The softer side of defense.
April 20, 2020 by Sion "Brummie" Scone in Analysis with 0 comments
Although zones and other non-matchup defenses have been around ultimate for decades, there has been a recent proliferation of new types of zones, junks, and switching schemes.
Though trying to comprehensively cover every type of zone and its individual nuances is beyond the scope of this series, we will explore their fundamentals and general principles, along with those of poaches and switches.
To conclude, we will take a look at some offensive counters to these defenses. Let’s roll!
Zones provide a way to restrict field space, reduce the chances of athletic mismatches, and allow you to keep your best deep defenders in places on the field where they can help. Here are some general principles of zones:
- Dedicated deep cover; your best deep defender (some combination of speed, height, and hops) should be charged with defending the deep space. This helps to even up athletic mismatches as you only need one strong athlete to compete on any deep shots. Against a team that loves to huck, this can result in them playing entirely through “Plan B,” which should be viewed as an immediate win.
- Overload the defense near the disc; putting lots of defenders near the disc severely restricts throwing lanes and helps to reduce the number (and size) of any big yardage-gaining throws
- Set “wing” defenders who are responsible for funneling the disc back into the middle of the field (where it will be surrounded by defenders)
- Seek to reduce effort required from the D-line and/or reduce athletic advantage of opponent
- Force opponent to play at a pace of your choosing
Defensive Strategy & Tactics: Zones, Poaches, and Switches [Pt. 3] is only available to Ultiworld Subscribers
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