November 19, 2008

Field trip to Monterey

I can't believe how fast this year is going by. It's already almost Christmas!! 

I thought I would talk a little bit about a field trip I went on recently. I got to go to Hopkins Marine Station in Monterey for my Marine Biology class. It was raining when my class arrived, but after a couple  of hours it cleared up and the water was gorgeous. This trip was the first time I had been to the ocean since I came back to school.

I went on a tour of the station and got to see the different laboratories and classrooms, which all had beautiful views of the ocean from every window! I couldn't ask for a better place to study than the library at the station with its floor to ceiling windows looking out to the ocean! In one of the labs there were huge tanks of water. Some had baby hammerhead sharks in them and others had various types of fish whose populations have declined in the ocean.

My favorite part of the trip was getting to explore the tide pools. One of my professors, Mark Denny (whose daughter played basketball at Stanford), took my class down to the tide pools during low tide and pointed out different organisms and the different types of research he and others do at Hopkins.

I saw lots of sea anemones, which are pretty cool if you ask me, and there were also tons of shells and many types of seaweed. I also saw a couple of sea otters, which was awesome.

I had fun, learned a lot, and managed not to get drenched by the waves. Others weren't so lucky!

Hannah Donaghe

November 10, 2008

Meeting the challenge

These first few months have been an amazing and exhilarating experience. It has definitely been an adjustment from high school, but I have developed some great friendships on the team and in the dorm. The best part of Stanford is the challenge it offers, both in basketball and academics.

Basketball has been a blast. I have had a great time getting to know my teammates and playing with such dedicated individuals. I am extremely excited for what this team can do this season. The first two games have been exhilarating. It was nerve-racking but it was a lot of fun to finally play in a college game. I am really looking forward to what the rest of the season will bring.

Another plus Stanford offers is the weather. Back in my hometown in Illinois it has already started to snow!

Sarah Boothe

November 5, 2008

Cheering the team on!

This blog finds me at the start of another season, but this time from a very different perspective. Usually at this point in the year my body’s dying from getting in great court shape, my brain’s overwhelmed with all the plays, and emotionally I’m a mixture of anxious, nervous, and excited.

This year, as a senior and unfortunately, injured, I’m in a little different state. My body is sore but in completely different ways. The physical therapy I do for about four hours a week makes the tiniest of muscles I never knew I had ache. Instead of my hamstrings, quads or calves killing me, the tiny muscle that flexes my second toe is sore.

Fortunately my brain isn’t quite as tired from preseason. After three years, the plays are pretty much engrained forever. I’m hoping that remains the case when I’m back on the court. Something tells me Tara will not cut me any slack if I mess up a play, even if I haven’t been running them.

From an emotional standpoint, I’m extremely excited about this season and anxious to get back out there. I can’t wait to see this team reach its potential. We have great depth and continue to have a lot of the intangibles that made us so successful last year such as toughness and team chemistry.

It’s weird watching everything from the sidelines in that I see things I never realized when I’m out there. I find myself learning from the coaching staff, not in the obvious ways, but watching things such as the sequence of drills, and breakdowns for guards and posts. I see more of the background work and concepts that when I’m out there are just drills. The bigger picture is a lot more apparent when you take a step away.

I’m trying to make the most of my experience on the sideline by learning from Tara about how she coaches. I think I would enjoy coaching as a hobby down the line so I’ve been trying to absorb as much as I can.

From Coach Morgan’s perspective, the team is coming together really nicely. I’m so proud of how well the freshmen especially performed in the exhibition against Chico State. It’s amazing how well they’ve adjusted. I just remember my first week of practice my freshman year I was concentrating so hard on remembering where I was supposed to be in each of the plays I could barely let myself just relax and play. Grace was one for one from three, Sarah dominated on her hook shot, Lindy was bombing, and Nneka killed it on the glass. I’m so proud of them.

I honestly think this team will have a lot to show the country, and while we lost an amazing player in Candice, we have several people more than ready to step up. I can’t wait to be out there playing with them, but in the meantime I’ll be cheering them on in any way I can.

Morgan Clyburn