Di Miller, Correspondent Denver Outlaws
Lacrosse is Awesome©
Photos Courtesy of Pretty Instant
The Denver Outlaws (1-0) would be the first team to face the Connecticut Hammerheads (0-1) in this shortened 2020 MLL Season. It’s a new era in the world of professional lacrosse with many changes. We’ve got the teams on opposite sides of the field; no locker room access or as the MLL is calling it “In the Bubble”; and most of all, a stadium with no fans. The Outlaws showed their veteran stature against this new Hammerhead team, taking the lead early; firing on all cylinders; and showing the lacrosse world that they are a team to be reckoned with. Their rookies were stellar in the contest not showing their lack of experience in the professional game. On the other side of the field, the Hammerheads have a much newer squad. They are the former Dallas Rattlers, a team that lost many of its key veterans when the PLL was formed in 2018 and probably the team hit hardest with the formation of the new league. They’ve got a ton of talent, but they need to use it as a team and once they do, they will be a stealthy opponent. Final Score: Outlaws 18—Hammerheads 6.
The Hammerheads would win the first draw of the game and the first in franchise history. That would be one of very few momentous occasions in the contest. Denver would be the only ones to score in the first and would spread the wealth. Charlie Hayes (1g) scooped the ground ball and shot one over the top to get it started 4:33 in the frame to put the Outlaws on the board 1-0. Chris Aslanian (1g, 3a) off the feed from Ryan Lee took only 12 seconds to put up another. Denver would put up three more before the first quarter was over. Jack Jasinski (2g) would score on a stop and go move hitting top corner at 5:51; Brian Kormondy (1g) found his way to the cage with a nice spin dodge, jumped up and over the defender and slam dunked it over Sconone’s shoulder with 4:14 left; and Daniel Bucaro (4g) would notch his first career MLL goal with a nice crease dive goal bouncing it in putting the Outlaws up 5-0. Denver would lead in SOG 8-2 and in GB 11-3. Connecticut would lead in Saves 3-2 and in TO 7-2. Face-offs were equal at three apiece. Score at the end of one: Outlaws 5—Hammerheads 0.
Connecticut would get on the board to start of the second with their first franchise goal. Ryan McNamara would score 2:12 in with an overhand shot high-to-low to get them on the board 5-1. It took 38 seconds for Denver to fire back from one of their rookies, Miles Silva. He’d get the feed from veteran John Grant, Jr. who was behind the cage and fired high-to-low for his first career MLL goal at the 2:50 mark. Grant Jr., would team up again for another assist, this time to Ryan Lee on the crease with a look away feed to put them up once again by six. Cody Radziewicz would stop the bleeding for a bit with back-to-back tallies and put a bit of a fire into the Hammerheads bench. The first off a nice freeze move; and the second bouncing it past the defender he’d close the gap to four 7-3. But that’s when Ryan Lee came to life going on a three-goal run notching his hat-trick and giving the Outlaws a seven goal lead heading into the half. Denver would lead once again in SOG 17-10; and GB 20-16. Connecticut led in Face-offs 10-16; and in TO 12-5. Score at the end of two: Outlaws 10—Hammerheads 3.
The Outlaws would dominate the third outscoring the Hammerheads 4-1. Connecticut seemed to be misfiring on most cylinders with missed passes; bobbling the ball; and it just seemed as though they lacked the composure they needed as a team. Denver saw this and capitalized. The Outlaws would get two more from Bucaro, his second giving him his first career hat-trick with 43 seconds in the quarter; another from Jasinski; and another from Silva. After the first goal from Bucaro, Outlaws Head Coach Tony Seaman gave net-minder Christian Knight the rest of the day off and brought in Nick Washuta to finish off the contest. He got a “Hello” from Bradley “Bubba” Voigt (3g) with 2:07 remaining who would get on the board smack dab in the middle of the Outlaws scoring party for his first of three on the night. The Hammerheads finally had some good ball movement, and got the ball to Voigt and with a nice backside flip in front of the cage, he’d put it between the pipes. Denver would once again lead in SOG 9-2; GB 12-4; and would shut out Connecticut in face-offs 7-0. Connecticut would lead in TO 6-3. Score at the end of three: Outlaws 14—Hammerheads 4.
With 15 to go, it was all for pride now as the Hammerheads had little energy left but still wanted to hold their heads high. They’d get on the board first with Voigt scoring 2:01 in on a quick scoop and shoot. But the Outlaws weren’t going to let up. James Burr (1g, 2a) would get the Sconone rebound, stuck with the play and fired it in 55 seconds later; Colorado native Colton Jackson (1g) got in on the action firing one from the outside with 7:35 remaining; and Silva would notch his first career hat-trick with 6:59 left. The Hammerheads would get another from Voigt for the hat-trick with 2:00 minutes remaining and that was it. Denver rookie Bucaro was able to handle the tough feed from Aslanian and shot across his body to find twine for the final goal of the game with 59.5 seconds on the ticker. Final Score: Outlaws 18—Hammerheads 6.
Denver: SOG—32; GB—41; Saves—10; TO 13; Face-offs 17-29
Connecticut: SOG—16; GB—29; Saves—14; TO 23; Face-offs 12-29
Denver-Christian Knight: SOG—9; GA 3; Save% .750%
Denver-Nick Washuta: SOG—1; GA 3; Save% .250%
Connecticut-Sean Sconone: SOG—14; 18—GA; Save% .438%
Stars of the Game:
Denver Outlaws—Ryan Lee 4g, 1a
Denver Outlaws—Miles Silva 4g
Denver Outlaws—Daniel Bucaro 4g
The Denver Outlaws (1-0) will face the Philadelphia Barrage (0-1) on Sunday July 19, game time 4:00 p.m. EST. You can catch the game on ESPN2.
The Connecticut Hammerheads (0-1) will face the Philadelphia Barrage (0-1) on Monday July 20, game time 4:00 p.m. EST. The game can be seen on ESPN+.
Di Miller, Correspondent Denver Outlaws
Lacrosse is Awesome©