NEWS, NOTES &
Friday, January 26, 2007
By Bethany Bradsher
Winter can't dampen the spirit of sport
By Bethany Bradsher
All rights reserved.
H.L. Mencken, the famous writer and social
critic, once said, “I hate all sports as rabidly as a person who likes
sports hates common sense.”
In spite of that scathing indictment, it’s time
for another Pirate grab bag, with reports — and assorted quotes — from the
various sports that make an appearance in the dead of Eastern North Carolina
“Tennis is a perfect combination of violent
action taking place in an atmosphere of total tranquility.” — Billie Jean
The spring season for East Carolina's men’s
tennis team opened with a fanfare last weekend when the Pirates defeated two
out of their three opponents at the Virginia Commonwealth Invitational.
The ECU netters triumphed in six out of eight
singles matches to claim victories against James Madison and Georgetown
before falling to the nationally ranked East Tennessee State in a 5-0 sweep.
At the top of the Pirates’ ladder, the
international duo of Aleksey Kochetov, from Russia, and Henrique Viana, from
Brazil, paced the Pirates to a 4-0 singles sweep of Georgetown, and freshmen
Bryan Oakley and Sam McSpadden each took two singles matches, against
Georgetown and JMU.
The man who is swimming against the stream knows
the strength of it.” — Woodrow Wilson
The ECU swim team found itself swimming against
a stream of sorts on Saturday, when the Pirates were edged out by the team
from Maryland-Baltimore County.
The defeat of the women’s team was a
heartbreaker, as the UMBC swimmers pulled past the ECU swimmers in the final
event of the meet, the 400-yard freestyle relay, to claim a 119-118 victory.
The men’s team lost 134-103.
Continuing her success at the UMBC meet was
junior diver Christie Icenhower, who claimed first place in the one-meter
event. Icenhower has twice been named Conference USA Diver of the Week this
season, once last week and once in October.
The result dropped the Pirate women to 9-3 this
season and the men to 7-4.
The H2O Pirates conclude their season this
Saturday at Duke, and the teams will travel to the Conference USA
Invitational from Feb. 14-17 in Houston.
Basketball, a game which won't be fit for people
until they set the basket umbilicus-high and return the giraffes to the zoo.
— Ogden Nash
The Pirate men couldn’t get past Memphis on the
court over the weekend, but the Lady Pirates fared better, defeating the
Tigers 69-57 on the road to improve to 9-11 and 4-3 in C-USA.
The women’s team was paced by Cherie Mills, who
scored a season-high 26 points and added 10 rebounds for the 12th
double-double of her career. The Lady Pirates’ dominant first half was key
to their victory, as they shot 44.4 percent and held the Lady Tigers to just
17.6 percent. Memphis also committed nine turnovers in the half, miscues
that led to 12 ECU points.
The Lady Pirates have a week off before they
travel to Huntington, WV, to take on Marshall Sunday afternoon.
Baseball is ninety percent mental and the other
half is physical. — Yogi Berra
Anyone who has been looking for the true winter
weather in recent months needed only to wait for the Diamond Bucs to take
the practice field; almost as soon as they suited up for preseason practice,
the temperatures plummeted.
With a host of new players challenged to make up
for the loss of standouts like Jake Smith and Adam Witter, this year’s
version of the ECU baseball team will certainly be looking for Yogi’s mental
edge when the season opens on Feb. 9 against Liberty.
Fans who can’t wait that long, though, can have
a sneak preview on Saturday at the seventh annual “Meet the Pirates”
luncheon. Fans who come to the event, scheduled for 11:30 a.m. at the Murphy
Center, can get autographs and photos with the baseball players and eat a
catered lunch with the team.
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02/23/2007 01:14:33 AM