Photo by Scobel Wiggins – Ultiphotos.com
In Week 9 of the 2013 MLU Season, the Vancouver Nighthawks travelled to Roosevelt Stadium to take on the Portland Stags. While both teams had already been eliminated from playoff contention, the conference rivalries had already began to develop in the Inaugural Season of Major League Ultimate. While neither team would make the postseason, bragging rights and the warm embrace of victory were on the line.
After the 1st and 2nd quarter both ended in tie scores, the Stags took a single goal lead heading into the fourth. Vancouver’s defense came up big early in the final quarter, converting two breaks before allowing Portland to draw even with a hold as the clock ticked below four minutes. Looking for a late score to put them ahead, Vancouver handler Kirk Savage launched a mid-field flick huck towards the end zone. The disc floated beautifully towards the goal line as streaking Nighthawks’ cutter Andre Gailits found himself positioned between two taller Portland defenders. Undeterred, Gailits launched himself upwards, splitting the defenders and coming down with the goal, celebrating with a raised finger to his lips, silencing the crowd.