“Muffler” Mike Kostiuk – All Lacrosse All The Time, a division of the Edge of Philly Sports Network
The final matchup of PLL Week 8 in Dallas saw Redwoods LC play Chaos LC. Both teams were trying to turn things around after dismal performances in the first half of the regular season. Oddly enough, despite their win-loss records, this game featured two of the top defensive units in the PLL. However, fans have come to expect the unexpected, and in this tilt, it was the offensive units that shone bright. A number of highlight-reel goals by both teams took center stage as Chaos triumphed 14-12. Both teams are now tied for sixth place in the standings at 2-5. With the top 7 (out of 8) teams making the playoffs, Cannons LC (1-6) are now on the outside looking in.
Something for everyone
Josh Byrne (4g) opened the scoring for Chaos, beating Redwoods netminder Jack Kelly at 1:52. Mac O’Keefe (3:14) followed to make it 2-0. Redwoods equalized with markers form Ryder Garnsey (5g; 5:41) and Sergio Perkovic (6:37). Chaos would again lead by two after Byrne’s second (7:27) and a strike from Chris Cloutier (10:06). Redwoods would answer the call with Garnsey’s second (10:55) and Myles Jones (2g, 2a; 11:57) beating the buzzer to make it 4-4 after 12 minutes of action.
The second quarter would play out as equally as the first, with Chaos taking a lead, only for Redwoods to respond each time. Byrne notched his hat trick at 2:08 before Garnsey tallied his own at 3:40. Ryan Smith (5g) got a power play marker for Chaos at 6:17, but hometown product Nakeie Montgomery (2g, 2a; 8:01) tied the game again for Redwoods. Chase Fraser joined the party at 9:00 before Charlie Bertrand (10:23) went between his legs to beat Chaos goalie Blaze Riorden on a power play. The first half ended in a 7-7 tie.
Chaos pulls away with double the Smith
Choas went on a three-goal run to begin the second half, with two more from Ryan Smith (2:00; 7:59) and a goal from Kyle Jackson (9:10). Redwoods quickly cut the deficit to one, courtesy of Garnsey’s fourth of the day (9:35) and Montgomery’s second (11:24). Dhane Smith, who had six assists in the game, found the back of the net at 11:49 to restore the two-goal lead for Chaos, 11-9.
Ryan Smith (0:32) and Byrne (2:36) each netted their fourth of the game to extend the Chaos lead to four. Redwoods again closed the gap to one, starting with Garnsey scoring his fifth goal of the game (3:34). Matt Kavanagh (4:09) followed with a power play goal, and Jones’s second goal (5:25) made it 13-12 Chaos with six and a half minutes to play. Ryan Smith would add his fifth of the game at 8:17, and this time, Redwoods would be unable to respond.
Redwoods play Cannons next Friday in Week 9 action from Denver, Colorado. Chaos plays Chrome LC (4-3) in the first of three Saturday games. Wins by both Redwoods and Chaos next week would virtually eliminate the Cannons from playoff contention.
Other Stats of Note
- Dhane Smith (Chaos): 1g, 6a
- Rob Pannell (Redwoods): 3a
- TD Ierlan: 16 of 30 on faceoffs; 7 ground balls
- Max Adler (Chaos): 14 of 28 on faceoffs; 10 ground balls (led all players)
- Blaze Riorden (Chaos): 14 saves
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“Muffler” Mike Kostiuk was formally introduced to box lacrosse when he attended a New England Black Wolves game on a whim in 2016. Instantly hooked, he has since become an avid follower of the National Lacrosse League. Following the postponement of the 2019-2020 NLL season, he was offered the chance to share his wealth of statistical knowledge and unique insights with the lacrosse community at large. He cheerfully accepted, and currently serves as Edge of Philly’s correspondent for both the Albany FireWolves and New York Riptide.