Rivals meet at U.P. Guts Frisbee tourney

CALUMET — One Guts Frisbee team came into Calumet looking for their fourth straight championship. ABC 10’s Keweenaw Bureau Reporter has more on what their biggest rival had to say about that.

Perfect weather, a great turnout and some epic Guts Frisbee playing combined to make this year’s Coca–Cola International Frisbee Tournament a great success.

The event, held annually at Agassiz Field in Calumet, had 13 teams competing for the Julius T. Nachazel Cup. A special award was given to tournament Field Marshall Dennis Walikainen for his efforts to grow the IFT, the Hall of Fame and the sport of Guts Frisbee.

Walikainen said, “The Bradshaw Award—it’s really nice. It’s named in honor of Dave Bradshaw from the old Highland Avenue Aces, who did the what we call the Reunion IFT back in 2004—really invigorated the sport, brought a bunch of old guys out who brought their sons out to play the game and it really gave it a kick start and it’s to the point now that we’ve got 13 five–man teams here today and the level of Guts is back up where it used to be.”

In a rematch for the championship, the Expert Villagers (formally known as the Appleton Assassins) knocked off the three–time defending champs, the Boomtown Saints, for their first IFT win since 2012. So what put them over the top this year?

Team member Jonathon Luedke said, “Just practicing, especially with half the people that we played with going to World’s in London and playing phenomenal there—it just made everything better.”

Other awards included the Healy Family MVP Award which went to Tanner Beckman of Expert Villagers and the Jon Davis Spirit of Guts Award for Bill “Igloo” Watt.

Next year’s 60th annual IFT will cap off a full Frisbee Week of activities, including a one–day, informal Frisbee tournament to be held in Eagle Harbor—where tournament play of Guts Frisbee began.