Knights record comeback win over Raiders
To some teams, a four-goal deficit may be too much to overcome, but it wasn’t a problem for the Airdrie Knights lacrosse team on July 3. Despite going down 4-0 early in the first period, the team rallied back to defeat the Okotoks Sr. Raiders 8-5 at the Ron Ebbesen Arena. Once again, a slow start to the game set the team back, forcing Head Coach Gareth Barley and the rest of the coaching staff to refocus.
“It’s becoming too much of a routine for the guys,” Barley said. “It baffles me why we’re starting that way. We’ve been trying a few different things to get ourselves ready to go, but I’m at a loss for words for why we continue to start so slow.”
The Knights managed to hold the Raiders off until 12 minutes into the first period, but the goals came fast and furious as the Raiders scored four times in five minutes. Chris Johnston got the Knights on the board with less than two minutes left in the first period. The Knights slowly closed the gap in the second period, as Mark Scherman and Casey MacIntyer both added goals, but the third was all Knights as Steve Schorn scored on a five-minute powerplay to bring the Knights within one goal of the Raiders. Matt Besplug and Adam Labarbera each added single tallies, but the hero of the night was Shawn Cable who scored the game-tying and game-winning goals within the span of 2:25.
Cable spent seven seasons with the Raiders before being acquired by the Knights in a trade last month.
“That was a big game for him,” said Barley.
Barley and Assistant Coach Dave Wandler also praised the team’s young players, like Besplug and Schorn, not only for the goals they scored, but also the character they provided in the win.
“It says a lot about our team as opposed to last year. Last year, we were very fragile. The mentality we have in the room now is no matter how far ahead or behind we are, we’re not getting too high and we’re not getting too low,” Barley said.
The Knights will now play two games back-to-back against the Calgary Sr. Mounties. The team will play its final home game July 15 against the Raiders. Game time is 2:30 p.m. at the Ron Ebbesen Arena.