School News: Roger Bacon Underwater Hockey
On a bright, sunny, but chilly day in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, the Roger Bacon High School Team A finished Sunday’s tournament action with 0 wins and 2 losses in the second and final day of the 2022 Milwaukee Fall Tournament, finishing in 9th place in this regional invitational tournament, while Roger Bacon’s Team B finished Sunday’s tournament action with 2 wins and 1 loss in the second and final day of the 2022 Milwaukee Fall Tournament, finishing in 3rd place in this regional invitational tournament
Roger Bacon High School Team A’s record on Sunday:
9:30 am: The playoff games continued for Roger Bacon Team A against Chicago #3. Chicago #3 defeated the Roger Bacon Spartans by a score of 8 to 0.
10:30 am: Then Milwaukee defeated the Roger Bacon Team A by a score of 8 to 3. Junior forward Jonathan Reilly ‘24 and assistant coach Alex Mathis ‘12 scored the Roger Bacon goals.
The Roger Bacon Team A finished in 9th place overall in the tournament with an overall tournament record of 1 win and 6 losses.
Roger Bacon High School Team B’s record on Sunday:
9:00 am: The playoff games continued for Roger Bacon Team A against Chicago Team #1 as the Spartans defeated the team from the Windy City by a score of 4 to 1. The Roger Bacon goals were scored by senior defensive back Emmett Breda ’23, and assistant coaches Joe Gering ‘00 and Andrew Kalvelage ‘03.
11:00 am: The University of Minnesota, the #1 seed in the tournament, then defeated Roger Bacon Team A by a score of 6 to 2. The Roger Bacon goals were scored by incoming freshmen forward Helen Russell ‘27 and assistant coach Katie Konrath.
In the second half, incoming freshmen forward Helen Russell ’27 took the puck into the heart of the Minnesota defense and scored Roger Bacon’s first goal of the game. This was also Russell’s first goal of her high school career.
Then later in the second half, Roger Bacon junior forward Kameron Kerl made an impressive break-away drive on the Minnesota goal, driving the puck from midpool to the very edge of the goal. Minnesota’s defense collapsed upon Kerl as he fought to drive the puck into the goal. Minnesota’s defense ultimately denied Kerl the score, but assistant coach Katie Konrath was quickly swimming up to support Kerl. The puck popped free in front of Minnesota’s goal, and Konrath was there to finish the point. Coach Konrath later said, “Give all of he credit to Kameron. He did all of the hard work on the point; I was just in the right place at the right time to finish the goal when the puck popped free.”
1:00 pm: Roger Bacon’s loss to Minnesota placed the Spartans in the bronze medal game against Door County Wisconsin Team #1. This was a hard fought game with Roger Bacon scoring first on a penalty goal. (A penalty goal in Underwater Hockey is when a penalty by the defense prevents a certain goal by the offense, very similar to a goal tending call in basketball.) Roger Bacon kept the pressure on Door County, ultimately winning the game by a score of 4 to 1. The Roger Bacon goals were scored by senior defensive back Emmett Breda ’23, assistant coaches Joe Gering ‘00 and Andrew Kalvelage ’03, and head coach Dr. Paul Wittekind ‘84.
The Roger Bacon Team B finished in 3rd place overall in the tournament with an overall tournament record of 5 wins and 3 losses.
Roger Bacon senior defensive back and Team A captain Anthony “Peppe” Mechley ‘23 said of the tournament, “I’m really proud of all of my Roger Bacon teammates. We all worked very hard and played very hard this weekend. My Team A struggled at times today, but we will all learn from our experiences, and we will all work to play better in the future. There was tremendous growth on both Roger Bacon squads at this tournament. I’m especially proud of how well Roger Bacon Team B did this weekend.”
Roger Bacon senior defensive back and Team B captain Emmett Breda ‘23 said at the conclusion of the tournament today, “I am very happy with how well both Roger Bacon teams played this weekend. While our adult coaches certainly helped us, the high school players had to carry both teams in tough competition. I’m just so happy with how well Team B played at this tournament. We finished in third place, which is extremely difficult to do when playing against adult teams. I’m proud to bring home a bronze medal for the Roger Bacon trophy case.”
Roger Bacon has the oldest high school underwater hockey team in the United States. The Roger Bacon “Spartans” have had tremendous success playing underwater hockey. In previous USA Underwater Hockey National championships, the Roger Bacon Varsity Team has won four national titles, most recently winning the “B” Division title in 2011 in Santa Clarita, California.
Roger Bacon’s head coach is Dr. Paul Wittekind ‘84, a member of the Roger Bacon High School faculty and the chair of the Social Studies department. Mr. David Dozer is the team’s chief assistant coach. Dr. Wittekind returned to Roger Bacon from The Ohio State University, where he and Mr. Dozer played on that school underwater hockey team.
Roger Bacon High School is a coed Roman Catholic high school run by the Franciscans in the Archdiocese of Cincinnati. Mr. Tom Burke ‘69 is the President Emeritus of Roger Bacon, and Mr. Steve Schad is the school’s Principal and CEO.
For more additional information, please contact the Roger Bacon coach, Paul Wittekind, at Roger Bacon High School (513-641-1300) or on his cell phone (513-602-0745).