Georgia Swarm

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Swarm is defined as a large number of people or things. In Georgia there has been a swarm of lacrosse players. Those players have descended upon the Infinite Energy Arena in Duluth. This is where one of the nine teams in the National Lacrosse League (NLL) plays – Georgia Swarm. The NLL is a men’s professional box lacrosse league in North America. Box lacrosse refers to games played indoors as opposed to the traditional field lacrosse played outside. There are five Canadian teams and four United States teams. The Western division contains the Calgary Roughnecks, Colorado Mammoth, Saskatchewan Rush, and Vancouver Stealth. The Eastern division contains the Buffalo Bandits, Georgia Swarm, New England Black Wolves, Rochester Knighthawks, and Toronto Rock.

There are four 15-minute quarters with two minute breaks between the first and second quarters and between the third and fourth quarters. There is a 12-minute halftime break. If both teams have the same amount of goals at the end of regulation, then overtime periods are up to 15-minutes each with the next team scoring winning the game. Each team is made up of 20 players of whom two are goaltenders. The average salary for a player is $19,000. The top franchise players earn about $34,000. A total of 18 games are played during the regular season, nine on the road and nine at home. The top three teams in each division make the playoffs. The top seed in each division is given a first-round bye, as the second seed host the third seed. All are trying to win the Champion’s Cup.

The Swarm’s colors are gold, blue and white. Their head coach is Ed Comeau. The team has three brothers on it, Miles, Lyle, and Jerome Thompson. Miles was drafted two years ago. Lyle was drafted last year and Jerome was a midseason signing. This season the Swarm are in the playoffs as the third seed with an 8-10 record. They won four of their final five regular season games, including their last three home games. That last home game was a 14-6 attack verse the Stealth in front of 5,347 fans. This is slightly above the average attendance since moving the team from Minnesota (2004-2015), where the average attendance was about 9,000. While in Georgia, the Swarm only saw an attendance of 9,000 for their home opener. “At this level, these are the best indoor lacrosse players in the world,” Comeau said. “These guys aren’t playing in this league trying to get to another league. This is the pinnacle. We hope over time when people hear the Swarm, they’ll know what it refers to. Right now, I’m sure people are flipping to the Weather Channel thinking there’s a bee infestation or something.” With more wins and playoff games on the horizon, look for attendance to swarm.

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