The Colorado Mammoth clinched their first win of the season, 12-7, on Sunday afternoon, playing in front of an energized crowd of 11,101 on Kids’ Day Out at Pepsi Center.
“I’ve been saying for the last few weeks that we were moving in the right direction,” said Mammoth interim general manager and head coach Pat Coyle. “I liked our game last week, it was just that we needed to clean up a few little things, and it made a difference tonight.”
The Mammoth beat the Calgary Roughnecks who were visiting for the second time this season. The Mammoth and the Roughnecks have split the series and will play the tiebreaker game on Saturday, Mar.16 at the Scotiabank Saddledome.
Ryan Benesch led Colorado’s offense, posting his second hat trick of the season and adding four helpers.
“[Del Bianco] made some big saves on me today, but the more chances I got, the more and more I tried to hit my spot and, luckily, tonight, I hit a couple.
“We know 0-3 wasn’t ideal, but we knew we were eventually going to break out and I think tonight was the start of that.”
Kyle Killen, the Mammoth’s first selection in the 2018 NLL Entry Draft (second round, 22nd overall), scored his first two career goals in his NLL debut on Sunday.
“We knew that Killen was going to bring excitement, a lot of movement, and we knew he had great hands, so we’re not surprised by what he did today,” said Coyle.
Jeremy Noble found Killen open in the middle at 12:27 in the second quarter and set the rookie up for his first career tally.
"As soon as I caught the ball, I just knew I didn’t have much time and I was kind of close to the crease, so I was just trying to make a quick move and be in the right spot,” said Killen. “I guess it worked.
“I was just happy that I buried it; got the first one out of the way.”
Goalie Dillon Ward saved 32 of 39 shots-on-goal in the Mammoth’s win.
“It was a complete team win," said Ward.
“I think just top to bottom, we played a great game. That was definitely a great game for the full sixty. And that was our focus. We just wanted to focus on winning each shift rather than the big picture.”
The Mammoth begin a three-game road trip in Vancouver next Saturday, Jan. 26. The team returns to Denver for their next home game against the Georgia Swarm on Saturday, Feb. 16. Tickets are available at AltitudeTickets.com.