By Clark DeLeon, Inquirer Staff Writer
A hat trick, a hat trick plus one, and stingy defense were the difference in the championship game of the Major Indoor Lacrosse League, which now has a two-time defending champion – the Philadelphia Wings.
Forwards Brad Kotz and Todd Curry scored seven goals between them last night as the Wings dismantled the New England Blazers, 17-9, at the Centrum.
Kotz, the game’s MVP, scored four goals and added four assists in an all- star performance. Curry pumped in three goals, and crowd-pleaser Lou Deligotti added two.
The Wings had felt confident going into the game because of the return of injured goalie Dwight Maetche, who did not play in the team’s regular-season loss to the Blazers three weeks ago.
New England was the MILL’s Cinderella team, making it to the final after a dismal 1989 season.
Maetche’s play allowed the Wings to build an 8-5 halftime lead. The defending champions were ahead by 15-8 when Blazers fans began to file out of the building with nine minutes to play.
The game opened with both teams exhibiting confidence and sending the message that they had come to run, if not to rumble.
They exchanged goals within the first two minutes.
The Blazers struck first, when Walt Cataldo rolled a bouncer past Maetche with 22 seconds gone. Scott Gabrielson evened the score 1 minute, 13 seconds later.
The game seesawed into the second period, with the Blazers holding a 3-2 advantage that was wiped out in a three-goal barrage less than three minutes into the period. Rickey Fried, Andy Wilson and Mark Kahn provided the goals, giving the Wings their first edge of the game.
With 3:39 remaining in the first half, the Blazers’ Glenn Stevens closed the gap to 5-4, but Curry pumped in two goals in a minute to build a 7-4 lead that lasted until the Blazers scored a power-play goal, capitalizing on the Wings’ second penalty of the night.
Chris Flynn, a former Penn running back and a Wings rookie, answered back 13 second later. Flynn forced goalie John Yeager to drop back into the net, pulling Flynn’s breakaway shot from five feet out with him. That gave the Wings their three-goal halftime lead.
(Philadelphia Inquirer, April 14, 1990)