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Socks and Hats All Over the Place in a Wild Week 6

The FireWolves Cannot Be Stopped

With up to a foot of snow barreling down on New York’s state capital, the hometown Albany FireWolves extended their season-opening winning streak to five games, outlasting the Halifax Thunderbirds in a hard-fought 12-10 triumph. Albany now stands alone as the only five-win team in the NLL. Not bad for a squad that won all of three games last season.

Eight players found the back of the net for the FireWolves, with Travis Longboat, Patrick Kaschalk, Alex Simmons and Sam Firth each scoring on two occasions. Down 10-8 in the fourth, Simmons brought the game even with consecutive goals. Firth then nabbed his second on what turned out to be the go-ahead tally with 8:43 remaining. A Nick Chaykowsky empty netter sealed things for improbable FireWolves.

Austin Shanks put together a strong game for the Thunderbirds, capturing a hat trick in defeat. Ryan Benesch and Dawson Theede added two more, but the now 2-2 Halifax club came up just a little bit short. 


The Mammoth and Bandits Renew Rivalry In Buffalo

Two teams that have grown accustomed to battling for all the marbles during the month of June, took the field in downtown Buffalo in a matchup of franchises who have yet to really find their stride in 2023-2024. And on this particular snowy January night, it was the defending champion Bandits taking down the 2022 champion Mammoth 12-8.

Buffalo jumped out to 6-0 and 9-2 leads, with Colorado never coming within four goals. The Bandits star duo, Dhane Smith and Josh Byrne, found that extra gear, each posting seven points in the victory, with Byrne putting a whopping 17 shots on net. Brad McCulley and Chase Fraser did their parts, contributing a combined 10-point effort, helping Buffalo back to an even 2-2 record on the season.

Despite hat tricks from Eli McLaughlin and Connor Kelly, Colorado’s up-and-down campaign rolled on, with the club now staring at a 1-3 mark heading into next weekend’s home game with the San Diego Seals.

BUFFALO, NY – JANUARY 6: Chase Fraser #95 of the Buffalo Bandits and Jalen Chaster #71 of the Colorado Mammoth argue during the NLL regular season game between the Colorado Mammoth and the Buffalo Bandits.(Photo by Mike Hetzel/NLL)


Shayne Jackson and Lyle Thompson Dazzle For The Upstart Swarm

Georgia Swarm standouts Shayne Jackson and Lyle Thompson lit the lamp early and often, leading their suburban Atlanta team to a thrilling 12-10 conquest of the always tenacious Panther City Lacrosse Club. Jackson found the net an incredible six times, leaving Gas South Arena with a sock trick to go along with four assists. The 2020 NLL MVP reached the six-goal strata on only eight total attempts on goal. Talk about efficiency!

The aforementioned Mr. Thompson added yet another hat trick to his sterling resume, with the Jackson/Thompson pairing scoring the go-ahead and clincher goals for the Swarm.

Georgia cruised to a 9-4 second quarter lead, only to watch PCLC claw their way back in the second half, tying the game 9-9 early in the fourth. The Fort Worth-based franchise just would not go away, squaring the game 10-10 before Jackson and Thompson took matters into their own hands. 39-year-old Callum Crawford had a massive night for PCLC, tabulating three goals and five assists.

The Swarm now stand at 4-1, with Panther City holding a disappointing 1-3 record.

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