The Tuesday Toss: Recapping Week 12 from the Other Side of the Atlantic
June 20, 2017 — By Evan Lepler
ROYAN, France – For the first time, the Tuesday Toss has been filed from overseas.
After spending the weekend in Toronto covering the Rush’s 33-point eruption against the San Francisco FlameThrowers, I arrived in France on Monday morning following an overnight journey with my esteemed traveling companions, Luke Johnson and Ian Lunger. We were welcomed by broiling temperatures and giddy ultimate fervor, the special type of energy that you only find at international sporting events.
There are 39 different countries and approximately 1,700 athletes competing at the fifth ever World Championships of Beach Ultimate this week in Royan, a vibrant exhibition of the growing nature of our sport as it closes in on its 50th birthday. It is a privilege to make the journey and be a part of the live coverage throughout the tournament, which culminates with championship games across seven different divisions on Friday and Saturday.
Amidst the hectic travels and vicious time zone hopping, there were simply too many fascinating AUDL developments this past weekend to skip the usual thorough breakdown. From San Jose smoothly reasserting itself to Montreal’s buzzer beating four-goal win, the league experienced a particularly consequential weekend. Madison continued to show signs of its 2013-16 self, while the South’s competing kings each survived threats from ambitious adversaries who were hungrily searching for upsets.
With 22 of the league’s 24 teams in action, Week 12 served as a critical turning point in several seasons. The race for homefield has never felt more meaningful, and the battle for survival is even more immediate.
We’ll begin in the East, where more and more it’s looking like the march to Montreal may include Montreal itself.
The Full Field Layout
Antoine Genest, one the veteran leaders for the Royal, was fast asleep when Mike Voelpel caught a deflected disc with no time left on the clock at Claude-Robillard Stadium on Saturday night. His slumber was understandable, for Genest is in France competing with Team Canada, and considering how the DC-Montreal showdown began around 1:00 AM in Royan, he accepted that he would learn the result as he awakened on Sunday morning for the first day of beach competition.
Well-rested and eager to begin Worlds, Genest and his follow Montreal mates on the Canadian National team were definitely energized to learn that not only had the Royal knocked off the DC Breeze, but they had also snatched a crucial tiebreaker that could give them a much easier road to staying at home.
Both teams were missing key contributors, but there was still plenty of talent and intensity on display. The Breeze had just beaten Toronto last week to inch their way back into first place, and the Royal realized the opportunity at hand.
Their many engaged and lively fans did too.
“I think the story of the day was that this felt like a playoff game,” said DC’s Chuck Cantone, who formerly played with the Royal, scoring 27 goals in 2014 for Montreal. “The Royal showed great intensity throughout, undoubtedly feeing off the energy of their amazingly passionate fans. For most of the game, things felt pretty even between the two teams. To Montreal’s credit, they played a hard-fought game and were able to hold on when we made a push at the end.”
Highlights from June 17 between DC and Montreal.
The Royal fell behind 2-0 in the opening minutes, but took their first lead on the first point of the second quarter and never trailed again. Up 10-8 at the half, the margin swung between one and four the rest of the way.
With just seconds remaining in the final quarter, the game’s result was determined, but the critical head-to-head tiebreaker still hung in the balance. Back on May 20, DC had defeated Montreal 23-20, meaning that the Royal would have to prevail by four to have the edge in possible dead locked race at the end of the regular season.
It’d be easy to envision that last point deciding the location of a playoff game in the East. Remember how a year ago Atlanta made the playoffs and Austin was left out entirely? That was a result a head-to-head point differential tiebreaker, and it’s a reminder of how every single moment matters.
The Royal had a 26-23 lead, with possession, as time was winding down. Everyone was cognizant of what was at stake.
“We were well aware of the implications of the point, as [Breeze Coaches] Darryl Stanley and Will Smolinski informed us of this before the point began,” Cantone explained. “The Hail Mary came down just in front of the end zone, and the disc took a lucky bounce for Montreal off of my hand and into the waiting arms of Mike Voelpel, who anticipated the deflection perfectly.”
One week after securing a huge victory AND the possible head-to-head tiebreaker with Toronto, DC faltered on the road, missing their chance to truly take command of the East Division.
Cantone finished with five goals, two assists, and two Ds to lead the Breeze in his homecoming, while Frenchmen Steve Bonneau and Quentin Bonnaud continued to produce big numbers en route to victories for the Royal. Bonneau’s six assists complemented Bonnaud’s six goals as multicultural Montreal won its franchise-record fifth game in a row. Kevin Groulx led the Royal with three Ds, and after the game, he showered praise on Americans Ben Katz and Christian Foster for their contributions to the cause.
“We kept a three-point lead most of the game, and when they closed out on us we always were able to bounce back with a couple of breaks,” said Groulx. “We managed our ends of quarter really well, and I think it played a good part to keep our momentum up.”
Montreal sits at 7-4 with three games remaining, vs. New York on July 1, at Toronto on July 8, and vs. Ottawa on July 23. Hard as it may be to believe, considering their 2-4 start, the Royal still control their fate to win the regular season in the East.
That’s technically true even as they wake up on this Tuesday in third place, a byproduct of DC’s 28-13 bounce-back win against Ottawa on Sunday and Toronto’s noteworthy victory over San Francisco on Saturday night. The Rush rose to 8-3, while the Breeze are now 8-4.
Still, the 7-4 Royal are becoming one of the most amazing and improbable stories in AUDL history. Blessed with their incredibly devoted fan base, the dream is still alive for Montreal to compete in the final four on their homefield.
“One thing that I believe sets Montreal’s fans apart is how they cheer for great ultimate and beautiful plays, regardless of which team is on the winning end,” Cantone commented. “It is always special for me playing in Montreal in front of friends, former teammates, and even family. I met my wife while living in Montreal, so Quebec will always feel like a second home to me…It was also fun to get a preview of the 2017 Championship Weekend venue. The stadium façade and grass field are magnificent, and Montreal will be the place to be for ultimate fans on August 26-27.”
The Madison Radicals continued to put their shaky start to the season in the rear view mirror by making the most important plays during crunch time over the past two weeks against their divisional foes. After letting their own first-half lead slip away against Dallas on June 3, the Radicals responded by sneaking away from Minnesota and Pittsburgh with a pair of one-goal wins, before dominating Detroit on Sunday to improve to 8-2 on the year.
Saturday’s matchup with Pittsburgh, certainly one the marquee games of the weekend, was tight the whole way. Though Madison never trailed in the first half and built a lead as large as four, the hometown Thunderbirds fought back and took a lead late in the third. At 16-all into the fourth, it was anybody’s game. Looking back on it, though, Pittsburgh realized they missed out on a critical opportunity late in the third.
Highlights from June 17 between Madison and Pittsburgh.
“The end of the third quarter was where we lost it,” said Pittsburgh’s Aaron Watson matter-of-factly. “We were up [16-15] with about a minute to go. They torched us up the force sideline in about 30 seconds. We then got the disc and worked it two-thirds down the field, threw something up, but KPS [Kevin Pettit-Scantling] easily D’d it. They got the disc to start the fourth and basically held serve the rest of the way.”
Watson was competing in his second game of the season for the Thunderbirds after missing most of the year while traveling through Asia. He reached out to Thunderbirds Coach David Hogan a few weeks before returning from his excursions through Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, and Taiwan. His presence was a boon for the Thunderbirds, but somehow it was a Radical who recently returned from Asia who would make arguably the biggest play down the stretch.
To start the fourth quarter, Pittsburgh answered the first three Madison holds, and the game was tied at 17, 18, and 19. But after taking a 20-19 lead, the Radicals capitalized on a Thunderbirds miscue when Adam Drews, back in the U.S. after living in South Korea for several months, reminded everyone in the Midwest of his handling abilities after a turn.
“[Drews] threw a pinpoint deep huck goal for what ended up being the difference maker,” said Madison’s Andrew Meshnick, who caught Drews’ shot that made the score 21-19.
With that critical break in hand, the Radicals O-line, which played perhaps its best overall game of the season, took care of the rest.
“Our O-line was 3-for-4 on timeout conversions against Pitt,” said Pettit-Scantling. “They were also tasked to maintain possession with a minute left on the clock against a tenacious D-line that didn’t give an inch. Our O-line throwers had to hit tiny windows to hold. When the final pass was caught with five seconds left, we went nuts, emptied the benches, and cheered. It was a big win for this team.”
While it felt like the devastating conclusion to the 2016 season was still haunting the 2017 Radicals through the first half of this season, Madison’s pair of narrow road wins over Midwest contenders seemingly have quelled that ghost for now. At 8-2 after following up the Pittsburgh victory with a 21-11 win over Detroit on Sunday, the Radicals are just a half-game behind first-place Minnesota, whom they will host for the first time this season on July 1.
“The adversity we’re facing every weekend is starting to temper our resolve,” declared Pettit-Scantling. “Instead of completely falling apart in games, we’re sticking together—using each other for support It doesn’t feel like the 2016 team, because that’s not who we are anymore. We’re the 2017 Radicals, and grinding for wins is becoming part of our identity.”
Pittsburgh slipped to 4-4 after the home loss, and while the Thunderbirds are still in solid position to make the playoffs in the Midwest, they are likely staring at needing to win back-to-back playoff games in Madison and Minnesota to have a shot at Championship Weekend. The Thunderbirds could catch the Wind Chill if they ran the table and won six straight to finish the year. But after another tight loss, Pittsburgh has not proven it can consistently make plays late in games against top caliber opponents.
With Pittsburgh fading from the regular season title chase, it’s now a two-team tussle to become the top seed in the Midwest.
After dropping back-to-back games against Los Angeles and San Francisco, 6-3 San Jose had gone from the West Division leader to a team in danger of slipping out of the playoff picture entirely heading into a daunting final five-game stretch. With three on the road and home games against perennial powerhouses San Francisco and Seattle, it was easy to envision the Spiders fading away as a nice early-season story that could not keep it up.
But on Saturday in SoCal, the Spiders showed that it is way too soon to write their 2017 obituary. Even without Justin Norden, Steven Chang, or their Coach, Tyler Grant, San Jose delivered a reminder of the Bay Area’s unrivaled depth and skill.
Highlights from June 17 between San Jose and San Diego.
“The last two weeks, we tried to re-emphasize that it’s about us, not them,” said San Jose’s Jackson Stearns. “We were starting to look at the standings too much, to worry about who was or who wasn’t playing for the other team, and we got away from our own game. For this road trip, knowing we didn’t have Tyler, Justin, or Steven, we doubled down on only focusing on the things we can control: our own play.”
Neither team registered any breaks in a 5-all first quarter, but the Spiders took the lead in the second. Brandon Fein recorded a couple of his game-high five Ds as San Jose took a 14-12 lead into the half. Smooth offense largely dominated the rest of the game, with the Growlers unable to string multiple breaks together at any point to slice into the deficit.
“My basic thought looking back on the game is that it was a pretty well-played match and the Spiders were just a little bit cleaner than us,” said San Diego Co-Captain Steven Milardovich. “It was closer than the [28-24] final score indicates, as we were down by two with under two minutes left and got forced into some overly aggressive throws trying to score quickly.”
Spiders rookie Shane Earley, a Santa Clara product, had his best game in the AUDL with seven goals, one assist, and no turnovers. Chuck Cao and Sonny Zaccaro carried the weight for the handling core, combining for nine assists on 118 completions with just three throwaways.
At 7-3, the Spiders are back even with the FlameThrowers atop the West and can move back into first place by themselves if they can knock off San Francisco at Foothill College this Saturday night. Both Bay Area squads have tough games remaining beyond this coming weekend, but it does feel like the regular season title and the critical #1 seed are at stake on Saturday.
Meanwhile, San Diego’s four-game winning streak came to a close, and the Growlers need to regroup. At 5-6, the Growlers still likely control their fate over their final three games. They have a home-and-home with LA and will conclude their regular season at home against the Spiders.
“I think if we win out and get a little bit of help, we could squeak into the third playoff spot,” said Growlers’ Co-Captain Dom Leggio. “This group seems to love adversity, so maybe having to win out is good for us. I’m confident we can pull this off after the slow start, but it’s probably going to take a perfect finish. We realize that and accept the challenge.”
The AUDL’s Cross Coast Challenge concluded with a high-scoring shootout on Saturday night in Toronto, as the Rush overcame an early three-goal deficit to prevail 33-27 over San Francisco. After trailing 16-15 at the half, the Rush seized control with a 5-1 run to start the second half and never trailed again. Down the stretch, it was clear that the FlameThrowers, who only traveled with 15 active players, were losing steam.
Highlights from June 17 between San Francisco and Toronto.
“We knew we had the numbers,” said Toronto’s Andrew Carroll in a conversation that can be heard on the AUDL Podcast. “We knew the second half would a lot tougher on them than it was gonna be on us. We felt like we hadn’t played a great first half. So that gave us confidence as well, knowing that if we tighten the screws, we’ll have a better second half and they’ll start to fatigue.”
Carroll’s teammates have always hyped him as being criminally underrated, and on Saturday night against the first-place FlameThrowers, he was easily the most productive player on the field, compiling six goals and eight assists. After spending the past couple of seasons making plays on the D-line, Carroll has transformed into a score-making machine on offense.
“He was someone we game-planned against,” admitted San Francisco Coach Ryo Kawaoka. “It was an eye-opening experience for some of the defenders that had to cover him.”
Kawaoka also praised the Toronto defense, which he felt made some really good adjustments throughout the game. At one point, Mark Lloyd began guarding handlers, which created some mismatches after turnovers. The Rush D-line capitalized enough to create separation and secure the victory.
San Francisco’s Antoine Davis authored some of the game’s most thrilling highlights, including a rare sky of Lloyd, on his way to a five-goal, four-D effort. Lucas Dallmann added seven assists, and the FlameThrowers were within three when Devon Williams scored with 5:34 left. But San Francisco could not get any closer, and the Rush closed on a 3-0 run.
“If we see them again at some point in the season, which hopefully we do, it will be a completely different story when they have their whole team,” said Carroll, acknowledging that San Francisco was shorthanded and without many of its top stars.
Full game footage from Saturday.
The Rush are off for the next two weekends before retaking the field against Montreal on July 8 in a game that will have massive implications in the East Division race.
All season long, Dallas knew that this particular weekend would be tough. Former Roughneck Dillon Larberg got married on Saturday—Congrats to him and his new bride, Alexa—and consequently, many current Roughnecks were attending their friend and former teammate’s nuptials.
Consequently, the Roughnecks were relying on a few guys making their AUDL debuts this past Saturday against Austin, along with a handful of other players who had played minimal roles throughout the season. While it certainly helped to have a bunch of veteran superstars leading the way, the newcomers did enough to help the Roughnecks remain undefeated all-time against their rivals from Austin.
“Steven Borik was really impressive,” said Roughnecks Captain Matt Jackson. “He was UT Dallas’ Callahan nominee this year, and he is known for being a deft handler. His Callahan video was chock-full of difficult off-hand throws, including more than a few lefty scoobers. Borik is also very athletic; I remember him getting a shoulder-high layout block at tryouts. He finished the game with one layout block and one high-release lefty backhand assist on a 100% completion rate. A very solid professional debut.”
Gabe Hernandez and Jack Wooldridge also made their Roughneck debuts on Saturday against the Sol, while Matt “Yeti” Costello made a one-day return from retirement to help Dallas beat Austin 27-25. Hernandez, despite a couple errors, is a player that the Roughnecks think could be impactful down the stretch of the season.
“Gabe Hernandez had a lackluster statistical performance [on Saturday], but it’s obvious to the leadership how impactful he could be,” Jackson said. “Gabe was Ultiworld’s ‘Breakout Player of the Year’ this season after he tore it up at Stanford this year. He finished the game with one block and one goal on a disappointing 33% completion rate. But the block was a sweet layout that we converted for a break. I’m a big fan of Gabe and the rest of the leadership also sees huge potential with him. Depending on how the rest of the season finishes, Gabe could make the final 20-person roster.”
Unquestionably, the most important postseason addition the Roughnecks could make would be a healthy Kurt Gibson, who has spent the entire spring recovering from preseason surgery. But in building up their depth in order to defeat Raleigh and the rest of the league, every contributor is important.
Saturday was a missed opportunity for the Sol, but it was the league’s chance to glimpse a few new Roughneck recruits. The Roughnecks survived without Chris Larberg, Matt Bennett, Dalton Smith, Dylan Freechild, Thomas Slack, Ben Lohre, and Gibson. At 9-2, Dallas is orchestrating itself for another run at a title.
The Greatest (Ultimate-Related Social Media Post of the Week)
It wasn’t exactly a social media post, but maybe the greatest social share of the week arrived onto Jonathan Nethercutt’s phone on Sunday evening in France. The MVP candidate for the Raleigh Flyers is here with the USA men’s team, and when he saw a text message from Nashville’s Jesse Shofner, he did a double take.
The text basically said, "We beat you 4-2."
Immediately, Nethercutt was like, what?
Did his first-place Flyers actually lose to the last-place NightWatch?
He turned to twitter and learned the the NightWatch had in fact led 4-2 after the first quarter when the game was called due to extreme weather. The text, with that additional context, now made slightly more sense.
Since Raleigh has another trip scheduled to Nashville on the weekend of July 8, the Flyers and NightWatch will tangle in a doubleheader then.
A quick anecdote from my Sunday flight from Toronto to Amsterdam, en route to France. The flight departed around 5:30 PM, and it was only a six and a half hour jaunt, not too bad as far as transatlantic travel is concerned. I expected they would serve dinner, but since it wasn’t an eight or 12 hour trek, I was not certain. After all, this wasn’t that much farther than the five-plus hour cross-country flights from the previous weekend.
Boarding the plane, I was hungry, and I knew if nothing else, I had a decent amount of trail mix in my backpack that could tide me over. Then came the announcement over the loud speaker.
The flight attendant informed us that there was a passenger with a severe peanut allergy on the flight, there would be no peanuts served, and they asked that anyone who had brought peanuts onto the plane to please refrain from opening them on the flight.
My trail mix, a conglomeration of cashews, m&ms, raisins, almonds, and yes, peanuts, suddenly was out of the picture. Sure, it probably would have been fine, but I didn’t want to be the guy to create a medical emergency at 35,000 feet over the Atlantic.
Thankfully, after initially only serving a tiny bag of almonds and a drink, dinner was eventually served. It was far from gourmet, but at least it was something.
Seven on the Line
1. Before their Sunday finale was postponed by the lightning in Nashville, the Raleigh Flyers survived their toughest remaining road game by surpassing Atlanta 24-21 on Saturday evening. Though Raleigh never trailed after seizing a 9-7 first quarter lead, the Flyers struggled to put the Hustle away. Until they broke to go up 23-19 with just a couple minutes remaining, they had never been ahead by more than three. “Atlanta was stingy with the disc, as they tend to be,” said Flyers Coach Mike Denardis. “In the first half, they took nice deep looks, hit their release valves well when pressured, and used Matt Smith’s speed to the corners effectively when they were near the end zone. We made a couple defensive adjustments later in the game to pressure them into difficult situations a bit more and they yielded positive results.” The Flyers only generated seven Ds as a team, but Nate Goff had four of them, earning team MVP honors for the night as bestowed by the squad’s coaches and captains. “I wish we hadn’t throw so many at him and instead chose to test others if we were going to chuck it,” said Atlanta’s Smith, who led the Hustle with seven scores. For the season, Goff has 14 Ds, second on the squad behind David Richardson’s 15. “[Goff] has not only filled a key need for us in terms of a big defender to scrap with all the giants in the South, but he’s also a nightmare to cover on a turn,” explained Denardis. “Given the skill set he brings and how much better he can get, the sky is the limit for this youngster.” The victory made Raleigh the first 10-win team of 2017, but at 10-1, they still have work to do in the final three games (vs. Jacksonville and two at Nashville) to lock up the top spot in the South.
Highlights from June 17 between Raleigh and Atlanta.
2. It’s hard to know if Nashville would have been able to hang onto its slim two-goal lead against first place Raleigh over the final three quarters on Sunday, but the wild weather just might have been timely for the fatigued Flyers on their second game of the weekend. After playing incredibly clean on Saturday in Atlanta, it was an ugly start from the Raleigh offense in the Music City. The Flyers had only turned it over 13 times in four quarters against the Hustle, but gave it away seven times in the first 12 minutes against the NightWatch. “Nashville looked focused and we looked a bit groggy,” said Raleigh Assistant Coach David Allison. “We started to settle down late in the first quarter and gained a bit more poise. Unfortunately, the weather halted the game and the forecast looked terrible. I know all of our players were hungry to finish the game. It’s too bad it didn’t work out.”
3. One more quick Raleigh note: The Flyers are as deep as any team in the league, and a big reason for that is the infusion of a bunch of members of the 2016 Charlotte Express. After a seven-goal weekend, Matt Bode now leads the squad in goals for the season, and the versatile cutter has been a consistent force for the Raleigh O-line throughout the season. “With Nethercutt, Goose [Helton] and [Jacob] Fairfax missing, Matt was definitely going to get a few more touches,” said Allison. “The big thing for him is to make sure he’s getting touches at every level; shallow, mid-range, and deep. He did an excellent job of varying his attack to keep the defense off guard. He’s grown a ton this season as he’s integrated himself into an offense that constantly rotates personnel.”
4. The Minnesota Wind Chill took a 2-0 lead and remained ahead for the entirety of their 23-12 triumph at Chicago, keeping them atop the Midwest division at 8-1, a half-game ahead of 8-2 Madison. Eager to prove that their 7-0 start was not going to be undone by a single one-point loss to the Radicals from the previous week, the Wind Chill traveled with, as Jay Drescher said, ‘the best roster we have ever brought to Lane Tech,’ the home of Wildfire. Brian Schoenrock added, “Our offense played great! It was not the cleanest game they have had this season, but I think they were only broken once, maybe twice the entire game. It makes life really easy on everyone if our O-line is that efficient.” Drescher and Colin Berry each finished with four assists, Greg Cousins and Dylan Declerq combined for nine goals. “We played well as a team and were having fun,” said Drescher. “We will have to clean up mistakes and throwaways if we want to compete with the best in the league.” The Wind Chill are off this weekend, guaranteeing they will still be in first place when they head to Madison on July 1.
5. If the New York Empire are going to turn their season around, perhaps they’ll look back at their 27-14 rout over Philadelphia as the start of the late-season rally. The Empire squelched their four-game skid by riding their superstars. Jeff Babbitt recorded five goals, one assist, and four Ds. Chris Kocher registered seven assists and scored twice. And after finishing with a -1 in his Empire debut on June 4, Ben Jagt put up a powerful +10 on Sunday against the Phoenix, with five Ds to complement four goals, two assists, and just one turnover. At 3-5, the Empire will be as busy as any team in the league over the final five weeks of the season. Three of their remaining six games, including their matchup this Saturday, will be against Ottawa. The Empire also have road games at Montreal, Philly, and Toronto, as they strive to avoid missing the postseason for the first time in franchise history.
6. For the third straight game and the fifth time this season, Indianapolis’ Rick Gross led the AlleyCats in plus/minus with a fantastic +11 in Saturday’s 23-21 come-from-behind victory over Detroit. The AlleyCats trailed by as many as six in the first half against the Mechanix and were down 20-15 late in the third before their furious 8-1 rally closed the game with an exclamation. Indy actually scored eight in a row to lead 23-20 before the Mechanix scored one relatively meaningless goal late. Gross finished with six goals, two assists, and four Ds to lead the way in the ugly turnover-filled afternoon. Indy gave it away 35 times, yet got the disc back just enough to narrowly prevail. At 3-6, the AlleyCats are fourth in the Midwest, a game and a half behind Pittsburgh in the race for the final playoff spot.
7. Dallas was not the only reigning division champ that debuted some new players this past weekend. The Madison Radicals welcomed two new rookies, as well as one old owner, onto the active squad for their two-game trip. Avery Johnson and Jeff Maskalunas, a pair of Wisconsin Hodags during the recent college season, each made positive contributions for the Radicals. And Tim Debyl, the team’s owner, coach, and occasional player—Tim wears #73 to represent the year he was born—made his first appearance of 2017 for the Radicals on Sunday in Detroit. “Avery and Jeff played exceptionally well for us in the win [over Pittsburgh],” said Meshnick. “Avery was consistently open for the offensive line, and Jeff made several key blocks throughout the game. We’ll continue to look for these two players to contribute in the coming weeks.” Even Debyl got involved in the scoring on Sunday, dishing an assist to Meshnick and scoring a goal from KPS during his seven points on the field. “Tim always fits into our zone well when he plays because he is the mastermind behind it all,” Meshnick explained. “On offense, he’s a reliable decision maker so the guys know what to expect from him even if we don’t play very many points together.”
Quickly, the top five questions for the week ahead.
1. Is this the weekend when Jacksonville finally beats Raleigh?
2. Which Bay Area team will be in the West’s driver’s seat heading into July?
3. Can the Los Angeles Aviators firm up their playoff berth by sweeping a road trip to the Pacific Northwest?
4. Might Indianapolis re-enter the playoff conversation by finally knocking off Pittsburgh?
5. Will New York take care of business in their final home game, getting to 4-5 before five straight on the road to finish their season?
We’ll know the answers to all five of these questions by Sunday night. We’ll also have a new set of Beach World Champions by then.
Enjoy the jam-packed week of ultimate, wherever you may be.
The Tuesday Toss is published weekly on theAUDL.com during the season. Got a comment or question about the AUDL or the current state of ultimate? E-mail Evan Lepler at AUDLMailbag@gmail.com. Feedback can also be levied on twitter: @EvanLepler