Thunderbirds Bounce Back, Hand Knighthawks Their First Loss of Season

Jan 27, 2023

HALIFAX, Nova Scotia (January 27, 2023) – The Halifax Thunderbirds (4-3) responded with a statement win on Friday night at Scotiabank Centre. The offence delivered with a diverse effort, and the defence held the Rochester Knighthawks (6-1) to a season-low in goals, the home team posting a 17-7 win.


The Thunderbirds started the game down 2-1, their first goal of the game courtesy of Wake:Riat BowHunter. Austin Shanks tied things up, and Ryan Terefenko went coast to coast to bury the ball and give the home team their first lead of the game.


They would not relinquish it for the rest of the night. Ryan Benesch cashed in off a great feed from Clarke Petterson, and Jake Withers – who was dominant at the face-off dot, going 24-26 – stayed up for an offensive shift and played a perfect two-man game. The Thunderbirds were up after one quarter, 5-2.


The four-goal run would continue into the second, becoming a seven-goal run. Eric Fannell, Cody Jamieson, and Shanks all found the back of the net. Holden Cattoni and Brad Gillies would cut the Thunderbirds’ lead in half. Halftime came with the home team up 8-4.


Two more Knighthawks’ goals started the third quarter. An unreal effort from Chris Boushy disrupted a pass from the goalie, and his pressure on the boards got him the loose ball. He immediately took it to the net to put his team up 9-6.


His efforts would become a run in the fourth that Boushy would eventually cap with his hat trick, chasing the opposing netminder. Shanks’ hat trick was followed by a transition marker from Graeme Hossack and another tally from BowHunter.


Cattoni’s hat trick stopped the bleeding, but his team was down 14-7. Boushy reopened the wound with his hat trick, followed shortly by Petterson’s lone goal of the game. BowHunter recorded his first pro hat trick off an outside rip.


Awarded a penalty shot, the Thunderbirds gave the opportunity to their first-round selection in the 2021 Entry Draft, defenceman Max Wilson, one he buried after two stick fakes for his first pro goal. It was the final tally in the game, the Thunderbirds leaving the Nest with an impressive 17-7 win against the only undefeated team left in the NLL.


Shanks’ eight points (3G,5A) led the Thunderbirds in scoring, as 11 different players recorded a goal in the contest. Petterson (1G, 4A) and Fannell (1G, 3A) were next in points with five and four, respectively. Warren Hill was phenomenal between the pipes, making 43 saves for an .860 Sv%.


The Knighthawks were led by Cattoni with four points (3G, 1A). Rylan Hartley earned the loss after being chased from the pipes 49:33 min. in. He finished the night with a 15.74 GAA and .750 Sv%.


The Thunderbirds return to Scotiabank Centre in February for an inter-conference matchup. They welcome the Calgary Roughnecks (3-2) to the Nest on Saturday, Feb. 4. Face-off is set for 7:00 p.m. AT. Fans can get tickets by visiting or by texting or calling 902-334-2333.

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