CALGARY, AB — This weekend, the Calgary Roughnecks are in Langley, BC, to face the Vancouver Stealth on April 16th at 8:00pm MT. The Roughnecks are coming off of a win against those same Stealth and will look to win the season series on Saturday.
Here are 5 things to watch for in the contest:
1) ALMOST THERE
Should the Roughnecks earn a win over the Stealth on Saturday, Calgary would clinch a spot in the NLL Playoffs. If that happens, it will be the 14th straight season the Roughnecks have found themselves in the post-season. With the Saskatchewan Rush and Colorado Mammoth tied at 10-4, there is now indication as of yet which team would be waiting for the Necks in the West Division Semi-Final.
2) RECORD CHASER
It’s not often that players set huge career milestones, let alone two in one game. But that’s what Roughnecks forward Jeff Shattler is set to do against the Stealth. Should the lefty score one point in the contest, he will reach 600 points. He is also only a single loose ball shy of reaching 1000 for his career. Should he accomplish that feat on Saturday, Shattler will become only the 23rd player in NLL history to reach that milestone. Keep an eye out for number 77 as he tries to cement his name in history.
3) PUSH THE PACE
It’s been talked about over and over again recently, but the Roughnecks keep having success scoring in transition. Last weekend against the Stealth, the Riggers saw Jon Harnett, Greg Harnett, Garrett McIntosh, Scott Carnegie, and Curtis Manning each add a goal in the win. Contributions out of the backend are always welcome and they provide a lot of energy for the team – something that is extremely important. That energy helped the Roughnecks go on an 11-2 run from mid-way through the second quarter until roughly the same time in the third quarter. Look for Calgary to remain aggressive in the transition game and put the Stealth on their toes.
4) LIGHTING THE LAMP
Ever since he was drafted, Dane Dobbie has done nothing but put the ball in the back of the net. Earlier this season, Dobbie passed Kaleb Toth as the Roughnecks all-time leading goal scorer and is now on the verge of being the first Rigger to reach 300 goals in the red and black. Dobbie will need to score four goals against the Stealth if he intends to reach the milestone. He has three goals in each of his last two games and has scored four goals once already this season, so it’s quite possible that he could become the 26th player in NLL history to reach the 300-goal plateau this weekend.
5) NOT GOING DOWN EASY
After losing seven games in a row and being on the brink of elimination, there’s no chance the Stealth will lay down and let the Roughnecks win. The Stealth will bring their ‘A’ game to Langley Events Centre as it is a must-win game. If Vancouver can win out, they still hold the tie-breaker and could theoretically tie the Necks record, putting them in the playoffs. Expect a hungry Stealth squad ready to battle to the final whistle on home turf. As it always is, the tilt between these two Western rivals figures to get aggressive as the two compete for the final playoff spot in the West.