The UBC Ultimate Program would like to thank the UBC Alma Mater Society for their continued support. Without them, we would not have grown to where we are today. We look forward to future opportunities and appreciate the support from past and present years.
To kick off the new year, we present to you our men’s and women’s rosters for the 2015 season.
Happy new year! Looking forward to lots of excitement this coming season. #TB1RD5
Passion drives a team to perform at the next level. Seeing a teammate bid for every disc, playing outstanding man defence, or make an unbelievable, physics defying play causes a team to access reserves and talent otherwise unattainable. Having teammates like this are an essential catalyst for any high performing team. Amy Luo continues to invigorate the T-Birds originally as a defensive specialist, and now an offensive contributor. Amy has battled back from a multitude of injuries and other setbacks and continues to inspire her teammates to access their competitive edge. With her roles on Canada’s U23 mixed team, Amy brings fire and experience into what is the most substantial, and ultimate test of the season.
Height: 159 cm
Field of study: Geography (NOT kinesiology or business, contrary to popular belief)
Position: O/D Hybrid cutter
How did you start playing frisbee?
I started for reals in grade 11 – In summer 2008 my friend and teammate Victoria Lam invited me to volunteer at worlds and I thought it was the coolest thing ever and since then I was determined to play ultimate and get good enough so I could play at the same tournament I was once volunteering for.
Who is your most influential player?
I have two – two of the fastest, best, most dedicated cutters in the world (literally – both represented Canada at the world games).
Catherine Hui – she always pushes herself to go 110% and picks up the slack for everyone else. Her energy and determination to the sport and her team is infectious and it always pushes me to play my hardest. It’s been an honour to play alongside her.
Jenn Kwok – Kwok has battled against endless injuries to still be one of the best cutters in the game. Her dedication to rehab, injury prevention, and just the sport in general are incredibly inspirational. I have always kept her playing philosophy in the back of my mind – “New beginning. Go in knowing you don’t want to regret anything. Drops, throwaways who gives a crap. The only time i have ever had regrets was when i hid and played scared, so go balls out, and it will change your game i swear.” She has always believed in me from day 1 and motivates me to work hard and play hard no matter what.
What is your favourite ultimate moment?
Scoring 8 goals against UVic at Regionals this year and proceeding to beat them on universe. I had never really played against UVic before (I always seem to get injured in the first few points and am out for the rest of the game against them) and offense has always been the biggest demon I struggle with in ultimate. So to be on the best offensive game of my life my first time playing against them was a huge personal achievement.
Slash break side and strike deep – the 7 cut, that or peeling in the endzone for the score.
What’s the worst injury you’ve sustained from ultimate?
Dislocating my right shoulder 4 times over 4 years in 4 different cities.
Photography, snowboarding, bunnies, anything UBC REC related
What teams do you play on outside of TBirds?
TC U23 Mixed, Battlecats, and now Zephyr
On top of playing frisbee Amy loves coaching. She started coaching juniors last summer and got so invested and considers it one of the most rewarding experiences ever. Check out our fundraising page for info on how to support Amy and the rest of the UBC TBirds Ultimate Team.
Our next profile features multi-talented O-line specialist Mira Donaldson. At only 20 years old, Mira has already competed at the highest level of play, representing Canada at the World Games. Do not underestimate her for her age – her arsenal of throws and vision of the field is that of a seasoned veteran. Hucks, hammers, scoobers, blades, forehand, backhand, Mira does it all. Unlike her indecisiveness in real life, her play calls and decisions on the field are always made with 110%, inevitably resulting in completed full-field hucks and shredded zones. Though Mira isn’t one to join in on the cheers and celebrations, her on-field plays make more than enough noise to compensate. You’d be hard-pressed to find a defender in all of women’s college ultimate that can stop the likes of Mira Donaldson.
Height: 175 cm
Field of study: Integrated Science
Position: O-line cutter
How did you start playing frisbee?
I was a heavy basketball player, and at my school the majory of the team would play ultimate in the spring as cross training. My older brother also played for our high school team, anything he did was considered “cool” in my eyes, so I was sold. After my first year, it was all I wanted to do.
Who is your most influential player?
The two that stick out the most are Candice Chan and Jon Hayduk. Jon has mentored me since day one back in grade 8, and has convinced me to play for more and more teams which I refuse to do at first, but end up loving. Every throw I know, I have learned from him, and I would not be where I am without his leadership. Candice is one of the most hardworking, intense, yet happiest players our there, and I wish I could be her! Having her as a teammate and friend for the last few years has bean great.
You probably have lots to choose from, but what is your favourite ultimate moment?
Hard to pinpoint one exactly, but winning Spring Reign in high school is still one of my most fond moments of a hard fought game and coming out on top. I must say, walking around a stadium full of 50,000 people at the World Games opening ceremonies was also an experience I will never forget.
I like hucking…a lot
Any other sports you play?
I played lots of basketball throughout high school and was considering pursuing it in university, but gave it all up for frisbee, and I still don’t regret that decision.
What teams do you play on outside of TBirds?
The ones that seemed to be used the most are MOORA and “The Kid”
Besides dominating on the court and field, Mira is aspiring to become a doctor and currently studying for her MCAT this summer. She also gives back to the ultimate community by coach her alma mater junior team, the BC All Stars Provincial Team. Check out our fundraising page for info on how to support Mira and the rest of the UBC TBirds Ultimate Team.
The score was 12-11 in a rematch of the two top teams from our pool. Instead of playing for bracket positioning, the tournament was now on the line. It was a situation that was familiar to only a handful of our players. The field was soaked and unforgiving by the time the last point was scored. The outcome: 13-11, UC San Diego over UBC. As students or as athletes, it’s easy to become preoccupied with outcomes. Whether it be obtaining a certain grade, lifting a certain weight at the gym, or placing well at a tournament. When you get caught up in the inviting thought of focusing on results, the process in order to achieve your goal gets tossed to the wayside. All weekend, captain Keane Knapp had said “focus on the process, not the outcome”; the result was the best tournament performance UBC has had in 3 years. Here’s how we ended up in the finals.
Saturday morning’s first challenge in pool play was against the UC Santa Cruz Slugs. Despite a sluggish (pardon the pun) and uninspired start, we ended up taking half and never looked back: 13-8 UBC. After a quick break, we were back on the field against a significantly better team in UC San Diego in what would be a preview of the finals. After getting broken 2 times in the beginning of the game, we battled back with a few motivational words from coach Marc Seraglia. Unfortunately, San Diego would answer back with more breaks than we could manage and we lost, 13-8.
Following a third round bye, we faced a young and avid Stanford team. We started strong and our defense carried us through the first half. In the second half, we became complacent and let Stanford back into the game. After allowing a few breaks, we gave our heads a shake and powered through to a 13-10 victory.
Up next was Las Positas in a cross-over game. Las Positas hosted a smaller team that had already played 2 universe point games that day (they would go on to play 4 the entire tournament). Their top end talent was unrivalled yet exhausted at the beginning of our game. Hoping to capitalize on our opponents fatigue, we jumped to a 10-5 lead. However, the team became complacent again, hemorrhaging breaks until we were down 11-10. After stabilizing our offence and earning a couple breaks back, it was 13-13; universe point, UBC on O. Playing on the edge of life and death tests the mettle of players; throws become harder to execute and wide open looks suddenly appear contested. After two turnovers, Las Positas was firmly in our red zone and it appeared a forgone conclusion that the game was theirs. An unfortunate timeout call – when they had none left – resulted in one last turnover for Las Positas: we converted. The outcome, 14-13 T-Birds, secured us the fourth seed going into bracket play.
There were some interesting storylines going on elsewhere at the invite. The most significant was that of Tulane, a team only able to field 8 players due to flight delays and cancellations, yet still managing a 3-1 record on Saturday. With the lesson of not being complacent still fresh on our minds, we prepared to face Cincinatti who had just defeated Tulane on universe point (there seemed to be a bizarre number of universe games this tournament. Seriously, check the scores). The highlight of our game wasn’t the complete game effort or the relentless defensive pressure we applied; it was Edward Guo exclaiming “OoooHHH, oOOOh Tyler” as he completely took over a point for which he was handsomely reward a callahan**. Our mentality carried over into our semifinal resulting in a complete game effort, soundly defeating Arizona 13-4. This set up our final with UC San Diego.
Uncharacteristic to our games on Sunday, we started poorly. It wasn’t decision , but rather a bunch of unfortunate execution errors that put ourselves in a 4-0 before finally getting 1 on the board. The squids had come to play all weekend, and it was clear that they were the best prepared team in the tournament. In the second half, with a renewed focus on defence, we started to claw back at the daunting San Diego lead. But in a classic case of “too little, too late”, we were felled 13-11.
The best part of tournaments isn’t necessarily the scores and games but the underlying storylines of the team as it grows. Whether it was Sancho packing 2 days of clothes and jerseys into a draw bag, Hackney’s zeal for life, debating lunch choices at Costco, or simply eating as a team, we learned some tough lessons and grew as a team.
The outcome was positive and the process was enjoyable. UBC’s Santa Barbara invite was a success.
See you at President’s Day.
*Universe point = Double-game-point, next team to score wins the game
**Callahan = a defensive block caught in the end zone, resulting in a unassisted goal.
With a new year ahead of us and a new college season, UBC Ultimate’s website is back and better than ever. It has been quite some time since we’ve used this website and a lot has changed since 2011 – let’s recap where our team is at now!
UBC Ultimate has now partnered with the Alma Mater Society to become an official UBC club. So our team now has two dimensions to it – the AMS club side of things, as well as the competitive team that competes in the USA Ultimate College Series. As an AMS club we offer a fun and welcoming environment open to anybody interested in ultimate frisbee and meeting new people. We host open practices in the fall for any club members, as well as social events and tournaments that are open to everyone, where we offer a discounted member rate. We’re still pretty new to this whole clubs thing and we’re working on creating the best possible experience for our members, so stay posted for lots of fun and exciting happenings for our beloved members!
Here are our current club executives:
President: Fred Lam
Treasurer: Laurel Jay
Vice President: Jo-Hannah Yeo
Social Coordinator: Mandy Wong
Logistics: Alex Jew
Senior Advisor: Kevin Greer, Keane Knapp
Public Relations: Amy Luo
Both the men’s and women’s team compete in the competitive USA Ultimate College Series, with the goal being to qualify for and win nationals. We practice three times a week and attend 2-3 tournaments throughout the season. For those looking for a different pace, we also offer a semi-competitive B team that practices twice a week and is looking to attend 1-2 tournaments.
Since 2011, the women’s team has qualified for nationals in Boulder, Colorado in 2012 where we placed 11th. In 2013 we also qualified for nationals and finished tied for 5th place. The men’s team have fought hard but were unable to qualify for nationals since 2011 – but there’s no time better than the present, right? Follow along on their quest for nationals this year with #ALLIN2014.
The women’s team has the talent of Tasia Balding and Jenn Kwok of Traffic Ultimate coaching us. We are excited for this dynamic duo of handler/cutter and their combined 20+ years of experience and talent to lead us to nationals once again. The men have welcomed Marc Seraglia of Furious George as their head coach. Under his guidance the boys are looking to make their long-awaited appearance at nationals this year.
Our club and team is fast growing with lots of new up and coming talent every year. The ultimate scene in Vancouver is phenomenal and we’re lucky to be in such a great city with such a massive pool of talent. As well, the growing interest in ultimate in Vancouver and at UBC has helped us foster a great club base thus far and we’re looking to keep on growing. We love this sport and we’re looking to advocate it in as many ways as possible.
Big thanks to the many veterans, alumni, coaches, and sponsors that have helped us get to where we are today. Looking forward to a fantastic 2014!
– Amy Luo, Public Relations
School is right around the corner, what does this mean? It means fall practices at UBC! For those that are new to our team, we host fall practices that are open to anyone during fall. Yup, that means no experience is necessary and we are open to all skill levels. If you’re interested in checking us out, feel free to drop by one of our practices. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org to get notified about upcoming practices! Thanks!