Toronto, Ont. – Stephan Leblanc had eight points, including his 300th career goal, but it was not enough as the New England Black Wolves fell to the Toronto Rock 13-12 on Friday evening at Scotiabank Arena.
Callum Crawford had four points on two goals and two assists while Reilly O’Connor and Joe Resetarits each had two goals and one assist in the loss for the Black Wolves (8-8) while Tyler Digby added two goals.
Leblanc got the scoring started, finding the back of the net unassisted with 12:20 to play in the first to take a 1-0 lead. The Rock (10-7) tied it up a minute later and took a 2-1 lead 25 seconds later on a goal by Dan Lintner before Challen Rogers gave Toronto a 3-1 lead with 10:14 to play in the quarter. Crawford made is 3-2 with 5:12 to play on a penalty shot and Tyler Digby tied it up with 4:32 to go. The Rock made it 4-3 on a goal by Adam Jones with 3:35 left in the quarter. O’Connor tied it up at 4-4 with 3.3 seconds left to close out the first.
The Black Wolves got the scoring started in the second as Colton Watkinson scored in transition with 11:04 to play to take a 5-4 lead. Toronto tied it up with 7:53 on a goal by Rob Hellyer but Leblanc put New England up 6-5 just 29 seconds later with his 300th career goal. Resetarits put the Black Wolves ahead 7-5 with 6:07 to go in the half before Hellyer made it 7-6 with 4:30 left and that’s how the first half ended.
The Rock tied it up at 7-7 with 11:54 to play in the third on a shorthanded goal by Dan Craig and Hellyer picked up a hat trick just 19 seconds later to make it 8-7 Toronto and Tom Schreiber followed that 21 seconds after that to put the Rock up 9-7. Digby picked up his second of the night with 8:30 left in the frame to make it 9-8.Toronto went back up by two, 10-8, on a goal by Johnny Powless with 7:14 to go. Crawford pulled the Black Wolves back within one, 10-9, on the power play with 2:45 to go and O’Connor scored his second of the night on the following faceoff to tie it at 10-10 with 2:20 remaining. The Rock took back the lead on a goal by Schreiber with 0.9 seconds to play to wrap up the third quarter.
Lintner scored with 11:58 left in the game to make it 12-10 Toronto and Craig made it a three-goal game just over a minute and a half later. Dereck Downs made it 13-11 with 7:49 to play and Resetarits pulled New England to within one with 2:59 to go, but the Black Wolves could not find a game tying goal in the final minutes.
In goal, Doug Jamieson had 37 saves for the Black Wolves. Schreiber led the Rock with six points on two goals and four assists while Lintner added five on two goals and three helpers and Hellyer had three goals and an assist. Nick Rose had 35 saves for Toronto.
The Black Wolves will return to the turf next week when they travel to Buffalo to face the Bandits on Saturday, March 20 at 7:30 PM.