Baltimore Orioles proceed to the Major League Baseball Playoffs

Siobhan Dempsey

Staff Writer

On September 18, the Baltimore Orioles defeated the Toronto Blue Jays, therefore clinching their spot in the Major League Baseball playoffs by winning the American League East pennant. The other American League teams that went to the playoffs are the Oakland Athletics, the Kansas City Royals, the Detroit Tigers, and the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim. The National League teams that initially went to the playoffs were the Washington Nationals, the St. Louis Cardinals, the Los Angeles Dodgers, the Pittsburgh Pirates, and the San Francisco Giants.

Since 2013, the Major League Baseball Playoffs have had four rounds. This change is because the Houston Astros switched teams from the National League to the American League, giving both leagues an odd number of teams. Previously, the playoffs were played without the first round.

In the first round, the two wildcard teams from each league play each other in a “sudden death” match. The four wildcard teams this year were the Kansas City Royals and the Oakland Athletics in the American League and the San Francisco Giants and the Pittsburgh Pirates in the National League. Kansas City beat Oakland to gain their first proper playoff spot since 1985 and San Francisco beat Pittsburgh to gain their first playoff spot since they won the World Series in 2012.

The second round is a best of five game series between two teams in the same league. Two teams from the same division never play each other in this round, even if one of the teams is a wildcard team. The third round is a best of seven game series between the final two teams in each league. That means this year the winner of the Orioles vs. Tigers will play the winner of the Royals vs. Angels and the winner of the Nationals vs. Giants will play the winner of the Dodgers vs. Cardinals.

The World Series is the final round of the Major League Baseball playoffs. It is a best of seven series between the final two teams.

As of deadline, things are looking very optimistic for our hometown team, and this writer hopes they continue their winning streak.

A League of Our Own

Eli Kaufman

Staff Writer

Every Wednesday on Belden Field, six teams comprised of over 50 students enjoy an activity unlike any other.
Today in sports, all you hear about is tough competition, brawls, and complaints about the way games are officiated. But there is one sport that is governed by the love of the game. Ultimate frisbee is quite unique. There are no referees, umpires, or instant replay. Every decision is made by the players and the spirit of the game could not be higher.

Intramural Ultimate Frisbee has been at Goucher for a few years now and it continues to grow every season. The league exists in both semesters in order to give athletes a chance to participate. “Intramurals are a great way to get out and play the game,” says Ben Saeks ‘17. “You don’t have to be the best player ever; it could be your first game.”

The mix of veterans and rookies on the field make for great learning and social experiences as well. Sophomore Jackson Hickey had one semester of frisbee under his belt in high school, but his passion grew once he arrived at Goucher. “Frisbee has better spirit than any other sport, with the possible exception of curling. The lack of refereeing leads to a sense of community and honor that promotes sportsmanship above all else.”
Saeks believes that intramurals are a great way to begin to get involved with the club team. “Intramurals bring a nice mix of people from the team and people who just want to play for fun,” says Saeks. “If you come to intramurals and decide you like it, it’s one easy step to join the team. The team is kind of like a family.”

Fall Sports Updates

Megan Meluskey
Sports Editor

Men’s Soccer
The team has produced a 5-4 record and is currently 1-1 in the Landmark conference. Senior Captains Lashaw Salta, Brandon Weiner, Thomas Adair and Nate Margolis have been leading the team to what will hopefully be a successful Landmark campaign. Their team goal is to make the Landmark tournament after being just out of contention for the last few years. With Landmark play in just the beginnings, the men have picked up 3 points with a win over Moravian. Ahead of the Landmark is Merchant Marine with 6 points. The Gophers dropped a tough 0-1 game up in Long Island at the Academy last Saturday. Leading scorers this season are Kevin Tonkovich with 3 and Lashaw Salta following with 2. Five additonal Gophers have contributed to the rest of the goals scored this season. Starting goalkeeper Nick Stolarz has a .734 save percentage so far this season.

Women’s Soccer
After a strong defensive start, the women’s team has had a few tough losses mid season. Prior to their overtime loss against Moravian, the women beat Hood 3-1 but the momentum was not enough to carry over to the conference rival. Taking on a strong Elizabethtown team on Saturday October 4, the Gophers held on with a score of 2-6. Lindsey Puopolo has led the offense with 3 goals. Goalkeepers, Liz Stradmen, Julianna Harkavy and Lexi Rudolph have combined for three shutouts. Rudolph was also recognized as Landmark Player of the Week early in the season. The team’s record is 3-6-1.

Women’s Field Hockey
Goucher’s Field Hockey team is off to their best season in years with a record of 7-2. The Gophers posted their first Landmark Conference win in five years in an overtime win against Moravian. Senior Captain Justine Ruhlin is leading the Gopher attack with 10 goals and was recognized as the Landmark Player of the Week late in September. Lizzie Barminski and Rachel Crain both have 5 goals on the season. Goal Keeper Demie Huffman has a .822 save percentage and back up goalies Taylor Striar and Liz Zengle have contributed to two shutouts thus far.

Volleyball
With a new coach at the helm, the Gophers have made a good showing this season. They are 7-12 overall and 1-2 in the conference. The team had a huge upset win in 5 sets against the favored Cardinals of Catholic. This past weekend the team was 0-2 against conference rivals Juniata and Susquehanna.

Women’s Cross Country
Goucher has had 4 meets thus far, coming in 4th place in their first meet, and 25th in their 3rd meet. Saturday October 4th in Bethlehem, they took 29th place. Runners Amanda Tascarella, Anna Sandacz, and Zoe Malkin are among Goucher’s top runners.

Dodgeball tournament proceeds to benefit the Matthew Gabriel Scholarship Fund

Megan Meluskey

Sports Editor

On most Sunday afternoons, you’ll find many Goucher College students spread out on the quad, relaxing, doing some homework and preparing for the upcoming week. However, on the warm and sunny Sunday of September 14 much of the college’s campus was gathered on or around the tennis courts to participate in the first Annual One Family Dodge ball Tournament. This tournament began as a way to raise money for the Matthew Gabriel One Family Scholarship Award fund. Matthew Gabriel, a hard working economics student and a talented  lacrosse player was tragically hit and killed by a drunk driver last April.  Organized by the Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) and the Goucher Athletic Department, the tournament included not just dodge ball but also a dunk tank, a bracket competition, a bake sale and the sale of the men’s lacrosse team’s “MG3” tee shirts. The entire day raised over $1000 for the endowment fund, surpassing the goals of SAAC and the athletic department. Lexi Rudolph ‘16, a SAAC representative, stated that it was a highly successful event for the endowment fund as well as a tribute to Gabriel’s legacy here at Goucher. Rudolph hopes the success of this year will allow SAAC to continue the event into future years.

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Ray Rice and the corrupt NFL machine

A.J. Rose

Staff Writer

Inever knew how much people in the Baltimore area loved the Ravens until I came to Goucher. If you’re from around here, chances are you bleed purple. That being said, I was both alarmed and disappointed to see several Goucher students wearing Ray Rice jerseys last Thursday, the night the Ravens took on the Steelers. As a Bostonian, I’m more than familiar with having a hometown bias. I also understand supporting your team when they’re in the midst of off-the-field controversy. However, that doesn’t justify defending or supporting someone who knocked out his wife and then dragged her unconscious body around like it was a corpse he was trying to dispose of. It was a disgusting, reprehensible decision, and one that Rice is finally being fully punished for.

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Volleyball team welcomes new head coach

Madeline St. John

Staff Writer

Enter the front doors of the Sports and Recreation Center (SRC). Navigate through narrow corridors, past workout equipment, past students doing sit-ups on the floor, up and down stairs. You will come upon a door. It will most likely be on the left. Through this door, you will be greeted by the young and friendly face of Coach Kelli Wilkinson.

Don’t let her youthful appearance fool you. Goucher’s new volleyball coach is seasoned and experienced. Prior to coming to Goucher, she coached for 12 years at St. Paul’s School for Girls, for 8 years at Notre Dame (Md.), and for two years at Stevenson. “It’s my passion,” she says, a glow in her eye. “I’ve been coaching for over 20 years.”

In Goucher’s women, Coach Wilkinson sees a future full of possibility. “It’s a great group of girls and a small team, so they will all get a lot of minutes [of] playing time. And there is a lot of potential recruiting-wise.”

Last weekend, the team challenged Stevenson, Hopkins, and Bridgewater in the Greg Giovannazzi Memorial Tournament. Coach Wilkinson is proud to represent Goucher. “I am thrilled to be here, working with a great group. I am looking forward to building a winning program.”

Luckily, the team seems to be just as excited for the season. According to team captains Hannah Kuehl and Michelle Tweedie, Coach Wilkinson has some winning qualities, she is “straight-forward, encouraging,” and “approachable.” In her, they see potential for change. “It’s a really positive environment,” says Kuehl. “I can’t think of a better word for it than positive.”

“She believes in us,” says Tweedie. Kuehl and Tweedie, who have been on the team the past two years, are enjoying Coach Wilkinson’s direction. “She cares about us,” says Kuehl. “Not only as players, but as students, as friends. She takes in all aspects.” “And she took us to the movies!” adds Tweedie, with a laugh. “10 points, right there!”

The team has enjoyed each other’s company in a number of settings: participating in a scavenger hunt, going to a movie, and having lunch together. “When you spend time together outside of practice, you can relax and get to know each other,” says Coach Wilkinson. “You see each other in a different light.” And since volleyball season is a short and intense two-and-a-half months, the team must come together quickly.

Even after 20 years, Coach Wilkinson has not grown weary of doing what she does. “I wanted to give back to a game that gave so much to me,” she says. “I want to inspire these girls to give back.” So far, Coach Wilkinson seems to be achieving this goal.  According to Kuehl and Tweedie, they “just love to come in and play.” “It’s a support system outside of school,” says Kuehl. “It is really nice to have that support system away from home. And we get to do something we love every day.”

“The more passionate you are, the harder you’ll play,” says Coach Wilkinson, with a smile. “I love getting them to love the game.”

Athlete in the Spotlight: Jessica Leffers

Megan Meluskey

Sports Editor

The women’s soccer team has yet to allow a single goal to be scored against them this season in neither their season opener draw nor their back-to-back wins. Class of 2016’s defensive back, Jessica Leffers, has played a crucial role in these early season shut-outs. Since the graduation of All-Landmark, defense woman, Caroline McDowell ‘14 , Leffers, a Dean’s list, psychology major from Germantown, Maryland has stepped up as one of the leaders on the team’s defensive unit.  While the team is composed of a young back line, they have along with their goalkeepers, Lexi Rudolph and Liz Stradtman, allowed only 19 shots against them in three games while their Gophers offense has managed an effort of 34 shots in three games. According to Leffers, the backline “works really well together and there is a lot of communication…we always drop in and have each other’s backs.”

Some new preparative measures the team’s head coach Tati Korba has taken include the use of a defensive belt during the team’s training sessions. This belt has been used by many other college programs nationwide and works to keep the shape of the defensive line by tying the four backs together. The belt forces the line to fall into proper position when other members of the line step up to play the ball. While Leffers questions whether or not her coaches are using the new equipment just to laugh at their struggled movements, she admits that it has been extremely helpful. Moving forward with the season, Leffers is optimistic about the team’s expectation for more shutouts. “We’re just looking really solid,” states Leffers.

Off the field, Leffers is a hard-working psychology student. This summer, she participated in a prestigious internship at Johns Hopkins in the Behavioral Pharmacology Research Unit. Her work there included surveying the effects of different drugs on an individual’s decision making. “It was a great experience and gave me insight on possible career paths after I complete my education,” Leffers said. She hopes to either be a psychology professor or conduct research in the field of psychology.

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