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Wings face Rochester Knighthawks Saturday in must-win NLL game

Friday, 25th March 2011

Categories Boy's/Men's, Pro  
 

Phillylacrosse.com, Posted 3/25/11
From Press Releases

In a do or die match-up to have any chance to qualify for post-season play, the Philadelphia Wings (4-7) ravel to Rochester, N.Y., Saturday to face the the Knighthawks (5-5) in a National Lacrosse League game at the Blue Cross Arena at 7:35 p.m.

The Wings are one-and-a-half games behind the Knighthawks for the fourth and final playoff spot in the NLL’s Eastern Division.

The K-hawks defeated the Wings, 11-6, in Philadelphia on February 5. Wings forwards Drew Westervelt and Athan Iannucci turned in strong performances despite the loss, leading the team with four and five points, respectively. If Philadelphia hopes to even its season record with Rochester, it will have to contain Knighthawk forward Shawn Evans, who burned the Wings for a total of 10 points on one goal and nine assists in their last meeting.

Series Notes:

Overall: Knighthawks lead 21-15
At Philadelphia: Wings lead 10-8
At Rochester: Knighthawks lead 13-5
Last Meeting: February 5, 2011; Rochester won in Rochester 11-6 (Blue Cross Arena)

About the Knighthawks:

The Knighthawks (5-5) are currently fourth in the NLL Eastern Division. The team is ninth in the league on both the power play and penalty kill at just 32% and 56% on each.

Rochester is led by the tandem of Shawn Evans and Shawn Williams. First and second on the team in points, Evans 14 goals, 27 assists for 41 points while Williams trails just two behind with 12 goals, 27 assists and 39 points. Forward Cody Jamieson and defenseman Sid Smith joined Evans in representing the Knighthawks at the 2011 All-Star game, with Evans taking home the game’s MVP honors following a twelve point performance.

About the Wings:

The Wings (4-7) are currently fifth in the NLL Eastern Division. The team is fifth in the league on the power play, converting on 42% of its chances, and eighth on the penalty kill, successfully defending 58% of its opponent’s opportunities.

Former league MVP Athan Iannucci leads the Wings with 27 goals and 29 assists for a total of 56 points this season. The club is proud to have sent two representatives to the 2011 NLL All-Star Game in Verona, New York last month. Brandon Miller was named the Eastern division starting goaltender, while Max Seibald netted a goal to help the East defeat the West by a final score of 30-26.

Coaches’ Corner:

Wings Coach John Tucker on his team’s two-week break:

“We did step away from the game and from our responsibilities as a team to clear our heads for a few days, but then got into heavy planning mode. We had some intense practices over the last few weekends and were able to sit down and look at some things as a team. We definitely got back to the basics and we’re looking to get a little more consistent down the stretch. We feel like we got some good work in and we’re excited moving forward.”

On the Wings’ last trip to Rochester:

“Rochester did a great job last time taking the energy level to us. We were feeling pretty good about ourselves heading in to that one, but they took us back to reality pretty quick. We’ve looked at a few things since then and hope to perform a little bit better in front of the Rochester fans on Saturday.”

Knighthawks Coach Mike Hasen on the playoff implications of his rematch with Philadelphia:

“Sure, the game is definitely important, but, at the same time, it’s just another game. You always do your best to focus and win every game, and that’s what we’ll being doing again on Saturday. Obviously, it’s important for the standings and to see who gets into the playoffs, but we can’t get too wrapped up in that. We just have to go out there and do our jobs and the rest will take of itself.”

With the team’s schedule winding down, there are just two more chances to see the Philadelphia Wings in action at the Wells Fargo Center this season:

Saturday, April 2, at 7:00 vs. Toronto Rock
Sunday, April 10, at 2:30 vs. Rochester Knighthawks

Single game tickets start at $10 and are available exclusively through ComcastTIX on line at ComcastTIX.com, by phone at 1-800-298-4200 or in person at the Well Fargo Center Box Office. Season tickets and multigame packs are also available by calling 215-389-WING (9464).


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