More Grudge Matches We Need Following Wrestling & Football Spikeball Game

Bo Nickal and Roman Bravo-Young defeated Micah Parsons and Jesse Luketa in what was a Spikeball grudge match for the ages. The event pitted two of Penn State’s most formidable sports teams against each other, wrestling versus football.

After the festivities on Tuesday, we couldn’t help but wonder what it would be like if more varsity athletes in Happy Valley challenged each other to (not-so) friendly competition outside of their respective sports. Here are some ideas for spectacles we’d love to take in…

Cornhole: Sean Clifford and Jake Zembiec vs. Myles Dread and Kamalia McDaniel

Who doesn’t like cornhole? The tailgate classic would be a perfect battleground for Nittany Lion QB1 Sean Clifford and Ice Gawd Jake Zembiec to prove they know how to drop dimes like no one else. Meanwhile, Penn State basketball three-point aficionados Miles Dread and Kamalia McDaniel could prove their sharpshooting prowess in the match.

Ideally, it would be played in front of the HUB’s High School Musical Steps to give those in attendance a perfect vantage point. If the basketball three-point specialists get hot, it could be the first loss of the year for Clifford. Additionally, Zembiec’s drip may weigh him down in pivotal moments. We predict a Dread/McDaniel win, 21-15.

Doubles Beach Volleyball: Jonni Parker and Serena Gray vs. Henrick Falck-Lauten and Jason Donorovich

A classic Olympic sport, 2-on-2 beach volleyball could reach Penn State should the two varsity sides decide a grudge match is necessary.

The No. 8 women’s volleyball team is currently in the midst of a title chase. However, once the offseason starts what better way to stay in shape then heading over to the East Halls volleyball court to take on the men’s team?

Coming off of a (hopefully) championship season, Serena Gray and Jonni Parker should make easy work of their male counterparts, who are just making preparations for the spring campaign.

Despite being on the sand, the match may be contested under frigid conditions should it be played toward the end of the fall semester. In that case, Gray’s Southern California background would not be nearly as important as a summer fixture. Nonetheless, the ladies take this one in four sets.

Jenga: KJ Hamler vs. Alex Limoges

With KJ Hamler’s agility on the football field and Alex Limoges’ quick wrists and stick skills on the ice, a high stakes game of Jenga would be a perfect way to decide which superstar was the quickest.

Played in front of the Starbucks in Paterno Library (which is a left turn from the front entrance, Curtin Road), Hamler and Limoges would be cheered on by caffeine-enthused fans.

Despite Limoges’ ability with the puck in Pegula, Jenga at the highest level is a full-body sport. Therefore, Hamler’s practice evading Big Ten defenders will pay off in the ultimate test, avoiding the tower from collapsing in front of hundreds of onlookers. Limoges won’t be as lucky and will join the wide receiver’s list of souls consumed.

Pong: Mike Watkins and Lamar Stevens vs. Any Frat

Playing in the Big Ten, Penn State men’s basketball may need to visit some of the hardest environments in college basketball, but none would be more difficult than heading to Frat Row for a game of pong.

While other proposed competitions don’t include the direct sport the competitor specializes in, the home side will have been training their whole lives for a high stakes game of pong. As long as the two selected brothers don’t get caught up in the moment and the home fans are on the frat’s side, it should be a close but convincing victory for the frat boys.

Although we heard that Mike Watkins can shoot the three now and Lamar Stevens is bringing the Mamba Mentality for his senior season, this will be a touch match-up for Penn State’s hoopers. The basketball stars will finish with three cups left. While skill may be relatively even between all four players, pure pong IQ will push Brad and Chad to the win.

Badminton: Blue Band vs. The Lionettes

Both student groups are known for being exquisite in their own trades. The Blue Band provides a beautiful melody with an array of instruments; meanwhile, the Lionettes are one of the most distinguished dance groups in the nation.

Both teams have perfect synchronicity, a big part of badminton. Badminton is one of the fastest sports, making it imperative to have strong mental communication with your partner.

Playing at the IM badminton courts, the two groups must use their individual talents to their advantage. While the arm strength of the Blue Band’s trumpet players may provide an advantage on the attack, the Lionettes will prevail due to their agility, flexibility, and the ability to perform under pressure.

I predict a final score of 21-19, a Lionettes comeback the ultimate end to an exciting match with a multitude of long rallies that would make Nickal proud.

Bocce Ball: The Nittany Lion vs. President Barron

Because why not?

We all know that the Lion has insane grip strength with his extensive one-armed pushup training routine. The mascot may have the physical advantage, but you need way more than just one skillset to thrive in a game as complicated as bocce ball.

The calculated intellect that President Barron brings to running Penn State will directly translate to an even more important feat, matching up against his school’s mascot in a popular backyard game.

Both players bring different, strong attributes to the match, making it a true Voldemort-Harry situation. Unlike the famous series, though, there will be no victor. The bocce ball match will end after a week of playing and be abandoned due to inclement weather once the snow reaches State College.

The two most influential people at the university won’t be able to decide the victor, and students will head into winter break with the debate a hot topic.

Dodgeball: Onward State vs. The Daily Collegian

I’ll leave this here…

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About the Author

Otis Lyons

Otis is a sophomore majoring in print journalism and is one of Onward State's associate editors. He lives just north of San Francisco, and is a diehard San Jose Earthquakes fan. Feel free to send over your soccer hot takes to his twitter @otisnlyons1 and instagram @otislyons

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