22W, no. 9; newsletter by b.n.)
I think it was Joe Torre who called Roger Clemens a “nose-bone-wearing, shrunken-head-carrying headhunter” back in the days when he was with the Boston Red Sox. Or maybe it was Derek Jeter. But whoever it was, there is no denying that after Roger Clemens signed to play with the New York Yankees, all was forgotten. What does that have to do with the Coastal Pirates? Well let's just say I know Joe Torre, and Russ Nicolosi is no Joe Torre. But more on that later. The Coastal Pirates found themselves up against the Crunch — a team that usually consists of guys like Mike Farrell (who was among the missing), Gucci (who donned the White to play with the Pirates), Scott LeMatty (present and accounted for playing on the Crunch), and of course “Roger” (as in Roger Clemens). The Pirates consisted of, the aforementioned Gucci, #67 and Keith on “D,” with Craig, Wildman, Scott Miller, Evan and someone else on “O.”
Anyway, the Pirates were able to jump on the board quickly when Russ picked-up an unassisted goal just :45 seconds into the game when he roofed a shot from the inside the left face-off circle. Russ would then get an assist on the next goal, but it was for the other team; the Crunch tied it 1-1 when Russ pulled-off what Harris termed as a “perfect deflection between my legs.” Oh well. Besides the guys mentioned above, the Crunch are known for guys like Alex Burke who is well known for taking slapshots from 10-feet outside the goal line when his team is leading 9-1. Now I know that #67 is well-aware of the velocity of Alex's shot, but for some reason #67 decided to turn his body to block a blast from the blueline; the puck hit #67's right foot so hard that his leg was literally blown out from under him. Ouch! Next, the Crunch added a goal that they actually scored to take the lead 2-1 before Keith tied the game up again on his own unassisted goal. The Crunch answered right back to take a brief 3-2 lead before Craig took a puck off the face off and tied the game for the third time. The Pirates finally regained the lead for the first time since the 21:00-minute mark on a goal from Wildman. Meanwhile, #67 was still hobbling around from the blast he took off his right leg — but obviously he didn't learn his lesson, because before the period was out he took a puck off the outside of the left leg; and let me tell you, it hurt so bad that his right leg suddenly felt fine. What followed was #67 dropping to the floor and, according to Gucci, he looked like the Black Knight from Monty Python's “Holy Grail” (In the scene, the guy had lost his arms and legs and was screaming, “Come back here, I'll bite your legs off!”).
I hate to say it, but after playing an impressive 1st period, the Pirates could not sustain the pressure. The Crunch would add a pair of goals before Russ and “Roger” had their run-in. I must admit that I didn't see the incident so I can only go with what Russ told me at the post-game “meeting” (I would have tempered it with a rebuttal from “Roger,” but he made a quick exit out of the rink after the game — not even stopping for a beer with his mates). Anyway, according to Russ there was a loose puck near the goalie when “Roger” slashed Russ' stick; nothing was called on that, but when Russ retaliated by knocking the stick out of the hands of “Roger,” Russ was called for a 2:00-minute penalty. At this point, the Pirates were only trailing by one goal, and this became a critical penalty kill; unfortunately, the Crunch were able to convert on the powerplay (Oddly enough, Wildman declared after the game that the penalty didn't hurt us — what game was he watching?). The Crunch would add another goal and fortunately for #67 he finally learned to stay out of the blast range of Alex's slapshots. Meanwhile with just :30 seconds remaining in the game and a three-goal lead, “Roger” picked up the puck and skated towards the Pirate zone; Russ stood up at the bench and yelled, “Shoot it at his head!” And just like that, “Roger” teed-up a slapshot that whistled just high of the crossbar and smashed into the glass behind the net. Hmmm. Scott LeMatty would point out after the game that all of the slapshots that “Roger” takes are head high. But no matter, much like Roger Clemens was welcomed to the Yankees, we expect “Roger” to be welcomed back to the Coastal Pirates this Sunday.
Oh yeah, and before I forget, for those of you that missed the “meeting” after the game: The play of the night did not happen during the game, but instead took place in the parking lot. Harris, who was walking around looking for a place to sit, saw a spot open up on the bumper of Scott's minivan. Usually Scott flips the seat back so that it acts like a tailgate on a pickup truck. Harris, in his haste to take the spot, did not verify that this was the case. Since, in fact, the bench seat was not flipped back there was just a deep well behind the bumper and Harris literally disappeared into the well — but amazingly did not spill a drop from his beer. Nice move Harris!
date of game: 7.20.05
1) RUSS NICOLOSI
If the game was only 1:00 minute long, Russ would've had the GWG.
2) BRIAN NEWCOMB
For playing goal with no pads. (At right, below.)
3) DARREN GUGGLIELMELLI
For abiding by his contract and playing for the Pirates whenever we play against another Gucci-rostered team.