All is now lined up for the Syracuse and West Genesee ice hockey teams to clash again for the Section III Division I championship if they both take care of post-season business twice on home ice.The Cougars have the top seed and the Wildcats the no. 2 seed for the sectional tournament, and will host quarterfinals late this week at Meachem Rink and Shove Park. Wins mean they will also be home for the Feb. 26 semifinal round.In order to win the regular-season league title, Syracuse had to win both of its remaining games last week, and did so, first handling Cicero-North Syracuse 9-1, and then blanking Baldwinsville 4-0 last Thursday. Defensively, the Cougars bottled up B’ville, holding it to 15 shots, all stopped by Alex Moreno, who had returned to the net after missing much of the season due to injury.Prior to that, the Cougars handled C-NS at the Twin Rinks, using three goals late in the first period to break out of a 1-1 tie.Benedict, with three goals and one assist, led the way as Vern Cooke scored twice and Durand picked up three assists. Jones had a goal and two assists.Matro, Colin Johnson and Cam Walsh also put in goals, with assists going to Richards, Luke Dwyer and Shemar ThomasWest Genesee, meanwhile, honored its seniors prior to last Tuesday’s game against visiting Ontario Bay, and then proceeded to blast the Storm 9-0.Building up an 8-0 advantage through two periods, the Wildcats saw James Schneid earn a three-goal hat trick, plus an assist as Billy Fisher got two goals and three assists and Andrew Schneid had four assists.Jeremy Keyes also scored twice, adding a pair of assists as Joe McLaughlin and Alex DeSantis had the other goals. Jake Kopek got two assists. Single assists went to Ryan Considine, Michael Bergan and Will Shields.Even with this, WG needed a win at Fulton 24 hours later to keep the pressure on Syracuse, and it got that victory, keeping the Red Raiders off the board in a 4-0 shutout.Goals by Keyes and James Schneid has the Wildcats in front 2-0 through two periods, and it doubled that margin thanks to a pair of third-period goals by Fisher, which helped overcome 46 saves by Fulton goalie Jadon Lee.Andrew Schneid piled up three assists, James Schneid getting two assists and McLaughlin a single assist. WG’s defense held the Red Raiders to just five shots.Despite these fine efforts, the Wildcats could not keep the Cougars from earning the regular-season title, though the bigger games still remain.After Tuesday’s opening round of the sectional playoffs, where no. 8 seed Liverpool faces no. 9 seed Cicero-North Syracuse and no. 7 seed CBA/Jamesville-DeWitt meets no. 10 seed Cazenovia, the lowest remaining seed draws Syracuse in the quarterfinals, and the other winner takes on WG.Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story Tags: ice hockeySyracuseWest Genesee What made the win over B’ville particularly sweet was that Syracuse had lost to the Bees 3-2 in the Dec. 7 final of the Bobby Conklin Tournament. Two months later, the result was quite different.Ryan Durand twice set up goals two minutes apart in the first period, setting up Kaleb Benedict’s wraparound effort and then feeding it to Stephan Matro, who scored to make it 2-0.Early in the second period, Tommy Rioux made it 3-0, and Durand himself scored in the final period as Benedict, Nelson Jones and Nick Richards each got one assist.
The women\’s hockey team will face the UMD Bulldogs this weekend, a team it is very familiar with.[/media-credit]After a two week road trip, the women’s hockey team is back on home ice, getting ready to face division rival Minnesota-Duluth. Despite their struggles this year, the Badgers feel as if things are really coming together — they just need to be more consistent in finishing their games.The team has been dominant for stretches on the ice, consistently outshooting its opponents, but has not been able to walk away with as many wins as they hoped for. UW interim head coach Tracey DeKeyser thinks that the home stand against Duluth is timed perfectly.“I know we’ve had some trouble scoring,” DeKeyser said, “But if you look at the dominance of the play or the number of shots taken per game, it’s pretty clear that we should feel confident in the direction we’re going and people have stepped up and made contributions. I just think it’s a great time to be matched up with Minnesota-Duluth.”Bringing home two wins, a tie and a loss, the Badgers are still working toward the success they had at home last year.While the confidence is high, Wisconsin knows it has to face a talented Duluth team. The Bulldogs are fierce competitors and sit in second place in the WCHA, one spot ahead of the Badgers.“They’re speedy [and] they’re skilled,” DeKeyser said. “We need to make sure we hone in on particular individuals as we line up … and see what they have in store for us.”Wisconsin has a 9-5-2 overall record (6-4-0 in the WCHA), and outshot its opponents this season 565 to 391. Despite the advantage in shot, UW has been unable to consistently get the puck in the net more often to seal wins.With all of their dominating factors, the Badgers still have a record that does not seem to support their statistics. DeKeyser feels the problems fall in Wisconsin’s inability to consistently finish games as strong as they start them.“I’m not sure if it’s consistency or just finishing,” DeKeyser said. “We’re doing the right things. If you count the number of scoring chances for each game and the number of shots on net, it’s too bad we haven’t been able to put the puck in.“I don’t want the players to get discouraged simply because we haven’t been finishing, but that is our focal point.”The rivalry between the Bulldogs and the Badgers is intense — UW defeated UMD for the 2007 national title but fell to them in the title game the next year. While they sit in second and third in the conference, respectively, both teams carry formidable rosters that will provide an even match up. No extra motivation is needed to get Wisconsin ready for the series.“I’m quite sure there will be no need to try and motivate the players for this particular series,” DeKeyser said. “They understand the importance of these games and they know this opponent is a highly skilled opponent … I think it’ll be a wide-open game and playing on the big ice that should be fun to watch more so than trying to attack four people in front of their net. Hopefully that’ll be good for our players.”Kelter twins in lineupWith the soccer season over after an exciting run in the NCAA tournament, freshmen Alev and Derya Kelter finally take their places in the Badgers lineup. Although the team has had only a short amount of time to see what they can do, DeKeyser feels the girls have a lot of potential. The coach has already seen it from Alev Kelter.“True to form, kind of like her soccer game, [Alev] is a physical presence out there. She can go into the corner against two opponents and come up with the puck. We know she can do that, we’ve seen her play for the past couple of years and that’s why she got the nod and got some playing time this [past] weekend.”
(Related: Can we code conscious programs?)In the film, Chappie—a decommissioned police robot in Johannesburg, South Africa—has its standard rule-based AI software reprogrammed with an experimental consciousness program by Deon Wilson (Dev Patel), the coder who developed the software powering the police bots. “Chappie” follows the curious autonomous being as it learns from the world around it, the humans it meets and the experiences it has to ultimately become self-aware.By depicting both the autonomous freedom of Chappie and the rules-based logic of the standard police robots, Fink pointed out that the film confronts the traditional expectations associated with artificial intelligence.“Chappie has a self-sustaining drive,” he said. “He doesn’t want to die. He calls himself Chappie. That aspect of it is the Holy Grail, if you will. That’s where we need to make a major jump in self-awareness. Also to be sentient, where you have the ability to think and experience in a subjective way. Unlike the police robots, Chappie is not governed by a specific set of rules by which he has to act. Humans don’t have mathematical laws in our heads. We think. We use deductive reasoning, which is the foundation of true autonomy.” Artificial intelligence is often depicted in films as the scientific floodgate to apocalyptic doom, a “Terminator,” “The Matrix” or “I, Robot” scenario where machines quickly turn on humanity. “Chappie,” the latest sci-fi parable from director Neill Blomkamp, portrays an AI being that learns and interacts with the world in ways that are innately human.“Chappie” takes an inside-out look at the swirling mass of conscious code inside an artificially intelligent mechanical being, or as Wolfgang Fink calls it, a sentient autonomous and synthetic reasoning system. Fink, a researcher at the University of Arizona and the California Institute of Technology, is studying and developing systems that can react to and explore environments independent of human control.“We’re not dealing with what is commonly known as artificial intelligence,” said Fink, who was given information about the film’s production to assess how it portrayed AI. “That’s often used in the wrong context. AI is exclusively rule-based, meaning a machine encounters a situation and reacts a certain way. In Chappie’s case, it has the capability to learn and self-modify. In that way, [in the film] it grows up like a child, modifying itself as it goes. The hallmark of an autonomous system is being influenced by its environment, rather than being pre-programmed.”Fink’s work includes research with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory to develop autonomous systems for landing on and exploring the terrain of Mars. According to him, Chappie represents the evolution of autonomous systems in the way the machine ingests diverse data sources and combines them abstractly to develop reasoning in any given situation.