The Carlisle Mosquito Online

Friday, June 29, 2007

Features

Ultimate Frisbee team at CCHS enjoys competition and has fun

Ultimate Frisbee has become a hugely competitive sport, but it has never drawn the same attention as football or baseball. When I tell kids at school that I play on the Concord-Carlisle High School Ultimate team, many laugh, exclaiming "I didn't know we had one!" Not only do we have one, but we finished ninth in the state as a second-year team; not bad considering there are over 40 high school teams in Massachusetts.

In Ultimate Frisbee, the play is similar to football; each team tries to move the disc up the field by passing to their teammates. Once a player has possession of the disc, he or she may not move, but must instead establish a pivot foot and throw to another teammate. There are two end zones, and once a player on your team catches it in the opposing end zone, you receive one point.

CChaos player Zach Lou (#22) outjumps his opponent in an Ultimate Frisbee game against Northhampton. (Courtesy photo)
Astonishingly, this sport has no referees and no officials. Players make their own calls, calling fouls and deciding whether or not you landed in bounds. People always wonder if this policy is not constantly abused. Therein lies one of the most powerful ideas behind Ultimate: the spirit of the game. Every player knows what's fair, and if the disc hit the ground resulting in a turnover, you acknowledge that it hit the ground. This spirit attracts people who can play fair and still have fun and be competitive. This idea creates a community that is unlike any other I have seen.

CCHS created an Ultimate team last year, and surprisingly had so many players that two teams were made: an "A" team for more experienced players, and a "B" team for those who were newer to the game. The "A" team finished 9-7, while graduating only one player. We set our sights on this year, where we moved into the state-wide "A" division.

This year we also had a girls' team, one of only a handful in Massachusetts. All teams, collectively re-named CChaos this year, practiced together, including scrimmages of mixed genders. In a much harder division, the "A" team had an uphill battle. After a grueling season, finishing 9-6, we had finished second in our division, earning a spot in States. The girls' team had an equally rewarding season, earning a spot in States as a first-year team. Coming into States as the #10 seed of 12 teams, the "A" team had a tough first-round loss to Lexington, 9-15, quickly rebounded to beat Masconomet, 15-4, and finally beat Acton-Boxborough, 15-10, to take ninth place. The girls' team, composed primarily of freshmen who were new to the game, was happy to win one of their games at States.

The Ultimate team is graduating 10 seniors, including Carlisleans Alex Ostrom and Spencer Holland. We look forward to next season, where we will have to try to replace the ten seniors we lost.

There are a lot of different ways to get involved in Ultimate. In addition to the CCHS team, a Middle School summer camp starts July 16, run by CChaos Coach Catherine Greenwald through Concord Recreation. This summer there will also be pick-up games every Wednesday night at 6:30 p.m. at South Meadow Field in Concord. Everyone, ages 13 and up, is invited.


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