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UNC men’s ultimate Frisbee team takes second in first spring tournament

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UNC men’s ultimate Frisbee team certainly started the season off on a positive note.

At the UNC-hosted Atlantic Coast Conference Ultimate Championship – the first competition of the official college season, which runs in the spring – Darkside came in second place.

“Overall, it was a very good tournament for our team, with everyone contributing to our wins,” said captain Thomas Sayre-McCord. “Our offense on transition after a turnover got much better as the tournament went on.”

The men went undefeated until the championship game, when they fell to Georgia Tech, a team they beat the day before in pool play. But despite a rather disappointing final, the team played a relatively solid first tournament.

“With the exception of our last game, our offense was very efficient, and our defense was effective at getting turnovers,” Sayre-McCord said.

Coach Mike Denardis also emphasized the efficiency of the offense in man-to-man situations. Zone-o, however, was a different story. UNC midfield zone cutters, called poppers, struggled to find holes in the cup.

“Georgia Tech put on a zone later in our game, and we gave up a lot of points because we couldn’t move the disc vertically in a zone,” Denardis said.

On the defensive side of the disc, Sayre-McCord said Darkside needs to work on converting turnovers and forcing other teams to make mistakes. Denardis seemed more focused on the basics: a strong mark.

“Our marks have to learn when it is time to put pressure on and when it is time to be very disciplined in not getting broken,” he said.

Darkside’s next tournament will be Queen City Tune-up, also hosted by UNC, in Charlotte Feb. 12 and 13. Tournament goals include improving the issues on defense and, of course, to win.

All in all, Denardis said he thinks the ACC tournament worked well to jumpstart the year.

“Getting some quality wins early in the season is always important,” he said. “I was very impressed with our young players, freshman especially, and our vets all showed good poise for most of the tournament.”

For more information:
What is the Atlantic Coast Conference Ultimate Championships?
Darkside 2010 takes third at Centex
Darkside 2010 takes second at Ultimax
Darkside 2010 takes fifth at Queen City Tune-Up
What is ultimate Frisbee?

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