Calgary Takes Down Buffalo In Overtime To Capture NLL Championship

Photo Courtesy of Calgary Roughnecks                                                                                                           

The Calgary Roughnecks took down the Buffalo Bandits in a very tight back-and-forth battle that needed overtime to decide the winner. Rhys Duch ripped one from the outside to secure the win and give Calgary their third championship in franchise history. 

Calgary was led by Dane Dobbie with 7 points (4G,3A) while Curtis Dickson and Riley Loewen each had 4 points (2G,2A). Rhys Duch also had 3 points (2G,1A) that included the game-winning goal. In net for the Roughnecks Christian Del Bianco made 43 saves off of 56 shots on goal.

Shawn Evans led Buffalo with 7 points (2G,5A) while Jordan Durston had 4 points (3G,1A). Dhane Smith also had 7 points (1G,6A) to help lead the Bandits as well. In net for Buffalo Matt Vinc made 37 saves off of 51 shots on goal. 

The first quarter saw much more offensive play than game one did a week ago. Calgary got on the board pretty quickly after a Dane Doobie snipe just a few minutes in. After a few big saves on both ends of the floor Shawn Evans got the Bandits offense going, tying things up at 1 with 9:49 in the first. 

After a diving Riley Loewen goal to put Calgary up 2-1 with 6:14 in the first, Chris Cloutier and Chase Fraser put in two quick ones to put Buffalo up 3-2 with just under five minutes to go in the first. Corey Small then extended the Buffalo run to three off a power play goal, putting the Bandits up 4-2 midway though the first.

Calgary finally got things going again with a Curtis Dickson goal in transition to cut the Buffalo lead to 4-3. The first quarter ended with some good defensive stops on both ends, making it a 4-3 Buffalo lead heading into the second period. 

Shawn Evans got his second goal of the game early in the second, extending the Buffalo lead to 5-3. Calgary then answered with a four-goal run that included two power play goals to put the Roughnecks up 7-5 midway though the second. 

The Roughnecks once again took advantage of a power play opportunity as Riley Loewen tallied his second of the game, putting Calgary up 8-5 and extending their run to five. Buffalo finally found some life in the final seconds of the second period with Chase Fraser goal on the power play. In the dying seconds of the half Dane Dobbie got his second of the day to put Calgary up 9-6 heading into the half. 

It was a much more defensive period in the third as it took six minutes before a goal was scored with both goalies shutting the door. Chase Fraser and Jordan Durston each scored within a minute of each other to tie things up at 9 for Buffalo and finally get the offense going. 

Dane Dobbie put the Roughnecks back up by one after a power play goal just minutes later. A Jordan Durston goal tied things up at 10 for Buffalo in the final minute of the third. 

Calgary got going early in the fourth with two straight from Rhys Duch and Curtis Dickson to put the Roughnecks up by two once again. After a long stretch of defensive play the Bandits tied it back up again at 12 with Jordan Durstin and Dhane Smith both finding the back of the net. 

With 54 seconds left in the game Dane Dobbie caught the outlet from Christian Del Bianco and buried the ball in the back of the net, putting Calgary up 13-12. Just moments later Corey Small found the back of the net for Buffalo, tying the game with 30 seconds in the fourth. Dane Dobbie could have put this one in regulation, but hit the post with a second left on the clock. 

After multiple big saves on both ends of the floor Rhys Duch ripped one from outside to secure win, and help the Roughnecks capture the 2019 NLL championship. 


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