Photo by Bob Durling –

For the third consecutive year, the Rumble opened their season against the Boston Whitecaps. New York fell again with a 13-20 loss in Medford, Mass. on Saturday.

Talented defense, but not aggressive enough

The loss stings, but the team’s gritty identity was definitely on display. They forced plenty of turnovers on defense and looked sharp at times. Jibran Meiser led the way on defense with six blocks. However, the team came out flat and found themselves down early 0-3.

“We need to be much more aggressive defensively and not come in nervous or tentative,” said Head Coach Anthony Nuñez.

Offense in unprepared

That does not mean that it won’t be prepared soon. Against the Whitecaps though, the Rumble consistently clogged the lanes and the decision-making was not as polished as it needed to be. The Rumble looked a little better in the second half though, scoring eight points as opposed to just five in the first. Giving this group another week to clean up the mistakes should prove useful.

Nuñez is clearly focused on the basics. “We are going to need to hit the open person and advance the disc quickly,” he said.

 Jibran Mieser will battle with opponents’ top player

New York prevented Boston superstar Jeff Graham from his usual production and that was in large part due to Jibran Mieser. Graham still played well with two goals and a pair of assists but considering that he finished third in goals and second in points just a season ago, this counts as a win.

“He’s a guy that really makes you work on every cut he makes downfield and you better be on your toes when he’s in the handler space,” said Mieser. “If you want to get better at this sport, he definitely has to be a player on your must-guard list.”

This week of preparation is crucial as New York travels to Philadelphia to take on the Spinners. The Rumble and Spinners met three times last year and every game was decided by only a single point. Catch the next round of this rivalry on MLU Live at 6:30 p.m. ET this Saturday.

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