It’s a bird! It’s a plane!

Decatur expands its roots in ultimate frisbee

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Meghan Costley

The men’s team huddles up at their first tournament.

Alia Carlton

“There’s this quote by a famous sports announcer, ‘Ultimate frisbee is what sports should be,’” said Kate Wilson, coach of the women’s ultimate frisbee team that includes Decatur, Lakeside and W. D. Mohammed High School, known as MELD for the initials of the schools involved.

This year is the first time that Decatur has designated ultimate teams for men and women.

Decatur has been given three years to form a full squad of its own by the administration, but for now the students join people from other schools to play a sport they love.

The men’s team, known as the “Dog Pound” has been around for four years.

Their biggest accomplishment so far was taking second place in the Georgia State High School Championship (B Division) in 2012 and 2013. They lost only to Lambert High School.

Eric Swett is the men’s coach. He was originally contacted by IB Coordinator Wesley Hatfield four years ago and has been involved ever since. The men’s team has players from all grades at Decatur and even some from Renfroe.

Ultimate isn’t officially considered equal to sports like football and soccer at Decatur.

“We’re working right now on getting [ultimate] recognized as a team sport instead of just a club sport,” Swett said.

Because of this, both teams has had to take on a lot of responsibilities themselves.

“[The mens’ team] finds our own field space,” he said. “Mrs. Hosking is our school sponsor and she’s helped us with it.”

The men’s team practices at Winona Park on Mondays and Wednesdays.

Kate Wilson coaches the women’s team in practice on Sundays at Henderson Middle School, and Wednesdays in Decatur.

Wilson said that starting up a new sport or club at a school is really dependent on the students.

“I can come in here with all of this frisbee experience … but that doesn’t matter if the girls aren’t into it,” she said. “Because of this a couple of people from each school really have to take the initiative to play and recruit their friends.”

Swett believes that ultimate frisbee should be played by everyone.

“It’s a very unique sport,” he said. “Every player gets to play every position on the field, so it provides an opportunity for people to play all aspects of the game.”

Wilson thinks that ultimate frisbee is a sport that should be recognized for the qualities of the average player and team.

“I think it’s a really cool thing because it requires a lot of sportsmanship and a lot of athleticism, but it also requires a lot of intelligence,” she said. “It’s also all about being honest, you don’t have referees that you’re trying to cheat, you’re just trying to tell the truth”

The DHS ultimate teams want you! Contact sophomore Lydia Booth (lydiabooth@csdecatur.net) for information on the women’s team, or junior Kyle Monsalve (kylem465@gmail.com) for information on the men’s team.