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Roughnecks clinch playoff berth in loss to Seals

It was a bittersweet night for the Calgary Roughnecks.


The Roughnecks (7-8) dropped a tough 16-9 decision to the San Diego Seals (9-4) in front of 10,854 fans at the Scotiabank Saddledome on Saturday night.


“Disappointed,” said Roughnecks head coach Curt Malawsky.


“They were better than us in all areas of the game. They deserved to win the game, we deserved to lose. We got the result we deserved.”


The Roughnecks were able to secure the fast start they were looking for with Rhys Duch firing home the opening marker just 0:21 into the first quarter.


However, that was the only lead the Roughnecks would have the entire game, as the Seals tied it up three minutes later and never looked back.


“It’s a game of momentum, and they got the momentum,” said Malawsky.


“We’d get one and they’d get two, then we’d get one and they’d get two, and then you just can’t crawl back. It was a disappointing night for us.”


One of the positives to come from the Roughnecks side was Curtis Dickson notching career-point number 700.


But despite the securing the milestone, Dickson said it’s hard to appreciate after a loss like they suffered.


“It is what it is,” said Dickson.


“I hate to sound cliché, but it’s an awful loss tonight and it’s kind of the only thing on our minds right now. I’ll look back at it sometime from now and be proud of it, but right now we need to figure out how to play lacrosse.”


Dickson finished the evening with five points (three goals, two assists), which led the Roughnecks offense, while the Seals were fronted by Dan Dawson, Garrett Billings, and Kyle Buchanan, each tallying eight points apiece.


Inconsistency has been a common theme this season for the Roughnecks, and it continued to show its teeth against the Seals.


Dickson said if they want to enter the playoffs on a high note, they need to look back on these last few weeks and figure out what needs to be corrected.


“It’s unfortunately the way it’s been going. We win one, lose one, win two, lose two,” said Dickson.


“We’re sitting at 7-8 right now, and that’s not good enough.”


On another positive note, despite the loss, the Roughnecks did clinch a playoff spot courtesy the Saskatchewan Rush taking down the Vancouver Warriors.


But despite securing their spot in the 2019 NLL Playoffs, Roughnecks defenseman Chad Cummings said it doesn’t make tonight’s loss any easier to swallow.


“We’re looking to win every single game and, after a loss, there’s nothing that really softens the blow,” said Cummings.


“We really want to be back here at home in the playoffs. We want a home playoff game, so losing this game tonight really hurts.”


The Roughnecks will now look to regroup for a road meeting with the Philadelphia Wings (3-11) next Saturday.


Dickson said they’re looking to finish out the season strong and ride some momentum into the playoffs, and won’t be able to do so by overlooking the Wings.


“We’re in must-win territory right now and that’s a scrappy Philadelphia team that’s looking to play out the regular season hard,” said Dickson.


“We can’t go into that game taking them lightly, and we have to figure out something fast.”