By Tyler Thornton
After a fall season highlighted by SoCon tournament championships in football, women’s soccer, and men’s and women’s cross country, Furman’s sports teams will look to maintain their success going into the spring. For track and field, the Blue Shoes Track Invitational here in Greenville is fast approaching. The competition takes place April 12 and should include plenty of highly competitive events.
On the basketball court, the women’s team has recovered from a slight early season dip and now hold a 10-7 record. With less than half of its games remaining, the women’s team can finish the season strong to position itself for a SoCon tournament bid. The men’s basketball team has its work cut out with a paltry 7-12 record, including 1-5 against conference opponents. However with 10 conference games remaining on its schedule, a late season surge in the vein of the Paladin football team’s efforts could make this a season to celebrate.
The Paladin golf and tennis teams continue their seasons into the new year where they will try to find success. Men’s golf fans can look forward to the Furman Intercollegiate to be held March 28-30 to conclude the regular season. Men’s tennis’s next matchup comes Feb. 1 against Winthrop here in Greenville. The women’s tennis team has its next home match Jan. 30 against East Tennessee State.
Less than a month from now, baseball and softball will return to Furman’s campus, a true sign that warmer weather is on its way. Baseball begins with a game against Norfolk State Feb. 14, at Greenville’s Fluor Field downtown. The baseball team finished in sixth place during last year’s regular season, a mark they will surely hope to improve upon this year. For the women’s side, the softball team starts its season Feb. 12 against USC Upstate. Coming off a middling 27-27 season, the softball team is returning all but two of its starting squad from last year’s team, and with another year’s experience, the team will try to make the small step forward into a winning season.
Finally, men’s lacrosse, a new addition to Furman athletics, will kick off its inaugural season with a home match against Lehigh Feb. 1. Despite the school’s inexperience in the sport, Furman hopes to compete at a high level this year with scheduled matchups against traditionally elite teams, including a March 18 home game against Duke, the 2013 Championship winners and Inside Lacrosse’s preseason no. 1-ranked team.