For the second year in a row, my Ultimate Frisbee team has made it to the national championships. Last year we went into the final round of 16 seeded 13th and finished 11th after a tough pre-quarter final loss to Boston's Tandem. This year we've had a pretty solid showing in tournaments and won the Big Sky sectional (Utah, Wyoming, Montana, Idaho, Alberta). We then went to Burlington, Washington (about 80 miles north of Seattle) and competed in the most difficult and power stacked regional championship. We qualified by finishing 4th in the tourney (out of 16 teams) behind the last three consecutive national champions.
We go into Florida next week seeded 6th, the highest we've ever been ranked in the country. The format of the tournament puts us in one of 4 pools to start and then the pools are reshuffled based upon our initial results. We are up against the third seeded team in the country, Slow White out of New York City. This team beat us last year at nationals and finished 2nd. This year we played them one time, at the Emerald City Classic or ECC and they beat us again. So we are hoping to break that streak. We'll also have to play a team from Denver, Bad Larry who is a perennial nationals qualifier. And the final team in our pool is Black Molly from the Triangle area. All of these teams are good and if we want any chance at holding seed or better, we need to win all these games...or at least that is how I feel.
Our team has changed from last year, we lost Rick to retirement, EZ, Kasi and Russ decided to take the year off, Rebecca moved, Andy Short got injured and Nevin isn't playing the series. But we added some great talent with Matt Luck, Timmy Murray, Theresa Weber, Alex Zimmerman and Grant Alban. Unfortunately, Grant was hurt early on like Andy and neither will be on our roster next week. We're a little worried about the time change, last year it really effected us in the first two games and we lost them both. People are trying to go to bed earlier and get up earlier to prepare as many of us will be getting into Sarasota Wednesday night and have to play at 9:30 AM Eastern time the next morning...that is 7:30 AM Montana time!
I hope to keep you all posted on our progress.