Sports

Spiders wrap up regular season of ultimate Frisbee league Friday night at Foothill


Courtesy of Bill Jent
San Jose Spider Nicholas Hirning, center, leaps to grab the Frisbee in a recent game. The team plays its home games at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills.

The San Jose Spiders will take the field at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills this weekend for their last regular-season match.

The Spiders (5-8) are set to take on the Seattle Cascades (4-8) 7:30 p.m. Friday in a matchup of teams from the American Ultimate Disc League’s West division.

Both teams are in the middle of the pack in their division of the AUDL, a semiprofessional ultimate Frisbee league comprising 23 teams from throughout the U.S. and Canada.

“The sport is just about ready to take off – I firmly believe that about ultimate Frisbee,” said Bill Jent, the Spiders’ director of business development.

Crowd numbers have been on the rise this season; the team averages approximately 600 spectators per match, according to Jent, who added that the Spiders averaged just under 500 fans last year.

Jent said the Spiders’ home field has been a major factor in the team’s rise in popularity. Foothill College offers a calmer atmosphere and closer venue for families than many professional or semiprofessional sporting events in the area, he noted, and because of the track that surrounds the field, there is plenty of room on the sidelines for kids to hang out, toss Frisbees and just have fun.

“(Foothill) has always been very welcoming, and they’ve worked with us to provide a great fan experience,” Spiders owner and general manager Andrew Zill said.

The Spiders have called Foothill home since their inaugural season of 2014.

The team won championships its first two seasons – and remains the lone team in the league with multiple titles – but was eliminated in the first round last year.

“We started at such a high level, winning those two championships our first two years, the fans have pretty high expectations,” Zill said. “They expect us to win.”

Friday’s matchup could potentially have playoff consequences. Should the Spiders win, they would remain in the running for the West’s second and final playoff spot – with some help. The Spiders would also need the Los Angeles Aviators (11-2) to handle the host San Diego Growlers (6-7) and for the Cascades to take down the host San Francisco FlameThrowers (5-8) Saturday.

For advance tickets and more information, visit sjspiders.com.

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