April 29, 2022
By: Jonny Richardson
The San Diego Growlers hosted the Salt Lake Shred under the Friday night lights at Mission Bay High School to open the 2022 AUDL season.
San Diego started on defense with a sideline roller pull, and after a Salt Lake drop, Travis Dunn sent a 40 yard assist to Stefan Samu who laid out for the first goal and break of the season. The two teams exchanged several goals until a Growlers throwaway gave the Shred a break for their first lead at 4-3, but Jonathan Helton connected with Sean McDougall to tie the game. Salt Lake’s Jordan Kerr and
San Diego’s Hunter Corbett exchanged scores, but the Shred earned back-to-back goals from Joe Merrill and Chad Yorgason to take a two-goal lead. A few seconds before the first quarter expired, Chris Mazur launched a 50-yard backhand to the endzone that deflected off a Salt Lake defender and found its way into Dunn’s hands for a 7-6 game.
The Growlers began the second quarter with a game-tying score from McDougall to Paul Lally which set off a string of offensive holds from each team. The Shred’s Will Selfridge was strong and led the quarter with three goals. For San Diego, Jesse Cohen, Helton and Lally each recorded two goals, and McDougall had 3 assists. Trevor Purdy secured a block in the endzone as time expired to keep the game tied at halftime, 14-14.
In the third quarter, the San Diego defense gave up two breaks that allowed Salt Lake to go on a 3-0 run. The Growlers responded with two breaks of their own by capitalizing on a block from Michael Tran and a Shred throwaway. Purdy, Helton and Lally each recorded goals to tie the game at 17 apiece. After Salt Lake scored, San Diego persevered during the longest point of the game that saw four possession changes, a timeout and an injury timeout. Helton connected with Reggie Sung from 55 yards away to tie the game at 18, and Purdy earned a second block as time expired in the third quarter.
Dunn gave the Growlers’ their first lead since the first quarter after two possession changes. Each team continued to exchange scores until two San Diego throwaways gave the Shred a break, and they doubled down with another break for the 22-20 lead as time dwindled. San Diego responded with a score, but the Shred continued to answer back with offensive holds. A San Diego throwaway with 20 seconds left sealed the game for the Salt Lake Shred who were impressive and victorious in their first ever AUDL game, 24-22.
The Growlers were led by Sean McDougall who recorded four goals, five assists and a block for a +10 performance. Lally put up a +6 (3-3-1) performance, and Dunn (3-4-0) and Helton (3-4-0) collected +5 outings. Purdy’s two blocks led the defense.
San Diego will travel north to take on the Oakland Spiders on Saturday, May 7 as they attempt to get back on track.