February 18, 2004

Stroll Around the Ancient Eight

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After a disappointing 0-2 homestand against Ivy front-runners Penn and Princeton, Cornell’s men’s basketball team has fallen from grace atop league standings and now rests in fourth. Though the cagers are still in the chase, this week’s Around the Ivies will divert attention from basketball for a look at some fresh faces, retiring faces, fast runners, and ice queens.

Brown

The past two weeks have been a whirlwind tour for former Brown star soccer player, Cory Gibbs ’01. Gibbs learned last week that he had been selected to join the United States National Soccer Team when it faces the Netherlands today in Amsterdam. Gibbs, who won Ivy League Player of the Year following the 2000 season also signed to play professionally with the MLS’ Dallas Burn only two weeks ago.

This stint with the national team will be Gibbs’ second, as he debuted last summer in the Confederations Cup against New Zealand.

“We’re very excited that Cory will be back in the U.S. playing. It will be great for us to see him play and watch his career grow,” said Brown head men’s soccer coach Mike Noonan earlier in the week. “He will be playing against the greatest teams in the world, including Holland this week, and it will be exciting for the entire Brown soccer community to watch.”

While Gibbs climbs upward on his path to soccer stardom, the women’s ski team went downhill, fast, as it swooshed to second place in the Colby-Sawyer/St. Anselm Carnival over the weekend in Pat’s Peak, N.H. The women placed in the slalom and giant slalom but couldn’t overcome a slicker Boston College squad, which finished the competition in first place.

Speaking of speedy, the women’s tracksters turned in 11 personal records and three men gave top-five performances at the Fasttrack Invitational.

On the court, the women’s hoopsters dunked Dartmouth 78-68 in a game during which the Bears were up by as many as 20 points at halftime. Showing their versatility and depth, each of the Bears’ starting five scored double digits.

Columbia

The wrestling team wrote the Lions’ top headline this weekend after pinning Harvard 29-16. After starting the match with a pin and one technical fall, the grapplers held their lead until the final buzzer. With the win also came the Dick Waite trophy, which is given annually to the Harvard-Columbia victor. It is the first time since 1996 that the award has rested in New York.

Following suit with another stellar performance was the women’s basketball team, which slipped past Princeton 60-56 in the final seconds of overtime. The lady Lions’ Edytte Key led Columbia to the win with her putback with only eight seconds left on the clock. Following the score, teammate Erin Jaschiv sank two free throws to seal the deal and send the Tigers home empty handed.

But enough about the landlubbers. Columbia’s men’s swim team handed Navy a 132.5-110.5 loss on Saturday to close its EISL season with a 6-3 record. The finish was the team’s best since the 19992-93 season.

Dartmouth

Men’s head basketball coach Dave Faucher resigned Monday but will continue to coach the Green until the end of this season. Despite taking the Green to two Ivy runner-up finishes in the mid-90s, Faucher’s teams have not performed well in recent years, and the team has a 3-19 mark this season.

“Dave’s passion for the game, his dedication and loyalty to Dartmouth, and the sensitive and caring way he deals with his players will be missed,” Director of Athletics Josie Harper said in a press release. “Dave has made many contributions to Dartmouth College and to athletics during tenure.”

On a lighter note, Elise Morrison, the star on the women’s hoops squad, received her eighth Ivy League Rookie of the Week award Monday. Morrison came up big in the paint for the Green in its weekend shootout with Brown, scoring 19 points, and she came to play against Yale the next day, tallying 12 buckets against the Elis. Morrison currently leads her team in nearly every statistical category including scoring, rebounding, blocked shots, and field goal percentage.

Harvard

The biggest news coming out of Harvard Square is the men’s squash team’s win over Yale to capture the Ivy championship. The Cantabs easily overpowered the Elis, dropping only two matches while winning seven. The title is the Crimson’s 34th since competition began in 1956.

Moving cross country, Harvard cum laude graduate Paul DePodesta became the second youngest general manager in major league baseball history when the Los Angeles Dodgers gave him the nod to fill their vacancy on Monday. While still an undergraduate, DePodesta was a two sport athlete for the Crimson, donning both football and baseball jerseys. After graduating, the former athlete moved into the back office of sports, working for the American Hockey League and Canadian Football League before moving on to an assistant position in Oakland A’s general manager Billy Beane’s office in 1998.

But who cares about baseball when there’s hockey to watch? Especially if you can catch a glimpse of Crimson senior Angela Ruggiero, who received the ECAC Player of the Week award Monday for the second week in a row. Earning her the honor this time around was a game-winning goal against Northeastern over the weekend. That win and two against Brown bumped the team’s record to 20-2-1 overall and 10-2-0 in the ECAC.

Penn

Hoops are high on the list for the Quakers, whose men’s and women’s teams both won Ivy League games over the weekend. The biggest news for Penn’s program is, of course, the men’s basketball team’s defeat of Cornell on Saturday. The win put the Quakers back in contention for the Ivy title with a 5-2 record on the season, and senior Jeff Schiffner earned his first ever Player of the Week nod for his performances against the Red and Columbia.

Freshman Ibrahim Jaaber shared the spotlight after netting the league’s Rookie of the Week award for his 20 points against Columbia and 75 percent shooting from the field.

The lady cagers also had one of their own receive recognition. Senior forward Jewel Clark was named the Philadelphia Big Five Player of the Week after she dropped 24 points in an 81-70 rout of Columbia. The standout is averaging 16.7 points per game and is shooting 75 percent from the free throw line.

Princeton

It was a big weekend for sophomore fencer Jacqueline Leahy, who captured the women’s national foil title at the Junior Olympics in Cleveland, OH. over the weekend. Leahy beat out 170 other competitors vying for the top spot and defeated Cassidy Luitjen from Columbia, a former national team member, to claim the victory.

And, in a rare Around the Ivies note, Princeton’s men’s volleyball team brought home three wins from the St. Francis Invitational this weekend. The Tigers started sluggishly with an 0-2 record but went on to capture three more wins against fellow EIWA Tait Division opponents.

Yale

Unlike their male counterparts, Yale’s women’s squashers brought home a crown on Valentine’s day, dropping Harvard 7-2 in the National Championships. The Bulldogs entered national competition ranked number one in the land, and they dismantled the No. 4 ranked Crimson.

The win gives Yale’s squad a triple crown of sorts: the national title, league championship, and victory over perennial archrival Harvard.

Finally, star freshman hockey player Kristin Savard earned the ECAC Rookie of the Week award following her three-goal weekend against Cornell and Colgate. The tally included the overtime winner against Colgate only 37 seconds into the extra session. The goal also ma
de Savard Yale’s top goal scorer with 11 and points leader with 17.

Archived article by Everett Hullverson

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