SCRIMMAGE ENDS IN DRAW - Calgary Roughnecks - News
SCRIMMAGE ENDS IN DRAW
It was mind over matter for Scott Ranger during the pre-season scrimmage against the Edmonton Rush.
By Avery Buye | Published: 12/18/2011 at 12:19:03 PM
It was mind over matter for Roughnecks' Scott Ranger during Sunday morning's pre-season scrimmage against the Edmonton Rush. The sixth-year Roughneck veteran tallied half of Calgary's goals in the 12-12 draw at the Scotiabank Saddledome.
“I was happy to get out there and battle with the boys. It was a rough day yesterday but I got all the fluids in there and was able to play today,” said Ranger, still feeling the side effects of food poisoning which prevented him from participating in yesterday's training sessions.
With 31 players vying for a spot on the 23-man roster, Calgary would come out hard. Less than a minute in, Dane Dobbie would power past Edmonton to record the first marker. Ranger and Geoff McNulty would follow suit with goals of their own.
“Once I started, I felt a little bit better. Once you get your first couple hits and scoring that early one definitely gave me a little bit of a boost,” added Ranger, who scored a career-high 29 goals for the Riggers' last season.
The Roughnecks dominated in the second quarter, adding five goals to their total. Ranger put a pair in on the power play while Shawn Evans, Daryl Veltman and McNulty each netted one. The half would come to a close with Calgary holding an 8-5 lead.
Edmonton poured it on in the second half, potting seven goals including the equalizer with less than 20 seconds remaining in the final quarter. Dobbie would add another for the Roughnecks', with Ranger scoring three to complete his ‘sock-trick'
Roughnecks GM, Mike Board, said that Ranger was impressive throughout the entire scrimmage. “When his shooting is on, he is probably one of the best in the league and he showed that today. He is a veteran player that you know is going to come to play every night.”
All four Roughnecks goaltenders saw turf time in the scrimmage. Nick Rose started in net and made 10 saves on 12 shots in the first quarter. Alex Coutts allowed three goals on eight shots in the second quarter while Frankie Scigliano stopped 10 of 12 shots in the third. Mike Poulin finished the scrimmage between the pipes making seven saves on 12 shots for Calgary.
“I was pretty happy with the play of our goalies again. I don't think there were a lot of cheap goals or things like that. We have some tough decisions in that position, we've got four guys sitting there and we need to figure out what to do,” commented Board.
The final Roughnecks' roster will be declared on Thursday, December 22nd at 10am. Both Board and the coaching staff acknowledge the difficulty of choosing a team with many high caliber players in the mix.
“We all came to the conclusion that all of these guys are good and we're cutting good players but every other team is going to be doing the same thing,” said Board. “It's going to be tough. We plan on talking to each guy who is still in camp between now and then. If we have to let somebody go, they are going to go on the right terms.”
Following today's scrimmage, preliminary expectations for the Battle of Alberta have also been set.
“They're a good team. It is going to be a battle all year with those guys. They added some pretty key members to that team. This league is going to be so tight now, it is going to be a battle every night. They look good and so do we,” said Ranger.
The Roughnecks start the 2012 season in Toronto when they visit the defending 2011 NLL Champions on Sunday, January 8.
Calgary's home opener is set for Saturday, January 21 when the Roughnecks host the Colorado Mammoth. Game time is 7:00 p.m. at Scotiabank Saddledome.