Roster openings on line in Arena doubleheader


Hockey fans have a chance to see a doubleheader and th debut of two new coaches at Baltimore Arena when the Baltimore Skipjacks play the Hershey Bears (4:05 p.m.) and the Washington Capitals meet the Philadelphia Flyers (7:35 p.m.).

This will be the first exhibition for the Skipjacks, who will als meet the Bears Tuesday night at the Hersheypark Arena.

Nearly 4,000 tickets had been sold by yesterday for th doubleheader, and a good walk-up is expected, according to a )) Skipjacks spokesman.

This will be the first appearance of Rob Laird, the rookie coach o the Skipjacks, but he isn't the only newcomer. The team's roster features right wing Peter Bondra and defenseman Jiri Vykoukal, both from Czechoslovakia; right wing Thomas Sjogren, from Sweden; and left wing Reggie Savage and goalie Byron Dafoe, (( both former top draft choices of the Capitals.

Other rookies are defensemen Jim Mathieson, Wade Bartley, Ken Lovsin and Rod Mandel; left wings Randy Pearce and Dave Lorentz; centers Victor Gervais and Harry Mews; and right wings Todd Hlushko and Steve Martell.

Veterans scheduled to play today are goalie Shawn Simpson, left wings Steve Seftel and Jeff Greenlaw, and centers Alfie Turcotte and Tyler Larter.

The Bears will also be under a new head coach, Mike Eaves,

former assistant coach of the Flyers.

Washington coach Terry Murray has personnel decisions to make soon at left wing, defense and goal. This is the Capitals' final exhibition game; they begin the regular season Friday against the Pittsburgh Penguins at the Capital Centre.

Kelly Miller, Alan May and Michal Pivonka are entrenched at left wing, and Bob Joyce (ankle injury), Nick Kypreos and rookie Steve Maltais are competing for remaining spot.

Right wings Dino Ciccarelli, John Druce, Steve Leach and Tim Bergland, and centers Mike Ridley, Rob Murray, Peter Zezel and Dale Hunter leave no vacancies.

Mike Lalor is expected to take up a lot of the defensive slack caused by the departure of Scott Stevens -- signed by the St. Louis Blues during the off-season -- and the loss of veteran Neil Sheehy with a fractured ankle. Rod Langway, Bob Rouse and Calle Johansson return to give the Capitals a solid defensive foundation. Defensemen Chris Felix, Bill Houlder, Kent Paynter and Mark Ferner, all of whom played for the Skipjacks last year, are seeking a spot on the Capitals' roster.

Mike Liut is the No. 1 goalie while Don Beaupre remains absent because of a contract dispute. Liut's backups are Jim Hrivnak and rookie Olag Kolzig, who has an injured shoulder.

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