The One Seed on Tape

by | May 19, 2011, 8:10pm 0

After the Florida post, commenter Tyler was kind enough to hook it up with some footage of Pittsburgh‘s final against Penn State at Ohio Valley Regionals. It’s in two parts, so I’ll put one here at the top and the other at the bottom of the post.


Pitt controlled the game throughout.

  • First half: ???, Pittsburgh 3- Penn State 1, 3-2, 4-2, 5-2 (Pitt breaks), 6-2 (Pitt breaks), 6-3, 7-3, 7-4, Pitt 8- Penn State 4
  • Second half: Pittsburgh 9- Penn State 4, 10-4 (Pitt breaks), 10-5, weird score repeat on the video, 11-5 (Pitt breaks), 12-5 (Pitt breaks), 12-6, 13-6, 14-7, 14-8, Pitt 15- Penn State 8

Pitt does a great job of moving the disc up front.

  • The first thing that stands out about Pitt’s offense is how well the disc moves laterally across the field. Check out the 1:10 mark in the first video for the best example: Tyler Degirolamo doesn’t see anything open in front of him, and instead of waiting to see if that changes, he quickly dumps the disc with an around flick. From there, it’s boom-boom-boom to the break side, the result of which is Alex Thorne essentially throwing a force side throw to an open man on the break side.
  • This continues throughout the video, and it shows in Pitt’s strong preference of the around rather than the inside break.

The rest of their offense is pretty basic.

  • I’ve seen Pitt play this at Easterns, at a round robin Truck Stop tryout two weeks ago, and on this video. To be honest, I still can’t identify an offense aside from “run around and try to get open.” This really stands out to me in the 11-5 point that starts at 2:15 in the second video, but at other times, especially when they go vertical on the endzone line, the space in front of the handler is very crowded.
  • This isn’t a huge problem because they’ve got the handlers to keep the disc alive when things get jumbled and their cutters know that it’s important to move the disc quickly if they do get it. Basically, Pitt is a team full of players that are good at running fast, catching, and throwing. Teams who are good at those things well tend to win games.
  • Pitt loves to fast break, and very rarely do you see the disc spend much time on the ground after they force a turn. It works particularly well for them because, once again, they know how to move the disc side-to-side rather than only forward, giving them more angles for attack.

The marks aren’t great.

  • In general, Pitt’s marks are very jumpy. You see a lot of guys shading really far into the inside lane and lunging for handblocks, which leaves a lot of room for around breaks.
  • One big exception to this is when Julian Hausman, #7, is on the mark. He’s big, and it’s hard to get breaks off against him, especially when the thrower is on the sideline.
  • When Penn State moves the disc quickly and takes advantage of chances to break, their offense moves well. When they hold it, Pitt does a good job of clamping down on the force side and leaving the thrower with few options.

Other thoughts.

  • Degirolamo has made a name for himself as a deep threat, but you see him catching the disc underneath quite a bit for Pitt’s offense. I think he does a good job of taking advantage of the fact that teams back him.
  • When Degirolamo does go deep, he is often his with the infamous same-third huck (want another example?). It helps to have Chris Brenenborg, Isaac Saul, and Thorne as your offensive handlers: all three played Junior Worlds, and Saul and Thorne grew up throwing discs.
  • Geoff Zettel, the cutter wearing the #23 Pitt basketball jersey, is underrated.
  • When I’m focusing on watching a particular team, I need to do a better job of focusing on how the other team gets its goals and turns. Rusty, if you’re reading, I’m working on it…

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