Panther City Lacrosse Club Mounts Comeback Win Against Mammoth
FORT WORTH, TX - In an epic back-and-forth battle between the Panther City Lacrosse Club and the Colorado Mammoth, Panther City came away victorious, 14-13, in an overtime thriller after scoring the game-tying goal with 34 seconds remaining in regulation and then scoring 29 seconds in the overtime period.
In a game that featured seven lead changes and nine ties, second year forward Jonathan Donville's goal 29 seconds into the overtime period proved to be the difference for the home team. This goal was the first game-winning goal in overtime of Donville's career. Prior to the overtime winner, Will Malcom, who finished as Panther City's leading scorer with seven points (4G/3A), drove the alley and put one past the Colorado netminder to tie the game at 13 a piece with 34 seconds remaining in the game. It was the third-straight game Malcom has recorded a hat trick and now brings his season points total to 45 points (16G/29A). This was Malcom's franchise leading 11th hat trick in the three years he has suited up for the purple and black.
Rookie Ryan Sheridan, who had been inactive the previous two games, was inserted into the lineup and immediately made his presence felt. Using his 6'4 frame to his advantage, Sheridan recorded a hat trick in the first half and finished the evening with six points (5G/1A) and was Panther City's leading goal scorer. Fellow rookie Jason Knox also chipped in with four points (2G/2A). The two rookies combined for five of Panther City's eight first-half goals. Phil Caputo's 14-game goal scoring streak came to an end tonight, but the assistant captain still recorded three assists on the evening.
Defensively, captain Matt Hossack continued to raise his level of play and led the team with nine loose balls and four caused turnovers. Third-year defenseman Pat Foley returned from a one-game absence and recorded four loose balls, two caused turnovers and added his second goal of the season, which gave Panther City their biggest lead of the evening with the score reading, 8-5 late in the second quarter.
Panther City will have three straight games at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth, but first have another bye week next weekend, before returning to action on Sunday, February 25 at 3 p.m. The game will be the club's youth lacrosse night, which celebrates the amazing growth the game of lacrosse has seen recently in North Texas.
POST GAME QUOTES
HEAD COACH TRACEY KELUSKY QUOTES
On being back in Texas and securing the win... "We missed Texas. It showed tonight. The boys seem to find another gear when we are back at Dickies. They love being here and it was a great win."
On rookie forward Ryan Sheridan's performance tonight (6 points - 5G/1A)... "Great night. Kudos to him because he sat out a couple [games]. One of the things he brought up to our [offensive coordinator] Kyle Goundrey is that he learned a ton watching the previous two games. From my perspective that is exactly what you want. You want someone who is coachable and wants to get better and understands his role within the team. He sat a couple and he could've easily been down - no one likes sitting, but he used it as a lesson and something to teach him and make him better and he was a beast tonight."
On the overtime winning goal... "We drew something up and there were a variety of different looks. We set something up to get Will [Malcom] underneath and again if he had the opportunity we wanted him to take it. Then there was a secondary option with #3 [Jonathan Donville] coming over the top. Great move. Great face dodge. Kudos to him for driving to the net and finishing it. We had a backup plan with an iso for Sheri [Ryan Sheridan] in the corner if we needed it. The best part of all of that is our guys stepped up when we needed to. I look at #4 [Will Malcom]. I challenged all our guys - if you want to be the big dog, you have to be the big dog. '4' gets the tying goal late. '3' steps up and gets the OT winner. That is character stuff. Those guys said, 'We want to be the best and we want to prove to others that we are.' Kudos to them."
FORWARD RYAN SHERIDAN QUOTES
On his thoughts about the game tonight and his performance... "We won, so I'm pretty pumped. Feels good to put up the points but at the end of the day it's all about wins. I'm glad I could help the boys."
On his thought of being back home in Fort Worth "I love being home. We had a pretty good crowd out there today so I'm glad we could bring home a dub for them."
On what he learned from his two games inactive and watching... I think sitting was absolutely beneficial. I wasn't in the lineup for the last two weeks and I was watching the game from the press box from a different perspective. The game really slowed down mentally for me and I was able to see the other guys work and see what I could do to help them and myself. Today the game was coming to me instead of me coming to it. I think sitting those two games helped me really find my comfort zone."
On what this win does for him and the team momentum wise... This is a huge win getting back to .500 is very important. Hopefully, we can go on a win streak here. Personally, for me it means I'll be in the lineup next week [laughs], but I just want to keep rolling, keep putting the ball in the net and keep getting [wins].
FORWARD JONATHAN DONVILLE QUOTES
On how it feels to be back in Texas... "It feels great. Some of us don't live in Texas, but it is still good to be back. Especially with the unique schedule with the rodeo being in Fort Worth. It is exciting in the second half of the year to hopefully make some hay here at home."
On his thoughts about the game winner and the win in general... "It's huge. I think we have lost a lot of games like that. Including the playoff game last year. We are in it late and just don't make enough plays at the end. After everyone of those games, the message has been that we have to figure out how to win these games. By no means does this one mean we are going to win the next one, but it's exciting to see that we made enough plays at the end. On a personal level, I haven't made enough plays at the end of the game to help my team win, so it is nice to not feel that."
On what he has learned from his rookie season last year and how that has translated into this season ... "I think a lot of it is off the floor. Learning how to travel and take care of yourself and how to manage handling this experience alone for the most part. In most parts of your lacrosse career, you live in the same town as your teammates or go to the same school and this is a more spread out experience so you handle the good and the bad alone for the most part and that's an adjustment. I think I learned from a lot of great veterans on our team and great coaches as well on how to manage being a professional lacrosse player and I haven't figured it out just yet but we're just trying to get better everyday."
On his perspective of the winning goal... "I think it was a good play drawn up by TK, really trying to get Will in some space where he is really dynamic and has scored some big goals. He is not scared of the moment or anything. Playing with him is a pleasure and he is a great person so trying to get him in some space. We set a cross pick for me as a secondary option and I was thinking shoot the whole way and I thought I had someone in the lane and I was trying to be instinctual after that. I don't know if it was a great shot. I think I was just lucky to have it go in the net and tell the boys to get back to Nicky [goalie Nick Damude] as fast as we could."
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