UFA Teams Release 2024 Rosters

Teams around the country reload as they look to dethrone the two-time defending champions New York Empire.

Los Angeles' Aviator's Lukas Ambrose goes flying for the layout block against the Colorado Summit. Photo: Slot Jackson - Ultimate Frisbee Association
Formerly of the Los Angeles Aviators, Lukas Ambrose’s signing with the Seattle Cascades is one of the most high-profile movements of the 2024 UFA preseason. Photo: Sloth Jackson – UFA

Tryouts have concluded for the 24 UFA teams across the country, and after weeks of slowly releasing individual signings the full rosters are now available for public viewing. Below I’ll take a look at who’s in and who’s out for the two dozen teams who’ll compete for the UFA title this summer.

East

New York Empire

Key Additions: Axel Agami
Key Losses: John Lithio, Jeff Babbitt, Ben Katz, Zach Burpee, Matt Stevens, Ryan Holmes

The Empire haven’t lost since 2021, which now feels more impressive after UNC Pleiades’ four-year winning streak ended last weekend. Jeff Babbitt’s shoes are big to fill, but defensive bulldog Axel Agami is a good pick to mitigate that loss. Nobody can fully replace a talent like Babbitt, but the Empire are a deep team full of know-how; even with significant player departures, they’ll enter the season as the championship favorite.

DC Breeze

Key Additions: Elliot Bonnet, Miles Grovic, Jace Dean, Zach Burpee, Lauren Boyle (coach)
Key Losses: Christian Boxley, Troy Holland, Alexandre Fall, Joe Merrill, Daryl Stanley (coach)

The losses of all four of Boxley, Holland, Fall, and Merrill will have their impact felt – especially on defense. Bringing in athletes like Miles Grovic and Jace Dean should help mitigate the losses, and Elliot Bonnet did his best Boxley impression on the beach last fall, leading France to a world championship. With the looming power of New York hanging in the air, the Breeze are not just tinkering with the edges of the roster but bringing in legit difference-makers. Are these changes enough to really move the needle? We’ll have to wait until they take the field against New York to find out. Also of note, Zach Burpee is doing the full Northeast tour, playing for DC after stops in Boston and New York the last two years. Maybe he’ll join Philadelphia in 2025.

Boston Glory

Key Additions: None
Key Losses: Wyatt Kellman, Brendan McCann, Orion Cable, Kuochuan Ponzio

The Glory by and large bring back their major contributors. With a garden of talent growing in the New England region, Boston should look similarly competitive to last season’s squad as they push to solidify their place as a consistent playoff team.

Philadelphia Phoenix

Key Additions: Michael Maroon
Key Losses: CJ Colicchio, Kainoa Chun-Muy

Like Boston, Philadelphia is largely bringing back the same team from last season. One of the best bought-in teams in the league, the Phoenix are hoping their minor roster adjustments are enough to get back to the playoffs or earn that elusive win over DC.

Montreal Royal

Key Additions: Quentin Bonnaud (returning), Tobe Decreane
Key Losses: Malik Auger-Semmar, Elliott Heloir, Brandon Adibe

Two big stars headline the Royal’s offseason. You’ve probably heard of Bonnaud–he’s scored nearly 200 UFA goals. You probably haven’t heard of Decreane, one of the up-and-coming stars from the Belgium U24 team that captivated the world’s attention last summer. He’ll be a player to watch this season and should help replace some of Malik Auger-Semmar’s production.

Toronto Rush

Key Additions: Akifumi Muraoka (returning), Brandon Adibe, Kevin Tong
Key Losses: Ty Barbieri, Mike Mackenzie, Geoff Bevan, Wilkie Lewis, James Lewis

Bringing back Muraoka is a win for a team in need of them given the personnel moving on from the Rush after a disappointing 2023. Tong is the latest Vancouverite to make the journey out east and his defensive prowess is sure to jumpstart the Rush’s efforts on that side of the disc.

South

Carolina Flyers

Key Additions: Henry Fisher (returning), Grayson Sanner (returning), Allan Laviolette (returning), Daniel Ferriter, Drew Swanson, Christian Belus
Key Losses: Matt Gouchoe-Hanas, Liam Searles-Bohs, Joe White, Alex Davis

It’s no surprise for a team that invests so much in local youth ultimate, but there is a lot of young talent joining the team. Though they lost a handful of stars, the Flyers have three returning all-star level players and a bunch of eager rookies ready to make a mark. With consistent leadership, the Flyers should regain their top-of-the-division form after last season’s aberration.

Austin Sol

Key Additions: Mason Zetsch, Jacob Kaplan
Key Losses: Shane Worthington, Zach Slayton

Last season went so well that the Sol are basically running it back. As one of the most bought-in teams in the association,1 the Sol bring back enough talent that they only needed to take two rookies. They also have a long list of practice players ready to push the main roster to get ready for each and every game and develop into the stars of the next generation.

Atlanta Hustle

Key Additions: Franky Fernandez, Walter Ellard, Aidan Downey (returning)
Key Losses: Liam Haberfield, Max Thorne, Mischa Freystatter

By and large, the Hustle have managed to maintain the success they initially reached in 2021 as one of the top teams in the league. Without too much higher to push, Atlanta is able to call up young local talent to replace a few veterans who are moving on. That’s what good teams do, and the Hustle can set sail towards what they hope is their first Championship Weekend appearance in team history.

Dallas Legion

Key Additions: Carson Wilder (returning), Cam Guidry
Key Losses: Tim Mosher, Myles Cooper, Griffin Miller

Dallas kept a lot of contributors from last season’s team. Hopefully that chemistry helps, but it’s tough to see this team beating anyone other than Houston. It’s good to see local legend Carson Wilder back with the team.

Houston Havoc

Key Additions: None
Key Losses: Xavier Fuzat, Cade White

Aside from keeping Ben Lewis, Matt Bennett, and Connor Ughetta, who were all great last season, the Havoc are bringing in twelve rookies. That’s a lot of new faces for a team with a tough schedule. This year the team is rostering more local players rather than filling spots with UT-Austin college players. Experience playing for teams like Houston Clutch could be…clutch in their competitive games with Dallas.

Central

Minnesota Wind Chill

Key Additions: Leo Sovell-Fernandez, Anthony Jirele, Matt Rehder, Greg Cousins (returning)
Key Losses: Marty Adams, Jason Tschida, Abe Coffin

Though the Wind Chill have significant losses, they have answers for every question. Cousins replaces Adams as a local player who does damage downfield. Rehder replaces Coffin as a two-way travel player. Sovell-Fernandez replaces Tschida as former Drag’n Thrust backfield pivots. All in all, Minnesota is in a good spot to go back to Championship Weekend and should look about the same as last season’s squad. Of course, it doesn’t hurt to mention that someone good in the air like Rehder would’ve been helpful towards the last play of last season…

Madison Radicals

Key Additions: Pieran Robert, Kevin Pettit-Scantling (returning), Tom Annen (returning), Kai Marcus (returning)
Key Losses: Kai DeLorenzo, Henry Goldenberg, Jake Rubin-Miller

The Radicals love continuity, and with their unique defensive systems and the lore of Breese Stevens Field still in place, they have it with a roster that brings back most key contributors and franchise talisman KPS after injury took away his 2023 season. With young players like Pieran Robert and Kai Marcus joining the fold, the Radicals have a higher ceiling than last year’s team.

Chicago Union

Key Additions: Joe White (returning), John Lithio, Ray Mauntel, Wilson Matthews, Cullen Baker, Jake Rubin-Miller
Key Losses: Jace Bruner, Eli Artemakis, Axel Agami, Nico Lake, Tavis Leighton, Luke Brennan, Asher Lantz

With an impressive crop of newcomers, Chicago will hope to push Minnesota and potentially return to Championship Weekend. How many games players like Joe White and Cullen Baker end up playing will make a big difference in the Union’s outlook for 2024.

Indianapolis Alleycats

Key Additions: John Jones (returning), Jake Kenniv
Key Losses: Carter Rae, Jacob Fella

The Alleycats have a fun mix of veteran who have been with the team for literally a decade and up-and-coming talent who can fill the shoes of the departed. Expect Indy to be a fun team to watch in 2024 as they work to return to the playoffs and potentially to Championship Weekend.

Pittsburgh Thunderbirds

Key Additions: Marcel Oliart, Anil Driehuys, Dan Nichols, Will Hoffenkamp
Key Losses: Clint McSherry, Mike O’Brien, Sam VanDusen, Alex Thomas, Dylan Best

Losing backfield stalwarts in McSherry and VanDusen is tough, but the Pitt trio of Oliart, Nichols, and Hoffenkamp all have handling experience and should be able to help fill the gaps around Max Sheppard and Jon Mast. Driehuys is a budding college star who could make a big difference once he joins the T-Birds.

Detroit Mechanix

Key Additions: Aiden Rudy, Jacob Felton
Key Losses: Jake Kenniv, Joe Cubitt

The Mechanix are bringing on an infusion of local college talent this season. It might not be enough to win a game but hopefully it will make their games a fun watch.

West

Salt Lake Shred

Key Additions: Grayson Rettberg, Oscar Brown, Ben Field, Zach Wolfe, Taylor Barton (returning), Joe Merrill (returning)
Key Losses: Joel Clutton, Devon Terry, Max Dehlin, Ben Hoffman

Rettberg and Brown are two of the most exciting players in their college rookie class. Field and Wolfe were two of the best MMP cutters on Boston Slow last fall. Barton and Merrill are two of the best players in BYU history and two of the best Shred alumni who did not suit up in 2023. Those are some powerful pairings and the Shred are hoping to pair their 2023 Championship Weekend appearance with another in 2024; they have the roster to do just that and the motivation, given that the event will take place at their home stadium.

Los Angeles Aviators

Key Additions: Brent George (returning), Bryan Nguyen (returning), Will Turner, Kobi McCracken
Key Losses: Jason Vallee, Lukas Ambrose, Marcel Osborne, Matt Miller, Aaron Weaver, Calvin Brown

Is it 2016 again? Imagining Brent George and Bryan “Stig” Nguyen running down hucks from a pinpoint handler2 has me in throwback mode for the Aviators. Of course, local college star Kobi McCracken adds a dose of youth to a team that has many shoes to fill as it looks to follow up on 2023’s playoff performance. It will be tough to do that as the team needs to replace the defensive prowess of Ambrose and Vallee and the offensive know-how of franchise centerpieces like Weaver and Brown.

Colorado Summit

Key Additions: Denny Bechis, Logan Pruess, Jeremy Knopf, Chance Cochran, David Yu, Nanda Min-Fink
Key Losses: Cody Spicer, Connor Tabor, Seth Wells, Calvin Stoughton, Joe Anderson

The Summit put together some really solid veteran pickups to round out a team that doesn’t need any more stars. Knopf, Cochran, and Yu are the kind of no-nonsense handlers who would be a benefit to any team. As Colorado looks to sharpen its edges ahead of another playoff push, this batch of veteran pickups should fit right in and help the team recover from the retirements of franchise icons like Spicer and Anderson.

Oakland Spiders

Key Additions: Jace Bruner, Eli Kerns, Justin Lim, Jake Thorne, Jason Vallee
Key Losses: Mac Hecht, Gavin May (injury), Munis Thahir, Justin Norden, Jacob Smith

There’s no way around it: replacing Mac Hecht is a tall task. Luckily in Eli Kerns, the Spiders picked up an All-Club level talent with extensive UFA experience, so I wouldn’t worry about the offense. Adding Jason Vallee and bringing back Jake Thorne will enhance the defense enough that the Spiders have a credible playoff push ahead even without a talent like Hecht.

San Diego Growlers

Key Additions: Matt Miller, Peter Lenz
Key Losses: Will Turner, Steven Milardovich, Paul Lally, Jeff Silverman, Tyler Bacon

The Growlers should be a really good team…in like 2026 or so. They’re just bursting with good college talent as recent graduates from Cal Poly SLO, UCSD, and Arizona all have starting spots on the roster. Getting those players not just up to speed playing together, but playing at a high enough level to succeed in the UFA will be the task for one of the better coaching staffs in the league.

Seattle Cascades

Key Additions: Lukas Ambrose, Christian Foster, Tommy Li (returning), Ian Sweeney
Key Losses: David Zhou, Dante Lopez-Escarez, Peter Geertz-Larson, Peter Lenz, Tarik Akyuz, Jamie Kauffman

It’s the same story in Seattle: there’s a lot of young talent coming in and a lot of roster inconsistency week to week and season to season. Before we get too excited about additions like Lukas Ambrose or Tommy Li, let’s see how often they’re on the twenty-person roster.3

Portland Nitro

Key Additions: Henry Wayte, Emmett Warner, David Barram
Key Losses: Ian Sweeney, Raphy Hayes, Will Lohre, Leandro Marx, Eli Friedman, Tom Doi, Mica Glass

Like Seattle, Portland has historically struggled to roster a consistent group of players week to week. Wayte, Warner, and Barram have all made waves in the college game recently and should translate to solid semi-pro players as well. Unfortunately, franchise mismanagement means they are unlikely to share the field with luminaries like Marx, Hayes, and Lohre, and that will ultimately hinder the Nitro’s success moving forward.


  1. Let me know how that sounds–I’m just trying it out 

  2. 2015’s Tim Beatty to 2024’s Pawel Janas 

  3. This is not a dig at Ambrose or Li, just a reflection of the Seattle franchise’s inability to field consistent lineups since 2016 

  1. Alex Rubin
    Alex Rubin

    Alex Rubin started writing for Ultiworld in 2018. He is a graduate of Northwestern University where he played for four years. After a stint in Los Angeles coaching high school and college teams, they moved to Chicago to experience real seasons and eat deep dish pizza. You can reach Alex through e-mail ([email protected]) or Twitter (@arubes14).

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