July 25, 2013 by Keith Raynor in Analysis, Recap with 1 comments
Atlanta’s Terminus, serving as the Triple Crown Tour’s Pro-Elite Challenge, gave us not just the first look at many of the division’s top competitors, but also a view into who will be the game’s stars this season. Sweating it out under the Georgia summer sun, these 14 distinguished themselves from a very talented pool of players. It took a lot to pare this list down, but here’s your first 7 Stars Line of the club season.
Maddy Frey (Ozone)
“I’m not sure I’ve ever seen her not get open on the first cut,” one of Frey’s teammates said of her, with astounding accuracy. It is tough to find a better option to initiate your offense, since Frey is able to function in nearly any space, finding the holes a defense presents. She’s comfortable coming under, moving the disc, putting up a big shot, or going totally horizontal for a mesmerizing grab (see cover photo).
Kelly Johnson (Nemesis)
With her brightly colored hair and a physique that has our comments section jealous, Johnson’s name is gaining notoriety. Her defensive play is every bit as imposing as her muscle tone, able to rack up run through Ds, layouts, and skies. On offense, her explosive first step makes her a great reset and threat to score in the red zone. For a woman nicknamed “Vegas,” it seems like a pretty sure bet when she’s on the line that Nemesis is gonna score.
Malissa Lundgren (Capitals)
Captain Capital is a model of consistency, less of a rock on an offense and more of a mountain. With so many pieces missing, the Caps’ offense wasn’t always moving as intended, but Lundgren was able to continuously create open resets. She was also able to drive the disc movement, getting separation upline, making break cuts that were easy for her throwers to hit, and often dropping dimes into the endzone.
Robyn Wiseman (Heist)
One of the things that makes Robyn Wiseman so fun to watch is the passion with which she plays. It also makes her very difficult to match up with. She’s aggressive with the disc in her hands, transforming into a freight train when she’s without it. Her team clearly looks to her as a leader, a role she fills with gusto and aplomb. She may be the type of player you have to gameplan around rather than gameplan for.
Christine Dube (Nemesis)
There were flashier players at Terminus and there are bigger names on the Chicago roster, but Dube was arguably their best performer. She’s a workhorse, able to bear a heavy workload on both sides of the disc. In the summer heat, she was able to outwork nearly every matchup she faced, finding unders, creating disc movement, and adding some nice downfield throws. No one left their assignment more frustrated than those covering Dube.
Amber Sinicrope (Brute Squad)
A defensive-minded handler with strong fundamentals, Sinicrope was one of the driving forces behind Boston’s success. Her trained disc skills and field vision pair with her game instinct to make her capable of shredding through defenses and allow her to react to anything thrown at her. Sinicrope is a tenacious defender, physical, quick-footed, and capable of providing a speed burst to ambush the disc in the air before her offender realizes it’s too late.
Jen Kwok (Traffic)
Kwok was able to get it done all over the downfield for Vancouver. Easily one of the top cutters we saw, Kwok-star repeatedly juked her defenders, demonstrating excellent timing and understanding of field space to produce big gains and a number of scores. On defense, she, perhaps inspired by being in a city known for its gridlock, was able to close down the lanes and generate some notable Ds.
Laura Bitterman (Brute Squad)
What Bitterman lacks in size she makes up in aggressiveness. And speed. She’s really fast. It felt like Bitterman was constantly finding the endzone, especially after a turn, providing opportunities for Brute to break.
Kate Wilson (Ozone)
Wilson is an ideal primary cutter, opportunistic enough to exploit defenders’ weaknesses, with and without the disc. This southern southpaw is a bomb-dropping threat after getting the disc underneath.
Lien Hoffman (Nemesis)
Continuing her success from this college season at Northwestern, Hoffman is a beast on the field. Her total package athleticism alters the field of play for throwers and she has a knack for Ds near the goal line, among other big plays.
Bree Cahn (Nightlock)
Cahn is one of those players that seems to be everywhere. One point, she’s getting a footblock. Next, she’s catching a goal. Then’s she’s picking up an unintended floater. She’s just able to do what’s necessary to get the score.
Paula Seville (Nemesis)
On Nemesis, Seville is one of the rookies, but on the field, she’s composed and experienced. Efficient, smart, and a strong defender (particularly on the mark), Seville is going to be big for Chicago this year.
Kira Frew (Traffic)
Frew is one of the most skilled competitors in the Women’s Division. As a thrower, she’s an assassin, hitting her targets from varying distances. As a leader, she’s a field general that controls the entire pitch.
Haley Reese (Ozone)
Reese was the engine driving Ozone’s D line, setting the tone with her huge pulls. She’d hold that tone for her team, with massive layout Ds (including some from devious poaches), and pretty throws for break scores.