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The Bradsher Beat
Wednesday, April 14, 2010

By Bethany Bradsher

Professor Bradsher's spring survival primer

By Bethany Bradsher
All rights reserved.

The process of getting my kids out of bed this morning was a lot like hauling large bags of cement downstairs. They had just enough Spring Break last week, it seems, to infect them from now until June.

Spring fever has officially arrived, not just at my house but all over Pirate Country. Since the chief symptom of spring fever is a wandering mind, I have created a study guide of sorts, a cram sheet of the most vital facts from the spring sports frenzy that encompasses more than half of the sports at East Carolina.

Pay close attention. This information will be on the End-of-Season (EOS) test:

1.  Spelling.  This lesson begins with the ABCs, specifically the opening letters of the Pirate track and field team. A is for Dennis Aliotta, who set a school record in the shot put at a recent meet in Raleigh and then won both the shot put and the hammer throw at the Mountains vs. Beaches challenges. B stands for Tynita Butts, who has broken the school record twice in the high jump during this high jump season and is aiming for a second NCAA qualification mark after finishing 10th at the NCAA Indoor Championship last month. And C is for Camelia Morman, who reached her own outdoor personal record in the triple jump in Wilmington with a second-place leap of 12.23 meters.

2.  Math.  Itís simple subtraction: 17 minus 9 equals 8, which is the number of teams in the Wolfpack Intercollegiate, including the East Carolina menís golf team. Out of that field, 9 finished below the Pirates, who finished the tournament No. 8. In more advanced arithmetic from the same event, the 68th-ranked Pirates finished ahead of five teams ó No. 31 Wake Forest, No. 47 Michigan, No. 56 UNC-Wilmington, No. 59 Virginia Tech and No. 64 New Orleans ó that were ranked higher than them in the latest Golf Weekly poll.

3.  History.  The Lady Pirates softball team would ace this test question: Who won both of the games between ECU and N.C. State last season? The Pirates swept that season series, defeating the Wolfpack 5-0 in Raleigh and 3-1 in Greenville. Itís time for history to repeat itself, as ECU (23-14) is traveling to Raleigh today for a doubleheader, with games at 3 p.m. and 5 p.m. The rivalry match will break up an intense Conference USA stretch for ECU, which is hoping to re-invent history this spring with its first C-USA title.

4.  Geography.  This lesson comes straight from the roster of the ECU menís tennis team, which includes players from Slovakia, Switzerland, Costa Rica and Norway. This United Nations of Pirate teams has collected an 18-6 record so far this season, beating opponents like Tulane, UAB and Appalachian State. The Pirates only need one more win to tie last seasonís school record for most victories in a season, chasing the 2009 teamís mark of 19-5. They only have one more chance in the regular season, Saturday at Elon, before they play in the Conference USA tournament starting on April 22.

5.  Physics.  Defined as the ďscience of matter and energy and their interactions,Ē physics will govern the next few weeks of the ECU womenís golf team, especially as they travel to Hattiesburg, MS, this weekend for the C-USA Championships. At stake is the Lady Piratesí chance to play in the NCAA East Regional that they are hosting at Ironwood ó only one of three such events in the nation. If enough golf balls interact favorably with holes, ECU could get the opportunity to participate in the tournament, rather than simply stand by and show hospitality.

Spring fever or not, there reaches a time when you have to study the material and show that you can rise above the distractions and reach excellence. And these lessons go beyond the three Rs to things like RBIs, pole vault heights and eagles.

Please try to stay focused. You might want to move your desk away from that window.

E-mail Bethany Bradsher

Bethany Bradsher Archives

08/06/2010 01:56 AM

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