Sun of the Beach SOTB Rostock - 22.07./23.07.2023
Last weekend was a blast; On Friday (Jul. 21), our team drove to Rostock/Warnemünde for one of our favorite beach tournaments — Sun of the Beach (SOTB). SOTB is organized by the Endzonis as a 2-day 2-night event. Despite a few last-minute cancellations, we still pulled through and found 3 extra players to support us during the tournament.
On Friday evening, teams arrived and set up camp. Luckily, we did not need to fully “camp” as the Endzonis organized a school hall for sleepovers. Teams members set up their sleeping bags and isolation mats, left their bags behind and headed to the delicious barbecue and drinks outside the hall.
On Saturday, we woke up early and joined other teams in having breakfast— then we warmed up and prepared for our first game against Team Lichtstadt. Our first game challenged us in many ways — for one, there was strong wind that made moving the disc quite difficult. For another, we were not used to the sand and often overestimated the distances we could run in sand compared to a grass tournament. Throughout this game, we gave our best — yet lost 7 to 3. The spirit was still high and our team was determined to improve throughout the tournament.
After the game, we huddled and reflected on where we could improve. At 11:00 AM, we kicked off our second game against team KFK from Copenhagen. To put it mildly, KFK rocked! They impressed us with their low short continuous throws and how they moved the disc. Our felines did their best and scored a couple of points— but we still lost 8 to 2 points.
Moving into our third game at 12:20 PM, we tried to keep our spirit high. This time we play with RotPot— a team we play against in almost every tournament. We felt better about our chances. This could be it! This could be our break! RotPot came prepared and brought their best game along. We started the game by scoring a few points— however, RotPot made the break and we could not recover ever since. We lost to RotPot 11 to 3.
Phew, we were a bit demotivated! Losing three games in a row was tough. We knew we had to change something— we just did not know what just yet. The spirit was getting low by the game. But alas! We have a much deserved break for now. It is time for a beer and some Fischbrötchen from beautiful Warnemünde.
After a 2-hour break, we were back at it— tossing the discs back and forth and ready to start our next game. In the afternoon, the wind started to calm down. Our throws were making it across the field like they used to on grass. We are excited and start our game against team Murmeltiere at 3:40 PM.
This time were doing better. Our throws improved as the wind slowed down. We are more used to the sand now. But our tactics could still use some improvements. We started the game in a tight-knit score. Towards the middle of the game, Murmeltiere made their break and never looked back. We lost 9 to 4 in a well-played game by both teams.
Again 40 minutes break and reflection time. Our throws got better, wind got calmer, and we are more comfortable in sand. We still make estimation mistakes: throwing the disc too far. We quickly discussed if we want to name a few experienced members as “handlers” and fix the handling group. Team voted to change strategy and see what happens.
At 5:00 PM, we started our last game for the day against Fischkutter. Something just clicked in this game. We were making fewer mistakes. Handlers were being more conservative on their throws. We started to favor short low throws over deep hucks in the abyss, and just enjoyed the game. We ended the game on a positive note. We won 9 to 8. Fischkutter challenged us every single point. But finally, we landed a much-needed win. It was time for some Italian food. We deserved that after all.
Our dinner was great, most team members ordered the authentic Carbonara pasta— while others got their favorite pizzas. Spirit was high! After all, it was party time 🎉
A side benefit to losing a few games on Saturday is that we did not need to wake up early on Sunday. Our first game was set to start at 10:25 AM against team Electric. Our luck streak kept us going. We won our first game against Electric despite a tough game. Sunday was cold and rainy (non-interrupted rain from 9 AM to 4 PM.) The team got soaking wet— and yet, everyone kept the spirit up on the field and side lines. But hey— we won!
Our luck and legs did not carry us forward through our last game against the Griffins at 11:55 AM. We came prepared— but the Griffins nailed it. They scored a much deserved win and concluded the tournament for us.
Reflecting back on SOTB, there were plenty of learnings for us, AirPussies. For one, we had a narrow margin of error with 3 women on the field. On Sunday, one of our female players broke her toe— which left us scrambling to find a backfill. As a team, we train for beach Ultimate once a year in our yearly Usedom camp in April. Three days a year is not enough time on sand to improve our technique. Our fitness and low throws in windy conditions could always be better. Despite all that, I couldn’t be more proud of how the team pulled together through this tournament. We struggled— but improved towards the end. It was the first beach tournament for myself and many others on the team— and I look forward to our upcoming beach tournament. Go Pussies!