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The New York Riptide upset the Buffalo Bandits in Week 8 of the 2023-24 season.

NLL Power Rankings: Riptide Steal Win from Bandits, Exit League Cellar

January 22, 2024
Jack Goods
NLL / New York Riptide

The Toronto Rock aren’t just atop the National Lacrosse League standings — they are also 5-0 for the first time in franchise history. The impressive start for one of the league’s historic franchises, combined with Albany’s stellar streak coming to an end, helps Toronto slide into the No. 1 spot in this week’s power rankings.

1. Toronto Rock (5-0)

The Rock are the final undefeated team standing, finishing their contest with Georgia on a 3-0 run to win 12-9. It took a comeback effort to keep the record unblemished, as Toronto trailed by three early in the third quarter and one goal entering the final frame. Josh Dawick accounted for the winner with 9:05 remaining, with Dan Craig and Challen Rogers adding insurance. Last week: 2

2. Albany FireWolves (6-1)

The FireWolves dug themselves out of an early 7-1 hole to get within one, but another 7-1 run in favor of San Diego sealed a 14-7 triumph for the Seals while simultaneously snapping Albany’s win streak. Alex Simmons was held to just two points, the quietest performance of his young career.  “As much as it sucks and as much as it hurts right now, in the long run, I think it’s going to be good for us to come back and play against some adversity,” Ethan Walker said. Last week: 1

3. San Diego Seals (4-2)

Curtis Dickson scored with four seconds remaining in the third quarter, leading to a dominant final frame for the Seals. Chris Origlieri allowed one goal in the final 16:30 while San Diego’s offensive stars went to work on the other end. Wesley Berg and Austin Staats each had seven points, and Dane Dobbie was close behind with six. Last week: 5

4. Georgia Swarm (4-3)

Zach Miller put Georgia up 8-7 entering the fourth quarter, but only Andrew Kew would beat Nick Rose the rest of the way. Lyle Thompson recorded a hat trick in addition to three helpers. As noted by Adam Levi for IL Indoor, Thompson is on pace for his first 50-goal season. Last week: 4

5. Rochester Knighthawks (3-2)

The Knighthawks had the weekend off and return Saturday for a rivalry matchup with Halifax. Last week: 6

6. Buffalo Bandits (3-3)

New York swarmed the Bandits early in a 15-13 upset, getting out to an early 10-3 lead with a run that caused Buffalo to swap out goalie Matt Vinc for a short period. The defending champs woke up in the second half, tying it at 13 with 2:09 remaining, but they couldn’t answer a final go-ahead tally from Jeff Teat. At least fans who attended Tucker Out Lymphoma night saw a hit of history, as Vinc became the first goalie in NLL history to reach 10,000 career saves. With injuries out the back door, does Buffalo need to make a trade to reach last year’s heights? Last week: 3

7. Halifax Thunderbirds (2-3)

The T-Birds got some rest this week in preparation for Saturday’s matchup with Rochester. Last week: 7

8. Philadelphia Wings (2-3)

The Wings enjoyed a bye week before Saturday’s home contest against San Diego. Last week: 9

9. Calgary Roughnecks (2-3)

A 5-3 fourth quarter in favor of the Mammoth doomed Calgary, which fell 13-10 in a rivalry matchup. The Roughnecks entered the fourth down a goal but allowed a quarter-opening three-goal run to put themselves in a tough position down the stretch. Jesse King did his part with seven assists. Last week: 8

10. Panther City Lacrosse Club (2-3)

PCLC had the weekend off and is next in action Saturday at Las Vegas. Last week: 10

11. Colorado Mammoth (2-4)

The Mammoth set a new season high with 13 goals against the Riggers, a positive development after two straight games being held to eight. Eli McLaughlin and Connor Robinson led the way with six points apiece, while Dillon Ward made 37 saves for his 70th career win. Colorado now plays on the road for four straight games. Last week: 12

12. Las Vegas Desert Dogs (2-3)

The Desert Dogs had the weekend off and return Saturday when they host Panther City. Last week: 11

13. New York Riptide (2-4)

Jeff Teat dazzled while playing in front of his dad, Bandits scout Dan Teat, recording his first 10-point performance of the season inside KeyBank Center. His final goal was the most important, a stellar leaping effort to answer Buffalo’s equalizer. Reilly O’Connor recorded his seventh assist on the game-winner, while Stephen Keogh added four goals and an assist on the night. Last week: 15

14. Vancouver Warriors (2-4)

The Warriors shut out Saskatchewan for the final 19:57, allowing the group to mount a 6-0 run for an 11-9 victory. Adam Charalambides recorded four of his seven points during the game-closing spurt, getting an assist on Keegan Bal’s go-ahead goal with 8:11 remaining. Aaron Bold made 39 saves, turning back the clock in the closing minutes to help Vancouver to a much-needed win. Last week: 14

15. Saskatchewan Rush (1-4)

Mike Triolo scored the final goal of the night for Saskatchewan with 4:57 remaining in the third quarter, with a poor-timed cold streak spoiling the Rush’s throwback night. The home squad led by four at the end of the second and third quarters but couldn’t hold on against an old rival. Zach Manns and Robert Church each notched five points. Last week: 13