Thunder rolls in overtime, 11-10 Gait forces extra period, then Hormes' goal wins it

January 18, 1998|By Steven Kivinski | Steven Kivinski,CONTRIBUTING WRITER

Tim Hormes' goal on a perfect pass from Paul Cantabene a little less than two minutes into overtime lifted the Thunder to an 11-10 victory over the Ontario Raiders last night before 3,815 at Baltimore Arena.

The game-winner, which officially came 1: 58 into the five-minute extra period, improved the Thunder's record to 3-0 and helped it surpass last year's win total.

"It's funny, because sitting on the bench I was saying to myself, 'If I could just get out there and get a breakaway, I know I'm going to score,' " said Hormes of Calvert Hall and Washington College. "We didn't really have the numbers on the break, but they were all looking at Paul and I [sneaked] behind them and he hit me and I just shot for the corner."

Gary Gait scored four goals and for the third consecutive game led the Thunder in scoring. Thunder captain Bob Martino added a goal and three assists and teammate Doug Knight had a goal and two assists.

Gait, who had 12 goals and seven assists in the Thunder's first two victories, came to life in the second half, scoring the first of his three third-quarter goals on a power play 22 seconds into the period. Chris Gill returned the margin to three momentarily with his third goal of the game, but an extra-man goal by Knight and consecutive goals by Gait tied it at 8 with one quarter remaining.

The Thunder regained the lead on a goal by Martino, but needed -- and got -- a fourth goal by Gait to tie it at 10 and send it into overtime.

Ontario, an expansion team that took defending champion Rochester into overtime before dropping its opener two weeks ago, scored first when Gill, a former member of the Thunder, scored a power-play goal after only 56 seconds.

The Thunder, which defeated Gait's former team, the Philadelphia Wings, 12-9, on Friday night, tied it on an extra-man goal by Chris Panos. Hormes' power-play goal at the 6: 29 mark put the Thunder ahead 2-1.

Gill ended a string of four straight power-play goals and tied it at 2 when he converted a feed from Jim Veltman while Jonas Derks was serving a two-minute roughing penalty.

Thunder forward Tom Ryan scored the game's first even-strength goal, but the lead was short-lived. Rob Williams found the net on Ontario's next possession.

The Raiders, who were charged with nine of the 15 first-half penalties, scored four consecutive goals to start the second quarter. Consecutive penalties by Tony Millon, who planted one player in front of the penalty box, resulted in quick goals for Ontario.

The Raiders stretched the lead to 7-3 when Derek Malawsky picked off a weak flip pass from goalie Derek Collins (28 saves) to Kip Fulks and tossed it into the vacant net.

Doug Knight ended Ontario's run and hopes of a second-quarter shutout by diving across the crease and slipping a shot past Raiders keeper Bob Watson (37 saves).

Gait, who had five goals and two assists a night earlier against his former team, was not a scoring presence during the penalty-filled first half that ended with the Thunder trailing 7-4.

"I think we've finally turned the corner [from last season's 2-8 team] because we're winning in a lot of different ways," Thunder coach John Tucker said. "We know how to put people away early like the first game, and the Philadelphia game was a war of attrition. Then, tonight, in overtime, we found a way to win. That's the sign of good team."

NOTES: The Thunder will play at Syracuse on Jan. 30 at Onondaga County War Memorial. The Thunder defeated the Smash, 23-13, in the opener. The Thunder will entertain the Philadelphia Wings the next night at Baltimore Arena.

Pub Date: 1/18/98

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