The Atlanta Blaze returned from a threeweek layoff victoriously, withstanding the Ohio Machine 13-10 on Saturday in Obetz, Ohio.
After Ohio’s Peter Baum scored with 2:58 left to make it a two-point game, the Machine (3-9) had chances to tie it with a 2-point goal, but they could not convert, and Atlanta’s Daniel Eipp scored an empty-net goal with 8 seconds left.
It was the Blaze’s first game since their win over Charlotte on June 30. That was followed by a bye week, with the Major League Lacrosse shutting down last week for the world championships in Israel.
The win helped Atlanta (5-6) keep its playoff hopes alive. It is sixth overall, one game behind fourth-place Charlotte for the final berth in the Major League Lacrosse playoffs.
The Blaze controlled the first half of Saturday’s game, taking a 7-3 lead into halftime, but Ohio grabbed control in the third quarter to take a 9-8 deficit into the final period.
The Machine’s David Emala scored 46 seconds into the fourth quarter to tie the game at 9-all, but Atlanta’s Jack Korzelius, Deemer Class and Tommy Palasek followed with goals to give the Blaze a three-point cushion.
Kevin Rice led Atlanta with three goals and anassist, while Connor Kelly and Christian Cuccinello each scored twice. Jeff Reynolds also had a goal, while Sergio Salcido had two assists.
Joe Nardella picked up eight ground balls and was 13-of-25 on faceoffs. Adam Ghitelman had 12 saves in the Atlanta net.
Baum, Ryan Ambler and Ryan Keenan each had two goals for Ohio.
The Blaze will now face their toughest stretch of the season, hosting Chesapeake on Thursday before traveling to Florida two days later.