Monday, January 31, 2011

Mammoth Continue to Struggle

Melissa Dafni

As a fan, it’s always difficult to watch your team lose. But is it harder to watch them get solidly beaten? Or barely beaten?  The Colorado Mammoth are essentially one goal away from being 0-4 and three goals away from being 4-0.  Instead, they are now 1-3.

In fighting, you need more than just skill.  You also need heart and a killer instinct.  The true test of a fighter is how they handle the situation when they’re losing.  Do they give up and accept their fate?  Or do they do whatever it takes to win?

This Mammoth team is talented but they just can’t seem to win.  They’re not giving up, but they’re also not going in for the kill.  They continue to struggle to play four solid quarters and it shows in their record.  Every game so far this season has been decided by one goal.  Every game so far has been within their reach, but they just couldn’t close the door.

Yes, the Mammoth have faced tough opponents, but in this game, it didn’t look like it was Philly that played the night before.  Granted, putting Rob Blasdell in for Chris Levis in the 2nd quarter certainly didn’t help since on the five shots he faced in seven minutes, he only made one save.

Looking ahead, the schedule isn’t going to be any easier so if the Mammoth don’t find in themselves what it takes to win, it’s going to be a long and disappointing season.

The Game

1st Quarter
Max Siebald scored the first goal of the night five and a half minutes in to give the Philadelphia Wings the lead.  Brian Langtry tied it up a few minutes later on the power play. Play continued for several minutes with neither team able to capitalize until with a couple minutes remaining, Athan Iannucci scored his first goal of the night to take the lead back, quickly followed by a goal from Matt Alrich.
Mammoth 1, Wings 3

2nd Quarter
The Mammoth scored a pair of quick goals in the first two minutes from Cliff Smith and John Grant Jr. to tie the game again.  Unfortunately for the Mammoth, the remainder of the quarter would not go so well.  Within a minute and a half, Ryan McClelland, Athan Iannucci and Drew Westervelt each notched goals for the Wings. After only five minutes of play, Chris Levis was pulled and replaced with former Philadelphia Wings back up Rob Blasdell… still wearing his Wings helmet.
Jamie Shewchuck was able to stop the Wings run and scored his only goal of the night on a power play.  Shewchuck’s goal wasn’t enough though as the Wings took advantage of Blasdell being in net. Alrich scored his second of the night followed by a short-hander from Brendan Mundorf and a pair of goals in quick succession from Iannucci and Westervelt.  With a little over two minutes remaining in the half, Blasdell was pulled and Levis put back in.
Mammoth 4, Wings 10

3rd Quarter
The third quarter has not been kind to the Mammoth the last two games as they were held scoreless by their opponents.  This time however, it was the Wings who were held scoreless in the third.  Although quiet so far this season, four minutes into the second half, Alex Gajic scored, followed by a second goal from Langtry and two more from Alex.  One of which was on the power play.
Mammoth 8, Wings 10

4th Quarter
Kyle Sweeney breaks the Wings’ scoring drought two minutes in followed by Westervelt’s third goal a few minutes later.  Westervelt’s goal would be the last for the Wings while Grant, Steve Toll and Smith, on a power play, would each score for the Mammoth.  With the fourth quarter winding down, Grant scored what would be the tying goal, but it was called back on a crease violation.
Final Score: Colorado Mammoth 11, Philadelphia Wings 12
MVP: Athan Iannucci
Attendance: 8,616

Around the League:
Philadelphia Wings 11, Boston Blazers 5
Calgary Roughnecks 15, Edmonton 11

Buffalo Bandits 5, Toronto Rock 8
Boston Blazers 16, Rochester Knighthawks 7
Washington Stealth 10, Minnesota Swarm 11
Edmonton Rush 11, Calgary Roughnecks 12

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