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2024-07-08 00:34:47
10 votes, rating 6
Green Dukes ‘Fight’ to Season’s First Win in Last-Second 1-0 Victory Over Blood Hens

Green Dukes ‘Fight’ to Season’s First Win in Last-Second 1-0 Victory Over Blood Hens

The Duqueswood University Green Dukes thrilled their home crowd at the Uther J. Rune-Elf Stadium with the debut of the team’s official fight song and a last-second 1-0 win over the Dell of War Blood Hens to secure their first victory of the NCBB season. The Green Dukes got the game-winning touchdown from sophomore line-elf-woman Lyric Birdsong (ancient fae studies) in the game’s closing seconds. Duqueswood also edged the Blood Hen dark-elf squad in successful blocks 23-21 in a surprisingly violent elf-on-elf match, with 4 combined casualties, including 2 Blue Hen deaths.

Oakward Weatherborn deals out one of the Green Dukes two kills on the day, pulverizing line-elf Josh Baker’s head to blood and bone dust with a double-branch mighty blow in the first half

“You hate to see elves die out there,” said Duqueswood Head Coach Gerric Smithson somberly at the postgame press conference before cracking into a wide grin. “But you hate to see it a whole heck of a lot less when those dead elves are wearing the other team’s uniforms! Am I right?”

The game’s unusual level of aggression may have resulted from a pregame dust-up involving Dell of War’s tradition of locking an underperforming intern into a cage with their War Hen mascot, a captive harpy, before each game. A highlight at all Blood Hen home games, the ritual is also sometimes performed at elf opponent home stadiums. However, when the team’s harpy-handlers wheeled the cage out to midfield, Green Dukes wardancer Dethwyntyr Whitebranch (elven military science—RETC) charged out onto the field armed with a cudgel and demanded that the intern be freed and the harpy released.

“These interns are unpaid,” said Whitebranch after the match. “This is simply another word for slavery. And this ‘blood hen’ deserves to be unmuzzled and set free no matter how we may feel about her screeches.”

Dethwyntyr Whitebranch interrupts the Blood Hens’ pregame ritual nearly leading to a brawl before the kick off

Both sidelines emptied into a near brawl on the field, but after stadium security cleared the pitch at sword point, the teams came to an uneasy compromise. The pregame ritual would not be performed, but neither would the intern nor the harpy be set free. In the latter case, this was mainly because, despite Whitebranch’s laudable sympathy for the beast, unmuzzling her and loosing her from the cage would surely result in many in attendance going deaf and/or having their eyes torn from their heads. (In the former case, this was because unpaid interns are the backbone of the NCBB.)

As part of the compromise, stadium security did agree to let Whitebranch debut the fight song he’d recently composed for the team. Inspired by Miranda Lambert’s singing after her TDs in last week’s game, Whitebranch performed the song, “For the Wood,” while playing upon a gittern at midfield for the home crowd, and then the game was finally able to get underway.

To hear Whitebranch’s performance, click here or on the image above

The Blood Hens struggled to secure the ball early, as a thunderstorm broke out shortly before kick-off, and the Green Duke’s deep kick left witch-elf Nasir Adderley fumbling the wet ball at her own goal line. Though Coach Smithson urged his team to stay back in a conservative column defense, sophomore catcher Gobyltyr Gusto (acorn analytics) charged up field and made a nearly successful attempt at a scoop-and score. After he, too, failed to grasp the wet ball, however, Adderley delivered a swift kick to his groin, followed by an uppercut that sent him sprawling out of the back of the endzone, and out for the remainder of the game.

“As a child I was told the legend of the great elven warrior Leeroyth Jenkinsyth, and I have always found this to be an inspiration,” Gusto explained after the game. “He was known to charge into every battle headlong and heedless of any danger, crying out his own name for all to hear. As I think back upon it now, it may have been a cautionary tale that I have greatly misunderstood.”

Shortly after Adderley dispatched Gusto, the Blood Hens’ second witch-elf Bilal Nichols managed to secure the ball and begin moving up field. However, the ball-handling struggles had cost the Blood Hens enough clock that by the time they’d gotten deep into Duqueswood territory the half was nearly over. This forced them to leave Nichols slightly exposed, and senior Green Dukes line-elf Greeny Bullwind (history of dirt) was able to punch the ball out of her hands. With senior treeman Oakward Weatherborn having just smashed the head of the Blood Hen’s only sure-handed elf, Josh Baker, who was trailing the play, Dell of War was unable to scoop the ball off the muddy pitch before the first-half clock ran out.

“Dark elf bad,” said Weatherborn after the game as he picked pieces of Baker’s skull, teeth, and brain matter out of his bark. “Dead dark elf good.”

Duqueswood senior thrower Bryden Branch (quantitative root-conomics) easily caught the second-half kick despite the rain, and as he slowly made his way up the field, those pre-game tempers seemed to flare up again. Early in the drive, Bullwind delivered a stiff side-kick to dark elf lineman Tim Jacobs’ throat, fracturing his trachea and leading to the second on-field death. Midway through the half, the Blood Hens’ witch-elves—apparently still miffed at the disruption of their pregame ritual—teamed up in a frenzy of spinning kicks and punches to knock Whitebranch off the field, where the wardancer’s head collided with a wooden stadium stanchion, leaving him concussed.

Greeny Bullwind earns Duqueswood’s second kill on the day with a brutal side kick to Tim Jacobs’ throat

The aggressive play to take Whitebranch out, however, allowed Branch to escape up field amid a cage of blockers, nearing scoring position. Some expert dodging by Blood Hen blitzers Nick Boyle and Ivory Sully cut Branch off before he could reach paydirt near the northern sideline. The thrower was forced to cut back across the field and hand the ball to Truegrass, who raced toward the endzone ahead of his blockers along the opposite sideline.

Unfortunately, Truegrass’s panicked dash left him open to a blitzing flying roundhouse kick from Adderley near the goal line. As Truegrass hit the pitch and Adderley snatched the ball out of the air, the Green Dukes’ threat looked to be ended. But with only seconds left on the clock, Bullwind charged into the fray and punched the ball out of Adderley’s hands, sending it bouncing and splashing into the endzone.

Still, the game seemed likely to end in a 0-0 tie, as the only Green Dukes player who could possibly get to the ball was 95-pound freshman line-elf-woman Birdsong, who would need to get past Boyle, a sophomore dark elf blitzer whose might has already generated 4 casualties and 5 MVPs in his career. The diminutive Birdsong began to tremble as she eyed Boyle, and it seemed clear that she lacked the courage to make run, but then Whitebranch, despite his concussion, rose to his feet in the Duqueswood casualty box. Turning to the crowd and lifting his fist into the air, he sang out the opening words of the team’s new fight song, “For every …”

Confused, the crowd at first failed to respond, but then Whitebranch cried those opening words a second time: “For every …” Again, the crowd was silent. Undaunted, Whitebranch raised his voice even higher and sang the words a third time, “For every …”

This time the crowd joined in and sang out the rest of the opening line “… leaf on every tree, we will fight for victory.” Suddenly, the entire stadium was singing as one, carried by the spirit of the song, a boundless energy of life and light descending on that muddy rain-soaked field. The crowd’s thundering voices seemed to inhabit Birdsong, as she stood tall, swelling with confidence, and then made a mad dash toward the ball in the end zone.

“We fight for the wood, fight for the good, fight for the right to be free!” sang the crowd as Birdsong charged forward and dodged past Boyle’s swinging fist. “Go, go Green Dukes! Green Dukes, go,” sang the crowd as Bridsong leaped into the air at the goal line. “Go, fight, win!” sang the crowd as Birdsong splashed down on the ball in a mud puddle in the endzone, miraculously securing the ball, and scoring the winning touchdown.

The Green Dukes’ student section sings along with the entire crowd to the team’s new fight song, inspiring Lyric Birdsong to score the winning touchdown

“We’ve already seen a few traditions come and go with this program,” said Coach Smithson when asked about the new fight song. “We had the tradition of wardancers dying. We had the tradition of me burying players in the wife’s garden, which the university tells me I can’t do any more. And now, apparently, we got this fight song. Let’s just say, based on the results, I hope this new tradition sticks around longer than the others.”
Rate this entry
Posted by Apojar on 2024-07-08 00:41:27
Such brutality shown! Poor Josh Baker's parents are going to read this and see the photo of that moment....... I love it.

I can't rate it any higher than 6 though. :(

P.S. - now the Fight song? Beee-utiful.
Posted by lancelott on 2024-07-08 01:57:22
Amazing write up, one of your best!
Posted by gettym on 2024-07-08 14:16:27
@Apojar: Thanks! The University of Duqueswood did officially send a leaf basket to both the Jacobs and Baker family. Oddly both were returned along with blood-soaked daggers. Must have been some sort of mix-up with the delivery service.

@lancelott: Thanks! The wins are rare enough that they do make for good write-ups.
Posted by BeanBelly on 2024-07-08 20:46:19
Great write up. Well played - a brutal win!
Posted by PatKnez on 2024-07-09 15:20:31
The best field reporter on Fumbbl. Another classic headline sports. I'm hoping to read about the Fins continuing their unbeaten streak as well. Thanks for taking the time to immortalize these games.
Posted by gettym on 2024-07-09 22:28:21
@BeanBelly: Thanks! It always feels a bit weird when elves die, and they're not my players.

@PatKnez Thanks! Glad you like 'em. I have the Nereid-fins vs. Shire Sheriffs write-up just about ready to post