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Sox’s historic win turns silence into cheering at PARC

Libby Nelson

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At first, no one was cheering.

Students across campus gathered Wednesday night to watch the game that would secure a 1-0 win and the first World Series victory since 1917 for the Chicago White Sox. The crowds of Northwestern students started off small. The scoreless seven innings before the win kept them quiet.

At least this was the case at Public Affairs Residential College, where the audience in the dorm’s TV lounge evolved from three guys into a group of more than 20 students.

And the original trio of viewers weren’t even White Sox fans.

“I’m a big baseball fan,” Medill junior Guy Benson said. “I’m an American League fan; I’m a Yankees fan. And (the White Sox) aren’t the Red Sox.”

Medill sophomore Kyle Adams, of Houston, cheered for the Astros.

But after four – and then five, six, seven – innings without a score, no one was doing much cheering at all. Even as more students drifted in to watch, they were not sitting on the edge of the dorm’s blue couches.

Although Adams and Benson were watching the Sox and Astros, the heated debate in their conversation focused on a World Series from nine years ago.

“You rooted for the Braves over the Yankees in ’96?” Benson asked in disgust.

Students wandered into the lounge, asked for the score, made a few comments and left. Some joined the growing audience.

“I’m a Sox fan, but I’m not a huge Sox fan,” freshman Tulane transfer Adam Wolsky said, as he took his place on the couch.

The commentary stayed mostly low-key as the game remained scoreless.

By the bottom of the 7th, the topic of discussion was basketball. At the top of the 8th, as more than 15 people occupied the room, conversation turned to whether the city of Chicago had decided to ban smoking.

Then came the 8th inning.

By the middle of the 8th inning, the observers began sitting up and leaning forward on the couches, aware that just one trip to home plate could make the difference.

When the run came, students almost missed it – they were caught up in a discussion of the quarter system and famous NU alumni.

For the rest of the night, baseball was the only subject. Students shouted when Juan Uribe, the White Sox shortstop, dove into the stands for an out. But they expected a game similar to Monday night’s 14 inning marathon.

“I thought (the game) was going to go a lot longer,” Weinberg sophomore Kate Lawson said. “It was really intense baseball.”

The sudden ending almost took them by surprise. Then the room erupted, as once motionless students jumped off chairs and began to scream.

“The Sox haven’t won the Series since 1917, which, according to my calculations, is about 350 years,” Wolsky said. “But seriously, the Sox played great. They only lost one game in the playoffs. They beat the Astros – they deserve to win.”

Reach Libby Nelson at [email protected]

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