The Chicago Wildfire took a small roster on their final road trip of the season, with the first stop being a Saturday evening game against the Detroit Mechanix.
Unseasonably cold temperatures, combined with heavy rain and driving winds gusting as high as 40mph, made the driving conditions treacherous and delayed the arrival for the small roster of 13 active players, but they arrived safe and sound and in time for the game.
The contest began and it was evenly matched in the early minutes, as the home team came out unabashed and unafraid against the visitors, ripping several downwind hucks in the early going. The rain would fortunately subside for most of the contest, but the wind would prove dominant and indefatigable, creating upwind/ downwind conditions throughout.
The Wildfire held as the contest went back and forth early, each team trading, neither able to capture the upwind break. Early mistakes, especially drops in the wet and errant throws sent off by the gusty conditions, hampered the Wildfire from pulling away.
In the middle of the second quarter, however, Chicago started to find its rhythm, the visitors getting their legs under them and refocusing their defense. Detroit quickly found all the down field options tightly covered, and the Mechanix struggled to move the disc effectively against the tight defense.
Conversely, Chicago started to tighten up their game, playing smarter, using short effective passes to move the disc up the field. The squad was able to score upwind again and again, going on a fierce 10 – 3 run that gave them a commanding 12 – 6 lead at half time.
The second half was all Wildfire, even as the rain started to pick up once again, and Detroit was simply unable to overcome their competition. Chicago, playing smart and able to save legs, were able to control the game for the 21-11 victory.
Chicago headed east after the victory towards the highly anticipated match-up against the Pittsburgh Thunderbirds the next day.