This week of PLL Lacrosse shook up the power rankings. The number one team went down, and another team is rising up the list as the season continues. Although we are only in PLL week 3, there’s much excitement to be had.
Redwoods vs Chaos
Although it was a battle between two winless teams, the game was filled with action until the very end. The Redwoods managed to shake the winless label, beating the Chaos 11-7 thanks to a dominant third quarter led by Myles Jones and Jules Heningburg.
Heningburg was at the forefront, leading the game in points scored with 1 goal and 3 assists. His entire team rallied off shots all game, and it was definitely a deciding factor in the win. Although the Redwoods, shot 23% to the Chaos 35%, they outshot them by a whopping 23.
The faceoff battle was fairly even throughout the match, but the last thing that separated the two teams was turnovers. The Chaos only caused 2 throughout the whole game, while the Redwoods rounded out at 11.
Just from watching the game, you could tell the Redwoods were out to win. Even on the first goal of the game, Rob Pannell fought the Chaos for possession, broke out of an aggressive double, and made a moving shot with space to go. This team, although starting slow, is no laughing matter.
Cannons vs Archers
The Archers absolutely ambushed the Cannons, raining it down on them with a dominant performance of 20-9. Will Manny continues to dominate the league, making his MVP case with an unbelievable 8 points on 5 goals and 3 assists. He managed to do this while shooting 83%, which quite frankly, is absolutely unreal.
The Cannons had no answer for their offensive attack. Behind Manny, Matt Moore had 6 points and Tom Schreiber had 7. They were running circles around the Cannons, despite Lyle Thomson’s best efforts.
The chemistry of the Archers is unreal. The passes they make, and the trust they have in each other is commendable. Shreiber and Manny have an almost unbreakable connection, with 4 of Manny’s goals being assisted by Shreiber.
Although they may not be No. 1 in the power rankings, the Archers are a team to beat with this standout performance. Although they may not have the overall star power talent, their ability to work as a unit makes them an unstoppable force, which may meet an immovable object next week in the Atlas.
Atlas vs Whipsnakes
The power rankings shift as the No. 1 Atlas go down to an undefeated Whipsnakes in an incredibly close game, ending with a score of 12-9. As I watched this game, even after the Whipsnakes’ 7-point third quarter, I still didn’t know who would come out on top.
Honestly, there wasn’t much to differentiate the teams’ performances. They were even in almost every statistical category, with the only factor being that the Whipsnakes just made more shots. The atlas shot the ball 43 times to the Whipsnakes 37, but the Atlas only managed to make 16% of their shots.
This might have everything to do with both teams’ goalie play. Atlas’ Jack Concannon had 17 saves, while Whipsnakes’ Kyle Bernlohr had 18. Concannon started the game hot, making a trio of incredible stops, but it didn’t save him from the Whipsnakes’ barrage that was soon to come.
The Whipsnakes made 5 unanswered shots between the second and third quarters, increasing their lead to 4. Despite the Atlas’ best efforts, that run decided the game. I still believe the Atlas are the best team in lacrosse, they were just bested today by another talented team.
Waterdogs vs Chrome
In incredible fashion, the Chrome has a huge comeback victory against the winless Waterdogs to reach the top of the rankings, with a 7-point fourth quarter pulling them away with a 17-14 victory.
Although a little too close for comfort, the victory cements the Chrome as a top talent in the league, with an outstanding all-around effort for the squad. Every single goal scorer for the Chrome shot over 50%, with the whole team shooting 45% being the best we’ve seen this week.
The Chrome needed to hold it down a little more on defense, and their great fourth quarter inflates those stats a little bit. The Waterdogs played their hearts out, shooting the ball well and making some incredible plays. I truly believe the Waterdogs are one of the better bottom-half teams, and they’ll make some noise further in the season.
Chrome fans should be happy with the win, but not content with how they got it. With a team being undefeated and almost losing to one of the lowest-ranked clubs in the league, you have to question their integrity. But as long as they keep winning, it’s hard to doubt their success, and hope they fare better against the Cannons this Saturday in Baltimore.