The Saskatchewan Rush rode another sensational third quarter to a 13-9 win over the defending National Lacrosse League champion Swarm in Georgia.
The Rush opened an insurmountable 11-5 lead heading into the fourth quarter outscoring the home side 6-2 and have now outscored opponents 19-6 in the third quarter while jumping out to a 3-0 record.
Jeff Shattler recorded his first hat trick as a member of the Rush, Robert Church also potted three and added three assists, with Mark Matthews, Jeremy Thompson, Marty Dinsdale, Ben McIntosh, Matt Hossack, Brett Mydske and Jeff Cornwall rounding out the Saskatchewan scoring.
Hossack, Mydske and Cornwall as defenders, all scored key transition goals back-to-back-to-back late in the third quarter.
Goalie Evan Kirk turned in another terrific performance with 41 saves earning first star honours on the road against the defending NLL champions.
The Rush defence was also praised by coach and general manager Derek Keenan as the Swarm made the score look for flattering with two goals in the final minute. They limited last year's NLL points leader Lyle Thompson to a goal and three assists while Shayne Jackson had three goals and one helper for the Swarm.
Saskatchewan's 66.7 % power play heading into the game remained in high gear with three goals on four advantages, while the penalty kill was one-for-two with a shorthanded goal. The Rush power play also surrendered a shorthanded goal.
The Rush are off to their best start since 2014 and take a 3-0 record into next Saturday’s game in Colorado against the Mammoth who are also 3-0.
The Rush swept the Mammoth in last season’s best of three Western Conference final.