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Stealth victorious in home debut
The Vancouver Stealth (1-1) used strong goaltending and were fueled by a raucous home crowd to defeat the Minnesota Swarm (0-2) by a score of 8-5 in their first-ever game at the Langley Events Centre on Saturday night.
It only took a few minutes for Vancouver Stealth fans to cheer as Rhys Duch brought the near-capacity crowd to their feet with the goal and Lewis Ratcliff and Cody Bremner assisted on the historic goal.
Before the first goal was scored both teams appeared a little shaky in the opening minutes, but once the teams settled down it was game on,
“We probably had a few nerves in the first five minutes of the game but we seemed to get over it. Then we got a couple of early goals which seemed to help settle us down,” said Stealth head coach Chris Hall.
“It was an electric atmosphere and you couldn’t help but get excited knowing it was a packed house, and that NLL lacrosse was finally back in the Lower Mainland.”
The Stealth put on a clinic on the defensive end, holding the Swarm to five goals on 50 shots. Tyler Richards was outstanding and the main reason why Minnesota struggled to find the net. Richards put up a career best goals against average to lead the Stealth to a strong first game at the Langley Events Centre,
“It was a great defensive effort and T-Rich was in the zone in net tonight,” said Hall about his starting goaltender, Tyler Richards.
“The defense also did a great job limiting quality scoring chances.”
The Stealth were led by Duch, who had two goals and one assist on the night to earn second star honours. Richards was the first star.
Vancouver never trailed in the contest, leading 3-1 after one quarter, 4-3 at the half and 6-4 after three quarters.
Jeff Moleski, Scott Jones, Mike Grimes, Cliff Smith, Cody Bremner, Tyer Rigby and Lewis Ratcliff had the other Stealth goals.
Moleski scored short-handed while one of Duch's two goals came on the power play.
The Swarm were led by Kiel Matisz, who had a pair of goals. Scott Jones, Josh Gillam and Callum Crawford had the others.