Spartan Ultimate glides through season with exceptional spirit

Stall 1…Stall 2…Stall 3…

The thrower must throw the disc before their mark counts stall 10.

Imagine: Stall 4… the disc is thrown. It slices through the air. It makes contact with a sweaty palm and… slips. The catch is just missed.

Senior Anja Seifert says whether it’s practice or a game, that wouldn’t matter. “When someone drops the frisbee, It’s always just, ‘you’ll get it next time’, like, ‘this is what you can do to improve.’”

“Spirit of the Game” sets Ultimate Frisbee apart from other sports. It is a concept in Ultimate that encourages great sportsmanship and integrity, simply put. “Every team after each game will basically rate the other team on their Spirit of the Game,” Freshman Caden Deardurff says, “like, how honest they were.” While most sports respect some form of this rule, Spirit of the Game is crucial for Ultimate. With no referee to call the shots, teammates have to hold each other and themselves accountable.

“I think the Spirit of the Game is interesting because it sounds at first just like be spirited, be happy, be fun, but it also involves like having a good knowledge of the rules and stuff like that,” Seifert says, “So we’re always practicing playing with the rules. Like, we’re always playing with a stall count, even if it’s not a drill that requires one.”

Seifert plays for both the SPA and the Washburn Ultimate teams. “Both teams are really supportive,” she says, “but I think SPA specifically has a really good culture of people helping the new people, and people who don’t know how to play at all.”

Deardurff is one of those new additions to the team this year. Coming from his soccer background, he says Ultimate practice is less competitive than he’s accustomed to. “It’s just more of an area where you can have fun and socialize with friends while still playing a competitive sport,” He says.

The Spartan Ultimate team has had only one loss this season, and the team’s encouraging and welcoming nature certainly hasn’t hurt. Seifert names her highlight of the season: “Our sidelines have been really, really good this year. Everyone’s always really happy and cheering and excited and there’s never, like, shame or guilt or anything.”

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