1/10/11 9:57 AM
The NLL kicked off their 2011 season this past weekend. Several Boston Cannons play indoor and BostonCannons.com will give you a recap of how your favorite players and their indoor teams fared each week.
The obvious choice of which team to play for for most of our players is the Boston Blazers. The Blazers roster is loaded with Cannons once again this season. The Blazers kicked off the 2011 NLL Season with a road game against the Philadelphia Wings. Kevin Buchanan, Jack Reid, Mitch Belisle, and Greg Downing all suited up for the Blazers on Saturday night in Philly. They were not the only Cannons on the field as MLL teammates Ryan Boyle, Pat Heim and Kyle Sweeney were opponents in this game.
The most interesting stat line to BostonCannons.com was that Pat Heim is listed as taking all 20 face-offs for the Wings. Heim had a slow start but overall won 7/20 in the contest. The first quarter was a back and forth affair as the two teams traded goals three times and went into the first break event 3-3. After the Blazers took a 4-3 lead in the 2nd quarter, Heim and Boyle created a shorthanded goal for the Wings to once again event the score. Both Cannons were credited with assists on the play. The Blazers stretched a 1 goal lead to 7-4 in the 3rd quarter as they were lead by Casey Powell, Dan Dawson. With under 30 seconds to play in the 3rd, Kevin Buchanan scored his first goal as a Blazer. Boston pulled away in the middle of the 4th Quarter, scoring three unanswered goals to capture the opening night win 10-6. Downing, Reid and Belisle collected a combined 7 loose balls on the night, while Boyle, Heim and Sweeney combined for 4 assists and 11 loose balls in defeat.
The Boston Blazers will play their 2011 Home Opener next Saturday January 15th @ 7:30pm at the TD Garden when they take on Edmonton.
Paul Rabil and the defending NLL Champion Washington Stealth had a busy first weekend of play. The Stealth played an away game on Saturday night in Colorado before returning home on Sunday for their 2011 home opener against Calgary.
With back to games to start the season, the Stealth decided to make it even more challenging by playing extra time in the first game. The Stealth wasted little time reminding Colorado why they were the champs, scoring 12 seconds into the season. In the 2nd quarter Rabil tallied his only assist on the night, a power play goal for Washington as they took a one goal lead into the half. The Stealth stretched their lead to 4 goals, the largest lead of the game, in the 3rd quarter before Colorado fought back to make it a one goal game leading into the 4th quarter. Colorado continued their comeback to take the lead in the 4th, but Washington was not done as they scored the final goal of regulation to force overtime. The sudden death extra period took almost 10 minutes before the Stealth scored the game winner. It was a hard fought first game for the defending champs. While Rabil had only 1 assist on the night, the Cannons star collected 12 loose balls in the contest.
Washington completed its back to back games at home on Sunday night against Calgary. In the first it appeared as though the back to back games was too much for the defending champs as they surrendered 6 unanswered goals to start the game. They bounced back in the 2nd quarter with six goals of their own to go into the half trailing 8-7. The Stealth took the lead briefly in the 3rd Quarter, but the visiting team stole the show on the defending champs' banner night with a 13-11 victory. Rabil had 2 assists and collected 9 loose balls giving him 3 assists and 21 loose balls on the weekend.
Check back every Monday as BostonCannons.com will fill you in on Cannons in the NLL.