Rush win a crucial game over the Wings

The Saskatchewan Rush picked up a 16-12 win in a crucial game over the Philadelphia Wings on Thursday night.

If this game didn’t show up on your schedule, that is because this was the make-up game for a match that was postponed in January due to weather.

This was a crucial game as both teams came into it with a record of 5-8 and battling for a playoff spot. The Rush, at 6-8, now trail the New York Riptide at 7-8 for the final playoff spot.

Saskatchewan got depth scoring as Zach Manns, Clark Walter and Robert Church all had hat tricks. Church finished with eight points followed by Ryan Keenan with seven.

Philadelphia’s defensive woes continued. They gave up 52 shots on net despite winning the faceoff battle 19 to 13. Once again, the Wings started Zach Higgins in goal, and pulled him in favour of Deacan Knott before going back to Higgins.

It was hard to hang the loss on Philly’s offence. They went five-for-five on the power play, although they got off to a slow start with only three goals in the first half.

You Serious Clark?

Clark Walter was a thorn in the side of the Wings in the first quarter with a pair of goals. He opened the scoring at the 3:26 mark.

Robert Church continued his hot hand as he made it 2-0 at 6:30. Saskatchewan extended their lead when defenceman Jake Boudreau stayed out on offence and buried a feed from Keenan at 8:58.

Mitch Jones finally broke the ice for the Wings at 9:21. However, Walter scored his second with 24 seconds left in the quarter as the Rush led 4-1 after the first quarter.

Wings offence struggles in the first half

Saskatchewan’s depth scoring continued while the Wings’ offence struggled with only two goals in the second quarter.

The big forward Mike Triolo found the back of the net for Saskatchewan 32 seconds into the second quarter. Keenan followed that up at 1:13 to put the Rush up 6-1.

Sam LeClair got the Wings back with four at 2:19. Mitch Jones finished off a two-goal run on the power play at 11:08 to make it 6-3.

The Rush rounded out the second-quarter scoring with a two-goal run of their own. Manns scored with 2:43 left on the clock followed by Nathaniel Kozevnikov as the Rush led 8-3 at the half.

Rush continue to dominate

Saskatchewan and Philly exchanged goals to open the second half. LeClair beat Frank Scigliano 1:40 into the third quarter. Mike Messenger replied on transition off a feed from Adam Jay at 3:11.

The Rush’s penalty kill struggled as Ben McIntosh scored at 4:31 to make the score 9-5 for the Rush.

Clark Walter would net his hat trick goal at 5:35 followed by Manns at 6:23 as Saskatchewan went back up by six goals.

LeClair scored his hat trick goal at 10:41, but Keenan rounded out the scoring at 11:35 as the Rush led 12-6 heading into the final frame.

Going goal-for-goal

Both teams exchanged goals in the fourth quarter, which was bad news for the trailing Philadelphia Wings.

McIntosh opened the scoring at 4:10, but Church replied on the power play 50 seconds later to make it 13-7.

Blaze Riorden and Holden Cattoni on the power play scored 1:27 apart to get the Wings within four.

Saskatchewan replied right back with a two-goal run of their own. Bobby Kidd III scored on transition at 9:15 followed by Church 31 seconds later as the Rush went up 15-9.

Joe Resetarits, who had been fairly quiet all game, found the back of the net at 10:06. Manns then replied on the power play at 11:18 to put Saskatchewan up 16-10.

Philly rounded out the scoring with a pair of power-play goals. First Holden Cattoni scored on the man advantage with 2:02 left and would score again with 1:46 on the clock. However, the Wings would fall in this crucial game 16-12.

Top Scorers

Saskatchewan Rush

Robert Church, 3g 5a

Ryan Keenan, 2g 5a

Zach Manns, 3g 2a

Philadelphia Wings

Holden Cattoni, 3g 4a

Mitch Jones, 2g 5a

Blaze Riorden, 1g 5a

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Shawn Slaght
Shawn Slaght

Shawn Slaght has been a sports reporter across the Canadian prairies for over 10 years and has experience covering everything from junior hockey to World Cup skiing to all levels of lacrosse. He is the Saskatchewan correspondent for All Lacrosse All The Time.