Editors Note: Megan Mahoney recalls her experiences with the Fairfield University Intramural program.
The whistle blew. Ryan Jessel ’05 took three slow steps toward the ball as the goalie tensed. He set up his shot, kicked and shot the ball to the lower left-hand corner of the net as the goalie lunged toward it.
His team erupted into cheers and hugs as they ran towards Jessel. They had won the championship after having been denied for the past four years.
Now I am not talking about a nationally ranked football team or the NCAA final game. I am talking about the Argyle Bandits, Fairfield’s championship intramural coed soccer team, crowned last Tuesday after a hard-fought win.
The Argyle Bandits have been chasing a championship t-shirt since freshmen year when we first played together. We achieved our first last year in indoor soccer (which we will defend this year, so everyone look out) but an outdoor one eluded us.
We came out this year on a mission. It is our senior year as a team and we wanted those t-shirts. That’s what it all comes down to really, the championship t-shirts proclaiming your superiority over all the other intramural teams.
I’ve been a hardcore intramural junkie since my freshman year. I’ve played indoor and outdoor soccer and softball with the same teams all four years. Go Hyrule Hooligans! This year, I added basketball to my resume and anyone who wants to see a disaster in the making, come see me play. I have never played basketball ever, not even in high school gym class. Plus I’m 5 foot 1. Enough said.
Intramurals have been one of my favorite parts of Fairfield. I met some of my best friends in the program and it has been a great experience for all of us to see a different side of people. The program has done nothing but improve in the four years I have been here. They have added so many new sports like lacrosse, golf and field hockey and intramural supervisors have done a better job scheduling and making sure referees and equipment are there when a game is scheduled, which used to be a problem.
This year, intramurals have run extremely smoothly. We got pinnies to tell the difference between the teams. Also, the program got a lot more strict on attendance. If a team forfeited more than one game, the team got kicked out of the league. If you showed up to every game, the team got their $25 fee returned to them.
In coed leagues, the refs try to make sure the girls aren’t bashed up or tossed around too much, something I very much appreciate. It is all in the spirit of competition, I know, but sometimes the guys can get a little out of hand and run into girls forgetting that many of them are smaller and lighter than the boys they are used to competing against.
During the championship game, I flew backwards, slid on my side for a bit and went end over end when a guy on the opposite team and I went up for the ball at the same time. He helped me get up and apologized as I tried to see straight. This type of stuff is all in the name of the game and they make for good stories.
The crowning personal achievement of my intramural career was when I hit a home run in a softball game. Wait, I take that back. I hit a single and three errors later, I scored. Since that is as close as I will ever get to a home run, I am taking it. I got the game ball that game from Mike Nolan ’05, our beloved captain. Inscribed on it were the lovely and touching words,
“To the person least likely to ever hit a home run.”