NLL: Big effort from Philadelphia’s Corey Small leads Wings to win

Rochester Knighthawks v Philadelphia Wings:: 3.26.22 :: Photo By Micheline V

It was an eight-point effort for Corey Small as the Philadelphia Wings broke a four-game losing streak on Saturday evening with a 12-8 win over the Rochester Knighthawks at Blue Cross Arena. Wings’ head coach Paul Day appeared ecstatic that the offense finally seemed to find the back of the net again. Philadelphia has struggled with either offense and defense this season. At the beginning of the season, the offense clicked, while the defense had a hard time slowing down players and forcing turnovers. Then they seemed to switch these last few weeks as the offense reverted back to relying on long shots like they tried in past seasons.  A rebirth of the offense happened early tonight. It seemed to be all Philadelphia on offense in the first half; while it was all Rochester in the penalty box. Tyler Biles dropped his gloves 18 seconds into the game which resulted in a 10-minute game misconduct, a two-minute instigator penalty, and five for fighting. The Knighthawks ended the game with 31 penalty minutes compared to the 10 the Wings had.Kyle Jackson, who signed with the Wings this week, had an immediate impact on Philadelphia’s offense.  His six points seemed to spark the offense while filling a void left by the injured Matt Rambo. But it was Corey Small, whose efforts (including a successful penalty shot), earned him a first star nod.  “We’re playing really unselfishly,” said Small. “We’ve been struggling to score these last few games. [We had to] keep composure and keep doing what we were doing at the beginning of the game. We knew it was going to be a tight one. It’s playoffs for here on out for us.”Rochester managed to come back in the second half. Unfortunately for the Knighthawks, it was too little to win. Rochester’s high scorers were Thomas Hoggarth and Ryan Smith, each with two.  The win keeps Philadelphia in the playoff hunt. They have a short week this week as they face the Buffalo Bandits on Thursday night in Philadelphia for their last home game of the season. Rochester will play Halifax on Friday.