The Tuesday Toss: 2018 Preseason


February 20, 2018
By Evan Lepler

Do you stay up later than you should watching old ultimate games? Join the club.

Many evenings in the AUDL offseason—and during the season too, for that matter—the powerful iPhone seamlessly streams one fun ultimate memory after another. As soon as one video ends, the all-knowing YouTube algorithm shamelessly entices you to view another, pumping out good suggestions like a trustworthy coach. We live in a magical era of technology and distribution, and if you’re not careful, you can easily hit 3:00 AM before you realize that the morning alarm is approaching all too soon.

Ever since the 2017 AUDL season concluded with a thrilling 30-29 win for the San Francisco FlameThrowers over the Toronto Rush in Montreal, my life has remained hectic, filled with flights, football, basketball, and, of course, late-night ultimate, a busy schedule that has left little time for tossing on Tuesdays. Frankly, it’s been far too long since I’ve launched a 50-yard flick. But with the 2018 campaign almost here—opening day is just five and a half weeks away—the renewed disc desire is palpable.

Full game footage from the 2017 AUDL championship game.

There’s certainly no shortage of storylines, and they will surely be discussed and analyzed in great detail as we make the march back to Madison for the league’s seventh Championship Weekend on August 11th and 12th (Mark your calendar now!). But to kick off the first Tuesday Toss of the new year, I wanted to briefly harken back to the AUDL’s beginning, a time which offers barely any resemblance to our current ultimate era.

It was even before the venerable Charlie Eisenhood created Ultiworld that the American Ultimate Disc League was conceived in 2011 and born in 2012. Like any startup, the league possessed great potential but needed a ton of help. 

Steve Gordon, who would become the league’s commissioner, and Rob Lloyd, whose son Mark Lloyd would emerge as one of the sport’s top stars, were two individuals who brought the means and vision to dramatically bolster the fledgling entity. A small cadre of other promising owners around the continent bought in with a collective commitment to create a lasting product that would both expose the world to the sport and provide local, fan-friendly ultimate viewing opportunities. Skepticism certainly remained, but the AUDL continued to grow.

In 2013, the AUDL was an infant, just beginning to crawl. With a stacked roster and united purpose, the Toronto Rush dominated with minimal resistance. One year later, the league became bicoastal, a significant step in the expansion process. The 2014 additions of Bay Area strength, the San Francisco FlameThrowers and the eventual 2014 and 2015 champions San Jose Spiders, added depth and cross-country sizzle.  

The league’s most noteworthy competitive development arguably came in the 2015 season, when the South Division arrived. Suddenly, the league consisted of four regional divisions that would battle amongst themselves for the right to journey to Championship Weekend.  The epic final four experience at San Jose’s sparkling Avaya Stadium showcased the best of what the AUDL had become: fans were treated to first-class amenities; an innovative charity challenge raised three-quarters of a million dollars and allowed me to catch a disc from Brodie Smith while soaring on a zip-line; and on the field, the Spiders reigned supreme again, narrowly edging the Madison Radicals in a dramatic title match.

By 2016, the modern AUDL landscape was seemingly set, with four stable divisions creating a framework for the future. But before the season even started, the Dallas Roughnecks shook everything up with the boldest parade of free agent signings in the short history of the league. Led by their resourceful and confident owner, Jim Gerenscer, the Roughnecks built an all-star roster for the team’s inaugural campaign. Skilled and deep, Dallas rampaged through the South Division and completed the league’s second-ever perfect season with a Championship Weekend triumph in Madison.

Last year—season six of the American Ultimate Disc League—was the first without a single expansion team. Every franchise had least one season under its belt, and the competitive intensity rose accordingly. Regular season upsets occurred considerably more frequently than ever before, and several teams saw years of development start paying off.  The league also introduced a special series of interdivisional play, with four showcase games featuring unique new matchups.

By the time Championship Weekend rolled around, none of the four semifinalists were a crazy surprise. But the action in Montreal last August—specifically Toronto’s takedown of Dallas—reminded fans that anything was possible in every game. The Rush gave the FlameThrowers a gripping fight in the final, but San Francisco prevailed 30-29 in an exhilarating down-to-the-wire conclusion, bringing the championship back to the Bay Area for the third time in four years.

All of this has led to 2018. The AUDL has a significant new television deal and a sparkling new website. A bunch of teams are giddy about the rosters they have already announced, while others are eagerly anticipating their final tryouts in the coming weeks. The free agent hot stove continues to simmer, with some of the league’s biggest stars of the past still unsigned and pondering the right opportunity.

The modern AUDL is far from a finished product, but the league begins its seventh season with a proud and sturdy foundation to build upon. Like a seven-year-old child, it still requires plenty of care and nourishment, but the personality and character has definitely begun to take shape. Further evolution is natural and inevitable, but it’s also important to enjoy the present.

The 2018 season is almost here.

The Most Interesting Free Agent Left on the Market

A slew of top players have already committed back to their teams. Last year’s MVP, Jonathan Nethercutt, is back for another run with the Raleigh Flyers after going 13-1 in 2017. Mark Burton, a First-Team All-AUDL staple, is poised to again be a critical lynchpin for the Seattle Cascades as they look to return to the playoffs after not qualifying last season. Jeff Babbitt of the New York Empire, fresh off the league’s first ever 40-goal, 40-block season, is hoping to help the Empire return to the playoffs this summer. But while a lengthy list of veterans are locked in, the individual who happens to be the biggest winner in the history of the league is quietly lingering as a potential franchise-changing free agent.

At 35-years-old, Beau Kittredge may no longer have the nuclear athleticism and speed that has defined his whirlwind career, but it’s not like the consecutive four-time AUDL champ is anywhere close to being washed up either. The native Alaskan who broke onto everyone’s ultimate radar at the University of Colorado in the mid-2000s won titles with the Spiders in 2014 and 2015, prevailed again during the Roughnecks perfect 2016, and then hoisted the trophy last summer with the FlameThrowers. So what jersey will he wear in pursuit of a fifth consecutive crown?

“I have no idea,” Kittredge recently told me over the phone. “At this point, I honestly have no idea where I’m gonna play.”

A bunch of teams have reached out to the quirky superstar, he confirmed, but at this point it’s impossible to predict where he might end up. In January, Kittredge wrote that his services could go to the franchise that does the most for the gender equity in ultimate movement, but that is far from the only factor. Like most elite players in this sport, Kittredge has career ambitions away from the field. At the moment, his entrepreneurial focus is the creation of a video game that he has been working on over the past several years. After spending considerable time and resources spearheading the game’s development from San Francisco, he has now moved to North Andover, Massachusetts to try and complete the endeavor and fulfill this non-playing passion that has driven him since he was a Spider.

His creation, once known as “Jack Nimble and the Boredom Bugs,” has evolved a great deal. It has a new name that Beau was not ready to divulge, though “the Boredom Bugs are still there and Jack is kinda still there,” he said. “It’s gone through a few iterations. It’s more of a spatial reasoning puzzle game than a tower defense game. It was a tower defense game; it no longer is.”

Speaking for myself, a guy whose gaming career peaked with Tecmo Bowl, Mario, and NBA Live ‘98, my main intrigue surrounding Beau’s game is simply a curiosity in seeing what exactly this enigmatic all-time athlete has been so devoted to alongside his disc dominance. For the sake of this column, his 2018 playing destination is certainly far more compelling.

At the moment, though, that information remains a mystery even to him. He could end up in San Francisco for the second year in row. It’s conceivable he may return to San Jose or Dallas, both of whom would eagerly welcome him back. New York would sure make a fascinating storyline, considering his current proximity to the Big Apple and his determination to focus on his video game company outside of Boston. But this is no more than thoughtful speculation. Over the phone, Kittredge said around seven teams had reached out, but he still had no clue what his best option would be or what he really wanted to do.

It’s entirely possible that some AUDL owner might read this Tuesday Toss and realize that the league’s only four-time champ is up for grabs like never before. And while he may end up with a familiar franchise, a surprise city could also emerge.

Like Adrian Wojnarowski or Adam Schefter, I hope I can be on top of this news when it happens. 

Wherever Beau goes, it will be very interesting to follow.

New York’s New Voice

A year ago, no AUDL team had more preseason buzz than the New York Empire. With recent college standouts like Jeff Babbitt, Conor Kline, and Ben Jagt joining the established core that had been one point shy of knocking off bitter rivals the DC Breeze approximately 45 times in 2016, the Empire were a popular pick to finally surpass DC and Toronto and emerge from the East.

Of course, the prognostications could not have been more wrong, as the team stumbled early and often, forcing a midseason coaching change that failed to really fix the team’s problems. After making the postseason in each of the franchise’s first four seasons, the 2017 Empire finished 6-8, three games behind the Montreal Royal for the East’s last playoff spot.

On January 5, however, the New York Empire introduced Eileen Murray, who led the Philadelphia Phoenix in the same role last year, as the team’s third Head Coach in franchise history. Murray, who also steered the USA Mixed team to a gold medal at last summer’s World Beach Ultimate Championships in France, becomes the first coach in AUDL history to coach two different teams in the same division in back-to-back seasons. But before you get excited for a bunch of juicy gossip, you should know this development is nothing like Bill Parcells leaving the Patriots for the Jets or Bill Belichick leaving the Jets for the Patriots.

Here’s the skinny: Murray lives in Bloomfield, NJ, about 19 miles from Manhattan and a good 90 miles from where the Phoenix play. A year ago, she wanted to be a head coach in professional ultimate, and Philly was the closest option. She enjoyed her experience at the helm of the Phoenix, helping the franchise rise from a winless 2016 to a 4-10 record last year, including victories over a pair of playoff teams. But the time away from her husband and children weighed on her, and after the season she stepped aside.

At one point during the winter, after already deciding the travel would be too much to return to Philly, she learned through the grapevine that the Empire were still looking for a new coach for 2018. Her familiarity with the franchise and her passion for coaching ultimate compelled her—with her husband’s blessing—to reach out to the New York ownership. A couple conversations later, she was officially back as an AUDL Head Coach.

A result of her many years in ultimate, Murray already has relationships with a few core returners on the Empire roster, and she’s also looking to put her own imprint on this team. About a dozen players were already signed before she took the job, but now she will have a significant voice in determining what other players the team signs to fill out the roster. She also has spent and will continue to spend considerable time in trying to learn exactly what happened with the team last year, and how they can avoid a similar fate this summer.

“I have had a lot of conversations with them about [2017],” Murray said. “I need to know what I’m walking into because they’ve already signed a bunch of people who were around last year. A lot of it had to do with turmoil in the front office; they lost their coaches midway through the season, and I don’t think they ever really recovered.”

Murray is hopeful that her strengths and experience will allow her to reach a group that is undeniably talented. It’s worth noting that CJ Ouellette, who has played on the Empire since the team’s inception, transitioned to a coaching role last year, and took over as head coach when Tom Gibbons resigned, has been re-upped and is expected to have a role on the 2018 team too.

“I’m pretty good at corralling people and having a unified voice,” said Murray. "I’m much older than the players now. CJ’s their friend. I’m not their friend; I’m their coach. So it’s much easier for me to kinda create that dynamic where ‘yes, you are listening to me and this is what we’re doing.’”

Transforming the Empire from a 6-8 disappointment to a true title contender is no easy task, but Murray will enter the season with bold expectations.

“Because we have so many of the same people coming back, and adding a couple new people who I think are going to be game-changers, I think we’re going to be in a really good position. I’m looking at the championship. I mean, we’re definitely gonna be in the playoffs in my mind, but I’m looking for the championship because I do think these people now have been together for several years. So even though they underperformed last year, they still know each other’s tendencies and are confident in each other, so we can just light that fire back and give them some structure, I think New York is gonna be on top this year.”

After being repeatedly reminded by Torontonians about my Empire predictions from last season, I cannot claim to be anywhere nearly as bullish on New York’s 2018 chances. As the Rush reinforced last summer, they are the number one team in the East until proven otherwise. But perhaps, just maybe, my Empire proclamations came exactly one year too early.

Coach Murray, New York’s new leader, certainly thinks so. And if the Empire can truly complement their existing talent with a few additional game-changers and have everyone paddling in the same direction for 14 games—far easier said than done—then the East suddenly becomes an even more vicious gauntlet, possibly the deepest division in the AUDL.  

Texas Transitions

Might this be the year that Austin takes the Texas torch from big brother Dallas? Not if Wes Nemec has anything to say about it.

Wait, who? Who’s Wes Nemec?

That’s a perfectly fair question about the new Roughnecks Head Coach, who was announced on Dallas’s social media three days after the Empire shared their hiring of Murray. Unlike Murray, who’s assuming responsibilities for a franchise that went 6-8 last year, Nemec is taking over for Patrick Eberle, who went 30-4 in two seasons as coach of the Roughnecks, including a title in 2016 and another trip to Championship Weekend last year.

“Filling the shoes of Pat Eberle is not gonna be an easy task,” said Nemec, stating the obvious.

Of course, Eberle was far from a household name two years ago when Dallas named him its first coach in franchise history, and the Texas A&M alum with a history of knee and back injuries managed alright, harnessing an abundance of talent to create a dominant team. But with a young family and another busy full-time job, Eberle decided not to return for a third year.

Consequently, enter Nemec, a 2011 Baylor alum who coached the university’s club team, Stonewall Ultimate, from 2012 to 2016. A couple months back, he was having a friendly conversation with one of the Roughnecks’ owners, and when the topic of coaching came up, he expressed interest in taking on the position himself. After deliberating, Dallas decided that Nemec would be the right man for the job, and he’s fully committed to take on the challenge.

“I haven’t even coached at the club level, so jumping into the pro coaching circuit is gonna be a little bit of a wake-up call for me,” explained Nemec. “It’s gonna be a little bit of a learning year for me just as a leader of a group with strong personalities and how all this works and what suggestions I need to make to make them be successful. I’m kinda viewing it as a much more collaborative experience, whereas college was more of a dictator experience. I think going into it with that mentality will be pretty helpful for me. I think the [returning Roughnecks] are just as smart as I am, if not smarter. [I plan to be] constantly soliciting feedback, throwing ideas at them, bouncing stuff off them. My job will be to just hold them to what we agreed to, basically.”

Roster-wise, the Roughnecks may lack some of the top-end firepower of the past couple years. However, Dallas still has some sensational talent that will be feared by every opponent the Roughnecks face. Veterans Matt Jackson, Dalton Smith, and Dan Emmons are the team’s tri-captains in 2018, and standouts like Jay Froude, Abe Coffin, Kai Marshall, and the Larberg brothers (Chris and Dillon) are also expected back. Jim Gerenscer’s track record suggests that the Roughnecks might have another star or two up their sleeve as well. It stands to reason that Jimmy Mickle, who’s currently living abroad playing ultimate in Australia, could seamlessly fit back into the Dallas fold as soon as he returns to the US, though nothing is certain on that front.

The Roughnecks will be returning plenty of playmakers in 2018, including defensive standout Jay Froude.

Meanwhile, the Austin Sol are a step ahead, having already announced their 2018 roster, and on paper it looks like the franchise’s strongest squad yet. Not only did Austin pick up Matt Bennett (brother and now-teammate of Mitchell Bennett) and Jason Holleran from Dallas, but the Sol have also signed a collection of Texas ultimate veterans who did not play in the league last year, a list that includes Mike “Tank” Natenberg, who served as the team’s first Head Coach in 2016. With a young daughter and other life responsibilities, Natenberg did not return in 2017, but new Sol Coach Ryan Bigley broached the idea of him coming back to play this season along with some of his old ultimate buddies.

“[Ryan] reached out to Jerrod [Wolfe], Kiran [Thomas], Max [Cook], and myself to play this year and add a little vet savvy to steady the young athletes,” Natenberg explained. “I won’t be coaching, which will be nice to just focus my time on training. I decided to come back because I think it’s going to be a ton of fun and will bring me a lot of joy. My body feels good. Two years of hanging with [my daughter] has made these legs feel pretty good again.”

Max Cook, one of the ultimate veterans joining the Sol in 2018, already has a champion's pedigree.

Additionally, there’s another cool wrinkle that has compelled many of these old friends to reconvene and represent Austin at the highest level of sport, a dynamic that has changed everything from a decade ago. As anyone with kids knows, it can be much harder to keep up with your buddies on a regular basis after you have become a parent.

“Kiran, Jerrod, Max, Jeff [Loskorn], and myself are all dads now, so what better excuse to get together then to train and play some friz,” declared Natenberg.

Other veterans like Ethan Pollack, Michael Matthis, Mitchell Bennett, Ryan Purcell, and Andrew Walch are returning to the Sol too, along with younger talents like Chase Cunningham and Brett Gramann. It’s hard to make any bold declarations about how good Austin will be without seeing exactly what the rest of the South Division will look like, but after going 7-7 in ’16—7-3 vs. everyone except Dallas—and slipping to 4-10 last year, the ’18 Sol will offer a fun mix of experience and hunger.

Without question, Austin deeply wants to defeat Dallas. This season, they will certainly have their best chance yet.


Wildfire Rising?

Quietly, the Chicago Wildfire have put together one of the best offseasons in the entire league, signing a handful of game-changing talents to easily elevate the franchise back into the postseason conversation. The Windy City averaged around 10 wins a season through its first three years in the league, but stumbled to 4-10 and 3-11 the past two years. Now, one could make the case that Chicago has surpassed Minnesota as the answer to the question: who in the Midwest can finally knock off Madison?

The Wildfire’s headlining acquisition is Kurt Gibson, the two-time AUDL champ who will be suiting up for his fourth franchise in the last five years. Gibson, who has resided in Chicago for a couple years now, won titles with the Spiders in 2014 and Roughnecks in 2016. In order to keep his even-year streak alive, the former college champ at the University of Florida will look to assimilate his disc-dominant style into a young team that could use some additional stability and experience. His presence should take a bunch of pressure off returning standout Pawel Janas, whose ubiquitous role a season ago earned him an All-AUDL nod for his all-around brilliance despite leading the league in turnovers. He and favorite target Michael Pardo made up the most dangerous offensive duo in the league in 2017.

Pawel Janas had one of the best throwing seasons in AUDL history in 2017, throwing the second most assists (85) during a single season.

“[Recruiting] Kurt has been a years-long process, with all the credit going towards Steve [Gordon], Pawel, and [Wildfire Managing Partner] CJ [O’Brien],” explained Adrian King, who will be returning for his second year as Chicago’s Head Coach in 2018. “Steve was working on him a year ago for the 2017 season, but the offer from Dallas was too sweet to pass up. This year, CJ took a low-pressure, long-term approach and highlighted the benefits of staying in town to pay for the Wildfire.

“I can’t speak for Kurt, but I’m guessing he’s at that point in his career where being a traveling mercenary has lost some luster. We can offer him the chance to build camaraderie among a group of teammates throughout the length of the season, rather than flying in for games. Regardless of his reasons, I’m thrilled. His skills will be an asset, but his poise and intangible abilities to ‘just win’ are going to give the Wildfire some much-needed confidence.”

It will be fascinating to see how King and the Wildfire utilize Gibson, whether it’s alongside Janas on offense or perhaps giving him the car-keys to quarterback the D-line. Regardless, the pair of dynamic handlers have some other noteworthy acquisitions that will bolster the squad, including a couple guys very used to winning.

Chicago has also added a speedy cutter in Ross Barker, who finished third on Madison with 25 goals last year, and another dynamic defender in Nate Goff, who led the Raleigh Flyers with 18 blocks and did not throw a single incompletion in 2017. The Radicals and Flyers combined to go 25-3 in the regular season last year, setting up Barker and Goff to further the Wildfire’s expectation of winning, no matter the opponent.  

Consequently, the Wildfire should be considered a real threat in the Midwest, and they are eager to take the field and show what they can be.

“The planning process for this year basically started in August,” said King, “so leadership is chomping at the bit.”

San Diego Bracing for April

As the only West Division squad that has never made the playoffs, the San Diego Growlers are on a mission in 2018, and third-year Head Coach Kevin Stuart is focused on starting fast. In all three of the team’s seasons, the Growlers welcomed a sizable number of new players into key roles, guys who were either out-of-town additions or had not accumulated significant experience playing in the team’s system. Each year, the team improved dramatically as the season went along, but disappointing Aprils were a barrier from advancing.

Here’s a look at San Diego’s record-by-month in three AUDL seasons (winning percentage):

April: 1-12 (.077)
May: 5-6 (.455)
June: 5-5 (.500)
July: 5-3 (.625)

While it’s only three years, the trend is quite noticeable. On one hand, it speaks to the team’s ability to build and get better as the year progresses. On the other hand, Aprils have obviously been rough.

“Yes, I am painfully aware we have been terrible in April and May,” said Stuart. “We usually figure things out by the middle/end of May. I think it’s just the learning curve of guys playing together and gaining a comfort level. It takes a few months to build that initial chemistry.”

This season, San Diego is expecting to have most of its 2017 contributors back in place, so the Growlers are counting on that continuity paying dividends.

“This will be the first year we won’t have to start over, so hopefully that’ll translate into some early season wins.”

The Growlers 10 best plays from their 2017 season.

The Coaching Carousel

With a few teams still finalizing plans, here’s a glimpse at the coaching situations around the league for 2018. Known assistant coaches are listed in parentheses.

DC: Darryl Stanley, second season
Montreal: Caroline Cadotte, second season (Guylaine Girard/Gustavo Castaño)
New York: Eileen Murray, first season
Ottawa: TBA
Philadelphia: Trey Katzenbach, first season
Toronto: Sachin Raina, second season

Notes: Alex “Dutchy” Ghesquiere remains the Technical Director in DC, serving primarily as an advisor/consultant. Katzenbach takes the torch in Philly in the role of Player/Coach. The ageless 47-year-old veteran who completed 258-of-260 passes (99.2%) last year would be a leader regardless of title, but it was cool to see the Phoenix promote him to the top job officially. In Montreal, the Colombian-born Castaño, who played for the Royal back in the franchise’s first season, joins the staff as an assistant, while Cadotte and Girard should provide a greater continuity this year after each missed considerable time a season ago.

Atlanta: Miranda Knowles, first season
Austin: Ryan Bigley, first season
Dallas: Wes Nemec, first season
Nashville: Will be led by Captains Paul Lally & Tyler Conger
Raleigh: Mike Denardis, fourth season (David Allison)
Tampa: Andrew Roca, first season

Notes: The Raleigh/Tampa rivalry might get even spicier with Roca taking over the Cannons. In an e-mail, Roca said that his “approach this year will be more innovative than any previous coach has taken before in the league.” Not sure exactly what that means, but I’m intrigued. If you haven’t been reading Knowles’ Mailbags, you should amend that immediately. They are fantastic. Lally spent one season playing with the Hustle, but he’s back with the NightWatch, the team he caught 70 goals for in ’15 and ’16, assuming a leadership role for 2018.

Chicago: Adrian King, second season
Detroit: TBA
Indianapolis: Eric Leonard, second season (Katie Dyer)
Madison: Tim DeByl, sixth season
Minnesota: Phil Bowen, second season
Pittsburgh: Pat Hammonds, first season (David Lionetti)

Notes: Unlike the South, with five of the six teams having new leadership at the top, the Midwest returns at least four of its six head coaches from 2017. DeByl is the Dean of all AUDL coaches for the Radicals, while Hammonds becomes the second coach in Thunderbirds history, replacing David Hogan.

Los Angeles: Jamison Gorin, first season (Steve Dugan)
San Diego: Kevin Stuart, fourth season
San Francisco: TBA
San Jose: Tyler Grant, second season
Seattle: Will be player-led

Notes: Franklin Rho, the only head coach the Aviators have ever had, stepped aside. He’s replaced by Gorin, who served as an assistant under Rho for two seasons. It’s still possible Ryo Kawaoka might return to the champion FlameThrowers, but nothing is official yet. Seattle made the finals in 2016 as a primarily player-led group.  


My Road to Raleigh

If you’re still reading this deep into an offseason Toss, you deserve a prize.

Here it is: I can report with 99% certainty that the AUDL’s Game of the Week broadcast will officially return on March 31, and the opening telecast of the season will originate from Raleigh, with the Flyers hosting the Tampa Bay Cannons to kick off our new year of coverage with a new television partner. The rest of the official Stadium broadcast schedule is still in the works, but brace yourself for another chapter of Cannons-Flyers 39 days from now.

Until then, I will continue my basketball odyssey. If you’re interested, here’s my travel schedule for the final few weeks of hoops.

2/21: Wake Forest @ Pitt MBB
2/24: UNC Asheville @ Gardner-Webb MBB
2/25: Georgia Tech @ Florida State WBB
3/1: NC State @ Georgia Tech MBB
3/3: Clemson @ Syracuse MBB
3/9-3/11 Big South WBB Tournament

If you stumble across my voice on a basketball game, don’t hesitate to let me know what you think. And if you need suggestions for an old ultimate game to stay up too late watching, I would be honored to get that ball rolling too.

A couple of forgotten gems: Week 5 in 2014: Indy @ Chicago; and Week 8 in 2014, Vancouver @ San Jose.

Great games. Exhilarating finishes. And don't forget to check out the Top 10 plays from every team in 2017:

Just please don’t blame me if you’re tired the morning after.

The Tuesday Toss is published weekly on during the season. Got a comment or question about the AUDL or the current state of ultimate? E-mail Evan Lepler at Feedback can also be levied on twitter: @EvanLepler