\'Necks playoff hopes shrink

TY PILSON -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 6:33 AM ET

The Calgary Roughnecks\' quest for a National Lacrosse League playoff berth suffered a huge blow over the weekend.

The Riggers fell 10-9 to the New York Saints yesterday on Long Island, completing a disastrous weekend where the team went 0-2 on a crucial eastern road trip.

Calgary was beaten 19-13 Saturday night by the Eastern Division leading Philadelphia Wings.

As has been the norm for much of this season, the now 7-6 Roughnecks got down early, trailing 4-1, and spent the rest of the game bailing out water.

\"We got down early and we dug a hole and that was kind of it,\" said Roughnecks head coach Chris Hall. \"We spent the next 45 minutes trying to dig out of it.

\"We have to quit getting down early like that. After those comeback wins (earlier in the season) against Vancouver, we started thinking we could do that all the time and you can\'t in this league.\"

Goalie Curtis Palidwor started again for Calgary but was pulled for the second-straight day with the Saints up 6-2.

Matt King finished out the contest.

Neil Doddridge led Calgary with three goals while Kaleb Toth and Tracey Kelusky each potted a pair. Jason Wulder and Tyson Leies also scored for Calgary.

Kyle Goundrey had three assists giving him eight in the last two games.

Matt Shearer led New York with four goals and former Rigger Chris Panos had two, including the game-winner.

Saints goalie Gee Nash was named the game star after making 55 saves in the win.

Yesterday\'s tilt started half-an-hour later than its scheduled faceoff.

One Roughneck team official said he heard that was to accommodate the late arrival of fans who were next door to Nassau Coliseum watching a college field lacrosse game at Hofstra University.

Whatever the reason, Hall wasn\'t pleased, to put it mildly.

\"That\'s unacceptable garbage for a professional league,\" said Hall, who was informed of the late start when the team arrived at the arena at 2 p.m. \"I was disgusted. We sat there having to wait that extra time. I\'m not very happy with the (Saints) organization.\"

However, late start aside, the Roughnecks blew a golden chance to add a notch in the win column. While the Saints are nowhere near the pushover their 2-12 record may indicate, it was still a game the Riggers should have won nonetheless.

The Roughnecks have now lost three of their last four games. They return to the Saddledome to finish off the season with three straight home dates against the Ottawa Rebel (March 30), Colorado Mammoth (April 5) and Buffalo Bandits (April 11).

Clearly, they now have their work cut out for them if they want to make the post-season soiree.

\"Those are three tough teams,\" said Kelusky, who had a chance to tie the game yesterday and force overtime with four seconds left but rang it off the post. \"It won\'t be easy. I think we\'ll need two (wins) to get in (the playoffs).\"

QUICK STICKS: Kaleb Toth had a fight to go with his two goals, throwing them with Armando Polanco in the third quarter ... Calgary outshot New York 64-43 in the loss. They also won 17 faceoffs to the Saints\' six and out loose-balled them 109-78 ... Calgary forward Jason Wulder played his 100th game Saturday night in the loss to Philadelphia.

NEW YORK SAINTS: 10

CALGARY ROUGHNECKS: 9


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