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Lacrosse Spotlight:
Wings Lose Home Opener To Lumberjax 14-12

Saturday, January 13, 2007

By Jennifer Stefani
Philadelphia Wings Correspondent

PHILADELPHIA - The Wings' remain winless (0-2) this season as they fell to the Lumberjax, 14-12, Saturday at the Wachovia Center. Dallas Eliuk, who spent 15 seasons in Philadelphia, made 44 saves for the victory. He is the only goaltender to win the Championship MVP twice and is a nine-time All-Pro. The Wings pulled within one goal on six occasions, but could not even up the score. Jeff Ratcliffe led the Wings with three goals and an assist, while Peter Morgan recorded three goals and six assists for the Lumberjax.

"We had too many mental mistakes and a couple of bad decisions," said Wings' General Manager and Head Coach Lindsay Sanderson. "That's been the story so far. When things aren't going your way, those are some of the things that happen. One of these nights it'll fall for us. It's a matter of working through this."

The Wings opened the scoring in the first quarter with a power-play goal by Jeff Ratcliffe. The Lumberjax answered less than a minute later with a goal by Ian Crashley. Philadelphia went up by three, 4-1, with scores by Keith Cromwell, Jake Bergey and Dan Marohl, but Portland pulled within one thanks to Mike Hominuck and Ryan Powell. Powell's goal was on the power play.

The two teams traded goals twice at the start of the second quarter. Brodie Merrill and Bruce Alexander (power play) put the ball in the net for Portland, while Marc Morley and Ratcliffe netted goals for the Wings. The Lumberjax took their first lead of the game with three goals to end the first half. Portland led Philadelphia, 8-6, going into the locker rooms.

The Wings started the scoring in the second half, but the teams went back and forth three times. Ratcliffe completed the hat trick and rookie Kyle Wailes and Morley also scored for Philadelphia. Scott Stapleford and Jed Prossner netted their first of the game, while Bateman added his second. The Wings made a change in goal at the 6:33 mark, as Ken Montour replaced starter Jay Preece. Wailes brought the Wings within one on the man advantage late in the quarter, but Morgan completed the hat trick to put the Lumberjax up, 12-10, with one quarter remaining.

It took five minutes before either team scored in the fourth quarter. Philadelphia's Shawn Nadelen made it a one-goal game for the fifth time in the second half, but Portland added another goal as Del Halladay became the tenth player to score for the Lumberjax. Sean Greenhalgh gave the Wings one more chance, but Merrill notched an empty-net goal to put the game away.

Jeff Ratcliffe led the Wings in scoring with four points (3G,1A). Seven other players scored goals for Philadelphia, including Marc Morley (2G), Keith Cromwell (1G,1A), Sean Greenhalgh (1G,2A), Kyle Wailes (2G2A), Dan Marohl (1G,4A), Shawn Nadelen (1G), and Jake Bergey (1G,3A). Goaltender Jay Preece made 24 saves and Ken Montour stopped 12 shots.

Peter Morgan led the Lumberjax in scoring with nine points (3G,6A). Nine other players scored for Portland, including Ian Crashley (1G), Jed Prossner (1G), Scott Stapleford (1G,1A), Del Halladay (1G,2A), Ryder Bateman (2G,2A), Brodie Merrill (2G,2A), Ryan Powell (1G,1A), Bruce Alexander (1G,1A), and Mike Hominuck (1G,7A). Goaltender Dallas Eliuk had 44 saves on the night.

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