Ultimate coaches transition online to keep in touch with players

In past years, the Ultimate Frisbee team would have been out on the turf all spring. This year they have been on their computers.

Em Paquette

In past years, the Ultimate Frisbee team would have been out on the turf all spring. This year they have been on their computers.

Elena Latterell, Staff Writer

The current pandemic has caused a lot of inconveniences in the lives of students at BSM, one of the hardest being the cancelation of spring activities. Whether a senior is missing their last season or a freshman is missing their first, players and coaches alike have been struggling with the newfound lack of communication with their teams.

In order to stay in touch with Ultimate Frisbee players, coaches John Groess, Kelsey Mueller, and Martha Lien have organized several online meetings with players to maintain the sense of community that goes along with participating in a spring activity. “Half of why we do sports and are on teams is to interact with people,” Groess said.

For the first time in the history of BSM girls’ team, enough players had signed up to field both varsity and junior varsity squads this season, and the first few practices had looked extremely promising, so the abrupt halt to the season was difficult to process for many players. The Ultimate Frisbee team is known for their great sense of camaraderie, and it was upsetting to know that the team wouldn’t be able to create memories this season like they have in the past. “Last year we did a bunch of fun activities, and we were always hanging out together before practices and stuff, so we didn’t really get a chance to do any of that this year or to say goodbye to any of the seniors,” sophomore Clare Meyer said.

I think for us it was just a matter of bringing everyone together… We didn’t want the season to just end like that, you know.”

— Kelsey Mueller

Because the coaches knew that this change would be hard on the players, they decided to organize meetings to see how people were feeling about the cancelation as well as allow players to interact with their teammates and coaches. “I think for us it was just a matter of bringing everyone together… We didn’t want the season to just end like that, you know, with sad news,” Mueller said.

Obviously, the meetings are better than nothing but still less than ideal. With a vastly different number of players joining each call, it’s difficult to organize activities that will flow smoothly. After an awkward first meeting, the coaches decided to organize meetings with games to play like trivia and bingo. “Playing games and stuff makes it less awkward, and it’s kind of bonding for next year,” Meyer said.

The coaches and captains are planning a final meeting to wrap up the season in June, but again, it’s difficult to predict how many players will end up joining the call and what activities would work well virtually. In the meantime, Groess has been dealing with a tough bingo loss from the most recent meeting, claiming that his recent Apple Polisher award was only given to him as an act of pity. “I’ve been losing a lot of sleep, and the student body I think knew, and that’s why I got the Apple Polisher,” Groess said.