The DC Breeze beat the Montréal Royal yesterday, 26-18 in front of 2,127 fans who showed up at Percival-Molson Stadium for the Royal’s 2016 Home Opener. The cool, rainy conditions did nothing to diminish the festival nature of the game in a city that averages the largest crowds in the league. The fans did not disappoint, and neither did the visiting team.
After a disappointing loss to Toronto followed by another 5.5 hour bus ride Saturday evening, the DC Breeze cleated up for their second game of the weekend hoping travel fatigue wouldn’t become a factor. The steady drizzle deterred neither players nor fans, and fatigue never entered the equation.
The DC Breeze came out strong on offense, scoring the first four points of the game. After the Royal managed to get a goal in, the Breeze continued their run for three more goals before Royal scored again, making it 7-2. The Breeze maintained a healthy lead, working through Montréal’s defense and amassing points while only allowing the Royals a handful of scoring opportunities. The Breeze took the first half comfortably at 12-6.
The rain let up somewhat during the third quarter, but the Breeze’s point run did not. DC kept their offense moving, losing a point off their lead but finishing the third quarter comfortably at 16-11. The Breeze truly hit their stride in the fourth quarter, extending the lead by drilling home ten more goals to the Royal’s 7 in the quarter to win going away, 26-18.
The Breeze ended the game with a 70% O-Line efficiency and a 47% conversion percentage. The clear player of the game for the Breeze was Nicky Spiva, who led the team in both assists and Ds with 7 and 6, respectively, and also took top honors with a plus-minus of 7. Overall 15 of the 18 active players amassed at least one goal, as the team did an impressive job of spreading the disc the entire game.
The game was also a homecoming for former man about Montreal Chuck Cantone (84), who was offered special fanfare both before and after the game. Here’s an article about the game from the Montréal Gazette, including quotes from both Head Coach Alex Ghesquiere and Chuck Cantone:
Staff Writer Libby Camberlin
Next game: Saturday, May 7, 6:30pm vs New York
Staying loose before the game:
The Royal making quite an entrance:
Breeze Captain Brad Scott with thoughts at halftime:
Brad again, with ex-Royal player Chuck Cantone and several others giving signed discs to some freshly converted Breeze fans: