Friday, June 4, 2010

Brute Squad Vs All Stars Showcase, Mixed Easterns and Gender Blender


It's going to be a busy weekend for Canadian teams and American teams in the eastern region.
In addition to CUT, which we already previewed, we have coed and elite women's action in Boston, and we have the always popular Gender Blender.

Boston Invite- Elite Women's Tournament and Showcase.

According to the upa site and the BUDA site, it's going to be a great weekend for women's ultimate in beantown. The elite women's bracket of the annual Boston Invite is held on its own this weekend.

Brute Squad, 2nd at USA nationals last year and headed to worlds, will play a friday showcase game at Tufts Bello Field.

Brute Squad vs. International All-Star Conglomeration (7:30pm - 9:00pm)

Canadian teams are Lotus (Toronto/Ottawa) and Stella (Ottawa). Two UK teams and a new team from North Carolina (Phoenix) will be in action as well.

Mixed Easterns

Boston's Annual coed tournament is also taking place this weekend. 32 teams will be in action.

Canada should be well represented. RIP from Montreal holds the number one tournament seed, which might be the first time a Canadian team has had such a distinction at this tournament. (Respect!). ONYX from Quebec City is the top seed in their pool. Finally, SPAWN from Fredericton New Brunswick is going to have a great Saturday playing strong teams like Quiet Coyote and Ballometrics.

Gender Blender

North America's party tournament enters its 14th year and once again, the event will be taking place in Fergus Ontario.

Drink challenges, costumes, skills competitions, and camping are a staple of the event. There will be footage from some of the games live via the internet on! Including the 9/10 play off, the semi’s and the finals.

On the side from all the fun, games will also be played and the schedule has many Canadian squads. Touring clubs BFC, Big Fish and Big Hammers will be in action. Long time Blender teams like The Bad Larrys and Force Gnome represent Toronto and Ottawa (respectively) with pride.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

CUT 2010- The Big Boys are Back for the Summer!


The big boys of the north east hit the field in the sleepy upstate New York area of Cazenovia. I hate to give away Ottawa trade secrets, but if you are looking for a great post game/ tournament meal, take the detour to Syracuse for Dinosaur BBQ. The food is amazing, and the atmosphere is truly unique.

CUT annually serves as the first major open tournament in the region for the summer, and this year is no exception.

Here is a preview of the elite pools and other Canadian squads.

Pool A

(Boston)- A deserving top seed. 3rd at USA nationals last year (still getting used to the name change), 2nd the year before, and going to Worlds in Prague as a potential championship favorite.

GOAT Y (Toronto)- Split squad from Toronto's best. 12th at USA nats last year, 6th in 2008 and 3rd in 2007. Toronto understands the season is a marathon and not a sprint, and continues to use the early schedule to make the best decisions for the fall.

PONY (NYC)- I think we'd all have to agree that PONY is one of the best teams not to make USA nationals last fall.

Mephisto (Montreal)- The defending Canadian national champions will have no shortage of day one competition.

Pool B

Bodhi (Amherst)- It was just 2008 that Bodhi was a relative unknown, trouncing teams in the early season tournaments and their seeds sky rocketed accordingly. The team had a great 2009 season, making it to the UPA finals and finished 11th. They're very young, they've already made it to the show, they have a pipeline of talent in Amherst, how can they not be excited about their 2010 prospects? I am.

Goat X (Toronto)- Second split squad from Hogtown. Toronto's three team open system had a very strong tryout process with large numbers of players trying out.

Philly Open (NJ/PA)- A new team building on players from New Jersey (Pike) and Philly Love (Philadelphia). Pike went to USA finals last year and finished 16th, so this merger team might be a huge boost in their ability to compete at the next level.

Phoenix (Ottawa)- 2009 saw many changes for the Ottawa open program. Many players departed and the second team was lost for the season due to numbers. That being said, Phoenix had a strong summer and fall performance, with a best ever 2nd place finish at CUC 2009. They clearly battled hard at each tournament and got the most out of their squad.

In 2010, Firebird is back, and top team Phoenix has one of their strongest rosters- ever. It was a very tough year to make the squad. One of the biggest surprises was Jan Gorski. After experience with Carleton University and a brief tenure with Firebird in 2008, Gorski played with coed team Liquid in Kitchener-Waterloo. That benefit of a change of scenery (and improvement in fitness evidenced through tryout tests) seems to have made a great change in his game.

Other Canadian Squads

Maverick (Kitchener Waterloo)- As the web site states, "2010 will be Maverick`s first year as an organized, competitive Open team, the first such team in Southwestern Ontario. In previous years we have played as a pick-up team under the name Medicare."

I guess this was an inevitable step (dissolution of coed team Liquid) given Liquid's failure to secure a worlds bid last year and Medicare's strong performances in 2008 tournaments like No Borders and Jazz.

Players of note include but are not limited to Andrew Higgins, Carson Turner (ex Phoenix and World Juniors), Tom Dowler and Trevor Henry (2009 Gender Blender 'Fastest Man').

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

USA College Championships 2010


The USA college championships just wrapped up this weekend, and the lack of Canadian teams leads to a wane in interest in this side of the border.

However, our lack of interest is not shared by the many players and fans that took part, anxiously watched/followed and covered the event. Many great reports on the men's and women's tournament are on the USA ultimate web site.

On the men's side, Florida won the title with a 15-12 victory over Carleton College. In the past five years, Florida has won two championships, while also finishing second and third. Four semi finals appearances in five years with two titles might not make them a "dynasty" in many people's eyes, but clearly the University of Florida has built a great program and it will be interesting to see if this team can continue to excel at this level.

On the ladies' side, Oregon entered as the top seed in the tournament and won the championship with a victory over University of California Santa Barbara. Oregon clearly was the class of the division this year, allowing no more than 9 points per game in the tournament, with several routs in pool play action. Given the suspension of the men's program last year, we can hope that the women's title will help foster better relations between the school and the Oregon frisbee team.

Congrats to Oregon and Florida on your national titles!

'USA Ultimate' Lunched- May Tournament Reviews


On May 24th, The Ultimate Players Association officially became USA Ultimate. This took place soon after CUPA became Ultimate Canada and launched its new site.
I don't think this was a major surprise to many. The new name, new logo and new website seem to be a fit for both organizations.

It seems from their communications that USA ultimate will continue with the status quo as it relates to their college and club series, specifically as it relates to Canadian teams participation.

Finally, CUPA and UPA won't have to explain to other members of the sports world that they are the national sport organization, and not a player's union. :)

Tournaments in May

KN in Montreal noted I forgot to review the recent Bell Crack Coed Classic in Philly and the women's section of the White Mountain Open. I had some problems with score reporter opening both of those tournaments.. previously, and apologize for the slight.

Bell Crack Coed Classic- May 15-16, 2010

Four of Ontario and Quebec's finest coed teams were active in this year's tournament.
  • Denoiret from Montreal, a mixture of Mephisto and Storm players entered as the third seed in their four team pool. They went 3-0 in day one pool play, beating tournament top seed Quiet Coyote 15-9.
  • RIP from Montreal also beat their seed and went 3-0 in pool play
  • ONYX from Quebec City entered as the highest Canadian seed and won their pool with a 3-0 record.
  • Monster from Toronto, one of Hogtown's strongest coed teams annually, went 1-2 in pool play and lost the crossover to get into the quarters by a single point. They later went on to win the B Consolation bracket on Sunday.
Three of the four Canadian squads advanced to the quarterfinals, and all of the easily moved on to the semis. Denoiret edged out ONYX in one semi, while RIP won their semi to nab a place in the finals.

In the all Canadian final, scratch that, all province of Quebec final, scratch that, all Montreal final, Denoiret defeated RIP 15-6. Perhaps these two teams could have a rematch before Mephisto, Storm and RIP all head to Prague to represent our country.

Overall, some fantastic performances by Canadian teams in a tough early tournament.

White Mountain Open- Women's Division- May 22-23 2010

Four Canadian squads were involved in New Hampshire at WMO.

Storm of Montreal entered as the number 2 tournament seed. They rolled on day one, going 4-0 in strong fashion.

QUB of Quebec City entered as the second seed in their pool and went 3-1 in pool play. They had a tough result versus top seed bent but set themselves up for a favorable quarterfinal with three very lopsided victories.

Mystik of Montreal held their seed in day one pool play. Their win over Dartmouth cemented their place in the quarters versus QUB.

Chikitas of Sherbrooke, also called EXO, qualified for a play in game to make the quarters with a 1-3 record in pool play. They won the play in game, but unfortunately they landed in a matchup with Bent, NYC's finest women's squad.

In the Sunday play. Storm and QUB advanced to the semis with victories. Chikitas and Mystik lost their respective quarters, and then lost in the consolation semi finals.

Storm beat another Hatch split squad team to advance to the finals, while QUB bowed out quickly to Bent in the other semi.

No score is reported for the final, but Bent's facebook site reports a 13-11 victory for NYC, and BENT leaves Hanover as 2010 champs.