Loss stings for new coach

DARREN FRIESEN, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 8:02 AM ET

So much for making a good first impression.

The Calgary Roughnecks failed to dazzle new head coach Jeff Dowling last night as the Riggers were beat by the host Arizona Sting 14-10.

Dowling, who was hired a little over a week ago to replace fired head coach Chris Hall, was less than pleased with his player's performance in his debut as Calgary's bench boss.

"I thought we played well in spurts but they just had more intensity than us," said Dowling.

"I thought we were good in the first quarter, both offensively and defensively but then we just kind of fell apart."

The Roughnecks' only lead of the game was in the first frame but the Sting then outscored Calgary 5-1 in the second quarter and from there, it was all Arizona.

As has been the case in quite a few games this season, the Roughnecks failed to generate enough offence to keep pace with their opponents.

"Yeah, we didn't shoot particularly well," said Dowling, who watched his team put 48 shots on Sting starter Rob Blasdell. "We probably tried to put 12 or 13 shots between his legs and he didn't even have to move his stick."

In addition to the sputtering offence, the d-corps did nothing to help out starter Andrew Leyshon, who made 35 stops.

"I thought Andrew played well, certainly good enough for us to win, but there was three or four times the defence completely lost their man," said Dowling.

"Our defence has to be better and offence has to find the net."

With the loss, the Roughnecks move to 5-5 on the season and the Sting strengthen their lead over Calgary, as they move to 7-3.

Also last night, the Edmonton Rush (4-5) moved a game closer to catching the Roughnecks for third in the West with their 12-9 win over Toronto.

The 'Necks and Sting will meet again next Saturday at the 'Dome (7:30 p.m.).


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