This weekend Orlando A-side hosted Daytona in a regular season matrix match, while Orlando’s B-side hosted Brevard. The events prior to the match are what true clubs are all about. A call came in from the city at 4pm on Friday stating that all city fields would be closed due to weather. Rather than forfeiting the match, the club banded together to make it happen. Adam Hyche, and Tom Murphy made countless phone calls looking for a viable option. JD Flynn contacted the referee society and Daytona to keep them informed. Chris Quigley reached out to Brevard. Raoul Besse loaded up his truck with goal posts, while Kenny Bernstein located the flags and goal pads. Eric Jacovetti found an auger and everyone showed up prior to the match to create a pitch from scratch. Rather than throwing in the towel, the Orlando boys stepped up.
The conditions were rainy, muddy, and miserable, but it didn’t stop Orlando from putting on a show for the supporters. Tackling was much improved, ball handling was good despite the conditions, and Orlando played to the caliber they’re capable of. Final score on the day was Orlando 46 – Daytona 5. Tries scored on the day go to Dan McGann, Sam Nelson, Chris Sunderhaus, Juan Dengal (2x), Mike Shope, Will Doherty, and Chris Claire. Man of the Match was awarded to Mike Shope for his play at hooker and filling in at flanker when needed. Two Zulus were also performed, but players will not be named so as to protect the innocent from their respective spouses. Orlando’s B-side hosted a traveling Brevard side and kept the intensity up throughout. Everyone saw significant time on the pitch and the new boys were able to showcase their talents. Final Score was Orlando 29 – Brevard 0. Tries were put in by Chris Claire, Chris Quigley, Sam Nelson, and Omar (Tony) Soto. Man of the Match was awarded to the veteran “rookie”, who claims he’s never played but kicks like a pro, Sam Nelson.
Many of you have asked what’s going on with the club after two poor performances against Boca and Lauderdale. Orlando is on the right track and setting itself up for the long-term. If you remember, the club was down to 10 members and 3 ex-com at the end of last season. A strong executive committee was established this year and meetings have been held regularly every month. 4 new positions have been created due to the enthusiasm of transfer players who held leadership positions in the former clubs. A full coaching staff has been named including Eugene Louw (Head Coach), Evan Haigh (Backs), and Tom Murphy (Forwards). A new bar sponsor has been located that is providing monetary sponsorships. The team has engaged in fundraising activities to provide financial stability. A blood drive was recently held for Cannon Wiggins, a two year old diagnosed with Stage 4 Neuroblastoma. Not only was it the most successful blood drive they’ve ever held, but the players donated $438 to the family to supplement their needs. A new application called “Whatsapp” has been implemented to create more bonding amongst the team and many new players have joined the club recently. They need time playing together before success will be consistent on the pitch, but Orlando will get there. Rome wasn’t built in a day, but the infrastructure is now in place to grow the club exponentially. Please join us for the next home match this weekend as Orlando hosts Tampa Krewe.