Chrome vs. Waterdogs Preview
By Quinn Magner | Jun 12, 2021
Where to Watch
- Sunday, June 13
- 1:00 PM
- Live on NBCSN or Peacock
As we buckle up for Week 2 of the 2021 PLL season, the 1-1 Waterdogs look to close their weekend with a win over the 0-1 Chrome at Fifth Third Bank Stadium at Kennesaw State University in Atlanta, Georgia this Sunday. Fans are sure to see a crop of truly electrifying offensive threats who will be standing between the lines for both of these clubs this weekend.
Who Will Own the Stripe?
After the Dogs in purple fell to the Cannons 13-7 last weekend after trailing 9-1 before the end of the 2nd quarter, possession was a key factor that the Waterdogs were missing. Faceoff specialist Jake Withers will have to square off with Chrome big boy Connor Farrell, who went 14-for-27 in the Chrome’s loss to the Redwoods. Withers went 14-for-22 last Sunday and is currently sitting pretty at 64% after his showing against Cannons, and Farrell holds firm at 44 percent at the stripe as well—both will have to get the ball rolling owning each scramble at every first whistle in order to dish out the most critical opportunities that can get their respective teams to 1-1 after Week 2. The 6-foot-2 LIU Post alumna Farrell earned major clout during the PLL’s 2020 Championship series finishing the summer with 62 percent on faceoff wins. Farrell utilizes his formidable 6’2, 240 lb. frame to bulldoze opponents for Chrome who struggled to produce goals from possessions during their Redwoods outing, and the 5’11, 200 lbs. Withers will have to be quick to the draw.
New Offensive Weapon with Bones (and corners, mostly) to Pick:
A former 3x All-American from Johns Hopkins, Ryan Brown, who has been hailed as one of the most accurate sharp-shooting attackmen playing the game today, was traded in the offseason from Atlas to help head coach Any Copelan and his staff chalk up plenty more goals in 2021. That said, rookie attackman Michael Sowers has been declared a no-go for the Chrome game after being hospitalized this past Monday because of a head injury suffered from a late cross-check to the back of the helmet in his PLL debut last weekend.
After burying three goals on Friday night against Chaos, Brown will need to help Ben Reeves and Michael Kraus create some major waves for Chrome’s veteran goaltender John Galloway. Sowers, a Tewaaraton finalist who just picked up his degree from Duke after losing to Maryland in the national semifinals, scored two acrobatic goals that were the Waterdogs’ only tallies from the team’s attack line last Sunday. So, between the always-threatening Brown, the versatility of Kraus and the QB-like IQ of Reeves, Waterdogs should put on an exciting display on attack for the crowd in Atlanta when they go toe-to-toe with their Chrome counterparts on defense, Mike Manley, Jesse Bernhardt and Greg Weyl.
Galloway vs. Ward
Who has the better game between the pipes can tilt the axis of the final score between these two 0-1 teams on Sunday. Former Syracuse All-American and veteran keeper John Galloway will have to show up for Chrome as he finished last week against the Redwoods with a 43 percent save percentage allowed 13 against the current top team in the league so far.
Dillon Ward will have to use his 6’5 frame and savvy, unorthodox high-arc to come up with some big stops on Chrome’s offensive stalwarts from the midfield in Jordan MacIntosh and John Ranagan. With attackman Jordan Wolf out for the bout this Sunday with a pulled hamstring suffered against Redwoods last weekend, former Duke standout Justin Guterding, otherwise known as “Gutterball,” will have to pepper the cage and set the stage against Ward. Guterding took 6 shots against the ‘Woods last weekend and finished with just one goal, but if Ward doesn’t come out standing on his head and get hot early between the pipes for Waterdogs, it could be a four-quarter dual between him and #14 in Guterding.
What to Expect
Expect high-volume shooting from the alleys stemming from Ranagan and MacIntosh for Chrome with potential for some exciting and athletic transition play from captain and veteran LSM Joel White to run downhill against Waterdogs’ defense. At the other end of the field, Waterdogs’ attack will have to make up for the loss of Sowers and get the ball moving fluidly from the first whistle if they want to prove that their offseason offensive moves reflect the hype that came along with them.
Week 2 of the 2021 PLL season in Atlanta is set to be an electrifying showdown between the best lacrosse players in the world, and NBC Sports shares the excitement behind the league bringing you Chrome vs. Waterdogs this Sunday, June 13 at 1 PM.