It is a little late, but here is the recap for the Midland Mayhem Invitational held back on November 11, 2017. The teams that competed were University Wisconsin- Platteville (UWP), University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL), and Midland University (MU). Each team came prepared to play and brought the energy. Results for the day: UWP 2-0, UNL 1-1, and MU 0-2. Let’s take a look at the matches of the day.
UNL def MU 3-2 OT
This was any interesting match for sure. I didn’t expect it to be this close considering that the first match up between these two teams ended with Nebraska winning 6-1. The difference this time must have been gaining the valuable experience from that game and home court advantage for MU. In this match, the Cornhuskers got out to an early 2-0 lead, but Midland picked up the pace of the game and was able to get two points on Nebraska to send it into overtime. It was here that UNL’s experience shined through and they were able to pull out the victory with some solid throws. Overall, MU impressed me with their ability to get back in the game to have a shot at the win.
UWP def UNL 4-0
The last time these two teams played Platteville handled them easily without to many problems. This time the match was a lot tougher. Nebraska used a different strategy and slowed the game down in order to disrupt UWP’s flow. The first point took over ten minutes long. At times, UNL had Platteville on the ropes and a chance to obtain a point, but Platteville’s veteran players stepped up and took control of the game and prevented UNL from accomplishing just that. Nebraska is improving and with time the games will get closer each match.
UWP def MU 5-1
The last match of the day was a fun one. This was a very fast pace match as Midland loves to run and gun, which makes them a great fit for the Midway Conference. MU had some strong throwers and were quick off the line. They could catch and were not afraid to challenge you. Platteville was never at fear of losing as strategy and experience were the big determinants in this match. I had a great time playing them and look forward to playing them again next semester.
Nebraska- As a team, they are on the right track, they are getting games in and have great leadership in place. The more games they get in the better they are going to be and the harder it will be to beat them. This bunch is eager to play and are looking forward to next semester when they should get a chance to play more of the Midway Conference teams.
Midland- It is great that this crew is getting games in and are having fun doing it. They are getting involved early even though it is their first year. They are all athletes which is going to help them in the future once they start understanding the game. I believe they will pick up their first win this season. The more they play the better they are going to get.
Platteville- I have a little more to say about this teams performance. As a club, we once again brought several of our freshmen to help them gain valuable experience. I’m happy to say that it is starting to pay off. Our freshmen are starting to pick up on the little things and that is important if you going to have success as a team. For example, Ryan Wall #19, must have a magnet on him because it seems he gets hit in the face quite a bit, but at this tournament he put that to good use and started catching with his face. If you’re going to get hit in the face there is no better way of doing it than catching the ball.
Austin Kurey #32, picked up on how effective team throwing can be as he found out he can make his throw more intimidating and appear faster. He found that he could get more people out and it reduced his chances of getting caught. Now, in practice when he gets a chance for a team throw, he takes it. Jacob Sebranek #22, found out that blocking is an important attribute to have to your game. It sometimes can be the most important talent to have on the court. He blocked well and when a thrower was in trouble he was right there stepping in front and allowing his teammate time to get back to safety. This makes me happy because I know that in the future that if he has a ball he is going to block for me and I have nothing to worry about. The rest of our freshmen started playing more as a unit and worked well with the upper-class men. The only disappoint was Bobby Lehrer #00, his catching was no good, he might want to start taking pointers from me (just kidding Bobby, but seriously).