By: Anthony Miller
The Premier Lacrosse League is returning to Frisco, Texas this weekend for the second time in league history.
It is week six in the league’s season as they are set to play at The Star in Frisco, Texas with playoff implications on the line with seeding for the playoffs. Four games will be played over the weekend with two on Saturday and two on Sunday. Three of the four games will be broadcasted on ESPN+ with only the Sunday afternoon matchup between Waterdogs LC and Archers LC on ABC.
A Brief History of the Premier Lacrosse League
The league launched its first season in 2019 with six teams playing as it was originally set up to be a direct competitor of Major League Lacrosse. PLL has had television deals with NBC for the first three seasons and has spent the last two seasons with ABC and ESPN. The league has gone from six teams to eight in five seasons of existence.
A difference from PLL compared to most professional sports as each team doesn’t have a designated home as it is a traveling schedule for the teams. Each week, they travel to a different city across the United States to play in front of the 13 different local city’s home crowds.
Their playoffs will consist of three games being played in the quarterfinals which will be followed by two games in the semifinals. The season ends on September 24 with the championship game being played in Chester, Pennsylvania.
Three of the last four championship games have featured either Whipsnakes LC or Chaos LC in the title game. Whipsnakes LC won the league’s first two title games while Chaos LC has only won one of their three appearances. Last season, Waterdogs LC defeated Chaos LC 11-9 to win their first league title in club history.
2023 PLL Mid-Season Review
First looking at the standings, the top two teams in the league halfway through the season are Archers LC and Waterdogs LC as both are sitting at 4-1 on the season. Five of the eight teams in the league have a winning record on the season with Whipsnakes LC, Atlas LC, and Chrome LC all tied for last with a 1-4 record. What has made Archers LC and Waterdogs LC the top two teams in the league has been their defense with Archers LC surrendering the least number of scores in the league with 50. Waterdogs LC is right behind them with 55 scores against them in the season which is tied for second in the league.
From an individual standpoint, Cannons LC’s Asher Nolting and Redwoods LC’s Ryder Garnsey lead the league in points with 22 on the season. Nolting has scored 11 one-point goals and has 11 assists as well. Garnsey has scored the most one-point goals in the PLL with 19 and has added three assists to his stat line. On the defensive side, Chaos LC’s Blaz Riorden has the best save percentage in the league with 63 percent adding 66 saves on the season. Redwoods LC’s Garrett Epple has created the most turnovers in the league with 11.
Week Six Weekend Preview
The top matchup of the weekend comes on Sunday at 2:00 pm CST on ABC as mentioned before, the top two teams in the league Waterdogs LC and Archers LC faceoff for the top spot in the standings. Each team is riding a three-game winning streak heading into Dallas this weekend. What makes this game so important is that it has playoff implications to it as each team is fighting for a quarterfinal bye in the playoffs.
Another key matchup is between Cannons LC and Redwoods LC as both teams head into the game with a 3-2 record and fighting for playoff seeding. Cannons LC is currently on a three-game winning streak while Redwoods LC have lost two of their last three games. The intriguing part of this game is that it features arguably the top two players in the league, Nolting and Garnsey.
This has the potential to be one of the biggest weekends of the PLL season with a lot of playoff implications on the line, especially for the top spot.
Featured Image via Premier Lacrosse League