Taylor Moreno Tops Leaderboard After Athletes Unlimited Lacrosse Week 2

PHOTO BY KAIT DEVIR / ATHLETES UNLIMITED

Taylor Moreno leads Athletes Unlimited Lacrosse Season 2 after two weeks of play.


Don’t let Team Apuzzo get hot.

No matter the circumstances or who’s on the field, Sam Apuzzo’s team was a consistent threat in Athletes Unlimited Week 2. Down 6-1 against Team Moreno on Saturday, Team Apuzzo rallied to force overtime and win 12-10. After falling behind 5-3 to Team Arsenault on Sunday, Apuzzo and Co. scored four straight goals to win 8-5.

Now, with Week 2 of Athletes Unlimited Lacrosse complete, the former Boston College standout is 6-0 on the season, second on the leaderboard and a captain once more. There’s little doubt that, regardless of who she drafts, Apuzzo will yet again lead a competitive team in Week 3.

HISTORY IN OVERTIME

Team Apuzzo didn’t just complete a spectacular comeback against Team Moreno. She made league history in the process. After neither team scored in overtime, the game headed to the league’s first-ever shootout, where Team Apuzzo won on a Katie O’Donnell goal.

While Team Apuzzo prevailed, the matchup yielded star performances from both teams. Rookie goalkeeper Taylor Moreno continued to deliver in just her fifth professional matchup, tying the league’s single-game record with 15 saves to earn 140 points. Attackers Cortney Fortunato and Scottie Rose Growney anchored Team Moreno’s attack, scoring four goals each.

Team Apuzzo’s performance featured hat tricks from Apuzzo, Charlotte North and O’Donnell. Just two weekends into her AU career, North looks at ease. She was key to Team Apuzzo’s comeback, recording a goal and two assists in the final three minutes of regulation. North’s strong weekend powered her to eighth place on the leaderboard — up nine spots from last weekend.







DEFENDERS SURGE UP LEADERBOARD

Perhaps one of the most unique aspects of the AU points system is how it rewards defenders and goalkeepers with points on the leaderboard. Two of next week’s captains — Moreno and Lizzie Colson — play on the defensive side, and five players in the top 15 play defense.

Beyond piling up points, many defenders were busy making bold choices and crafty moves. Emma Trenchard had an all-too-easy interception in Team Moreno’s loss against Team Apuzzo. Goalkeeper Caylee Waters was lighting up the cage left and right, recording nine saves in Team Arsenault’s 11-7 win over Team Johansen on Saturday. And O’Donnell rocked the transition game on Thursday, helping power Team Apuzzo to a win over Team Johansen.

LEADERBOARD

1. Taylor Moreno, G, 996
2. Sam Apuzzo, A, 965
3. Lizzie Colson, D, 814
4. Amanda Johansen, M, 806
5. Kady Glynn, G, 791
6. Sam Geiersbach, A, 720
7. Ally Mastroianni, M, 715
8. Charlotte North, A, 713
9. Dempsey Arsenault, M, 668
10. Haley Warden, M, 614

WEEK 3 CAPTAINS

Can Apuzzo stay perfect? That’s the prevailing storyline heading into Week 3, which sees Apuzzo trail first-place Taylor Moreno by just 31 points.

Taylor Moreno: After ranking atop the leaderboard at the end of Week 1, Moreno will again don the gold jersey and choose first in the weekly draft. Despite her solid efforts in the cage, Team Moreno finished 1-2 during Week 2. Moreno chose a dynamic mix of rookies and vets, and it will be interesting to see if she switches up her strategy entering Week 3.

Sam Apuzzo: An offensive force, Apuzzo notched 498 points during Week 2 to rank among the league’s best. A captain every week this season, Apuzzo seriously knows how to draft a team. She brought several creative rookies onboard in Week 1 and partnered with U.S. teammates Mastroianni, North and Colson in Week 2.

Lizzie Colson: The lone new captain in Week 3, Colson leapt up the leaderboard over the weekend. She did it all for Team Apuzzo, notching six caused turnovers, four draw controls and three ground balls. A former standout at Maryland, look out for Colson reuniting with fellow Terps’ alumni like Alex Aust Holman or Meg Douty.

Amanda Johansen: After going 1-2 in Week 2, Johansen returns as a captain in Week 3. She missed part of the 2021 season due to injury and has looked nothing but stellar so far this season. Over the weekend, Johansen tallied three goals, four caused turnovers and eight draw controls. She will certainly be a force to reckon with again in Week 3.

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