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Catching Lightning In A Bottle

1 March 2019 Views From The Booth Sports

Winchester Printers
Greetings from The Booth!

Well, most of us are working today because we’re not Bryce Harper, who is now a member of the Philadelphia Phillies. The former Washington National has agreed to the biggest contract in baseball history, a $330 million, 13-year deal. Is any pro athlete worth this kind of money? My standard answer is, “yes, if someone is willing to pay.” In reality, I hope the Phillies are ready for the injuries and the long stretches where strikeouts come more frequently than home runs.

That being said, Harper is one of the faces of MLB, and one of the most exciting players in the game, and it will be tough to see him in a divisional rival’s uniform. it will be interesting to see the reaction of the DC fans when Bryce comes into town.

Changing gears, good luck to the Strasburg Rams and Millbrook Pioneers girls basketball teams, who, as of this posting, are still alive in their respective VHSL state tournament brackets.

Finally, the Shenandoah University women’s basketball team made an improbable run through the ODAC tournament last weekend and captured their first-ever league championship and the automatic bid to the NCAA Division-3 tourney. The Hornet women made history as a number-8 seed, defeating number-one seed Guilford along the way, the first time in league history an 8-seed has beaten a 1-seed.

I have said a few times that the SU ladies would be a “tough out” in the ODAC tournament, and they certainly were, as they ratcheted up the defense and hit crucial free throws down the stretch, always important in tournament games. And let’s not forget the coaching of Melissa Smeltzer Kraft, who got absolutely every ounce out of her team in this incredible season.

Languishing in the middle of the ODAC pack and below .500 late in the season, something clicked for the Hornets. They found ways to win games. Shots started falling. Most importantly, SU got solid play from the bench, and that depth came to the forefront in the ODAC tournament as “youngsters” Sierra St. Cyr and Ragan Johnson played like experienced seniors.

Momentum in sports is a real thing, and once it’s on your side, magical things can happen. Once the Hornets got rolling late in the season, they caught lightning in a bottle in the tournament. Whether it continues tonight at DeSales is anyone’s guess. The Bulldogs are 25-2 and riding a 20-game winning streak, so the order is tall.

Whatever happens, this season of SU women’s basketball is a success.
But let’s hope “Big Mo” doesn’t jump ship just yet.

Good luck ladies, and until next visit from The Booth,


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