DULUTH, Ga. (March 11, 2022) – The Georgia Swarm (5-6) invite the Halifax Thunderbirds (8-1) to Harrah’s Cherokee Casino and Resort Field for the first ever game between the two franchises in Georgia. The all-time series between the two teams stand at 1-0, as Halifax was an expansion team during the shortened 2019-20 season. The two teams faced off for the first time ever earlier this season on Feb. 19, with the Swarm falling to the East Division second-place team, 15-10.
The Swarm enter tonight’s matchup coming off a thrilling 17-16 overtime win over the Rochester Knighthawks at Gas South Arena last Friday. Before making the trip to Duluth, Ga., the Thunderbirds host the Albany FireWolves on March 11 in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Prior to facing the FireWolves, the Thunderbirds beat the Vancouver Warriors, 14-12, on March 5 marking its fifth win in a row. The Swarm could log their first back-to-back wins of the season with a victory Saturday and mark the second time they have pulled even at .500 this season since doing so on December 12, when they evened up their record at 1-1 with a 14-10 win over New York.
Two Georgia players rank top-five in NLL goals as Lyle Thompson (31) is tied for first and Shayne Jackson (25) is tied for fourth. Thompson also sits third in league points (67). Jackson led the team in points last week against Rochester, recording five goals and three assists. After Adam Wiedemann sent the game into overtime, Jackson scored the golden goal, moving the Swarm to 5-6 on the season and firmly into the playoff picture. Despite being tied with Philadelphia (5-6) for the eighth and final seed in the NLL playoffs entering this weekend’s play, the Wings hold a tiebreaker advantage, having beaten the Swarm twice in two matchups this season.
The Swarm combined for 12 caused turnovers compared to the Knighthawks’ six. Wiedemann led the team after forcing three turnovers while Chad Tutton and Joel White both followed with two each. Wiedemann also made an impact on offense last week after scoring the tying goal that sent the game into overtime. Other defenders who stepped up on offense were White (2A), Bryan Cole (1G, 1A) and TJ Comizio (1G, 1A).
Starting netminder Mike Poulin totaled 31 saves on March 4, collecting the 6,000th save of his career, becoming the sixth goalie all-time to do so. Poulin also marked his fifth win of the season and 99th all-time. He passed Anthony Cosmo for fourth place on the all-time wins list.
Halifax ranks second in the East Division despite scoring the least number of goals in the East (105). The squad averages 11.67 goals per game, led by Austin Shanks’ 18. The team’s backline is led by starting goaltender Warren Hill who ranks second in NLL wins (7), and goals-against average (9.05). while sitting fourth in save percentage (.811).
The Thunderbirds acquired Shawn Evans in a trade with the Knighthawks on Wednesday, March 9. After totaling 47 points and 38 assists with Rochester, he now leads the Thunderbirds in those respective categories. Evans totals nine points more than teammate, Clarke Petterson, and 12 more assists than Petterson and Stephan Leblanc, who are now tied for second with 26 assists.
The Swarm vs. Thunderbirds matchup marks the final home game for Georgia in the month of March. The team goes on a two-game away stretch to Albany (March 19) and Toronto (March 26) before returning to Gas South Arena on April 1. The Swarm play four games in the month of April, hosting three of them (April 1, April 16, April 30). The lone and final road contest of the regular season is on April 23 when they travel to league newcomer, Panther City Lacrosse Club in Fort Worth, Texas.
Jordan Hall: Is 2 points away from reaching the 800th of his career
Vaughn Harris: Needs 15 faceoff wins to reach 200 in his career
Jordan MacIntosh: Needs 15 faceoff wins to pass Stephen Hoar for 6th place in league history with 1,651
Jordan MacIntosh: Is 11 loose balls shy of 1,446, ranking him 9th in NLL history
Mike Poulin: Needs one win to become the fourth goaltender all-time with 100 in his career
Lyle Thompson: Is 6 points shy of achieving the 500th of his career
- Georgia fell to Halifax, 15-10, on the road; both teams combined for 95 total shots on goal
- Halifax netted the first two goals, but the Swarm responded with three-straight to take their only lead of the game
- The Swarm took five shots less than the Thunderbirds getting outshot 50-45; Shayne Jackson led the team with 15 on net
- Jordan MacIntosh recorded the most points on the team after scoring one goal and giving out five assists; Lyle Thompson, Brendan Bomberry and Jackson each followed with two goals and three assists each
- Craig Wende played 37:32 minutes in net, stopping 27 Thunderbirds shots; Wende ended the night with a .794 save percentage
- The Swarm were outscored in every frame besides the fourth; in the third, Georgia only scored one goal, but the Swarm’s defense held Halifax to three goals
- Georgia struggled with faceoffs, only winning 7-of-29 (24.1 percent) opportunities; all seven Swarm wins were by Connor Kirst, while Jake Withers won all 22 Thunderbirds faceoffs
- Halifax’s starting goaltender Warren Hill made 35 saves and posted a .778 save percentage
- Clarke Petterson and Austin Shanks both totaled seven points while Stephan Leblanc and Cody Jamieson registered six points apiece
- Georgia is tied for first with the Buffalo Bandits for most goals scored in the league as they both netted 130 shots so far this season; the Swarm averages 11.81 goals per game
- The Georgia defense ranks third in overall penalty killing record stopping 29-of-45 (64.4 percent) opportunities; the backline defused 10-of-16 (62.5 percent) man-up chances at home
- Lyle Thompson ranks tied for first in NLL goals (31), third in league points (67), second in shots (125), and tied for first in shorthanded points (4); Thompson averages 6.09 points per game
- Shayne Jackson ranks 10th in NLL points (50) and is tied for fourth in league goals (25); Jackson scored the game-winning goal on March 4 marking his second of the season tying him with Thompson for first on the team
- TJ Comizio ranks fifth in league shooting percentage after sinking 3-of-7 shots (42.9 percent); Comizio sits 17th in NLL rookie points, recording 10
- Mike Poulin sits second in NLL goaltender minutes played after logging 621:53; Poulin has saved the fourth most shots in the league, totaling 364
- Ethan Walker has moved from eighth to sixth place in NLL rookie points, registering 26; this is the fourth-straight week Walker ranks top-10 in that category
- Among rookies, Connor Kirst has won the second-most faceoffs, totaling 56 wins; the newcomer posts a 46.3 winning percentage
- Bryan Cole ranks fifth among NLL defenders in points (17), fourth in goals (7), second in power-play goals (2), and fourth in power-play points (3)
Where To Watch
- ESPN+ – Use your ESPN+ account (or create a new one) to watch the game live Saturday, March 12, 2022, at 7:00 PM ET and all season long
- Peachtree TV – The Swarm vs. Thunderbirds game will be tape delayed; the broadcast will air on Sunday, March 13 at 2:00 PM ET
- Watch live in person at six Gwinnett County Taco Mac locations: Buford, Cumming, Duluth, Johns Creek, Lawrenceville & Suwanee
About the Georgia Swarm
The Georgia Swarm continue the 2021-22 season at Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Resort Field at Gas South Arena. The full schedule is available at GeorgiaSwarm.com/Schedule. Watch the fastest game on two feet for just $10 a seat by heading to GeorgiaSwarm.Com/Tickets or by calling 844-4-GASWARM. Many other membership options, fan experiences, and group ticket options are available at GeorgiaSwarm.com. For additional information, follow the Swarm on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and TikTok: @GeorgiaSwarmLAX.
About the National Lacrosse League
The National Lacrosse League (NLL) is North America’s premier professional lacrosse league. Founded in 1986, the NLL ranks third in average attendance for pro indoor sports worldwide, behind only the NHL and NBA. The League is comprised of 15 franchises across the United States and Canada: Albany FireWolves, Buffalo Bandits, Calgary Roughnecks, Colorado Mammoth, Georgia Swarm, Halifax Thunderbirds, Las Vegas NLL, New York Riptide, Panther City Lacrosse Club (TX), Philadelphia Wings, Rochester Knighthawks, San Diego Seals, Saskatchewan Rush, Toronto Rock, and Vancouver Warriors.
For more information, visit NLL.com and find @NLL on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.