Day two of the NCPA Nationals is in the books. The weather carried over much the same as yesterday with mostly overcast skies and a few drizzles threatening rain enough that I had to break out some of my rain gear to protect my equipment. With several Class A teams being sent home, all the Class A games got moved to the webcast field. A couple teams got a second shot at moving on thanks to their participation in Class A NCPA events in the regular season giving them enough seed points to stay alive. However, it turned out that these teams still were unable to make the necessary adjustments to stay in the competition. I was unable to see any of the morning’s ocho-final games as I was on the other fields photographing Class AA, but I did get to catch the last few. I’ll say it again: the scoreboards don’t tell the whole story. An 11-0 game for the Texas AM Aggies over the Drexel Dragons was not a much of a smashing as it sounds. Watch the game over again and you can see that this game was about edging out Drexel in every aspect, but the Aggies weren’t unstoppable. I’m not sure what happened to Drexel, but I would guess the Aggies got under their skin enough to get the Dragons making mistake after mistake. Little things win and lose tournaments and repeated penalties will definitely cost you points. Texas AM is not unbeatable, but it will take a well-composed team to show the cracks in the Aggies armor.
On the Class AA side of the tournament it’s much harder to speak with authority about particular teams. So many teams are in the tournament that it makes the literal hundreds of games go by in a blur. By the time the flag is hung I’ve practically forgotten the point that just occurred. Going by the results boards it’s the University of Texas Longhorns Orange and University of Wisconsin-Platteville Pioneers Orange going undefeated with the University of Texas at San Antonio Roadrunners and University of South Florida Bulls only losing one point for the day. With prelims out of the way, everyone going to play Sunday is equally in a must-win situation where losing a match means being eliminated. I’m also glad to report that my local friends in the Georgia State University team will be moving on as will two of the teams I’m photographing this year – the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Panthers Black and the Illinois State University Redbirds.