What do you get when you cross a stellar ice rink with a few old broom sticks and a group of Raiders who are down for a good time? An intramural broomball league. Here’s the catch: this is no joke, and neither is the sport of broomball. For over a century, this simple, yet thrilling, game has captured the attention of young and elderly crowds alike, and for the very first time, in only a few short days, it is coming to our very own Northwestern College. Get ready, Raiders.
Last year was the inauguration of NW’s on-campus ice rink, affectionately dubbed the “Raider Rink.” Located just north of the Science Building, the rink did not get as much use last year as was hopefully anticipated. The rink reopened for the 2023 season in mid-January. In an effort to encourage more use of the rink this year, an intramural broomball league is set to begin this winter, permitting enough people sign up.
Evan Olesen, co-coordinator of the intramural teams on campus, along with Lincoln Brollier, gives an inside look at exactly what this experience will entail for those who choose to participate on the rink or cheer from the sidelines. “Teams can be comprised of any combination of men and women,” said Olesen. “To sign up, one should go to IMleagues.com/NWCiowa.” After enough people have signed up, Olesen will post the full schedule on this website.
The game of broomball has many similarities to hockey in that it is played on the ice and two teams are playing against each other, trying to get an object in the opposing team’s net. There are, however, some differences between these two games that make broomball fun and unique. In broomball, both teams are comprised of six people, but only four of the six are on the ice at once. As the name of the game states, a broomstick is used in placement of a traditional hockey stick. Finally, rather than the use of a puck, a small ball is used in broomball.
Anyone and everyone on campus is encouraged to come and participate in this exciting new event at the Raider Rink. In order for this league to happen, though, more students are needed. As of right now, there is one team of six signed up. Time will tell if enough students get together to be a part of the first official Raider broomball season.
Students may also consider joining a team or being a spectator in either the men’s five on five intramural basketball league or the doubles intramural golf league. Whether it sees any broomball action this year or not, the Raider Rink is available for people to use and enjoy.