Meet the Red Scare: Who are the students in front row at Dayton games

Flyers can complete perfect season at home Saturday

The Dayton Flyers can secure the first undefeated season at UD Arena since 2015 on Saturday by beating George Washington in the regular-season finale. A dream season has included a number of notable feats, but the contributions of the fan base can not be overlooked.

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Dayton sold out 14 games this season. That's a school record. It will set the all-time attendance record Saturday, too.

While the entire fan base deserves a large share of the credit for what the program has become, no one makes more noise than the students in the Red Scare section, and no one in that group cheers harder than the people in the front row. For anyone who watches the games on TV or has a close-up view of the student section at the arena, they are familiar faces by this point.

But who are they? Here's a glance at the members of the Red Scare's executive board:

Taylor Genier

Position: President.

Hometown: Rochester, N.Y.

Year: Junior.

Major: Marketing and management information systems.

Why he loves Red Scare: It's the greatest student section in the world! The passion for UD and the Flyers at this school cannot be matched by anyone else in the country!

Why he loves Dayton basketball: We knew this team was going to be good this year, but no one could expect a year as special as we've been having. This team is really good on the court, but even off the court, they still have the same chemistry and togetherness. It's really cool to see on campus.

Credit: David Jablonski - Staff Writer

Credit: David Jablonski - Staff Writer

Emily Noll

Position: Executive assistant to external relations.

Hometown: Cincinnati.

Year: Sophomore

Major: Finance.

Why she loves Red Scare: It's a good time.

Julia Bunch

Position: Freshman Apprentice

Year: Freshman.

Major: Sociology.

Why she loves Red Scare: I have been on the Red Scare board since October 2019. I love Red Scare because of the energy it brings to campus. We work hard to bring everyone together, and I have so much fun being a part of something bigger than myself. Keeping our spirit alive has been one of the best experiences and I am so glad I've met so many amazing people through the board.

Why she loves Dayton basketball: The minute you walk into UD Arena, the energy is indestructible. As a student, I have never felt so welcome and seen so much dedication. We paint ourselves blue and scream at the top of our lungs to show our support, and that doesn't just happen anywhere else. The Flyer spirit is incredible and unmatched, which is what makes UD basketball what it is.

Credit: David Jablonski - Staff Writer

Credit: David Jablonski - Staff Writer

Katie Acra

Position: Creative media director.

Hometown: Middletown, Ind.

Year: Sophomore.

Major: Graphic design.

Why she loves Red Scare: I get to work with an amazing group of students to bring spirit and energy to sporting events!

Why she loves Dayton basketball: The energy at games is incomparable. Just go to a game and you will understand why I love it!

Kyle Brun

Position: Social media director.

Hometown: Indianapolis, Ind.

Year: Sophomore.

Major: Communication/public relations.

Why he loves Red Scare: I love the different and unique ways that Red Scare unites our UD community.

Why he loves Dayton basketball: Best fan base in the country. Period.

Tommy Reese

Position: Treasurer.

Hometown: Ellicott City, Md.

Year: Junior

Major: Engineering.

Why he loves Dayton basketball: I love everything Dayton. I love cheering on our Flyers. Huge college basketball fan. This season highlights the atmosphere of our city and the potential we have.

Bryan Borodkin

Position: Men's soccer chair; also one of the Blue Men.

Hometown: Medina.

Year: Senior.

Major: Political Science/pre-law.

Why he loves Red Scare: I love Red Scare for a few reasons. First, the energy at athletic events is truly second to none. Although I especially love men's soccer and men's basketball, every athletic event is hype and reminds me why I love UD in general. I also love the rest of the people on the board. Everyone is really spirited and super close. I'm definitely going to miss everyone once this semester is over.

Why he loves Dayton basketball: THE ENERGY. There is no other program in the nation that is as close knit and as hype as the University of Dayton. Despite being a nationally-known program, I actually feel close with not only the players, but also the coaching staff and the entire Flyer community that comes out to the arena on gameday. There is no better feeling in the world than when the Flyers get on a streak and everyone in the arena is on their feet is screaming.

Daryl Zawaski

Position: Director of community outreach.

Hometown: Boston, Mass.

Year: Sophomore.

Major: MIS.

Why she loves Red Scare: My dad played soccer for UD back in his days here, so I loved the idea of joining the group that's behind supporting all of our athletic teams! Contrary to popular belief, we don't just do men's basketball. We do much more!

Why she loves Dayton basketball: This team is just so special, and it's a thrill to see our cheers/chants having a direct, positive influence on the team's play.

Credit: David Jablonski - Staff Writer

Credit: David Jablonski - Staff Writer

Sam Enderby

Position: Men's basketball chair.

Hometown: St. Paul, Minn.

Year: Junior.

Major: Education.

Why he loves Red Scare: I love Red Scare because of the people and the great opportunities it gives us to support the Flyers. The passion of the community, the atmosphere of the arena, and the bond/sense of pride that it creates between the students.

Katlin Pistone

Position: Women's basketball chair.

Hometown: Brookville.

Year: Sophomore.

Major: Mechanical engineering.

Why she loves Red Scare: I love Red Scare because coming to college was hard at first. Playing two varsity sports in high school and then not becoming a college athlete can take a toll on a person, but being involved in getting students excited about our athletics and seeing behind the scenes work of the games is so exciting.It has helped me get to know people with the same excitement and spirit as me about Dayton sports and also allowed me to get to know the players individually and know their personalities. Also we get a lot of free clothes and food.

Why she loves Dayton basketball: There are too many things to love about UD basketball. First is obviously how well we are doing this year. Absolutely no one expected us to have this dream season, and defying the odds by moving up in the AP poll every week is so fun because I get to rub it in with my friends (who go to what should normally be a basketball school) and tell them that they should've come to Dayton.

Another thing I love about UD basketball is the players. We genuinely have one of the nicest teams in the country, and the boys will always stop to say hi or take a picture with anyone who asks them and they are so humble about their success. You would never know Obi (Toppin) is going to be a top-five draft pick because he acts like a normal person.

Finally, getting to heckle the other team. Being the front row, I love getting in their heads and changing the momentum of the games. Getting crazy with thousands of other UD students when Obi dunks will never have a matched feeling.

Credit: David Jablonski - Staff Writer

Credit: David Jablonski - Staff Writer

Annie Montefiori

Position: Vice President of External Relations (Flight Attendant).

Hometown: Erie, Pa.

Year: Senior.

Major: Occupational and behavioral health science.

Why she loves Red Scare: I love the energy we bring to the games. My favorite thing at a UD game is when our boys are on a run and the whole arena erupts out of their seats and starts screaming for the Flyers. From where I stand, it looks like a sea of Dayton fans consuming the other team, and it is such an incredible sight!

Why she loves Dayton basketball: UD basketball is like no other. Not only do we have a humble coach who is a great leader, but the Flyer Faithful are something no other school has. We have fans that come to every game and have been coming since the arena was built, and that is something to pride ourselves on!

Michael Oliver

Position: Executive assistant to the VP of sports (former president)/Pilot.

Hometown: Avon, Conn.

Year: Senior.

Major: Senior Mechanical Engineering.

Why he loves Red Scare: Red Scare shows up at more sports than just basketball, so throughout the fall of my freshman year, I had been exposed to how much fun the student section could be but basketball season is a whole new level. When I came to my first basketball game, that was the deal breaker. I'm from Connecticut, so I had never been to a UD basketball game before then. I was hooked. Being on Red Scare is incredible. It's special to be able to say that you are a part of making UD basketball what it is. We may not be out on that court, but opposing teams definitely feel our impact.

Why he loves Dayton basketball: I had always been obsessed with sports. In fact, when applying to college, one requirement I had was that the school had to be D-I and in a major conference. Dayton was the only mid-major I applied to because their reputation preceded them. I had heard just how special the basketball program was. UD basketball transcends the school. It is a rallying point for the whole community and city. There is so much pride in the basketball team. We bred loyal fans. Regardless of where you are, you will find an avid UD fan. No matter how small your connection is to the team, you are proud to call UD basketball your team.

Michelle Smith

Position: Chief of staff.

Hometown: Brookville.

Year: Senior.

Major: Pre-physical therapy.

Why she loves Red Scare: I love Red Scare because we have the opportunity to bring together hundreds of students with the same goal of being lowd and cheering our team to a win.

Why she loves Dayton basketball: I love UD basketball because the energy and atmosphere inside UD arena is unbeaten. It is one of the few things that brings the entire campus, city, and nation of Flyer fans together with a true passion and excitement for the sports.

Credit: David Jablonski - Staff Writer

Credit: David Jablonski - Staff Writer

Solomon West

Position: Women's soccer chair.

Hometown: Dayton.

Year: Junior.

Major: Electrical and computer engineer technology.

Why he loves Red Scare: I love the effect that Red Scare has on both the students and athletes. Seeing my peers fired up and loud (or Lowd) is something that can't be matched. And knowing how much the coaches and players for not just basketball appreciate our presence gives any fan a reason to make it to every Flyers game.

Why he loves Dayton basketball: My mom is a grad school alumni of the University of Dayton and is the reason why I fell in love with sport. Being from Dayton, UD basketball was always around, so it was only natural for me to be a Flyers fan.

My fandom became a passion my freshman year of high school during the Elite Eight run. I still remember that day. It seemed like I was one of the only ones hoping for the win over OSU. All throughout my bio class, I had my iPod on under my desk, trying to contain my mix of joy and pain throughout the game.

he last minute of the game happened between classes, meaning that I could watch the game-winning shot without sneaking. As it fell, I dropped everything and quite literally ran around my high school. From that moment forward, I had said I was going to UD. Now as a junior, I can still count on one hand how many games I’ve missed as a student. I love UD basketball because it coupled with the engineering department was the reason why I started looking at UD in the first place.

Grace McGinley

Position: Freshman apprentice.

Hometown: Indianapolis.

Year: Freshman.

Major: Communication management.

Why she loves Red Scare: I love Red Scare because it has been an amazing way to meet new people and get involved on campus. I also love Red Scare because I absolutely love going to all of UD's sporting events and cheering on all of the teams!

Why she loves Dayton basketball: It brings the whole Dayton community together! This season has been very special. The team has been playing amazing, which has been so fun to watch and be a part of.

Sam Penewit

Position: Former vice president; current football chair.

Hometown: Vandalia.

Year: Senior.

Major: Political science and history with a minor in military science.

Why he loves Red Scare: Painting my body blue because I can do that in legitimately no other situation.

Jacob Mantle

Position: Freshman apprentice.

Hometown: Cincinnati.

Year: Freshman.

Major: Communication: public relations.

Why he loves Red Scare: Although I have only been on the board for less than a year, I have quickly come to love the people on it as well as our involvement in athletics. Since I no longer play competitively (unless intramural counts), I feel like cheering the best I can and hyping everyone up for games is my contribution to the team. I also have had the privilege to be a Blue Man this season and it has been nothing but exciting!

Why he loves Dayton basketball: I have been following Dayton basketball since 2013-14. My dad is an alumni and I have family in Centerville, so we have always been cheering for them. I love UD basketball and UD Arena because it's a place where everyone sets aside their differences and roots for the same thing. We all want the Flyers to win!

Erin Gyles

Position: Freshman apprentice.

Hometown: Rochester, N.Y.

Year: Freshman.

Major: Discover business.

Why she loves Red Scare: Red scare has provided me the opportunity to meet new people that have the same passion for Dayton sports as I do, making every game a fun experience.

Why she loves Dayton basketball: The atmosphere in the arena is unreal. I love getting hype when the team makes a great play.

Emmy Cobb

Position: Marketing chair.

Hometown: Dayton.

Year: Junior.

Major: Sport management.

Why she loves Red Scare: I love the people and being able to cheer on Flyer athletics with everyone.

Why she loves Dayton basketball: I've been a lifelong UD basketball fan, so being able to watch them make this mark is a dream come true!

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