TONIGHT’S GAME OVERVIEW
The Rochester Knighthawks remain in search of that elusive first win of the season tonight as they open a rare two-game weekend against the defending NLL champion Calgary Roughnecks at Segar & Sciortino Field at The Blue Cross Arena. The 7:00 p.m. matchup will be the first and only meeting of the season between the two teams and can be heard live on 107.3 FM The Bull as well as B/R Live.
WATCH: MIKE HASEN PRE-GAME
LAST TIME OUT
A thrilling back-and-forth offensive battle between the Knighthawks and Toronto Rock came down to the final minute with Rochester ultimately coming up a goal short in a 13-12 loss to the Rock this past Saturday at Scotiabank Arena. Holden Cattoni (5+4) led the way offensively for the Knighthawks, notching his fourth five-goal game of his pro career, while also adding four assists for a career-high nine-point night as he eclipsed the 200-point mark in his pro career. Shawn Evans matched Cattoni with a nine-point effort (2+7) of his own to become just the sixth player in NLL history to reach 1,200 career points. The two-time NLL MVP factored in on each of Rochester’s first six goals of the night, including scoring off a floor-length pass from goaltender Craig Wende. Phil Caputo (2+1) netted a pair of goals, including Rochester’s final tally of the evening to pull the team within one goal with just under three minutes left. Dan Michel (1+0), Matt Bennett (1+0) and Curtis Knight (1+2) contributed to the final score line with a goal apiece. Wende (0-3) made his second start in the net for Rochester, making 49 saves on 62 shots on goal. Netminder Steve Fryer came in for 45 seconds during the third quarter of play, making one save in his time out on the floor.
WATCH: HOLDEN CATTONI PRE-GAME
KNIGHTHAWKS TEAM AND LEAGUE LEADERS
Coming off his dominant performance Saturday in Toronto, Cattoni, who spent the first two years of his NLL career with the Roughnecks, remains Rochester’s top point-getter, leading the team in goals (8), assists (12) and points (20) through the first four games of the season. He comes into the weekend ranked 12th in the in NLL in scoring while his eight goals are also 12th-most among league leaders in that category. Evans, who played five seasons in Calgary where he led the team in scoring four straight years and was a two-time NLL MVP, remains at a close second with 19 points. His 12 assists are tied with Cattoni for the team lead and are tied for 14th in the league. Ryland Rees, Rochester’s second overall pick in the 2019 NLL Entry Draft, ranks among league leaders with a team-high 30 loose balls and Jay Thorimbert, who recently surpassed Geoff Snider for first all-time in league history in career face-off wins, is fifth in the NLL with 50 face-off wins, good for a .521 success rate at the face-off dot.
EVANS JOINS ELITE COMPANY
With his nine-point effort Saturday in Toronto, Evans became just the sixth player in NLL history to reach 1,200 career points. It didn’t take him long either as the 15th-year pro recorded a point on each of Rochester’s first six goals of the contest, including the primary assist on all three first-quarter scores. Evans notched his 1,200th point with a goal just 53 seconds into the second quarter and now trails only John Tavares, Josh Sanderson, Dan Dawson, Colin Doyle and John Grant for the most points all-time in league history.
WATCH: SHAWN EVANS PRE-GAME
SCOUTING THE ROUGHNECKS
The defending champion Roughnecks have started their title defense with a 2-2 record with both wins coming on the road. They’re one of seven teams to remain unbeaten on the road this season. Calgary returns 16 of its players from last season’s championship squad, including the goaltending tandem of Christian Del Bianco and Tyler Richards, as well as veteran forward Curtis Dickson, who leads the Roughnecks with eight goals, nine assists and 17 points. Dickson has spent his entire 10-year NLL career with Calgary, where he’s amassed 739 points on 403 goals and 336 assists in 156 games. Calgary, however, remains without captain and two-time NLL champion Dane Dobbie, who’s currently serving a six-game suspension. Defending the crease, it seems as though Calgary has relied solely on Del Bianco, as he’s made all four starts in the net so far this season and ranks third in the NLL in saves (195). The Roughnecks make their only trip to Rochester coming off an 8-7 setback to Philadelphia.
- Shawn Evans is nine assists away from tying former teammate John Grant Jr. for fifth all-time in NLL history. He also needs 13 more goals for 450 in his career.
- After surpassing Pat McCready for sixth all-time in loose balls Saturday at Toronto, Jay Thorimbert needs only two more loose balls for 1,600 in his pro career
WATCH: CRAIG WENDE PRE-GAME
UP NEXT FOR THE KNIGHTHAWKS
The Knighthawks close out the weekend on Sunday, Jan. 19 when they travel to Wells Fargo Center to take on the Philadelphia Wings at 7:00 p.m. for the only time this season. The 7:00 p.m. matchup will be carried live on 107.3 FM The Bull as well as B/R Live. Fans can stay up to date all season long with the latest Knighthawks news, stories and notes at www.rochesterknighthawks.com.