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Pack the house

February 15, 2019

This piece represents the opinion of the Bowdoin Orient Editorial Board.

The Bowdoin women’s basketball team has danced its way to the number one seed in the NESCAC tournament, and the music doesn’t seem to be stopping anytime soon—though it may be changing tempo. Taylor Choate ’19 told Orient columnist Ian Ward this week that “in the postseason, everything’s different. Everyone’s coming at you much harder.” And as Ward notes, for the Polar Bears, ranked number one in the nation after an undefeated season, it is truly everyone who wants a chance on the floor with them. That floor, for as long as the team is in the NESCAC tournament, will be right here on campus, in Morrell Gymnasium.

An undefeated season in sports is rare, and especially so at Bowdoin. The women’s basketball team has not had a perfect regular season since 2003, when it made the National Championship game before ultimately falling to Wilmington College, 59–53. This year’s Polar Bears have already beaten the defending national champion Amherst in a game that rocked Morrell, with attendance numbers so high they threatened the fire code.

Several of us were there that day, holding our breath as the Mammoths kept up a slight but steady lead through the first half, leaping to our feet at every three-pointer and roaring our approval as the Polar Bears took the lead. Even those of us who don’t usually enjoy basketball games were committed to threatening the structural integrity of the wooden bleachers. It was, without a doubt, the game of the season and definitely the game of day. In comparison, that night’s much-hyped hockey game, despite its similarly close score, was lackluster.

And while Morrell was packed for the game against the Mammoths and attendance has been solid all season long, we continue to hear tired tropes about how the game isn’t as interesting or physical as when the men take the court. This, we can confidently say, is bullshit. We dare those who disagree to go and watch the women play and not find them awe-inspiring.

The mental fortitude necessary to never have an off day is remarkable. It’s one thing to take the title, but it takes another level of skill to be the best team on the court every single day. So, let’s see if the Polar Bears can finish the job. What women’s basketball is giving the Bowdoin community is the single most alluring concept in all of sports: a perfect season. And we have a front row seat.

We trust that Bowdoin students are excited for the NESCAC tournament, but we’re sending out a missive to be sure: pack the house this Saturday against Connecticut College and continue to do so for as long as you can watch this squad play. Morrell Gym seats approximately 2,500 spectators. We expect every single one of those seats to be filled.

This editorial represents the majority view of the Bowdoin Orient’s editorial board, which is composed of Anjulee Bhalla, Nell Fitzgerald, Roither Gonzales, Dakota Griffin, George Grimbilas, Calder McHugh and Jessica Piper.  


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