Senior captains John Hall and Allison Audette agree that the sudden surge in popularity of ultimate frisbee lies behind its uniqueness, fun community, and emphasis on sportsmanship.
“The sport is competitive, but there is also a big emphasis on fair play through the idea of ‘spirit of the game,'” Audette said. “It’s what makes the sport different from other sports because there aren’t referees, so I think that really encourages fair play.”
Hall added, “I think one of the main reasons that ultimate has grown so much [is] the combination of a very fun, welcoming community while still preserving the challenging athleticism and skill from other sports.”
The ultimate team continues to find success in competitions while maintaining a welcoming community. “In 2019 our girl’s varsity team came 6th in D2 and our boy’s varsity team came 10th in D1 which [is] remarkable considering the size of SPA. For such a small school, we are able to beat schools 3 or 4 times our size and still maintain a welcoming community,” said Hall.
Because of the constant and consistent growth of ultimate, the team has grown as a community and group overall. “I think over the years I have definitely seen the team improve,” said Audette. Additionally, Hall said, “I definitely think that as the years have gone by, we have seen a large increase in our performances.”
Audette, who joined the ultimate team as a 9th grader, said, “A lot of people started playing in ninth grade. When I was in ninth grade, however, many of the seniors at the time hadn’t played for very long since having a team was pretty new […] now that the program has been going on for a while and becoming more popular, there are more people on the team who have been playing for a while.”
The ultimate team has 42 members, but captains expect that number to grow. “Ultimate has grown [once games start] in recent years and has become one of the major sports in terms of player count,” said Hall, “we have players from all grades, and we know that ultimate is here to stay because of how popular it’s become.”
The ultimate team hopes to maintain its fun, inclusive culture while continuing its pattern of success.