Lincoln 1 0-13; Oxford 1 0-13; Cambridge 1 0-13
So, our warm up matches were against these 3 teams that never truly let us into the other half of the pitch. Against Lincoln, they showed a good, clinical side when they came to the end-zone, but we managed to show some good continuation play, with a lack of effectiveness in their half of the pitch, but still felt unlucky not to score. Oxbridge firsts, however, had the athleticism to play man D very well and forced us into unfortunate errors towards our endzone, which they then very quickly converted.
Anglia Ruskin 4-4
WHAT A GAME!! This game had a bit of everything, and was the main factor in getting our 18th seeding after the group stage. After not being allowed to truly reach top gear against Cambridge, darkside had just come off after a close game with few subs, so were clearly tired!
Sensing that this game was ours for the taking, we scored our first point of the tournament to bring it back to 1-1, amid great celebration after working it well up the line. During the next point, one of the major talking points occurred, in which Dan ‘Adam Carver’ Rickers pulled off a great leaping grab whilst mid-stack, only for one of the opposition to fall to the ground. He seemed to be under the impression that Dan had intentionally hit him in the balls, and subsequently gave him a reasonable amount of abuse. The team did well to not sink to his level, although a spirit time out was called, with the player then ‘supposedly’ being injured. It was the spark that set off this game as a spectacle.
After a series of long points, in which good continuation play worked well for us. Our tight man D allowed us to dominate. We found ourselves in the commanding position, and saw Anglia Ruskin’s injury list growing. Whilst 4-2 up, however, they achieved a great final couple of points to close out for the draw; probably a fair result in the end. Well played Bears 3!
In the last game of the day, against a very energetic BUF side, we initially traded points, our huck and D against their 4-3 horizontal stack. It was a well-played game, with our continuation play improving still when trying to advance up the pitch, with a special mention to Maddie for her relentless effort in forcing the disc towards the endzone. Unfortunately our hard man D was not as effective as their quick breaks, and unfortunately, they forced us back to our own endzone a few too many times and forced turnovers, with the final score of 5-9 to BUF.
Cambridge 3 5-2
Our first victory in the tournament! This is the first time we that we had to contend with the wind and after the first few points which took a reasonable amount of time, including an amazing swing pass from Aron. We sorted out our O and provided some great continuation play, scoring freely right at the end of the game. Both teams unfortunately lost a couple of players to injury causing a drain on numbers and time, however our hard man D proved effective with few people getting free under alongside their unwillingness to throw long meant that we came out as victors in the end!
Nottingham Trent 0-13
When we were being briefed by Bears 2 in how to play against Trent, we were told to take Tom Barkley out of the game, and if we did that, we should have done well. Unfortunately, we had nobody with the defensive prowess of Hamza, so our attempts at man-marking him were futile. At a very quick half-time point, we decided to change strategy to an arrow-head zone, which worked well causing them problems, as they started making mistakes. We learnt a lot from this game, especially how to not lose the disc around the endzone (huck it away!). The second half took much longer to complete, and whilst we didn’t manage to make many chances at their endzone, our D improved dramatically, and we did well, finally being soft-capped at 13.
Fling 2 8-3
A great game from Bears 3, using our arrowhead that we had practised against Trent to great effect, finding our best positions within the formation, we improved rapidly in this game. On O, our passes connected, and we sprinted hard on our cuts making the most of our extra players. We were clinical towards the endzone, and cleared our lines effectively when near the endzone, thanks to Aron finally getting used to hucking in the wind. We were ruthless on the counter-attack and caused them a lot of trouble as they struggled to connect their swing passes.
This was a great display from all involved and led perfectly to our final match, a re-match against BUF…
Amazing game from all involved, digging deep after a great day of Frisbee we had to get into our last reserves to produce an amazing performance.
The wind had a big part to play in this game, with the up wind points proving to be the really defining moments of this game. On O, we once again relied on our huck, and produced some amazing endzone play. At one point, BUF tried to enforce a junk zone on us, but our cutters crashing made holes in their cup, allowing for effective hucks. D caused them no end of troubles, and their unwillingness to throw deep, even when playing down-wind, only made it easier for us. Restricting their options up the line, we forced them to make mistakes on the swing, allowing for quick counters, setting up some great endzone play, culminating with a final point in which Jamie Barr got free in the endzone after a quick counter, sealing 17th place overall!
- A big shout out to our MVP of the final, Aron Lim, and our MIP of the tournament, Laurence ‘Florence’ Barton, and a big thank you to all involved in Bears 3 for helping in one of the most enjoyable experiences of my fledgling Frisbee career, and helped me to learn so much about the sport that is Ultimate.