With the all-star break in the rear view mirror at the playoff push heating up. week nine of the MLL season featured four games with three taking place on Saturday night and on Sunday evening.
On Saturday, the Boston Cannons took down the Denver Outlaws 16-13 to take over at the top of the standings, the Chesapeake Bayhawks defeated the New York Lizards 11-19, and the Dallas Rattlers beat the Atlanta Blaze 16-14 to secure their second win of the season. Sunday night, the Chesapeake Bayhawks beat the New York Lizards 24-7 in a complete onslaught.
Here are some players that really stood out during week nine of the MLL season.
OFFENSIVE PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
Chesapeake’s offense was fueled by many factors in their two wins this weekend, but no players stepped up bigger for the Bayhawks than Colin Heackcok. The lefty midfielder put on an absolute clinic in both of Chesapeake’s wins.
In both of Chesapeake’s games against New York this weekend Heacock went off, causing havoc all over the field. While Heacock did most of his damage in the scoring department, he was also effective as a feeder and always seemed to be in the right place at the time. It was domination in its truest sense. It didn’t matter what the New York defense did, because nobody was going to slow him down.
On Saturday, Heacock set a career-high of six goals and then followed it up with four goals on Sunday, tallying 10 combined points over the weekend. The midfielder also hit a career milestone, notching his 50th career goal in Sunday’s win.
DEFENSIVE PERFORMANCE OF THE WEEK
Atlanta Blaze defenseman Liam Byrnes continued his impressive play this season on Saturday, despite the loss. Byrnes has been flying all over the field this season, terrorizing opposing offenses. Byrnes has been the leader of this Atlanta defense and The Guy when it comes to keeping things flowing how they should be.
On Saturday, the defenseman showed up big time once agin as he gave the Atlanta defense a big boost, especially when they might have not been performing their best as a unit. While they lost a close one, Byrnes’ effort certainly made a difference and helped to not allow Dallas to gain too much separation.
Byrnes ended the game with two caused turnovers and seven ground balls. Currently, he leads the league in caused turnovers with 15 so far this season.
GOALIE OF THE WEEK
Again, Nick Marrocco came up huge for the Boston Cannons, helping them secure the 16-13 win over the Denver Outlaws on Saturday night. His performance was not only great statistically, but Marrocco was a leader and a calming presence for the Cannons’ defense.
Marrocco was able to shut out the Outlaws’ offense in the second quarter, giving Boston a ton of momentum going into the half. That momentum that Marrocco carried over into the second half, as Boston was able to hold Denver down the stretch and secure the win.
The second-year goalie ended the game with 16 saves off of 29 shots, helping Boston secure the win and take over the top spot in the standings.
Rookie OF THE WEEK
Despite the loss, Atlanta Blaze rookie faceoff man Alex Woodall really gave his team a boost on Saturday. Woodall showed why he was selected first overall in the 2019 draft as he absolutely dominated the faceoff dot.
A Towson alum, Woodall went 26-33 at the faceoff dot. Woodall’s efforts helped his team be able to somewhat control the pace of play and dominate possessions, especially in the first half.
Woodall currently leads the league in ground balls off the faceoff with 95 and has an overall faceoff win percentage of 53.48 percent, thus far.