Bayhawks Rally to Outgun Hounds; Denver Finishes Unbeaten

The Hounds picked up where they left off to start the third quarter, going on another 4-0 run. Westervelt finally scored a power play goal to snap Charlotte's string of eight straight goals and end a nearly 10-minute drought for Chesapeake, which trailed 14-10 entering the final frame.

Chesapeake clamped down defensively, started winning some face-offs and mounted a gutsy comeback. Rubeor opened the fourth quarter with a left-handed sidewinder then Grant took over, finding Mackrides on the crease for a score then using a terrific stick fake to dodge a defender for an unassisted goal that cut the deficit to one.

Kimmel then regained the lead for Chesapeake by winding up and unleashing an overhand crank for a 2-point goal that made it 15-14 with 8:41 remaining. Kimmel laughed when asked afterward what he was thinking as he wound up for the 2-pointer that proved so decisive.

"I wasn't thinking. If I had been thinking, I probably wouldn't have taken the shot," Kimmel said. "We were going back-and-forth from one side of the field to the other and I was gassed. The guy covering me was backpedaling so I had some room. I just closed my eyes and went for it. It probably wasn't a great decision, but fortunately the shot went in."

Rubeor added an insurance goal with 3:10 to go and Charlotte was forced to go for a 2-pointer down the stretch. The Bayhawks used up the entire shot clock before rolling the ball out of bounds with about 20 seconds left. The Hounds cleared the ball and head coach Mike Cerino called timeout to put the ball in the stick of Danowski. However, Chesapeake defenders Michael Evans and Barney Ehrmann teamed to strip the high-scoring attackman and time expired without the visitors getting off a game-tying shot attempt.

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The Charlotte Hounds on Saturday night came up short against the Chesapeake Bayhawks, falling 16-14 in front of 10,831 fans at Navy Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Md. The loss means the Hounds (7-7) will have the No. 4 seed at Championship Weekend and face the undefeated Denver Outlaws (14-0) in the first semifinal. The Bayhawks' Ben Rubeor was named Player of the Game for a six-point performance.

The Bayhawks opened the game with five straight goals, including the first of the night from Rubeor, to set the tone for a high-scoring affair. John Haus ended the run with a tally from long range, but John Grant Jr. responded with a goal of his own to keep the Bayhawks ahead by five, 6-1. Geoff Snider won the ensuing faceoff, and Josh Hawkins scooped up the groundball and took it straight to the cage to make it a four-goal game. Ryan Flanagan then scored in transition to cut the Bayhawks' lead to 6-3 at the end of the first quarter.

Momentum stayed with the Hounds to start the second, as Jake Tripucka pulled the Hounds within two, 6-4, just two minutes in. But Drew Westervelt tallied his second of the night off a feed from Rubeor, who turned around and scored his second of the night to push the Bayhawks in front 8-4. Tripucka then scored his second of the night, and Snider won the ensuing faceoff to set up Hawkins for his second of the night to pull Hounds within 8-6. The Hounds then were called offsides, giving the Bayhawks a man-up opportunity. They took advantage as Grant Jr. made a beautiful feed to Westervelt to put the Bayhawks back up by three. However, it would be the last goal the home team would score for 9:42 as the Hounds put together a seven-goal run.

Mike Sawyer scored first off a feed from Matt White, then White got one of his own off a feed from Danowski to cut the Bayhawks' lead to 9-8. Danowski then gave the Hounds their first lead of the game, 10-9, by ripping a 2-pointer with 11 seconds remaining in the half. The run continued in the third, as Sawyer opened the scoring off a great individual effort to put the Hounds up 11-9. That was followed by goals from Ryan Young and Kevin Drew to build a 14-9 lead. However, it would be the final goal of the night for the Hounds. Hawkins got called for pushing, and Westervelt ended the run with a power-play goal to make it a 14-10 game going in to the final stanza.

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