The Toronto Rock take to the road this weekend to face the Rochester Knighthawks at Blue Cross Arena on Saturday, January 30 at 8:05 p.m. ET.
The Rock (3-0) remain undefeated thanks to a 17-3 home victory over Rochester (2-1) on January 23 and now sit alone on top the National Lacrosse League’s east division standings. Going into last weekend’s matchup with the previously undefeated Knighthawks most lacrosse experts, including Toronto’s general manager and assistant coach Terry Sanderson, believed it would be a very close game.
“We don’t understand why there was that much of a spread. I’m pretty sure it was mostly Bobby Watson,” said Sanderson.
Toronto netminder Bob Watson proved to be a wall in net for the Rock stopping 45 of Rochester’s 48 shots on goal. Allowing only three, Watson held the Knighthawks to their lowest single-game goal total in franchise history. He was named game MVP and this week’s NLL overall and defensive player of the week.
Part of the win can be attributed to two-time league rookie of the week, Garrett Billings. Draining five goals and assisting on three others, Billings led all scorers in the lopsided victory. The rookie has a team-leading 11 goals in three games this season.
“A lot of things went well for us and our work habits were tremendous,” said Sanderson of Toronto’s performance. “Our guys followed our game plan to a T; this proved to them that we have to work hard.”
On the other end of the turf Paul Gait’s Knighthawks forgot about the team mentality.
“We didn’t play as a unit,” said Gait. “When the pressure was on they resorted to individual skills and selfish play.
“I hope they contemplate how bad they played, bounce back and re-focus.”
This is the second time the Rock have started a season with three wins. The first 3-0 streak in 2000 was halted by the Knighthawks, but as the 2010 Toronto Rock have proved they are anything but predictable.
Fans can watch Saturday’s game from Rochester live online at NLL.com. The Rock’s next home game is Friday, February 5 when they host the Philadelphia Wings at 7:30 p.m. at the Air Canada Centre.