DENVER – Led by six different scorers, the Denver Outlaws (3-0) defeated the Charlotte Hounds (0-3) by a score of 11-7 in the team’s home-opener at Sports Authority Field at Mile High on Sunday.
The Outlaws celebrated their 2016 MLL Championship in a pregame ceremony that included a banner unveiling, highlight video and welcome address from team President Mac Freeman.
Denver dominated the game’s possession behind midfielder Tom Kelly’s 15 faceoff wins (71.4 percent) and a 36-31 groundball advantage, highlighted by defenseman Matt Bocklet’s team-high six. The Outlaws made the most of their lead in possession, outshooting the Hounds 31-18.
Goalie Jack Kelly also held his own in net, stopping 11-of-18 shots (61.1 percent).
"That was a hard-fought defensive battle,” Head Coach B.J. O’Hara said. “Both goalies played outstanding. To have the advantage through possession really made a difference. It takes a lot of pressure off the offense because they don’t have to score every time they get the ball.”
Attackmen Eric Law, Mike Bocklet and Matt Kavanagh and midfielder Jeremy Sieverts led the way offensively, each contributing two goals and one assist.
The Hounds opened up a 3-1 lead in a high-scoring first quarter that included nine goals and a 45-minute lighting-delay. A two-point goal by defenseman Michael Simon with just under three minutes to play in the first quarter turned the tide of the game and sparked a 7-2 Outlaws first-half run.
Denver outscored Charlotte 3-2 in the second half to provide the final margin.
The Outlaws head back on the road next Saturday for a matchup with the Florida Launch (5 p.m. MDT faceoff)