Thursday, May 04, 2006

Waiting for Ultimate

Have you ever hoped and prayed for two different, apparently unrelated events, then have both of them happen at once, except one of them ruined the other? I've been waiting to play ultimate again for a long time. I played for awhile with this group up in salt lake, but they were really good and I'm not in the best of shape. So I stopped, and waited for this other group to start playing in Sandy when it got warmer. They finally sent me an email this week saying that thursday (today) would be the first game. I was stoked. I found my cleats in storage and cleaned them up, I started running again so I won't be laughed off the field when I start gasping for air after 20 seconds of running, and I called up a few friends to come with me.

Some people reading this may know that I also have a garden. Gardens require water. I am lazy. Therefore, I love rain. We haven't had a good solid day of rain in many many weeks now, and I was starting to wonder what was up.

Alas, both hoped-for events have happened on the same day. Frisbee is scheduled at 8:00 tonight. It is also currently raining quite hard, with no end in sight. And its not the nice, warm summer rain that is pleasant to play frisbee in; no, its the hard, driving winter rain complete with high winds.

I guess this is a blessing in disguise- I'll be able to run for another whole week so that by next thursday I'll be able to run them all into the ground!!! BHA HA HA HA HA!!!


JonnyF said...

Ahh...frisbee. That would be fun.

Golfing pirate 14 said...

So, I played some real ultimate for the first time in a long time yesterday, and I need some help from the many frisbee gurus on this blog.

I got kind of frustrated, because our team was throwing what I thought were waaaaaaay to many long passes. Now if you ask me, a long pass should only be thrown 1)when the person with the frisbee either has room to throw or is good enough to throw without room (ie when covered well by a player from another team) AND 2)the deep receiver is open, or is well covered by one defender, and you know the receiver can outjump or outrun the defender. If those two conditions don't exist, I think it's a low percentage play. The argument against is that if the long pass works, great, if it doesn't, at least it's an effective "punt". I don't buy that. Ultimate is all about keep possesion of the disc. Working it up the field slowly when you need to may be boring sometimes, but it's a good way to score. I do think there should always be at least one, maybe two deep receivers to stretch the defense, whether you throw to them or not.

I also was frustrated with people rushing passes, thus throwing bad ones. 10 seconds is plenty of time to find an open player, use it. Completions of any kind are always great, if you never throw an incomplete pass, you will eventually score.

Anyway, my question, frisbee gurus, is: Do I have a valid point here, or am I full of crap? Perhaps a little of both?

Nick said...

I must admit, one of my favorite things in life is to be on either the throwing or the receiving end of a nice long pass into the end zone, especially if it goes through multiple defenders.

But you're right, the long game only works given that those two points you make are true. Otherwise, its always the short game that wins. Especially as the teams get better- a good, experienced team will never allow the opposing team to score many long points. They always win with short, quick passes, well, not so much quick as smart.

I'm playing with this group that plays in front of the sandy city hall tuesday and thursday nights. Many of them are pretty good, but the rest are pretty amateur. The most common mistake after getting an interception, or making a cool catch, is just to throw it away in the heat of the moment. The more experienced players are always more patient and wait for a nice smart pass to get open.

JonnyF said...

Take off your eyepatch and you'll play better.
Like Nick, I immensely enjoy being on either end of a long throw into the endzone. That said, I also immensely enjoy hitting home runs, booting soccer balls really far, spiking volleyballs really hard, and sinking three pointers.. However, none of these things make up a comprehensive winning strategy for offence in their respective sports.
Sometimes the long pass is worth a try, and I have seen situations where a punt is in order. However, if a punt is good, a punt from ten feet closer to the goal is better.
I have also played with people who thought the goal of ultimate was to throw long passes rather than score points. It is unfortunate. But a point I would make about that is that (like on any sports team) a large factor of your authority is your relative skill level. If you are obviously the best player on the team then people will listen to you. Of course, even if you are the best player, it might not be so obvious to athletes who think that they are "all that". You know the ones I'm talking about. Anyway, my point is get really good, then you can tell them what to do.
On a side note, this reminds me of playing volleyball at a certain place which will remain unnamed (sounds like "empty sea"). I tried to score points, and thus have my team get to fifteen points before the other team. This is a reasonable goal. Some others were there to hit the ball as hard as they could (never mind that it almost always went into the net or out of bounds), presumeably because they thought it was cool to hit things hard. When confronted about their lack of point production, these people often had an excuse such as, "Well, because I hit so hard, no one goes up to block me. It's intimidation." Right. I'm really scared of guys who hit it into the net. (Gosh, sorry guys. I didn't realize I had all this pent up bitterness. (You can tell by the sarcasm.))

erin said...

I always count my success in frisbee by how many grass stains I have when I'm done. If I look respectable afterward, that's no good. Of course, I count grass stains because points for me are few and far between. I remember one particular day when Nick and Jenny and Randy and I were playing frisbee at pioneer park and we were experimenting with throwing multiple frisbees. I remember apologizing a lot that night and I have a distinct impression that Jenny was the only one I was on good terms with for awhile after that. I think I got better that summer, though. I learned about stacking from Nick...and I think I could still do it if I had to--you know, like if I was cornered in a dark alley and some sketchy character was coming at me. I'd yell "Stack!" and run out at a 45 until I was out of range. That'd show him, eh?

Golfing pirate 14 said...

Arrr! Not me eyepatch! I looks ugly without it!

Thanks guys for validating my complaint. Nick kind of inflated my ego there, but then Jon (speaking of hitting things really hard in volleyball) smashed it to the floor (hey, what're brothers for)

My frustration mostly stems from the fact that when waiting for people to show up last week my group of 5 people lost to a group of 3, 7-4, because we (by we I mostly mean this good athlete that thought he was all that) weren't making smart passes. The team of 3 was good, but had we made easy, smart, open passes all the time instead of going for a lot of bombs, we would have scored every time we had the frisbee and won, because they turned it over a few times. I suppose it's not so big a deal, because I usually work Thursday nights, so I won't be playing with that group much and after all, it's just a pick up game.

By the way Jon, (or anyone who has seen me play) any specific suggestions of how to get better?

JonnyF said...

Erin: It is disappointing when you are still clean after playing some frisbee. I've often asked people to throw me passes that I could dive for so I could get dirty if I was still clean at the end of a game.
Brent: I think the biggest improvement you could make is to learn to throw forehand, right and/or left handed (I don't know which one you will prefer). It took me about six months to really get my forehand down. It wouldn't hurt to be familiar with "team" skills like stacks and cups and defensive forcing directions, but those are easy. You can learn those in five minutes, well, maybe fifteen.

erin said...

And Brent, they'll totally help you out in a dark know, just in case.

Golfing pirate 14 said...

Erin, you're comment made me laugh. I had an image of being in a dark alley, getting in trouble, then yelling "Cup!" and out of nowhere, Nick, Jon, and Warren appear in good defensive positions.