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Archive for May 29, 2007

May 29, 2007 — In the upper deck

Saw a few old friends at the 2007 Division I women’s championship game in Philadelphia. One of the first was Team USA’s Quinn Carney, who I first saw as a freshman at Flemington Hunterdon Central (N.J.), then became a member of perhaps the single greatest recruting class in the history of women’s lacrosse, winning four straight championships at the University of Maryland.

Up in the front row of the upper deck of Franklin Field, there were many more orange-clad Virginia fans than Northwestern supporters in the upper deck. Many booed when Northwestern ran its spread-to-score attack in the last 10 minutes. 

A number of outstanding coaches had taken their seats behind me, amongst them Princeton’s Chris Sailer, James Madison assistant Jessica Wilk, UConn’s Bonnie Rosen, and Bowdoin’s Liz Grote. When chatting with them at the interval, I felt like I was doing a soccer halftime for SkySports; the U.K. cable broadcaster usually assembles an all-star panel for halftime analysis.

At the end of the match, I saw another outstanding coach: Jill Cosse of North Caldwell West Essex (N.J.), who coached senior Lindsay Finocchiaro and the redshirted Kim Pantages. The last time I had talked to her, her field hockey team had lost the first-in-the-nation Tournament of Champions in New Jersey.

When the Northwestern team sprinted across the Franklin Field pitch, bringing the championship trophy, I said to Cosse, “They even celebrate with intensity, don’t they?”