Jeff Cornwall had been preparing his entire career for a moment when he may be called on to score.
It doesn’t happen often for defencemen like him, but in Saskatoon Saturday night, with the Championship on the line, that moment came.
“Ultimately that’s something I practice quite often and when I had the chance in front of me I knew exactly what I wanted to do,” Cornwall said.
“I wanted to come up big for my teammates,” he said.
There were just 12 seconds of regulation time left on the clock when Cornwall scored, beating the Buffalo Bandits 11-10 and sealing the sweep.
The crowd lost it. The team said they had never played in front of a crowd so loud.
But there was a lot to cheer about. The Rush are back-to-back NLL Champions.
Coach Derek Keenan said it was the team’s persistence that paid off Saturday night after a tight game that went back and forth throughout the match.
“We just kind of hung with it, like we talked about throughout the entire playoffs. We focus on the process and being patient,” Keenan said. “And sure enough we got a breakaway.”
As impressive as Cornwall’s goal was, the team’s goalie Aaron Bold was at least equally impressive, taking home MVP honours for his effort in the playoffs.
On Saturday, he stopped 47-of-57 shots in the win.