March 24, 2010

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O'Toole One Save Shy of NLL Record

from press releases

Rochester Knighthawks goalie Pat O’Toole will establish the National Lacrosse League’s all-time saves record with his first stop against the Buffalo Bandits on Saturday, March 27.

The K-Hawks netminder tied the mark of 6,356 saves set by Hall of Fame goalie Dallas Eliuk on March 13. The 7:35 p.m. contest at Blue Cross Arena will be broadcast live on The Zone 94.1 FM and thezone941.com. Fans can also catch all the action on NLL.com.

Knighthawks Notes: Rochester (5-5) enters the game in fourth place in the East Division, but is only one game behind division-leading Orlando (6-4). The Knighthawks have struggled lately losing two straight home games. Rochester dropped a 12-11 overtime decision to Edmonton on February 27th and lost 9-4 to Orlando on March 13th. The loss to the Titans was the fourth time this season that the K-Hawks have been held to single-digit goals. Only the Colorado Mammoth (90 goals) have scored less goals this season than the Knighthawks (96). Rochester is in the midst of a season-high four-game homestand. John Grant Jr. leads the Knighthawks with 51 points (21+30) in nine games. He is also 11th in the NLL in points. Craig Point is tied for the team lead with 21 goals. Shawn Williams is five points away from 700 as a Knighthawk. Rochester’s penalty-killing unit was a perfect seven-for-seven last game and has killed off 23 of the last 26 opportunities (88 percent). O’Toole is fourth in the NLL with a 10.19 goals-against average. Saturday is defenseman Scott Ditzell’s 27th birthday.

Baby Grant: John and his wife, Raygen, welcomed their first child, Gabrayel Louise Grant, into the world at 12:39 a.m. on Sunday. She weighed in at seven pounds and 2.4 ounces.

Buffalo Notes: The Bandits enter the contest as one of the hottest teams in the NLL, winning three straight and four of their last five. Buffalo has climbed within one-half game of the fourth and final playoff spot in the East at 5-6. Last weekend, the Bandits won consecutive road games in overtime against Toronto and Boston. In the past two games, John Tavares recorded seven goals, four assists and 15 loose balls en route to NLL Offensive and Overall Player of the Week honors. The league's all-time leading scorer had the OT game winners in an 11-10 win at Toronto on March 12th, and a 9-8 win at Boston on March 13th. Fellow forward Mark Steehius is fifth in the NLL with 58 points (24+34). Head Coach Darris Kilgour became the NLL’s all-time leader in wins on March 12th after earning his 94th victory to pass legendary coach Les Bartley. Goalie Mike Thompson has started the last two games and has made 101 saves in 130 minutes of work.

Head-to-Head: Rochester is 2-0 against the Bandits this season, winning 10-5 on January 9th and 13-11 on Jan. 16. John Grant led the way with five goals and 11 assists. The Knighthawks lead the all-time series with a record of 24-14.

Silent Auction: Spirit of the Stick, in conjunction with the Knighthawks, GAIT Debeer Lacrosse & Marc Mesh; will host a silent auction of specially prepared lacrosse sticks signed by the members of the Knighthawks, NLL Hall of Fame members, Bandits players and the charity’s co-chair, Jim Veltman. The mission of Spirit of the Stick is to “use lacrosse, the Creator’s game, to provide an experience for ‘in need’ communities/children & adolescents that is empowering, inclusive, sustainable and that provides growth that is emotional, physical, psychological and spiritual.”
 
Postgame Events: After the game, fans can head down to the turf for a full-team autograph session. The Toronto Nationals (MLL) will be bringing the Steinfeld Trophy to the game so fans can take pictures with the Cup. Fans can also meet their favorite players at Legends Bar and Grille in the Radisson for the official postgame party.

Next Game: The Knighthawks will hold their “Breast Cancer Night” when they host the defending champion Calgary Roughnecks on Saturday, April 3rd. The Knighthawks will wear pink helmets and jerseys during the 7:35 p.m. contest at The Blue Cross Arena. Fans can bid on the jerseys until the start of the third quarter. Those paying with cash can take their jerseys right off the players’ backs after the game. The funds raised will go to the Knighthawks/Amerks Charitable Foundation, Inc., which will distribute the money to local cancer-related charities. The helmets will be auctioned off by the NLL through their website at a later date. The Knighthawks will also showcase their pink dashers, which will be the first of their kind in NLL history. The first 5,000 fans will receive a noisemaker courtesy of Time Warner Cable.

Blazers' Dawson Headlines NLL Award Winners

Dan Dawson of the Boston Blazers was named the National Lacrosse League’s Overall Player of the Week and Offensive Player of the Week for Week #11 of the 2010 NLL Season. Dawson scored five goals and tallied two assists in Boston’s 12-5 road victory over the Edmonton Rush on Saturday.  The win improved the Blazers’ record to 6-5 and allowed them to keep pace in the tightly-packed Eastern Division playoff chase.  The Week 11 NLL schedule consisted of games played on the weekend of March 20th.

Boston Blazers Goaltender Anthony Cosmo was named Defensive Player of the Week. Cosmo made 35 saves on 40 Edmonton shots faced, allowing only five goals in the 12-5 win at Edmonton.

The Transition Player of the Week was Jeff Shattler of the Calgary Roughnecks.  In a rematch of last season’s championship game, Shattler scored one goal and added two assists while scooping up ten loose balls as Calgary defeated the Orlando Titans 13-6 at Orlando on Saturday.

Boston Blazers Transition Player Ryan Hotaling was named Rookie of the Week. Hotaling won 13 out of 22 faceoffs and picked up six loose balls in the Blazers’ 12-5 win at Edmonton.

The NLL Weekly Player Awards are determined each week by a vote of the general managers and head coaches of the league’s 11 member clubs.  


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