Tonight the Buffalo Bandits try to break a two game losing streak against the Portland LumberJax, and I try to get my first win in the press box. Last Saturday the Bandits suffered a tough 15-14 overtime loss in Rochester, and are looking to regain their form at home.
The game will mark Portland’s first trip back to HSBC Arena, the site of last year’s NLL Championship Game. Buffalo defeated the LumberJax 14-13, giving the Bandits their first NLL Championship in over a decade.
This year Portland sits at 5-3, good for second place in the West, while the Bandits (7-3) sit atop the East despite the two game losing streak. Bandits head coach Darius Kilgore has cited defense as a major concern for the team, as well as playing a full 60 minutes.
Bandits.comsays that goaltender Ken Montur will get that start tonight, after backup Mike Thompson was ineffective last week against the Knighthawks.
With Boston just a half game back in the East, it becomes very important for Buffalo to take care of business at home. They will have to do it shorthanded, as Rich Kilgour and Kevin Dostie will not play. Clay Hill will be a game-time decision with a groin injury.
Last time I was in the press box was February 28th, which saw the Bandits collapse late in the 4th quarter against Minnesota. Hopefully I’m better luck this time around. Look for NLL player of the month Mark Steenhuis to have a better showing tonight, as he was held to just three points in Rochester.
Game time is 7:30 tonight at HSBC Arena.