ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Webster Schroeder High School graduate Grant Catalino tied a Major League Lacrosse single game record with nine goals in the Rochester Rattlers’ 19-16 loss to the Hamilton Nationals on Friday night before 4,120 fans at Sahlen’s Stadium.
Catalino, a rookie attacker out of the University of Maryland, also set a Rattlers team record with his nine goals, one of which was a two-point goal.
“They kind of just kept coming to me,” Catalino said. “I was feeling my shot. That two-pointer was a blessing. I don’t know how far out I was but I was pretty far out. In the end Hamilton won the game. As much as those nine goals are cool I rather would have had the win.”
Catalino led the way early with a first quarter hat trick. After Jeremy Boltus opened the scoring for the Nationals 1:26 into the game, the Rattlers responded with four-straight goals. Greg Niewieroski opened the scoring for Rochester less than a minute later, followed by goals from Ned Crotty and Dan Groot in a two minute span.
Catalino topped off the 4-0 run with a beautiful goal that started with Rattlers goalie John Galloway. He found Jordan McBride on a long outlet pass and McBride dished it to Crotty, who found Catalino for the goal.
The hat trick for Catalino came with just two minutes left in the first quarter when he scooped a ground ball and flicked it into the net all in one motion. But the Nationals ended the quarter strong with late goals from Boltus and Brett Bucktooth to cut Rochester’s lead to 6-5 at the first intermission.
After a slow start to the second quarter, Rattlers midfielder Martin Cahill registered two goals in less than a minute starting at 6:10 into the quarter. First Cahill finished a pass from McBride and 47 seconds later the University of Delaware product ran past Nationals midfielder Brice Queener with a great individual move to give Rochester an 8-5 lead.
Then Catalino continued to make it look easy with two more goals as the Rattlers doubled up on Hamilton with a 10-5 lead. Hamilton would end the half on a 3-1 run with Catalino’s sixth goal of the match splitting a pair of Boltus goals to send the Rattlers to the half up 11-8.
Hamilton closed that lead in the third quarter, outscoring Rochester 5-2 in the quarter. Boltus scored three of those for the Nationals to bring his total to seven. Catalino and Crotty scored for the Rattlers and the quarter ended tied at 13 apiece.
Earl then scored his third goal just over one minute into the quarter to give the Nationals a 14-13 lead, their first since scoring the first goal. Kevin Crowley and Walters then scored, followed by Hall’s third of the game to cap a 9-0 run for the Nationals.
With the Nationals now up 17-13, Catalino broke Hamilton’s long run with his eighth goal of the game with 2:16 left in the game. That tied a team record for goals (8), which was set by John Grant Jr. on June 16, 2007 in a road game against the Denver Outlaws.
But Walters added a two-point goal for Hamilton with one minute remaining to give Hamilton the necessary cushion of a 19-14 lead.
With just 18 seconds left in the game, Catalino struck for his ninth goal of the game – a two point goal – to set a team record and tie a MLL record for goals in a game. Unfortunately for the Rattlers, it was not enough as Rochester lost 19-16.
“We continue to make mistakes in the middle of the field and that is something we have to figure out and learn from,” Rattlers Head Coach B.J. O’Hara said. “We have to limit our mistakes and that is what we are going to address on Saturday.”
With the loss, Rochester falls to 0-5, while the Nationals improve to 2-3 on the season. The two teams square off again on Saturday at Ron Joyce Stadium in Hamilton. The game begins at 7 p.m.