MLL Weekend Preview: Week 11
Ohio Machine (7-2) at New York Lizards (3-5)
Thursday, 7:00 PM on LSN
Storylines: The Lizards will debut their newest superstar after pulling off a blockbuster trade with Boston on Tuesday that landed them All-Star attacker Will Manny. He'll slide into an already loaded lineup at attack that stars Rob Pannell and Matt Gibson. The new-look Lizards will face the team in the midst of the longest winning streak in MLL this season, as the first-place Machine have won their last five straight. Thursday marks Ohio's third game in eight days after playing a doubleheader weekend last week.
Players to watch: At the time of the trade, Manny led all Boston scorers with 30 points, which is more than anyone in New York's lineup. His former Cannons teammate and current Lizards teammate Joe LoCascio had a career-high four goals on May 13, but has been limited to two points total in three games since then. Week 10 Warrior Offensive Player of the Week and a leading scorer in the league, Marcus Holman is riding high for Ohio after a 10-point weekend.
Florida Launch (5-4) at Atlanta Blaze (3-5)
Saturday, 7:00 PM on Twitter
Storylines: The Blaze will get a second chance at topping Florida in the Twitter Game of the Week after the Launch pulled out a come-from-behind win against Atlanta two weeks ago. The win was the third straight for Florida at the time, but that win streak ended last week against the Hounds. Atlanta is coming off a dramatic 14-13 win in overtime against the Rattlers as they sit just one game back of Charlotte for the final playoff spot.
Players to watch: Kieran McArdle lit up the Blaze two weeks ago to the tune of seven goals and an assist and his 4.60 points per game is the seventh-best mark in the league, according to Moneyball Lacrosse. He'll have to deal with the reigning Warrior Defensive Player of the Week in Scott Ratliff, who has been a top defender all season with 16 caused turnovers.
Rochester Rattlers (4-5) at Chesapeake Bayhawks (3-5)
Sunday, 6:00 PM on LSN
Storylines: After starting the season 3-1, the Bayhawks have gone sour, losing their last four straight games. They'll have to end the streak against a team in Rochester that beat them just three weeks ago. That game went to overtime with Zed Williams netting the winner, but the Bayhawks rallied after trailing by five goals at the half. The Rattlers are on a losing streak of their own, dropping their last two games, each a one-goal loss.
Players to watch: Rookie Jake Froccaro is coming into his own with the Bayhawks after scoring a hat trick in each of his last two games. His teammate and fellow rookie Josh Byrne has also sparked the Chesapeake offense since being drafted last month with 11 goals in three games. The last time he faced Rochester, Byrne racked up seven goals. The Rattlers will counter with a veteran attack led by Jordan Wolf (30 points) and Ned Crotty (23 points).
Atlanta Blaze (3-5) at Denver Outlaws (6-2)
Tuesday, 9:00 PM on Twitter
Storylines: Do you love America and lacrosse? Then this is the game for you. Tune in on Twitter (mll.twitter.com) at 9 ET/7 MT to watch the Outlaws and Blaze from Denver on the Fourth of July. The game will be followed by Colorado's premier fireworks show and a live performance by the Colorado Symphony. The second-place Outlaws just overcame a seven-goal deficit to beat New York last weekend, while the Blaze will be playing for the second time in four days after a Saturday night date with Florida.
Players to watch: The Outlaws received big contributions from rookies Gavin McBride (3 goals, assist) and Zach Currier (goal, 3 assists) in last week's win against the Lizards, adding to an already strong lineup led by second-year player Matt Kavanagh (19 goals, 12 assists). For Atlanta, it will mark Chris Bocklet's first trip to Mile High in a different uniform after spending five seasons in Denver. He'll go up against his two brothers still on the Outlaws, Matt and Michael.