Rock, Roughnecks Pick Up Saturday Wins

TORONTO, ON The Toronto Rock (4-4) defeated the Minnesota Swarm (1-7) by a score of 14-12 at Air Canada Centre on Saturday night. The win is the Rock's second in six tries against East Division opponents, but the fourth win in five home games this year.

After falling behind 2-1, the Rock got a spark from Scott Johnston's scrap with Minnesota's Shayne Jackson. Toronto scored the next 3 goals to take a 4-2 lead at the end of one. That wasn't the only scrap of the first quarter as Swarm captain Andrew Suitor and the Rock's Billy Hostrawser also engaged in a battle of fisticuffs.

The Swarm cut the lead to 5-4, but Rock captain Colin Doyle scored a pair of goals in the late stages of the frame to send Toronto to the break with a 7-4 lead. His second goal was his 500th career goal and it came with just a second left in the first half.

The third quarter was all Toronto Rock. The home side scored 6 straight goals and led 13-4 after three quarters. Josh Sanderson with a pair and Stephan Leblanc with a single each completed hat-tricks.

After being held off the board for 23:46, Minnesota finally got on the board again early in the fourth quarter. They didn't stop there and made things very interesting by outscoring the Rock 8-1 in the final quarter but it wasn't enough.

Garrett Billings led the Rock point parade by piling up a 9-point night, all of which were assists. Leading goal scorers were Sanderson and Leblanc with three apiece.

Nick Rose was tremendous between the pipes for the Rock and made 46 saves on the night to earn his fourth win of the season.

Doyle's 500th goal puts him in elite company as he's just the fourth player in NLL history to achieve the milestone. John Tavares, Gary Gair and John Grant Jr are the others.

The Rock will hit the road for a pair of games in Alberta next weekend and then return home after a bye week for a St .Patty's Day match-up with the Rochester Knighthawks on Saturday, March 15th at 7:00 pm at Air Canada Centre.

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TORONTO The Minnesota Swarm (1-7) outscored the Toronto Rock (4-4) 8-1 in the fourth quarter during a spirited comeback but finished on the losing end, falling 14-12 Saturday evening at Air Canada Centre in front of 9,207 fans.

With his team trailing 13-4 at the start of the fourth quarter, Coach Sullivan huddled all of his players around him on the bench and challenged the Swarm to finish the game on a strong note. Minnesota did just that, and scored the game's next seven goals to pull within two at 13-11 after F Kiel Matisz (2G) scored five-hole on a six-on-five opportunity with 1:05 remaining.

"Quite honestly I told them to play with some pride," Sullivan said. "They responded back in the fourth quarter by taking some pride in their game, creating some havoc, and finding the openings."

Transition player Jordan MacIntosh (5G) tallied three of the Swarm's eight fourth quarter goals, and totaled a game-high five goals on the night, which tied a career-high. All three of MacIntosh's goals in the fourth were scored on crafty behind the net attempts on Rock GNick Rose.

"Jordan put the team on his back," Sullivan said. "From winning faceoffs, to getting behind the net with the dunks he got, that's what great players do."

"It was desperation," said MacIntosh in regards to his play in the fourth. "At the end of the day though, it wasn't enough."

Trailing 13-6 with 3:28 remaining the fourth quarter, MacIntosh scored two goals in an 11-second span to pull the Swarm within five at 13-8. Transition player Brock Sorensen (2G) then followed MacIntosh's highlight-reel goals with one of his own: a behind-the-back score in transition to keep the momentum in the Swarm's favor. After two quick Rock penalties, Matisz found the back of the net on a power play chance, and then converted his second goal of the night with just over a minute left. Trailing 13-11, Minnesota had the opportunity to bring the game within one, but Rock T Jesse Gamble intercepted a pass, and took the ball the other way for an empty netter to seal the deal with 29.7 seconds remaining.

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2014-02-23



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