Blaine Manning first, then Colin Doyle. Both Toronto Rock forwards were working their way toward the National Lacrosse League record for consecutive games played but both came up short when the injury bug snapped. Manning’s streak ended at 162 games and Doyle’s is done at 188, which ties the record of the now-retired Steve Toll. Up next? Shawn Williams, the long-time Rochester Knighthawks forward who now is with the Edmonton Rush. Williams has played in 182 straight games and while he’s not focused on breaking the ironman record, he acknowledges the significance of it. “I’ve been lucky,” he told NLL.com. “Lucky and fortunate.”
Indeed, these streaks are impressive. It’s a contact sport, lacrosse, and considering the punishment forwards can take game in and game out, Manning, Doyle and Williams understand and appreciate the good fortune of being able to dodge defenders and serious injury. It’s part of the game, says Williams. “If you don’t have the bumps and bruises, you don’t feel like you’re in the game.”
For Doyle, staying home from the Rock’s trip to Calgary last Saturday and watching the game at home on TV hurt more than the lower body injury that kept him out of the lineup. He told NLL.com that were Saturday a playoff game, he would have played.
“Seeing them battle but not being part of it was pretty tough. This was quite a different experience for me. Thank God for TSN and HD,” he told NLL.com.
If all goes well for Williams, he’ll tie the record of 188 consecutive games on March 10 at Calgary, then will break the record March 17 at Philadelphia. It’ll be a nice record to own, but it’s not foremost on the mind of Williams. “I don’t think about it. I’ll be out there looking to help my teammates earn a win.”
Plus the links
Kevin Crowley, the No. 1 overall entry draft pick of the NLL’s Philadelphia Wings, has joined the coaching staff at St. Joseph’s University in Philadelphia to work with head coach and Wings teammate Taylor Wray. “Having played for Coach Wray with team Canada in 2010, I know he brings a wealth of knowledge to this team and I look forward to learning from him,” Crowley said in a statement on the University’s website. (SJUHawks.com) … Like the jerseys sported during the unveiling of the Mammoth’s all-decade team? They’re up for auction to benefit Kroenke Sports Charities. (ColoradoMammoth.com) … Mark Stehlin has stepped down as gameday announcer for the Brooklin Redmen of Major Series Lacrosse after 15 years. Contact the Redmen via their Facebook page if you’re interesting in volunteering for the position. And while you’re at it, pick up a pair of adult season tickets for $65, a deal that’s good until March 1. In other Brooklin news, the team’s spring golf tournament is set for Sunday, June 10, at Kedron Dells near Oshawa. It’s a 1 p.m. shotgun start and the $110 entry fee includes golf, cart and dinner. … The Redmen, coming off a 13-7 record in 2011, are amped for the 2012 season and rightly so, especially after their 2012 draft that brings them no less than 5 players from the Whitby Warriors, who won the 2011 Minto Cup. Add to that a pair of players there were able to protect through affiliation, which includes highly hyped prospect Mark Matthews, and the Redmen are in great shape for 2012. “He did indicate prior to going to school that he wants to play for the Brooklin Redmen and he wants to win a Mann Cup,” GM and coach Wayne Colley said of Matthews, who is at school in Denver. (DurhamRegion.com) … The Junior B Orangeville Northmen will have new jerseys and an updated logo for the 2012 season, says general manager Ryan Dowdall. (Orangeville Banner) … The Junior B Guelph Regals will open their 2012 season at home against the Elora Mohawks with a ceremony to honor former Toronto Rock goaltender Bob Watson. (Guelph Mercury).Chavez is an avid lacrosse player in Rochester and a journalist for the Democrat and Chronicle as well as a longtime Inside Lacrosse contributor. Email him at email@example.com or go to RochesterSports.com.
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