By Larry Snyder
Pittsburgh, Pa. – Coming off a bye week, the Pittsburgh Thunderbirds (0-4) seek their first American Ultimate Disc League victory of the 2021 campaign Saturday, July 3, at J.C. Stone Field in North Park against the Philadelphia Phoenix (2-2). This Atlantic Division clash gets underway at 6:00 p.m. EDT.
For their match back on Saturday, June 19, Pittsburgh followed the storm clouds across the turnpike to the South Philadelphia Super Site at 10th and Bigler Streets to face the Phoenix. The only other time these Commonwealth Cup rivals met was in June 2018, during the regular season. The City of Brotherly Love collected a 30-21 victory.
After a close 5-4 exchange in the opening quarter, Philadelphia proved it was ready to move beyond their one-point advantage. They exploded for a 10-5 run in the second for a commanding 15-9 lead going into halftime. The Scarlet, Vermilion, and White claimed 12 more points in the second-half and a 27-18 triumph.
Philly’s 28-year-old cutter, Greg Martin, unleashed a blistering assault of the box score with six goals, three assists, one block, and 463-yards receiving. His plus/minus rating was a solid +10 for the evening. Another cutter, Sean Mott, provided three goals, five assists, five hockey assists, and 305 throwing yards.
First-year cutter Scott Heyman, 19, contributed four goals to Phoenix head coach David Hampson’s clipboard. The last cutter on this list is Mike Arcata, who chipped in three goals, four assists, one block, and 314 throwing yards.
Leading Pittsburgh on the score sheet was C.J. Colicchio as he delivered four goals, six assists, three blocks, and 263 yards receiving. He matched Martin’s +10 mark in the plus/minus column. Thomas Edmonds, in his third season as a handler, supplied a pair of goals, four hockey assists, and 231 throwing yards.
Max Sheppard brought his hard-hat and lunch pail as he owned one-third of the Thunderbirds’ goals with six. The 2019 All-Star cutter came through with 263 receiving yards. Jimmy Towle furnished three assists, four hockey assists and one block.
This contest sees Philadelphia riding a two-game losing streak on the road. They lost to the Raleigh Flyers 23-11 on Friday, June 25, and 24-17 on Saturday, June 26, to the Atlanta Hustle. Rested from the bye week, Pittsburgh should be ready to jump-start their season. The Black and Gold opened 2019 at 0-3 before assembling six consecutive victories for a successful 8-4 campaign.
Jon Mast, 27, is listed on the active roster for the first time this season as the Thunderbirds battle the Phoenix. His career 95.90 completion rate as a handler should help the flow of head coach Pat Hammonds’ offense. There will be a familiar face to T-bird fans on the Philly sideline as Alex Thorne returns to the City of Bridges. He supplied 22 goals and 51 assists for Pittsburgh over the 2015 and 2016 seasons. Defense is one key element as the two squads show up in the top ten for blocks in 2021.
GAME DAY INFO:
Thunderbird Tickets: Online Here
Streaming (Subscription): AUDL.tv
Updates: Twitter At @PGHThunderbirds -OR- Facebook At pghthunderbirds
Looking Back At Week 3 On The AUDL YouTube Page – Pittsburgh Thunderbirds At Philadelphia Phoenix Game Highlights…