CALGARY, AB — The Calgary Roughnecks were at home for Week 12 of the NLL season, taking on Adam Jones and the Colorado Mammoth. The Roughnecks fell behind early, but found a way to tie the game up going into the second half. A five-goal effort in the third quarter put Calgary up for good and they would win the game 13-9.
Here are five things we noticed in the game:
1) BURTON FITTING IN NICELY
When Roughnecks GM Mike Board signed Tyler Burton to the practice squad, it was a very quiet move. Since being activated, he has been anything but quiet. The London, ON, native has been effective in the face-off circle and has contributed goals in three of his four games played this season. Against the Mammoth, he went 15 for 26 on draws and would battle hard on defence if he did not retrieve the ball. He had a team-high 11 loose balls in the game. Without even considering the goal, he had himself a pretty good game, but he did score and it was incredible!
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2) RUNNER, RUNNER
He’s shown up on this list a couple of times in the past few weeks and for good reason. Karsen Leung is on fire! The transition player has registered a point in seven straight games and has scored a goal in each of his last five games. With a goal and an assist in the contest, the Roughnecks assistant captain has really come alive lately and should be a major force down the stretch. He added seven loose balls in the tilt and played solid defence against the left side that includes John Grant Jr. and Adam Jones. So long as he keeps running the floor hard, there’s no telling what Leung can do throughout the rest of the season.
3) THE POULIN WALL
This is an easy one. Mike Poulin was arguably the best player on the floor on Saturday, stopping 48 shots and holding a very dangerous offence to under 10 goals. While he was making the easy saves, the Poulin Wall was also making some unbelievable saves that seem humanly impossible. At one point, Callum Crawford beat Jon Harnett and was streaking to the net. As Poulin came out to cut off the angle, Crawford passed the ball to Eli McLaughlin on the footstep and somehow, Mike Poulin did this…
4) SHUTTING JONES DOWN
On Saturday the Roughnecks defence did what had seemingly been impossible up until this point – stop Adam Jones. Jones carried a 56-game scoring streak into the contest and was making it look easy. Jones managed 11 shots on net during the contest, of which Mike Poulin easily set aside. None of his shots were easy and Roughnecks assistant captain Greg Harnett gives credit to Curtis Manning and Mike Carnegie who were all over Jones and John Grant Jr. on the left side. While not all of the credit can go to two men, as it took the entire unit to stop the Mammoth offence, shutting down Jones and ending his streak is a big accomplishment for the Roughnecks defence.
5) THE ICE BERG
How about rookie Wesley Berg? He’s playing like a seasoned veteran out there and routinely making plays to help out his team. The rookie looks very comfortable playing against the NLL defences, and that showed on Saturday. The righty scored two goals – one was a fantastic short-handed marker – and two assists. Berg put a few shots off of the iron and could have been looking at a score sheet that read 5 or 6 in the goal column. He also caused a turnover and scooped seven loose balls. He is second on the team with 62 loose balls this season, trailing Dan MacRae by only a single loose ball. It’s not hard to see that the best is yet to come for the talented rookie.