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A whiteboard in the locker room tracks the wins for each side. Despite being outnumbered 12-11, the defense and goalies currently hold the season series lead, 7-4. Costales described them as “cocky,” but blueliner Megan Quinn prefers to be called “just better.”Maybe the defense and goalies hold the lead because the team boasts the two players most frequently credited as the entire hockey team’s best: Derrer and Abbey Miller.Both players possess a softball background, Miller as a catcher and outfielder while Derrer played shortstop. The defender even considered college softball locally at Michigan State or Central Michigan.“Abbey Miller and Dak have the strongest arms on that team,” Costales said. “They whip people’s heads off.”The strength comes from some atypical training. Over the summer, Miller coached at a summer hockey camp and led off-ice training, where she somehow found herself playing dodgeball daily.“I would go pretty hard against, like, 10 year olds,” Miller said.To avoid the ringers, forwards occasionally take cover behind a refrigerator on their end of the locker room. The opposition may yell at them for hiding, but at least it provides protection. The defense itself uses tactics considered ethically ambiguous. A door sits propped open on their end that balls occasionally soar through, and then the forwards shout back.Derrer alone has hit two players — senior forwards Heather Schwarz and Jessica Sibley — in the face before games. Once, such a hit swelled one of Sibley’s eyes shut prior to the game. The team worried one of its captains wouldn’t be on the ice in time, but the swelling subsided just before the puck dropped. To date, no one has missed any time for the Orange because of dodgeball.“It’s all fun and games,” Derrer said.Even errant throws create hazards for players as sometimes skates fall from the tops of lockers. But the threat of injury deters no one. The players agree that dodgeball is a fun and unique pregame preparation. The balance of healthy adrenaline and danger helps hone a winning mindset.“It gets pretty rowdy,” Derrer said. “Sometimes coach can tell when we’re really pumped before a game when there is a big dodgeball game in there.“It carries on to the ice sometimes.” Comments Published on February 14, 2017 at 10:00 pm Contact Andrew: email@example.com | @A_E_Graham the boys are rolling to Buffalo for the CHA semi finals!! #ppw #chemistry #WEARE pic.twitter.com/knlIxpP5IT— alysha burriss (@beebopburr) March 3, 2016 Paul Flanagan struggled to focus on the recruit and parent in front of him. He couldn’t figure out the origin of that loud noise emanating from his team’s locker room.Over the years, pregame volume usually stemmed from an unusual tradition on his squad, one that no one truly knows the origins of and that also often leaves team pictures askew. But that thought didn’t enter his head then. He was only thinking one thing.“What the hell is all that noise?”Dodgeball has been a mainstay for Syracuse (11-12-5, 10-4-2 College Hockey America) in preparing to take the ice at Tennity. The team plays the gym class classic before every home game. Even though it causes the occasional minor injury, Flanagan pays no mind to it and players say it helps them get fired up and focused.“It is really, really aggressive,” junior forward Emily Costales said.AdvertisementThis is placeholder textThe pregame ritual has happened at every Tennity home game for as long as any player can remember. Best the head coach can recall, and he’s been here all nine years of the program’s existence, it started in the team’s second or third year. But he can’t be sure.The odd tradition stuck out to now-junior defender Dakota Derrer on her official visit to Syracuse three years ago. The team played before its game as the recruit watched. All she could think was, “What’s going on?”She saw forwards on one end of the locker room and goalies and defense on the other. A line of squishy, rubber balls lay between them, on and around the sacred “S” in the middle of the locker room. Stepping on that “S” incurs a $5 fine.Games usually last between five and seven minutes and are accompanied by music like “Broccoli” by D.R.A.M. Hurling a foam sphere at your teammates, Costales said, amps up the team, engages a competitive mindset and creates important pre-game “sparks.” Facebook Twitter Google+
Super League Gaming, one of the world’s top amateur esports leagues, has announced the addition of four new teams with an expansion of its league roster. These are the Atlanta Bashers, the Tampa Bay Dungeoneers, the Philadelphia Specters, and Washington D.C. Conspirators. The U.S. focused expansion is great news for amateur esports fans in these cities in particular, and means that the league’s reach has grown to sixteen cities in total. Each of the new city teams will compete nationwide in both Minecraft and League of Legends tournaments. To date, Super League Gaming has hosted more than 1,500 events with over 10,000 amateur players attending through two eventful years of play.“With our expanded sixteen city national footprint, Super League Gaming has truly established itself as the go-to place for amateur esports experiences,” said Ann Hand, CEO Super League Gaming. “The league’s addition of Atlanta, Tampa Bay, Philadelphia, and Washington D.C. highlights the incredible growth and hunger for this type of premium gaming competition. We are excited to further showcase how our city teams are the best portal for aspiring gamers looking to go pro.”“We’re thrilled Super League Gaming has expanded to our nation’s capital,” remarked Zach Leonsis, Senior Vice President of Strategic Initiatives at Monumental Sports & Entertainment. “Washington D.C. has a storied tradition of being home to professional teams competing at the highest level, and we are excited the Conspirators are joining the city to ignite the amateur esports community, given our deep commitment to esports competition of all levels.” Ann Hand, SLGRegistration information for League of Legends City Championships is live now, and fans will find activity dates, locations, and other details for the new teams at https://champs.superleague.com/leagueoflegends.Additional partnerships with leading esports titles will be added to Super League Gaming’s roster throughout 2018.We caught up with Super League Gaming CEO Ann Hand, and were able to ask her a few questions.ESI: Do SLG have plans and aspirations to expand beyond the USA? Ann: Yes, we will be announcing a next wave of cities in 2018 that will include will include two teams in China!ESI: How is the planning to go about tying these teams in with their local cities, and engaging city residents who might not necessarily be esports fans? Ann: Our vision for our city clubs is that they are community platforms for all things local to gamers whether you play in one of our leagues or just enjoy rooting for your hometown and being a spectator. As we launch new game titles and expand our network of partner locations, there will be a variety of ways for gamers to participate in the Super League experience.ESI: Can you share additional thoughts on teams securing local level sponsorships and partners, just as lower league football clubs do in the UK?Ann: Yes, we have just started to engage with local partners whether they’re gaming venues or brands that represent a piece of the local gamer lifestyle. Local sponsorships will enable us to create more premium experiences for our gamers, and also represent the aspects of gamer lifestyle unique to that city.Esports Insider says: Great news from Super League Gaming with the new city based teams, and it’s particularly exciting to hear from CEO Ann Hand about SLG’s plans beyond this and the forthcoming addition of teams in China and beyond.