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Flashback Friday – Ryan O’Donovan 1997 Rochester Honker

Jacob Colwell, a senior at Saint Mary's University (Winona, MN) studying Sports Management, has taken on the challenge of contacting many former Rochester Honkers players and coaches. He wanted to see what they are doing now and some of their favorite memories of playing in Rochester. Below you will enjoy his discoveries as we present……Flashback Fridays!

Ryan O'Donovan – Butler
1997 Rochester Honkers
Photo of Wife Tricia, Daughter Rachel, Son Will, and Ryan

What’s your favorite memory while playing for the Rochester Honkers?
RO: Winning the NWL Championship in 1997 at Waterloo. We popped some champagne (21+ only, of course) and celebrated like kids.  It was great and it meant a lot to us.

What’s your favorite non playing memory from your time with the Rochester Honkers (Host Family, Experience, Bus Ride, etc.)
RO: Mike and Barb Sarr, my host family, were awesome!  I still keep in touch with them 17 years later.

Who was your favorite teammate when you played for the Rochester Honkers and why?
RO: Our team in 1997 was great.  We all got along well and we all wanted to win badly.  I remember we won the first 11-12 games of the year.  After that first loss you would've thought a family member died.  I think we expected to win every game that year.

What has happened to you since you left Rochester and what are you doing now?
RO: I completed my M.S degree in Counseling at Butler University.  I currently live in Cambridge, MN and work at Anoka-Ramsey Community College.  I am the Director of TRIO Upward Bound, a federally funded program that helps high school students in our area get ready for college.

What was your biggest realization while playing for the Rochester Honkers?
RO: It was my first in depth experience swinging the wood bat.  It was an adjustment early on but turned out to help my development as a hitter.

Do you still stay in contact with former teammates? If so who?
RO: Connect occasionally through Facebook.  Unfortunately, though, I don't see or communicate much with former teammates.  Many of us are spread out across the country.  Would be great to have a reunion at Mayo Field!