Christian Walker, Contributing Writer
University of Dallas Ultimate took its highest tournament finish in the history of the program Oct. 20 – 21 at University of Texas at Dallas’ Ultimate 101 Tournament, finishing second out of 12.
The team is captained this year by junior Will Teller and the “Walker Bros.,” juniors Christian and Austin Walker. Most exciting for the future of the club is the addition of many new players, mainly freshmen, but with a few juniors as well. These players were a huge factor in the success the team enjoyed in the tournament.
UDU first faced off against the rival Southern Methodist University team, cruising to an easy 13-5 victory, and went on to win the rest of Saturday’s games. Only Coppell High School gave UDU any trouble, but UDU took the lead, 7-5, at halftime and went on to win 13-7. The highlight of the game was Christian Walker’s “Callahan,” a move in which a defensive player intercepts the disc in the opponent’s end zone to earn a point.
With a record of 3-0 in Saturday’s pool play, UDU took the first seed in their pool. The team easily won its first game and went on to the quarterfinal game against University of Texas at Austin Graze. In the past, Graze had always beaten UDU fairly easily, but in Sunday’s windy conditions, UDU took control early – it broke twice, with a huge upwind score from alumnus Michael Falconer – to take a 3-0 lead. UDU scored upwind again, and then held serve, with sophomore Zack “Barbie” Wellwertz getting the team’s second Callahan of the weekend, to win 12-8, pitting the team against Louisiana State University, the clear favorite for the tournament, in the semifinal round.
LSU, led by Team USA player Garret Yetman, had crushed other teams in pool play. Although LSU scored the first point upwind, UDU broke upwind right back, and managed to hold off LSU’s strong attempts to come back. UDU won 8-7 on universe point, a “next point wins” scenario, with a give-go from Christian Walker to Teller past an LSU defender. Although the team put up a good fight in the finals against UTD-Alumni, that team’s experience and stifling zone defense gave UDU’s opponents the victory.