The Rochester Knighthawks battled back in the second half and were a crossbar and one second away from overtime. In what was an exciting back-and-forth contest, however, the Knighthawks fell 12-11 to the New England Black Wolves Friday at Mohegan Sun Arena.
“We didn’t get the bounces tonight,” said Knighthawks head coach Mike Hasen.
That was apparent in the closing seconds as Josh Currier whipped a shot off the crossbar with under 10 seconds to play. After a scramble for the loose ball, Jarrett Davis took a pass and scored but time had just expired.
The goal would have forced overtime and would have capped off a two-goal rally. It was Currier’s tally with 34 seconds to play that got the Knighthawks within one. Dylan Evans then won the most important draw of the night to set up the final opportunities.
“There were good spots and bad spots,” said defenseman Sid Smith, who made his return to the lineup tonight. “That’s been the theme to our year. We’re struggling to find some consistency.”
One player who has been dependable down the stretch has been goalie Matt Vinc, who tied his career high with 53 saves Friday night. He made 34 of those stops in the first half as Rochester trailed by just one at 5-4.
Kyle Jackson also had a game to remember as he scored a career-high five goals as part of a seven-point effort. The rookie fueled a second-half comeback as he notched three goals in the third quarter. His first goal of the third was a one-handed whip to the far side to bring Rochester within one at 6-5. His next two goals tied the contest at seven and then at eight apiece.
“He was really good tonight,” said Hasen. “We tried to get him as many touches as we could at the end.”
“I definitely had an extra pep in my step, which was a good thing,” added Jackson. “I felt better than I have in previous games.”
Rochester also received three-point outings from Currier (2+1), Cory Vitarelli (1+2), Joe Resetarits (1+2), Dan Lomas (0+3) and Jarrett Davis (0+3). Resetarits, who scored late in the fourth quarter, extended his team-leading point streak to 12 games.
The Knighthawks (4-8) will return to action on Saturday, March 25 when they host the Buffalo Bandits at 7:30 p.m. on Military Appreciation Night. Rochester will also celebrate the 10th anniversary of winning the 2007 Champion’s Cup.