After a frenetic pace of National Lacrosse League action, the action slowed a bit last weekend with just 3 games. And with 2 of the 6 teams (Buffalo, Rochester) not fielding any rookies, we’re left with just a handful of first-year players taking the floor. A couple of our top-ranked rooks struggled in the goal department, but a lot of shooters find the going rough against the Edmonton Rush so they’re not alone. And so with a good portion of the rookie ballers having the weekend off, ILIndoor didn’t shuffle the spots for the week but that’ll change next week when we get to see more rookies in action.
1. Tyler Digby (Vancouver): The right-hander out of New Westminster was held without a goal (on 6 shots) for the first time in 4 games, but did have a pair of assists in Vancouver’s home loss to Edmonton on Saturday. He maintains the lead in the rookie scoring race with 15 points (8-7) through 5 games.
2. Dillon Ward (Colorado): The goalie out of Orangeville got the start Saturday at Calgary, making 35 saves on 48 shots (.729) to help the Mammoth end their 4-game slide. His stat line wasn’t as crisp as it’s been in previous games, but he did enough to keep the Mammoth in position to win and getting the win is more important than any other stat out there.
3. Riley Loewen (Edmonton): The left-hander out of Burnaby, B.C., was goal-less for the second straight game but maintained an important presence for the Rush as they rallied to beat the Stealth. Although he hasn’t scored a goal on his last 11 shots over the last 2 games, scoring 4 goals in his first 2 games means defenses still hold him accountable and can’t ignore the threat he brings, which opens space for teammates.
4. Cody Bremner (Vancouver): The left-hander out of Victoria had about as much luck as teammate Tyler Digby against the Edmonton defense, going without a goal and taking just 2 in Saturday’s home loss. He did scoop 5 LBs, though, and has a good chance to break his 2-game goal-less streak with a pair of games this weekend.
5. Logan Schuss (Minnesota): The left-hander out of Ladner, B.C., did not play last weekend.
6. Karsen Leung (Calgary): The right-hander out of Victoria had 1 assist and scooped 5 loose balls for the Roughnecks in their home overtime loss to the Mammoth.
7. Robert Church (Edmonton): The right-hander out of Coquitlam had 1 goal and 2 assists in Saturday’s road win over Vancouver. He scored the first goal of the third quarter, and it sparked a run of 8 unanswered goals to take the Rush from a 7-2 deficit to a 9-7 lead. He’s got 6 points (3-3) in his last 2 games for the Rush.
8. Jason Noble (Minnesota): The left-hander out of Orangeville did not play last weekend.
9. Ethan O’Connor (Toronto): The right-hander out of Milton, Ont., did not play last weekend.
10. Garret Thul (Philadelphia): The left-hander out of West Point did not play last weekend, but did have an impressive weekend at the Team USA tryouts.
Honorable mention: Calgary T Tor Reinholdt had 1 loose ball in Saturday’s OT loss at home to Colorado … Vancouver T Nick Weiss played his second straight game and contributed 1 assist, 3 LBs and 1 forced turnover in Saturday’s home loss to Edmonton … Calgary’s Garrett McIntosh had 1 assist and 5 loosies in Saturday’s home loss to Colorado. He also took 4 faceoffs, winning 2.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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