Photo courtesy of Nick Ieradi

A Film Study of Tye Kurtz’s First Pro Career Hat Trick

By Daniel May | Aug 15, 2023

Ever since Tye Kurtz put on a Chaos jersey, it was only a matter of time before he scored his first ever professional career hattrick.

After missing the first three games of the season, being held scoreless in his debut, and scoring two goals in each of the past three games, Kurtz eclipsed his first PLL hattrick in a timely manner this past weekend. In a 6:41 span at Peter Barton Stadium in Denver against the Whipsnakes, Kurtz notched three goals.

Breaking Down the Goals

Kurtz’s first goal came off a turnover in the clear by the Whipsnakes, which resulted in reverse transition for Chaos. 

It was definitely his easiest goal of the three, as he caught the pass from Will Bowen on the doorstep untouched. But as the old saying goes, “‘they all count the same.” 

That goal is the perfect example of complimentary lacrosse:  making plays which benefit your teammates on the other side of the field. A hard ride by the attack to force the turnover, then the heroic effort by Bowen to scoop up the groundball and rush the ball upfield. It fueled the flurry of goals that ensued afterwards.

Kurtz has looked more comfortable with each passing week with a steady increase in his shots each game he’s played – 3,4,6,7, and most recently, 9. The 17th overall selection from this year’s draft stands out for his quick, deceptive, and accurate shot that has added more range to Chaos’s offensive unit. With the loss of Wes Berg in free agency last summer, Heah Coach and General Manager Andy Towers needed to find a replacement. Another dynamic shooter on the righty wing, with younger legs, became the answer. 

Kurtz has fit seamlessly into this offense so far this season as another Canadian with elite off-ball IQ and an understanding for the scheme. 

He’s finding chances from two-man games, cutting off ball, and putting himself in positions to score when his defender’s slide.

His second goal of the game exemplified just that. Ryan Smith and Dhane Smith worked a two-man game top center, resulting in Dhane rolling off and getting the feed. In hopes of taking away the shot, the Whipsnakes defender responsible for covering Kurtz slid upfield, opening him up on the wing. After a nifty backhand pass by Dhane, Kurtz shot the ball around the defender in front of him and fooled the goalie.

Through just 8 games, Chaos have initiated more shots (103)  and have scored the most goals (28) when initiating from X compared to any other year. 

Since Chaos has relied heavily on X dodging to initiate their offense, wing shooters like Kurtz become more valuable. And he’s been able to find many shooting opportunities off those chances. 

His final goal of the hattrick resulted off a patented Brian Minicus speed dodge from the endline. Two defenders hedged to Minicus once he turned the corner, which left Kurtz open in the middle after the ball was swung to Smith. Once again, Dhane was able to find Kurtz in the middle, who finished with a crafty twister.

Kurtz is just scratching the surface on what he can do for Chaos. He’s only shooting 29%, so by improving that area of his game his goal total will skyrocket.

He’s a purebred scorer that filled the net at Delaware and has been a go-to scorer in the box lacrosse world. He possesses the confidence to be a volume shot taker that isn’t common among rookies. 

In other words, he’s just getting started.