Wednesday, January 26, 2011

The Battle of Alberta!

By Mike Wilson

The Battle of Alberta. Edmonton vs. Calgary. Fierce rivals in every sport. The legendary battles of the Oilers and Flames and the Eskimos and the Stampeders have brought these two cities to loath the other.

 This rivalry isn't lost in the sport of lacrosse. These teams hate each-other and the play on the floor shows it.

So far Calgary leads the record of this series with a record of 11-5 but these games have been more than just numbers.
·                     The Rush celebrated their first win in franchise history and their only win of the year, against Calgary.      
                   "It was unreal! Even though we almost blew it and won on a cheezie goal, that first win was like winning the cup for us.
 Even if you're not from Alberta, when you play IN the battle of Alberta it automatically becomes personal."
                                                                   -Teddy Jenner (Rush 06-07)

·                     A Playoff spot was stolen from the Rush when they lost to Calgary 17-11 in front of a 14,790 person crowd. The largest in franchise history. 
·                     In 2009, the Roughnecks came into Rexall Place and beat down the Rush by a score of 22-10. At the beginning of the second half, then Coach Bob Hamley sent out the biggest and toughest on the roster onto the floor. As the whistle blew to begin the quarter, all 10 runners engaged in fisticuffs and a line brawl was born. 
·                     2010 was a big year for the battle of Alberta. The Roughnecks took away the Rush's chance at a home playoff date, but they returned the favour kicking them out of the playoffs in the first round by the score of 11-7.
The Battle of Alberta will be in 2 parts this weekend, with the first game on Friday night being Edmonton's home opener; the second instalment with take place in Cow-town the day after.

The Rush will go into their 2011 home opener winless and hoping to change their luck. The Rush have showed some great defensive play but have had trouble scoring goals. So far this year the Rush have only put up 22 goals on the board putting them last in the league in scoring.

The Rush are looking for player like Gavin Prout, Andy Secore, Dean Hill, and Ryan Ward to step up and start scoring. The most any of them have so far is a measly 8 points in 3 games. Pa-theh-tic.

With Calgary, it's the exact opposite. Players like Scott Ranger, Dane Dobbie, and Jeff Shattler have stepped up on the offence with the departure of Josh Sanderson.

To put this into perspective, Calgary has 5 guys with more points than the leading scorer for the Rush, Gavin Prout.

The defence is Calgary has not fared as well as the offence. After losing 19-14 to the Stealth last week, they have now allowed the second most goals this year. So if the Rush's offence is going to click, I would think it would happen this weekend.


I pick a draw by the end of the weekend with each team winning at home.

Who likes fights?