GWINETT, GA — Like they did last month at home, the Calgary Roughnecks rallied for a come-from-behind win on the road over the Georgia Swarm on Friday.
Trailing 11-8 late in the third quarter, the Roughnecks (6-7) reeled off eight straight goals to rally for a 16-12 victory over the Swarm (4-8) at the Infinite Energy Arena.
“It might not have been our cleanest game that we’ve had in the last little bit of a run we’ve been on here, but the guys stuck to it and they battled and they competed,” said Calgary coach Curt Malawsky in regards to his team’s third straight win. “The little things – coming to the bench and the loose ball battles – turned into big things.
“The guys are committed to each other. That’s the biggest thing. When they believe in what they can accomplish together as a unit, good things happen to us. Our guys are playing with a lot of confidence and believing in themselves right now.”
Curtis Dickson scored six goals and added five assists to match his single-game career high of 11 points that he set last season.
“It’s great,” said Dickson of the accomplishment. “The win’s the most important part. Our offence was playing well in here tonight. We were moving the ball around.”
Earlier this season, the Riggers rallied back from a 9-3 deficit to beat the Swarm 12-11 at the Scotiabank Saddledome on Feb. 6.
“You never want to have slow starts,” stressed Dickson. “We never obviously give up on ourselves and we keep ourselves in the game.”
On Friday, Dane Dobbie scored four times and added five assists, while Jeff Shattler also had a big game with two goals and six helpers. Rookie forward Wesley Berg chipped in with two goals and two assists, while Karsen Leung (1g, 2a), Tyler Digby (1g, 1a) and Jon Harnett (2a) also had multiple point performances.
In a relief appearance of starting goalie Mike Poulin, Frankie Scigliano stopped nine of 10 shots he faced in 17:54 of action to improve his record to 3-4. Poulin made 25 saves before being replaced by Scigliano in net late in the third quarter.
“Poulin’s been great on this run and Frankie’s quietly waited his turn as Poulin did earlier in the year,” said Malawsky. “Frankie stepped up and made some big saves and enabled us to go on that seven-goal run.”
Shayne Jackson and Chad Tutton both recorded hat tricks for the Swarm, while Jordan MacIntosh and Josh Gillam had a pair of goals each. Randy Staats and Jesse King also scored, while starting Swarm goalie Brodie MacDonald finished with 25 saves.
The Roughnecks will continue their busy weekend with their second straight road game on Saturday night (8 p.m.) against the Colorado Mammoth (8-3) at the Pepsi Center in Denver.
“It’s going to tough,” said Dickson, who had a hat trick and five assists to help lead the Riggers to a 13-9 win over the Mammoth last Saturday at the Saddledome. “They’re going to be angry at their performance last week, so they’re going to be looking for revenge. It’s always a hostile environment going to play in Colorado. We’ll get in there tomorrow morning and get some rest and be ready to go tomorrow night.”
Tutton opened the scoring with a short-handed goal for the Swarm at 6:40 of the first quarter before Dickson replied with a power-play marker for the Riggers 1:34 later.
Dickson put Calgary up 2-1 at 12:24 of the opening frame before Georgia responded with two quick short-handed goals by Gillam and Jackson.
Digby and Dickson then counted back-to-back power-play goals for the Riggers to give Calgary a 4-3 lead after one quarter of play.
The Swarm scored the first four goals of the second quarter – two by MacIntosh and singles from Staats and Jackson – before Dobbie and Dickson scored to pull the ’Necks back within a goal.
King then bounced a shot through Poulin’s legs with 4:26 to play in the second quarter to put the Swarm back up by a pair heading into the halftime intermission.
Like he did in the first quarter, Tutton started the third with an early goal – this time to give Georgia a 9-6 lead.
After Dickson and Dobbie scored for Calgary, Tutton and Jackson replied with goals for Georgia to put the Swarm up 11-8.
That prompted Malawsky to replace Poulin in net with Scigliano and the move seemed to spark the Calgary offence which reeled off eight straight goals.
“Frankie stepped in and played lights out and only let in one goal,” said Dickson. “Any time you can get goaltending like that, it makes it a little easier for the offence to get us back in that game and pull out a win.”
After Dobbie and Berg scored late in the third quarter, Dickson and Shattler counted early goals in the fourth to put Calgary up 12-11. Dobbie then notched the eventual game-winning goal at 7:10 of the final frame before Berg, Shattler and Leung, into an empty net, added insurance markers.
Gillam scored his second of the game for Georgia at 13:07, but it was too little, too late for the Swarm.