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Blast Return To Championship Series
Defeat Lancers 14-8 on Monday to win Eastern Division Finals
Monday, March 12, 2012
ROCHESTER, N.Y. – The Baltimore Blast advanced to the MISL Championship Series for the second consecutive season, taking a 14-8 victory against the Rochester Lancers in Game 2 of the MISL Eastern Division Finals. Max Ferdinand, Adriano Dos Santos and Pat Healey each finished with five points for the Blast, while the Lancers were led offensively by Andrew Hoxie with four points and Doug Miller with three points.
The Blast would take the lead less than a minute into the game, striking quickly on a counter-attack goal as Dos Santos found Ferdinand in behind the Lancers defense to finish after just 33 seconds. A little over six minutes later the Blast would double their lead when Mike Lookingland found Machel Millwood just off the top of the Lancers' penalty area and Millwood turned and finished.
The Lancers would get on the board less than three minutes later when Doug Miller found a streaking Andrew Hoxie who ripped a shot high past the Baltimore goalkeeper Sagu to make it 4-2 Baltimore after one quarter of play.
Both teams had good chances in the second quarter, but neither team was able to score. The Lancers' best chance game on their first power play when Rey Martinez headed a pass to Lubo, only for Blast goalkeeper Sagu to tip the header onto the post and out, keeping his side ahead 4-2 at the halftime break.
As in the first half, the Blast got a goal from Ferdinand with Dos Santos earning the assist within the first minute of the second. This time it was a scramble in front of the Lancers goal that saw Ferdinand finish, extending the Blast's lead to 6-2. Less than two minutes later Baltimore would score again when Dos Santos had his shot rebound off the end boards with Healey on hand to finish into a wide open Lancers goal to give the Blast a six-point lead.
But the Lancers would rally, Hoxie passing off the end boards to Jeremy Ortiz, who was able to beat Sagu to cut the lead to four. A couple of minutes later, the Lancers would score against. With Garcia in the penalty box Carlos Farias took the restart and fed Doug Miller, who powered it into the top of the goal to cut the Blast's lead to 8-6.
After weathering more Lancers pressure, the Blast grabbed back momentum with less than two minutes left in the third-quarter. Warren Ukah found Healey in the Lancers' penalty area and his diving shot eluded Lancers goalkeeper Patrick Hannigan to give the Blast a 10-6 lead heading to the fourth quarter.
The Blast then extended their lead with less than five minutes remaining in regulation, Ferdinand finding Millwood on the back post for an easy tap-in goal off a restart. The Lancers pulled Hannigan in favor of the sixth attacker from there and Dos Santos would score on a breakaway off a nice assist from Healey. The Lancers would answer 13 seconds later when Hoxie found John Ball for an easy tap-in, but that would be the closes the Lancers would get as the Blast advanced.
The Blast will face the Milwaukee Wave in the MISL Championshp Series, with Game 1 scheduled for Friday, March 16 at 7:35 p.m. ET at Baltimore's 1st Mariner Arena. Game 2 will take place on Sunday, March 18 at 4:10 p.m. ET at Milwaukee's U.S. Cellular Arena, with a 15-minute mini-game set to be played following that contest if neccessary
Hopefully, the new teams can stick around and build on this season. It looks like Missouri was the only other team to finish above .500 besides these two.
A pro football Hall-of-Fame without Art Modell as a contributor is like a Baseball Hall-of-Fame without Pete Rose as a player. What's the point of it???
Proud to be "Mean Spirited, Angry, Bitter Blogging, Blogger #804.1" -- (For Joe Newman I.D. Purposes)
Missing the Continental Basketball Association a little bit more, everyday...
Since neither Soccer-Man nor his evil twin (BlastFan) have posted here since before Thanksgiving, I'd hope that whatever the complaint is, it won't be here.
Doesn't matter to me. Both teams played well in the finals, and the Blast didn't give up in the last game. The Wave deserved it, and congratulations to Tozer on the big 700 - what an accomplishment!
I was content with how the Blast turned out this year. Considering they lost a lot of key players pre-season and were looking for leader roles all season long, they didn't do as bad as I thought they would. The Wave are going to go through a similar rough period in the near-future - you can't retain the same great players forever.