All the news, quotes and anecdotes from the Roughnecks heading into the 3rd and 4th games of the season
HEARTBREAKING SETBACK: The Calgary Roughnecks (0-2) gave up a late four-goal lead and suffered a heartbreaking 13-12 overtime loss to the Colorado Mammoth last Saturday night at the Scotiabank Saddledome. Sean Pollock scored at 6:02 of the extra session to lead the Mammoth (1-1) to its first win of the season. Netminder Mike Poulin did his best to keep Calgary in the game as he stopped 41 of 54 shots he faced. With time winding down in the fourth quarter, Poulin made a highlight-reel save with his right arm to deny Colorado sniper John Grant Jr. from scoring his seventh goal of the game. Grant led the Mammoth attack with six goals and two assists, Gavin Prout scored once and set up six others, while Jamie Lincoln had two goals. John Gallant, Jordan McBride and Adam Jones also scored for Colorado. “It’s a game of bounces,” said Calgary coach Curt Malawsky. “(It) wasn’t meant to be. We’ll just regroup and battle back.” Shawn Evans notched four goals and added three assists for the Riggers, while Jeff Shattler scored twice and set up two others. Dane Dobbie (1g, 3a), Scott Ranger (1g, 3a), Geoff Snider (2g, 1a) and Joe Resetarits (1g, 2a) also had multiple-point performances, while Curtis Dickson scored once. Matt Roik picked up the win in net for Colorado in a relief appearance. Roik finished with 29 saves, including four in overtime, while starting goalie Chris Levis stopped six of 12 shots he faced.
BACK IN ACTION: Calgary forward Dane Dobbie returned to action against the Mammoth last Saturday after missing the first game of the season as a result of a game misconduct penalty he took during Calgary’s playoff loss to the Edmonton Rush on May 5. After being deemed the instigator of a fight during Calgary’s 19-11 loss to Edmonton, Dobbie was assessed a one-game suspension, which he served on Jan. 12 when he missed Calgary’s home opener against Toronto.
MAMMOTH TASK, PART 2: The Riggers will get their chance to avenge last Saturday’s loss to the Mammoth when the same two teams face off against each other once again at the Pepsi Centre in Denver on Friday night. “We’ve got an opportunity to bounce back right away,” said Snider, who won 22 of 25 faceoff that he took in addition to scooping up 12 loose balls in the first game of the home-and-home set. “We get to move forward and just build. We’re right in these games. I don’t think we’ve played close to the way that we can play yet. I think that’s a real positive thing.” Following Friday’s visit to Denver to take on the Mammoth, the ’Necks will head to Philadelphia to face off against the Wings (2-0) on Sunday.
ROUGHNECKS VS. MAMMOTH: The Roughnecks went 1-1 in the 2012 regular season against the Mammoth. After a 13-12 overtime loss to Colorado at home on Jan. 21, the Riggers rebounded with a 21-10 shellacking of the Mammoth on Feb. 24 in Denver. Veltman led the way offensively for Calgary over Colorado with six goals and nine assists in the two-game set, while Evans (5g, 6a), Shattler (2g, 9a), Ranger (3g, 7a), Dickson (4g, 4a) and Snider (2g, 2a) were also dangerous. John Grant Jr. led the Mammoth attack against the Riggers last year with eight goals and nine assists in just two games. Gavin Prout was also dangerous against the ’Necks as he scored the overtime goal in the first game and finished with four goals and seven assists in the two-game set. Adam Jones (3g, 6a) and Jamie Lincoln (3g, 1a) also had multiple-point performances in both games against the Riggers. Poulin had a win and a loss in between the pipes for Calgary, while Chris Levis went 1-1 in the Colorado net. Calgary has an all-time record of 12-14 (7-8 at home, 5-6 on the road) in the regular season against Colorado.
ROUGHNECKS VS. WINGS: The Roughnecks have an all-time record of 2-2 (1-1 at home, 1-1 on the road) against the Wings. The last time the two teams met was back on March 5, 2011 at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia when the Riggers prevailed by a score of 13-7. Ranger led the way for Calgary with a hat trick and two helpers, while Shattler (2g, 6a), Dickson (2g, 4a), Dobbie (2g, 3a) and Veltman (1g, 1a) also chipped in offensively. Poulin made 31 saves in net to register the win. Of the five players who scored goals for Philadelphia during the loss, only Drew Westervelt still remains with the Wings. Westervelt had a goal and three assists the last time the two teams met, while goalie Brandon Miller made 25 saves in a losing cause.
MOUSE’S MUSINGS: Curt Malawsky, whose nickname is ‘Mouse’, took over as the sixth head coach in Roughnecks’ history prior to the start of the 2013 season. “This is a resilient bunch of guys,” said Malawsky, who helped the Riggers win a Champion’s Cup in 2009 in the final season of his 12-year playing career. “Anytime you expect to be where you want to be at the end of the season, there’s going to be bumps in the road. Any championship team I’ve been on, it’s never been win all 16 games. The guys have to battle back and keep their chins up and keep the eye on that prize.” Malawsky will be assisted by Bob McMahon as offence coordinator and Bruce Codd as defence coordinator. It’s the third season for McMahon on the Calgary coaching staff, while Codd joined the Riggers this season.
A LOOK BACK: Led by the offensive exploits of Evans and Shattler, the Roughnecks finished atop the 2012 NLL standings with a 12-4 record. In his first year with the Riggers after being acquired from the Rochester Knighthawks, Evans led Calgary in scoring with 32 goals and 47 assists in 16 games played. Shattler followed up a 75-point season in 2011 with 72 points (31g, 41a) in 2012. Veltman (20g, 42a), Ranger (24g, 37a), Dickson (31g, 25a) and Dobbie (28g, 22a) also had solid offensive seasons for the ’Necks. In net, Poulin was a workhorse for the Riggers as he compiled a 10-3 record to go with a 10.27 goals against average and a .789 save percentage. After finishing first in the NLL’s West Division, the Roughnecks hosted the Edmonton Rush (6-10) in the first round of the playoffs on May 5. Led by five goals and six assists from Ryan Ward, the Rush upset the Riggers 19-11. Corey Small also had a strong game for the Rush with five goals and three assists, while Tom Johnson had a hat trick. Ranger notched four goals and an assist for the Roughnecks, who beat the Rush all four times the two teams faced off against each other in the regular season. “They just worked harder than us,” Ranger said. “They got the bounces they needed and we didn’t get the bounces and we weren’t working hard enough. It’s unacceptable and our season’s over because of it.” Dobbie had a hat trick and four assists for the ’Necks, Evans scored twice and set up four others, while Shattler had two goals and three assists.
RETURNING VETERANS: Captain Andrew McBride leads a group of 19 returning players on Calgary’s roster this year. Joining McBride on defence for another season are Dan MacRae as well as the brother combinations of Mike and Scott Carnegie and Greg and Jon Harnett. Back from last season at forward are Jeff Shattler, Shawn Evans, Curtis Dickson, Daryl Veltman, Dane Dobbie and Scott Ranger. At the transition position, Geoff Snider, Curtis Manning, Travis Cornwall, Nolan Heavenor and Peter McFetridge are all back for the 2013 campaign. Mike Poulin will once again be the starter in between the pipes, while Frankie Scigliano will be counted upon to be a reliable back-up goalie.
NEW FACES: New additions to Calgary’s roster include forward Aaron Pascas, who the ’Necks acquired from the Toronto Rock in exchange for a draft pick. Among the four new faces who made the team are three of Calgary’s seven 2012 NLL Entry Draft selections: forward Joe Resetarits (first round, sixth overall), transition player Matthew Dinsdale (first round, seventh overall) and forward Jackson Decker (second round, 17th overall).
LETTER MEN: Andrew McBride is back for another season as Calgary’s captain, while Mike Carnegie will again serve as an assistant. With the retirement of Kaleb Toth, another assistant spot opened up. Malawsky chose to reward Scott Ranger for his leadership abilities. “He’s eager to do it,” Malawsky said. “He does a good job leading us without a letter and now he’s got a letter, so our leadership group is strong and we’re really going to lean on those guys.” Ranger said he was honoured to accept his new role as an assistant captain. “I try to base my game on leadership anyways,” he said. “Now with the letter, it just gives me the opportunity to talk to the refs. It’s definitely one of those things that I’m going to be proud to wear on my shirt for sure.”
MILESTONES WITHIN REACH
- By setting up just one more goal, Scott Ranger will reach the 200-assist mark.
- Jeff Shattler needs to scoop up just one more loose ball to reach 700.
- Goalie Mike Poulin needs just three wins to reach 30 in his seventh season.
- Nolan Heavenor is five points away from 100 in his eighth year in the NLL.
- With six more penalty minutes, Andrew McBride will have spent 300 minutes in the sin bin.
- Dane Dobbie is eight points away from 300 in his sixth season with the Riggers.
- Daryl Veltman needs to score nine more times to hit the 100-goal mark.