The San Diego Seals look to build on last week’s momentum as they play host to the Colorado Mammoth at Orleans Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on Super Bowl weekend.
“The additional benefit of showcasing professional box lacrosse to a new audience is exciting,” said Seals president Steve Govett. “The atmosphere at Orleans Arena is going to be electric, and we look forward to exposing the sport to a brand-new fan base in an iconic city.”
San Diego is coming off of a convincing 15-11 victory over the Riptide, the significance of which can’t be understated. The win brought the Seals right back into the Western Division mix with a 2-5 record on the season, which is currently only good enough for last place but is nipping at the heels of the 2-4 Roughnecks and the 2-4 Warriors.
Colorado is situated well, holding down second place in the Western Division with a 4-4 record behind the 3-2 Saskatchewan Rush and are coming off of a 13-12 overtime heartbreaker to the Buffalo Bandits.
The division is entirely up for grabs at this point as none of the teams have truly separated themselves from the rest of the pack. Saturday will be the first of two matchups between these two teams and will undoubtedly be highly contested considering what is on the line.
“It’s going to be a heated game against Colorado, so we’re excited,” said assistant captain and defenseman Cam Holding. “Yes, we’re in Vegas but at the end of the day you have to go in and execute your role and make that your priority and focus. We’re looking to go in and get the win.”
The two teams last met in April of 2019 with San Diego winning in dominant fashion 12-7. The win was led by a 4 goal, 2 assist performance from Casey Jackson, the Seal’s leading scorer last season and a player who just returned to the active roster in the last few weeks.
In Casey Jackson’s absence, the Seals offensive production has been led by the forward corps of Connor Fields (12g,20a), Wes Berg (12g, 20a), and Zack Greer (12g,18a), all of whom share the leading goal scoring position. Now that Jackson is back, however, the offense is primed to explode. San Diego already posted their highest score of the season last week with 15 points and found contribution from Jackson who posted 2 goals and 2 assists in just his second game back.
The Seals look to continue building on their offensive momentum Saturday, but will have to contend with a much tougher defense than they saw last week. Anchored by Dillon Ward in net, who is averaging only 9.04 goals against per game and has logged 346 saves, the Colorado defensive unit is among the best in the league. To illustrate, the Mammoth have played one more game than the Seals to date and have allowed 9 fewer goals.
The teams will have their work cut out for them come gametime, but the matchup should prove electric for the Las Vegas crowd on a weekend that is already palpable with sports excitement.
“Just being a part of it, in that environment, in that city, it’s going to be something special,” said Seals head coach and general manager Patrick Merrill. “We know we have real work to do.”
Faceoff is set for 6:30 PST/9:30 EST at Orleans Arena in Las Vegas. Fans can watch the NLL Game of the Week free on B/R Live, Facebook and Twitter.