The Boston Cannons’ first playoff run since 2015 ended Friday night when they lost to the Denver Outlaws, 17-15, in the Major League Lacrosse semifinals in Denver.
“We got off to a great start,” said Cannons coach Sean Quirk on Saturday. “Our guys really executed well. Denver’s a great team. They’re the defending champions, they’re well coached. I felt like our guys competed for the full 60 minutes [Friday] night, and we’re super proud of what they did the entire season.”
The Cannons, who never trailed until the fourth quarter, were outscored, 7-2, in the second half after two of their top three offensive midfielders — Kyle Jackson and Kyle Denhoff — sustained injuries in the third quarter.
Jackson scored the opening goal 1:09 into the game, and four of his teammates added tallies to send Boston into the second quarter up, 7-3.
Zed Williams, who added one of the first-quarter scores, was among those who found the back of the net in the second quarter, adding two more to lead the Cannons into the break with a 13-10 lead.
Jackson was on the receiving end of a hard hit from Denver’s Michael Rexrode near the Outlaws’ goal, and Denhoff landed on his arm after sending a shot in from the middle of the arc. Quirk said Saturday that both injuries were “significant.”
To replace them, BU alum Cal Dearth and Newton’s Charlie Durbin fell into the top midfield line. Dearth scored his third goal of the game before Denver tallied four in a row to end the third quarter tied at 14.
The Outlaws took their first lead, 16-15, with 5:41 to play, with an insurance goal coming from Zach Currier less than two minutes later.
Duxbury’s Nick Marrocco saved 15 of the 32 shots he faced.
Williams was the leading scorer for Boston with 5 points, followed by Dearth and Challen Rogers, who each recorded 4 points, as the Cannons closed their 2019 campaign after a 9-7 regular season.
“The most unfortunate thing is we don’t have another day to practice, to play together,” Quirk said. “Myself and my coaching staff, we’ve been with the Cannons for four years now, and we’ve been kind of building toward this. I think the future is extremely bright.”
Denver, in its fourth consecutive and league-record ninth overall championship game, will defend its title Sunday against the Chesapeake Bayhawks.