So far it’s gone like this for the Philadelphia Wings. They opened their National Lacrosse League season with 2 wins, including an impressive road victory in Toronto. That was followed by 3 straight losses, including back-to-back thumpings in which the Wings were outscored 36-18 by Calgary and Rochester. But today, the Wings are riding a 3-game win streak after last weekend’s big overtime win in Buffalo. How big was it? “This could very well be one of the best character wins in the Wings franchise history,” team president and owner Mike French told PhillySportsLive.com. “It shows the importance of the leadership we have in the locker room.” So as the Wings nip at the heels of Toronto at the top of the East Division, it’s important to note that as well as it’s going today in Philly, it might get even better.
Max Seibald, who is listed as a transition player on the roster but might better be listed as a ball of energy, was hoping for a February return from his broken foot. That obviously didn’t happen, but if he’s close to joining the team with a healthy wheel, that can only bee seen as a positive.
In addition, veteran forward Brendan Mundorf told ILIndoor back in January that he was eyeing a March return to the lineup. He tore ligaments in his ankle last summer playing for the MLL’s Denver Outlaws and had surgery after the season. The right-hander has long been a source of blue-collar scoring and the depth and potency of Wings’ front door will surely benefit from his return.
Adding those ingredients to a team that just went through “one of the best character wins” in franchise history just may be setting up the City of Brotherly Love for a bright future. And if there are any fans in the NLL who deserve that, it’s the fans in Philly. And if there is anyone who is a qualified judge of character wins, it’s French. He’s been through it all with the Wings, good and bad. And lately, there hasn’t been a lot of good.
But the Wings have been patient with their American experiment, and it just might be starting to pay off. ILIndoor’s Tom Ryan recently pointed out that many of the inexperienced Wings were learning the indoor game through the mistakes they make. As weird as that sounds, it plays right into the old maxim that experience is the best teacher and it’s been an immense help in giving the Wings’ athletic defensive corps the knowledge it needs to win in the NLL.
With 2 games left against the Rock and the Stealth among their remaining 8 games, the Wings have their work cut out for them. But as we can see, there’s plenty of reason for optimism.
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Washington Stealth forward Rhys Duch notched his 400th career point during Sunday’s home win over the Stealth. “Before the season I looked at it and figured I’d hit it at some point. But to be honest I had no idea. I like to think that it’s 400 of many more to come,” he said. (StealthLax.com) … The Knighthawks’ win in Colorado on Saturday was their third straight road win and it came courtesy of Cody Jamieson’s fourth goal, the winning goal of the 12-11 decision. “They just vacated that bottom spot and I knew with some speed I could get inside,” he said. (Knighthawks.net) … Buffalo Bandits play-by-play man John Gurtler wasn’t alone in the sinking feeling after Philadelphia’s Drew Westervelt scored the winning goal in OT on Friday. “I must admit I felt like the Beaver did when Wally punched him with a belly full of soda after the Wings scored the overtime goal,” he wrote in his blog. (Bandits.com).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 firstname.lastname@example.org or go to RochesterSports.com.
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