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Battleship Builds From Memphis Win

  • 15 Feb 2019

Yes, it was a friendly, but Battleship’s win over Memphis last weekend was important for the Mobile, Ala., team. The team is only five years old and its player base fluctuates, but a spring-opening win builds some excitement, and Battleship can ride that.

Angie Kazek is Battleship’s social chair and has been playing with the team since 2015, a year after its creation. The flanker picked up the sport at Spring Hill College and is involved with both the men’s and women’s programs. Krazek explained that Spring Hill is struggling with numbers and injuries, but a big recruitment push is underway and the current players combine with Battleship for home games.

The rest of the player pool hails from Pensacola, Bollix, Panama City and other surrounding areas, but consistency is difficult due to many members being military.

“Numbers have increased this year due to heavy recruitment efforts and overall cohesion of players,” Krazek explained. “With new players coming out to each practice field positions are shuffled around a bit. However, we do have veteran players that are adaptable to new positions as well as great at giving advice to the rookies.

“On the field our vets handle a lot of the communication and it helps especially on defense when it comes to getting set off of the breakdowns,” the flanker continued. “Not to mention the vets are pretty spread out amongst the forwards and the backs, so that also plays into our advantage having experienced eyes and ears on all sides of the pitch.”

In the pack, battle-tested props Kandi Pemu and Katie Riela direct the scrum, and they’ve been crucial in getting the rookie second row operating properly. Krazek sets the pace in the loose forwards, and against Memphis, the openside was quick off of defensive scrums to pressure the inside backs and stood up three ballcarriers that resulted in turnovers deep in the Flamingos’ territory.

Flyhalf Clara Alden-Coe (Ohio State) and back Kendall Smith (Columbia) dictate the open-field attack, and their sharp running lines and crucial defense were key to keeping Memphis at bay.

“A new member to watch is one that scored her first try this past weekend and has adapted to the game with ease after only practicing for about a month: lock Lindsey Smith,” Krazek noted. “Smith is a personal trainer and fitness coach at Personal Edge Fitness here in Mobile.”

Battleship ended the day with a 48-30 win in the mid-season friendly and looks to continue that positivity forward.

“We have never beaten the Memphis team before, and playing against any of the three Tennessee teams in our division is bound to be a tough match,” Krazek credited the DII True South opponents. “This victory carries a huge weight for our club as we often struggled with numbers in the fall due to injuries. Plus it’s always great to win your spring season-opener.

“Overall for us southerners playing in what felt like an arctic tundra, we played at our level and controlled the tempo of the game,” Krazek ended.

Battleship will resume league play on March 16, but the first True South matrix match of the year will occur March 2 between Knoxville and Memphis. Learn more about the geographic union and check in with the current standings/results.

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