Di Miller, Correspondent Denver Outlaws
Lacrosse is Awesome©
The Denver Outlaws (8-5) hosted the Boston Cannons (7-6) on Saturday August 31 in a battle for a spot atop the league with the Chesapeake Bayhawks (8-5). The game was the first of two to be held on the campus of Denver University at Peter Barton Lacrosse Stadium. The 2,112 Outlaws fans would not be disappointed as the Outlaws would outscore the Cannons marking their largest win since July 24, 2018 when they defeated Boston 25-11. Denver, for the third time this season would allow fewer than 10 goals in a game; and held the Cannons leading scorer, Mark Cockerton to no goals in the contest. Final Score: Outlaws 22—Cannons 9.
The game started out a bit slow with both net-minders making saves on each end of the field and the ball going end to end. Denver’s defenseman Andrew Newbold (1 2ptG) would get it going with his third two-point goal of the season at the 10:32 mark putting the Outlaws on the board. A little less than three minutes later, Zach Currier (3g, 1a) would go airborne on the right side of the cage and fake Nick Marrocco on the outside putting it into the net on the far side 3-0 Denver. Ryland Rees (1g) and Will Sands would team up for Boston at the 7:02 mark to get them on the board 3-1. Three and a half minutes would tick off the timer before the Outlaws would score again. Jack Jasinksi (1g, 1 2ptG, 1a) would get his first of two on the day at the 3:34 mark; and Denver would close it out at the buzzer with .01 on the clock with Ryan Lee (5g, 3a) putting his first of five up on the day. The teams would be even on shots on goal at six apiece; and turn overs at three apiece; Denver would lead on GB 14-6; and Boston would lead at the face-off dot 4-2. Score at the end of one: Denver 5—Boston 1.
Each of the teams would score four times in the second, but Denver would put up the second two-point goal in the contest. Boston would get it started at the 12:31 mark with back-to-back goals from Kyle Jackson (2g, 1a). He’d team up with James Burr on the first; and Kyle Denhoff on the second. Then in his usual fashion,
John Grant, Jr. (1g) would find his way around from “X” and look over his left shoulder and flick his stick low around the left side and roll it in between the legs of an unsuspecting Marrocco putting the Outlaws back up 6-3. About a minute and a half later, the Cannons would strike back with one from Matt Bertrams (1g) with 7:05 remaining in the half. But just as quickly as they’d close the gap, the Outlaws would go on a three-goal run started off with a unassisted bullet by Mikie Schlosser (2g, 1 2ptG); Matt Gilray (1g) would be next as he’d scoop the ground ball at midfield, head down field set up and fire within the two point arc; and Schlosser would cap off the run putting them up by six. Boston would put one more on the board before the half from Connor O’Hara (1g) with 2:16 left. Denver would lead in all categories: shots on goal 8-6; turnovers 5-2; ground balls 15-4; and face-offs 6-3. Score at the end of two: Outlaws 10—Cannons 5.
The wheels started to fall of the bus for Boston in the third and Denver would outscore them 6-1 including another two point goal. The Cannons would get their lone goal 1:09 into the frame and that would be it when James Burr (1g, 1a) would find twine with the assist to Kyle Denhoff. The Outlaws would go on a six-goal run with Lee scoring unassisted 50 seconds later; Brendan Kavanagh (3g, 1a); Currier with two more;
Jasinski with his first MLL career 2pt goal at the 7:24 mark; and Schlosser putting up his second. Denver would lead in both shots on goal 10-5 and ground balls 17-8; while Boston led in turnovers 9-6; and face-offs 6-3. Score at the end of three: Denver 17—Boston 7.
The Cannons would start off the final frame with Zach Goodrich getting them on the board at 1:24 with the one of the last two they would score for the remainder of the game. The Outlaws would notch two more, one from Lee and the other from Kavanagh putting them up 19-8. There would be one man-up goal in the contest, and it would be scored by Boston 23 seconds into the penalty. Kyle Denhoff (1g, 2a) would score on the man-up with 8:07 remaining and that would be it for Boston. Denver would score three more, another from Kavanagh for his hat-trick; and Lee would notch the final two with 3:03 and 1:11 remaining. Final Score: Outlaws 22—Cannons 9.
Boston Cannons—SOG 22; STOT 37; GB 28; FO 18-32; TO 21; PP 1-4; TOP 26:03
Denver Outlaws—SOG 34; STOT 58; GB 56; FO 14-32; TO 16; PP 0-2; TOP 31:48
NET MINDER STATS:
Boston Cannons Nick Marrocco—SOG 29; Saves 13; GA 19; SV% .448%
Boston Cannons Tate Boyce—SOT 5; Saves 2; GA 3; SV% .600%
Denver Outlaws Dillon Ward—SOG 19; Saves 11; GA 8; SV% .421%
Denver Outlaws Christian Knight—SOG 3; Saves 3; GA 1; SV% .333%
So what does Denver have to do to keep up their winning ways? In speaking with Outlaws midfielder Chris Aslanian, twice awarded Cascade Rookie of the Week we asked what their strategy is. He said they need to keep it simple; keep moving the ball; be unselfish; and get the best looks for the offense.
Boston on the other hand, who had been coming out strong scoring big in the first quarter have hit a wall losing their last two and their recent victories have only been by one goal. If they want to move back up in the ranks to that third spot ahead of the Atlanta Blaze (7-6) they need to start putting up points early and can’t their opponents jump out to the kind of lead the Outlaws got against them in yesterday’s contest.
The Denver Outlaws (8-5) head to New York on Saturday September 7 to face the Lizards (4-10) for the final meeting of the two teams. Denver has won the series 2-0 but the Lizards have the chance to again be the spoil sport as they did in Dallas yesterday when they halted the Dallas Rattlers (6-8) six game winning streak. This game will by no means be an easy win for Denver. They cannot let up for one second as Chesapeake isn’t going to relinquish that top spot without a fight. Game time 7:00 p.m. EST and the game can be seen on www.majorleaguelacrosse.com
The Boston Cannons (7-6) will host the Chesapeake Bayhawks (8-5) at Veterans Stadium in Quincy, MA, game time 5:00 p.m. EST. The Bayhawks need to continue to win to hold that number one spot in the league. This game can be seen on www.laxsportsnetwork.com
With the final three weeks of the season, every game is a must win for the top four as it will decide who sits where in the playoff scenarios. This will be an interesting weekend coming up as two of the top teams play once more.
Di Miller, Correspondent Denver Outlaws
Lacrosse is Awesome©