Thursday night at the Toronto Rock Athletic Centre (TRAC) had the Six Nations Chiefs (2-3) facing the Oakville Rock (2-3). The Rock had a long night the previous night against the undefeated Brooklin Lacrosse Club losing 17 -11, and were looking to bounce back against the Chiefs. Six Nations, with their young lineup, had been off all week, and were chomping at the bit to get back to the floor. With players like Tyler Brown, Sam LeClair, Kedoh Hill, and Nonkon Thompson, Six Nations, though young, had a very potent lineup and were going to give Oakville all they could handle, setting up another classic battle in Major Series Lacrosse… #MSLClassic series.
Before the game the players stood together at centre, united in strength, in a pregame friendship circle. A moment of silence was held to honor all disappeared indigenous children, and residential school survivors
During the game the Six Nations Chiefs unveiled their new Jersey for this MSLClassic tournament (courstesy of Uncommon Fit)…showing memorial, and respect to all the victims of Residential Schooling
The goalie match-up had Craig Wende playing back to back games for the Oakville Rock, against Warren Hill for Six Nations.
The start of the first quarter had Craig Wende quite busy making a number of good saves, keeping the score tied at 0. The Chiefs were definately taking the play to the Rock early. Joey Szabo opened the scoring for the Rock at 7:27, after throwing a few fakes then beating Warren Hill to open the game’s scoring. As the period went along Oakville got more opportunities testing Warren Hill quite consistently, but he was up to the task making save after save. Dylan Watson scored with just 2.6 seconds left in the quarter increasing the Rock lead.
After one quarter, Oakville 2, Six Nations 0.
Dylan Watson added to the Rock lead on the power play with a long outside shot just 0:48 seconds into the quarter, but the Chiefs finally answered back when Tyler Brown converted a Nonkon Thompson pass at 1:32. The Rock’s Watson scored his third of the night, again from the outside, just 0:45 seconds later, but Tyler Brown scored his second of the night on an absolute laser from the outside at 2:49. Tyler Brown scored his third of the game off a Nathan Kamminga pass on a pretty give and go play at 6:51, narrowing the game to just a 4-3 lead for Oakville.
The tempo of the game had definitely picked up from the opening quarter, with both teams getting plenty of opportunities.
A solid penalty kill of a double minor penalty by the Six Nations Chiefs kept this a one goal game heading into the half.
At halftime, Oakville 4, Six Nations 3.
The Chiefs put up two quick goals to start the third quarter, taking the lead for the first time in the game. Kedoh Hill found Sam LeClair for the first one, followed by Daylen Hill beating Wende for the other. Oakville’s Ryan Lanchbury scored on the power play at 9:45, followed by Stephen Portelli at 11:19 with a blast past Warren Hill, giving the Rock the lead once again. Henry Follows scored with just 0:11 seconds left and the Rock were up by two heading to the fourth quarter.
After three quarters, Rock 7, Chiefs 5.
The Chiefs pressured right from the start of the quarter, and soon were rewarded. Justin Martin put one behind Wende, followed by Kedoh Hill at 5:06 to tie the game, then Kevin Owen Hill blasted a howitzer at 6:16 giving Six Nations the lead. Sam LeClair added to the lead on the power play at 9:49, then scored again at 10:49.
This was a great back and forth affair most of the night, but with the grind of two tough games in two nights, the Rock didn’t have that extra gear by the end of this game.
Nonkon Thompson put one into the empty net with 0:12.5 seconds left, and that would seal the Rock’s fate on this night.
Final score, Six Nations Chiefs 11, Oakville Rock 7.
Gary Groob has been involved with Lacrosse for the majority of his life, whether playing, coaching, or covering the sport for the media.
An avid fan, with a real drive about helping to “grow the game”, Gary became part of podcasts about the game in 2010. Through the podcasts, Mr. Groob was given an opportunity to write about lacrosse, and the rest as they say, is history.
Through many miles (flying and driving) Gary has made inroads with the National Lacrosse League, Major Series Lacrosse League, the Ontario Lacrosse Association, as well as the Arena Lacrosse League, covering the leagues, their teams, and players, working for, and in concert with all of them.
In the year 2020, Mr. Groob was made the media person for the Arena Lacrosse League, voted onto the board of directors of the Brampton Excelsiors Lacrosse Club, as well as being made administrator of the Lacrosse page “Global Lacrosse” with a membership of 9000 members in over 90 Countries. Gary was also made an administrator of Lacrosse History Past Present and Future in 2022.
Mr. Groob co-hosts a weekly Lacrosse show on Spanglish Sports World, and ZingoTV channel 250, as well as writes a weekly lacrosse column for La Portada Canada News (both in print, and online).
Gary also hosts a Lacrosse talk show and podcast for The Edge of Philly Sports Network, seen live Sunday nights at 9pm (ET), and archived on the Edge of Philly YouTube page, as well as Spotify.
Mr. Groob’s other sports interests include Hockey, Football, Boxing, Wrestling, and Baseball, competing competitively in Boxing and Wrestling for many years.