By Kat Smith
Saturday consisted of 4 pool games.
The first was against Cardiff. We had already played this team at the Regionals so we knew what to expect. We shut down their offence plays straight away and converted the turnovers into scores. This was a very successful first game and we won 9-1.
Our next game was against Newcastle. Prior to the game, we knew this would be much tougher. However it was very close and we traded for the first 6 points. Everyone really stepped up their game for the second half of this game and we played some great defence resulting in an exciting 8-4 win.
Next we played St. Andrews in our toughest pool game. Again, we played very well especially since they were a very well drilled and experienced team. An excellent D at the end meant we finished the game 6-6 which was a very good result. With this result, St Andrews had the same results in the pool game as us and so the winner of the pool would be decided on points difference.
Our last game of the day was against Kent. Unfortunately this wasn’t our best game. They played an aggressive zone against us, which we had trouble working against and went 2-0 down. We did manage to pull it back at the end, though, to win 5-3. Unfortunately this meant that St Andrews took the top pool spot and we took 2nd place. This meant that we would have a cross over the next morning.
Overall, we made a very good start to the tournament and ended Saturday seeded 5th, thus putting us in a good position ahead of Sunday’s games.
Sunday morning began with a cross over with the 12th seed. Winning this would mean we were guaranteed a top 8 finish, so we knew it was a big game. We traded for the first couple of points and then scored a big break point taking us into the lead. This game was very tough but everyone ran hard and played some brilliant defence. We battled through and won 5-3.
Then we played in the quarter final against Dundee who, like all of the Scottish teams in the competition, were very strong. We started well but they took an early lead. The points in this game were long and hard fought by both teams.
We worked very well against their zone, keeping very calm on disc. Dundee called a tactical time-out with 3:49 left on the clock, as they were 5-2 up. We decided that to stand a chance at winning this game we would have to start playing our long game, to try and score points in quick succession. This worked and we pulled it back to 5-4 within the next 2 minutes. With 1 minute left on the clock we were starting the point on defence.
We pulled out all the stops in this point and turned them over. We knew we didn’t have much time left so we got the disc moving as quickly as possible and managed to score with 10 seconds left. The buzzer for the end of the game went, and the score was 5-5.
This meant it was now sudden death, so the next team to score would win the game. We had a disadvantage as we were starting on D. The people who were playing this point gave it their absolute all. We played some unbelievable defence and caused them to turnover. We now had possession of the disc so we just needed to keep it and score. This was easier said than done as they played 4 on line against us (a zone protecting the endzone which makes it very difficult to score).
We were extremely patient and calm and worked the disc round until a space in the endzone appeared and we scored! We played a fantastic game and the determination of everyone on our team helped to pull it back. After our win we were guaranteed a top 4 finish, which was absolutely fantastic.
Our next game was the semi-final against Edinburgh. They were the defending champions and were generally a good team made up of mostly postgraduates who had been playing for years! Unfortunately we lost this game but it was a great game and everyone played really well. We didn’t give up or let our heads get down.
Our final game of the day was the 3rd-4th place playoff against York who again were a very experienced team. They went up by a few points and although we made a come back towards the end we sadly lost this game 7-6.
Overall, we had a brilliant weekend. We’ve gone from failing to qualify for nationals last year to coming 4th this year, which is an excellent achievement. Everybody put their all into every game and I could not be more proud of the team!