By Leo Schafer
Franciscan’s two ultimate teams, FATAL and Fire, participated in the Commonwealth Cup, a D-I tournament held in Martinsville, Virginia, on Feb. 18 and 19.
Franciscan’s teams were invited to the tournament, which included but was not limited to teams from Liberty University, University of North Carolina, West Virginia University and Georgia Tech, due to their historic performance and preseason seeding.
In the 16-team men’s bracket, FATAL was seeded 12th and placed in a pool with 4th seeded University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, 5th seeded Liberty University and 13th seeded University of North Carolina.
Both FATAL and Fire exceeded their seeding, with FATAL coming within a point of defeating eventual tournament champions Wisconsin-Madison, and within four points of defeating eventual third place team Liberty in pool play. FATAL defeated North Carolina in the most significant blowout of the pool play and finished with a positive point differential going into the consolation bracket.
In the brackets, FATAL recorded wins against Michigan (by forfeit), Georgia Tech (in the second largest blowout of the tournament), and North Carolina by rematch. This performance earned FATAL 9th place in the tournament, a net of +3 over pretournament seeding.
In the 13-team women’s bracket, Fire, which was seeded 9th, placed in a pool with the University of Mary Washington (seeded 5th), George Washington University (seeded 8th), the University of Michigan (seeded 12th) and Elon University (seeded 13th).
Fire also finished with a positive differential after wins against Michigan and Elon and losses against George Washington and Mary Washington, finishing second in the pool.
Fire fell in the first round of the championship bracket to eventual champions Triangle Tourists. Fire also lost to 5th place Cedarville University, setting up a 7th place matchup with Virginia, ending in a loss for Fire. Despite this, Fire placed 8th, a net of +1 from its pretournament seeding.
Several FATAL players scored their first FATAL goal in this tournament, including sophomore Peter Sammons, senior Wesley Steele and freshman Justin Wallace.
FATAL will play its next tournament March 4-5 in Advance, NC at the annual D-III tune up.