Ultiworld’s All-Europe Line 2019: Women’s, Presented by Tokay

The top seven players in the European women's division!

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Thanks to Klara Lipertova, Focus Ultimate, John Kofi and Anna Matsegora for allowing us to use their photos for this article!

With the 2019 season over, it is time for us to consider the individual players who had the best overall season this year. These are the top seven players in the women’s division this year. The selections are based on input from the Ultiworld Europe staff. The players are in no particular order. EUC and EUCF were the marquee events this year so performance in those events were considered first but performances in other tournaments such as WU24, EBUC, Tom’s Tourney and Windmill were also taken into account. In cases where a player played for different divisions between the EUC and EUCF, the division where they made the most impact was usually where we considered them for placement in these lines. In any disputed cases, the division for the EUC was used. Without further ado, here is our All-Europe Women’s line for 2019!

Sarah Melvin (Ireland Women, Dublin Gravity, EuroStars)

Sarah Melvin at the EUC. Photo by John Kofi.

The first piece to our All Europe Women’s line is the best deep receiver in the game right now and the player of the year, Sarah Melvin. Melvin led her Irish team to a EUC victory and was arguably the strongest cutter on this year’s EuroStars tour. Even as she battled with injuries all season, she still managed to bring her club team to a semifinals finish. Melvin broke out on the European scene in 2018 on the EuroStars tour, but this year she backed that up with tremendous performances for her club and country.

-Ravi Vasudevan

Laura Farolfi (Italy Women, CUSB Shout)

Laura Farolfi at the EUCF. Photo by Quentin Dupre La Tour of Focus Ultimate.

Laura Farolfi might be as much of a talisman for the women’s side of Italian ultimate as Davide Morri is for men’s. She is hardly ever stopped by a defender on the field due to her clever cutting and speed. She can then get the disc to any of her fellow players with her veteran throws. She combines abilities on the field with great leadership skills and what seems like never ending enthusiasm and motivation on the field and sidelines of every game. Besides her fire on the field and her emotions, she works calm under pressure as she showed for Italy during EUC and for CUSB Shout EUCF, when she was one of the main reasons her team came back from a deficit to win important games.

-Christina Obermayer

Alisa Tizik (Russia Women, EuroStars)

Alisa Tizik at the EUC. Photo by Anna Matsegora.

Alisa Tizik could not be stopped by anyone this season. Even in Russia’s semifinals loss to the Irish at EUC, Tizik found herself scoring the lion’s share of the points and her quickness and ability to find holes in a defense is simply unmatched. She also returned to the EuroStars after a year off and was an absolute monster over on the other side of the Atlantic. While Tizik generally shines on offense, she is definitely no slouch on defense. She crossed over for Russia time and time again in their bronze medal run and there is no question that without Tizik, it would have been very tough for Russia to see the same success they saw this year.

-Ravi Vasudevan

Anna Ceschi (Italy Women, CUSB Shout)

Anna Ceschi after the semifinal win at the EUCF 2019. Photo by Klara Lipertova

The EuroStar killer is our next pick for the All Europe line. Ceschi has had success with Italy women, Raleigh Phoenix and CUSB Shout this year. She has been an elite level defender for a while now, but has elevated her offense as well. Ceschi was instrumental in the insane comeback against Germany in the EUC quarterfinals as well as the comeback win against YAKA in the EUCF semifinals. She plays the best in the biggest moments on both sides of the disc and is an easy pick for the all Europe line.

-Ravi Vasudevan

Fiona Mernagh (Ireland Women, Dublin Gravity)

Fiona Mernagh at the EUC Final. Photo by John Kofi.

Fiona Mernagh has probably been the most underrated player in Europe for the last decade. She doesn’t throw as many hucks as Áine Gilheany or catch as many goals as Sarah Melvin but she is the glue that ties the whole gold medal Irish team together. She played as a mid on the offensive line at EUC but was capable of doing anything when called upon. When Ireland needed a break Mernagh would crossover to add some fire power to the defensive line and showcase her whopper pull. At EUCR-W (UK Nationals) Mernagh was head and shoulders above anyone else at the tournament and made mincemeat of Iceni in the final. Dublin Gravity were the only undefeated team at EUCF until Mernagh had an unfortunate collision that left her concussed and unable to play the rest of the tournament. This season wasn’t just the luck o’ the Irish, they will be back with a bang next year and Mernagh will be leading the charge.

-Liam Grant

Olga Podolskaya (Russia Women, Elvis Presley)

Olga Podolskaya at the EUC. Photo by Anna Matsegora.

Olga Podolskaya, the 2018 player of the year, had a quiet year by her standards, but she still managed to pick up a decent bit of hardware in Portugal (where she was the stats leader), Hungary, and Russia. In Russia, she managed to win the indoor championship, the mixed beach championship, and she finally led Elvis Presley to gold on grass over powerhouses like Cosmic Girls and Brilliance. She was dominant in every game she played in. Very few players are able to make ultimate look as easy as she does. Every catch, every throw, every block, and every layout looks effortless when she does it. She makes so few mistakes that some people compare her to a machine. It is Olga’s field, and we’re just playing on it.

-Ned Garvey

Laura Niederhauser (Switzerland Women, FABulous, CUSB Shout)

Laura Niederhauser at the EUCF. Photo by Klara Lipertova

The Swiss women’s team shocked many with their silver medal run at the EUC. Niederhauser was the best player on the team and it took her playing an all-star role offensively to get the Swiss to the finals at the EUC. In the final she scored three out of Switzerland’s eight goals. Her club team, FABulous, didn’t make it out of the EUCR but she was given an invite to CUSB Shout for the EUCF and was a key part of their title run. On this team she showed her tenacity on defense. She got block after block after block throughout the weekend and worked really well with Ceschi on the turns to help convert those blocks into breaks. Niederhauser stepped up for her country and really stood out on an EUCF championship team.

-Ravi Vasudevan

 

 

 

 

  1. Ravi Vasudevan
    Avatar

    Ravi Vasudevan is Ultiworld's European editor and a host of the podcast EuroZone. Emails about EuroZone should go to eurozoneultimate@gmail.com. Ravi played for WPI in the US until 2008. He has been living and playing in Europe since 2009 and has competed at WUGC 2012, WUCC 2014 and WUCC 2018.

  2. Ned Garvey
    Ned Garvey

    Ned Garvey is a member of the European staff. After graduating from the University of Vermont in 2015, he’s been living and playing in Russia and Latvia. He currently lives in Riga, Latvia, and plays for Salaspils Wild Things.

  3. Liam Grant
    Liam Grant

    Liam hails from the rugged west coast of Ireland. He found himself catapulted into the Irish ultimate community during his time in the National University of Ireland, Galway. He may lack in talent on the field, but he makes up for it with shenanigans and tomfoolery off the pitch. Liam is truly in his element on the beach; he eats sand for breakfast. Liam captained the Irish Mixed National team in 2016 and also competed for the Irish National Mixed Beach team in 2013, taking home a silver medal and a bundle of precious memories. He can be found at most major European tournaments flying the Irish flag at the bar.

  4. Christina Obermayer
    Christina Obermayer

    Christina Obermayer is a young player from Vienna, Austria, who is really interested in everything ultimate has to offer. She coaches her mixed team, Wiener Mischung, and plays for the women’s team Box Vienna Ultimate. She’s represented Austria on the junior level before and is eager to get some more international experience, both on the field and reporting from the sidelines.

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