As the regular season winds down to a close, six Penguins teams are preparing for the postseason. The 12 Black, 13 Black, 14 Black, 14 Red, and 15 Black will be traveling to Indianapolis, IN for USAV Nationals and 16 Black will be headed to Orlando, Florida for AAU Nationals.
“These teams have worked incredibly hard this season,” said Anne Slattery, club director. “They’ve more than earned the right to compete at this level.”
The 12 Black, 13 Black, 14 Black and 15 Black teams earned bids for the American Division at the Badger Qualifier in March. The 14 Red team will compete in the Patriot Division.
For AAU Nationals, 16 Black will play in the Premier Division. 16 Black earned free entry into nationals with their second-place finish at the AAU Super Regional in Rockford, Illinois last month.
Big Ball Bash, held annually in conjunction with E.C.H.O to encourage healthy lifestyles and support teams heading to Nationals, will be held on May 3rd and May 10th at Center Court Sports Complex in Waukesha. E.C.H.O is a nonprofit organization dedicated to encouraging healthy active lifestyles. This is the 7th year in a row the organization and Midwest Penguins Volleyball has teamed up in support of the cause.
Money raised from entry fees, the silent auction, and the various drawings and/or contests, will go to support E.C.H.O.’s mission and Midwest Penguin teams headed to nationals.
The 14 Black team is running an additional fundraiser on Monday, May 13 from 4:30 to 9 p.m. at Pizza Ranch,930 Fleetfoot Dr. Waukesha, WI 53186. The team will earn 10% of the proceeds made that night. Check back here for more information on additional fundraisers as they are established.
“Competing on the national stage is a great experience for any team, and we couldn’t be more proud of what they’ve accomplished,” Slattery said. “We look forward to watching them continue to grow as athletes throughout the coming weeks.”
Since the Wisconsin Club started three years ago, it has over doubled in size and influence. What began as about 40 kids and 8 coaches has now developed into a program with 88 athletes, 10 trained adult coaches, and 13 high school skills training coaches.
Athletes who play in the Wisconsin Club are split into teams and practice twice a week for eight weeks. One of the practices is for their team to play and grow together while the other is a whole group practice focused on skill development. Three times throughout the 8-week season, the teams play each other in a mini-tournament.
Club director, Janice Siebert is “very excited about the success of the WI Club. It has made an incredible impact on hundreds of youth in the area.”
The majority of the young athletes that play in the Wisconsin Club are those who are multi-sport athletes or prefer a less time consuming or costly option to a full club season. Many of the athletes have gone on to play in high school or even try out for club at the older age levels.
The high school coaches focus on the skills training for the young athletes and are key to the success of the WI Club. They are mentors and leaders for the 5th through 8th graders athletes and bring a fun atmosphere to the practices. The high school coaches are talented players themselves and provide a unique perspective for the young athletes that are a part of the program.
Since the program started three years ago, it has gone from two teams at each age group (5th-6th & 7th-8th grade) to have enough teams to support an entire Friday evening mini-tournament. Siebert said, “I look forward to the continued growth of the program and can’t wait to see what the future has in store for the WI Club.”
It is fun and inspiring to see the game of volleyball grow and develop for so many athletes and their families. To all those past and present who have played in, supported, coached in, or helped develop this awesome program, thank you and keep up the great work!
The Badger Region recently debuted the Badger Region Power League which features an “Elite” division and a “Regional” division.
In its inaugural year, the power league features 192 teams from 30 clubs signed up to participate.
Tournament locations were selected based on RFPs submitted by participating clubs.
"I am very pleased with the status of the first Badger Region Power League," said Jen Armson-Dyer, Director of Operations at Badger Region. "This league was formed at the request of our clubs, coaches and families to allow them to stay closer to home for a high-quality event and save money and peace of mind. From the initial idea, there has been complete buy-in and that really speaks to the quality of our club leadership and the families they serve. We’re proud to be a host of this event and will do everything we can to make this a competitive, fun, safe and cost-saving event that will thrive in Badger Region.
Clubs committed to the 2019 Badger Region Power League include:
|360 Volleyball Academy||414 Milwaukee Elite||Adversity-Wisconsin|
|Balance VBC||Capital Volleyball Academy||Eclipse VBC|
|Epic VBC||FC Elite||Fond du Lac Fusion|
|Fox Valley Performance||Impact VBC||Jr. Red Knight VBC|
|Midwest Penguins||Milwaukee Sting||Motion Volleyball Program|
|Next Level||One Wisconsin VBC||Revolution Volleyball Academy|
|River City VBC||Rolling Thunder VBC||Royal VBC|
|Southwest Milwaukee||V-Hawk Extreme||Club W|
|Wisconsin Blaze||Wicconsin Ice VBC||Wisconsin Juniors|
In the first week of competition, Midwest Penguins Volleyball Club had nine teams compete. Results from weekend one are below.