The Homegrown Clowder, Yukon’s Ultimate Frisbee team, has won the Great Alaska Jamboree (JAM).
According to its website, the Jamboree is Alaska’s only ‘Bring a Team’ tournament and typically attracts intermediate to advanced players.
In recent years, the JAM has featured seven or eight teams from Alaska, as well as two or three teams from Outside.
The tournament was held June 24 and 25 at Kincaid Park in Anchorage, Alaska and featured many advanced-level teams and players from Alaska, the Southern 48 and beyond.
This year there were eight teams participating in the tournament: one from Whitehorse, one from Seattle, one from Los Angeles, an international team comprised of players from around the globe and four from Alaska.
Homegrown Clowder went 2 and 2 the first day, but went on a winning streak on the second day, going 4-0 to take the title, beating Chartreuse from Seattle in the finals, 7-3.
Team captain Callahan McKenzie said for many of the Whitehorse players, this was their first time playing against non-Whitehorse players in five to 10 years.
“We faced a couple of challenges during the tournament. Firstly, it was the first time all of us had played together, so we spent some time going over strategy before the first game,” he said. “Secondly, our roster was a bit smaller and older than most of the teams there. Luckily, folks from Whitehorse are generally fit and with age comes experience. Lastly, the second day of the tournament was incredibly windy, making it difficult to throw and catch. We adjusted our game to small-ball and ran some effective zone defense to secure our wins.”
Previous to this, the Whitehorse team participated in the competition in the early 2001 to 2003, and then in 2013 with little success. However, this year the team partnered with a few individuals from the Kootenays and Washington state to assemble more skilled and experienced players.
The JAM tournament has been held since 1996 and has featured some of the top mixed ultimate teams from the United States.
In Whitehorse, organized Ultimate Frisbee has been happening since 1999, operating as a drop-in sport, with a range of players from beginners to those at the elite level.
The team currently plays on Wednesdays at 6 p.m. at École Émilie-Tremblay and indoors at the Canada Games Centre (CGC) during the winter months.
Contact Patrick Egwu at email@example.com