Friday, July 6, 7 p.m. ET | Sahlen's Stadium | Rochester, NY
Saturday, July 7, 7:30 p.m. ET | James M. Shuart Stadium | Hempstead, NYWatch & Follow Friday: National TV: CBS Sports Network, Web: Live Blog
Watch & Follow Saturday: National TV: ESPN2 Syndicated TV: Armed Forces Network Web: ESPN3, Live Blog
The Big Picture: New York rivals Long Island and Rochester will play a home-and-home set on Friday and Saturday night. This will be the only two matchups of the season between the Lizards and the Rattlers.
Last season, the Lizards beat the Rattlers both times the two teams met, though neither squad had much overall success as both missed the playoffs. This season, both teams have been better, and a sweep for either team would have important playoff implications.
Players to Watch: Rookie Matt Gibson has transformed the Long Island offense. The Yale product has 20 points in only five games, but most importantly has given the Lizards’ offense a true playmaker at the attack position to play alongside Grant Catalino and Ryan Young. Midfielders Brian Langtry and Max Seibald are Long Island’s primary midfield options; Langtry and Seibald rank one-two on the Lizards in scoring, respectively. Goaltender Drew Adams has had an excellent season so far, playing all but two minutes between the pipes for the Lizards so far. He is second in the league in save percentage.
Players to Watch: The health of Ned Crotty is something to watch going forward. Crotty could return this week, but will likely not be at full strength. When healthy, Crotty is unquestionably Rochester’s best offensive player. In the meantime, veteran Kevin Leveille and the emerging Steven Boyle will need to step up on attack. The Rattlers haven’t gotten much from their offensive midfield so far, but SSDM Steve DeNapoli and LSM Joel White have explosive transition skills.