Omaha Vicious is very close to becoming a top-level team. At the last event in Chicago they were finally starting to play with the swagger their talent level deserves. Houston Heat, who won the Phoenix Open, beat them, but only by two points, and they lost in sudden death overtime to the team who went on to take second place, Moscow Red Legion.
These close games are a sign the boys from Vicious, now in their third professional year, are ready to contend with the best teams in the world on a regular basis. So much of the professional game takes place in your mind, and you have to have faith in yourself and the players around you.
Like most of the teams struggling to move up the ranks, their problem is with consistency and confidence. But Vicious is starting to play like they believe in themselves, and for a good reason.
Bryon Bortal (ranked 97th) and Trevor Reser (ranked 70th) can be very productive over on the snake side, and their Dorito line up, with Phil Kahnk (ranked 21st) and Zach Sherman (ranked 65th) is rock solid. In fact, Kahnk is putting up great numbers this year and really proving he’s a top level pro player. He still makes a few too many mistakes but really has started to win fans and turn heads as Vicious’ highest ranked player.
Parker Rosenthal (ranked 80th) and Shane Colby (ranked 61st) are two other core members who need to have a good event in order to give Vicious the best chance at MAO. Colby, with his speed, has become a staple of the team’s attack.
Also, so much in the PSP pro division is decided by which team shoots the most opponents off the break and big Chris Hooker (ranked 82nd) is a machine in the Back center, and when he’s on, no one is getting out wide on Vicious.
One of the biggest strengths in this camp is their ability to look objectively at what’s keeping them from progressing, and they’ve been working hard in practice sessions to improve their deficiencies. The mid Atlantic open could be a break out event for the boys from Omaha.