Connor Matthews of Oregon Ego celebrates after Xander Tice scored at the Stanford Invite earlier this spring. Photo by Rodney Chen of UltiPhotos.com.
During the Ultiworld live stream Sunday afternoon of their game against Washington Element, towards the end of the game the commentating team of Keith Raynor, Charlie Eisenhood, and Simon Pollock had a brief conversation on where Oregon Ego sits this season in terms of strength, and where they could reach at nationals this season. It was towards the end of a game that they were having some trouble putting away, and had already won barring some ridiculous breakdown on their part or comeback from Washington.
They concluded that this team, that has gone 15-1 this season, cannot be judged solely based on their record but instead on who they’ve beat. OK, nothing wrong with that. But then that they were a ‘tier 2’ team in the nation, and not someone who could be seriously expected to compete for the championship beyond quarterfinals at Nationals because of where they’ve competed.
Oregon Ego is a top team, and should be competing for a national championship in the semifinals and perhaps even the championship game, this season.
Their lone loss on the season came to Harvard at the Stanford Invite, where Harvard tied for 3rd and Oregon finished in 5th with consolation wins. [Harvard also had an insane tournament, totally defying all expectations that most had going into Stanford.] In total, Oregon has 7 wins over teams in the top 20 of the USAU rankings.
To compare: Wisconsin also has 7, Pitt only has 4, and UMass leads the bunch with 9 wins over top 20 opponents from the USAU rankings (as of Monday March 28th).
Judging Oregon on who they’ve beat, they compare to other top teams in the nation. They are not the same team with no Dylan Freechild on the line. But they are still a top team.
This past weekend, they proved that in beautiful weather against formidable opponents and less than formidable opponents, they can put teams away and win. In the weather later in the weekend, they had some difficulty but quickly worked it and still won their games - including the big win over Washington.
Oregon Ego is a top team.