Madison at Indy

Ryan Baker, Journalist

It feels like anytime the Indianapolis AlleyCats and the Madison Radicals play each other it comes down to the very end. The last five of seven matchups between these two teams have been decided by a single point, but only two of the seven have gone Madison’s way. This past weekend was no different, as the Radicals suffered a heartbreaking 23-22 loss to the AlleyCats.. 

A win would have put them in the driver’s seat for a playoff spot given the loss the Chicago Union suffered. Nonetheless, the playoff hopes are still alive for a team that finished with a 4-8 record last year. With the middle of the Central Division muddied up with four teams within a game of each other, there’s no telling what will be the result with three weeks left to play. 

The Radicals jumped out in front right away in the first quarter, scoring three of the first four points. Then, they managed to put up another three-point run late in the quarter to give them a two-goal lead. The second quarter was completely back and forth, as the two teams traded points every possession, at five apiece. 

“I thought that we were playing really well, but we missed a lot of opportunities to extend the lead. I think we just made a lot of mistakes when we had moments that could’ve given us more breathing room. They did a good job of keeping the pressure on us,” said DeByl. “We’ve got to keep the pressure on and try to build a lead, because you don't know what's going to happen.”

The AlleyCats started to gain some momentum in the second half. A score at the end of the third quarter hurt the Radicals, as their lead was cut to just one. The mishaps really started to come into play in the fourth quarter. A huck out of bounds by Ted Schewe with three minutes to go and the game tied allowed Indy to take the lead on a break. Then, the Alleycats came down with a huck that  Victor Luo threw with 17 seconds left, which was a bit too early

“We got a little aggressive and took some chances. That's going to lead to some turnovers. I think they [Indy] did a really good job in the fourth quarter of just grinding out points over and over again. The couple of mistakes they made, they fixed and scored,” said DeByl.

It was an uncharacteristic game for the stout defense of the Radicals. They only managed six breaks on 24 chances, and only were able to grab twelve blocks throughout the game. The other side of the ball, however, played solid. Besides a few trigger-happy mistakes, the offense flowed well and minimized turnovers.

Individually, it was the usual for Madison. Kai Marcus put together a 400 yard performance, while having only two turnovers. Jake Carrico played efficiently, getting three assists, two goals and a block in 18 points played. Finally, goal-leader Anthony Gutowsky matched his career-high in goals for a game with six. 

The offense and defense will have to come together to make the playoff push a reality. With games remaining against the Thunderbirds, Union, and AlleyCats, once again, both sides of the disc need to be at the top of their game. The pressure is on.

“This team seems to respond better to playing game by game. I don’t think we played badly in Indy or anything. I thought we fixed a lot of our mistakes from the previous games. It's down to it. Now, we have to start adding some pressure and people are going to have to respond to it,” said DeByl.

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