KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Baltimore coach Kenny Cooper was pleased by the way the Blast beat the Kansas City Comets last night, 7-6, in overtime.
"They had two goals on shootouts and a power-play goal, and we still figured out a way to win," Cooper said. "It was a great character win."
The Blast, which was forced into an overtime when Kansas City's Jan Goossens scored with two seconds left in regulation, pulled out the victory on Bruce Savage's 35-foot goal1 minute, 29 seconds into the extra period. It was Savage's first overtime goal since Feb. 28, 1987.
"We regrouped on the bench for the overtime," Cooper said. "We couldn't go three games down to Kansas City in the division standings. We wanted to pressure in overtime, not just sit back. Savage got a real good strike on the goal."
Midfielder Billy Ronson scored the hat trick in the first half in helping the Blast build a 5-1 lead. But the completion of a hat trick by ex-Blast forward Carl Valentine, with two shootout goals in the second half, fueled Kansas City's comeback.
The Blast appeared headed for victory in regulation when goalkeeper Scott Manning lunged to his left and stopped a Valentine shot with 29 seconds to go. But the Comets, pressuring with a sixth attacker, tied the score at 6-6 on Chad Ashton's shot that was pushed in by Goossens.
Ronson, who recorded his second hat trick of the season, said the Blast gave a good effort overall. "It doesn't matter who gets the goals as long as we win," he said. "We played total offense and total defense. We didn't come on the road for the joy ride. We came to win. We intend to win at Tacoma Saturday night and go back 2-0."
Comets coach Dave Clements said his team was lax in the first half when the Blast built its four-goal lead.
"Then you take so much out of yourself tying the game up," Clements said. "We've not played for 60 minutes, and that's a killer."
With David Vaudreuil waiting out a two-minute penalty for holding, the Comets took a 1-0 lead at 3:45 of the first period. Valentine, from the right of the box, scored his fifth power-play goal of the season on a shot that deflected off Baltimore defender Ed Reynolds. Only 16 seconds remained in the penalty when Valentine made his 12th goal of the year.
Ronson, a 5-foot-4 midfielder, took over and gave the Blast a 2-1 lead with a pair of goals. He tied the score at 1-1 on a 50-foot rocket 9:31 into the first period. Fifty-one seconds into the second period, he struck again, for his 12th goal of the season.
That was the first of three Blast goals in a little more than five minutes. Richard Chinapoo scored from 55 feet with 3:57 elapsed in the second period, and Mobilio pushed the Blast lead to 4-1 with a score at 5:56 of the period. Mobilio's goal came only 20 seconds after he left the penalty box for a two-minute misconduct violation.
Ronson hit the hat trick on a power-play goal with 50 seconds left in the half. It was the first power-play score allowed by the Comets at home this season.
First quarter--1. Kansas City, Valentine 12 (Hundelt), 3:45; 2. Baltimore, Ronson 11 (Wittman), 9:31. Penalty--Vaudreuil, Balt (boarding), 2:01.
Second quarter--3. Baltimore, Ronson 12 (Panzetta), :57; 4. Baltimore, Chinapoo 7 (Stancovic), 3:57; 5. Baltimore, Mobilio 17 (Troy), 5:56; 6. Ronson 13 (Mitchell), 14:10. Penalties--Mobilion, Balt (misconduct), 2:29; Hundelt, KC (handball), 13:01.
Third quarter--7. Kansas City, Peschisolido 7 (unassisted), 3:48; 8. Kansas City, Valentine 13 (shootout), 11:37; 9. Kansas City, Eck 6 (Kain), 12:16; 10. Wittman 12 (Mobilio), 14:17. Penalties--Fraser, KC (tripping), 4:36; Reynolds, Balt (tripping), 11:37.
Fourth quarter--11. Kansas City, Valentine 14 (shootout), 1:32; 12. Kansas City, Goossens 19 (Ashton), 14:58. Penalties--none.
Overtime--13. Baltimore, Savage 3 (Chinapoo), 1:29. Penalties--Wittman, Balt (tripping, misconduct), 1:32; Wittman, Balt (misconduct, served by Mobilio), 1:32; Gorset, KC (handball). 2:47.
Shots on goal--Baltimore 5-7-5-8-1--26. Kansas City 8-6-13-8-1--36. Goalies--Baltimore, Manning 18 saves; Kansas City, Gorset 7 saves. A--5,453.