The Charlotte Hounds used a huge third quarter to break open an otherwise close game against the Ohio Machine, and coast to a 13-7 victory on Saturday night. Hounds attackman Eric Lusby scored five goals on the night, and was awarded the Player of the Game award.
The Hounds have now won two consecutive games to bring their record to 3-3, while the loss leaves the Machine winless after six games.
After a few empty possessions by both teams to start the game, rookie Logan Schuss received a pass from Steele Stanwick and got the Machine on the board with a quick high to low shot from the left side. Lusby then responded with two goals of his own, with the second coming off an assist from former Loyola teammate Mike Sawyer.
Brett Garber then answered with a goal for the Machine, before Schuss scored his second goal of the night on a play nearly identical to the first, to put Ohio back up, 3-2. The hounds took the lead right back when Matt Danowski scored his first two-point goal of the season to close out the first frame with the hounds leading 4-3.
After early struggles, the second quarter saw both goalies get hot, with each denying several good scoring opportunities. Brian Phipps made a few point blank stops for the Machine, highlighted by his denial of a Danowski wrap-around shot from right outside the crease. Adam Ghitelman also made several key stops in the quarter for the Hounds, including two saves on Kyle Hartzell two point attempts. Both goalies would end the quarter with seven saves to that point in the game.
The only goal of the quarter was scored when Joe Cummings picked up a Stanwick rebound and deposited the ball into the back of the net to send the teams to intermission locked in a 4-4 tie.
In the breakout quarter, Danowski began the scoring for the Hounds on a Ryan Young assist, before Matt White recorded his first career MLL goal to make it 6-4. Another Cummings goal brought the Machine back within one, but that was as close as they would get.
Brian Carroll extended the lead back to two before Mike Sawyer, Peet Poillon and Danowski scored three quick goals, with Danowski’s third goal of the game coming only seven seconds after Poillon’s first. Steele Stanwick scored his lone goal of the game in between Lusby’s third and fourth goals to close out the quarter with the Hounds leading 12-6.
Marcus Holman brought the Machine back within five on his only goal of the night to start the fourth quarter, but Lusby responded with his fifth goal of the contest, as he once again got the helper from his former college teammate, Sawyer. The goal made it 13-7 in favor of the Hounds midway through the final stanza, and the game would end by that score.
Next, the Hounds continue their homestand when they host the Boston Cannons on Friday, June 15 at 7:00 pm. The Machine will also play on Friday when the Rochester Rattlers visit Selby Stadium for the second match up of the season between the teams in a game that faces off at 7:30 pm.
Other than the third quarter, in which the Hounds outscored the Machine 8-2, neither team held much of an advantage, with each team scoring five goals.
The teams combined to go 0-5 on man advantages, as Ohio went 0-1, and Charlotte went 0-4.
Neither team held much of an advantage at the faceoff X, as Tim Fallon went 12-23 for the Hounds, and Eric O’brien won 11-23.