WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Boston Whitecaps (5-3) leave the nation’s capital controlling their playoff destiny as they defeated the Current 18-17 at Cardinal Stadium.
How it Happened: On a humid afternoon in D.C., the Boston Whitecaps arrived at the Dojo to battle the D.C. Current for a playoff spot in the East. In a back and forth battle between the league’s two previous champions, the game included aggressive play, heated one-on-one battles and a last-second buzzer beater attempt. On the final drive by the D.C. O-line, Boston’s Alex Simmons laid out to bat down the disc with 30 seconds remaining. Taking their time with dump throws, Boston was killing the clock. In an attempt to end the game, the Whitecaps sent up a high hammer that they expected would end the game, but Alan Kolick came down with it. With fractions of a second left on the scoreboard Kolick put it to the end zone where Jeff Wodatch was able to reel it in, but time had already expired.
Turning Point: With the score tied at 16, Boston on offense, the disc was sent floaty into the air towards Alex Simmons. Yards behind Simmons, David Cranston went up to attack the play but Simmons had already caught the disc and crashed hard into him. The dangerous play resorted in a band on Cranston as Boston would go on to score the point. Boston used that play to gain motivation and stop D.C.’s run.
Player of the Game: Without Teddy Browar- Jarus and an injured Jeff Graham, Boston relied on Josh Markette (2 goals, 7 assists) to send some big hucks and act as the reset man. He was the only player for the Whitecaps to attempt 25 throws and he commanded the flow of the game.
Stat of the Game: 3 goals scored by Piers MacNaughton in the final quarter. Boston needed a go-to man to ward off D.C.’s momentum. MacNaughton did so by scoring three of his four goals in the fourth quarter, the same amount as the rest his team.
Quotable: “I honestly thought we were down on the final point,” said Markette. “We get the turn and I am leaping out of my chair but they were dumping and swinging and I was like ‘Guys, there are 10 seconds left, we have to score.’ Then someone tells me we are actually winning and I cannot tell you how I went from desperation to complete elation.”
What is Next: Despite the loss, the Current still are alive for a playoff spot but need help. Boston on the other hand will clinch a playoff spot by winning out and might even head into the playoffs with the number one seed if everything shakes out right. Next week the Whitecaps will host the Rumble while the Current travel to Philadelphia in hopes to keep their playoff hopes alive against the Spinners.