Rochester, New York

Saturday, April 28th - Sunday, April 29th

Our first half marathon in the Rochester area - the Flower City Challenge - would, by the end of the weekend, prove to be one of the best we've ever taken part in. From organization, to volunteers, to location, to route - this was top notch, and one we will probably consider doing again next year.

Left on Saturday morning after Mike's hockey tryouts. We drove north, stopping first at Fleet Feet in Syracuse. Jill had won a contest earlier in the week and her prize was a boat load of running gels (she got the chocolate!). Stopped at the Brooklyn Pickle for lunch after hitting up Fleet Feet before making the drive the rest of the way across the Thruway to Roch-cha-cha. Hit up our second Fleet Feet of the day - this time in 'Ridgeway' - to pick up our race stuff. From there, it was onto the Hyatt Downtown Rochester - our new favorite place to stay up there!

Literally a block from the Blue Cross Arena, it was perfectly situated for our weekend. Both the start and finish were at the Blue Cross, as was the Rochester Knighthawks game we went to on Saturday night. Prior to the game, we went to Roncone's Italian Restaurant, a little neighborhood joint Jill found on Yelp that was perfect for our pre-race carb up! Drove back to the hotel after dinner, parked, and walked over to the Knighthawks game at the Blue Cross. After the game, it was back to the hotel to try and get some sleep.

Race time was 7:30 on Sunday morning, and it was a cold start for sure! Twenty-eight degrees on the mercury at the start, but with the sun out and running it didn't take long to warm up. Great course, a little hilly (especially through the cemetery - yes, a cemetery), but this ones a keeper folks! Hit up the post race food inside the Blue Cross before walking back to the hotel. Because we were there with the race, the Hyatt gave us a 2:00 checkout - bonus! Another reason to go back!

A post race celebratory beer and chow was in order at Joe's Crab Shack, which we hit up before getting back on Route 90 and heading home.

Rochester Knighthawks 9, Philadelphia Wings 7

(April 28, 2012) - The Playoffs are coming back to Rochester! The Knighthawks earned their first home postseason game since 2007 after a 9-7 victory tonight over the Philadelphia Wings at The Blue Cross Arena.

Rochester will host the Wings in the Divisional Semifinal Game on Friday, May 4th at 7:30 p.m. Tonights game was the third and final regular season meeting between Rochester and Philadelphia. The Knighthawks won all three meetings to improve to 25-16 all-time against the Wings.

Rochester ended its season with wins in two of its last three games to improve to 7-9 and clinch second place in the East Division. The Wings ended regular season with five straight losses and missed a chance to host a home playoff game for the first time since 2002. Philadelphia finished 7-9 and in third place in the East.

Rookie Stephen Keogh scored a career-high four goals and tied a career best with six points. Matt Vinc was stellar in goal with a 35-save effort. Craig Point (2+1), Joe Walters (1+2) and Johnny Powless (1+2) also all had solid three-point games for Rochester. Brendan Mundorf led Philly with four goals and three assists. Rookie Kevin Crowley recorded four assists and Dan Dawson collected three points (2+1).

In the game, the first quarter saw Rochester take a 2-0 lead early behind goals from Point and Keogh. Point scored on the power play, and just over a minute later Keogh doubled the Knighthawk lead with a goal of his own. Philadelphia quickly responded with two goals in 25 seconds to even the score. Dan Dawson and Drew Westervelt scored the Wings goals.

In the second, Philadelphia took its first lead of the game when Westervelt scored at the 12:07 mark. The lead was short-lived however, as the Knighthawks drew back even with a goal off the stick of Powless less than a minute later. Keogh then scored again for Rochester, giving the Knighthawks the lead at 4-3. The two teams would both go scoreless over the final ten minutes of the half.

At the start of the third, Philadelphia quickly drew even again when Dawson scored on an early power play. Rochester then answered with a power-play goal of its own, a little over a minute later, when Keogh connected on a pass from Jamieson. The goal put the Knighthawks back in front by a goal, and they would not surrender the lead again.

Later in the third, Jarrett Davis extended the Rochester lead to 6-4 at 6:56. Mundorf was able to draw the Wings back within a goal, but Rochester opened the fourth period with four straight goals and never looked back. Point, Keogh, and Joe Walters scored in the rally for the Knighthawk. Mundorf added two more tallies for Philadelphia, but it was little too late.

Before the game, the Knighthawks handed out their team awards. Jamieson was named the Ricoh MVP, while Powless won Thunder Tribe Rookie of the Year honors. Pat McCready won the Army ROTC Defensive Player of the Year. Dylan Evans was honored as the Most Improved Player and Cory Vitarelli earned the Seneca Niagara Casino Unsung Hero. Additionally, Walters, Keogh and Joel White shared the Community Service award.

Trip Notes:

Our seats for the Knighthawks game were Section 117, Row P, Seats 22-23-24.