Andover Competes in A Division of Amherst Tournament

Two weeks ago Andover competed in the A division of the Amherst tournament, playing some of the best teams in the country, including Amherst Ultimate, the number one ranked ultimate team in the country. Andover kicked off the tournament against Four Rivers Charter School of Greenville Massachusetts. Andover dominated Four Rivers, and got off to a hot start winning 15-5 in the first round. “We were definitely the better team on the field and it showed. But it is always great to win the opening game of a tournament and it is awesome to start the tournament on a high note,” said David Russell ’12. Andover carried the intensity of the first round win into its second game against Longmeadow High School. Andover battled against a great Longmeadow team for threee hours, each team playing great defense and connecting on offensive plays. The team broke through and fought harder than Longmeadow and was able to obtain their second win of the tournament on a close 12-10 win. “Longmeadow was a great team, and by beating them we proved that we can compete with the best teams in the country. We executed great defense, and connected on many scoring opportunities. The win over Longmeadow was definitely the highlight of the tournament,” said Dylan Gully ’12. Andover’s next opponent was Amherst, the top ranked Ultimate team in the Country. Although Andover had intensity following two straight wins, Amherst made quick work of Andover, finishing them off 15-3. Amherst showed their top ranked skills with dominant defense and minimal turnovers on the offensive front. Despite the loss to Amherst, Andover had a wonderful first day in the tournament, going 2-1, and proving that they belonged in the A division of the Tournament. On Sunday Andover woke up for an early morning game against Pennsbury. At this point in the tournament, Andover and Pennsbury were both matched with numbers, as each team beat Longmeadow and Four Rivers, and lost to Amherst. Although Andover came out firing, Pennsbury’s offense proved to be too much to handle. “In our Sunday morning game against Pennsbury we played pretty well, but we were outmatched by their athleticism and their flow on offense,” remarked Coach Scott Hoenig. With the inability to find a flow on offense, Andover fell to a 15-9 loss, bringing its tournament record to 2-2. Andover, plagued with injury after playing three high intensity games, went on to lose its next three games, finishing the tournament with a 2-4 record. “It was unfortunate that a lot of the players were injured for these past two games. If we had a healthy roster we definitely would have won one, if not both, of the last two games,” said Josh Feng ’10. This past weekend Andover played Masco under the lights of Phelps Stadium. Andover did not find its flow on the offensive and defensive fronts, and fell to Masco 15-7. Despite the loss, there were some great highlights, including a sweet score by Rob Stevens ’10. “Rob Stevens had an insane layout in the endzone against Masco, it was life changing,” said Turner Shaw ’11. This weekend Andover competes in the NEPSUL championships, and is seeded as one of the top four teams. Hotchkiss, NMH and Brunswick appear to be Andover’s toughest competition in the tournament, but there four other teams making a run for the finals.