Written by Leia Turner (women’s captain 2016-17), which captained Bears 1 at UXIR 2016.
Bears 1 [13 – 0] Cardiff 3
Our first game of the tournament was against Cardiff 3, who were a very freshery team. We wanted to use this game to get our heads into the tournament and to work on our team chemistry. We initially started playing 2-1-2, and after a shaky hammer from me our offence worked fine. On defence we played both man D and some FSU to practice both.
Bears 1 [10-8] Coventry 1
This game was a lot closer than any of us intended it to be. There has always been friendly rivalry between Warwick and Coventry, and we could tell that they really wanted to win this game. Our defence was a bit lacking, and we didn’t pressure their deep throws nearly enough. This meant we got scored on several times with some pin-point, pitch-length hammers. Despite the close score throughout the match, we didn’t let our heads get down, and our offence remained strong against their zone. All in all, it was a fun challenging match.
Bears 1 [12-1] Keele 2
I didn’t play much in this game due to my injured leg, but it was great credit to the other girls on the team for playing most of the points with just 3 girls! I think our defence improved in this game compared to the previous game. I’m not sure what else there is to say..
Bears 1 [10-5] UBU 2
UBU 2 were seeded second highest in our pool, so we were expecting this to be the toughest game of the day. The game felt really close, and had really high intensity with both teams pressuring the other. It felt like we were trading throughout that game, so I was actually quite surprised with the result. UBU 2 were the only team that played three girls against us, which I always enjoy, as it’s no fun if a team just run their offence through their boys. It was a really fun, well-spirited game to end the Saturday.
Bears 1 [9-4] Bears 2
With both bears teams topping their respective pools on the Saturday, this was the big 2v3 semi final that would decide the best bears team. I think there was a lot of excitement and anticipation going into this match, but it was highly spirited by both teams despite the friendly rivalry. Bears 2 used their advantage of having 5 girls on the team, to play 3 girls against us a lot of the time. Both teams knew what the other was going to do, so in the end it came down to the fact that Bears 1 were slightly more clinical. But it was hard-fought, enjoyable game 🙂
Bears 1 [6-7] UBU 1
This was the big 1v2 final of the day. There wasn’t a game on the other pitch, so that everyone could watch the final. Bears 1 started on offence, and we ran our 2-1-2 which worked effectively to put the point in quickly. Equally UBU’s offence was very clinical; we managed to turn them in a later point but didn’t capitalise on this get the break before they turned us back over and scored the point. UBU did really well at adjusting their defence to try and slow our offence down, firstly by marking our first look at Joe as the iso, and then making it very hard for me to get free up the line. In hindsight I think I should have taken a break from being with the 2-1 handler weave, and stood in the endzone, since my injured leg was slowing me down. UBU managed to get turn us over and get the break, and then we were trading from behind. So in the end we lost by one point, but it we didn’t make it easy for them, and it was definitely one of the most enjoyable games of the tournament.
Bears 1 [12-3] Cardiff 1
Bears 2 had already played Cardiff 1 in the 3v4 before the final. So we talked to them bit about how to slow them down on offence. We wanted to bring our high intensity from the final against UBU into this game, so we started the game with lots of energy. Cardiff, on the other hand, had a slightly slower start, and were perhaps not expecting us to quite as much energy as we did. On defence we would sometimes be able to turn Cardiff over, and then we used our quick turns to put points in quickly before they had a chance to set their D up. It was a well-spirited match, and a good final win to end the tournament on.