George Washington's baseball team gave a good account of itself against top-ranked Virginia last week, losing by the thoroughly respectable score of 2-0. (One of the Cavaliers' runs was pretty chintzy, too - the result of a balk.) The Colonials (9-19) have been having their problems this season, recently suffering a 19-1 defeat at the hands of Marist, so you can understand the sports information department wanting to accentuate the positive after the close loss in Charlottesville.
Thus, the game summary on gwsports.com recounts the exploits of Colonials pitchers Tommy Gately, Kenny O'Brien and Craig Lejeune, who combined to hold Virginia to just six hits, all singles. Also mentioned is shortstop Justin Albright's "heads-up" throw home in the seventh inning, which cut off a run.
It isn't until the seventh paragraph that you stumble across this note:
"The two runs were all the Cavaliers would need as starting pitcher Will Roberts was perfect on the mound, striking out 10 batters en route to the eighth nine-inning perfect game in NCAA Division I (since 1957) history and the first since 2002."
Oh, is that all?
Poor Will Roberts, sacrificed on the altar of athletic self-promotion.
But I'm not going to take the SID to task for, as we say in the news business, burying the lead. Everybody, after all, has a job to do. I'm just going to wonder what it would be like if other sports events were covered this way - from a single perspective, without paying much attention to things like, well, history. Some possibilities that popped into my head:
• HERSHEY, Pa., Mar. 2, 1962 | The New York Knicks piled up their second-highest point total of the season tonight but couldn't avert a 169-147 loss to the Philadelphia Warriors at Hersheypark Arena. Three Knicks - Richie Guerin (39), Cleveland Buckner (33) and Willie Naulls (31) - all topped 30, and Dave Budd (13 points, 10 rebounds) had a double-double.
Seventh paragraph: Philadelphia's Wilt Chamberlain scored 100 points, breaking his own NBA record for a game by 22 (set earlier this season against the Lakers in triple overtime). Chamberlain made 36 field goals and 28 free throws, both also records.
• ORCHARD PARK, N.Y., Jan. 3, 1993 | Despite a historic performance by Warren Moon, the Houston Oilers dropped a 41-38 overtime thriller to the Buffalo Bills today in the first round of the NFL playoffs. Moon threw for 371 yards and four touchdowns, both franchise postseason marks, and drove the Oilers to a game-tying field goal in the final seconds of regulation, forcing OT. Alas, it wasn't to be.
Seventh paragraph: The Bills staged the greatest comeback the league has ever seen - and they did it without quarterback Jim Kelly, who was out with a knee injury. Kelly's backup, Frank Reich, rallied Buffalo from a 35-3 deficit in the second half with four TD passes of his own, the last three to Andre Reed.
• AUGUSTA, Ga., April 14, 1968 | With a brilliant final-round 66, Bob Goalby won the Masters today and claimed the hallowed green jacket. It was the first major championship for the 38-year-old pro, and he did it in style, going birdie-birdie-eagle on 13, 14 and 15. His total of 277, 11 under par, left him with a one-shot cushion at Augusta National.
Seventh paragraph: Goalby almost had to endure an 18-hole playoff, but Roberto DeVicenzo signed an incorrect scorecard, dropping him to 10 under. DeVicenzo's playing partner, Tommy Aaron, mistakenly wrote down a 4 instead of a birdie 3 on Roberto's card for the 17th hole, and the Argentine failed to catch the error. So - on his 45th birthday, no less - DiVicenzo had to settle for second place.
• MOSCOW, Aug. 3, 1980 | The 22nd Olympiad came to a close today, and it was a glorious one for the Soviet Union. The Soviets obliterated all modern records by capturing 195 medals, 80 of them gold.
Seventh paragraph: The United States boycotted the Games because of the U.S.S.R.'s invasion of Afghanistan. Some 60 other nations also didn't participate.
I could keep this up all day, but you get the idea: News is what you make of it. One man's Narrow But Encouraging Defeat is another man's Eighth Perfect Game Since 1957.
And the world spins on.
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