After our last game on Day 3 against General Strike Phil told us to do whatever we needed to so that we’d be ready to play by the time we got to warm-up. Playing involves more than the physical aspect of the game, it involves focus.
I took a walk just past midnight through the forests and streets of Lennoxville. Should I be called I was ready, focused, and ready to dominate my matchups much as each of us had done for the past three days. I was ready to communicate from the sideline and work with the team much as we’d done for the past three days. Where others had the luxury for old habits and chemistry we had developed it over a period of days and even with our miscues in important games were rolling into what each one of us dreams: a Day 4 match!
Our team mentality was entirely different today and it was obvious from the get-go. On Day 1 most of the team did not warm up before games. Today we had a 90 minute warm up that started off gently and got us fully into game shape by the end of it. Today was an entirely different team from the one that had played the past three days.
During warmup throwing the wind was something we found ourselves battling after not experiencing it for three days. The Women’s final showed how tricky it was to move the disc in any direction and we worked off of that experience. The stands also swirled the wind in unexpected ways on the sidelines closest to the crowds, notes were made. Almost as soon as we started throwing on the field we were told that it was time for introductions. Those moments of running onto the field with my teammates are amongst the proudest that I have. It was time to win a game, nothing less would matter.
We started with an easy offense where both teams felt each other out and then quickly punched into overdrive. We took a 4-2 lead and at that point we lost a bit of edge and Mephisto picked it up. Our opponents seized the advantage and quickly tied the match before continuing onwards to take the lead. By half it was 8-5 and our energy level was still lacking. Serving to Mephisto in the second half saw their lead grow to 9-5 before we started our comeback. Like in the General Strike game Tim Tsang made a huge D followed by a monster catch to get everybody fired up. While we didn’t get the break on the next point the adrenaline started coursing and we were going to finish strong. By the time we hit 14-13 and were pulling we wanted to finish it right there with an awesome D line.
The midfield turn during that final point saw one of the most frantic and energetic defenses from Mephisto. Fighting for the win each throw made by us was at a high stall count and under tremendous pressure. Every cut to space was heavily contested and every catch on the edge of disaster. After eternity just yards outside of salvation a short, stable, calm backhand connected.