Rock Ground Knighthawks In 12-9 Win
Toronto Improves To 5-3
Saturday, February 10, 2018
Rochester, NY – The Toronto Rock (5-3) defeated the Rochester Knighthawks (2-6) by a score of 12-9 on Saturday night at Blue Cross Arena in Rochester, NY. In the process, the win gives the Rock the season series and the head to head tiebreaker against the Knighthawks.
Nick Rose was phenomenal between the pipes, making 36 saves on 45 Rochester shots to improve his record to 5-2 on the season.
“That’s a good road win for us,” said Rose after the game. “This is a really tough building to come into and get a victory. To do that and take the season series against the Knighthawks, that’s massive.”
Rock head coach Matt Sawyer was happier with his team’s performance after a 16-8 loss last weekend at home to the Calgary Roughnecks.
“That was a tough game out there, we certainly paid a price in all areas on the floor,” said Sawyer. “We had 12, two were empty netters, but at the end of the night, those 10 we scored up front might have been as pretty as any of the ‘twenties’ we put up. We were facing a desperate team in Rochester and we knew that the game was going to be tight. Our goaltender was outstanding and we found a way to get it done, so that was good.”
After falling behind 3-1 just past the midway point of the opening quarter, the Rock scored a pair of goals just 50 seconds apart to tie the score 3-3. Toronto outshot Rochester 17-11 in the first quarter, but things were even on the scoreboard at the end of one.
Toronto scored the first two goals of the second quarter and appeared to have all the momentum, leading 5-3 just 1:08 into the frame. Latrell Harris scored the first of those two goals just nine seconds into the second and Brett Hickey 59 seconds later, both of those goals coming on the power play. Rochester broke up the Rock’s four-gaol run, chipping away with a power play marker and shorthanded tally to tie the score 5-5 heading to the halftime break.
The defensive battle continued into the second half and Rose made some big saves at key moments. Down 7-6, Toronto scored the final three goals of the third quarter, kick started by a transition goal from Rock captain Brodie Merrill. The Rock carried a 9-7 lead into the final quarter.
In the fourth quarter, Toronto managed to answer every Rochester tally and get a couple of empty net goals in the process to seal the win. Tom Schreiber left the game momentarily in the fourth quarter with a lower body injury but did return.
The Rock offence was spread throughout the roster with Reid Reinholdt’s four points (1+3) being the top offensive output. Rob Hellyer and Dan Craig each scored twice while Merrill, Harris, Hickey, Kieran McArdle, Adam Jones, Sheldon Burns and Billy Hostrawser all had singles.
The Rock will wrap up their two-game road trip next Saturday night in Georgia against the defending NLL champion Swarm