Hey, Jurassic Fanatics! It'll be a furious weekend of nonstop action at the Power House starting tonight, February 3!
Tonight your Lady Raptors host the Cincinnati Sirens in the first women's indoor game of the year. ”It’s awesome to be able to give the same opportunity to the girls as the guys here in this town and this state being the first professional women’s indoor team to come to Iowa,” said Raptors managing partner Bobby Hurwitz. We got a great writeup and video spotlight from Kristin Rogers at KCRG tv; be sure to check it out!
The Men's side then take the field on Saturday for a MASL2 matchup with huge potential playoff implications. Your Raptors are currently at the top of the table in the MASL2 North Division with 13 points, thanks to a gritty road win last weekend vs. Muskegon.
The Lancers are in third place, but because of the league's widely distributed schedule they've only played two games. But they've won both in convincing fashion, scoring 8 goals per game on their way to a +6 goal differential. Crucially, both victories came on the road. In a league where road wins are hard to come by, that's huge. Rochester is accustomed to coming onto their opponent's turf and coming away with a win.
Rochester relies heavily on a duo of veteran scorers, forwards Vadim Cojocov and Joey Tavernese. Both have extensive M1-level experience. Cojocov played five seasons with the St. Louis Ambush, while Tavernese has played with the Florida Tropics and is currently playing for Utica City FC. They currently have three goals apiece on the season; Cojocov has also racked up an assist.
In the net, the Lancers 2 are anchored by keeper Jakeb Mitchell. His 5.00 goals-against average (GAA), while impressive, has benefitted from facing the Muskegon Risers in both his victories; their rather anemic attack averages just 6 goals per game. But Mitchell has stopped his share of shots, facing an average of 15.5 each contest. That works out to a .677 save percentage, good for fifth in the league.
(For more in-depth analysis of the Lancers and their game, see this writeup by our friends at Front Row Soccer).
With six games under their collective belt, we have a pretty good idea of how your Raptors match up with the rest of the league. As always, what stands out about the hometown side is their generous nature. Of all Raptors' scorers, only one, forward Will Davis, doesn't have an assist. Defender / midfielder Pat Kelly just misses the league's leader board with four assists, and Ronaldo Rojas, Ayo Adebayo, and Jake Johnson have three each. We're also fairly well balanced when it comes to goals scored. Jonah Dancer is far and away the team's leader in goals, with twelve (good for fifth in the league), but Kelly has six, Rojas and forward / midfielder Ricky Orozco each have five, and Angelo Oquendo racked up four in his first night's action (plus an assist).
In the net, Jesus "Chuy" Ortiz continues his steady play, with 6.24 GAA (fifth in the league) on a .574 save percentage. He is ably backed up by Luis "Luisito" Perez. The Lancers have needed just 23 shots to score their sixteen goals, so both Ortiz and the defense will need to be on their toes. Leading scorer Tavernese hasn't missed at all this season, while Cojocov has had only one of his four attempts deflected.
In short, look for a fast, action-packed game that will probably be closer than the final score might indicate. It'll be a great show, and we look forward to seeing you there. Don't forget: It's Jurassic Park Night, so dress up as your favorite dinosaur! We'll be giving out free team scarves for the first 250 fans in the arena. Doors open at 5:30 for a 6:30 kickoff. Tickets can be purchased at the Alliant Energy Power House box office, or online.
For more Raptors news, player reports, and in-depth analysis, follow the Raptors Report on Twitter: @IaRaptorsReport.