Di Miller, Correspondent Denver Outlaws
Lacrosse is Awesome©
Featured Image Photo Credit: Di Miller
On Sunday July 21, 2019 the Denver Outlaws (6-2) hosted the Dallas Rattlers (1-7) in front of 3,752 die hard Outlaws fans. Sunday was a special day in Denver as another great would have their jersey retired. Matt Bocklet who played his entire MLL career in Denver and was team captain for the Outlaws in all three championship titles would see his #7 jersey retired, the third Outlaws jersey retired in franchise history. Bocklet played for the Outlaws from 2009-18 and is the franchise’s all-time leader in games played with 144. The South Salem, N.Y., native made five career MLL All-Star games and ranks No. 3 on the league’s all-time ground balls list. Unfortunately, the festivities would not be capped off with an Outlaws victory as the Rattlers would finally put together a full 60 minutes of lacrosse and get their first victory of the season defeating the Outlaws. Dallas did what they needed to do, part of which was hold Zach Currier to no goals; and they held Ryan Lee and Brendan Kavanagh to a combined three goals. Final Score: Dallas 11—Denver 8.
The Rattlers would dominate the first 15 outscoring the Outlaws five to one. Rookie Bradley Voigt (1g) would be the first to get Dallas on the board only 46 seconds in. A little over a minute later Joe Saggese (1g) would score again giving Dallas a two point lead and the Outlaws fans were a bit stunned. But this is what the Rattlers had done of late, jumping out to a lead only to give it up in the second half. Denver was rushing their shots on cage and Sean Sconone was holding up quite well against some of the best shooters in the league. It took almost six minutes before the scoring drought would end and again it would be Dallas continuing their run. They’d put three more up, Bryce Wasserman (3g); Ryan McNamara (1g, 1a); and Jack Curran (2g, 1a). The Outlaws would score their lone goal with 51 seconds remaining in the first, a nice shot from the left side of the cage as Taylor Stuart (1g) would make the slam dunk over the shoulder of Sconone to find the back of the net stopping the five goal run. Score at the end of one: Rattlers 5—Outlaws 1.
Denver would open up the second just a minute in with veteran John Grant Jr., teaming up for the assist to Brian Begley (1g) to close the gap 5-2. But just as quickly Curran would score his second for Dallas to put them back up by four. Again Denver was chasing and in unfamiliar territory once more. Another five would come off the clock as the teams would head up and down the field in a contest with virtually no penalties. About halfway through the second quarter, Brian Kormondy would head to the cage and set up for a nice shot on cage sending one past Dillon Ward to put the gap back at five. The Outlaws would score the final two before the end of the first half with Ryan Lee (2g, one 2-pt goal, 1a) scoring back-to-back goals, the first at the 4:42 mark (unassisted) as Lee would set up outside the two-point arc with Grant Jr. on the door step, Grant Jr. thought Lee was making the pass for Jr. to score, instead Lee sent the floater past a confused Sconone for the two-point goal. Originally called a one point goal, Outlaws Head Coach Tony Seaman threw the challenge flag and the challenge held “two-point” goal closing the gap for Denver; and the second with the assist to Grant Jr. Score at the end of the first half: Dallas 7—Denver 5.
The third was a sleeper, but all Denver as they would tie the game giving Outlaws fans a glimmer of hope that their team would not fall to the winless Rattlers. They would score two, the first from Brendan Kavanagh (1g) at 13:04; and the second by Sean Lawton (1g) at 10:38. Score at the end of three: Outlaws 7—Rattlers 7.
Fifteen minutes to go, and Denver had done this before…come back from behind so why couldn’t they do it again. But Dallas was on a roll and they were hungry for “win” number one. There wasn’t much scoring in the fourth, but Dallas would score the first three which all but sealed Denver’s fate. Zack Greer would score the go ahead goal (1g, 1a); Wasserman would get his second and what turned out to be the game winning goal 9-7; and Kormondy would get another with 4:21 left on the clock. John Grant, Jr. (1g, 2a) would get his only goal of the game off the ensuing face-off with the assist to Max Adler only seven seconds later. Possession would go back and forth for the next two minutes, but Dallas would have the final possession.
With 1:29 left on the clock, Denver would pull Ward and bring in back up net-minder Christian Knight and six seconds later he would be faced with Bryce Wasserman barreling down the field with only Andrew Newbold to help defend the cage, and Wasserman would put the final nail in the coffin at the 1:15 mark from the right side of the cage with a nice bounce shot through the five-hole on Knight. Final Score: Rattlers 11—Outlaws 8.
Next weekend is the MLL All-Star Game on Saturday July 27, 2019. We’ll be there covering the game so stay tuned for our coverage.
The Outlaws and Rattlers will have a combined 11 players in the All-Star Game; including Zach Currier, Mikie Schlosser, John Grant, Jr., Brendan Kavanagh, Finn Sullivan, Max Adler, and Dillon Ward for Denver; Jack Curran, Jake Pulver, Bryce Wasserman, and Craig Chick for Dallas.
Di Miller, Denver Outlaws Correspondent
Lacrosse is Awesome©