As everyone knows each team this season is represented by two players for the All-Star Game presented by SAVAGE Apparel Co. (or maybe you don’t but in the words of the famous urban philosopher The Notorious B.I.G., “if you don’t know, now you know”). Now it may be true for many teams, but I think it’s especially true for the four Michigan schools that more than just two players per team are deserving of the status of all-star. So I decided to make a full team of the players from the Great Lakes State that I deem to be all-stars in addition to the eight players recognized by their respective schools.
To begin, I will list the eight all-stars as chosen by their respective teams. All eight are great dodgeball players and are well deserving of their all-star recognition. That being said, I will keep the comments on each brief and save the space for the “snubs” if you will, as those eight will get a sweet jersey so they don’t need the extra recognition to pat their egos.
(Edit: Kevin’s team will get a sweet black and red jersey and Leski’s team will have the unfortunate circumstance of playing for him.)
Aaron Krafft (GVSU) (Bailey via trade)
Gets mad if you spell his name with one “F”
Ben Tubergen (GVSU) (Bailey)
Went from assistant captain to no leadership position whatsoever… embarrassing.
Nick Hazergian (SVSU) (Bailey)
Throws hard so he thinks he’s cool.
Kyle Bruce (SVSU) (Bailey)
Actually Kyle seems pretty chill, he’s good in my book.
Alex Holzgen (CMU) (Leski)
Needed a haircut. Got a haircut. Still could probably use a haircut.
Zach Bachner (CMU) (Leski via trade)
Can only assume as captain he OK’ed those grey jerseys, have to question his decision making after that.
Colin O’Brien (MSU) (Bailey)
Never heard of him. Supposedly changed his hair to fit in with new Elite teammates though.
Wes Peters (MSU) (Leski)
Will probably find some rule to complain about in the All-Star game and then get carded, possibly even a red.
OK now that we got through those eight we can talk about the players that were not recognized but could take the place of any one of their teammates and it would be well deserved. These are in no order of importance but just merely mimic the order of the teams from above.
RaQuain Franklin (GVSU)
I can only assume Grand Valley didn’t vote RaQuain as an all-star to keep it from going to his head. Well, too bad GVSU, I’ll do it for you. I have mad respect for Ray because most power throwers try to throw it through people’s chest with sheer power. Ray is the exception where he goes for people’s feet. As a fellow foot thrower, real recognize real.
Brandon Meisel (GVSU)
He’s probably not an all-star because an extra game might be the end of his knees. Brandon has a great arm and has captained Grand Valley to a #1 ranking once again as just a sophomore. He also has shown his skills as a catcher as just this past weekend he made an overtime swinging catch against MSU.
Sam Stockdale (GVSU)
Lefties are always tricky. I feel like Sam is a product of the GVSU machine. He is just a perfectly well-rounded player. He can throw, catch, block, and always plays smart and within the Grand Valley gameplan. When GVSU molds dodgeball players, people like Sam are the prototype.
Michael Riley (CMU)
CMU did me a favor and left off, in my opinion, their two best players from the all-star list. Aside from one questionable throw to Becca Shappell earlier this year, Riley has always been a difference maker for CMU. He ranks as one of the best throwers in the league and one of the best pump fakers in the league, a deadly combination. And unlike his teammates, he remains stylish on the court.
Shane Willette (CMU)
Although some may question how he can play well whilst wearing a beanie, it seems to have no hindrance on his play. I think Shane is the most consistent player on CMU. He is a great all-around player and has very few bad days. And as Kevin Bailey can attest, I once decreed him as Central’s best player.
Jonathan Airbets (SVSU)
Jonathan made a couple of huge catches as one of the last SVSU players remaining at the MDC. From everything I can tell, he’s been a great leader for SVSU this season and would be well deserving of an all-star spot.
Lucas Salinas (MSU)
In his first season in a leadership position, Lucas has embraced the head captaincy superbly. He doesn’t try to do too much on the court and is good to make a big play when MSU needs him. His biggest asset to the Spartans has been his mind. Lucas has a great strategic mind and has been great at getting everyone on MSU to be on the same page on the court.
The honorable mentions, otherwise known as the five subs on the 20 man roster. These five I have just a hair under the previous seven, but if you told me they were an all-star, I still wouldn’t bat an eye.
Logan Rohloff (GVSU)
Logan is one of the most improved players I’ve ever seen at GVSU. Often times for Grand Valley, their top players establish themselves by the end of their freshman year. That was not the case for Logan, and I mean that as no disrespect. He worked hard and developed his game and now is an integral player for the Lakers. Also, just like I said for his teammate Sam, lefties are tricky.
Aaron Terenzi (GVSU)
Aaron has been around the league long enough that most are familiar with his high level of play. He is always relied upon by Grand Valley and this season has been no different. He could easily be an all-star this season, but perhaps he’s getting a Popovich-style DNP (old) for the all-star game from Coach Fettig.
Bryce Belen (CMU)
Just like Logan, Bryce has developed into a great player for his team. Another great all-around player from Michigan, Bryce also has stepped into an assistant captain role this season. I have been impressed with both his play and leadership all season long.
Cody Putnam (SVSU)
I’ve said it before, but Cody has no regard for his own well-being on the dodgeball court. Although his arm had a few more MPH a couple years back, he can fire a dodgeball. Cody will give everything he has and then some for SVSU dodgeball and would be a worthy all-star.
Alex Zajac (MSU)
Zajac remains a top player for MSU. When he is on a hot streak, he is one of the best players in the nation. And, as far as I know, he’s the only engaged person on this list, so we know at least one person has his life together.
The crazy thing about these four teams is I could probably add another 5 to 10 players to this list. I know many teams have several all-star quality players, but I do not think there is a region where that is more prevalent than the Michigan Region. Congrats to the 8 Michigan All-Stars and I’m sure we will all look forward to watching Leski lose.