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EndZone (Strategy)

In order to win, your team must catch the disc in the endzone more times than the opposing team, sounds simple doesn't it. On the contrary, endzone turnovers are very common as are complete break downs in defence... teams often behave uncharacteristically when the pressure of the endzone faces them.

KeyPoints:

  1. Don't overlook the importance of practicing endzone plays

Endzone Offence can be one of the hardest parts of the game to master. Although the disc can be less than 3 yards from the endzone, the added defensive pressure, reduction in open space, and mental aspect can make scoring in the endzone very difficult. Some teams have special endzone plays that they use, usually after timeout calls, but either way, endzone offence "simply" requires patience and smart choices. The emphasis on "simply" means that your team should spend a signficant amount of time practicing endzone drills.

KeyPoints:

  1. Patience
  2. Most teams play or switch to vertical offence for the endzone.

One strategy that helps with scoring in the endzone is to have a default play to use, or to yell out the name of one of many.

KeyPoints:

  1. Have a number of set endzone plays with corresponding calls that you can use.

The most straightforward strategy for the endzone is to use one of your many offensive plays. Although there is no real rule of thumb, most teams use a vertical offence in the endzone. The main reason horizontal is used less often in the endzone is because horizontal requires a lot of vertical space, and in the endzone you'll only have 25 yards to use.

Although the main strategy to adopt for the endzone should be patience with the dump and swing, and smart choices, there are some common plays that are well suited for the endzone. The first one is the berkeley cut up the line as it's really a win win situation. If the defense is playing the dump tight, than cutting into the endzone should be an easy score if the handler puts up a floaty pass. On the other hand, if the defense is playing off the handler covering the up the line, than they are essentially giving the handler a free dump pass. The dump pass is only effective if you are able to get the swing off, thus the third handler (or front person in the stack) must time their cut to get the disc on the other side.

Endzone Offence (Flash Illustration)

KeyPoints:

  1. Utilize the handler dump and always TURN to the dump on the fifth stall count.
  2. The Dump-Swing strategy is easy to predict, so make sure you keep the defenders busy.

In theory, endzone defence is simple, hold the force, stand on the inside side of players in the mark (front them a bit), call "up" when the disc is thrown. In practice, endzone defence requires trust in your teammates to do their part, so this means in most cases you shouldn't be poaching. If the disc goes up and is floating, your entire team should be making a bid on the disc. Instead of making a risky layout D that could give the handler a few seconds to throw without a mark on them, play smart defence and aim to push them back.

Endzone defence also requires the sideline (eight person) to get involved, they should be yelling "up" and letting their teammates on the field know how to mark and position themselves.

KeyPoints:

  1. Hold the force.
  2. Front the defence.
  3. Make bids on floaty passes.
  4. Sideline Communication.

Most teams stick to 1-on-1 defence in the endzone, but some teams play zone to surprise the offence. Usually, this is hard to do if your team has been playing 1-on-1 till the endzone. On the other hand, teams often take timeouts when they are on the endzone line and setup plays that are expecting 1-on-1 defence. In these cases, playing zone defence can be very effective in shutting down any plays they may have developed. Still, because zone defence leaves a lot of open space, it's usually not recommended.

The only real strategy to adopt, as mentioned before, is one of patience and trust. If you are playing your mark hard, and everyone is doing the same, you'll eventually frustrate the offence and they may put up some floaty hammer. If the offence scores after a hundred passes, the defence has done their job and the sideline must recognize this.

KeyPoints:

  1. Zone defence is useful in rare occasions.
  2. Patience and trust your teammates.
  3. Mentally, it's a victory for both teams if the offence took a hundred passes to score.

Endzone Defence (Flash Illustration)