No Break: An inside look at Lambert Ultimate Frisbee


The Lambert Ultimate Frisbee team marches toward the playing field before one of their tournaments (Photo used with permission from Jared Bennett)

What are you doing on a typical Saturday? If you’re like the majority of high school students in the United States, this time is more than likely spent sleeping until the late hours of the morning, watching television, eating vast amounts of food, and pushing off all of the work you need to accomplish until a later date. However, there is a new group of students at Lambert High School who are looking to break this mold.

While most kids are still brushing their teeth or watching Netflix, the members of the Lambert High School Ultimate Frisbee team are lacing up their cleats and driving to tournaments that are often far away from campus and begin in the early hours of the morning. Building a successful club sports program is a difficult task that requires massive amounts of effort and coordination. It also involves the dedication of strong and determined leaders.

Leaders like Jared Bennett.

Jared’s love for the sport of Ultimate Frisbee began over four years ago while he was still a young student walking the halls of Riverwatch Middle School. During PE., Bennett notes that him and a large group of friends “got together and started playing” and right from that moment, he knew he was hooked.

As he got into high school, Jared knew that he wanted to compete for a spot on the Lambert club team. Much to his surprise, Bennett was given the opportunity to play on the varsity team, a chance that is very rare for a first year high school student. The first few years of playing for Lambert saw little success, but this adversity allowed him to form close bonds with the veteran leadership on the team. These relationships allowed Bennett to become become incredibly knowledgeable about a sport that not too many people know a lot about. By the end of his junior season, Jared was already filled with the skills, intelligence, and confidence to help lift the team up to a position where they could compete for a state championship.

By the time senior year begins, many students, including Jared, are swamped with responsibilities including making sure they begin with high academic marks, finding what colleges to apply to, and making sure all of the applications for colleges and scholarships arrive in a timely manner. So what else is a high school senior to do during this than add even more responsibility to their already crowded pallet? For Bennett, this extra commitment came as a welcome surprise when he found out he had been named a captain for his final season of Lambert.

If there was any honeymoon period to revel in the joys of this honor, it was short lived as Bennett notes he “got to work almost immediately trying to work on things to make the team better.” From the very beginning as he was trying to pick the team, Jared says that one of his main goals was to build a team that was not only talented athletically but also a team that he and the various other captains could shape into a “committed, knowledgeable team that could make a run at a state title.”

After experiencing a few crushing losses at the end of the 2016 season to end their state championship hopes, Bennett knew that the Lambert team was on the precipice of becoming great, but they just needed a little more fine tuning. Luckily for the team, turnout for tryouts in the fall featured the largest amount of students that had ever showed up for an ultimate frisbee tryout in the past. What this allowed Bennett and the other team captains to do was select a team that featured a wide range of athletes, drawing from former baseball, soccer, basketball, and softball players, as well as a state recognized wrestler.

In order to turn raw athleticism into success on the field, Bennett and his fellow captains try to take in as much information about the game as possible by watching film of college and professional teams, and trying to implement some of the strategy that they use into Lambert Longhorns squad. Although there have been some bumps in the road (Jared has noted that a few early practices in the fall were particularly tough), Bennett feels as though the returning players and senior leadership have done an incredible job of adapting to everything the captains are throwing at them and helping the younger players become more successful.

Improving on the practice field is not the only goal for the Lambert ultimate frisbee team however. Like any high school competition, the final summit for this team to reach will be winning a state championship. In order to do this, the Longhorns will have potentially have to take down a few established powerhouses of the sport including Grady High School and Paidea High School. However, Bennett feels incredibly confident in the abilities of this team that has been competing since the beginning of the school year. Although he knows to expect a challenge from from schools all over the state of Georgia, Jared notes that “this is the best team that I’ve ever had a chance to play with.” Bennett also believes that he and his fellow seniors have built a solid foundation on which the Lambert ultimate frisbee team can experience a high level of success for years to come.

However, when it is all said and done, do not be surprised if a state championship is brought to 805 Nichols Road sooner rather than later.