Tor Anders Gunnerød, Slagen Bandits Captain gives us a run down of the season so far. And it's not a bad start !
Slagen Bandits season has just started, and what a start it has been!
Since living in the frozen north keeps the team from playing outdoor paintball for way to long in wintertime we eagerly jumped upon an invitation from our Portuguese friends Nuno and Christina at Vilaverde Paintball park in Sintra just outside of Lisbon to come play their tournament. We thought it would be a great kick-off to our season and a great team building experience.
We flew down to Pourtugal on Thursday with 10 players, including some old friends coming into paintball again and our dear Swedish friends Ami and Mats Helge from Hybrid photo. They brought along their sidekick Sebbe who filled in as our last player. Amazingly nobody lost their gear and everybody arrived safe and sound in Lisbon. Waiting for our gear in the airport Kristine soon got bored of riding the conveyor belts and started looking around the airport shops. After a while she ended up buying a cute little toy pig as our mascot and good luck charm (our home field is located on a pig farm). Personally i thought we used up the little pigs good luck right away as we navigated Portuguese traffic in an area which apparently is the densest populated area in Europe pr. square kilometer and the numbers on the traffic signs seems to be just a suggestion on how you should drive.
On friday we had a short practice at Villaverde and were really impressed by the site. We then went for a little tour of Portugal with Nuno and Christina as our guides. After a great trip we woke bright an early for Saturdays competition. To get most out of our trip we decided to enter two teams on Saturday as it was regular 5 man paintball. Slagen Bandits 2 went undefeated in the prelims and Slagen Bandits only dropped one game. The finals was played as a round robin between the four best teams. Bandits 2 won their two first games convincingly but Bandits 1 narrowly lost their two games. The last game of the tournament was Bandits 1 vs Bandits 2 which was a real car crash point and over in about 15 seconds with Bandits 1 taking the win. That meant that Bandits 2 took first place and Bandits 1 third place.
Happy with our performance we went back to the hotel to celebrate and prepare for Sundays x-ball tournament which was when the real tournament started as far as we where concerned. Sunday started with great paintball weather, slightly overcast but still nice and warm (by Norwegian standards at last, apparently it was quite cold compared to the weather they had the week before). The format was race to 3 points and played as a round robin league with every team getting 5 matches.
The team was pretty much on fire at the start of the tournament and didn't drop a point in our first matches and grinding out some super quick points. As the other teams figured out what we were doing and started to adjust to our playing style the games got a bit closer but at the end of the day we were undefeated and had taken another first place. Hybrid photo brought a celebratory bottle of champagne to the prize awards and it was only the start of a great evening which didn't end until it was almost morning and we had to leave for our red-eye flight home.
Thank you Nuno and Christina for a great trip and hope to se you soon again!
NPL 1 - Norwegian Paintball League
Only a short week later its was time for the Norwegian season opener, the first leg of the Norwegian Paintball League. It was another great day for paintball but the team didn't start as well as in Portugal. The format was race to 3, a new rule this year meant it was possible to draw a match. And that was just what we did. Our first match was a 2-2 draw against Trondheim Dominators. Then we won 3-0 against Trondheim Dominators 2 and Oslo Paintball kids.
At this point we started racking up several 1-4-1 penalties, not by players intentionally playing on, but people just getting dinked out on their loaders and packs and not noticing. This made the next games thougher than they should have been and we dropped our last game 3-1 to Tufte Rebels, a new team in the Elite division. We scraped by into the semifinals on better point differential than Trondheim Dominators.
In our semifinals against Mayhem we won 2-1 and moved on to the finals to face Oslo Paintball kids again. Again we made it hard on ourselves with some 1-4-1s early on, and quickly we were down 2-0 and things looked bleak against an opponent that played much better than in our previous match.
We dug deep and managed to even it up to 2-2. In the final point we had a bad breakout, but pulled out a 2-3 in the dying seconds of the match and pushed the buzzer with 2 seconds left for our second win in a week and a second bottle of champagne from Hybrid photo in the same time!
To top it of our division 1 team only dropped one game in the prelims and took a convincing victory in div. 1 on Sunday!
So in week we collected four 1st place trophies!
We would like to thank our sponsors: Planet Eclipse,Hybrid Photo, Dark Sports, Spine, Gloube Souldiers, Goldhammer, Slagen Paintball, snøservice.no and Tanked. Thanks for helping us out guys and girls!