By Kelsey Doherty | 7/5/13 3:00 PM
The Boston Cannons will host the Charlotte Hounds on Saturday night at 8:00pm ET at Harvard Stadium in the first game of 2013 to be broadcast on ESPN 2. Both teams are looking to hit .500 on the season, with records of 4-5 heading into week ten.
Last time the two teams met, in week seven, the Cannons put together an impressive performance, winning 15-13. Charlotte opened up the game hot, putting up seven goals in the first quarter and only allowing two to Boston. The momentum quickly shifted as the Hounds failed to score in the second, an issue they have struggled with in the past month. The Cannons’ seven-goal run put them up 8-6 at the half with three points coming from Mike Stone’s natural hat trick. The second half brought plenty of back-and-forth play but it was not enough for the Hounds, even with hat tricks from Ryan Young and Matt Danowski they could not keep up with Stone and rookie Will Manny.
What the Hounds did do well was cover Paul Rabil, however this opened up the rest of Boston’s midfield and attack for plenty of scoring opportunities. The Hounds will need to find a happy medium in week ten, keeping Boston’s offense in check and still covering Rabil.
The Cannons have returned to the form many had already expected from them coming into the season. Their dominant midfield and attack have led them on three game winning streak. The game against Charlotte also seemed to set a tone for Rabil, as he has quieted down in his scoring over the last three weeks, but Boston is proving that they can win without the constant scoring from Rabil.
Last week the Charlotte Hounds dropped a game to the undefeated Denver Outlaws with a final of 17-11. Just as they did against the Cannons, the Hounds failed to score in the second quarter, and just could not stop Denver’s powerful midfield. For a team with the fewest penalty minutes heading into week nine, the Hounds did not show the same discipline, posting twelve total penalty minutes in the game, which undoubtedly hurt them. Amongst the tough loss, rookie Mike Sawyer still managed a hat trick, as he consistently produces for his team.
The Boston Cannons on the other hand are now on a three game winning streak after a very slow start to the season. Fresh off a 13-10 win over the Ohio Machine, the Cannons are looking to ride that momentum into week ten against the Hounds. Cam Flint was named Cascade Rookie of the Week, leading his team with four goals in the game. Mike Stone also recorded three points and has been a force in the Cannon’s midfield.
The two teams consistently have the same few players putting up points and will have to rely heavily on their defense to keep the other team in check. Charlotte’s leading scorers, Danowski and Young, combine for 55 points on the season, while Boston’s Rabil and Stone combine for 57 points. In goal the two teams are fairly evenly matched, as Jordan Burke only has a goals against average of 14.05 while Adam Ghitelman of Charlotte only has a .473 save percentage.
With a close game in week seven and a similar approach to their midfield and attack, this game could be anyone’s.
To catch all the action live tune in to ESPN2 on Saturday night at 8pm ET as the Cannons host the Hounds in what is sure to be a very close game.