MLL Weekend Preview: Week 7
Florida Launch (2-3) at New York Lizards (2-2)
Friday, 7:00 PM on LSN
Storylines: These are not your daddy's Florida Launch, as they say. After suffering a 19-7 loss at the hands of the Machine last weekend, the Launch have completely reshaped their roster thanks to a bounty of draft picks in the 2017 MLL Collegiate Draft last weekend. First-round picks Dylan Molloy, Nick Mariano and Sergio Salcido will all be available for Florida, as well as goalie Benny Pugh and defenseman Alec Tulett. New York will have to get by for a few weeks without crafty attachman Rob Pannell, who announced he needs hand surgery.
Players to watch: All eyes will be on the first-overall pick from last weekend's draft, Dylan Molloy. The bruising attacker will look to make a quick transition to the pro game after becoming the first Brown Bear ever taken in the first round of the draft.
With all the offseason chatter about New York's star power with Paul Rabil, Pannell, and Joe Walters you may be surpirised to learn none of those players leads the team in points through four games. Matt Gibson (10 goals, 3 assists) holds that distinction and is coming off a four-goal performance at Boston.
Ohio Machine (3-2) at Chesapeake Bayhawks (3-1)
Friday, 7:30 PM on LSN
Storylines: With Denver's loss last weekend, the Bayhawks are officially the hottest team in the league, riding a three-game winning streak. Their formula includes a lot of scoring, which is why they're leading the league in scoring efficiency according to Moneyball Lacrosse. Ohio is coming off a 12-goal dismantling of the Launch last weekend and has allowed 10 goals or less in three of its five games.
Players to watch: Watch whoever is in net for Ohio. Veteran Scott Rodgers, despite a 10.42 goals against average in four games (second in MLL), sat last weekend in favor of Kyle Bernlohr. The second-year goalie then stopped 14 of 21 shots against him in an impressive win against Florida. The Bayhawks will put Ohio's defense to the test with the likes of Myles Jones (18 points), Nathan Lewnes (13 points) and newcomer Sean Evans, who notched three goals and three assists in the first MLL game of his pro career last game.
Denver Outlaws (4-1) at Boston Cannons (2-3)
Saturday, 7:00 PM on LSN
Storylines: This game will feature an angry Outlaws team looking to rebound from their first loss of the season. Denver has been a defensive juggernaut, holding oppenents to single-digit goals in three games this year. Boston still has a good taste in its mouth from a thrilling win over New York two weeks ago -- a much needed win that snapped a three-game skid.
Players to watch: The Outlaws are expected to activate first-team All-Ivy League selection and the sixth-overall pick in the draft, Zach Currier. The Princeton grad will slide into a strong midfield lineup that features Jeremy Sieverts (13 points) and Drew Snider (7 points). The Cannons were buoyed last week by a six-point night from All-Star attacker Will Manny. The fifth-year pro is leading the team with 18 points through five games.
Charlotte Hounds (2-4) at Atlanta Blaze (1-3)
Saturday, 8:00 PM on Twitter
Storylines: The Twitter Game of the Week features the first game of a home-and-home series that will see these same teams meet next weekend in Charlotte. Both of the Hounds' wins this season have come in road games, including last time out at Ohio. Atlanta has been disappointed two games in a row -- losing both times by a combined four goals.
Players to watch: Hounds attackman Ryan Brown is tied for the league lead in points with 22 and his 18 goals are tops in MLL. Midfielder John Haus isn't far behind with 11 goals and eight assists, tied for third in the league. Atlanta's star LSM Scott Ratliff will have his hands full with Charlotte's offense, but he is tied for eighth in MLL with eight caused turnovers according to Moneyball Lacrosse.