New Goals: Blaze Riorden impresses as Bandits rookie

Former star college lacrosse goalie now plays offense for Buffalo.

BUFFALO, N.Y. (WIVB) – It was the goal seen around the world.

Albany keeper Blaze Riorden recorded a save, ran past midfield, split two Cornell defenders and fired a shot. Goal.

He garnered SportsCenter “Top Play” honors, an ESPY nomination, one million internet views and…a new cellphone.

“I got so many texts my phone froze and I had to get a new phone,” Riorden said with a laugh.

In fact, playing offense is what Blaze has always being good at. A twist of fate when he was younger put him in net. He stayed there throughout his college career.

“My Dad was my coach and I broke our goalies hand with a shot so my Dad made my go in net and that is how I started to become a goalie in third grade.”

Now, Blaze plays for the Bandits.

And, he is still scoring goals…but not as a goalie.

This offseason he was picked up by the Bandits as an undrafted free agent. And as a kid who grew up in Rochester, he knew all about Banditland.

“Who’s house? Steenhuis, the BOX, all that.”

But, the transition from a field goalie, to a box attack was not an easy one.

“I took it upon myself and I got in shape and lost about 40 pounds and worked on my stick skills. I just studied the game. It is definitely the hardest I have ever had to work to be a part of a team but I am happy to be a Buffalo Bandit.”

And if he was ever called upon to get in goal for the bandits?

“I am not much of a box lacrosse goalie, I tried it before and got called Swiss cheese so I think I am going to stay out of the net.”

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