It wasn't the victory that John Grant Jr. and Shawn Williams were looking for after making their first trip Edmonton, but they showed why they're two of the best players in the world.
The Rochester Knighthawks duo scored for eight goals and 14 points in helping the East to a 17-16 overtime victory over the West in yesterday's National Lacrosse League all-star game at Rexall Place.
Williams capped off the night by notching the overtime winner just 29 seconds into the extra frame.
"It still stings; I wanted to get out of Alberta by six o'clock last night, but I couldn't get a ride," said Grant.
"It's nice to get the win here and show the fans it's a great game to watch and it was an exciting overtime game. An Alberta guy wins MVP, so all in all it was a good day."
Grant, Williams and the Knighthawks played the Edmonton Rush for the very first time Saturday afternoon and the Rush ended up beating the defending NLL champions 10-9 in overtime.
Yesterday, the entire East squad was practically silenced as the West stormed out to a 6-1 lead. Grant picked up the pace and scored four points (two goals, two assists) in the second quarter, including a creative one-handed tally.
"The best thing about playing these games is you're playing with so many great players, and sometimes you just start watching them. It's a joy to be out there," said Grant.
He also scored another beauty after faking a pass and freezing the West goaltender before putting the ball in the back of the net.
Williams had one assist in the first half before exploding for three goals and a pair of helpers in the third quarter, before potting the game winner.
"We didn't really have a formal warm-up, so the first half was kind of our warm-up," said Williams.
"As much as it's a fun game, you want to win; you take pride in that rivalry."
West starting goaltender Gee Nash was spectacular in the first half, only allowing one goal in the first quarter and ending his night with 32 saves.
San Jose's Colin Doyle led the West with four goals. His prettiest came on a breakaway where he pulled some magic out of his stick and mesmerized East goaltender Nick Patterson with a series of fakes before stuffing the ball just under the crossbar.
"I don't have a lot of trickery, but that is my go-to move so any time I can get a chance to do it I do," said Doyle.
"I feel bad for goaltenders in that situation, they don't have any defence in front of them, but the fans want to see some of the neat things we can do with our sticks and we try to cater to it."
Calgary Roughnecks forward Dan Carey led the West with six points, including a hat-trick.
QUICK STICKS: A pair of Philadelphia Wings had great nights. Forward Athan Iannucci led all scorers with five helpers, while transition player Geoff Snider had three goals and three assists to take home MVP honours.