MLL: Chesapeake chisels away Lizards’ lead

July 19, 2020 Annapolis, MD – Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium Chesapeake Bayhawks vs New York Lizards. Alex Spring and the Lizards surrendered a 6-3 lead in the second quarter. (Photography Credit: Alex McIntyre)

The heat from the sky wasn’t the only thing on fire in Annapolis as the Chesapeake Bayhawks played like they had a hometown advantage Sunday afternoon against the New York Lizards at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium.

Nine different players contributed to the scoresheet in the Bayhawks’ 18-13 win. Some of these goal scorers like Andrew Kew (two goals) and Lyle Thompson (three goals) were expected. However, one was not: C.J. Costabile, whose two 2-point goals became the game changer for the Bayhawks. Costabile had two shots take flight and land in the back of the net; the first one seemed to shock New York’s Austin Kaut. The second one made him angry. Maybe unexpected, especially two in a game, but neither goal should have been shocking as Costabile has been known to score 2-point goals and make it look easy.

“C.J. kind of knows the right time to pull the trigger. If you look at his career, he has a history of doing this. He has a sense for when to shoot,” Bayhawks coach Tom Mariano said told the Capital Gazette.

Someone else who made scoring goals look easy in the beginning of the game was New York’s Dylan Molloy, who had three goals for the Lizards. He looked red hot in the beginning and it appeared that the Lizards made the Bayhawks their prey. Connor O’Hara found the back of the net four times for New York.

But thanks to Costabile, the Bayhawks soon found their rhythm and played more like the defending champions that they are.

Brian Corrigan replaced Kaut in goal. Both had seven saves at the end of the contest. Making sure both goalies have time between the pipes is important in case of injury or if one player has a bad game.

New York seemed to stumble on defense at times during this game. It is hard when you have a plethora of attackers who can score at will. Of course when you have attackers like Lyle Thompson who can score despite multiple men on him (or get the assist with multiple men chasing him) it makes sense that the New York defense would be a little flustered.

This is the second game where New York has been in control and faltered. They have a day off to regroup before they play Denver on Tuesday, to try to stay the course to finish strong if they want to compete next weekend.

Chesapeake still needs to work on coming out strong right away. Taking their time getting set up on offense and eventually scoring goals has worked out okay for them in the first two games but they have yet to face a stronger team like Denver or Boston, who they’ll face Monday.

Some of the players looked spent at the end of the day today, so all teams need to make sure they are hydrating properly and resting after these grueling games in such intense heat. With little to no time to rest, these two factors could mean the difference between first place and second.