Article by Matt Hunt
Following their first win of the season in double overtime over the Spinners, the Rumble carried the momentum into Saturday night’s game to defeat the DC Current 17-14. It was the first time the two teams have faced each other, after their first scheduled game was rained out.
Chris Mazur and Ben Faust came into the game with 23 points each, tied for second in the league, and both players played integral parts in helping the Rumble to their second straight win. The Rumble gained momentum quickly, taking only 26 seconds to score the first point of the game. Faust connected with Aman Nalavade on a deep huck, which set up Mazur with an easy throw to Kevin Terry for the goal.
The Rumble took advantage of early turnovers by the Current and quickly jumped out to a 4-1 lead. However, the Current were able to swing the momentum back and tie it back up at 4-4. The Rumble were unable to score for nearly 10 minutes, but their relentless defense, led by Jonathon Cox, kept the Current from taking a lead. Alan Kolik, who has the 2nd most assists in the league, had difficulties overcoming the Rumble’s defense.
The Rumble struggled in the second quarter, unable to gain the control that they had early in the game. With a 7-6 lead, the Rumble missed a key opportunity to go up by two points just before halftime. Coming out of a timeout with 2:33 to go, Mazur turned over the disc on the goal line. The Current then took advantage and tied the game with 35 seconds left in the first half.
The two teams continued to trade points but the Rumble would make use of the Current’s early struggles in the third quarter. The Current failed to generate momentum, with two key drops and multiple unforced turnovers. After a turnover by the Current, Lucas Murphy made a highlight-reel play that would change the tempo for the rest of the game. Murphy tracked down a throw from Joe Anderson and made an incredible diving catch in the end zone to put the Rumble up 10-8.
New York would start to pull away and extend their lead, leading the Current 13-10 at the end of the 3rd quarter. Jonathon Cox helped avoid a Current comeback with two huge plays early in the fourth quarter. Cox scored the first point of the 4th quarter off a DC turnover. He then forced another DC turnover on the Current’s goal line with a big layout D. Ten seconds later, Cox then caught another pass from Terry in the end zone to put the Rumble up by 5 with 8 minutes left to play in the game.
It seemed that the Rumble would ensure themselves of another victory, but the Current would not give up. DC quickly scored to close the gap to 4 points and then forced another turnover. The Current gained back momentum and appeared that they could make a comeback. However, with 6 minutes left to play, the Current dropped a pass in the end zone that would have made the game 15-12. The Rumble scored off the turnover and would hold on to win their second straight game, by a score of 17-14. It was the lowest scoring game the Rumble have played this season, but with their defense firing on all cylinders, it would prove enough to come away with a win.
It was New York’s first home win of the season, in front of a large crowd who all wore black shirts for “blackout” night. The Rumble will be home again next Sunday on May 26th, when they take on the Boston Whitecaps at 1 pm. It will be “Kids Day” at the Eagle’s nest, where there will be face painting, balloon twisting and a special halftime performance. Purchase tickets here and make sure you don’t miss out on all the fun!