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Minnesota Swarm Win Overtime Thriller against Rochester in Season

May 2, 2015 - National Lacrosse League (NLL)
Minnesota Swarm News Release

Minnesota Swarm Celebrate Goal vs. Rochester Knighthawks
Minnesota Swarm Celebrate Goal vs. Rochester Knighthawks
(Minnesota Swarm, Credit: Scott Pierson)

SAINT PAUL, Minn. - The Minnesota Swarm (6-12) finished off the season with a thrilling 13-12 overtime win against the Rochester Knighthawks (12-6) Saturday night in front of 9,086 fans on Ho-Chunk Nation Field at Xcel Energy Center. With the victory, Minnesota won the season series 2-1 against the three-time defending champion Knighthawks. After an exciting 60 minutes of regulation, the two teams went into overtime for the second time this season at The Hive. There was no score during the first 10 minutes of back-and-forth action in overtime, until second-year transition player Jason Noble scooped up a loose ball and sprinted up the floor for a two-on-one opportunity. As he entered the offensive zone, Noble whipped a bounce shot farside that slipped past Knighthawks' G Matt Vinc for the game-winner. The score marked Noble's first ever NLL goal, and it couldn't have come at a better time. "Guys were nagging him all year to get that goal, glad it paid off in overtime fashion," Swarm T Kiel Matisz said. "We're all very happy for him to have a first goal like that."

Minnesota started out with an early two-goal lead in the game with goals by both T Ethan O'Connor (1g, 1a) and Matisz (4g, 1a). The Knighthawks fought back to get on the scoreboard and cut the lead to one, but the Swarm added a goal from T Joel White (1g, 2a) to regain the two-goal lead. Rochester then went on a four-goal run to end the first quarter and held a 5-3 advantage. The Knighthawks scored first in the second quarter but Minnesota fought back to make it a close game at halftime, 6-5. Goaltender Brodie MacDonald entered the game in relief of Zach Higgins at the beginning of the second quarter and played a phenomenal game in the win. MacDonald made a season-high 47 saves and only allowed six goals. MacDonald also recorded an assist in the game off of Shayne Jackson's goal in the middle of the fourth quarter. After the game, MacDonald spoke highly of the Swarm's fan base and their enthusiasm Saturday night. "The fans are always great here," MacDonald said. "Every game no matter where we are in the standings, they're great."

Minnesota's T David Earl (1g) tied the game at six early in the third quarter and F Joe Maracle (2g) got the go-ahead goal 20 seconds later to make it 7-6. Rochester's T Jordan Hall (3g, 2a) answered back to even the game up at seven. Minnesota then took control and scored back-to-back goals by Matisz and D Mitch Belisle (1g). With 38 seconds left in the quarter, Matisz took advantage of a potential two-for-one scoring opportunity by ripping a long shot past Vinc. The Swarm then converted on its second chance when Belisle scored with just four seconds left in the quarter. "Honestly we were trying to get the ball back with 10-15 seconds left," Matisz said. "... I think I caught Vino standing still there and he wasn't expecting me." The Swarm controlled most of the fourth quarter until Rochester tied the game with two minutes left in regulation and pushed it to overtime where the back-to-back action continued until Noble scored the game-winner. "It was a beauty," MacDonald said. "Bounce shot farside, doesn't get much better than that."

Minnesota's F Shayne Jackson (2g, 4a) finished the season first in points for the Swarm with 79. Rookie F Miles Thompson (1g, 2a) was second in points with 62 and finished the season second in scoring amongst rookies in the NLL. Despite missing the last few games of the season, F Callum Crawford was third in scoring for the Swarm with 53 points. Newcomer Joel White ended the season second in the NLL for loose balls with 182 and teammate T Jordan MacIntosh (3a) finished in fourth with 171 loose balls. -- SWARM -- Mariah Holland Intern | Minnesota Swarm Professional Lacrosse (NLL)

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Minnesota Swarm Celebrate Goal vs. Rochester Knighthawks
Minnesota Swarm Celebrate Goal vs. Rochester Knighthawks

(Scott Pierson)

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