Archive for February, 2013

Davidson Park Sports Report

February 27, 2013

By: Stuart Lotz ’15
Men’s Golf

Stu Lotz

Stu Lotz

This past summer my friend and classmate Will Bartlett and I decided we should host a sports talk show on the campus radio, 91.5 WLUR.  We’re both huge sports fans and avid tweeters/bloggers so we figured this would be a good way to convey our general sports knowledge.  Will, a mass communications major, is a Tennessee fan from New Jersey (insert joke here) but has a great knowledge of the NBA, NFL, and pretty much every sports league out there.  I’m from Pittsburgh and consider myself a diehard Steelers, Penguins, Pirates and Pitt Panthers fan, but also have a great interest in the NHL, NFL, and college sports.

This fall we had a half-hour time slot on Wednesday nights to start out.  We figured out pretty quickly that 30 minutes was not enough time for us to cover what we wanted to do.  As the semester progressed, we experimented with the show.  We tried different time slots, allowed call-ins, and talked various sports.  We tried to find our niche and what topics we’re best at discussing.

Hosting a sports talk show had been a great experience thus far.  I believe it has improved my communication skills and made me a more comfortable and confident public speaker.  It has also taught me a lot about the business of radio and journalism.  Preparing for the show is a crucial aspect that I did not think was necessary in the first few shows.  I have learned that preparation is everything and to never go into something completely unprepared.  I am glad that we decided to host a sports talk show and look forward to evolving our show as time progresses.

Tune in Monday nights at 8 pm to the Davidson Park Sports Report.  You can listen in online at the following link http://www.wlu.edu/x50441.xml.

So Long Football

February 25, 2013

By: Chip Whipple
Assistant Sports Information Director

ImageThe month of February brings to an end the professional football season. A lot of people (myself included) get invested during the NFL season with our favorite teams and fantasy teams. Side note – All of my teams did pretty poorly this season. The Browns did what they have done best the past 14 years and that was losing a lot of games. I was also in a few fantasy football leagues and failed to secure a single Top 3 finish. Sure, you can follow NFL through the combine, and free agency and the draft are quickly approaching, but there will be no more real, honest to goodness games until September.

The NFL season didn’t exactly end how I would have hoped. As a life-long Browns’ fan, seeing the Ravens win their second Super Bowl since leaving Cleveland was a bummer. But I wasn’t as upset as I was the first time they did it in 2000. I’d like to think part of it was how I’ve matured since I was a freshman in high school. Also, I have a lot of great things going on now, so the disappointment of seeing a rival team succeed wasn’t as much of a bother. And as they say in Cleveland, there is always next year.

Part of me is a little disappointed when football comes to an end, but on the other hand, it is kind of nice to have Sunday afternoons backs. I don’t feel that need to be in front of the television for the 1:00 pm games, or make sure my fantasy roster is completely set. My wife, Lydia, surely will enjoy that I won’t be yelling at the television or my computer (when I follow the Browns online) on why my team did or did not use a time out.

Plus, we are now past the All-Star break in the NBA, which means the playoffs are right around the corner. While I won’t have a dog in the race (my Cavaliers will be in the lottery again), watching the best basketball players in the world compete every night in the playoffs is one of my favorite things to experience every year.

Who knows what I’ll do with free Sunday afternoons now (as long as I’m not covering a W&L sport). Maybe I’ll go on long walks with our new dog Max, or maybe I’ll get to take out the golf clubs a little earlier than I was expecting.

One of the things I’m most looking forward to is spring in Lexington. With this being the first one since we’ve moved, I’m excited for the warming weather coming sooner (spring in New Hampshire, and Ohio before that, didn’t really begin until mid-May). The one thing I do know is that no matter what happens this spring and summer, the NFL will start back up in September. And I’ll be right there waiting for it.

Tourney Time

February 19, 2013

By: Christine Clancy
Head Women’s Basketball Coach

2013-02-02 17.23.01In my completely biased opinion, there is no event in sports that matches March Madness, except for, maybe, the Olympics! Post-season college basketball is a time when anything can happen and unlikely upsets become commonplace. Although it is not March yet, DIII post-season basketball is upon us!

Last night, we had the opportunity to host a first round ODAC tournament game against Emory & Henry. Going into the game, I was nervous, as I always am … What is the team going to look like tonight? How are we going to handle the pressure that comes with a win or go home tournament? How is E&H going to play? Are we going to hit shots?

Once our starting five stepped out onto the court, in front of the biggest and loudest home crowd that we have had all season, something special happened. The team was focused, determined, and my job was easy, just stay out of the way and let them play. As a coach it is so fun to see the moment when everything starts to click and in the first half last night, that’s exactly what happened. In those 20 minutes we went from five players on the floor to one team. We finished the game with a 21-point victory, shooting nearly 60% (75% in the first half) from the floor, four people scored in double figures, we had 21 assists on 25 buckets, and we held a team with very good offensive firepower to under 50 points. Did we make mistakes? Absolutely, but it didn’t matter, because we responded to those mistakes as a team, with a “next play” mentality. Sometimes post-season play brings a team to a higher level, and last night that happened for my team.

With the win, we have earned the right to play in the ODAC quarterfinals at the Salem Civic Center. We have a big challenge ahead of us with Eastern Mennonite the #1 seed in the tourney, but perhaps with a little more of that post-season magic we could pull off a big upset!

ODAC Championship

February 12, 2013

By: John Geissinger
Assistant Swimming Coach

The 2012-13 ODAC Champion Generals!

The 2013 ODAC Champion Generals!

We have just returned from the ODAC Championship, winning our sixth straight title and 23rd overall for the University. We end the year setting seven new school records and posting 40 All-Time Top 10 Performances in school history. Emma Swabb won Rookie of the Year, Caroline Hamp was ODAC Swimmer of the Year, and Delaney Rolfe was the Scholar-Athlete of the Year, the first three-time winner of that award for swimming in ODAC History.

The conference overall has seen a lot of recent growth and improvement in the last few seasons and all of the coaches should be commended for that. Guilford got a relay in the Top 8 of Finals, Bridgewater captured third-place, and Emory & Henry won three events. It certainly was a good sign for the ODAC as a whole. Moving forward, the women’s team continues to focus on the goal of qualifying for NCAAs. The future is bright as we return ¾ of the 200 Medley Relay that flirted with a provisional cut in that event.

A successful season does not come without struggle and I would like to thank the Senior Class for guiding our team through the trials and tribulations of the season. You are only as strong as your weakest link and everyone towed their weight. With an exciting incoming class joining our strong team next year I anticipate more fast swims to come, more records to fall.

Signing Day

February 8, 2013

By: Scott Abell
Head Football Coach

The first of February is an exciting time for college football fans everywhere.  February 6th is national signing day.  This is the day that Division I programs have their committed recruits sign their national letter of intent.

For us at Washington and Lee, this is also an exciting time.  Each year near the end of January we can really begin to see what our next year’s recruiting class will look like.  Early decisions have wrapped up and we typically will have two thirds of our incoming class looking forward to becoming a General.  I would like to take this opportunity to reach out and thank my staff.  Recruiting is a never-ending job and I could not ask for a better group of coaches to represent the university and the football program.

When we started this process last February for the 2013 recruiting class we began with roughly 800 names to investigate.  As we look at recruits we evaluate three areas, academics, character and football.   I am pleased to say that we feel like we have landed some great student athletes and we are excited to see this group come to campus.

For my family and I, this signing date was special as we watched our son Porter sign his national letter of intent to play football at the University of Richmond.  We are very blessed that he has this opportunity and so proud of how hard he has worked to make this day a possibility.

As it is said so often it is never too early to look ahead to next year.  Now that a good portion of our class has been admitted and decided to make Washington and Lee their home, we can look ahead with excitement and optimism.   To our 2013 class welcome, we look forward to you being a part of our family and to the staff thank you for all the hard work bringing them here.  Go Generals!

Personal Evolution

February 5, 2013

By: Brian Laubscher
Sports Information Director

When I started this blog 3 ½ years ago, I thought it might be a good way for people to get a look inside our athletic department.  A way to get to know the personalities and inner workings of the department and to connect to our coaches and staff members in a way that fans, athletes, parents, etc., couldn’t by just reading a bio or seeing the result of a game.

Personally, I used the blog as a way to share my thoughts about our teams or my experiences in athletics or as a sports fan.  As of the fall of 2009, I would say that those few topics pretty much encapsulated my life.  Sad when I think about it.  I had plenty of fun moments, don’t get me wrong, but your life can only be so rich when you’re not responsible for creating your own memories.

Funny that you can look back at this blog and pinpoint the time when my view points and thoughts that I was willing to share shifted from involving or even better yet, revolving around my job.  It started when I married my wife Mindy and picked up speed after the birth of my son Parker.  One parent told me that having a child would rock my world and I must say he was right (you know who you are :)).  I knew that life would be different, but I couldn’t comprehend the ways it would change me.

I had to share this classic photo of Parker throwing a fit.  He apparently was not pleased about having to go inside after riding in his wagon.

I had to share this classic photo of Parker throwing a fit. He apparently was not pleased about having to go inside after riding in his wagon.

My thoughts and sometimes my ramblings now tend to revolve around my family, even if they often still involve something related to sports (like when I finally let Parker wear his Eagles jersey upon learning of Andy Reid’s firing).  The truth is no matter how I have changed, sports will always be a large part of my life.  The difference is that now my family is my life and sports just seek to enhance it.  I can’t say that has always been the case and I’m happy enough about that to give people more of a look at my family life because I’m proud and content with where I am.

So if you are looking for more content about the top W&L sporting moments of the 2012-13 school year, I could probably recite them to you in one of my final entries before the summer break this June.  The old me did it in 2010 and again in 2011.  The new me, I would much rather share with you the details of the next chapter of my life.  If you’ve really read the first four paragraphs of this blog entry you may already have it figured out.  For the rest of you, I’ll make it much easier in the next paragraph.

On June 13, 2013 (or so they say), my blog content will expand as I share details surrounding the birth of my second child.  I’m hoping the experience will be just as good as the first, but at very least the timing was better than the first time around (Parker was born in September).

I’m sure that plenty will be different, but I’m excited to see in what ways that is true.  Will the baby have the same features, will its temperament be the same?  Will it sleep as well as Parker (God I hope so)?  Will it have hair right from the start or will it be bald?  Will it take a bottle well and will it do its best to make me look like a stellar father just as Parker did?

There are so many questions that Mindy and I decided this time around we would find out the biggest question of all.  Parker’s sex was a surprise right up until the moment he took his first breath.  This time around we wanted it to be different.  This June, Mindy and I will introduce Parker to his little brother and I can’t wait to tell you all about it.

Sieve, Sieve, Sieve!!!

February 1, 2013

By: Alison Kapuska
Assistant Athletic Trainer

Although I work with a variety of sports here at W&L one winter sport holds my heart. I may have mentioned that grew up in the frozen tundra of Minnesota, land of 10,000 lakes but others lovingly refer to it as the State of Hockey. Ice hockey that is! Growing up my neighborhood had an outdoor rink that made me rummage around for my figure skates to practice my backwards crossovers. People would also flood their backyards for rinks. My high school also had an arena which we played arena games for gym class, my favorite being broomball you could get your eye ball poked out playing ringet.  Most importantly my college had a team the St. Cloud State Huskies. Its tough to admit but I was not coordinated enough to skate and apply hand eye coordination so I never played the sport (the first divot in the ice ended my chances of gold in figure skating).

Back to my Huskies…One of the best aspects of being an athletic training student at St Cloud State was my exposure to the sport. Before that I never appreciated the effort it take to become a high level hockey player. Not only do you have to skate, shoot, but you have to combine the two on ice with in the men’s case people checking you all over the place.  One instance I was standing on the bench watching practice and a puck shot around the boards and hit it seemed like 4 inches from my head. I pondered wearing a helmet to watch practice after that.  It also taught me the ways of stretching athletes with skates on, the smells that will accumulate in goalie gloves, and how difficult it is to run across the ice when there is an on ice injury. And that’s only the athletic training part.

UntitledPicture this is an arena full of rowdy fans picking on the opposing teams goalie it goes a little something like this “ Anderson, Anderson, You suck Sieve, Sieve, Sieve (with hand motions)” Cant picture? No? Well youtube it, its awesome!!!!

Although I haven’t been able to get to a game since I was in college I try to keep up with my team. Who may I add is #1 in the WCHA no big deal. I will scroll through my Direct TV guide to see if they are playing on some obscure ESPN channel or check out the webcasts if I remember. Last year I was lucky enough to see them battle the U of Minnesota Golden Gophers on TV. They did not win but it was exciting to get a piece of home in VA. You betcha I will be filling out my bracket for the NCAA tournament!