Sandblast finals Sunday
The clouds came in the afternoon today making for a temperate finals with a touch of wind. Great weather for watching.
As expected, top seed Team USA was in the finals with their deep bench and bounty of speed. They matched up against Drazba XX, presumably a team going back to the Southern Illinois days or at least named in homage to the SIU captain killed in a car crash in 1985.
Now a Chicago-based core who has played together for more than ten years, Drazba added Ron Kubulanza and Alicia White to the mix, formidable pickups for any team. The combination proved effective as Drazba took half 8-7.
Team USA finally reeled in Drazba by converting giveaways and looked to close it out at 14-11 before Chicago rebounded with two straight to make it 14-13. Finally a Jared Inselmann forehand down the line to a streaking Brett Matzuka provided the win for the Beach Worlds team.
In semis, it was Drazba over Team USA2, aka the Masters team, 15-12. A sloppy game for the most part on both sides but Drazba proved more up to the task, completing the big plays and buckling down when needed. It ended a nice run for us (Team USA 2), playing together for the first time and initially seeded 11th.
In the other semi Team USA defeated Red Stripe. Red Stripe then removed their Speedos, donned velour tracksuits, set up the loudspeaker, and live commentated/heckled the finals entirely in Italian. To understand more, you have to see the DVD.
Beachface, the ND alumni team always sporting the camouflage, took the betty pool with three straight in the morning to win out for 9th and an overall 6-1 record.
In the Skyd writers versus Skyd writers II (who knew so many Chicagoans?), Team USA 2 defeated Randy Graves and the Kansas-Deerfield combo team Beach for America in quarters. This was the game I learned the bro-smash and hope to employ it as a psych-up tool at the next tournament.
As usual tournament director Twirly provided plenty of giveaways for everyone. Spirit winners Drunkards and Dragons received some nice schwag, the tournament champions on Team USA got shirts and a free bid for next year (!?) and everyone got plenty of drinks from Fuze, 5 Hr. Energy and Cruzan Rum at the Saturday night party.
No, actually, no one paid me to write that. I just thought it would be nice if I did.