Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Happy Birthday Big Boy

FatherBlog is 82 today.

Happy birthday big boy. TigerBlog was talking to his brother the other day and they both agreed that FB is not what you think of when you think of your standard-issue 82-year-old. He's still up every day, suit and tie, off to work in New York City. He still travels. He still eats at all his favorite restaurants.

He was born 82 years ago in that same New York City. He grew up in Brooklyn. He's worked in Manhattan for going on 54 years. He's an Army vet. He never went to college, and yet he's worked hard, achieved big things in business and done the one thing he's wanted to do - see the world. It's an impressive story. 

TigerBlog will be forwarding him the link so he can read those first few paragraphs. And because he didn't have any stamps, so he didn't send him a card, something for which he apologizes.

Speaking of apologies, TigerBlog didn't realize that the field hockey opener was this past weekend until after he'd written about women's volleyball and women's soccer.

As it turns out, all three won their league openers. And all three were impressive.

Before he gets to that, there's the men's soccer team, which opens its Ivy season this coming weekend at Dartmouth. And before that, the Tigers celebrate FatherBlog's birthday with a nationally televised game against Rutgers on Myslik Field at Roberts Stadium. The game will be seen on ESPNU, and it starts at 7.

Princeton, who had played into horrible luck to start the season, comes into the game tonight off a huge performance Saturday, with a 2-0 win over No. 21 FDU. In fact, Princeton is now 1-0-1 against ranked teams (it opened with a tie at No. 8 Syracuse).

The Tigers basically controlled the game against FDU, with a 19-7 edge in shots and nine corners to one for FDU. For all of that, the game was scoreless until less than 10 minutes remained.

For a team that has had its share of late heartbreaks so far this season, Princeton this time reversed that, scoring twice in those final 10 minutes. The result was a really impressive win and perhaps a season that is rejuvenated. You can see the goals HERE.

Again, that game tonight is at 7 at home, with free admission. And if you're not in the area, then you can tune in on ESPNU to see it. 

As for the three women's teams that had league competitions, they all won.

The women's volleyball team swept Penn in three games as it started its run for a possible third-straight championship. If you missed THIS VIDEO of head coach Sabrina King as she was mic'd up before the Penn match, it's definitely worth seeing. So is THIS ONE, which shows some highlights of the match and a huge, spirited crowd at Dillon Gym.

The field hockey team defeated Dartmouth 5-0 Saturday and then also won at Boston University Sunday. It's possible that no college team in any sport has played a tougher schedule so far than the Princeton field hockey team, and the Tigers are a very toughened 4-4 as they head into the heart of the Ivy season, with some other quite challenging non-league tests remaining.

In the only game that TigerBlog was actually at, the women's soccer team defeated Yale 2-0, improving to 8-1-0 on the year. The Tigers, ranked 16th, were taking on a Yale team that was off to a great start as well.

The game was a huge one. Losing at home against one of the league's other top teams in the first Ivy game of the year would not have been good for a Princeton team whose only loss is 1-0 against West Virginia, the national runner-up a year ago.

Instead, the Tigers controlled this one from start to finish. Mimi Asom put Princeton ahead 1-0 with a great goal driving to her left 14 minutes in, and even though it stayed that way until the clincher with five minutes to go from freshman Olivia Kane, there was never a sense that Princeton wasn't going to win.

Vanessa Gregoire assisted on Kane's goal, leaving her two away from tying the school career record, by the way. Also by the way, you can see game highlights HERE.

Another big winner in that game was the crowd at Roberts Stadium. It was a little hot for late September, so it felt more like July, but there was a big crowd and the crowd was into it. Roberts Stadium is a perfect venue for college soccer.

And that word, "perfect," also describes Princeton's weekend in Ivy openers. There is, of course, a very, very long way to go for everyone.

But hey, starting out with wins isn't bad.

And happy birthday FatherBlog. Like Ivy wins for Princeton's teams, TigerBlog hopes he has many more coming his way.

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