Less than one month ago, Buffalo Bandits General Manager Steve Dietrich announced that the team had re-signed starting goaltender Anthony Cosmo to a new one year deal. With the Bandits locking in their 2014 finalist for NLL Goaltender of the Year for another season, the team’s focus shifts now to who will be backing up Cosmo for the 2015 season.
With only one open position and three solid potential backups in Kurtis Wagar, Eric Penney and latest Bandits acquisition Dave DiRuscio, the Bandits coaching staff will need everything at their disposal to select the correct compliment to Cosmo.
Kurtis Wagar: For the 2014 NLL season, Wagar was the backup goaltender to Cosmo. At the present time he is listed on the NLL website as a restricted free agent. His free agent status could change at any time so the question that remains will be if the Bandits decide to retain his services or to move on. With Cosmo having such a stellar 2014 season, Wagar unfortunately received minimal playing time. In 18 games played, Wagar’s season consisted of one loss in 25 minutes played where he allowed four goals in 20 shots with a 9.57 GAA and .800 save percentage.
Eric Penney: For the 2014 NLL season, the 38th overall pick from the 2013 draft was placed on injured reserve and did not see any action for the entire season. Penney has not been medically cleared by the Bandits physicians yet and his status on the NLL website lists Penney as still being on injured reserve. At the present time his status with the Bandits is currently in limbo.
Even though Penney was not able to play in the NLL, he was able to play this summer in the Ontario Lacrosse Association’s Junior A circuit for the St. Catharines Athletics before his rights were moved to the New Westminster Junior Salmonbellies of the British Columbia Junior Lacrosse League.
For the St. Catharines Athletics he posted a record of five wins and nine losses in 14 games played with 129 goals allowed, a 9.21 GAA and a .734 save percentage.
For the New Westminster Salmonbellies he posted a record of four wins and one loss in seven games with 33 goals allowed, a 8.25 GAA and a .822 save percentage.
Dave DiRuscio: The latest Bandits goaltending acquisition had a tremendous 2014 season as starter for the Canadian Lacrosse League (CLAX) champion Niagara Lock Monsters. DiRuscio was voted the 2014 CLAX Season MVP and Top Goalie of the league with a 7.95 GAA and a .865 save percentage.