(Sunday, Feb. 14) – The Georgia Swarm (3-4) returned home to Harrah’s Cherokee Casino Field at Infinite Energy Arena on Sunday afternoon, but could not stop the Buffalo Bandits (4-2) en route to a 21-14 loss.
Having been away from home for close to a month, the Swarm was anxious to get back to The Hive after finishing their three-game road trip with a 2-1 record. From the get-go however, Georgia could not muster enough production on both ends to slow down a hot Bandits squad that posted a season-high 21 goals. The two teams will meet again next Saturday in Buffalo for a 7:30 p.m. showdown.
"We weren't surprised by anything that they did, we knew they were going to run," Swarm head coach Ed Comeau said. "We knew that they had some dynamic scorers, and we had a plan for it, but didn't execute well. Having a chance to go back and play them in their house, I think the guys are looking forward to that and hopefully we can put a better effort out and make it more of a game."
Despite the loss, the Swarm saw strong production from their leading scorer, forward Johnny Powless who posted a team-high eight points (4G, 4A). After this four-goal performance Sunday, Powless now ranks third in the NLL in goals (19) and sixth in points (37). Captain Jordan MacIntosh (2G, 3A), assistant captain Shayne Jackson (2G, 2A) and rookie transition player Chad Tutton (2G) each added two goals apiece. MacIntosh recorded his 100th career goal in the NLL late in the fourth quarter on a beautiful behind-the-back shot while he was soaring midair across the crease.
After Buffalo jumped out to an early 2-0 lead in the first, the Swarm fought back and tied the game up after Jackson and Tutton tallied their first scores. The Bandits closed the quarter with another score, and then managed to tack on another seven goals in a row to build a commanding 10-2 lead midway through the second. Georgia made a push at the end of the half, getting as close as 11-5, until forward Ryan Benesch (3G, 6A) scored 12 seconds later to give the Bandits a 12-5 advantage at half.
The Swarm managed a four-goal run at the end of the third quarter which re-energized their crowd and put the game within five at 15-10. Buffalo countered with two goals to start the fourth, and the Swarm’s offense hit a dry spell before scoring the game’s final three scores. Dhane Smith led the Bandits with a game-high 13 points (5G, 8A) and Alex Kedoh Hill added four goals and an assist.
To purchase tickets for the Swarm’s remaining six home games, call 844-4-GASWARM or visit GeorgiaSwarm.com.
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