After the first round was over all teams were arriving at the fields. The sparkling new FSU Rec Sportsplex was nearly filled to the brim with Ultimate teams as far as the eye could see. The top seeds in the morning pools were rubbing the sleep from their eyes after first round byes and getting ready to take on the third seeds in their pools. Considering the props that we gave them, we were ready to see Michigan State in action.
They were taking on Valdosta State and Burning couch didn’t waste much time proving that they were in Tallahassee with one thing in mind, the first place prize money. VSU was handed a 13-7 defeat in quick and impressive fashion.
Valdosta, perhaps conscious of the man to man athletic differences between itself and MSU, came out immediately with a zone defense. In what became a theme of the day, Burning Couch conserved its possession of the disc, working it slowly between its handlers for upwards of 10 throws, before moving the disc upfield at all. Once MSU had felt out the cracks in the zone the team quickly moved the disc into the endzone to take a 1-0 lead.
However, as well as Michigan State moved the disc, Valdosta State was doing a strong job in its own right. The boys from south Georgia were running a vertical stack set to the side of the field and focusing on isolating their cutters in space. It was easy to tell that the team had put in a lot of practice time running the offense because even MSU didn’t really have an answer for VSU’s well timed and strong cuts.
The first half was a back and forth affair with Burning Couch grabbing two breaks off of two Valdosta miscues, taking half 7-4.
Valdosta kept the game within reach until 10-7, when MSU got three straight breaks to win on defense, 13-7.
It was a game that showcased two teams that know what they like to do on offense and do it well.
“We run a vert but we push it over,” Valdosta captain Charlie Edminston said. “To open up the field for us, use that field to get our big guys into space and use that to move the disc downfield.”
“Our O was looking pretty good,” Michigan State captain Alex Edinger said. “Our zone O was looking really good, I was really happy with that.”