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Sock Tricks, Goalie Goals and Clutch Performances Shine Bright In Week 13

A Crazy Last Few Minutes In Fort Worth

The final game of Week 13 took place at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth, with the Panther City Lacrosse Club hosting the Georgia Swarm. Georgia’s weekend began two nights earlier in San Diego, when the club found themselves on the losing end of an overtime thriller. Fast-forward to Sunday and the boys from Suburban Atlanta once again left the floor in heartbreak, losing to PCLC 10-9. After assembling five uninterrupted goals from the second through fourth quarters, the Swarm looked to have the game in hand once the iconic Lyle Thompson put his team up 9-7 with 3:21 remaining. But in the blink of an eye, that all changed as the home squad scored three goals in a stretch of 1:26, with Callum Crawford giving his team a 10-9 lead with only 40 seconds remaining. This game came up with one last curveball after what appeared to be a Seth Oakes tying-goal, in the closing seconds, was disallowed – Oakes fell in the crease after his initial shot, the rebound came out to Andrew Kew, who then passed it back to Oakes who shot again. Though the ball went in, a player who was in the crease cannot be the first to touch the ball after it is recovered (see the full rule below). What a bizarre finish!

Jonathan Donville led the way for the winners with three goals and two assists, while the hero named Crawford connected on two scores and four helpers. Lyle Thompson had a Lyle Thompson type of afternoon navigating a hat trick and with two assists, in what turned out to be a very disappointing weekend for the Swarm.

 

The New Kings Of New York? 

Saturday night, nearly 18,000 box lacrosse fans jammed KeyBank Center to celebrate Native American Heritage Night and witness an intra-Empire State battle between the defending champion Buffalo Bandits and the high-flying Albany FireWolves. Buffalo looked a little different from the get-go as Devlin Shanahan started in goal in place of the legendary Matt Vinc, who was recently placed on injured reserve. The undisputed star of Albany’s impressive 13-10 road victory was young Tye Kurtz. The 17th pick in the 2022 NLL draft captured a sock trip, ending his night with six goals and one assist. The University of Delaware alum entered the evening with 12 goals, only to head back out into downtown Buffalo with 18 goals to his name. Albany rookie sensation Alex Simmons posted one score and five helpers, with Ethan Walker and Travis Longboat combining for eight total points. Even goaltender Doug Jamieson got in on the fun, scoring a nearly full-field empty net goal, with under 10 seconds remaining.  

Josh Byrne had a strong night for Buffalo, tallying three goals and three assists. The great Dhane Smith helped out on six of his team’s scoring efforts but never found the back of the net on his own.  

The FireWolves’ record now stands at 8-2, after completing a season sweep versus the boys from Banditland.  

  

 

The Rock Survive Despite A Myriad Of Injuries 

At the moment, the Toronto Rock more closely resemble a M.A.S.H. unit, as compared to a league-leading National Lacrosse League franchise. The club entered Saturday’s home game minus the services of Latrell Harris, Dan Craig, Mitch de Snoo, Challen Rogers and Josh Jubenville. The missing Toronto guys could probably go toe-to-toe with any group of five players throughout the NLL, so Matt Sawyer’s team had their work cut out for them with the hungry Vancouver Warriors paying a visit to downtown Hamilton. The game entered halftime tied 2-2, in one of the lowest-scoring 30-minute stretches one will ever observe in a lacrosse game. Come the second half, the scoring increased a bit, as the hometown Rock escaped with a 9-5 win. Tom Schreiber scored in the third and fourth quarters as part of a two-goal, four-assist contribution. Chris Boushy added two scores, with Rock goalie Nick Rose saving 45 of 50 shot attempts. 

Vancouver received two goals from Kyle Killen, with no more than one score emanating from any other player. Back in his home metro area, Oakville, Ontario native Aden Walsh got the start in net for the Warriors, stopping 37 of 46 shots.   

 

The Thunderbirds Run Wild In Saskatoon   

The Halifax Thunderbirds played inspired lacrosse on Saturday, demolishing the Saskatchewan Rush 19-6 at SaskTel Centre. Nearly 8,000 fans watched the devastation from up close and in person. The Thunderbirds’ strong season rolls along, with the club now owning a solid 7-4 record. This game was never once in doubt, with Halifax jumping out to a 3-0 lead and not looking back to see if the Rush were still there. The road team held an 11-4 halftime advantage, with Saskatchewan only managing two second-half celebrations. Clarke Petterson was big-time for the victors, tallying three goals and five assists. Ryan Benesch laid claim to four scores and two helpers, amid Austin Shanks and Randy Staats combining for a whopping 13 points. Warren Hill had an impressive night between the pipes, standing tall and obstructing 38 of 44 shots.   

The Rush’s Robert Church assisted on four of his team’s goals, with Zach Manns and Clark Walter coming together for seven points, but this one 100 percent belonged to the folks from Canada’s Atlantic Coast. Not even channeling the Hulk on Marvel Superhero Night could help the Rush.

Thunderbirds vs Rush 02-24-2024

 

Josh Currier Was Calgary’s Mr. Clutch 

Canada’s Mountain Time Zone was the setting for a see-saw affair between the visiting Philadelphia Wings and the always well-supported Calgary Roughnecks, who took the field surrounded by 12,110 of their closest friends from Alberta and beyond. This dramatic episode went down to the wire with Josh Currier finally icing the game for the home team, connecting on consecutive fourth-quarter goals, giving the Roughnecks 12-11 and 13-11 insurmountable cushions culminating in a 14-11 win. All told, Currier finished up with three goals and one assist, while Dan Taylor tabulated four scores and one helper. Calgary’s Jesse King and Tyler Pace coalesced for a robust 13 points, as the Roughnecks produced four separate streaks of three successive goals, with the Currier-Currier-Shane Simpson demonstration occurring at the close of the game. 

The Wings played well throughout. Holden Cattoni bought himself a hat trick, while Mitch Jones and Joe Resetarits acquired two goals apiece for a Philadelphia team that only put together four second-half lamplighters.  

  

The Desert Dogs Hit The Jackpot in Rochester  

The Las Vegas Desert Dogs and Rochester Knighthawks entered their game with near identical 3-6 and 3-5 records, respectively. This evenly-matched affair stayed close throughout with the visitors from Sin City scoring seven of the final eight goals to collect a 12-8 road triumph. Throughout the second half, the Desert Dogs’ tenacious defense allowed the Western New Yorkers a minuscule two scores. Rob Hellyer led the way for the winners obtaining three goals and three assists, with Casey Jackson securing three goals and two assists. Young phenom Jack Hannah added five points in a balanced effort courtesy of Shawn Williams’ scrappy bunch.  

Connor Fields had a strong evening for Rochester inscribing three scores and three helpers, with Ryan Smith accomplishing six points (two goals, four assists), but that was about it for a Rochester squad that simply could not muster much of anything in the final 30 minutes.  

The Las Vegas four-goal win was completed in just 1 hour and 58 minutes. Hopefully, the home fans did not spend too much time out of their seats.  

 

Wesley Berg Was Nothing Short Of Magnificent 

Friday night marked the San Diego Seals’ opportunity to host Marvel Superhero Night, with the home team donning Marvel-themed jerseys showcasing supervillain Thanos. With the presence of such a dastardly character threatening to wreak havoc on the game, the Seals needed a hero to come along and fight the forces of evil. That savior came in the name of one Wesley Berg. The 30-year-old British Columbia native blasted a spellbinding six goals, including the game-winner, 4:12 into a highly dramatic overtime session. San Diego’s captivating 12-11 victory over the Georgia Swarm capped a fourth quarter/overtime stretch where the club posted five of the game’s final six goals. Austin Staats connected on one goal and five assists, with Curtis Dickson contributing two scores and three helpers. The Seals trailed 10-7 before successfully righting the ship late in the third quarter. 

Seth Oakes was the story of the Swarm’s disappointing evening, tallying four goals and three assists, with teammate and former league MVP Shayne Jackson being responsible for two goals and six assists. The great Lyle Thompson had a relatively quiet night with just one goal, though he did make the pass on three of Georgia’s scores.  

 

The Mammoth Dominate The Riptide At Home 

Taking the field for the first time since announcing their upcoming relocation to Ottawa, the New York Riptide traveled to Denver for a matchup with the always dangerous Mammoth. The Riptide went into halftime leading 8-6 before getting absolutely steamrolled by a second-half Colorado surge that resulted in the 2022 NLL champions winning the final 30 minutes by a 12-2 margin. At one point, the Mammoth reeled off 10 consecutive goals en route to what would become a decisive 18-10 triumph. Eli McLaughlin notched a ridiculous nine points (four goals, five assists), while Tyson Gibson torched his former team with six points of his own (four goals, two assists). Colorado cornerstones Zed Williams and Conner Robinson each secured a hat trick, with the one-time close contest turning into a rout as the third and fourth stanzas progressed.  

On the New York side of the equation, the most notable happening occurred in the wake of Jeff Teat only scoring two goals, marking the end of his eight-game hat trick streak. The leading MVP candidate leaves the Rockies with 35 goals for the season. 

10,388 fans jammed the Loud House for this Friday night clash.  

NLL