UUCC Women’s Preview

Finally, a preview of the ultra competitive Women’s Division.

Riot (NW1, Seattle)

Roster additions:
Rohre Titcomb (Brute Squad)
Calise Cardenas (Underground)
Heidi-Marie Clemens (Underground)
Caitlin Cordell (Underground)
Emily Baecher (Slow White)
Erin Gallagher (Shazam Remains)
Claire Suver (Underground)

Roster departures:
Alejandra Torres
Karen Brimacombe (Fury)
Gretchen Muller
Emily Grad

Results:
Texas Shootout – 2nd (14-16 Fury)
World Ultimate Club Championships – 3rd (14-12 Brute Squad)
Emerald City Classic – 2nd (11-14 Fury)
Labor Day Championships – 2nd (10-15 Fury)
Washington/BC Sectionals – 1st (13-7 Traffic)
Northwest Regionals – 1st (15-12 Fury)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 14-5

Analysis:
As always, a top contender in the Women’s division, Riot is looking to improve upon last year’s disappointing 3rd place (yes, when you’re that good, 3rd place is disappointing) finish.  All 6 (including WUCC) of their losses this year have been at the hands of Fury, but Riot also holds 3 wins over Fury, including the key one: finals at Regionals.

Not a lot of turnover from this team, other than some promotions from the feeder team, Riot is certainly going to have some great chemistry, and they will need all of it to take down Fury again when it matters.

There’s absolutely no reason to think that Riot will drop a game in pool play, and Brute Squad (2-0 this year, including the bronze medal game at WUCC) and Traffic (4-0) are the only teams standing in their way of holding seed into the championship bracket.

Fury (NW2, San Francisco)

Roster additions:
Karen Brimacombe (Riot)
Kaela Jorgenson (Burning Skirts)
Kari Deleeuw (Mischief)
Robin Knowler-Davis

Roster departures:
Lyrica Hammann
Julie Baker

Results:
Texas Shootout – 1st (16-14 Riot)
World Ultimate Club Championships – 1st (16-15 UNO)
Emerald City Classic – 1st (14-11 Riot)
Labor Day Championships – 1st (15-10 Riot)
Northern California Sectionals – 1st (13-7 Zeitgeist)
Northwest Regionals – 2nd (12-15 Riot)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 15-3

Analysis:
Even a more dominant season than Riot has had (even though Riot accounts for all 3 of their losses, Riot is also the victim of 6 of their wins this year), Fury is the BMOC that no one has figured out in 4 years.

Like Riot, not much in the way of roster turnover, but one huge addition is Kaela Jorgenson of the UC-Santa Barbara Burning Skirts.  She and Georgia Bosscher should help ensure Fury wins the next 4 championships as well.

Brute Squad (NE1, Boston)

Roster additions:
Jessica Blanton (Lady Godiva)
Chelsey Burrows
Julia Echterhoff
Sarah Cook (Lady Godiva)
Maureen McCamley (Lady Godiva)
Vicky Chow (Lady Godiva)
Tracy Woo (Lady Godiva)

Roster departures:
Mackenzie Fazekas
Ellie Graeden
Lauren Childs
Rohre Titcomb (Riot)
Lucy Barnes

Results:
World Ultimate Club Championships – 4th (12-14 Riot)
Emerald City Classic – 3rd
East New England Sectionals – 1st (13-2 Hatch)
Philly Fusion – 1st (14-12 Capitals)
Northeast Regionals – 1st (15-10 Bent)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 9-3
Analysis:
Brute Squad, coming off a fantastic silver medal performance at last year’s UPA Championships, are back and likely even better, after picking up players from the now defunct Lady Godiva (in particular, Canada’s own Vicky Chow).

Brute Squad has but one loss this year to a non-Fury/Riot squad, 12-11 to Scandal at Philly Fusion, and are looking very good in their quest to break into the big 2.  Dory Ziperstein and Dominique Fontenette continue to lead the squad, but keep an eye on Tracy Woo, who, allegedly, at 6’5” (she may have grown 4 inches in the offseason, according to Score Reporter) should be a matchup nightmare for all teams in this tournament.

Capitals (NE2, Ottawa/Toronto)

Roster additions:
Shannon Becker (Stella)
Sarah Kidd (Lotus)
Martha Paterson
Marie-Celine Alexander (Stella)
Dominique Rioux (Stella)

Roster departures:
Kathryn Pohran
Jenna McBride
Alison Flynn
Sheri Madigan
Chantal Mayotte
Monica Kerr-Coster
Heather Adams
Hadiya Roderique

Results:
Philly Fusion – 2nd (12-14 Brute Squad)
Upstate New York Sectionals – 1st (15-0 Lady Spuds)
Northeast Regionals – 2nd (15-5 Bent)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 5-4

Analysis:
A much smaller roster than in years past, with significant names not making the trip this year (Alison Flynn and Hadiya Rodrique stand out for me), the Capitals, a mix of Lotus (3rd at CUC) and Stella (2nd at CUC), are perennial contenders at the UPA Championships.

Still lead by Alyson Walker, Anne Mercier and Carla DiFilippo, the Capitals will be looking to repeat their big upset in power pool play last year, this time taking down Fury.  With the smaller roster, and the weather expected (mid 80’s and humid), I don’t think they’ll have the legs to do it this year.

Scandal (MA1, Washington)

Roster additions:
Marie Laurenza (Loose Cannon)
Allison Maddux (Lady Condors)
Crystal Davis (Casual Encounters)
Ashley Daly (Hybrid)
Octavia Payne (Wildcard)
Trudy Philip (Wicked)
Johanna Neumann (Random Acts of Violet)
Heather Smith (Hooray for Coed, Hooray)
Maureen Hsia (Nemesis)
Jill Bingham (Axis of C’Ville)
Molly Roy (Dartmouth/Princess Layout)

Roster departures:
Sarah Smith
Jenny Hong
Megan McVey
Sarah Farnham
Susan Peine
Lisa Helvin
Sarah Itoh
Rachel Borchardt
Jennie Yang
Alanna Tievsky
Beth Stankevich
Courtney Wang
Abby Elbow

Results:
Winston Cup Challenge – 2nd (13-15 Phoenix)
Chesapeake Open – 1st (13-7 Bent)
Philly Fusion – 3rd
Capital Sectionals – 1st (13-0 Georgetown)
Mid-Atlantic Regionals – 1st (14-13 Phoenix)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 10-3

Analysis:
Scandal, having finished 11th last year at Nationals, made a number of changes to their roster, and the difference was noticeable.  Having finished no worse than 3rd in any tournament this year, and an impressive record against other finalists this year, Scandal has shown that they are worthy of the 5 seed heading into this tournament.

However, having not played any of the Northwest teams has me wondering if they may not be quite as good as their record would indicate.  Much like their male counterparts on Truck Stop, they appear to be a team on the rise, and this tournament will show whether they are ready to take the next step of reaching the quarterfinals.

Traffic (NW3, Vancouver)

Roster additions:
Ashlee Davison (Zephyr)
Catherine Hui
Jessie Wu
Jaimie Kot (Zephyr)
Beverley Porter (Zephyr)
Neilu Rishi (Zephyr)
Crystal Lok Koo
Amira Maddison

Roster departures:
Tory Hislop
Manny Chanoine
Stephanie Chow
Nikki Short
Mel Harder
Jill Calkin
Megan Atkinson
Anne-Marie Carey

Results:
Summer Solstice – 1st (15-11 Further)
Emerald City Classic – 4th
Labor Day Championships – 5th
Washington/BC Sectionals – 2nd (7-13 Riot)
Northwest Regionals – 3rd (15-8 Zeitgeist)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 3-8

Analysis:
That 3-8 record against qualifying teams stands out, but a closer inspection shows that 0-7 against the top 3 finishers from last year (the one exception being a 14-12 loss to Pop at ECC).

Having picked up a number of players from Zephyr (16th at WUCC), I would imagine Traffic wants to use this tournament as a springboard for next season, and the bid to represent Canada at the 2012 World Ultimate and Guts Championships, and a breakthrough to the semi-finals would certainly send them on their way.

However, that 0-7 record against Fury, Riot and Brute Squad stands out, and despite the presence of stars Kira Frew and Sarah Bobak, it’s hard to believe that they are anything but a notch below the top teams at this point.

Phoenix (MA2, Triangle Area, NC)

New team in 2010

Sharon Tucker (Backhoe)
Kelly Tidwell
Juliette McNamara (TAU)
Jessi Jones
Sara Dieter (Olio)
Janna Coulter
Jessi Witt (Nemesis)
Teresa Rouse (Backhoe)
Jennifer Waldrup
Jennifer Joyner
Claire Calise (Olio)
Cate Foster (Backhoe)
Leila Tunnell (Backhoe)
Whitney Morgan
Nicole Chauvigne (Backhoe)
Lindsey Hack (Backhoe)
Christina Beauchamp
Sasha Resnick
Tania Reitz (Backhoe)
Heather Zimmerman
Frannie Goodrich (Backhoe)
Britta Jones
Katy Harris (Backhoe)
Lindsay Lang
Lauren Gardner (Backhoe)
Melissa Gannon
Kate Morrison (Backhoe)

Results:
Texas Shootout – 5th
Winston Cup Challenge – 1st (15-13 Scandal)
Chesapeake Open – t-3rd (Hot Metal)
North Carolina Sectionals – 1st (14-8 Sweet T)
Philly Fusion – 5th
Mid-Atlantic Regionals – 2nd (10-4 Showdown)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 6-9

Analysis:
Along with fellow long time UPA Championship qualifiers Lady Godiva and the Lady Condors, Backhoe also bid adieu to the Ultimate world this year, after a 9th place finish at WUCC.  From the ashes of one team springs another, and thus Phoenix was born.

Owning 2 wins against teams seeded ahead of them at this tournament (Scandal and Capitals), Phoenix has shown they are ready to pick up where Backhoe left off, and are a dangerous team for any of the top seeds to face.  A spot in the quarterfinals is certainly attainable, and a likely goal for this team.

Molly Brown (SW1, Denver/Boulder)

New team in 2010

Sara Hill (Box)
Emily Hanson (Box)
Yelena Onnen (Box)
Sophie Herscu (Rare Air)
Leslie Schein (Rare Air)
Lindsey Cross
Dena Slattery (Nemesis)
Shannon Waugh (Rare Air)
Kath Ratcliff (Zeitgeist)
Anne Pogoriler (Rare Air)
Anna Schott (Rare Air)
Amanda Good
Jamie Anderson (Box)
Beth Goldstone (Box)
Kelley Kneib (Rare Air)
Stephanie Shea (Box)
Jana Krutsinger (Rare Air)
Michelle Groscost (Box)
Kelly Bolt (Rare Air)
Leah Borsheim

Results:
Colorado Cup – 1st (15-7 Pop)
Labor Day Championships – 9th
Rocky Mountain Sectionals – 1st (15-9 Jack Wagon)
Southwest Regionals – 1st (15-5 Knock Out)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 4-2

Analysis:
Molly Brown, an amalgamation of Rare Air and Box, (A women’s team named Box isn’t as off-putting to advertisers as MethOD is?  Really?) is looking to build something long term in Colorado.  Early results have been mixed (an undefeated Colorado Cup, followed by 4 losses at Labor Day), but have shown that Molly Brown is on the right track.  Advancing to power pools will be a great next step for this squad.

Showdown (SO1, Austin, TX)

Roster additions:
Amanda Berens
Katie Blyth
Whitney Miller
Lilly White (Texas A&M)
Holly Gruenke
Shelby Kuni
Meredith Hicks (Chewbacca Defense)
Jess Huynh
Marjo Manalang
Ashley Greiwe
Janel Venzant

Roster departures:
Lisa Short
Jessica Guffey
Stephanie Redfern (Dirty Birds)
Austine Lin
AJ Moore
Frances Tsukano
Natalie Guimard
Johannah Sanchez-Adams
Leda McDaniel
Becky Brindley
Lindsay Lowe-Worthington

Results:
Texas Shootout – 4th
World Ultimate Club Championships – 15th (17-12 Zephyr)
Chesapeake Open – 5th
Philly Fusion – 6th
Texas Sectionals – 1st (13-1 Inferno)
South Regionals – 1st (11-8 Ozone)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 6-12

Analysis:
Coming off a 5th place finish last year, Showdown made quite a few roster changes this year in an attempt to join the next tier of teams such as Traffic and Capitals.  They certainly scheduled for it, as their 18 games against fellow USAU Championships teams are second only to Riot’s 19.

However, the victories failed to come, and only one of those victories came against a team seeded higher than them this week (12-11 over Scandal at Philly Fusion).

I do believe the more difficult schedule will help them in the long run, and this weekend, as they should be used to playing in pressure situations, and that will help them get past Molly Brown for a berth in power pools.  Repeating last year’s performance, however, will be a tough challenge.

Nemesis (CN1, Chicago)

Roster additions:
Erin Percival
Lien Hoffman
Brit Belsheim
Mel Lau (Spicy Tuna)
Christine O’Brien
Kate Fasbender
Alyssa Kelly
Adrienne Ohler
Sara Miller

Roster departures:
Leah Berry
Megan Sweas
Jessi Witt (Phoenix)
Dena Slattery (Molly Brown)
Momo Hsia
Kim Streff
Josie Ferrell
Kelly Rippl

Results:
Colorado Cup – 3rd
Emerald City Classic – 6th
Chicago Heavyweight Championships – 1st (15-9 Pop)
Central Plains Sectionals – 1st (15-3 Spicy Tuna)
Central Regionals – 1st (13-5 Pop)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 7-3

Analysis:
Nemesis is riding a 16 game winning streak coming into Nationals, but only 5 of those wins are against Nationals calibre teams, and all of those 5 are against teams seeded below them.  They’ve shown they can beat up on inferior teams, but having not played a tight game since August, will they be able to turn it on now?

Pop (CN2, Minneapolis)

Roster additions:
Michelle Verant
Sanna Beek
Brit Gartner
Rebecca Enders
Sarah Solarz (Chad Larson Experience)
Beth Bernhardt
Elise Rasmussen
Sarah Hoistad
Christine Rosen (Chad Larson Experience)
Krissy Morin

Roster departures:
Sarah Dikeman
Julie Schmitz
Alyssa Olson
Lisa Fenske
Sarah Berseth
Katie Wilson
Jeanine Kooman
Trish York
Meghan Cain
Anne Lightbody
Krissy Thatcher

Results:
MUDI – 1st (6-0)
Colorado Cup – 2nd (7-15 Molly Brown)
Emerald City Classic – 7th
Chicago Heavyweight Championships – 2nd (9-15 Nemesis)
Northwest Plains Sectionals – 1st (15-1 Surly Women)
Central Regionals – 2nd (5-13 Nemesis)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 4-7

Analysis:
Pop is making their 3rd consecutive appearance at Nationals, but have yet to breakthrough to the quarterfinals.  Key pickups Sarah Solarz and Christine Rosen (both from CLX) provide a great boost in talent (Rosen had 14 goals at WUCC for CLX).

4 wins against Nationals teams is a nice building block, but they appear to still be a ways behind regional rival Nemesis (0-3, average margin of defeat: 7 points), and they need to clear that hurdle before they can tackle quarters.

Bent (NE3, New York City)

Roster additions:
Amanda Lobel (Bashing Pinatas)
June Bae (Bashing Pinatas)
Whitney Viets (AMP)
Linda Dolan
Marika Austin
Rowan Sill
Kelly Hyland

Roster departures:
Mari Oshiro
Amanda Davis
Angela Tong
Chris Hung
Keri Dorko
Palak Shah
Jackie Booth
Katrina Krasnansky
Emma Frankel

Results:
White Mountain Open – 1st (Win over Storm)
Emerald City Classic – 8th
Chesapeake Open – 2nd (7-13 Scandal)
Philly Fusion – 4th
Metro New York Sectionals – 1st (15-5 MissCONNduct)
Northeast Regionals – 3rd (5-15 Capitals)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 6-12

Analysis:
A team that scheduled hard, their 6 wins include 4 against teams seeded ahead of them at Nationals, including a 12-10 upset of Capitals at Regionals (who head up Bent’s pool on Thursday).  Pulling off that upset isn’t out of the question, but facing Capitals right out of the gate, it’s doubtful that Bent would be able to catch them off-guard.

Safari (SW2, San Diego)

Roster additions:
Goldamer Thach
Brittany Cabriales
Sarah McNees
Amy Besek
Amy Little
Melissa Spalding
Amy Chang
Rosalind Tsao
Lauren Silverman
Katherine Miles
Ruth Chen
Kristen Boles
Patricia Anderson

Roster departures:
Erika Swanson
Taiala Carvalho
Anahid Brakke
Mary Ann Polityka
Taylor Pence
Stephanie Jong
Lisa Bittner
Heather Kinkhead
Arthi Padmanabhan
Gina Phillips
Minh Huynh
Melody Gall
Astrid Manning
Jennifer Jacobsen

Results:
Emerald City Classic – 9th
Labor Day Championships – 8th
Southern California Sectionals – 1st (15-3 Knock Out)
Southwest Regionals – 2nd (15-9 Knock Out)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 1-9

Analysis:
Safari rounds out pool D and, after retooling a large portion of their roster this year, spent the summer going head to head with the best teams on the west coast.  I’m of the opinion that getting beat by great teams is a greater learning experience than beating up on inferior teams are, and Safari should be able to use this experience to their advantage against Bent to try and get out to a strong start in the bottom pools on Friday.

Unfortunately for Safari, Bent has done the exact same thing, going head to head all year with the best teams on the east coast, and I think Bent’s better record against the top competition is a better indicator for success this weekend.

Ozone (SO2, Atlanta)

Roster additions:
India Stubbs
Kirsten Shell
Michelle VanHandel
Kate Wilson

Roster departures:
Julia Echterhoff
Sandra Davis
Lane Seidor
Kristen Lamm
Heather Waugh
Cara Hauk
Anna Bucher
Amanda Strout
Deb Cussen
Sarah Owenby
Haley Reese
Shanye Crawford

Results:
Winston Cup Challenge – 8th
Chesapeake Open – 6th
Shawn Adams Memorial – 1st (15-1 hot box)
East Coast Sectionals – 1st (8-7 DeSoto)
South Regionals – 2nd (13-6 Top Shelf)

Analysis:
Ozone, a perennial qualifier for Nationals, is shockingly coming to Nationals with only a roster of 14 AND without legend Deb Cussen.  I hope that this isn’t a sign that Atlanta women’s Ultimate is coming to a close (a la Lady Godiva, Lady Condors etc.), but it sure doesn’t bode well for the team’s outlook this week.  A win over Pop in pool play may set them up for a run to pre-quarters, but there’s no way they can get further than that with such a small roster during a humid week in Sarasota.

Storm (NE4, Montreal)

Roster additions:
Christine Lord
Melanie Gagne
Marie-France Hivert
Marie-Helene Audet
Isabelle Lemay
Helena Skrotzy-Boisvert

Roster departures:
Carmen Lee
Stephanie Beaumont
Laurence Vincent
Melanie Prescott-Gagnon
Jessie Tomas Grignon (Snowbirds)
Rachel Moens
Audrey St-Arnaud (Snowbirds)
Alison Fischer

Results:
White Mountain Open – 2nd (loss to Bent)
World Ultimate Club Championships – 13th (17-14 Leeds, Leeds, Leeds Women)
West New England Sectionals – 1st (15-4 Mystik)
Northeast Regionals – 4th (15-4 Hatch)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 0-4

Analysis:
Reigning Canadian Women’s champions Storm make their 1st ever appearance in Sarasota, thanks to the Northeast region receiving 4 bids this year.  Genevieve Dufresne and Rachel Moens lead the Storm attack, and with a favourable pool (Phoenix, Fury, Nemesis) could see themselves in power pool play on Friday.  Anything beyond that would have to be considered a Cinderella run.

Revoloution (CN3, St. Louis)

New team in 2010

Abby Stephens (One Trick Pony)
Lindsey Gapstur
Laura Halfmann
Danielle Blatt
Kate Wilson
Megan Greenwood
Kami Groom
Tasha Parman
Ellen Miller
Kasey Sudkamp
Emma Harty
Britt Gott (One Trick Pony)
Kara O’Malley
Michelle Place
Sam Huo
Megan Epperson
Hilary Biggar
Tricia Wong
Katie Bilek
Mel Huegerich
Theresa Chan

Results:
MUDI – 2nd (5-1)
Cooler Classic – 1st (14-9 Dish)
Chicago Heavyweight Championships – 3rd
West Plains Sectionals – 1st (15-7 Filthy Gorgeous)
Central Regionals – 3rd (Dish)

Record vs USAU Championship teams: 0-4

Analysis:
I’ve always wondered why a large city such as St. Louis doesn’t have consistent good club teams, and here’s hoping that Revoloution is able to take advantage of the flux that is the middle of the women’s division and make themselves a perennial participant in Sarasota.  Enjoy the moment ladies, may it be the 1st of many.

Overall:

I think the Women’s division is going to be fairly “boring”, in that the more things change, the more they stay the same, and I don’t see anyone knocking out Fury or Riot, or preventing Brute Squad from getting to the semi-finals.

The intrigue is going to be in the middle portions of this tournament.  With so many teams having folded, or merged/started anew, there is a lot of opportunity for some new women’s teams to stake the claim as being the next dominant program over the next few years.

Call-me-out-after-the-fact-prognostications:

Champion – Fury (boring!  But until somebody beats them…)
Finalist – Riot
Semi-finalists – Brute Squad and Traffic
Quarterfinalists (straight from power pools) – Capitals and Scandal
Quarterfinalists (from pre-quarters play) – Storm and Showdown
Pre-quarters participants – Phoenix and Molly Brown

2 thoughts on “UUCC Women’s Preview

  1. Traffic was certainly a tough competitor, they are filled with young talent and pure speed. The score was in part an indication of how fired up we were to meet them (it’s been 3 years), then our dominance over them. I have no doubt the meeting at CUC in 2011 will be far more intense. There’s no doubt the capitals have struggled against teams weaker than us this season, and I understand the criticism. What is impressive is that we collectively put a disappointing loss against Fury on day 2 behind us, refocused as a unit, played our game and came out on fire. That is what I am most proud of. We are a young team but for the first time showed poise, confidence and perseverance at a UPA championship and no one but the capitals themselves could have predicted that. We didn’t get into the finals by chance or with luck but we earned it by battling the number one seed Riot to the end. Thanks to all our Capitals Fans for all your support a special thanks to Blue at Ultimate Experience. Thank you to those Capitals ladies who have come before us and built a co-operative team between two cities that no one thought possible. We have taken a huge step but still have more to achieve. For now celebrations are in order! Go Caps!!

  2. Hoods, I don’t think you could have said it better. Thanks for a great tournament.

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