Tuesday, May 31, 2011

UVA Spring Sport Champions

Over the Memorial Day weekend, two of Virginia’s spring sports teams won titles. In Baltimore, the Cavalier men’s lacrosse team won their fifth NCAA title, while in Durham; the baseball team won its third ACC tournament crown.

In the first game of the lacrosse final four, UVa faced off against an upstart Denver squad making its first appearance on the big stage, compared to the Wahoo’s 21st. Their inexperience showed as the Cavs jumped to a 5-2 first quarter lead and were up 13-3 at one point. After dispatching the Pioneers with a final score of 14-8, Virginia advanced to their ninth final, this time against rival Maryland.

On a sweltering hot Memorial Day, the Terrapin defense cooled off the Hoos, shutting them out in the first quarter. Despite playing in Maryland’s backyard at Ravens Stadium, the Cavaliers responded to take a 5-3 halftime lead. After the Terps rallied to tie the game at six in the fourth quarter, Virginia used their new ball control precision offense to connect on three straight goals, which sent the black and red clad fans heading for the exits with two minutes left. The nine goals scored by the Cavs were the second fewest on the year, the fewest also being against Maryland in an earlier loss.

This was the fifth title for the program, third since my freshman year in 2003, which is an absurdly high number when compared to the rest of the teams in my 100% theory. During that same span, only one of the other eleven teams have won a title (1% Colts in ‘06), and one other even made a title game (Cleveland Cavs in ’07). It gets even worse when you expand the time frame, since five of the teams have never won a title (UVa football and basketball, Cleveland Cavs, Capitals, and Nationals) and the Indians and Browns have not won in almost five decades. Maybe I should only have lacrosse jerseys and posters. This is certainly a good start.

Not to be forgotten, the UVa baseball team won their second ACC title game in three years over the weekend as well. Virginia won all four of their games in the tournament including victories over three top-20 schools. They will hope to capitalize on this momentum as they did two years ago when they won the tournament and advanced to their only College World Series. It helps that they will be the #1 overall seed and have this new shirt to wear around.

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