Roughnecks Steal 14-13 OT Win Over Rush

The Calgary Roughnecks took a gritty 14-13 overtime win over the Rush in Edmonton last night. The win improves Calgary’s record to 11-6 while Edmonton drops to 15-2.

In a game that saw several momentum shifts, the 8,756 fans left with a sour taste in their mouths as the Roughnecks’ tying goal in the dying moments of the fourth quarter was shrouded in controversy.

With less than a minute remaining in regulation and the Rush clinging to a 13-12 lead, Roughnecks transition Geoff Snider was pushed at mid-court and had clearly stepped across the center line before releasing a blind pass back into the offensive zone. Although Calgary should have lost possession on the over-and-back violation, the referees missed the call and play continued. Seconds later, Shawn Evans snuck a five-hole shot past Rush goalie Aaron Bold which trickled into the net to tie the game and send it to overtime.

Mark Matthews scored the first of his three goals just 36 seconds into the game but Jeff Shattler would answer for Calgary just 23 seconds later, beginning what would turn out to be a see-saw battle. A Jarrett Davis tally at the 1:50 mark would put the Rush back out in front and they would maintain that lead until the 8:58 mark of the second quarter when Roughnecks forward Curtis Dickson picked up his second of the game to tie the score at 6-6.

Two minutes later Dickson would earn his hat trick and give Calgary their first lead of the night, a lead they would carry into the locker room at halftime.

Dickson scored his fourth goal of the game two minutes into the third quarter before Edmonton began clawing their way back, scoring twice in less than a minute to knot the game at 8-8 and the contest would remain tied for almost six minutes until Dickson once again beat Bold to put Calgary back on top.

Edmonton would then go on a four-goal run. Rush captain Chris Corbeil notched one of his three goals of the night at the 11:18 mark of the third to tie the game again and Edmonton would add three more quick goals in the first three minutes of the fourth period to take the biggest lead of the game and chase Calgary starting goaltender Frankie Scigliano from the contest.

With Mike Poulin shutting the door in relief of Scigliano, Calgary began chipping away at Edmonton’s three-goal lead. Dickson notched the sock trick at 6:04, followed 31 seconds later by a goal by Evans and the tying goal from Daryl Veltman 29 seconds after that.

One minute later Corbeil would earn his hat trick, giving the Rush what was looking like an insurmountable lead until Evans’ controversial tying goal with just 47 seconds remaining in regulation.

In overtime both teams had good opportunities to put the game away but it was Dickson with his seventh goal of the night at the 4:13 mark who would seal the deal for Calgary.

The game was a study in contrasting styles. Edmonton’s smothering defense kept the Roughnecks offense at a distance, giving up very few close in shots and almost never allowing an uncontested shot. Calgary’s offense was able to adapt by making the most of their mid-range shots—Dickson especially scored repeatedly from a distance—and taking full advantage of the few open cutters they were able to squeak through Edmonton’s defense.

On the other end of the floor, the Rush were repeatedly able to break players loose on transition for off-man opportunities and clean breakaways that they were able to capitalize on. When Calgary had the time to set their defense up they were able to contain Edmonton’s scorers, although a number of lapses left man wide open on the doorstep. Were it not for a few huge saves by Scigliano in the first three quarters Edmonton might have run away with the game.

Corbeil and Matthews both had three goals and an assist in the game for the Rush while Curtis Knight (1 G, 3 A) and Robert Church (2 G, 2 A) also contributed four points apiece.

Curtis Dickson’s seven-goal outburst led the way for Calgary while Daryl Veltman also added seven points by way of a goal and six assists each.

Bold gave up 14 goals on 47 shots for one of his weaker performances of the season. Scigliano gave up 12 goals on 40 shots—not great statistically, but some clutch saves in tough situations kept his team in the game. Poulin stopped 10 of 11 shots he faced, shutting down Edmonton’s offense in the late stages of the game and giving Calgary the opportunity the pick up the “W.”

Both the Roughnecks and Rush wrap up their regular seasons next weekend against the Vancouver Stealth. Edmonton hosts the Stealth on Friday, April 25 and then Calgary travels to Vancouver on Saturday for their final game. After that, Calgary will be taking on the Colorado Mammoth in the first round of the postseason while the Rush enjoy a bye week before facing the winners of the Roughnecks-Mammoth series.