Video of the unofficial Lone Star QC vs. University of Texas game at Breakfast Taco. Video credit to Brad Armentor! Here's what I saw!
Neither team was anywhere close to their potential top form. Both teams' passing was sloppy at times and the defenses had gaping holes. The bottom thirds of both teams (players 14-21 on the depth chart) are that big of a factor as the stars are carrying the team. While all of this is usual for a team that hasn't even started their official season, it shows that the two top teams in the country, according to the Coaches Poll, are vulnerable now.
Although they didn't have bludger control for a majority of the video, Lone Star's beaters completely and totally outplayed UT's beaters. Reed Duncan was constantly pestering the Longhorn beaters when his team was on offense. Duncan looked like he was really bothering them and forced them into making several errant throws, as well as taking their focus off playing defense. Lone Star's defense in the video was powered by Mollie Lensing. Although Texas looked like they had better passing accuracy and more chaser movement, Lensing was able to limit a lot of that. In the center of the defense, Lensing rushed all around her defensive half to beat Texas players left and right. She definitely lead the game in total beats. Hope Machala replaced her towards the end, and it was clear right away that there was no drop off in beating prowess.
Stephen Bell and Chris Morris look outstanding and will likely be Lone Star's greatest offensive weapons. Bell and Morris played great in transition and each tacked on a goal during the 10 minutes shown in the video. Bell and Connor Drake held down the defense with solid play in the keeper zone, making key tackles and scooping up loose balls, to end UT possessions.
The Texas beaters managed to hold bludger control but were not too impressive. They certainly weren't terrible, as there were several instances where they made big, goal stopping beats. Very prepared for Lone Star's fastbreak, the UT beaters probably prevented Stephen Bell from scoring an extra 30 points. However, the pair wasn't able to shake off Duncan. He really affected their performance. Maybe better communication between the pair would've been the answer. I don't know. They'll need to figure something out though, because teams will start to repeat what Duncan did as a tactic to beat the champs.
Texas has a really strong core of quaffle players. The line of Kenny Chilton, Augie Monroe and Hector Peralez showed a lot of potential at the end of the video. On one possession in particular around the 9 minute mark, Peralez set a few screens for Monroe, then rolled off towards the middle of the pitch. After receiving an pin-point accurate pass from Monroe, Peralez drove through the middle and barely missed the shot.