The first of the two events this weekend will be hosted by Miami (OH) University. The teams in attendance will be: Miami (OH) University, University of Akron, Bowling Green State University, and the University of Wisconsin-Platteville. This will be the first action of the year for both UWP and BGSU and for Akron and Miami this will be their second event. Let’s take a look at the schedule below.
The following questions were asked of the captains of each team about their expectations for the Redhawk Classic.
Erik Zander– Which team are you excited to play and why?
UWP Captains– We are most excited to play BGSU because they are relatively unknown to us. We haven’t seen BGSU play since the Viking Clash in the fall of 2021. At this tournament we brought 8 players, so it was hard to determine where we matched up against them. We have played against some of Akron’s players over the summer, so we are excited to see a new team.
Evan Brown (BGSU)– I’m most excited to play Akron and Ohio. They left a bad taste in our mouth the last times we played and I can’t wait to go out and compete against them again and show we’re a better team than last year.
Elly Schipfer (Miami)– We are excited for all three match-ups, but definitely pumped about playing Akron again. We only played Akron once last year, and it was the first game of the season for our team of basically all rookies. So, it will be cool to see how much we actually learned in a year, and what our team could do in the upcoming season!
Arik Kavanagh (Akron)– Akron is excited to play against a full rostered UWP. We have played them a couple times in the past but never at full force.
EZ- For your team to succeed, who needs to play well?
UWP Captains– In order for our team to succeed, we need our second-year players to really step up to the level of our seasoned veterans. They have shown significant improvement since going to Nationals last year. The confidence in their abilities going into these three matches is imperative. These players include Jalen Sims, Zak Lathrop, Joshua Kratz, and Cody Larson.
EB– For our team to play well we’ll need Riley Brady, Evan Maynard, Josh Boyers, Camen Kline, and Logan Gerardot to play well as they are all huge for our team.
ES– Basic answer, but the team as a whole needs to play well. We will need throwers like John Rick, Cole Ginocchio, and Max Edling to help lead the team offensively. But we also have a roster of solid catchers, like our captain Katie Mei. If we can put all our individual roles together this weekend, I believe we will get some wins.
AK– We will need to be play well, from top to bottom. We have players that are experts at certain aspects of the game and the only way we will be successful will be if we can uses those strengths at the same time.
EZ- Who on your team are you excited to see in action?
UWP Captains-We are most excited to see Cody Larson, a second-year veteran, play this weekend. He had a strong first semester in which he played through an injury. We are looking forward to seeing him take the next step. His ability to throw has impressed us, especially with his limited experience. The rookie we are looking forward to seeing play is Bailey Schaefer. Since the beginning of the semester, his ability to listen and understand the game should translate well on the court. We also believe that his catching ability is at a high level for a rookie.
EB- The veteran I’m excited to see most this year is Logan Gerardot. He has made vast improvements and I can’t wait to see what he does. I could also say Camen Kline and Evan Manyard as they both have made vast improvements too. A rookie I am very excited to watch this year has to be Dalton Curran. He has put in a lot of work as a rookie and has great potential I feel to run for rookie of the year.
ES– I’m excited to watch Katie Mei and Connor Smith this weekend. This will be their first tournament in a captain’s position, and I’m excited to see how they lead the team. Katie has a strong catching ability, while Connor is definitely a leading thrower. For our rookies, we lost one to an injury this week at practice, so we are hoping for a quick recovery for him. I think this weekend will be a great debut for Philip Hampton, who is showing potential to be a strong thrower for our team.
AK– Kyle VonScio (rookie), has a great arm already and is showing advanced game IQ. Nicole Cutich is one of Akron’s star dodgettes from last season and has shown passion for improvement. She’s improved her throw over the summer and we are excited to see her impact on the starting lineup this Saturday.
Final Thoughts– Tomorrow’s event should be filled with some good matches. Both Platteville and Bowling Green are going to be having their first matches of the year and will need to shake off the rust. Akron and Miami will be playing in their second events and be looking to make improvements from what they learned, and dominate the court. To watch the games tomorrow, make sure that you go to these YouTube channels and subscribe to both to get the notifications when the games are live.