Photo Courtesy: Sally K. Blacksnake
Kevin M. Neibauer
LaxPhilly- A Division of the Edge of Philly Sports Network.
The Top Two Teams in the East Division met up for the first of a home and weekend series.
The first place Buffalo Bandits move to 11-1 with a 16-11 defeat of the second place, Halifax Thunderbirds who fall to 8-4.
“When everything’s said and done, we will find out who is at the top of the East after this weekend,” Buffalo Captain, Steve Priolo.
The first half was a tale of two quarters.
Dhane Smith (3g, 6a) put up four points in the quarter with a pair of goals and assists to give Buffalo a 5-3 lead after 15:00.
Halifax completely dominated the second stanzax with a five goal run and Shawn Evans putting up a trio of assists.
Stephen Keogh added a goal and an assist.
It took all of :33 for Chris Cloutier (2g) to put Buffalo on the board with help from the dynamic duo, Dhane Smith and Josh Byrne.
Eric Fannell (2g,1a) had an answer just a minute five later with the first assist of the day from Evans and Clarke Petterson (3a).
Newly activated, Dawson Theede (4g,1a) paid immediate dividends off a pretty set up from Cody Jamieson and Chris Boushy (2a).
With just 2:23 played, we had three goals
The goals would keep coming with Buffalo engineering the first run of the day
Ian MacKay (2g, 1a) at 3:55, Dhane Smith 1:50 later and Connor Fields (1g, 3a) scoring on the advantage got it to a 4-2 game.
Stephen Keogh (2g,2a) put an end to the run with Smith putting an end to the quarter.
Connor Fields and Byrne (3g,4a) matched up for the first of the afternoon from Byrne to make it 6-3.
Halifax found another gear with, Keogh from Evans and Chris Boushy, Fannell, Tyson Bell (1g), Theede and Cody Jamieson (1g, 3a) ended the half with an 8-6 Halifax advantage.
The Chess Match Kicks In
Despite the deluge, the Bandits weathered the storm.
But, not before Theede hit for his hat trick with another quick strike.
This one :36 to push the Halifax run to six goals and a three goal lead,9-6.
Buffalo battled back.
Ian MacKay scored short handed off a feed from Ethan O’Connor (2a).
Kyle Buchanan (1g, 2a) hit on the man advantage, from, who else? Smith and Byrne.
Nanticoke (2g,1a) and Byrne made it a four goal flurry.
Shawn Evans (1 g, 5a) stopped the Buffalo push with assists going to Cody Jamieson and the red-hot Theede.
Byrne and Nanticoke closed the third with Buffalo up, 12-10.
To The Fourth
Buffalo kept their pedal to the metal with Smith and Kevin Brownell (1g,1a) making it 14-10.
Theede nailed his fourth before Cloutier and Chase Fraser (1g, 2a) ended the scoring and the 16-11 Buffalo win
Inside the Game
Halifax was very much aware of their lost weekend and the importance of this one.
“We’ve got to find a way. We’re striving to get better week in week out, every week. It’s offense by committee. At the end of day, we get paid to go out there and score goals. That’s what we’ve got to do.” Halifax leader, Cody Jamieson
• Shots on goal had Halifax with a 65-42 advantage.
• Bandits netminder, the ageless Matt Vinc, stopped 54 shots and recorded a pair of assists.
• Warren Hill, Halifax goaltender turned aside 26 Bandits shots
• Power play had Halifax with a goose egg,0 for 7 and Buffalo hitting on 3 of 6.
• Loose Balls were 86-62 for Halifax.
• How dominant was Buffalo in the second half? The Bandits outscored Halifax 10-3.
The same two teams meet in Halifax Sunday afternoon.
Buffalo One Step Closer to Division Title.
Kevin has followed and promoted the game of lacrosse since May 19, 1974.
The same day the Philadelphia Flyers won the Cup, the Philadelphia Wings were introduced to Neibauer and Philadelphia.
Kevin has covered many sports, including baseball, football, basketball, and.. lacrosse. A former licensed football referee and baseball umpire, Kevin brings a unique insight to his game coverage.
A published writer in JustHockey Magazine, Kevin covered the American Hockey League as well as a monthly story on a pugilist where Kevin used the pen name, The Rink Rat. Neibauer turned his attentions to lacrosse for a few years and does his part, whether podcasting or writing to grow the game. Kevin branched out to his roots and currently provides insight for all Philadelphia teams for Edge of Philly as well as his full-time duties with LaxPhilly.