Seals lose overtime heart breaker, 13-12

Credit: Josh Jimenez;/ EVT Sports

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Credit: Seals

The first home overtime game in San Diego Seals‘ franchise history didn’t go to plan, as the Seals never possessed the ball in the sudden-death period.

The Seals led four goals after the first period, but after a catastrophic second quarter, they trailed at halftime. Their offense was stellar, but they just couldn’t tread water defensively. The usually stout Frank Scigliano faced 50 shots and allowed 13 goals. He also allowed a goal on four of the final six shots he faced, including the game-winner. 

The Seals started out extremely well, as rookie Tre Leclaire opened the scoring less than three minutes into the game. Philadelphia did briefly take the lead in the first, but San Diego roared back. Leclaire added a second goal to tie the game, shooting just before the shot clock expired. Fellow rookie Mac O’Keefe put himself on the score sheet with a long-range strike before Zack Greer doubled the Seals’ advantage on their next possession. The newly acquired Brett Hickey scored his fourth goal in a Seals uniform before Seals phenom Austin Staats put another goal past Wings goalie Zach Higgins. The Seals ended the first quarter with all the momentum in the world and a four-goal lead, but hardly anything went right in the second quarter.

Philadelphia pulled a goal back just over a minute into the period, but Staats quickly scored his second of the night to put the Seals back up by four. Ben McIntosh scored the first goal of his hat trick a couple of minutes later, bringing the Wings’ deficit back down to three. Philadelphia then scored on consecutive possessions, as Corey Small and Kiel Matisz quickly brought the Wings back into the game. Blaze Riordan tied the game at seven, which took the air completely out of Pechanga Arena.

The Seals didn’t seem to have any sort of energy left, and Austin Staats put them a man down after getting a two minutes penalty for slashing. Small quickly slotted home a power-play goal, putting the Seals behind, despite being ahead by four goals entering the period. McIntosh extended the Wings’ lead just over a minute into the third quarter, but Austin Staats completed his hat trick to get the Seals back within one. San Diego missed a chance to draw level on a power play, sending them to the final quarter down a goal,

Philadelphia’s Jackson Suboch was given a five-minute major for a high sticking penalty, which changed the entire dynamic of the game. Casey Jackson scored twice on the power play, giving the Seals the lead. Both of Jackson’s goals were extremely athletic, including his first goal, which saw him leap from behind the goal. However, Corey Small equalized for Philadelphia, tying the game at ten, completing his hat trick in the process. Matt Rambo fired the Wings ahead before McIntosh extended the lead to two with under two minutes left. When the Seals looked dead, Zack Greer scored twice in the final two minutes to tie the game and force overtime. Greer’s second goal gave him a hat trick while the crowd erupted behind him. 

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The NLL’s overtime period is sudden death, and Philadelphia’s Ben McIntosh finished his four-goal night off with the game-winning goal just moments into overtime.

The Seals will travel to Colorado for their second game of the weekend. It’s a crucial affair, as San Diego leads the Mammoth by just half a game atop the Western Division. The Seals will look to snap their three-game losing streak in the process.

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