Eight teams started the season off with high hopes of making the playoffs, and with only 4 games left on each team’s regular season schedule, only one of those teams has truly been eliminated from contention, the Ohio Machine. At 2-8, they can not possibly get back to .500, and will be forced to play the roll of spoiler for the remained of 2012.
Both Hamilton and Charlotte must win out to reach .500, and this will give them a shot at the playoffs, but even then, each would need other teams like Long Island, Boston and/or Rochester, to lose a whole lot of games the rest of the way, as they would need to leapfrog two of those three in the standings.
I’ll go into more depth on the playoff picture in my MLL Weekend Preview later this week. Now it’s time to recap last weekend’s action, grade my predictions, and get to the excellent video highlights!
Ohio Machine & Hamilton Nationals Split Series
Ohio and Hamilton split their home-and-away series pretty much as predicted. Both games were tight, but neither team did themselves many favors by going 1-1. Hamilton can still make the playoffs, but two wins here would have been HUGE towards that end. The road with two wins would have been tough, and the road with one win is even tougher. Ohio effectively ended their season with the loss.
Ohio Wins Round One:
Hamilton Takes Round Two:
I will continue to call games played on back-to-back nights in two different locations home-and-away series, and not home-and-home series. You can look at the series from the standpoint of the home team every time, but doesn’t that make every single series home-and-home? Home-and-away means one team is playing home, then away. Away-and-home means you’re playing away, then home. A series means it is with the same two teams. Why is this so hard to verbalize intelligently?
I don’t care about convention when it runs contradictory to all common sense. But go ahead and try to explain it to me in the comments if you must.
LI Lizards 14 – Boston Cannons 11
The Lizards were looking a little shaky for a while, but did just fine against the Cannons, winning by three… just like I said they would. Long Island continues to look strong, and really doesn’t have too many holes. The Lizards have diverse scoring options in the midfield and on attack, plenty of athletic poles, a top level face off man and an underrated star level goalie in Drew Adams. They can play with anyone and I expect them to be around near the end of things.
Boston is actually quite similar to Long Island in many ways, with some slight tweaks here and there. The foundation of solid overall scoring, athletic middies and poles, good goaltending, and excellent face off work is all in place. When Boston plays well, and plays together, they are world beaters. When they force things, it can fall apart. A couple more wins and the Cannons will be poised for a run, but they need to get those wins in first.
Chesapeake Bayhawks 13 – Rochester Rattlers 7
I thought Rochester would keep it going, and win again, so I followed my formula of picking the opposite of WHATEVER I think might happen WHENEVER Rochester is playing, and I went with Chesapeake. NAILED IT! My Rochester picks are always opposite day, and almost always correct. Rattlers desperately need to rebound this week against the up and down Charlotte Hounds.
Denver Outlaws 21 – Charlotte Hounds 7
Ouch. That is what every Hounds fan is saying right now. I’m also saying it. I picked the Hounds to win here, and man oh man am I regretting that one! Geoff Snider is still in Finland with Canada’s undefeated U19 team, and Charlotte had no answer for Denver’s newly acquired Anthony Kelly. Charlotte brings in Jerry Ragonese this weekend to stem the bleeding. Good luck, Jerry!
Major League Lacrosse’s regular season may be winding down, but the most exciting part of the professional year is nearly upon us! Make sure you get caught up, take in some games and get ready for pure excellence!