Friday, May 25, 2018

Runners, Throwers, Jumpers, Rowers - And Bryce

TigerBlog went to visit Bryce Chase in the hospital the other day.

Bryce, the longtime consigliari of the men's lacrosse team and a 1963 alum, had a nasty spill on his bike last week. It was an in area that TB had been in a few days earlier and thought was slippery.

Turns out, unfortunately, that he was right.

Bryce ended up with a steel rod in his leg, from his hip down, after breaking his femur. When TB saw him, he was in good spirits, with his primary concern to ready to go for his 55th Reunion.

Peter Farrell was there as well, with his wife Shane.

The longtime women's track and field coach is probably the perfect person to have come visit you in the hospital. He stops by. He genuinely cares about what happened to you. He can relate and talks about the time something like that happened to him.

And he tells funny stories. Lots of them.

Like the one he told Bryce, about how he went to see former Princeton (and U.S. Olympic) track and field coach Larry Ellis once when Ellis was about to be discharged, only Ellis didn't want to leave because they were about to serve lunch.

Peter said he offered to buy him a hamburger after the left.

The more TigerBlog thinks about it, the more he thinks Peter should take up hospital visiting as a second career, now that he's retired.

Peter was in TB's office earlier, and he talked about how it's odd for him this time of year, with nothing to do, as opposed to the 39 years he spent coaching his team, when this time of year meant getting ready for the NCAA regionals and then the championships.

The Princeton Athletic year is winding down quickly. Before it ends, there are as many as three weekends of competition left, including this one.

This weekend will see Princeton have teams in two sports compete, interestingly enough, an hour apart on the west coast of Florida. 

Princeton will be sending 25 athletes to the NCAA track and field regionals, which will be held in Tampa. The Princeton women's open rowing team will compete in the NCAA championships, which will be in Sarasota.

The list of Princeton track and field athletes, their events and the times they compete can be found HERE.

Kennedy O'Dell and Joey Daniels have qualified in two events. O'Dell will be in the hammer and the shot put; Daniels will run the 110 hurdles and be in the 4x100 relay.

The goal of all of these athletes is to reach the NCAA championships, which will be in two weeks in Eugene, Ore.

The women's open rowing team is one of three to have reached the NCAA championships each year since the current format began in 1997.

TB doesn't know a lot about rowing, so he'll copy and paste what his colleague Craig Sachson had to say about the championships:
The Tigers who competed at the 2017 NCAA Women's Rowing Championships didn't exactly hide the distaste for their performance — not immediately after, not during the preparation for the 2018 season, and not during another successful spring on Lake Carnegie. They didn't run away from it. They owned it, and they vowed to be better because of it. The early 2018 results — a 13-1 regular season, a third straight Ivy League title, and two gold medals at Ivies — indicate that Princeton did grow from that weekend. But the three days that the Tiger women's rowing team has long awaited have finally arrived.

That's pretty good stuff. HERE is the rest of what he has to say.

Good luck to the runners, throwers, jumpers and rowers.

Also this weekend are the NCAA lacrosse championships, with the men in Foxboro and the women at Stony Brook.

TigerBlog will be at the men's again. It'll be his 23rd Final Four in 26 years.

His predictions for the weekend? Well, the top four seeds reached the semifinals on both sides. In fact, the four teams that have reached the Final Four on the men's side are the top four teams in the Inside Lacrosse preseason poll.

So who will win?

Maryland is the top seed on both sides, but TB will go in a different direction. He likes fourth-seeded Boston College, maybe because 1) the Eagles beat Princeton, 2) the Eagles then beat Stony Brook.

As for the men, TB can see any of the four teams as the last one standing. He'll go with Yale, though. The Bulldogs aren't going to beat themselves, and they have a lot of experience and a lot of confidence. 

Whoever wins, TB wants to see Princeton there next year, on both sides.

And he wants to see Bryce out of the hospital as soon as possible.

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