When the DC Breeze needed their top stars to step up, they did. In fact, not a single player on the squad had a bad game against the Toronto Rush on Sunday. Sure, there were the occasional mistakes and poor decisions throughout the course of a grueling game in very hot conditions, but as a whole every player’s performance stood out as strong and productive.
Claiming first place over the Rush with a 25-17 victory, the biggest stat that stood out was how many breaks the DC offense gave up. One. It happened to end the first quarter, and from that point the Breeze would not allow the Rush’s D-line to score again. On the flip side, the home team defense scored nine breaks, five of them in the third quarter.
Throughout the entire contest there were only 20 turnovers for the Breeze: 16 throwaways and four drops. Only four players had more than one turnover, Three from the O-line while one was the top defensive handler.
One of those 20 turnovers was by Nathan Prior in the first half, his first turnover of the 2017 season! Despite the turnover, Prior still has highest throwing percentage in the league at 166/167 (99.4 percent) for players with 100+ throws.
As mentioned in the game recap, every player but one either recorded a goal or an assist. The lone exception was David Shields, a defensive unit regular. Five players scored three goals or more, highlighted by Joe Freund‘s four goals. Brian Marshall, Jeff Wodatch, Max Cassell, and Delrico Johnson all found the end zone three times.
With the success of the D-line, DC (7-3) was able to diversify playing time with every player playing at least 11 points. The most active was Rowan McDonnell with 24 points played.
Throughout the contest, the Breeze generated 17 blocks, slightly above their season average.
In a game with so few turnovers for the home team, only two players were perfect with 10+ passes. Both Markham Shofner (12/12 throws) and Austin Bartenstein (14/14 throws) surpassed the mark. Shofner played primarily on the D-line all game, helping bring consistency after turns. Seven other players on the roster had fewer than 10 attempts but no throwaways.
Breeze Top 5 Performers of The Game:
Joe Freund: 4 goals, 1 block, 7/8 throws (+4), 100% Offensive Efficiency
-Leads the team in offensive efficiency (60 percent)
Alan Kolick: 1 goal, 5 assists, 1 block, 24/27 throws (+4)
-Second on the team in assists (24)
David Bloodgood: 1 assist, 4 blocks, 25/27 throws (+3)
-Tied for second on the team in blocks (10)
Nathan Prior: 1 assist, 27/28 throws (+1)
-Leads team and entire AUDL in completion percentage among players with 100+ attempts (99%)
Brian Marshall: 3 assists, 2 blocks, 7/7 throws (+5)
Although the Toronto Rush (7-3) lost this latest contest and the season head-to-head tiebreaker advantage with the Breeze, the Rush are still tied with DC in the standings with the No. 1 seed in the East still far from being decided. The Rush make their way into the league’s Cross-Coast Challenge this weekend when the San Francisco Flamethrowers visit Toronto Saturday evening. Meanwhile, DC embarks on a difficult Canadian doubleheader road trip to play the Montreal Royal (6-4) and the Ottawa Outlaws (2-5) this Saturday and Sunday. The Breeze must continue to win games to keep the edge over Toronto, and Montréal is also nipping at their heels only one game back in the standings. The Breeze and Royal play Saturday, June 17 at 6:00 p.m. ET, then the Outlaws will host the Breeze Sunday at 2:00 p.m. ET.