DC Breeze falls to NY Empire 18-17 in overtime battle

DC Breeze falls to NY Empire 18-17 in overtime battle
DC Breeze falls to NY Empire 18-17 in overtime battle(WHSV)
Published: May. 14, 2023 at 10:08 PM EDT
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - On Saturday, the DC Breeze fell to the NY Empire 18-17 at Carlini Field. This meeting was a rematch of the 2022 AUDL East Division Championship final that saw the Empire escape with a 19-18 victory.

The Breeze fall to 2-1 while the Empire improve to 3-0 on the season.

Both teams recorded a 96% completion rate along with similar offensive line conversion rates. However, the Empire had a 63% conversion percentage on defense while the Breeze defense had a 44% conversion percentage.

During the overtime period, the game was tied at 17 with 1:30 left on the clock. The Empire duo of Jack Williams and Jeff Babbitt was able to score the winning goal for New York.

“This is why I play the sport, to push myself to the limit,” said Ben Oort, who made his debut with the Breeze after a professional stint in Toronto at only 18 years old. Oort was also a top player in the Netherlands. “This game was important so I was excited to have a chance. We got close and I’m pretty sure we will do better next time.”

Andrew Roy made his Breeze debut this spring after spending the past two seasons with the Minnesota Wind Chill, where he racked up 44 assists.

“It’s brutal to have that result, we really wanted that one and we had opportunities,” said Roy. “At the end of the day, this is our third game of the season. We have a lot of positive points and I think a lot of our mistakes were very controllable.”

DC defender David Cranston is in his fourth season with the Breeze and picked up a crucial block on Saturday.

“We’re only going to go up from here,” said Cranston. “We can do a better job defensively but we did a good job creating pressure. I’m excited about the rest of our games.”

The Breeze is back in action on Saturday when DC faces the Toronto Rush on the road. The game is scheduled for 6 p.m. and will be streamed live on AUDL.tv.