For CU Denver’s players of Ultimate Frisbee, this season is a warm-up—a time to stretch the legs, recruit new players and train to work as a team. It’s also a time to test their mettle, which the team did against Colorado School of Mines on Sunday, Oct. 18.
CU Denver’s team, Frostbite Ultimate, has a long history with Colorado School of Mines. In the spring of 2015, both teams took part in a 60-team tournament held in Las Vegas. “Mines was on track to go to nationals in Division III,” said Alex Kacsh, junior political science major and team captain for the last two years. “Games went to 13 points in that tournament and the score was 12 to 10, Mines ahead. We beat them 13 to 12.”
The main rules are relatively straightforward. It’s a seven on seven player, non-contact sport. You can’t run with the disc and after you catch it, you have ten seconds to throw. Goals are made by catching the Frisbee in the end zone, much like football.
Ultimate is one of the teams offered through the CU Denver Club Sports program, which also include Men and Women’s Soccer, Men’s Ice Hockey, Women’s Volleyball, Cheer and Dance, Men and Women’s Basketball, Cycling, Lacrosse, Tennis, Taekwondo, and Cross Country.
USA Ultimate, the national governing body for the sport, organizes official games in the Spring, while practice matches are organized between schools during the Fall. In a recent home game, CU Denver once again took on Colorado School of Mines. Frostbite scored a three point lead by half-time and held that advantage until the end, confirming that what happened in the Las Vegas tournament wasn’t a fluke.
The game is one of the fastest growing team sports in the country and, according to several players, one of the most competitive sports on campus. Unlike other sports, Ultimate is competitive in a different sense. Players claim that because there are no referees, every player on the field has to have an agreement to play with honor and respect, something they call the spirit of the game.
“A lot of people who play are expats from other sports,” said Sam Wilson-Moses, senior political science major and co-captain. They are people who played basketball but found it too competitive or people who played football but found it too violent. One of the major draws to the sport is its sense of community and democratic process of rule enforcement. “It really is a sport that is built to get people communicating and get them all on the same page,” said Wilson-Moses.
Players are also in love with CU Denver’s new field. “This field is soft and cushy, said Wilson-Moses. It’s pillowy. There’s a lot of hurling your body on the ground in Ultimate, and it really makes a difference if the field is soft.”
Even with the practice season just starting, the leaders of Frostbite Ultimate are confident in their team and their performance. “We’re going to go to regionals this year and we’re going to make a nationals run soon,” Kacsh said. “We’re here to win a championship and bring CU Denver a title.”