Logan Wisnauskas led the way with seven points (3G, 4A) to help Chrome defeat the Archers, 21-18, in the Championship Series semifinals at The St. James in Springfield, Va. on Saturday.
Down 17-8 with under two minutes to play in the third quarter, the Archers went on a five-point tear to bring the lead within five by the early minutes of the fourth quarter. Wisnauskaus stopped the bleeding, giving Chrome the 19-14 lead before Archers attackmen Marcus Holman and Grant Ament put four more points on the board.
With a minute left to play, Chrome led 20-18 before Wisnauskas met net, giving Chrome a comfortable three-point cushion. The team played keep away, running the shot clock down to victory.
“It’s a fun game. It’s up and down. You have to sort of manage the game,” Chrome acting head coach Jacques Monte said. “You can’t ever control it, you just have to manage it.”
Cole Williams added six points (5G, 1A) and Dylan Molloy had five (2G, 1T, 1A) for Chrome.
With the win, Chrome advances to the first-ever Premier Lacrosse League Championship Series final against Atlas on Sunday. The two met on Thursday when Atlas hit 11 two-pointers to claim the 29-20 victory.
Against the Archers, Chrome was physical and got to shooters’ hands. In a complete defensive effort, Chrome held the Archers to 15 shots and six goals in the first half to begin the third quarter with a four-goal lead. In the Archers’ matchup against Atlas on Friday, they scored 14 goals in the first half alone. On the game, the Archers took 38 shots compared to Chrome’s 45.
“It was too slow of a start for us and not our best energy in the first half,” Holman said. “I was proud of our team for coming back in the second half.”
For the Archers, Ament had six points (3G, 3A) and Holman (3G, 1T) and Jeff Trainor had five (4G, 1A).
In goal, Sean Sconone was the bedrock of Chrome’s defense. He stole 11 shots (40.7%) and tallied an assist. Through the Championship Series, Sconone’s saved 49% of shots.
“Not only is he saving the ball but Sean’s really coaching us back there,” Williams said. “I’m an offensive guy and I’m listening to him telling us when to slide, listening to him during timeouts… That’s stuff I appreciate.”