The Scarlet & Black

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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Intercollegiate and intramural sports get ticklish nod

This week, due to the several enthusiastic verbal submissions I received, the Grinnell Tickle City Award decisively goes to Grinnell athletics.
Over the past weeks, the volleyball team made the conference tournament and both men’s and women’s cross country teams recently took home conference titles.

The men’s soccer team made history by winning the Midwest Conference Tournament and advancing to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in school history. In the MWC semifinals, the Pioneers defeated St. Norbert College on penalty kicks after playing to a scoreless tie. The next day they beat Beloit in another penalty shootout after the game ended 2-2. Brimming with confidence in penalty kick tie-breakers, the Pioneers tried to confuse NCAA first-round opponent Macalester College by logically arguing why they should go straight to penalty kicks without playing a single minute of regulation.

Unfortunately, the players of Macalester, an institution ranked 29th of all liberal arts colleges in the nation by U.S. News & World Report, realized at the last second what was going on and didn’t agree. Macalester went on to win an extremely hard-fought game with a score of 2-0 and the Pioneers now lament the fact that they didn’t draw a state school in the first round.

Also, Pioneer basketball is underway and the women’s team won their first game of the season at Cornell College. On the men’s side, the high-scoring run-and-gun offense we know and love is back to business. Look for them to light up Darby with three pointers while stubborn opposing teams infuriate the Scarlet Sea faithful by refusing to shoot a similar amount of threes and then taking easy lay-ups instead of monster dunks.

The season opener was a dramatic come-from-behind win over Waldorf College. It was also a milestone victory for the Pioneer coaching staff, as it was assistant coach David N. Arseneault’s ’09 historic first win with the program after a successful playing career.

The only consolation for Waldorf was that they made it back to Forest City, Iowa in record time after they got out their keys and pulled up their team bus right as the game was out of their reach, thanks to the friendly suggestions of the Grinnell fans to help them get home safe.

The current excitement is not just about varsity sports, though, as the action-packed intramural dodgeball league has returned to the Auxiliary Gym. Many teams are playing a solid, fundamental game by remembering to dodge, duck, dip, dive and dodge. Others are just closing their eyes and running around in circles hoping they don’t get drilled.

Unfortunately, it’s expected that in the next couple of weeks a few players will be forced to schedule season-ending rotator-cuff surgery for injuries sustained by repeatedly throwing those horrible cloth-covered dodgeballs that weigh about eight ounces.

At the top of the standings right now are the Purple Cobras of big-budget Globo-Gym, who are threatening to take over the Grinnell College fitness center if they win the title.

Grinnell Athletics, you are tickle city!

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