Thursday, November 19, 2009
Im really sorry to our alums that nothing was ever written about our first national's appearance in 3 years. I certainly would like to write about what happened in each of our games but Jacob from CSULB came to Ohio and graciously video taped most of our games. He did really good work, so here it is. This is more of a summary than I could ever write:
Game 1 Standford 12-15L
Game 2 Michigan , pt.2 10-15L
Game 3 Minnesota , pt.2 13-14L
Game 4 UVA, pt.2 12-15:
Game 5: Georga 15-11W!
Game 6: Luther - no video 12-14L
Game 7: NC State (SCHWAAAAAAAAANNNN!!!) - no video 15-13W!
Check out Amy "Meeko" Chang's photos of the Squid's (and some others) games
Full UPA score reporter on the tournament. (Notice that pool D was the toughest: D had the fewest single didget losses, two of them being 15-9, and we put 3 teams in the quarters) Each game was very tight and each opponent gave us a really tough game. Each loss felt very very winable.
Once again, big props to Jacob Baumer of Longbeach for the videos and Meeko for the photos.
Other fans that made the trek include: Nami, Wormser, Kubiak, and Soda's parents (and their cowbell). Thank you very much to them.
In the first game against Chico the Squids came out ready to play and were led by captain Guy Hughes and graduate student Brooks Taylor. Both were confident with the disc and made it their responsibility to dictate the play on the field. In his first game ever, rookie Shreyes Boddu came up with a huge defensive play in a tight spot. The Chico “Hops” showed though that their program has improved over recenet years and gave the Squids a late scare. Fortunately, the Squids snuck out with a 13-11 win.
Next up was Humboldt St. and the game started off with Humboldt taking control. Their zone gave some of the most experienced (however rusty from the offseason) throwers some headaches, but once the Squids were able to figure it out, they surged back. Thanks to multiple scores from senior leader Josh Nickerson and rookie Sean O’Donnell stepping up, the Squids were able to squeak out another close win, 11-10.
The final game of the day was against the No. 2 overall seed, host team UC Santa Cruz. The winner would win our pool and although there was a lot of fire for the first part of the game, the Squids were not able to overcome a plethora of mistakes from veteran players. The lack of early season conditioning was also apparent and despite big defensive play from rookies Aaron Lee and Albert Lee, the Slugs from Santa Cruz were able to capitalize on more turnovers than the Squids and won decisively 13-7.
Finishing 2nd in their Saturday pool, the Airsquids were matched up against northwest powerhouse Stanford for their quarterfinals game on Sunday. Having only beat Stanford once in Squid history, the team came out fired up. With a few veteran D’s coming from grad student Patrick Metz, UCSD easily went up 7-5 at the end of the first half. Stanford’s disciplined offense and a few Airsquids mistakes let them come back in the second half to tie it up at 12-12. However, UCSD would not settle for a loss, and after a savage defensive stand, Josh Nickerson caught the final goal with a grab over 2 Stanford players, Airsquid victory 13-12.
For the semifinal game, UCSD played against southwest regional rival, the Claremont Braineaters. With the wind picking up, both teams started the game easily trading points. Claremont rapidly moved the disc up the field with short quick passes while the squids lengthened the field, with Stephen Hubbard throwing deep bombs to the big receivers. Once again, the squids found themselves playing a close game, down 11-10 with only 5 minutes to go. And once again, UCSD proved that they wanted it more, quickly tying the game up 11-11 and pulling to the Braineaters. Claremont crumbled under the defensive pressure, missing a pass at half field. The Airsquids capitalized, securing a place in the finals with a 12-11 win.
The final game gave the Airsquids a second chance against UC Santa Cruz. This time, the squids came out swinging. With solid offense by Sophomore Murphy Hitchcock and Nicholas Miller, UCSD kept pace with Santa Cruz, trailing by only one point at halftime. Unfortunately, the UCSC defense proved too much in the second half, and with energy flagging, the Squids offense made a few mistakes that cost them. Unable to make a comeback, the game was ended 12-8 UCSC. Even with this loss, the UCSD Airsquids placed 2nd overall in the tournament, proving that they are a team to be reckoned with for the coming season.
Sunday, May 3, 2009
UC San Diego
UC Santa Barbara
Wednesday, April 29, 2009
UCSD Ultimate traveled to Denver this past weekend to compete at Southwest Regional Tournament and, ultimately, for one of 3 bids to Nationals. All year the team worked toward this tournament – this Regionals was the most important tournament of evey team members’ Ultimate careers.
The Squids go into the weekend with the major advantage of good seed because of their dominant performance at Southern California Sectionals two weeks previous. Saturday’s first game at 9:00am featured biting cold not seen all year in San Diego – I’ve gone skiing in warmer weather. Thanks to a quality warm-up directed by Coach Kevin Stuart and the luxury of our first game being against a less skilled team, the Squids were able to raise their level gradually through the day.
Air Force had many athletic players which allowed them to play tight defense on our cutters but we were able to work the disc, albeit with some difficulty. The cold really was an issue and while we made some conditions related turnovers, they seemed to have the same amount or more despite the fact they are used to playing in such conditions (they are located in Colorado Springs). Our D runs away with this one, 15-6.
Everyone agrees that we must raise our level against the next team which we know little about. Colorado College was vastly under seeded due to a fluke underperformance at their Sectionals tournament which was apparently played in a blizzard. They give us a great game but we always seem to be in control. While the wind and cold were still a factor, our throwers such as Brooks "Cork" LaComte, Mark "Dibs" Johnston, and Stephen "Pumba" Hubbard chose their risks wisely with calculated attention to how the particular wind direction would affect the disc. Colorado’s out-of-bounds pulls were a great help to our offense and served as a reminder for the importance of working to keep our own pulls in bounds. Final score: UCSD wins 14-10.
The last game of pool play was against Azusa Pacific who were shaping up to be the Cinderella team of the tournament. It was not to be against the Squids however as we jumped out to an early lead with pretty looking throws to and from Dibs, Hyzer, Monstro and absolutely filthy D’s from Cork and Soda. Our D recognizes that they rely on their one superstar’s throws to score and effectively shut him down. Dibs finishes the game with a 70 yard backhand to a ridiculously open Soda after he breaks his defender’s ankles with sharp cutting. 15-3
Such a swift victory affords us the time to rest before the next game and watch the UCSB/Arizona battle who’s winner would be our next opponent. Arizona pulls out a difficult double game point win over UCSB and so are matched up with a rested Squid team to determine seeding in the elimination bracket.
This game verse Arizona may well be our best and most complete game this season. Although they are notorious for their great throws, our defense was forcing them to cough up the disc and was persistent in converting. It was plainly clear that they did not have the legs run with us when we were on O and had to resort to putting up prayers when they had it because their cutters could not get open. Additionally, and perhaps more importantly, different teams learn to play Zone O differently and one of our Zone D sets gave them absolute fits. We routinely backed them up into their own endzone with this containment zone with a turn coming eventually after their pass count skyrocketed. The marks in this zone, Didj, Bitusa, and Threeve seemed absolutely impenetrable and generated many of the turned in this setup including a crafty layout by Didj and a handblock by Bitusa. Junior Captain Bobble made sure to remind everyone that he has the biggest flick on the team with an utterly monster jack upwind to Kattan . Everyone seemed to doing the right things and we run away with it 15-8. This game is certainly a statement to many across the nation as Arizona is held to be a very good team after their Quarterfinals appearance at last year’s National Championship. Additionally, we proved to ourselves the value of our depth and stamina (which we must credit to all those lifting sessions and Monday night track practices.)
4-0 on the day makes you feel good and a buffet dinner afterwards makes you feel even better.
Our first matchup of Sunday was against cross-town rivals SDSU. Admittedly, we were looking past them and such a mental state is just asking for disaster. The game started well with us breaking them often – Monstro has an amazing reception for one of those breaks - we kept scoring and the mental energy settled and that’s when they pounced. Instead of breaking when down like other teams, SDSU forced 3 turns in 3 points and scored each possession. We took half ahead by one but we could have taken half with an impressive margin if not for our opponent’s surge. We obviously did not fix whatever problem we had over half. The O line continued to turn the disc verse their zone until we stopped playing around with the disc and went for the harder but rewarding throws – our own zone continued to be shredded. We received the disc at 12-12 with the soft cap about to go on – all we had to do was continue to score our O points and we would win. We couldn’t do that though and their Doffense had the quick strike to score the upwinder. 12-13, game to 15. Going up wind we seemed shaky at first, especially pushed into our own endzone, but the disc was moved passed most of their players with a good looking over-the-top throw from Bobble. Unfortunately though, we turned the disc on an in-cut reception. We prepare to play D and eventually force them into a floaty hospital pass into the endzone but they somehow come down with it.
Down 12-14, its time for the gloves to come off. We score our O point and then send out our stacked D line 13-14. Our sidelines are loud as our on field players desperately look for a turn. It came almost too easily as Cork smacks down a poach D after only a few throws and then breaks the mark to a blazing Biel for the conversion. 14-14. Pulling downwind on double game point, our D appears to be getting beaten. SDSU works the disc the entire length of the field but we are holding our ground at our endzone. A speeding pass goes up but is beyond their outstretched player and our fully laid-out defender, Hutch. SDSU doesn’t even have time to regret the chance they mucked up before our players get the disc gets moving and then Cork gets his missile lock set on his favorite receiver, Biel. The massive forehand huck is quickly heading OB but Biel shows why people can’t even pretend to guard him: our fastest player by far chases the pass down and makes the difficult catch at the last moment. Clutch. 15-14 Squids! The second amazing comeback in 2 weeks!
With intensity and energy the highest its ever been all year, I almost felt sorry for the next team in our path, UCSB. Almost.
UCSB is our most storied rival. The continual fight between the UCSD Air Squids and the UCSB Black Tide has been raging for as long as we have had a program and we have only recently begun to assert our dominance against what is the winningist team in all of college Ultimate history. Our teams’ 2 previous matches this year are split 1-1.
The wind maintained a 10-15 mph average with sporadic gusts for the entire Semifinal match and thus zone D was standard for both teams. Instead of being flustered by the zone as we were in the previous game however, we immediately go for the throat with blades, hammers and floaty hucks to our big guys for them to gobble up over their deep defenders. Yui starts the fun with a zippy backhand down wind which was the model for the rest of our shots. Kattan, Forge, Bobble and Hyzer are playing well down wind. Getting breaks upwind, however, was what won this game. Biel has some tricky grabs on messy upwind deep throws. Dibs has a long IO forehand break across the face of the endzone to end another up winder. We all were pretty sure the game was in the bag when Forge makes the most ridiculous grab I have ever seen for an upwind score, skying a 5 person pile including our own best receivers.
The Offesne receives the disc, going down wind, to finish the game. We start well but an up-the-line pass is a tad too far and Tide converts. There are a few jitters but shake it off and receive again. This time however, every pass is smooth, cutters are open, and the Squids will not be stopped. Our downfield moves the disc so well that the last throw from Bobbke to Biel is a easy, completely open forehand. THE SQUIDS ARE GOING TO NATIONALS!!!!
Pure elation. Cloud Nine. Indescribable.
Our goals for the season had been accomplished and we made a definite statement with the commanding 14-9 win over our long-time rival.
The final game against University of Colorado at Boulder was to determine the winner of the region but we were both guaranteed bids to Nationals. Right before the game started the wind picked up to 30mph and the Squids are just not trained to play in such conditions while Colorado practices in similar wind often. They could throw and catch, we couldn’t period. We really didn’t really do anything well in this game (although Hutch and Threeve played well) but such a whopping will certainly show us what we have to work on in the coming weeks to shore up our weaknesses.
We left Colorado cold, wet, and tired but it is going to be a few weeks before the unwavering smile fades from our faces. Perhaps the best part of going to Nationals is that it gives us another month to spend together. From here on out we can focus on getting better and having fun. And fundraising – tickets to Columbus are expensive.
Finally, I’d like to personally say that I have never been more proud of a group of teammates. I’ve never been more proud to be a part of any group in any setting – we all worked incredibly hard the entire season. Thank you Squids.
-Stephen “Pumba” Hubbard
Tuesday, April 14, 2009
This past weekend, the UCSD Air Squids, traveled an hour north to Long Beach to participate in SoCal Sectionals.
The Squids entered the tournament seeded 2nd out of 25 teams, so the competition on Saturday was pretty easy. We faced local rival USD first in moderate wind. USD had one player with nice hammers that shredded our zone in the first couple of points, but after a while we switched defenses and ran away with the game, winning 11-5.
Game two was against Redlands, a very young and inexperienced program. Our fish got a ton of playtime, and the D line led by Brooks "Cork" LeComte and Eric "Beil" Abhold held strong the whole game. We won 11-3.
Game three was against UCLA's B-team who are coached by ex-squid captian Brian "Millhouse" Chen. Again, our young D line was able to play almost the entire game as we won 11-2.
Game four promised to by our hardest game of the day, as we faced off against SDSU. These guys beat us last year at sectionals and we were not about to give up a loss this year. Our offense came out strong and we stacked both the O and D lines to start the game. Our hard pressure D and clean offense led us to an easy 11-5 victory.
Our last game of the day was supposed to be against Cal State Fullerton, but they decided to forfeit, so we got to go home early with an 11-0 victory.
Our strong performance put us in the Semi-final at 11am on Sunday. Both the semi and the final were games to 15. We faced UCLA, another team coached by an ex-squid, Jon "Yugo" Miles. UCLA came out fired up and put on a strong showing breaking us in the second point of the game for a 2-0 lead. They held that break and gained two more before half. We tried to regroup at halftime, but after halftime they put a little run together to go up 10-5 on us. We managed to trade some points but they held their own to get to 13-8.
Then the Squids found some magic. We started to string a series of scores together and finally stopped making the stupid mistakes that got us into the 5 point hole to begin with. We slowly crept closer to UCLA. At 14-12, we were 6 minutes from hard cap, so we knew we had to score quickly. By taking the underneath cuts that UCLA was giving our tall set of cutters, we quickly moved the disc down and scored in only a minute. Now we were within one point of tying them. With the score 14-13 UCLA, and the sidelines packed with both squad's B-teams plus a pack of cheerleading girls who had come down from LA, we pulled for what could be the last point of the game. The frisbee went up against a significant crosswind and then proceeded to blade back at a mild angle towards UCLA's handlers. One of their players went to catch it and... dropped the pull! We ran down and I picked up the disc and realized that my defender was forcing me the wrong way! An easy throw to Josh "Forge" Nickerson brought the score to 14-14 as hard cap went off. Double game point. Squids pulling to UCLA for a spot in the Sectional finals versus UCSB. Our most experienced players filled the line, and prepared to pull for what would be the last point of the game. UCLA caught the pull this time, but the Squid line covered well and immediately put pressure on the worn down UCLA line. After several swing throws among their handlers in the backfield they dropped a pass and we had a chance to end the game. Once again, we would not waste a prime opportunity. We moved it quickly down the field and I was able to catch a pass up the line on my defender and threw it to Justin "Bobble" Elliott on the open side for the game winning score. The sidelines erupted! Ice and Lite (A and B team) rushed the field screaming and jumping with eyes wide and jaws dropped. For all the yelling we were doing it was hard for all of us to believe what had just happened. This is the biggest comeback I've ever been a part of as a Squid. We took the game 15-14.
Energy was flowing and we were pumped up to beat Black Tide who had defeated us with a victory at their home tournament three months earlier in the season. It was time for revenge, and we were not going to wait for Santa Barbara to hand it to us. We started the game with a 7-2 run. We took half 8-3. Tide's team leaders were not at their finest and while we slacked towards the end of the game, they only turned the disc over more. We never let them get closer than 4 points and finished the final with a win 15-10.
By winning Sectionals, we have locked down the second seed going into Regionals in two weeks in Colorado.
Tuesday, April 7, 2009
The origins of the Air Squids go back to 1980, when a group of grad students got together and formed the team. At the time the team was known as Entropy. It wasn’t until the 1988-1989 season that the team became known as the Air Squids. The name Air Squids was originally a joke. A player named Peter Ritson, who had previously played for UC Santa Cruz, would call his teammates a bunch of squids whenever they didn’t play hard. Since squids were spineless and soft. Dave Adelson is said to have come up with the name Air Squids. The idea was that the team would temporarily be named the Air Squids, until they became a better team. In theory as the team was to get better, the squid would move up to be something like Air Sharks or something higher up on the phylogenetic scale.
At the time, the early UCSD ultimate team was not as big and well structured as it is now. The team was under the radar in the ultimate scene in the mid 80’s due to lack of interest and organization. However, one thing that was known during this time period was that UCSD used to host a tournament known as Winter Crystal Palace. It wasn’t until later in that decade the team reappeared back on in the ultimate scene.
The 1988-89 season had a core of 9 regulars and 3-5 additional guys who would sometimes show up to play. A big problem for the team during this era, was the lack of competition. To solve this problem UCSD, Cal State Long Beach, Caltech, UCLA, UCI, and Northern Air Force base collaborated to form the SCCUL (Southern California Collegiate Ultimate League). The structure of the league had 4 of the 6 teams meeting every other week and playing a round robin of 3 games each. Additionally, scrimmages with SDSU and UCR were organized.
After that season, the popularity of ultimate spread throughout the campus thanks to the start of an intramural league. Along with the intramural scene, a huge factor which raised campus awareness about ultimate was the sale of $5 discs. The team sold discs not for profit, but rather to raise awareness of the sport. John Toman was one of the original team members who did the designs for the shirts, discs, sweaters, and various Squid paraphanalia.
In order for the Squids to grow and become more competitive, the local competition had to get better as well. That meant there was a lot of cooperation with other regional/ local teams to help their programs develop as well. Although the SCCUL was formed, it wasn’t until the addition of teams from Northern California and Oregon which really helped competitive college ultimate grow. Pat Pohl, the current coach of Las Positas college and collegiate regional coordinator of the western region* at the time, made the Winter Collegiate Tournament. There was a huge effort to get the teams from so cal and nor cal/ Oregon to come together and play this winter tournament. This was a huge step for not just UCSD ultimate, but west coast ultimate as a whole, since the tourney brought together all the west coast teams for the first time.
An interesting side note from this time period is that we were the first team west of the Mississippi and second team in the nation to hire a coach (Tony Pellicane).
A picture of the crystal palace tourney shirt
A special thanks to Dave Adelson and Nami for getting me in contact w/ Dave .
Sectionals this weekend...some teams are about to get shat on by the squids.
Tuesday, March 31, 2009
As Winter quarter finally came to an end, and glorious spring break started; the squids traveled to their annual spring playground: Texas.
Centex this year was run in the same format as the Stanford Invite. We knew almost all of our games beforehand:
Saturday - Arkansas, UNC, Harvard, Illinois
Sunday - Minnesota, Iowa, Final Placement Game
Splat was nice enough to house the team on Friday night, so we arrived to the fields nice and fresh on Saturday morning ready to play. After 45 minutes of warming up, our opponents (Arkansas) were nowhere to be found. Finally, 10 minutes before the game started, they showed up with a pretty small squad of about 11 or 12 guys. They had 2 real handlers and two fast recievers. My favorite play call of theirs was "blacks" where their two fastest players just went deep for a huck. After trading the first few points with them, we clamped down on their huckers and stopped the easy deep throws, and maintained our offensive poise to win the game 13-9.
Game two was against UNC's Darkside, who I've never played against before. I think the relative ease of the first game lulled us into a false sense of security and we stared the game with a three point deficit. Our offense finally locked down by switching to stack, and we got some turns back on D to make it a close game. At one point, after a particularly long and frustrating point, Bobble spit on the ground after scoring, which really pissed the UNC coach off. Someone pushed Bobble, I pushed the guy back, then someone else pushed someone else and everything escalated. Both sidelines cleared, Coach Stu was up in their coach's face and finally some nearby observers intervened to break it up. The rest of the game was played with observers, and we really stepped our intensity up. On double game point, Pumba had a great layout catch to keep the point alive, and we put the score in to win the game 12-11.
After a tiring and emotional game against UNC, we had trouble focusing for the next game against Harvard (who, by the way, had the ugliest uniforms I've seen). Harvard's play reminded me of Stanford. All their guys were smart and moved the disc quickly around the back. They rarely made a mistake and went up on us by 4 to start the game. Once we settled down we started to get some rhythm on offense. After half the wind picked up, and both teams began to massively overshoot target receivers on downwind points. They chose to throw a force middle defense on our stack, which gave us a couple easy hucks for scores. Even with these points, Harvard handed us our worst loss of the year to this point: 8-13.
The last game of the day was against Illinois, who didn't really come to play. They looked lazy on D and gave us some easy points on O. We found that as long as we cut hard on offense, we were able to score easily every time. We opened up the rotation a bit and even had some (unsuccessful) fish points. We won 13-7.
We found out what true southern hospitality was on Saturday night. Didj's (one of our fish) parents live in Austin and gave us all pads to sleep on, great food to eat, Gatorade, and breakfast tacos in the morning. This combined with the bye, meant that most of us felt nice and fresh in the morning.
The wind was strong when we got there and stared our game against Minnesota. Besides that, I really don't know what to say about the game. We turned the disc over 8 times in the first half and were down 7-1 at halftime. We played really really bad, but they also never gave the disc back. I've never lost a game this bad on Ice. We managed to scrounge up two more points before the game ended, with us losing 3-13. Ouch.
Our next game against Iowa was tough. We had to take a deep breath and try to regroup from that ass raping. We focused on keeping our throws solid and improved our offensive efficiency. On D, our young 4man cup started generating D's. The Iowa handlers looked scared when our cup was on, and they kept trying to jam it through, which didn't work. We won this game 13-10.
In our final placement game, we were pitted against Kansas. They were a very similar team to us, and scored most of their points by hucking to tall athletic receivers. The 4 man cup seemed to be working pretty well against them, so at double game point we put a young cup line in. They got the turn twice, but were unable to score. We lost the game 12-13.
So we went 4-3 in our last tournament of the year. This gives us a final regular season record of 20-8. In the last couple of seasons, we barely broke .500, so I'm glad we stepped it up in the regular season this year. Sectionals is 2 weeks away, and we're excited to start our journey toward nationals.
Dangle lives in Houston, so he let us stay with him on Sunday night on the way down to Surfside.
Monday, March 9, 2009
Stanford Invite from Dibs’ perspective.
This past weekend, the Squids traveled out to Ripon, CA for the Stanford Invite. The format for this tournament was different than any tournament I’ve ever seen. Here’s how it worked:
Cultimate (the company that runs these big tournaments) ranked the top 15 teams (we were an “honorable mention”) and divided the 48 teams into “Tier 1 and Tier 2”. All of the tier 1 teams played against opponents of similar strength, which means there were no pools and no brackets. Going into the weekend we knew almost our entire schedule.
Saturday: Pacific Lutheran (a tier 2 team), UBC, University of Washington, Western Washington
Sunday: UC Santa Cruz, UC Davis, the final placement game
The two teams with the best record would then play each other in the final placement game. The next two teams play in the 3-4 game, etc.
Our first game against Pac Lutheran was a great chance for all of us to get warmed up. Individually, they were quite skilled with the disc, but after throwing some questionable zones and dropping a pull, we were able to finish quickly 13-3.
Our game against UBC was observed by “active observers”. They called travels and made up/down calls. I was worried about how this would work for our team, but the only guy who really had a lot of travel calls on him was UBC’s main guy. Haha. With some ridiculous grabs by Forge, and great hucks from Cork, we finished those Canadians, 13-10.
Washington was clearly a solid team. They moved the disc fast and mostly through a redhead guy (who I think is on Sockeye). We had a great game and took half by one. They played close D but we were still feeling fresh, so we matched their intense D with equally crisp offense. There were very few breaks, but we had one more than them and at one point we were up 9-7. Then things seemed to fall apart. They had been solid on doffense all weekend, and when we started making small throwing and catching mistakes, they made us pay. They went on a 6-1 run to finish, 10-13, handing us our first loss. This one hurt. There isn’t an excuse for dropping a game like that. We were not that tired, but we really let our mental edge down. Looking at the weekend, this was really our shot to take down a big time team. Washington killed Colorado and beat Michigan and Oregon. We’ll close better next time we see them.
Western Washington seemed tired. They were undefeated going into our game and we knew they had a ton of talent (including a worlds player) who had massive pulls and hucks, but they just didn’t play hard D. On offense we were able to score almost effortlessly. They kept throwing up long floaty hucks to their tall fast receivers, but our combination of Kattan, Forge, and Bobble got the D almost every time. Near the end of the game, they gave us another scare. They started another run, but we had built such a lead that this time we ended the game before it got too close. At one point we were up 11-4, we ended the game with a win, 13-10. Every year that I’ve been on the squids, we come out soft and then have to fight to come back in the second half. This was the same in our first two tournaments this year, but for some reason at this tournament we always took half, but had trouble finishing. Either way, a win is a win.
On Sunday morning, we arrived to the foggy fields to find the grass covered in frost. After a relatively strong showing on Saturday (winning more games than the past 2 years combined at Stanford), we were excited for the opportunity to show off our talent against UC Santa Cruz, a team that always plays extremely hard. We were one of the first teams to start warming up and we set a positive tone from the beginning. The game started with hard D and sloppy O on both sides. The wet and freezing conditions made it hard to throw crisp forehands, and as a result we (mostly me) turned the disc over again and again. Luckily, UCSC looked equally cold, and we were able to take half by one. In the second half, our defense was able to capture a few breaks, but the weekend trend continued with our offense looking shaky near the end. We gave up a few breaks but at 12-11, we got turnover and called a timeout. Dollar set us up with a play that set Kattan up as a dump and then sent him deep for a throw from Pumba. The play worked perfectly, and Kattan caught a wide open goal for the win, 13-11.
After a bye spent watching and heckling UC Davis, we warmed up to play them in our last set game of the weekend. They played really hard defense and a fast offense, but we were able to keep up despite our long weekend. During a timeout, Pumba beat his brother (a freshman at UC Davis) in pokey. Didj had a great D in the endzone to add a break. The game ended with a scare as a stall 9 floater was thrown up into the endzone that I was able to come down with for the win, 13-10.
At this point the top 2 teams (and only undefeated Tier 1 teams) were Carleton and Florida. There were 5 teams with only one loss: Stanford, Washington, Wisconsin, Oregon, and Us. They set us up against Oregon in a 7/8 game.
Our game against Oregon started with easy offensive scores from both sides. It was clear that both sides were tired and the defense just couldn’t keep up. After some hard mental breaks, we went down at half 5-8, and decided that if we were going to win, we needed to play our top guys on every point for the rest of the game. We battled hard back and were able to climb back within one point, but our legs just fell out from under us. Each of the starting 7 turfed at least one throw. We still held the game close, but fell 13-15.
I’m really proud of the team that came up to Stanford this weekend. We only had 16 to start (from a roster of 24), and ended with 14. Every single fish that made the trip up played great. Soda was always able to get open when we needed it and both he and Didj had some great deep D’s. Our O-line was remarkably consistent (at least in the first half of games) and they were able to hold things together even when things weren’t going our way. Thanks guys. A 5-2 record against these teams is a great stepping stone toward our goal of making nationals.
Thursday, February 26, 2009
As some of you know, I'm making an attempt to capture all of squid history in writing. Any alumn (b or a) please contact me if you haven't done so. Every piece of info helps (esp emails of older squid). I know you older squids have more to think about on your minds besides frisbee (unlike me), but your contribution would be greatly appreciated.
<3 eric hsu 'monstro'
in the mean time, check out this clip of our new red head squid
Wednesday, February 25, 2009
Sat Rd 1 (8:30) - Pacific Lutheran
Rd 2 (10:25) - Washington
Rd 3 (12:20) - British Columbia
Rd 4 (2:15) - BYE
Rd 5 (4:10) - Western Washington
Sun Rd 1 (8:00) - UC-Santa Cruz
Rd 2 (9:55) - BYE
Rd 3 (11:50) - UC-Davis
We also have a fungus to watch out for called Coccidiodiomycosis. Symptoms "range from a minor flu-like illness to life-threatening respiratory conditions and serious disorders outside of the pulmonary system". If it's sunny, we're relatively safe from the so-called "valley-fever". If it's rainy and windy, these buggers will proliferate and release spores into the air.
Tuesday, February 17, 2009
After a strong showing at the Santa Barbara Invite, we entered Pres Day this year as the second seed. UC Berkley, who won in
In our first game of Saturday, we faced USC. We started with some hard man defense and a new offense: the horizontal stack. This new offense is run by 3 handlers, rather than the usual Spread offense that is run by the 4 downfield players. This new offense looked nice and crisp and opened up the field for lots of handler initiated swings and hucks. On the final point of the game, Mark “Dibs”
The next game, against UC Berkley’s B-team, was a great chance for the fish to show us their potential. On offense we continued to run the ho-stack, and on defense we ran a vertical stack. All our younger players looked solid. Murphy “Soda” Hitchcock showed great maturity and poise. Borland also had a great layout catch to keep an errant huck alive. We ended up closing this game out, 13-2.
The next game was against USD, where the wind picked up a little. They had a few experienced players and a good zone. We made mistake after mistake and were down by a point at half. In the second half we collected ourselves and were able to convert on offense and create turns with our 4 man cup. We were finally able to end this game with a win, 13-9.
Our final game of the day was against Cal Poly SLO under the lights. This was the first showcase game the Squids have played in 2 years, and we were excited. SLO has had a breakout season so far, with a great showing at Sean Ryan during fall quarter. Rumor has it they didn’t graduate a single person last year. Starting the game, it was evident that their ho-stack offense flowed through 2 solid handlers, who would hit any of their fast young receivers. Great aerial plays from Eric “
Our first game on Sunday was against UCLA. These guys beat us earlier in the year at Sean Ryan, and we’ve been hungry for revenge for 3 months. The game started out terribly. They run a strong man defense on our downfield cutters, but a poachy zone on our handlers, making it hard for us to move it from our handlers to our downfield players. They started with a couple D’s close to our own goal and were able to convert quickly to go up 4-1. It was obvious that our new handler run ho-stack wouldn’t cut it against their D, so we switched to the good ol’ squid spread. Our handlers were able to work it around in the back and eventually get it downfield to our core group of cutters: Guy “Kattan” Hughes, Eric “
The final game of our Power Pool was against
We had a meeting with the coaches/captains of most of the teams and decided that rather than wait for the storm to come on Monday, we should take the top 4 teams into the semi-finals. That set us up against
The final against UC Berkley was a tough game. They move the disc extremely fast on offense and were able to stick extremely close on D. They also had a zone D that was hard for most of our team to break, but Brooks “
Overall, I think this tournament was a success, even though we were unable to break seed. Taking 2nd at our home tournament is something the Squids have not done in a long time. I really want to thank Stephen “Pumba” Hubbard for his time. This tournament was a success because of all his hard work. The next tournament we’re looking forward to is the Stanford Invite, on March 7th and 8th.
Sunday, February 8, 2009
pres day in a week suckas
cheers- giant whale
Monday, February 2, 2009
Here's a quick blurb on the fish in no particular order
Soda: Probably has one of the longest stories for how he got his name. Really fast, former cross country/ track runner in high school. He shows a lot of potential (not to say that any of the other fish don't). He's loudest person on the sidelines, even if he doesn't play a single point. Watch out for this kid in the future, he picks up things fast.
Threeve: Notorious for reciting poetry in trees, and hitting on girls with a box on his head. Played HS ultimate in Burlingham, under the coaching of a former Blacktide (booo) / current Jam player. Has a really smooth around flick. He also does a great chewbaca impression. Also known as BITUSA's friend
BITUSA (born in the USA): Named after Bruce Springsteen. Played HS ultimate with Threeve. He's probably one of the best known fish, because of his promiscuous actions with a psycho's sister (who is still in high school) *on a side note, Duol may have been behind that turn of events. Another thing BITUSA is famous for is his ability to eat an immense amount of food. He almost ate 10 doughnuts in 15 minutes... keep in mind, this was after he ate a California burrito 10 minutes before. BITUSA will be the next Bobble.
Heyzer: Tall guy from Colorado. He somehow has time to play for the squids, even though he's on the UCSD golf team. He's your complete player he will play receiver, he will jack it, he will bid, he will eat your babies. He threw a game winning backhand huck to Balco on DGP against SDSU in so cal warm up. There's talk of him being a possible FOTY. Besides his deadly frisbee skills, his looks are able to cause any psycho to fall in love with him. Watch out for this kid whether it'll be on the PGA tour, frisbee pitch, or the next Zoolander movie.
Scoops: Heyzer's appt mate. Former soccer player turned frisbee fanatic. He has a good field sense, and will learn to pick up the game well. He caught a nice layout bid against SB in sean ryan. He's currently training with the members of squid rice (coppa and myself) to develop low deadly pinpoint throws.
JohnC: Short, fast, white boy from the OC who is infatuated with Lil Wayne and Akon. Like soda, he was a former track stud in HS. He has accelerates very well and is a little ball of energy. Keep an eye out for him (it's going to be hard considering how dam small and fast he is).
Didj: Defensive stud. Basically a white Balco from Texas who can hold his own. He bids with no regard, and will own anyone he marks up on. Unlike Balco, he has a dam good flick. His IO breaks have been known to cut grown in half (wtf do they put in the water in Texas). Fun kid to hang out with, he has mono right now though... probably cuz he won the party from last weekend.
Borland: This kid didn't know he was on A-team until 1 month after the roster was posted. Despite his missed training time, his learning curve is pretty fast. I like the kid's name, because I used to watch home improvement.
Foley/Pebbles/Pubbles: Comes to the Squids having played High School ultimate locally at University City. Like Threeve, he has nice throws for a fish. Once he gets "kill mode" instilled in him, he'll get really dam good. Like scoops, he is being trained by squid rice and will begin to utilize those dirty low IO throws.
- Giant whale