By Shane McNamara
After what can only be described as a nail biting weekend, UL Ultimate Frisbee are this year’s Indoor Inter Varsities Mixed champions. On Saturday, the 23rd of January two teams travelled to Cork to make history.
Our second team finished in the top 12 bracket which was a huge achievement for them despite acquiring injuries. They remained positive throughout the tournament and were a credit to themselves both on and off the pitch displaying amazing performances of ultimate.
Needless to say, after beating UCD in the semi-final on universe point, the first team were on a complete high. This high could be felt by the Mardyke Arena and even friends at home as the final was going to be live streamed. Now the only thing that stood between UL and that trophy was the infamous UCC. UL were most certainly the under dogs throughout the tournament but as the old saying goes: “it’s not about the size of the dog in the fight but it’s about the size of the fight in the dog”. The taste of victory is addictive and our win against UCD most certainly left us hungry.
We told ourselves to approach the final like it was “just another game”. Everyone was relaxed and yet had the perfect amount of butterflies required to stay focused. We took every point as it came and never let our heads drop. UCC went up 4-2 early on in the game but with the help of a quick pep talk and extremely clinical offense and gritty defence we brought it back to 5-4. We then traded for a while until it was 7-7.
Bodies were tired, hearts were pumping and it was anyone’s game to take. Suddenly it was universe point again, game to 8. We did it before so what was stopping us from doing it now? It was now down to luck. UL started on offence giving us a head start. Now all we had to do was retain the disc and hopefully get lucky in the end zone. We were swinging the disc and being very clinical with each and every pass. No one was taking a chance. Suddenly Andrew Meade saw a gap in UCC’s end zone, he popped a pass into the air for Gary Gilmartin to snatch out of the sky. As soon as his feet touched the ground the atmosphere was electric. The crowd ran onto the pitch and soon everyone was covered in sweat. We headed home that night with 2 trophies, 9 gold medals and memories that will last a lifetime.
We would like to thank UCC for their outstanding spirit on the pitch. It was a fantastic display of sportsmanship. I’m sure we will see them on the field sooner than we would like. However this time, we might stand a little taller.