While the City of Spokane and inland empire was struggling to pull itself out of a major storm, the joys of flag football seemed to go beyond Mother Natures efforts to stop the fun. Battling frigid temperatures, the teams were treated to dry and sunny conditions and brought the competitive atmosphere to warm things up on the field.
This years tournament had fourteen teams competing for the Elite division title and 10 teams competing in the Competitive Division. The first games were played on Friday night, with the cold weather, the fogg started to roll in, which created some very surreal playing conditions. Elite pool play finished up Saturday morning with no real big surprises, if you happen to be somewhat familiar with the teams. The lone upset came from The North Remembers, who handed a more favored Bad Intentions a loss.
Seeding Play - Elite Division:
Bad Intentions - 35 vs Underdawgs - 0
Outlaws - 32 vs Happy Time - 0
FFC United - 13 vs Elite - 14
Meet Us at The 30 - 14 vs Sharks - 17
BITE - 19 vs The N. Remembers - 6
Elite - 0 vs Not Fast or Furious - 17
Sharks - 6 vs Outlaws - 26
The N. Remembers - 37 vs Bad Intentions - 28
Yakima Grid Iron - 14 vs WMDs - 17
Not Fast or Furious - 47 vs FFC United - 12
Happy Time - 28 vs Meet Us at The 30 - 6
Underdawgs - 0 vs BITE - 26
Crusaders - 12 vs Yakima Grid Iron - 28
After pool play the standings were set:
1) Not Fast or Furious
5) Yakima Grid Iron
6) The North Remembers
7) Bad Intentions
8) Happy Time
11) Meet us at the 30
13) FFC United
Individual Competition Awards
Chris from Gobble Trobble proved he has speed to kill. Dominating the 65 yard dash competition and taking home title of "Mr. Fast" at the Turkey Bowl Flag Football Tournament.
Claiming this years "The Cannon" award is Ben Bissle from team Village Tavern Bar Flies. Showing off his arm strength and throwing the ball an impressive 61 yards at the 2015 Turkey Bowl Flag Football Tournament going on at Dwight Merkel Sports Complex.
From the very beginning it seemed these two teams were destined to face off in the championship game. Both teams were highly organized, extremely focused, and generally went about business on the field without much complaining or reliance on others. It was as if both teams were on a mission and nobody would get in their way. The energy for these two teams seemed noticeably higher than the others teams. Maybe they had a trick to managing the cold, or maybe it was the laser sharp focus.
Not Fast or Furious is a young team loaded with talent and high motor players. What they may lack in overall knowledge and experience, the more than make up for with tenacity and athleticism. The Outlaws on the other hand are a much more deliberate and experienced team. They run precise plays that are tried and true from years of playing flag and honing their craft. With that experience comes age, and while age alone won't won't win or lose games, it does require that the older team execute better.
The championship game was a classic, while the Outlaws seemed to running on fumes as they came into the game, they were able to rely on a ball control offense and kept Not Fast or Furious at bay for much of first half, only surrendering 1-TD in the first half. But the ball control offense of the Outlaws wasn't able to connect when it mattered, maybe it was the cold weather, maybe the fatigue, or the fact that the Outlaws QB was rocketing the ball in, but the WR's for the Outlaws were unable to hang onto the ball and many good drives stalled out.
Not Fast or Furious on the other hand, seemed to get stronger as the game moved along. Their offense found its rhythm as the first half started to wind down. The used a balance attack and spread the ball around with quick passes, slowing down the Outlaws rush and stayed ahead of the chains to keep drives moving. Their Defense continued to keep the pressure on the Outlaws, and with a 14-0 lead late in the game, Not Fast or Furious was able to pick off a deflected ball and took it back to the house to seal the championship!
Final Results, Outlaws 0 vs Not Fast or Furious 20.
Not Fast or Furious- Elite Division Champions
Competitive Division Bracket results:
The 9th Man 8 vs Warriors 24
Gobble Trobble 19 vs Backyard All-stars 6
Late Arrivals 26 vs Turf N’ Burn 12
Renegades 23 vs WOR 6
Village Tavern Bar Flies 23 vs Gobble Trobble 13
Rebels 34 vs Warriors 14
Village Tavern Bar Flies 7 vs Renegades 12
Late Arrivals 7 vs Rebels 27
Rebels 15 vs Renegades 0
Rebels – Competitive Division Champions
All Tournament Individual Awards:
The Officials and tournament managers nominated the following players for the Spokane Turkey Bowl All-Tournament team. Congratulation to those nominated, and Thank you to the Spokane Parks and Rec for hosting this wonderful tournament.
Quarterback: Andrew Dresback, Not Fast or Furious
Wide receiver: Austin Ehlo, Not Fast or Furious
O-line: Zach Nordmeyer, Bad Intentions
Safety: Andre Moore, Outlaws
D-Line: Noah McWilliams, Not Fast or Furious
Defensive back: Austin Ehlo, Not Fast or Furious
Line-Backer: Colten Williams, Not Fast or Furious