2015 Beach Championships: Day Two

Posted: May 4, 2015 11:24 AM

See day 1 recap

Another first for USA Ultimate and the ultimate community wrapped up yesterday afternoon. The inaugural Beach Championships was a weekend full of energy, competition and lots of sand.

Where Saturday was windy enough to create noteworthy upwind-downwind conditions, Sunday was a nearly perfect day for beach ultimate – sunny, warm and just a slight breeze. Teams took advantage with countless exciting throws and highlight-worthy plays.

Men’s Division

In addition to having the "best player on the beach," And the Warhawks can actually call themselves the best team on the beach – at least in the men’s division. The Boston crew wrapped up their weekend with an impressive win over Ocean City, Md.’s, Humiliswag in the men’s division finals. After going down a break early, And the Warhawks locked down on defense and created and took advantage of turnovers. They took half 7-4 and never looked back, closing out the championship game 13-7.

The top of the men’s division played out entirely to seed:  top-seeded And the Warhawks defeated fourth-seeded Yetis on the Beach (Ann Arbor, Mich.) and second-seeded Humiliswag defeated the three seed, Right Coast (Raleigh, N.C.), to reach the finals.

Mixed Division

Los Angeles-based Point Break heads back to their beach on the opposite coast with the inaugural championship title in the mixed division. The team’s 7 Figures/Mischief core helped them outlast No Tsu Oh, largely a Showdown-Tejas group, in the finals 13-11. Tyler Grant, a Mischief stalwart for many years, really stood out on the sand. He made play after play for Point Break, including a monster end-zone D on double-game point in the team’s semifinal against Opig that gave Point Break possession and the break they needed advance to the finals.

The mixed division this year was an interesting conglomeration of teams with strong ties to the mixed club scene with imports from the men’s and women’s divisions, both as additions to well-known mixed teams and as entirely new teams. All the unknowns made mixed the most volatile – and often the most exciting – division with more frequent upsets and surprises than any other division this time around.

Women’s Division

The teams that made the finals in the women’s division were exactly what you would have expected if you skimmed the division’s rosters, but many probably wouldn’t have expected Boston’s Skeeahreet to come out on top. The Brute Squad-heavy team, with some help from friends like Fury and World Beach Championships veteran Anna Nazarov, bested the all-start squad that was Seattle’s The Mussels. The Mussels went down early and were on the edge of defeat with the score at 12-9 in favor of Skeeahreet when they broke three straight times to force double-game point. Each team had opportunities on that final point, but Skeeahreet eventually held and claimed the inaugural beach championship title in the women’s division.  Chicago-based Rockford Beaches defeated Filly LAMP, essentially the women of mixed division team Philadelphia AMP, to claim third place.

Mixed Masters

As in the women’s division, the two mixed masters team who had largely rolled throughout the early rounds met in the championship game – top-seeded Swamp Rats (Triangle Area, N.C.) and Over the Hill (Washington, D.C.). Over the Hill tallied a couple early breaks, but the Swamp Rats always seemed to recover and went into halftime down 6-7, on serve. They found their resolve at the right time, went up 12-9 and didn’t look back. They clinched the championship 13-10 riding strong play from Sharon Tucker, Trey Katzenbach and captain Ben Dieter.

After a surprising day one, Rochester, N.Y.’s Overrated fell in the quarterfinals to Brooklyn’s Shostakovich, who in turn just missed out on the finals with a 11-10 loss in their semifinal against Over the Hill. The Swamp Rats defeated the D.C.-heavy Charge! to advance to the finals.

Grand Masters

For anyone who watched grand masters play on Saturday, the championship match up wouldn’t come as a surprise. After losing to Vermont’s No Country on a hotly contested double-game point in the first round of the weekend, North Carolina’s Alchemy was ripe for a rematch. Things looked a little hairy for the North Carolinians early on, down a break at 3-5. Given the short rounds of beach ultimate – one-hour rounds this weekend – it can be difficult to mount a comeback, but Alchemy didn’t seem to mind. They rattled off four straight points to take half 7-5. They gave back one break in the second half, but it wasn’t enough for No Country. Alchemy scored the final point just before the hard-cap horn sounded and clinched the title 11-9.

In addition to the great games, amazing plays and fun times, thousands more people were drawn into the sport this weekend. Countless conversations were had between athletes, volunteers and staff and the hundreds of people who stopped along the Virginia Beach boardwalk to watch.

For the athletes, the sand that will inevitably end up on the floor over the next couple of weeks after being dumped out of the clothes and gear that made it out to the beach will likely be a pleasant reminder of the 2015 Beach Championships.


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