Jacks down Bears, 5-4, to end streak

December 12, 1992|By Doug Brown | Doug Brown,Staff Writer

With a revitalized squad resembling the one that opened the season so successfully, the Skipjacks finally ended their losing streak.

They defeated the Hershey Bears, 5-4, last night before 2,791 at the Baltimore Arena, ending their losing streak at six and winning for the first time in eight games, since a Nov. 21 victory over the Utica Devils.

The Skipjacks scored three unanswered goals and overcame a 4-2 deficit in the third period. Mike Boback scored twice within five minutes and Mark Hunter punched in the winning goal with five minutes left.

"I think people left us for dead after Hershey's fourth goal," Skipjacks coach Barry Trotz said. "We began playing out of desperation at that point and came up big."

The turning point, in Trotz's estimation, was Boback's first goal that brought Baltimore within 4-3.

"Then we came at them again and again and really went hard to the net the final 10 minutes," Trotz said. "On the bench, guys were saying, 'Enough is enough.' I changed lines, we picked up the tempo, took their momentum away and actually became dangerous."

The game wasn't two minutes old when Hershey center Glenn Mulvenna was injured in a collision near the boards and had to be carried off the ice on a stretcher. He suffered a sprained left ankle and didn't return.

Predictably, it was the Skipjacks' Reggie Savage who opened the scoring, slipping the puck past Tommy Soderstrom with 4 1/2 minutes gone. Savage led Baltimore in scoring against Hershey last season with 12 goals and six assists.

John Byce marked his return to the lineup by giving Baltimore a 2-0 lead halfway through the first period with his 12th goal of the season. Byce was the team's points leader until he suffered a deep thigh bruise and missed six games.

Soderstrom stiffened in the second period as Hershey made it 2-2 on goals by Tim Tookey (18th of the season) and Toni Porkka.

The recent arrival of several key players from the parent Washington Capitals and the return of others from injuries prompted Trotz to say "the team is back to where it was opening night."

Byce is back, and defenseman Jason Woolley played his first game with the Skipjacks last night. Wool

ley is on a rehab assignment after missing 26 Caps games with a broken wrist.

"Except for [injured goalie] Byron Dafoe, we're back to where we were," Trotz said. "I hope we're the Young Guns again, not the

Pop Guns like we were for a while."

Skipjacks tonight

Opponent: Hamilton Canucks

Site: Baltimore Arena

Time: 7:35

Outlook: Hamilton, a 5-4 loser to Binghamton last night, is a distant last in the AHL's Southern Division. The Canucks are 0-2-1 against Baltimore. They won only one of their first five away games. Stephane Morin is in the AHL's top 20 in points. Eric Murano is second to Morin on Hamilton's points list. The goaltending is shared by Bob Mason, Mike Fountain and Troy Gamble.

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