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After slow start, baseball bounces back strong

in Columns/Sports by

After a slow start losing two doubleheaders to open up the season, the Baseball team bounced back over spring break in Fort Myers, Florida. The team flew south for their annual trip the first Saturday of spring break to escape the cold. After seven days of sunshine, the team returned with an overall record of 6-8, going 6-4 in Florida. Over 100 Division III baseball and softball teams from across the United States headed to Fort Myers to compete in the annual Gene Cusic Collegiate Classic. The tournament is a memorial for Cusic, a former Lee County Parks and Rec athletics manager and baseball fan. Established 26 years ago, the classic has expanded tremendously, originally having just 11 teams. Other Conference teams to attend this tournament included Gettysburg and Haverford.

The Garnet baseball team faced a packed schedule with 10 games in just six days. The trip began on an incredible high note with a walk-off win in extra innings in their first game on Sunday. Jared Gillen ’20 drove in the game winning run for the Garnet to defeat Rivier College in extra innings. The team lost a doubleheader on Monday to Defiance College and rallied to finish 4-2 in their next 6 games, defeating Hiram College, Rockford University, Baruch College and the United States Coast Guard Academy. One of the team’s losses was to Alvernia University who is currently ranked 23rd in the nation in Division III.

Other notable performances came from Conor Elliott ’19 and Cole Beeker ’20 at the plate, as well as Ryan Warm ’20 on the mound who, despite the loss, had a strong pitching performance against Alvernia. Elliot and Beeker lead the team with batting averages of .383 and .367 respectively.

Despite the busy schedule, the team was able to get some rest and relaxation during their spring break. Fort Myers is the spring training home of both the Boston Red Sox and the Minnesota Twins, offering a great opportunity to see some Major League Baseball. The team saw the Minnesota Twins defeat the Toronto Blue Jays before returning to Swarthmore on Friday to conclude their spring break trip.

Up next for the Garnet is a home doubleheader against Penn State Berks on March 18th after their game scheduled for March 14 against Eastern was canceled due to weather. Centennial Conference play will begin April 1 against Johns Hopkins University, who was picked to finish first in the conference coaches poll. The Garnet, who were picked to finish 10th in the same coaches poll, must make a strong conference play campaign to reach the Centennial Conference playoffs.

There’s Always Magic in the Air on Broadway

in Arts by

What’s the one thing you absolutely must do while you’re in New York City? The obvious answer, at least to me, is to have a Broadway marathon. Four shows, two days, and one very starstruck musical theater aficionado: here’s the story of an amazing, hectic, tour de force spring break experience that still feels a little like a fever dream.

It all began on Saturday afternoon with a rear mezzanine seat ticket to the Imperial Theater for “Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812,” a musical based on Leo Tolstoy’s “War and Peace.” The cast kicked off the show by introducing their characters: “Balaga is fun, Bolkonsky is crazy, Mary is plain, Dolokhov is fierce, Hélène is a slut, Anatole is hot, Marya is old-school, Sonya is good, Natasha is young and Andrey isn’t here!” In other words, if you didn’t quite manage to muddle your way through Tolstoy’s dense prose, don’t worry: “The Great Comet’s” got it all summarized for you.

And then, of course, there was Pierre, the adorably bewildered, awkward count who is perhaps better known in his day job as singer-songwriter Josh Groban. If there’s any good reason to see this musical, it’s his mournful solo in “Dust and Ashes,” i.e. an existential crisis set to music and performed by one of Broadway’s greatest baritones.

The entire show was remarkably innovative. There were strips of empty space between seating sections throughout the house where the ensemble stomped, sang and twirled. They tossed packaged dumplings into the audience and handed out little plastic egg shakers, and the myriad of lightbulbs hanging over the audience’s heads were lowered to create the illusion of a star-filled sky in one breathtakingly magical moment. But the ensemble—dressed in crop tops, basketball tanks, leggings, jeans and sneakers—felt out of place with the setting and the main cast’s period-appropriate attire, especially during what I’ve dubbed “the rave scene.” Kudos to the creators for the gutsy design choice, but did they really have to have glowsticks and light-up shoes in what was supposed to be a 19th-century Russian pub?

    “We really shouldn’t,” I heard one ensemble member say to another at one point, as they body-rolled their way across the space directly behind my seat.

“Come here,” laughed the other, and they proceeded to make out in the middle of a number.

It was a wild ride. I was thoroughly amused.

Going from this chaotic glory of a musical to the sugar-sweet “Waitress” later that night (also with a rear mezzanine seat) was one heck of a transition. Based on the critically acclaimed film of the same name by Adrienne Shelly (though the musical’s book was written by Jessie Nelson), the story of Jenna, a small-town waitress and expert pie-maker who longs to escape her abusive marriage, sounds almost like the plot of a Hallmark movie. But the cast and creative team somehow managed to avoid falling into the trope of a mere feel-good show, expertly navigating their way past cliches and Mary Sues with large contributions from Sara Bareilles (a Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter-turned-Tony-nominated Broadway lyricist and composer).

Perhaps the most fun part of the show were the pies. Not the pies in the musical, of which there were many. I mean the pies being sold during the intermission for more than this broke college student was willing to fork over. Judging by the moans of ecstasy (this is, in fact, not an exaggeration) of those sitting next to me as they bit into their key lime and pecan pies, they must have been the height of culinary excellence, and the little collectible tins they came in were a cute touch.

But beyond the pies, the incomparable Jessie Mueller (Tony, Drama Desk and Grammy Award-winner) was the one who truly made the show. Her vibrant soprano voice carried all of the music with polished ease. “She Used to Be Mine,” the musical’s trademark number, is touching in its own right, but Mueller’s incredible range of emotions transformed it into a heartbreaker. Needless to say, she received a well-deserved standing ovation at curtain call.

From Becky and Dawn, Jenna’s funny and lovable coworkers and friends, to Dr. Pomatter, the handsome gynecologist with a severe case of foot-in-mouth, the supporting cast rounded out the performance with a little attitude and a lot of love to create about as great of a musical as is possible when it’s set entirely in a Southern pie diner. Which, as it turns out, is pretty darn amazing. I didn’t quite dream of pies when I flopped down on an air mattress in the living room that night, but the show definitely clung to me long after I’d left the theater for my friend’s sister’s apartment (thanks for sparing me NYC’s agonizingly high costs of living, Rachel).

The next day, I was off to “Puffs, or Seven Increasingly Eventful Years at a Certain School of Magic and Magic,” a.k.a. the Harry Potter fan musical that somehow made its way onto Broadway. Maybe it was the trademark Hufflepuff likeability or the tongue-in-cheek critiques of the Harry Potter universe, but there was something about the show that enabled it to hold its own amongst the flashing neon lights of bigger-name stars in bigger-name shows for me. It was a pleasant surprise,albeit not the biggest one.

“Oh, hey, I think know her, she was in my year at Swarthmore,” said the person sitting next to me in the rear orchestra section, pointing at a picture of one of the cast members before the show.

In the characteristically Swawkward conversation with Jonathan Hui ’12 that followed, I learned that the Hufflepuff character Sally (whom Potterheads may recognize as an allusion to Sally-Ann Perks) in the musical was played by Jessie Cannizzaro ’12. Evidently the Swat bubble doesn’t just exist at Swat, it follows you around. But the light-hearted musical was a hilarious foray into the world of side characters J.K. Rowling somehow neglected to develop through seven books (and eight movies), the central theme of house pride was made only slightly ironic by the sense of collegiate allegiance I had by having a Swarthmore graduate in the show. I left that theater with a sense of validation for being a Hufflepuff and a pretty sweet “#ThirdOrNothing” T-shirt.

That night, at last, was the final and most highly anticipated musical of my trip: “Kinky Boots,” or, more specifically, Todrick Hall’s last performance as Lola in “Kinky Boots.” I’ve been in awe of the singer, dancer, actor, director, choreographer, and YouTuber’s work for many years, so I was beyond thrilled to get to meet him at the stage door after the show, alongside a crowd of appreciative fans, and, while I was there, I managed to obtain several of the other cast members’ autographs, including Taylor Louderman (Lauren) and Marcus Neville (George).

As with most final performances, the entire show became a tribute of sorts to the departing cast member; I was glad I’d seen it once before, so my “Kinky Boots” experience wasn’t entirely centered around Hall (much as I love all that he embodies). Still, Hall’s performance was nothing short of spectacular, from his tearful duet with West End-exchange actor Killian Donnelly (Charlie) in “Not My Father’s Son” to his soaring rendition of “Hold Me In Your Heart.” By the end of the show, I was honored to have watched him in the role, and in a cushy center mezzanine seat, no less.

In his parting speech at curtain call, Hall reminded the audience why musical theater is so important as a safe space for marginalized groups. When “Kinky Boots” premiered, it was a potentially controversial ode to love and acceptance regardless of gender or sexuality, and it was rewarded with rave reviews, accruing Tony, Grammy and Olivier (the British equivalent of the Tony) Awards. Centered around the unlikely friendship between a reluctant shoe factory owner and a fabulous drag queen and featuring a kickass score by Cyndi Lauper, it was uplifting, tragic, sassy, and hysterical by turns, calling out to the audience to “just be who you wanna be” without turning it into a heavy-handed battle cry. The performers jokingly addressed the audience on several occasions during the musical as “Ladies, gentlemen, and those who have yet to make up their minds.” The theater itself upheld this acceptance of gender fluidity with a small but significant addition to the customary signs outside the bathrooms, stating “Gender diversity is welcome here. Please use the restroom that best fits your gender identity or expression.”

It is my one regret that I did not manage to acquire a dazzling pair of Price and Son six-inch-heel boots(the company is really missing out with that lack of merchandising). But, in all earnestness, everything about the show from the choreography to the set design to the witty banter between characters raised the bar in entertainment “thigh-high.” The closing number, “Raise You Up/Just Be,” had me humming and tapping my toes all the way through the long and mildly nerve-wracking subway journey to a different friend’s house to crash (thanks, Ruth). It was a sensational romp from start to finish, and I couldn’t have asked for a better way to conclude my whirlwind trip.

The complex and intricate combination of factors that musical theater utilizes in storytelling has always enthralled me. At Swat, I sweep stages, carry props, and run cues on the light board in LPAC, dreaming of a future in which I get to push the button that drops the chandelier in “The Phantom of the Opera” or track Elphaba’s movements in “Wicked” with a spotlight from a little nook in the set onstage. But it’s one thing to be behind the scenes of a production and another entirely to be sitting in the audience. I typically prefer the former, unable to suspend my disbelief well enough to truly immerse myself in the show. It’s odd, then, that I keep returning to Broadway as an audience member, captivated from the moment I watched my first show in the big city four years ago. “The Great Comet,” “Waitress,” “Puffs,” and “Kinky Boots,” they’re as different as four musicals can be, but there’s a certain quality that they all share, something I can only describe as “Broadway magic.” It’s in the massive billboards’ flashing cries, the snippets of overheard conversation in another language on the streets and the scent of overpriced meat on rice from street carts on every corner. The place itself is a living, breathing urban fairytale, and it’s always a privilege for me to spend some time in the playground of imagination that a good Broadway show embodies.

Caught up in this fantastical whirl of bright lights and brighter stars, it’s no wonder that “The Great Comet” asks its audience, “Are you ready to wake up?”

Men’s Golf Kicks Off Spring Season Along Georgia Coast

in Columns/Sports by

This past week the Men’s Golf team spent their break enjoying the picturesque Georgia coast and competing in an important out of conference Tri-Match.  

The team flew down to Georgia on March 11th, and stayed for the duration of the week. They competed in the Coastal Georgia Tri-Match held in St. Simons Island against both The College of Coastal Georgia and Villanova University.

With the match at St. Simons Island as their top priority, the team played four other area courses to prepare. Aside from the Sea Island Golf Club Retreat course that the match would be played on, they also played notable courses including the Plantation Course at the Sea Island Resort, Frederica Golf Club, Ocean Forest Golf Club, and the Seaside Course at the Sea Island Resort.

The Tri-Match would bring some tough opposition. Villanova and Coastal Georgia both have players that have performed well in their respective conferences. Lucas Trim of Villanova, a NCAA Division I institution, finished last season in the Top 15 of the Head-to-Head Big East Conference Player Standings with an average round score of 74.79. Coastal Georgia, an NAIA powerhouse, was preseason ranked 7th in the NAIA and fielded Eamon Owen in the Top 40 of the Head-to-Head NAIA Player Standings last year.

Albeit the field was daunting, the Men’s Golf team rose to the challenge. The team was led by Michael Chen ’17, Adam Agustin ’20, and Dan Altieri ’19. Chen fought as the top scorer for the Garnet with a 79, good for 7 over par. Behind Chen were Agustin with an 80 and Altieri with an 81.

Despite an average showing at the Tri-Match, Chen believes the team has many areas where they can improve their game. The team finished 35 strokes behind the second place team (Villanova), but they had to overcome a rough start. Early in the week the team had to shake off the rust from a long off-period between the Fall and Spring seasons. As the week went on the team’s performance progressively got better and the players hit their stride. The break also allowed the team to strengthen an already strong sense of team chemistry. Chen and other members of the team are optimistic about the upcoming Spring season and are eager to showcase their accrued prowess in their first major tournament.

“We always look forward to playing at such a high level of competition. Going forward, we know what we need to do to improve and compete. Our first major tournament is in two weeks at The Bridges Golf Club in Gettysburg, PA. We look to continue to improve day-in/day-out and take home the conference title,” Nick DiMaio ’19 said.

With a large portion of the season ahead of them, the team has work to do. They’re keeping their eye on the prize and are putting in the time and effort needed for a championship run. The observed team camaraderie and resilience shows a deep commitment to performing better in the matches to come.

Spring break roundup

in Sports by

Track and field

The men’s and women’s track and field teams opened up the outdoor season last Friday at the USF Invitational down in Tampa, Fla. Both teams showed that they came to compete, as the women had six top-10 results while the men had four.

Thrower Osazenoriuwa Ebose ’15 continued with the types of stellar performances that marked a successful indoor season in which she was named Centennial Conference Indoor Field Athlete of the Year. At the USF Invitational, she placed second in the discus throw and third in the shot put. Lulu Allen-Waller ’17 achieved personal collegiate-best marks in the 100-meter high hurdles and the 400-meter intermediate hurdles, as did classmate Anise Charles ’17 in the 200-meter dash.

Jason Heo ’15 highlighted for the men by placing sixth in the 100-meter high hurdles with a time of 16.52 seconds, .06 seconds short of his personal best. Zach Kronstat ’15, Emmanuel Schorsch ’15, and Andrew Jansen ’18 also had top-10 performances in the triple jump, javelin throw, and shot put, respectively.

The next day, Sarah Nielsen ’16 placed eighth in the mile at the NCAA D-III Indoor Track and Field Championships. In the process, she became the fifth athlete in the women’s team’s history to earn all-America recognition indoors.

Both teams will compete next in Widener University’s Danny Curran Invitational on March 27 and 28, looking to build on a great start to their outdoor season.

Men’s tennis

The Garnet went 1-2 over a spring break that consisted of a competitive set of matches against nationally-ranked opponents. Although they lost to 31st-ranked Stevens Institute of Technology and 19th-ranked University of Mary Washington, the Garnet earned their second win of the season against 37th-ranked Washington and Lee.

Despite the losing record during that time, the team still had great performances that showed why they are a force to be reckoned with. Mark Fallati ’18 remained undefeated at second singles until the spring break finale against the Mary Washington, during which he fought to three sets but ultimately lost 6-2, 2-6, 10-8. One of the highlights of the trip was the team’s sweep of singles play against Washington and Lee en route to a 7-2 victory.

On Tuesday night, the men’s tennis team hosted second-ranked Claremont-Mudd-Scripps, who dominated the Garnet and won 9-0. CMS did not lose a set in any of its singles matches. Fallati and Ari Cepelewicz ’18 kept it close in second doubles, but ultimately fell 8-6.

The team will continue with a packed schedule this week. They host Ursinus College Thursday night before leaving Friday morning to play at DePauw University on Saturday and Kenyon College on Sunday.

Women’s tennis

The women’s tennis team went to Hilton Head, S.C. over spring break and left with three wins against all three of their opponents: Westminster College, Randolph College, and Albion College. There were streaks and sweeps everywhere for the Garnet, making it fitting that they won their last match against Albion with a 9-0 sweep.

Alli Wong ’17 and Maria Cuervo ’18 went undefeated at first doubles to kick off each of the victories. The team swept third doubles throughout the three victories as well. Wong and Cuervo also won all of their singles matches, setting the tone for the Garnet’s dominance. Ashley Gao ’18 had impressive performances throughout the break as well, with two doubles wins with Rachel Bronkema ’18 and three singles wins.

With a four-game winning streak dating back to March 1, the Garnet have plenty of reason to be confident going into their next match on Saturday against McDaniel College, their first Centennial Conference opponent this season. From there, they head over to play Oberlin College on Sunday to close out a busy weekend.

Women’s Softball

With one of the most packed spring break schedules, the women’s softball team went down to Fort Myers, Fla. to kick off their season. Although they started off with three wins, the team lost some momentum and closed out the break with a 4-4 record.The Garnet put out a high-scoring offense in all of its wins, driving in at least 10 runs in each. Likewise, it struggled to put up runs in the games that it eventually lost, failing to score more than three runs and even getting shut out once.

However, solid pitching performances often kept the Garnet close, as three of their four losses were only by one point. One of the more notable games like this was a 1-0 loss to Geneva, in which Swarthmore pitcher Emily Bowman ’18 dueled the opposing pitcher and lost, despite giving up only four hits and striking out eight over six innings. Bowman also provided 4.2 scoreless innings of relief the previous night to keep Swarthmore within distance of opposing Drew, who ultimately won 4-3. Mary Olesnavich ’18 also pitched strongly throughout the trip, posting a 1.58 ERA in 13.1 innings pitched. Swarthmore’s pitching overall was solid, with a 2.83 ERA over the course of the trip.

The team’s doubleheader scheduled for Tuesday against Widener University was postponed. Their next matchup is a doubleheader at home against Penn State Brandywine at 3 and 5 p.m. today.

Men’s lacrosse

During spring break, the men’s lacrosse team won two games to bring their win streak to a total of four games. The games, in which Swarthmore went against Gordon College and Whittier College, were both played in California. However, the Garnet showed that they can win in any way needed on enemy territory, as they easily defeated Gordon 16-8 before pulling out a close 13-12 win against Whittier.

The game against Gordon was never really in question. Although Gordon did score first, the Garnet responded with eight unanswered goals by the half and built themselves a comfortable 12-3 lead as they went into the final quarter. Cam Marsh ’18 and Ian Lukaszewicz ’15 led the team by scoring four goals apiece, while Andrew Preiser ’15 led in assists with four.

Against Whittier, the Garnet had a respectable 10-5 lead going into the final quarter. Whittier would not go down easily, though, as they trailed just 12-11 with less than a minute left. Goalie Cole Fox ’17 stepped up under the pressure and was able to turn away a shot attempt that was soon converted to a goal by the Garnet. The Garnet survived a goal in response by Whittier in the closing seconds to escape with the win. Fox performed well in both matches, saving 16 and 15 shots respectively, and now has a 3-0 start to his season.

The Garnet will look to continue their winning streak this Saturday when they play Ursinus College, their first Centennial Conference opponent this season, at home.

Women’s lacrosse

Following a winless spring break, the women’s lacrosse team came to life at home against Alvernia on Tuesday as they earned a 17-4 victory. The first half of the victory showcased the Garnet’s offensive explosiveness, evidenced by the team’s 12-3 lead at the half. Overall, 8 different players scored for the Garnet; Sara Lentricchia ’15, Kathryn Restrepo ’18, and Elyse Tierney ’15 had four goals apiece. In the second half, the team displayed their defensive abilities as they kept Alvernia to only one goal. The victory was the definition of a full-team effort, the kind the Garnet hope to have in future games.

Over spring break, the Garnet lost its two games against Lynchburg and Rochester. The team struggled to put away shots against Lynchburg, netting only five out of 24. Restrepo scored a hat-trick to mark one of the positives in the 11-5 loss. The game against Rochester was much closer. During the first half, the Garnet was able to equalize after being down 4-2, and trailed 6-5 at the half. Restrepo had yet another hat-trick along with Lentricchia, but the team ultimately fell 14-10 as Rochester turned the ball over only twice and had twice as many shots as the Garnet in the second half.

The team’s next game will be away against Eastern University, where they hope to start to build some momentum for the rest of the season.

Frisbee teams have high expectations for season

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Frisbee photo

Thor saw rem. Marrow tesh. Mort H Waste. These three phrases are anagrams of the word Swarthmore. There are thousands of ways to rearrange the letters in Swarthmore. However, many combinations, like the ones above, don’t make much sense. Two anagrams that do make sense are Earthworms and Warmothers. These are the respective nicknames for the men’s and women’s Ultimate Frisbee teams.

Though the Ultimate teams, much like actual earthworms, tend to play under the radar, they are actually some of the largest teams in the school. The men’s team contains 40 players whereas the women’s team has around 30 players. Perhaps one reason these teams don’t have campus-wide recognition is that they are not a varsity sport and instead fall under the category of a club sport. As a result, they don’t have frequent access to the field house or the turf and they don’t have a connection with Swarthmore’s athletic department.

Because the Ultimate team is independent of the athletic department, the players are thrust into leadership roles. Neither of the teams have hired coaches, prompting the captains for each team to double as coaches and teach in addition to playing. Both the Earthworms and the Warmothers have three captains. These student-athletes not only participate in matches and coach their teammates, but also register for tournaments, plan practices, and manage their whole team’s budget.

“You have to lead every practice,” said two-year Warmothers captain Amy Jin ’15. “The younger players all look up to you and listen to you. So you have to be really careful about what you’re saying — what types of attitudes you are leaving them with.”

Jin, along with Tamsin True-Alcala ’15 and Rebecca Levine ’17 captain the Warmothers squad this year. Though most captains at Swarthmore and other collegiate programs are seniors, the Warmothers always make it a priority to include a non-senior as a captain. This nuance is not performance-based. The younger student-athlete is chosen so the seniors can mentor her in how to manage the team and control all of the team’s lesser-known logistical issues. However, because of this dynamic, there’s a definite distinction in the actions of the younger captain versus the temperament of the older captains.

Jin commented, “When I was captain last year I had a very different attitude than I had this year because I let the senior captains hold the louder, more important voice of the team. And this year that’s me. I’ve become a lot more assertive about things.”

Similar to Jin’s increase in leadership this year, the three Earthworm captains, Joe Corcoran ’16, Evan Rosenberg ’15 and Temple Price ’15, have all been forced to step up.

Corcoran noted, “I’ve definitely noticed in the other two captains them taking on more responsibilities and being more sure of themselves.”

In fact, the Earthworms and the Warmothers are heavily reliant on their captains because they are both such young teams. The Warmothers only have three seniors, two of whom (Jin and True-Alacala) are returning. They have seven first-years and eleven sophomores. The Earthworms are in a similar position as close to half of the team is comprised of new players. But, youth should not be confused with weakness.

“Our freshmen look really good,” Corcoran said. He went on to praise their progress after their week-long trip to Hilton Head Island, South Carolina. “There’s a better team dynamic in that they’re better friends with each other and the team is closer in general.”

Both teams spent their spring break in Hilton Head, dedicating all six days to Ultimate. Practices went from 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. The captains led the practices and focused on one skill per day. For instance, one day they emphasized throwing while the next was conditioning. After accumulating a total of thirty-six hours of practice, both teams enter the season excited and ready to go.

For both the men’s team and the women’s team there’s a distinction between new players and returning players. For many first-years, just like Jin and Corcoran, college was the first time they played organized Ultimate. As a result, there’s a definite learning curve. The Warmothers combat this curve by playing returning players more than new ones. This allows new players to learn this system without being thrust into a lot of playing time. That said, Jin and the other captains make it a priority to play everyone who shows up for the tournament even if it’s only for one or two points.

The men’s team, on the other hand, has a more aggressive policy for integrating the new players. They use their spring break trip to assimilate first-years into the quick paced nature of the game.

Corcoran said,“[The trip’s] all about getting new players as much experience as possible so they can start playing with our experienced players.”

Though the men’s team emphasizes a quick transition, the players who get the most minutes are generally returning players.

Regardless of who plays, young or old, both Swarthmore teams have high expectations going into the season. Jin and True-Alcala have made the regional tournament every single year. This year should be no different, as the Warmothers expect to add to their recent success and make the tournament once again. Corcoran and the rest of the Earthworms believe regionals are in reach as well. But in order for them to make it there, they know they’ll have to beat rivals Franklin & Marshall and Haverford something that they know won’t be a walk in the park.

The men’s team begins their spring season this weekend, whereas the women will travel to Haverford on Saturday for their second match of the season. The forty-degree forecasted weather and the barren trees without leaves will not deter them. The teams have become quite accustomed to playing in the cold. On top of that, they know their namesakes, the real earthworms, will be slithering right below them, fighting to give the players an extra edge.

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