|August 11, 2012 - Delaware, Ohio - The Boston Cannons (9-5) secured their spot in the MLL Championship Weekend with an 18-16 victory over the Ohio Machine (2-12) in tonight's regular season finale. Ryan Boyle was named Bud Light Player of the Game for leading the Cannons with two goals and four assists for six points. Combined with Long Island's loss to Hamilton, the Cannons earn the third seed and will face the loser of tonight's Denver-Chesapeake game.|
Kyle Hartzell struck first with a long two-pointer to give the Machine an early lead. But Matt Poskay scored twice in the quarter and Mike Stone and Paul Rabil each had one to end the first quarter in a 4-4 tie.
Stone, Pat Heim, Ari Sussman and Boyle each scored early in the second quarter to give the Cannons a three-point lead. But Ohio went on a five-goal run to end the first half, including two from Steele Stanwick with less than a minute on the clock, to take an 11-9 lead into the break.
Ohio kept the Cannons off the board for 12 minutes in the third quarter while scoring twice to increase their lead to 13-9. Stone completed a hat trick and Boyle scored his second goal to pull the Cannons back within two heading into the final 15 minutes of play.
With a two-point goal early in the fourth quarter, Rabil tied the game at 14 and tied the MLL single-season scoring record of 71 points (set by John Grant, Jr. in 2007). Kevin Buchanan scored all three of his goals in the fourth quarter and Boyle set up the Cannons' final three goals of the game to secure the victory and the chance for Boston to defend the Steinfeld Trophy at home at Harvard Stadium, August 25 & 26.
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ANNAPOLIS, MD - Midfielder Kyle Dixon scored four goals and piled up seven points, but it was not enough as the Chesapeake Bayhawks fell to the Denver Outlaws, 15-13, before a crowd of 10,420 last night at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium. Dixon fired in a pair of 2-point goals, increasing his Major League Lacrosse single-season record in that category to 14.
Attackman Brendan Mundorf totaled five points on three goals and two assists while goalie Jesse Schwartzman made 15 saves as Denver rallied from an early five-goal deficit to capture the third regular season championship in franchise history. Rookie attackman Mark Matthews had three goals and an assist for the Outlaws (11-3), who set a franchise record for victories and earned top seed for MLL Championship weekend.
"That's a very talented offensive team and you have to cover them for 60 minutes," Chesapeake head coach Dave Cottle said. "I'm disappointed that we didn't keep playing at the level we did during the first quarter for the rest of the game."
Denver will face fourth-seeded Long Island (8-6) in the opening semifinal (1:00 p.m.) on Aug. 25th at Harvard Stadium in Boston. Chesapeake (10-4) receives the second seed and will take on No. 3 Boston (9-5) in the second semifinal (4:00 p.m.).
"It definitely feels good to get that number one seed and play in the early game," said Mundorf, who was named Bud Light Player of the Game.
Attackmen Ben Rubeor and Drew Westervelt scored two goals apiece for Chesapeake, which missed a chance to set a franchise record for victories. Attackman John Grant Jr., joined midfielders Ben Hunt and Steven Brooks in totaling a goal and an assist for the Bayhawks, who were seeking their first regular season championship since 2005.
"It's a little annoying and very frustrating," Chesapeake goalie Kip Turner (11 saves) said of the missed opportunities. "On the other hand, it's good for everyone to know on our team to know that we have to work even harder over the next two weeks in order to accomplish our ultimate goal."