TORONTO – The Toronto Rock extend their win streak to two after beating the Rochester Knighthawks 16-10 in front of 14, 812 fans at the Air Canada Centre tonight.
Gary Gait opened the game with a goal for the Knighthawks in the first 40 seconds of the game before Stephen Hoar put the Rock on the scoreboard, tying it up at one-all. Jason Henhawk continued the back-and-forth, scoring the next for the K-Hawks. Lewis Ratcliff and Craig Conn scored on the power play to give the Rock their first lead of the game. Luke Wiles kept up the momentum by netting Toronto’s fourth. Henhawk scored his second for Rochester but Ratcliff kept the gap in Toronto’s favour with his second, ending the first quarter up 5-3.
Outnumbered with only three Rock men on the floor, Rob Marshall deeked around the Rochester defence to put Toronto’s sixth past Pat O’Toole. Bill McGlone showed off his acrobatic moves, jumping and diving in front of the Knighthawks net as Toronto continued to dominate the second quarter. Bobby McBride and Shawn Williams brought the Rochester tally up to five after finally being able to sneak a shot past Bob Watson. Coming off the bench Wiles caught a long pass from Conn recording his second goal followed seconds later by Ratcliff’s third goal. With 24 seconds left in the half Ratcliff scored again, putting the Rock up 10-5 heading into the dressing room.
Ratcliff could not be stopped, starting the second half off with his fifth goal of the game. After seven scoreless minutes of play McGlone dropped his second into the back of O’Toole’s net to widen the Rock lead. The Knighthawks’ Steve Toll and Henhawk began a Rochester rally late in the third quarter that was capped off by a Craig Point buzzer-beater.
Toronto started the final quarter with a 12-8 lead. Conn started Rock scoring with his second followed by an unassisted goal from Peter Lough, his first goal of the season. Shawn Evans put up number nine for the Knighthawks, but Wiles answered back for the Rock followed by Nick Carson, scoring his first career National Lacrosse League goal on the Rochester empty net. With 1:55 remaining on the clock Joe Walters brought the K-Hawks into double digits. The Rock could not be outdone tonight taking the decision 16-10.
Top goal scorers for Toronto were Lewis Ratcliff with five goals and Luke Wiles with three. Bob Watson recorded the win stopping 38 of 48 shots on net.
Jason Henhawk led Rochester with a hat trick. Pat O’Toole stopped 38 of 53 shots.
Toronto (4-7) takes to the road next week and heads West for an All-Canadian weekend with the Rock throwing down with the Calgary Roughnecks on Friday, March 27th and the Edmonton Rush on Saturday, March 28th. Ball drop for both games is 9:00 p.m. EST.
The next Rock home game is Friday, April 3rd when they host the Boston Blazers.