Toronto Sets NLL Record With 17 First Half Goals
Langley, BC – The Toronto Rock (2-2) offence picked up right where it left off after last week’s 20-13 win over Buffalo, defeating the Vancouver Stealth (0-4) by a score of 24-7 on Saturday night in Langley, BC at the Langley Events Centre.
In the process, the Rock’s 17 first half goals set an NLL record for most goals in a half. The 24 goals scored by Toronto in the game was the second best total in franchise history, one shy of the 25 the team scored against the Syracuse Smash on April 15, 2000.
“We think we’re going to have a strong offence and it takes some time to get going,” explained Rock Head Coach Matt Sawyer. “Everybody was feeling (the pressure) a bit, we only scored nine goals in each of the first two games, but confidence is a powerful thing and it takes some time to build some chemistry. We made some lineup changes, inserted Dan Craig and Kieran McArdle, and switched from a strong right side to a strong left side, so far the results look pretty good.”
Pretty good might be an understatement. As Sawyer noted, the team scored just 18 goals combined in two losses to open the season but have since scored 44 goals in two wins to even their record.
Tom Schreiber notched career-highs with 12 points (*NLL later removed an assist, leaving him with 6 assists and 11 points*) and 5 goals and his 7 assists tied a career-best while Rob Hellyer equalled Schreiber’s output and his own personal career-high with 12 points and tied his personal career best with 9 assists. He’s scored 12 points and 9 assists on multiple occasions but interestingly enough the first time he did so was back in 2014, also against the Stealth and also at the Langley Events Centre.
Not to be overlooked is a 10-point game (4+6) by Adam Jones that vaulted him to the top of the NLL scoring race with 28 points after four games. Right behind him tied for second in league scoring are his teammates Hellyer and Schreiber with 24 points each.
The Rock led 10-0 after the first quarter which matched a team record for most goals in a quarter, also set in 2000 against Syracuse. Toronto continued to roll, mounting a 17-1 lead at the half and etching their spot in the NLL record book with their offensive output in the opening 30 minutes.
In the second half, Toronto was on cruise control and outscored Vancouver 7-6 over the final two quarters.
Rock goaltender Nick Rose earned his second win of the season, allowing just five goals on 31 shots through three quarters. Rookie Riley Hutchcraft saw the first action of his NLL career, playing the fourth quarter and giving up two goals on 13 shots.
The game wasn’t without some fireworks. There were four fights in the game with several ejections including both captain Brodie Merrill and Brad Kri getting instigator and game misconduct penalties that cut their respective night’s a bit short.
Next up, the Rock are back at home on Friday night against the Rochester Knighthawks at Air Canada Centre as Toronto tries to move above .500 for the first time this season after starting the season 0-2.
Single and group tickets are on sale now for next Friday’s game. For more information, please visit torontorock.com/tickets or call 416-596-3075 and talk to an account executive.