Carleton v. UNC-Wilmington
Carleton College against UNC-Wilmington was one of the most anticipated quarterfinal matchups this morning, and from the start it was a highly contested game. Starting on offense, CUT would show quickly that no matter who was covering Simon Montague or Justin Norden, not much could be done to slow down the machine. At first, it was Alan Gruntz covering Montague, but soon after Tommy Lamar (for Norden) and Robert Goode (for Simon) were brought on for help. Still, going into halftime Carleton was up with an 8 to 7 lead. The physical play of the Seamen wasn’t as out in full-force this game, or at least as much as was expected. That didn’t seem to be the problem defensively, it was simply that Carleton was very patient with the disc and weren’t taking any risky chances
Defensively, CUT was held back by the UNC-W offense for the first half of the game. This is when we saw players like Goode and Lamar go to work, and their entire offensive line. While CUT was able to get one break in the first half, but with UNC-W answering not too long after with a break of their own it didn’t mean much. It was the second half that we saw players like Julian Childs-Walker, a limited Nick Stuart, and Will Herold come up big for the CUT. Rattling off a few breaks, and establishing a solid lead, Carleton was able to ride that to the end even as UNC-W pressed on. Winning the game 15-12, Carleton moves on to face the Central Florida Dogs in the semi-finals, while Wilmington finishes off an impressive 2013 season.
Oregon Ego v. UC- Davis Dogs
Finding out that your team has to face Oregon Ego can be a daunting realization. Even at a fall tournament against their split squad, you go into the game simply hoping to put together a few nice points and show your rookies that Ultimate is fun, even when your team is getting torched (except for that one time… http://scores.usaultimate.org/
However, knowing this game was in their near future did not scare the UC Davis Dogs in the least. Having come off of a huge upset over the local favorite Wisconsin Hodags in the pre-quarters, the Dogs knew they could compete with any team at this tournament. Out of the gate they hit the ground running and picked up an early break to take the lead 1-0. From here, most of their D-points were spent in a zone, using a 3-man cup that forced the Oregon to move the disc back-and-forth across the field in a steady cross-field wind. The wind was constant but not strong enough to prevent Ego’s deep roster from dumping and swinging.
Each team was playing very possession oriented ultimate and threw few turnovers until the score was knotted up at 6 a piece and #10 Dylan Freechild took the reigns. Freechild provided a massive layout D on his fellow All-American, #12 Elijah Kerns, before dishing the disc to #2 Charlie Wilson-Moses for the break, putting the game back on serve. Oregon would break once more to take half 8-6
Having some wind knocked out by the back-to-back breaks, the Dogs never seemed to get their feet back under them. Their hucks floated out of reach of their deep cutters and Oregon ramped up the defensive pressure, earning more possessions following a few remarkable layout blocks by #59 Topher Davis. Ego ran away with the second half and put an end to Davis’ weekend, final score 15-9. Oregon will play against Pitt in the first of two Open Semifinals tonight at 5:30pm.
Dartmouth Pain Train vs. UCF Dogs of War
Sneaking into the quarters by upsetting Texas Tuff, Dartmouth was the clear underdog against a UCF team that came out strong enough this weekend to win their pool. In spite of this, Dartmouth came out strong in the first half. The first point of the game saw UCF pulling way out of bounds, starting the Pain Train off with an extremely short field for the easy score. This proved to be a chronic problem for UCF, one that Pain Train took full advantage of. An early D by Dartmouth senior CecilQiu allowed them to score the first break of the game, and they continued to roll, taking leading by as much as four before taking half 8-6. Grad student Ian Engler and senior DanielRosengard played big for Pain Train all game, anchoring a patient offense that was able to find holes in UCF’s zone.
Pain Train’s unexpected run came to a halt in the second half however, as the taller and more athletic Dogs of War fell back on their deep game to jump-start their offense. Though Dartmouth came out with another break to open the half, UCF took advantage of Dartmouth turns by almost immediatelyhucking downfield, hitting 6’ 2” junior Jeremy Langdon a number of times and rolling to their first lead at 10-9. Pain Train had no answer for the Dogs of War’s deep shots, and though they fought hard and tied the game a few times they never regained the lead. With the game tied at 12, and soft cap on to make a game to 14, UCF played with a patience they hadn’t exhibited earlier to work the disc down the field for the score. In game point, Langdon came out big for UCF once again, getting a monster layout that gave UCF the disc back and allowed them to huck to the goaline. When an offensive foul was overturned by the observer, UCF was able to take an easy shot at an unmarked cutter for the win.
Final score: UCF 14, Dartmouth 12.
UNC Darkside v. Pitt En Sabah Nur
The road for the UNC Darkside in this tournament has been exceedingly rough. An early loss in pool play meant they faced a polished Pitt team in the quarterfinals after dispatching a speedy Harvard team the round before. The toll of the up-and-down tournament showed early for UNC, and the Darkside could only manage to stay with Pitt as far as 1-1 before Pitt went on a three point run. Typical names, Saul, Degirolamo, Thorne, all were methodical and precise from the first point, so not surprisingly Pitt had a Thorne-Thorne connection to take half, 8-5.
The second half showed more of the same from the Pitt stars. After two quick breaks to go up 10-5, En Sabah Nur cruised to a decisive 15-9 win. They will take on first overall seed Oregon in what should be the game of the day in the Open semifinals.