Green Dukes Fall in Devastating 3-0 Loss to Hampton Pie-Rats
The Duqueswood University Green Dukes suffered their first major set back of the NCBB Season 44 in a costly 3-0 shutout vs. the Hamton Pie Rats underworld squad. In addition to giving up 2 TDs to junior gutter runner Velk Highrunner and 1 TD to sophomore tight end clan rat Khunq Cindermaul, Duqueswood sustained three casualties on the day, including the death of senior thrower Elehorn Oakhand (quantitative rootconomics).
“He’s gonna be tough to replace,” said Green Dukes Coach Gerric Smithson on the loss of Oakhand, who led the team with 9 career completions. “But you know the refrain around here. It’s next elf up.”
The game got off to a promising start for Duqueswood when junior thrower Bryden Branch (quantitative rootconomics) flipped the ball to sophomore catcher Scootyr Spinleaf (undecided) near midfield after receiving the opening kick. Some solid blocking along the southern sideline, including freshman wardancer Bixtyr Brightwing (magical leaf studies) stomping Pie Rat snotling Migga into the turf, cleared a path for Spinleaf for what looked to be an early TD.
However, sophomore catcher Gladryl Stormfoot (history of dirt), who needed to protect the backside on the play, missed his assignment. Intimidated by the claws on the Pie Rats best tackler, junior skaven blitzer Kritch Emberwalker, Stormfoot failed to engage on the block, standing back from Emberwalker, closing his eyes, and hoping to screen the backside blitz.
“I told these guys over and over in practice, we can’t rely on ‘hoping’ for our blocks,” Smithson said after the game. “You know the old saying, ‘hope in one hand, crap in the other, and see which fills up first.’ Well, apparently, that doesn’t make sense to wood elves, because there’s a long practice among them of defecating in their own hand and carrying it to the Eastern Wastes so as not to ‘despoil the forest.’ Who knew, right? Always learning something new with this squad.”
Gladryl Stormfoot fails to make a key block during the Green Dukes opening drive because of his fear of Kritch Emberwalker’s claws. Said Stormfoot after the game, “I thought the creatures had paws, not claws.”
By failing to make the block, Stormfoot left an opening for Emberwalker to easily dodge through and chase down Spinleaf. The skaven blitzer then made the tackle, clawing a huge gash in Spinleaf’s arm that helped to free the ball.
The teams spent most of the rest of the half fighting over the ball deep in Pie Rat territory, and the Green Dukes had a chance to salvage the drive, when freshman lineman Ganderly Truegrass (tree bark studies) shoved Emberwalker into the ball, and it bounced to the edge of the goal line. Branch spun away from the scrum and then tried to reach between Highrunner’s legs to scoop the ball up and dodge away for the touchdown.
Highrunner, however, knocked the ball away with his tail, and the Pie Rats two-headed junior thrower Quagreetch Featherclaw easily grabbed it. Sprinting to midfield, Featherclaw flipped the ball to Cindermaul who easily broke into to the clear to put the Pie Rats up 1-0 at the end of the first half.
Featherclaw is able to look both before him and behind him as he flips the ball forward to Cindermaul for the opening score
Perhaps more costly than the score was the action trailing the play as Emberwalker took down Spinleaf earlier in the half. Unlike Stormfoot, Oakhand made the block he was required to make to keep Spinleaf from being chased down from behind. Unfortunately, the player Oakhand was blocking was Varag Ghoul-Chewer, whom Hampton had hired for the day.
Though Oakhand kept Ghoul-Chewer from the ball carrier, he mainly did so by getting his throat in the way of the massive orc’s hand, which proceeded to rip out the wood elf’s larynx. As Oakhand lay bleeding out on the sideline, the Duqueswood apothecary stepped forward, but Coach Smithson signaled him to sit down. “Looks like there’s no saving him. He’s uh … already fully dead,” Smithson said, despite the fact that Oakhand continued to gasp for air, and his body didn’t stop bleeding and go still until the beginning of the second half.
Down 1-0 without the ball at the start of the second half, the Green Dukes grew desperate early on defense, and their aggressive cage leaping and blitzing soon led to all but 5 players being KO’d or injured. Hampton took advantage, and found paydirt twice in the second half on long runs by Highrunner, who led all players with 32 yards rushing on the day.
Highrunner blazes a path toward one of his two second-half TDs
“It’s tough when you get down early like that,” said Coach Smithson during the postgame press conference. “Sometimes the harder you try to clean up the mess you made, the more of a mess you make. In that way, I guess that is kind of like taking a crap in your own hand. Hey, maybe I’ll use the metaphor that way for the fellas from now on.”