2013 Pro-Elite Challenge - Men's Terminus Preview

Posted: July 18, 2013 04:51 PM

It’s time for the inaugural Pro-Elite Flight Challenge, operating this year under the auspices of Club Terminus in Atlanta! Terminus will be the first major tournament of the year for the vast majority of the field which includes four Pro Flight teams and all eight Elite Flight teams. These are the top men’s teams that didn’t compete in the U.S. Open Championships, with every team at this tournament having played at the 2012 National Championships. Each team will be looking to make a statement and open their season strong, so let’s take a look at the pool play match ups.

Pool A

A1   A2   A3   A4   A5   A6
Chain Lightning
Johnny Bravo
Sub Zero
  San Jose
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Machine comes in as the tournament’s overall top seed, hoping to build off their fifth-place finish at Club Nationals last year. They’ll take on one other Pro Flight team in pool play, the hometown Chain Lightning. Neither team has seen tournament action yet this year, although both teams used their respective matchups against the NexGen College All-Stars as tune-ups (Chain won 15-13, while Machine lost 15-11). Machine will be without handler Dane Olsen (dislocated shoulder) and cutter/defender Goose Helton (hamstring). Instead, they’ll rely on handler Bob Liu and cutters AJ Nelson, Michael Schwenk and Dan Williams. Chain lost a few of their top players from last year, including Sammy Chatterton-Kirchmeier and Nick Lance, but has retained a strong core featuring longtime Chain staple and U.S. National Team member Dylan Tunnell.

Rhino, Johnny Bravo, Sub Zero and Boost will all look to unseat one of the pool’s two Pro Flight teams and earn a spot in the championship bracket. Rhino in particular has experienced a large amount of roster turnover between last year and this year, including the loss of three of their four 2012 captains, but they are a young team loaded with potential. Boost comes in as the last seed in the pool but the only team to have already experienced tournament play this summer. They currently hold a 6-1 season record after finishing second to Condors at Cal States 2013 last month. They’ll hope to capitalize on that early-season experience to break seed.

Pool B

B1   B2   B3   B4   B5   B6
Madison Club
Furious George
  Washington DC
Truck Stop
  New York
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GOAT will start the weekend as the top seed in Pool B, followed by their fellow Pro Flight team Sockeye as the two seed. Both teams are trying to build off top-eight results at Club Nationals last year (GOAT finished sixth, while Sockeye tied with Chain for seventh). GOAT will play with a slightly shortened roster – they’ve only selected 23 players so far and will add one player from Grand Trunk, Toronto’s feeder club team, for Terminus – due to the World Games and the U23 World Championships in Toronto. Sockeye has been a top team for years, and will no doubt spend this season looking to get back to the semifinals at Club Nationals.

As with Pool A, the four remaining teams – Madison Club, Furious George, Truck Stop and PoNY – are Elite Flight teams hoping to break seed and play for the championship on Sunday. Each team will see their first tournament action since Club Nationals last year with the exception of Furious George, who played at the British Columbia Ultimate Championships this past weekend. The Vancouver team took home first place and a 4-0 record without meeting much resistance. They will look to prove themselves against stronger competition at Terminus this weekend.

It’s very early in the season, but these results could be telling as the rest of the summer and the Triple Crown Tour unfold. Stay tuned for more from Atlanta.

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