COLORADO — Dane Dobbie helped get things started, while Tyler Digby put an exclamation point on a big win for the Calgary Roughnecks on Friday.
On a night when Dobbie recorded his 300th National Lacrosse League goal, Digby scored five times and added an assist to lead the Roughnecks to a 14-12 win over the Colorado Mammoth in front of 12,730 fans at the Pepsi Center in Denver.
“All of us are so happy for him,” said Digby of Dobbie, who scored twice in the first quarter before adding a pair of assists. “He’s a great team guy and we couldn’t be happier for anyone. That got us started and we went from there.”
Dobbie was pleased to record his milestone marker early in the game so the Riggers could concentrate on the task at hand.
“It was nice to get it off my chest in the first quarter and move on,” said Dobbie, who’s now just 10 points away from 600. “It’s one of those things I’ve talked to you guys for a few games now about it and guys have been bringing it up. I was hoping I could get it early.”
Calgary coach Curt Malawsky praised Dobbie for his significant contributions for the ’Necks ever since he started his career in Calgary with seven points in five games back in 2008.
“That’s one hell of an achievement by him and we’re pretty proud that he’s doing it as a Roughneck,” said Malawsky, who also had kind words for Digby’s effort. “He scored some massive goals for us tonight and he was our player of the game. He’s got some really nice hands and when he gets going to the net he’s pretty tough to stop, so he had a whale of a game for us.”
Digby hit a milestone of his own as his fifth goal – which also stood up as the game winner – was the 100th marker of his career in his fourth NLL campaign.
“It’s great,” said Digby. “It’s more about the team. A guy getting 300 is a lot more. Me and Dobbes would both take a team win before any personal stat.”
Curtis Dickson chipped in with a hat trick and four assists as the Roughnecks improved their record to 2-1.
Jeff Shattler tallied two goals and five assists, while Tyson Bell (2g, 1a), Wesley Berg (5a) and Riley Loewen (2a) also had multiple-point performances.
Goalie Frank Scigliano did his part in net as he stopped 33 shots fired his way to record his second straight win.
Jeremy Noble and Zack Greer both had hat tricks for the Mammoth (2-2), while Callum Crawford scored once and set up five others.
Joey Cupido scored twice, while Jordan Gilles, Eli McLaughlin and Zach Herreweyers – with his first NLL goal – each scored once.
Dillon Ward started in net for Colorado, but was pulled in the second quarter after stopping just six of 12 shots he faced. Alex Buque then made 25 saves in a relief appearance.
Gilles gave the Mammoth a 1-0 lead at 2:32 of the first quarter before Dickson replied for the Riggers 26 seconds later.
Dobbie appeared to score his 300th career goal at 9:07, but the goal was waved off due to a crease violation.
“Obviously it got called back, but luckily within a couple minutes I got it,” said Dobbie, who took a pass from Dickson in the slot and whipped a shot past Ward for a power-play goal. “Dickson gave it to me and I shot it around a defender’s shoulder.”
Digby scored 46 seconds later when the ball bounced off his foot and into the Mammoth net before Dobbie fired a submarine shot past Ward at 14:41 to give the visitors a 4-1 lead.
Noble scored with two seconds remaining on the clock before Shattler tallied an even-strength goal and a short-handed marker early in the second quarter.
Buque then took over the goaltending duties from Ward in the Colorado net.
After Noble answered back with a power-play goal for the Mammoth, Bell took a long pass from Scigliano and scored in transition. Digby then converted a pass from Shattler to put Calgary up 8-3.
The Mammoth finished the first half with a three-goal run as Noble, Herreweyers and Greer found the back of the net.
Dickson fired a rising shot past Buque at 2:58 of the third quarter to give the Riggers a 9-6 advantage before Greer answered back at the six-minute mark.
Digby then counted a pair of power-play markers, but each time Cupido answered right back with a breakaway goal off the ensuing faceoff.
Crawford scored with nine seconds left in a wild third quarter before Bell bounced a shot past Buque for a short-handed goal 12 seconds into the final frame.
McLaughlin replied for the Mammoth 22 seconds later before Digby counted his fifth of the game at 1:40.
“We had some ups and downs, but stuck to trying to work harder than them and that’s what put us out on top,” summed up Digby.
Dickson completed his hat trick at 8:45 before Greer scored on a penalty shot with 47.9 seconds left in regulation to round out the scoring.
The same two teams will meet up in Calgary for a rematch (and a Star Wars Party) at the Scotiabank Saddledome on Saturday, Jan. 28.
“It’s always a battle,” said Malawsky of facing the Mammoth. “We always have a great rivalry and they play us tough. Last year they beat us by five or six in our rink, so they’re going to be coming out hard.
“If we think we’re coming home just to sit on our laurels, we’ll end up on the wrong end of the scoreboard, so we have to make sure we’re focused and continue to stick to what makes us successful.”