Revolution Snags First Win in Double Header Weekend Against Soul
by Gerleen Dineros
Atlanta, GA—Saturday, May 4. St. Pius High School was the site of three competitive ultimate games on Saturday, dedicated fans lingering far into the evening despite the rain to watch as Medellín Revolution snagged their second win of the season against Atlanta Soul. After local high schools Paideia and Grady competed in the State Championship with Paideia taking the title, AUDL team Atlanta Hustle defeated Austin Sol, 23-19. Then came the heated and highly anticipated rematch between Revolution and Soul.
Revolution had won against Soul in their PUL home opener in Colombia two weeks prior, but Soul were now on their home turf with a full bench, up against Revolution’s roster of 15. During the first point, Soul’s Erynn Schroeder had a layout D, stopping Revolution’s mid-field movement. Schroeder then cut deep, only for Revolution’s Elizabeth Mosquera to snag it from above her and huck it to Ximena Montana for the score. Revolution and Soul traded points throughout the first quarter, staying within a point of each other until the beginning of the second quarter.
Soul’s Paula Seville performed exceptionally, easing the disc into the end-zone alongside teammates India Stubbs and Maureen “Mo” McCamley with precision and finesse that rain nor their defenders could stop. Soul’s offense consisted of hitting the first open person to initiate several give-and-go’s down the field. They succeeded in doing that as they squeezed throws upline to powerhouse cutters Caroline Taylor and Katie Franchot, captains of the elite Atlanta mixed team Bucket.
But Revolution hardly seemed tired from the way they commanded the field. Their small but talented roster included U.S. athletes Claire Chastain and Kaela Helton. Elizabeth Mosquera and Valeria Cardenas were also stalwarts who broke through Soul’s zone defense, exchanging throws in such quick succession down the middle of the field that Soul’s transition defense did not have time to adjust. This allowed Revolution to edge ahead of Soul 11-8 heading into the third quarter.
Soul's defense paired with the consistent downpour of rain forced Revolution to work harder to move the disc downfield and rely less on their deep shots. After the game, Soul’s Katherine Yost said, "We changed our game plan to adjust to their four handler swing movement-wide [across the field] and played tighter defense on them."
Soul’s high level of defensive pressure generated several layout Ds and interceptions by Jin-Mi Matsunaga and Leah Tsinajinnie during key moments of the game. But Soul had difficulties converting those D's into points during the fourth quarter, turning over the disc several times in the endzone and giving Revolution opportunities to retaliate with their own scores. Revolution's ability to retain possession of the disc on their offensive points helped them pull ahead and end the game ahead, 24-17.
Shayne Crawford, Soul's team manager, was not discouraged by the loss. "We as a team need to recognize that adversity is good for us. [It] is going to give us the strength we need to close out these kinds of games if we keep our focus." Despite playing on home turf with their largest roster to date, Soul struggled with cohesive chemistry between players. The size and depth of their roster proved to be a challenge as they pulled talented women from different club teams across the southeast who have yet to play consistently together.
Atlanta Soul's next game will be June 1 at home against Nashville Nightshade, while Medellín Revolution will have another doubleheader this weekend against Columbus Pride and Indianapolis Red.
Gerleen Dineros is a competitive club player located in Atlanta, GA whose heart is scattered across ultimate communities in Nashville, Chattanooga, and Washington D.C. She has volunteered as the club Sectionals Coordinator for the Southeast Division since 2015. At the top of her bucket list is to play at the Boracay Open.