Two Wings Players Debut in Toronto; Lose 12-9

Wings' Zach Higgins
Wings’ Zach Higgins

Last week, Matt Sawyer was blunt when his team didn’t break double-digits on the scoreboard in a losing effort.

“For as poorly as we played, we still had a chance.”

Matt Sawyer; 12/10/2021

Ditto. Except, this time, the Philadelphia Wings are the culprit. It was a tale of two halves. The Wings had the lead at the half, then lost 12-9 in regulation. The second half was dominated by the Toronto Rock, answering Sawyer’s blunt take from the week prior.

Offensively, Philadelphia fell behind for three quarters. Specifically, the Rock dug the Wings grave in the third.

“At halftime, we weren’t too thrilled with how we played, but that six-on-five play got us going.”

Nick Rose; 12/18/2021

Everything fell apart for Philadelphia when Toronto began a scoring run. Reid Reinholdt started the sequence, finishing with a completed hat trick from Rob Hellyer. These goals added insurance. Then, Hellyer ripped a shot from the left-wing, and the ball broke through Zach Higgins’ facemask.

Nolan Clayton replaced Higgins in the fourth quarter. Both teams traded goals until regulation time finished. The Wings fell to 2-1 as a result.

Injury Report

Before faceoff, Matt Sawyer advised that Tom Schreiber would not be available. The forward is currently on injured reserve with teammate Brandon Slade.

At the end of the third quarter, Zach Higgins went down. Rob Hellyer blasted a rocket of a shot through Higgins’ facemask. The goaltender made the save, however. Per Higgins, he’ll be back following the holiday break.

NLL Debuts

Jackson Suboch made his debut with the Philadelphia Wings. The first-round pick in 2020 made a few critical defensive plays, including a blocked shot. Also, Blake McDonald made his debut. McDonald was the only player chosen by the Wings in an open tryout. A “diamond in the rough,” Philadelphia found another defenseman.

For the Toronto Rock, Justin Scott made his debut. In the fourth quarter, he scored his first NLL goal.

Up Next

Next, the Philadelphia Wings (2-1) are back home to defend the home turf against the Georgia Swarm (1-1.)

Opening the season, the Colorado Mammoth was a rude awakening. Then, the Swarm got their win back against the New York Riptide, a mutual victory shared with the Wings.

“Going into this three-week break, we didn’t want that upset stomach for that long.”

Lyle Thompson; 12/12/2021

In all-time meetings, Georgia has the edge on Philadelphia. The Swarm holds a 3-2 record over the Wings. Paul Day hopes his team continues to separate from the pack in the NLL rankings with a rebound.

Lyle Thompson noted how young of a team Georgia is. There is a lot of space for them to grow, but they’ll take on an astute mix of veterans and rookies at the Wells Fargo Center on January 8th, 2022. These two teams always play each other tough. Defeating a roster that includes Thompson and Shayne Jackson would be a confidence boost after a loss to the Toronto Rock.

(Photo Credit: Alex McIntyre)