6:45 p.m. - What was that Newton said about objects in motion? I think it was something about how they tend to remain in motion.
Wonder if that Newton fellow knew much about indoor lacrossse, because we have two teams flying in opposite directions tonight. The Bandits have lost three in a row, while the Edmonton Rush has won three in a row. The Bandits want to change direction, the Rush do not.
And that's the setting for tonight's game. It's a big one for the Bandits, who are facing a three-game road trip after this. When you are but one game ahead of the last-place squads in the league, the margin for error is small.
The lineup for the Bandits already looks interesting. Nick Cotter has been placed on the physically unable to perform list. That has opened up a roster spot, and it has been taken by Alex Kedoh-Hill. (Note: I've seen his name as Alex-Kedoh Hill, Alex "Kedoh" Hill, and Alex Kedoh-Hill. I'll stick with the latter from now on - unless I hear otherwise.) Hill came over from the Knighthawks for Scott Self just before the deadline.
Meanwhile Chad Culp and Carter Bender are also hurting, according to coach Darris Kilgour. Billy Dee Smith will miss tonight's game because of a suspension from the Colorado home game. He dropped his appeal.
I saw Tracey Kelusky participate in the morning shootaround. He said his injury was coming around, and that he was almost healed. Kelusky is on injured reserve.
Cheap plug for a reason department: I wrote up a imaginary conversation between the Bandits' Steve Dietrich and his Toronto counterpart about the deal that brought Dietrich's rights back to Buffalo. I saw Dietrich at practice this morning, and said I hoped he got a laugh out of it. He said he did, adding that he liked the idea of it taking three players and two draft choices to get his rights. Dietrich also said he has no plans to return to active duty. I bring it up because you'll like Kilgour's reaction to the trade; it's in Sunday's notebook in the newspaper.
The Bandits are wearing special uniforms tonight. They will be auctioned off later to raise money for the fight against cancer. The pink trim isn't bad against the black uniforms.
You can watch tonight's game on line through nll.com, which has a link to the You Tube's Lacrosse Network. Or you can listen to the game on 1520 AM. When this game is over, you can listen to Syracuse's basketball win over California on that same station. Note: That last part may turn out to be wishful thinking. Blame March Madness.
7:17 p.m. - It's been pointed out that this is Jordan Critch's first career game with the Bandits. He is one of the team's second-round draft choices. (Thank you, Alan.)
7:33 p.m. - Interesting how some good young players drafted by the Bandits have wound up in Edmonton - Jeremy Thomnpson, Chris Corbeil and Jeffr Cornwall.
7:47 p.m. - Edmonton is out to a 2-1 lead with about 10 minutes left in the quarter. The tiebreaking goal scored when Curtis Knight flipped the ball into the crease. Mike McNamara and Anthony Cosmo couldn't figure out who should pick the ball up, and it dribbled in. These things happen in a losing streak.
By the way, kudos to the sound man for playing "YYZ" by Rush when Edmonton took the floor. Good to hear one of my favorite bands in the building.
7:55 p.m. - Edmonton has done a great deal right already. Corey Small has a hat trick, and it's 5-2, Rush. Bandits have missed some passes, and Edmonton looks stocked with good athletes.
7:58 p.m. - Kurtis Wagar has come on in relief after Jarrett Davis scores to make it 6-2. Cosmo was far from sharp, but he hasn't gotten much help. By the way, Mark Matthews made a great pass across the crease to set up Davis' goal. I'm starting to see what the fuss is all about when it comes with the rookie. Shots are 18-7, Edmonton.
8:05 p.m. - Shots for the period ended up 22-8, which describes how the first period went. Buffalo might even be a bit lucky to be down by only four.
8:14 p.m. - Buffalo has cut down on the shots on goal in the first part of the second quarter. Bad news - Edmonton has scored on two of its three shots. Rush leads, 8-3.
8:21 p.m. - The game has calmed down a bit. Edmonton still has the five-goal lead, but the Bandits have settled down a bit. There is 5:11 left.
8:32 p.m. - Not much noise from the crowd at the end of the half. It's 9-4 Edmonton after two periods. Shots are 33-18.
8:56 p.m. - Bandits are showing a little life early in the second half. They have scored two straight goals to cut the lead to 10-6.
9:00 p.m. - It's still 10-6 with 5:53 left. Edmonton has gotten a little too fancy in its shots, trying to be flashy. Still, the Rush is hanging on to the four-goal lead.
9:11 p.m. - Dam has broken again. Edmonton has taken a 13-6 lead with a minute to go in the period. Cosmo back in.
9:25 p.m. - 16,629 are here tonight. OK, some have left. It';s 14-6 with 7:48 left.
9:19 p.m. - Still 13-6 with 12 minutes to go. At least the Bandits killed off a five-minute major.
9:38 p.m. - Bandits' misery, at least on the field, is over. It's a 14-7 final. Alex Kedoh-Hill's three goals are the only bright spot.
11:41 p.m. - Whew. When I left the arena at 10:20, the Bandits were still in a players-only meeting in their locker room. Buffalo has gone from 5-3 to 5-7 in no time at all, seemingly, and the Bandits are a half-game out of the overall basement.
Coach Darris Kilgour started his remarks tonight by saying, "We were in trouble from the first minute to the last minute." No argument.
There are only four games to turn things around, and the first three of them will be on the road. This could be quite a ride.
My stories will be posted soon. Thanks for following along.
--- Budd Bailey