29S, no. 6; newsletter by h.s.)
It is often said that if the Pirates played in a 42:00-minute league they would rival the great teams of the Montreal Canadiens in the '70s. Once again — unfortunately — that adage held true.
Playing in our second of two out-of-division games, the Pirates faced the A-division Bruins and were to looking to keep their three-game win streak alive. In fact, the last loss the Pirates suffered was a narrow 5-4 defeat vs. the A-division Bulldogs back on Week 2. Although Kevin was (again legally) absent for this outing, the Pirates fielded a full ten-man crew: Up front were the lines of Anthony Toscano-The Farkas Bros. and Wildman-Ralz-Dan DiPierro; due to the shortage of blueliners in attendance, Scott LeMatty and Brooks came back to help out Gucci and (a subbing) Joe Baio.
The Pirates weren't shy about about applying pressure right from the first faceoff. Casey had a fair share of shots — and a fair share of help from the post — during the 1st period. I made one save that I was particular proud of (and probably as surprised as anyone) when I gloved-down a breakaway down low in the opening few minutes. The Pirates killed-off an early powerplay, but at the 8:00-minute mark the Bruins were able to net the first tally of the night for the 1-0 lead. Brooks, who had been guarding the blueline, took advantage of some open ice he saw late in the period and went coast-to-coast before tying the game up 1-1. Other memorable highlights included Glenn Farkas doing his Dave Schultz impression after a Bruin repeatedly sticked him in the facemask as he lay on the ground trying to play a loose puck (both players served 4:00 minutes for fighting). Even with all the shots and penalties (including a powerplay opportunity for us in the final 1:30), the period ended in a 1-1 stalemate.
The Bruins applied significantly more pressure in the final period. During a penalty on Tim (he was given 2:00-minutes for watching a player fall), the Bruins were able to keep the puck in the Pirate zone and had us on our heels. Again the penalty-killing unit came up big and late in the period the game was still tied and seemed destined to remain that way. Then, with 2:30-minutes, the Pirates caught what appeared to be a big break: A Bruin got called for a minor and the Pirates got the man-advantage. During the ensuing faceoff though, the worst possible scenario happened: The Bruins got the puck and fired a big, center-ice slapshot through a few players who decided that a shattered shin-bone was too high a price to pay for a tie in the standings. You pretty much know the end of the story by now: In an instant, the puck skipped under my legpad and the Bruins had the 2-1 lead on a shorthanded goal. We regrouped and put the extra skater out there immediately — giving us :45 seconds of a two-man advantage, but couldn't find the twine. In the closing :30 seconds, Wildman had his stick shattered on a tomahawk chop (that fortunately missed his bad wrist), but there wasn't enough time left to organize on the powerplay.
A heartbreaking loss, but one where we showed a lot of heart and that we can play with the A-division guys ... at least for 42:00 minutes.
date of game: 5.06.07
1) BOB BROOKS
For bulking-up the defensive corps (and still netting a goal).
2) JOE BAIO
For a number of big defensive plays (plus I think he brought most of the fans in the stands).