Ultimate Frisbee Flies Through Talent Filled Tournaments
By Anna-Elisabeth Scheidt '12, Contributing Writer
The men’s and women’s Ultimate Frisbee teams kicked off their respective seasons this spring break with their traditional journey down south to train and compete against other college teams in two tournaments. The men’s team first went to South Carolina for the “Slightly Thawed Goose” (originally the “Frozen Goose” but renamed after having been pushed back several months) tournament, before joining the women in Savannah, Georgia for the “High Tide Spring break Ultimate Tournament”.

The first stop for the men, the “Army of Darkness”, with an A and B team totaling 37 people, was the tournament in South Carolina where they met a great deal of success despite a long drive and rainy weather. Ezra Van Negri ’12 said, “We played pretty well; we made it to the finals. [However], we played five games, [and] everyone was very tired. Some people were sore and injured. We didn’t end up playing the Championship [match].”

All the teams competed in Georgia, a challenging tournament due to its duration as well as the intense level of competition.

Sam Feldman ’12 described, “It is a difficult tournament, [with] a lot of good teams from the Northeast and Midwest, like the University of Minnesota in Duluth.”

The tournament, spanning three days, was set up as pools or groups of four teams on the first day with each team playing the other three within that pool. Based on the performance on the first day, teams got “repooled” for the second day with three more matches played with teams of similar points standing.

On the last day, two brackets, a championship bracket and consolation bracket, are formed from the performances the prior day. The men’s team made it to the consolation bracket to finish 10th.

For the women’s team, the tournament was a chance to challenge and explore the depth of what is a very young team. Gabi Barmettler ’10 commented, “It was a really great experience because we have a lot of new talent in the team this year. About half of the players hadn’t played much before. It was an exciting opportunity to learn and play together.”

Frisbee aside, the training trip is still a spring vacation, with both teams managing to squeeze in lounging at the beach or just some relaxing in their down-time. With funding from the Association of Amherst Students, the men’s team was able to rent a house and a condo for their teams, and thus as co-captain Joe Bobman ’12 described, to “vacation in style.” Abigail Murray ’11 said, “When you tell people you’re going to Georgia, staying by the beach with a bunch of friends and spending the week playing Ultimate, it sounds a little too good to be true.” Feldman echoed a similar sentiment, “It’s nice to go on a road trip and also have something to do.”

This spring holds a busy schedule for both the Ultimate teams, the most exciting prospects being a home tournament and the UPA college championship series. The home tournament on April 10, the first to be hosted by Amherst in over 10 years, promises to be very competitive with schools such as University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth College, Brown University and Williams College. For Tom Mcclintock ’10, one of the four co-captains of the Army of Darkness, the team is right where it wants to be after the training trip: “We achieved the expectations that we had set at that point of the season. We showed good chemistry and individually we all balled out of control. As the season progresses I expect that we’ll step up our game, become more organized through practice and generally win some big games. Things are looking good.”

Issue 19, Submitted 2010-03-24 04:23:14