June 23, 2018 — After losing 5 straight games, most recently to the Cascades at home, the Growlers knew they needed a win in Seattle to keep their playoff hopes alive.
The Cascades drew first blood with a hold and a break, but Max Hume’s flick huck to Mark Slader stopped the momentum, 2-1. Seattle answered (despite a big layout D from Will Griffin), but so did San Diego with another forehand bomb from Dom Leggio to Sean Ham, 3-2. The teams traded, then after a SEA turnover and a SD timeout, Wes Groth fed Tim Okita for the break, 4-4. After a couple turnovers and a last second foul call, the Cascades closed the quarter on a Mark Burton hammer to take the lead 5-4.
In the second quarter, the Growlers’ offense tied the game then took the lead when Hume assisted to Groth for a break, 6-5. The teams traded several holds until Seattle broke to go up 10-9. More trades, then the Cascades took advantage of another turnover, 12-10. Each team held on offense and San Diego could not convert near the endzone before half, down 13-11.
San Diego’s defense led to a break to begin the third quarter, but a Seattle hold and break of their own put them up 15-12. More trading, then a huge layout block from Scott Radlauer led to a Growlers’ break to pull within one score, 17-16. After another Seattle turnover, San Diego completed what seemed like a hundred throws before notching a break to tie the game at 17s with 10 seconds left. Steven Milardovich made sure there was no buzzer beater with a convincing interception as time expired.
The Growlers held on offense, but the Cascades doubled down with a hold and a break, 19-18, to kick off the final quarter. Michael Tran worked a nifty give-and-go to a shifty Dom Leggio for the hold, Seattle countered, and San Diego tied it at 20-20 with 3:45 remaining. The teams traded scores, punctuated by a Wes Groth (#22) layout catch to tie the game at 22’s with 1:26 left. The Growlers pulled and kept the disc in front of them forcing several sideways throws until one hit the turf and timeout was called with 15 seconds. Michael Tran picked up and dumped to Leggio who hit Milardovich under, then dished to Sam Fontaine who threw a bending forehand to the back right corner of the endzone to a tiptoeing Tim Okita for the buzzer beater victory, 23-22! Click here for highlights!
Dom Leggio led the Growlers with +8 (5 assists, 4 goals, 1 turnover) and Wes Groth contributed +6 (2 assists, 4 goals, 1 defensive block, 1 turnover) with several full extension layout catches. Sean Ham and Tim Okita had solid +5 games as well.
The Growlers playoff hopes are still alive with the win and an LA Aviators sweep of the bay area teams. San Francisco comes to town this Saturday, and Mission Bay HS will be rocking at 6:30 pm as the teams will settle who owns the series tiebreaker! San Diego will be riding some positive momentum from the win and will be especially motivated after letting one slip away in OT on Jun 2 vs SF.