The Wichita Wings might have considered it a moral victory. But they didn't. And the Baltimore Blast might have been unhappy with a 7-6 victory against a team playing without its only true goalkeeper. But it wasn't.
"We should have won this game," said Wings defender Kim Roentved. "This was a great chance for us to show we could play our way through adversity."
Said Blast defender Iain Fraser: "We've been on the other side in dodgy games like this that we should have won and didn't. We knew this would be a tough game. We had to play against both a normal offense and a sixth attacker, and we didn't know when they'd play one or the other.
"I think we should have had 10 goals. We didn't, but we did win."
And that's the bottom line for the Blast (12-12), which achieved a .500 record for the fifth time this season.
Now the Blast will try to extend its two-game winning streak, facing the St. Louis Storm today at 2:05 p.m. at the Baltimore Arena.
And Wichita (13-11) will try to regroup this week and find a new goalkeeper -- possibly former Blast goalie Scott Manning -- to replace All-Star Kris Peat.
Peat went up for a ball 10 seconds into the second quarter last night, bumped into teammate Steve Pittman and came down hard on his left side.
"I was falling, and the only thing I could do was to reach out my left hand to break the fall," Peat said after the game.
After a 15-minute delay, he walked off the field, sat on a stretcher and was taken to University of Maryland Hospital. Tests showed Peat hyper-extended his left elbow and pulled the biceps tendon away from the bone.
He is expected to be out from six to eight weeks, which means Wichita coach Roy Turner will be on the phone today, trying to find a replacement.
"Scott Manning is my first choice," Turner said. "He is a great keeper and if he is kind enough to help us out, we would be grateful. I haven't had a chance to talk to him yet, so when he
reads the paper, it might be our first contact."
After Peat went out, most of the 7,709 spectators at the Arena urged the Blast to take full advantage of the situation, screaming, "Go on, go on!"
The Blast quickly took a 2-1 lead when Kevin Sloan scored 38 seconds after Peat left the game. But Wichita hung tough,
trailing by 3-2 at the half.
"At first we were cautious," said Blast goalkeeper Cris Vaccaro, who made 14 saves. "Then in the second half, we became more intense and went forward more. But you've got to give Wichita credit. They fought to the end and they were in it to the end. But we won and a win is a win."
The Blast managed three goals in the third quarter, by Rod Castro, Joe Koziol and Domenic Mobilio. But down 6-3 going into the fourth quarter, the Wings were by no means out of the action.
"We stopped playing for about five minutes in the third quarter," said Wichita's David Byrne, who replaced Peat and played the sixth attacker position for 43 minutes, 15 seconds. "We're the kind of squad that when someone gets injured, you're supposed to cope. We showed we can play. We just didn't take care of business."
Wichita goals by Roentved and Danny Pena tightened things considerably in the fourth.
NOTES: Before last night's game, the Blast signed former Maryland Bays G Steve Powers to a developmental contract for the remainder of the season. . . . Borja became the Wings' all-time leading point scorer (414) with two assists in the first half, passing Erik Rasmussen.