Wednesday, April 29, 2015

DC and Portland Take Early Conference Leads as Vancouver Earns Season's First Win

After a week with a massive shakeup in the rankings, nothing changed into this week. Well, that is rankings-wise at least. We learned a lot about each individual team this week with results that many could have predicted beforehand. The Current and Stags both have early leads at point, being the only squads with undefeated records but week in and week out that can easily change. Vancouver and Seattle faced off in the annual "Border Bid" in a battle between the two most inexperienced teams in the league. This all while Boston got their first win of the season after going 0-2 for the first time in franchise history.

1. DC Current: 2-0 

Last Week: 1     Change: +0

Defeated Philadelphia Spinners 18-15

Weekend Superstar: Lloyd Blake (4 goals, 2 assists)

Review: A lot cleaner game for the Current this past weekend as they defeated the Spinners. It may not seem like it now but it was a key victory in their pursuit for the Eastern Conference title. Lloyd Blake who moved from the D-line to the O-line to fill in the absence of Sean Keagan, had a coming out game this past week. His four goals led the team which is starting to look like the team they were at the end of last year. The team now has a winning streak that spans over a year.

2. Portland Stags: 2-0

Last Week: 2     Change: +0

Defeated San Francisco Dogfish  15-12

Weekend Superstar: Peter Woodside (5 goals, 1 assist)

Review: Traveling down to San Fran is going to be no easy task for any team this season. However this time the Stags put this one away after a threat from the Dogfish. The normal stars for Portland continued to get involved, this time the team was lead by Timmy Perston and Peter Woodside. There are still some issues, especially being broken three times in a row in the third quarter that brought the game within one. For now the team holds the top spot in the Western Conference as they will have a rematch of the West Championship next week.

3. Philadelphia Spinners: 1-1

Last Week: 3     Change: +0

Philadelphia Spinners
Lost to DC Current 15-18

Weekend Superstar: Billy Sickles (1 goal, 4 assists, 2 blocks)

Review: The Spinners dropped a close one in DC this past weekend. Despite the numerous attempts by the Current to run away with the game, Philadelphia stayed within striking distance. The difference maker in the game: the weather. The rain, while still affecting the Current, disrupted the Spinners O-line. It will be interesting to see how the team responds when they host DC in Philly and if they can replicate the positives at home.

4. Boston Whitecaps: 1-2

Last Week: 4     Change: +0

Defeated New York Rumble 20-13

Weekend Superstar: Tyler Chan (4 goals, 1 assist)

Review: The Whitecaps got their first win of the 2015 season by controlling the Rumble at home this past weekend. The team got past their 0-2 start by breaking the Rumble for the first three points of the game. From there the Whitecaps "rode the wave" and put away New York. Tyler Chan played in hist first ever professional ultimate game and made his presence known. Chan may be the perfect player to replace the absence of Danny Clark and return Boston to the top of the East. Don't believe me? Just check out his Callahan video

5. Vancouver Nighthawks: 1-1

Last Week: 5     Change: +0

Defeated Seattle Rainmakers 22-20

Weekend Superstar: Kirk Savage (3 goals, 5 assists, 1 block)

Review: Decisive win on the road for the Nighthawks in the annual Border Bid game. The final score was closer than the play on the field. The top stars for Vancouver in Aaron Loach, Brendan Wong, Charles Eyrich, Jordan Tessarolo, and Kirk Savage lead the way, recording 16 goals and 13 assists in the game. Morgan Hibbert had himself a quiet outing with only an assist and two blocks but was forced to leave the game due to injury. The defense stepped up with higher intensity and forced turnovers like they did last year.

6. Seattle Rainmakers: 0-2

Last Week: 6     Change: +0

Lost to Vancouver Nighthawks 20-22

Weekend Superstar: Mark Burton (3 goals, 6 assists, 1 block)

Review: Even with an MLU-high on the week of 9 points, Mark Burton could not will the Rainmakers to a victory. The offense looked much improved, aided by the return of Daniel Trytiak, and converted on a majority of their O points. Their defense forced turnovers, another issue from the previous week, but were unable to convert those turns into points.

7. San Francisco Dogfish: 1-1

Last Week: 7     Change: +0

Lost to Portland Stags 12-15

Weekend Superstar: Andrew Goldstein (1 goal, 2 assists, 2 blocks)

Review: Do not let this loss discourage Dogfish fans. If you take out the fourth quarter of play, it is only a one point deficit for San Fran. Nevertheless a loss is a loss, but the team is starting to find out who they really are and what parts go where. Gabe Saunkeah and Matt Kissmann are getting comfortable together as the main offensive handlers allowing Drew Kim, David Abram, and others fill into their natural positions.

8. New York Rumble: 0-1

Last Week: 8     Change: +0

New York Rumble
Lost to Boston Whitecaps 13-20

Weekend Superstar: Jibran Mieser (2 goals, 6 blocks)

Review: If Jibran Mieser is still available in your fantasy league, he will not be for this upcoming weekend. It however was not just Mieser who had a great weekend for the Rumble, Chris Mazur, John Wodatch, and Ben Faust kept the team as close as they could to the Whitecaps but unforced errors increased the deficit. There should not be much to worry about though if you are New York, after all this was your first game and Boston's third

This upcoming week, the 2013 and 2014 champs in the Boston Whitecaps and the DC Current will have their only bye of the season before facing off in Boston in week four. The Rumble will attempt to get their first win on the year traveling to Philadelphia, as the Spinners are hoping to return to form. On the West coast the Dogfish travel to Seattle for a rematch of the 2013 Western Conference Championship as the Rainmakers will be welcoming Kaliff El-Salaam for his first game on the year. Meanwhile the Stags will head to Vancouver for a rematch of the 2014 West Championship.

Don't agree? Tell me what I missed in the comments section and who you think 
should be at the top.

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