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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Saturday, June 22, 2024

Sports


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Columns

Extra Innings: The anatomy of a failed rebuild

In 2021, the Chicago White Sox were one of the best teams in baseball, cruising to an American League Central title with a record of 93–69. Tim Anderson’s epic walk-off home run against the Yankees in the Field of Dreams game was perhaps the best moment of the entire baseball season (look it up, it’ll give you chills). Years of rebuilding the farm system were paying off. Despite a disappointing exit in the division series, the future seemed bright. Heading into 2022, the White Sox were ranked No. 4 in ESPN’s preseason power rankings.


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Columns

Sports and Society: Making stuff up

The College Football Playoff is ridiculous. To demonstrate, let me paraphrase a conversation I heard between national analysts Danny Kanell and Ryen Russillo on the latter’s podcast about which teams deserve to make the playoff: Russillo argued that if Georgia beats Alabama, the question then becomes if Florida State should get into the playoffs over Texas, even with their backup quarterback.


The Step Back
Columns

The Step Back: The heart of a champion

What defines an NBA champion? Domination? The hard road? Historical impact? With each season ending in a new coronation, how do we compare championships over time, and determine which teams are truly the best in NBA history?


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Sports

Women’s soccer advances to the NCAA Final Four, continues the Cinderella story

Three weeks ago, when the Tufts women’s soccer team was bounced out of the NESCAC playoffs in the quarterfinals, most people would have told you it was a long-shot for the squad to make the NCAA tournament. Yet, after analyzing the resumés of potential Pool C teams, the selection committee decided to award the Jumbos an at-large bid. Even then, people would have told you that the Jumbos would not be a tournament team for any length of time.


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Sports

Washington and Lee narrowly defeats men’s soccer in NCAA tournament Sweet 16

Soccer can be a funny game. For all of the meticulous analysis, hours spent training and constant repetitions that go into preparing for a match, the true determination of a contest’s outcome can sometimes be luck. Luck — that elusive, fickle force that can turn dreams into reality for some and bring nightmares to life for others. Unfortunately, the Tufts men’s soccer team found themselves on the wrong side of chance on Nov. 18 in the Sweet 16 round of the NCAA Division III men’s soccer tournament against Washington and Lee University. Despite convincing results in the first two rounds of the tournament and a 12–3–3 record across the regular season and NESCAC tournament, a cruel twist of misfortune led to the only goal of the game, meaning the Jumbos fell 1–0 to the Washington and Lee Generals and would not dance on to the Elite Eight. 



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Columns

Extra Innings: The two sweepstakes

There are two players that teams looking for a superstar this offseason will be all-in on. The first is, of course, Shohei Ohtani. We’ve been waiting all year to see where the two-time American League MVP plays next. The other is Juan Soto, who no one thought would be available this offseason, and who still might not be (it’s complicated). Here are my thoughts on where these two end up.


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Sports

Field hockey’s impressive season and the careers of a beloved senior class end in NCAA quarterfinals

Tufts field hockey burst onto Ounjian Field in commanding fashion on Nov. 8 following disappointment in the NESCAC tournament. Tufts opened NCAA play with a 5–0 victory over Southern Maine. After a tough overtime loss to the Mammoths in the first round of the conference tournament, gratitude for the chance to continue their season inspired the Jumbos’ dominant response. Senior co-captain Andrea DelGiudice and junior Kylie Rosenquest combined for four goals, and senior Rachel Scrivanich buried another in the net on a first-quarter corner. Sophomore Gabby Sousa notched two assists, and the Jumbos finished with a 27–2 advantage in shots on goal. 


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Sports

Women’s soccer advances to NCAA Sweet 16

Coming out of their NESCAC season, the Tufts women’s soccer team entered the NCAA Division III as a Pool C at-large bid and immediately hit the ground running. They faced Franklin & Marshall on Nov. 11 and shut them down 2–1. The Jumbos were led by sophomore forward Elsi Aires, who put both goals away, but also saw strong effort by senior midfielder Thalia Greenberg and junior defender Jordan Cushner.



Graphic for Reese Christian’s Column “the hard count”
Columns

The Hard Count: The Deshaun Watson Problem

In last week’s column, I wrote about the success of the Houston Texans with CJ Stroud at quarterback, and I stated that the Texans had ‘finally’ found their franchise quarterback. This ignored a wrinkle in the Texans’ history, that being the promise of 2017 draft pick Deshaun Watson during four seasons in Houston.


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Sports

Cross country excites at NCAA regionals, men place 2nd to secure Nationals berth

The men’s cross country team finished in a strong second place out of 34 teams at the NCAA Division III East Regional championship in New Hampshire on Saturday. All seven runners were in the top 35 to secure all-regional honors, and this performance, along with a strong record this season, secured the team an at-large berth for the NCAA National championship that will take place on Saturday. 


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Sports

Men’s soccer dances on after thumping Bridgewater State 3–0, outlasting Rochester 2–1

3,470. That is the number of miles Washington and Lee, Ohio Northern and Colorado College will travel in sum to get to Bello Field for their matchups this coming weekend. The Tufts men’s soccer team hosted the first two rounds of the NCAA tournament this past weekend, and with a 3–0 win against Bridgewater State on Saturday and a 2–1 win against Rochester on Sunday, they earned a spot in the Sweet Sixteen. 


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Columns

Sports and Society: Ban bandwagons

We need some standardization for sports fans, and I’m declaring bandwagoning illegal. You heard me. There are all sorts of rules governing player and team movement across professional sports in America. Players sign contracts and can be traded without their consent. Teams can’t just move to Barbados without running things through the proper channels. The NFL even has a borderline-authoritarian policy called the franchise tag, which can just force a superstar player to stay put regardless of their wishes.



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Sports

Tufts football falls to Middlebury in tight game for season finale

In what was predicted to be a potentially league champion-deciding matchup, both the Middlebury Panthers and the Tufts Jumbos were ready to rock and roll on Saturday. Middlebury started with the ball, and senior wide receiver Carter Stockwell got the Panthers moving with a 16-yard rush up the middle. The Panthers charged downfield, but a throw from senior quarterback Cole Kennon was picked off in the endzone by the Jumbos’ senior defensive back Drew Guida.


The Step Back
Columns

The Step Back: Why the NBA needs expansion now more than ever

For almost twenty years, the NBA has comprised 30 teams. With vastly increasing league popularity and a treasure trove of player talent, team expansion has become a tantalizing idea for fans and executives alike. As other major sports leagues like the NHL have expanded in recent years, the NBA board has yet to budge on the topic of expansion. It was only this past summer that NBA Commissioner Adam Silver finally acknowledged the possibility of expansion following the end of the league’s media rights deal in 2025. What Silver fails to realize, however, is that NBA expansion is not a luxury – it’s a necessity.




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Sports

Men’s soccer splits NESCAC championship weekend, falling in the final

The Tufts men’s soccer team has rarely entered the NESCAC Tournament as underdogs. They were NESCAC champions in2017, 2019 and 2021, winning every championship game they participated in. However, following a 2–1 victory over Bowdoin in the quarterfinals, the Jumbos were considered heavy underdogs entering the semifinals, as they faced the undefeated Middlebury Panthers, the third-ranked team in the United Soccer Coaches Poll.


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