Home ice may not be advantage for Jacks

April 19, 1993|By Doug Brown | Doug Brown,Staff Writer

Not that he really needed to, but coach Colin Campbell issued a glowing endorsement of his Binghamton Rangers.

"I don't care how you look at it -- and I respect Baltimore and the effort they put in -- but we are a much better team," Campbell said. "On paper, on ice, any way you look at it."

Few would quarrel with that, even though Binghamton's firs round, best-of-seven AHL playoff series with the Skipjacks is tied at one game apiece after the Rangers' 6-2 victory Saturday night.

The Rangers are the class of the AHL, having set league record for points (124), wins (57) and goals (392). The Skipjacks, seeded No. 4 in the Southern Division, feel fortunate to have stolen Friday night's opener, 4-3, with their disciplined, slow-paced play that frustrated Binghamton.

"Any time you start 1-1 on the road in a playoff, you're happy, said Skipjacks coach Barry Trotz. "A lot of people said there was no way we'd win a game. We did that.

"This series is far from over. We're going to try our best to make life miserable for the Rangers."

The next three games will be played at the Baltimore Arena, all a night, Friday, Saturday and next Monday. Trotz is aware that among the slew of league records Binghamton set was most road victories, 25.

Any hope the Skipjacks had of making it two straight over Bing hamton vanished Saturday night when the Rangers scored two goals within 30 seconds early in the second period for a 4-0 lead.

"That was the real stab in the heart," Trotz said.

Because of injuries, he used only eight forwards and fiv defensemen. Only three of the latter -- Brad Schlegel, John Slaney and Steve Poapst -- were fully healthy.

"Baltimore is a strapped team," Campbell said. "Some key guys aren't with them."

Trotz gave the players yesterday and today off to allow injuries to heal and the spring to return to tired legs.

"I'm glad we don't play until Friday," Trotz said. "We need this time off to get people healthy and rested."

JACKS VS. RANGERS

!(Series tied, 1-1) Results

Skipjacks 4, Binghamton 3

Binghamton 6, Skipjacks 2

Schedule

Date .. .. .. Time .. .. .. .. Site

Friday .. .. ..8:05 .. .. .. Baltimore

Saturday .. .. 8:05 .. .. .. Baltimore

April 26 .. .. 7:05 .. .. .. Baltimore

April 28 .. .. 7:35 .. .. .. Binghamton*

April 30 .. .. 7:35 .. .. .. Binghamton*

* - if necessary

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