2-goal spurt gives Hershey revenge, win over Bandits 4-3 victory is atonement for 2 previous home losses

January 21, 1996|By Phil Jackman | Phil Jackman,SUN STAFF

HERSHEY, Pa. -- The Hershey Bears proved beyond a shadow of a doubt, at least on this occasion, how important it is for a team to have three sets of defensemen, or five blue-liners who can go and go and go.

The student in this lesson was Baltimore as the Bears, beaten in their den by the swift-skating Bandits in their past two meetings here, got a measure of revenge with a tough 4-3 victory before 7,085 last night.

While winning for the third time in five games in the 12-game season series between the longtime rivals, the Bears also proved that the race isn't always to the swift.

Made to look like it was skating in sand through much of the first 30 minutes, Hershey used its depth and patience to break away from a 2-2 tie with a pair of scores in little more than a minute after mid-game and ran its unbeaten streak to five games (4-0-1).

"Breakdowns," said Bandits coach Walt Kyle of his team's enthusiastic but fruitless effort. "We knew we'd have to be solid throughout without a solid defenseman like Doug Crossman or Don McSween and, unfortunately, there were a couple of plays when our goalie just had no chance."

While seeing their 4-0-1 success run end, the Bandits didn't submit without a fight.

"We controlled the game for 30 minutes, but after that we were in the [penalty] box," said Kyle. "We gave up a 5-on-3, there was a 10-minute misconduct and other mistakes.

"We made the tempo early [fast], but then they took it [slow and deliberate] and we couldn't get it back."

The Bandits led the Bears a mighty chase until the home team figured out a way to slow them down. And Baltimore helped by taking a half-hour in penalties.

It wasn't so much Hershey being put on the power play since it hit only just one of six attempts, but the fact that the Bandits didn't have use of some of their more reliable players for long stretches as they luxuriated in the penalty box.

Baltimore did an excellent job of stopping Hershey's top scorers, but it was supporting cast members who turned in the goals. Phil Crowe, Chris Herperger and defenseman Jason Bowen scored their third, sixth and fifth goals, respectively, and Scott Morrow (26) and Jim Montgomery (20) were held off the board.

The win gave Hershey 46 points and some breathing room over Baltimore (41) in the battle for the runner-up spot behind Binghamton in the Southern Division.

NOTES: Duane Norris has earned the Bandits' first Player of the Week Award. Norris had three goals and four assists, including a winning score in overtime, over a three-game unbeaten streak before the All-Star break.

Bandits today

Opponent: Portland Pirates

Site: Baltimore Arena

Time: 5 p.m.

Radio: WITH (1230 AM), WAMD (970 AM)

Outlook: Portland belted the Bandits, 7-4, here a month ago despite getting only 16 shots. The winners hit on all three power-play chances. Tough times have hit the AHL affiliate of the Washington Capitals, however, the Pirates winning just one of 11 games and falling deep into the AHL cellar.

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