On a snowy night when there were as many Stormtroopers as lacrosse players inside Pepsi Center, the Colorado Mammoth harnessed ‘the force’ in the third quarter as it went on a 5-1 run to retake the lead. In the fourth quarter, Adam Jones played the role of offensive hero, scoring the game-winner with less than five minutes remaining on ‘Star Wars Night’.
“We were hungry!” said transition player Cam Holding. “It’s our barn – we talked about trying to take our barn back and I think that was on everybody’s minds tonight.”
Fresh off a season-opening loss to Edmonton at home a week ago, Colorado defeated Vancouver, 13-12, on Saturday night. It was just the Mammoth’s second win in the last 13 games against the Stealth.
Starting goalie Tye Belanger was chased from the cage 19 minutes into the action. First-round-pick Dillon Ward shined in relief, making 30 saves while registering his first-career NLL win.
“I got into a bit of a groove,” said the 22-year-old. “I was able to get the first couple saves under my belt, and went from there.”
Ward got help in front of him, as veteran Sean Pollock scored three goals in eight-plus minutes in the third. His final tally, 14:24 into the period, was the first of three Mammoth goals in a 30-second span.
“I just found myself in a good spot a couple times.”
Pollock, Jones and Drew Westervelt had hat tricks. John Grant Jr., Dan Coates, Bob Snider and Holding had a goal apiece.
Tyler Richards took the loss for Vancouver. Forward Rhys Duch, who led the NLL in goals-scored last season, led all players with four goals.
The Mammoth travels to Alberta to take on the Calgary Roughnecks (0-1) on Friday night. On Saturday, Colorado will be in Edmonton (1-0) for a rematch of the home-opener.