Machine made the most of their bye from Sectionals last weekend, traveling to Whitewater, WI for a double practice and team retreat at the Kolinek Family Lake House. 

The annual event known as "Sports Day" continues to evolve year by year, and features crew vs crew challenges in a variety of sports and mental tests. Starting with a 4 hour practice on Saturday morning, Machine's early focus was all business, as it would be the team's final practice weekend prior to Regionals on September 12th/13th. After the testy, back and forth, practice where the O-line and D-line regularly butted heads, the team came together as one to shift their attention to the Sports Day activities. 

All aspects of Sports Day (the schedule, awarding of points, and ruling over all disputes) is handled by the Sports Day Tsar, a position held by Craig Poeppelman for the past 4 years.  Sports Day planning is a large undertaking, and in exchange for his prep work, the team hands over all power and authority to the Tsar for the duration of the weekend. 

Physical Challenges

Disc Golf (Ryder Cup format, each crew selected certain players to play in one of three singles heats, and two players to play in one paired heat, with one member of each pairing having to throw with their non-dominant hand)


Beach Volleyball (It took less than two minutes for this to look like a scene straight out of Top Gun)


Kayak Relay Race (Crews had to complete a 5 lap relay course, with different challenges assigned to each lap. e.g. getting out of the kayak and onto a floating dock to catch a disc from a teammate on shore, riding two people in one kayak, etc...)


Mental Challenges

Password (a variation on the classic TV game show)


Family Feud (an exact replica of the show itself, this pitted crews against each other in a bracket hosted by Beam Harvey. Responses were gathered from a questionnaire which was sent to several of the top men's and women's ultimate teams from across the country).


Trivia (This featured combined categories for Music/ Sports, History/Movies, and Math/Food - Followed by a point stealing variation of the classic "Prisoner's Dilemma" psychological experiment).

Celebrity (A three round game similar to charades/ catch phrase). 

Final Standings (and Accompanying Prizes/ Punishments):

  • 1st - School Crew
    • Cullen Geppert/ Ron Kubalanza*/ Jack Shey/ Brett Matzuka/ Nick Zeman
      • One member of their crew must attend Northwestern Gung Ho Practice for a week this fall
  • 2nd - 6D's
    • Craig Poeppelman/ Andy Neilsen*/ Noah Backer/ Stephan Mance/ Brett Kolinek/ Mike Schwenk*/ Slam Johnson*
      • Chose the mystery bag, and received a signed Ron Harper Bulls jersey)
  • 3rd - MeanMachine part Crew
    • Kevin Kelly/ Andrew Sheehan/ Ben Spielman/ AJ Nelson/ Bob Liu*
      • Has to pick up cones after every practice and bring the shade tent to tournaments the rest of the season)
  • 4th - U32
    • Goose Helton/ George Hughes*/ Dan Williams/ Travis Carpenter/ Tim Fergus
      • Had to clean the lake house and make breakfast for everyone the following day
  • N/A - Petty Crew
    • Walden Nelson/ Neal Phelps/ Greg Slover*/ Yiding Hou*/ Adrian King/ Von Alanguilan*
      • Split amongst other crews to keep teams even

* = not in attendance

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