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HAMILTON, Ontario (February 13, 2022) - Once again, the Halifax Thunderbirds (5-1) used solid first and fourth quarters to emerge with their second consecutive win, a 10-8 besting of the Philadelphia Wings (5-5) at FirstOntario Centre.
A late push from the Wings gave them the lead with 2:36 min. left in the fourth quarter, but a later surge from the Thunderbirds, who scored three goals in the last minute and a half, kept them perfect at FirstOntario Centre this season.
The Wings would open the scoring in the Sunday matinee, the second goal a shorthanded marker from Kevin Crowley. Cody Jamieson broke the ice for the home team with a power play goal, his first of two this quarter. The captain’s power play goals sandwiched Stephan Leblanc’s first of the game, and the Thunderbirds finished the first quarter up 3-2.
Corey Small tied the game at three, the second of six times the game would get tied up this afternoon. A Ryan Terefenko shorthanded goal off the face-off needed a challenge flag from head coach Mike Accursi to overturn the initial no-goal call, but it gave the Thunderbirds the lead back eight seconds after Small’s goal. However, Brett Hickey had the last word of the half on the power play, and the two teams went to the locker rooms tied at four.
Crowley’s second goal of the game gave the Wings the early lead in the third quarter. Jamieson’s hat trick once again tied things up, before Kyle Jackson scored easily when no Wings defender pressured him low on the crease. His goal put the Thunderbirds up 6-5 heading into the fourth quarter.
Jackson scored his second goal two minutes into the fourth, widening the lead to two goals. But a power play marker from Hickey and back-to-back goals from McIntosh gave the visiting team the lead with just over two-and-a-half minutes left in the game.
A huge transition goal from Brad Gillies tied things up for the last time today. With 23 seconds left in the game, Leblanc’s second goal saw him tip-toe on the doorstep to net the game-winner. Tyson Bell tacked on an empty net goal for good measure, and the Thunderbirds improved to 5-1 thanks to a 10-8 score against the Wings.
Jamieson (3G, 2A) and Leblanc (2G, 3A) led the Thunderbirds in scoring with five points each. Jake Witherswon the matchup against prolific face-off player Trevor Baptiste, winning 16 of the 22 draws, all while throwing in an assist, nine loose balls, and three caused turnovers. Warren Hill made 36 saves for an .818 SV%.
Small led the visiting team in scoring with six points (1G, 5A), with both Crowley (2G, 2A) and McIntosh (3G, 1A) finishing with four points apiece. Goalie Zach Higgins made 44 strong saves in net for an .830 Sv%.
The Thunderbirds return to Scotiabank Centre for their first home game since Dec. 10. They welcome the Georgia Swarm (4-5) to The Nest for the first time ever on Saturday, Feb. 19. Face-off is set for 7:00 p.m. AT.
Due to provincial restrictions, there are a limited number of tickets available to Saturday’s game. Fans can secure season tickets to watch the return of championship-calibre professional lacrosse in Halifax by visiting https://ticketatlantic.co/thunderbirds or by calling or texting 902-334-2333.