After a bye week, the Riptide have back to back games this weekend starting Friday night against the New England Black Wolves at Mohegan Sun Arena (7:30 p.m. on B/R Live). The Riptide made strides between their first game, a 12-4 loss in Halifax, and their most recent contest, a 14-10 setback in Vancouver. Now with some extra time to study what happened in the first two games, the Riptide have things in the proper perspective.
“We just have to keep taking steps forward,” said General Manager and Head Coach Regy Thorpe. “I thought against Vancouver we took a couple of steps forward from the previous week against Halifax. We just have to keep stepping in the right direction and keep taking those steps forward and not backwards. We had a good week of prep and film and scout.”
Through two games, forwards Connor Kelly and Dan Lomas are tied for the team lead in scoring, each with three goals and four assists for seven points. In the second game of the season in Vancouver, the Riptide took a huge step forward in the face-off department as Alex Woodall made his season debut winning 17 out of 29 draws against the Warriors. Between the pipes, goalie Alex Buque has a 13.00 goals against average and has made 77 saves.
On Friday night, the Riptide will face another tough task in the 2-0 Black Wolves.
“New England is playing really good lacrosse right now,” said Thorpe. “We’re excited about the opportunity. They’re a veteran team. They’ve been playing really good on the defensive end and transition.”
The Riptide will have to pay close attention to Black Wolves forward Callum Crawford who leads New England in scoring with six goals and seven assists for thirteen points. Forward Andrew Kew is also an offensive threat with three goals and seven assists for ten points. Face-off specialist Joe Nardella is off to a great start winning 25 out of 48 draws through two games while goalie Doug Jamieson has an 8.00 goals against average and has made 89 saves.
“They’re offense has been clicking,” said Thorpe. “They’re just really solid all over the place defensively, offensively, special teams, and goaltending so they’re going to be tough to beat. Our guys are excited for the challenge. They have a lot of experience and they’re a playoff team from last year.”
After Friday night’s game in New England, the Riptide are right back in action on Saturday night at 7:30 p.m. when they host the Saskatchewan Rush in the inaugural home opener at Nassau Coliseum.