Luke Dyer has come home with a silver medal from the WFDF men’s U24 World Ultimate Championships.
Dyer was an alternate on the squad and took the field as a defensive cutter in 11 games for the Canadian team.
“It was incredible to see the level of talent from all around the world being showcased,” Dyer said. “Getting to experience different languages and cultures combining to play in the same sport was very cool.”
Canada was seeded sixth going into the tournament but was undefeated in pool play to finish first in Pool B. The team eked out a 15-14 win over Colombia in the quarter-finals, thanks to a disciplined zone break and some big skies. Canada then beat Japan 15-10 in the semis to earn a spot in the final against Team USA.
USA won the final 15-12.
‘Let’s go, Canada’
“The final was the coolest experience of my ultimate career so far. Three thousand people packed into the stadium to watch an ultimate game is truly incredible,” he said. “Playing against the U.S.A., we were automatically the crowd favourite, and they would randomly cheer, ‘Let’s go, Canada,’ even if they weren’t Canadians.
“At the end of the game, we were able to walk around the field and thank the crowd for the game, which was a bittersweet but fulfilling moment.”
This was Dyer’s first appearance on the world stage. The world championships were held in Germany from July 13-20.
“I’d like to thank all the players in Newfoundland and Labrador and beyond that allowed me to play to a level high enough to be able to make this team. The community I’m a part of is very special, and has the perfect amount of grit and determination to make anything happen,” Dyer said.
‘Won’t be the last’
Dyer is also the youth performance and development co-ordinator for Ultimate NL, and has been working with junior athletes in the club Storm program. The junior open and women’s teams are competing at nationals this week.
“I really enjoyed my experience on the international stage,” he said. “I know by watching the future ultimate players that I won’t be the last one to get to experience that from this province.”