Friday, October 7, 2016

Weekend Report

The big news out of the Department of Athletics monthly staff meeting yesterday is that there will be an extension of the ping pong tournament.

In its first two years, the tournament was limited to athletic department members in Dillon Gym. Mike Pallister, the assistant field hockey coach, has won both times. He's like a ping-pong combination of Yasser El Halaby and Ivan Drago.

Ah, but this year, there will be a sister tournament in Jadwin Gym. At the end, the winner of the Dillon tournament and winner of the Jadwin tournament will play each other.

So who will be the Jadwin winner?

TigerBlog originally guessed that men's soccer coach Jim Barlow would be the Dillon champ. Barlow is one of the better players over there, and TB knows that he is a really strong all-around athlete, so it wasn't a bad guess.

So who would be his sight-unseen Jadwin favorites?

His first thought was Mike Russo, assistant baseball coach, and James Perry, offensive coordinator in football. TigerBlog has a hunch head men's basketball coach Mitch Henderson might be pretty good as well.

And his own colleague, John Bullis. Maybe Craig Sachson. He's got the racket skills from tennis and squash.

And maybe Jon Kurian from the business office. If nothing else, Kurian will tell everyone he's really good and then blame it on the sun or a pulled hamstring or something when he loses.

Then there's Mollie Marcoux Samaan, the Ford Family Director of Athletics. She's another good all-around athlete, and she's super competitive. And TB suspects she is behind the expansion of the tournament, so she must know she has a chance.

TigerBlog, by the way, is a decent ping-pong player. He's not quite as good as Barlow, which probably puts him somewhere in the top half of players around here but nowhere near the top.

Now if there was a "who can type the most words per minutes" contest, then TB would like his own chances.

As for actual Princeton Athletic events for the weekend, the football team is at Georgetown tomorrow. Georgetown was 3-0, including a win over Columbia, before its 31-17 to Harvard a week ago.

Princeton is playing its final non-league game before finishing with six straight Ivy League games. The Tigers defeated Columbia 48-13 a week ago after scoring touchdowns on seven straight possessions.

John Lovett, Princeton's sort-of quarterback who can run, pass or catch, ranks first in the league and second in the FCS in points per game with 12.0, after scoring six rushing touchdowns in the first three games.

If you want more on the football game, Craig has you covered HERE.

Speaking of the staff meeting, TigerBlog learned two things about Ivy League soccer there.

On the women's side, he learned that Brown has allowed only two goals the entire season. That's two goals against in 10 games.

On the other hand, Brown has scored seven goals in those 10 games, which translates to 5-3-1 overall, 1-1-0 in the Ivy League. Brown has played three 0-0 ties so far this year.

Next up for Brown is a date with Princeton on Myslik Field at Roberts Stadium tomorrow at 4. Princeton is 9-1-1 overall, 1-0-1 in the league. Princeton also has scored 21 goals in those 11 games, tied for the top number in the league.

On the men's side, Princeton will host Brown at 7 in the second game of tomorrow's doubleheader. TigerBlog already knew that three games in the first week of the Ivy season ended in ties. He didn't realize until Jim Barlow said it at the meeting that the fourth game ended in double overtime, as Penn defeated Cornell on a goal that came eight minutes before it would have been an eight-way tie for first.

The field hockey team is at Columbia today, looking to go to 3-0 in the league. If Princeton wins that game, it'll be tied for first with whichever team wins the Harvard-Brown game tomorrow.

Princeton then hosts Duke Sunday.

The women's volleyball team is already 3-0 in the league, which is a three-game improvement on last year. Of course, Princeton turned that 0-3 start last year into a 10-1 finish that earned a share of the championship.

Princeton takes to the road this weekend for the first time in the league when it heads to Columbia tonight and Cornell tomorrow. It's early, yes, but Princeton and Columbia are the lone unbeatens in the league right now.

There's also home men's water polo Sunday and home men's tennis all weekend.

As you can see, it's something of a busy weekend for Princeton. But at least the fall/winter crossover hasn't started yet, right?

Soon enough.

You know what there are 21 of today?

Regular-season college men's hockey games. Egads.

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