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Last night featured 150 local young professionals, competing for the right to claim Xoso Dodgeball Champion on their athletic resumes. Another 100 playoff hopefuls had already had their dreams of dodgeball glory fade into the distance. The Xoso Sport & Social League offers two divisions on Thursday evenings, separating veteran "A" league teams from newer "B" league teams.
On the B League side of the gym last night, Gym Tan Dodgeball proved that it doesn't always matter where you're seeded.
The Fall Season of Xoso dodgeball wrapped up last night with an epic night of playoffs and championship matchups. Coming into the night Drinkin' Team (6-2) and Titsburg Feelers (6-2) arrived with the top 2 seeds, while Gym Tan Dodgeball (5-3) and Hookers and Bacon (4-4) had earned the lowest seeds - 5th and 6th respectively.
In the opening round the first matchup contained little drama as Sexual Chocolate and Gym Tan Dodgeball(GTD) were set to square off in a battle of 4-seed vs 5-seed. Sexual Chocolate unfortunately didn't have the minimum number of players and so GTD was awarded a victory by forfeit and advanced to the semifinal round. The other quarterfinal matchup was a different story as the 3-seed, Ball Thugs & Harmony, went to battle against the 6-seed Hookers & Bacon. It was a close fight the entire game as the game progressed: 1-1, 2-1, and finally 3-1 with Hookers & Bacon finally able to distance themselves from Ball Thugs. Ball Thugs were not done however, as they whittled their competition down in the next game. This 5th and deciding game determined the match as time ran out on Ball Thugs, even though they had more players left as time expired, this additional point brought them a 3-2 loss and allowed Hookers & Bacon to complete the upset and move on to face Titsburg Feelers in the semifinals.
The Titsburg Feelers took advantage of their 1st round bye and used their rested arms to welcome Hookers & Bacon to the semifinal round. Hookers & Bacon put up a tough fight by winning 3 games, however the #2 seed proved to be too much and won convincingly 6-3. With their victory Titsburg earned a spot in the Championship game versus the winner of #5-seed Gym Tan and #1-seed Drinking Team. In this other semifinal match the top-seeded Drinking Team had a strong advantage as they battled GTD late into the match with a 3-2 lead, and time winding down at approximately the 4 minute mark. Gym Tan would not give up. GTD successfully tied the match up at 3-3 with just over 2 minutes remaining. With little time on the clock these two teams battled in one final game to determine who would move onto the Championship match. In an exciting and heated contest Gym Tan gutted it out and was able to secure a win in the final game for a 4-3 match victory.
The intensity and stakes only got higher as the Championship Match featured Gym Tan Dodgeball squaring off against the second-seeded Titsburg Feelers. The games in this final match were long and extremely hard-fought as each side knew what was at stake. They battled toe-to-toe for four exhausting matches and in the end were tied at 2-2, due to the Titsburg Feelers having more players on the court as time expired and Gym Tan missing a half-court basket as the whistle blew. The Championship was settled with one final sudden death game. The score was finally settled when the team that seemed to have the most fight in them, Gym Tan Dodgeball, was able to oust the final Titsburg Feeler and claim Xoso Dodgeball Championship status. Gym Tan was able to knock off the #1 AND #2 seeds to truly prove that, in the playoffs, it's anyones game.
Congrats to Gym Tan Dodgeball on their first championship!
On the "A" league side, Team AP survived to win their 3rd straight A League title.
In one of the most tightly contested dodgeball playoffs in recent memory, Team AP was able to secure their 3rd consecutive Thursday dodgeball crown. Usually seeded 1st or 2nd, AP (6-2) finished the regular season in 3rd place and faced the unusual challenge of not having a 1st round playoff bye and instead having to win three matches to clinch the championship. In round 1, AP struggled early against 6th seeded Bat S*** Crazy (2-1-5) before pulling away late to win 5-2. The other round 1 matchup saw 4th seed (o)(o) (4-4) knock off 5th seed Dirty Smurfs (4-4) also by the score of 5-2 to advance.
In the evening's first semifinal, top-seeded and undefeated D3: The Mighty Drunks (8-0) battled (o)(o) in a closer than anticipated match but emerged a 4-2 winner. Semifinal #2 was a tense affair that saw Team AP jump out to a 3-1 lead on a 2nd seeded Kendall's Bridesmaids (7-1) before Kendall's Bridemaids closed the gap to 3-2 and then evened the match at 3-3 by winning a 3-on-3 sudden death round after regulation time had expired. The squads then faced off in an untimed, winner-take-all 8-on-8 game won by AP to set up a championship showdown with longtime rivals D3.
This season's title match between AP and D3 marked the 4th time these rivals have squared off in the playoffs over the last few seasons. A determined D3 played hard to end AP's post-season dominance but was unable to slow down AP as they established a 4-1 lead in the first 20 minutes of the match. Energized by their earlier round scares, AP was in classic form for the championship round marked by their athleticism and unmatched throwing ability. D3 clawed back late to narrow the lead to 4-2 but ran out of time as AP closed out the match 5-2 and celebrated the first three-peat in Xoso history.
Congrats to Team AP!