The Philadelphia Wings remain undefeated at home with a 21-13 win over the league-leading Rochester Knighthawks Friday at the First Union Center in front of 10,235 fans. Jake Bergey led the Wings with 12 points (6G, 6A), while Kevin Finneran and Tom Marechek each added four goals, as the Knighthawks dropped their second straight decision.
"It's a great feeling," said Wings' coach Adam Mueller. "Offensively, we're finally firing on all cylinders. Defense was also pretty good and Dallas (Eliuk) was great. We're not quite perfect yet, but we're pretty close. We beat the best team in the league."
Rochester controlled the opening minutes of the game and took its first lead of the game on a 5-on-3 advantage after Philadelphia's Bryan Barrett and Richard Brzeski were put in the penalty box. Philadelphia answered with goals by Mark Millon and Bergey in a forty-second span to gain the lead. The Knighthawks swung the momentum once again with Curt Malawsky's second goal of the game and a tally by Ted Jenner to round out the scoring in the quarter.
Bergey started the Wings' offense in the second quarter with a power-play goal and later completed the hat trick. Finneran added two goals for Philadelphia and Keith Cromwell and Marechek each netted goals. John Grant, Malawsky, Darcy Sweet, Shawn Williams and Tim Soudan each scored for Rochester in the quarter to keep the score knotted at eight going into the locker rooms.
The Wings dominated in the third quarter. Finneran and Jeff Ratcliffe scored two quick goals to re-gain the two-point lead. Curt and Derek Malawsky each tallied for Rochester, but the Wings scored four unanswered goals (Finneran, Ratcliffe, Ryan, Bergey) to end the quarter and take a five-goal lead into the final period. Rochester goalie Pat O'Toole was replaced by Patrick Campbell with :56 left in the quarter.
O'Toole returned in the final quarter, but was replaced once again after letting in three goals (Marechek 2, Phair) in the first five minutes. Campbell's luck wasn't any better as he let in Bergey's fifth goal of the night and Ratcliffe's second to give the Wings a 10-goal lead. The Knighthawks netted three more goals before the frustration finally set in and a brawl broke out with 2:29 left in regulation. The two teams combined for 55 minutes in penalties, including eight game misconducts and 11 five-minute fighting majors. Bergey capped off the scoring with his sixth goal of the game.