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SPWK3 Emotions vs. The Dictators

We welcome MUD Poet Laureate Mark DQ

The Dictators' Emotions: The Ballad of the Game of the Week

Twas a blustery day on the fourth of May, when two teams came down to the river to play a game for the ages, or at least of the week, from which only one team would extend its win streak[1].

In came Emotions, their last three they had won, one loss on their record, not quite per-fec-tion. The Dictators were there to answer their glare, with zone D aplenty and hucks thrown with great care.

Wiener to Graf, started the first half. Then Maya to Phil, caused an emotional laugh. Emotions had scored two, the Dictators still none, until Shoemaker strode deep and hauled in a long one[2].

Schaffenberger's big D, stopped Emotions' surge for three, the Cobbler[3] then scored from the lefty Josh Z. Push pass to Thompson from the one they call Harinthon, Nielsen with a big sky[4], and then Nielsen to Griffin.

Sami's huge defense led to Dictator's offense[5], When H then hit Maggie, to up the suspense[6]. Eklund to Harper, answered by Keith to Christine, Emotions back within one, nose to nose are these teams!

The play of the game of the game of the week, came from Sami's high release break which looked real freakin' sleek[7]. Emotions showed emotions, needing to call a timeout, down by two at this point, their faces did pout.

Eric then scored, coming out of the brief pause, bringing close to the half like he was Santa Claus[8]. Oh the mighty Emotions, down by three at game's middle, gathered quick to discuss how to solve the Dictator's riddle.

The second act began, with a tough foul call, sending back Collier's dump D on a very high stall[9]. Sami to the Cobbler followed by H to Ben Graf, is how the first scores went in the next half.

10-6, 11-6, then 11-7, 12-7 12-8 to 13-8, and then Emotions seemed deadened. But Emotions don't die, they always fight back, the next two they did score, on their comeback attack[10].

Up five at one point, but now within three, could the Dictators quell this Emotional spree? The Dictators next score brought their lead up to four, how could Emotions come back with anything more?

The wind was a-swirlin', as the victory banner began unfurlin', but "Wait!" cried Mateo, his eyebrows a-furrowin', 14-10 was the score, the game not quite over, so he dispatched his top line like NASA dispatched the Mars rover[11].

Cap'n Mead brings one in[12], and so does Harinthon[13], But what kind of answer do they have for Griffin? No answer we know of, or at least that was seen, as Brianna scores again, she's a scoring machine[14]!

By the side of the river, at the park called Riverside, one team left quite sullen while the other smiled wide. What lesson was learned, in the defeat of Emotion? That the Dictators will fight with relentless devotion.

[1] Not really, though.  The Dictators came into this game on a one game losing streak. [2] Assisted by Andrew Eklund [3] Shoemaker's unofficial nickname.  Credit to Christian Gaffney, I think. [4] Hsu to Neilsen to Schaffenberger. [5]Harper to Benel. [6] Dictators lead 5-4. [7] Sami to Valdez. [8] 8-5 Dictators at half. [9] Foul call on the mark. [10] Notes from the second half are tough to read, they got soaked on the author's bike ride home.  These eight scores include a Munson catch in the end zone, a sweet Shen layout score, Graf throwing it to someone, a Hsu score, and four other indecipherable/unmemorable scores. [11] [12] Assisted by Keith. [13] Assisted by Graf.  Gorgeous put. [14] Assisted by Zukoff.


Every season features new captains. This Spring, Gabe Finkelstein, and Jake Walkup are 2 of MUD’s freshest. You might remember Gabe and Jake from such teams as The Funeral, Toast, and Social Studies. This season, they captain Alphabet Soup. For our first installment of Game of the Week, we visited East River Park to see Alphabet Soup take on Emotions, captained by Mateo Mead, former captain of such teams as The Funeral, Toast, and Social Studies. Thats right, the students take on the teacher, in a plot line ripped the Fall 2013 season.

As players were throwing on the carpet, and others were just arriving, Finkelstein assured, Wilson Chen that, “You can throw as many hammers as you want, because I’m not going to be one of those captains” Time will only tell Gabe.

Mateo and Gabe flip, Gabe wins, and elects to pull. Theres a strong wind crossing the field, as is often the case here at East River Park. Mateo will start at the north end of the field and the game will begin promptly at 6:29. Activity on the track this evening includes elementary school kids having track practice. Sunset is scheduled for 7:44.

Alpha pulls, and plays zone to start. Benjamin Graf throws a big floating force side back hand to find Mateo yards shy of the end zone. The Alpha zone has been beaten, Mateo throws a dishy little thing to Michael Albanese, and its 1-0 Emotions on top. Emotions pull from the south, they play a zone D, the swing throw goes off to Alphabet's Cat Rice, who cant reach the swing, and its a quick turn. Emotions Disc, swing to Maya Perry, scoring throw to Paul Robustelli, and its 2-0 Emotions are taking over. The Emo pull lands short of the south endzone, Dan Bolivar picks up, the Emotions cup forms around the Alpha handlers, Josh Kent is to Dan’s break side. Dan Bolivar doesn’t need any help. DB guides the offense straight up field, ending the point on a 30 yd throw to Peter Horton. 2-1 Alpha is catching up. The pull lands on the far side line, with Alpha’s zone setting up, and an unforced error leads to the turn, Alpha scores quick, 2-2.

Centurion, Keith Piaseczny has arrived to shore up this Emotions offense. Maggie Mead receives the pull, and its’ Maggie, Keith and Ben anchoring the back field, the disc goes to Keith to Ben, to Maggie to Mateo, back to Maggie, then back to Mateo, somewhere in that passing Alpha switched to man, Mateo with the disc, on the near sideline, marked by Gabe, throws to Phil Vlahakis, and Emotions are back on top, 3-2. Katherine Cole picks up the pull, and pushes the disc up field to Josh Kent, who throws to Cat Rice, through the cup, but Allie Wassel is there with the Layout D from the short deep. Emotions Disc, Mateo throws a dying forehand. Turnover. Kent picks up, throws to Pete, and it’s off the tips of his fingers. Keith picks up, bladey dangerous veteran forehand, Mateo pulls it down. 4-2 Emotions pulling away. Cat Rice with an assist to Tom Kucera for the score, 4-3. Next point, Emo turns over at half field, Bolivar picks up, throws, disc sails out of bounds, Keith picks up for Emo, swing throw to Maya, who just cant get there. Bolivar goes for the quick strike kill, Mateo says no, posterizes Gabe for the D. Emotions swell up the field, Mateo takes over, score. 5-3 Emotions hold strong. Emo’s new D strategy is man. They believe they are better athletes, than Alphabet Soup, but this Soup seems a bit runny. Pete with the disc throws to Wilson Chen, short of the endzone, throw to Bolivar in the endzone, but he cant hold on. Emo quickly turns at midfield, DB big backhand that doesn’t look like it will be caught, but Pete, reads and comes down with the swilly throw. Quick throw to Ethan Grund and it’s 5-4.

“Take me out coach too many bad throws,” pleads Bolivar to the sideline, this guy needs a few points off.

Alpha Scores off a quick turn, and its tied at 5-5. Alpha’s pull falls near the goal line. Their zone defense sets up quickly, but is soon permeated by a core of familiar Emo handlers  Maggie, Ben and Keith. Advancing down field, Emotions turn at the end-zone. Mark Popinchalk picks up the disc throws big, but the wind carries it over the far sideline just past midfield. Alpha sets their zone defense, Pete, playing in the top of the cup, pulls down a D for Alpha. A quick big throw to Mark who pulls down the disc to redeem his turnover. Alpha scores 5-6. For the first time, Alphabet Soup has the lead.

Pulling, Alphabet brings the famous Weseleyan Zone defense, Emo works to turn down field, Alphabet Soup quickly drops. Keith with the disc, looks down field, waits showing forehand, sees Mateo with a step on his defender, throws the forehand, it bends, it will hit the front corner of the north end zone, but Mateo can't reach, the disc hits the ground. Dan Bolivar picks up force side throw to Jake who throws to Ethan, then up line to Tom, and Mike, Emotions run the disc around their end zone, but cant find any upfield traction, but they could play this game all night. Alphabet Soup finds a D, but Peter goes down in injury, looks like his right shoulder more info as it becomes available. Peter is helped to the sideline bleachers, Gabe subs in for his injured teammate. Quick Alpha score DB to Ethan, 5-7. Alphabet Soup pulls to half field, unforced error leads to Emotional turn over. Upfield throw, Mateo gets a hand on a pass to Tom, Emo disc. Soon after Emo scores. 6-7. Alpha takes half on a score by Abby Murray.

Halftime. 6-8 Alphabet Soup on top.

Emotions are talking about going to the disc, and the need to dictate through their offense what happens on the field. They’ve lost some intensity, but this is all very moving stuff.

Alphabet Soup is going to keep using their zone defense. It’s gotten them this far, a come from behind 2 point lead, it will take them the rest of the way.

The first possession out of half time featured Cat Rice picking up some trash throws once at midfield and again in the end zone. Giving Alphabet Soup a lead they would hold, and grow for the rest of the game, as Emotions seemed to have a fit in the rain and cold. Notable plays for Emotions by Jaime 'Spoon' Lawler, but they're not enough.

Final thoughts on an early season game. This was a cool windy night. Emotions broke out to an early lead, but could only look on as Alphabet Soup made quick scores after turn overs, puzzling Emotions. Alphabet Soup was able to make big throws on the arms of Kent and Dan Bolivar. Bolivar was able to recognize open space and get there before his defender. Emotions weren’t able to contain him. Though Emotions were able to stop a great deal of up field movement, Dan was always able to reset to Katherine Cole, or Josh Kent. Gabe Finkelstein was pleased to implement his Wesleyan zone, ‘minnows and sharks’ he whispered to himself as he stalked the sidelines.

As for Emotions. Mateo was his most effective/consistent player. While Alphabet Soup might have found energy in the wind and cold, Emotions were drained by it, their drops and reluctance to make plays increased as the evening drew on. Fortunately for these Emotions, warm weather is here.



The teams are drafted, the schedule is set. Game of the Week returns.

Check in here for an account of all the throws, bids and sideline banter of each weeks’ featured game.

As always, see you on the field.

SMW1: Toast vs. LazerEggs
Summer League is here. Friendships and rivalries are renewed. If you were on Christian's team for the Spring season and find yourself on Frazer's team for the summer, look no further than those drops and throwaways during the playoffs. Perhaps after 7 MUD seasons you've drifted from one captain to another, fearing that you may some day land on a Alex Schneider's team, always hoping on draft day you’ll find your way to Mateo’s team, on which you're sure to win some games and have fun giggling over his witticisms. Unfortunately, once again you’re on the new captain’s team, and you worry the season may be spent languishing in loss after loss while he figures out how to set up a Doodle. While it's tempting to believe that your team is a reflection of your captain and your team's fate is sealed on draft day, it's not true: teams are greater than the sum of their parts, but whatever. Summer is here, and you are where you are, get out your trick throws; bring on the swagger. If you've been talking up your game since Johnny Broadcast graced the pages of this website; now is the time. Show us what you've got.

Our first hightlight matchup takes us to East River Park where LazerEggs take on Toast. Mateo Mead captains Toast, his ambition to dominate the league is obvious, though not as overt as season’s past, his roster is highlighted by Jordan Rosefigura, John Sakon, and Jon Read. While Alex Schneider and K-Cole, seem bent on returning to the top of the league after last season’s embarrassing showing. They’ve drafted a team with more than one capable handler. Josh Kent returns to their service, hopefully more often, Chris Nelson, Scott ‘Shaqfu’ Knackmuhs, and Chris Ward round out the back field for this squad. On this Wednesday evening, the numbers were light. Toast had 1 woman present at the time of the pull, Rosefigura, while Casey Markenson was the singular woman for LazerEggs.

While some locals did push-ups in the back of the endzone, teams cheered, the sky grew dark, and rain was forecasted post game. On the first point Mateo throws a slow forehand to Jon Read, who catches for a score against Josh Kent, 1-0. Toast neglects to play defense until 2/3rds field when Evan Simon throws it away. Toast walks it up for a score 2-0. Chris Ward, disgusted, takes the field. Halfway down the field, Toast looks to capitalize on another drop and Sakon makes the upline move. Score, 3-0 Toast. Jon Read checks in that his lungs are ready, and takes the field for Mateo. With the arrival of Abby Murray, a second Lazer woman, Schneider has a gender imbalance in his favor, they’ll play a 5-2 line, while Toast can only field 5-1. Mateo looks longingly to the field gates. Maggie Mead, where are you? Toast’s junk defense, meets LazerEggs as Kent puts the big backhand to Schneider for the score. 3-1. On offense, Toast looks to strike back quickly. Sakon big forehand. Jon Read can't get there. “Almost beautiful placement,” says Mark DQ, dismissing the effort from the sidelines. Kent makes another big throw, and after a quick assist, score is 3-2. Maggie Mead where are you? Toast looks deep to Jordan who drops what should have been a two hand score. Toast turnover. Lazer turnover. Toast has a hard time with the lane poach, but Lazer can't hold force. Toast throws wherever they want, which leads to a throw to nobody. No worries though because Lazer turns over in their end zone. Toast has the disc and Francis Giknis lays out, but can't get there, and we are in a grind out point of drops. After some handler work the Schaffenberger hammers to Markenson for the score, 3-3. And we are all tied up.

Maggie Mead strolls in. Toast calls time out.

After the time out, Toast turn over. Josh Kent picks up, crowd goes wild. Lazer score, 3-4. Lazer gains the lead for the first time. Another forgettable Toast turnover. Chris Nelson to Mark DQ for a score, 3-5. Josie Pratt is here, giving the Lazer women a much needed sub.

LazerEggs calls timeout. Mateo encourages his team to learn each other's names.

Toast, with the disc, quick turnover. Lazer works it for a bit, before the throw away. Toast pushes up forehand sideline for the score, 4-5. Lazer still holds the lead.

Ladies and gentlemen, it’s 7:04 pm and Orion Burt has arrived! Captain Schneider gets dishy and throws it right to Mateo. DQ sky D. Mateo Ds a Schafenberger backhand. Toast turnover and this point is too long. Scott Asher D over DQ, and Toast works to a Mateo-Read score, 5-5 tied again. Next point, Lazer turnover. Toast works to the endzone. Chris Ward likes the Sakon hammer to nowhere, and its Lazer disc. Josh Kent’s scoober is off target.

Toast works it up against a forehand force man defense. At the goal line, mere feet from the force sideline, Maggie Mead throws a bender forehand. The disc arches to the breakside cone, Sakon reads the disc, Chris Nelson is on D; it’s a difficult catch made no easier by the blady throw. It’s the kind of throw you can catch at only one point: the kind of throw that says desperation: the kind of throw that leaves Maggie’s dump option, exclaiming, “I’m right here!:” the kind of throw you only see in Summer League. Sakon goes up, his defender locks step with him. No catch, the disc falls to the ground. Sakon calls foul.

The sideline grumbles/gripes and the disc goes back to Maggie. After some handler action, the disc moves to the break side, Francis scores for Toast after a confusing set of throw, 6-5 Toast. The players are hot and tired. Nate Sany arrives to relieve the Lazer men. Lazer moves the disc up field; Orion Burt gets whatever he wants. Jordan, who finds herself in front of the disc in the end zone, gets a D for Toast. Toast methodically goes upfield for the score, 7-5. Chris Ward to Nate Sany for a Lazer score after a drought, 7-6. The Eggs look to lengthen this half. Quick Toast throwaway. Sany is tall. Score is tied, 7-7. Tall guy Sany gets a D on a Maggie Mead bender, and Lazer moves up field. Turnover. Toast disc, Maggie redeems herself with a flat throw to space for Jordan to run down. Toast takes half 8-7.

To start the second half, Toast brings a zone defense. Sakon lays out on the carpet, gets a rug burn and the D. Asher throws a hammer. Sakon goes up for the catch. Drop. Foul. Contest. Nelson signals “that’s two.” Toast scores, 9-7. Toast brings the zone and holds all the way to the end zone as Lazer makes all the throws and catches, 9-8. Quick Toast throwaway. DQ hammer D’d by Sakon. Toast throwaway. Schneider to Sany for score. At 7:40pm the score is 9-9. This game will end at 8pm. Jordan catches a Jon Read throw between her legs and dishes to Josh Zukoff who throws it away. Lazer picks up. Orion scores, 9-10. Mateo hucks to Nate Mandel, 10-10. Lazer turnover. Sakon makes a big throw that’s D'd by Sany. Kent makes a big throw that’s D'd by Mandel. Toast plays keep away in their end zone, eventually finding their way out to half field where Sakon puts up the OI forehand to the end zone for the score, 11-10 Toast. Schaffenberger to Sany up the forehand sideline. Mateo has position, stands his ground and Nate Sany’s arms aren’t long enough. The veteran captain gets a D on one of the league’s younger players. Toast works up to midfield turnover. LazerEggs ten yards out, dump swing, Abby with the assist for the score, 11-11. Toast throws to Mandel who is D'd by taller Sany. Lazer doesn’t possess the disc for long before Sakon gets the run thru D and Toast scores again, 12-11. Nelson throws it away at the goal line. Asher throws it away, and Toast misses an opportunity. Schneider steps in on an injury call, activates his offense, and Nelson scores. At 7:56 the score is tied at 12-12. The league’s permit expires at 8:00, so the captains agree universe point. Kent takes the field for a rare appearance on defense. Schneider steps off. Toast does what they want to half field. Soccer Ball on field. Sany guards Asher who is hanging out deep. Suddenly Asher takes the in cut, Sany follows. And Sakon gets away from DQ, who perhaps thought Sany had the deep poach. Jon Read flicks it easy to wide open Sakon and wins it for Toast, 13-12. The rabid East River Park Soccer players take the field, and the night is over.

This was a tight game all the way through. While LazerEggs and Toast both had the lead at times, neither team was able to create back to back breaks to put the game away. Eventually Toast won on universe point forced by time. If asterisks can be placed to the Summer League records, this game deserves one, as it effectively ended in a tie. Neither team had an advantage, and due to time/permitting constraints, the game came to a premature end. The lesson here, getting to the fields on time can be the only advantage you need.

SpW5: Chicken vs. Pillow

Week Five – Thursday – Riverside

Pillow Talk and Chicken and Waffles enter Thursday's tilt at the bottom of the MUD Standings. Chicken & Waffles are 2-10 while Pillow once the league darlings, find themselves at 4-7. These are certainly difficult times. Pillow Talk enters on a 5 game downward spiral, Chicken & Waffles look to avoid one. Each team needs a momentum shift.

Marquee Matchups: Phil Hospod vs. Eric Shoemaker and Phil Yates vs. Jerald Isseks and/or Jon Read were the matchups of the game. Chicken & Waffles's Andrew Segoshi and captain Alex Schneider also had good games, but almost no one on CW could match up with Pillow’s Nate Mandel, Sara Cornish and captain Jake Hall.

First half: Sam Linton to captain Schneider with a sweet toe-the-line grab over Shaq Fu, 1-0 C&W. Cornish puts into the sky for Dan Nelson over Yates, 1-1. Mark Chen throws the game’s first turnover to Schneider or Hospod (neither can get to it). Segoshi gets the D back for CW. Maor Ben-Gur finds Chen with a lefty break, 2-1 C&W. Captain Hall to Zeb Hermann ties it at 2-2. Therese Zosel-Harper drops it, but then Hermann drops it. Hospod tries a hammer that sails too far. Schneider then gets a poach D in the lane, and Yates finds Hospod for the Phil connection, 3-2 C&W. Next point, Segoshi has a huge dive in the dirt for a dump D but he misses. Nelson throws a weird one up to Hall, 3-3. Hunt Clark is on the sideline discussing new centurion Bob Suvanich’s long career in MUD, and at the mention of one of Bob’s former, "bad" teams, captain Alex perks up and defensively asks "you talking about me?" Last place is a paranoid burden. In the game, Pillow Talk gets a break as captain Jon Read finds Nelson, 3-4 Pillow. Mandel gets a dump D on Ben-Gur’s throw and then shoots it to Read to go up another break, 3-5. Schneider gets a pretty throw to Yates but he can’t stay in-bounds. Hall then hucks it out of bounds. Chen finds Zosel-Harper despite Pillow Talk’s sudden backhand force, 4-5. Hunt trusts his captain’s baggage, launching one deep to Cornish who gets a monster sky over a well-positioned captain Katherine Cole, 4-6. With the backhand force favoring his lefty flick, Ben-Gur easily gets it to Casey Markenson, 5-6. Hunt misses Ariella Rosen on the next position, and Chen puts a sweet huck to Sam Linton. Linton finds Zosel-Harper to tie the game, 6-6. Hall shows off a nifty OI shot to Hermann who brings it down over Schneider, 6-7. Cole drops it. Hunt throws it away, but then he gets what should have been a callahan on the dump D. He squeezes one into Bryn Tulip amid Linton laying out, 6-8.

Halftime: Before the half Pillow’s Zach Wasser showed up without shorts. He subbed in having borrowed Josh Schaffner’s. Eventually Zeb Hermann offered his to Wasser, and Zach chose Zeb’s in order to be wearing all red. Schaffner gets his clothes back while Hermann played the remainder of the game in steel-grey boxer-briefs. Schneider reminded his team that they’re still in this and it was recently tied.

Second Half: Newly splendid in red, Wasser throws it away. Jared Lenow does the same. Hermann, feeling cheeky, puts up an amazingly bad huck. Nelson Ds Schneider’s throw. Abby Murray, who showed up at the half and added yet another woman to C&W’s line, gets the D with her back. Murray then drops a score after Rosen makes a D bid. Cornish can’t resist an up-the-line cut from Wasser, but neither can Nelson and the two fellas collide as the disc hits the ground. Murray can’t quite get to a throw on the line. Hermann has a hot IO break to Mandel. Cornish throws it away up-the-line again. Mandel gets a poach D, feeds it to Hermann and takes off. Hermann puts up a chancy, bladey huck to Shaq Fu? No it’s to Mandel, 6-9 Pillow. Jake Hall screams “Bookends, baby!” Segoshi asks, “That was only the first point after half?” Yes. Second point: Schaffner and Cornish sandwich Mark Chen to D a Schneider huck. Then Pillow turns it. Ben-Gur gets stuck on the line and confuses the protocol for a high stall punt when you also have a wide open swing, sending the swing way over Chen’s head. Hunt throws it away. Alex finds Nora Sheridan, 7-9. Yates yells “Yeah Chick Wafs!” Jerald Isseks boosts it to Cornish, 7-10. Schneider throws it away. Hall jumps about 20 feet in the air to catch his team’s swill, lands, and guns a hammer to Danny Nelson, 7-11, play of the game. Mandel sees a huck on the next possession, leaves his man, runs about 30 yards and gets the D. Tulip hucks it to Nelson, 7-12. Segoshi finds Hospod, 8-12. Mandel turfs it. Chicken gets it to the line and then Ben-Gur throws it away. Yates wonders, “have we ever scored when we’ve been on the end line?” The scale of his “ever” is unclear. Shoemaker almost brings down a nasty score sky over Hospod, but then he gets a nasty D sky on the other end. Hermann throws it away. Zosel-Harper can’t hold on. Mandel gets it to Shaq Fu, 8-13. KCole gets tired of this nonsense and finds Lenow who pulls it in as Tulip bids, 9-13. After Cornish’s throwaway, KCole hucks it flat and far to Segoshi who skies Tulip, 10-13. Looking like Chicken is on a run, Chen Ds a Hermann huck to Cornish. Or was it to Schaffner? But then Murray drops it. Wasser puts a pretty one to Cornish deep, but it clangs off her hands. Hospod hucks it too far. Pillow gives it right back. Hospod misses Chen this time. Isseks puts up a baby huck to Cornish, but Markenson has her boxed out. Cornish calls a foul! Contest! Back to Isseks who this time gets off a money break to Mandel, 10-14. Pillow causes another turn and Hermann looks at Mandel in traffic. What kind of country is Montana? Over Yates and Schneider. Game Pillow, 10-15.

HERE'S WHAT MATEO DON’T GET: Though Chicken & Waffles could match up evenly against plenty of Pillow Talkers, they didn't seem to have a solution for Jake Hall, Sarah Cornish and Nate Mandel besides “hope they make mistakes.” Chicken's star handler Josh Kent who engineered their most recent victory (against Pillow Talk) was not present. The captains of Pillow Talk admitted after the game that Chicken & Waffles is like a bunch of pieces that don’t clearly connect, except when Kent is there. So what’s this guy doing missing games? Alex and Katherine have officially made a winning season impossible and there are still nine games left. They don’t have to play The Funeral again, but they do face the Good Guys three more times. This Sunday however, they play a leaderless Quiet. It’s time to turn things around.

This Game of the Week graciously provided by Mateo Mead.

SpW5: The Funeral vs. Good Guys

Week Five - Wednesday - East River Park

The Funeral has rolled over early season competition, and after a befuddling slip up with BYOB, they find themselves 12-1. While The Funeral was at the peak of their powers Good Guys' Captain Frazer was known to estimate that only his team could defeat The Funeral. It is a moot point now; however, the claim was made. Game of the WeekTM was on the sidelines to tell the story.

At 6:23 Frazer was stalling for his women.
At 6:25 Captains flip. #J9 couldn't say who won.
At 6:30 teams huddled up.

In the Good Guys’ huddle, Frazer asks... "Who's our captain?" Teams discuss strategy. Good Guys are having fun.

First half: The Funeral pulls. Jeff Ng picks up. A little back and forth handler action. The Funeral plays a clammy zone; Craig Barowsky throws a turnover. Devin Horne (The Funeral) has a wide open up line throw to Funeral Director Mateo Mead for the score, 1-0. Pull by the Funeral, a few Good Guy throws, Brian Rossi takes the deep shot to Ng. It's tipped by Mateo, Jeff bobbles... can’t hold on. The Funeral, looking to widen their lead, quickly pick up near the goal line. Mateo blows a swing hammer. Turnover. This should be easy for Good Guys. Frazer IOs a backhand to Ng (now that's co-captains!) for the score. Tie game, 1-1. Good Guys call time out.

Lexi Zalk has shown up, she needs time to cleat up. Frazer declares it's now a fair game as Good Guys have 2 women and can legally field a full line. Inside The Funeral huddle, Mateo calls my bad. Inside the Good Guys huddle there is a discussion of zone. 

Good Guys pull and rush down the field to set up a surprising clam defense. Funeral struggles to adapt. Amadeo Lasansky gets a quick poach D out of the short middle. Frazer catches the score. 1-2 Good Guys. On the next point, Lexi gets a tip D on the dump to #J9. Good Guys handler action, big throw to the end zone. Horne tips it, but Dan Seto makes the catch, 1-3 Good Guys. Big pull for the Good Guys. Man defense, big throw to Horne, drop. Big throw for Good Guys, Lexi can't make the catch. The Funeral has some handler action until Alan Knox puts up a big throw. Seto steps in with the D! Karina Ray gets the D right back, and The Funeral, again on their own goal line work it around, patient now with the disc. Line throw to Knox who milks it to the end zone, 2-3. Good Guys still in the lead. Funeral pulls to a patient Good Guy Offense. Turnover on an errant throw. The Funeral give it back. Good Guys throw it to Mateo. Lexi gets a step up D. Good Guys throw to the end zone, and again Mateo will not let it happen. The Funeral with the disc, quick work up the field. Mateo to Sean Petterson, 3-3. Frazer picks up The Funeral's pull, quick throw to Chris Ward. Back to Frazer, big throw to Lexi with a nice throw to space LoLo who catches the score, 3-4 Good Guys. Back in the lead. Funeral disc, errant throw by Reynaldo Punzalan. Turnover. Patient GG offense. Drop. #J9 picks up for The Funeral and throws up the line to Gabe Finkelstein for the score, 4-4. Funeral pulls. Jeff Ng picks up, he’s trapped in the end zone. Big throw that Amadeo can't bring in. Petterson hucks a turnover. Frazer throws big and Chris Ward can't make the catch. Knox hammer to Finkelstein for the score. That's 2 in a row for Gabe, 5-4 The Funeral. They pull. Good Guys, bad decision turn over. Steve Carpenter to Ruben Land, 6-4 The Funeral. The ensuing pull drifts out of bounds. Jeff Ng, from the brick, puts a big throw up to Frazer who throws a 5-yd forehand turnover. Matt Olsen gets a D. Good Guys turn it over again. Punzalan hits Sandy Schaffa for the score, 7-4. The Funeral. They are running away with this. Jeff Ng picks up the pull, patient work to half field, big shot to Seto, Oh! he can't make the catch. Funeral, on their own goal line, patiently find each other up the field. Chris Clark, with a Colt .45 forehand, can't connect to Schaffa, turnover. Good Guys take a big shot to Frazer who makes the catch. Good Guys now two-thirds of the way up the field, patiently move the disc between the handlers. Line flick to Seto with the big grab for the score, 7-5. Good Guys aren't out of this yet. Ruben Land jacks a forehand out the back of the end zone. Good Guys on their own goal line. Patience, miscommunication, turnover. Ryan Hamill gets a D on Ruben, but Ward can't hold on to the next throw. Unreal. Funeral with the disc 15 yards out, very deep stack. Knox cuts in for the catch and turns for the line throw to Horne. Score. That's half. The Funeral lead 8-5.

Halftime: It's a real campfire circle in the Good Guys' huddle. Frazer wants to simplify the game. He sees his team making drops and is interpreting this as a lack of focus. He wants to win the 50/50 battle catches. Mateo tells The Funeral they are a team of monsters and they can all play big. “Everyone is killing it...bringing the pressure.” Mateo pumps up The Funeral.

Second half: Good Guys pull. Funeral works the disc. Seto with the D at half field. Then he gets the grab on huck that's misread by Horne. Quick throw to Barowsky for the score. 8-6, The Funeral. Pull. The Funeral works to half field and Ruben overthrows Sandy Schaffa. Good Guys' disc and Ruben gets a D. Funeral's disc and Frazer gets a D. Frazer to Seto, half field hammer. "That was amazing," exclaims Chris Ward. 8-7, Good Guys are catching up. Schaffa to Knox to Owen Simpson for the big forehand to Knox for The Funeral's first point of the second half. Score is 9-7. On his line, Frazer recognizes a threatening defense posed by The Funeral and is determined to beat it. The Funeral pulls a low one and the Good Guys drop it at half field. Karina Ray gets The Funeral score on a throw from Simpson, 10-7. The Funeral brings out their Zone defense; there is no wind. Good Guys recognize. Hammer to Olsen in the flat. Dump to handlers, around to Frazer. Again hammer to Olsen. Working it horizontally now, Amadeo makes a catch inches out, dump swing to find Olsen for the score, 10-8. The Funeral hold the lead. Good Guys pull OB, they set up their zone defense, still no wind. Funeral recognizes. Lexi swoops in from the force side wing for D on a swing. She gambled big and won. Frazer picks up. Dump to Amadeo, up line throw to Ward, for another Good Guys score, 10-9. Good Guys pull and once again bring the zone, The Funeral recognizes, Frazer gets a tip D. "Frazer playing like an animal!" screams Barowsky. Ward puts a big gentle back hand to Jeff Ng. Score: 10-10. Good Guys pull and zone. The Funeral beats it. Horne scores, 11-10. The Funeral pulls and traps the Good Guys in their end zone, a little throwing around. Good Guys throw it away to half field. The Funeral with disc. Punzalan to Knox, 12-10. The Funeral regain their edge. Big pull from Carpenter. A few throws into the point, Steve gets the D. Throw to Ruben. Disc bounces off Ruben's chest. Turnover. Big throw to Barowsky with the catch. Timeout two-thirds up the field.

Everyone needs a breather. Chris Ward brings water to the Good Guys. Carpenter's 2-year-old son brings it to The Funeral. Frazer has a plan. Ward tells a story about an earlier zone point when Mateo said, “We could do this all day!” and then promptly turned it over.

Disc is in. Barowsky dishes to Frazer. Line throw to a perfectly-timed cut by LoLo. 12-11 The Funeral. Jacques Couvilon is getting excited as the Good Guys are again within 1. They'll need 2 breaks to win this game. Good Guys come zone. The Funeral work. Eventual #J9hammer to Horne for the score, 13-11. That point took a lot out of Good Guys, who need a score. They send out a line to do it Barowsky is itching to play sky ball and Ward hasn't fired his forehand rifle all night. Short of half field, Barowsky gets too much deep respect from Petterson and is open for every under cut, three catches in a row. Frazer to Barowsky and back and forth until Good Guys are 3/4 up field. Good Guys in red zone, Barowsky with disc. Dish to Frazer, bender to Jeff, score. They still trail by 1, 13-12. Good Guys show person D. Funeral is open for everything. Big throw to Knox, but it's OB. Good Guys have a few looks: throwaway. The Funeral with the disc now. Throw again bounces of Ruben's chest. This time he makes the catch. Knox puts a weird IO to Ruben for the score, 14-12. We are in cap time, but the score negates it. The Funeral pull sails onto the barrier track, Frazer takes the disc to a generous brick mark. Lefty forehand to Lexi. 6 seconds later, Frazer lays out for dump catch, keeping the possession alive. Olsen puts an up-line IO to Frazer, but as the disc bends the wrong way, Frazer can't get there, and the disc, along with Good Guys hopes, falls dead at half field. Knox blades it to Ruben for the W. Final score 15-12.

The teams line up for hi fives. Quite a game. Good Guys think they beat themselves and that they're the better team. The Funeral discusses favorite plays and great dump Ds. The Funeral cheer, "Good Guys!" Good Guys cheer, "Funeral: you're dead to us," but it was inaudible. An undisclosed source close to Good Guy leadership said, “That cheer sounded as yucky as our end zone offense.”

Post Game Thoughts: Good Guys' Lexi and LoLo played the entire game, and were still coming up with plays until the end, an impressive performance. The Funeral looked confident throughout, and quickly adjusted when strategies were ineffective, Good Guys weren't able to adjust as quickly.

HERE'S WHAT I DON'T GET: The Good Guys inability to adapt to The Funeral's defense. While the deep game may work on some of the lower teams in the league, and it did keep them in this game, it didn't win this game. The big throws forced Good Guys into battles over 50/50 discs, which they had difficulty winning. Frazer noted at halftime that Good Guys would have to win these battles in the second half. One way to win 50/50 discs, is to not make the throws that lead to these situations. If Good Guys had been able to favor a shorter game for greater portions of the field, they may have found more success, and even a W.

At midseason, The Funeral's place at #1 is a foregone conclusion. Good Guys have had success all season against teams that aren't The Funeral and after tonight's game, Frazer was overheard making plans to be in 2nd place come playoffs. With BYOB's recently upsetting behavior, and Nader’s Raiders counting their wins, can Good Guys even hold on to the number 2 spot until seasons end?

SpW5: BYOB vs. Quiet

Week Five – Tuesday – Riverside

Coming off Upset Sunday when Quiet knocked off Good Guys and BYOB took down The Funeral, we here at The Latest came out to this Tuesday night matchup to see which of these teams is actually more upsetting.

Marquee Matchups: Jenny Norris (Quiet) vs. Sarah Heffernan (BYOB) looked to be the night's main matchup though sparks were sure to fly between Brendan Snodgrass (Quiet) vs. John Sakon (BYOB). By the end, Norris and Heff mostly shut each other down, Sakon was involved in the most scores, but Christian Gaffney (Quiet) and his former teammate/old workhorse Mark DQ (BYOB) probably entertained the crowd the most.

First half: Captain Bob Suvanich to the bespectacled Dan Anthony, 1-0 BYOB. Paul McDonnell (Quiet) has his break throw D’d by Sarah Heffernan, but Quiet gets it back and Travis Rothbloom finds Evan Schulman for the score, 1-1. Quiet captain Gaffney gets a poach D on Dan Gerber and then hits Snodgrass, 1-2 Quiet. The next point takes about 15 minutes and is a classic turnover saga. It starts when Snodgrass Ds Bob’s blade to Sakon, but Sakon calls a foul and it goes back. Bob tries another blade and Gaffney Ds it. Then Heff gets to Gaffney’s break throw before Norris can. Snodgrass Ds Bob again. Gaffney throws away a huck to Snodgrass, but then Gaffney hand-blocks Sakon. Finally Rothbloom finds his captain to put Quiet up a break, 1-3. Though Norris Ds Sakon’s hammer to Josie Pratt, Bob gets it back D’ing a short huck by Gaffney. DQ soon finds Josie for the score, 2-3. And out comes the BYOB zone. Quiet busts that cup and Alex Berzofsky eventually finds Alex Kuo, 2-4. The two Alex’s shook hands and exchanged names after the point. Sometimes it takes 12 games to meet all your teammates. On the field, Snodgrass throws a rare hammer that DQ smacks or macks to the intended target, Schulman, 2-5 Quiet. Next point Snodgrass Ds Sakon’s huck. Gerber beats McDonnell to the Snodgrass throw, but then Gerber tries an IO to no one. Norris eventually finds Gaffney’s button hook cut with a sweet little break, 2-6. Gerber strikes back for BYOB with a pretty, teardrop push pass to a wide open Josie, 3-6. Quiet blows their possession and Sakon finds Heff on the break side, 4-6. BYOB tries Z again and gets the D on the line. Then they get super cloggy. Sakon makes a great bid on a Heff throw but he is OB. Zone is back on. Quiet is patient and successful for about 7 minutes, then Berzofsky puts a dumb floater right to Gerber’s deep D. Then DQ hucks it to Heff, 5-6. More zone. McDonnell drops a swing. Sakon hammer to DQ, 6-6. Quiet’s Nielsen can’t resist his wife, open by 30 yards, but he throws it about 15. DQ hammers to Sakon who makes a nice over the top, looking-back catch, 7-6 (that’s five in a row). Sakon short deep Ds a little throw from Rothbloom, and Bob honey hucks it to Heff, 8-6.

Halftime: In the huddle Gaffney explains that Ultimate is a games of the runs. Sakon tells Bob that they can call more travels, especially on Berzofsky.

Second Half: Sakon break to DQ, 9-6 BYOB. BKap shows up for Quiet. Gaffney finally subs out and tells his co-captain, “Brittany, they’re coming zone. Tell our team what to do.” Quiet doesn’t get the message. Turnover. Sakon to Heff, 10-6. Zone gets another D, Josie skies BKap, and then gets a nasty break off to Heff, 11-6 (that’s nine in a row). BKap finally finds Brad Russell and ends the drought, 11-7. BKap Ds Gerber’s huck to Jordan RoseFigura. Brendan Cambra throws it away. Sakon gives it back with a turf, but Nielsen throws it just out of Gaffney’s reach. Jeff Rohr turfs it. Gaffney overthrows BKap. Gerber puts it up to Sakon in double coverage. Huge sky, 12-7. Gaffney blade to Schulman, 12-8. Sakon finds RoseFigura, 13-8. Gaffney finds Snodgrass, 13-9. Quiet, playing much more intensely now gets the D and BKap breaks it to Nielsen, 13-10. Sakon hucks it to Josie, 14-10. Game point. Gaffney turfs it but then gets a poach D. Sakon D’s Norris’s overthrow. Gaffney Ds a huck to DQ, lots of contact, foul is debated and not called. Norris, high in the stall count, throws up a jump disc to a Sakon D. Kuo gets a fabulous dump D, but then slips and drops a beautifully thrown, easy score. DQ miraculously comes away with an in-cut catch after a full D bid by Gaffney. Schulman hand-blocks Sakon. Rothbloom throws it away. Heff turfs it. Gaffney throws it away. BYOB works it. Dan Anthony gets a newsclips bookends and hits Gerber for the win, 15-10. Turns out it is Bob’s 100th.

An exciting game sure, and it looked like Quiet was crawling back in it in the second half, but...

HERE’S WHAT I DONT GET: BYOB entered Week 5 with a disappointing record of 3-7, and a schedule that included Sunday games against The Funeral and Chicken & Waffles. Onlookers saw this schedule and safely assumed they would finish Sunday 1-1. BYOB thought otherwise. Premiering a zone defense that took advantage of their height, team chemistry, and a blustery day at Inwood BYOB was able to grab seven unanswered points, enough to outlast The Funeral 14-12 for the W in what is the biggest upset of the season, they would go on to have a similar performance against Chicken & Waffles. In this game, a similar story. While the BYOB zone was off to a slow start on this night, they found their footing and used their D’s to catch Quiet out of position, and score quick points. Quiet was caught off guard gave up a 3 point lead to find themselves down 2 at half, and quickly down by more as the second half and BYOB got rolling. Gaffney often laughs off a zone, directing his team to simply throw around the opposition but it wasn't there tonight. In MUD, it can be difficult to react to sudden strategy changes, especially when short handed.

BYOB enters Week 6 with a record of 6-7. With a game against #3 Nader’s Raiders, BYOB could find themselves in a tie by record for 3rd place. While Nader’s Raiders themselves have won 3 in a row, they have also struggled against zone defense. Will BYOB’s upsetting streak continue?

Special thanks to Mateo Mead for reporting from the field.

SpW4: Good Guys vs. Pillow Talk

Week Four – Friday – Riverside

Pillow Talk had a balanced line. In attendance were captains Jake Hall and Jon Read, most of Vassar College, Hunt and John Kim, and also present was Danielle Berardi in her first game back since Summer 2012. The Good Guys had one woman to begin the game, Larissa Wohl (“LoLo,” affectionately), so they started the game down a player. MUD legend Venu Manne strolled in to join forces with Good Guys for a few points of league founder vs. league founder action (John Kim vs. Venu), the likes of which MUD hasn't seen since Fall 2008.

First Half. Talor Gruenwald IO break to Ryan Hamil. 1-0 Good Guys. Rusty Venu drops two in the next point and Hunt Clark, with what Hamil described as a “classic, perfect Hunt throw,” hits Zach Wasser for the score. 1-1. GG’s Paul Robustelli to Amadeo Lasansky, 2-1 Good Guys. Pillow throw-away and then Amadeo to Dan Seto, 3-1 Good Guys. Wasser from Vassar gets an around break to Josh Schaffner, 3-2. Next, despite the fact that every time Hunt got the disc GG captain Jeff screamed “NO HUCK,” Hunt puts up another one to Jay Lucey. Was he straddling? Apparently not. 3-3. Venu Ds a John Kim shot to Jerald Isseks; Pillow captain Jon Read gets in Gruenwald’s and Rostustilli’s way for a deep D; GG gets it back though and captain Jeff finds Robustelli with a cute catch on the line, 4-3 Good Guys. Hamil goes lefty big to Gruenwald, 5-3. Robustelli pulls in a nasty, literally dirty layout catch and then hucks to Dan Seto, who skies Dan Nelson for another GG score, 6-3. Hunt, trying to stanch the bleeding, finds Pillow captain Jake Hall, 6-4. Captain Jeff responds with one to Venu, 7-4. And for half, Gruenwald sinks one to Piotr SVC, 8-4 Good Guys.

Second Half. Good Guys waste no time getting the D, and Seto finds Eleni Healey, who arrived a few points in to assist LoLo in the savagery, 9-4 Good Guys. Lucey to Wasser, 9-5. Venu, acting like it is 2009 and he’s at some exclusive, invite-only pickup, finds Seto for the score, 10-5. John Kim sees that and hits Wasser to make it 10-6. Venu again finds Seto after an amazing cross-field break by LoLo, 11-6. Next as Amadeo gets it to Seto for the 12-6 score, some punk on the sideline, probably Eric Shoemaker, says “old guys getting it done.” In disgust or solidarity, the ancient Piotr finds his captain Jeff, 13-6. Pillow Talk tried to take back momentum with an Isseks hammer to captain Jon’s spirit-foul teapot, 13-7. It briefly worked as captain Jon then found Schaffner, 13-8. But the masters took it back as Amadeo hit Piotr to make it game point, 14-8. Shaq Fu gets mentioned in the newsclips with an extraneous score to Vassar’s Wasser, 14-9. Pillow somehow gets one more point, 14-10. And then, even though they’d been silent all half, Gruenwald sends a huge huck to Robustelli for the GG win, 15-10.

Now, here’s what I don’t get: After starting 3-0 and tied for 1st, Pillow Talk dropped 2 in a row to The Funeral and Good Guys, respectively. Next they found a W3 win against BYOB, but since they have lost five in a row and have fallen to 6th place overall. Pillow Talk is all over the bed. Two early season wins barely came on universe point: they shushed Quiet during Opening Sunday Festivities, and found a come from behind victory over a gassed Nader’s Raiders. Pillow Talk’s early boasts may have been disingenuous; however, recent losses could be attributed to low attendance. One thing playing to Pillow Talk's favor: this evening won’t be over for 5 more weeks.

Good Guys, meanwhile, remain stuck behind The Funeral, having beaten every other team in the league (though they lost once to BYOB, oddly). It seems for the Good Guys that the season is getting a bit boring. captain Frazer has boasted that the Good Guys can beat The Funeral, and they will have that chance this coming Wednesday.

Thanks to 5-season MUD veteran Brad Paris for additional reporting.

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