2015 Suburbs College/Prep – PLAYOFFS Opening Rounds (July 29)

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Updated: July 31, 2015

We began the night with 16 Championship contenders and when the lights clicked off we were left with just 8 Teams still standing.  We had an All Sports Series first this past Wednesday Night.. More on that below.  We’re going to go through and recap what transpired this past Wednesday Night and take a look at what is ahead next week for Championship Wednesday Night powered by CEA Study Abroad.  Before we get to that, we just want to send another Thank You to the Teams who had their seasons come to a close this past week. It was great having all of you in the League and we’ll see you guys again next Summer (or maybe at one of our Campus Leagues during the school year)!  Also, here’s the Weekly Video Highlights with extended Playoff Coverage!  OK Let’s Recap!

Playoff Recap

Opening Round 1 – 16 Teams Remain

13. Team Levin (First Bank of Highland Park) v. 16. Team Morrison (Bekin’s Lake County) – 13. Team Levin Wins 6-0.

Both Teams entered the night knowing it was capable of the to make a run.. In the past few seasons, at least 1 of 4 Teams in the 13/16, 14/15 match-ups have advanced to the Elite8.. To go on a run though, you have to win the first one.. Team Levin has past Playoff experience in All Sports Series and it showed on Wednesday Night.  They were able to grab an early lead and then tightened the clamps on Defense to deny Team Morrison any shot at grabbing some momentum.. Team Levin was able to secure the W and would move on to face 4. Team Zisook with a spot in the Elite8 on the line.

For Team Morrison, they really did have a stellar Rookie season. These guys were complete Rookies in the All Sports Series world and it took them a couple of weeks to get their bearings.  They are a talented bunch that with a couple acquisitions could be battling for the Championship a year from now. Thanks again for playing!

14. Team Herz (Dr. Jacob D.D.S.) v. 15. Team Gerszonovicz (BBQ Pit) – 15. Team Gerszonovicz Wins 8-7

Both squads were getting their first taste of Playoff action in All Sports Series and you could tell that nerves were high.. The sun setting didn’t do any of the fields any favors either.. These two squads traded the lead a few times over.. Both Teams made big plays in the field late, as there were multiple runners thrown out at home..  Team Herz grabbed the lead once again in the Top of the 6th and Team Gerszonovicz came up to the plate and was able to tie it.. Nothing happened in the top half of the 7th, which gave the Sammys squad a chance to win it in the Bottom of the 7th.. With just one out they advanced a runner to 3rd and Ryan Mass stepped up to the plate.  He geared up for a sacrifice fly and just belted the ball well past the left-field for a Game Winner.   Team Gerszonovicz would move on to take on 3. Team Prizant for a spot in the Elite8.

For Team Herz, they now have a Game to motivate them in the off-season for future success. Some of the best Teams in All Sports Series had a hard Playoff loss in their first season.. You need those moments to help fuel the future.. They’ll be back and better than ever next year! Thanks for playing!

Opening Round 2 – 14 Teams Remain

3. Team Prizant (SportsLock) v. 15. Team Gerszonovicz (BBQ Pit) – 3. Team Prizant Wins 11-1

15. Team Gerszonovicz got little time to celebrate their first ever Playoff W, as the #3 seed Team Prizant was waiting for them in the next Game.   The stakes were extremely high here.. Winner earns a spot in the Elite8.. Just to remind everyone, Team Prizant is a combo of last year’s Runners-Up Team Rijos and last year’s Top2 Team Valvassori.. They are a hybrid built with one goal in mind.. Winning the Crown.  From the moment the Game started they drained the momentum that Team Gerszonovicz had created in the previous Game.. Team Prizant jumped on an early lead and never looked back!  They were headed to the Elite8 for the second straight year..

For Team Gerszonovicz, they can take away from their debut season a Playoff W.. A feat that many do not accomplish. They have the building blocks for a special group and you can see them making future runs at the Crown. They will take part in the Champaign League this Fall under the Sammy’s banner and with their newfound experience could really do some damage soon! Thanks for playing!

4. Team Zisook (Baker Boys) v. 13. Team Levin (First Bank of HP) – 4. Team Zisook Wins 4-2

This was a sleeper candidate for Game of the Night.. A few things needed to happen to get here of course.. 13. Team Levin did their part as they won in the Opening Round to get into this Game.. A spot in the Elite8 was up for grabs.. 4. Team Zisook was a bit undermanned in this one and their raw athleticism that has been driving their enormous success this season is neutralized just a bit on the softball diamond.  With the waves they’ve made in Hoops thus far this season, it’s safe to say they had many people rooting against them on Wednesday Night.

Team Levin grabbed a 2-0 lead early and that’s where the score sat for a few innings.. Then Captain Zisook took it upon himself to ignite his guys.. With one swing of the bat he drove the ball and rounded the bases for a solo shot.. He cut the lead to 2-1..  The score remained 2-1 heading into the Bottom of the 6th where the rest of Team Zisook’s bats came alive just in time to survive.. They would tack on 3 runs in that inning and closed the door on Team Levin in the Top of 7th to win 4-2.  Team Zisook now heads to the Elite8 and the Hoops Court where no one wants to seem them!

For Team Levin, they battled all season long.. They were missing a couple key members from past squads.. They have guys up at Camp Ojibwa right now (who could blame them for that!?) but they never phoned it in.. They took some of the League’s best to the limit, with this final Game being a prime example.. Many of these guys will take part in the different Campus Leagues this Fall..  This is a group, that with their full squad, can win the whole thing next year.  They will be among the oldest groups next Summer, which will be new for them and their time is coming… Thanks for playing!

5. Team Lehrman (Camp Ojibwa) v. 12. Team Fialkow (Biaggi’s) – 5. Team Lehrman Wins 9-1 

The 5/12 matchup usually provides some drama.. Not just in the NCAAs but in All Sports Series as well.. 5. Team Lehrman was determined to not let any doubt creep into their minds and came out very aggressive at the dish and on the base paths.. They scored early and often and never really looked back.  They took care of business and the Ojibwa crew moves on to the Elite8 to take on 4. Team Zisook in Hoops.. No small test there.. Toughest test of the year for them awaits..

For Team Fialkow, it was many of their debuts and there’s a learning curve in All Sports Series. They are clearly talented and there are certain groups who have the look and feel of future Champions.  This is a Team with tons of time as they are only just graduating High School.. They will be back and you heard it hear first, they may be the favorites come 2017.  Next year, expect a real run in the Playoffs as well! Thanks for playing!

6. Team Sutker (Once Upon a Bagel) v. 11. Team Levenfeld (Sunset Foods) – 6. Team Sutker Wins 10-0

This was a true Rivalry Game by every sense of the word.. These two squads grew up together and know each other all too well.  With a spot in the Elite8 on the line there was no telling what would happen.. Seeding can get thrown out the window when Rivals meet up..  Team Sutker got a big inning early in this one and never really looked back..  They played really great D anchored by shortstop Casey Maione.  Before you knew it, Team Sutker was moving on.. They have a tough one ahead next Wednesday as 3. Team Prizant is waiting for them.

For Team Levenfeld, they achieved more success than many Rookie Teams.  They too are among the younger half of the League and have plenty of time to make a real run at the Crown.  They have a very strong foundation and with the addition of one or two more bats for softball and potentially another Hoops scorer they could win the whole thing in the future.  Thanks for playing!

7. Team Kollada (Sarkis Cafe) v. 10. Team Liss (Testing Timers) – 7. Team Kollada Wins 2-1

The 7/10 Game is always a highlight of the Opening Rounds.. It always ends up being two evenly matched Teams who are slugging it out to earn the right to try and slay a Giant in the Elite8. This Game moved along speedily as hits and runs were tough to come by. Team Kollada scored the first 2 runs of the Game and held that lead into the 7th. In fact, Captain Kollada brought a no-hitter into the 7th inning with him!  Team Liss would eventually break up the no-no and managed to score a run to make the Game 2-1 in the 7th.  Many would have buckled in that spot, but Team Kollada collected themselves, and got the key 3rd out to preserve the W!

For Team Liss, these are All Sports Series vets that know you need to perform at your absolute best in the Playoffs.  They just needed a few more hits early in the Game and couldn’t get the base-runners they needed.. That being said, this new look Team Liss has some real potential and it would be great to see them build on this Roster that formed in 2015. They may move onto the Chicago Men’s League by next Summer, but their are Playoff Ws ahead for them! Thanks for playing!

8. Team Gordon (Gordon Bros.) v. 9. Team Lutz (Poopie Palz) – 8. Team Gordon Wins 8-7

This was the Rematch that everyone was talking about heading into the Opening Rounds.. 8. Team Gordon battled 9. Team Lutz to a 12-11 Comeback W in Softball a few weeks back that was one of the true highlights of the Summer..

Wednesday Night started out similarly to their first contest.. Team Lutz jumped out to an early lead which they held throughout the Game.. Speed ahead to the 7th inning and Team Lutz was up 2 runs and 3 outs away from the Elite8..  Team Gordon got 2 on base.. So the go-ahead Run was at the dish.. Long-time Team Gordon member, Garrison Sanipass, stepped up and hammered the ball.. One run would score, two runs would score, and Garrison rounded 3rd and headed home!  It was a 3-run Homer that gave Team Gordon the final lead of the night.  They had done it again! For the first time in Team Gordon’s history they were off to the final night of All Sports Series and into the Elite8!

For Team Lutz, there’s not a better group of guys in the League.  No doubt, it’s a tough way to go out but this group is a special one.. Many Teams have Players that can excel in a couple sports, but this group truly has the depth to excel in all aspects of All Sports Series.  Many members of Team Lutz will play in the Fall at the various Campus Leagues and they may enter 2016 as the true favorites to win the whole thing.  This type of Loss is everything that this type of group needs to earn a future Championship.  Lock it in.. At least the Final4 for them next Summer!

Top2 Game – 1. Team Nelson (Spikeball) v. 2. Team Holway (Weil Foot & Ankle) – 2. Team Holway Wins 18-3 and Can Choose Side of Bracket for Elite8.

Many anticipated this being the Game of the Night. While this was the only contest of the Opening Rounds that would NOT result in an ELIMINATION, the stakes were tremendously high.  The Winner gets to select which side of the Bracket they’d like to be placed on for the remainder of the Playoffs.  ?Not to mention, these two squads have been rolling over the competition so far this Summer and it was exciting to finally see them on the same field…

Team Holway ended that quickly.  They poured it on early and it was over before it started. It seemed as if Team Nelson just didn’t have their normal intensity.. You can rationalize that by thinking, they might just not care who they play and in what sport. They think that when the time comes they can beat any of the remaining Teams in any sport. They might just be right..

Moving forward, Team Holway made their selection and will play 8. Team Gordon in the Elite8, which means Team Nelson takes on 7. Team Kollada..  If these Two Teams meet again it will be under the bright lights and for the Championship in Flag Football. That would be something…

Here are the Elite8 – Hoops Matchups:

2. Team Holway (Weil Foot & Ankle) v. 8. Team Gordon (Gordon Bros).

4. Team Zisook (Baker Boys) v. 5. Team Lehrman (Camp Ojibwa

 

1. Team Nelson (Spikeball) v. 7. Team Kollada (Sarkis Cafe)

3. Team Prizant (SportsLock) v. 6. Team Sutker (Once Upon a Bagel)

*For the first time in All Sports Series history.. The Top 8 seeds have all qualified for the Elite8. We will have a star-studded Championship Wednesday!

Winners will move on to the Final4 later on Wednesday Night in Softball and then the Winners of those Games will compete for the Championship in Flag Football to conclude next Wednesday’s Championship Night!

 

That’s it for this Week. Congrats to those who moved on. Thanks again to the other Teams. Have a fun (and safe) Lolla weekend and see you guys next Wednesday where we’ll Crown a new Champion!

– Holden