“Muffler” Mike Kostiuk – All Lacrosse All The Time, a Division of the Edge of Philly Sports Network
The New York Riptide traveled to MVP Arena in Albany on Saturday for the first of three matchups with the FireWolves this season. Both teams made several trades this week, including with each other, as defenders Leo Stouros and Curtis Conley were swapped. The biggest trade involved New York sending future Hall-of-Famer Callum Crawford to Panther City for several players and draft picks. The new-look Riptide charged out to leads of 4-0 and 10-3 in a dominating 16-10 victory. New York improves to 1-4 with the win, while Albany falls to 2-3 and 0-3 at home.
New-look New York offense explodes in first half
The Riptide came out with guns blazing from the opening faceoff. Jeff Teat (7g, 5a; 1:00), Connor Kearnan (2g, 3a; 5:59), Teat again (6:18), and Larson Sundown (2g, 2a; 7:24) quickly gave New York a 4-0 lead. Connor Kelly (2g, 4a; 8:13) broke the run, but Sundown’s second (9:06) made it 5-1 Riptide after one quarter.
New York extended their lead with four more unanswered goals to start the second quarter. Tallies from Kevin Brownell (0:30) and newly-acquired Brett Hickey (2g, 4a; 1:49) chased Albany goalie Doug Jamieson from the game. Justin Geddie relieved Jamieson, but was greeted with Teat’s hat-trick goal (2:19) and a score from Tyler Digby (1g, 3a; 6:09). Colton Watkinson (1g, 1a; 6:37) ended the run, only for Teat to score his fourth of the night (8:28). Kelly’s second for Albany (14:57) cut the Riptide lead to 10-3 going into halftime.
New York keeps up the pressure in second half
Albany started the second half with goals from Kieran McArdle (3g, 2a; 0:30) and Tanner Thomson (2g, 3a; 0:48). However, Teat’s fourth (2:14) and Kearnan’s second (3:42) pushed the New York lead back to seven. Thomson’s second of the quarter (4:15) made it a 12-6 game, but Hickey’s second (6:14) restored the seven-goal Riptide lead.
Jamieson replaced Geddie in net for the remainder of the game, but the FireWolves struggled to narrow the margin. Teat (10:00) and McArdle (11:09) exchanged power-play goals to make it 14-7 Riptide with 15 minutes left to play. Reilly O’Connor (1g, 4a; 1:31; power play) and Teat’s seventh goal (4:18) effectively put the game out of reach. Albany closed the scoring with a three-goal run, courtesy of John Piatelli (1g, 3a; 9:55), McArdle (10:36), and Ethan Walker (14:11).
Other Stats of Note
Albany continued to struggle without Joe Nardella, going 9 of 30 at the faceoff dot.
Power Play: NY 2 of 4; ALB 1 of 3
Jay Thorimbert (NY): 12 Loose Balls (led all players)
Steve Orleman (NY): 28 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.