Stealth all Roughed up

IAN BUSBY, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:33 AM ET

They bombed the Stealth.

Bring on the Titans.

Captain Tracey Kelusky scored five goals, goaltender Matt King made 20 straight saves and scored on a long bomb and former San Jose Stealth player Scott Ranger had five helpers against his former club in a 17-5 win for the Calgary Roughnecks.

That all happened before halftime of a game that saw the Calgary Roughnecks capture the National Lacrosse League's West Division title and a berth in the championship game.

The Riggers had a 9-0 lead after 30 minutes, built it to 15-0 after three quarters and completely stomped on the visiting San Jose Stealth last night.

The West Division final was no contest in front of 9,639 fans at the Saddle- dome, and the Riggers will host the New York Titans Friday night for the Champion's Cup (7:30 p.m.).

"We're confident right now," said Riggers coach Troy Cordingley. "It's always hard to get to this point.

"We talked about peaking at the right time. We finished with the best record in the league, but so many veterans in our room are not satisfied.

"Credit the players and veteran leadership. We've played two solid playoff games."

The Roughnecks and the Titans have faced each other once in their history, a 12-10 win by the Calgary club at Madison Square Garden Feb. 22. This will be their first visit to the Dome, where the Riggers are 1-0 in Champion's Cup games, beating the Buffalo Bandits 14-11 in 2004.

It's a hot goalie against the most complete team in the NLL, coming off a remarkably impressive performance.

Josh Sanderson had a goal and nine assists to lead the Riggers offence last night, but there wasn't a single player who didn't contribute to the pounding.

Dane Dobbie had a natural hat-trick in the third quarter and piled on three helpers.

Ranger took a pounding from his former teammates but drove home how badly they miss him with two third-quarter goals to go along with his seven assists.

Kaleb Toth had two goals, while Curt Malawsky, Jeff Moleski and Nolan Heavenor rounded out the scoring.

The Riggers chased Stealth starting goalie Tyler Richards with four early goals to bring on Matt Roik.

When Roik was bombed, Richards came back in, but nothing was slowing down the Riggers, and Roik ended up finishing the game.

"Everyone keeps on getting better," Toth said. "To go to the final and something were to happen and we lost, then this is all a waste of time. Our goal from the start is to win this league. We have one game to go. We will be prepared."

Last night, the defence was ready.

When Riggers defenders weren't picking off passes, they were keeping the Stealth offence to the outside.

NLL leading scorer Colin Doyle was held in check as Moleski spent the majority of the game in his face.

When Rhys Duch broke the shutout string 24 seconds into the fourth quarter and Jeff Zywicki put the second one in 25 seconds later, the crowd gave King a loud ovation.

"This is pretty awesome when the boys work that hard," Kelusky said. "There were no passengers and it's something we preached all year."

IAN.BUSBY@SUNMEDIA.CA


Videos

Photos