and their loved ones,” said Ameet Mallik, Executive Vice President and Head, US Oncology at Novartis. “In partnership with SCDAA and Jordin Sparks, our goal is to inspire people who are touched by this difficult condition to help them to lead strong, vibrant lives.”last_img read more

In no rush on TPP Trudeau says as feds dismiss reports of

first_imgHO CHI MINH CITY, Vietnam – Canada won’t be pressured into prematurely signing a deal on the Trans-Pacific Partnership, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Thursday as his Liberal government flatly denied media reports of a “deal in principle” on the Pacific Rim trade pact.The 11 remaining TPP economies, including Canada, have been trying to salvage the deal after U.S. President Donald Trump pulled out earlier this year.But Trudeau’s remarks, along with signals from government insiders, suggest the Liberals — who are currently preoccupied with rescuing NAFTA — hope to avoid making any hurried commitments on the treaty during this week’s APEC meetings in Danang.“We’re not going to sign a deal just because we feel pressured into a signing a deal — we’re going to make sure that it’s right for Canada and it’s right for the world,” Trudeau said during an armchair discussion in front of 1,200 students at Ton Duc Thang University in Ho Chi Minh City.“We’re in no rush to do that, so we’re going to take our time and look carefully at the negotiations.”Trudeau is scheduled to meet Friday in Danang with his counterparts from the other TPP countries, where they will also take part in the Asia-Pacific Economic Co-operation summit.A media report surfaced Thursday citing the Japanese economy minister as saying that the pact’s remaining countries had agreed in principle on a way to proceed with the TPP — a report that was quickly quashed by International Trade Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne.“Despite reports, there is no agreement in principle on TPP,” Champagne tweeted.Trudeau, who insisted he’s a strong supporter of free trade as long as it benefits everyone, also gave a lengthy explanation on why the updated TPP should contain more robust protections for culture through exemptions.“Culture is more than just an economic good,” he said. “When you look at culture as just another economic box to be ticked off or filled, you’re not understanding how important it is in shaping the identity of a community and of a country.”Behind the scenes, Canada doesn’t want to charge ahead and sign the deal Friday just because the leaders have all gathered in one spot, said a senior government official who spoke on condition of anonymity due to the sensitivity of the matter.One reason why Canada wants more time is because of the still-unknown outcome of the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, the official said.Ottawa has been seeking changes to the TPP, or even an exemption or side letter, so that it would avoid inadvertently harming Canada, regardless of the outcome from the NAFTA talks, said the official.As an example, the official noted Canada’s unique situation among TPP economies of having a deeply integrated auto-supply chain with another country. Auto parts can cross the U.S.-Canada border a half-dozen times before they are installed into a vehicle and, therefore, more changes might be needed to the TPP’s rules-of-origin thresholds.Canada has also been trying put its mark on TPP, which was negotiated by the former Conservative government, by pushing its partners to include “progressive” chapters on the environment, gender equality and labour rights.The official said the countries should take more time to get the whole deal right — and to raise the bar.Trump, the official added, only pulled out of the Pacific Rim deal about 10 months ago, while the first discussion by the remaining countries’ officials on how to reshape a post-U.S.. TPP only happened five months ago.Australia, Japan and Singapore had already ratified the TPP and, after Trump withdrew, the official said they were urging the others to just do it, but Canada has insisted the U.S. departure has deeper ramifications than just minus one.The official acknowledged a couple of people around the table might say Canada is being obstructionist, but that it’s probably due to their own domestic pressure to sign the deal.Eric Miller, a Washington trade consultant, said Canada address these concerns by agreeing to sign on to a mechanism to review the TPP.“The countries are going to be deal-minded, but (a review) is going to be more than a legal scrub,” said Miller, president of the Rideau Potomac Strategy Group, which has advised different clients on trade issues, including Industry Canada.“There’s going to have to be some new pieces put on the table, but it’s going to be less than the full-on renegotiation, where you essentially throw everything out and start again.”last_img read more

You cant sit here Ohio State honors POWMIA with an empty seat

A sign reading “YOU ARE NOT FORGOTTEN” in front of the POW-MIA seat at Ohio Stadium. Credit: @OhioStAthleticsIt’s a seat, but not any seat. Unlike other seats, which are meant to be sat in, no one will sit in it. Not on Saturday when the Ohio State football team opens its 2016 season against Bowling Green at Ohio Stadium. Not any on Saturday, or the week’s other six days. No, no one will ever sit in this seat, because this seat, it’s more than a seat. The seat is in the first row of section 3AA at the stadium. It’s in that section, surrounded by the some 100,000 frenzied other fans wearing Scarlet and Gray and the usual sliver of opposing fans wearing whatever colors of whatever team they support, that members of the ROTC program at Ohio State, donning their branch’s respective uniforms, sit during football games. This seat, unveiled for the first time Thursday, is black. It’s not for Buckeye fans. It’s not for opposing fans. It’s not for any of us. This stirring black seat is a memorial for the 92,000 American soldiers that are unaccounted since World War I, the war that was supposed to end all wars. If looking at the seat from the front, in the upper right-hand corner, it’s marked seat No. 1, for the 92,000. In the middle of the forever-empty seat’s back is the harrowing POW/MIA logo — the silhouette of a man’s head in the foreground, with a guard tower and a barbed-wire fence in the background. The rest of the seats at Ohio Stadium are mostly bleachers. The bottom rung, closest to the green astroturf, are steel gray. The ones beyond that are scarlet. That pattern — rows of gray, rows of scarlet, rows of gray — spiral upward until the stadium stops and the sky begins. Smattered throughout the vast stadium, disrupting that perfect scarlet-and-gray spiral, are scarlet chairs, for the season ticket holders. But on game day, what those seats look like, no one knows; it doesn’t matter. The seats in the stadium, whether it be for the meaningless spring scrimmage, the banal early-season matches versus weaker teams or the wintery late-season contests, are, it seems, always occupied.This POW-MIA seat will remain empty the entire season at Ohio Stadium. Credit: @OhioStAthleticsExcept this black seat will never be occupied. Though it has a backing like the scarlet chairs season-ticket holders sit in, this is quite literally one-of-a-kind. It shall always serve as a reminder that whatever a game’s outcome is, at the end of the day, it’s just sports, which are important, but not that important. On the gray railing in front of the empty black seat is a black rectangular plaque, with a thin-gray trim. In large gray font, it reads: “YOU ARE NOT FORGOTTEN.” Below, it continues: “Since World War I, more than 92,000 American soldiers are unaccounted for. This unoccupied seat is dedicated to the memory of these brave men and women and to the sacrifices each made in serving this country. God Bless You. God Bless America.” Sometime around noon on Saturday, the kicker for either Bowling Green or Ohio State will send a football flying through the blue September sky. Well over a 100,000 fans, wearing a collection of scarlet and gray, orange and brown, or their ROTC uniform, will leave their seats, making noise, as the game gets under way.But in the first row of section 3AA, there will be a tiny space where no noise is coming from, near the black seat, in which no one is sitting. read more

Sophomore racquets step up for Buckeyes

Normally, when a top player goes down with an injury, it’s panic time for a coach and his or her team. When the women’s tennis team’s No. 1 singles player and senior captain Paloma Escobedo went down in early March, coach Chuck Merzbacher didn’t have to reach for the panic button. Instead, he and his team put their faith in the sophomore trio of Gabby Steele, Fidan Manashirova and Kara Cecil. Their faith has paid off in wins. With a combined record of 55-30, the three have helped the Buckeyes (10-8 overall) to a winning record. The team is 3-1 in the Big Ten, with its lone loss coming against Northwestern, which leads the conference with Michigan. “They’ve stepped up,” said Merzbacher, who isn’t surprised by his players’ success. “They were a good recruiting class coming in. I knew they were going to be significant. They’ve done that and more.” With the loss of Escobedo, the players were forced to fill in the gap. “I think that everyone had to step up,” Manashirova said. “We all had to play our best tennis every single match.” The women were all 5-star recruits coming out of high school, and have had little difficulty adjusting to collegiate tennis. “Looking at the past captains and leaders, you learn from that. It’s really easy to adapt quickly here,” Manashirova said. The players’ quick learning curves have impressed Merzbacher. “They’ve adapted to college tennis very quickly,” he said. “They’ve come in; they’ve learned how to win right off the bat. They just keep moving up the lineup. There’s been no delay in their progress; they’ve gone right to it.” On the court, the women play with a quiet intensity. Despite attending high school in different regions (Manashirova in California, Steele in Ohio and Cecil in Florida), the women play with a natural chemistry. In less than two seasons, they have secured 103 combined wins in singles play. But when it comes to their success, the women aren’t ones to promote themselves. “We just keep having fun. We don’t take anything too seriously,” Steele said. “We just kind of go for it.” Merzbacher thinks otherwise. “I think they push each other. … They compete with each other, and they’re great teammates to each other at the same time,” he said. “They’re going to be an important part of this year and for the future.” It’s not the future or the past that interests Manashirova and Steele. The women prefer to focus on their next opponent. “Just taking it one match at a time. I just want to win every single match that I play,” Manashirova said. “I just want to think about what’s next.” Steele also believes her next match always has to be better than her last. “I think there’s always room for improvement and you can always do better,” she said. “Every single day that you go out on the court, work hard to improve.” The hard work and focus is paying off and Merzbacher doesn’t hesitate to say he’s proud. “Those three stepped up,” he said. “I think that shows the type of kids they are.” read more

Womens soccer looking to ride momentum into huge game at Penn State

Junior midfielder Ellyn Gruber (5) fights off a defender during a match against Purdue Sept. 29 at Jesse Owens Memorial Stadium. OSU lost, 1-0.Credit: Michele Theodore / Copy chiefAs the Ohio State women’s soccer team (8-3-3, 2-2-2) heads to State College, Pa., to play No. 17 Penn State, it has to prepare to face its second ranked opponent in its last three scheduled matches.Coach Lori Walker said she understands the importance of this match for the Buckeyes.“(Playing) at Penn State is always a great challenge,” Walker said. “It’s going to be a battle, and you know, we’ve just got to take it minute by minute. I (have) got to make sure my A-team gets on that bus.”The Buckeyes won their last match Saturday, ending a three-game scoreless streak in the process, by finding the back of the net three times in a win against Michigan State.“It was a huge weight off our shoulders,” said junior midfielder Ellyn Gruber. “We (had) been working all week on (finishing), a lot of repetition and stuff, so it finally gave us some confidence.”OSU started the year at No. 23, peaking at No. 21, but fell out of the polls after losing to Boston College 1-0 Sept. 5, despite beating Northeastern 4-1 Sept. 8. The Buckeyes currently sit eighth in the Big Ten and if the team wants to move up the standings, it has to start with improved finishing offensively, sophomore forward Michela Paradiso said.“We just gotta continue to work harder in practice and keep finishing, cause that can give us confidence that we can keep putting goals up on the board,” Paradiso said after Saturday’s game.At 10-3-1 overall and 4-2-0 in Big Ten matches, the Nittany Lions are currently third in conference play, sitting behind No. 22 Nebraska and No. 12 Michigan. The Nittany Lions are coming off a 1-0 home loss to the Wolverines Sunday, their first loss at home since the beginning of the 2012 season to Stanford.Offensively, senior forward Maya Hayes leads Penn State with 13 goals on the season, a mark that makes her second-best in the Big Ten.The Buckeyes lost their matchup last season with the Nittany Lions, a 3-0 decision at home, but Gruber said the Buckeyes will be ready this time around.“That’s going to be a huge, huge game. It’s going to be really tough, but we are just going to have a good, hard, week of practice, and we’ll be prepared,” Gruber said.The game is set for 3 p.m. Thursday. read more