Last Saturday, the University of Wisconsin-Platteville (UWP) went head to head in a double header with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL). Both games were highly competitive and both sides showcased their talent. In the end, Platteville was able to take the wins in both matches. The scores were UWP def UNL 3-2 and UWP def UNL 4-2. Here are my thoughts and what some of the players had to say about the day.
Erik Zander– UNL was a pleasant surprise for me, even though they were a young team with very little experience they played exceptionally well. UWP was not expecting them to play as well as they did. They communicated effectively on the court and pushed hard. UNL was quick and did a great job of controlling the pace of the game and keeping ball control. They held Platteville to their back line most of the day. The Cornhuskers were in it with every point for UWP and a few of those points could have gone either way. Platteville was rusty and it showed on the court, but as the day went on they got back into the flow of things. They had to rely heavily on catches and cross throws to put UNL away. They played patiently and never lost their cool, they waited for UNL to make mistakes and capitalized on them. Their experience was the biggest deciding factor in getting the victories. UWP had big performances from Bobby Lehrer, Austin Kurey, and Noah Larscheid. I cannot wait to see these two teams go head to head at the Pioneer’s home tournament!
Jared Colden (UWP) – I think overall we had a pretty successful double header at Nebraska. We had a pretty good match-up going into the tournament. As a team, I think we had some great moments and others not so much. We started off rusty and slow and as the day went on we got comfortable and got into a groove. Overall, we played great, but we still need to work on some stuff and this tournament helped us pin point what we need to focus on. We had too many dropped catches that would’ve helped us in the long run and would’ve helped us win a few of the points we lost. I feel like that was our Achilles’ heel this past weekend. Some other things that we need to focus on is listening to what our captains say, better start, and learn to keep ball control.
Overall, as a team we played great. I’m proud of what we did and I hope we can continue to get better as the year goes on. Some players that I thought performed great were Noah Larscheid, Chad Jakel, and Austin Kurey. Noah got the job done. Whenever we needed a catch or a clutch throw, Noah was there to complete the task in any way possible. He was also everywhere on the court. Noah had some good cross throws to get some key players out on UNL that earned him the nickname Sniper Jr. Even though Chad couldn’t throw at all, he still held the court down and did his job as captain. Between resetting the count, setting up team throws, and making some clutch catches, he was able to help us stay in the game when we were down and helped us come back a few times. Austin was versatile this past weekend. He was able to work with multiple different teammates to team throw, block, and get team catches. This helped us a lot when some of our stronger throwers were out. Austin was able to work with whoever was on the court and come up with a catch or a clutch throw.
Nebraska did a really good job recruiting this year. I was only able to recognize 3 players from last year. Even with the amount of new people they have, they are still a strong team. I was surprised to see how smooth they transitioned between throws and how they held ball control so easily. They have a great mixture of great throwers to clutch catchers. No matter the situation, it seemed like they had players to step up and do what they had to do. On top of that, they are a pretty cool team to hang out with. Some of their players were kind enough to give us a small tour of their campus the night before. We really appreciated that and would like to thank them for doing that. They liked to joke and talk between matches, which made the weekend even better. I wish them good luck with their season and can’t wait to see them again at our home tournament.
Jacob Sebranek (UWP) – I thought that our team played poorly in the first half of both matches. As a team we need to get ball control and cannot allow ourselves to start each point with two or fewer balls. I thought Chad Jakel played well, but everyone on the team will have to listen to the count better. I thought UNL played very disciplined and did a real good job of pump faking. They definitely have a real promising young team. Also, thanks again to UNL for the campus tour.
Ailis Leahy (UNL) – We were so happy to host UWP at the Cornhusker Clash! We are excited to be playing them in the future (hopefully November 16th @ UWP). UNL has a lot of room for growth since we have a lot of new recruits and after this double header our newcomers were able to see what a tournament experience is like. Everyone was in good spirits in the end and we are hopeful for some wins in the future!
Cassie Perry (UWP) – My first experience at a tournament was, above all else, educational. Our members of the team had done a great job preparing us for tournament styles but seeing a tournament in person was still surprising. I counted for the UWP team and because I’m a clueless freshman, I needed assistance. They were very patient and helpful. I am really looking forward to traveling with our team to tournaments, especially since our home tournament was so fun! I know our team is planning on going to a tournament at UWP on November 16th, but after that I don’t know what the future holds. In a month, our team has developed so much, I can’t wait to see what will happen.
Robert Gabel (UNL) – I’m incredibly proud of my team. We went on the court with only 5 players that had ever been to a tournament, and we performed better than the predictions for us. The new players got thrown into the fire, and they did great. For their part, UWP lived up to the expectations. They are an incredible team, especially at getting catches. It is always a pleasure to play against them and I think everyone walked away from the tournament a little sore, but happy after a fun day of dodgeball!