Winners of three straight games, the FireWolves have two games this weekend, both against the 2-4 Georgia Swarm. Albany is coming into the game hot after handing the Halifax Thunderbirds their first loss of the season as the FireWolves defense shined while the team moved to 3-2 on the year. The first game of the back-to-back is on Friday at 7:30 p.m. in Georgia while the second game is on Saturday at 7 p.m. back in Albany. Both games will be broadcast live on My4 WNYT and ESPN Plus and can be heard on 104.5 The Team ESPN Radio.
Despite having four losses early on the season, two of the four were in overtime against the Philadelphia Wings, and another was just by two goals, proving that the Swarm can hang with anyone. Georgia is coming off one of those aforementioned overtime losses to the Wings just last weekend. The Swarm were able to tie the game late in the fourth quarter, but Philadelphia had the last laugh in the low-scoring affair. Georgia has four players with at least 19 points on the season, making them a tough matchup for any defense.
FireWolves Players to Watch:
Doug Jamieson has lived up to the hype of one of the best goaltenders in the game over the past three contests for the FireWolves, allowing a mere 19 goals over that span. The reigning Goaltender of the Year finds himself ranking second in the league with just 9.02 GAA on the season and has been a major component in the FireWolves’ three-game win streak. Albany has faced many tough offensive tests to date, but lookout for the firepower of Lyle Thompson, Shayne Jackson, and co. on the Swarm. If the FireWolves defensive unit can continue to force errant shots, you can expect a couple of high-save games from Jamieson.
Nick Chaykowsky missed the FireWolves’ matinee victory in Philadelphia due to being placed on the Covid List, but he sure made an impact on his return to action against Halifax. He seemed to be everywhere on the floor all night and was rewarded with his first goal on the season on a power play early in the second quarter. He is just another member of the FireWolves’ stout defense and that was on full display last weekend as he caused one turnover and scooped up five loose balls. Albany’s defense will be an X-factor in these games, and you can expect to see Chaykowsky remaining in the mix against Georgia’s weapons.
Joe Resetarits may be a name that pops up frequently in our pregame previews, but no one can deny the season he is having as he has given opposing defenses fit all year. The former UAlbany Great Dane showed out for Capital Region fans last weekend, putting in yet another outing of at least three points with one goal and three assists. Resetarits finds himself ranked second on the team with nine goals and third on the team with 18 total points as he is a key member of the FireWolves’ balanced offensive attack. Look for Resetarits to continue to take a bunch of quality shots on net while creating scoring opportunities for the rest of the Albany offense.
Opposing Players to Watch:
Lyle Thompson is a name that Capital Region lacrosse fans already know very well as the forward was a standout for the UAlbany Great Danes not all that long ago. He has continued to be a superstar since he finished up school and is having a masterful season to no surprise. Through six games, Thompson ranks third in the league with 35 total points and 15 goals. His 20 assists also rank him inside the top ten. Thompson has yet to score fewer than three points in any game this season and even boasts a 10-point effort back in early December. Albany’s defense has done a stellar job over the past three victories limiting their opponents’ top scorers, but Thompson is on another level and will present arguably the biggest challenge to this point in the season.
Shayne Jackson is a name that may get slightly overlooked because of Thompson’s greatness, but fans (and the FireWolves) should not sleep on what Jackson has done so far this season. Like Thompson, Jackson has also scored at least three points in each game, and he has done so with a perfect balance of 10 goals and 10 assists on the season. Jackson is the reigning league MVP, and the Albany defensive unit needs to treat him as such. He is coming off of a four-point performance against the Wings on two goals and two assists and will continue to compliment Thompson as the duo creates matchup issues for opposing defenses.
Goaltender Mike Poulin has had a nice season despite the team’s 2-4 record. The long-time veteran has given up just 64 goals through the first six games and has made a whopping 230 saves. Poulin has kept the Swarm in contention in every game this season and this weekend’s games against the FireWolves should be no different. Albany has established themselves as a defensive unit meaning fans could expect low-scoring affairs in the back-to-back thanks to high-level goaltender play and sturdy defenses on both sides.
After this weekend’s set of games, the Swarm and FireWolves will faceoff one more time on the season. The next matchup is set for Saturday, March 19 at 7 p.m. at the MVP Arena in Albany.
Fans can secure their tickets for any of the 2021-22 FireWolves games today! For more information regarding tickets, visit www.AlbanyFireWolves.com or call/text the FireWolves front office at 518-362-4900.
The Albany FireWolves 2021-22 Inaugural Season is presented by CDPHP.
The Albany FireWolves is the Capital Region’s very own Professional Box Lacrosse team, playing in the National Lacrosse League out of the MVP Arena in downtown Albany, NY. For more information, contact the Albany FireWolves Front Office at (518) 362-4900 or visit AlbanyFireWolves.com