Vancouver, BC (Friday, May 1, 2015) – The message for Saturday night’s game is simple for the Vancouver Stealth. Win and you’re in the playoffs. It comes down to the final game of the regular season as the Stealth battle the Calgary Roughnecks with the winner advancing to the National Lacrosse League playoffs. Faceoff is at 7:00PM at the Langley Events Centre.
The Stealth currently sit in fourth place in the NLL West Division, a game behind the Roughnecks. With a win, Vancouver will win the season series and a berth into the post-season for a date with the Colorado Mammoth next week in the Mile High City.
“It’s going to be an exciting night,” said Stealth Head Coach Dan Perreault. “We’re expecting a big crowd and get them behind us. It’s great for the franchise that we’re in this position. We welcome the challenge.”
“It’s a huge game for the team and the franchise,” said Captain Curtis Hodgson. “The opportunity to get into the playoffs, something we’re hungry to get into, especially after last season. I love the fact that we’re playing at home and I feel like with the home crowd behind us, it’s going to push us. We expect to win the game.”
The Stealth are the healthiest they’ve been all season as the team welcomed back transition player Tyler Garrison, who’s been injured for most of the season, goaltender Tyler Richards, who sat out two games due to injury and defenseman Rory Smith, who was coming off a two-game suspension. All three were in action last weekend against Buffalo.
“It feels good to back,” said Garrison. Talking about Saturday’s game, he added, “Its Game 7 as soon as we start. It’s a game that you’d want to be a do-or-die situation. It’s going to be awesome, I’m excited.”
Calgary, a Champion’s Cup finalist a year ago, started this season 0-6 and a playoff spot looked to be out of reach. The team strung together a strong second half and now find themselves with an opportunity to move on to the playoffs.
“Our guys trained real hard in the bye week,” added Head Coach Curt Malawsky. “We’re going to be a very well prepared team and the guys are chomping at the bit to go.”
The Stealth will be looking to draw on their positive experiences against Calgary as they’re 2-1 against their rivals this season, outscoring the Roughnecks 49-39, including a 13-9 victory at the Langley Events Centre in February. Duch has scored an impressive 23 points in the three games while Tyler Digby has contributed with 12 points in the season series.
“The teams know each other well,” added Hodgson. “Every game’s been intense and I expect nothing less on Saturday.”
“We match up well against them,” said Perreault. “It comes down to one game and we have to be at our best.”
All BC minor lacrosse players that wear their minor lacrosse jersey (or a Stealth jersey) to the game will receive free admission and an opportunity to take part in the ‘Stealth Experience.’ Children attending must be accompanied by an adult.
Following the game, BC minor lacrosse players will be invited down to the turf to ‘play with the Stealth’ where they will have the chance to shoot on a Stealth goalie, pass the ball with a Stealth player, get autographs and other lacrosse activities as a part of the ‘Stealth Experience’. BC minor lacrosse players attending who would like to participate in the post-game activities will be required to bring helmets (with masks) and gloves (sticks will be provided by the BC Lacrosse Association and LEC).
All fans attending the game will receive a Stealth Energy Towel courtesy of Global BC and the first 1000 fans through the doors will receive a Stealth USB Charger, presented by the British Columbia Lottery Corporation.
The ticket office will open at 2:00PM on Saturday and fans are encouraged to arrive early to ensure ticket availability, especially for groups, and to get parked and enjoy the Pre-Game Party, which starts at 5:30PM.
Stealth Players to Watch:
Rhys Duch –The forward is one point away from tying his career high for points in a season (96 – 2013). Duch has already surpassed his career high for assists in a season as he has 60 in 2015. His previous high was 54 in 2009.
Tyler Richards – Last weekend, T-Rich became just the 13th goaltender in NLL history to reach 3,000 career saves. Richards needs 43 saves to surpass last year’s save total (487).
Corey Small – Set a career high in points with 68 this season. Small set a career high in goals (30) in a season when the forward notched a hat-trick last weekend in Buffalo.
For details visit www.StealthLAX.com