Mantis and some pick-up players spent some great and sunny days in Bruges at Tom’s Tourney in early May this year.
Game day 1
Due to some unforeseen circumstances most girls of our team had a relatively short night. Which resulted in some tired faces on the first morning. Fortunately the sun was already up and shining so waking up wasn’t too hard.
The first game was against the Belgian National team who had Mantis coach Silke on their side. We fought hard and never made it an easy game for our opponents. Miscommunications happened more often in our team, so we ended the spirited game 7:11.
GB Women were up next. We had a really good start, where we managed to keep up a good defense and a solid offence until a score of 4:4. Then the experienced ladies showed their class and finished us 5:10. Still, we took a lot of positive attitude out of that game.
Our game against the German U23 was disappointing. We took the lead very soon because it was clearly one of the first games they played as a team, which made it easy for our defense. But then the German girls came back stronger and took us by surprise. So our 3 points lead vanished and lead to a 3 points lead for Germany, who ended the game 6:9.
We had another game that day against the Dutch National team. Nothing worked out for us. We dropped in front of our own end zone. Our defense pressure was non-existent. And most of our throws never reached the intended receiver. We were very unhappy not to be able to give the Oranjes a better fight. We switched our defense to a zone later in the game which helped us scoring 2 points. So it wasn’t a complete disaster but only a disaster. The final score was 2:13.
There was a BBQ for dinner with lots of Mayo that made us almost forget the last game. Dead tired from running and drained from the sun throughout the day we went back to our tents and fell asleep quite fast.
Game day 2
The next morning was another sunny one where we first encountered Gentleladies. We seemed not to have forgotten the last game of the previous day. Unfortunately, we didn’t really get there. At least the spirit was good. But still, it hurt to be beaten 5:13 because we could not give them an actual fight.
Up next was another national team. The Danish ladies beat us 5:10 and even though the score might not suggest it, every point was a fight. A very good and fair fight.
The last game of that day was again against Germany, but this time it was the masters. It was a game at eye level. Both teams tired and giving their best. Our defense slowed them down but they scored anyway. Their defense slowed us down much more but we also kept scoring. It came down to a universe with some turnovers. In the end the German masters kept a cooler head and defeated us 7:8 in a very spirited game.
We ordered pizza for dinner and enjoyed the music and the bouncy house race. Some of us took the party-bus to the party and came back at some point shortly before sunrise. The others went to bed a little earlier.
Game day 3
In the morning we came together for one last breakfast together. Then we discovered that we had 2 games left and not only 1 as we had wrongly assumed before. 2 players short, because they found something better to do on a sunny Saturday (a wedding and work), we warmed up to face familiar faces: the Danish women! And it was an awesome game. Our defense gave them a lot of trouble. We finally found the guts to throw some hucks that actually were received. We lost 7:9 but no sad faces there, only laughter.
Our very last game of Tom’s Tourney was against the French masters. A very intense and tight game concerning body contact and score. Unfortunately this last game was not as spirited as the games we had before but we managed to stay focused and keep the lead we took at the very beginning to a final score of 8:7.
Very happy about this last and only victory in this tournament we showered, put down our tents and had some beer while watching the finals. The award ceremony was shortly after and the remains of this year’s mantis-connection gathered one last time. We really could not keep quiet as the spirit winner of the ladies was pronounced: MANTIS!!!
I really want to thank all of you ladies! It was so great playing, laughing, eating and drinking with you, I hope we all see each other again at some point.
We want to thank all Tom’s Tourney volunteers and the Freezzz Beezzz for this great tournament and we are looking forward to next year’s anniversary.
Mantis roster: Carmen, Asia, TingTing, Kathi R., Linda, Angi, Flora, Lisa, Hannah, Rosi and our pick ups Babsi, Melissa, Anne and Sonja.
Coach: Kathi M.
Written by: Carmie