Been awhile since we’ve had an athletics post, so lots of news to report …

  • Superstar Eph track and cross country alum Jen Campbell ’05 recently won the Boston Athletic Association 5k in record time.
  • The break-out Eph athlete of the Spring has to be super-frosh (and NESCAC ROY lock) Cedar Blazek, who was recently named NESCAC player of the week for the second straight week after batting an incredible .813 in last week’s games.  Blazek has put up other-worldly statistics, and currently leads the Ephs (and in several cases all of NESCAC) in virtually every offensive category, including batting average, on base percentage, slugging, runs, home runs, RBI’s, batting average, doubles, triples and stolen bases (!!!).  Blazek has already broken the Eph single-season home run record after only 2/3 of a season as an Eph.  A very inexperienced women’s softball team has really grown over the course of the season: following an 0-8 start, the team has since posted a 14-10-1 record, including a 7-2 record in NESCAC play.  If the Ephs win this weekend’s three game series with Amherst, they will clinch first place in NESCAC West and top seed in the NESCAC tourney.  Expect Blazek to be walked early and often, ala Barry Bonds in his prime (minus the steroids).
  • Baseball, winner of eleven of its last twelve games, has likewise been on a major roll after a tough start to the season.  The Ephs have already won the Little Three, and locked up the NESCAC West title this weekend as well with two victories over Wesleyan.  Williams is led by perennial all-NESCAC outfielder Al Matthews ’10, who is batting nearly .500 on the year.
  • Check out this great article on future Eph pole vaulter Jenna Adams ’14.
  • Two-time defending national champ women’s tennis has risen to its usual spot atop the national rankings, thanks to an upset of previously top-ranked Amherst and an incredible eleven wins against top 25 teams this Spring, including every team in the top five.  The NCAA.com site features numerous great articles on the Ephs tennis juggernaut.
  • Speaking of juggernauts, the top-ranked women’s crew dynasty keeps on chugging, dominating the competition this year while they aim for a FIFTH straight national championship.
  • Great article by former baseball commissioner Fay Vincent, discussing the role creativity in, among other things, his stewardship of MLB, and giving a massive shout-out to math prof Ed Burger.
  • The presentation of the Deford and Pinsky awards, a great  unique-to-Williams tradition, occurred on Monday.
  • Williams has narrowed its football search down to six finalists, and the new head coach will be hired in May.  The pool of candidates sounds impressive.
  • Congrats to the men’s and women’s track teams, each of whom won its tenth straight NESCAC title last weekend … just an incredible decade-long run of sustained excellence for the track program.  Special kudos to Stephen Simalchik ’13 who shattered a 25-year-old conference record in the javelin throw.
  • Although I am in hoops withdrawal, I was happy to see tidbits on two future Ephs, Hayden Rooke-Ley, who turned down scholarhips offers for Williams, and Taylor Epley, who will be playing in the Kentucky-Indiana all-star game in June (last time I checked, hoops was fairly popular in those states …).
  • Fun article on Student Athletic Advisory Committee talent show.
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