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Saints send Skipjacks reeling to 'all-time low'


All the Skipjacks can hope to salvage from last night's embarrassment in Newmarket, Ont., is the fact they weren't shut out.

The one goal the team got from Steve Maltais with 25 seconds remaining served not to pacify the team but just to avert complete humiliation.

The Jacks were drilled by the seventh-place Saints 9-1 in what coach Robbie Laird called "an all-time low for our team."

It appeared to start out well, as the Jacks and Saints skated to a scoreless first period.

But Jacks goalie Shawn Simpson surrendered a pair of goals in the first minute of the second period and the Saints led 3-0 by the end of the period.

"I felt good about the game going in and I expected a win," said Laird, who discounted that his team was playing its third game in as many nights. "Even when we were down 3-0 I thought maybe this is the night we would stage a comeback."

Instead, the Saints (19-26-7) repeated their earlier showing, getting two more first-minute goals in the final period, and battered Simpson and the dreadful Jacks defense for four more goals before Maltais got the visitors on the board.

"We have four rookies on defense and we're giving up way too many goals as a team," Laird said. "It's hard to blame all of this on Shawn because he didn't play poorly, especially early in the game."

The Jacks (27-21-3) were outshot 42-35 and 16-8 in the final period.

"All we can do is say that this is the lowest point we're going to reach and pick ourselves up and get a win in Hershey tomorrow," Laird said.

After the Hershey game (7:30, WLIF-AM 1300), the Jacks return home Sunday night for a game with New Haven, their fifth in six nights.

Capitals preview


* WHEN: Tomorrow, 7:35.

* WHERE: Capital Centre.


* OUTLOOK: The Capitals (24-27-3) are looking to build on last night's big overtime win on Long Island with a victory over the Jets (18-29-8), who make the last of two trips into the Capital Centre. The Caps defeated the Jets 3-1 on Oct. 12. The teams finish the season series in Manitoba on March 8. The Caps, who play their next four at home, are without defenseman Rod Langway, who continues to have back pain.

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