Poterack vs. Madison
The Madison Radicals were 2-0 coming off their 2018 title; the 2019 season was looking like nothing new for the team that had dominated the Midwest Division for six years running. They hadn’t lost a home game to a divisional opponent since the franchise’s inaugural season in 2013, and defeated the Pittsburgh Thunderbirds 26-17 in their 2019 home opener. The Minnesota Wind Chill changed all of that on an incredible defensive play that many will look at as the turning point for the Radicals’ 2019 season, if not their franchise as a whole.
Down by two with about six minutes left in the fourth quarter, this game was not what Radicals fans were used to seeing at Breese Stevens Field. Instead of Madison’s usual dominance, the Wind Chill had kept the game within two goals the entire game as they seesawed back. Now, Minnesota was looking to protect a two-goal lead of their own. Madison receives the pull, and needing to score quickly to keep the pressure on Minnesota, Kevin Brown spies an early opportunity to shoot deep after a centering pass from Nate Bosscher. Teammate Tarik Akyuz starts his cut from the right third of the field about 30 yards from his handler, and Brown puts out a leading flick to the left half of the end zone. Chasing Akyuz is Wind Chill rookie defender Josh Poterack, who the team had just signed 12 days earlier after seeing him impress at Iowa State. Poterack, still trailing a step behind his man as the disc floats above their heads, has the smallest of windows to make a play. Timing his launch to perfection, Poterack leaps, reaches over the head of Akyuz while avoiding contact, and knocks the disc away, falling to the ground as the crowd erupts.
While the play was one of the most memorable of the season, the Radicals did manage to score that same point despite another turnover on their next possession. But Poterack's block helped siphon off over two minutes off the clock, and the Radicals were unable to tie up the game in the final minutes, in part due to yet another Josh Poterack block. The game sent a message to the rest of the Midwest Division: Madison could be beaten at home. The Radicals would go on to lose two more home games in 2019, and for the first time in franchise history, they failed to qualify for the postseason.