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Coach Cottle Working to Improve Offense as Bayhawks Host Cannons

March 18, 2016
ANNAPOLIS, MD - Head Coach Dave Cottle saw some encouraging signs amidst another tough loss for the Chesapeake Bayhawks. After reviewing videotape of Chesapeake’s 8-7 double-overtime defeat at Rochester, Cottle came away with the same positive thoughts he had immediately after the game.

“I thought we played with much more energy and much more enthusiasm. I thought we played really hard and battled from start to finish,” Cottle said. “I thought our defense played much, much better. We were also better off the ground and better going from defense to offense. I felt like it was the first time this season that we were actually competitive in a game we lost.”

Perhaps the No. 1 highlight was the stellar play of goalkeeper Kip Turner, who recorded 18 saves. The eighth-year professional was a wall toward the end of regulation and in both overtimes.

“I thought our goalie was absolutely outstanding,” Cottle said.

Cottle said Chesapeake did some good things on offense even though it equaled a season-low with seven goals. The Bayhawks fired off a season-high 51 shots, which comes from possessing the ball and being aggressive going to the goal.

“It was clearly a game that we could have won if we had executed on offense,” Cottle said. “I talk all the time about the three E’s – energy, enthusiasm and execution. I thought we had great energy and enthusiasm, but our execution wasn’t very good. We have to get better at running offense and we have to start finishing our shots.”

Cottle was pleased with how well midfielder Joe Walters played in his debut for the Bayhawks. Walters, acquired in an offseason trade with Florida, missed five games due to his commitments with the Rochester Knighthawks of the indoor professional National Lacrosse League. The left-hander, who played for Cottle at Maryland, dished off two assists.

“You could tell that Joe was still re-acclimating to the outdoor game, but I still thought he gave a boost to our offense,” Cottle said. “Joe is a great passer. He sees the field extremely well and that is what makes him such an outstanding distributor.”

As Chesapeake prepares to host the Boston Cannons on Saturday night (7:30 p.m.) at Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium, Cottle said it might be time to give rookie attackman Brandon Benn an opportunity to play. Benn, the team’s fifth-round draft pick, scored 104 goals over his final three seasons at Johns Hopkins. Cottle described the Canadian as a strong inside finisher and is also effective on extra man.

Chesapeake lost starting close defenseman Brian Spallina for the season due to a broken jaw, forcing Cottle to scramble for a replacement long pole. The Bayhawks traded a third-round draft pick to Florida for Jason Noble, who was a second team All-American and first team All-Ivy League selection at Cornell.

Noble played long stick defensive midfield against Rochester and displayed aggressive on-ball defense, solid ground ball work and smart decision-making in transition. “I thought Jason Noble was a very positive addition. I believe he is going to help us.”

Chesapeake was without three face-off specialists against Rochester since Adam Rand (hamstring) and Stephen Peyser (leg) were injured while long pole C.J. Costabile was unavailable for personal reasons. That led Cottle to trade midfielder Cam Holding to Denver for Stephen Robarge, a second-year pro out of Virginia Military Institute.

Cottle thought Robarge acquitted himself well while going against Rochester’s John Ortolani, one of the best in Major League Lacrosse. Robarge, who won 7 of the 17 draws he took versus the Rattlers, will face another stiff test this Saturday in Boston ace Chris Eck.

Cottle said Peyser will remain on injured reserve for a third straight week as he has a small fracture of the tibia. Rand and offensive midfielder Kyle Dixon (hamstring) also will not play against Boston while offensive midfielder Steven Brooks (leg) is questionable. On the bright side, Chesapeake will be bolstered by the return of the aforementioned Costabile, offensive midfielder Peet Poillon (concussion) and short stick defensive midfielder Dan Burns (shoulder).

Boston (3-3) beat Chesapeake 15-9 in the season opener for both teams behind a seven-goal outburst by attackman-midfielder Kevin Buchanan. The Cannons are led offensively by perennial All-Pro Paul Rabil, who ranks second in the league with 27 points on 11 goals and 16 assists. Attackman Will Manny (20 points) and Buchanan stand fourth and fifth in MLL in scoring while Jordan Burke is second among goalies with a 9.89 goals-against average.

“Hopefully, we’ll play a lot better than we did the first time against them,” Cottle said of the Cannons, whose three losses have all been by one goal. “We’ll have to be better on offense because we’ll probably need to score 12 or 13 (goals) because that’s what you’re going to need to beat them.”

The Bayhawks 2014 Season Tickets are now available and can be purchased over the phone by calling the box office 866-99-HAWKS (42957). Visit us at for the full schedule. This season, the Bayhawks and Lexus are giving away an ES350 to one lucky Season Ticket Holder at the last game of the season. Every Season Ticket purchased will amount to one entry into the giveaway.


2014 Home Schedule 

June 14th                      vs.        Boston Cannons                       7:30 PM

July 17th                       vs.        Rochester Rattlers                     7:00 PM

July 31st                       vs.        Denver Outlaws                         7:30 PM

August 9th                    vs.        Charlotte Hounds                      7:00 PM




Please send requests for media credentials for the upcoming season to Heidi Evans at or 866-99-HAWKS extension 1308.

For Chesapeake Bayhawks media relations or to request an interview, please contact Heidi Evans at or 866-99-HAWKS extension 1308.

For Chesapeake Bayhawks Team, Ticket, and Apparel Information: or 866-99-HAWKS.