Utah Holds On To Beat Carolina

Eduardo Curros – Field Correspondent, All Lacrosse All The Time

Week 3 in the PLL saw the Utah Archers take on the Carolina Chaos at Villanova Stadium in Philadelphia. The Archers are walking into this game with a 1-1 record, while the Chaos enter at 2-1. For Carolina, Blaze Riorden was back in net after sitting out Week 2 with an injury. Utah countered with Brett Dobson. With two elite goaltenders on display, fans got the low scoring event they expected, with the game tied 7-7 after three quarters of play. Dobson made the difference, shutting out the Chaos in the fourth quarter as Utah held on for a 9-7 victory.  

Dolans Bar

Defenses stay tight in the first half

The Archers struck first at 2:31, with Mac O’Keefe scoring on an assist from Connor Fields. The Carolina Chaos were quick to reply with Brian Minicus scoring unassisted at 4:08 and Eric Dobson scoring his first PLL goal at 4:36. Ian MacKay closed the scoring for the Chaos at 5:46 with help from Jules Heningburg, but Grant Ament would replay for Utah unassisted at 11:52. Chaos held a 3-2 lead after one quarter. Chaos extended their lead early in the second quarter with goals from Josh Byrne at 1:23 and another from Eric Dobson on a power play at 4:37. Archers fought back with three consecutive goals to tie the game at the half. Ryan Ambler scored at 5:32, then again at 9:49 on a pass from Tom Schreiber. Schrieber followed up by feeding O’Keefe for the equalizer at 10:34.

Utah shuts Carolina out in the fourth for the win

The Chaos and Archers would exchange goals starting with Byrne scoring unassisted at 3:41, followed by Schreiber scoring a power play goal on a pass from O’Keefe at 9:16. Shane Knobloch scored unassisted at 10:18, then Ament responded for Archers at 11:22 to tie the game 7-7 after three quarters. The fourth quarter would prove defense wins games, as Brett Dobson and the Utah defense shut down every opportunity that Carolina had to score. Connor Fields gave Archers the lead for good with an assist from Ambler at 9:51. Schreiber then closed the scoring at 11:45 to give Utah the 9-7 victory.

Curros’s Corner

The goaltender duel went to Brett Dobson, who had 15 saves and a save percentage of 68.2%. Blaze Riorden had a 55% save percentage, making 11 saves. Nick Rowlett of Chaos outdueled Mike Sisselberger at the face-off dot, winning 12 of 20 draws and grabbing a game-high 10 Ground Balls. After scoring five goals in two games during Carolina’s Homecoming Weekend, Heningburg was held to just one assist. Tye Kurtz, Kyle Jackson, and Ross Scott were all held without a point for Carolina. Utah plays the Boston Cannons in Minneapolis two weekends from now. Meanwhile, Carolina will match up against a Philadelphia Waterdogs team desperate to break a three-game losing skid.

“Muffler” Mike Kostiuk

“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 covers NLL, PLL, WLA, and Major Series Lacrosse for the network.