The Toronto Rock defeated the Philadelphia Wings by a score of 12-9 in the final exhibition game to close the NLL preseason. (Photo: Toronto Rock)
With the start of the 2014 NLL regular season just days away on Saturday, Dec. 28, the NLL preseason wrapped up this past weekend as teams prepare for their openers. The Toronto Rock beat the Philadelphia Wings 12-9 at the Toronto Rock Athletic Centre in Oakville on Saturday night to close out while other teams held training camp sessions.
In the opening quarter, Philadelphia opened the scoring with a pair of goals in the first 3 minutes of play to lead 2-0. The Rock answered with a pair but the Wings got those two goals back in short order to restore their two-goal edge. Rock defender Damon Edwards scored his second of the quarter to close the gap to 4-3 after one quarter.
The visitors got the first goal of the second quarter to lead 5-3 but Rock forward Eric Law scored just 47 seconds later to once again bring the Rock to within a goal. Rock captain Colin Doyle scored on the powerplay to tie the game 5-5. Philadelphia’s Jordan Hall scored his third goal of the half to put the Wings up 6-5 at the break.
The first 10-plus minutes saw both teams fail to get on the board. Doyle changed that with his second of the game to tie the game 6-6. Rob Hellyer and Scott Johnston each scored once to give the Rock an 8-6 lead. Philadelphia scored with just three seconds left in the frame and trailed 8-7 after 45 minutes of play.
Toronto surrendered the first goal of the fourth quarter and the game was once again tied. The two clubs would trade goals before the Rock rattled off the final three goals of the game to surge ahead and hold on for a three-goal win.
Nick Rose relieved Zak Boychuk in the Rock goal to begin the second half and allowed just three goals in earning the win.
Josh Sanderson led the scoring parade for the Rock with three goals and four assists for a seven-point night. Other Rock goal scorers were Doyle with three, Edwards and Rob Hellyer each with a pair while Law and Johnston chipped in with one each each.
The Philadelphia Wings open the regular season by visiting the Buffalo Bandits at First Niagara Center on Saturday, Dec. 28 at 7:30 p.m. ET. The Toronto Rock open their schedule in Week #2 as they host the Calgary Roughnecks at Air Canada Centre at 7:30 p.m. ET for a matchup of 2013 regular season division champions.