Ben Chiu arrived at Cal already a veteran in the Bay Area Ultimate scene, having captained his high school team, Miramonte Rogue Bucks, for two years and playing a key role in the Bay Area Happy Cows YCC finals run in 2014. After spending his first two years guarding the opposing team’s biggest threat and directing the offense on a turn, Ben was elected captain for his third year, along with a move to the offensive line and continued to grow as a leader in these roles his senior year.
Ben commands respect on the field with his passionate play and inspires his teammates through insightful and enthusiastic speeches in huddles and on the sidelines. He leaves it all out on the field for his team, playing with an unmatched level of heart. Ben controls the offense with beautiful hucks for single-throw scores while shredding zones with cup-breaking throw-and-goes and pinpoint over-the-top hammers. However, the best feature of his versatile play is his intensity, making possession-saving layouts, timely layout Ds or towering skies when he is free to roam the deep space.
In Ben’s senior year, he has led the team to its most successful season in years. At Stanford Open, Cal was only able to roll out 13 active players, many of them rookies. With only one other veteran handler playing, Ben played nearly every point and carried the team to its first tournament title and Stanford Invite bid since 2014. Ben’s performance at Stanford Open set the tone for a year that included at third-place finish at President’s Day Invite and wins against strong opponents at prestigious tournaments Stanford Invite and Northwest Challenge.
Ben is a fantastic leader for both the team and local Ultimate community. Along with having coached his high school team in 2015, he leads workouts and pods for UGMO and personally mentors many young players. He is a role model thanks to his strong work ethic off the field and great spirit on it. He works tirelessly behind the scenes with both school administration and team leadership to develop Cal’s program and has laid the groundwork for the team’s success for many years to come. There is no one more deserving to be Cal UGMO’s first Callahan nominee.