Green Dukes Earn 2-2 Tie in Sloppy Yet Highlight-Filled Game Vs. Ratskis
The Duqueswood University Green Dukes
fought their way to a 2-2 tie with the UDub Ratskis
in an NCBB
game that was equal parts sloppy and dazzling. Despite the rain, which turned the first half into a muddy scrum, the Green Dukes got touchdowns from sophomore receiver Scootyr Spinleaf (undeclared) who continues to fill his dead brother’s
offensive cleats, and junior lineman Greeney Bullwind (history of dirt). Standout senior gutter runners, The Paws and Kenny “Smooth” G gave the skaven Udub squad their touchdowns on the day.
Spinleaf scores the tying touchdown in the first half
“Look, any time you’re playing against skaven, you need to watch out for two things,” said Duqueswood Coach Gerric Smithson as he scratched furiously at his beard with his good arm
during the postgame press conference. “Quick scores, and fleas. I think we did a good job of holding off those quick scores. The fleas … maybe not so much.”
Duqueswood looked poised to take control of the game in the first half after separating those flea-ridden paws from the ball more than once on leaping blitzes by junior wardancer Angorn Windfoot (history of elven warfare) and freshman wardancer Bixtyr Brightwing (magical leaf studies). On two occasions the Green Dukes even gained possession of the ball and looked close to scoring a defensive touchdown and taking a 1-0 first-half lead.
The first came when junior lineman Foren Longweed (mystical fauna studies) stomped on rat ogre Zachary "Red" Henning’s tail after the huge mutant rodent managed to scoop the ball off the muddy pitch. When Henning roared with rage at the insult of the tail-stomping, he momentarily forgot about the ball, which popped into the air and landed in the hands of junior Duqueswood linewoman Zephira Gettleaf (double major: oakish, women's & arbor studies).
Rather than dodging away from Henning, Gettleaf curiously stood beside the rat ogre, and reached her hand toward his snout in a manner so slow it was unclear if she was defending herself or had momentarily lost her wits. Henning simply grabbed her arm and tossed the elf maiden to the pitch, easily freeing her from the ball.
Henning thrashes Gettleaf, using her own outstretched arm
“I hold an abiding love for all woodland creatures,” said a bruised and bloodied Gettleaf after the match. “I had never seen a squirrel so grand, but as I tried to pet this glorious rodent, he but used my arm as a cudgel with which to throttle me. I’m starting to think he may not have been a squirrel.”
After a leaping blitz from Windfoot, the Green Dukes reclaimed the ball, with freshman catcher Gladryl Stormfoot breaking into the clear along the northern sideline. But Ratskis gutter runner Rome "Not In A Day" Ozune punched the ball loose from behind deep in UDub territory to stave off a Green Dukes’ touchdown and relaunch a scoring drive for the Ratskis.
Freshman gutter runner Tybo "Workout" Rogers deftly scooped the loose ball out of the mud, and handed it forward to The Pawz, who scurried up field. Dodging and sidestepping along the northern sideline, The Pawz left Windfoot grasping at air and finally face down in the mud as he high-stepped into the end zone.
The Pawz gets the Ratskis off to a 1-0 lead with a TD late in a rain-soaked, fumble-filled first half.
Udub opened the second half with a surprise onside kick, but Windfoot and sophomore thrower Bryden Branch (quantitative root-conomics) were able to hold off a hard-charging Henning and "Smooth" G long enough for Duqueswood senior thrower Elehorn Oakhand (quantitative root-conomics) to grab the ball. In Branch’s case holding of Henning meant taking a frenzied paw to the face and then positioning his prone body between the rat ogre and the ball.
That unconventional blocking strategy held up long enough for Oakhand to roll out to his right and hit a speedy Spinleaf just past midfield. As fleet-footed as his older brother—but without the aid of warpstone dust, we hope—the elven catcher streaked toward the end zone untouched to tie the game.
“Every time I have the ball in my hands, the noble memory of my brother spurs me to greater speeds,” said Spinleaf after the game. “Well, that and the fear of getting my throat ripped out by the fiends on the opposing team, of course.”
From there, both offenses seemed to settle in and adjust to the rain, as the teams traded quick scores with little defensive resistance, save for a brilliant chain-block by Henning that opened a ball-freeing blitz by Rogers. Despite freeing the ball, however, Udub couldn’t stop the Green Dukes from tying the score with a quick pass from Branch to Bullwind along the southern sideline.
With the game knotted 2-2 and little time on the clock, Udub moved quickly into Green Duke territory, leaving “Smooth” G open for a backside blitz. Brightwing took advantage of that opening, dodged away from a skaven blocker, and took “Smooth” G down with a rather rough forearm shiver to the back of the head.
As the ball skidded across the puddles at midfield, the Green Dukes seized their chance for a late-game victory. Branch grabbed the ball, looked downfield, and tossed a perfect spiral to Stormfoot. The pass caught the catcher in stride deep in Udub territory behind any Ratskis defenders, and Stormfoot streaked toward the endzone for what would have been the winning score.
There was only one problem. The final whistle had already blown, and the game was long over.
Green Dukes players celebrate what they thought was the winning touchdown in the endzone, long after the game had ended and most fans had left the stadium
“Look, I know we’re three seasons into the program now, but there are still some aspects of the game that are hard for the elven mind to grasp,” said Coach Smithson. “I mean, we’re talking about beings who can live for thousands of years, so the concept of a clock ticking down and something ending in a matter of seconds from the present moment can be tough to grasp. But yeah, knowing when the game is actually ending … That’s something we’re going to need to keep working on.”
Next up, the Green Dukes will host their home opener vs. the 'Bama Bumpkin Tide dwarf squad, who are currently 1-1-0 on the season.