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LumberJax

by: , DAWSON

The Portland LumberJax expect tough competition this season, which opens for them at 7 p.m. Jan. 12 at the Rose Garden against the New York Titans.

The Jax say they have greatly improved from last year, when they went 4-12. Seven of those games were decided by one or two goals. Four other games were decided by three or four goals.

'It's a one-goal league, as we often say,' Portland coach/General Manager Derek Keenan says. 'It's very competitive. I think every team is good.'

'You'll see a lot of one-goal games,' says new forward Dan Dawson, who is expected to raise the team's level of offense dramatically. 'I don't see many teams finishing over 10-6 (only two of 13 did last year). Every team is a legitimate playoff contender.'

This year, the National Lacrosse League has 12 teams in two divisions. Four teams from each division will make the playoffs. Portland is in the West with four other teams: Calgary, Colorado, Edmonton and San Jose.