2014 Nationals - Women's Division Preview

Posted: October 15, 2014 03:27 PM

Leah Brown previews the Women's Division at the 2014 National Championships in Frisco, Texas.


2014 Nationals Women's Division:



Pool A

A1 A2 A3 A4
2014TCTLogos BruteSquad 2014TCTLogos Ozone 2014TCTLogos Schwa 2014TCTLogos Capitals
Brute Squad

Brute Squad should be looking forward to all the benefits that come from having a successful year. Finishing the season with the number one spot in the nation is a direct result of working as a team according to captain Emily Baecher. "This year, we have made the finals of every tournament we've attended and won every one except U.S. Open," she said. "Our greatest improvement has been involving our entire roster on the field for every tournament."

Atlanta’s Ozone took the first Nationals bid from the Southeast Region with a thrilling win in the finals. After their moderate success at Cackalacky Challenge and the Chesapeake Invite, they are looking to capitalize on recent momentum.

Although Schwa has been inconsistent, largely thanks to their mix of explosive youth and veteran experience, they have had plenty of high-level success in the past. As a team from the Northwest, they are used to a high level of play and will probably compete well.

The Capitals have had an up-and-down year according to captain Carla DiFilippo. Despite multiple incarnations of their roster throughout the season, they had competitive games with both Brute Squad and Schwa. They are seeded fourth in the pool, but they could make a strong showing. But Baecher said it best when she said, "Nationals can be a crazy tournament, and we'll be facing teams that we haven't seen for months or at all this season." So anything is possible. 

Pool B

B1 B2 B3 B4
2014TCTLogos GreenMeansGo
San Francisco
Green Means Go

It’s no surprise that Riot is seeded first in the pool; they have consistently come out on top when it counts over most of the past decade. With a strong set of handlers and greater team chemistry than ever, they should have no problem converting their efforts into wins during pool play.

As a team that was founded just two years ago in 2012, Nightlock is experiencing a massive amount of success. The team draws from the Bay Area, which is loaded with talent, and they will undoubtedly combine that talent with the momentum they gained at earlier tournaments to create a good run.

Heist may be one of the dwindling number of teams that doesn’t utilize a coach, but that hasn’t stopped them from competing at a high level in the past. "Throughout the season, we have shown more resiliency as a team and ability to adapt than in the past," said captain Robyn Wiseman. "As a team, we've struggled with some defensive sets and made adjustments to make our team defenses work for personnel.

Coming into regionals with one bid, we knew that earning that bid would mean we had to execute better than every team." They did, and are now hoping to capitalize even further. Green Means Go is peaking at just the right time, according to captain Katie Ryan. After big turnover at the beginning of the season and tons of time spent building team morale, GMG is finally putting up wins and showing they can compete.

Pool C

C1 C2 C3 C4
2014TCTLogos Fury 2014TCTLogos Traffic 2014TCTLogos Underground
San Francisco

San Francisco Fury will look to finish well at Nationals again this year to build on previous success. Sometimes being a favorite can bring out the best, and other times the worst, in a team. But with the ever-positive influence of coach Matty Tsang and powerhouse athletes, they have a good chance of performing well in Frisco.

Traffic started the year with quite a large roster and some difficult tournaments, but have shaken off the rust for recent huge wins against Fury, Scandal and Showdown. They will get another chance to prove themselves against Showdown during pool play, and team member Candice Chan is confident it will be a competitive match up.

Showdown is looking to capitalize on the strengths of their young role players during pool play according to captain Shereen Rabie. "Other teams haven't experienced the full strength of our roster yet," she said. "We have experienced an upward trajectory since Worlds in terms of team chemistry and solidifying our strategy going into Nationals." As a semifinalist from last year, they know what it takes to clinch big wins.

Underground is coming off of a mixed bag performance at regionals and has a lot to prove in Frisco. With some outstanding athletes and coach Frank Nam at the helm, they could stage some upsets in Pool C. 

Pool D

D1 D2 D3 D4
2014TCTLogos MollyBrown 2014TCTLogos Nemesis 2014TCTLogos TabbyRosa
Washington, D.C.
Molly Brown
Tabby Rosa

With the injury bug forcing limited numbers, Washington D.C.’s Scandal has had a tough go at regular-season tournaments but has still managed to make their mark and grab the number four seed for Nationals. Coach Alexander Ghesquiere says the defending champions are ready to unleash their full potential.

Molly Brown has already improved upon their showing from last year by securing the number five seed after strong weekends at the Chesapeake Invite and South Central Regionals.

Nemesis has had trouble over the past season with both Scandal and Molly Brown, so they may have a tough time making the most of pool play. But they did have success during the Pro Flight Finale, so don’t count them out too soon, as they have historically done well at Nationals.

As runners-up in the Southeast Region with their upset win over Phoenix, Tabby Rosa is ready for more action. The young team has mainly shown only their skeleton crew at most tournaments in the regular season, but they showed tremendous ability in both of their regionals wins over Phoenix. They are coming together at the perfect time to show what they are really made of. Judging by past performances from each of these teams, it will be an interesting pool to watch; betting against any one of these teams would be unwise.  

Dark Horse

"You know, once you get to this sort of elite-ultimate play, I think the most accurate answer to this question is to expect some upsets," Showdown’s Rabie said. "Every team this year, especially within the Worlds context, has had ups and downs." Many other team captains and coaches share that sentiment, especially with the improvement in women’s ultimate over the past year. Any team could challenge for the win, and most haven’t seen each other at full strength yet. Each pool could be full of surprises and explosive performances, but teams that may make especially noteworthy splashes are Tabby Rosa and Nemesis

Players to Watch

  • If you want to see the best puller in women’s ultimate, watch Green Mean’s Go’s Nikki Ross consistently pull it into the back corner of the end zone.
  • Heist’s Wiseman said Georgia Bosscher is singly the most dynamic, explosive, athletic woman in their division. "Her skills with and without the disc are a huge asset, but it is her incredible positive attitude that really helps to keep people having fun and playing their best," she said. 
  • Fury’s Manisha Daryani has plenty of Nationals experience, and that will come in handy for this year’s contest. Look for her consistently being in the right place at the right time and getting plenty of open looks in the end zone. 
  • Brute Squad’s Baecher said her entire team is a threat when they click together, but added, "Keep an eye on our coach, Mike Zalisk. He is going to be wearing some ridiculously weather-appropriate and fashionable apparel."
  • Capitals captain Carla DiFilippo said Jordan Meron is someone to look out for. "She was one of the team captains for the U-23 Team Canada women in 2013 and has been a dominant speedster in the lanes for Capitals for a few years now," she said. "She has been improving at a steady rate, and we are looking forward to seeing what she will bring at Nationals."


Games to Watch

Round 1 (9:00 – 10:45am, Field 10)

  2014TCTLogos Nemesis  

Scandal v. Nemesis

Nemesis will be looking to prove themselves against Scandal and make up for recent losses. 


Round 2 (11:15am – 1:00pm, Field 13)

2014TCTLogos Ozone 2014TCTLogos Schwa  

Ozone v. Schwa

Schwa’s raw explosive power and competitive region should prove to make an upset possible against Ozone. But Ozone currently has the edge in momentum with their regionals win. 


Round 3 (1:30 – 3:15pm, Field 5)

2014TCTLogos Traffic

Traffic v. Showdown

As teams that have met before in the regular season, they will be even more fired up for a rematch in Frisco. 


Round 4 (3:45 – 5:30, Field 2)


Riot v. Nightlock

Any time you can see Riot play, it’s worth watching, but Nightlock has had plenty of success as a young team and is looking to capitalize on all the talent and momentum they’ve built this season. 


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