Thunder preview

January 04, 1991|By Doug Brown

VS. PITTSBURGH BULLS

* WHEN: Tomorrow, 8 p.m.

* WHERE: Pittsburgh Civic Arena.

* OUTLOOK: Coach John Stewart will use Tom Manos in the goal in the first half and Jeff Gombar in the second. In last week's season-opening 20-16 loss to the Detroit Turbos, Stewart and general manager Darrell Russell were reminded that it's not wise to play a goalie for an entire Major Indoor Lacrosse League game. The Thunder led at halftime, 11-9, but it wasn't until the fourth period, after Detroit had surged ahead, that Manos replaced Gombar.

"It was a mistake not to pull Jeff at halftime," Russell said. "A goalie has a lot of equipment, and it's an emotional job and he works hard. He gets worn out."

Pittsburgh is led by Brian Nikula, who paced the MILL in goals last season. Among the newcomers drafted by the Bulls are former local stars Tim Hormes and Bob Martino of Washington College, Brian Keith of Navy and Ed Stephenson of Towson State. This is the Bulls' opener; they had a 3-5 record last winter, finishing fifth in the six-team league.

"They're feared throughout the league because they're the most physical team," Russell said. "We're afraid when we play them because we don't know who's going to survive. We like tough lacrosse, but not hitting for hitting's sake like that."

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