We’ve heard of the shot heard around the world. Sean Pollock may have launched the shot felt around the world. On “Lacrosse Out Cancer” night in Colorado, Pollock’s overtime goal sent the Mammoth to a 10-9 National Lacrosse League win over the Calgary Roughnecks and at the same time, gave the Pollock family a game and moment to remember. The Mammoth players on Saturday wore jerseys with names of cancer victims on the back. Pollock just happened to be wearing the name of Jenna Pollock, his wife, who was diagnosed with — and beat — breast cancer 2 years ago. “If you want to write a script, that’d be a good one to have,” Sean Pollock told ColoradoMammoth.com. The stage was set well before the game was played, when Pollock tweeted: “Honor to play for the toughest, most courageous and beautiful person I know @jennapollock17.”
As inspired as the Mammoth might have been, the start of the game was anything but before the intensity picked up in a big way late. The Riggers opened a 5-0 lead before Joel Dalgarno got Colorado on the board at 2:49 of the second quarter. It was the first of 5 straight Colorado goals that sent the game into halftime tied, 5-5.
Pollock had 1 of the goals in that run, and his second goal of the night, at 9:07 of the fourth, gave the Mammoth an 8-5 lead. Fourteen seconds later, John Grant Jr.’s goal made it 9-5 and that set the stage for Calgary’s rally to force overtime. The Riggers scored the next 4 goals, the tying goal coming from Daryl Veltman at 14:21.
And for as quiet as the Pepsi Center was following Veltman’s goal, it was the complete opposite at the 9:21 mark of overtime after Pollock buried the winner past Calgary goalie Mike Poulin.
Pollock celebrated with a sweep of the rug as teammates rushed in to celebrate. Game-winning goal. On a special night. For a special person. Not bad for a guy who thought he might not even play after a slight injury in practice the night before.
“I honestly didn’t think I was going to play,” he told ColoradoMammoth.com. “Obviously this is my favorite game of the year, and I wanted to play. Once I got to the arena and got moving a little bit, that pain went away.”
Winning can be a great cure for what ails a team. On Saturday night, it was a victory in more ways than one.
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The Roughnecks took a 5-0 lead, then didn’t score a goal for the next 38 minutes and 55 seconds. Coach Curt Malawsky isn’t one to whine, but when your opponent has 7 power plays and your team has 0, it raises questions. “They played a complete, perfect game, according to the officials, and I don’t think I’ve ever seen that in my 40-something years of lacrosse — I don’t think I’ve even seen a team not get a penalty,” said Malawsky. (Calgary Sun) … The Buffalo Bandits didn’t have their first lead against the Minnesota Swarm until there was 3:48 left in the game. But there are no style points for wins in the NLL, and Dhane Smith’s third goal proved to be the winner and helped keep the Bandits in first place in the East Division with Saturday’s 12-9 win. “His transition is unbelievable. He’s so fast, and has such soft hands around the net. He makes big plays,” said coach Troy Cordingley. (Buffalo News) … What do the Minnesota Swarm have to do? Slow starts doomed them in weeks previous, only to see spirited rallies late in the last few games.On Saturday, it was the reverse as Minnesota took a 5-2 lead after 1 quarter, then saw the Bandits take control in the fourth with 3 goals in a span of 1:19to seal Minnesota’s 6th loss in 7 games. “We really wanted to get out to a lead this game, and we came out and did that. Unfortunately we didn’t have the second half that we usually put together,” said Josh Gillam. (Minnesota Swarm) … The Edmonton Rush are 9-0 after Saturday’s 10-9 win over the Vancouver Stealth, but it wasn’t sealed until Aaron Bold made his 41st save in the final seconds. And that chance for the Stealth came when Edmonton’s Chris Corbeil shot and missed on an open net. “I probably should have just soaked that one in the corner. I honestly thought there was a little less time than there was, and that’s just clock awareness,” said Corbeil. (Edmonton Sun) … Philadelphia’s Jordan Hall had 3 goals and 2 assists in Saturday’s 13-9 loss to the Knighthawks, but none of those points came in the fourth quarter as the Wings were held to just 1 goal in the fourth. “Sometimes (goalie Matt Vinc) can take you out of your game just because you start second guessing yourself, thinking he maybe knows where you’re going… Mix that in with the defense, and it’s definitely a tough combination,” said Hall. (NLL.com) … The Rochester offense isn’t setting the world on fire, but balance was the key in Satuday’s win over the Wings as Cody Jamieson (4 goals), Stephen Keogh (2) and Cory Vitarelli (2) all got in on the act. “We work hard on offense, and when we work as a unit we’re going to get opportunities and we have a lot of confidence in everybody,” said Jamieson. (Democrat and Chronicle).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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