TORONTO – Powered by an 11 point outburst by Cody Jamieson, the Rochester Knighthawks slipped by the Toronto Rock, 17-12, in a come-from-behind thriller at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Saturday night, to keep the third place Rock at bay and the next day, in Philadelphia, moved into a first place tie with the Buffalo Bandits with an 11-7 win over the Wings.
Saturday night at the ACC, there was plenty of scoring in the first period as the Rock took a 2-0 lead by the 3:22 mark with goals by Rob Hellyer and Colin Doyle.
Dan Dawson cut that lead in half at 3:51 as they traded goals back and forth until the quarter ended just like it began, with two Toronto goals scored by Hellyer and Doyle.
Garret Billings made it 7-3 for Toronto, 18 seconds into the second quarter, before Cory Vitarelli scored Rochester’s 4th goal.
Toronto responded at 4:35 with Doyle’s third of the game and another by Josh Sanderson. Brad Self closed out the half for Rochester at 14:03 with the Rock still leading 9-5.
Cody Jamieson then went on a scoring binge to begin the third period and spark the Knighthawks rally, netting four in a row, at 0:49, 3:13, 4:20, and 5:16. When Toronto’s defensive squad finally put a blanket on Jamieson, Steve Keogh, Joe Walkers and Johnny Powless took over the lead role, creating a 12-9 lead out of the first half deficit.
Late quarter goals by Toronto’s Billings and Knighthawks’ Joel McCready, ended the third quarter with the Knighthawks leading 13-10.
The Rochester power surge continued into the 4th quarter with another string of four goals, scored by Joe Walters, Stephen Keogh, and a pair by Cory Vitarelli to make it 17-10.
Toronto netted two late game goals, which were inconsequential to the outcome.
Jamieson recorded another stellar night with his four goals and seven assists, for an 11-point game, and credited the K-hawks’ coaching staff for the halftime motivational chat in the dressing room that inspired the huge second half.
Following the Toronto game, the K-hawks boarded a plane to Philly to take on the Wings and came out with an 11-7 win. Six Nations Craig Point dressed for the Knighthawks and made his presence felt with four goals and an assist, while Cody Jamieson scored once and assisted on five. That gave Jamieson five goals and 12 assists in two nights for 17 points.
Rochester had control of the game right from the opening faceoff and are now 9-3 on the season.
Following weekend games, the Buffalo Bandits and the Knighthawks share the top spot in the East, with the Toronto Rock four games back followed by Philadelphia and Minnesota.
In the West, the Edmonton Rush is 4.5 games ahead of the second place Calgary Roughnecks. The Colorado Mammoth is next, followed by the Vancouver Stealth.
The Knighthawks are down now until March 29th when they host the visiting Edmonton Rush at 7:30pm in Rochester.