Cavalry bring home three wins

Mark Hill, management information systems sophomore, gets ready to throw the frisbee to his teammate during a warm-up before practice begins, Oct. 13, on the field across from the MSU soccer field. Photo by Gabriella Solis.

Mark Hill, management information systems sophomore, gets ready to throw the frisbee to his teammate during a warm-up before practice begins, Oct. 13, on the field across from the MSU soccer field. Photo by Gabriella Solis.

The Cavalry, the Ultimate team, participated in its first tournament of the semester this past weekend, Oct. 10-11. The team brought home three victories and finished seventh place overall, when they were predicted to finish dead last.

As the sun rose over Penberthy Sports Complex in College Station, the Ultimate team could be seen stretching out, running drills, and practicing their throws. As the first tournament of this season started up, the men’s spirits were high as the excitement for their first chance to play competitively began.

Three of the four teams were matched up with The Calvary in Saturday’s first round of pool play. The other teams included A-teams from Texas A&M, University of Texas, and Baylor. The Cavs managed to put seven points on the board against the three Division 1 teams. Four of those seven points were scored by deep-field hucks to veteran players Kevin Paniagua and Ryan Luig.

“I’m glad we had the opportunity to score there when we did. Up until then we weren’t connecting,” said Luig, computer science junior. “I ran up the field, locked eyes with him and we knew what we wanted. He put the disc right where I wanted it.”

Getting beaten by the A teams provided a good example for the teams to visualize what experienced and high-level ultimate looks like and gave a good reference for the team to see how the game flows.

The players got chances to put what they have been learning into practice against more evenly matched teams, and in those games the Cavs came out on top experiencing wins in three games. The team beat Texas A&M B teams twice, also defeating Sam Houston University.

In Saturday’s first victory against A&M B the Cavalry proved the teams resiliency by going on two separate 3-0 runs against the Aggies, one before the half to go up 7-6 before the break, and another to finish the game 13-12 with a game-winning sky by Ryan Luig.

Game 1 on Sunday morning was a face-off against Sam Houston State. The Cavs came out strong and were ahead at the half 7-4. As the winds started to pick up in the second half of the game, tempers flared and the Cavalry finished the game in its largest scoring gap of 13-8.

The second and final victory of the tournament was against the other Aggie B team. It came from a clutch layout defensive play by Mark Hill with the Cavs capitalizing off that in a final ultimate point scored by an end-zone grab by Kevin Paniagua.

The leadership of the team had more goals than just winning. They wanted to get their rookies in the action and experience plenty of real game-time situations, as well as the whole team going home from the weekend having learned how to progress in specific areas of the game.

“I’d say it was a great success,” Darin Young, marketing junior and captain of the team said. “Getting beaten at first helped us to realize how hard we would have to compete. After that we made adjustments. Our veterans found opportunities to teach and our rookies learned a ton. That led to more turnovers on defense which is really how you win games, which we did. If winning three games in a tournament where we were supposed to win zero is any indication of what’s to come, I’m excited to see where this team will go.”