Sunday, January 30, 2011

Saturday, January 29th: Women's Ice Hockey vs. Boston University

What: Women's Ice Hockey vs. Boston University

When: Saturday, January 29th, 2011, 4:00 PM

Where: Mark Edward Freitas Ice Forum

Result: Loss, 4-1

According to the Box Score, this game drew 287 fans. I'd say it was more like 200, but either way it was more than I expected. It was Skating Strides Day, which meant the Huskies wore pink instead of white, and there was Breast Cancer Fundraising all around the arena. But as for the game, it wasn't too nice. UConn's Women's Hockey did well last season, but had struggled this season. However, they headed into Friday's matchup at BU on a five-game winning streak but lost 2-1 after being up 1-0 heading into the third period. After that letdown, they struggled again yesterday, giving up two goals in the first period. After a scoreless second, they gave up two goals in period 3, before Jennifer Chaisson scored with under 4 minutes to go to give the Huskies their only goal. We'd lose, 4-1. A disappointing game. But I'm still looking forward to the game vs. Providence at the Whalers Hockey Fest. That should be fun. And we've got one more home game before then. For now though, that's it. See you Monday after the Women's Basketball vs. Duke.

Saturday, January 29th: Men's Basketball vs. Louisville

What: Men's Basketball vs. Louisville

When: Saturday, January 29th, 2011, 12:00 PM

Where: Gampel Pavilion

Result: Loss, 79-78, 2OT


Let me just start out by saying that in spite of the loss, this was a very exciting game to watch. Back and forth the entire time. We were up by about 7 with only a few minutes left, but thanks to missed free throws and bad possessions, the Cardinals came back to send it into overtime. And then another OT. My first OT at a UConn basketball game, and my second. But we lost. With about 4 seconds left, the Cardinals made a free throw but missed the second. 79-78. Kemba Walker launched a three-pointer from half court that nearly went in. But it didn't. If it did though, the entire arena would go crazy.

At first, I thought that I would have trouble getting a seat in the lower level. As it would turn out, though, due to snow removal efforts nobody could line up until 6 AM. I got there around 10:45, and wound up near the back of the lower level. Still good seats though. Better than for the Nova game. It was a disappointing loss, especially since we could have been #3 in the nation with a win. But next up is Syracuse. That's going to be a huge game and I think we have to win. Two losses in a row could drop us out of the Top 10 and send us on the same downward spiral that doomed us last season.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Good Article about Rentschler Hockey

I don't usually post outside articles, but with the Outdoor Hockey Games coming up at Rentschler Field on February 13, I found it a good idea to post this article from the Daily Campus. I would encourage everyone to come check this out. We've seen the Winter Classic on TV, and it's truly magnificent. But with tickets costing several hundred to several thousand dollars each, who can go? This is a chance to see ice hockey return to its roots.

And hey, it's part of the Whalers Hockey Fest, so perhaps the NHL will be influenced by its success to bring the top-level hockey back to Connecticut someday. Let's do this!

Schedule For Week Ending Sunday, February 6

Snowed in now thanks to another Cancellation. Here is next week's schedule.


Y = Will Attend

P = Probably Attending

M = Might Attend

D= Doubtful to Attend

Monday, January 31:

7:00 PM: Women's Basketball vs. Duke (Y)

Wednesday, February 2:

7:00 PM: Men's Basketball vs. Syracuse (Y)

Saturday, February 5:

2:00 PM: Women's Basketball vs. DePaul (Y)

7:05 PM: Men's Ice Hockey vs. Army (P)

Sunday, February 6

1:00 PM Women's Ice Hockey vs. Northeastern (P)

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

About the Basketball Games

I had written up a summary for the men's and women's basketball games I attended last Saturday, but for some reason when I hit "Publish" Wordpress didn't post it and now it's lost. I'm trying to recover it, but if not, they may be lost. I may rewrite it, I may not. It took me a while. We'll see.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Friday, January 21, 2011: Men's Ice Hockey vs. Air Force

What: Men's Ice Hockey vs. Air Force

When: Friday, January 21, 2011, 7:05 PM

Where: Mark Edward Frietas Ice Forum

Result: Air Force 2 Connecticut 1

Summary: It is freezing outside now. And it was pretty cold in Frietas Ice Forum during this game. But it was still fun. I arrived around 6:00 PM for the Blue Line meeting. I received a free slice of pizza before sitting in Section 3, third row. And the game was somewhat exciting. Air Force went up 2-0, but the Huskies cut it to 2-1 on a goal by Billy Latta. I had Latta in the Goal of the Game contest, but I wasn't the lucky winner. I did win a $20 gift certificate to the True Blue Tavern though through the student loyalty program.

Anyway, after the Latta goal, UConn was unable to score any more, although they had the opportunities. After ultimately pulling their goalie, they still couldn't score, and that was the game. Overall, pretty fun night.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Schedule for Week Ending January 30, 2011

Ok, you know the drill. Below is my schedule for the week from January 24-30.


(Y) = Will Attend

(P) = Probably Attending

(M) = Might Attend

(D) = Doubtful to Attend

Saturday, January 29:

12:00 PM: Men's Basketball vs. Louisville (Y)

4:00 PM: Women's Ice Hockey vs. Boston University (P)

That's it for next week. A busy week after that, though.

A Word on Hockey Before the Game Tonight

So many of you may have heard that the UConn Men's and Women's Ice Hockey teams are playing in the Whalers Hockey Fest at Rentschler Field on February 13. The men's game vs. Sacred Heart begins at 1:00 and the women face Providence at 4 PM. Tickets are $10 for adults, and $5 for Seniors, Youth, and Students and can be purchased here. Admission includes both games and I am told that SUBOG will be selling Roadshow tickets for student transportation beginning February 1.

I have a feeling that this will either be a sell-out and a success or it will be a colossal failure and nobody will buy tickets. Only time will tell. Let's hope it's the former rather than the latter. Buy tickets and go to the game. This is your chance to experience an atmosphere like the Winter Classic but for a fraction of the price. Tickets to this past year's game at Heinz Field were going for $500 minimum. And the seats that weren't in the sky went for several thousand. This is general admission (I haven't figured out if there's a general admission section for people who don't buy tickets through the Whalers Hockey Fest organizers or if it's all general admission throughout the whole stadium). So you can get somewhat close. Even the worst seats are better than the $500 seats at Heinz. And they're 2% of the price (1% if you're a student - though with the bus ticket it's still probably the same). So let's go out there. And of course, tonight is the Men's Ice Hockey game vs. Air Force. Stay tuned.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

January 17, 2011: Men's Basketball vs. Villanova

What: Men's Basketball vs. Villanova

When: Monday, January 17, 2011, 3:30 PM

Where: Harry A. Gampel Pavillion

Result: Win, 61-59

Summary: As a write this, I am snowed into my dorm and all classes before noon are canceled. Looking at the forecast, it is possible that afternoon classes were be canceled too. If they aren't, I'm so not looking forward to walking to the Physics Building from East, and who knows how delayed the buses will be?

But anyway, on to the game. Let me start this off by saying that on Sunday afternoon around 3:30 PM (a full 24 hours before the game), I was walking by Gampel on my way to the Co-op to pick up my books, and people were already lined up in tents outside the arena. Keep in mind, the forecast predicted a low of 3 degrees for that night, with a windchill of about 10 below. When I arrived at Gampel about 40 minutes before doors opened, the line already stretched somewhat far. In fact, there were so many people in front of me that I wound up in the upper part of the student section. I never sat there before.

But all in all, this was a great game. The crowd was loud the entire contest, louder than I'd ever heard them before. We started on an 8-0 run, before Nova started to play well. The first half was a poor shooting affair, and we lead just 24-22 at halftime.

But in the second half, both offenses picked up. It was 59-54 with under a minute left when Nova hit a three-pointer. Kemba Walker then bricked two free throws, before we fouled Derek Fisher who nailed both of his to tie the game. But Kemba Walker hit a jump shot with 2.5 seconds left, sending the crowd into a frenzy and giving us the lead for good.

One amusing moment occurred during the second half. Villanova was fouled shooting what was called a long two. However, the refs needed to look at the monitor to determine if it was in fact a two-pointer or if he was beyond the arc. At this point, the Student Section started yelling "TWOOOOO" and the Visiting Section yelled "THREEEEE". As the person behind me put it, "I feel like we're on The Price is Right".

For the past nine years, I had gone to New York Knicks matinees on Martin Luther King Day. Now that I'm in college, that's not practical because the semester starts the next day (or perhaps not, in case of snow.) But this was pretty good too, and was probably more exciting than any of the Knicks games I was at. And more raucous, and an overall better atmosphere, mainly because there aren't drunks spewing profanity every ten seconds. The whole crowd chanting "F*** THE REFS" after a bad call is one thing. But one crazy drunk guy shouting "F*** YOU" every ten seconds is totally different, and obnoxious.

So long for now, and I'll be back after Ice Hockey Friday night.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Fall 2010 Semester Countdown #2: UConn Wins Big East Soccer Tournamnet Quarterfinal vs. Depaul 2-0

Game #2 in our countdown of the best five games of Fall 2010 semester is the Big East Tournament quarterfinal between the Huskies and the DePaul Blue Demons.

Here is a summary from the original post
Well, the game was delayed until Friday, after it was scheduled to start on Thursday, a day after the other Big East first round games. But that didn’t matter. It got off, and went well. We won 2-0. And I was cheering incredibly enthusiastically. So now I have no voice almost. Oh well. And a bunch of people thought I was drunk. I have not drank any alcohol in my entire life. Just putting that out there. And I have a feeling I am going to end up on Youtube now. We will see. If so, I’ll be sure to post the footage, however hilarious/embarrassing it may be. And one guy (who looked about 45, and I believe was the father of one of the high schoolers who were basically cheering me for cheering) first pointed to a cup of hot chocolate that had been stuck in the fence, and said “did you drink from that?”. I told him no. He told me “What did you drink?” I told him the only think I drank was a bottle of water. He said “Well whatever that is, I want some.” It was water, not alcohol. Why must everyone assume I am drunk just because I am cheering incredibly rowdily and enthusiastically? Anyway, just some of the quotes I threw out there were referring to the chubby DePaul goalkeeper as “a Teletubby”, “A pumpkin Teletubby”, and “Tinky Winky’s Husband”. (It is a well-known fact that the purple Tellitubby is gay, see this article from BBC) I also hollered random names of foods, like “Look, cake. Go eat it!” and screamed “GO UCONN!” repeatedly. And there was that routine where I said “Hey Goalie, I have to take a Mamadou”, then proceeded to pantomine going to the bathroom, before mock wiping my (clothed) buttocks with a glove as if it were toilet paper and pretending to throw it on the field. Never before has “Mamadou” been used as a euphemism for a bowel movement. Boy, it was fun. But I have no voice. It was worth it all though. Completely and absolutely. GO HUSKIES! Now for the ratings. (And these will count because although it was a conference tournament, it was designated as a “campus sites” game rather than us hosting the entire tournament.)


All in all, it was a great atmosphere here at Morrone in spite of the postponement. Unfortunately, I was not able to attend the NCAA Tournament game against Brown as it was during Thanksgiving Break, and due to the power failure, I couldn't even watch a webstream or hear a radio broadcast. And we lost on penalty kicks (again). Oh well. I'm looking forward to another great season with the Goal Patrol next year.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Fall 2010 Semester Countdown #3: Women's Basketball Defeats #2 Baylor 65-64

Here is game #3 in our Top 5 Games of Fall 2010 Semester Countdown. On November 16 at XL Center, the #1 UConn Huskies women's basketball team faced off against the #2 Baylor Lady Bears, led by the manly Brittney Greiner. Down by one, 65-64, Baylor chose not to foul and instead forced the Huskies into a shot-clock violation. Unfortunately, there were only about 1.5 seconds left when they got the ball, and a desperate heave failed.

This #1-#2 matchup was by far the tightest the Huskies were played during what would eventually become a 90-game winning streak. But thanks to 30 points by Maya Moore, the Huskies were able to pull this one off. And surprisingly, Greiner only managed seven rebounds. This was my first game ever at the XL Center, plus it was on National TV (ESPN2) as part of the 24 Hours of Basketball Marathon. All in all, a great game.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Fall 2010 Countdown #4: Women's Soccer Pulls out OT win vs. Penn State

It's time for the #4 game of Fall 2010 Semester in our countdown. This game was played on September 5, 2010, which was before this blog started, so I have no previous review.

However, this was my first women's soccer game. I had attended a little bit of the game vs. Illinois two days earlier, but left because the weather was nasty (thank you Hurricane Earl). This game, however, I would attend in its entirety. And I'm glad I did.

I had previously attended multiple men's games with the Goal Patrol (an exhibition vs. Boston University, as well as meaningful games vs. St. Francis and Yale). But this was my first experience seeing Morrone for a women's game (excluding the few minutes I was at the Illinois game for).

It was also my first brush with the Goal of the Game contest. I picked Linda Ruutu. Turned out, Devin Prendergast got the first goal. Nobody won, because, in the words of the intern working the table, "she was a midfielder". Well, Ruutu was a midfielder too. Don't I get credit for that? Well, to date, I haven't won a GotG contest, though I've entered at soccer, field hockey, and ice hockey games. Hopefully I will eventually.

As for the game itself, Penn State got a quick goal to go up 1-0. But then UConn evened it up 1-1 at halftime on the aforementioned Prendergast goal. They would go up 2-1 after Jessica Shufelt scored, but the Nittany Lions would even it up at 2-2 and send it into overtime.

College, unlike FIFA, has golden goal (ie sudden death). So, when Shufelt scored again a couple minutes into overtime, that ended the game right there. A very exciting finish to what had been a very exciting game. Not bad for my first time there.

I would only attend a couple more women's soccer games this year (the first half of Notre Dame and about two minutes of the DePaul game before heading over to Field Hockey) but hopefully I'll be able to attend more next year.

For now, though, we had a pretty good season, and let's look to improve next year.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Fall 2010 Greatest Games Countdown #5: Women's Field Hockey Big East Semifinal vs. Louisville

Here is the first game in the Top 5 Countdown as promised. On November 6th, 2010, the Huskies defeated the Louisville Cardinals 2-1 in the semifinal of the Big East Field Hockey Tournament at the Sherman Family Sports Complex.

Below is the summary from the original review
Second game of a Big East Tournament Doubleheader. I was at part of the opener, #4 Rutgers vs. #1 Syracuse, which the Orange won in a blowout. This will not be reviewed. For this contest, although it was played on campus, the Huskies were the “away” team, and hence were announced first, wore their blue uniforms, etc. This is because they had a lower seed. Anyway, it was a packed house, about as packed as I’ve ever seen it, including a large Louisville contingent. Admission was free for me as a student, but others had to pay (unlike normal Field Hockey matches). And Louisville’s best player, who won BE Offensive Player of the Year, was ejected towards the end of the first half, her team already down 2-0. Nicole Youman will be suspended for the first game of the NCAA Tournament should her team qualify, but if not, as a Senior, there’s really nothing else to suspend her for. I don’t know how that would work exactly. I remember when Zinedine Zidane was suspended 3 games for his headbutt in the 2006 World Cup, but had planned on retiring immediately after and as such couldn’t serve it, he did three days of community service through FIFA’s program instead. Perhaps NCAA has a similar route? I don’t know. Anyway, just as a reminder, this game, and today’s final vs. Syracuse, will be reviewed but will not be included in the ratings as it is not a “home” game or a “Campus sites” postseason game.


The Huskies would lose to the Orange the next day. But this was still a great contest. As a student, I got in for free, although if not, I would have had to pay. This is in contrast to normal Field Hockey games at Sherman which are free to everyone. But since the Big East Conference was running this one, that's how it was. It was still pretty fun though.

The atmosphere was great, and ultimately us Husky fans went home happy while the Louisville fans did not. Louisville would not make the tournament. Syracuse would become a seeded team which meant they would host a regional. They would need Overtime to beat Penn State, however, before losing to Ohio State. UConn, on the other hand, got placed in the regional hosted by Maryland. They would beat American in a shootout, before losing to the eventual champs 3-1. But it was still a great season for the Huskies, who finished with a higher national ranking than any other fall sports team.

It was a fantastic atmosphere at Sherman. The Big East sometimes holds the tournament at Sherman, and sometimes at other sites. Here's hoping it's back here next year.

Fall 2010 Review Countdown - Starting Tonight

So there's only five days until we resume our commentary with the UConn-Villanova Men's Basketball game at Gampel Pavillion. We will be trying to take a more personal take on UConn sporting events this semester. So let's get ready by counting down the top 5 UConn Games of Fall Semester. The only rule is that I must have been in attendance at the game. Other than that, anything goes. And it's starting tonight. So get ready!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Schedule for Week Ending January 23rd, 2011

We're back! It's been a long absence, but after Winter Break, I am returning to this blog. Here is my schedule for the coming week,


Y = Definitely Attending

P = Probably Attending

M= Might Attend

D= Doubtful to Attend

Monday, January 17

Men's Basketball vs. Villanova, 3:30 PM (Y)

Friday, January 21

Men's Ice Hockey vs. Air Force, 7:05 PM (P)

Saturday, January 22

Men's Basketball vs. Tennessee, 2:00 PM (Y)

Women's Basketball vs. Pittsburgh, 7:30 PM (P)

Men's Ice Hockey vs. Air Force, 7:05 PM (D)

Will attend either Women's Basketball or Men's Ice Hockey.

We're Back!

Starting spring semester (in a few days) we will be returning to the Blogosphere! However, note a few important changes.

  • The "rating" system will be eliminated. Instead, I will post a more in-depth review and commentary of each game I attend.

  • All old posts (with ratings) will stay up, however the page listing overall ratings will be removed.

  • Photos may also be added for certain games. Stay tuned!