Last night can only be described as sweet! The Edmonton Rush organized a bus to take fans from Edmonton down to Calgary to watch the Rush take on the Roughnecks, so Tom and I bought tickets to go. In all there was about thirty people on the bus, give or take, but there were far more fans in the Rush section (which was section 210 if you know the Saddledome). And man am I ever glad we decided to go – seeing the Rush record their first ever franchise win, and in Calgary no less, was awesome! Sure it would have been nice to win at home, but if you have to win elsewhere, might as well keep the Battle of Alberta alive while you’re at it.
The first half of the game was actually very tight, with no more than a goal separating the teams. Eventually we took a four goal lead (our first such lead ever) only to see it wash away almost as quickly. We were up by one goal with about 30 seconds left, and Calgary overturned the ball. Our goalie Campbell, who played an amazing game stopping 67 shots, got the ball and instead of killing time, decided to throw it up the middle! If you know how bad that is in hockey, trust me, it’s worse in lacrosse, and sure enough they tied the game with about 10 seconds left. We thought we were going to OT, but Bergman somehow saved the day:
Bergman scooped up a loose ball at centre and, with time running out, ran down the floor and fired a shot at Calgary goaltender Curtis Palidwor. The ball bounced straight out off Palidwor’s pad, hit Calgary’s Andrew Biers on the leg and bounced into the net as the final buzzer sounded.
It was crazy! I really didn’t think there was enough time left, but the goal was reviewed and it stood, and we’ll take it. Everyone in the Rush section went crazy, and Calgary fans started to leave and throw things on the field.
Some other things of note:
- There was about 12,000 people at the game last night.
- When the Roughnecks come on the field, they run through a small, crappy version of the Oiler’s famous oil derrick.
- Even though we had some penalties, the game looked like one of our most disciplined this season. We need to stay out of the penalty box!
- The dance team in Calgary is called the Drill Crew, and they are pretty good. Our Crush girls even did one dance at the game.
- The screen at the Saddledome is not nearly as nice as ours, but they have little TV’s above all the urinals in the washrooms! And they have Tim Horton’s and Subway inside the concourse too!
- Tom and I were sitting one row behind, and about 6 or 7 seats to the right of some of the Crush girls. With about three minutes left in the game they started looking back at us provocatively! As Tom said, “have the gods shone down upon me?” Turned out they just wanted someone to go buy them more beer – sorry girls, not when we’re about to win the game!
- I was surprised that we were on an ordinary old bus. I kind of expected the Rush to have some fancy barbed wire bus plastered with Rush logos! I guess they have set expectations high with all of their other marketing stuff.
- The Edmonton guys do a much better job of keeping things interesting, keeping the tempo up in the stadium as the game goes on. Rush home games seem like much more of an event!
The bus ride home was much more high energy than the ride to the game. As we drove away from the stadium, everyone started chanting “one and six, one and six!”
The Rush take on Colorado on March 3rd, where hopefully we’ll get our second win and move one step closer to the playoffs!
Read: Edmonton Rush