Panther City Falls to San Diego in Saturday Night Thriller
The Panther City Lacrosse Club (4-4) fell to the San Diego Seals, 12-10, in a thriller Saturday night at Pechanga Arena. Panther City was trailing 9-4 at half, but rallied back and totaled six goals in the second half compared to San Diego’s three (one empty net goal).
Will Malcom led the club with six points (1G/5A), while rookie Mathieu Gautier led all scorers with four goals, his first career hat trick in the NLL. Fellow rookie Jonathan Donville chipped in with five points (1G/4A). Panther City was very efficient on the man advantage on the evening as they went 5-8 (62.5%) on the power play with goals scored by Patrick Dodds, Gautier (2), Jake Fox and Will Malcom. It was Fox’s first goal as a member of Panther City.
In net for Panther City, goalie Nick Damude tallied 47 saves on 58 shots (.810 save percentage) and after nine first-half goals, only allowed San Diego’s high-powered offense to score twice in the final two frames as he made 28 second-half saves.
Panther City returns home to Fort Worth and Dickies Arena next weekend to face the Vancouver Warriors on Saturday, February 11. The game will be broadcast on KTXA 21 and streamed on ESPN+ with face-off set for 7:00 p.m. CT
POST GAME QUOTES
HEAD COACH TRACEY KELUSKY QUOTES
On the difference between the first and second halves…
“First half we just didn’t come out urgent. I thought we got outworked bad. They out loose balled us, they out worked us and as a result they obviously outscored us. We adjusted in the second half. We made a couple slight adjustments, but really it just boiled down to a willingness to compete and willingness to do things urgently on both sides of the ball. Offensively, we created more havoc and played the way we wanted to play. It is a bit of a mindset with us. We just think sometimes we just have to show up. No – you have to show up and buckle up and put on your hard hat and work boots.”
On how the team responded to his message all game about just worry about us and your role…
“[It clicked] a little bit [second half]. It is looking inward. I think we had maybe three or four passengers in the first half. Guys who maybe, the lights were on, but we are playing against the big boys here. I really liked how they responded after having a conversation about it. Ultimately, it has to be on them. They have to be internally motivated and understand that they can play at this level and play against arguably the best players in the world.
On the message to the team as they return home to play at Dickies Arena in front of home crowd fans…
“We talked about it we need at least two of the next four, including tonight, so now we need two of three here. No better place then to go back to Dickies Arena in front of our fans and show them what this club is all about.”
FORWARD MATHIEU GAUTIER
On what was clicking for him personally tonight…
“The whole offense.- our gameplan was to get the ball moving and get touches and find backs and flash middle. Our righties were looking in the middle today and finding me and our my shots were dropping.”
On what he saw from the offense in the second half…
“We came in after the first half and knew we had better in us and we were down in the game and we were down in the game. We were able to come back and kept our feet moving. That’s what we did. Stuck to the game plan. Unfortunate that it turned out like that, but we move on to next weekend.”
On the message moving forward as the team returns home…
“You always want to bounce back after a loss. Every game is very important as we approach playoffs. All week we will get ready for Vancouver back at home and we will be ready to go.”