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Blaze Fall to Chesapeake 13-16

August 25, 2019 - Major League Lacrosse (MLL) - Atlanta Blaze News Release

Atlanta, GA - The Atlanta Blaze move to 7-6 following a loss to the Chesapeake Bayhawks (8-4) at Silverbacks Stadium. The Blaze came out scorching with four straight goals in the first quarter but could not withstand strong runs from the Bayhawks as they fell 13-16.

TJ Comizio opened the scoring after netting a Mark Matthews pass with 12:37 left in the first quarter. Randy Staats connected with Brendan Sunday on a highlight behind-the-back assist just 30 seconds later to make it a 2-0 game early in the first. Tommy Palasek would knock in a pair of goals to seal the early scoring barrage for Atlanta.

Chesapeake answered back with two goals from Andrew Kew and Steele Stanwick to make the score 4-2. However, Atlanta outshot Chesapeake 10-5 in the first quarter with goals from Christian Mazzone and Mark Matthews pacing the Blaze to a 6-2 lead.

The teams went back and forth in the early second quarter as leading point scorers Lyle Thompson and Shayne Jackson came to life and added to their season goal totals. Thompson used his awareness on an errant ground ball in Blaze territory, using a scoop and score to notch his 39th goal of the season. Thompson finished with two goals on the night.

Just 30 seconds after Tommy Palasek scored his third goal of the first half, midfielder Drew Schantz found Shayne Jackson on the wing for Jackson's first of three goals on the night. Jackson's 37 goals for the season ties a Blaze single season record. The Bayhawks responded with another pair of goals from Nick Mariano and Matt Abbott pushing into Atlanta's 8-6 lead.

The Bayhawks took over the last 10 minutes of the first half, using a 7-1 scoring run with tallies from Abbott, Thompson, Stanwick, and Colin Heacock. Shayne Jackson would give Atlanta its only goal as the Bayhawks would go into halftime leading 9-11.

Atlanta was held scoreless in the third quarter as the Bayhawks built the lead up to 9-14. The Blaze committed eight turnovers in the quarter while Chesapeake had just three.

"The Bayhawks have become great rivals for us over the last four seasons," Spencer Ford commented. "We have to take care of all of the little battles in order to win the fight."

The Blaze continued to fight back in the fourth quarter, using scoring efforts from Jackson, Matthews, Palasek and Christian Mazzone. However, Atlanta committed five more turnovers in the fourth and Chesapeake used the clock to their advantage to secure a 13-16 victory.

Randy Staats played well in his return from injury, racking up four assists, including a highlight behind-the-back pass to Brendan Sunday and a pair of assists to Tommy Palasek. Staats now has 28 assists and 44 points through nine games this season. Mark Matthews led Atlanta with five points on two goals and three assists.


Mark Matthews: two goals and three assists

Randy Staats: four assists

Shayne Jackson: three goals

Tommy Palasek: three goals

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