Hatchlings Emerge at UCLA One-Day
Slightly cloudy and a cool 67 degrees, this past Saturday presented prime conditions for UCSD Dragon Coalition to kickstart the season at UCLA One-Day. Worm-in-beak and coffee in hand, the early birds set off for Los Angeles before the sun rose. Returners were eager to get back on the line, and rookies just as eager for their first ever game of college Ultimate. With inconceivable masses of recruits this fall, the team split into X and Y teams, respectively named Team Phineas and Team Ferb, and set off to face their first opponents.
Team Ferb faced some tough opponents to start, and though they fought hard, faced defeat in their first three games. The team was able to keep spirits high, however, and never gave up. All sorts of returners stepped up to the plate to fill handler shoes—cleats, if you will—and did their best to make amazing plays for their rookies’ first day of playing Ultimate. That they did, and with each challenging game came improvement in field awareness, confidence, and fun for the Team Ferb. Emma “Capwn” Ellefson-Frank and Kezha “Crush” Neale-Saches did some exceptional handling, stepping out of their comfort zones for the good of the team. A highlight of the day for Team Ferb was new rookie Rango marking against an opposing Rango from another team. Bella “Chila” Ely pulled some weight for the team too, ever the flash on her feet. The team ended the day with a well-deserved win against Long Beach, and celebrated halftime with a Pitbull dance party. Classic. An invigorating round of applause to Team Ferb, and congratulations to all the rookies on their first ever tournament!
Team Phineas started out a bit rocky as well, suffering a close loss in their first game as they learned the ropes of new roles in their team. New rookie Boeing had a stellar play, completing book ends in the first game, and scoring her first point in Ultimate! The team’s second game proved more fruitful with a win, as did the third! Hayley “Xylo” Stringer had an epic layout pancake catch in the endzone, surely evoking some heart eyes for the swag factor of the sport. The last game of the day saw Team Phineas against the USC A Team full of returners, and our own team stood their ground, giving rookies some great in-game experience. A tough loss was not too surprising, yet not disappointing in the slightest. The team is infinitely proud of our returners and rookies alike stepping up to the plate and giving their all. The game showcased some golden lowlight moments, including Marlo “Valen” Ramada’s gorgeous 3-yard flick huck into the turf, and Sofia “Katana” Lake’s butter fingers on catching the pull. These two loveable goofs had the whole sideline laughing, and took it in stride, playing hard and lightening the mood during a tough game. Moments like these were important to show everyone that big dogs make mistakes too, and learning and fun are the most important parts of this weekend.
An honorable mention moment for the weekend was the Celebrity Cameo of Cameron “Cheezus” England, former Dco who came to cheer everyone on for the first tournament of the season. We love and miss you Cheese, thanks for coming to support and motivate everyone! This first tournament was a major success, with rookies and returners gaining tons of experience. Way to kick off the season right! Dco, You Know!