Photo by Jason Honyotski – UltiPhotos.com
The Philadelphia Spinners (5-3) unexpectedly fell to the New York Rumble (2-6) Sunday afternoon, 17-20, dropping them to a tie with the Boston Whitecaps for first place in the Eastern Conference.
The Spinners offense struggled early in the game and were unable to generate points after multiple turnovers and miscommunications. After putting 25 points on the board against the Whitecaps last week, New York’s offense has finally found their footing. On Sunday, the Rumble proved that they are a team to be reckoned with by securing an early lead against Philadelphia. New York dominated the beginning of the game, scoring three points in a row before Philadelphia was able to get on the scoreboard. After the first quarter, the Spinners trailed the Rumble, 4-7.
Philadelphia’s offense started slow, but began to show some life in the second quarter and cut the lead to just one point. Yet they continued to struggle and were never able to take the lead. The Spinners entered the half down 9-10.
The Spinners’ strong offensive players were continually shut down by the Rumble defense. Jake Rainwater (3 goals, 1 assist, 1 block) and Billy Sickles (2 goals, 1 assist, 2 blocks) were unable to adapt to the Rumble’s hard defense and remained relatively quiet during the first half. Sickles was kept in check for most of the game, but began to make his usual plays after defender Christopher Mazur (2 assists, 3 blocks) left the field due to an injury. Even with a tough defender, Sickles was still a top performer during Sunday’s game. He remains a strong contender for the MLU Rookie of the Year award.
Player of the game, John Wodatch had a standout performance recording one block and three goals, one of which was a Callahan that ultimately secured the win for the Rumble. Wodatch also had a big sky in the end zone with five seconds left in the third quarter. The Spinners had mounted a comeback and tied up the game, but this score gave the Rumble the lead and new momentum going into the fourth quarter.
The Spinners defense had a strong showing by Leon Chou (2 assists) and Gabe Colton (1 assist), who each had two blocks during the game. Chou’s impressive hand block in the third quarter and Colton’s well-read block helped keep the Spinners in the game. Defensive handler Michael Panna also shined with three goals for the Spinners.
The fourth quarter proved to be troublesome for both teams as they traded points back and forth, neither team able to take control. With the game tied at 17, it seemed as though overtime was pending, but after a quick point by the Rumble, Wodatch made the play of the game on a layout for the Callahan (17-19). This play put New York up by two and set them up to receive the pull. Mike Hennessy (1 goal, 4 assists) found Ben Faust (1 goal) in the end zone to seal the win for New York, 17-20.
The Spinners now share their number one spot in the Eastern Conference with the Boston Whitecaps, who won against the D.C. Current this weekend. The Spinners now must to fight for their playoff spot in the Eastern Conference.
The Spinners return home next week to take on the D.C. Current and look to secure their playoff spot. The game will now be played at Carey Stadium at Germantown Academy in Fort Washington, Pa. First pull is set for 4:00 p.m.