By Jessica Braveman | 8/7/14 2:00 PM
As we enter the final week of the 2014 Major League Lacrosse regular season, three teams (Rochester, Denver and New York) have clinched the playoffs, leaving one spot available, and three teams (Charlotte, Chesapeake and Florida) have been eliminated. With only a single regular-season game remaining, the 2014 Rookie Class will push to make final impressions, and for two teams (Boston and Ohio), hopefully make the playoffs. Here is a look at the rookies who made an impact this past week:
Week 13 was a slow week for the Ohio rookies. The only first-year Machine player to make an appearance in the team’s victory over the Rattlers was Derek Maltz, who was held without any goals, assists or groundballs, but did manage one shot on goal.
The Rochester rookies were a little quieter than usual, with the exception of Mark Cockerton. Perhaps that is why the Rattlers tallied their first at-home loss of the season last week. Jordan Wolf notched the first goal of the game against Ohio, but didn’t get many shots on goal after that. Mark Cockerton had a fantastic game yet again, netting four goals and one groundball, earning him the Cascade Rookie of the Week honors. Cockerton now has the most goals this season among the Rattlers with 22.
The Lizards’ Week 13 victory over Charlotte featured a strong performance by rookie Joe Fletcher. In the early minutes of the game, Fletcher put New York on the board with his first MLL career goal. Fletcher also had two groundballs and an overall impressive defensive performance, which earned him the Warrior Defensive Player of the Week title. Also making an appearance was rookie Alex Zomerfeld, who played in his second game with the Lizards.
Kieran McArdle was held to just one goal and an assist, a great game for a rookie, yet it seems like a let down compared to his ten point outburst the week before. McArdle, however, still continues to be a contender for the Rookie of the Year Award. Joe Meuer also dressed and recorded one groundball.
Colin Dunster contributed to Denver's victory last week with one groundball and a goal. Dunster's efforts put the Outlaws up 10-4 coming into the half. Brent Hiken took most of Denver’s faceoffs, winning six and picking up three ground balls throughout the game.
Justin Ward’s three assists extended his streak of at least three points per game to five. The attackman remained the team-scoring leader and was the only first year to record a point this week. Brendan Fowler had his second consecutive game carrying the entire faceoff load, but he struggled, only winning eight possessions. Henry Lobb and Michael Ehrhardt played well at defense, each recorded multiple groundball pickups.
Not much action from the rookies in Boston’s high intensity win over the Florida Launch last week. Midfielder Rob Emery had one assist late in the third quarter, handing it off to Will Manny. Emery has had a decent first season with the Cannons, tallying 11 points in nine games played. He ranks among the top ten in points for the Boston Cannons.
Rookies Mark McNeil and Jack Runkel dressed for Chesapeake this past weekend. Runkel saw five minutes in cage at the end of the first half and made one save while allowing one goal. The Bayhawks fell to the first-place Denver Outlaws, 18-16.
Be sure to check back next week for the latest information on the MLL’s 2014 Rookie Class.