A week after the New York Cup began for the Albany Rebels in defeat, it seems they are already facing must-win games. The first test comes this Saturday when the Rebels will travel to play the Syracuse Gaels at 12 p.m. at Corcoran High School in Syracuse. It is a pivotal match as the Rebels and Gaels are both 0-1 in the New York Cup, and Buffalo leads the competition with a 2-0 record.
"This is a huge game for us," said Ryan Moloney, Rebels co-head coach. "I'm looking forward to seeing how our team responds to last week's setback."
The Rebels won both of their New York Cup matches against Syracuse last year, by an aggregate score of 8-37 (61 points) to 5-23 (38 points), but barely escaped with an overtime victory against the Gaels at their annual tournament.
"For a few years we have been getting the better of Syracuse but last year they came very close to beating us," said Rebels forward Cillian Flavin. "We will have to be at our best this weekend to keep our New York Cup hopes alive and to keep on top in our rivalry versus the Syracuse Gaels."
Injuries have been starting to pile up for the Rebels – Spencer Bassette, Roshal Patel and Mark Adam are all out for the season – and Ryan Moloney and Charles MacGowan are recovering from recent injuries.
Fortunately, other players have stepped up. The addition of Tom Caldwell and Mikey Heiserman in midfield, and RC Helsing and Chris Scotto di Carlo on defense, have filled the gaps and kept Albany performing. The Rebels have an overall record of 5-1 this season.