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1Q 2Q 3Q 4Q OT F
Minnesota Swarm Minnesota Swarm
(5-0 H 2-0 A 3-0)
5 6 2 3 16
New York Titans New York Titans
(1-4 H 0-1 A 1-3)
0 0 5 4 9

Those Swarm Sure Are Sick

Friday, February 8, 2008
St. Paul, Minnesota
Attendance: 10,204

Minnesota Swarm Head Coach Duane Jacobs describes his team as "Sick". Jacobs doesn't mean the Swarm have the cough due to cold, but they're "Sick", as in very good or awesome. One reason Jacobs thinks the Swarm are "Sick" is that he just watched the Swarm dismantle the New York Titans 16-9 at the Xcel Energy Center four hours earlier. Jacobs saw his team score a NLL record twelve consecutive goals to begin a game. He saw his team shutout the Titans in the first half with constant pressure from the likes of Jon Sullivan (2a 20 LB), who got the game ball from Jacobs. He saw his goaltender Nick Patterson (5-0 11.01 GAA .786) pitch a shutout until 6:16 of the third quarter. He saw his young, fast, unpredictable and experienced team win their fifth straight and go to 5-0 for the first time in team history.

The Swarm attacked right out of the gate. Chad Culp (8g 10a) opened the scoring at 3:08 of the first. Kyle Ross (2g 4a) then scored his first NLL regular season goal on a 2 on 1 with Noah Talbot (2a 13 LB). The scoring in the first continued as Mike Hominuck (4g 11a) spun by his opponent on the Swarm's first power play of the night. Ryan Ward (14g 13a) finished off the first with two goals with the last one scored as he streaked right down Titan goaltender Matt Vinc's driveway on a breakaway.

The fun times continued in the second quarter as the defensive pressure intensified. Even though the Titans were winning the initial possession, the Swarm's constant pressure and sagging on defense quickly regained possesion for the team. Andy Secore (10g 17a) opened the scoring on Vinc's top shelf in the second. Secore's goal prompted Titan Head Coach Adam Mueller (Swarm Head Coach 2006) to pull Vinc in favor of Erik Miller. Mark Miyashita (1g 1a) got his first goal of the season to put the Swarm up 7-0. Craig Point (9g 15a) found himself all alone on the crease to score on Miller to increase the lead to 8-0. Sean Pollock scored the next two goals, with the first one coming as he toyed with Miller by himself with a couple fakes on the crease then found the hole. In between the Pollock goals, the Titans' Jeff Ratcliffe scored but the goal was waived off after the Titans were caught with too many men on the floor. Ross continued with his career night in goals on another breakaway triggered by Travis Hill's (1g 3a) defense to finish the first half scoring. The Titans' Ryan Boyle did score later on in the quarter but his goal was waived off as he shot after the shot clock expired. Patterson faced 18 shots and made 18 saves in the half including a last second save to send the game into half at 11-0.

Last year, the Swarm outscored the Titans 13-4 in the first half at the X but only held on by a score of 17-14. This year, the Swarm again entered the second half with a huge lead and like last year, Mueller made some halftime adjustments to get the Titans on the right track. At first, that didn't appear to be the case, as Hominuck scored his second goal of the night on another breakaway caused by defensive pressure by T. Hill. There has never been a shut out in the 22 year history of the NLL and the dream which almost seemed it could become reality was dashed by the Titans' Pat Maddalena on a power play goal at 6:16 of the third. After a Brendan Mundorf goal to cut the lead to 9, 12-3, Culp was fed on the crease by Pollock at 10:42 to increase the lead to 13-3. Jordan Hall, the first overall pick in the 2007 NLL Draft, scored twice in the last minute of the quarter to narrow the lead to 13-5.

Ward was the first Swarm player to ring up a hat trick on the night as he slid behind a Pollock screen and found an opening on Miller. After Mike McLellan scored his league leading ninth power play goal, Patterson was given the night off coming out of the first official time out in the quarter. That paved the way for the NLL regular season debut in goal of Kevin Croswell. The first shot on Croswell went in off the stick of Casey Powell but nothing to worry about as Patterson mentioned after the game, that the first shot he faced as a rookie in Vancouver also got by him. The rookie netminder remained steady and saved seven of the nine remaining shots on him. It was a good opportunity to get Croswell some game experience and Jacobs took it. With Patterson's number one status unquestioned, it was reassuring to see how well Croswell performed coming off the bench cold in the fourth. Later on, the Swarm's defensive pressure got to the Titans again as Ross forced the turnover and found Secore coming off the bench for the goal to make it 15-7. Hominuck got the second Swarm hat trick of the evening as he got a feed from Point and lasered it past Miller. The Titans John Orsen finished off the night's scoring on a breakaway but it was way too little and way too late as the Swarm won 16-9.

Jacobs emphasized after the game that it is the defense that ignites all that happens with the Swarm. Constant pressure on the ball carrier is what happens first, then the sag by the defense towards the ball side. With the Swarm's speed and ferociousness, the turnovers come and each defender has the green light to the goal after they scoop up the turnover. Then it is all constant attack going up the field and if it isn't there, the seven headed monster comes in with 30 seconds of constant probing to finish off the opponent. But it is never the same each time on defense and offense, that is what makes the "system" work so well. The unpredictable is all that is predictable under Jacobs. There is no rest not only for the opponents under siege but also for the Swarm as they are laying down the siege.

This week it was Hominuck who struck hardest of the seven headed monster as he led the Swarm with three goals and three assists. Ward got his hat trick and two assists, while both Secore and Pollock each got two goals and three assists. Patterson made 38 saves on 44 shots in 52:05 of play while Croswell in his debut of 7:55 in the fourth made 7 saves on 10 shots. As I mentioned earlier, Sullivan got the game ball for his performance against the Titans. I am told by everyone, including Jacobs last night, you never notice him out on the floor. How can that be? It is because he never makes mistakes as he's generally assigned to the best the other team has. No defender can shake him, he stays out of the box and is consistently consistent. Sullivan and players like Noah Talbot actually start everything for the Swarm since they are the first on the scene with the constant pressure that Jacobs preaches.

History was made then taken away by a new rule instituted this year. Burnsville's own Colin Achenbach (3 LB) made his NLL debut in the game. On a breakaway, soon after Pollock's second goal of second quarter, with Ryan Sharp (5g 2a), Sharp shot and the ball rebounded to Achenbach who poked the ball into the net. If Achenbach would have done that last year, the goal would have counted but this year the goal was disallowed because a player must make one cradling motion with ball before he can shoot on net. That didn't happen with Colin and the first NLL goal by a native Minnesotan will have to wait. Nonetheless, Colin was very positive about his three loose ball performance after the game. He wished the goal would of counted but feels that he will get another chance soon.

Look for the eighth head of the offensive monster to make his debut this season on Sunday. That would be Rory McDade on the left side. Jacobs guaranteed McDade's appearance but would not divulge who he would replace since it's all about unpredictability. McDade has been watching all the action online and as expected, he has kept in himself in shape for his debut. He knows the chances to play are limited but when the team needs him, he will be there. More help is on the way as Andrew Biers is here this weekend. According to Andrew, he will be in the lineup in two to three weeks. Biers did participate in the team's pre-game warmup before the pre-game warmup and was moving well. He said he feels much better this weekend than the last time he was in Minnesota as he got around in a wheelchair at the X after injuring his knee against Phildalelphia the night before.

In attendance last night for his first Swarm game, was new owner Craig Leipold and his right hand man Mark Leopold. They appeared at the post game party and were very impressed with the Swarm. They thoroughly enjoyed the team's effort and just like the Wild, they want to help bring a cup to Minnesota for the Swarm. They are committed to the Swarm's long term future and for any doubters out there, the Swarm are here to stay for a very long time. The sale according to Leipold should be finished in around two to three weeks or about the same time Biers comes back to the line up.

The weekend is not yet over as the Swarm will host the Portland LumberJax (1-4) on Sunday, February 10th at 3:00 pm CST at Xcel Energy Center. The Titans have already travelled back to the NYC to get ready to host the Buffalo Bandits at Madison Square Garden on Sunday, February 10th at 11:30 am CST.

Game Statistics

Pointstreak Swarm Notes Titans Notes

Team Stats Sv/S PIM PP SH S SOG LB FO
Minnesota 45/54 18 2/4 0 71 56 67 12/29
New York 40/56 8 2/8 0 77 54 79 17/29

# Minnesota G A Pts PIM PPG SHG S SOG LB FO
9 Craig Point 1 2 3 0 0 0 12 4 6 0-0
16 Noah Talbot 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 1 0-0
17 Sean Pollock 2 3 5 0 1 0 4 4 2 0-0
19 Chad Culp 2 2 4 0 0 0 7 7 5 0-0
20 Kyle Ross 2 1 3 4 0 0 2 2 4 0-0
21 Andy Secore 2 3 5 0 0 0 10 7 3 0-0
23 Jon Sullivan 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 2 0-0
26 Ryan Sharp 0 1 1 2 0 0 6 6 9 0-0
27 Colin Achenbach 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 0-0
28 Darren Halls 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 4 4-9
31 Kevin Croswell 0 0 0 2 0 0 0 0 0 0-0
39 Mark Miyashita 1 0 1 2 0 0 3 3 9 6-17
44 Ryan Ward 3 2 5 0 0 0 9 7 2 0-0
47 Travis Hill 0 2 2 2 0 0 4 2 7 2-3
50 Ryan Cousins 0 1 1 4 0 0 2 2 5 0-0
73 Dean Hill 0 2 2 0 0 0 4 4 0 0-0
90 Mike Hominuck 3 3 6 0 1 0 8 8 5 0-0
93 Nick Patterson 0 1 1 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0
3 Chris Courtney Did Not Dress
8 Rory McDade Did Not Dress
12 Eric Pacey Did Not Dress
24 Justin Norbraten Did Not Dress
34 Nick Inch Did Not Dress
 
# Minnesota MIN GA Saves Shots Dec  
31 Kevin Croswell 7:55 3 7 10    
93 Nick Patterson 52:05 6 38 44 W 5-0 Started
 
# New York G A Pts PIM PPG SHG S SOG LB FO
2 Brendan Mundorf 1 0 1 0 0 0 8 4 0 0-0
3 Matt Alrich 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 1 3 0-0
5 Jamie Hanford 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 15 17-29
12 Jarett Park 0 0 0 0 0 0 5 4 12 0-0
14 Ryan Boyle 1 4 5 0 0 0 8 5 4 0-0
15 Patrick Merrill 0 0 0 0 0 0 3 3 3 0-0
19 Mike McLellan 1 2 3 0 1 0 9 7 2 0-0
20 Greg Peyser 0 0 0 2 0 0 2 2 5 0-0
21 Erik Miller 0 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0
22 Casey Powell 2 1 3 2 0 0 12 6 6 0-0
32 Rich Brzeski 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0
41 Bryan Barrett 0 2 2 0 0 0 0 0 4 0-0
42 Pat Maddalena 1 2 3 0 1 0 12 8 2 0-0
44 Jordan Hall 2 1 3 2 0 0 7 5 10 0-0
48 Matt Vinc 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0-0
56 John Orsen 1 0 1 0 0 0 3 2 7 0-0
71 Keevin Galbraith 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 0 1 0-0
90 Jeff Ratcliffe 0 1 1 0 0 0 7 7 5 0-0
10 Brian Tower Did Not Dress
24 Rory Smith Did Not Dress
34 Anthony Kelly Did Not Dress
36 Mitch Belisle Did Not Dress
47 Jeff Spano Did Not Dress
 
# New York MIN GA Saves Shots Dec
21 Erik Miller 44:23 9 28 37 L 0-1  
48 Matt Vinc 15:37 7 12 19   Started

Scoring
Time MN NY Team Goal 1st Assist 2nd Assist Notes
1st Quarter
3:08 1 0 Minnesota Chad Culp Sean Pollock Mike Hominuck  
5:38 2 0 Minnesota Kyle Ross Noah Talbot Darren Halls  
6:06 3 0 Minnesota Mike Hominuck Chad Culp   PP
9:54 4 0 Minnesota Ryan Ward Sean Pollock Chad Culp  
14:15 5 0 Minnesota Ryan Ward Ryan Sharp    
2nd Quarter
0:16 6 0 Minnesota Andy Secore Mike Hominuck    
0:37 7 0 Minnesota Mark Miyashita Dean Hill    
2:42 8 0 Minnesota Craig Point Andy Secore Ryan Ward  
4:08 9 0 Minnesota Sean Pollock Ryan Ward Andy Secore  
5:55 10 0 Minnesota Sean Pollock Dean Hill Craig Point PP GWG
9:15 11 0 Minnesota Kyle Ross Travis Hill    
3rd Quarter
3:20 12 0 Minnesota Mike Hominuck Travis Hill Nick Patterson  
6:16 12 1 New York Pat Maddalena Ryan Boyle Mike McLellan PP
7:41 12 2 New York Casey Powell Bryan Barrett Erik Miller  
8:48 12 3 New York Brendan Mundorf Casey Powell Ryan Boyle  
10:42 13 3 Minnesota Chad Culp Sean Pollock Mike Hominuck  
14:21 13 4 New York Jordan Hall Ryan Boyle Bryan Barrett  
14:48 13 5 New York Jordan Hall      
4th Quarter
0:35 14 5 Minnesota Ryan Ward Ryan Cousins    
1:26 14 6 New York Mike McLellan Ryan Boyle Pat Maddalena PP
7:28 14 7 New York Casey Powell Jeff Ratcliffe Mike McLellan  
10:38 15 7 Minnesota Andy Secore Kyle Ross    
11:48 15 8 New York Ryan Boyle Pat Maddalena Jordan Hall  
12:13 16 8 Minnesota Mike Hominuck Craig Point Andy Secore  
13:24 16 9 New York John Orsen Erik Miller    

Penalties
Time Team Player Penalty Bench Duration
1st Quarter
0:30 Minnesota Ryan Sharp Checking from Behind   2:00
4:03 Minnesota Mark Miyashita Illegal Cross Checking   2:00
4:53 New York Casey Powell Holding   2:00
6:28 Minnesota Kyle Ross Slashing   2:00
2nd Quarter
0:37 New York Jordan Hall Roughing   2:00
2:56 Minnesota Ryan Cousins Checking from Behind   2:00
3:50 New York Greg Peyser Checking from Behind   2:00
5:50 New York Jeff Ratcliffe Illegal Substitution X 2:00
12:53 Minnesota Ryan Cousins Holding Stick   2:00
3rd Quarter
6:00 Minnesota Travis Hill Roughing   2:00
1:12 Minnesota Jon Sullivan Hooking   2:00
4th Quarter
2:50 Minnesota Kyle Ross Checking from Behind   2:00
15:00 Minnesota Kevin Croswell Checking from Behind   2:00

Referees
Crew Chief Assistant Referee Technical Referee
39-Rick Lum 60-John Bistowski 73-Daren Yates