Sunday, 26 August 2012

Stillwater Stiffs 11-2-2

Seems the Stiffs have fallen on hard times recently. The wins are few and far between these days. I'm not quite sure what the hurdle is, whether it's karma for doing so well in the early season, maybe it's that Undead don't do as well as other teams in the later stages of league progression, or maybe that the people I play against are now picking up the tricks to beat an Undead team. Whatever the reason I'm certainly getting schooled a lot nowadays where I was previously not having too much trouble winning games. So after eating a lot of humble pie I have started looking a lot closer at how I am playing. Certainly my luck with the armour and injury rolls has dried up so I'm having to rely on the running game. But to cut a long story short, there is definitely a silver lining to this losing streak in that it is teaching me how to become a better coach. It also means that hopefully my fellow coaches may not be too adverse to me playing Undead for another season so I can spend a bit more time learning the team. We'll wait and see on that one though...

I've got a very quick review of the last two games I played. The first was against Jim's Ogre team - Bash'n'Dash. In our last game beating this team was a very simple process of blitzing one Snotling a turn with my Wights and putting them in the injury dugout. By the end of the first half Jim didn't have enough players to contain my team. It appears it was not so simple this time round. I followed the same process but those Snotling would just not go down. I managed to get a handful knocked out but then they just woke up after every drive. So effectively Jim was playing with a full team for the whole game and he had plenty of screening to help his Ogres break through all my tackles and wander into the endzone. Final score was 2-1 to Jim. My dice weren't fantastic for my injury rolls so my biggest flaw here was not having a back up plan. I received first and scored too early allowing Jim to score before the end of the first half and then receive for the second. I should have played for time more and tried to beat up more Snotlings. But oh well, lesson learned, we'll chalk that one up to experience.

The second game was against Simon's Humans - The Middenheim Municipals. I was giving away something like 240k in inducements for this match so figured I would be getting Wizarded somewhere. I was somewhat relieved to hear Simon was taking a Star Player instead; none other than the Mighty Zug! In hindsight however I would have easily preferred a Wizard over Zug. I received in the first half thinking I would try and grind him down a bit before finishing him off in the second half. I caged up in the centre with my Wights on blitzing duty trying to put his catchers out of the game. Once again however my casualty machine failed to fire. Even with four Mighty Blow players on the field I simply could not roll high enough to put players in the injured dugout. On top of this Simon's positional play was exceptional. He constantly stalled my cage even breaking it a few times to leave me scoreless at the end of the first half. In the second half Simon blitzed down his right wing. I had left this one open a little to tempt him over there while I pinned his two blitzers to the other wing with my slower players. I thought with my Wights and Ghouls I could win the sideline brawl as I severely outweighed him with the amount of block I had. Once again however my cunning plans were smashed to pieces by Simon's dazzling positional play as he pranced in for a Touchdown and I was left wondering where I had gone wrong. Thankfully for me the casualty machine kicked back into gear at the tail end of the second half leaving me with just enough room to score on the final turn and tie the game. It must be said that this was only by the slimmest of margins as Simon failed a pivotal 'Gor for it' roll when blitzing my ball carrier, so I only just scrapped through...but I'll take it none the less.

So that's it so far for the Stiffs. We have one more game in the regular season against Michael's Slann and apparently there are no play-offs. So if my maths is correct, thanks to their early season rampage, the Stiffs are BCL champions for 2012 as no one can reach them on the table. They'll certainly be looking to finish the season strong though. This sudden change in fortune does not sit well with the Stiffs fans. Many have been seen burning their pendant flags and foam fingers after the recent match with the Municipals and rumour has it many fans are dumping their red and black to don the colours of more promising teams. The good news is that the Stiffs number 8 Wight - Kraftig, has recently been practising a 'legal' fouling technique called 'Piling On'. He seems to have it mastered now so he will be looking for blood against the Slann. Even if they lose the game, if they are able to keep the casualty count high enough that should keep the fans on board.

That's all for the BCL league. With the wind down of the season the Stiffs will be going on tour soon to attend the Greenstone Cup and throw their weight in against our country's best. I'll start posting a lead up to this very soon. Fingers crossed they make a good impression.

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