USA Ultimate U-20 Open- Training Camp Day 2

Posted: July 29, 2010 03:11 PM

This August, 44 of the best youth Ultimate players in America will be traveling to Germany to participate in the 2010 World Junior Ultimate Championships. But first, the Open and Girl’s teams will meet at Amherst College next week for a weeklong training camp hosted by USA Ultimate.

Five members of Team USA have agreed to blog about thier experiences for - Bethany Kaylor,Sally LandefeldMaddy RoorbachNick Stuart and Matt Barnes. Follow their progress here as they train, travel and compete throughout the next few weeks.

Our fourth entry comes from Matt as he prepares for USA Ulimate's team camp in Massachusetts.

Matt B

Hey everyone,

Just a quick intro, my name is Matt Barnes (#4) and I just finished my freshmen year at Brown University. I went to high school at Needham HS in Massachusetts. With that out of the way, on to Day 2 of training camp…

Today started bright and early with a 6:45ish wakeup. After a solid breakfast, Team USA was on the fields for morning practice around 8:30. The morning session began with some endzone work as Team USA began to gel offensively. Efficiency and smart decisions were the name of the game as the drills transitioned into endzone-focused scrimmaging. Throughout the scrimmage, the endzone offense looked clean, and while defensive bids were frequent, both teams were scoring when they had the chance. The second half of the session focused on a lot of defensive principles with marking and dictation drills. The team came out flying with several sweet layout grabs and blocks in the first few drills. After the drills, Team USA broke into a scrimmage where points could only be scored by getting blocks on defense. A few massive skies and layout blocks punctuated a great scrimmage, and a solid morning session.

In the afternoon session, more emphasis was put on defense during a few marking based drills. This was a chance to work on both our marks and our break throws. Then, Team USA began some work on its zone D and zone O as the wind began to pick up a bit. Some great defensive efforts were rewarded with many turnovers, but just as frequently, the offense was able to move the disc quickly through the defense. It was clear as the scrimmage continued that the team was starting to gel. Handlers were hitting open cutters in space and the disc never seemed to stop for more than a second or two.

Looking forward, there is a lot to be excited about for Team USA. Tomorrow’s scrimmage under the lights at Amherst College (7PM for anyone interested) will mark the first time that the USA will line up as a full 23 against a common opponent. Both on and off the field, the team is coming together and having a lot of fun. With the first games in Germany less than a week away, the anticipation is building and I know I speak for everyone when I say we are excited to get over to Germany and start playing.

-Matt Barnes