Once again, Mother Nature is preparing to take Storm Dayz literally.
The tournament - hosted by the Kishwaukee Valley Storm - is returning to the Sycamore Park District after a one-year stint in Beloit, Wisconsin, due to the COVID_19 pandemic. And thunderstorms are in the forecast for both Friday and Saturday.
“I mean, I wish it could be a good sunny day,” said Addison Dierschow, who plays for the Storm’s 14-and-under team. “But it can’t always be a sunny day. You just have to play through it. I wish it would be sunnier but if it’s raining we’ll just fight through it and do our best.”
The tournament starts Friday and concludes Sunday – which has a 35% chance of rain showers. Both Friday and Saturday have around a 50% chance of thunderstorms.
The tournament will feature 76 teams across five age groups.
“I really missed having Storm Dayz here last year,” said Storm 18u player Logan Neblock. “I just hope it doesn’t rain. It’s rained every year I’ve been on Storm. Still, it’s good to be back.”
Last year, the tournament was dry in Beloit, however that weekend Neblock said she remembers it rained in Sycamore.
This year’s tournament features a Storm team in each of the 14u and 18u age groups, plus two 16u teams. The Sycamore Sycos, another travel team based in Sycamore, has teams in every age group except 14u.
Anna Criswell, a 2018 graduate of Sycamore and former Storm player is in her second year as an assistant on the team.
She said she’s glad the tournament is back where it belongs, although she said the team did well in Beloit last year.
“It wasn’t our hometown, but the girls still treated it like our home tournament,” Criswell said. “Attacked really well, played really well, and made the quick adjustment that needed to be made not being at our home fields.”
Still, she said, it doesn’t compare to being back home.
“It’s a feeling that is indescribable playing at your home field, playing all the teams you invited,” Criswell said. “Plus you have people come and watch. It’s really great.”