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Knighthawks at Minnesota Friday

March 24, 2005 - National Lacrosse League (NLL) - Rochester Knighthawks News Release

Game Notes: The Rochester Knighthawks (7-4) battle the Minnesota Swarm (2-9) in a key home-and-home series this weekend. The two-game set begins on Friday, March 25th with an 8:30 p.m. contest at the Xcel Energy Center. The following night, the ‘Hawks host the Swarm at 7:35 p.m. at The Blue Cross Arena at the Rochester War Memorial. Both games will be broadcast live on News Talk 950 WROC and knighthawks.net. Saturday’s contest will be televised live on WB16.

Head-to-Head: Minnesota spoiled Rochester’s home and season opener on January 1st, defeating the Knighthawks 12-11. Craig Conn led the Swarm with three goals and one assist. He also netted the game winner early in the fourth quarter. Rochester’s John Grant had five goals and three assists in his first game back from an ACL injury. Mike Accursi also had five points (1+4) in his Knighthawks’ debut.

Last Game: Backup goalie Pat Campbell turned in one of the best performances of his career last Saturday night, guiding the Rochester Knighthawks to a 12-11 overtime win over the Buffalo Bandits. The victory was his first since January 25, 2003. Campbell stopped 32 of 35 shots, as Rochester battled back from an 8-2 second-quarter deficit. The Knighthawks never led until Shawn Williams netted the game-winning goal at 3:33. Rochester was led by eight points (3+5) from John Grant and five from Williams (2+3).

K-Hawks Notes: Rochester is in the midst of 11 straight games against Eastern Division teams. The games against Minnesota and the April 1st contest at Buffalo end the stretch. The K-Hawks conclude the regular season with a road game at San Jose on April 8th and a home matchup against the Colorado Mammoth on April 15th. The home finale is the last regular season game for Mammoth team captain and NLL legend Gary Gait. The contest could be crucial, as Rochester fights to make the postseason for the 11th time in the team’s 11-year history.

Rochester gets Steve Toll: The Knighthawks acquired San Jose forward Steve Toll for a first and second-round pick in the 2005 National Lacrosse League Draft. Toll is in his eighth season of professional lacrosse and has 96 goals, 126 assists and 645 loose balls in 88 games. The native of Oshawa, Ontario, spent the majority of his career with the Toronto Rock, where he won championships in 1999, 2000, 2002 and 2003. The 30-year-old forward is a graduate of the Rochester Institute of Technology.

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Campbell wins league awards: Rochester Knighthawks goaltender Pat Campbell earned his first-ever weekly awards in Week #12 for his performance in the Knighthawks’ 12-11 overtime victory over the Buffalo Bandits Saturday night. Campbell, who is in his eighth pro season, earned the Overall and Defensive Player of the Week awards. In just his second appearance in net this season, he came off the bench with an 8-2 deficit and rallied the Knighthawks to a 12-11 overtime victory over the Bandits. He recorded 32 saves and allowed only three goals in 37:43 of play to lead the Knighthawks’ come-from-behind victory. He also recorded one assist in the win.

Playoff scenario: Rochester (7-4) can clinch a playoff berth with a pair of wins over Minnesota AND a Toronto loss to Buffalo this weekend. Rochester would be assured of a record no worse than 9-7 and would win tiebreakers for a playoff spot by virtue of winning the season series against both Toronto (2-1) and Philadelphia (3-0). The Knighthawks are currently 1-1 vs. Buffalo and have an identical overall record of 5-3 against divisional opponents.

Minnesota Notes: The Swarm began their inaugural season with a 2-2 record with wins over Rochester and San Jose, but then lost their last seven games to go to 2-9. On Thursday, Minnesota acquired the Arizona Sting’s first-round pick in the 2006 NLL Entry Draft and future considerations in exchange for forward Craig Conn. On February 8th, Minnesota traded for forward Ryan Ward from the Philadelphia Wings. Ward also plays for the Rochester Rattlers of Major League Lacrosse. Former Knighthawks Teddy Jenner and Jamie Taylor are also members of the Swarm.

Next Game: On Saturday, the ‘Hawks host the Swarm at 7:35 p.m. at The Blue Cross Arena. The game will be broadcast live on News Talk 950 WROC and knighthawks.net, and televised live on WB16.

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