This weekend the Michigan Region is back at it again for the Sagnasty Classic! The teams in attendance will be Saginaw Valley State University (SVSU), Grand Valley State University (GVSU), and Western Michigan University (WMU). The games will be played in the Hamilton Gym at the Ryder Center in University Center, Michigan. For GVSU and SVSU, this will be their first tournament of the year, while the Broncos of WMU were in action last weekend at JBBBIII. GVSU and SVSU will have a lot of rust to shake of in their first games back in action, but it shouldn’t take long for them to get back up to speed. For WMU, expect even better play this time around now that they have their first tournament under their belt already. The following is the schedule for Saturday’s event.
Here are the questions that were asked of the captains.
Erik Zander– What are your expectations for your team this weekend?
Matt Barnett (WMU)-I expect my team to be able to put up a good fight to a top 10 team and the reigning champs.
Bryce Stevens (SVSU)– My expectations for my team are to come out playing with intensity and continue to grow from everything we learned from last year. This will be our first tournament of the year so we will need to adjust as playing as a complete team.
Ben Smart (GVSU)-Our expectations for the Sagnasty Classic is that we are going to go 3-0.
EZ- Provide an underrated player on your team that needs to have a big performance this weekend for you to have success?
MB– Thomas Mosebach, Thomas is absolutely jacked and is very athletic. I can’t stress how big his biceps are and they are going to pay dividends this weekend.
BS (SVSU)-I said this all last year Chris Rucker #25 is definitely our most underrated player. He is solid, all around a great catcher, thrower and play maker. When he plays well we play well. I’d Like to see him make some big plays for us, help us take home some wins, and get the recognition he deserves.
BS (GVSU)- I’ll give you two underrated players. Owen Israel’s our Assistant Assistant Captain – He will honestly throw through you and is amazing at catching and then Alec Gonzalez – He is amazing at hitting people in the feet and throwing out reset throws. Also don’t forget about Alec’s catching ability.
EZ- Are there any rookies that we should watch out for?
MB– Alex Marczuk and Michael Griswold, Alex learned a lot from JBB3 and is very hungry to improve. Michael is a good thrower and caught on to the game quickly.
BS (SVSU)-We will only have 2 rookies with us for our first tournament. But Owen Folsom, is definitely one of our stronger rookies. Some people just have natural talent like Cole Machiela and Owen is that guy.
BS (GVSU)-You honestly need to watch out for all our rookies. They are learning fast and love this game already.
My Thoughts– WMU is on the right track and I love what they are doing. When you are a young team and looking to get better, the best thing that you can do is get in as many tournaments as you can and play several teams. It allows them to see several different play styles and learn from their mistakes. Come Nationals, this team will be prepared and make for some interesting games for their opponents. SVSU is having their first event of the year and are ready to get back on the court for some action. The question for them becomes: can they pick up where they left off at Nationals or are they going to need a few games before they are up to speed to compete with the rest of the Michigan schools? They have a lot of returners and a lot of talent to do so and I wouldn’t be surprised if they became one of the top teams in the country this season. For GVSU, the question is: have they been able to recruit more top talent to make up for a few key losses from last season? They are still a young team, so we shall see if that is a factor in their matches.