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Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

The student news site of Marquette University

Marquette Wire

Men’s ultimate frisbee club, “Birdhouse”, doubles down in Dimmadome Invitational

(Photo courtesy of Marquette Club Ultimate Frisbee Team)

The Valley Field dome echoes with the sounds of teams yelling and the crowd chanting in the crisp cold air, but in the brief moments of silence, you can hear the sound of discs flying through the air. Birdhouse, Marquette men’s ultimate frisbee club team, hosted the Dimmadome Invitational this past weekend, a winter tradition that started in 2019.

Steven Murphy, captain of Feeder and a senior in the College of Arts & Sciences, said Marquette entered the tournament as two distinct programs, House and Feeder.

“We separated into two teams for a tournament in November and will continue this way for the rest of the season. House is our more competitive team and Feeder is about development and growth,” Murphy said.

Ben Bolz, House team member and a sophomore more in the College of Engineering, could be heard chanting one of the team’s many chants of “Look up in the sky, it’s a birdhouse but why?”

“I like to keep the team enthusiastic because you can only win games with the right mindset and at the end of each tournament, we do awards and the Spirit Staff goes to the person who shows the most team inspiration, somebody who hypes the team up the most,” Bolz said.

Marquette’s House finished strong with a record of 3-1 and  Feeder went 0-4 in the six-team tournament, which involved games against University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Milwaukee School of Engineering and University of Chicago and Hillsdale College (Michigan).

Jordan Liff, a former Marquette law student and coach of Feeder, said he was proud of the team’s attitude throughout the tournament.

“I was really happy with our first game played, even if the score didn’t affect it, I thought we were playing a great game,” Liff said. “We weren’t getting really upset with ourselves and we were helping each other out, being encouraging to each other. We’re only going to get better.”

Michael Donlin, captain of House and senior in the College of Business Administration, said this tournament is something teams look forward to playing in every year.

“We are known for this tournament and teams want to come and play and it’s a little fundraiser for us to get some money in our pocket,” Donlin said.

Murphy said that all teams paid a fee of $250 to enter the tournament, which included a hospitality bag, an ultimate frisbee tradition.

“A lot of teams pride themselves off their food bags they hand out at tournaments. We’re giving out cereal bars, fruit snacks, bagels with peanut butter and more, so players won’t get hungry,” Murphy said.

Charlie Benforado, a fifth-year senior on the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee’s ultimate frisbee team BlackCat said he enjoys the rivalry between the two teams.

“I always love playing Marquette. It’s fun and I have a mental score of who’s won the games,” Benforado said. “We play on average three times a year, but it’s pretty hilarious because we sign up for a lot of similar tournaments, so we will drive to Saint Louis and end up playing Marquette.”

Benforado described Birdhouse’s style of play with a lot of bravado about BlackCat.

“They always have a really good system, some good players but talent wise I think we are better but they’re more consistent,” Benforado said.

Donlin said that the unique aspect of ultimate is that there are no referees.

“We play 7v7 and it’s continuous play until someone scores and you usually play to 13 or 15 points,” Donlin said. “One of the biggest things about ultimate that I love is that it’s self-officiated because there’s something called spirit of the game which means we’re just out here to have a good time. When there are disagreements we just talk through the rules and then agree to play on.”

Donlin said Birdhouse’s legacy will continue in the future due to the gaining popularity of the sport.

“This team is probably the best team that I’ve played on since I’ve been on this team,” Donlin said. “I’m not worried about this team’s future at all because there’s a lot of potential in those younger classes, which is just awesome. Now all I have to do is help teach them and we’ll be good to g0.”

The story was written by Catherine Fink. She can be reached at [email protected] or on Twitter @CatherineFinkMU.

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