From tragedy to triumph

Rice University News & Media

Rice U. lecture features Houston Astros staff members discussing team’s historic World Series victory following Hurricane Harvey
Only nine weeks after Hurricane Harvey devastated the Bayou City, Houstonians were hungry for something to celebrate — and celebrate they did, when the Houston Astros beat the Los Angeles Dodgers in Game 7 of the World Series last November.
Panelists Jose Enrique Cruz ’13, Giles Kibbe and Justin Wolin ’15. Photo by Kerri Barber.
On April 12, the Rice University Sport Business Society, an organization of the Department of Sport Management, hosted “From Harvey to History: How the Astros Won More Than the World Series.” Astros employees Justin Wolin ’15, Jose Enrique Cruz ’13 and Giles Kibbe spoke to a crowd of approximately 50 Rice students and staff about how the Astros rallied around the city in the days and weeks following the storm’s devastation and the road to winning the first World Series title in the franchise’s history.
Clark Haptonstall, chair of the Department of Sport Management, said it made sense to host a panel on this topic because Hurricane Harvey and the Astros’ World Series victory are two of the biggest events in the history of Houston.
“Because both happened within a short span of time, they will be intertwined in the minds of Houstonians,” he said. “It made sense to get perspectives from Astros staff members on the two events and their impact on one another.”
Just days after the storm hit, the Astros were scheduled to play a series against the New York Mets. Cruz remembers that there was some question as to whether the series should be played, but ultimately it was decided that the games would go on.
“If there’s one thing I know about sports, it’s that entertainment and getting people’s minds off of the disaster and issues they are going through is definitely welcomed,” said Cruz, …

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