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All-Region 2022: Great Lakes (D-I Women's)

Who are the best players in the Great Lakes region? This is an open thread to discuss All-Region nominations, All-Freshman nominations, coaching awards, and more. Stay positive and keep it civil.

For All-Freshman I would like to nominate Abby Wiedeman from Purdue Xpress. She is an insane D-line player and gets at minimum 2 hand blocks a game (!!!). She is a diligent and reliable handler and is already one of the strongest defensive players in the region as a freshman. Her mark is probably one of the most treacherous marks in Great Lakes and this was evident at Regionals where she was forcing turns left and right on much older players.

I also want to shout out and nominate 2 players from Purdue Xpress for All-Region: Stephanie Nobbe and Lauren Kitten. I would recommend ultiworld takes some notes here. Steph is consistently the team’s top scorer and top defender game after game and tournament after tournament. In our sectionals finals game, she had 6 Ds in one game and is one of the best cutters in the Great Lakes. Not only is she an immense defensive asset but also consistently racks up assists, scores, Ds, callahans. She is an essential member of the team as well as emulates the core team values of grit, passion, and most importantly family. She has to be one of the most spirited players on the field while always being open. Like not kidding she always gets open and can catch anything I don’t know-how.

Lauren Kitten on the other hand is an electric handler. Best known for her deep look hucks–Lauren dominates the field offensively in the Great Lakes. She is a staple O-line player and is the center of the competitive and strong culture for Purdue’s team. She is a fierce leader and competitor on the field and is one of the strongest handlers I have ever had the pleasure of playing with. Her frisbee knowledge is vast and her capabilities as a player on offense–and defense as well-- is insane. You will hear the sideline scream “Lauren Kitten does it again” because she makes magic happen with insane deep looks and throws she whips out of her pocket–not to mention the occasion half field hammer as a treat.

UofM player here.

Miranda Baltaxe: Amazing offensive cutter who can send it deep for continuations. Huge threat in the deep space.

Kat McGuire: Again, Kat can send it deep from the cutter position and also helps shred zones.

Emily Evans: Emily played awesome defense this weekend and is a consistent cutter for the D-line. She also had some great grabs and run through d’s.

I really want to preach Sophie Harvey for All Freshman. Sophie is a true freshman (never played before this fall) and is already marking up on and shutting down some of the greats around the region and country. She consistently generates d’s in the under and deep space (with layouts and skies) and plays suffocating handler defense. She also can shoot it deep (again after never thrown before the fall).

Around the region:

Maddy Simko (GVSU): feel like theres not much that needs to be said here lol. Maddy has great hands and reads. Also has great deep puts.

Annie Meilink (GVSU): Really versatile player - ability to get open deep and under and play in a hybrid position. Killer give and go’s.

Stephanie Nobbe (Purdue): Super strong defensive player - ability to have super fast closing speed and d’s in the air. Incredible hands on some deep shots.

Claire Schmidt (Chicago): Claire is a rock for Chicago on the field with the ability to be a bailout and send it deep.

really wish I could have played Notre Dame or Northwestern because they have so many strong players/awesome plays that I saw from the sideline!

Shoutout flywheel three coaches Elizabeth “Benny” Benedetto, Mike Jahn, and Tracey Lo. They put in so much work for our team to be able to reinvent ourselves post covid. In a team of mostly rookies, the three helped us become the best people we can be on and off the field. They empowered players from all sides of the roster with feedback and care. I can’t say enough good things about them and neither can the rest of Flywheel <3

Menace player here! I’d like to submit a few people from our team for consideration.

Louisa “RJ” Ruge-Jones - RJ controls the field whenever she’s on. She has a commanding presence not only as a handler, but as a defender too. She crushes zones on offense AND runs zones on defense.

Giovi Kelly - An absolute force on the field. One of the most aggressive cutters you’ll see play. She’s quick, she’s big, and she’s not afraid to fight for the disc. She’ll beat you deep, under, wherever.

Rookie Wise:

Anne and Grace Cook - these two started playing the game this year and they do not play like it. They’re twins who are both incredibly fast and have adapted super well to our team, killing it as marks in our two person cup. I swear to god, they have sticky fingers because these girls catch everything, even if they end up diving and rolling around on the ground. They’re super amazing cutters and defenders. They’re also insanely spirited and I can’t wait to see them grow.

Abbey Mullen - Abbey is a rookie coming from Oak Park River Forest high school, so she has experience playing before, and does it show. Abbey, depending on the point, is either a handler or a cutter. And either way - she DOMINATES. She’s calm, collected, and basically everything you want in a player. Her hucks and throws are crazy, and her field knowledge is insane for a freshman. She also has already made herself a staple of our starting and universe lines.

As for other teams:

Maddie Galvin (Notre Dame) - Maddie is one of the main handlers for Notre Dame and absolutely kills it whenever she’s on the field. She directs her offense with quick, efficent swings along with her blazing speed. I played with her in high school (go Neuqua!) and every time I see her, she gets better and better.

Lauren Kitten (Purdue) - this woman is insane. Someone mentioned her above and as a fellow handler, I aspire to have her confidence, skill, and leadership abilities.

Kat McGuire (Michigan) - I love Kat with all my heart. We played Michigan for the first game on Sunday at regionals and she constantly found ways to break our defense. She had crazy cuts and I cannot wait to play her again because I feel like I learn so much just playing against her.

ND Echo player here. I’d like to nominate two ND players for the All-Region discussion:

Maddie Galvin is one of the best handlers in the region hands down. Our blonde haired, visor wearing, lefty for those who don’t know her name. She breaks the mark as if it doesn’t exist, places beautiful hucks downfield no matter the weather, and frustrates defenses with her ability to get the disc to even the most covered cutter. An amazing leader and role model. Proud of her growth since making the All-Freshman team 3 years ago.

Aoife Scannell is an absolute beast of a defender and a cutter. She frustrated many handlers with her mark in the cup at regionals, generates D’s consistently and layouts on defense as much or more than on offense, and when she goes up vertically for the disc she almost always comes down with it. She also extends the field as a cutter with super versatile throws and hucks. Aoife is a stud on the field, finds so much joy in this sport and brings it out in others, and makes huge plays even tho she always guards the other team’s best players. Seriously her chest high bids are awe-inspiring.

Around the region:

Maddy Simko (GVSU): breaks any mark, skies people for days, smiles while doing it! Carried a brand new team to breaking seed big at regionals- very impressive.

#8 cutter (Chicago): fantastic cutter, generates tons of D’s especially in the deep space

Claire #82 (Chicago): handler with great control on throws all over the field. also super impressed with Claire’s IO flick break throws that force really honest defense.

Sarah Johnson (Northwestern): really hard to cover handler who can run the field up and down going every other with the cutters. super impressive handler movement

Lauren Kitten (Purdue): incredible handler, led team to natties, enough said.

Red gloves & hat player on Purdue (I think this is Stephanie Nobbe?): Run through D’s on other team’s fastest cutters, fantastic in the air on D as well. Really frustrating to be a handler when this player is on the field.

Riley (?) red-head on Purdue: Apparently a sophomore (what?!). This player contributes in big ways on every part of the field for Purdue with incredible catches, defense, & hucks.

Didn’t get to play Flywheel this spring but I would echo the Sophie Harvey for All-Freshman nomination. She learned how to play mark in a cup in our quarterfinals game against Flywheel at Fall 2021 Regionals and over the course of a single point (universe point) she became a major threat to our zone offense with her speed and intense mark. Can only imagine how much she’s grown.

All-Freshman for Note Dame:

Emma Baran: Fantastic cutter and crucial part of our O-lines. She always makes big plays and has amazing bids.

Elena Dansdill: True freshman who has become a staple part of our offense. She consistently comes up with shocking catches, get’s open against strong defenders, and skies people on defense.

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Sophie harvey is #4 on flywheel! Insane freshman

Actually going to highlight a couple more Notre Dame folks cuz why not!

Ella Crowley (Bake) is a helluva a cutter who deserves recognition (short, blonde, probably bidding). She commands the field as a cutter getting open at will against any defender and is a major threat deep, chasing down any disc for layout scores.

Claire Hackl (Goose) is a young hybrid (tall, red head) who makes a major impact especially in terms of shredding zones on offense and making big plays on defense. Her mark is as intimidating as they come, and her field awareness is phenomenal.

Flywheel player so a little biased but want to shout out some of our players

  • Claire Blazewicz (all region): captain, handler, and a crucial piece of our O line. Beautiful throws (her deep throws are arguably the best in the region), calm under pressure, and will put everything on the line for her team. Off the field, Claire was a critical piece of rebuilding Flywheel post-Covid. Brought positivity, laughs, and all around joy to every huddle and played a huge role in rebuilding a sense of community on a team with so many new players this year.

  • Kat McGuire (all region): I don’t have a lot to say here other than Kat is just an all around incredible player and getting to play with her has been a highlight of my time with Flywheel. She’ll beat you to every disc, sky you, break you with a perfect inside flick, or just run you until you can’t breathe.

  • Madison Nightingale (all region): Our Callahan nominee for a reason. The rock of our D-line, she’ll hand block you, foot block you, layout D you, and then on the turn, embarrass you with her upline cuts and give and gos. Another one of our captains, Madison is a perfect example of what Flywheel values - hard work, trust in your teammates, constant self-improvement, and playing for your team every time you step on the field.

  • Bria Stocker (all region, rookie of the year??): Bria’s a former soccer player who had never played ultimate before tryouts in the fall. Watching her grow as a player this season has been incredible and I can’t wait to watch her as she continues to develop her skills and ultimate IQ. She was consistently assigned some of the hardest matchups and effectively shut them down or challenged every play. Her confidence, athleticism, and the field sense she brings from her soccer background are going to make her a huge threat for years to come. She’s a sophomore and has plenty of time left to grow with this team.

  • Sophie Harvey (FoTY): Another one of our rookies who had never played before this season. She picked things up so easily and quickly became a key player on both offense and defense (for example, she learned how to play zone defense Saturday night of fall regionals and went out the next morning and looked like she had been doing it for years). Also has the confidence to take on challenging matchups and consistently shut them down. She generates D’s wherever she is on the field and to echo what was said above, her handler defense is suffocating. Towards the end of the spring season, she started throwing beautiful hucks out of nowhere, and it made her even more of threat on offense than she already was. I can’t wait to watch her continue to develop; I have no doubt she’s quickly going to be one of the strongest players in the region.

  • Coaches: Already mentioned above but I really want to highlight Flywheel’s coaches this spring season - Mike Jahn, Tracey Lo, and Elizabeth “Benny” Benedetto. Like many other teams that were impacted by Covid, we had 8 returning players in the fall and weren’t sure what this year would look like for us, but we knew we needed coaches who we trusted to help us rebuild a strong foundation. We’ve had multiple different coaches over the last few years which naturally disrupts consistency in team-wide systems and can cause frustration due to conflicting messaging. This spring, the three of them were able to take our team back to the basics and ensure that every player on the team, new or returning, had solid fundamental skills to build off of. Throughout the season they gradually built a system we could all buy into and processes we could rely on in difficult moments. And they did all of this while seamlessly integrating 14 new (to Flywheel) players - 7 of which had never played before the fall. I’ve honestly never trusted coaches more and wish I had more time with them.