Northwestern students compete to throw first pitch at Cubs game

Tom Meyer

Four Northwestern students competed Tuesday night for the opportunity to throw out the ceremonial first pitch at a Chicago Cubs game in May.

The contestants answered trivia questions about NU, the Cubs and Wrigley Field to earn the chance to throw out the first pitch before NU Day at Wrigley, the Cubs’ May 17 game against the Philadelphia Phillies. The winning student will be selected by the executive board of NCA: The Student Alumni Partnership over the weekend.

“There are a lot of Cubs fans at Northwestern and so I think for some people this is a really big thing,” said Jordan Woll, an NCA member who helped emcee the event at Giordano’s Pizza, 1527 Chicago Ave.

Three of the contestants described themselves as big Cubs fans and the contest as a unique chance to live out one of their dreams.

“I’ve been a lifelong Cubs fan and I just thought this would be a once in a lifetime chance,” Annas Rahman, a Weinberg sophomore, said. “You watch the games and see people throwing out the first pitch but never think that it could be you.”

Communication junior Meghan Kasprzyk, who also competed in the event, said she also felt that way until two years ago when she saw a classmate throw out the pitch as the winner of the annual competition.

“Freshman year I knew the winner and then it was just kind of like, ‘Wait, that could be me,’ so I decided to go for it,” Kasprzyk said.

The competition consisted of three rounds of trivia, with the first two rounds split between NU and Cubs trivia and the final round divided between NU and Wrigley Field. NCA executive board will consider the contestants’ scores on trivia, in addition to their performance in the talent portion and crowd reaction, when choosing a winner.

For the talent contest, Communication sophomore Mollie Block performed the “worm” dance move, Rahman juggled and Kasprzyk presented a slideshow showcasing her ability to “photobomb,” or sneak into photographs. Each contestant brought friends to the event, who cheered loudly for their chosen candidates during the talent portion. Jeffery Arnier, a Weinberg sophomore and the fourth contestant, did not participate in the talent competition.

“I think there was great participation, a great atmosphere,” Woll said. About 50 students came to the competition.

Though the contestants will not find out their fate until the weekend, Block said she already knows what will happen if she is selected.

“It’s gonna be embarrassing,” Block said. “But I promise I’ll practice. And Cubs fans are a forgiving bunch. They tend to cheer if you just get it to home plate.”

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