Nail Biter in Arena League West

The First Place Grizzlies Move to 5-2 with Huge Final Quarter

The Grizzlies continue to be consistent and get the best of the Black Fish who fall to 1-6.

Kevin M. Neibauer

LaxPhilly- A Division of the Edge of Philly Sports Network

A Tight One

Most lacrosse games have a “feeling out” pace in the opening quarter and this one was no exception.

Five goals were scored with the Grizzlies opening things with a short-handed marker from Garrett Lewis (1g, 2a) with help from Sekawnee Baker (2a) at 12:27.

Andrew Joseph (2g) doubled the lead at 8:48 before the Fish would answer.

Laszlo Henning (3g, 1a) notched a pair with the first coming at 8:15 with Evan Messenger setting it up.

Henning nailed another with help from Greg Lunde and the second helper from Messenger at 2:44.

:59 later, it was Anthony Buono (1g, 1a) with Jon Phillips picking up his first of four assists to end the tight 3-2 quarter with the Black Fish in front, 3-2.

Action Picks Up

The second quarter revealed seven markers as things started to heat up.

The Black Fish rally would go to five when Henning and Phillips did the work that Lunde (1g, 2a) converted on the man advantage.

Not to be outdone, it was, once again, Phillips getting the job done with Henning getting his hat-trick to push it to a 5-2 Black Fish edge.

Andrew Gresham (3a) with help from Steve McKinlay (4a) set up Brian Smith (1g, 1a) and, at the 9:38 mark, the Black Fish run was stifled and the score flipped to a manageable, 5-3.

The Grizzlies tacked on another courtesy of James Baker (3g) but, the Fish countered with an Isaac Bot (1g) hard work unassisted goal.

It took just nineteen seconds for Joseph to hit rope for the second time with James Baker closing out the half with a marker with 3:24 to play.

We would go to the second half with a tied game, 6-6.

Second Half

The pace slowed considerably with just a pair of goals with each team recording one.

McKinlay set up Erik Maas (2g) for his first goal of the game with Evan Messenger (2g, 2a) having an answer.

The Climatic Fourth

SIx times the lamps were lit with the Grizzlies doing the honors on four of those.

James Baker made it 8-7 just a minute twenty three in.

Ethan M’Lot (1g, 1a) got it back even at 10:32.

The Grizzlies growled and seized control when Jacob Patterson (2g,1a), Maas and Patterson with his second seemed to blow it open.

The three goals came just 3:40 apart and the Grizzlies had an 11-8 lead.

Evan Messenger picked up an “oh by the way” tally to close the score sheet at 11-9.

“Most definitely, you can’t drop two to the same team,” said the Grizzlies’ Garrett Lewis on avenging the earlier defeat.  “We just settled in and just played our game. We know the intensity we can play with and we know our identity and we want to play like Grizzlies every night”


The Black Fish went 0 for 4 on the Power Play while the Grizzlies didn’t have any advantages.

Shots were 46- 39 the Black Fish way.

David Mather took the loss with 28 saves allowing 11 goals.

For the Grizzlies, Brandon Humphrey had 37 saves.

Kevin Neibauer
Kevin Neibauer

Kevin has followed and promoted the game of lacrosse since May 19, 1974.
The same day the Philadelphia Flyers won the Cup, the Philadelphia Wings were introduced to Neibauer and Philadelphia.

Kevin has covered many sports, including baseball, football, basketball, and.. lacrosse. A former licensed football referee and baseball umpire, Kevin brings a unique insight to his game coverage.

A published writer in JustHockey Magazine, Kevin covered the American Hockey League as well as a monthly story on a pugilist where Kevin used the pen name, The Rink Rat. Neibauer turned his attentions to lacrosse for a few years and does his part, whether podcasting or writing to grow the game. Kevin branched out to his roots and currently provides insight for all Philadelphia teams for Edge of Philly as well as his full-time duties with LaxPhilly.