Skip to main content

This Weekend in Lehigh Sports 01/05/2007

While waiting to put together my "Lehigh's recruiting needs in the offseason" blog post, I'm going to continue to break down the Lehigh sports scene for this weekend after a rough week for basketball, but a surprisingly solid performance at the Southern Scuffle in wrestling.

Last weekend, Lehigh placed five at the Southern Scuffle to successfully shake off a slow start to finish 11th, just barely beating Pitt and Virginia, while finishing just behind Ohio State and North Carolina. Senior heavyweight Paul Weibel was the star, taking out Joe Fendone of Edinboro before eventually falling to the defending national champion Cole Konrad of Minnesota in the semifinals. He apparently almost got the pin before bowing out - overall, seems to me (who doesn't know a lot about wrestling) a great job.

This weekend, it's off to the west coast to compete in a grueling five duals in three days. Cal State-Fullerton, American, Arizona State, Stanford, and UC-Davis are on the offing this weekend. None are ranked opponents, and though they should be good competition, you'd hope that there's a good shot that we can fly back from the west coast with one dual win here.

Our men's basketball team has been officially solved by two beatable teams: Monmouth of the NEC (6-8, 209 RPI) and Columbia of the Ivy (8-5, 191 RPI). What's more disheartening is the way we're losing: getting either embarassed (getting hammered in the 67-39 loss to Monmouth) or losing on huge mental errors (committing a foul with a 1 point lead with .4 seconds to play in a 55-54 loss to Columbia). Let's face it, teams have figured it out: triple-team our best scorer, senior G Jose Olivero, and make someone else beat you. Not exactly the way you want to go into your league schedule this weekend vs. American at Stabler on Saturday.

This team, on paper, is better than their 5-11 record and (ugh) 288 in the RPI might indicate. Injuries to the big guys below have killed us as well, but what's really killing us the most is not playing consistently and making terrible errors of judgement down the stretch. But the time for making mistakes is through. Hopefully with American this Saturday at home we get things started, and getting our first (!) road win this year at Navy will be equally as important. If not, well, you'll be hearing a lot about Lehigh football recruiting this winter.

The women's team, loaded with seniors, also disappointed in a 66-56 loss to Yale, giving the Elis their first road win since November 21st. Like the men, it seems like they're simply not playing with enough consistency to be a favorite going into league play. Only senior Sara Ellis and sophomore C Melissa Rich hit double-figures against Yale, with five of Ellis' points coming at the line. Rich has been a find at center, and (once again) on paper this is a team that should be running for the title, but there are too many Yale games where it's potential unfulfilled.

And with Army playing like they're on fire, Bucknell not too far behind, and Navy and Holy Cross waiting in the wings, it's time to get things consistent once again in time for American and Navy this coming week. Hopefully next week it will all look better.

Comments

Anonymous said…
its really simple, the TEAM needs to step up and make plays. The Mens team has been dissapointing so far. Jose is not our only player, we got Hall, Neptune and White. All have potential to be big players on this team. Lehigh needs to step up in league play and make up some lost ground. Its time to be better and step up!!!
Anonymous said…
Time to step up in the world of sports cliches. Leave nothing in the locker room, give 150%, play your "A" game and want it more than they do.

Popular posts from this blog

Remembering Lehigh's Battles With The Late Tubby Raymond

(Photo Credits: Delaware Online)

When I heard the news Tubby Raymond, legendary Delaware head football coach, died last week at the age of 92, two immediate memories came rushing back to me.

One occurred on October 16th, 1999, when Tubby had made a complaint to the local paper or radio in the run-up to Kevin Higgins' Mountain Hawks beating his Blue Hens on Delaware's homecoming, 42-35.

I have no idea if the quote even actually happened, but my recollection is that Tubby said that Lehigh had "St. Bartholomew's" on their schedule, and hadn't played anybody.  It was a verbal jab that many Delaware fans took with them to the stands to heckle the Mountain Hawk fans that made the short trip to Newark.

Up until that point, I had watched a bunch of Lehigh football games over the years.  I experienced their rise in the 1990s.  I enjoyed wins, and championships, and playoff victories.

But never had I felt a win so viscerally vindicating than the one over Tubby Raymond&…

Lehigh Wrestling Gets Superstar Treatment at PPL Center. Lehigh Football Needs The Same At Murray Goodman.

"We knew it would be nice," Lehigh wrestling head coach Pat Santoro said. "But it was even better than we expected."

Pat was talking about the reception his Lehigh wrestling squad experienced at Allentown's PPL Center this weekend, when a sellout crowd over nearly 10,000 people came to watch No. 1 Penn State grapple with No. 5 Lehigh in a collegiate wrestling event.

It was, by all accounts, something special to behold. 

"I thought it was really cool and an exciting place to wrestle," said Penn State wrestler Nick Nevills. "These fans were really into it, a rowdy bunch. It's a lot more fun as an athlete to wrestle in an environment like this. I'd say it was one of the most exciting times I have had in my career."

The sense of spectacle at the PPL center, though, puts a spotlight on what more can be done at Lehigh itself to make their athletic contests into spectacles.  It requires money to be spent and energy to be expended.  But the…

Troy Pelletier Hasn't Stopped Outworking His Rivals On His Journey To Professional Football

Many Patriot League football fans remember the 153rd meeting between Lehigh and Lafayette, one that ended happily for the Mountain Hawks.

They might remember the MVP performance of QB Brad Mayes, or perhaps the halftime speech by OL Zach Duffy that seemed to spur the Mountain Hawks to victory.

Or perhaps they might remember the spectacular single play of Mayes rolling right and finding WR Gatlin Casey in the end zone to give the Mountain Hawks a lead they didn't relinquish.  It was an incredible play by Mayes, who returns this upcoming year for his senior season, and Casey, who, having exhausted his eligibility at Lehigh, will be playing one more year at Middle Tennessee State.

As great as those individual moments are, though, they are not my biggest takeaway of that game.

Too many Lehigh people forget that Lehigh was down 31-21 at half, and that victory was no sure thing.  And they sometimes forget that so much of that victory came from the grinding of WR Troy Pelletier, deliver…