The Boston Cannons celebrated their second Major League Lacrosse Championship on Sunday. (PHOTO Courtesy: Boston Cannons/
By Matt Noonan
The city of Boston had something to celebrate on Sunday when the Boston Cannons of Major League Lacrosse (MLL) captured its second championship in franchise history by defeating the Denver Outlaws, 13-10.
Sunday’s game between Boston and Denver occurred at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium in Annapolis, Maryland, which was the home site for the 2020 MLL season.
The Cannons’ three-goal win over the Outlaws was highlighted by John Uppgren (five goals, one assist), who guided Tufts University to a pair of NCAA Championships in 2014 and 2015.
Mark Cockerton contributed three goals and one assist while Bryce Wasserman, Ben Spencer, and Challen Rogers each recorded two points (one goal and one assist), respectively.
Duxbury native Nick Marrocco, who played college lacrosse at Georgetown University, ended Sunday’s championship match with 10 saves.
The championship win was the first for coach Sean Quirk, who was hired to lead the Cannons on October 8, 2015. Quirk became the Cannons’ sixth head coach after guiding the Endicott College men’s lacrosse program for 17 seasons.
Boston Cannons Helmet. (PHOTO CREDIT: Reed Smith’s Photography)
By NoontimeSports.com | @NoontimeSports
The Boston Cannons of Major League Lacrosse (MLL) unveiled its 2019 schedule earlier today, which includes 16 contests with eight games taking place in Massachusetts.
Boston will begin its new campaign on Saturday, June 1st when they host the Ohio Machine (no time or location for the game has been announced as of late this afternoon).
Following the conclusion of their season-opener, the Cannons will hit the road for a pair of games before concluding the month with back-to-back home dates against the Chesapeake Bayhawks on Saturday, June 22nd and the Denver Outlaws on Saturday, June 29th.
Denver captured last season’s MLL championship by defeating the Dallas Rattlers, 16-12.
This year’s 16-game schedule is a first for both Boston and the MLL, as all nine teams competed in just 14 contests previously with the top four teams advancing to the postseason.
In addition to two more games next year, the 2019 season will begin later than it has previously with its opening week beginning a few days after Memorial Day (May 31st-June 2nd).
The 2019 regular season, which will include an All-Star Game on July 27th at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, will conclude the third weekend of September (Sept. 20-22nd) with championship weekend taking place one week later (Sept. 27th-29th).
Boston Cannons 2019 Schedule
Ohio Machine at Boston Cannons | June 1st
Boston Cannons at Charlotte Hounds | June 8th
Boston Cannons at Florida Launch | June 15th
Chesapeake Bayhawks at Boston Cannons | June 22nd
Denver Outlaws at Boston Cannons | June 29th
Boston Cannons at Dallas Rattlers | July 6th
Boston Cannons at New York Lizards | July 11th
Atlanta Blaze at Boston Cannons | July 20th
Boston Cannons at Chesapeake Bayhawks | August 3rd
Florida Launch at Boston Cannons | August 10th
Boston Cannons at Ohio Machine | August 17th
New York Lizards at Boston Cannons | August 24th
Boston Cannons at Denver Outlaws | August 31st
Charlotte Hounds at Boston Cannons | Sept. 7th
Boston Cannons at Atlanta Blaze | Sept. 14th
Dallas Rattlers at Boston Cannons | Sept. 21st
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Catholic Memorial and Malden Catholic will be the first two teams to compete in the series – the two squads will face-off at Harvard Stadium on Saturday, May 5th at 3:30 p.m. before Boston entertains the Dallas Rattlers at 6 p.m.
Governor’s Academy will square-off against St. Sebastian’s one week later on Saturday, May 12th at Harvard Stadium with the game scheduled to commence at 3 p.m.
The final two matchups with take place in Hingham on Saturday, May 19th with the girls team hosting Braintree at 12 p.m. followed by the boy’s team entertaining Needham at 2 p.m. Boston and the Chesapeake Bayhawks will also compete in Hingham that same day with face-off scheduled for 6 p.m.
For more information on the upcoming High School Rivalry Series – HOP HERE!
Members of the Boston Cannons pose for a picture during the team’s Media Day, which was held on Monday, March 26th at the Warrior Ice Arena in Boston, Massachusetts. (PHOTO CREDT: Reed Smith’s Photography)
By Matt Noonan (@MattNoonan11)
Coach Sean Quirk said on Monday that the Boston Cannons’ focus for the 2018 season is to compete for a Major League Lacrosse (MLL) championship.
Boston hasn’t won a MLL crown since defeating the Hamilton Nationals in 2011 (the Cannons scored a 10-9 win in Annapolis, Maryland), but Quirk and his team seem optimistic about accomplishing their goal this upcoming season.
“Our number one focus, challenge and goal going into (a new) season is to compete for a MLL championship, “said Quirk during Monday’s Boston Cannons Media Day.
“It is certainly a realistic goal (and) one that we know our staff and players believe they can achieve.”
For Boston to achieve its preseason goal of winning its first MLL crown since 2011, they will need to get off to a strong start. Boston is one of nine teams that competes in the MLL, so early season wins are critical for any squad in the league that hopes to compete for a title in late August.
Boston Cannons coach Sean Quirk speaks to members of the media during the squad’s Media Day, which was held on Monday, March 26th at the Warrior Ice Arena in Boston, Massachusetts. (PHOTO CREDIT: Reed Smith’s Photography)
“It’s critical,” Quirk said of getting off to a good start.
“In any sport (or) any league, but particularly in the MLL because there are nine teams (in the league and) four make the playoffs, so those early games before teams start to get their NLL (National Lacrosse League) guys and their draft pick guys are critical, so those early season wins are important just like any game throughout the season.”
Last season, Boston secured an opening day win over the Florida Launch, but struggled over the next few weeks, dropping close games to the Atlanta Blaze, Chesapeake Bayhawks and Rochester Rattlers (now the Dallas Rattlers) before returning to the win column in its fifth game against the New York Lizards.
Boston did defeat the Denver Outlaws a few weeks after its second win over New York, but never returned to the win column afterward – the squad would drop its final five contests, including a 21-9 setback to Rochester in mid-July.
An opening day win next month against the Charlotte Hounds would certainly be a great way for the Cannons to start a new campaign.
Boston recently began preparations for its upcoming season last weekend at Endicott College, but will reconvene in a few weeks for two more practices before heading to Charlotte on Saturday, April 21st.
“We certainly feel really good going into any new season, but I think that training camp from this past weekend showed that we have a lot of pieces there to certainly compete for a championship and keep getting better,” said Quirk.
Following the team’s opener against the Hounds, the Cannons will visit Atlanta on Saturday, April 28th before welcoming Dallas to Harvard Stadium on Saturday, May 5th.
And one of those teams happened to be the Boston Cannons, which captured four of their final five contests, including a come-from behind season finale win over the Florida Launch.
Yet, despite an exciting 11-10 win over the Launch last August, tie-breakers among the league’s nine teams ousted the Cannons from the 2016 MLL playoffs, providing head coach Sean Quirk and his team with some motivation heading into the 2017 season.
“The parody is absolutely ridiculous in the league,” Quirk said earlier this week during his team’s Media Day at the New Balance Headquarters in Boston. “Anyone can win on any given day, (but) I think how we prepare for that (first game) is going to be critical.”
Getting off to a hot start will be critical for the Cannons, who look to return to the playoffs for the second time in three seasons. And to avoid any end of season tiebreakers, earning early season wins will help the local squad position themselves for a chance to contend for the Steinfeld Cup.
“We really hit our stride last year probably mid-way (or) maybe a little bit after that (point in the season), but we finished really strong,” said Quirk, who will be entering his second season with the Cannons.
“We beat New York at home, we finished beating the Florida Launch at home … so we put ourselves in every position to make the playoffs, but we didn’t do that early on in the season … so our goal is we have to be prepared better than we were last year early on to have success.”
Boston began positioning themselves for a successful 2017 campaign by recently inking Brodie Merrill, John Uppgren, Mike Begley and Joe Nardella to new contracts, while welcoming back John Tucker as an assistant coach.
Tucker, who began the 2016 season as the Atlanta Blaze’s first-ever head coach, spent a trio of seasons in Boston (2013-15) and was tabbed the squad’s head coach midway through the 2015 season.
The Cannons also acquired Matt Landis from the Florida Launch last month – he will be one of many defenders on Boston’s backline that will attempt to lock-down the league’s top attack.
Boston’s Josh Hawkins will be one of the key players to watch this season at the midfield. (PHOTO CREDIT: Reid Smith/Boston Cannons)
Boston will welcome back a slew of key players from last season, including Will Manny, Josh Hawkins, Kevin Buchanan, David Emala and Tyler Fiorito, who will be spotted between the pipes this season. Manny paced the squad with 50 points last season, while Max Seibald led the unit with a quartet of two-point goals.
Hawkins enjoyed his best season a pro, netting career-best in goals (11), points (14) and ground balls (51). He is one of many Cannons eager to return to the field in a few weeks when Boston visits Florida in their season-opener, which is scheduled for Sunday, April 23.
“Every game is a playoff game,” said Hawkins, when asked about his team’s outlook for the upcoming season. “That’s how it is … it’s always playoff games for us.”
Following a visit to Florida, Boston will head to Atlanta on Saturday, April 29th before entertaining Chesapeake on Saturday, May 6 at Harvard Stadium. Roughly one month after the Cannons’ home opener, Boston will welcome the defending champion Denver Outlaws on Saturday, June 3rd.
Boston will close out its season at home with back-to-back games against Florida (July 29th) and Atlanta (August 5th). Following their season-final against the Blaze, the Cannons hope to return to the field the following week for a playoff game.
“You have to approach every game with a winning mentality,” said Buchannan. “We just have to find a way to win week-in and week-out.”
For more on the Boston Cannons, visit their website at BostonCannons.com and make sure to follow them on Twitter (@BostonCannons) and become a fan on Facebook, too.