For Fords Frizz, that’s just the way it is

Fords Frizz – Ronan Wood ’23

The ultimate frisbee team, known colloquially as Fords Frizz, does not get the most support from the school. The team does not have Varsity status, meaning frizz players cannot get the Iron Man award, given to athletes who participate in varsity sports all through the upper school. And the student body, known to fervently support most teams in an organized, coordinated fashion, is rarely found at Frizz games.

“Especially at Haverford, no one goes to frisbee games,” Sixth Form captain Matthew Franz said. “I want people to get more excited about frisbee.”

Frisbee, which needs little equipment other than a disc and a field, just lacks the glamor of some other, more high-octane sports.

“If I’m being honest, most [frisbee] kids are kids who quit crew and need a sports credit or quit some other sport or they just need a sports credit,” Sixth Former Ebaad Khan said. 

“I think just winging a frisbee is really fun to do, and it’s satisfying to watch it go far…What’s not to like about that?” 

Matthew Franz ’23

Coming off of three losses against Haverford High School, Shipley, and Abington Friends, Fords Frizz is aware that they are far from the athletically dominant image that the school is known for.

“We don’t have that many players, and nobody’s really too passionate about the sport,” Franz said.

The thing is, they don’t care about everything that is stacked against them. They don’t care that they’re not perfect, that the school doesn’t support them, that many of the players are still learning the rules of the game. They just do their thing.

“We always look forward,” Khan said.

To foster this attitude, the team embraces the idea of  “short-term memory.”

“Practice is the time we remember, per se. But come game time, short-term memory. Next play, next play, next play. Don’t worry about what just happened,” Sixth Former Luccio Acchione said.

And while Frizz players may not find support within the school, they find it within the team.

Brady Miles ’24 looks for the open players – Ms. Barbara LaPenta

“My favorite part is the camaraderie, the relentless support everyone gets from their teammates,” Acchione said. “It’s one of the most fun extracurricular activities I’ve done at Haverford. It is a happy place to be, and everyone on the team can attest to that.”

Just the act of throwing a frisbee is what makes the team worthwhile for some. The experience itself is what they seek.

“I think just winging a frisbee is really fun to do, and it’s satisfying to watch it go far,” Franz said. “What’s not to like about that?” 

As the team looks forward to the rest of the season, they eye longstanding rivals like Lower Merion, even if victory seems unlikely.

“I heard stories about those games against Lower Merion. They were intense, they were super energetic, a little feisty, and of course Lower Merion’s one of the best teams in the area. They bring it every year. We got beat up pretty bad by them last year,” Franz said.

The team also looks forward to facing Episcopal Academy’s nascent ultimate team.

“We’re hoping to schedule [a match against EA], and if we get them, that’ll easily be the biggest rival.”

The importance of the team is not the results of the games, though. The team makes its mark on the school community by being an accepting and supportive place. 

“Despite wins or losses, we are Fords Frizz,” Acchione said.

Author: Joey Kauffman '23

Joey Kauffman is an Editor-In-Chief for The Index for the 2022-23 school year. He previously served as a Managing Editor, where he won a Gold Key from the Scholastic Art and Writing Awards for his opinion piece “Start Language Learning in Lower School.” His review of the movie "I'm Thinking of Ending Things" also earned him second place in the Pennsylvania Press Club Annual High School Journalism Contest. In May of 2023, Joey’s features piece, “Controversy swirls around fan section nickname” won second place in the National Federation of Press Women High School Journalism Contest after winning the Pennsylvania competition.