SOUTH HADLEY, Mass. – It was an incredible spring season for the Mount Holyoke College Ultimate Frisbee team, which finished the year ranked eighth among all Division III club programs, and 72nd overall across all divisions. The squad represented MHC once again at the Ultimate National Championships, finishing fifth overall in an outstanding field of 16 teams.
Led by head coach Evan Johnson, Mount Holyoke produced an 18-4 record this spring. Members of the team included Ada Schnake, Ysabel Lavitz, Bernadette Norman, Marlee Raiffa, captain Katrina Meserve, Hannah Finn-Erb, Elizabeth Nelson, Yu Hu, Christine Sherwood, Natalie Russianoff, Abigail Cough, Mahmuda Alam, Sarah Bloomgarden, Emma Bowe, Caitlin Connell, Yue Deng, Madison Flueckiger, Sara Frieze, Clara Honigberg, Robin Joyce, Hyeji Kim, Victoria Lorenz, Celia Mulcahey, Hadley O'Malia, Alice Richardson, Zoe Rollenhagen, Jing Yi Tang, Michelle Wellman and Xueyi Yang.
Mount Holyoke opened its spring season at the Jersey Devils Tournament from March 24 through 25. It was a weekend of tough competition as the Lyons shouldered a tough loss to Carleton University (12-4), but rebounded with wins over Towson University (9-5 & 10-5), Lehigh University (7-6), Messiah College (8-3), Wellesley College (7-3) and Ottawa University (10-5) to capture the tournament title.
The squad followed that up with a huge weekend from March 31 through April 1 at the Vermont Open 2018. MHC bested the University of Maine (12-4), Boston University 'B' (7-2) and Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) twice (10-3 & 8-4) to win that tournament as well.
MHC didn't slow down from there, competing at the South New England Division III Women's Conference Championship from April 14-15 in Northampton, Mass. The squad posted a 4-1 record at the event, including wins over Smith College (13-6), Clark University (11-8), Amherst College (12-7) and WPI (10-5). It's only loss came at the hands of Williams College (12-6) to secure second overall, as the top four in the section advanced to the regional championships.
At the New England Division III Women's Regionals, held April 28 in Williamstown, MHC played hard against the region's best in the hopes of securing one of four bids to Nationals. The team posted a 4-2 mark at the event, besting Middlebury College (11-9) before falling to Brandeis University (13-7) and Williams (13-1). The squad rebounded with victories over Smith (15-3), Bowdoin College (14-9) and Middlebury (9-8) once more to earn them a spot for the College National Championships.
The team headed to Rockford, Ill., on May 19-20 opening the first day of action with a 12-10 win against Oberlin College. MHC fell to Wesleyan University (14-8), but defeated Catholic University (15-10) in pool play. The squad went on to defeat Georgia College (15-10) in the prequarterfinals – sending them into the championship bracket.
It marked a moment in history for the MHC Ultimate Frisbee team, which had never before made it into the championship bracket. Unfortunately, MHC fell to Bates College (15-6) in the quarterfinals. Due to thunderstorms, the remaining games were unable to be played, resulting in the squad's tie for fifth. Highlighting the effort at Nationals was Meserve, who notched 11 goals and 33 assists. Hannah Finn-Erb also had a spectacular showing with 17 goals and four assists.
Photos courtesy of MHC Ultimate Frisbee.