College Update: Action Everywhere

Smoky, Stanford, and Tune Up, oh my. Rounding up one of the most packed weekends of the regular season

Oregon's Adam McNichols plucks one out of the sky over Washington University in the final of the D-I College Ultimate Frisbee Stanford Invite 2024. Photo: Rodney Chen -
Oregon’s Adam McNichols plucks one out of the sky over Washington University in the final of Stanford Invite 2024. Photo: Rodney Chen –

Ultiworld’s coverage of the 2024 college season is presented by Spin Ultimate; all opinions are those of the author(s). Find out how Spin can get you, and your team, looking your best this season.

Throughout the spring season, we’ll publishing a bite-sized weekly recap of the action across the college division. This will serve as a supplement to our standard tournament reporting and offer a high-level look at the latest happenings and the biggest stories of the week.

Want your tournament listed? Submit a recap of what happened right here.

D-I Women’s Division

Vermont Victorious at Stanford Invite

In one of the most exciting endings this season, #6 Vermont Ruckus was able to claw back from a 12-9 deficit in a game to 13 against #2 British Columbia Thunderbirds in the final to win Stanford Invite. Ruckus also had key wins over #14 UC San Diego and #5 Stanford Superfly, with both games ending in a score of 10-7. The Thunderbirds also had an impressive run leading into the final match, beating #8 UC Santa Barbara burning Skirts 12-8 and #10 Colorado Quandary 11-8. For more info check out Day One coverage and be sure to read Day Two coverage after.

Stanford Invite Women’s Final Recap

Elsewhere in the Division

  • Central Florida Sirens went 6-0 in pool play at Florida Spring Showcase, notching FIVE bagels en route to the first place game on Sunday, which was unfortunately canceled before it could be completed. This is doubly impressive when you consider this 10 person team is hot off another undefeated run at Mardi Gras last weekend.
  • In their premier outing, Cornell Wild Roses took down Columbia in a lossless run at No Sleep Till Brooklyn. The Wild Roses had wins over some top ranked D-III teams with a 9-7 win over Mount Holyoke and a 10-7 win over Williams in the semifinal.
  • In one of the most confusing pool play formats you’ll ever see, Ohio Stacked Cats had an impressive run at Huckleberry Flick, only losing 9-5 against Cincinnati on Saturday. But cats have nine lives, and Ohio brought the heat in the final, reversing the outcome against Cincinnati and winning 10-4.
  • A bevvy of high school-aged teams were all that stood in Arizona Scorch’s way on Sunday of Snow Melt. After a 4-0 start the Tucson-based team quickly cooled off, losing back-t0-back games to Fairview High School and the U-20 COSmic Winter Warm-Up, two teams they’d beaten the day before.
  • You know what they say: the real final is in quarterfinals. Washington University Iron Horse were only really tested by Iowa State Women Scorned at Midwest Throwdown, scraping out a 7-6 quarters win before overpowering Saint Louis and Truman State for the back-to-back Throwdown titles.1
  • New Hampshire Oriza held onto second by the skin of their teeth at the round robin Grand Northeast Kickoff. After falling to Brandies 14-7, Oriza were one point away from slipping to third after being seeded first, but pulled out a universe point 9-8 win over Amherst in the last round.
  • SUNY-Albany Deception couldn’t quite make it click at SouthHill Slam, opening the tournament with a win over Cornell B before losing out. Cancelled play on Sunday washed away any chance of notching another win against the B team.
  • The American Dirty Ladies lived up to their name with a 9-6 final win over Lehigh at the Cherry Blossom Classic. They breadsticked similarly patriotic George Washington and had no mercy when bageling their own B team in their undefeated run.

Looking Ahead

Next weekend, will feature some regional fixtures in Big Sky Brawl (Boise, ID), Irvine Open (Irvine, CA), and Live Free or Sky (Durham, NH). All are important tournaments at their level, but none feature elite level competition. There’s also a curious event scheduled called Kernel Cup — currently scheduled as a two-team showcase between Maryland Helpful Corn and Towson Hammertime.

D-I Men’s Division

UMass Makes it Happen at Smoky Mountain and Oregon Inflate their Ego at Stanford

#9 Oregon Ego were able to work their way through the west coast challengers at Stanford Invite, with an impressive run. Their closest game of the weekend was a 13-10 win in pools against the Tulane Tucks; after that they made it look easy. In bracket play they beat Vanderbilt and Wisconsin 13-2 and 13-6 respectively, then hoisted the trophy after a tidy 12-7 win against #24 Washington University Contra.

Meanwhile in the southern stretches of Appalachia #4 Massachusetts Zoodisc made a sun run against the best the nation has to offer. After slugging it out against #5 Colorado Mamabird, #10 Pittsburgh En Sabah Nur, and #23 UCLA Smaug in pools Saturday morning, Massachusetts had to end the day in prequarters facing off against #18 Tufts Elephant Men. If Saturday was challenging, then Sunday was truly hard for Zoodisc. They opened the day against #6 Carleton CUT, going the distance to double game point and clutching it out to win 15-14. That earned them a date with the odds-on favorites to win it all, #1 North Carolina Darkside. UMass didn’t balk however and won 15-13. Waiting for them in the final was #3 Georgia Jojah where Zoo cleaned up and won 15-12. You can read more about Day One and Day Two.

Smoky Mountain Invite Men’s Final Recap

Elsewhere in the Division

  • Missouri lost by one in the final to a surging St. Olaf team at Midwest Throwdown. The team still had a good weekend with quality wins over Carleton CHOP and Northwestern.
  • Connecticut’s undefeated outing at No Sleep Till Brooklyn was spoiled by two D-III teams. The Huskies took a 12-5 battering to Middlebury Pranksters in pool play before losing in the final 11-10 against Williams WUFO. The Huskies were able to pick up wins against Columbia, Boston University, and Delaware to get there though.
  • Kentucky KULT took home the gold at The DUDE. Coming in seeded fourth, KULT went 4-0 in pools and took down no.1 seed Dayton, no.3 seed Ball State, and no.2 seed Miami (Ohio) all in a row to claim the title.
  • In the battle for Washington, Washington State Air Raid put Washington B away to the tune of 7-4 in the PLU Men’s BBQ third place game. Washington B might have snatched an 11-9 win over the Air Raid in the first round of pool play, but day one wins guarantee nothing on day two.
  • Utah Valley and Denver went down to the wire for title of best D-I team at Snow Melt, with Utah Valley scraping out an 11-10 win for third place. That is, unless you count Colorado B, who almost took home the hardware in a 14-12 final loss to Colorado School of Mines, their second loss to Entropy on the weekend. But hard to say they were even the best B team there, as Colorado B fell 12-10 to Brigham Young B in pool play on Saturday.
  • UMass stays winning. Massachusetts B took down Grand Northeast Kickoff, finding their toughest competition from a fellow B team in Tufts B. A +59 point differential for UMass B tells you all you need to know.
  • SUNY-Buffalo Green Eggs and Ham made a case for best Metro East team with a 13-1 beatdown of Cornell Buds and finals appearance at Oak Creek Challenge. The Buds found their groove on Day Two, making it to semis where they fell to eventual tournament champions Appalachian State Nomads. The Atlantic Coast showed out; in addition to App State’s win, Towson Pandamonium were one away from their own finals berth and went on to take down Cornell in the third place game, 13-11.
  • They may be a B team, but Penn State-B LoveTap sure spanked some teams en route to taking down Philly Special. Their only win over a D-I team came in semis against SUNY-Albany, but D-III’s Bowdoin gave Tap their closest game with a 9-8 scare in Sunday play.
  • We’ve given the B teams their laurels, how about some C team love? Alabama C were a forfeit away from seeing themselves crowned Black Warrior Classic champs. That title instead went to Alabama-Birmingham Inferno, who Alabama C had already beat in pool play. But Alabama C’s perhaps sweetest win came in the very first round of play, where they took down Alabama B 11-6.

Looking Ahead

Not a lot of big ticket items next week, but some definite regional action in Big Sky Brawl (Boise, ID), Spring Spook (Oxford, OH), Silicon Valley Ralley (San Jose, CA) and Centex Tier 2 (Austin, TX). Lots of action should impact bids to regionals from various conferences.

D-III Women’s Division

Around the Division

  • In a battle of intense meteorologically named teams, Truman State TSUnami weathered the #4 St. Olaf Vortex storm for a 5-4 victory and a spot in the Midwest Throwdown final. St. Olaf went on to finish a respectable 3rd  in a field consisting of mostly D-I teams.
  • #7 Colorado College Zenith won Snow Melt handily, never letting an opponent score more than five and bageling Air Force on the way to a tournament title.
  • #5 Williams Nova won the third place game over the #9 Wellesley Whiptails at No Sleep till Brooklyn, a game that ended 9-8 in a weekend full of close games. Also at No Sleep, #22 Wesleyan Vicious Circles found a key win over #10 Mount Holyoke 9-7 in another close match while #19 Bates Cold Front stumbled to 3-2 9th place finish in their first outing.
  • #21 Lehigh Gravity made the final but fell just short of the win at Cherry Blossom Classic, losing 9-6 to American. Gravity did beat Catholic Nun Betta 7-5 during pool play, the kind of solid cross-regional result Lehigh needs if they want to earn the OV another bid. Catholic still had a good showing themselves, finishing the weekend in 4th.
  • Georgia College Lynx Rufus finished 4-2 at the Florida Spring Showcase with wins over LSU, Florida Tech, and a universe point win over Alabama.
  • Amidst a mix of D-I and D-III teams at Huckleberry Flick, Franciscan FIRE and Kenyon Blu-Ray were the cream of the People’s Division crop, splitting games with each other and only otherwise losing to tournament finalists Cincinnati. Franciscan got the win when it mattered most, in Sunday’s quarterfinal, and were one point away from upsetting Cincinnati in the semi.
  • Best course of action when you’re seeded last? Finish first of course. Brandeis Banshee followed the script to a T, knocking off New Hampshire and fellow D-III team Amherst to kickstart their season at Grand Northeast Kickoff.
  • In a rematch of last year’s Metro East Regionals semifinal, Ithaca Kweezy once again came out on top of Connecticut College Amaltheia, first 6-4 in pool play and then 9-5 in the SouthHill Slam final. With Wesleyan currently ranked ahead of both teams, this might’ve been a preview to yet another semifinal matchup between Kweezy and Amaltheia.

 Looking Ahead

While there will certainly be some action at Big Sky Brawl, Irvine Open, and Live Free or Sky, the key tournaments will come in Mid-March with Tally Classic, Women’s Centex, and Southerns.

D-III Men’s Division

Franciscan and Whitman Survive FCS D-III Tune Up Unscathed

The Mecca of D-III Men’s action known as FCS D-III Tune Up certainly lived up to the hype this year. The big winners, other than the fans, was Ohio Valley team Franciscan Fatal and #12 Whitman Sweets. Both teams finished the shootout style tournament 7-0. Fatal brought the heat with an early upset over the #3 Richmond Spidermonkeys 13-12 in their first game of the weekend and rounded out the weekend with big wins over #9 Berry Bucks and #18 Navy Poseidon. The Sweets had a great weekend too with wins over #22 Davidson DUFF, as well as the aforementioned Richmond, Berry, and Navy. You can catch more about that by reading these well-crafted2 Day One and Day Two pieces.

Around the Division

  • #6 St. Olaf Berzerkers took down the Midwest Throwdown, beating out Missouri 9-8 in the final match and establishing an early North Central pecking order with an 11-6 win over Carleton CHOP in quarters.
  • #5 Williams WUFO won No Sleep Till Brooklyn, beating Connecticut 11-10 in the final. WUFO also had key wins over Yale and Syracuse and, most importantly, a 12-10 win over #1 Middlebury Pranksters in the quarterfinal game.
  • #10 Colorado School of Mines Entropy won Snow Melt, beating out Colorado (B) in the final game 14-12. Bereft of fellow D-III teams, Entropy instead notched wins over Kansas and Utah Valley in the quarterfinal and semifinal, respectively.
  • It’s tough out there for D-III teams at D-I tournaments. Denison almost walked away from The DUDE winless but managed to strike gold at the eleventh hour, pulling out a one-point win over Case Western Reserve B in the very last round of consolation play.
  • Colby CDC finally got a coveted win over New England kings Middlebury…or at least are one step closer to that lofty goal with a win over Middlebury’s B team at Grand Northeast Kickoff. Their luck ran out against D-I B teams, with CDC losing to UMass B and Tufts B, but their 4-2 weekend included wins over fellow New England D-III program Amherst Army of Darkness.
  • Puget Sound Postmen got revenge for last year NW Regionals game-to-go to the game-to-go loss with a statement 13-4 win over Pacific Lutheran Reign Men in quarters of PLU Men’s BBQ. But the Postmen couldn’t send PLU’s grizzled alum team packing in the final, falling 13-5.
  • The College of New Jersey Revolution put some respect on the Metro East name at Philly Special. The lesser-known ultimate team named Revolution netted three dubs against New England’s triple-b Brandeis, Bentley, and Bowdoin en route to the final, where they tapped out against Penn State B 11-9.

The following Snow Melt recap was submitted by Colorado School of Mines coach AJ Abraham.

Colorado School of Mines Entropy won the tourney, with wins over Colorado-B and Utah Valley. Last year’s People’s Champs Colorado College Wasabi failed to make semis with a quarters loss to Colorado B, but closed Sunday with two wins to claim fifth. Undefeated on the season but for two losses to Entropy (one of which they avenged in the New Year Fest final), UVU is a really, really solid program. The Mines vs UVU semifinal had the feelings of a finals matchup. Mines broke upwind to win, 15-13. Also, it was very windy.

Mines rode a very solid O-line anchored by Randy Lahm to victory. The D-line was opportunistic all weekend, with Preston Nash getting some big breaks. They might not have been at FCS Tune Up, but with the undefeated showing Entropy are hoping they proved themselves one of the top D-III teams in the country.

Looking Ahead

Rice Cloud 9 and Trinity Turbulence will see some action at Centex Tier II alongside some lower level D-I teams

  1. Sort of – with 29 teams at last year’s Throwdown, the tournament was split into two groups, with WashU coming out on top of the St. Louis contingent 

  2. A 100% unbiased assessment 

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