By the fourth round on Saturday, CCC had seen its fair share of expected and unexpected finishes. Among those finishes that were expected would be Virginia Night Train. Although Night Train’s performance thus far in the fall has not been up to par with the way it finished off last season, one had to know that it would only be a matter of time before the boys from Charlottesville got back on track.
They proved that they were right where they wanted to be throughout the day on Saturday and we had the opportunity to see that first hand when they faced off against the Sarasota Cheetahs, a club team from Kennesaw, Ga.
While the teams more or less traded points to 3-2, and even beyond that to 6-5, it was quite easy to see that Virginia was in control of the game. Led by senior captain Tyler Conger Night Train asserted itself early in the second half by turning a 7-5 halftime lead into a 13-6 victory.
UVA exhibited outstanding defense and even smarter offense during the game, countering the top talent, players like Taylor Goforth and Sean O’Kelley, of the Cheetahs with an all around team play that’s tough to beat. While Conger certainly led the way with plenty of scores thrown and several deep blocks, there were contributions from all over the UVA roster, players like Tom Licitra and Brian Kiernan contributed on both sides of the disc as well.
UVA earned its four consecutive breaks to finish the game in a variety of ways. Getting the disc once thanks to a high stall count punt, once thanks to a layout block, once due to a pressured drop by the Cheetahs and finally due to a team defense that left Sarasota with nowhere to go with the disc.
“I’m happy with the way that we’re playing,” Conger told us after the game. “We haven’t been able to compete with our full squad yet this season and I’m excited to see everything mesh together.”
Virginia will certainly be a team to watch tomorrow as the bracket play continues on.