IM flag football turnout strong despite poor weather

IM flag football turnout strong despite poor weather

There was a spirited atmosphere surrounding the intramural football field during the first week of the Intramural Department’s first-ever spring flag football competition beginning Monday, April 7.

“It was very competitive,” junior Andy Conyers, a member of the Intramural Council, said. “It should be a good rest of the season.”

There are two divisions in the competition, a men’s which has always been offered in the fall, and a coed which is being played for the first time.

Teams in each division have a few more regular season games left before beginning tournament play on Tuesday, April 15. The finals will be played two days later on Thursday.

Since it was the first time with coed teams, there were several tweaks to the rules and the first week served as a testing-out phase.

“Everyone was excited to play,” Nicole Darling, assistant director of student activities and intramural director, said. “We were kind of working through the kinks.”

Conyers experienced the kinks firsthand as he worked the competition as a referee, but Darling thought that her staff did a fine job officiating throughout the first week.

“There are only two refs and we can’t see everything,” Conyers said. “But we do our best to call a fair game.”

The competition had to endure more than just a few rule changes, however.

The weather became a problem, but according to Darling, everyone handled the challenging conditions well and produced some exciting, competitive games.

Junior Andy Hermann knows what the games were like as he played multiple positions for his team, the BAMFS, in the men’s division.

“For the most part it was pretty clean,” Hermann said. “Towards the end, there was a little trash talking, but it was all in good fun.”

While the men’s league was heated, the coed was less about winning and more about having fun. Sophomore center Lauren Katch and her team, the Buxtoneers, were handed a crushing defeat on opening day but were still in good spirits as they continued to play on.

“Most things are more fun when they are coed,” Katch said. “The boys are more competitive and it’s fun to try to keep up with.”

Also with the coed league, other than the obvious mix of men and women, there is a mix in players’ knowledge and experience in the game of football. This makes for interesting team chemistry.

“You could tell the boys knew what they were doing,” Katch said. “We didn’t really know where to go but the guys helped us out.”

Some of the tricky rules included 20 yards for a first down, since the field was only 50 yards long. Among the rule changes in the coed division were that a female must touch the ball at least once every four plays, and if a female scores or throws for a touchdown it is worth nine points instead of the usual seven.

The coed division and spring season altogether were created by Darling and her staff because of student requests for more flag football. Fans can catch the action of the second week and tournament coming up from 3:30-7:30 p.m. at the intramural field.

Katch is looking to finish the season strong as she fires up her teammates with a simple, yet powerful statement.

“I’d like to see a couple more wins,” Katch said.