2013 High School Western Championships - Sunday Recap

Posted: June 3, 2013 10:34 AM


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Open Division (Scoreboard)

Sunday morning, the brackets were set. The boys warmed up with one thing in mind, taking home the trophy. There was an intense quiet about the fields, the quiet before the storm. And what a storm it was!

In the first round of the day, three games were won by one point, two of those on universe. Everyone in the crowd was on the edge of their seats as Nathan Hale faced Berkeley with Atascadero and Monarch playing next door. Both games drew crowds who were curious about all the excitement. After a strong start by Nathan Hale who took half 7-4, Berkeley flew back into the game scoring three of the next four points. Nathan Hale responded with a run of their own, taking back a strong lead at 12-9 with the game to 13. But Berkeley refused to give up, again scoring three in a row and knotting it up at 12-12, sending the match up into overtime and making it a game to 14. Nathan Hale scored the next point to take a 13-12 lead and had the disc ready to score the game-winning point, but as the hard cap horn blew, Berkeley came up with a huge D that led straight into a full-field huck that tied the game and forced universe point. An unfortunate turn form Nathan Hale gave Berkeley the disc back with a short field. After a time out call, Berkeley was able to punch in the game winner.

As Berkeley and Nathan Hale battled it out, a similar story was unfolding next door between Atascadero and Monarch. Only this time, it was Monarch who came back from a 5-2 deficit to tie the game at 6-6. The two teams battled for the rest of the game, both defenses making the other’s offense work hard. Monarch would eventually tie the game at 12 all just before the hard cap went on. After a long point, Atascadero completed a huck just outside the end zone before punching it in for the victory.

On the other half of the bracket, South Eugene faced off against Roosevelt, and Franklin met Summit. South came out very strong, taking an early lead they would ultimately hold throughout the game. The South Eugene sidelines were impressively loud, keeping the game’s energy high. It seemed the only team with a sideline as loud as the Axemen’s was Franklin, who also came out very strong in their own quarterfinal match up. They took a 7-3 lead over Roosevelt and seemed up to the challenge of playing South Eugene, should they meet in the semifinals. Summit also had plans to reach South Eugene, however, and came out in the second half ready to play, scoring four goals and bringing the game to 10-8. Franklin had an unfortunate turnover close to the goal line but were saved by the bell of hard cap even after Summit punched in the last goal. Final score, 10-9 in Franklin’s favor.

The semifinal round paired a few teams coming off very big victories. Both Berkeley and Atascadero were ready. Having seen each other in other tournaments this season, they were both prepared for what the other would bring, making this one of the most exciting games of the round. Atascadero took a solid lead into half at 7-4. In what seemed to be a recurring trend, Berkeley came out of half with flying colors, scoring four of the next five points and tying the game at 8-8. The teams traded points back and forth until Berkeley was able to break the trend and go up by two. With the score at 12-10, Atascadero put up a gigantic huck, bringing the team back to life. The next point went back and forth and saw each team flirt with the end zone. Berkeley finally managed to earn the score on a break huck to take the game with a final score of 13-11.

In the other semifinal game; South Eugene and Franklin were set for what promised to be a high-intensity game and constant battle of energy. South got on the board first with the conversion of a "Greatest." The team erupted from there, using that energy to score the game’s first three points. It was apparent that Franklin was flat at this point, but the fight never left them. They continued to work the disc down the field effectively, but in the end, they just didn't have quite enough to make a comeback.

In the fifth-place bracket, Roosevelt and Summit played a great game with both teams using stifling defenses to force a lot of swing passes. Summit ended up taking half 7-6, but Roosevelt found the holes in Summit’s defense and came away with the victory. Monarch and Nathan Hale both looked a little flat after a few tough games, but as the game progressed, Monarch began to hit their stride using both a huck game and short passes to work it down the field and secure the win.

Teams were geared up and excited for the day’s final round. Playing for third place were Franklin and Atascadero, two very athletic teams that had shown throughout the day that they had multiple ways of getting the disc down the field. Franklin was playing very strong and aggressive, bidding for a lot of Ds and putting pressure on Atascadero. In response, Atascadero upped their own aggressiveness, shutting down Franklin’s typically strong deep game. The score stayed tight throughout the game until Atascadero managed a break at 9-8 then one more for 11-9. The two breaks were enough to push them through to a win and third place. In the fifth-place game, Monarch looked to continue their smooth play, going up 4-2 and holding all the way to 9-6. Roosevelt countered with a 4-1 run to tie the game up at 11 all and setting the stage for a nail-biter ending. Monarch stepped up their game and scored the next two points to win 13-11 and secure fifth place.

The last game of the day – the championship. A battle-tested Berkeley versus a dominate South Eugene. The game started like almost no other in the tournament with South going down 0-1 after a Berkeley break. To everyone’s surprise, South followed up with a 7-1 run to take half 7-2. It all started with the South sideline, which at this point had grown. Locals had all come to cheer on the Oregon team in the final. After every score, the entire South team would rush the field celebrating – cow bells would ring, and people would cheer. Berkeley did all they could, trying to match the energy of South and their sideline. But in the end, the crowd was too big, South's defense was too strong and their offense was too consistent for Berkeley to catch up.

Congratulations to South Eugene for earning the title of Best in the West and keeping the trophy at home in Oregon.

Girls' Division (Scoreboard)

In a fitting end to their dominant performance, Monarch High School completed their tournament sweep with a 13-3 decision against Roosevelt in the finals. Both teams entered the game with confidence, but Monarch’s seniority proved too much for Roosevelt. Monarch had not allowed more than four points in a single game in the tournament, and Roosevelt continued to play better in each successive game, integrating several Seattle area players more successfully as the tournament progressed.

The Rough Riders solidified their chemistry throughout pool play and entered their semifinal match up against South Eugene with confidence. After turning two points over against South Eugene’s zone, the Rough Riders settled in and increased their advantage throughout the semifinal game. The Roosevelt squad beat South Eugene for a second time in the tournament and, with the victory, solidified its claim to at least second place.

Roosevelt, who showed that they deserved their place in the finals, could still not stop Monarch’s balanced attack. Monarch utilized their short game and minimized unforced turnovers to build a strong advantage entering half time. It was more of the same after half for the senior squad. The team’s combined experienced was evident in the victory. Roosevelt demonstrated they had talent on their side of the disc as well, but could not finish points after moving the disc down the field.

Monarch entered the finals after a victory over Corvallis Ladies Ultimate (CLU). CLU earned a place in the semifinals with a victory over Summit in the final round of pool play. The reenergized CLU team put together solid early competition against Monarch behind strong handler play. The CLU girls had trouble limiting unforced turnovers and fell behind before Monarch convincingly pulled away in the game. CLU entered their final game with South Eugene with just seven girls after injuries claimed three of the players from their already-small roster.

South Eugene won the third-place game against the diminished CLU team while Garfield reversed Saturday’s 4-10 loss to Summit with a 10-6 victory, claiming fifth place.

The level of competition in the girls’ division increased round by round throughout pool play and the championships bracket and closed out the day with clear results.

Congratulations to Monarch High School on their great weekend and convincing championship win!


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