HAMILTON IN SEARCH OF PLAYOFF BERTH THIS WEEK
8/2/11 12:00 AM
Game Notes: The Hamilton Nationals return home to host the first-place Boston Cannons on Saturday, August 6th at 7:00 p.m. at Ron Joyce Stadium. The Nationals (6-4) can move into first place and clinch a playoff berth with a win against Boston (7-3).
Download Game Notes: Click here to access game notes (PDF).
Head-to-Head: Hamilton is 3-2 lifetime against Boston. The game is the second and final meetings this season between the two teams. The last time they met, the Nationals defeated the Cannons 16-12 on July 23rd. Brett Bucktooth netted a career-high five goals and Cody Jamieson scored three goals and added one assist. Goalie Scott Rodgers made a career-best 20 saves to win his third game of the season.
Hamilton Notes: Last game, midfielders Hall and Stephen Keogh led the Nats with three-goal efforts. Hamilton jumped out to a commanding 10-2 lead to earn its fifth win in the last six games. The win allowed the Nationals to remain in second place in the MLL standings. Walters recorded two goals and two assists in the win and set a single-season team record with 19 assists this season. Walters leads the Nationals in points and is now third in the MLL with 35 (15+1+19). Jamieson chipped in a man-up goal at 4:40 of the first quarter to give the Nats a 1-0 lead. The man-up was the first of a team-record four in the game. The 10-point win also tied a team record. Scott Rodgers held Chesapeake scoreless for nearly 20 minutes to earn his fourth win of the season. Rodgers is fourth in the league with an 11.44 goals-against average.
Casey expected to play: The two-time MLL Champion and four-time All-Star Casey Powell is expected to play this weekend. Powell is seventh all-time in goals with 197. He is MLL’s all-time leader in points (388).
Brodie closing in on No. 1: Nationals defenseman Brodie Merrill (516) is second in league history in ground balls, trailing only Paul Cantabene (538).
Weekly Honors: Merrill earned the MLL Defensive Player of the Week award, while attackman Jeremy Boltus was honored as the Cascade MLL Rookie of the Week for the second time this season. Merrill leads the MLL with 69 ground balls in 10 games and is also tied for sixth in the MLL with 11 assists. He leads all MLL defenders with three goals and 15 points. Boltus recorded two goals and two assists in the 16-6 win.
A ‘Bolt’ of offense: Boltus (Army) leads the Nationals with a six-game goal-scoring streak and a 10-game point streak. Boltus leads all MLL rookies with 27 points (18+9). He is two goals away from moving into the MLL Top 10 all-time in rookie single-season tallies. He trails Mike Springer (Bridgeport - 2003) and Conor Gill (Boston - 2003). Kevin Huntley has the record with 30 (LA - 2008).
Cannons Notes: Boston was the first team to clinch a playoff spot in the MLL last weekend. Kevin Buchanan scored the game-winning goal with 1:06 left, giving the Cannons a 10-9 victory over the Denver Outlaws. It was the ninth postseason berth in the Cannons' 11 seasons. Paul Rabil continues to lead the league in points with 41 (24+3+14). Matt Poskay is eighth in the MLL with 30 points (26+4). In goal, Jordan Burke is second in the league with a 10.71 goals-against average. He leads the MLL with six wins and a .603 save percentage. Boston has the highest-scoring offense in the league with 136 goals. The Cannons are tied for the best road record in the league with a 4-1 record.
Next Game: The Nationals end the regular season with a 7:00 p.m. road contest against the Long Island Lizards on Saturday, August 13th at 7:00 p.m.