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.
April 15, 2003
Snow, Hokies Make for Tough
Early in the week, it seemed as
though not even the power of a "Reverse Curt" could turn the weather. The wet
conditions limited us to one light workout on the gridiron turf in the
Around here, the word snow cannot be uttered without
it. You have words such as curveball, knuckleball, knucklehead, meathead, Title
IX - now you have
conclusion of this winter, Webster's is sure to include this new compound word
in its 2004 edition.
The position players managed to get in a few swings in the softball cage,
located under the football stadium. The cage is like hitting in a shoebox, and
throwing regular BP is out of the question. The tempo was very slow, with most
guys going through the motions with underhanded front toss drills. To pick up
the pace and not waste the day, we set up a competition where line drives off
the L-screen, or "the dunking booth" as we call it, earned points. BP
immediately turned into a yap fest with everyone chirping about how many points
he would tally. We made the most of what we had to work with and had some fun.
On Thursday, "Curt Gowdy" finally came through in the clutch. (I was worried
there for a while.) The sun popped through like a zit on a teenager's face, and
we squeezed in a doubleheader versus Northeastern. The team was very much
looking forward to playing under blue skies with temperatures in the 60s.
The early stages of the game exposed the rust of not being on a baseball diamond
in more than a week. Northeastern had us down quick 6-2, but as the game
progressed, we found our rhythm and pulled off an 8-7 come-from-behind victory.
The second game turned out to be a dogfight, going into extra innings. After an
inning-ending double play on a tremendous defensive effort on an attempted
squeeze in the second extra frame, the Huskies, in the bottom half of the
inning, left us on the field with a string of hits and won 3-2.
We were hoping to get two there, and that split was a bit disappointing knowing
that an all-important midweek win had escaped us. On the bright side, the team
was able to get out on a field and play a couple.
The week's Big East matchup found us journeying to Blacksburg, Va.,
to take on Virginia Tech. The weather was tremendous (60s and sunny) all weekend
in Hokieland, and it was great not having to put on 15 layers to play ball.
Saturday was an Ernie Banks day - great day to play two. In the first game of
the set, the team rode a tremendous pitching performance by freshman
All-American Chris Lambert, who dealt us to a 3-1 victory.
The great start to the weekend was short-lived. In the second matchup, Tech took
advantage of a few defensive miscues and consistently put up numbers offensively
to win 12-3, leaving Sunday's finale as a much-needed victory.
The bowling tour was put on hold with no alleys near our hotel. The staff had no
choice but to settle in for the night with some Papa John's delivery, flipping
between the Masters and the Red Sox/Orioles game.
The team had a great pregame BP, where the final hitters' round was extended,
hoping to get the bats going. Each lineup guy got two game-ready swings,
concentrating on hitting a line drive or hard ground ball. It seemed to work as
we jumped out to a 7-3 lead. The defense was solid, and we were settling in on
the mound. But the momentum began to shift, and the Hokies started to chip away
and finally tied the game in the bottom of the ninth. In the extra innings, Tech
made more plays than we did and sent us home in the bottom of the 12th with an
We had them on the ropes but couldn't finish them off. It was a very
disappointing defeat, especially when you consider we put up 15 hits and had a
pretty good lead. But hey, that's baseball. You need to play hard for nine and
put a team away when it presents itself or it will come back to bite you. The
hope is that the players can come away learning from this game and come out
flying next week.
Gowdy Brings Snow Back to Northeast (4/8/03)
Eagles' Wins Rise with Temperature (4/1/03)
Return to Florida Not as Rewarding (3/25/03)
Weather or Not... Eagles Battling Elements (3/18/03)
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)