SAINT PAUL, Minn. –The Minnesota Swarm (7-8) defeated the Philadelphia Wings (5-11) 11-9 on Treasure Island Field in front of 9,635 fans at Xcel Energy Center. As part of an NLL initiative to help “Black Out Cancer,” a portion of the proceeds from tonight’s game were donated to the Randy Shaver Cancer Research & Community Fund.
Leading the Swarm in scoring was F Ryan Benesch, (3g, 2a) who recorded a hat trick and broke the Swarm all-time record for most goals scored in a regular season. He now leads the league with 43 goals. The all-time record was previously held by F Aaron Wilson (2a) who notched 40 goals during the 2010 season.
During the fourth quarter, the Swarm offense continued on its third quarter momentum. At the 12:50 mark, Benesch registered a goal, bring the score to 7-7 tie. After Philadelphia quickly regained its lead, T Andrew Watt (2g, 1a) tied the game up at 8-8 after notching his 15th goal of the season. Benesch responded 51 seconds later, giving Minnesota its first lead since early in the first quarter. Forward Mat Giles (1g, 1a) and Watt each notched a goal, sealing the deal for the Swarm.
Goalie Nick Patterson played a complete game and recorded 24 saves on 35 shots.
During the third quarter, F Callum Crawford (2g, 3a) recorded his second goal of the game at the 12:27 mark to bring the score to a 5-3 Philadelphia lead. Benesch posted his 41st goal of the season at the 7:44 mark, decreasing the Wing’s lead to 7-4. Forwards Sean Pollock (1g, 1a) and Kevin Ross (2g, 1a) each collected a goal to end the third quarter at a 7-6 Philadelphia lead.
Coming from behind the net, Crawford posted his first goal of the night during the second quarter bringing Philadelphia’s lead down to 3-2. At halftime, the Swarm trailed the Wings 5-2.
In the first quarter, Ross tallied the first goal of the game for the Swarm at the 7:10 mark. The Swarm trailed the Wings 2-1 at the end of the quarter.
As a team, Minnesota recorded a season-high 60 shots on goal and allowed a season low 35 shots from the Wings.
Forward Ryan Boyle (3g, 1a) led Philadelphia with four points. Goalie Brandon Miller played a complete game for the Wings andmade 49 saves on 60 shots.
Minnesota picked up its first win against an East Division opponent since 2009 when Minnesota defeated the Wings 13-12 on the road on March 14. With the win, the Swarm continues its quest to secure a home playoff game. The team needs to win against the Mammoth next Saturday and have Washington lose tonight to secure a home playoff game.
Prior to the game, Coach Mike Lines pledged to donate $10 per goal scored by the Swarm. After matches from other donors, the Coaches Challenge raised a total of $2,110 for the Randy Shaver Cancer Research & Community Fund.
Minnesota will battle the Colorado Mammoth during the last regular season game next Saturday, April 23 at 7:30 p.m. on Treasure Island Field at Xcel Energy Center during “Rock the Hive.”
Lower level single game tickets can be purchased for as low as $24 for the remaining 2011 home game. Tickets are available online at mnswarm.com or by calling 888-MN-SWARM.