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MLL News and Notes: July 13

July 13, 2011
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Players of the Week

Offensive Player of the Week
Paul Rabil, Boston Cannons

Rabil scored three goals, including a two-point marker, and added three assists to lead the Cannons to their fifth straight win, a 15-12 victory over the Denver Outlaws at INVESCO Field at Mile High. Rabil, who was named as the Bud Light Player of the Game, scored two of his goals in the second half as the Cannons overcame a 7-3 half-time deficit to take sole possession of first place in the MLL standings. The MLL’s leading scorer with 33 points, Rabil is also tied for the league lead with 18 goals.

Defensive Player of the Week
Brian Phipps, Chesapeake Bayhawks

While leading the Bayhawks to a 13-11 victory over Rochester, Phipps made a season-high 21 saves, including 11 in the second half, as Chesapeake snapped a two-game losing streak. Honored as the Bud Light Player of the Game, he made six saves in the first quarter and had six more saves in the fourth quarter. Phipps, who has started the last two games for the Bayhawks, ranks third in the MLL with a .559 save percentage while allowing 14.00 goals per game.

Cascade Rookie of the Week
Kevin Crowley, Hamilton Nationals

Crowley earned the Cascade Rookie of the Week honor after scoring four goals with two assists in the Nationals’ 15-9 victory over Long Island. While leading the Nationals to their third win in a row, Crowley tallied three of his goals in the first half as Hamilton jumped out to a 7-4 lead at the intermission. The first overall pick in the 2011 MLL Collegiate Draft, Crowley has scored six goals with four assists in five games this year.

MLL News and Notes

PLAYOFF POTENTIAL: A pair of teams could clinch a spot in the 2011 Sports Authority MLL Championship Weekend presented by Warrior this week. A Boston win over Long Island will secure a playoff berth for the Cannons, who are in first place with a 6-1 record. Meanwhile, the Denver Outlaws can secure their sixth straight playoff appearance with a win and a Long Island loss against the Cannons.     

ON THE OTHER HAND: While the Cannons and the Outlaws can clinch a playoff spot this weekend, the Rochester Rattlers will be eliminated from playoff consideration with a loss against the Outlaws on Saturday night. It will be the first of two meetings between the two teams as the Rattlers will host Denver next week at Sahlen’s Stadium.

TOO CLOSE FOR COMFORT: For the third straight year, the Sports Authority MLL All-Star Game was decided by a single point after Team Authority’s 21-20 victory over Team Warrior on Saturday night. In 2009, the Old School All-Stars edged the Young Guns by a 22-21 margin in overtime. Team USA edged the MLL All-Stars by 13-12 in last year’s exhibition at Harvard Stadium.    

TWO STEP: Team Authority midfielder Michael Kimmel tied a Major League Lacrosse All-Star Game record by scoring three two-point goals in the 21-20 verdict on Saturday night. In 2009, Brian Langtry converted three two-point goals for the Old School All-Stars. Kimmel was making his first-ever MLL All-Star Game appearance and has not scored a two-point goal in 13 regular season games.

POINT TAKEN: In addition to tying the All-Star Game single-game mark for two-point goals, midfielder Michael Kimmel set an All-Star Game record by posting nine points on Saturday night. He eclipsed the previous record of seven points, which was set seven times.

20-20 VISION: For just the third time in the 10-year history of the All-Star Game, both teams scored at least 20 points. In 2005, the Young Guns All-Stars edged the Old School All-Stars by a 21-20 margin in overtime. Two years ago, the Old School All-Stars earned a 22-21 overtime victory over the Young Guns. It is the fifth time that the teams have combined to score at least 40 points.

THREE FOR THREE: Boston Cannons midfielder Paul Rabil earned a title in the Bud Light Skills Competition after claiming the Freestyle championship on Saturday night. He had claimed the Fastest Shot contest in each of the last two years with a shot of 111 miles per hour. Defenseman Kyle Hartzell of the Chesapeake Bayhawks claimed this year’s Fastest Shot title with a shot of 102 m.p.h.

HIGH FIVE:  After splitting their first two games, the Boston Cannons have won their last five games in a row and are now in sole possession of first place in the MLL standings with a 6-1 record. The Cannons defeated the Denver Outlaws by a 15-12 count on July 3 at INVESCO Field at Mile High. During the five-game win streak, the Cannons have outscored their opponents by an 84-57 margin. In addition, midfielder Paul Rabil has contributed 29 of his 33 points while goalkeeper Jordan Burke has a .617 save percentage and a 10.20 goals against average.

RABIL ON A RAMPAGE: Over the last three games, Boston Cannons midfielder Paul Rabil has been on a scoring tear with 18 points. He has tallied at least five points in each game, including a seven-point effort against Denver on July 3. Rabil, who is the MLL’s leading scorer with 18 goals and 33 points, has scored at least three goals in each game. In addition, he had a season-high three assists in the win over Denver. Rabil has scored 96 career goals, including 19 two-point goals, with 42 assists. He had his 150th career point against Chesapeake on June 25.  

NOT SO LUCKY SEVEN: The Rochester Rattlers are hoping that the All-Star Game break provided them with the spark to end their seven-game losing streak. The Rattlers are coming off a 13-11 setback against the defending MLL champion Chesapeake Bayhawks on July 2. The Rattlers, who named former midfielder Tim Soudan as their head coach for the remainder of the season on June 28, have lost their last five games by a total of nine points.   

GOOSE EGGS: Rochester Rattlers attackman Ned Crotty and Denver Outlaws attackman Brendan Mundorf were each held without a goal in their games in Week 7, marking the first time they failed to score a goal this season. Mundorf is tied for first in the MLL with 18 goals while Crotty ranks fourth with 15 goals.

NOTHING GETS BY BURKE: In addition to leading the MLL in scoring offense through the first half of the 2011 season, the Boston Cannons can also boast one of the league’s top goalkeepers as Jordan Burke leads the MLL with a 10.17 goals against average and a .617 save percentage. Burke made 16 saves in the Cannons’ 15-12 victory over Denver on July 3. In the last four games, Burke has posted a .642 save percentage while allowing 9.75 goals per game.

MAY THE SCHWARTZ[MAN] BE WITH YOU: Denver Outlaws goalkeeper Jesse Schwartzman has continued his stellar play this season and ranks second in the MLL with a 10.25 goals against average and a .576 save percentage. He has held opponents to under 10 goals in five of his seven outings, including just nine goals in 58 minutes against Long Island on June 25.   

FIRST THINGS FIRST: Through the first 21 games this season, the team that scores the game’s first goal has a 16-5 record. In all three games last week, the team that scored first went on to earn the victory. In addition, Chesapeake and Hamilton have scored the first goal in five of their seven games and both teams are 4-1 when scoring first.