Saturday, February 28, 2009

Dayton vs. LaSalle

Several of our friends in Philadelphia are "transplants", like ourselves. Many of them attended the University of Dayton for college (it is a R&H target school for recruiting engineers). Meg Edwards, one of our good friends (and the mother of three pictured above), is "the main squeeze" in their local alumni association chapter. The Flyers came to town a few weeks ago to play LaSalle (one of the Philadelphia Big 5) in an important Atlantic 10 Conference match-up. Having the in with Meg, Rachel and I donned our red and headed to Tom Gola arena for the game. *** Please note that Brian Albright, the guy in the snazzy yellow sweater is a Dayton grad. Also note, that yellow is La Salle's color.***

Pictured above L-R: Brian Albright, Kate Edwards, Meg Edwards,(Me in back), Olivia Edwards (baby), Keith Edwards, and Abby Edwards, who serenaded us with her rendition of James Blunt's "You're Beautiful" on the way to the game.

The Flyers built a significant lead by half time on some hot shooting from the perimeter. In the second half, they cooled off a bit, and La Salle made a run on them to tie the game with just a few seconds left. Dayton held the ball for the last shot. One of the Dayton forwards missed a 17 footer from the lane elbow with 3 seconds left. Their most athletic guard shot down the lane, caught the rebound off of the rim and jammed it home for the win as time expired. WHAT AN AMAZING FINISH!!!

Dayton has a very athletic team but are streaky shooters (sounds a lot like my Vols). They also run the same offense as Tennessee, where the guards circle around the top of the key meaninglessly, without looking to pass the ball inside.

In this photo, Rachel with Brian "I Wear the Opponents Colors" Albright.

REFLECTIONS - The Palestra

For my birthday, our friends Tim and Nicole Callahan, invited us to a Big 5 game at The Palestra. St. Joseph's was playing Temple. The Palestra is the gymnasium for the University of Penn, but many of the Big 5 games are still played there. It is "The Cathedral of College Basketball" and opened in 1927.

Unfortunately, I forgot my camera. I tried to take pictures with my Blackberry, but they were blurry. Rachel commented that it was the best arena she has ever been in for watching basketball. I agree. It holds about 8,500 fans, and the seats run down to the court. The atmosphere is awesome!!! The Hawk mascot for St. Joe's flaps his wings for the entire game. I imagine it takes an aggressive training regimen for a person to be able to repeatedly lift his/her arms above his/her head repeatedly for over 90 minutes straight.

Unfortunately, Temple defeated St. Joe's. It was another night to watch Dionte Christmas light up a team, as he did my Vols in December.

If you ever have the chance... go to the Palestra, even if you don't get to attend a game.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Spring Mountain - Skiing Locally

Sorry for the long absence, folks. I don't have a good excuse, as Rachel and I were not up to much in January. I just haven't sat down and written in a while. I hope to do better, as I now have a few items to blog about.

One Sunday in January, Rachel and I went skiing at Spring Mountain resort.

Rachel did some research and found that there is a place to ski only 15-20 minutes from our house. Although smaller than the resorts in the Poconos, you can't beat Spring Mountain for convenience. With a very short drive and no traffic, you can be at a ski slope that is not overly crowded for the most part. Since it is 50 minutes to an hour outside of Philadelphia, the center-city crowd will likely opt to continue on to the Poconos, leaving Spring Mountain to the locals.

With 3 lifts, and a beginners area on a separate slope than the intermediate area, Spring Mountain does not feel crowded. Although the slope ratings are a bit elevated (a black diamond is really more like an intermediate slope), it has a decent run or two and a terrain park for snowboarding and/or ski jumping. Spring Mountain would be a great place to take a first time skier to learn.

(View from near the top of the intermediate slope)
(Rachel skiing down the intermediate slope)

REFLECTIONS - Congrats to Rachel - One Race Per Month for One Year

Last year, Rachel set a goal to run one race per month for an entire year. She has now accomplished that goal. This reflection contains a few pictures from some of her most recent races. Sadly, professional photographers took the pictures from the past two races, as I am not getting up early on a Saturday morning when it is less than 30 degrees to go run.

All of these races ranged from 5K to 10 K in length. In 2009, she is kicking it up a notch, as we are running the Cooper River Bridge Run in Charleston, which is a 10K in April. She also wants to run the Broad Street run in Philadelphia, which is a 10-miler. While her example as rubbed off on me slightly (I did run several races in 2008), I cannot say that I am committed to a 10 mile run.