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Panther City Scores Massive Win Over Albany FireWolves

Fort Worth, Texas.  (April 14, 2024) – The Panther City Lacrosse Club (9-8) defeated the visiting Albany FireWolves, 11-7, Sunday afternoon at Dickies Arena in Fort Worth. The win was Panther City’s fifth win at home this season, thus guaranteeing a second-consecutive season with a winning record at Dickies Arena.

Goalie Nick Damude was stellar in net all game and recorded 54 saves on 61 shots faced (.885 SV %). It was his third game this season making at least 50 saves and seventh game with a save percentage of at least 80%. It was the seventh game this season for Damude allowing less than 10 goals. He also added an assist on a full floor pass to Josh Medeiros.

The transition game was the difference for the home team as they were able to manufacture goals between the lines with defenseman Brandon Goodwin recording a hat trick and Josh Medeiros also added two goals, for a total of five transition goals in the contest. Both Goodwin and Medeiros also added five loose balls for the home team.

Offensively, Callum Crawford was the leading scorer in the game as he finished with six points (4G/2A). Crawford now has 41 goals on the season and became the first 40-goal scorer in Panther City Lacrosse Club history. He is joined in the record books by Will Malcom who finished the game with five points (2G/3A) and with those five points now has 100 points on the season and becomes the first ever PCLC player to record a 100-point season. Malcom leads the team with 65 assists, which are two shy of the franchise record (Johnathan Donville – 67). Donville chipped in with four assists.

The team will close out regular season play next Saturday in Calgary as they will take on the Roughnecks on April 20 at 8 p.m. CT. With the win today over Albany, Panther City has eliminated Calgary from playoff contention.

 

POST GAME QUOTES

HEAD COACH TRACEY KELUSKY

On Damude’s performance today and how important that is looking down the road… 

“If history tells us anything it’s that the top four goalies in the league are always typically the last four teams standing. Nicky [Nick Damude] has proven himself this year time in and time out. He prides himself on being the backbone of our defense and tonight he certainly stood on his head. I think he was at [88%] before the two late goals, but he was outstanding. He’ll be the first to say that our defense was allowing him the shots that we wanted. Ultimately, he made some big saves in the fourth. Your best defense player has to be your goalie.”

On the six to nothing start to the game… 

“You love coming out to six nothing lead, but it was masking a lot of stuff that we weren’t doing well. I didn’t think we played really well defensively. I thought that they were able to run around and manufacture real good looks. Thankfully Nicky [Nick Damude] stepped up and played real well early. Offensively we were stagnant. Thankfully, we got a couple goals in transition but it was a deoderant because we weren’t good. It came back a little bit to bite us. The thing we pride ourselves on with this group is being resilient and finding a way to win which we did but it wasn’t pretty.”

On Brandon Goodwin’s performance and what his versatility brings to the team… 

“That’s why we got him. He had an exceptional summer last year and then he played real well last year as well. He’s a guy that can do a little bit of everything. He plays great defense. He’s been in this league a long time. He’s been around. I think he’s always been comfortable here, but I think he is starting to relish it and the fact that he is one of our leaders allows him to be a little more free and just go do what he does best. Which is push the ball in transition, play really gritty defense, and manufacture some good looks on net and tonight I’m happy with the job from him.

On what they’re looking forward to next week and what they plan on … 

“I haven’t done the algebra on it. I don’t know if we are in yet or not in yet. Officially we are not but it’s another opportunity for us to take a step closer to where we want to get too and that’s my mindset. There are a lot of cleanups and there always is and my job is to be critical. It’s a big win. We worked hard tonight and we battled hard tonight, but ultimately my job is to be critical and find the things we can fix. Next week is another opportunity for guys to earn more trust in their teammates which was a big thing we talked about tonight. I think maybe we had a couple passengers again tonight. Any championship team has to get to a point where we have everybody contributing in some capacity. You can’t just wear a jersey and expect things to happen. Making that known to the boys is one thing. We have some young guys in our locker room. Our vets did an outstanding job tonight of leading and I expect them to do the same next week regardless of the implications. But for me it’s always about putting one foot in front of the other and we’re still chasing our best game and that’s the mindset.”

On Will Malcom’s success … 

“He knows that this is his offense. We gave him the keys to the offense year one. We said this is your offense and you tell us what you want to do. He does so many little things very well. He picks up the loose balls and he relieves pressure in transition. I’m sure he wants to do that six on five play again, but shame on me we haven’t really run it in practice. He’s awesome. The guys love him. He’s an elite player in this league by getting into that 100-point plateau. We are going to need him more in the postseason and he’s even more dangerous when he’s playing with a bit of swagger and confidence which he should have. I’m lucky that we have him.”

Panther City Lacrosse Club