February 22, 2013
Knox students vs. alumni in a match at the 2013 Natalie Veneziano Ultimate Tournament
The label on their red t-shirts -- "Geritol" -- notwithstanding, there was nothing old or tired about the team of Knox alumni who kept up with, and sometimes defeated, their younger opponents in the 2013 Natalie Veneziano Ultimate Tournament, held in February in Knox's T. Fleming Fieldhouse.
Led by Rob Clark '95, now a newspaper editor in Michigan, the Knox alumni team attracted players from the mid 90s, when he founded the tournament, through last year's graduates. "It's our homecoming," Clark said. "It's a highlight for us to be able to come back and play against today's Knox students." Clark and fellow Knox alumni founded the tournament, now in its 19th year, in memory of their late classmate, Natalie Veneziano '98.
"I've played a lot of sports in my life, and this game really makes sense to me," Clark said, reflecting on ultimate's reliance on players to call their own fouls.
"We have alumni coming in from everywhere, Boston, Portland, St. Louis, Kansas City -- one flew back from Austria," said Dan Morgridge, '05, of Chicago. "I played informally in high school," he said. "When I got to Knox it was my first time on a team." Morgridge says he still plays on a club team that competes around the region.
Highlights from the 2013 Natalie Veneziano Memorial Tournament, Feb. 16-17, Knox College:
In the tournament finals Chicago Buick, a mixed team from Chicago, defeated the Knox alumni team 11-10 on a universe point. In the semi-final matches, Buick beat the Knox student A team and Knox alumni defeated Northern Illinois University. On Saturday, Knox A beat Knox alumni 11-10 on a universe point.