The Bates Student

The Voice of Bates College since 1873

Author: Max Petrie (Page 2 of 3)

Squash Teams Are Confident About 2018

For both the men’s and women’s squash teams, the beginning of the second half of the season has been a tough road. The women’s team has dropped three matches and won one in January, while the men have lost two and won two. In part, this could be due to the lengthy break that comes between the semesters. On this, captain Eliza Dunham ’20 says, “I think the break we have in the middle of the season is always a struggle but as long as the team is motivated looking forward to the rest of the season – which they are – it’s not too much of an issue.” Hopefully this will prove to be true as the season continues.

Since coming back in January, the women’s team has had matches against Middlebury, Williams, George Washington, and Wesleyan. They lost to the first three, but managed to beat Wesleyan by a score of 7-2. Although this is not the start they would have wanted in the new year, they are excited about what is to come the rest of the season. “I’m feeling really excited for NESCACs especially because since we had a slow start to the season we’re coming in as underdogs for the first time in a while and I think the whole team is excited to surprise everyone,” says Dunham ’20. Clearly, there is a lot of fight left in the team; no one is giving up on the season as a whole.

In their most recent match, the women’s team pulled out a win against Wesleyan, in what will hopefully be the start of a winning streak. In that match, Bates had a strong showing down the ladder, with wins coming from the numbers two, three, four, five, six, seven, and eight positions. The only losses were at the one and nine spots. On goals moving forward, Dunham says, “I think our biggest goal for the team is for no one to have regrets. We don’t want the season to end and people on the team feel like they could have done more or played better in certain matches. We want everyone to feel like they gave all they possibly could into this season.” With this win, it seems that the Bobcats are back on track and will have more wins to come.

For the men’s team, winning two and losing two matches in January was not as great as the first semester record of 4-0. They dropped matches to Middlebury and George Washington, but were able to pull out wins against Williams and Wesleyan. In the most recent match, against Wesleyan, they won by a score of 8-1, with everyone winning except for the number one position. Overall the team is now 6-2, in a good spot with four more matches coming up prior to NESCACs in February. Both teams will play next at home against Colby on Wednesday, January 24 at 6pm.


Swimming and Diving Team Defeats Middlebury and Remains Undefeated

The men’s and women’s swimming and diving teams are off to great starts for the 2017-18 season. With three meets down, they have not lost and have high expectations for what is to come. Chris Lee ’18 says, “We have Midd, Colby and Bowdoin coming up in the next two weeks, and I think they present us with great opportunities to race our best events and get back into that racing mentality.” This quote was taken prior to the meet against Middlebury on Sunday, January 14, which both the men’s and women’s teams won to continue the winning streak.

In the matchup with Middlebury, the men won by a score of 170-118, and the women won 152.5-141.5. In the men’s meet, Riley Ewing ’18 broke a Tarbell Pool record in the 200 backstroke. Alex Bedard ’19 also broke a pool record in the 100 breaststroke. The women’s team was in a tough spot towards the end of the race, as they needed to win the last two events in order to pull out the win. After Hope Logan ’18 won the 400-yard individual medley, it came down to the 200-yard freestyle relay team. This group was able to win as well, to give the team the scoring push it needed to finish on top.

Prior to this race against Middlebury, the team had their annual training trip to Florida over winter break. Although this may sound like a nice vacation, it is a lot of hard work. Lee ’18 says, “Florida marks a shift from massive yardage sets to more technical, mentally engaged sets… We swam twice a day, clocking about seven to ten thousand meters a day.” He also mentioned how much the trip does to build morale for the team. Clearly, this is paying off, based on their first meet back.

In the first part of the season prior to winter break, the teams had meets against Trinity and Wesleyan, and the Maine State Meet. In the matchup with Trinity and Wesleyan, the women’s team beat Wesleyan 171-119 and beat Trinity 208.5-84.5. In the Maine State Meet, the men’s team came in first place with 1,096 points. Bowdoin took second with 869, Colby came in third with 648, and the University of Maine finished last with 521. For the women, they scored 1,039.5 points, which was enough to beat Bowdoin’s 938, Maine’s 795, and Colby’s 388.5. Clearly, these were dominant wins for both the men’s and women’s teams.

With such a great start to the season underway, the team knows that they have the ability and the training to push their success even further. Lee ’18 says, “I think this season, the senior class has been focused on the team morale and camaraderie. A happy team is a successful team, and we have tried to entertain, understand, and lead our underclassmen as best we can. Training-wise, the team has put in immense effort in these last three months, and we are about to reap the benefits in February. I think as long as we stay on our current trajectory, everyone will be very pleased once NESCAC season arrives.” The ceiling has not been reached yet, and it seems that there is a lot of confidence among the team members. This is rightly earned based on early success, and with the hard work being put in day in and day out, the rest of the season should continue to be bright.


Squash Teams Are off to a Strong Start

For the men’s squash team, the season couldn’t be off to a better start.  In four matches, they have gone 4-0, winning three by margins of 9-0 and the last 7-2.  These matches have come against Bowdoin, Connecticut College, Vassar, and Haverford.  As of right now, the team is nationally ranked at number eighteen.

  The first match of the season came at Bowdoin, who, at the time, was nationally ranked at number twenty-seven.  In that match, they won every game except for two in the 9-0 win.  Up and down the lineup the team performed well, with Mahmoud Yousry ’20 and Graham Bonnell ’20 holding down the top two positions with 3-0 wins. Captains Anirudh Nambiar ’18 and McLeod Abbot ’19 also won their games at the fourth and fifth spots. On the beginning of the season, Abbot says, “So far I’m incredibly happy with the season. We’ve inserted three freshmen into the lineup and they’ve all performed better than expected. With the loss of several seniors last year we definitely needed some of the younger guys to step up.”  He also made a point to shout out Bonnell, who has improved greatly so far this season. “The MVP of the season so far is without a doubt Graham Bonnell. He trained harder than anybody this summer and moved from playing seven last year to firmly playing number two, knocking on the door of the number one spot. I’m excited to see his game progress over the rest of the season,” Abbot states.

After this match, the Bobcats moved on to defeat Connecticut College. Next on the slate was matchups with Haverford and Vassar on Saturday, December 2.  Bates won both of these matches as well and now sit at 4-0, maintaining their national ranking of eighteenth. On Saturday, Bates outplayed Vassar, with every player on the Bates team winning their games 3-0.  In the afternoon matchup with Haverford, it was a little tougher but still a dominant win. Despite dropping two of the games, they still managed to win 7-2.  As of right now, the Bobcats’ men’s team is off to their best start in seven years, in which they also began 4-0. Their next match is on January 12 against Middlebury. Looking forward to the season ahead, Nambiar says, “I fully believe that this team has the ability to be one of the twelve best teams in the country. We have a lot of quality on this team and with the right push, this team will be able to go very far this season.”

The women’s team has also started their season and although it has not gone as perfectly, they are still in a good position. They are 2-2 thus far, with wins over Bowdoin and Haverford and losses to Connecticut College and Vassar. Although 2-2 is not the ideal record at this point, both losses have been only by one game scores of 5-4.

On Saturday, December 2, Bates played well at the top of their lineups, going undefeated through their first four positions in both matches. The first match, against Vassar, was a 5-4 defeat.  The four athletes in these top positions were, in order of one to four, Luca Polgar ’20, Vicky Arjoon ’19, Maeve O’Brien ’21, and Katie Manternach ’21. The Bobcats were unable to finish in this match against Vassar, who was ranked number twenty-nine nationally, dropping the later games and losing overall 5-4.  However, in the afternoon match with Haverford, ranked number thirty nationally, the Bobcats had a better showing. They swept positions one through four and then won 3-0 at positions five and six. Positions one through four were won by the same athletes as the morning match, mentioned previously. Five and six were won by Hannah Conner ’18 and Cata Robert ’18, both by scores of 3-0. With these six wins at the top of the slate, they were able to hold on to the lead and win 6-3.

“There is definitely a space for improvement since we have a huge range of experience across the team,” Arjoon says. “Each player, international or not, brings something new to the table. Regardless of where you play on the ladder, you always have the ability to learn something new, or even teach something to another teammate.”

Although the women’s team is only .500 right now, their losses have been closely contested, and the rest of their season looks bright. Their next match is on January 12 against Middlebury.

“Like years past, there has always been a visible jump in skill from the beginning of the year towards the end when we go to NESCACs and Nationals because we are constantly exposed to a variety of skilled teams,” Arjoon says. “The College Squash Circuit has become increasingly competitive over the years, so we’re looking to crack the Top 12 at Nationals and show them what Bates has to offer!”

“There is an amazing team dynamic present on the team this year, considering we have four of our teammates who aren’t at Bates right now,” Arjoon continues. “They will contribute a lot of depth to the roster in January when they return, so this addition will certainly make the group much more competitive than we already are.”

Intramural Sports Offer an Array of Athletic Opportunities for Students

Speaking about maintaining his health through his participation in intramural basketball, Brian Daly ’18 says, “I do it to make up for all the drinking.” Ayden Eickhoff ’19 says, “I enjoy playing intramural sports because they create friendly competition in a low-stakes environment.” Whatever the reason, there are plenty of intramural sports to take part in at Bates. They all are competitive but do not expect players to have great skill, and they create a welcoming and fun atmosphere rather than focusing solely on winning and competition. Eickhoff says, “Because of that environment, the focus is not as much on winning as it is on having a good time.”

Bates offers a variety of intramural options, ranging from basketball in the fall and winter to softball in the spring. Whatever you enjoy playing, there is probably an opportunity to do it. For example, there did not used to be an intramural soccer team at Bates. Eickhoff speaks to this, saying, “Some friends on the track team made an IM soccer team during short term my first year at Bates. I have stuck with it every season ever since!” Students can join teams that already exist or create their own if sports they want to play are not currently available. It creates an environment in which anyone can participate, regardless of skill or experience.

The combination of the variety of available sports and the attitude of players to welcome anyone creates an inclusive atmosphere for prospective players. Eickhoff says, “There are so many different sports offered so something is bound to align with your skills. You don’t have to be an ‘athlete’ to make a positive difference on a team.” With this kind of attitude from the players, Eickhoff encourages everyone to try something out: “Do it!” she says. “It’s a great study break and there are no participation requirements if you end up really not enjoying it.”

Players can make it what they want it to be, without feeling pressured to do anything more. For some athletes, this means competing while for others it simply means having fun and being active. As Sean Lovett ’18 says, “I do it to make sure I don’t become obese.” Many players talk about remaining active even though they don’t play a competitive sport anymore. Many others cite the ability to enjoy getting away from the classroom and their studies for a while in order to do something different, even if it is not a sport they have played in the past. Being able to take some time to do something new is exciting and fun, and provides a new way to meet people and engage with different parts of the Bates experience. Whatever your reason, intramural athletes encourage everyone to try something out and join a sport. You never know what you might end up really enjoying.


Men’s and Women’s Swimming and Diving Team is Optimistic about Upcoming Season

As the Bates men’s and women’s swimming and diving team gets ready to start their season, there is plenty of optimism from the athletes. Coming off of the success in NESCACs last year, they feel that they can do even better with another year of experience. Hope Logan ’18 says, “We would love to bring more healthy women to NESCACs than last year. We had a lot of injuries and even though our roster is honestly smaller, if everyone stays healthy, we could have more women score this year.” For the men’s team, Riley Ewing ’18 says, “I expect the team to do well again this year. The freshmen have a lot of depth.” The combination of experience and results with the depth of the incoming class seem to have the team set up for a successful season.

The team’s schedule is quite intense, with nine practices a week, and it is therefore of the utmost importance that everyone maintains a good attitude about the tough schedule. On this, Chris Lee ’18 says, “I expect that everyone not only shows up to our nine practices a week, but also gives it everything they have. Our schedule is pretty grueling, so those early mornings and long, exhausting sets are much easier with a group of positive friends who are doing it with you. Bates Swim and Dive operates like a family, and I expect that everyone treats their teammates and coaches accordingly. I think that as long as everyone is physically and mentally invested, we will be more successful than ever before.”

With this kind of an attitude, the athletes seem to believe that they can build on the past to end with even better results this year. Seconding this is Ewing, who says, “So far it seems like the practices have been ramped up so our training early this season will help lead us to one of our best finishes at NESCACs. The atmosphere has been awesome so far. We just finished our first Saturday practice and the energy couldn’t have been higher!” With this excitement, results should follow as the season begins.

In order to maintain this energy throughout the long and hard season, a positive attitude is necessary for these athletes. Speaking of the women’s team, Logan says, “You could feel the drive in the air during our first week of practice, it’s chemical. This is the most supportive women’s team I have ever seen. We are absolutely ferocious.” Lee shared a similar sentiment, saying, “With the first week of practices now under our belts, excitement is at an all-time high. During practice, everyone is cheering for one another, the team’s favorite songs are blaring, and teammates are giving out relentless high fives. It’s truly an unparalleled experience, one which I’ll miss unconditionally.”

The excitement and attitude are at a level that should lead to success for the team, something that the seniors particularly want to see as they enter the last year of their collegiate careers.

Knowing it is their last opportunity with the Bates team, they will work hard to make sure they end on the right note. Lee says “Going into my last year is a bit bittersweet because I’m pumped for the upcoming season and to work with the amazing group of swimmers we have, but knowing it’s my last season will always be in the back of my mind.” Seconding this is Ewing, saying, “I’m feeling really excited about my last season! I’ve been competing for 15 years now so this is the last hoorah.”

The comradery really stands out and helps translate into confidence from the athletes. Logan says, “I couldn’t do it without these women. They rock.” Bates will kick off the season on November 18 against Wesleyan and Trinity with expectations high. Lee says, “We have an incredible line-up of athletes coming off our one of our most successful seasons ever, as well as 15 first-years ready to jump in with two feet. Based on the first week of workouts, BS&D is poised to reach heights never before achieved.”

Women’s Field Hockey Season Ends, but Program’s Future Is Bright

Taylor Lough ‘19 gets ready to score her 10th goal of the season in loss to Middlebury. PHYLLIS GRABER JENSON/BATES COLLEGE

Taylor Lough ‘19 gets ready to score her 10th goal of the season in loss to Middlebury. PHYLLIS GRABER JENSON/BATES COLLEGE

The Bates field hockey team has seen its season come to a close with a tough loss in the NESCAC playoff tournament this past Saturday, October 28. In a hard-fought game against Middlebury, the number two nationally ranked team, the Bobcats were held to one goal while the Panthers scored four.

However, despite the outcome, members of the team still had positive thoughts to share about the game. Caroline O’Reilly ’18 says, “I’m proud of how our team played during that game. We really played together as a team throughout the entire game, even when it wasn’t going in our favor.” Sydney Beres ’18 adds, “I think that although we didn’t win there were a lot of moments in which we dominated. I think that this game is a great learning experience for the team.” Although both these seniors will not be playing next season, they see the potential that the end of this season can have for next year.

Heads were not down after the loss and the future is bright for the Bobcats. Beres says, “I think that the team will never forget the feeling after the Midd game and will want to use that as motivation to work even harder. I know they are capable of winning NESCACs one of these years and I truly believe that Bates field hockey will be able to do so.”

This positive outlook on the future of the program was seconded by O’Reilly. “We wouldn’t have been able to make it as far as we did this year without the contributions of players in the past,” she says. “I think they set us up so that making NESCAC playoffs becomes an every-year thing. The underclassmen are all extremely talented, dedicated, and hard-working, so I’m confident that they will be able to lead the team to more success in the future!”

The core of the team will remain intact, as only four players will graduate. Although all four were assets to the team, there is plenty of chemistry and cohesiveness as a unit moving forward. Because of this, O’Reilly feels that the coming years will be good for the Bobcats based on what was showcased by the team at the end of the season, specifically during a stretch in which they won six of seven games. “Everyone really stepped up both in games and at practice. We all worked really hard to push each other so that we could be successful in the end of the regular season,” she says. “I’m really impressed with the underclassmen too, who were able to dominate some of the top players from other teams.” With these underclassmen returning, hopefully more seasons of winning streaks against ranked opponents will continue.

Beres believes that ending the season as a nationally ranked team will help motivate the team to continue its winning ways. She says, “This year we proved a lot about our ability. The fact that we were nationally ranked is huge. I’m sure the team will work hard to keep our name on that list.”

The potential to beat ranked teams and remain a ranked team themselves is a great motivator for future seasons. O’Reilly concludes, “It’s going to be awesome to see how much they continue to improve in the upcoming seasons.”


Student Athelte Profile: Caroline O’Reilly ‘18: A Field Hockey Midfeilder, O’Reilly ‘18, Passionate About Spanish And Education Studies

Caroline O’Reilly ’18, a senior midfielder from Longmeadow, Massachusetts, is planning to lead the women’s field hockey team to playoffs and win NESCACs, but she wants to focus on the fundamentals first.

Her field hockey career took off in sixth grade, after her parents told her they would not allow her to play ice hockey. “My brothers both played [ice] hockey, and I just felt so left out so I figured field hockey was the closest thing,” O’Reilly remembers. She convinced her younger sister to play and now they bond over the experiences playing in college. “She really gets what it’s like to be a college athlete so we call each other to talk about our experiences,” she explains. But since her sister plays at a different school, O’Reilly’s Bates teammates have become her family.

To her teammates, she’s “Little Caroline,” but her presence on the field is far from little. “It didn’t happen right away, but I can confidently say that I’ve found my voice on the field and on the team, and it’s just so different from where I was as a freshman. I was so quiet,” O’Reilly admits. “I get so excited to go to practice each day now, and I always come ready to work, smile, laugh and, most importantly, have fun while I do it.”

Underneath her winning smile is a tenacious, hard-working athlete. Her highlight of the season thus far was beating Connecticut College on Saturday Oct. 7, where O’Reilly scored the final goal in Bates’ 3-1 win. O’Reilly’s pregame rituals include eating peanut butter crackers in the locker room and listening to music, and it clearly works for her.

During preseason, the field hockey team took a kayaking trip together to bond off the field, and O’Reilly believes the teams’ success this year can be attributed to that bonding experience. After the win against Connecticut College, O’Reilly is excited for the future of this year’s team. “I’m really looking forward to using our win as momentum to shoot us forward,” she says. “We have a lot of potential on this team, and this cohesive unit has what it takes to be successful.”

As a senior, she wants to lead by example in focusing less on the big picture, and more on the individual steps to get where they want to go. For her, this means focusing on a good night’s sleep, eating healthy food, and showing up to practice in the right mindset. It also includes watching film of her own game on nights where her friends get to go out, but she will do whatever it takes and is confident that her team feels the same way. O’Reilly’s focus after this weekend has moved to the next game, and what she personally needs to do to make sure the team secures that win.

When reflecting on her growth from freshman to senior year off the field, O’Reilly considers her study habits and time management skills to have improved immensely. Writing thesis in-season this year is proving to be tough, but O’Reilly feels the last three seasons have prepared her for balancing school and sports. It also helps that she is passionate about her subject. O’Reilly is combining her Spanish major and Education minor to focus on Special Education, specifically looking at children’s literature in Spain and the United States. “I’m working hard to keep up with my thesis chapters, so I can really focus on the coming [field hockey] games,” she says. “It’s my last season and I need to be more focused than ever.”

Come support Bates Field Hockey and O’Reilly next weekend, Oct. 14 and 15, as they take on Tufts and Amherst on the JB turf, and secure two more wins to propel them to their end goal.



Women’s Soccer Loses to Conn. College, Wins Against Elms College, and Optimistic About Playoff Potential

Through the first month of the fall season, the Bates women’s soccer team has had five wins, two losses, and one tie. They beat Maine Maritime, Hamilton College, University of New England, Wesleyan University, and Thomas College. Their sole tie was with Williams College, and their only two losses were to Babson University and Trinity College. As far as the first half of a season can go, this was a great start. Ainsley Jamieson ’18 says, “I think the work rate and intensity have been really good thus far.” This helps explains the early success that the team has had.

However, so far this October, the Bobcats have lost two NESCAC games to Bowdoin and Connecticut College, with the second loss coming this past Saturday Oct. 7. Fortunately, they bounced back and defeated Elms College on Sunday Oct. 8.

On Saturday at Connecticut College, a school that is ranked 16th nationally, the Bobcats were outshot 27-5 and 12-2 in shots on goal. Although the shot totals were not great for the team, one bright spot was Captain Sarah McCarthy ’18’s nine saves. Ultimately, the great goalie plays were not enough as the team lost the contest 3-0. Although this was not the outcome they were looking for, Connecticut College is nationally ranked and was not expected to be an easy opponent.

Putting the loss behind them, the team was able to bounce back on Sunday when playing Elms College, winning the contest 3-0. The three goals were scored by Sarah Gutch ’19, Riley Turcotte ’20, and Elizabeth Bennett ’21. This was an important win for the team to help right the ship and get back on track to winning games after a tough spell of three straight losses. The Bobcats looked good in this game, tallying 19 shots to Elms’ 8, which included 6 on goal for Bates versus only 3 for Elms.

Despite the lack of success in the first few games of October, the team still strongly believes in their ability to be successful. Emma Goff ’18 says, “I would say that the team atmosphere this year is better than it ever has been. From the first person on the roster to the last, everyone has 100% bought in to the success of the team. This has made a huge positive impact on our season.” Because of this atmosphere, the Bobcats are ready to continue their season through October with their eyes on NESCAC playoffs. They do not believe this to be unachievable.

At 6-4-1, the Bobcats are not out of playoff contention. In order to make these playoff goals a reality, Jamieson says, “Going into the second half of the season we can’t let our intensity decrease.” This is especially true because the last four games of the season, all in the month of October, come against NESCAC opponents. Due to the highly competitive nature of the conference, none of these games will be easy contests. All are home games, which should benefit the team, but the opponents are Tufts, Amherst, Middlebury, and Colby. Jamieson ’20 says, “I have confidence in every member on the team this year and I think we have the potential to do big things.” With this attitude and the success of the team thus far, the Bobcats have their eyes set on playoffs and will continue to play hard to make that a reality.



Getting to Know Bates Football Punter: Justin Foley

Last week I sat down with Bates’ football punter, Justin Foley ’19, to get a better understanding of our player. In 2015, his first year as a punter, Foley averaged 37.2 yards per punt on the season. He earned the “NESCAC Special Teams Player of the Week” honor for his performance in the Bobcats’ 10-9 win over Colby on Oct. 31 of that season. His nine punts in the Colby game averaged 38.3 yards, with seven of them pinning Colby inside the 20-yard line. Two of Foley’s punts landed inside the 5 and another pinned Colby at the 3. In 2016, Foley’s play enhanced. He made the “Second Team All-NESCAC” and punted more than any other player in team history. He broke the Bobcats’ single-season record for number of punts in Week 6, finishing with 81 total. Foley’s kicking proved crucial with several games turning into field-position battles. He averaged 37.9 yards per punt and landed 20 inside the opponent’s 20-yard line, with only five going into the end zone for touchbacks. This season he has already punted a total of 24 times in three games, which accumulates to 866 punting yards.

GN: Okay Justin, where are you from?

JF: I am from Lynnfield, Massachusetts.

GN: Growing up what sports did you play and when did you first start punting for football?

JF: I started playing football, baseball, and soccer way back in elementary school. I might have even been 3 or 4 when I started playing soccer and baseball. I continued with all three sports until high school and then I had to choose between football or soccer. I ended up going with football. We had kicker/punter tryouts for the freshman team and somehow I accidentally punted a spiral that blew my coach away. The position has stuck with me every since. Until my junior year of high school, I also played defense as a middle linebacker but then by senior year I was a punter/kicker only.

GN: Okay, cool. Now why did you choose Bates? Was sports a factor in your decision?

JF: Sports was definitely a crucial factor of my decision, but it was not the biggest factor. I had visited a bunch of other schools in New England and I am familiar with the area. My entire life growing up I have had a summer home on Echo Lake in Mt. Vernon, just outside of Augusta, and back in my middle school and high school days, my mother would always tell me, “I want you to go to a NESCAC school like Bowdoin, Bates, or Colby”. Every time I would dust her off with “Ya right Mom. Tiny school in Maine? No thanks!”. When the time finally came along junior and senior year of high school, I finally learned the value of a NESCAC education, and also visited the campuses to see how beautiful they actually are. After my first visit to Bates, entering my junior year of high school, I was dropping off a very close family friend, Jimmy Fagan ‘17, before his first year, and I said to myself “Wow. I can see myself here”.

GN: Obviously you have punted for the team since your first year at Bates and you have gotten better each year. You earned “NESCAC Special Teams Player of the Week” honors against Colby your first year and you earned “Second Team All-NESCAC” honors last season. What are you doing that is helping you improve each year?

JF: The most important thing is consistency, and that starts with the way I drop the ball. I have to do that the same way every time. I do it differently depending on the weather, especially if it is windy. But that is the most important thing. My legs have to do the same thing, because of the muscles I use. Unless I am tight in the muscles, I can do the kicks consistently.

GN: Your team has had a rough start to the season. What has the coaches said to you guys during this stretch?

JF: He says that we bring energy and effort every week but we are lacking in focus here and there. We are making mental mistakes, not being in the right place at the right time and plays get blown up.

GN: Finally, some miscellaneous questions. Favorite TV shows growing up?

JF: Um, oh goodness (laughs). Family Guy and Friends.

GN: Great choices. Favorite commons meal?

JF: Focaccia chicken.

GN: Favorite sports teams?

JF: The Red Sox and the Patriots.

GN: Favorite athletes?

JF: Probably Marquette King. The punter on the Raiders, he is so cool (Laughs).

GN: Yeah, he has so much swag. I know you also play baseball at Bates. What is the biggest takeaway so far from playing football and baseball?

JF: Probably balancing my life with and without sports. Academics, social life, etc. A mixture of staying busy and finding time to relax.

Volleyball Team Confident Looking Ahead Rest of Season

The women’s volleyball team has won three of their past four games, including wins in their last two against Simmons and Plymouth State on Saturday, Sep. 30. These wins are very important to the team’s resume. Captain Jacqueline Forney ’18 said after the games: “The wins position us for a regional ranking which will certainly help us when tournament time comes around.” On the wins and becoming regionally ranked, Augy Silver ’18 said, “It is awesome for team morale. We have been having a ton of fun.”
The first game on Saturday was a 3-0 win over Simmons, in which Forney had 26 assists. Angel Echipue ’21 had 11 kills, leading to a .611 kill percentage, while Gabi Eustache ’20 led the team with 15 digs. The team’s kill percentage was .276 while Simmons’ kill percentage was only .011.
The second game, against Plymouth State, was a 3-1 win. Eustache led the team with 30 digs while Ruby Lightbourn ’21 had 12 kills, leading the team. In this match, the Bobcats’ kill percentage was .194, while Plymouth State’s kill percentage was only .104.
With the two wins this past weekend, Bates improves to 7-6 on the season. Silver ’18 says, “We are feeling confident moving forward”. This sentiment was echoed by Forney, who is “excited and eager for what’s to come”. These optimistic feelings come at a point in the season where the schedule becomes more in the Bobcats’ favor. Silver says, “The hardest and most travel-heavy section of our season is over and we all feel that we are hitting our stride in the coming weekends at home”. This certainly seems like it will be a boon as the season continues.
Looking ahead, the team has a slew of NESCAC games coming up, beginning with Hamilton this Friday, Oct. 6 and Williams on Saturday. Following these comes Bowdoin the following Tuesday, and the next weekend has Connecticut College on Friday, Oct. 13 and Wesleyan the day after. All five of these games will be at home. Silver says, “Moving forward we hope to win the rest of our NESCAC games and get some experience in our fall break games in Wisconsin”. Between the conference play coming up and the road trip afterwards, there will be plenty of opportunity for the team to come together even more. On the team dynamic, Forney says, “We’ve placed a greater emphasis on off-season communication so that our first-years have an easier transition into the program and college play. Our communication has consisted of core team values and what the program strives to accomplish during their time here at Bates. This has undoubtedly translated to court play and made for a great start to the season. Although we’ve lost a few key NESCAC games each one has been close to the very end. Give us a month and those losses will turn into wins.”
With the upcoming conference games, Forney speaks of keeping the focus tight each match while looking ahead to the season as a whole. She says, “The main goal is to focus on a game at a time, a set at a time, and a point at a time. It’s an expectation to make NESCACs [playoffs], however we know it’ll be a challenge. Everyday Coach emphasizes to focus on the process. If we believe and trust in the process, we’ll be just fine.”

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