Thursday, May 12, 2005

The right foot

Apparently our presence on the bus didn't act as a hex on the team. Who knew?

Today's contest (a 2-0 NU victory over Purdue) proved one thing: pitching wins tournaments. Purdue hasn't scored a run against Northwestern in about 3500 straight innings and they never seriously threatened today, managing only four hits against Courtnay Foster.

Sure, the Wildcats could have done more on offense, but a W is a W, as they say, and after opening the last two Big Ten Tournaments with 18- and 11-inning contests, it must have been nice just to get one out of the way.

Earlier in the day, Howard and I sat at the Olive Garden, watching the team eat from what amounted to the kids' table across the room (long story). As I commented yesterday, the atmosphere was incredibly relaxed, and this carried through to the game. There's no better combination than to be relaxed during a game while simultaneously taking it seriously -- well, no combination since some genius came up with a shot and a beer, anyway.

Tomorrow it's either Iowa or Penn State, against whom NU achieved an impressive 4-0 record this season. Iowa lives for this tournament, but on the flip side Northwestern is pretty good, so we ought to see a fine game. Assuming, of course, that the mighty winds do not come and blow down our construction trailer/broadcast facility, or that the rains do not cancel any or all of the four games on the schedule.

You wonder how teams can play this schedule with midterms and the like, until you realize that everyone but NU is out of school already and is enjoying their summer vacation. That's fine, though, 'cause we get them back in the fall by playing football games in front of an empty stadium. Suck on that, Michigan.

As your loyal correspondents prepare to take our evening meal, we assure you that we'll be back tomorrow -- or whenever the game may be held -- with the tournament semifinals, live on WNUR.

Even if we have to do it from the kids' table.

Until then, I am outie 5000; take it sleazy.

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