The New York Lizards hold off a late surge by Rochester Rattlers to win their home opener.
The New York Lizards opened the season with a great home opener against the Rochester Rattlers Sunday night with a win 18-15. The Rattlers had struck first with a goal from Dan Hardy who moved from the midfield down to start at the lefty attack. The Lizards came back quickly scoring the next three goals of the game before the Rattlers Lawson scored to make it 3-2. After a back and forth first half the Lizards looked to run away with the game in the 3rd quarter by scoring seven unanswered goals with Molloy grad Albert Maione netting 2 out of his 3 goals during the run. It was 17-12 towards the end of the fourth before the Rattlers long pole Mike Manely scored his second goal of the game and this one was a two pointer which made it 17-14. Then Dan Hardy had his fourth on the night to make it just a two point game. The Lizards attack did a great job in running out the clock with Tommy Palasak scoring his second of the night, an open netter to put the game away at 18-15.
New York Lizards
The Lizards looked great all over the field on Sunday, the new additions meshed well with the returning players. The offense can sure move the ball and has a lot of different players who can make something good happen with it. Matt Stribel was a key addition on the midfield he had three points on the night and is a big threat from up top. Both Shamel Bratton and Steve DeNapoli added defensive skills plus the ability to bring the ball up in transition. With no Ned Crotty on attack Rob Pannell did not miss a beat from last season scoring six goals. On the defensive side Kyle Hartzell led the team with six ground balls and just plays tough defense. He has a great stick at the LSM position. Steve Holmes is another new addition down low that played some great defense. This unit can only get better with draft pick Joe Fletcher joining the team when his college season is over. Look for great things from New York this year.
Rochester had Dan Hardy really come through by playing a great game on attack alongside Kevin Levielle he had five points on the night. Newly acquired midfielder Justin Turri who was traded twice this offseason before finding his way to Rochester added six points of his own. While Sam Bradman making his MLL debut was a little off on the night and was held scoreless. The Rattlers look to get better once their college draft picks Miles and Ty Thompson and Duke's Jordan Wolf joins the team this summer to make for a more steady attack line. The Rattlers will be good this season but they will also be very young.
The Lizards travel to play the Bayhawks this Saturday at 7pm. While the Cannons will go up to Rochester to take on the Rattlers Friday at 730pm.