It was a nice warm morning when I jumped onto the monorail, slightly late, to go meet the team for our van ride out to Ulsan. My second season was coming to a close with Daegu Hurricane and the competition for the finals was wide open.
It had certainly been a tougher season, with key players missing from some weekends and not having the best thrower in Korea on the team anymore had certainly made it more challenging. We were no longer going into finals an unbeaten team, not even number one seed – having dropped down to fourth with a series of losses the previous weekend. But our squad was at full strength for the finals and we were lucky that Korea was giving us a blue-skied, warm day; as opposed to the frosty-breath mornings that are becoming more common.
There was a jubilant atmosphere across the four pitches when we arrived. The fields busy with all squads from across Korea turning up. We didn’t have long to prepare for our opening game so got kitted up pretty quick and warmed up for our opening game.
I won’t bore you with details of each individual match, there was lots of throwing and catching, running and intercepting, diving and cutting, points scored and conceded. None of our games were easy victories, with all teams playing some of their best frisbee from the season and bringing real challenges. All the games were great fun though and played with really good sportsmanship. Frisbee is unique in that there’s no referees and teams call if they feel they have been fouled against. This can on occasion lead to some heated discussion surrounding contentious decisions, but today these moments didn’t really happen. We pushed through some really close games that could have gone either way based on a few drops/great plays and got through to our third final in a row – mean I was lucky enough to play under the floodlights again which I love.
The final was a semi replay from last season’s final, with it being Daegu vs. Pohang, although each team had had a few changes to its players – it felt much more intense this time around. We managed to grab an early lead and hold it until the final 10 minutes of the game when some great handling by Pohang was too much for us to defend against and we lost 4 points in a row, putting us one point behind at 9-8 with the game being to 11. It was certainly and nervy time and we were all running on fumes of energy, our legs feeling exhausted. The crowd support, (mainly from our own team), lifted when we went behind, giving us a final boost and somehow we pulled together what we had left and managed to grab the next 3 points taking the championship 9 – 11. We were very excited to win it again and I was also very excited finally being able to get some proper food and drink – it was close to 8pm and I’d just been snacking through the day.
The team dinner and party that night was a blur of fun and faces. We were all beyond exhausted on Sunday and getting back to Daegu meant it was strictly bed and netflix time. I was so tired I accidentally turned off my alarm instead of snoozing it on Monday morning, my body waking me in an adrenaline panic 10 minutes before I was supposed to be in work, you can imagine how my Monday was. Only really by yesterday afternoon was I starting to feel more like myself again – frisbee finals takes it out of you!
So that’s it for Hurricane for another season. There’s one last casual tournament in a couple of weeks, then we move indoor for just fun pick-up matches throughout the winter. Individually I came out of this season winning best offensive player, I feel my game has improved a lot from last years finals, but my throwing still has a long way to go to compete with the top handlers in the league. So lots to aim for when the next season gets going in the spring.