The San Francisco Dogfish suffered their first home field loss on Saturday when they fell to the Portland stags 18-16 in overtime.
Portland came back from a four-point deficit at the end of the third to force overtime, and then scored a point early in the period. With 11 seconds remaining, Grant Cole threw a disc to Chris Hancock to secure their two-point win.
At the beginning of the game, San Francisco went up on a break the first point and maintained a one- or two-point lead through the first half. By the end of the third quarter the Dogfish had a four-point lead, but the Stags came back in the fourth to force overtime. Portland then scored at 1.5 minutes into the overtime period, and again with only 11 seconds remaining.
This game marked the third loss in a row for San Francisco, who only had two losses during the regular season last year and had never lost at home.
Mac Taylor was back this week, and made his presence known with five assists and one goal. Aaron Caulfield had another great week with three defensive blocks and four goals. James Yeager and Jordan Jeffery were key to moving the disc for the Dogfish this week, and Yeager had three assists while Jeffery had three goals.
The Stags demonstrated good overall team effort for the win, but Mark Burton, Breeze Strout, Cody Bjorklund and Eli Friedman were consistent playmakers in this game for Portland.
The first quarter showed how well both teams could throw zone defense. In the second quarter things got “spirited.” The San Francisco crowd became equally loud with cheering and heckling. The Stags head coach received an orange band. The Dogfish turned over the disc to give the Stags possession after a line catch by Gary Dixon was called inbounds by the referee, but Dogfish Head Coach Justin Safdie felt otherwise.
Unfortunately, the Dogfish lost Chris Hart in the second quarter. Hart had a goal and a block in the first quarter, but was carried off the field by teammates following a knee injury, and did not return to the game.
In the third quarter the Dogfish scored five points to the Stags’ two, and at 14-10 it looked like they might take the game. But the Stags rallied and scored the first three points of the fourth quarter. A lot of unsuccessful hucks on both sides followed. The Dogfish continued to make great defensive plays, but were also stalled twice in this quarter. The Stags were given a turnover for an erroneous timeout call, but with two seconds left the Dogfish couldn’t put one more in the goal to take the game.
Overtime play began with a huck by Bjorklund that was blocked by Kohji Sugioka. The intended receiver almost had the goal after a second bid, but dropped the disc. After a Dogfish turnover the Stags scored on a hammer from Strout. The next three minutes and 19 seconds began with a huck by Evan Boucher that was blocked by Bjorklund, a Bjorklund huck that was blocked by Caulfield, a Dogfish turnover and a dropped Stags huck. Following a timeout the Dogfish turned over the disc, and the final seconds of the game for the Stags belonged to Chris Hancock, who laid out to make a great grab and then ended up scoring the goal that sealed Portland’s win.
Despite the disappointing loss, the Dogfish looked like they were more composed and in sync with each other this game.
“We just need to put it all together and execute in all four quarters,” said Sam Adamson. “Usually that happens for us in the second half. In this game we did well in the first three quarters, but we gave up the fourth.”
The Dogfish play another double-header on the road next weekend, with a rematch against the Stags on Saturday and their last regular-season game against the Seattle Rainmakers on Sunday.