The club’s high turnout has captains thinking KSC can qualify for regionals for the first time in years


The sport of Ultimate Frisbee is still young, particularly at Keene State College, where an Ultimate Frisbee Club was started just seven years ago.

But that doesn’t mean it’s not organized, competitive or popular for that matter.

“This is the most people we’ve had in my four years here,” senior captain Josh DiGiovanna said proudly as he watched over practice last week.

“We’ve got a really dynamic group of people this year.”

There are roughly 30 people who come to the club’s practices regularly, which is no small commitment.

“We always have people who peter-out after a while,” senior president Dan Bullard said.  “We expect our team here Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays for about three hours each.  There’s also a set workout we try to get people to do during the week.”  As if devoting your weekends to the club wasn’t enough, members are also given playbooks to learn.

These surprisingly complex play-calls feature three end-zone plays, three defensive sets and two offensive sets.  “We try to make sure everyone has a good understanding of our plays if they’re going to play,” senior Andrew Wallace said.  “A lot of the freshman have been picking it up quickly, which is great.”

There are two positions on the team, cutters and handlers.  Because a player cannot move while in possession of the frisbee, the Handlers focus on distributing the frisbee around the field, while the Cutters move up field and try to get open.

“[Ultimate Frisbee] combines a lot of different types of sports,” DiGiovanna said.  “You see aspects of football, team handball and soccer.”

The team is also taking a trip to a tournament called “High Tide” in Georgia this Spring, the first year KSC will be attending.

The team had their first match this weekend against U-Mass Dartmouth, but Bullard describes the Fall semester as preseason for the spring, when there are more tournaments.

“We’re always looking for more people this time of year,” Bullard said.  “Right now we have eight girls, and eventually we’re looking to have an all-girls team to put out there.”

Only 25 people can be on the roster for U.S.A. Ultimate-recognized games.  U.S.A. Ultimate, or U.S.A.U., is the governing body of all levels of Ultimate Frisbee which sanctions certain tournaments and uses them as qualifiers for the Championship Series.  Like other sports, those qualifiers include sectional, regional, and national levels.  Last year KSC could not attend regionals after it was rescheduled due to rain.

“We usually get to sectionals and lose to our rivals,” senior and team member Andrew Wallace said.  “U-Mass Amherst and Bowdoin College are always pretty good.”

This year expectations are high. “I’m really hopeful we get to regionals this year,” DiGiovanna said.  “We’ve had a great start to the year.”  Whether or not KSC finds success this year remains to be seen.  However the sport, people seem to think, has nowhere to go but up.

“[Ultimate Frisbee] is one of the fastest growing sports in the country,” Bullard said. “I definitely think we’ll see it take off more over the next couple of years.”


Zach Winn can be contacted at

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