PLL Week 5: Atlas Down Former Unbeaten Chrome on Jeff Teat Winner

PHOTO COURTESY OF PREMIER LACROSSE LEAGUE


The Chrome once again showed an impressive ability to come back this weekend during the Premier Lacrosse League’s stop in Minneapolis. Except this time, the Atlas were up for the challenge.

The Chrome appeared to be on life support when Chris Gray put the Bulls up 11-5 with one minute, 45 seconds remaining in the third quarter, a goal that extended a five-point run kickstarted by a long two-pointer from Cade van Raaphorst. That six-goal deficit remained when Bryan Costabile opened the second half scoring to make it 12-6.

Last week in Baltimore, Jesse Bernhardt orchestrated a fiery halftime speech to ignite his crew. That wasn’t needed this time. The Chrome scored six straight goals in about five and a half minutes in the third quarter, with Jordan MacIntosh getting the 12-12 equalizer, before entering the closing minutes tied at 13.

But Jeff Teat made sure that was all for naught, scoring off a move from X, and Jack Concannon secured a late save to seal a 14-13 Atlas win.

“Tale of two halves,” Atlas coach Ben Rubeor said. “The Chrome has shown throughout this season an ability to make a comeback. I was definitely worried about it at halftime and then got to see it in person. When those guys go, they really go. … But I thought our guys made some big plays.”

The first-ever battle between the top two picks in this year’s College Draft, Gray and Logan Wisnauskas, lived up to the billing. Both led their respective teams in scoring, with Gray finishing with five points on two goals and three assists and Wisnauskas with six points on four goals and two assists for the Chrome.

TWO-POINTER CHANGES THE TIDE

Never underestimate the influence of a timely two-point shot. The Archers were reminded of that Saturday night against the Redwoods.

With just five seconds left, Marcus Holman went to set a pick play up top for teammate Tom Schreiber. That freed Holman up perfectly on the left side, allowing him a chance to rip a sidearm shot past Jack Kelly as time expired.

“Coming out of the time out, our plan was just to get a pick for Tom on the wing and just kind of let him swing over the top and do his thing,” Holman said. “But the Redwoods kept switching the short stick onto a different guy. So, I think part of being a great player at the pro level, the difference between college and pro, is to be able to think on the fly and play fast. It ended up being me to set a pick for Tom, and I just slipped the pick. Tom puts the ball right on your stick.”

It proved to be a major emotional boost in the Archers’ 10-9 victory. Neither team led by more than one goal the rest of the way, with the Archers securing the win thanks to ending the contest on a two-goal run. Holman notched the game-winner, his fourth goal of the day, from a tight angle to the left of the goal.

“Going into halftime 5-3 versus 5-5, I felt, personally, that it was a spark for our team,” Holman said. “I wanted to try to provide that momentum and get guys excited in the locker room.”







CHAOS NAB FIRST WIN

At long last, the defending champions are in the win column.

After still looking out of sorts last week following the return of much of its roster from the National Lacrosse League season, the Chaos notched the final two goals of the game Saturday against the Cannons for a 13-11 win.

Two of the returnees came up big late, with Josh Byrne recording the game winner with 8:40 remaining and Dhane Smith adding an insurance tally. Byrne finished with four points, while Smith and Kyle Jackson each had three.

The Cannons went on a three-goal run featuring a pair from Ryan Drenner to tie the score at 11. The Chaos held on, backed by Blaze Riorden. He made 20 saves to anchor a squad struggling at the faceoff stripe following an injury to Jerry Ragonese.

“We’ve been on the wrong end of the stick to start the season, but Jerry goes down, guys step up, everyone makes a play, and we come out with a win like we talked about,” Riorden said.

WHIPS SUFFER FIRST LOSS

In a rare occurrence, the Whipsnakes came out on the wrong side of a one-goal game Sunday night.

Kieran McArdle scored his third goal with less than two minutes remaining, lifting the Waterdogs to a much-needed 11-10 victory. That handed the Whipsnakes their first loss, creating a three-way tie atop the standings between the Whips, Chrome and Atlas, who are all 4-1.

“We just battled,” said McArdle, who scored all of his goals in the fourth quarter. “We scrapped. That’s just how we play. That’s a big one to win at the end of the game and claw it out.”

NOTEWORTHY

Ragonese recorded the first goal of his professional career 11 years after debuting with the Rochester Rattlers of Major League Lacrosse. … Kelly got the start in goal for the Redwoods instead of Tim Troutner, who has struggled early in the season. Kelly made 12 saves (57 percent). … Connor Fields made his season debut for the Archers after returning from his time with the Buffalo Bandits of the National Lacrosse League. He notched an assist. … The Chrome were without head coach Tim Soudan due to medical reasons. Jacques Monte stepped in as the interim head coach, while volunteer assistant Nate Watkins joined the traveling party in Minneapolis. … The Chrome’s defeat marked the first time Wisnauskas and Jesse have lost in over a year, with Bernhardt having served as an assistant coach on the undefeated national champion Maryland squad Wisnauskas starred on. … The Archers’ Will Manny passed Casey Powell for ninth all-time in career goals.

UP NEXT
ALL TIMES EASTERN

(in Boston)

Saturday, July 16

All-Star Game, 4 p.m. (ESPN)
All-Star Skills Competition, 7 p.m. (ESPN+)

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