Anthony Cosmo pulls no punches, especially when it comes to talking about his 2013 National Lacrosse League season. The 13.37 goals-against average was the worst of his 13 NLL seasons. The .751 save percentage was the worst since a .750 in 2005. And he didn’t finish 8 games he started. “I’d have to say it was one of the toughest years I’ve had, personally,” Cosmo told the Buffalo News recently. The tune for 2014, however, is much different as the Bandits are sitting atop the East Division with a 6-2 record, and Cosmo said the turning point came in Week 2 of this season as the Bandits trailed Toronto 6-2 at halftime. Yes, Buffalo was losing, but this time, it was different.
“Against Toronto, we were down, 4-0, in the first quarter, but I still felt right,” he said. “Going into halftime, we all had a different mind-set. Last year, everyone would blame each other in that situation to a certain extent. This was different.”
So as it stands today, Cosmo has 6 wins, tied for best in the league. His 10.21 GAA and.810 save percentage both rank as third-best in the NLL. Confidence is a word that comes up a lot when talking about how Cosmo’s play is helping the Bandits.
“It lets the rest of the guys play with more confidence, it lets them play with more swagger,” GM Steve Dietrich told the Buffalo News. “We can send two guys in after a loose ball, or take some chances. … If a guy makes a mistake, he knows it might not lead to a goal.”
The Bandits are off until March 8, giving Cosmo and the Bandits plenty of time to think about the team’s reversal. But he’s been in this game long enough to know that he doesn’t need that much time to figure it out. He’s rolling with momentum and knows that will bring the praise. But he knows too, how quickly that can all change and he’s just doing what he can to keep the Bandits on the drive to restore their glory.
“Part of being a goaltender in this league is that you live by the sword and die by the sword. You’re a hero or a zero,” Cosmo said. “I’m playing well now, and I’m a hero. But last year I was a zero.”Chavez is an avid lacrosse player in Rochester and a journalist for the Democrat and Chronicle as well as a longtime Inside Lacrosse contributor. Email him at firstname.lastname@example.org or go to RochesterSports.com.
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