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Old Gold & Black

Old Gold & Black

OPINION: Men’s Basketball just won’t back down
Abigail Taylor, Contributing writer • February 27, 2024

Fight to the Finish

Fight+to+the+Finish

By: Omar K. Elmore, Senior Writer

In honor of Coach Ayers’ 30th season as Wofford’s head football coach, the class of 2021 received commemorative shirt-jerseys featuring the number 30. In continuing a tradition started during the 2016-2017 football season, the freshman class and orientation staff made the Terrier Walk from the Greek Village to Gibbs Stadium. After forming the tunnel through which the football team entered the field, the group filled the student section and cheered on the Terriers to a one-point victory.

“It was a great way to get freshmen to be a part of the campus community,” says Bali Channa ’20. “The matching shirts were a perfect way to get everyone on the same page.”

The first-year students gathered with their orientation group before making the trek down to the stadium to watch the team warm up. Once they cleared the field, they all made a tunnel while learning chants that students tend to lead at any given sports event.

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“Seeing our orientation group leaders get loud and rowdy after a week of hanging out with them was great,” says Sanders Pruitt ’21. “Watching them let their guards down encouraged the rest of us to get a little crazy.”

One could hear the influence of orientation week throughout the game. For instance, the cheerleaders and dance team taught a chant to the Class of 2021 that starts at every kick-off. The student section roared leading up to the kickoff and, as Furman’s kicker hit the ball, exploded into a chant spelling W-O-F-F-O-R-D.

“The energy was amazing,” says Pruitt. “The stadium was electric the whole way through. It was great for that to be our first football game as a Terrier.”

The game was not lacking in drama. After a strong start from both sides, the game was tied at 10 at halftime. To start the second half, Furman drove down the field for a 75-yard drive, scoring on a short run at the goal line. Furman would hold the one-touchdown lead for the remainder of the third quarter as each team went scoreless the rest of the period.

The fourth quarter offered a few turns as the Terriers scored 14 unanswered points giving them a 24-17 lead. As the clock winded down, Furman drove down the field before capitalizing on a 44-yard score to bring the Paladins within one point before the extra point attempt. With 46 seconds remaining, instead of going for the tie and likely leading the game to overtime, Furman decided to go for the win with a two-point conversion.

“We were all on the edge of our seats,” says Channa. “We didn’t expect them to go for two at the end. It was one play to decide the game.”

Veteran safety Malik Rivera ’18 intercepted the Paladins’ pass at the goal line, sealing the victory.

“After last season, with the Terriers making it so far in the playoffs, we are all excited for what can happen this season,” says Pruitt. “Starting the season and our freshman year by beating our rivals only has us more excited.”

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