D-III Nation: Kenyon College

by | March 19, 2012, 6:04pm 0

A lot of DIII action has occurred recently, and I plan to do a recap of major DIII results, so check back later this week to see that!

Now, to this week’s feature: Kenyon College SERF from Gambier, Ohio. Last year, led by Ironside starter Russell Wallack, they took the DI route, and placed 6th at DI Regionals. This year they’re officially playing DIII, and look to be one of the best newcomers to the division this year. This is an interview with captain Brendan O’Connor. It was completed on Jan, 4, so I apologize if it is out of date. Enjoy!

Notable Roster turnover, young team? Veteran team?

Brendan: Our senior class last year wasn’t huge: only four players. One of those, however, was Russell Wallack, who now plays for Ironside. Russ is a fantastic player and teacher to whom Serf owes an incredible debt; however, coming into this year, we approached his absence not as a loss but as an opportunity for each and every one of us to step up and collectively fill the space that he has left. Our six seniors this year have excellent chemistry on both sides of the disc, and with sixteen sophomores the future of Serf looks bright.

Expectations for the Spring, goals, competitiveness

Brendan: We closed out the fall season with a great weekend at MLC, upsetting Kansas State to win our pool and getting our rookies some excellent playing time against quality teams on Sunday after losing to Minnesota in the pre-quarters. Our performance at MLC definitely set the benchmark pretty high for the spring.

Up and Coming players, guys on your team that are going to be making plays come the season

Brendan: Both Kenneth Polyak ’12 and Corey “Condor” Barber-Bockelman ’14 have come into their own this year and we’re excited to watch them blow up in the spring. Kenny is a scrappy Russian from San Francisco who makes some seriously athletic plays: an ice hockey player at heart, he sacrifices his body like no one else on the team does. Corey is enormous – 6’4” and still growing. He, Danny Rosenberg ’13, and Dan Kipp ‘14 make an excellent set of big targets who will make athletic plays.

Star Players, who would be your Callahan nominee? Who are the big playmakers and leaders

Kenyon College Captains, Brendan O'Connor '12, Adrian Galbraith-Paul '12, and Jordan Rhyne '13 - Photo by Brady Meisenhelder

Brendan: Other notable players include Adrian Galvin ’12 (John Jay HS), who is absolutely fearless in the air, and Sam Warlick ’12 (University School of Nashville), possibly our most consistent handler.

What tournaments are you planning on going to in the spring?

Brendan: We’ll drive somewhere south for a tournament in mid-February, probably either Queen City or Music City Tune-Up. Then we’ll head down to Wilmington, NC for the Easterns Qualifier. We were disappointed in our performance last year and are definitely looking for redemption. After that, we’ll be hosting our annual tournament, the 75th Annual Kenyon FRED in Gambier, OH on March 30-31, the last weekend of the regular season.

Who in your region are you looking at as contenders? Teams and Players to watch that aren’t your own?

Brendan: Last year, Kenyon and Dickinson – the two strongest DIII teams in the region – went DI. We haven’t yet decided as a team what we’re going to do this year, but it seems that these are probably still the two most competitive DIII schools. Denison beat us at a scrimmage early this fall, so they are definitely a team to watch as well: seemed to have a fair number of athletic players, if somewhat short on experience. We’re looking forward to meeting them in a tournament setting this spring.


Photo by Brady Meisenhelder


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