San Diego Completes Sweep of Panther City

The San Diego Seals hosted the Panther City Lacrosse Club Friday night for the second of their two-game series this season. San Diego came in on a three-game win streak. Panther City was coming off a crucial overtime win against Buffalo and looking to avenge a home loss to the Seals back in Week 14. Panther City held a lead halfway through the fourth quarter, but a five-goal run in the final five minutes of the game gave the Seals a 14-10 win. With the win, San Diego improves to 12-4 and remain the #2 playoff seed, just a half-game behind Toronto, who plays at Albany on Saturday. Panther City falls below the .500 mark at 7-8, but remain the #7 seed, pending the outcomes of the remaining games in Week 19, including their home matchup with Philadelphia on Sunday afternoon.

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Staats has hat trick as San Diego takes slim halftime lead

Goals from Callum Crawford (2:18) and Ty Thompson (8:54) put Panther City up 2-0 early. San Diego got equalizers from Austin Staats (11:11) and Patrick Shoemay (14:24) to level the game at 2-2 after one quarter of play. Staats (1:10 second quarter) scored again to give the Seals a 3-2 lead, but Phil Caputo (3:08) tied the game for PCLC. Wesley Berg (4:37) scored to put San Diego up again, but Crawford’s second (5:22) tied the game at 4-4. Graydon Bradley scored in transition (9:50), followed by Staats’ hat trick goal (11:49 power play) to give the Seals a two-goal lead. However, Caputo scored his second goal with one-tenth of a second left on the clock to cut San Diego’s lead to 6-5 going into halftime.

Late fourth quarter surge gives San Diego the sweep

Berg struck again (1:04) to open the second half and extend the Seals lead to 7-5. Panther City responded with goals from Ryan Sheridan 33 seconds later, then a power play goal from Crawford (3:50) to tie the game at 7-7, where it remained until the fourth quarter. Trevor Baptiste took the opening faceoff of the final frame, then scored 10 seconds in to restore San Diego’s lead. A goal from Brandon Goodwin in transition (3:44) tied the game, but Chris Wardle scored 28 seconds later to put the Seals up again, 9-8. A rifle from Jason Knox on a power play (4:58) and a nifty spin-and-dive goal from Will Malcom (7:32) gave Panther City a 10-9 lead.

But San Diego goaltender Chris Origlieri would shut the door on PCLC the rest of the way. The Seals took advantage of a pair of untimely penalties on the Panther City defense, and strung together a five-goal run over the final five minutes of the game. Staats (10:03 power play) tied the game at 10, then Berg’s hat trick-goal (12:31 power play) put San Diego ahead for good. After PCLC hit the post and Origlieri denied a Crawford quick-stick attempt, Dane Dobbie (13:25) and Tre Leclaire (13:55) added insurance goals, then Baptiste scored an empty netter (14:00) to put the game out of reach.

Other Stats of Note

Panther City: Crawford (3g, 3a); Caputo (2g, 1a); Malcom (1g, 4a); Knox (1g,1a); Sheridan (1g, 1a); Thompson (1g, 1a); Goodwin (1g, 1a)

San Diego: Staats (4g, 1a); Berg (3g, 4a); Baptiste (2g, 1a); Leclaire (1g, 4a); Dobbie (1g, 1a); Wardle (1g); Shoemay (1g); Bradley (1g)

The Seals won 25 of 27 faceoffs; Baptiste led all players with 20 Loose Balls

Origlieri (SD): 35 saves; Nick Damude (PCLC): 40 saves

“Muffler” Mike Kostiuk

“Muffler” Mike Kostiuk was formally introduced to box lacrosse when he attended a New England Black Wolves game on a whim in 2016. Instantly hooked, he has since become an avid follower of the National Lacrosse League. Following the postponement of the 2019-2020 NLL season, he was offered the chance to share his wealth of statistical knowledge and unique insights with the lacrosse community at large. He cheerfully accepted, and covers NLL, PLL, WLA, and Major Series Lacrosse for the network.