Toronto, ON – This is familiar territory for The Toronto Rock. The team currently sits atop the Eastern Division with a solid 8-3 record, after reclaiming first place with an important road victory over the Buffalo Bandits last Saturday. Despite a three-game winning streak and two games in hand over the Bandits, nobody on this team is relaxing yet. The Rock have five games remaining against tough opponents, beginning with this weekend’s match-ups versus Calgary and Philadelphia.
The last meeting with Canadian rivals Calgary resulted in one of the roughest games either teams experienced all season. With the Rock up 16-10 in the final minutes of the game, tensions boiled over with five fights erupting in the last 50 seconds of play.
“We’re expecting a tough game. Just look at their line-up. How do you expect anything less? Fights happen in a game. Sometimes out of frustration, sometimes to make a statement. Whatever happens this game, we’ll accept it if it comes to that again” said Terry Sanderson, Toronto Rock Head Coach and GM.
While the Roughnecks hold down first place in the West, they made numerous changes at NLL trade deadline to solidify that position. Recently signed transition player Kyle Neufeld and face-off specialist Jordan Sundher join newly acquired Ted Dowling for this trip to Toronto. Meanwhile, key players like Devon Wray, Andy Ogilvie and Matt Green are sidelined due to injury.
The Riggers are winless on ACC turf in four previous meetings and Toronto holds a commanding 6-1 overall record against Calgary. Toronto will look to the continued consistency Blaine Manning, Colin Doyle and Josh Sanderson, plus the unexpected offensive contributions of defensive veterans like Derek Suddons, Brian Beisel and Phil Sanderson. Everyone knows, however, that if the Rock can’t convert games in hand into points in the standings, a playoff spot may not be in the cards.
April 1st is the Rock’s “Salute to 911 Services” Night. The special evening will see the Chiefs from Toronto Police, Fire and Emergency Medical Services on hand for the ceremonial face-off, as well as participation of the Toronto Fire Pipes and Drums Unit, EMS Honour Guard and Police Services Colour Guard in the opening ceremonies. There will be a pre-game Community Safety Tailgate in the Galleria of the ACC from 5-7pm, where fans can pick up valuable spring safety information or purchase a special edition t-shirt from which the proceeds will go to benefit The Hospital for Sick Children.
Tickets for the Rock’s “Salute to 911 Services” Night through Ticketmaster outlets, online at www.torontorock.com, by phone at (416) 872-5000, or in person at the Box Office at the Air Canada Centre.