Stephanie Han / The Dartmouth Senior Staff
In the final week of Ivy play the Big Green volleyball team pulled off a spectacular 3-1 win against Princeton, ruining Princeton’s hope to be a contender for the Ivy League title. During the game, there was no doubt in our minds we were going to win; it was like a flashback to when we were 7-0 during preseason and were feeling invincible. It was very satisfying to get back the same confidence we had started the season with, three months ago. As a senior, it really was all I could ask for during my final weekend representing the Big Green. If it was a perfect world, we would have beat Penn on Saturday and taken them out of the running for the title too, but playing two high energy volleyball games back to back really does take a toll on your body; especially OLD bodies like mine. So, we were really nice and dropped our last game 3-1 to Penn, allowing them to still be in contention for the title with Yale; I mean we couldn’t just GIVE the title to Yale like that, they need to work for it a little.
The Penn game was technically the “Senior Day” game, meaning that Jessie Hartman ’11 and I were the center of attention. There was a nice little ceremony of sorts at the beginning, tallying off all of our ‘amazing’ contributions to the program over the last four years. The announcer listed off all of our impressive stats, but honestly I think it would have been more entertaining to know how many pounds of ice and rolls of athletic tape I used over my college career. Really the best thing about Senior Day were the ENORMOUS posters of our pictures that were put up in the gym. And by ‘best,’ I mean embarrassing. At the end of the night we got to keep them and now I have this huge poster of us in my room, making me seem either really narcissistic or just creepy.
Overall “Senior Day” was good, but it still has not settled in that I am actually done playing sports for Dartmouth. I just realized that I will actually have nothing to complain about anymore. Most of my complaints over the last four years have had to do with my lack of time (due to practice and training), my deteriorating body (due to being old) and the lack of sleep (due to the combination of the two previous reasons). Now what am I supposed to complain about? The weather? WAY too standard. I try to strive for excellence in my complaints. I guess I’ll have to move onto complaining about the male-dominated social scene or the clear inequality of Collis versus Food Court. You know, real intellectual stuff.
But don’t get me wrong, even though all athletes complaints usually derive from their sport, we love it. A friend of mine put it perfectly by saying, “The only thing worse than playing volleyball, is NOT playing volleyball.” Which is the God given truth of college athletics. However, many people have consoled me by saying that once you are an athlete you are always an athlete, which is slightly comforting. I will say though, everyone better watch out for all the newly released ’11 fall athletes in the next couple weeks, pong games and frat basements may no longer be safe due to increased competition and celebratory debauchery.
So as I embark upon my twilight months of “nonner-hood” I say adieu Dartmouth, thanks for reading. Watch volleyball next season because the ‘12s are going to do some big things and there is no other sport as entertaining and spandex-clad as the sport of volleyball.