The two weeks leading up to ECC were pretty crazy. Emily was away in Magnetewan, Ontario with childhood friends and it was my last week of work, so, i pretty much lived at the office that week.
I packed, painted, took doors off hinges, pulleyed couches down from the 3rd floor porch, put doors back on, recycled computers, etc from sunday to monday night. 3rd floor moving sucks. tuesday-wednesday traveling from boston to philly, then philly to pittsboro, nc. thursday the truck came, i unpacked everything just in time to get a ride to the airport.
all in all, i had 1 day of throwing in 2 weeks, not good.
on friday we played johnny bravo, kie, and sockeye.
johnny bravo has had a bunch of roster changes, but for the most part, their handlers are the same. they struggled against our zone looks and they also gave up the disc on hucks. we played pretty sloppy but won.
kie was short, fast, and chippy. they hucked i think 0 times on us, but they consistently managed to get the unders. they struggled with zone and we played it a lot and worked on having different personnel learn our different zones.
we then played sockeye which would have been an "under the lights" game for us since it was 9:30 or so start time boston time. i think we went down a break the first half. they did what they historically do to us which is front our players, especially our handlers, and force us deep. this year we have a more consistent deep game, plus jeff isn't as injured as he was all last season.
on defense tim gehret (sp?) was tearing us up. he gives and goes very well. and their cutters were non-stop in and out ho machines as usual. in the end, it was all about the fact that sockeye coughed up the disc more than us.
from a me perspective, i didn't feel up to speed until the sockeye game and my legs on the mark were still kind of dead. too much travel and heavy lifting for me.
after that, we went to a nice, completely empty family-run italian restaurant and made some owners evening.
Saturday: we played ring, furious george, and jam. ring came out on fire and played an interesting cup in the front, man in the back zone against the ho stack transition as well as their typical poachy, force-middle defense, and it got them up 3-0. our own d line got 0 turns in the first half, which i did not help our cause with two turns during the same D point. i had little confidence in my throws all weekend and i was having a lot of trouble on my forehands as my shoulder was sadly really, really stiff from me being so weak and carrying heavy stuff all week before.
ring was also dropping hammers all over the place in the first half. 30-55 yard hammers to cutters in stride. sometimes there is little you can do but tip your hat when people are that on (and then force backhand).
the second half, ring's O just started to hiccup and there was a dropped pull, at least two drops with their men hearing footsteps, and a couple huck turnovers. our o line remembered that it is stingy and stopped turning it over.
I had never beaten furious before this weekend. they had smashed metal in the past at nationals, and i was interested to see how furious would look like this year. the take away message in playing them is that oscar guy can bomb bendy flick hucks down the sideline to really tall receivers.
I think we went down by 4 in that game, but the difference was that we got breaks in the first half. towards the end of the second half, we were in the drivers seat again.
jam had about 15 dudes, so it was a little frustrating only getting 3 or so breaks on them. they are all pretty talented and don't turn the disc over if they don't have to. they are still the best team at dump swinging and attacking the underbelly of defenses that we played all weekend.
on a me perspective: this day was my worst day, my legs were slow, and my forehand was crazy.
paul, will, chicken, seth, and i went to the river and sat in it for an ice bath. it was awesome.
sunday morning we played goat. i like playing them because they have pretty talented and fun handlers to cover. we played a lot of transition, and other stuff to get hassel and big andy out of their normal rhythm. there was a little bumping and things got heated in the first point of the game, but cooler heads prevailed and we played well and nicely after that.
after goat, we played chain. they had maybe 15 people like jam, but they were clicking and absolutely crushed ring in the game before. they gave us a game, but eventually our legs wore them down and we did a good job of containing their stars (dylan wasn't there.... i have yet to beat chain when dylan and jason simpson both are uninjured. hopefully we will get our shot at chesapeake).
chain is going to be really strong this season. they are filled with great athletes who also happen to be great throwers. it seems like every good cutter they have could be a handler as well.
the next game was revolver. they are pretty stingy with the disc like we are, but run through their cutters. their handlers pretty much get the disc started and then occassionally go for deep strikes. it seemed like in the slight amount of wind, that was a better strategy.
we blew a goalline d break, but all in all, we did not play very well. it was windy enough that there was a noticeably easier side to score from, and because of the break, our D line spent a lot of time going upwind which meant i would see less pt since i am not what you would call an upwind thrower (stupid bird arms).
i did not play very well this game. my legs started to go and i made an abysmal dump cut being the third option for a trapped thrower and got absolutely blown up by the second dumps man. my fault. that could have been the game right there. goes to show games are one and lost on simple things like dumps. we also seemed very disjointed on offense, often looking off swing passes to hold the disc to look for the huck. this let the dump defenders set up properly and made completing dumps harder for us than with most teams.
i was really impressed with revolvers D. Their handler D worked our handlers pretty well, and they did a good job on our cutters. I can't wait for the rematch, and i hope they bring close to a full squad to chesapeake.
that is pretty much all i know. i have been using my time off to get in shape (bike riding, running, sweating in the sweltering carolina sun), and I am going to try to throw around at least 3 times a week outside of practice.
chesapeake looks fun, except for the super late showcase game. i think if it goes to seed it will be against goat and i love playing those guys, so it should be fun.