Sixth Man: Women’s Hockey

hockey

There are certain things you have to be willing to give up in you’re going to enjoy a women’s hockey game: namely, the hitting that really serves to make men’s games entertaining. No one gets crushed against the boards in a women’s hockey game–or if they do, the referees are sure to take it pretty seriously. Instead, it’s an arguably more fluid game, with the puck constantly in motion and far less likely to get stuck in a corner, buried in a scrum of swarming bodies. But still: no hitting.

Despite this crucial difference, there is a lot that is the same about the Brown men’s hockey and Brown women’s hockey experience. Most excitingly, Hermano!!!!! For those of you who missed my multiple men’s hockey posts way back in 2012–I’m sure that’s hardly any of you–I’ll give a brief description of Hermano(!!!!!). Hermano(!!!!!) is the nice Brown Athletics employee who drives the zamboni, the machine used to smooth the ice between periods. I don’t know if this is typical of other hockey teams, because I’m not a huge hockey fan, but Brown hockey treats Hermano(!!!!!) like a superstar. He gets an announcement befitting peak-era Michael Jordan from the PA guy, and then the scoreboard does a little graphic with flames around the word “Hermano!!!!!” He also gets to drive a flame-bedazzled zamboni. And, to be clear, Hermano(!!!!!) is a superstar.

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Sixth Man: Volleyball

 

The "jump up and block the ball" move is just one of many possible types of "volleys"

The “jump up and block the ball” move is just one of many possible types of “volleys” at a volleyball player’s disposal

This column used to exist regularly, we swear. You can find the archives here. This year, it spontaneously rises from the dead, like Neo amidst a hailstorm of bullets from Mr. Smith. Welcome back to Sixth Man. 

Here is the problem with going to a Brown sports event: you feel like you don’t fit in. At last night’s volleyball game, the surprisingly large crowd was composed of the following members: me, the weird guy sitting behind me definitely reading my notes over my shoulder the whole fucking game, 50 or so athletes, a bored-looking 9-year-old with an iPod, and a smattering of players’ parents bickering over how to pronounce various other players’ names. This was not the ideal atmosphere to take in my first-ever Brown volleyball game, alone, but I suppose that’s what you get when you don’t have many friends and agree to cover Brown sports.

I showed up five minutes late, which, to my dismay, was just in time for the national anthem. This isn’t an ultra-relevant concern, but why do we bother with the national anthem before sports games if it’s a generic taped CD version? I say it’s live or bust. You could even bring out one of those classically trained 11-year-olds to stumble through a botched rendition who makes it even more uncomfortable for the crowd than for her. That’s what we go to sports games for, right?

Anyway, I digress. Let’s talk volleyball. Brown was off to an 0-4 start going into Tuesday’s game, which sounded a whole lot worse until I found out that Tuesday’s opponent, Providence College, was 0-7 with straight-set losses to possibly fictional colleges Gardner-Webb and Southern Utah. They were not better than expected, either. I’ll save you the suspense–Bruno picked up its first win of the year in consecutive sets, 25-21, 25-22, 25-18.!”But what do all these numbers mean???” I hear you probably (not) asking. Good question. Volleyball matches are played in intervals of 25-point sets; win three sets, and you win the match. (I think there’s something special about the fifth set, if it comes to that, but this one didn’t go that long, so who cares.)

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Sixth Man: Meet your CollegeInsider.Com tournament field!

I guess Jeremy Lin played in this tournament one time when he went to Harvard

Jeremy Lin played in this tournament one time when he went to Harvard

It’s March! It’s Madness! The sportiest of Brown students might know that yesterday was Selection Sunday, when the 68-team field was set for the annual NCAA men’s basketball tournament. Yeah, yeah—YAWN. The real bracket came out hours before. That was the mothafuzzin’ COLLEGEINSIDER.COM TOURNAMENT bracket, featuring your very own Brown University Bears!

There’s actually a pretty decent chance you’ve heard about this game, because the athletic department has been bombarding the student body with emails about it as if there were a Beyoncé concert taking place on the Main Green, when in fact it’s actually a first-round game of the fourth-most important postseason college basketball tournament. Nonetheless, it happened, and Brown is in it. And because we know you’re already at Pizzitola for the free food from Spats and Paragon (!) and exciting basketball (…) and want to know how Brown stacks up, here is a breakdown of the entire 32-team CIT field. Note: CIT is what tournament insiders call the CollegeInsider.com Tournament, not a popular workspace for Computer Science concentrators.

BROWN: Popularly known as the “kill squad” in college basketball circles, some experts forecasted a 28-0 season from the Bears before a few tight games tripped them up on their way to a solid 15-13 finish. Widely acknowledged as the overwhelming CIT favorites.

HOLY CROSS: Brown’s first-round opponents, Holy Cross are nicknamed the Crusaders and finished 19-13. They played a game against UNH in November that was broadcast on the Live Well Network, which is kind of funny.

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Sixth Man: Winter Sports Recap

All is right with the world again: people are finally back on campus, classes have resumed, Gail is once again greeting us in the Ratty, and Sixth Man is back. As you get settled into your routine, don’t forget to check out some of the winter season sports that Brown has to offer. Whether it’s track and field, basketball, hockey, or even fencing, we’re sure that whatever you’re into, you can find some entertainment. Even though we know everyone has been keeping up with what’s been happening in the Bruno sports world over winter break (I mean, who hasn’t been following squash?), we decided to give a recap of some of our favorite winter sports teams.

Gymnastics

gymnastics

Yes, there are in fact gymnastics competitions outside of the Olympics. Are they as interesting? No comment. The Brown gymnastics team has been competing since the middle of January, finishing second out of four teams in their last two meets. If you’re expecting to see some of the same tricks that you saw in London last summer then you might be disappointed, but it’s not every day that you get to see someone hurl themselves off of a balance beam and not fail miserably.

Basketball

Bball

You know what they say about Brown basketball, right? That we’re the Duke of the Northeast? Ok, maybe no one has ever said that, but it’s fun to pretend. Even though we may not be considered a basketball powerhouse in the traditional sense, the Bears have gotten off to a great start in the conference. A 3-game win streak has put Bruno just behind first-place Harvard for the Ivy League lead. A tough road game looms on Friday at Harvard, but a weaker Dartmouth and Princeton are soon after. Continue Reading


Sixth Man: Fall sports update

taylor_110213-081

November might mean a lot of different things to a lot of different people, but I think we can all agree that it mostly screams out, “Fall sports Ivy championship hunt crunch time!!!!” Am I right or what? While you kick back and pat yourself on the back for getting through those midterms mostly alive, athletic Brunonians are out fighting for those elusive Ivy League titles. Let’s see how they’re doing.

[Update: Football, men’s soccer, and volleyball were all eliminated from championship contention over the weekend.]

FootballWhile Sunday NFL Countdown host Chris Berman ’77 may have predicted big things, football’s Ivy chances took a big hit when it opened its conference schedule with decisive losses to Harvard and Princeton. Wins over Cornell and, this past weekend, Ivy-leading Penn have snuck Brown kind of back into the picture, but da Bears still need to win out against Yale, Dartmouth, and Columbia, then hope Princeton, Penn, and Harvard choke real hard. Championship chances: 5%

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Sixth Man: Equestrian

BEQ

Bears ride horses, who knew?

Last weekend, I went to the Brown Equestrian (BEQ) team’s home show. After three wrong turns and an excursion through Massachusetts (I don’t understand New England), we made it to Windswept Farm, BEQ’s barn in Warren, RI. My first thought upon seeing the horses was that these 1500 pound beasts are nothing like my understanding of horse-creatures from Robot Unicorn Attack. They all were twice as tall as me, had big pieces of metal in their mouths, and looked like they wanted to bite my head off. But then my friend on the team introduced me to a horse named Momma, who seemed really sweet and calm and almost transformed me into a horse person, until I learned she was narcoleptic and was actually just falling asleep. This doesn’t seem safe when she’s about to be carrying someone on her back at 20 mph… I took some selfies with the sleepy horse and then went to watch the show. Continue Reading