Red-Hot Queener Backstops Nats' Win
The Hamilton Nationals ended their long road trip on a high note, defeating the Rochester Rattlers 17-11 tonight at FAU Stadium in Boca Raton, Fla.
Brett Queener made a team record 25 saves and Joe Walters led the offense with six points (3+3) to help Hamilton improve to 6-2. The Nats Martin Cahill (4+1+0) also notched a career-high five points, while Kevin Crowley chipped in three goals.
"It was our best offensive effort of the season," said Nationals Head Coach Dave Huntley.
Hamilton broke open the game in the second quarter with a 4-0 run. Rochester fell to 3-5 with the loss. John Ranagan continued to play well for Rochester, scoring four times to give him 10 in the last three games.
Hamilton started off early in the first with a goal from Walters just 22 seconds in, before Crowley found the back of the net for the second Nationals goal. Rochester got on the board just under five minutes into the first with a goal from Tom Montelli, which was quickly answered by Crowley. Cahill would put one more in for the Nationals and Ranagan for the Rattlers before the end of the first.
Starting off the second quarter, Rochester's Kevin Leveille found the back of the net for the Rattlers, but Stephen Keogh was close behind to answer it and start a 4-0 run. Hamilton also added tallies from Cody Jamieson, Crowley, and a two-pointer from Cahill. Leveille put another one in, only to be answered by Roy Lang, ending the half 10-4 in favor of Hamilton.
Rookie Kevin Cunningham got the ball rolling in the second half with an assist from Walters for his first of the contest. Cahill putting in his third of the night to seal a hat trick in his first game back on the active roster after two weeks off. Dave Lawson put one past Queener, followed by Ranagan, who started chipping away at the Nationals lead.
The Rattlers finally getting into a rhythm with two goals to start off the fourth and continue to chip away at the Nationals lead and cut it to 13-8. Keogh, however, ended their two-goal streak, as he found the back of the net only to be answered by Ned Crotty. Walters chipped in his second and third goals of the contest during the fourth and Cahill notched his fourth of the game.
The Nationals are back home at Ron Joyce Stadium next Saturday to take on the Chesapeake Bayhawks for the second match up this season. For tickets call 905-525-NATS (6287).
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- Hounds Boost Playoff Position with 16-15 OT Win against BayHawks - Charlotte Hounds
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