risbee takes second at tourney
By Ali Azar
The MIT frisbee club took home second place in Saturday's sectional tournament at Keene State College in Keene, NH. The Beavers went undefeated in their five-team pool but lost the tournament championship game to settle for the runner up position, which was good enough to qualify them for the Ultimate Players' Association Regional Tournament.
MIT started the day with a 13-2 victory over Worcester Polytechnic Institute under overcast skies and a light morning rain shower.
After the easy opener, however, the Beavers got sloppy against a determined MIT Sloan School squad, who participated in the sectional tournament for the second straight year. Sloan came back from an early 4-1 deficit to end the half with a two-point lead, 7-5. But the frisbee club pulled together in the second half to stifle the upset try and take their second victory of the day, 13-11.
In the the third game, against Boston College, the Beavers opted for a zone defense despite the presence of calm air, which usually provides for good zone-breaking passes from the offense. Although the zone did not contain the offense as well as usual, it did force the mediocre BC disc handlers to throw a lot of passes, which led to mistakes and BC turnovers. MIT capitalized on these turnovers and defeated BC 13-8.
MIT earned an undefeated pool record by crushing Harvard in the Beavers' fourth victory of the day. Good coaching and substitutions by captain Mark Griffith G allowed the team to take an easy 7-0 halftime lead and cruise in the second half to a 13-4 final tally.
MIT's pool play placed them in contention with the winner of the other pool, Tufts University, for the tournament championship. The champion is seeded first and the runner up second in the slate of five teams from the section which qualify for the Regional Tournament.
Tufts was MIT's toughest opponent of the day, and both teams played an intense game of few mistakes and turnovers. Tufts and MIT matched goal for goal in the first half except for one MIT turnover which gave Tufts a 6-4 lead. MIT, however, turned on the heat to capture the halftime lead, 7-6.
Unfortunately, the MIT squad missed the opportunity to take a two-point lead by failing to convert the first possession of the second half. Tufts stayed in the game and eventually took a two point lead off of key turnovers by MIT. Despite allowing MIT to tie the game 12-12, Tufts pulled out the 14-12 victory.
The loss placed MIT second in the tournament among five teams qualifying for next weekend's Regional Tournament at the State University of New York at Albany. Besides Tufts' first-place finish, the other qualifiers were Boston College, Boston University, and Harvard.
Tufts will likely be seeded first in the Regional Tournament, since they have winning records this season against all other contenders, which include primarily Columbia, Cornell, Wesleyan, and MIT. MIT hopes to be seeded third, although a season of mixed performance may cause them to be placed lower. The top three teams at the Regional Tournament qualify for this year's National Collegiate Tournament, to be held in Wilmington, NC.
(Ali Azar G is a member of the MIT frisbee club.)