Women’s Ultimate at UW-Madison can be described in just three letters: BDL.
BDL, short for “Bella Donna Love,” is a phrase that describes the love of ultimate frisbee and the love of the team. And there is no shortage of that here at UW-Madison. Our Sport Club program has two Women’s Ultimate teams, a Premiere team and a B team.
Bella Donna is UW-Madison’s premiere team and competes in regional and national tournaments. The team recently traveled to a tournament in Columbia, Missouri, earlier this November, where they placed 9th out of 27 teams. Atropa, the Women’s Ultimate B team, is a no-cut program that competes at the regional level and is geared towards players that are newcomers or are looking to improve their skills.
Both teams embody the “BDL” spirit and are enthusiastic about their passion for ultimate! We met with Lauren Allin, a team captain in her fourth year with Bella Donna, to learn more.
Rec Sports: How does “Bella Donna Love” play into your team?
Lauren Allin: We use it to sign off on emails…and we also use it as a cheer! My favorite cheer for breaking up a huddle is “Up and up,” which basically means “keep going.” Kind of like the Wisconsin cheer “Onward.”
RS: What’s something about Ultimate Frisbee that people may not know?
LA: Ultimate is pretty competitive. A lot of people think it’s Disc Golf, which can also be competitive but is not as aerobically intensive. Ultimate is a field sport and has high-level athletes that play, especially at the national team level and elite club level.
RS: What does a typical season look like?
LA: Fall is our offseason, when we do tryouts and ramp up to the spring. Our spring season starts in January, but we usually don’t play a tournament until early February. We have our main season from January until mid-March or early April, and then it’s post-season until early May, and if you qualify for nationals out of post-season, you play Memorial Day Weekend.
RS: How do you get into the zone before a game?
LA: We do a couple different drills with a lot of cool catches. We get people pumped up through cool plays.
RS: Do you have any favorite pump-up songs to get ready to go onto the field?
LA: We have a speaker that we use to listen to a lot of dance music. We dance a lot to get pumped up! We don’t normally do that for warm-ups, but if we come out of a loss, we’ll do that right before our next game to get people back into it.
RS: Do you have any victory traditions?
LA: If someone scores a point, we’ll usually have an individual cheer for that person…For example, my nickname for the team is Allin, which is my last name, because there was already a Lauren and a Lorraine. They needed a nickname, so “Allin” stuck. My nickname comes from the video of the BBC groundhog that says, “Alan! Alan!”
RS: How would you describe your team in three words?
LA: I’d say we’re competitive and fun-loving. And positive!
This energetic sport combines a passion for the game with a high level of competition. Be sure to stay up to date with Women’s Ultimate on their website and on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. (Psst…they even live tweet their games!)
Good luck with the upcoming season, Women’s Ultimate! Up and up, #activebadgers.