Rampage defeated at home by the Spinners (22-30)
The Rampage returned to Rhode Island this Saturday, fresh off a two win road trip to Columbus, OH and Detroit, MI. The Rhinos were looking to move into first place with a victory over the 2-0 Philly Spinners, who had lived up to the preseason hype with impressive home wins over Buffalo and Connecticut.
As the day's gusty winds died and the sun faded behind the bleachers of Pierce Stadium, a small but rowdy crowd of 229 decked out in Rampage orange filed into their seats ready for a battle.
The Rampage D-line was quick to give the crowd something to cheer about, drawing first blood with a break in the opening point. The teams then traded O-line scores, and Rampage got another break, giving the home team an early 3-1 lead.
The Spinners quickly recovered, and shook off any nerves or travel lag in their first away game by answering back with four straight scores. After another trade of breaks and a tie at 5-5, the first quarter would end with the home team trailing 7-6.
The second quarter also saw the Rampage score first, but it would be the last time the sides were equal. A balanced and steady attack by the Spinners offense was led by captains Trey Katzenbach and Nick Hirannet, while Art Shull and Jake Rainwater piled up five goals each.
The Rampage D-line was missing some key players: team captain Teddy Brower-Jarus’ absence and Matt Heath’s injury began to take their toll. Their leadership and depth in the handler core was more and more apparent as the game went on.
The Rhinos’ D was still able to generate a few turnovers, but missed opportunities prevented a sustained come-from-behind rally. When the Rampage D-line was able to break, it seemed like the Spinners were ready to answer with two of their own. Sean Murray and Alex Grintsvayg each had three blocks, including and eye-popping layout catch D by Alex on an in-cut throw to a Rampage cutter.
The Rampage offense was led by Adam "AJ" Johnston who had seven receiving scores along with an assist despite often lining up as the third handler in the Rampage's horizontal stack attack. The hucking game that carried Rhode Island to their two wins the previous weekend failed to click as often against Philly's tough marks and deep help defense. The Spinners’ lead would grow to 3 at halftime, 5 at the end of the third quarter, and 8 as the final seconds ticked away.
The Rampage look to return to their winning ways at home this Saturday as they host the struggling 0-2 Buffalo Hunters at 3:00pm in Pierce Stadium. We look forward to seeing everyone out there as we take the field to claim our first win in Rhode Island.
Sam "Hollywood" Henderson
Brian Zid of the RI Rampage goes big for a goal.
April 14, 2012
CT Constitution outlast RI Rampage 29-23
First pro Ultimate game a success for everyone involved
EAST PROVIDENCE, RI – On Saturday, April 14th the Rhode Island Rampage hosted the Connecticut Constitution in the first-ever professional Ultimate game. Though the Rampage lost 29-23, history was made nonetheless as the two teams opened the inaugural season for the American Ultimate Disc League (AUDL). The AUDL games feature four 12 minute quarters where each team throws the disc back and forth until a reception is made in the endzone, resulting in a point.
The Rhode Island Rampage is majority owned by Warwick, Rhode Island native and former Syracuse, CFL and Arena League football star, Emerson Kilgore. The team operates under the leadership of General Manager, Head Coach and minority owner Jose Invencio. On the field, the Rampage is led by Teddy Browar-Jarus, of elite Open team “Boston Ironside” and assistant captains, Brandon Malecek, also of “Boston Ironside,” and Mike Miller, of elite Mixed team “Slow White.” The 25 man roster is comprised of other players from all levels of college and club competition from throughout New England.
The first quarter featured an early four-point lead for Connecticut, but the Rampage answered back with solid deep throws and clamped down on defense to fight back to trail just 7-6 at the end of the first quarter.
The second quarter, however, was a bit lopsided. Several unforced turnovers by the Rampage allowed the Constitution to take a fairly large 14-8 lead going into the halftime break.
The second half of the game was a high-scoring, back-and-forth affair, filled with exciting plays from both teams. Throughout the half, each team seemed, at times, poised to make a long run of several scores in a row, but neither team was able to generate enough momentum for long. In the end Connecticut’s halftime lead held, and the Constitution won 29-23.
By all accounts, the first-ever professional ultimate game was a rousing success. Even if the new teams showed a few chemistry problems, both the Constitution and the Rampage pulled off the high-flying and athletic plays that have made ultimate one of the fastest-growing team sports in the world. Throughout the game, the crowd was very enthusiastic and quite responsive to the exciting on-field play.
After the game, one fan declared the match, “One of the most awesome things I’ve ever seen.” He was most impressed by the speed of the game and “the athleticism it takes to cover that huge field.” The AUDL games take place on an 80 yard long field, with 20 yard endzones and is 53 yards wide, the same dimensions as a football field. Another fan described the game as “much more engaging than soccer.”
Other fans celebrated the numerous aggressive deep throws made by Rampage captains Brandon “Muffin” Malacek, and Teddy Browar-Jarus, and an interception made by Rampage player Dave Lipson, as time expired at the end of a quarter.
Emerson Kilgore, Majority Owner of the Rhode Island Rampage, was extremely pleased. “I’m not really too concerned about the scoreboard today,” said Kilgore. “Our team has the talent to be very successful. Today was about putting on a great show for our fans, and putting a professional product on the field, and that’s what we did.”
“Today was a ton of fun,” said Rampage player Matt Heath after the game. “I’ve never played for that many people before. It was awesome that the crowd was so into it, so I want to thank them all for coming out.”
When asked how the Rampage can learn from this game, Heath said, “Mostly just that we need to work on chemistry. We had some big plays, and some great man-to-man defense, but we just need to get our offense flowing a bit better, just by playing together more, and coordinate our defensive strategy to make sure we’re on the same page.”
Heath said, “I absolutely hope and expect that people will come out and watch. We have some great players, and as we learn how to play together we’re going to be a very competitive team in this league. Ultimate has always been a good spectator sport, but with the AUDL system, it’s better than ever.”
Rampage goes on the road this coming weekend, playing at Columbus on April 21st and at Detroit on the 22nd. The next home game is April 28th, when the team hosts Eastern Division powerhouse The Philadelphia Spinners, in what is sure to be an exciting matchup, 7:00pm, Pierce Stadium, East Providence, RI. The stadium is a few minutes east of downtown Providence and just an hour south of Boston.
Tickets for all Rampage home games are just $10 each, offering a family friendly opportunity to experience the exciting game of Ultimate at the professional level.
Visit the RI Rampage website at www.rirampage.com
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