South – 2nd Round
There many bracketologists out there that thought that this region would be where the big upset out come out of. Many thought the Episcopal’s would not be able to hold things together and thought the committee was being generous in giving them a 2 seed. Their locker room drama, many thought, would get the best of them and the PCA attempted to poke holes in that area. When play turned to the topic of homosexuality the PCA looked focused and together. The Episcopals looked on their heels until someone pulled out the Book of Common Prayer. In an amazing act of unification, the Episopalians all came together and was able to put the match away in their favor. The Southern Baptists looked as strong as ever in this matchup against the Evangelical Lutherans. The EL looked scared of the SB’s size and power and the scoreboard echoed it. The SB went out to an early lead and never looked back. The EL were left scrambling to help define what made them different than all the other Lutherans but it was to no prevail. The SB rolled to meet the Episcopals in the finals in the South.
The north was a pretty boring region this year. The Full Gospel was a nice surprise but they were like ants under a five year olds shoe, they never stood a chance against the Roman Catholics. The Pope called for two changes in the line up and they simply walked over their opponents. There seemed to be nothing the FG could do to slow the RC monster. Likewise the AMEZ looked over powered by the Lutheran World Federation. The LWF came out strong and never gave up. They stuck to their game plan and kept shooting sola scriptura. The AMEZ could not match their precious and dedication to this battle cry and went home with their heads hung low. Next match though looks promising. It is a rematch from the Halloween upset of 1517. The RC will be out for revenge but will the Lutheran’s have the energy and history to pull off a second upset? We will see because it is of course, March Madness!
West – 2nd Round
The Church of God hung with the Independent Baptist for most of the game and it looked like they would be able to pull off an upset. When it came down to fervor and inspiration, these two were neck in neck. When it came to passion and biblical knowledge, they were even. When it came to conservative values, it too was a draw. Worship styles, belief that Jesus spoke English and wrote the King James Bible, it was still a dead heat. What put the IB over the top wasn’t anything spectacular it was a simple nagging and meticulous Baptist nature that enabled them to push ahead in the end. As for the other battle. The AME came out strong and took a huge lead in the first half. They had history, organization, and unity in their side. Yet it seemed the Non-Demon Fenoms (as one supporter’s shirt called them) came out of the locker room with direction and passion. The second half was a whole different type of play and the Non-Denom took over and pulled out an amazing comeback to win a trip to the Western finals. This looks like a hard team to beat this year.
First up was a clash of style of worship, theology, background, organization, well everything. To look at these two teams it was hard to find any similarities. The play of the game was mirrored these differences as well. The Eastern Orthodox tried to slow the game down while the Pentecostals tried to speed it up. The Pens attempted to get the crowd into it and had them on their feet with their hands in the air, when the EO’s came back with creed after creed and calmed them right back down. The firery Pens attempted to poke holes in the EO’s quoting that their holidays are weeks off from what they are supposed to be. That proved to be the Pens down fall because they could recover as the EO’s backed their holiday claims off another calendar the Pens hadn’t even heard of. The other battle was less of a news story. The United Methodists look more organized and together in years. This is a conference year for them and as always this brings out the methodical nature of this organization. It was that type of connectionalism that was too much for the American Baptists. They attempted to join together but their autonomous nature enabled the UM to overpower them and move into the finals of the East regional.