Thunder's Dixon set to strike back

January 29, 1994|By Steven Kivinski | Steven Kivinski,Contributing Writer

It didn't take Lindsay Dixon long to contribute to the Baltimore Thunder's offense.

Sixty-eight seconds, to be exact.

Dixon, who was acquired by the Thunder via the dispersal draft after the Pittsburgh Bulls franchise folded, scooped up a loose ball in the corner, sprinted in front of the face of the crease and whipped a behind-the-back shot past Detroit goalie Steve Dietrich, giving Baltimore a 1-0 lead in its Major Indoor Lacrosse League opener Jan. 8 at the Baltimore Arena.

Dietrich and the Turbos defeated Baltimore that night, 15-8, but Dixon's two goals and one assist were just three of the reasons Baltimore first-year coach Skip Lichtfuss wanted the Annapolis native on his team.

Here are some others.

"Lindsay is a perfect physical specimen, a pure shooter, has TC real good field presence and great speed," said Lichtfuss, who drafted Dixon out of Towson State while serving as general manager for the Bulls. "He's the guy we look to and he has to get us a couple of goals a game for us to be successful. He is the main guy on the line he runs and he's the guy we look to for scoring."

If that's the case, Dixon may have disappointed his teammates in last Sunday's 17-12 loss to the two-time defending MILL champion Buffalo Bandits, but his one-assist effort didn't change the opinion of his coach.

"The shots didn't fall for him last game, but every athlete has days like that," said Lichtfuss. "He created some opportunities for himself, he just couldn't find the net. Believe me, that won't happen very often."

The 6-foot-2, 205-pound Broadneck graduate wasn't exactly thrilled with his performance in the Thunder's last outing, and he hopes to make up for it tonight against the Boston Blazers at the Baltimore Arena. Enduring a 1-7 season last year at Pittsburgh and an 0-2 start in Baltimore hasn't been fun, but Dixon says he can't be too upset, considering the teams they've faced.

"If you put our team outside, it would be one of best outdoor teams ever assembled, and I still think this can be one of the best indoor teams around, but it's totally different playing against these Canadian-style teams," said Dixon, who was selected the Bulls' Most Valuable Player as a rookie last season after finishing with 17 goals and 11 assists.

Lichtfuss isn't pushing the panic button yet.

"The way I see it," said Lichtfuss, "we've played two of the top three teams in the league and I've already seen a marked improvement. If we continue to make the progress we're making, we'll be in good shape."

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