Kelusky passes off to grateful teammate

CAMERON MAXWELL -- Calgary Sun

, Last Updated: 7:34 AM ET

While many of today's professional athletes come complete with egos as big as the Hummers and Escalades they drive, that's just not the case with Tracey Kelusky.

In fact the Calgary Roughnecks captain is about as selfless as they come and a prime example of that came last week in the Riggers 17-13 win over Colorado.

The Roughnecks had been given a penalty shot and, under the new rules, the coach can select any player to take it rather than the guy who was hauled down.

So Calgary's head coach Chris Hall chose Kelusky because it was his 100th game.

But rather than take the shot, the captain, showing how classy he is, deferred to teammate Lewis Radcliff, who converted for his sixth tally of the game.

"Lewis had the hot stick and I don't think he'd had a six-goal game before, so it was one of those things and I wanted him to get to that plateau," said Kelusky.

"I've been fortunate enough to do it before and, for a guy like him, he's a goal scorer and it's good for his confidence.

"Plus, I hope he'd do the same for me."

Maybe Radcliff will get the chance tomorrow when the Minnesota Swarm (off to a 1-2 start) take on the Roughnecks (Saddledome, 7:30 p.m., Shaw TV), although penalty shots are few and far between in the National Lacrosse League.

Ratcliff sure appreciated the captain's gesture as it helped him become what is believed to be the first NLL player to score for the cycle as he potted a powerplay goal, a shorthanded marker, an even strength tally and the penalty shot.

"It was Tracey's hundredth game so they asked him if he wanted to take it but he's a very unselfish player," recalled Ratcliff.

"So he said to me 'What's the most goals you've ever scored in a game?' He wants guys to reach milestones and the most I'd ever scored was five.

"So he said to go ahead and take it.

"It was really nice of him to let me have a go."

When the infraction occurred, Ratcliff wanted to be the one to take the shot but he certainly understood why Hall called on Kelusky, considering it was his 100th contest.

"But that's the kind of player he is and that's why he's wearing the C on our team," said Ratcliff, who has 29 points in three contests, including nine against Colorado.

"He's the best captain I've played for."


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