By: Lauren Lowther
Sacred Heart University’s club ultimate team is hosting their first ever, “Spikeball Spring Classic Tournament,” on April 21, to raise money for the team.
According to USA Spikeball, it is a $10-dollar registration fee per team on or before April 15, and a $20-dollar fee per team from April 16-20.
The ultimate team plays Ultimate Frisbee.
Ultimate Frisbee, known officially as “ultimate,” is similar to American football, but with a flying disc and without physical contact. Spikeball is similar to volleyball. It involves volleying a ball, but hitting it against a net before it hits the ground.
“There’s definitely overlap within the communities of those who play Spikeball and those who play Frisbee both inside and outside the Sacred Heart community,” said sophomore co-captain Josh Belluche.
Belluche and junior co-captain Evan Sigouros, are ready for the event. They went as far as getting their friends from home involved in the tournament.
“We have people from New York, New Jersey and Connecticut coming,” said Belluche. “We will even have some representation from Virginia. It is cool because all of these teams come together because it’s an official Spikeball tournament where we will have brackets, winners and prizes. We expect it to be really competitive and a ton of fun.”
“We are excited about the exposure this event will provide to the SHU ultimate team and it also gives us a chance to experience Spikeball through an official tournament setting,” said Sigouros.
Belluche and Sigourous will be competing in the tournament in addition to running it.
“There was an ultimate team here at SHU in 2013 but never really took off because many of the team leaders were graduating,” said Sigouros. “So a few of us met up and put a plan together to build excitement and get more students involved. It began as more of a common interest with getting together for pick-up games and it’s evolved into much more.”
Previous experience isn’t required to join the ultimate team. The sport combines aspects of other sports such as running, sliding and diving. Those aspects are what makes the sport appealing to Sigouros.
The team is also looking to appeal to the freshman class next year.
“There are a lot of people in the incoming freshmen class that have expressed interest,” said Belluche. “It’s a great way to meet people and get involved with the school.”
Sigouros is hopeful to gain support so this can continue for years to come at Sacred Heart. Club ultimate is planning to have some scrimmages against local schools and the members of the team purchased uniforms for the season.
“From a captain’s perspective, it’s amazing to see the increased desire for people to improve their skills so they can get better and contribute to overall success of the team and the program,” said Sigouros.
The team is currently run by the players and they practice once a week. They also come to play informally to continue to work on their skills. As the program continues to evolve, the team may look for a coach but it is important that they find someone who knows the sport well and can help them collectively advance.
The tournament will have check-ins beginning at 9 a.m., and will run until 3 p.m. It will take place at the turf softball field on campus.
There will be both intermediate and advanced divisions.