Categorized | Featured, In-Depth

Club sports on the rise at Meramec

Posted on 20 September 2016 by admin

Campus Life has seen increased interest in athletics from students. While club sports don’t receive the same funding as recognized team sports, students continue to play any way they can.

hockeyInline Hockey Soon to be a club at Meramec

By: Katie Hayes
Editor in Chief

After a two-year hiatus, the roller inline hockey club is in the process of returning to Meramec. While it is not currently a recognized club, goalie and full-time student Josh Wisely is in the process of assembling a team and paperwork.

“I wanted to start it up with a couple of friends and now a lot of people want to play,” Wisely said.

The inline hockey team, a club sport at Meramec, disbanded in 2014 after a lack of interest and funding. A decade ago, fifty students played roller hockey on four different teams — an A-team and three B-teams.

Wisely, a former goalie for Lutheran South High School, is currently assembling the team with two other players he has played with or against his entire athletic career. Wisely said there are currently twelve players interested in joining the team, but there may be more.

“It was just a bunch of people that we didn’t know that wanted to start the team and then we came together to start it,” Wisely said.

Steve Misuraca, who began working with the team when his son played roller hockey in 2001 and 2002, serves as the team manager. He is currently working with Wisely to organize the team.

“[Wisely’s] kind of taken charge and he’s got a lot of guys from Parkway South, a lot of guys from Oakville, and other guys, I think a couple guys from Vianney that want to play,” Misuraca said.

Misuraca said the interest in inline hockey began to die down as interest in indoor soccer grew and competed with rink availability.

“Inline hockey grew really big when the Vipers were a St. Louis team back in the 90’s and got a lot of young folks interested, but a lot of the rinks in the last five years have either switched their court to ice hockey or to indoor soccer,” Misuraca said.

Before the teams dissipated two years ago, they played in the National Collegiate Roller Hockey Association. The A-Team travelled across Mid-America to compete. Although the team was classified as Division III, they still played Division I and Division II teams.

“Technically, the league classified us as a Division III school,” Misuraca said. “It worked out pretty good. Now, we’re a Junior College team, we’re not even Division III.”

Although Wisely is still in the process of assembling interested players and paperwork to become an official club, he finds the outlook promising.

“You have to have people motivated enough to start a team,” Wisely said. “Then you have to have people who want to play. And then you have to have them motivated enough. It really revolves around that — I think motivation is the biggest factor.”

ultimate-frisbeeUltimate Frisbee
Fun, fast pace, and a good workout for those who join the Ultimate Frisbee Club at Meramec

By: Marie Schwarz
Managing Editor

When the weather forecast predicted rain and even storms for most of Friday, Sept. 9, the Ultimate Frisbee Club still met at Bohrer park to play. For the first 15 minutes of the game, rain poured, but as the sun came out, 10 players took to the field to play Ultimate Frisbee.

Much like any other competitive sport, the game involves high jumps and a lot of running.

“The best part about [Ultimate Frisbee] is getting together with everyone [and] having a good time,” said Tyler Godar, vice president of the Ultimate Frisbee Club. “It’s really fast paced, you’re always really running around, and it’s a really good workout. Everyone is really polite and they are competitive, but we are not yelling at each other, not getting mad, it’s just a fun game.”

Godar, who has played Ultimate Frisbee since his sophomore year in high school, said the biggest difference between Ultimate Frisbee and other sports is that there is no referee needed. Fouls are discussed between those involved in an action.

“The sport has something that’s called ‘the spirit of the game,’” said Eric Chavez, president of the Ultimate Frisbee Club. “The players are the guys who actually control everything. There are no referees, there is no player telling you something like ‘hey, this was a foul’ or something. It’s all the actual players who are controlling that.”

Chavez joined the Ultimate Frisbee Club when it was founded last spring. He had no experience at all. The former president of the club, Rusty McDonald, showed Chavez how to play and Chavez said he grew to love it. Now Chavez is the president of the club.

“What I am pretty much in charge of is making sure everything is good with the club, in a sense of do we have a spot to play, do we have sponsors, do we have guys to come out and play,” Chavez said.

Although this particular Friday only men came out to play, Chavez welcomes everybody to join. “A lot of people don’t know that, but we are co-ed, so girls are welcome to come as well,” Chavez said. “It tends to be a lot of guys coming though.”

Godar said the future goal of the Ultimate Frisbee Club is to become a National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) Division III team, play against other colleges and continue to the National Championship. “We still have a lot to accomplish, but we are well on our way,” Godar said.

The club meets twice per week. On Thursdays at 2 p.m., the Ultimate Frisbee Club meets on the soccer field near the baseball fields on the Eastern side of the Meramec campus. On Fridays at 2 p.m., they meet in Bohrer Park which is located on 5705 South Lindbergh Boulevard. Chavez calls the Thursday meetings “for-fun practices.”

The members who already play Ultimate Frisbee show new people how to play. “We do show you how to throw a backhand, how to throw a forehand,” Chavez said. “We get you the rules, and how to play the game.”

The Friday meeting in Bohrer Park is for those who want to play more competitively, but that does not mean beginners are not welcome to join, Chavez said.

“If you have ever played before, come on out, we would love to have you. If you haven’t, come on out, and you’ll have a good time,” Godar said. “You’ll get some good exercise.”

Everybody brings in a really nice attitude, Chavez said. “It is competitive of course, but even if you go to Ultimate Frisbee all over St. Louis…everybody is incredibly nice. The whole scene behind this sport is just people who want to play Ultimate [Frisbee] and have fun.”

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