Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 8/9/20
From Press Release
Whipsnakes went nearly 29 minutes without a goal, then exploded for a 10-goal run to defeat Chaos, 12-6, in the PLL championship game today at Zions Bank Stadium in Herriman, Utah.
The Whips completed an undefeated run through the fan-less, quarantined tournament that started July 25 and ended with them repeating as PLL champion in front of a national broadcast TV audience on NBC.
MVP Zed Williams scored five of his PLL single-game record-tying six goals in the fourth quarter, including four in less than two minutes as the Whipsnakes offense sprung to life after a lackluster performance through three quarters.
Williams was chosen with the fifth overall pick in the March 16 PLL entry draft.
“Thank God we have Zed on the team now,” said Matt Rambo (La Salle, 1G, 3A), the 2019 PLL MVP.
Chaos had gone 0-4 in Group Play, but upset No. 2 Chrome, 19-14, and No, 3 Archers, 13-9. to reach the final.
Both Rambo, who finished as the top scorer of the PLL Championship Series with 25 points, and Williams were blanked by Redwoods in the Whipsnakes’ 13-12 semifinal win Thursday — a game that went to overtime after the Whips coughed up an 8-2 lead and sputtered on offense.
That trend continued in the championship game Sunday. After scoring the first two goals, Whipsnakes went silent. Chaos deployed a suffocating defense and goalie Blaze Riorden (14 saves) – who is Rambo’s teammate and roommate with the Philadelphia Wings was sensational.
Chaos scored six unanswered goals, including another highlight-reel variety act by Josh Byrne, to go up 6-2. Even after Brad Smith scored to end a Whipsnakes drought of 28 minutes, 59 seconds, the pace favored Chaos.
Then the fourth quarter happened.
John Haus scored on a short-stick invert to make it 6-4 with 10:12 remaining. Five seconds later, Joe Nardella (12-for-19) fed Williams in the left slot off a clean faceoff win and the 6-foot-2 righty dropped his hands to score on a submarine shot.
Williams tied it at 6 with 9:41 left when he split a double team, got point blank on Riorden, pulled his stick across his head and used a twister finish to beat him.
Twenty-two seconds later, Rambo fed the ball in front to Jay Carlson, who pump faked and scored the go-ahead goal.
Chaos called timeout after Carlson’s goal but could not stop the tidal wave. Williams finished the stretch with two more tallies, coming off a screen for a time-and-room blast to make it 8-6 and then bowling over Jack Rowlett at the top of the arc before using the Chaos defenseman as a screen for a goal that made it 9-6 with 8:11 remaining.
Chaos squandered a power-play opportunity when Whipsnakes defenseman Tim Muller pressed out to cause a turnover. Rambo capitalized on the other end, scoring on an inside roll-and-dive to deliver the proverbial dagger.
Williams added one more goal for good measure, roll-dodging through a double-team and tucking a shot inside the near pipe.
Defenseman Bryce Youbng (St. Augustine Prep) had a groundball in a key role for Whipsnakes.