As we gear up for the big event in Vero this week, I went back into our database and based on my data search this looks like it is the first article I wrote for FLN and it was a game coverage of Columbus playing Spanish River, on March 7th, 2013. Yep, over 7 years ago now.
Needless to say, my writing matured a bit since then.
I also saw that there was a lot of my early stuff that focused on MLL exploring the market at FAU to gauge interest in moving a franchise into the stadium, which we were blessed to have for 5 years. The Hamilton-Rochester game (that was a MUCH better article) and an interview with then MLL Commissioner David Gross were two highlights of that early coverage, as well as my first big kerfluffle that Tom West and I now chuckle at, but was intense for about 24 hours at my first Final Four.
I’ve thought about my Top 10 Moments over the 7+ years and one day will get down to it.
Anyhow, here it is:
In a game featuring two programs on the rise, Columbus Catholic (3-1) sent Spanish River (5-1) to their first defeat Tuesday night 11-6 in a game of second-half runs. A tightly defended first half ended with CC taking a 3-2 lead to the locker room behind two unassisted goals from long pole Omar Shabazz (who would complete his hat trick, a rarity for a long pole, in the second half). The tight defenses caused numerous turnovers and low shooting percentages. Face-offs were evenly split in the first half and the tenor of the game suggested that whoever got their offense unwound in the second half would have the advantage.
The second half also opened slowly for the first six minutes of the third quarter as the turnovers and missed shots mounted. Finally, attackman Grant Nordlund broke through for CC, on his way to a four-goal second half to stretch the lead to 4-2. After Adrian Franzone cut the lead to one three minutes later, CC ran off 3 goals in 4 minutes to take a seemingly safe 7-3 lead into the fourth.
Spanish River showed their moxie in the fourth by scoring the first three goals of the quarter to pull within 7-6 with nearly eight minutes left in the game. The comeback was more impressive given that CC dominated the face-off circle in the second half, winning 11 out of 13. SR’s defense caused a number of turnovers and their offense started converting opportunities. SR pushed hard for the equalizer but was not able to score again. CC put the game out of reach in the last five minutes with four goals in that period.
Hurting SR was their shooting percentages. They launched 33 shots but were able to only put 13 of them on goal, with 6 scoring. CC took 29 shots but hit the net with almost half of them, and scored on 11 of the 14 that were on target. Both teams were missing some key players because of injuries. Franzone and Colton Stanger led SR with 2G and 1A each.
In their next games CC hosts Belen Jesuit on March 8th and SR host PB Gardens, also on the 8th.