A recap of Saturday's Regionals play.
September 28, 2014 by Charlie Eisenhood in News, Recap with 2 comments
The final six teams in the men’s bracket are set, and there’s been only one change from original seeding. Garden State Ultimate (#7) and Town Hall Stars (#6), have switched places, and GSU remains to face Medicine Men (#5) at 9 AM today in the second place bracket. They’ll play alongside Pittsburgh Dire Wolf (#4) and Philadelphia Patrol (#3), a a rematch from the Founders section which should be very exciting. Dire Wolf took their first loss today in the second round against Medicine Men 10-12, while Patrol battled Pittsburgh Temper in a close third round game that ended with Temper winning on double-game point 12-11. Med Men also took their first loss of the day in the third round, although it was a 15-5 thumping from Truck Stop – Truck allowed only one point from Med Men in the second half. Garden State were knocked out of the first place bracket by Temper, in a 15-11 quarterfinal matchup.
All that said, to no one’s surprise: Truck Stop (#1) and Temper (#2) face each other at 11 AM tomorrow to decide who takes the first spot in Frisco. The loser makes a final attempt to secure second place in the 1 PM game to go.
Washington DC Scandal and Philadelphia Green Means Go are undefeated so far in pool play, and are well positioned to make the finals at the conclusion of pool play this morning. Scandal, as expected, has dominated every matchup and are the no doubt favorites to take another Regional title.
Pittsburgh Hot Metal lost a big game yesterday against Green Means Go and will now have to earn a bid through the second place bracket.
The top four seeds all went 3-0 in pool play, though only the top two seeds — Philadelphia AMP and Washington DC Ambiguous Grey — cruised. Both Virginia’s Ant Madness and Tyrannis had some close games to earn their bye into quarterfinals.
Boston Ironside cruised through their relatively easy bracket into the final, as New York PoNY and Toronto GOAT duked it out in the other semifinal to determine who would get a shot at Ironside. GOAT looked very good in the first half, dominating offensively with Derek Alexander, Mark Lloyd, and Jeff Lindquist running the show. New pickups Morgan Hibbert and Aaron Liu played on the starting defensive line and helped GOAT land two breaks in the first half.
Although PoNY would get some breaks back in the second half, they could never quite tie it up. When PoNY was threatening to tie it at 11-11 after a GOAT turnover, Adrian Yearwood came up with a huge footblock near the goal line that resulted in a GOAT score. A break on the following point gave them some breathing room, and they rode it out on offense to a 15-13 win.
Elsewhere in the bracket, Garuda and Big Wrench, both from the Boston area, have looked good. Big Wrench, the #5 seed, upset Ottawa Phoenix, the #4 seed, in quarterfinals, and Garuda looked very strong against PoNY, leading nearly the entire game before succumbing to better PoNY defensive pressure late in the game.
Boston Brute Squad has been totally dominant, and New York Bent has been #2 so far this weekend. Bent beat the Toronto Capitals convincingly in pool play yesterday 11-7; the Capitals had no answer for Bent’s offensive line, which never got broken. The two teams will likely meet again in the second place game-to-go.
It was a wild day in the Mixed Division. Things got interesting early when New York 7 Express jumped out to a big early lead on Boston Ghosts, looking well poised for an upset after taking half 8-2. But the Ghosts switched up their defense, going to a junky zone, and 7X fell apart at the seams, giving back the six point lead and ultimately losing 15-13. The Ghosts went on to lose big to Boston Wild Card in the semis, and Boston Slow White took down New York SHUYAMOUF in the other semi.
Slow White and Wild Card have looked like the class of the division thus far.
Although Austin Doublewide had a bit of a shaky start (something they’ve struggled with) against Denver Inception, they pulled out a 13-11 win and steadily improved throughout the day, including a convincing 13-7 win over #3 seed Dallas Plex in the last round of the day.
Denver Johnny Bravo has steamrolled the competition so far and had no trouble getting big wins over even the best teams in their pool.
Plex, Houston Space City Ignite, and Houston H.I.P. are all in a good place to battle to be the team that reaches the game-to-go.
Denver Molly Brown has looked untouchable so far, including a 15-9 win over two seed Austin Showdown.
#3 seed Dallas Maeve got a big win over #4 seed Houston Inferno to set themselves for another game against them in the backdoor semifinal.
#1 seed Austin Cosa Nostra and #2 seed Denver Sweet Action will face off in quarterfinals after Sweet Action lost to the #7 seed Arkansas RUA in pool play. The other top seeds — Mesteño and Love Tractor — both went 3-0.
By now, you’ve probably heard. Orlando Omen rocked Southeast Regionals with a stunning blowout of top-seeded Atlanta Chain Lightning, 15-7, in quarters. They have now reached the final after defeating Huntsville Freaks Uv Nature in the semifinals. They will face Raleigh Ring of Fire, the #2 seed, who beat Florida United in semifinals.
Who is Omen? First of all, they are no fluke. They were the Top Select team in the region this past season, finishing fourth at Regionals last year in a three bid region. Much of their roster is built from current and former University of Central Florida players, including many who reached the College National final in 2013. They use 6’6″ studs Mischa Freystaetter and Michael Hickson to good effect; Brawley Adams and Kyle Reedy are other familiar UCF names.
They simply outplayed Chain Lightning, a team that had a bad game at the wrong time (including a dropped pull and a number of other miscues). Omen’s offense was red hot, and the defense took advantage of nearly every Chain turnover.
Chain now has to fight through a brutal backdoor bracket. They open Sunday with a game against Florida United, then they face the winner of the 4/5 seed matchup. If they win that, they will face the loser of the final for the region’s second bid.
Both Phoenix and Ozone sit at 3-1 and should advance to the final. Phoenix has been very up and down, not looking very good at all in some of their games, but bringing it all together against Ozone. They will need to find that again if they want to earn a bid.
The expected top performers all met expectations on Saturday, going 3-0 and taking a bye into quarterfinals. Top seeded Atlanta Bucket is on a path to see #5 Raleighwood in semis; #2 Asheville Cahoots should see #3 Charleston Pluff Mud Panic.
Additional reporting from Simon Pollock, Preston Thompson, and Matt Reese.