Thursday, April 12, 2012

Everything Happens For a Reason - Lindsey Lammers

Lindsey Lammers

Sophomore – Women’s Golf

Being unable to compete during the spring season has definitely been frustrating to say the least.

The spring season is a time for us to really hone in on our games and push each other to improve knowing that the Horizon League Championship is coming in late April. Not being able to play or practice with the girls has been difficult because I have felt so helpless. While they are all working hard to better their abilities on the course, I have not been able to hit a golf ball or even a putt in over a month. Instead of this, rehab has been my best friend. This consists of doing a variation of stretches four times daily, in effort to get my range of motion back as well as scar tissue massages. On top of this, I see a physical therapist twice a week where I do wrist exercises and ultrasound treatments.

My trainer has also been working with me every day to keep me in shape by doing cardio and core exercises. Training has been a great outlet for me to let out my frustration and push myself physically, knowing that I can’t on the course. Rehab has played a huge role in bettering my wrist, and it is clear why so many people have placed an importance on following these simple, but tedious exercises. It definitely has not been easy, but as I see my wrist recovering every day, I know I am doing what is needed to ultimately get back on the course.

My goal since the day of surgery has been to return and contribute to the team before the end of the season. Staying positive and optimistic has kept me mentally strong and is also pushing me to work hard in hopes to return as soon as possible. I have been trying to really apply myself in every area that I can because I know my teammates are working equally as hard on the course. Every extra exercise, workout, putt, or practice we do gets us one step closer to winning that championship ring.

Everything happens for a reason, and I believe with the support and help from my teammates, trainer, and therapist, I will return healthier than ever.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Team Yellow Forever

Senior Matt Nedwicki
By Matt Nedwicki - Men's Soccer
April 10, 2012

This past winter was my fourth off-season with the men's soccer team and I have to say, one of the most difficult. On average, we lifted twice a week, as well as doing some sort of conditioning twice a week (stairs, long distance, etc.). In addition to our strength and conditioning regimen, we also played soccer three times weekly. It's not that I dislike running and lifting, but the highlights of my week were definitely the actual soccer practices. Two of these three practices were from 10-11:30 P.M. inside Calihan Hall playing futsal—a type of soccer played with a smaller, heavier ball. Futsal is intended to work on quickness of play as well as ball control.

At the beginning of the semester, we were divided into three teams of 7: Yellow, Green and Red. With these teams, we played in a mini-league every Tuesday and Thursday night. Each team would play the other two once a practice with the cumulative points leader at the end of the semester being crowned champion. The teams were divided with an eye for parity, but to be honest, Team Yellow was far superior in every aspect. Although dashing good looks don't often play much of a factor in sports, it must have been disheartening for the Green and Red teams when they compared themselves to the Yellows. I can only think that it was jealous rage that drove them to injuring 4 of the 7 Yellow stalwarts before the season was through.

With their far superior teammates out of the way, Red and Green could now focus on battling for the championship amongst themselves. It was a hotly contested title race that came down to the very last night of games. Team Red, who had held first place for every week of the semester but two, were able to hold off a charging Green Team to capture the first inaugural men's soccer Futsal Title. Although I was only able to participate in half the season due to injury, I looked forward to each of these Futsal nights. Enjoyment was had by all, and more importantly, we improved as a group. Team Yellow forever.

College Athletics Reality Check #1 - There is No Offseason

Junior Nina Carter
By Nina Carter - Women's Soccer
April 10, 2012

The Titans women's soccer team has been hard at work even though we are technically in our “offseason”. College athletics reality check #1: There is no such thing as an offseason. Since we play in the fall and typically that lasts until mid-November depending how far we go in tournament play, the majority of the school year is left preparing for the following season. Just because we don't have any games doesn't mean we're not playing. A typical week of training for the women's soccer team consists of 7 AM conditioning and weightlifting on Tuesdays and Thursdays, 12:45-1:45 PM practices on Tuesdays and Thursdays, and 10:15 PM futsal games on Wednesday nights. For those of you who don't know what futsal is, it is a game of soccer played in a gym with a smaller and heavier ball. Futsal is aimed to develop player's ball control, and let me tell you these games can get pretty competitive.

Initially we had three spring games scheduled, U of M, Madonna, and Northwood. On February 12th we travelled to Ann Arbor to face the Wolverines and were interested to see how we matched up to the Big 10 school. The game was a high intensity fast-paced game but we kept up and showed that we are not to be taken lightly. Our second spring game was against Madonna who we had various opportunities to score on during the game but we used it as an opportunity to play. against a local program. Our game against Northwood was rescheduled twice due to the crazy weather we have been experiencing and unfortunately we were not able to play them this spring season.

We still have conditioning twice a week along with other individual workouts. As the school year draws to a close, the team prepares to move back home which ranges from Thunder Bay Ontario to Toronto to Virginia to the very suburbs of Detroit. This doesn't mean a break from soccer though because now it is time to start preparing for the rigorous preseason in August that will come much too quickly for some. Because in all reality there is no offseason, no such thing as “down-time”, because when one season ends, the next begins.