The Rochester Knighthawks held onto an early lead and defeated the Philadelphia Wings 13-9 in front of 6,488 at The Blue Cross Arena on Saturday night.
The Knighthawks (2-0) scored seven unanswered goals before halftime to take a commanding 9-3 lead. Cody Jamieson and Craig Point each scored twice to lead the rally. Jamieson began the run and tied the contest at 3-3 before the end of the first.
Rochester outshot the Philadelphia 13-5 in the second quarter while outscoring the Wings 6-0 in the period. Joel McCready and Jamieson scored less than a minute apart to pull ahead 5-3. Three of the last four goals in the quarter were all scored on the power play. Point scored twice with a man advantage, the latter putting the Knighthawks ahead 8-3. Dan Dawson closed the half with his second of the game with former Knighthawk Jordan Hall in the penalty box for illegal cross checking.
Matt Vinc and the league’s stingiest defense held the Wings (1-1) scoreless for 24:27 between the first and third quarters. After Hall’s power play goal gave Philadelphia a 3-2 lead at 12:52 in the first, it wasn’t until the 7:19 in the third when the Wings earned their fourth goal. Hall again scored on the power play when Knighthawks defenseman Sid Smith bent over to pick up Mike Kirk’s stick when it was knocked out of his hands.
From there, the Wings went on a run of their own, scoring six straight to cut the lead to one. Garrett Thul, Tracey Kelusky and Kevin Ross each scored once before the end of the third in a span 1:06. It was Ross’ second goal that made it a 10-9 game with 9:24 left in the final quarter.
Dawson finally ended Rochester’s lull with his hat trick goal, once again scoring by diving across the front of the crease. Point drew the crowd to its feet with a behind-the-back goal to complete his hat trick shortly thereafter. Stephen Keogh added a last-minute goal to seal the deal for the Knighthawks.
Dawson was named the first star of the contest with three goals and three assists. Jamieson was the second star with a game-high eight points (2+6). Kyle Buchanan, who led the Wings with six points (2+4), earned third star honors.