Sports athlete of the week

ISAAC T. ENTZ ’11 Isaac T. Entz is up in the air

Ultimate Frisbee, Course 16, Glass Lab — taking it all in stride

Isaac T. Entz ’11, a senior in Course 16, is currently taking the intense 2.007 (Design and Manufacturing I), yet still finds time to enjoy playing on the MIT Ultimate Frisbee team. Recollecting how he got so interested in Ultimate, Isaac explained, “I first learned to play after home football games at my high school. Half of the marching band would stick around after games to play, and that’s where I got my start. I didn’t play competitively in high school but did play pickup Ultimate with a quality group at the local college in town.”

Nowadays, Isaac gets a thrill from his Ultimate Frisbee team primarily through a twofold interplay. “I like the combination of the competitive nature and the fun spirit of the team. We practice and play to be competitive, but we don’t forget to have fun along the way.”

What is the MIT Ultimate Frisbee life like? There are four or five tournaments per semester, usually on the weekends. The team tries to practice for three hours every Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday, and run a track workout on another day.

“I leave from the Student Center shortly after six in the morning and get back after four or five games a day at 7 p.m. It’s nice to have lots of teams close by in the New England area so we don’t have to travel extremely far for tournaments — usually only an hour or two away,” said Isaac.

In fact, Isaac competed in a tournament close to home last weekend — Briggs Field. “We just had the Metro Boston Conference Championship this past weekend here at MIT, which is the tournament for the section to determine who goes to Regionals, and eventually to Nationals,” said the senior. “We didn’t officially qualify for Regionals this year, but there is a chance we can still get a bid to go based on how other sections finish. We’ll probably find out in the next week.”

When asked how he manages to balance the Ultimate life with school, Isaac responded with a chuckle: “I don’t, I just play Ultimate! We practice two to three times a week and it mostly just works out. I’ve made commitments to both, so I go to practices and tournaments and use other time during the week to get the classwork done.”

But this is not an easy task. “With more lab classes this semester, I’m usually working during the day on the 2.007 robot or on getting tests run in the wind tunnel for Course 16 … then practice or glassblowing in the evenings … I get home late, but I try to keep sleep time close to eight hours. The weekends usually end up being free from work, but often fill up with Ultimate or glassblowing or senior class activities.”

Besides his fondness for tossing the Frisbee, Isaac has a passion for sharpening his skills at the MIT Glass Lab. “I’m in an intermediate class and I monitor for a beginner practice session. I also help out with the pumpkin crews (to make pumpkins for the Great Glass Pumpkin Patch in the fall) on the weekends when I’m not at an Ultimate tournament.”

Currently pursuing a degree in Course 16, Isaac cherishes the present but thoughtfully considers his future endeavors. “I enjoy lab classes infinitely more than lecture and am looking for work as a mechanical design engineer next year. The career aspirations are still ranging from head engineer at Lamborghini to full-time mechanical engineer with a third-world NGO, but I’ve got time to figure that out.”

For now, Isaac takes delight in his free time. “I often enjoy walking around Newbury, the Boston Common, and Faneuil Hall/North End areas, or going to random hole-in-the-wall bars when I can convince my friends to punt work with me. I also ride my bike a lot, dream about my motorcycle back home (especially when the weather is nice), and hang out in the MIT Glass Lab a lot, all while trying to avoid the ‘wing-manning’ of Bobby Weber ’13.”