The full general report is on the UKSAA website, but the A team of Luis Felipe Paulinyi, Andrew Howe and Chris Skipper seeded 3rd, while the B team of Theo Chen-Sverre, Stephen Fawcett (woop) and Matt Leivers seeded 16th out of 32. This was far better than expected, and without an (unintentionally) poor final end from Stephen, the B team would have seeded 14th, which would have meant a potential second round match up against the A team. Andrew’s 265 Bray I is an all-time universities novice record.
As it was, the B team beat Aberdeen 8-5 in the first round, while the A team beat the host Lancaster B team 9-3. This featured the C team of David Williams and James ‘You’ve got this’ Strudwick and the people from Clickers trying to fix the tab of one of Lancaster’s archers. While seeding 16th meant that the B team avoided the A team in the second round, it meant that they had the joy of facing the number 1 seeded Nottingham A instead. Both teams scored one less point than in their first rounds, and Nottingham A were convincing winners, 13-7, though it was still close until the third end when the top seeds hit 5 out of 6 discs. Meanwhile, at the other end of the hall, the A team looked in trouble, down 3-0 after the first end against the 14th seeded Keele. A controversial penalty for Luis stepping out of the box to fix his bow meant that it was 4-4 going into the final end. From the other end of the hall it looked like Keele got three hits, and Southampton only got two, meaning both Southampton teams would be out, but a line-cutter took things to a tie break. Three tie-break ends were required before Southampton shot all three discs to face Loughborough.
Loughborough were the defending champions, and had the number one individual from the Bray I but as a team were only the 11th seed. Southampton A had to up their game to get through the toughest quarter of the draw, and going into the final arrow of the match, scores 13-13, ‘King Novice’ Andrew had the opportunity to win it… and he duly obliged, Southampton through 14-13.
The semi-final was against the 2nd seeded Oxford, who had just beaten London by one point (so we were one point away from having ‘Gay Bar’ as walk-on music for a team), and Southampton couldn’t quite replicate the form from before, losing 12-9. The previously imperious Nottingham A lost to 5th seeded Edinburgh in the other semi-final. Walking out to T-Rex’s 20th Century Boy, Southampton kept the bronze medal match tight up until the final end, where the luck dried up and Nottingham won 14-11. Oxford went on to beat Edinburgh to win their first title, their supporter (female) was so excited that in jumping up and down she accidentally punched the commentator. This was still the best performance at BUTC by SUAC, equalling the 4th place from a few years ago but seeding higher, and getting a B team through to the second round.
Most of the innuendos and incidents that happened can be found on the SUAC Facebook page, though I will explain the female supporter reference is due to the fact that the majority of people actually shooting were men. It was possibly the first time that Southampton had sent this many people to a competition without a single woman, so I can’t decide if the innuendos were worse than normal or just felt that way…