ROCK DO EVERYTHING BUT WIN IN 11-10 ROAD LOSS TO WINGS
The Toronto Rock (9-3) had their eight-game winning streak snapped at the hands of the Philadelphia Wings (5-5), losing 11-10 on Monday night at Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia. The Rock outshot their opponents 66-35 but couldn’t hit their spots and slip back into second place in the East Conference, a half-game behind Buffalo.
It certainly wasn’t for a lack of trying, some nights the ball doesn’t drop your way. The Rock hit what felt like a dozen or more posts in the game and in the end, those fractions of an inch they were off all night, were the difference in the game.
“We outshot them 2-to-1 in the first half and created a lot of opportunities but had trouble getting the ball behind (Zach) Higgins,” said Rock Head Coach Matt Sawyer. “We got ourselves chasing the game a little bit, but we stuck with it and had opportunities right down to the end. Overall, it wasn’t our night. There was a lot of good stuff out there, but it just wasn’t good enough from start to finish.”
As was the case throughout the game, the Rock certainly had several scoring chances in the first quarter, but ultimately, they came up empty through fifteen minutes. It was just the third time this season they had been held scoreless for an entire quarter. The Wings led 2-0 after one.
In the second quarter, the game opened up a bit. Both teams showed the ability to finish their chances but a 5-4 quarter in favour of the Wings stretched their lead to 7-4 at the half.
The third quarter was much the same as the opening quarter with just two goals scored, this time it was a split of the offence with each team scoring once and the Wings leading 8-5 heading to the final quarter. The Rock goal came from Corey Small and it broke up a Wings’ four-goal run. Toronto was held without a goal for 20:32.
With the score 9-5 in the fourth quarter and the Rock offence began to find the mark once again. Dan Craig and Tom Schreiber scored just 23 seconds apart to close the gap to a pair. It was Craig again with a terrific airborne effort that saw him leap and stuff the ball past Higgins making it a one-goal game. Small would tie the game with a power play goal with 4:40 to go.
The Rock defence was sturdy all night long, limiting their opponent’s chances time after time. However, some aggressive play seemed to open up some scoring chances for the Wings who scored twice to take an 11-9 lead with 2:08 to play. Schreiber scored with just under a minute to play but the Rock could get no closer, falling 11-10.
Craig was the top Rock goal scorer with four. Schreiber and Small each scored twice. Challen Rogers and Latrell Harris scored singles.
“No excuses, a lot of shots in the game, a lot of posts, that’s the reality, but that’s not an excuse,” said Craig. “We have to shoot better, we put enough on the net, but at the end of the day they put more in the net.”
The Wings’ got 55 saves from Higgins, while Rose made 21 saves. Both squads were 1-for-2 on the power play.
Tickets are on sale now for the Rock’s next home game at FirstOntario Centre on Saturday, March 11 against the Albany FireWolves at 7pm ET. It’s Indigenous Heritage Night, celebrating the roots of the game of lacrosse.