February 9, 2013 -- The University of Wisconsin Evans Scholars attended the 61st annual Evans Scholars Winter Outing the weekend of Feb. 9, an outing commonly agreed upon to be one of the most enjoyable of the school year. Some notable activities include a stay in downtown Chicago, meetings for new Executive Board members and a dance at the Hyatt in the evening. The most exciting event of the weekend is the inter-chapter basketball tournament held at the University of Illinois Chicago. This year UW Madison fielded a men's and women's team, both of whom battled their way to first place victories in their respective brackets.
The women's team, coached by President Brady "Blade" Beck, achieved their second championship in as many years. Despite losing a number of talented players from 2012's graduating class, the Lady Badgers rallied around a strong sophomore class to dominate the field of eight women's teams, beating Minnesota in the championship game. The team consisted of freshmen Aidanne MacDonald Milewski and Emily Mech; sophomores Kate Benson, Stephanie Tadje and Alyssa Gohr; juniors Liz Lindner and Dianne Kilgas; and senior Ashley Klingbeil. When asked about his team, Coach Blade said, "They played well as a team, and they had fun doing it. They enjoyed the games for the reasons why we all enjoy it. They played their hearts out to represent our school well."
On the men's side of the bracket the Badgers lost four from the previous year's touranment, but returned with a solid group of sophomores and juniors, most notably Head Coach Maxwell "Jim" Hurley. Under Coach Jim's unwavering guidance and potent advice, Wisconsin managed to win four straight games to win their first house championship since 2008. The team consisted of freshman Patrick Dreschsler, Assistant Coach; sophomores Jake Wheeler, Brady Cassidy and Alex Baumgartner; juniors Johnny Keeler, Jake Bunno, and Austin Resop; and seniors Charlie Wendelberger, Joey Baer, Tony Anderson and Justin Brellenthin. When asked to describe his team in one word, Coach Jim chose 'resilient'. "We felt that we let a few previous tournaments get away from us, so I'm really pleased we were able to seal the deal this year." Coach Jim is currently undergoing contract talks with the UW Madison Chapter, who are trying to sign the high-profile head coach to an extension that would ensure his unmatched coaching presence at Winter Outing 2014.
All in all, UW Madison made a strong showing at Winter Outing 2013, both athletically and socially. In the words of Former Chapter President John "Jett" Parent, "The men's and women's outstanding performance was a reflection of the excellence continuously exhibited by the Wisconsin chapter in all aspects of Evans Scholars living."