ANNAPOLIS, Md. – The Outlaws have only lost one game in the last 357 days.
That loss came to the Chesapeake Bayhawks in the 2012 Steinfeld Cup Championship Game.
Denver got a measure of revenge for that game’ outcome with a 13-9 victory over the Bayhawks at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium on Saturday. The win improves the Outlaws’ record to 7-0 and gives Denver a two-game lead on top of the MLL standings.
“Some of the things we’ve tried to do while building a team were to try to compete better with the Bayhawks,” Head Coach Jim Stagnitta said on this week’s MLL conference call. “I think that’s a credit to Dave (Cottle) and what they’ve done with their squad.”
Eric Law kept his perfect shooting streak intact, leading all players with five goals. Law, who scored on all four of his shots in his MLL debut last week was 5-of-5 shooting on Saturday to increase his goal total to nine on nine shots.
While Law had no problem solving Bayhawks goalie Kip Turner, the Bayhawks goalie saved more than 70 percent of shots off the rest of the Outlaws’ sticks.
Both Turner and Outlaws goalie Jesse Schwartzman turned in strong performances to keep the league’s two highest-scoring offenses to a combined 21 goals. Schwartzman saved 17-of-26 shots (.654 pct.) and Turner stopped 19-of-32 (.594 pct) for the game.
Law, who scored the first goal of each of the four quarters, netted his first goal 4:23 into the game to open the scoring off an assist from Brendan Mundorf.
The Bayhawks responded to take a 2-1 lead with back-to-back goals from Steven Brooks and Matt Abbott before Chris Bocklet tied the game near the end of the first quarter on a man-up goal off an assist from Zack Greer.
A pair of University of Denver alumni combined to start the second-quarter scoring when defenseman Dillon Roy found his former college teammate Law open on the crease to give the Outlaws a 3-2 advantage 6:20 into the quarter.
It appeared that Chesapeake had taken a 3-2 lead on a goal from Michael Kimmel earlier in the second quarter, but Stagnitta challenged the ruling, saying that Kimmel’s foot was in the crease. After review, the challenge was successful and the goal was waived off.
Later in the frame, Stagnitta again challenged a ruling of a Turner save, saying that Mundorf’s shot crossed the plane of the goal. He won the appeal for the second time and the Outlaws were awarded a goal to open up a 5-3 lead.
Schwartzman made seven saves in the second quarter to limit the Bayhawks to one point in the period and the Outlaws took a 6-3 lead into the intermission.
Law opened the third quarter with a goal in the first minute just as he did a week before against Hamilton.
With the Outlaws ahead 7-3, Ben Hunt hit the net on a man-up advantage to cut the lead to three.
Jeremy Sieverts, a former Bayhawk, scored back-to-back unassisted goals 53 seconds apart to put Denver on top 9-4, which marked the largest lead of the game for either team at that point.
The Bayhawks got back into it with three straight goals and Turner kept the Outlaws out of the net for the final 8:40 of the third quarter to make the score 9-6 going into the final frame.
Just as he did in the first three quarters, Law started the scoring, needing just :42 seconds to put the ball into the back of the net.
Drew Snider added his first of the game 1:29 later to put Denver ahead 11-6.
After a pair of Bayhawks goals cut the lead to three, Law turned momentum back to the Outlaws’ side with a goal at the 11:37 mark to push the score to 12-8.
The league’s two-point scoring leaders, the Bayhawks attempted to get back into it with long-distance bombs, but Schwartzman’s steady play in net swallowed up all of the Bayhawks’ attempts from deep.
Snider iced the win with a goal with just 45 seconds to go and the Outlaws left with a franchise-record 13th-straight regular-season win. The last time Denver lost in the regular season was nearly a year ago when the team dropped a 14-8 decision at Long Island on June 23, 2012.
Denver returns home on Saturday, June 22 against the Ohio Machine. Tickets are available on DenverOutlaws.com for that matchup.