Steve Englert is an assistant coach at Boston College.
Each week, he will provide
a journal of the previous week's happenings from Chestnut Hill.
March 18, 2003
Weather or Not... Eagles
New England winter has been
relentless. It just doesn't want to end. Our indoor practice bubble has been
deflated to make room for spring football. Our baseball diamond is a blanket of
and our cages are drenched, so workouts have been limited to hitting in a local
batting facility 40 minutes south of the campus.
Last weekend marked the beginning of conference play. It was a battle of the Big
East Title IX teams - BC having three scholarships and Georgetown a whopping
one. Man, I'm starting to sound like my buddy's wife.
the team enjoyed a special pre-trip dinner at the infamous CherryTree (a
favorite amongst all), where the usual orders of hot wings and steak tips were
buried in bunches.
Of course, it was snowing as we boarded the bus, bellies full for the 12-hour
trip to Newport News, Va., to play at old War Memorial Stadium. Kicking off the
journey, it was Jack Nicholson as Randle Patrick McMurphy in "One Flew Over the
Cuckoo's Nest," an all-time top-five favorite. A few of our guys fit the mold of
some of the characters portrayed in this classic, from Martini to Taber right on
down to the Chief. Hilarious flick.
Then the WWII series, Band of Brothers, shellshocks us for six episodes before
everyone shuts it down for the remainder of the trip.
The next day,
the team managed to sneak in a late-afternoon workout
at the stadium, taking a solid hour of BP. The players
worked on situational hitting, having a plan at the plate and ironing out any
swing flaws. Defensively, we focused on getting live reads off the bat and
fielding a ton of ground balls.
After practice we settled back to the hotel to watch the conference hoop
tourneys, during which point the subject turned to bowling. After a little bit
of chest-thumping, it is on! The staff jumped in a cab and headed to the nearest
AMF Lanes once again. A new road sport has been found,
and a season-long tour has been established. We caught a lot of funny looks from
the good ol' boys in Virginia as we walked into the alleys sporting matching
Under Armour shirts and Oakley sunglasses.
(Note: Biggie Smalls aka Notorious B.I.G.
is alive and well, driving a taxi in Newport News. So, throw your hands in the
air if you's a true playa.)
The guys were very excited to get into conference play. A doubleheader
on the slate, and it felt great to be playing outside.
Pitching and defense win ballgames, and they both showed up for us that day. Mix
in some timely hitting and all of a sudden we're 2-0 in Big East play after 4-1
and 5-1 wins. Both games featured solid pitching throughout, stellar defensive
plays - double plays, belly plays, throwing runners out - and some big hits. Off
to a good start.
Sunday's game was bumped back three hours due to steady morning rain. The radar
showed a two-hour window of dryness, and the tarp was pulled. The field was a
little soggy in the outfield, but overall
good to go. Hoping that
our guys are mudders, the need for a sweep was stressed to the fullest. We could
not afford a letdown.
The game was played under granite skies with sporadic showers mixed in. Our plan
was to play small ball early and score a couple of quick ones because who
how long the weather was going to hold up?
Georgetown had the same idea and the score
back and forth, with each team answering the other in the early innings.
Unfortunately, we couldn't stay out of the big inning. Georgetown took advantage
of a few defensive miscues and put up crooked numbers in the sixth, seventh and
eighth to pull away 11-4.
We were really hoping to get three and get a good jump on the Big East. But it
is very difficult to sweep on the road. Two of three isn't bad. The team played
hard, and we have some positive things to build from. There is always room for
improvement, and we're expecting to get better each week.
Our midweek game against Rhode Island has been postponed, and I'm sure we'll be
scrambling to squeeze in workouts somewhere as we get ready to face the
Hurricanes of Miami this weekend. !$#@&%$ snow.
Wins Bring Fun in the Sun (3/11/03)
Hanging with Nomar and the Gang (3/4/03)
Working the Kinks Out (2/25/03)
(photo courtesy of BC Media Relations Office)