Toronto – The Philadelphia Wings (5-4) defeated the Toronto Rock (4-5) by a score of 12-10 on Friday night at Air Canada Centre to take over sole possession of first place in the NLL’s East Division.
Toronto’s Kasey Beirnes opened the scoring on the powerplay but just 8 seconds later, Philadelphia’s Brodie Merrill tied the score 1-1. The Wings Dan Dawson struck shorthanded to push the visitors out to a 2-1 lead. Garrett Billings appeared to even the score, but Philadelphia challenged the call on the floor and the goal was disallowed leaving the score at 2-1 in favour of Philadelphia through one quarter.
Philadelphia increased their lead to two goals as Drew Westervelt scored shorthanded to make it 4-2. Jamie Rooney and Billings, on the powerplay, scored back-to-back goals to draw the Rock even 4-4. After the Wings had regained the lead, Captain Colin Doyle made his impact felt as he tied the game with less than a minute to go in the half. The Rock had one more possession in the first half but their offence came up empty and the score stood at 5-5 at the half.
Westervelt’s pair of powerplay markers put Philadelphia up 7-5 just past the six minute mark of the third quarter. Doyle scored the lone third quarter goal for the Rock as the third quarter finished 7-6 in favour of the Wings.
The Wings scored the opening two goals of the fourth quarter, both coming from Mike Hominuck giving Philadelphia a 9-6 lead. The Rock battled hard in the final quarter and were able to pull to within a goal late in the fourth. Philadelphia added an empty netter with 27 seconds left to seal the 12-10 win.
Rock forward Josh Sanderson’s second quarter assist on Garrett Billings’ powerplay goal was the 700th assist of Sanderson’s NLL career.
Leading the way offensively for the Rock was Garrett Billings with a goal and 7 assists. Philadelphia’s Dan Dawson was the Wings top point getter with 3 goals and 3 assists.
Next Friday night at 7:30pm at Air Canada Centre, the Rock will play host to their biggest rival, the Buffalo Bandits. For tickets, please visit www.torontorock.com or call 416-596-3075.