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Lightning Kick Off Rivalry with 10-9 OT Win in Denver

December 8, 2008 - Professional Arena Soccer League (PASL) - Colorado Lightning News Release

The team rivalry was extremely clear between Colorado Lightning and Denver Dynamite on Saturday night with high intensity and aggressiveness during the entire game. Zach Cousins and Josh Elbaum scored two for the Lightning in the first quarter and only allowed the Dynamite one goal, scored by Ryan Creager. During the second quarter, Ryan Slaughter, James Merrimand and Clayton Zelin scored for the Lightning while Garth Archibald scored one for the Dynamite. The beginning of the second half, Ryan Creager scored for the Dynamite making the score Lightning, 5 to Dynamite, 3. Chris Handsor of the Dynamite scored, making the game close, 5-4.

After the Lightning having the lead for the whole game, Denver stepped up their game. Brian Contresas scored for the Dynamite on a power play, tying the game. After it was tied 5 to 5, Lightning's Elbaum scored taking the lead back from Denver. Not letting Lightning get another big lead, Dynamite's Archibald tied it back up again making it 6 to 6. Pete Randall and Chris Handsor of the Dynamite both score goals against the Lightning, taking their first lead in the game. After the Lightning's Doug Brannan scored to make their leap back to victory, the Dynamite slid one past Lightning goalkeeper, Michael Archuleta. Wanting to kick it up a notch, Elbaum tied the game with only 34 seconds remaining. The game went into overtime and James Merrimand made the goal to win the game for the Colorado Lightning, 10 to 9.

It was Merrimand's first game with the Lightning. "We came out strong tonight and got the lead," Merrimand said about tonight's game, "We sat back at halftime but we came back and it paid off." Elbaum after scoring 4 goals tonight said, "This game gave me a positive outlook on the season. Being from Denver and having a lot of fans at the game, I played with a lot more intensity and wanted to lead the team."

Both teams played a great game and gave it all of their heart. Elbaum said, "Having friends on the other team made us stronger and gave us an edge to push harder." The aggressive nature off the game kept all the fans on their toes in anticipation for the game winner. "We hope to keep this energy on the road," explained Elbaum. "This game hopefully reminded the team and the fans that we are here to compete and give the Lightning a good name."

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