Township of Langley, BC (Saturday, March 21, 2015) – On a night where Rhys Duch reached a historic milestone, and over 9-thousand dollars was raised for BC Minor Lacrosse, the Vancouver Stealth dropped a narrow 14-11 decision to the Colorado Mammoth on Saturday night at the Langley Events Centre.
Duch surpassed Gary Rosyski in the third quarter as he brushed off a defender and put home his 251st career goal past Dillon Ward, to become the all-time goals leader in Stealth franchise history. The Victoria native scored a team-high 5 points (3g, 2a) in the loss.
“Yeah it’s cool,” said Duch. “I’ll put the ball on display in the man-cave but it’s certainly shadowed by the loss.”
“Rhys is a great player,” said Head Coach Dan Perreault. “We expect that from him and he expects that from himself.”
Duch opened the scoring at 2:57 in the opening quarter, rifling a shot by Ward. The Stealth led 3-2 thanks to a Justin Salt goal early in the second quarter but that was the final time Vancouver would lead as the Mammoth went into halftime with a 6-4 lead. John Grant Jr also reached an important milestone in Saturday night’s game. With his assist on a Jeremy Noble goal in the second quarter, Grant Jr. overtook Colin Doyle for second on the NLL All-Time Scoring list with his 1,335th point.
“That was our most complete game of the year,” said Mammoth Coach Chris Gill. “We could’ve easily folded the tent when they came back on that run and got close but I’m proud of how the guys battled through it.”
Grant Jr. finished the game with 6 points (1g, 5a) and Adam Jones led Colorado with a game-high 8 points (2g, 6a).
“Grant takes a beating but for a guy to do what he does every game is amazing,” added Gill. “He’s one heck of a player and he deserves this honour.”
Down 9-4 midway through the third quarter, the Stealth used a 4-0 run to get right back into the game, trailing 10-9 after three quarters and setting up for an exciting finish. Stealth forward Corey Small scored his first of the game at 1:46 into the fourth quarter to tie the game at 10-10 but Joey Cupido and newly acquired Jeremy Noble scored the next two goals to regain the Colorado lead. Tyler Digby’s second of the game cut the lead to 12-11 but that’s as close as Vancouver would get as the Mammoth added two more goals to win their sixth game of the season.
“We put up a pretty good fight but we got ourselves in a position where we’re down 9-4,” said Perreault. “We had some pretty good looks early in the game but didn’t put them away; credit to their goaltender. We battled back but it’s tough to come back when you’re down like that.”
“It was a strange game,” said Stealth forward Johnny Powless, who scored a goal and added two assists. “Some of the shots we were taking were hitting posts or weren’t going in, we’re dropping balls but that’s in the past now and we’ll look forward to next weekend.”
BCLA Night raised $9,920 for BC’s Lacrosse on the Move Fund, helping support travel costs for BC minor lacrosse teams. The Stealth’s special edition British Columbia jerseys were a big hit as 24 lucky fans with the highest bids took home a game-worn player jersey.
FINAL SCORE: Vancouver 11 – Colorado 14, SHOTS ON GOAL: Vancouver 50 – Colorado 56, SAVES: Tyler Richards 42-56 (L) – Dillon Ward 39-50 (W), LOOSE BALLS: Vancouver 58 – Colorado 44, FACE-OFFS: Vancouver 19-29 – Colorado 10-29, POWER PLAY: Vancouver 1-3 – Colorado 2-5.
The 3 Stars of the Game:
For details visit www.StealthLAX.com