The theatrics of sport cannot be matched

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Photo by Brady LeSueur

I’m not afraid to admit it: I’m a sucker for theater. Mostly movies in the comfort of my own home, but whether it’s the stage or the screen, the storylines are what get me. My only problem is the predictability. Nine times out of 10 I feel like I know what’s going to happen 15 minutes into the story. Enter my love for sports. Really, sports are just a form of theater where the script is written right in front of us. The characters develop through the course of a season and we’ll always find the ones to love and love to hate. Sports at Utah Valley University definitely have a knack for theatrics.

After closing the season with a bitter 2-0 loss to the Seattle U Redhawks, the UVU men’s soccer team bounced back and fought to the bitter end against the Redhawks in the WAC title match. Goalkeeper Collin Partee was sent off with a red card in the 90th minute then the Wolverines fell 5-4 in penalty kicks. It was a dramatic finish to a terrific match from the opening kickoff.

After the men’s basketball team suffered a four-point loss to Montana State in early December, I was sitting with a pair of local journalists waiting for head coach Mark Pope to come speak to the media. One of the men expressed concern that after such a loss the team may not win a game in December because of the grueling schedule to come, especially with NBA-prospect Joel Bolomboy and Weber State coming to the UCCU Center. However, the Wolverines had another script in place. I sat courtside and watched an undersized UVU team upset Weber State 84-81 in double overtime.

Wrestler Jade Rauser battled injury through his senior season; he was even forced to forfeit matches because of injury. Despite the setbacks during the season, Rauser fought his way to a third-place finish at the Big 12 tournament and clinched a bid to the NCAA Wrestling Championships, where he finished in eighth place and earned UVU’s second-ever All-American honors in wrestling.

The storylines that played out over the 2015-16 season for UVU would not have been written by anyone but the Wolverine faithful. Wolverine athletics only looks to get increasingly dramatic in years to come. The men’s soccer program is becoming the team that nobody wants to play because they don’t want to lose to the school down the street from BYU that’s just getting started in Division I athletics. The men’s basketball team is turning into the team that will dominate the conference because recruiting juggernaut Mark Pope always gets his guy.

The theatrics and drama of sports is what keeps me coming back for more. UVU athletics has no shortage of drama, and it only looks to increase as our teams are getting bigger and better. Once you get a taste of what UVU has to provide on the court, pitch, field or the mat, you’ll be hooked.