Vol. LXII, No. 46
Wednesday, November 12, 2008
(Photo by Stephen Goldsmith)
RENEWAL PROJECT: Princeton University mens basketball head coach Sydney Johnson fields questions last week at the programs annual media day. As Johnson enters his second year at the helm of the program, he hopes that the enthusiasm his players have displayed in the preseason will help the program rebound from last seasons disappointing 7-23 record. The Tigers will take the first step in that process when they host Central Michigan University this Friday in the season opener for both teams.
The banners recently hung in the rafters of Jadwin Gym serve as a daily reminder to the Princeton University mens basketball players of the glory that has preceded them.
Those highlights include 25 Ivy League titles, 23 NCAA Tournament appearances, a 1965 Final Four run, and an NIT championship in 1975.
For second-year Princeton head coach Sydney Johnson, a former Tiger star who helped the program win two of those Ivy crowns, the banners are a kind of roadmap as the squad looks to rebound from a 2007-08 season that was a low water mark.
Heading into early October, the Princeton High boys soccer team was sailing along, brimming with confidence.
The Little Tigers brought a 7-0 record into critical mid-season contests against undefeated WW/P-N and tough Steinert.
Getting a wake-up call, PHS went scoreless on the week, falling 2-0 to WW/P-N on October 7 and 1-0 to Steinert three days later.
PHS senior defensive star Will Slade acknowledged that the team was humbled by those setbacks.
Courtney Banghart has proven herself to be a quick study.
During her career with the Dartmouth College basketball team from 1996-2000, Banghart was a starter by the time she was a sophomore. The sharp-shooting guard went on to be an All-Ivy performer and a key part of two Ivy championship squads.
Later, she returned to her alma mater as an assistant coach with the womens hoops program, helping the Big Green to a pair of Ivy crowns and earning a masters degree in writing and leadership development in her spare time.
It was the final act of a compelling three-part drama featuring the Princeton High boys soccer team and rival WW/P-N.
Powerful WW/P-N won the first battle staged between the teams, prevailing 2-0 in a regular season matchup on October 7.
Three weeks later, PHS took the second act, gutting out a 2-1 overtime win over the Knights in the Mercer County Tournament semifinals on the way to its second straight county crown.
The Mercer County field hockey tournament was full of twists and turns this fall, with rain delays, venue changes, and a final that took place four days later than originally scheduled.
But when the dust settled there was one constant, the Stuart Country Day squad was in the championship game, marking the Tartans sixth straight appearance in the finals.
With rain pelting the field at WW/P-N last Wednesday, third-seeded Stuart looked to win its fourth straight MCT title as it faced No. 4 Hopewell Valley.
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