Two weeks removed from a must-win victory at Philadelphia, the DC Current find themselves once again thrust into another crucial conference game on the road this Saturday at New York.
The Current (1-3) sit at the bottom of the Eastern Conference standings and desperately need a win to get back in the playoff hunt after getting pummelled by Boston last week.
Earning the big W at the Eagle’s Nest won’t be easy. The Rumble, also 1-3, are coming off their first win of the season last Sunday at Philadelphia in a thrilling double overtime decision and have gained some much needed confidence before facing the Current. But with a win, and a Spinners loss against Boston, the Current would find themselves tied with Philadelphia at 2-3 and back on track towards earning a playoff berth in the remaining four games of the season.
Despite the ugly loss last week, the Current have plenty to be hopeful for heading into Week 5. Jeff Wodatch and Tom Doi have proved themselves troublesome for defenders to track down, grabbing 10 and 8 goals so far this season, respectively, while Markham Shofner and Alan Kolick have made defenses pay with their use of every inch of the field. Shofner is top ten in the league with 19 points (13 assists, 6 goals) with most of those earned on downfield hucks. His partner in the backfield, Kolick, leads the Eastern Conference in assists with 17 and has completed 191 of 203 passes for a stunning 94% completion rate. Kolick’s ability to control the flow of the game on offense was a crucial factor in the win against Philadelphia and should be again against New York.
The two squads met a week ago for a sloggy 1:43 seconds of game play before the referees ended the game due to lightning strikes in the area. DC was up 2-1 when the game was called. Captain Sean Keegan was active early in the game with two assists, and the Current will need his leadership on the field on Saturday if they want to come away with the win.
If the Rumble have a chance of winning, it will be because of their dynamic duo of Chris Mazur and Ben Faust, who are tied for second among leading scorers with 23 points apiece. Mazur presents a particular threat both as a thrower and a scorer with 12 assists and 11 goals.
The Current, who have given a conference leading 77 goals this season, will need Ryan Todd, Brian Marshall, and Delrico Johnson to step up and make things difficult for New York’s leading scorers. Each of them have provided key defensive stops thus far this season and we can expect more of the same in Week 5.
The game will be played at the Eagle’s Nest in Union City, NJ on Saturday at 7 pm.