Ohio Machine

The Ohio Machine were a Major League Lacrosse (MLL) professional men's field lacrosse team based in Obetz, Ohio. They first played in the 2012 MLL season and continued through the 2018 season.[1]

Ohio Machine
Founded2012
Last season2018
LeagueMLL
Based inObetz, Ohio
StadiumFortress Obetz
ColorsCarolina Blue, Red, White
              
PresidentRyan Chenault
Head coachBear Davis
Championships1 (2017)

On August 19, 2017, the Machine won their first championship in franchise history by defeating the Denver Outlaws, 17-12.[2] The Machine made the playoffs four times (2014, 2015, 2016, 2017), appeared in the league championship game twice (2016, 2017), and won one title (2017).

Franchise history

2012-2013: Early struggles

In January 2011, MLL voted to grant expansion franchises to Columbus and Charlotte, North Carolina for the 2012 MLL season.[1][3] Both teams were owned by New Balance founder and MLL investor Jim Davis.[4] The league announced on April 12, 2011, the team name would be the Ohio Machine, borrowing the moniker and colors of the team previously located in Chicago. On May 19, 2012, the Ohio Machine got their first win in their franchise history in a home game against the Rochester Rattlers.

On June 24, 2013, two days after a 19–5 loss to the Denver Outlaws, Ted Garber was fired as head coach and replaced by Bear Davis. Garber had led the expansion franchise to a 3–19 record through its first 22 games including a 1–7 start in 2013.[5]

2014-2017: Rise to contention and first championship

After putting up only four victories combined in their first two seasons and getting off to a 3–6 start in 2014, the Machine rattled off five straight victories to end the regular season and clinched their first playoff berth.[6] Their streak included wins over the top-seeded Rochester Rattlers and the eventual champion Denver Outlaws. On the road in their first playoff game, the Machine took an early 4–0 lead over Rochester, however the Machine would run out of magic, as the Rattlers came back to end Ohio's Cinderella run, 15–11.[7]

In 2015, the Machine improved upon their previous record with a 9–5 campaign, earning them the second seed. However, they would lose to the Rattlers again in the playoffs, falling 12-8.

Ohio got off to their best eight-game start in 2016 at 6–2. The Machine would stumble and go 1–3 over their next four games but clinch their third straight playoff berth with a dominant 22–13 win over the defending champion New York Lizards. In that game, John Grant Jr. scored ten goals, a single-game MLL record. The Machine had also defeated the Lizards 22–10 earlier in the season at home. The 2016 MLL season saw seven teams finish at 8–6, but due to tiebreaker procedures, the Machine were rewarded with the #1 seed in the postseason.

The Machine defeated the Charlotte Hounds 16–10 on August 13 for the franchise's first playoff victory ever. The next week, they faced Grant Jr.'s former team in the Denver Outlaws, who including the semifinals entered the game on a seven-game winning streak. The Machine took a 9–3 lead before a 97-minute weather delay and a 14–7 lead into halftime but could not hold on, losing 19–18 on a goal by Eric Law with 12.9 seconds left. It was Grant Jr.'s first loss in a Steinfeld Cup game in six trips.

The Machine finished the 2017 season with a 9-5 record and the second seed in the postseason. It was the fourth consecutive playoff berth for the Machine. With the New York Lizards not making the field, that became the longest active streak in the league. On August 12, the Machine hosted the Launch in Florida's first ever postseason game. The Machine prevailed 18-13, advancing to the championship game for the second year in a row.[8] Again, they would face the Outlaws.

On August 18, the league would host its first ever MLL Honors show. Goalie Kyle Bernlohr would win Most Improved Player, and Tom Schreiber would be named the league's Most Valuable Player for the second straight season.[9] The next day, the Machine would compete for a title in Frisco, Texas, at The Ford Center at The Star. With three minutes left in the third quarter, the Machine trailed 10-6. However, Ohio was able to get some offense going and scored three straight to bring it within one heading into the fourth. After Matt Kavanagh scored a goal to make it 12-10 Denver with 10:30 remaining in the game, the Machine would finish the game on a seven-goal run, courtesy of Jake Bernhardt, Greg Puskuldjian, three straight from Marcus Holman, Connor Cannizzaro, and another Bernhardt score.[10] After coming up short in 2014, 2015, and 2016, the Machine would finally break through to win the franchise's first Steinfeld Cup. They would be the first team since Denver in 2014 to win the team's first championship.[11] Marcus Holman, who had four goals and two assists, was named the Most Valuable Player of the game.

2018

In 2018, the team would finish 3-11 during the regular season for last place of the 9 teams.

Before the 2019 season, the league was faced with competition from the Premier Lacrosse League as well as a desire to achieve a "one owner, one vote" structure. Therefore, Major League Lacrosse contracted from 9 teams to 6. Jim Davis was forced to choose to keep only one of the four teams he owned: the Machine, the Charlotte Hounds, the Florida Launch, or the Dallas Rattlers. Davis chose the Rattlers and folded the other three teams.[4]

Stadium

Fortress Obetz is the third home of the Ohio Machine.[12] On November 16, 2016, the village of Obetz, a community just south of Columbus, announced they would be constructing a 6,500-seat multipurpose stadium, Fortress Obetz, at the site of the closed Columbus Motor Speedway. It would be ready in time for the Machine's first home game of the 2017 season on May 6.[13] The stadium opened on May 6, 2017, for the home opener of the Machine against the Rochester Rattlers, who beat the home team 12-11 in overtime. It would take three tries for the Machine to finally get a victory on their new home field. The Machine defeated the Florida Launch 19-7 on May 27.[14]

The Machine began play in 2012 on Selby Field at Ohio Wesleyan University and moved to Panther Stadium at Ohio Dominican University for the 2016 season.[12][15] Panther Stadium is less than half of the size of Selby Field.

Season-by-season

Ohio Machine
YearWL%Regular season finishPlayoffs
2012212.1438th in league---
2013212.1438th in league---
201486.5714th in leagueLost semifinal vs. Rochester Rattlers 15–11
201595.6432nd in leagueLost semifinal vs. Rochester Rattlers 12–8
201686.5711st in leagueWon semifinal vs. Charlotte Hounds 16-10
Lost championship vs. Denver Outlaws 19–18
201795.6432nd in leagueWon semifinal vs. Florida Launch 18-13
Won Championship vs. Denver Outlaws 17-12
2018311.2149th in league---
Totals4157.418Total Playoff Record 3–3
Playoff Win % = .500


Roster

2018 Ohio Machine
Number Player's Name Nationality Position Height Weight College
0Davey EmalaA5 ft 11 in195 lbNorth Carolina
1Marcus HolmanA5 ft 11 in185 lbNorth Carolina
4Ryan AmblerA6 ft 1 in190 lbPrinceton
5Carlson MilikinSSDM6 ft 0 in195 lbNotre Dame
12Steven WaldeckD6 ft 0 in210 lbStony Brook
14Justin GuterdingA6 ft 0 in185 lbDuke
15Peter BaumM6 ft 1 in197 lbColgate
16Ryan KeenanA5 ft 9 in190 lbPenn State
17Jackson PlaceD5 ft 11 in185 lbBucknell
18Kyle HarrisonM6 ft 0 in194 lbJohns Hopkins
23Dominique AlexanderM6 ft 2 in215 lbOhio State
25Brian KaralunasD6 ft 0 in185 lbVillanova
26Tom SchreiberM6 ft 0 in190 lbPrinceton
31Kenny MassaFO6 ft 0 in195 lbBryant
33Tyler PfisterM6 ft 2 in185 lbOhio State
35Kyle BernlohrG5 ft 10 in160 lbMaryland
40Pat HarbesonM5 ft 7 in170 lbVirginia
41Bryce YoungD6 ft 2 in205 lbMaryland
42Scott RodgersG6 ft 4 in250 lbNotre Dame
51Dominick CalistoD6 ft 0 in190 lbBoston University
58 Brandon Mangan A 6 ft 2 in 185 lb Yale
79 Mark Matthews A 6 ft 5 in 235 lb Denver
77Ben RandallD6 ft 3 in192 lbOhio State
81Zach BryantD6 ft 3 in195 lbRobert Morris
83 Frank Brown A/M 6 ft 3 in 215 lb Hobart
92 Greg Puskuldjian M 5 ft 11 in 205 lb Adelphi
99Evan ConnellM5 ft 11 in190 lbNorth Carolina
  • updated 2018-07-16

MLL award winners

Most Valuable Player

Most Improved Player

Head coaching history

# Name Term Regular Season Playoffs
GC W L W% GC W L W%
1Ted Garber2012-201322319.136
2Bear Davis20132018763838.500633.500

MLL Collegiate Draft history

First round selections

References

  1. Babo, Zach (January 21, 2011). "MLL Expanding to Charlotte, Columbus for 2012 Season". Inside Lacrosse. Retrieved February 7, 2011.
  2. The Ohio Machine are the 2017 MLL Champions
  3. McLean, Derek (January 21, 2011). "Major League Lacrosse To Add Two New Franchises in 2012". Major League Lacrosse. Retrieved February 7, 2011.
  4. Wagner, Bill (April 2, 2019). "Major League Lacrosse disbands three franchises". Capital Gazette. Retrieved July 2, 2019.
  5. Ohio Machine Makes Coaching Change
  6. Shawn, Mitchell (August 10, 2014). "Pro lacrosse: Machine clinches playoff spot for first time". The Columbus Dispatch. Retrieved July 3, 2019.
  7. "Rochester Advances to MLL Title Game with 15-11 Win Over Ohio". Inside Lacrosse. August 16, 2014. Retrieved July 3, 2019.
  8. The Ohio Machine defeat the Florida Launch
  9. Five Ohio Machine players and head coach selected for 2017 post season awards
  10. MLL Championship Boxscore
  11. The Ohio Machine are the 2017 MLL Champions
  12. Widman Neese, Alissa (November 17, 2016). "Obetz says lacrosse stadium eventually will pay for itself". Columbus Dispatch. Columbus, Ohio. Retrieved 2017-01-21.
  13. Obetz building 6,500-seat sports and concert venue
  14. "Ohio Machine 2017 Schedule". Pointstreak.com.
  15. Stroup, Ben (October 27, 2015). "Machine leaving Delaware, moving to Ohio Dominican University". The Delaware Gazette. Delaware, Ohio. Retrieved 2017-01-21.
  16. MLL Statistics and Information (January 14, 2012). "2012 MLL Collegiate Draft Results" (Press release). Major League Lacrosse. Retrieved December 10, 2015.
  17. MLL Statistics and Information (January 11, 2013). "2013 Collegiate Draft Results" (Press release). Major League Lacrosse. Retrieved December 10, 2015.
  18. MLL Statistics and Information (January 10, 2014). "2014 Collegiate Draft Results" (Press release). Major League Lacrosse. Retrieved December 10, 2015.
  19. MLL Statistics and Information (January 23, 2015). "2015 Collegiate Draft Results" (Press release). Major League Lacrosse. Retrieved December 10, 2015.
  20. http://www.majorleaguelacrosse.com/press-release/12859/2016-mll-collegiate-draft-live-updates/
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