On a stormy and rainy Wednesday afternoon the Connecticut Hammerheads (1-2) picked up their first franchise victory 10-8 over the New York Lizards (0-4).
With both teams needing a win, the Lizards came out pushing the tempo for the first quarter. But it was Hammerheads goalie Sean Sconone who came up big in the first 10 minutes.
Decker Curran finally found rope for the Lizards with just under five minutes to go in the first quarter. Michael Kraus would tie the game for the Hammerheads, but it was Sean O’Brien firing a shot past Sconone to give New York a 2-1 lead after the first quarter.
The second quarter was all Connecticut with goals from Ben Martin, Bradley Voight and Brendan Collins. The Lizards had some offensive chances, but it was Sconone and the Hammerheads controlling the first half as they would lead 4-2.
With five minutes to go during the halftime break, lightning struck. After a one-hour delay due to high winds the second half got underway.
Andrew Pettit and Sean O’Brien scored 40 seconds apart to tie the game 4-4. Pettit’s goal was the Lizards’ first in 19:17 of playing time. Connecticut would score three consecutive to open a 7-4 lead. Connor O’Hara would find the back of the net for the Lizards, but Bradley Voight would be wide open in front to close the scoring in the third and give the Hammerheads an 8-5 lead.
As the fourth quarter got underway the rains started to fall a bit heavier. O’Brien and Pettit would see their way through the raindrops to bring the Lizards within a goal at 8-7.
Bradley Voight then netted his fourth of the game with an underhand shot through the five hole. Will Sands would score a minute later as Connecticut would regain a three-goal lead 10-7.
Nick Aponte would take a feed from O’Brien and fire a shot past Sconone to bring the Lizards within a pair at 10-8.
With a minute to go in regulation (52 seconds on shot clock) the Lizards called timeout to set up a play but the play never seemed to materialize. As the time dropped below 35 seconds, the Lizards would feed Dylan Molloy in front. Molloy was immediately double teamed and Connecticut would force the turnover with 15 seconds left as Player of the Game goalie Sean Sconone played keep away.
Voight (4G) lead the Hammerheads, while Will Sands and Michael Kraus each had a pair. Sean Sconone played his best game of the week with 15 saves to help carry his team to victory.
O’Brien (3+2) lead the Lizards’ offense. Pettit notched a pair, while Molloy was kept off the board by the stingy Hammerhead defense.
Both teams are back in action Thursday as Connecticut will face the Boston Cannons at 7 p.m. in a must win for them.
New York will face off against the Philadelphia Barrage at 4 p.m. This will be the final game for both teams and it will be like a playoff game as the winner clinches a spot in Saturday’s semi-finals and the loser will go home and prepare for next season.