The PLL returned to Homewood Field in Baltimore this past weekend and fans filled the seats to watch some week 4 lacrosse action.
The opening game featured the Redwoods against the Whipsnakes in a Friday night showdown. The ever-potent Whipsnakes slithered away with a 12-11 win as they wowed the crowd.
The game was closely matched in the first half with the Redwoods leading with six goals to the five scored by Whipsnakes at the half. The third quarter saw the Whipsnakes double up the Redwoods 6-3 while the fourth quarter saw the Redwoods out score the Whipsnakes 2-1. It was not enough to pull out the victory.
Matt Rambo continued his former MVP status throwing in four goals and adding one assist. However, most people focused on two areas: goaltending and the return of Zed Williams to the Whipsnakes. Tim Troutner’s save percentage was 27% for the Redwoods as compared to Kyle Bernhlor’s save percentage of 55%.
“It was fun,” enthused Williams after the game. “It was fun to see everyone. It was fun to play field lacrosse again.”
The Whipsnakes have four wins and no losses going into week five. The Redwoods have one win and three losses.
Friday’s second game was not the one-goal game that many people expected with the PLL. The Waterdogs lapped up Chaos in what appeared to be the dog days of summer when they doubled up Chaos 18-9.
The Waterdogs came out strong in the first, scoring five more than Chaos. The second quarter saw both teams score three. The third and fourth quarter were more evenly matched; however, Chaos could not compete with the Waterdogs and their offensive dominance.
The top scorers for both teams were Dhane Smith and Connor Kelly, who each scored two goals and added two assists. Kelly edged out Smith’s goal scoring with his two 2-point goals, this giving him a total of six points on the night.
Another big scorer was Ryan Brown, who spoke about going up against last year’s MVP, Blaze Riorden and his goaltending: “At times, Blaze can be considered the best player in the world in what he can do to change the game for that team, so when you’re playing against him, you want to shoot responsibly.”
And shoot responsibly, Brown did, with four goals on 10 shots.
Riorden had a 46% save percentage where he saved 13 shots. His opponent, Matt DeLuca, stopped 11 shots to earn a save percentage of 55.
Chaos has yet to win a game this season. The Waterdogs earned their only victory so far.
Both the temperatures and the lacrosse action were blazing in Saturday’s first game, in which Chrome took on the Cannons. Chrome pulled out a stunning overtime victory that left many fans shaking their heads at the 12-11 win.
Both teams scored three to end the first quarter. The second quarter saw a burst of offense from the Cannons who outscored Chrome by three. The Cannons scored the only two goals of the third quarter. And then, the shocking ending: Chrome’s offense came to life in the fourth quarter by scoring seven goals, with two of the goals scored within 20 seconds of each other—at the end of the game. The game went into overtime and Chrome secured the win.
Asher Nolting fired four goals into the net and added two assists. Brendan Nichtern had one goal and five assists for Chrome.
Lyle Thompson, while he potted a pair of goals, also had three turnovers at the end of the game.
“I was upset with how I finished the game,” he said. “The disappointment is mostly personal. I was happy with the way we were playing offense. They went on a run at the end of the game… Naturally, a team that is ahead gets a little bit too comfortable with the lead.”
The Cannons need Thompson to get back to his elite goal scoring ways so they can get their second win, as they currently sit at 1-3 in second last place.
Chrome has yet to lose a game at 4-0.
The last game in Baltimore was another close one. The Archers lost to Atlas 10-9 in a game where players were slipping and sliding all over the field, even though it was not raining.
The Archers outscored Atlas 5-4 in the first quarter. The second quarter saw Atlas net two while keeping the Archers scoreless. Both teams scored three in the third, and both teams scored one goal in the fourth quarter.
Matt Moore had a hat trick for the Archers, while Jeff Teat had a hat trick for Atlas. Surprisingly, Chris Gray was held scoreless.
The Archers are now at .500 with two wins and losses. Atlas is now at three wins and one loss.
After the game, Chris Bates reflected on the play of the Archers.
“They did a nice job all game of pressing out and making us uncomfortable,” he said. “We put ourselves in a position… Not playing entirely well… We were sloppy.”
The Archers will have to eliminate these errors in order to have a run at the top of the standings.
It is Minneapolis for PLL action in week five. The Archers take on Redwoods for the first Friday game. The second Friday game is Atlas against Chrome. Saturday’s games have the Cannons playing Chaos and the undefeated Whipsnakes taking on the Waterdogs.