Minnesota Swarm Come Up Short In Season Debut Against Calgary
SAINT PAUL, MN - The National Lacrosse League's (NLL) Minnesota Swarm lost their first regular season game of the year to the defending league champion Calgary Roughnecks, 12-7, in front of 8,112 fans at Pengrowth Saddledome Sunday evening.
The Roughnecks jumped out to an early 6-2 lead in the second quarter behind three goals from Josh Sanderson (4g, 6a) and never looked back. Minnesota was able to trim the lead to 7-6 in the third quarter, but the Roughnecks finished the game on a 5-1 scoring run to seal the victory.
Newly acquired forward Ryan Benesch led the Swarm with 5 points (2g, 3a) and Aaron Wilson added 3 points (2g, 1a). Nick Patterson allowed 11 goals on 45 shots and added 34 saves in the loss.
In his first game as Head Coach of the Swarm, Mike Lines started Nick Patterson at goalie along with team captain Ryan Cousins, Scott Self, Callum Crawford, Noah Talbot and Jay Thorimbert.
After Calgary scored the game's opening goal, Minnesota got on the board when second-year defenseman Andrew Watt notched the team's first goal of the year to tie the game up at 1-1. Aaron Wilson responded with a goal a minute later to give the Swarm their only lead of the game, 2-1. Calgary's Jeff Moleski (1g, 1a) answered with just under two minutes remaining in the first to tie the game 2-2.
The Roughnecks then managed to score four unanswered goals in a seven-minute span to build a comfortable 6-2 lead midway through the second quarter. Minnesota responded with two of their own from Benesch to cut the Calgary lead to 6-4 heading into halftime.
Minnesota opened up the second half with a sense of urgency when rookie forward Zack Greer (1g, 1a) scored the first goal of his career to bring the Swarm within one, 6-5. Calgary's Curtis Manning (1g) answered Greer's score 40 seconds later with a goal of his own. Wilson then responded his second of the night to bring the game back within one at 7-6.
Like they had done earlier in the night, Calgary went on another scoring run, this time adding three goals to build a 10-6 advantage. With just two seconds remaining in the third quarter, Sean Thomson (1g, 1a) buried his first goal as a member of the Swarm to give the team some momentum heading into the final period.
Unfortunately for the Swarm, Thomson's goal would be their last. Minnesota's chance for a comeback was stifled after Cousins was penalized twice in the fourth quarter, which left the team short-handed early in the final period. The Roughnecks were able to tally two more goals in the fourth to secure a 12-7 victory.
The two teams meet again at Xcel Energy Center for the Swarm home opener on Friday, Jan. 15 at 7:35 p.m. CST. Lower level single game tickets can be purchased for as low as $24 for each of the eight 2010 home games. Tickets are available online at mnswarm.com or by calling 888-MN-SWARM.
An exclusive Channel 45 ticket package is available for the home opener and all Saturday home games this season. The package includes two tickets, two hot dogs and two sodas for just $45. To purchase the Channel 45 Pack visit ticketmaster.com.
Fans in attendance at Friday's home opener will receive gold rally rags to help celebrate Country Weekend at Xcel Energy Center. Local country signing star Tim Sigler will be perform the national anthem and host a post-game concert. Fans also have the chance to tickets and a meeting with Brad Paisley, who will be performing the following night at Xcel Energy Center. A full-size 3M NASCAR Simulator will also be on display along with NASCAR memorabilia.
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National Lacrosse League Stories from January 11, 2010
- Minnesota Swarm Come Up Short In Season Debut Against Calgary - Minnesota Swarm
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