The Sweater may be gone, but the cup will be ours

Asher Laackman ’22 working the sideline, EA Day, November 9, 2019 – Mr. Thomas Stambaugh

Several weeks after EA Day, students have gradually freed themselves from the frustration of losing the Sweater. 

     Among the five fall sports, the Fords ended with an overall win:loss ratio of 2:3. With crushing victories in golf and water polo and tough losses in cross country and soccer, it all came down to football. 

     The football Fords have vanquished numerous opponents over the past three months and was only one step away from the Inter-Ac championship, before losing on November 9.

     While the loss this year is certainly painful, an article written by the Headmaster Dr. John Nagl has provided some insights on how to interpret the loss this year from a different angle.  The article, titled “The Day EA Won the Sweater,” was published on the Haverford school website in 2017, when the Fords encountered their first defeat on EA Day after nine consecutive years of victory. 

     The article starts with a famous quote by General Douglas McArthur, “On the fields of friendly strife are sown the seeds that on other days, on other fields will bear the fruits of victory.” Dr. Nagl believed that “the discipline, the teamwork, and the desire to win that is inherent in sports prepared boys for the challenges of life.”

Tyler Zimmer ’21 teeing off on Aronimink’s first hole, EA Day, November 9, 2019 – Mr. Thomas Stambaugh

     “The fruits of victory in life do not grow only from seeds sown on victorious athletic fields,” Dr. Nagl wrote. “In fact, we often learn more from our defeats than from our victories.”

     After all, the loss at this year’s EA Day does not represent the whole of Haverford’s athletics. November may be cold without the sweater, but the start of winter sports season is just about to heat it up. 

This year’s winter will not be cold, because Fords have fires burning in our chests. We are ignited and in pursuit of victory.

     While the EA Day represents a rivalry between the most elite athletes of Haverford and EA, the Heyward Cup is a season-long, 46-year-old competition amongst Inter-Ac League, where every athlete’s effort pays off and take effects in earning points for their school. The Heyward Cup is not about individualism. It is all about teamwork and understanding collective value. 

     This year’s winter will not be cold, because Fords have fires burning in our chests. We are ignited and in pursuit of victory. There is no need to wait for next year. This year, the Fords shall again seize the Cup, just as their brothers did eighteen times in the past.

Soccer Fords preparing for the opening whistle, EA Day, November 9, 2019 – Mr. Thomas Stambaugh