Photo by Kevin Leclaire – UltiPhotos.com
After losing to the D.C. Current 28-15 last week, the New York Rumble return home hoping to avenge their loss and recapture the team chemistry they demonstrated two weeks ago at the Eagle’s Nest.
The Rumble are now 2-3, while the Current are 4-1 for the season. Winning this game would put the Rumble squarely back in the running for first place in the Eastern Conference. Last week, the team found themselves playing behind early in the game, and couldn’t make a comeback due to D.C.’s tireless defense and their ability to capitalize on turns. The team hopes to commit fewer errors this week and bring a ferocious intensity to their home field.
“Everyone will have less mistakes next week,” said Coach Head Coach Anthony Nuñez. He expects his players to be smarter on offense and more physical on defense.
Expect to see a strong performance from O-line handlers Chris Mazur and Isaac Saul, who have both tallied up a total of 17 points so far this season (Mazur has 6 goals and 11 assists, while Saul has 5 goals and 12 assists).
Yet the most important statistic to watch going into this game might be completion rate. D.C. capitalized on both defensive plays and unforced turnovers, the latter of which New York provided repeatedly. During the game, there were only 13 Current D’s, but the Rumble committed 21 unforced turnovers – almost twice as many. Yet Michael Hennessy, Dan Heijmen and Jack Marsh all posted solid completion rates at 97, 91 and 90 percent respectively. Keep an eye on those players as the Rumble attempt to cut down on offensive errors.
In addition to higher completion rates, the team also hopes to contain three star players on the Current – Peter Prial, Alan Kolick and Markham Shofner. If the Rumble defense can shut down these three players, they will limit the Current’s offensive impact drastically and give themselves a better shot at taking down the reigning Eastern Conference champions.
“We hope to put Kolick into uncomfortable positions on the field to create more mistakes for the Current,” said Coach Nuñez. “Last game, they had a flawless first quarter.”
The players are hoping to focus on their own game and make improvements on both an individual and team level.
“We’re worried about what’s going on in our circle and nothing else,” said Saul.
Although game five included many miscues between players and a possible lack of defensive intensity, Coach Nuñez and the Rumble players are confident in the fact that the team will be much improved when they face off this week against the Current.
Join the Rumble this Saturday at the Eagle’s Nest at Union City High School at 7:00 p.m. Catch the free fan bus leaving from 37th and 9th Avenue directly to the stadium one hour before the start of the game.