In a game marred by 63 penalty minutes -- 42 of which were against the home team -- the Baltimore Bombers suffered their first-ever loss Sunday afternoon, 20-9 to the Boston Rockhoppers at Du Burns Arena.
The Rockhoppers (3-1) scored nine straight goals to break open a tied game at the half and take sole possession of first place in the North American Lacrosse League, dropping the Bombers to 2-1.
Bombers coach Hunter Francis was displeased with his team's effort.
“Before the game I felt we were focused and calm. It got physical and chippy out there, and we lost our focus and our nerves -- it was a humbling experience, to say the least,” Francis said.
The coach was also quick to praise the Rockhoppers: “They blew out Kentucky last week, so we knew key pieces were falling together for them. They are the standard for each of us to strive for and a great testament to what is happening in the North American Lacrosse League.”
With the contest tied at 7 at the half, no one on Baltimore’s bench had any idea of what was about to unfold. As players on both teams were continually escorted in and out of the penalty box, Boston took advantage of Baltimore’s unforced errors and short-handed defensive unit with a precision offense.
Suddenly the pick-and-roll game clicked, and within the opening minutes of the third period the Rockhoppers had poured in five goals and the rout was on. The Rockhoppers' defense was led by goalie Vince Talbot, who faced only two shots on goal in the third quarter as Boston opened a commanding 16-7 lead.
Devan Spilker and Andrew Wasik led the Bombers with three goals apiece, and Wasik and Dan Marohl (St. Mary's, UMBC) added a pair of assists.
The Bombers travel to Louisville, Ky., this weekend for a pair of games against the Kentucky Stickhorses, who stand in third place at 1-2. The Bombers' next home game is at 8 p.m. Saturday, Feb. 9 at Du Burns Arena against the Rhode Island Kingfish. Tickets are on available for sale on the Bombers Facebook page and the Bombers’ ticketing website.