Chaos falls to Chrome after scoreless fourth quarter

By Lauren Merola | Aug 6, 2022

After six ties and three lead changes, rookie Cole Williams ripped the go-ahead goal to give Chrome the 10-9 lead with 11:22 left to play in the 13-9 victory over Chaos in Denver on Saturday.

Chrome held Chaos scoreless in the fourth quarter while putting in four goals. Logan Wisnauskas, Chrome’s go-to goal scorer, had five points (1G, 4A) and Dylan Molloy had four points (2G, 2A) on the day.

“Even watching [Wisnauskas] with the [Maryland] Terps [last] year, I think he was a really underrated passer,” Chrome coach Tim Soudan said. “He’s an underrated dodger, but the thing that’s really unique about him is he’s really intelligent and lets the game come to him. He’ll take what you give him. If a guy flashes open, he does a really good job of putting the ball right in his stick.”

With the win, Chrome snapped a three-game losing streak and improves to 4-3. Chaos falls to 2-6.

With the Chaos loss, the Cannons – who are in last place at 1-6 – playoff chances improve to 20.1%. If Chaos beat Chrome, the Cannons’ chances would’ve fallen to 3.3%. Now, the Cannons and Chaos will duke it out for a playoff spot in the last two weeks of the season.

“We still hold our future. If we continue to win out, we’re going to go to the playoffs,” Jack Rowlett said. “That’s the goal moving forward. It’s really hard to lose; it really eats at you, but we’re in a position where we can’t get upset with ourselves. We have to continue to come out with the idea we’re going to win every single game and play with that swagger.”

On offense, Chaos rushed shots. Missed shots, dropped passes and saves often resulted in a quick Chrome transition.

“Offensively, I felt like we had too many ball possessions finish in the first 15 seconds,” Chaos coach Andy Towers said. “Chrome was beating us off the ground. We had three pipes that could’ve gone in and didn’t. It is what it is, and it was a big swing where we would hit a pipe and they’d go into transition and to their credit, they finished a lot in transition. I wish we were a little more conservative in what we decide to take within the first third of each possession. That came back to bite us in the end.”

Chrome grabbed 42 groundballs to Chaos’ 22.

“A difference of 20 possessions per game is a big deal. It’s significant,” Towers said. “In the end, I think that was the No. 1 statistic that led to this outcome.”

For Chaos, Mac O’Keefe (1G, 1T) and Dhane Smith (3A) had three points. Chris Cloutier (2G) and Josh Byrne (2G) had two apiece.

Chrome prioritized one-v-one matchups and keeping the long pole on Byrne. If there was a miscommunication or uneven matchup, Chrome recovered well.

“If they did get stuck with a shortie on the left side, they were squeezing in on me, staying in a double and getting to my hands, so I have to be smarter and be able to make the right play and right read,” Byrne said.

In the first half, Chaos shot 33%, sinking 5-of-15. Going into the third quarter, Chrome led 7-6.

“I liked the intensity we played with in the first half,” Rowlett said. “I thought Chrome had continual drive throughout the game. I think there were points in the game where we weren’t focused on how serious of a game this was for us.”

At the stripe, Connor Farrell had himself a day, winning 14-of-23 faceoffs on 60% and grabbing 10 groundballs. Max Adler went 9-of-24 and picked up three groundballs.

In the penultimate week of the regular season, Chaos takes on the Archers. Chrome plays a Cannons team with nothing to lose.