Tigers Clawing for Playoffs

The cricket team, after a rough 0-7 start to the season, will try to overcome the early season hole to close out strong.

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By Nadia Rahman

Freshman Vishwaa Sofat stepped up to hit against the Thomas Edison bowler and eyed him up. Sofat then smacked the next ball for a six, similar to a home run in baseball, except worth six runs. He and the Tigers, Stuyvesant’s cricket team, cruised to their first victory of the season.

After defeating Thomas Edison High School for their first win of the season, the Tigers will look to carry the solid play over for the remainder of the season and put their rough start behind them. The team currently sits at 1-7, which is last in their Bronx/Manhattan Division.

However, the team has not lost hope, even with the tough beginning. “We usually start off a little rough but end much better, so the fight isn’t over yet,” said senior and co-captain Vijay Daopersaud, who bowled well against Thomas Edison and helped lead the Tigers to victory with two wickets.

Senior and co-captain Gurpreet Singh shared a similar sentiment: “We still have six more games to go, and I believe in this team to go out there and win,” he said. Neither the captains, nor the rest of the team, will give in with so much of the season left to play.

In order to improve, the team will need to quickly gain the experience and mentality that only comes with playing the game for a long time. Many new players have had to step up and fill the roles previously occupied by seniors. “We lost around seven starters this past season. All of them had at least three years of experience playing the sport,” Singh said.

One of the few bright spots on the hitting side of the game, Sofat has become a force with the bat. He has scored a combined 54 runs over six games and will look to add to that total as the season draws on. “He really stepped up and provided much needed stability for batting and bowling and keeping, something done by very few players in the league,” Daopersaud said.

A consistent problem for this team has been run production. Their highest output was the 83 they scored against Thomas Edison in their win, but after that the next highest is more than five runs less, and the team averages about 60 runs per game. Opponents, meanwhile, have surpassed the 100-run mark four times against Stuyvesant, and Dewitt Clinton piled on 257 in a blowout Tigers loss. If this team has a shot to bounce back, they will need their batsmen to step up.

With 14 juniors on this year’s active roster and only two seniors, expectations were high but tempered. Last year’s team finished with an 8-5 record and was third in the division, making it to the second round of the playoffs. However, this year’s Tigers roster is younger and less experienced. Even though many would call this a rebuilding year, the captains believe in their team. “There are benefits in having a young squad. They have more years ahead of them and they all have a ton of potential,” Singh said.

With the season just over half finished, the Tigers will need to greatly improve their record in order to try and qualify for the playoffs. While that is an extremely challenging task, this team has the personnel and leadership to go on a run.

However, even if they fall short, the team is in position to rebound next year, with a huge junior class and underclassmen that have been practicing and improving this season. Either way, the Tigers are in position to make noise in the league sooner rather than later.