Can You Match the Term to the Sport?

John Miller

5 Min Quiz

Home base

There are four bases in baseball, and the fourth and final base is home base. When base runners safely cross home base, they score a run.

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Volley

In tennis, a "volley" is anytime you return a shot back against your opponent. Sometimes, tennis players will return volley after volley, probing each other for defensive weaknesses.

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Blitz

It's one of the most feared defensive attacks in American football -- the blitz. Blitzing defenses send extra defenders running after the quarterback in hopes of disrupting a play.

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Airball

An airball is a basketball shot that's so far off target that it doesn't touch any part of the hoop. Players who toss up airballs can expect to be heckled by the crowd.

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Bunt

The act of bunting is when baseball hitters stand in front of a pitch and tap the ball into play. Bunting is often an effective way to advance base runners.

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Strike zone

In baseball, a pitcher throws into the strike zone, the area in front of the batter. The zone is typically defined as over home base, above the batter's knees and below the batter's belt. Three strikes mean the batter is called out.

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Rebound

In basketball, after a missed shot, players from both teams scramble for possession of the ball. Whoever nabs the "rebound" will make the coach happy.

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Fast break

In basketball, after a shot, rebound or steal, the offensive team may charge down the court on a fast break, attempting to score as quickly as possible. The fast break is a powerful weapon for fleet-footed teams.

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Ace

In volleyball, an "ace" is a serve that's so fast and well-placed that it's not returnable, resulting in a point for the attacking team. Servers love to rack up as many aces as possible during a match. The term is also used in tennis.

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Walk

When a pitcher throws too many balls (instead of strikes) to a batter, he "walks" him. It means the batter gets a free ticket to first base.

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Wide receiver

Wide receivers are the tall, fast players who catch passes in American football. The best wide receivers have sticky hands and very fast feet.

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Doubles

In tennis, a doubles match is when two players play on each side of the court. Doubles tennis features very different tactics compared to singles tennis.

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Pinch hitter

In baseball, pinch hitters are the substitute batters who step up to the plate for another player. Coaches often use pinch hitters to replace weak hitters in the lineup.

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Cow corner

It has nothing to do with actual bovines. In cricket, the cow corner is a part of the field between wide long-on and deep mid-wicket. Fielders are rarely placed here, so it's a place where cows could hang out without being bothered.

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Layup

A layup is a basketball shot attempted close to the basket, often executed as the shooter is running toward the hoop. Teams that give up too many layups lose a lot of games.

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Kill

"Kill" seems more appropriate for football … but it's actually a volleyball term. It's an offensive attack that ends with a side out or point.

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Cross-court

In tennis, the cross-court shot is a shot blasted diagonally into the opponent's court. It's a legal and often deadly attack.

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Sack

In American football, a "sack" is when the quarterback is tackled behind the line of scrimmage, resulting in a loss of yardage. The offensive linemen will hang their heads in shame; the defensive players will celebrate with weird dances.

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Knockout

Boxers are always looking for the knockout, in which they knock down their opponents. A true knockout ends the match, leaving the victor standing over his bloodied competition.

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Service error

In volleyball, a service error occurs the server fails to complete a legal serve. The ball may have failed to clear the net, or perhaps landed out of bounds.

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Free throw

After a foul or technical foul, a player may be awarded a free throw, which is attempted from the free throw line 15 feet from the basket. Free throws are worth one point.

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Scrum

When the forwards from each team gather and try to push each other back, they're part of the scrum. The scrum is a way of restarting play following an infringement of the rules.

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Double hit

A double hit is when a volleyball player strikes the ball twice in a row. It is, unfortunately, an illegal play that results in a side out.

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Body check

Body checks are a favorite tool of ice hockey players. It refers to an action where one player uses his hips or body to push another player, often into the boards. Hard body checks sometimes result in injury.

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Moonball

In tennis, "moonballs" are very high shots, often hit as a defensive (or annoying delay) tactic. Players who routinely deploy moonball tactics may be scorned by competitors.

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Referee's throw

In handball, a referee's throw is performed by -- you guessed it -- the referee after an interruption of play.

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Linebacker

Linebackers play "back" from the first line of defenders in American football. They are both fast and powerful, capable of stopping running backs and tight ends alike.

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Strike

Bowlers are always licking their chops after a strike -- it means they knocked down all 10 pins. In a perfect game, a bowler rolls strikes every frame.

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Hat trick

If a single player scores three goals in a game, he or she has performed a hat trick. Sometimes fans will celebrate this rare feat by chucking their hats onto the ice.

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Maul

In rugby, a maul refers to a situation where the ball carrier is grabbed by one or more opponents, while also being held by his or her own teammates. The players remain on their feet and the ball is in motion toward one of the goal lines.

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Image: Shutterstock

About This Quiz

Is it a moonshot or airball? The wide world of sports is chock full of esoteric terms that only true fans truly understand. Can you match these official terms and silly slang to the sport of origin?

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