The Chesapeake Bayhawks defeated the Charlotte Hounds, 10-9, to earn their second consecutive MLL Championship title on Sunday, August 25 at PPL Park in Philadelphia, PA.
Led by Championship Weekend MVP, John Grant Jr., the Bayhawks grabbed 10 goals and played a strong defensive game. They have now earned the Championship title in three of the last four seasons, and their fifth club title.
The game opened with a faceoff win for Chesapeake’s Adam Rand, but it was the Hound’s that struck first with a goal from Ryan Young, a minute and 11 seconds into the quarter. Adam Ghitelman made a couple of stops as the Bayhawks tried to keep the pressure on before the 2012 Championship MVP, Ben Rubeor put Chesapeake on the board, sending one into the net. Veteran attackman, Casey Powell would add to this, putting the Bayhawks up 2-1. After Charlotte went 1-5 in shots on goal, Young grabbed another one to even up the game. This was only temporary as Grant came in with the pick and roll to give the Bayhawks the 3-2 advantage.
The score would remain at 3-2 until the 3:43 mark in the second quarter, when Grant would take the feed from Powell to score again, making it a 4-2 difference. Charlotte failed to take advantage of a man-up situation and just couldn’t get a shot off. Matt Danowski was the only Hound to take a shot on goal in the quarter. To close out the half Grant slashed another goal with 1.1 seconds on the clock to head into halftime up 5-2 and complete a natural hat trick.
The third quarter would see a change in pace, with the ball traveling up and down the field, the type of lacrose tailored for a young, Hounds team, but still they struggled to compete. Grant would again send the ball sailing past Ghitelman, carrying his team to a 6-2 lead. The Hounds then turned it on, scoring two goals 46 seconds apart, one from rookie Jake Tripucka, and Young completing his hat trick. With a 6-4 lead, the Bayhawks kept the Hounds scoreless the rest of the quarter. Drew Westervelt and Matt Mackrides would contribute to the Chesapeake lead, making it 8-4 before heading into the final 15 minutes of the MLL season.