Launch Fall to Outlaws 14-10 in Fourth of July Classic
via Launch Web Site The Florida Launch returned from a three week bye to fall 14-10 against the Denver Outlaws Saturday night at Mile High Stadium. The Launch’s Owen Blye recorded a hat trick and Lyle Thompson scored twice but Denver’s close defense against proved too much for Florida to overcome. The loss levels the season series between the squads to 1-1. Denver jumped on the board early, tallying their first two goals under three minutes into the game. Michael Bocklet and Bailey Tills, for the Outlaws, scored their first goals of the game making it 0-4. Unforced turnovers plagued the Launch attack in the first period, as well as excellent goalkeeping by Outlaw rookie goalie Jack Kelly, keeping All-Stars Kieran McArdle and Connor Buczek off the scoreboard. However, Jovan Miller took the ball down the alley and blasted a goal past Kelly to get the Launch on the board just before Denver answered back leaving the Launch down 1-6. Florida’s defense sought a change in the second quarter with a goalie change as Brett Queener entered the game. Only 30 seconds in, quick offensive ball movement opened up Casey Powell in front of the cage and to score his ninth of the season. On the other end of the field, Florida’s defensive unit was having some trouble withstanding the offensive fire power of the Outlaw attack that saw seven different goal scorers in the first half. Under seven minutes to go, Denver punched two more goals in to widen the deficit. As momentum seemed to be on the opponent’s side, a huge save by Queener catapulted him up the field, leading to an impressive transition goal by Owen Blye on the crease. The goal pipes seemed to be the biggest enemy for the Launch attack as four shots just barely missed the net to nail the side posts. Lyle Thompson sneaked through coverage for a Launch goal with 35 seconds in the half, for a score of 4-8. Florida outscored the Outlaws 3-2 in the second quarter, and looked to build off that momentum in the third. Owen Blye came alive, beating his defender around the crease and tallying his second of the night. Strong defensive play led the way for the Launch, shutting down the Outlaws potent attack through the majority of the third quarter until Matt Bocklet scored to put the home team up by three. Steven Brooks recorded his sixth of the season by squeezing the ball past Adam Fullerton in goal at the to put his team closer. A minute later Lyle Thompson bounced a goal through the goalkeepers legs to make the gap just two scores and the Launch’s late scoring spree wouldn’t stop there. Owen Blye, with 18 seconds remaining in the quarter, scored off a quick catch and release to seal his hat trick. Going into the final period, Florida was only down one goal, but Drew Snider hit a big two pointer early for Denver. Soon after, All-Stars Kieran McArdle and Connor Buczek work the two man game and McArdle. After some back and forth play between the teams, Denver gets their second two pointer of the period from Nick Ossello. The two man attack game worked well for the Launch as Connor Buczek recorded a goal just inside the two point line. With the Launch down three late in the quarter, Bocklet capitalizes on an open net putting the Outlaws up by four, and they would hold the ball as the clock ticked down to win the game. The Launch now have ten days to regroup before traveling to New York to take on defending champion, New York Lizards, on Thursday, July 14 at 7:30pm. Florida Launch members Kieran McArdle, Connor Buczek, Chris Mattes and Tucker Durkin will also be on display this weekend as they head to California for the 2016 MLL All-Star Game, July 9. The game is scheduled for 4:00pm PT/ 7:00pm ET.