Kevin M. Neibauer.
LaxPhilly– A Division of the Edge of Philly Sports Network.
The Wings get a wildcard with an overtime thriller. To keep playoff hopes alive, the Philadelphia Wings (9-9) went to overtime to Best the Georgia Swarm (9-9), 11-10, to keep playoff hopes alive.
The National Lacrosse League had a muddled playoff picture heading into the final week of the regular season. Three teams were hunting for the last two spots in the East Divisions. The Philadelphia Wings and the Georgia Swarm were two of the candidates. Wings Captain, Kiel Matisz showed why he is their leader with a six assist night to drive Philadelphia to the cusp of a playoff seat. Coupled with an Albany Fire Wolves win, the victory propelled each team to the postseason.
To the Game
Ben McIntosh (3g,1a) pushed Philly in front with helpers from Kevin Crowley and Matisz. Brendan Bomberry (2g,2a) had an answer a minute twenty later converting a Miles Thompson and Stephan LeBlanc set up. Jordan MacIntosh (2g) flipped the lead the Georgia way with help from Jordan Hall and Shayne Jackson at 5:16. Philadelphia has a Jackson, and Kyle Jackson (1g,4a) buried a setup from Matisz and Matt Rambo (1a). The Georgia Jackson was the catalyst on a power-play goal from Bomberry that ended the opening stanza with Georgia Swarming, 3-2.
To the Second
Another man-up marker, this one from Jordan Hall (1g,4a) with help from Lyle Thompson padded the Georgia lead to 4-2. Philly fired back with Corey Small (3g,1a) at 3:24 on another man-up marker with help from Kevin Crowley, and Matisz Crowley and Jackson would be the catalysts for McIntosh a minute a half later to get the contest even at 4-4.
Jordan MacIntosh was less than impressed and gratefully received and converted a pass around from Lyle Thompson and Bomberry to put Georgia back in front at the 11:55 mark. Matisz and Small countered with a pretty man-up set up that Ben McIntosh buried. Lyle Thompson and LeBlanc worked the ball to Jackson to end the half with a 6-5 Georgia advantage .
Lyle Thompson (2g,3a) kicked off the second half with markers at 3:37 and 4:06 boosting the Swarm to a three-goal advantage, 8-5. Philly FOGO, Trevor Baptiste cleanly won the ensuing face-off with Ryan Wagner (1g), cutting it back to a two edge just seven seconds later. The Wagner goal kick-started a Wings run with Kevin Crowley (1g,4a), Crowley setting up Small to tie it at 8-8 after three quarters.
The Philly Phlurry continued with Small (4:58) and Blaze Riorden (2g), potting Jackson and Matisz that put Philly in front, 10-8. LeBlanc cut the lead in half with a minute four to go followed by Villanova product, TJ Comizio beating Wings netminder, Zach Higgins with :48 to play. Neither team could get the difference-maker, so the extra time they would go. Philadelphia started short-handed, but goaltender Higgins outlet Blaze Riorden ended the first part of the Wings playoff puzzle.
Suppose you haven’t figured it out. For Philadelphia to qualify for the postseason, it was not a “win and in”. The second part of the equation was an Albany win ..check. Shots were heavily one-sided, 63-43 for Georgia. Higgins stopped 53 for Philly with the ageless, Mike Poulin stopping 32 for the Swarm. Face-offs went, as usual, the Wing’s way, 20 of 25 with Trevor Baptiste going 19 of 24 while collecting 12 loose balls. Wings Punch Playoff Ticket. The Wings get a wildcard with an overtime thriller.
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.