This past weekend, Carleton’s competitive D-III Ultimate teams played at the USA Ultimate D-III Nationals in Ohio. Eclipse, the women’s team, won 2nd place and GOP, the men’s team, tied for 3rd place.
Eclipse, Carleton’s Division III women’s team, surprised the field, making it to the finals with an 11th place seed. They defeated Truman State, Valparaiso, Hamilton, Williams, and Wake Forest before losing out to eventual national champions Rice University in the finals.
“We went into the weekend with few expectations, but the knowledge that we had the potential to do really well despite our 11th place seeding,” wrote Eclipse captain and
Geology major Julia Reich ‘15 on behalf of her team. Eclipse faced Rice earlier in the season in Riverside, California and thus knew that they could keep pace with any teams in last weekend’s Nationals tournament in Ohio.
Eclipse won their spring break tournament, “Southerns”, in Georgia, as well. They lost only three games in the regular season. “More than any other year, Eclipse has really come together as a team on and off the field, and we feel this weekend showed our dedication to each other and love for the game of frisbee,” wrote Reich in an email.
Followers of @GOProcks cheered the guys on from blossoming Minnesota. GOP lost an early game to Bentley University’s “Icehouse” team, the eventual champions. GOP proceeded to sweep the competition before losing to Elon University in a close, 13-15 semi-final game.
“Overall we felt this weekend went very well,” wrote Godfrey in a post-tournament email. “We definitely thought that we peaked at the right time and played our best frisbee of the year, with everyone stepping up their game in whatever way they could.”
GOP, known for their roster of an incredible height range, went 4-4 at the DIII Warm Up tournament in February. They upped their game to a 6-3 finish at the Southerns tournament in Georgia over spring break, winning the Northwoods tournament and North Central Division III Men’s tournament since then.
The interviewer caught up with GOP captains Daniel Barter ’14, Matt Godfrey ’15, and Anders Berglund ’15 before their Nationals tournament. “The entire team is super excited to play, and that will be key.” said Godfrey.
“Alums said the team is extremely talented,” added Berglund. (All the teams had just had their huge alumni weekend.) “We’ve got all the skills clicking together.”
After the tournament, Godfrey maintained an upbeat tone. “At the end of the semifinal game (which we lost), all any of us could say was that we were sad we couldn’t play anymore, but not because we didn’t play to our potential and that we had more to give on the field, but that we no longer had the opportunity to play with one another.” Godfrey wrote in an email on Tuesday. “We were very very happy with our performance at nationals and very very happy with the year as a whole. “”
Last Thursday, Godfrey was lamenting that GOP 20 would be over after the tournament. “But next year is GOP’s 21st birthday,” added Berglund.
This coming weekend, Carleton’s Division I men’s and women’s teams, CUT and Syzygy respectively, will travel to Cincinnati, OH to compete in Nationals as well.
Syzygy captains were too busy preparing, both mentally and physically, to respond to a request for an interview.
Syzygy went 4-3 at both the Queen City Tune-Up in Charlotte, NC in February and the Northwest Challenge in Portland, OR over spring break. Since then, Syzygy have swept their Conference and Regionals tournaments, winning the single bid to Nationals offered for the Division I North Central region.
The interviewer met with CUT captain and Economics major Simon Johansen ’14 on Thursday, May 15th.
“It was definitely the most difficult season,” said Johansen, “but easily the most rewarding.” For the seniors on CUT, this will be their fourth Regionals and Nationals. In fact, CUT has missed Nationals only once since 1990. With a rough start in Tampa during winter term and a losing streak at their spring break tournament, the hometown heroes rallied to snag one of the region’s two strength bids at Regionals.
When asked which players we should keep an eye on this weekend, Johansen basically listed the whole roster. “Galen Ryan gets open all the time and makes it look easy,” Johansen said. Also watch out for second year players Jesse Bolton and Justin Lim. “They make big plays,” said Johansen. He also emphasized the importance of d-line handlers, consciously risking ridicule from his teammates; he is a d-line handler himself.
When asked about the mindset of the CUT coming into Nationals, Johansen described a team hungry for competition. “98% of the season is practice,” Johansen said. “The mentality is always that everyone is excited to be playing a different team, excited to be outside in better weather than what we have in Minnesota. Nationals is like a celebration. Regardless of how well we do, the season ends there, and CUT 2014 will cease to exist.”