Roughnecks off to a rough start

GERRY MODDEJONGE, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 11:04 AM ET

Things are a little rough in Roughnecks land.

Calgary's club comes into Rexall Place behind the Edmonton Rush for the first time in the history of the National Lacrosse League.

After splitting a home-and-away series with the Minnesota Swarm to start the season, the Roughnecks were edged 16-15 by the Washington Stealth at the Saddledome last weekend.

"We, like every team in this league, absolutely hate losing," said Roughnecks head coach Dave Pym. "Unfortunately, we've been inconsistent and too complacent in some of our most basic decisions. I think we've addressed it and I look forward to us executing against a team that's obviously on a high coming off a couple wins.

"You add in the fact that it is the provincial rival and the intensity is that much more."

The Rush are 2-0 since dropping their season-opener to the league-leading Washington Stealth (4-0).

"Last game was our best game so far and we look to keep improving," said Rush assistant coach Jeremy Tallevi, whose squad is home for the second week in a row. "Certainly there's a rivalry between our teams and we're going to do everything we can on Saturday to get a victory.

"I know Edmonton hasn't had too many over Calgary in the past, but we're going to do everything possible to avenge that."

That vengeance will be to the tune of 10-3, which is the record the Roughnecks have earned against Edmonton since the Rush joined the league in 2006.

While the Rush are looking like a vastly different club both on paper and on the floor, the Roughnecks haven't exactly resembled the championship form they rose to last season.

"Teams are kind of coming at us real hard," said Pym. "As much as we prepare and we think that we have great game plans, if there's any kind of an inconsistent effort ... it's just exacerbated because the intensity that's coming at them is that much more."


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