Sunday, September 16

Sectionals, Day 2 (aka NOT THE TURF MONSTER!)

Day two started much earlier than Day 1.

Jamie his lady friend and I all left PA at about 6:30am. He assured me that this would be enough time to get to the fields and warm up at 8am. Didn't happen. We got therei at about 8:15. fortunately, no one else was warming up. We got our cleats on and got prepared for our first game against Roots of Rhythm.

Roots of Rhythm, 13-6?
I don't know the final score, but we started this game off with a hiccup rather than a bang. Our 2nd throw was a turnover (YAY O-Team!) about 15 yards out of the endzone. Roots converted to go up 1. We then scored on O and broke twice to go up 3-1. Never looked back. I got a half-D in one of these points and threw a goal or two. This game reminded me of how the biggest difference between levels of play is the quality of the mark. Bad marks mean bad defense. No matter the force or what you're trying to take away, if the marker is a non-factor, the team will fail. I don't remember much else, but this game was ours.

We watched the end of the other semi, in which Burgh lost to OLD SAG (whose name, One Last Ditch Shot at Glory, has really gone on too long. Great name, but "LAST?" They've been around for a bit too long for that modifier) on double game point. The last goal was scored as Tom Maroon went up to make a huge sky for the goal, tipped the disc, and then his brother, Billy, who had followed the play made the layout grab for a goal. Fantastic. Quite the, uh, stationary crap-simulating spike afterward as well.

We then had a bye. This meant that it was time to get breakfast because Jamie's timing for our drive in the morning was a bit off and we didn't get anything on the way. Dono and I got to a deli and ordered breakfast sandwiches. These were good and all, but the coup de grĂ¢ce was as I got my coffee, I realized that I could get a Choco Taco for breakfast. You can't go wrong there-- Choco Taco plus coffee equals happiness.

As we returned to the fields, the conversation about bacon making everything better was rehashed. As it so happened, Dono didn't want his whole sandwich, which was a bacon egg and cheese. Jamie the vegetarian said he wanted it without the bacon. I leapt at the opportunity for bacon. I was then told that I could only have it if I ate it with the Choco Taco. I was sold in an instant. I opened the packaging and laid the bacon on the first bite. As I chowed down, I was sure to chew completely and take in the full flavor of this complex treat. Good texture variance. Good balance of salt plus sweet. Meaty aftertaste. In short, phenomenal. I would eat it again. right now.

vs Old Sag, 13-11
We broke early and got complacent. I hate playing masters teams. They throw all of their throws near-perfectly, which causes me to near-miss about 4 Ds in this one. What a waste of energy. One of their players was just as surprised as I was to find that the game was close as he said "Even in the first half when we were down by one, it felt like we were down by 4 or 5." I guess. It was a bit anti-climactic to win the Section playing poorly in the last game, but it still counts as a W, and was much better than some of Pike's previous foibles at sectionals, including a loss to Run in 2003 and a double-game point victory over Burgh last year. At some point in this game, I was guarding a dump, and shuffling my feet really well. As I went to plant and change direction, I realized that I was planting on thin air. Just afterward, my locked knee hit the ground. Why? Big fucking hole. I hate crappy fields. I took an injury as I felt the inside of my knee (top of the shin-bone and bottom of the thigh-bone) sort of bang together. As Raph said "Like jamming your finger, but with your knee." I was pretty sure I would be just fine, but I stayed off for a little bit and checked out the structural integrity. No problems, just sore. Got back in the game and felt fine. I bet it'll be sore tomorrow though. I hate the turf monster. But not as much as Wendell Davis.

Feeling good this weekend, if not entirely mentally there. Sectionals is tough mentally. Pulls were good, none OB. Most, if not all, were 5 yards in front of the endzone or deeper. Some were, frankly, beautiful. Some were a bit low. Some didn't go quite where I wanted them to, directionally, for the D we were running, but they were all acceptable. Throws were good, defense was, well, I got Ds, but they were easy. Offense was good, but I made one or two dumb errors because I just wanted the point to be over already. Ah well. Practice next weekend will be solid, which leaves just...

*two* weeks until I find out if my preparation and obsession pays of in 07. I'm really excited. It's gonna be a blast, and I know I'll be prepared like no other for the challenges ahead.
Workout Total:
2 games of ultimate

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