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Yellow Jacket Roundup: Maui Wow-y

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YOU TOO CAN OWN YOUR OWN FRANCHISE

Us too, coach, us too.
Georgia Tech Athletics/Danny Karnik

ATLANTA, GEORGIA - We learned some stuff about some teams this weekend as a healthy mix of the non-revenue sports teams ventured to all corners of the country, and even to the near abroad. So, grab your passports, and prepare yourselves for a quick spin through a blend of sports from the tennis court to the volleyball court, and even to sports not played on courts. Wow. What a treat.


No. 7 Men’s Golf

Tech’s pride and joy spent the weekend out in Scottsdale at a Hawaiian sunglasses-themed golf invitational. The Maui Jim Invitational, named for a Peoria, Illinois, based sunglasses company (Author’s Note: if you’re ever in Peoria go to Avanti’s, the bread is swell) originally from Hawaii, hosted at a golf course in Scottsdale, Arizona, and hosted by Georgia State, somehow is as diverse as an event as you get in the sport of golf. Competition spanned this past weekend and featured a wide range of teams, several of whom were ranked. Seeking to avenge their one stroke loss to the Arizona State Sun Devils last year, the Jackets went into the final day of competition trailing that same foe. Spoiler alert, Tech hadn’t lost in regulation yet this year, and didn’t start today. Though junior Tyler Strafaci and sophomore Noah Norton, Tech’s top scorers, placed just 6th overall, the immense team depth that proved so vital last year shone through yet again. Andy Ogletree and Strafaci caught absolutely on fire on the back nine on the final day to give Tech the victory. Perhaps both Tech’s greatest asset and hinderance is the absence of a transcendent star - their fortunes rise and fall on the whims of the group as a whole but they lack one player that can simply put the team on his back and play - but today those two stepped up in a big way when they were needed the most. Senior James Clark finished in 48th, while Freshman Connor Howe competed as an individual and placed 30th in his college debut, and, all in all, Tech looked up to their usual elite form against a solid slate of opposition.

If this team was a smoothie shop, who would they be? Maui Wowi, obviously. Hawaiian, but actually based on the mainland, and has some solid options but no one smoothie that triumphs over them all.

Next Week: The Swingy Bois get a week off to rest on their laurels.

No. “Would Probably Be Ranked But There Are No Rankings Yet” Women’s Tennis

At the last minute, Tech was able to enter a tournament this weekend, obscuring their unfortunate double cancellation last week due to the effects of the hurricane in the Carolinas. They made the most of the opportunity, however, with Tech taking home both a singles and a doubles title on the weekend. Victoria Flores was unbeaten on her way to both crowns, and freshman Dalila Said also played for a title, but fell in three sets. Meanwhile, the Jackets took home a doubles victory courtesy of Flores and another newcomer, Valeriya Deminova. All in all, a solid, albeit rushed, last-minute weekend for the Jackets.

If this team was a smoothie shop, who would they be? Smoothie King, because they’re probably the closest thing Tech sports has to royalty at the moment.

Next Week: The Racket Jackets head to fall ITAs out west in sunny, and waterless, California.

Volleyball

Friday, September 21st: Syracuse (5 - 4) swept Georgia Tech (11 - 3), 25-14, 27-25, 25-21 (3 - 0).

Saturday, September 8th: Boston College (12 - 2) defeats Georgia Tech (9 - 2), 25-18, 25-22, (3 - 1).

Now, I’m not saying to sound the alarm quite yet. Tech has always played better volleyball in the comforts of home, anyways, but Syracuse has the look of a middle-of-the-pack ACC team and Boston College may be better than their decidedly “meh” 2017 season, but I am highly skeptical they’re about to make the leap to the stratosphere. Tech has two freshmen already with three conference Freshman of the Week awards between them. That’s alright, too. But going winless on the trip wasn’t exactly a great start to the conference slate. So what happened?

Tech never truly challenged Syracuse in the first set in New York. Simply put. Syracuse was attacking at a .400 clip. That’s extraordinary. However, in the second set, it was much closer. Neither team was playing as well and it was a war of attrition. Tech lead by as many as seven points just one away from set point. Syracuse got four back. Tech got set point. Then Syracuse got four more. Suddenly, Tech found themselves on the opposite side of the scenario. They hung around a little longer, but ultimately fell. The team is young, playing on the road, in their first ACC game. Seems like the prime opportunity for something like that to happen. In the third set, it was a classic ACC “close-but-not-too-close” set. The Jackets took a slight deficit early, and, as such, never really got to set the tone for the set. They fell by four to close out the sweep.

Over in Boston on Sunday, the Jackets again came out slow. They made it out of games with slight wins against a much lower caliber of team doing the same thing. However, against ACC competition, they were never able to make up the deficit and fell 25-18 in the first. The second set was closer, featuring several ties, including one as late as 22-22. That would be all the Jackets were able to score, though, and the Eagles rattled off three straight points to send it to the third set. The third set in Boston was certainly Tech’s best set of the weekend, considering it was the only one they won in two games. The box score reads much more like the past few weeks than it had the past two games. Mikaila Dowd found her groove, and Brambilla got well on her way to yet another double-double. However, that win would be it for the Jackets, who were unable to prevent Boston College from taking the final set.

If this team was a smoothie shop, who would they be? Jamba Juice, because they’re the best, or at least most notable, everyone seems to know what they are, and generally reliable.

Next Week: Volleyball returns home to the much friendlier confines of the O’Keefe Gymnasium to take on well-regarded Louisville as well as the Fighting Irish.

Cross Country

So, in a somewhat unexpected turn of events, the women’s cross country team this year might actually make some noise at the end of the season. Though they had suffered some setbacks last year and it appeared to be a lot of the same this coming year, they backed up their victory over the Athenians a while back with a second place showing in a field of 24 teams, four of which are top-30 teams, that took place on the same course the conference meet will be run. Not bad. They were led by Mary Prouty, Nicole Fegans, and Amy Ruiz, in that order.

Meanwhile, the Tech men placed ninth overall, which is less spectacular than the ladies, but still put them ahead of two of the other five conference foes at the meet. They were paced by Andrew Kent, Avery Bartlett, and Braeden Collins. It was not a bad showing, And especially nice considering the ACC championship will be on the same course, and Tech had been looking to improve at that race in particular after a down year there last fall.

If this team was a smoothie shop, who would they be? Orange Julius, because Cross Country is a sport as old as time.

Next Week: Since they only have one more regular season event, and it’s not next weekend, seems like the runners have a break this weekend.

Men’s Tennis

So this tournament exists, at least according to the UTSA website and RamblinWreck.com. There are preview articles. Michigan and Auburn were there. But neither site has the results of the event. So, perhaps we did well? Yeah, let’s go with that.

If this team was a smoothie shop, who would they be? Tropical Smoothie Cafe, because it sounds exciting, but is actually regular. One time, there was that one really, really amazing smoothie you had there and you just know they’ll get it right again someday if you believe hard enough.

Next Week: The other Racket Jackets draw the short end of the stick and, rather than heading to California, the men will head to beautiful, breezy Tulsa for their fall ITAs.

Softball

As is tradition, we are left with just the annual Case of the Mysterious, Disappearing Softball Games. They won. This we can all but be assured. Should there be a way to get the score? Yes, of course. Is there? Nope. So perhaps we will find out in time for the next edition of Yellow Jacket Roundup. As is tradition.

If this team was a smoothie shop, who would they be? How would we even know if we don’t know the score of the game? Actually, though, that probably makes them Planet Smoothie, because apparently that’s a place that should exist, but who’s to say what goes on there? According to this writer’s non-scientific poll, no one knows anyone who has ever gone to one. And how would anyone know what happened in a sporting event without stats or the score being posted online?

Next week: Tech’s weekly matchup shifts to Friday against the Reinhardt Eagles at 5:00 PM.


This Week on the Flats:

BOLD for home, REGULAR for away, ITALIC for time and location

Monday: OFF

Tuesday: OFF

Wednesday: OFF

Thursday: OFF

Friday:
Swimming and Diving vs. ... Also Swimming and Diving (White and Gold Intrasquad)
2:00 PM, McAuley Aquatic Center

Softball vs. Reinhardt
5:00 PM, Mewborn Field

Volleyball vs. Louisville
7:00 PM, O’Keefe Gymnasium, ACC Network Extra and WREK 91.1

Saturday:
Swimming and Diving vs. ... Also Swimming and Diving (White and Gold Intrasquad)
7:30 AM, McAuley Aquatic Center

Football vs. Bowling Green
12:00 PM, Bobby Dodd Stadium, RSNs (Fox Sports South in Atlanta) and Georgia Tech Football Radio Network

Women’s Tennis @ Riviera/ITA Women’s All-American Championship
All day, Pacific Palisades, CA

Men’s Tennis @ ITA Men’s All-American Championsips
All day, Tulsa, OK

Sunday:
Volleyball vs. Notre Dame
1:00 PM, O’Keefe Gymnasium, ACC Network Extra and WREK 91.1

Women’s Tennis @ Riviera/ITA Women’s All-American Championship
All day, Pacific Palisades, CA

Men’s Tennis @ ITA Men’s All-American Championsips
All day, Tulsa, OK