Boston for a Rookie – The Wake Up Call
Copy/Pasted from the Truck Stop Ultimate Website.
Truck Stop finished 5th place at Boston this year. That’s the highest I’ve ever finished at any serious club tournament not called Sectionals. Yet I come away with mixed feelings on the weekend. Sure, there is some satisfaction in how we closed out games on Sunday to secure 5th. But there’s a lot more hunger for what’s left on the table after we didn’t close out the second half against Southpaw and how we didn’t come out on fire against GOAT.
At moments, it was surreal to finally take the field with some of the very best and most dedicated players around and be one of seven guys trusted to go out and make a play for Truck Stop.
But reality came calling quickly – the “I made the team” honeymoon is over.
In games against the top teams, there’s zero room for fatigue or excuse. When you take the field with six other guys you’ve worked with since tryouts, there’s no room for mental errors on the mark that leave your downfield teammates exposed. Nor is there any room to be irresponsible with the disc (one example might be throwing a bladey, inside-out, backhand huck from the flick side) – especially after we worked so hard to earn the turn. You learn you never again want to let down your teammates.
These are the lessons of Boston. It’s good to get slapped around early, a reminder you aren’t untouchable as a team or a player. You learn nothing is given to you.
I have a lot of respect for Truck’s leadership this weekend – both captains and veterans. On past teams I’ve played on, tough losses wilted desire and killed work ethic. Instead, we doubled down. With low numbers, guys like #6 Bobby Gordon played through pain and made some incredible grabs on huge bids. #1 Daniel Kantor had two goal line hand blocks at clutch moments.
On the O-line, guys like #21 Rob “the American Eagle” Dulabon, #7 Sean Keegan and #5 Keven Moldenhauer levitated to sky defenders, both keeping us in the game and setting the tone as our defense took the field. And #67 Jammin inspired the team as only he can (it involved eating actual grass), at a moment on Sunday when it would have been easier to just pack it in.
You play one game with these guys and you know this is exactly why you worked so hard for tryouts. I come away from Boston a little sore and pretty tired, but starving to do more to ensure 5th place is where we start the climb up.
Erik Salmi #61