June 3, 2013 by Charlie Eisenhood in News, Recap, Video with 2 comments
Last year, the Philadelphia Spinners were the crown jewel in the American Ultimate Disc League. They won the inaugural Championship and, upon the announcement they would be leaving the league to join (and create) Major League Ultimate, had high hopes of a repeat in their new environment.
The fairy tale has come to an end. The Spinners first offensive possession against the New York Rumble summed up their season: the disc sailing over their heads, leading to a Rumble Callahan. They would fall behind 7-2 in the first quarter, and would never recover. The 21-13 loss was their sixth straight — it knocked them down to 2-6 and last place in the Eastern Conference.
They now need to win their final two games — the next coming against the undefeated Boston Whitecaps on the road — to have even an outside shot at the playoffs.
The Spinners were never able to adjust their offense to the league’s defenses, which started shutting down their underneath options and forcing them deep. The conservative Philadelphia approach crumbled as they could never stretch the defense by consistently hitting their deep cutters.
The Spinners didn’t get any help from New York’s Chris Mazur, who had another outstanding performance for the Rumble. He had five of the first seven New York scores of the game and always seemed to be in the right place at the right time.
The Rumble now control their own destiny, and only need a split of their two upcoming games against the Current to ensure themselves a playoff spot.
Watch the full game footage:
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Boston Whitecaps 23 – 19 DC Current
Boston again proved to be too much for the Current to handle in Washington as the Whitecaps moved to 8-0 on the season with the four point victory.
The final score suggests a bit of a closer game than it was — Boston managed the clock well at the end of the game after leading by five heading into the fourth quarter. With no shot clock, the Whitecaps were content to just maintain possession up three late in the quarter after a Current run, and they ran out the clock on DC.
“There really aren’t many words to describe a game like this,” Current head coach Keven Moldenhauer told a team reporter. “It’s been the same story all season. We haven’t put together a complete game once. Now we have to. If we win out, we go to the playoffs. If we lose one, we’re out. Simple as that.”
The Whitecaps have already clinched home field advantage for the Conference finals. The Current, on the other hand, need back-to-back wins against the Rumble and a Week 10 win against the Spinners to make the playoffs.
The Current travel to New York next weekend with their playoff hopes on the line.
At home in San Francisco, the Dogfish embarrassed the Portland Stags with the biggest blowout of the season in Major League Ultimate, avenging a road loss — their only of the season — to Portland three weeks ago.
You could see the impact of game tape and adjustments, as San Francisco held MLU goal leader and Stags’ star Tim Perston to just one goal in the game. Windy conditions — something San Francisco players train diligently to deal with — made the game a one-sided affair. Portland broke the San Francisco offense just once in the game.
The Dogfish are still in second place in the Conference because they have played one fewer game than the Rainmakers. They are both headed to the playoffs, and their final two matchups this season will decide who gets home field advantage for the Conference finals.
Seattle Rainmakers 24 – 12 Portland Stags
The Rainmakers may not have won by 18, but they still dominated the Stags again this week. Matt Rehder rejoined the team after five weeks away and made an immediate impact for the team.
Seattle continued their pattern of strong starts and got out to an early three goal lead and extended that to 14-6 by halftime.
The Rainmakers finished a sweep of Portland dating back to the preseason — none of their games were close.
Watch the full game footage.