Syracuse Silver Knights Continue Playoff Hunt with Match vs Harrisburg
The Syracuse Silver Knights (9-7) continue to hunt for a playoff spot with a match against the Harrisburg Heat (5-12) on Sunday, February 11th. Kickoff is set for 4:05 p.m. Syracuse holds on to a slim half-game lead for second place in the MASL Eastern Division heading into the weekend.
Syracuse played two games last weekend against Cedar Rapids and Baltimore. The Silver Knights defeated the Rampage at the Oncenter War Memorial Arena 6-4, and lost in overtime to the Blast 8-7 at the SECU Arena.
Harrisburg did not play last week. Two weeks ago, the Heat lost two home matches to Baltimore 4-2 and to Florida 5-4.
Here are five things to watch for during Sunday's game:
1. Record-shattering affair
Sunday's match could see two important milestones reached. Joey Tavernese is two points away from setting a new single-season record for points. He is also one assist away from setting a new single-season record for assists. Slavisa Ubiparipovic is also one point away from reaching the 200-point mark in a Silver Knights uniform
2. Ramin's steady rise
Ben Ramin scored two goals against Cedar Rapids last Friday. The effort against the Rampage earned Ramin his second MASL Team of the Week honor. While he didn't record a point against Baltimore, Ramin did block seven shots to keep the Silver Knights within striking distance of the Blast throughout the match. His vast improvement from his rookie season to now has proven to be very important this season for Syracuse.
3. One-sided affair
Syracuse and Harrisburg has been a matchup that has traditionally favored the Silver Knights. Syracuse has won six of the last seven matches against the Heat. In its history, Harrisburg has only defeated Syracuse once at the Oncenter War Memorial Arena, back on March 4th, 2015, in an 8-6 win for the Heat.
4. Major injury for Harrisburg
Stephen Basso is the reigning MASL Defender of the Year. He played a key role last season in his first year in a Heat uniform to lead Harrisburg to a playoff berth. However, on Wednesday Basso announced on his Instagram account that his season has come to an end. Basso was second on the Heat this season in blocked shots behind Lucio Gonzaga. Our best wishes go out to Basso in his recovery. Meanwhile, the Heat must play the rest of the season without one of its best players and leaders.
5. Battle in net
Andrew Coughlin has blossomed into a premier keeper in the MASL. He carries a save percentage of 69.4% into Sunday's match, which is the third-best mark in the MASL. Coughlin has also made 209 saves this season, which is the second-best mark in the MASL. The person who leads the MASL in saves is Hugo Silva, Harrisburg's keeper. Silva has 214 saves on the season. Both keepers will need to be on top of their game in a key match in the MASL Eastern Division.
Fans who cannot make it to the Oncenter War Memorial Arena on Sunday can watch the match on MASL.tv. For tickets and more information on all Silver Knights matches, call 315-303-7261 or log on to syracusesilverknights.com.
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