For the last three seasons, the Harvard men’s water polo team had missed out on the CWPA Eastern Championship. The season-ending tournament had been just out of reach for this year’s senior class, but they were determined to make this year different.
For the first time all match, the Dartmouth fans were not screaming at the top of their lungs. All that could be heard were the thwacks of the racquets and the umphs from freshman Denis Nguyen and the Big Green’s Michael Laser.
Down 15 strokes and closing in on the lead on the final day of the Ivy League Championships, the Harvard men’s golf team hadn’t felt this type of pressure in a long time.
A two-point victory had never tasted so sweet for the Harvard women’s basketball team. The Crimson ran out and celebrated, forming a huddle directly over the “H” of Hofstra on the opposing team’s midcourt.
Where to start with the 2011-12 Harvard men’s hockey team? The Crimson set an NCAA record with 11 ties, skated at Fenway Park, the TD Garden, and Atlantic City, made it all the way to the ECAC Championship game, and—at one point in the season—had the most effective power play ever.
Dec. 22, 2003 was the last time the Harvard women’s basketball team had beaten a Big East opponent. Eight years, to the date, had passed. Two thousand nine hundred and twenty-two hours had gone by. Seventy thousand one hundred and twenty-eight minutes had ticked off the clock.
The Harvard women’s hockey team turned over a new leaf this season. Despite losing two of its top four scorers, the squad squeaked out its highest win total since setting an NCAA record for consecutive wins in the 2007-08 season.
Harvard is all about the numbers. Number one school in the country with 6,400 undergrads, 3,500 courses, three million volumes in Widener, 12 undergraduate houses, and 41 Division I sports teams. One basketball NCAA tournament run, two Winklevii, three women’s soccer Ivy League championships in the past four years, and a handful of 2012 Olympians.
I came back to 14 Plympton Street to write this parting shot because it seemed appropriate. What I didn’t expect was to be enveloped one last time in the legendary LoveSac, a humongous blue beanbag, here for storage, that has been passed on between generations of Sports editors.
Sophomore Christo Schultz and the Harvard men’s tennis team earned sole possession of the Ancient Eight crown with six wins in seven Ivy contests. Ranked in the top 25 at the end of the regular season, the Crimson advanced to the second round of the NCAA tournament before falling to Florida.
Despite last year’s Ivy League title for the men’s squad and the NCAA individual foil title for sophomore Alexandra Kiefer, another successful year was never a certainty for the nationally-contending Crimson fencing team. But with a second-place finish by the men’s squad in the Ivy League Championship, a sixth-place finish at the NCAA Championships, and individual silver medal for outgoing co-captain Valentin Staller in the saber, Harvard was nonetheless able to remain in the upper echelons of Ivy and national fencing.