Wednesday, December 11, 2013

2013 MLU Season Recap

A little over a year ago, Major League Ultimate was born.  Two men, Jeff Snader and Nic Darling, created a vision of bringing professional ultimate frisbee to the world of sports.  Now over 400 days later the inaugural season has been completed and a champion has been crowned.

The league is composed of eight teams from eight different cities, with four on the East Coast and four on the West Coast. The four teams that make up the Eastern Conference are the Boston Whitecaps, the DC Current, the New York Rumble, and the Philadelphia Spinners. The Western Conference is composed of the Portland Stags, the San Francisco Dogfish, the Seattle Rainmakers, and the Vancouver Nighthawks.  Each team completed a 10 game regular season playing each team in their conference three times and also their "local rival" another time to add up to 10.  At the end of the regular season, the top two teams in each conference based on their win-loss record played each other for their respective conference championship.  The conference champions then faced each other in the MLU Championship to determine the league champs.

During the regular season, the Boston Whitecaps dominated the league by going undefeated (10-0) in the Eastern Conference and earning a berth in the playoffs. After starting the season 1-4 the DC Current miraculously came back and forced a winner-take-all match up against the New York Rumble in the final game of the MLU regular season. It was a game described by Nathan Slade, a player for the DC Current, as "the most exciting ultimate game that [he] had ever been a part of", in one of the most epic back-and-forth games of the season, the Current came away as victors 22-20 sending them to the Eastern Conference Championship. On the West Coast the conference was dominated by both the San Francisco Dogfish and the Seattle Rainmakers who both finished the season at 8-2, which sent both teams to the playoffs.

Conference Championship weekend went exactly how someone would expect the games would go based on the regular season results. The Boston Whitecaps took care of business against the DC Current 23-15 and the Dogfish and the Rainmakers battled endlessly with major injuries and setbacks until finally San Francisco came out on top 18-17.
This then set up the MLU Championship that was to be take place in the city where the MLU was founded, Philadelphia.  The game was filled with Sportscenter Top 10 highlights that could last for a week, both teams gave it their all trying to claim the very first MLU Championship. The difference however was made with Josh Markette of Boston scoring half of their points leading them to the 20-15 victory over the Dogfish.  In the end the storybook ending was wrote, the Boston Whitecaps ran the table and went undefeated to win the Major League Ultimate Championship. A feat that only one professional sports team in North America has accomplished (the 1972 Miami Dolphins) has now been done in the first season of Major League Ultimate. Only time will tell what is next for the MLU.

Congratulations to the Boston Whitecaps, 2013 MLU Champions!

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