Spring break 2016: Lehigh sports edition

Lehigh juniors David Young Stephen Fitzgerald jog over to warm up with their teammates at baseball practice Tuesday, Mar. 8, 2016 at Legacy Park. Lehigh Baseball will play Villanova University Wednesday March 9, 2016. (Kendall Coughlin/B&W Staff)

Lehigh juniors David Young and Stephen Fitzgerald jog over to warm up with their teammates at baseball practice on Tuesday, March 8, 2016 at Legacy Park. Lehigh will play Fairleigh Dickinson University in a doubleheader on Saturday. (Kendall Coughlin/B&W Staff)

With Spring break approaching, many Lehigh sports teams find themselves in the midst of their seasons.

Lehigh softball

It all starts on Saturday when the softball team will travel to Orlando, Florida, for the University of Central Florida Spring Fling Tournament. Over the course of the weekend the team will play games against Florida Gulf Coast University, Indiana State University and Purdue University.

Afterward, the team will head to Clearwater, Florida, to play against Hartford University on Tuesday and then to Tampa Bay, Florida, to play University of Maine and the University of Southern Florida the next day. Finally, the Mountain Hawks will return to Clearwater for the University of South Florida Spring Break Tournament where the team will face Rutgers University, Quinnipiac University, Northwestern University and Marist College March 18-19.

Lehigh baseball

The Lehigh baseball team will play Fairleigh Dickinson University four times over Saturday and Sunday at Fairleigh Dickinson. It will then compete in the Russmatt Invitational in Winter Haven, Florida, starting on March 16, and will play several games through March 20. The team will play Bradley University, Maine, Dartmouth College and University of Massachusetts.

“Obviously our team goal going into spring break is to win as many games as we can,” senior outfielder Anthony Rinaldi said. “Going down to Florida gives us the opportunity to play very good competition around the country.

“Last year, we did not have much success during our trip down and so, moving forward, this year we would like to come back to Bethlehem with more wins. Besides winning, we would also like to develop our players further. Being that we play just about every day, it gives our hitters the opportunity to find a groove at the plate.”

Junior outfielder Stephen Fitzgerald said team members also play for each other.

“We have some great talent on our team, but it’s not taken for granted,” he said. “Our team works extremely hard, and we’re hungry to get better every day. We also have great team chemistry, which is important in baseball because we play 50+ games in our season. We are constantly together, whether it’s at practice, on the road or off the field, and it makes us want to play even harder for each other.”

Lehigh rowing

Both the men’s and women’s rowing teams will compete against Loyola University (Maryland) and the University of Delaware on Saturday and March 19, respectively. These will be their first regattas since the fall semester and both will be home on the Schuylkill River in Philadelphia.

Senior rower Carolyn Mazzie said one of the team’s biggest strengths is its ability to adapt to unforeseen circumstances.

“Going into the racing season our strengths are definitely our cohesion and ability to adapt to whatever is thrown at us,” Mazzie said. “We are really pushing the one team mentality, which is crucial for a sport that you have to move as one with seven other people in a boat. By never knowing our specific workout for the day, only the general training plan, we have learned to be adaptable. Adaptability is key when it comes to the fact that anything can happen in a race.”

Lehigh lacrosse

The men’s lacrosse team will have two games over the break. The first will be away Saturday at Army West Point at noon. The second will be a week later March 19 against rival Lafayette College in Easton at 1 p.m.

The women’s lacrosse team will compete three times over spring break. The first game will be Saturday at Liberty University at 3 p.m. The second game will be on Tuesday away at Davidson College. Its third and final competition of the break will be March 19 at home against College of the Holy Cross and will be streamed live on the Patriot League Network.

Lehigh women’s basketball

The women’s basketball Patriot League Championship will be held Saturday at 6 p.m. in West Point, New York, and will be aired live on the CBS Sports Network and ESPN radio. Lehigh is facing Army the day before in the tournament semifinals and will need to win the game to qualify for the championship.

Lehigh golf

The men’s golf team will compete in the Manhattan Spring Break Tournament from March 16-17 in Jupiter, Florida. The women’s golf team will compete in the Lady Eaglecat Invitational from March 15-16 in Daytona Beach, Florida.

Lehigh wrestling

The NCAA Championships for the wrestling team will be held in New York from March 17-19. Nine wrestlers on the team will be competing in the championships, with the chance for a 10th wrestler once the official championship brackets are announced.

Lehigh track and field

Both the men’s and women’s track teams will compete in the Bulls Invitational from March 17-18 in Tampa, Florida. On March 19, the teams will both also compete in the Philadelphia College Classic in Philadelphia.

Lehigh tennis

Both the men and women’s tennis teams were set to go to Puerto Rico for their matches, but that trip was canceled due to concerns about exposure to the Zika virus.

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