Tonight the second place Blast looks to avenge an early season loss to the Chicago Riot. The Blast, 8-3, is ½ game behind the Milwaukee Wave. A win tonight would put them back into a tie for first. The Blast has won their last 2 games and is hoping to keep the second half of the season going strong. The Riot is 2-7 and are not only tonight’s opponent, but the Blast play the Riot tomorrow night in Chicago. The next two games present a great opportunity for the Blast. The crowd looks like a lot of people, with an announced crowd of 6,916. Great attendance.
The Riot starts off strong, with some aggressive play that leads to a nice header goal by forward Anthony Maher. This was quickly answered by Blast forward Lucio Conzaga as the Blast tied the game 2-2. At 8:14, Riot forward Miodrag Djerisilo takes a ball off the board to put the Riot back in the lead at 4-2. This is starting off as a real see-saw battle. And at 10:52 in the first quarter, Blast defender Mike Lookingland tied the game 4-4. With less than a minute to go, Blast forward Pat Healy scored a power play goal and the Blast lead at the end of 1 quarter 6-4. Very exciting.
Early in the 2nd quarter, Blast forward Carlos Garcia put the Blast ahead 8-4. The first 2 score lead of the game and hopefully something the Blast can build on. And they do with forward Worteh Sampson scoring to increase the Blast lead to 10-4. The Riot responded by getting a little chippy. After the Riot commits a penalty for having too many players on the field, the Blast go on a 2 minute penalty. They don’t waste the opportunity as defender Pat Morris scores his second goal of the night, 12-4. The Riot quickly responds and closes the game to 12-6. With less than a minute to go, Blast defender Pat Healy scores his second goal of the game and puts the Blast up 14-6, and that’s the score at halftime.
The Riot came out in the second half and scores a 3 point goal less than 30 seconds into the half. Score goes to 14-9. A good bit of the 3rd quarter is a real defensive effort by both teams. Lots of action but no scoring. That changed at 9:14 when Blast forward Lucio Gonzaga scored and the lead was back up to 16-9. The rest of the 3rd quarter remained a tough defensive battle and ended with the Blast up 16-9.
The final quarter started off with some real physical play. The Riot scored a nice rebound goal to make it 16-11. Then, the Riot commits their third penalty of the night on a Blast break away. This lead to a Blast shoot-out goal by Giuliano Costanzo. On the ensuing kickoff, the Riot score within seconds and the score is 18-13 with 8 minutes to play. One minute later, the Riot score again and its 18-15. This has turned into a real high scoring affair. With 2:46 left in the game, the Riot makes it real interesting by scoring, to make it 18-17 Blast. This Riot team will not go away. Lots of hard play to finish the game, but no more scoring. The Blast win 18-17 and go to a record of 9-3. The Blast look to beat the Riot again tomorrow night in Chicago.