Shawn Slaght, All Lacrosse All The Time – A Division of the Edge of Philly Sports Network
The Saskatchewan Rush had a huge fourth quarter to take a 14-8 win over the struggling Vancouver Warriors on Saturday night.
Vancouver kept the game close as it was tied 6-6 heading into the final frame. However, the Rush outscored the Warriors 8-2 in the fourth for the win.
After signing Aaron Bold this past week, it was a bit of a surprise move that the Warriors started Aiden Walsh in goal. To his credit, Walsh stopped 41 of 55 shots in one of his best performances of the year.
On the other end of the floor, Alex Buque got the start for Saskatchewan against his former team. After a bit of a shaky start, Buque settled in during the second half. He stopped 43 of 51 shots for the win.
The win keeps the Rush in the mix at the top of the West standings, while the Warriors continue to find answers as the rebuild begins.
Vancouver gains the early lead
Saskatchewan got on the scoreboard first from an unlikely source. Jake Boudreau flipped a pass to Kyle Rubisch and Rubes made no mistake burying the goal to make it 1-0. It was Rubisch’s 171 game as a member of the Rush, moving him into first place in franchise history.
Riley Loewen would tie it up for Vancouver on a nice solo effort at 9:45. Saskatchewan would regain their lead on the power play 37 seconds later. Mark Matthews would send a behind-the-back pass to Ryan Keenan for the goal.
Adam Charalambides shot at the 4:02 mark would sneak by Buque to tie the game up 2-2.
Vancouver would then score twice in the final minute to take the lead. Brett Mydske’s shot would hit the crossbar, off of Buque’s back, and in for Vancouver’s first shorthanded goal of the season.
Kyle Killen took a buzzer-beating shot that trickled by Buque. After a video review, it was ruled that the ball crossed the goal line with 0.1 seconds left on the clock. It was the Warriors’ second shorthanded goal on the same power play. Vancouver led 4-2 after the first quarter.
Warriors hold on to the lead in the first half
Saskatchewan got on the board first in the second quarter. Holden Garlent picked up a rebound off the backboards and buried it at 11:19 to narrow the lead to 4-3.
Keegan Bal quickly replied at 10:52 by diving across the crease to make it 5-3.
Saskatchewan’s rookie sensation Austin Madronic scored off an outside bouncer at 9:39 to narrow the lead back down to one. Robert Church tied up the game with a long shot nine seconds later.
Vancouver regained the lead with 56 seconds before the half. Bal picked up a loose ball along the doorstep of the crease and scored to make it 6-5 for Vancouver at the half.
Offenses go silent in the third
Goals were hard to come by in the third quarter, but the Saskatchewan Rush were able to tie up the game.
The lone goal came only 29.5 seconds into the third quarter. Keenan ducked his way around a couple of defenders to get the shot away.
Huge fourth quarter gives Saskatchewan the win
The Rush opened the fourth-quarter scoring with an outside shot from Robert Church on the power play to make it 7-6. Killen replied 32 seconds later at the 12:13 mark to once again knot the game up 7-7.
Saskatchewan would dictate from here on in, outscoring the Warriors 7-1 to end the game including a six-goal run. Boudreau scored his first NLL goal through traffic at the 11:00 mark to make it 8-7 for the Rush.
Keenan would score his hat-trick goal going short side on Walsh to extend the lead to two. Marshall Powless got in on the action. Walsh got a piece of his hard shot at 7:39 but not enough to prevent a goal.
Madronic scored his second of the game at 5:09 as he tip-toed the crease to make it 11-7 for Saskatchewan.
Marty Dinsdale also got revenge on his former team. He scored Saskatchewan’s 12th goal, while Mark Matthews added lucky number 13.
A bouncer shot by Shawn Evans with 1:33 left temporarily stopped Saskatchewan’s momentum. Jerret Smith’s empty net goal sealed the huge fourth quarter for the Rush to make the final 14-8.
Mark Matthews, 1g 4a
Robert Church, 2g 3a
Ryan Keenan, 3g 1a
Marty Dinsdale, 1g 3a
Kyle Killen, 2g 2a
Keegan Bal, 2g 1a
Adam Charalambides, 1g 1a
Shawn Evans, 1g 1a
Riley Loewen, 1g 1a
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Shawn Slaght has been a sports reporter across the Canadian prairies for over 10 years and has experience covering everything from junior hockey to World Cup skiing to all levels of lacrosse. He is the Saskatchewan correspondent for All Lacrosse All The Time.