7/27/12 9:00 AM
The Ohio Machine vs. Rochester Rattlers
Saturday, July 28, 7:00 p.m.
Sahlen’s Stadium, Rochester, NY
Fans can watch the action live on ESPN3.com or at 11:30 p.m. on SportsTime Ohio.
The Ohio Machine (2-9)
Rochester Rattlers (6-5)
The Ohio Machine will travel to Rochester to face the Rattlers for the second time this season for a chance to sweep the series. Ohio will face one of the league’s top defenses and the league’s top penalty killing unit.
Last Time Out
The Machine jumped out to a 2-1 first quarter lead against the league-leading Chesapeake Bayhawks last Saturday at home. The Bayhawks took a one goal lead late in the 2nd quarter but defenseman Greg Bice scored his first goal of the season to tie the game up at halftime. Attackman Ben Rubeor opened the third with a two-point goal and attackman Drew Westervelt and midfielder Michael Kimmel followed that up with goals of their own. Rubeor’s second goal of the game gave them a five-goal lead early in the fourth quarter. Machine rookie attackman Joe Cummings completed his first career hat-trick on a pass from Chazz Woodson. Bayhawks midfielder Kyle Dixon put the game away when he recorded his MLL record 12th two-point goal of the season. Midfielder Connor Martin scored his first career two-point goal with less than two minutes to go but the Machine fell to the Bayhawks 11-7.
Last Time vs. Rochester (5/19)
The Machine was behind early 2-0 in its historic home opener but answered quickly with three straight goals from attackmen Jim Connolly and Andrew Combs and midfielder Connor Martin. Midfielder Matt Casey score 51 seconds into the second quarter to continue the team’s run. After a five minute scoreless streak defenseman Kyle Hartzell slung his second two-point goal of the season. Midfielder Dan Groot and attackman Chazz Woodson scored right after to increase the Machine’s lead to 8-2. The Rattlers responded by scoring three out of the next four goals to make it 9-5 Ohio at half-time. The Rattlers cut the Machine’s lead to two, 9-7, with two straight goals but Ohio went on a 4-goal run to end the third quarter up 13-7. Each team scored three goals in the fourth quarter and the Machine won its first game of the season. Attackman Chazz Woodson led the Machine with four goals and goalie Stefan Schroder had 17 saves in the victory and was named Bud Light Player of the Game.
#12 (D) Ray Megill - With three groundballs against the Chesapeake Bayhawks, defenseman Ray Megill has set a career high for groundballs in a season with 33. Megill’s previous high was in 2008 when he had 31 groundballs in 12 games with the Boston Cannons.
#30 (G) Brian Phipps - In his fifth start, Machine goalie Brian Phipps only allowed nine goals against the Chesapeake Bayhawks. Phipps now is sixth in the league in goals against average with a 12.89 average. Phipps also has 35 saves over his last two starts.
#44 (D) Greg Bice - With 20 seconds left in the first half against the Chesapeake Bayhawks, defenseman Greg Bice scored his first goal of the season. Bice now has 12 career goals and seven career assists for 20 career points. In 2010 Bice set his career high for goals in a season with five.
#81 (D) Kyle Hartzell - Defenseman Kyle Hartzell continued his career year with six groundballs against the Chesapeake Bayhawks. With that performance Hartzell moved into fourth place among defenseman in groundballs with 43.
#88 (M) Connor Martin - Midfielder Connor Martin scored the first two-point goal of his career against the Chesapeake Bayhawks. Martin now has career highs in goals, two-point goals, assists, points, powerplay assists and shots.
Roster Regulars - Ten of the Machine’s 19 players who played against the Chesapeake Bayhawks on May 5th were still on the roster when the Machine played the Bayhawks on July 21st. Seven machine players have played in all 11 of the team’s games: Greg Bice, Matt Casey, Jim Connolly, Kyle Hartzell, Connor Martin, Ray Megill, and Chazz Woodson.
Home Is Where The Defense Is- The Ohio Machine’s defense continues to be significantly better at home. At home the Machine allow 10.16 goals per game while during road games the Machine give up an average of 12.4 goals per game.
Amazing Attack- The Machine’s attack has been the driving force behind the team’s offense this season. The attack unit now has 64 out of the teams 121 goals. It has also accounted for 61 percent of the team’s assists.
Out of Playoff Running: “We have been going through some growing pains like any expansion team and developing the talent on the field, especially the rookies. Our players are unselfish and we’ve been right there with our opponents throughout the season but the ball hasn’t bounced the right way for us. That’s just how it goes.”
Veterans: “The veterans have been key for this team this season, especially as mentors for the younger players. Having guys like Greg Bice, Brett Hughes and Chazz Woodson, as well as Kyle Hartzell and Brett Garber, makes it somewhat easier to deal with what usually goes on in this league and keeping things progressing throughout the season. They have been all around remarkable.”
Upcoming Match: “We need to control the possession and use the shot clock wisely, as well as win those face-offs like we have been these past two weeks. Our players are going to respond well within these last three weeks. Our guys aren’t going to give up. They are going to continue to keep playing hard for the rest of the season. Our guys are certainly looking forward to being the spoilers over the last three weeks.”
Joe Cummings: “I believe he has done an extremely good job in these past couple of games with us and is going to be a persistent, smart player in this league for seasons to come.”
Steele Stanwick: “He is an amazing player and person who takes the game seriously and has a lot of pride in his game. His vision is stellar and is dangerous behind the net. He will just get better and better the more he plays in this league.”
The Rochester Rattlers began the season with a 3-3 record but have won three out of their last four to put them in a tie with the Boston Cannons for the final spot in Championship Weekend. Last weekend the Rattlers faced the Charlotte Hounds for the first time this season. The game was tied at two after the first quarter but Rattlers’ midfielder Brad Ross scored in the second to give Rochester the 3-2 lead. Ross’ goal began a 4-0 run for the Rattlers and they took a 6-3 lead into the first half. The Hounds’ Billy Bitter scored his 11th goal of the year to bring Charlotte within two. The MLL record holder for most games played, Matt Striebel, scored a power-play goal three minutes later to retake the Rattler’s three point advantage. Rochester scored seven out of the next eight goals to hand the Hounds their eight loss of the season. Striebel and midfielder Roy Lang led the Rattlers with four points each.
The Ohio Machine will travel to Boston to play the first of its two games against the Cannons. A week later, Ohio will welcome the Cannons to Ohio for the team’s last game of the season. The game against the Cannons will also be “Fan Appreciation Night,” which will feature numerous raffles, $1 Brats, $5 Meal Deals (hot dogs, soda, popcorn), and fireworks presented by Bud Light. Fans can also win a chance to take home one of the player’s game worn jerseys after the conclusion of the game. For tickets to “Fan Appreciation Night,” call the Machine at (614) 754-1973 or click here to purchase them today.