Big Ego Ultimate/DoG plays its first tournament since June this weekend, entering Sectionals as the #4 seed. We open with a pivotal game against the Gunslingers, who we beat by 1 at Boston Invite, and close with Red Tide, playing a couple college teams in between, then the usual format machinations on Sunday to guarantee that if the 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 5th best teams are in one pool and all teams play consistently, the game to determine the antepenultimate spot to Regionals is fair, or something like that.
Ok, I was kidding. They don't care about the antepenultimate spot.
We're in the Score Reporter as Big Ego, but I submitted our roster as simply "DoG", although whether it stands for "Death or Glory" or "Delusions of Grandeur" has yet to be determined. As usual, our shirts our nowhere to be seen. During our heyday, I don't ever remember having team shirts at Regionals (other than the year where we didn't get new shirts and just used the ones from the year before), and at least once they showed up at Nationals (and one year at Worlds, they didn't even show up, and we played with only a light shirt). Now, we need freakin' numbers on the shorts. Is there a chance this rule is going to be revoked? Anyway, we gotta get working on that.
So how does the team look? It's hard to say. We'll have something like 20 of our 30+ at the tournament, I think, although not everyone has bothered responding to the poll. We've averaged about 10-12 of us (plus some outsiders sometimes) at the four practices we've had the last three weekends. Since we've had so few and needed to play so much, we haven't really talked a lot about what our strategy is. We will probably use our bye this weekend to do some walkthroughs and even chalktalk about things like defense against the ho stack.
We will treat this weekend as a learning experience, and also a bit of a reunion. It will be less about subbing to win than about getting familiar with each other and having some good times (although the prohibition against alcohol will inhibit that).
If we keep winning (or if we finish 2nd on Saturday), we'll get to play Boston Ultimate. Perhaps we'll ask them to play zone D in order for them to practice and us to score. Or maybe we'll just pull off the Best Win Ever and take them down.
The Masters race is wide open in the Northeast this year. There are three teams competing for two spots (plus two other teams, as well as five Grand Masters teams), and it's anyone's guess who will make it. Two Canadian Masters teams which finished 1 and 2 at their Nationals (one of which won NE Regionals last year) combined, but apparently they will be bringing a reduced team to Regionals because of Canadian Thanksgiving. Above & Beyond has made Nats three years running, losing in semis last year and finals in 2005 (although we did steal Mooney back from them). We beat A&B twice this year at Masters Easterns, but that was early June. A&B lost to Wesleyan (!) at Sectionals last weekend, but they probably had only half of their players. Of course we think that we're the best team (hence the name Big Ego Ultimate (hmm, Delusions of Grandeur also applies)), but we also know it's up for grabs.
We are also going to Clambake. I think this is only the 2nd time I've played there, and I'm really looking forward to it. From what I remember and all I hear, they throw a really good event (it's a Clambake theme). It's a bit of a shame this year that it falls on the only weekend between Sectionals and Regionals, or else it might attract more top teams from the area, but it has in the past and there is no reason that it can't again with a little bit of effort (vintage DoG went once, recent DoG went once). Great chance to bond as a team. More to come about this when it's time.
Workout this week: played basketball Monday night. I avoided covering that one guy who cheats most of the night, but in the last game he matched up against me, then did a couple pushoffs, so I worked him hard and didn't let him get away with his lowering the shoulder or hand to the stomach when cutting. I'm sure we'll match up again. It's kinda fun in a way, and as I get better from playing, I'm sure I'll own him, but I could also just blow my top. We'll see.