Monday, September 28, 2009

Big Week in Carolina!

It was a longgg trip to NC this week for Belmont Women’s Soccer, but we figured out a way to make it shorter. You might ask, how do you to turn a 12 hour trip into an 8 hour trip? Survey Says: Come back with 2 wins! We started out the week with an odd practice schedule & played Thursday night. A lot of other things were odd about this game too: we warmed up in pink (breast cancer awareness), it didn’t rain, & my shirt could’ve been a dress. On another note, the locker room was emotional that night too. When you have away trips, a lot of times there is a certain amount allowed to travel. This meant that starting with tonight, when we are not at home, a conscience effort will be put forth to play for our teammates who cannot come with us. Like I said last week, we cannot be successful without our ENTIRE roster. We had GREAT support from them at home & tried not to disappoint them by wasting our opportunities. We played into a stalemate at halftime & I decided it was time for an obvious & corny pump-up speech. I told everyone to put their hands on someone’s back & “flip” the “on-switch.” I didn’t feel we were playing to our potential & something collectively needed to change. They all laughed then & teased me after the game about my lame motivation attempt, but we DID end up scoring 3 great goals in a small amount of time! Granted, I have my annoying moments, but when you guys score 3 goals in 5 min, its pretty hard for me to stop doing those sort of things! We ate some food then headed to Campbell.

We practiced on Friday & Campbell’s coach tried to tell me there were snakes in the field where we were. He lied. Saturday night rolled around & we were back to our normal playing conditions: Rain. Mud. Rain. But this was our first conference game & we weren’t going to all of a sudden let the weather bother us. The “Fighting Camels” came out hard & we withstood their high energy shutting them out in the first half. Second half, we turned it up a notch & ran at them. Jayme Trocino (JTro) scored a beauty off of Elizabeth Bublis’ (Bubs) cross. But later the refs rained on our parade & called a PK. We went into OT. Bub decided we had all been out in the rain way too long & just before the 1st OT was about to end, she picked up the garbage around the goal & scored for the game winner! Starting 1-0 in the A-Sun. It was a great win for us! And also, special thanks to all our fans who came to support us this weekend & all of those who have in the past! Winning twice, got us home in a JIFF!

Belmont women’s soccer is STARTING to turn the corner. Can we continue Tuesday night against our rival, Lipscomb?…Come out to The Battle of the Boulevard to find out! For now, we’ll see ya then…or see you some other time!

-GRRRRRRRR! Renee Pilch #0 Sr.

The Weekend...

Hey Belmont Fans. My name is Maggie Johnson and I am a sophomore Outside Hitter on the volleyball team. I am from Naperville, IL, outside of Chicago, and I attended Wheaton Academy. If you keep up with us on the court I wear #1. I am teaming up with JGray on this blog to keep you all up to date on our season and the team. We just got back from a great non-conference match at UT-Chattanooga. We won the match in four sets with a really solid collective performance form the whole team. We had three players’ notch double-doubles and some awesome defense carried us to a win against a tough Mocs team. There were defiantly some extra battles fought to including one against the floor that could not stay dry. The gym was not air-conditioned and both teams were working hard the whole night, so a towel was kept close to the court and used often. The team was a little incomplete last night because we had to leave two players at home due to illness, hopefully they will be back for our conference matches this weekend against Kennesaw State and Mercer. We really hope that you all can make it out for a game sometime this year. So after a good practice this afternoon we should be ready to go for the weekend.

- Maggie Johnson, Volleyball, Soph. #1

Monday, September 21, 2009

Road Trip

Hello bloggers. My name is Jenny Gray. I am the solo senior on the Belmont volleyball team. I am originally from Greenwood, Indiana- a suburb of Indianapolis, where I attended Center Grove High School. If you are a frequent viewer of Bruin volleyball, you will see me playing middle hitter and wearing #14. If you really know me well, you know my name to be J.Gray. Being my fourth and final year on the team, I am pretty accustomed to how things work around here. From our travel experiences to our daily practices, experience often comes in handy. Being a division I student-athlete is certainly an amazing opportunity; however, it also comes with its fair share of obstacles. Managing school work with athletics seems to be more of a balancing act than anything else.

Some of you may attend (or attended) Belmont, some may be dedicated Bruin fans, and others may just be into reading blogs. Whatever may bring you hear, I am glad that you made it. My teammate Maggie Johnson and I will be taking you on a journey through Belmont volleyball. We will travel on road trips, spend some down time at airports, and enjoy home matches together. The purpose of the blog is to provide you with an inside look- which, knowing myself and my teammates, will be rather exciting.

Conference play is underway, as we are currently 2-1. Yea…yea, you must have heard that we lost to Lipscomb in 3. It was a tough loss to say the least. But we didn’t let it do too much damage. We are moving forward from that and got 2 conference wins this past weekend. Our next trial comes this weekend as we face Florida Gulf Coast and Stetson. Florida Gulf Coast is a very strong program with a powerful home court atmosphere.

Quick fact: They have only lost 1 conference match at home—ever.

We are hoping to add to that number this weekend.

Right now we are at the Orlando, Florida airport. Sitting around- you will see our team doing a variety of activities to pass the time until we board the next flight and head to Ft. Myers, the home of Florida Gulf Coast. Some studious players are hard working on their homework; others are catching some sleep before we take off. We even have a group of 3, Megan, Kayla, and Tara playing Rummikub. Personally, I pass time reading. Don’t get too excited, they aren’t my school books. I’m really good at reading for pleasure and not as skilled as reading for homework. I haven’t quite mastered that yet.

We will be flying into Ft. Myers and playing Florida Gulf Coast. After the game we will drive to Deland, Florida- home to Stetson University. The 2:00 Saturday game causes some trouble to scheduling a flight home, so we must stay until Sunday morning. Hoping for some free time at the pool- it should be a nice, relaxing time.

Thank you for checking in on this first blog. We have a long road ahead of us as we journey throughout the season. Catch ya later!

God Bless

-Jenny Gray

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Hey Hey from the Sideline

Well our season has begun and things aren’t going EXACTLY like we had hoped. However, Lisa made a great point that we are turning a new leaf at Belmont and playing a VERY new style of attacking soccer, while still trying to maintain our stellar defense (a defense that won us the Conference tournament last year! ).This has been an adjustment that has made our climb harder, but once we hit our peak, there’s NO team in the A-Sun that will be able to compete with us. I love EVERYONE on this team for what they EACH bring to the table and once we can get 110% dedication from our ENTIRE roster, this will prove to be the most all-around talented team Belmont has ever had…one that can TRULY make a name for ourselves in the Division I world. We have fared well against tough competition, but the time for moral victories stops after August. BU can REALLY make a statement for the rest of September, BUT it is up to EACH ONE of us to decide HOW we can contribute to the success and HOW we will write our history. Belmont Women’s Soccer has raised its expectations in the last few years. The 2008 title is OURS without a doubt! But when it comes to Championships…One year CAN BE criticized as a fluke; Two years DEFINES the start of tradition..What will we do in ’09?? Stay tuned and see how our adventure plays out!..GRRRRRRRRRRRRR!!

—-”I believe” :) , Renee Pilch, SR Goalkeeper #0

Raining in Nashville

Running in the rain in Nashville is a very dangerous proposition. The drivers themselves show little regard for you when the sun is shining anyway, but when the clouds form overhead and the rain starts coming down in sheets, you become absolutely invisible. I suppose it’s not too hard to see why. Anyone with any semblance of common sense shouldn’t be out in running shorts when rivulets are forming on the roadways, but each of the cross country runners here at Belmont are inspired by a multitude of factors to lace the shoes up even as the various animals are lining up two-by-two. Today was one of those days, when each cross of the road becomes an exercise in self-preservation. The men’s team is preparing for a split-squad weekend, with most of us heading to Tuscaloosa to compete in the Crimson Classic on Friday, September 18th. The rest of us will be staying in Nashville for a Saturday morning race out at Percy Warner Park (the site of the Belmont Opener-thanks to all who came out and supported the teams!) sponsored by Vanderbilt. Hopefully the weather cooperates, otherwise it could start to look like Woodstock ’99 out there-without the $7 water bottles, of course. This week should tell the team a lot about what kind of shape we’re in going into some big races next month, including a race at Louisville, Kentucky we go to (mostly) every year and a new race for us in Charlottesville, Virginia. A couple of us are getting back into shape, and some of us are getting acclimated to college running (which, believe it or not, is a lot different from high school training), but everyone is very excited about this season’s prospects. For now, it’s time to pound that wet pavement…and hope that Range Rover on 21st Avenue heeds the “Walk” signal flashing in front of him.

- Kip Hill, Men’s Cross Country RS Jr.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Successful Weekend for Volleyball

The Lady Bruins Volleyball team finished a 7 game stretch of playing at their home, the Curb Event Center, this past weekend where they picked up two W’s in conference play over Jacksonville and North Florida. After coming out and playing well in the first two sets of the match Saturday afternoon against North Florida, a different team temporarily emerged from the locker room after intermission. They fell behind early 1-6 and never could quite gain momentum to turn the tables and rally a come back victory. Something must have been said in the huddle between sets 3 and 4 because the Lady Bruins came out dominating and clicking on all cylinders, taking a huge early lead in set 4. The announcer and I commented about how different this team looked from the one we saw just a few minutes earlier. They all seemed to be having a ton of fun and you could tell they were enjoying being out there, playing with all smiles. It was a great way to end their home game stretch before hitting the road later this week to head south for two more conference games in Florida. The team will hit the hardwood again Friday and Saturday for games against Florida Gulf Coast and Stetson respectively.

- Kristen Finch, Belmont University Marketing