Millon's 4 goals power Thunder, 16-6 Defense shuts down Charlotte late in game

January 28, 1996|By Reid Spencer | Reid Spencer,SPECIAL TO THE SUN

CHARLOTTE, N.C — CHARLOTTE, N.C. -- With a four-goal performance from Mark Millon and a defense that was all but impenetrable for the final 22 minutes of the game, Baltimore walloped rookie-laden Charlotte, in a Major Indoor Lacrosse League contest last night at Independence Arena.

The Cobras (0-4) scored back-to-back goals to pull within 8-5 at 8:11 of the third period, but Paul Cantabene and Bob Martino scored 43 seconds apart, at 9:45 and 10:28, to put Baltimore (2-2) firmly in control at 10-5.

Then the Thunder outscored Charlotte 6-1, with the Cobras' only goal occurring with a two-man advantage.

Thunder goalie J. J. Pearl had another splendid night with 32 saves, and when he went to the penalty box for fighting 263-pound Mike Murphy with 8:28 left, back up Bob Watson blanked the Cobras the rest of the way.

"In this league, you're not going to run away from anybody in the first half," said Baltimore coach Skip Lichtfuss, "but I think in the second half our defense really picked it up.

"We picked up our speed, too, and later on in the game, we were fortunate enough to convert a lot of opportunities in transition."

Millon picked up his fourth goal at 9:19 of the final quarter to raise his season total to eight -- tied for the team lead with Tim Hormes, who scored once last night.

Millon opened the scoring for the Thunder 1:11 into the game, taking a pass from Dan Radebaugh, diving across the center and firing low to goalie Dwight Maetche's left.

Baltimore didn't score again until 9:46, when Chris Gill converted a screened shot from the left wing for a 2-0 lead.

On pace to set a league record for fewest goals per game in a season, Charlotte failed to find the net until 11 seconds were gone in the second quarter, when veteran Chris Bates beat Pearl from point-blank range.

That made it 2-1, but Brian Kroneberger countered at :58 with a quick wrist shot from the right wing. Millon, Jeff Klodzen and Martino added second-period power-play goals as the Thunder stretched its lead to 7-3 by the end of the quarter.

Entering the game as the league leader in saves with 136, Maetche stopped only 17 shots against the Thunder, which had 73 shots and put 37 of those attempts on net.

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