The Journey of Roundnet Kris
Kristof Reitz is a roundnet enthusiast and fanatic to say the least. Having started playing the sport in 2017, Kris has since helped German roundnet grow, specifically Wurzburg where he studied. You might recognize him from this famous rally on a Spikeball Instagram post! Give him a follow @roundnet_kris !
Looking to embark on new adventures, Kris headed to North America at the end of 2019 to indulge in roundnet that USA and Canada had to offer. Here is the condensed tale of his remarkable journey.
While his stay in the USA was just a couple weeks in January of 2020, Kris’ first destination to Long Island, New York was a highlight. There he got to meet and play with roundnet legends Tyler Cisek, Ryan Fitzgerald, as well as Dylan Fogarty. Kris quickly realized the extent of the roundnet community’s hospitality, as Tyler warmly welcomed him to the Cisek family household during his Long Island stay.
Making his way up north across the eastern American coast, aiming eventually for Montreal, Kris stopped in Boston to greet their community. After a fun roundnet session in squash courts with Alex Daly and other spikers, Kris found out that some Boston players were heading to Montreal that same weekend. Better yet, they were heading up for the Winter Spike 2020 roundnet tournament. Unaware of this tournament but happily surprised by the coincidence, Kris found a last minute Québecois partner (Vincent Bastrash) and caught a ride with the Boston players across the border.
From thereon until March, Kris enjoyed his time in the Montréal, arguably the roundnet capital of Canada. During his time there, Kris most fondly recalls post-roundnet “festivities” with travelling Ontarians, Kayla Larivière and Ian Donaghey. In terms of the sport, he became acquainted with many elite Québecois roundnet teams such as Strong Flush, Never Give Up, and Simply Smashing. Kris also faced all sorts of stiff competition with Francis Thériault at the Tournoi intérieur de roundnet de Lévis, a tournament that served as a Team Canada Qualifier for the later cancelled World Championships. Besides meeting (and losing to) elite women’s roundnet players Jordann Vigna and Frédérique Crête at this tournament, Kris met Vancouver ballers Etienne Côté and Jaden Smit – at this point in time he didn’t know that he would play countless pick-ups and tournaments with them and their community.
But before travelling to B.C., Kris made a stop in Alberta from June to August where he visited the Rocky Mountains and became well acquainted with the communities in Edmonton, Red Deer, Calgary, and Southern Alberta.
Note: If you’re wondering what Kris did from April until June, you’ll have to ask him yourself about his experience with the Christmas Tree industry in Nova Scotia.
Shortly after landing in Calgary, Kris headed up to Edmonton with myself, to compete in a King of Court Tournament. After a disappointing and jet-lagged day consisting of mostly shaking off the roundnet rust, Kris’ only happy memory from the day was enjoying ciders at a bar for the first time since health restrictions had eased in the country. After several tournaments with Roundnet Alberta over the summer with many different partners (McKenzie Lowes, Godric Tham, Jesse Lentz, Rebecca Cyr), Kris ended his time in the province with an inspiring performance securing victory at Alberta’s first ever provincial championship.
Nearing the end of August, Kris drove west in his signature camper truck to meet B.C. communities from the interior all the way to the shore. He has played extensively in the province, getting to know players in Kamloops, Kelowna, Penticton, Vernon, Fraser Valley, and Vancouver. Making friends with Olivia McLennan and Lewis McKnight in the Okanogan and Blake Bosak, Justin Plett, Carlos Nakamura, Tijs de Vries, and many others in the Vancouver area, Kris has developed plenty of bonds across the province. Notably, he holds onto the thrilling memory of a tournament win with Justin at Locarno Beach.
Presently, he has temporarily settled down in B.C. where he spikes and works remotely for Roundnet Germany. It is unclear when, if ever, Kris will return home to Germany to ultimately finish his travel with roundnet adventures. Kris has certainly left a unifying impact everywhere he has toured over the past year. Regardless of where he goes next, me and many other lucky Canadians are happy to have welcomed this spiking nomad to our communities.
Written by: Chris Gloria
July 1, 2021
Kris seen on the podium with his friends from the Okanogan (left).
Kris photobombing a podium picture in a Vancouver area tournament (right).
Overcoming the darkness and pouring rain, Kris and Blake Bosak beat Red Deer superpower, Jauzi, in Alberta's first provincial championship.