Urban Legends 86, Throwbacks 84
The body count continued to pile up for the Kronum League’s walking wounded, as wedgeback Jordan Welles and ranger-turned-wedgeback Greg Ermold were both out with injuries for the Urban Legends. With Kevin Glover again sitting with a strained MCL, the Legends were forced to throw crosser Kevin Clark in net for the first time in two seasons. Clark performed admirably in net given his layoff at the position, saving 11 of 25 shot attempts. However, the added defensive responsibility affected his offensive game, as the former league MVP was shockingly held scoreless in the game, missing all 9 of his shot attempts. Fortunately for the Legends, his teammates Mike Ragan (24 points, 8 assists), Brian Sperling (20 points), and Dan Vignola (15 points, 13 saves) were there to pick him up and pull off a dramatic last-second victory.
With the Throwbacks ahead 79-74 down the stretch, Mike Ragan hit the biggest shot of the game with an 8-point kronum to put the Legends ahead for the first time in over 30 minutes of game action. The team traded points until the Throwbacks’ Steve Fariss (team-high 14 points) converted a clutch flex zone shot to tie the game at 84 with 4 seconds left. After the timeout, the Throwbacks were so concentrated on Clark, Ragan, and Sperling that the Legends wisely went to the other side of the field to Dan Vignola, who kicked home the game winner from just inside the wedge line as time expired.
The Throwbacks had actually taken a large lead in the second quarter, going ahead by 23 at 55-32, behind back to back fours from George Price and John Graham. Clark and Ragan shot 0-14 combined through two periods as the Legends’ offense was stifled by the tough Throwbacks defense. However, Ragan hit his stride once the third period got going, hitting two cross zone shots in addition to his huge kronum. He got the Legends back in the game to set up Vignola’s late-game heroics. The rest of the league better watch out if the Legends continue to receive good offensive production from these players, get Clark rolling, and return their injured teammates to the lineup.
Work Horses 105, Night Owls 101
They say familiarity breeds contempt. Following an offseason that saw the Horses and Owls swap a total of seven players between them, the stage was set for a burgeoning Kronum rivalry. However, during preseason action, the Owls dominated the Horses in winning all three contests between the teams, and murmurs were that this relationship would be more feud than rivalry. But in Week 2, the Work Horses wiped away that bitter taste of defeat, edging the Night Owls in another game that came right down to the wire.
The match started out as a back and forth offensive game, with both teams coming out hitting cross zone attempts, plenty of flex zone goals, and four-point ring shots in the first period. Horses’ captain Phil Cavalcante was the happiest player in the league to see Week 2 roll around, as he put his struggles against the Nimble Jacks and their shadow defense in the rear view mirror. Cavalcante shot 55% on the game on his way to a league-high 34 points. Matt Kump (8 points, 3 assists) continued his strong play from last week early on and Mike Small (20 points) and Dave Slusser (18 points, 13 assists) provided consistent threats throughout the game. The Night Owls did not replicate their strong defensive effort from week one but captain Kyle McGrath (26 points, 7 assists) and Joe Tulskie (23 points) bolstered the Night Owls’ attack with some high volume scoring of their own.
The game was close throughout with the Night Owls narrowly in front, until with 14 minutes remaining in the third period, Slusser stepped up and hit a huge 8-point kronum to tie the game at 80-80. The next few minutes saw Cavalcante and Slusser drain shots from the cross zone and suddenly the Horses had their largest lead of the game at 91-84. The closing moments played out as the Kronum version of the march to the foul line at the end of a basketball game. The Work Horses had four penalty shots in the last minute, missing their first three before Matt Urglavitch blasted a kick home to go up four at 105-101. The Owls had one more chance to tie but a McGrath cross zone attempt was saved and a Tulskie rebound effort was blocked to end the game. In a day full of exciting Kronum action, this game did not disappoint and only served to stoke the rivalry for future matches between these two clubs.
Jet Sets 101, Evergreens 100
In their first professional Kronum League game, the Evergreens certainly looked like they belong, jumping out to an 25-11 lead over the Jet Sets. The Greens showed they can score in a variety of ways, as they pounded the goal zone and played the drive and kick game in the flex area to perfection. However, one thing they’ll learn with experience is that Jeff Regensburg is not a man who should be left alone, as last season’s leading scorer dropped a game-high 30 points.
With Regensburg keeping the Jet Sets in the game early on, the Jet Sets made a tactical shift in the second period, moving Stephen Vandenberg (20 points, 5 assists) into the middle. The move worked for them, as the Sets cut the lead to 60-57 before the Evergreens’ Harold Bolton hit a 4-point ring shot as time expired to end the second period.
However, the Sets continued to chip away behind Regensburg and Vandenberg, eventually taking a 79-78 lead. The teams went back and forth with the Jet Sets’ high scorers going up against brothers Joe (20 points) and Dom Petrino (18 points, 12 saves) for the Evergreens. After Dom Petrino hit a four-point ring shot with under 30 seconds left to take a 100-99 lead, Vandenburg answered right back with a flex shot to retake the lead. The Greens went to Ryan Maley (16 points) for the game’s last shot but Christian Rota made a huge save to end the game.
Despite the loss, it was an encouraging performance for the Evergreens in their first game. Joe Petrino (8 for 26 shooting) did not have the dominant performance everyone expected but the team received scoring from a variety of different sources which should bode well for the future. The Greens also look to have a winner at wedgeback in Gerry Plescia, who led the league with 15 saves, including a huge rejection in the goal zone. So although the Jet Sets came away with the W on Sunday, the Evergreens will certainly have a few of their own before the season concludes.
Week 2 Leaders:
Points – Phil Cavalcante (34), Jeff Regensburg (30), Kyle McGrath (26)
Assists – Dave Slusser (13), Matt Parsons (9), Mike Ragan (8)
Saves – Gerry Plescia (15), Dan Vignola (13), Dom Petrino (12), Derek Clouser (12)
Blocks – Ryan Kirby (3), 7 tied with 2
Steals – Mike Ragan (4), Nick DeLuca (2), Kevin Clark (2), George Price (2)