GW may not have a football team, but it has plenty of other varsity sports to watch. Here is a basic run down of all the teams, which each compete in the Atlantic 10 Conference: baseball, basketball, cross country, golf, gymnastics, women’s lacrosse, rowing, softball, squash, swimming and diving, tennis and volleyball.
With so many to choose from, how do you know which ones are worth checking out? Well, here is a guide that highlights the University’s top sports to watch. (In case you didn’t know, GW athletic teams are nicknamed the Colonials).
Round ball is far and away the most popular sport at GW. The men’s and women’s teams each play at the Smith Center, located at 600 G St., across from Funger Hall.
The men’s team has a young, talented nucleus. Look for sophomore guards Carl Elliott and J.R. Pinnock to have great 2004-2005 campaigns.
On the women’s side, all-conference pick Anna Monta?ana is one of the most exciting players in the A-10. The versatile star averaged 12 points per game last year and recorded the second triple-double in GW history against La Salle.
Both squads had strong seasons last year, with the men earning a trip to the National Invitation Tournament and the women getting a berth in the NCAA Tournament. Because the men’s team should be strong again this season, expect fans to pack the 5,000-seat Smith Center.
Don’t worry, if you’re a student, you don’t need a ticket. All you have to do is show your GWorld and you get in for free. But be prepared to arrive at least a half-hour to an hour before each game starts to secure a seat in the student section.
The crowds at women’s games are significantly smaller than at men’s, so early arrival is not necessary. But don’t let the small number of spectators fool you, the women have consistently been at the top of the A-10 during head coach McKeown’s tenure.
Even if you’re not a sports fan, try to get to a few basketball games. It’s like a party in the student section, complete with tri-cornered foam hats and free t-shirts handed out by the cheerleaders.
Both soccer teams play at the Mount Vernon Athletic Complex, which is a 10-minute shuttle ride from main campus. Both teams have been successful in recent years – the men last made it to the NCAA Tournament in 2002.
On the men’s side, A-10 All-Rookie Team Member Jeremiah Burke is back and ready to wreak havoc on opposing defenders. Goalkeeper Anna Handzlik will be between the pipes again for the women’s team. The junior had five shutouts and an 8-4-2 record as a starter.
On a warm fall day, it’s nice to get away from the city for a while for a soccer match. There is plenty of seating next to the artificial turf field. Usually you can get close enough to do some up-close-and-personal heckling of the opposing team if you want.
Baseball is another highly popular sport at GW. This season, head coach Tom Walter’s squad had a 41-18 record and finished second overall in the A-10 standings. Baseball last captured the A-10 title in 2002, the same year it last made the NCAA Tournament.
The team has been loaded offensively in recent years. Sophomore Anthony Smith will lead the way next season. As a freshman this year, Smith was an RBI machine, driving in an A-10 leading 67 runs while batting .376.
Unfortunately for fans, the GW baseball team plays its home games at Barcroft Park in Arlington, Va. Occasionally the University will run fan buses to the games, but not too often.
The baseball team routinely has players who are drafted by Major League teams, but if you want to see them in action, a car would be nice. You can try taking the Metro, but even from the Ballston, Va., stop on the orange line, a cab ride is necessary.
The men’s and women’s crew teams have several home meets on the Potomac River during the fall and spring. Even if you know nothing about rowing, take a walk down to the Georgetown waterfront if you want to catch a glimpse of the action.
Crew has enjoyed some success over the past few years. A freshman crew that included Amy Garrison, Mike Hill and Mike Uncusi-Ungaro took the silver medal last year at the ECAC Regatta in Massachusetts this spring.
The largest meet of the year is the GW Invitational, which the Colonials host each April. The event usually coincides with the Cherry Blossom Festival, and thousands of spectators attend every year.
Each meet is run out of the Thompson Boat Center, at 2700 Virginia Ave.
Like the basketball teams, volleyball plays its home games at the Smith Center. The action is fast-paced, and the matches don’t usually last more than a few hours.
The program is on the upswing, as the Colonials have finished the last
two seasons with records of 21-11 in 2003 and 19-13 in 2002. Junior Lindsey Vernand will lead the Colonials next season. The 2002 A-10 Rookie of the Year was fourth on the team with 159 kills last season.
Sport: Women’s lacrosse
Like soccer, the lax team plays its home games at Mount Vernon. With nice weather, games in April and May are a nice distraction from the finals crunch at the end of the semester.
Laura Hostetler is the player to watch for the Colonials. As a freshman in 2003, she was named to the All-America Division 1 Rookie Team by Womenslacrosse.com.
In her first year at GW, she was also named the A-10 Rookie of the Year and established four all-time school records, including goals (45) and points (62).
Season: Fall and Spring
The men’s and women’s teams play their home matches at the tennis center at Mount Vernon.
Senior Matt Treadgold had an excellent season last year for the Colonials, going 19-3 in singles play. He was also named to the A-10 All-Conference Team.
After its season was canceled last year due to injuries, the softball team will be back in action next season at Mount Vernon Field. Junior Elana Meyers and sophomore Gabby Culp will lead the way for the Colonials.
and water polo
Season: Fall and Spring
The swimming, diving and water polo teams compete in the pool t in the basement of the Smith Center.
All are tough sports to participate in and often exciting to watch.
Sophomore swimmer Sean Flaherty should have another strong season next year after capturing the A-10 Most Outstanding Rookie award this year.
The gymnastics team holds its meets at the Smith Center. Erin Aiken had a strong season for the Colonials this year. The sophomore competed at the NCAA Gymnastics Regional in Raleigh, N.C.
The cross country, squash, and golf teams each compete off-campus.