Aug. 29, 2011
VILLANOVA, Pa. - Beginning the trip by watching Josh, who is 6'4 and bald, climb into a bunk the size of overhead storage was a great and entertaining way to kick off our 10-hour road trip to Tennessee. We got to take a sleeper bus complete with 20 beds, a big screen tv, wifi, and a bathroom (which was a good thing for the people in the front of the bus, but not so much for the people in the back due to the very unpleasant smell that worsened as the trip went on). The trip to Tennessee flew by thanks to Lost season 1 and a great assortment of snacks (shout out to Julie Darty), which were actually supposed to last us the whole weekend but were almost gone within the first couple of hours. We made a quick stop at Chick-fil-a for dinner where Josh grimaced every time each one of us stepped up to the register and put in a milkshake order.
At about 1:30 am arrived in Knoxville and walked in to our hotel like sleeping zombies. Even though we had a short night of sleep, except for those who could actually sleep in the claustrophobic caves...I mean beds...we were all full of energy on Friday because we were all so excited to play our first game. Walking into the massive Thomas Bowling arena and across the orange and white checkerboard floor a feeling of nervousness and exhilaration overwhelmed us all. "Toto, we are not in Jake Nevin anymore." After the fun bus ride, uncoordinated dancing, and jokes about Molly's boot, we were now ready to get down to business.
We kept our winning streak against Maryland alive by defeating them on Friday evening. Being the 3rd year in a row they lost to us, the Terps walked out of the gym with their heads hanging low. It was a great victory for us and a positive way to begin our season.
Saturday morning we played Tennessee, who is ranked 24th in the country. Since they are a very physical team, we realized that they would get their hard and showy kills, but we would get ours too by tooling them and putting the ball where they are not. We ended up losing to them in 3, but we fought hard the entire time and put pressure on them thanks to our tough defense and smart shots.
Our game verses Ohio later that night was an intense one filled with long, nail biting rallies, but at the end of the day we couldn't find a way to finish so we lost in 5.
In every game we had some heart pumping and adrenalin building plays that reminded us why we play...because this game is fun. The celebrating, the stuff blocks, the fist pumps, the competition, all of these make us want to come back for more. Big 5 here we come!