Column: Sports musings over sunscreen

Column: Sports musings over sunscreen

A few thoughts I had while applying sunscreen over spring break:

The women’s basketball team shouldn’t let their 4-26 season get them down – they can proudly call themselves record-holders. The Huskies overcame a 16-point deficit to force a women’s NCAA-record five overtime periods in a 98-90 loss against Drexel Feb. 22.

Shaleyse Smallwood, who lead the Huskies with 37 points, played a women’s NCAA-record 63 minutes despite missing the previous two practices with the flu. Jody Burrows played a solid 27 minutes with a torn ACL.

A five-overtime game isn’t just taxing for those on the court. According to Sports Illustrated, the paramedics were called twice to respond to emergencies in the audience, but didn’t specify what they were.

The game opens a debate: Are these Huskies CAA cellar dwellers or NCAA record holders? Looks like they’re both.

Another thought was what we learned from the men’s hockey season: momentum can be easy to build, but hard to keep.

For example, the Huskies had won four of the past five before their opening-round Beanpot game against BU, only to lose 4-0 to the Terriers. Then it happened again – beating our crosstown rivals 4-2 in the last game of the season, but getting trounced in the Hockey East playoffs by Boston College.

Despite difficulty maintaining momentum, Northeastern did show toughness worthy of Huntington Avenue. The Huskies crawled back to respectability after losing seven of 10 games early in the season. Finishing 13-18-5 isn’t half bad – but it will go down the drain if they don’t do better next season.

And that will take some serious momentum maintenance.

Speaking of momentum, here’s an incredible line score: 3 IP, 0 H, 3 BB, 4 SO.

Those on the mound were Kris Dabrowiecki, Trevor Smith and Bobby Carrington of the baseball team.

They were pitching to Julio Lugo, Kevin Youkilis, David Ortiz, J.D. Drew and Mike Lowell of the Boston Red Sox. Drew and Lowell struck out.

Looks like Adam Ottavino, last year’s ace and recent draftee of the St. Louis Cardinals, won’t be missed too badly.

Speaking of baseball, the storylines for this year’s major league baseball season are beginning to shape up. From Matsuzaka-mania in Boston to the spending-spree Cubbies in Chicago to the steroid investigation of Barry Bonds in San Francisco, 2007 should be a season to remember.

For Sox fans, this year’s pitching staff could be the best in a long time (including the Pedro Martinez years). But buyer beware: a pitching staff filled with “ifs” is nothing but iffy.

It can be summed up in a sentence: If Matsuzaka can pitch in America like he did in Japan, and Schilling can be his old self while Papelbon can successfully move from the bullpen to the rotation, this year’s team will be awesome. Anything short, and it’s a crapshoot.

My pick for the 2007 World Champs: The Chicago Cubs. Call it a faith-based decision.

At the start of the season, I would have called anyone who thought the men’s basketball team would finish with the same conference record as George Mason a fool, but the tables have turned. The Huskies tore GMU a new one Feb. 24, defeating the former Final Four squad 73-50 in the last game of the season.

The two squads finished with equal 9-9 conference records. More importantly, the Huskies built a solid foundation for success in years to come. Looks like athletic director Dave O’Brien was on the money when he said Bill Coen was the best fit for Northeastern – he’s made us forget about the past and look toward the future with his players.

And the future is here on Huntington Avenue, as a new star has emerged in Matt Janning, who was recently named CAA Rookie of the Year. That rebuilding year is over, let’s look forward to next season.

Speaking of looking forward to something, St. Patty’s day is this Saturday and March Madness is here. Never before have there been more excuses not to do homework.

– Matt Foster can be reached for comment at [email protected]

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